About three years ago, I wrote this little “open letter to Grandma” article for RootsBid.com. It being Thanksgiving, I thought it was a perfect time to bring it back out. Happy Thanksgiving and don’t forget to say ‘thanks’ to ole Grandma for all her ‘help’ in your pursuing the family history!
I am writing to share with you all that has happened as a result of searching the family tree. I also want to thank you for making me a careful and thorough genealogist. I don’t think I could have become one without you.
I particularly learned a lot from trying to figure out how old you really are. It was naïve of me to expect you to give your correct age to the census taker anyway. No dignified lady should tell anyone her true age. And while we are at it, it’s no one’s business how old your kids are either.
Now figuring out who your parents were, that was a trial. Did I say trial? I meant to say the MOST FUN EVER! It was particularly amusing that your kids did not seem to know what your maiden name was. Way to keep them guessing! Kids are so nosy, they just never know when to stop asking questions. Anyway, I was able to confirm my suspicions of your parentage with DNA. I was happy to fork over the few hundred bucks on DNA kits to do so. It was pocket change really.
Oh by the way, I found your marriage record. Not the one for you and Grandpa, the OTHER one. No worries, since you obviously forgot about it, I added it to the family book. I almost didn’t find it since your maiden name was spelled wrong. Seriously, that clerk must have been on something that day because “Creech” doesn’t look anything like “Witt.” It’s almost like he heard you wrong when you told him your name. Cousin Joe suggested you may have lied about your name. I punched him in the nose, how dare he call you a liar! I know if you did give the wrong name (I’m not saying you did,) it was out of love for me. You always wanted me to learn and work hard. Thanks, Grandma.
I want you to know how much I appreciated you filling out all that paperwork for the 1893 act of Congress. Those Five Civilized Tribe Applications for enrollment into the Cherokee tribe were filled with genealogical data that I could not find anywhere else. Sorry you and the kids were rejected by the commission. I know they were wrong about you, Grandma. Anyone who has seen your picture with your dark skin and high cheekbones could tell you were the Indian Princess you always said you were.
Just a few more things. We had some bad news. The diamond ring you left to me, well the jeweler said it was fake. Obviously, he took the real diamond out and replaced it with that piece of glass. By the way, who is Avon?
We took the kids to see your grave site last month. It was a hoot trying to get the van up that mountain. We were so glad you decided to be buried in the pasture, no one would ever think to look there! Your tombstone is totally safe from vandals and it was a particularly good idea to have that bull guarding the area.
Grandma, I really miss you. Sure hope where ever you are, that you are enjoying the journey…just like me.
All my love,
P.S. The family bible with no names in it. Priceless. I am still trying to figure out how to get the invisible ink to show, but don’t worry, I love these little games you left me!