Welcome to my family history blog.

In 1985 my sister and I started planning our parents 50th Wedding Anniversary. I decided I wanted to honor them and the families that came together through their marriage to create our family. After the anniversary my sister wanted to join in what had become for me an exciting hobby.
We decided that she would take the paternal line and I would concentrate on the maternal line. It’s been 29 years and be have both learned a lot.
2014 is going to be the year I get truly organized. While I’m working on the stacks that need purging, filed, or organized I thought I would tell the stories that I have found during my searching. Hopefully my sister will take turns with me and share the stories of the ancestors she has met during this process.

Ada Richmal Heap
Ada Richmal Heap

Story 1       John Lyle Dougherty
John Lyle is our maternal great grandfather. Our grandmother…….
This is already complicated. Maybe I should actually start with the cast of characters

Simple Tree
Simple Tree

Grandma Dougherty was a very large character while we were growing up. Grandma & Grandpa Dougherty did not live close but we (my sister & I) spent a month or so with them every summer until we were teenagers. Grandma was good at telling us stories. Often these stories were about her family (the Heap’s) that lived back on Staten Island in New York.

The Heap Family
The Heap Family
The Heap Family Home May 1914 - Staten Island New York
The Heap Family Home May 1914 – Staten Island New York# 1 story

“My mothers family are the Booth’s,” she reminded us,” and we are not only related to the man that shot Abraham Lincoln (John Wilkes Booth) but to the man himself.”
She went on to say that she had a cousin that came from England to attend the wedding of a cousin (or niece) of Mr. Lincoln. This information is just one of those tidbits that I never forgot and when I started this search I wanted to prove. Well in all my searching I have never found any connection to either man.

Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
John Wilkes Booth
John Wilkes Booth

Story #2

My grandmother went to the Salvation Army thrift store at least once while we were visiting each summer. She always wore white gloves, and a hat, a lady of her era.

JE Dougherty & Ada R. Dougherty

She would rummage through the stacks of clothing looking for sweaters that she could use the yarn from to make her hooked rugs. She was a true recycler. She had the rugs she made throughout her home and we all had one at one time or other. I loved them. She would then go through all the silverware looking for true ‘silver’ ware. And last she would look at all the dishes looking for hand painted china and she also looked for “good pieces’ of crystal. When grandma got home the first thing she did was dump all the silver and dishes she had bought into hot soapy water and then take off her gloves and wash the gloves in the same soapy water. My collections and my sister’s collections include some of her finds.

Story #3
“You know about the Booths, did you know that the founder of the Salvation Army was one of our relatives.” This was an explanation of why she always went to the Salvation Army thrift story, better known to all of us in the family as the ‘U know where!’
I do not know who coined the term but my money’s on grandma.

William Booth
William Booth

My search to verify a connection to William Booth founder of the Salvation Army has again produced nothing.

Return next week to find out about the civil war connection

8 thoughts on “52 Ancestors: #1 Getting Started

  1. Pop (Ron Dougherty) sent me the link to your blog. This has been fun to read and very interesting. I look forward to reading more!

  2. Great Ada, I have been fascinated over the years how my siblings and remember different things. For instance if I were writing this I would say we went to the “u know where” every weeks during the summer months we were thereAlso I do not remember her washing those white gloves along with all the silverware. I do remember unraveling all that yarn and rewinding into balls

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