I found, via Out of my Tree Genealogy, a wonderful site called Lives of the First World War. This site aims to have stories for all of those who were involved in the war. From my family, that means great-aunt MARION CALHOUN who was in the VAC and was nursing in England for a time during the war. Also there is grandfather ALEXANDER CALHOUN, who was in the Siberian Expeditionary Force. And the reason that both of those relatives joined was the death of their brother, great-uncle DOUGLAS HANLEY CALHOUN. Doug was an engineer and died in Belgium in 1917. His siblings were so very devastated by his death that they put their regular lives on hold to join the war effort.
This is a truly wonderful site, please go look at it and help, if you can.
I will end with a few pictures of Marion in her VAC uniform…over there!
I love collecting information on our ancestors, but I also love to share that information. First of all, people get really excited when you tell them you have a photo of their great-grandmother, someone that they have some vague idea about. It makes them want to share back. This is what makes genealogy so fun for me. I give things to various newly-found relatives, and they give amazing gems to me.
Today, I called the Grey Roots Museum & Archive. This is the historical society for Grey’s County, Ontario, Canada. Many of my husband’s ancestors came from there. I have a wonderful group photo, circa 1894, that I found in one of my mother-in-law’s albums. This photo has about 75 people in it and she wrote on the reverse side of it:
In back row of those seated — Aunt Helen (Isaac), a man standing behind her has his right hand on her left shoulder (Richard Dixon). To her left, a man then three (all seated) ladies and then my mother (Sarah Jane Isaac), in a white dress and sailor hat.
Cousin James Snell is behind lady leaning over with an umbrella on her lap – black dress.
First row standing – Great Aunt Mary Henderson Geddes and husband William Geddes – near left side of picture. She is in black dress and bonnet.
1894? Dromore Ontario
I was interested in finding out if they could tell me anything more about the photo, but I also wanted to give them a digital copy of it. I want other folks who might have ancestors in this wonderful photo to have the opportunity of seeing it (and possessing it), too.
I don’t know the reason for all these people in the photo to come together. I wonder if it was a church event or a town event. Everyone is dressed to the nines; it’s impressive. This photo gave me a first look at HELEN ISAAC’s first husband, RICHARD DIXON. I got to see my husband’s grandmother, SARAH JANE ISAAC, as a very young woman. I had never even heard of JAMES SNELL before I saw this. And then there are Great Aunt MARY HENDERSON GEDDES and Great Uncle WILLIAM GEDDES…wow.
This photo will help me put together the story of these ancestors. I have some faces to put behind the words that I will write. And I hope someone out there will recognize some of the other faces here, and maybe tell me something about them.
So, here I go, sharing this photo with you. You’re welcome.