Well, looking over my family tree recently, and my introduction to this blog, has shown me that I had a severe case of tunnel vision! In my first post I included a picture of my great grandfather Merritt Walton but I had four great grandfathers – and four great grandmothers too. That means eight lines of ancestors going back and the number doubling with each generation. Looking again at my subtitle for this blog I obviously have to amend it to include lots more than the Walton lineage. I’ve always been sort of proud that one of my direct ancestors (Rev. Wm Walton) was one of the first settlers in Massachusetts. He didn’t come on the Mayflower but he wasn’t far behind. I’ve also been proud that at least four of his great great grandsons fought in the Revolutionary War. That included my 4th great grandfather, William Walton (1743-1823), and three of his brothers. I’m pretty sure some other great great grandsons (my distant cousins) also fought but I haven’t tracked them down yet. I focused on the Walton lineage because one of my grandmother’s maiden name was Walton and I spent a lot of time with her as a young boy. So, I sort of locked on to the Walton name as special to me (which it always will be). But, my direct ancestors also include such illustrious early New England names as Maverick, Conant, Putnam, Hutchinson, Cooke, Edwards, Harris, Prince and others! In some of those lines I also have direct ancestors who served in the Revolutionary War. That’s my grandmother’s paternal side. Her maternal side originated from more southerly colonies and there also can be found some Revolutionary War soldiers! I’m not nearly done tracking down these people yet but I’ll be working on it!!
So, that’s my one grandmother’s side but I had another grandmother and two grandfathers as well. But, these are going to be much tougher. One grandfather was first generation USA born with parents who came over in the mid 1800’s from “Germany” (I put that in quotes because Germany or Prussia was really constantly changing but on census records they usually claimed Germany as their origin). I obviously will have some difficulties tracking my ancestors back along those lines, but I’ll try my best. So, that’s all on my mother’s side of the family – my father’s side presents similar problems. His mother’s parents were from England and had apparently emigrated in the mid to late 1800’s. I know her father’s full name but have only her mother’s first name. My grandfather on that side was first generation USA born whose parents came from Sweden and there was a name change upon arrival (I think) in the USA so that really complicates things.
Well, looks like I’ve got my work cut out for me. But at least I won’t be suffering from tunnel vision any more!