Friday, September 14, 2007

How an Internet Cousin Shattered a Brick Wall and Made Me Want to Kiss Her

Dee. What can I tell you about Dee? Dee and I both descend from George Washington Lynch and Catherine Good Lynch. She descends from daughter Laura, and I descend from son John Perry. It was my mom who found Dee, or maybe it was Dee who found mom. Whatever the case, the two connected and collaborated on finding Lynch family information.

Dee was responsible for sending us a picture of Catherine, of giving us an insight into George's raucous character, and in general, filling in the blanks. We in turn contributed information about the Ohio branch of the tree, added parents for Catherine, and helped build a bridge to our mutual Virginia ancestry. All this collaboration and neither side had ever met or spoken a single syllable to the other. Our connection was an Internet driven one, fueled by the magic of e-mail. And oh, what e-mail. Dee has what I think might be the Lynch flair for telling a story. And funny! When Dee's on a roll, her e-mail is down right hysterical, her observations filled with dry wit. Though I have many Internet Cousins that I truly like, Dee's unique. Dee is Dee.

Dee is also tough. I have been trying for years to connect George Washington's father, Daniel Lynch, with a William Lynch that lived in Crawford County, Illinois. William's genealogy went back two more generations and if I could connect the two, I would automatically have two more generations in our Lynch line. I had found a ton of circumstantial evidence. Each new piece of information was sent to Dee.

Dee's response? That's nice. (Yawn.) Not Proof.

Every time. EVERY - SINGLE - MADDENING - TIME! I knew in my heart that they were linked, but Dee kept me honest. Dee kept me working. Dee kept me banging my head against a brick wall!

And just like that the brick wall was broken, shattered to pieces. And not by any of my endless hours of research. A letter, of all things, shattered the wall; a letter that Dee found among her deceased Aunt's papers. Dated September 3, 1944, the letter was from a Hannah Richardson. Dee, bless her heart, didn't abstract the letter for me. Not Dee, she typed every little word in the letter and e-mailed it to both my mother and me. Hannah, as it turns out was William's daughter, and she talked in the letter about Uncle Dan, our Dan! The whole family relationship was laid out in brick-by-brick detail. And just like that, we gained two more generations of Lynch information. Ah, Dee, I could just kiss you!

Until next time — Happy Ancestral Digging!

Note this post first published online, September 14, 2007, at Desktop Genealogist Blog at The News-Messenger Online

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