Thursday, December 15, 2011

Advent Calendar - December 15: Holiday Happenings

This is the 15th of 24 posts for the 2011 Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories, a Geneablogger tradition.

On the 10th Day before Christmas,
my true love inquired to say
Did any ancestors marry on Christmas day?"

1) Select one or more December to mid-January birthdays and/or anniversaries on your family tree.

This, of course, requires knowledge of the birthdays, and anniversaries, of my ancestors and other relatives. What better way to find out than to exercise my genealogy software programs. The RootsMagic 4 program easily makes a list of persons born on specific days and couples with specific wedding days.

In my over 41,000 person database, there are 48 persons born on 25 December, but only one of my known ancestors - Benedict Oatley (1732-1815) - was born on Christmas Day.

Likewise, in my database, there are 40 couples married on Christmas Day. Only one known ancestral couple - Edward Hildreth (1831-1899) and Sophia Newton (1834-1923) was married on Christmas Day.

I had to use the Custom List in RootsMagic 4 to look for the 40 people that died on 25 December, but I found that none of my known ancestors died on that date. I did find that my ancestor, Thomas Wheeler (1621-1704) died on 24 December.

2) Write a short tribute to or memory of those birthday guys and gals and write a toast to the anniversary couples.

I am, of course, thankful that each one of my ancestors were born on the day that they were born, and that they were married on the day that they were married. There are things that happen in a moment that take a lifetime to explain - a birth, a conception, a marriage, a death, or any of the events that each individual experiences in their lifetime.

I wonder if my great-great-grandparents Edward and Sophia (Newton) Hildreth had some sort of special way each year to celebrate their marriage on 25 December 1852. I hope so! They shared 46 wedding anniversaries together.  A toast to Edward and Sophia (Newton) Hildreth - thank you for  your fine New England ancestry (even though Sophia's Newton ancestry is still one of my biggest mysteries!).

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