Four Generations: My mom, Nana, Great-grandma and me in front.

about this blog

From childhood, I have always loved stories about the people who came before us. My Nana loved to tell tales about her younger days and I would sit in rapt attention, even when it was the tenth telling of the story. When my grandparents passed away, I inherited many wonderful photos and old family books. In the interest of sharing these resources with extended family, I started an Ancestry tree in 2009.  Weaving the tree details together became a passion, I love digging into stories and solving the puzzles of who and how our ancestors lived.

Moving beyond a list of records, with this blog, I hope to illustrate a sense of time and place for our forebears. In both heroic moments and times of desperation, these people survived disease-ridden ships, war, slavery, poverty, plagues, natural disasters and other hardships that most of us are hard-pressed to understand today. Still, they survived and passed on a legacy to us. Though we may never know some of the motives for their decisions, I hope through these tales we may appreciate their journey.


When asking my Papa about my heritage as a child, he used to say I was a Heinz 57 (mix of flavors). As I grew older and started researching I found his words to be more than accurate. This site will reflect the diversity of my DNA and my ever-growing extended family. With more than 5000 people in the family tree, I can’t list all of the surnames, but stories are likely to include: Gregoire, Conlin, Stierwalt, Stookey, Seals, Carroll, Rider, Bergey, Hintz, Crosby, Bibbins, Conlin, Ove, Haselhaugen, Finneplassen, Grandpre, Shull, Lavoy, Burg, Ferguson, Rider, Bergey, Strouse, Young, Duffy, Sherlock, Berard, Boudreau, Sycks, Ort, Price, Welborn and Turner. Use the search function (looking glass icon at the top right of the page) to search posts by a particular surname or geographic region.)


All of the memoirs are extrapolated from civil records, personal records, books, newspapers and historical events. I have tried to maintain accuracy in the retelling. Sources for each tale may be found by following the link to my Ancestry.com tree in each post. If you click on the lineage chart snippet at the end of each tale (see example below), it will take you directly to that individual’s Ancestry.com profile. You should be able to view my tree on Ancestry.com with a free account, but if you would like additional information about the tree or sources, please feel free to contact me using the form linked here.

Click on the lineage snippet to access additional information and sources.
I want to help!

If you are a family member and want to contribute to the tree, there are several ways you can help:

  • Take a DNA test and attach it to the family tree (this helps confirm research and connect to new relatives)
  • Ask to be added to the tree as a contributor (as a contributor to the tree you can upload photos and add stories about your part of the tree)
  • Check your attic/basement for old records, photos, books or other cool memorabilia to share with the extended family. The key to unlocking one of our genealogical mysteries could be hiding in a dusty, old box in your closet. I would love the opportunity to help you share it!

Thanks for stopping by. I hope you enjoyed the tales about our ancestors.

Have questions, comments or story ideas? Please drop me a line. I am actively researching our family and would love to make new family connections and share resources.