I Don’t Speak French

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Or for that matter German, Italian, Russian, Portuguese, Latin, ok, the list is lengthy and at times my English has been questionable. Right when my seventh grade French classes would have come in handy, I am pulling up blank. It is a good thing my determination out shines my language skills. Google translate and I have become best friends.


I joined, or I am in the process of attempting to join, two research sites on line. To my chagrin they are both in French. It is getting a bit comical, me with the translate button, trying desperately hard to get information in the correct on line boxes. I even have to translate the email instructions, because, they of course are in French. If I could only reach back far enough in time to crack little me in the head.

Directories, census records and newspaper articles, I can understand. Ask me for information and I can weave a story together to display locations, times and relatives. I can tell you where they lived and who their neighbors were. I understand states, counties and cities and have the general knowledge of distance, here, in the States.


But now I have fallen into the ocean and I cannot swim. I am once again back to the same point when I started my American genealogy. That big old question once again looming; where do I start? It seems every search turns up a zero, and some wonderful people have tried to help. There is no telling if the bits of information that I currently have are even correct past the names that we called them and the boat they floated over on. I just need that one crack in the wall, that “ah ha!” moment when the pieces start falling into place, nice and clear.


The immigration information that I sent for two months ago is still out there, somewhere, just not in my mailbox. I have my fingers crossed that they will contain a key or two that will throw the door open and give me greater insight into the enigmas that call themselves my relatives. At this very moment there isn’t much going on with my family tree unless someone dies, gets married or born.  


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