Wednesday, June 8, 2011

After the Athey's (or Is That Athy?)

Mom is busy consolidating the binders in her cabinet. They are organized by family surname and some binders are thick and some meager. So she's combining the thin ones together as it makes sense alphabetically. Guess you have to know Mom;)

She mentioned the Atheys. Who are they, I wondered? I'm a newbie at this family history stuff and trying hard to learn all the surnames that belong to us.

I launched my Family Tree Maker and opened Mom's latest GEDCOM to find that the closest Athey/Athy is my mother's father's mother's sister's husband. That makes him her great great uncle and a non-blood relative. Again I used the Steve Morse One-Step web site at http://www.stevemorse.org/ . Go to the menu in the upper left and look under Vital Records. That gives you a drop down and Relationship Calculator at the top of the last section.

I just love all the work Steve Morse has done and offers free to anyone who can use it. I saw him lecture and met him afterward, thanking him for all the good he has done. Think he's gets a little shy about gushing comments and I was kinda gushing.

But back to the Atheys. Mom had mentioned a book written by Larry Athy and off I go on a hunt for said book and Athy family history. Four hours later, I realize that this is a very fascinating story. Check it out at:

I do love a good story! Then, while I'm driving on an errand, I think wait, he's not a blood relative, is he? I call Mom - hands free on my cell phone - and she thinks maybe he is, but she's got her head in multiple binders, reorganizing. When I get home I check the relationship calculator and sure enough, not a blood relative. (BTW, could have done the same thing in FTM, right?)

So here's my question: am I interested in him at all because he's not a blood relative? Should I keep my story-gathering limited to blood family only? How far should I cast my net? Or not worry too much about that relationship issue and just go gather up good stories wherever they are? Any thoughts?

Enoch Clise 1843 - 1896, also not a blood relative,
but another good story for another day,
In his Civil War uniform. Also married to two
of our Whetstone sisters and mayor of Frostburg, MD, twice.

1 comment:

  1. Be careful using Larry Athy's book as definitive source. He has some errors per some more sophisticated genealogists. My mother is/was an Athey and goes all the way back to Capt. George Athy line (to Ireland). There were a few boards (some taken down) that had a lot of information on the Athy line and some debates. Possibly a better source (although in no way perfect) is Dr. C.E. Athey. I found a copy here: http://www.higginsonbooks.com/genat001h.html

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