Sunday, March 16, 2014

Cousins: so close and yet so far apart ~but not for long

I have connected with yet another cousin I didn't know about!. His name is Paul Schuler.  As it turns out Paul is into Genealogy too. Actually much more dedicated then I am.  He is a huge contributor to the website named Find a Grave. For those of you not familiar with Find a Grave it's a wonderful (free) site for locating you guessed it: graves and other forms of final resting places! It's staffed by volunteers and Paul has contributed to over 9300 memorials.

Paul and I are 3rd cousins as we share the same great great grandparents: Moses and Eliza Saunders.
Now get this. We both were raised in Stockton Ca, only 10 years apart in age, and we didn't know we existed.   Go figure!

I have 1st, 2nd and 3rd cousins and I refer to them all as 'cousins'.  I plan on continuing with this but took this as a opportunity to brush up on the correct definitions.  When I went and researched (you know: Googled) I found lots of complicated descriptions and diagrams. The following explanation  seems pretty easy to follow:
    • First cousins are the people in your family who have two of the same grandparents as you.
    • Second cousins have the same great-grandparents as you, but not the same grandparents.
    • Third cousins have in common two great-great-grandparents and their ancestors.
When cousins descend from common ancestors by a different number of generations they are called “removed.”     
    • Once removed means there is a difference of one generation. Your mother's first cousin would be your first cousin, once removed. She is one generation younger than your grandparents and you are two generations younger than your grandparents.
    • Twice removed means that there is a two-generation difference. Your grandmother's first cousin would be your first cousin, twice removed because you are separated by two generations.
I found the above information at Genealogy

So where did Paul and I meet today? The San Joaquin Catholic Cemetery of course! He was there adding more memorials to Find a Grave.  While we were there he showed me a family plot I wasn't aware of. It belongs to Laura (Saunders) and Andrew Blossom. I would not of known this by looking at the headstone as their names are NOT on the marker. Please please don't do this!  Names are very helpful.  Luckily the marker had the birth & death years, plus most of their children are in the same plot so Paul figured it out.
I'm oh so happy for more family/genealogy connections!

 Thanks for sharing your time with me!