Monday, 20 May 2013

This blog is designed to allow my extended family an opportunity to learn more about our ancestors and their place in history. Like many of my generation, I have recently taken up the hobby of researching our previously unknown relatives and their stories. I am guilty of of ignoring our family's history until after the deaths of both my wife's and my parents, making the task of recording our story that much more difficult. That said, there are tremendous sources of genealogical information available to us if we take the time to look and use the numerous tools that are currently available.

About the Title

Stella Quarta Decima is Latin for The Fourteenth Star. Fourteen is a recurring number in my research to date. Fourteen is the approximate number of generations that my research covers to date. My great grandmother Sarah was one of fourteen children, the last of the large families in my tree. The longest period of time I worked for one employer was fourteen years. My wife's birthday is the fourteenth of the month. 

As for the star, only a small number of the 7,475 individuals in my tree are well known, but they are all stars to me.  We don't get to chose our relatives, so celebrating their achievements unconditionally seems to me the least we can do.

Lastly, Stella Quarta Decima was the motto of the Republic of Vermont during its short history as an independent nation from 1777 until 1791. During this period, Vermont, prevented from becoming the fourteenth State of the Union by a long standing territorial dispute with New York, apparently toyed with the idea of forming a union with Canada. As we will find out, some of our relatives were equally confused as to which nation they wanted to belong too.

What to Expect

The blog will profile the stories  a number of our more interesting relatives, including both our direct ancestors as well as selected aunts, uncles and cousins. The material posted will consist primarily the research notes and the first draft of my book, tentatively titled Tinker, Nailer, Soldier, Sailer. As I anticipate travelling to Ontario and New England to confirm my initial research, I also plan to post photographs, stories and other research relating to Tinker, Nailer, Soldier, Sailer.