Thursday, August 28, 2014

August 2014

August 2014 has been a very busy month for me with very little transcription done of the Blake wills. As always it is a busy gardening time and we uprooted a crab apple tree that we have wanted to take out for a few years. It is always hard for me to remove a tree - they live a long time and in their lifetime see so very much. This tree doesn't have quite such a long history only 35 years but still it was sad watching it come down. Helping to be the remover of its being. I simply love trees. They are one of the many gifts God gave to us. We still have two large trees and they will prosper from the loss of this one using up the ground water. In all we have removed six trees over time from our property. Six trees that we actually put in. But now we have another three trees behind us which the City planted and they are spreading out and covering the end of our property (we back on a main road). Our yard is becoming quite dark by mid afternoon with all the tree cover around us on both sides so this one little crab apple tree will not be missed. I have made jelly and juice from the fruit of that crab apple tree and it was the sweetest crab apple product I ever tasted. The bees likely crossed the apple tree next door with the crab apple so that the fruit was just a little bigger and sweeter than it would have been.

But I digress. This next week will be my week to return to Cornwall trees and hopefully I will manage to get something up this time. It will take me a day or so to get back into momentum with this Blake line. My find yesterday in the Pipe Rolls makes my look back in Cornwall ever the more interesting because this too is an old Blake line. Are they all descendant of the le Blak family of Rouen, Normandy? Did they choose the name spontaneously because of the actual word Blak which has the meaning of fair from the French Gaelic or dark from the Old English. My own line was somewhat fair as my grandfather had grey/blue eyes and he used to comment that his sisters were fair haired and blue eyed. I am the only one of my siblings with a blue eye ring but my eyes would be called hazel rather than green or gray, there is some brown in my eyes.

My other grandfather also had grey eyes but the hair colouring was definitely quite dark. Learning lately from Britains DNA that the predominant eye colour in the British Isles is blue was something I didn't know before. Tempting to test my brother for blue eye colour and I may do that in a bit. Testing at two or three different companies is quite interesting (I have tested our yDNA at FT DNA, National Genographic and Britains DNA; our mtDNA at FT DNA, National Genographic, Britains DNA and Sorenson and our atDNA at FT DNA, National Genographic, Britains DNA and hopefully we will be able to test at Ancestry through my cousin. That is to come and I am quite excited as ancestry has a huge database. Once they open their testing to Canada I shall get my brother to test there as well. We have an amazing number of matches with people in the USA but only one ancestral line here in the Western Hempshere on our direct line - my mother, her father and his mother. I can on occasion be helpful to people looking for their ancestral location when they match me on particular lines where I have traced down all the children back in the 1700s.

Back to the New Brunswick 1921 census and I will complete that tomorrow. I want to then group the families into another couple of blogs and see what I have learned about the descendants of Captain John Blake. I then need to have a look at the OPRs for Scotland where this family is said to be ancestral to and investigate the couple of baptisms there in the right time frame. It would not be that unusual for descendants of the Blake family of Somerset to disappear into Scotland after the Glorious Restoration of King Charles II to the throne of England. They would certainly not have been very favoured given the role they played during the days of Cromwell.

This month has flown by quickly but the long dark days of winter will soon give me more time to work on my genealogy. I have promised to give a talk on one name studies after Christmas to the Ottawa Branch of the Ontario Genealogical Society. This will be the very last one as I really do not want to take the time to work on these talks. It is valuable time to my studies. But it is also nice to explain the idea of one name studies and it does encourage me to look at the larger picture of what I am doing and even make changes in my approach on occasion.

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