My Family tree journey

my family history journey

Over 15 years ago my Uncle gave me a very battered shoe box that he had inherited from his mum, my grandmother and as it later turned out, it seems she had inherited the box from her mother. The box contained around 50 or so photos ranging from me as a 3 year old (so mid 1970s) to a photo which can be dated to around 1870!  What an absolute treasure trove!

I then discovered in the bottom of that old shoe box the postcard on the left. Dear Emma, It started… I had no idea who my namesake was or how she was related to me but I made it my mission to find out and so my journey began…

some of my family photos from that box

Going back in time

It didn’t take me long to find out that Emma was, in fact, my Great grandmother and the postcard was written by Maud, her sister.  Not only that but their parents were Emmanuel & Sarah Start (pictured on the left) and eventually I found out that the name Emma or Emmanuel, dependent on sex, has run in the family for at least 300 years!

My research took me back through time, primarily in Lincolnshire, to reveal that my ancesters were farmers, ale house keepers and yet more farmers.  As I had always had a keen interest in social history, my enthusiasm for historical research was ignited and set me on a path that has become an obsession to uncover the next piece of the puzzle.  Slowly my ancestors started to come to life and I discovered torrid love affairs, illegitimate children, impossibly romantic runaways and tragic stories of prisoners of war.

While some branches of the tree have so far proven impossible to get much further back than 1780 others have led to long lost wealth and nobility dating as far back as 1480.