Monday, October 22, 2018

Thoughts About Genealogy -- How Much is Enough?

 I dabble in all sorts of things, none of it very well but I am diligent.  One of my pursuits has been my working on my family tree. 

Family history has always been a popular "thing" in my father's side of the family.  The family was fairly historic and it was something the family was very proud of.  There really wasn't a whole lot of research to do as it was pretty much already done, I just had to add to it a bit.

My mother's side was a different story and back in the late 80's she decided she would like to know more about her family so off I go to "discover" her roots.

It hasn't been easy but with I knew a few snippets of information and with the help of some distant cousins I learned a bit more and was gifted with some old photos.

The person I started with was my great-grandmother who was born in Cinderford, Gloucestershire, England.  She moved with her family to Wales when she was about 9 years old and then, as an adult with children of her own she immigrated to the US.  My grandmother lived with my g-grandmother at one time and she told me a few things about her.

The one thing that I learned about my great-grandmother (she had a  name, it was Dinah) was that she was very religious and refused to be photographed.  So, you can imagine how surprised I was when my cousin sent me three photos of great-grandmother Dinah.   Well, I felt I had to share with other members of the family.

So, long story short Dinah has been copied, mailed, emailed, put on Ancestry.com and put on facebook and I can honestly say I feel awful about it.  We all wanted to know our foremother but have we all been terribly disrespectful of her wishes and beliefs? 

I feel she would be appalled at the whole thing if she knew and she would probably hate us all! 

So, how far is too far to go with genealogy?  At what point does the research and sharing become an invasion of privacy? If the person is deceased does it really matter anymore?  I worry about things like this.

Personally, in the case of Dinah, I think we have overstepped the line.