Echoes from the Past
The Port of Greenock, Scotland, where my
Carmichael and McCormick ancestors
departed for America.
The Scottish Emigrant's Farewell

Fareweel, fareweel, my native hame, thy lanely glens and heath clad mountains,
Fareweel thy fields o' storied fame, thy leafy shaws and sparkling fountains.
Nae mair I'll climb the Pentlands steep, nor wander by the Esk's clear river,
I seek a hame far o'er the deep, my native land, fareweel, forever.

Thou land we' love an' freedom crown'd, in ilk wee cot and lordly dwelling
May many hearted youth be found, and maids in ev'ry grace excelling;
The land where Bruce and Wallace wight, for freedom fought in days o' danger,
Ne'er crouch'd to proud usurpin' might, but foremost stood, wrongs' stern avenger.

Tho' far frae thee, my native shore, an' toss'd on life's tempestuous ocean,
My heart, aye Scottish to the core, shall cling to thee wi warm devotion,
An' while the waving heather grows, an' onward rows the winding river,
The toast be "Scotland's broomy knowes, her mountains, rocks and glens forever!"

-- Author Unknown
Why Me?

Why me...
This is a tedious task, much work,
Not a great tree, my family,
Not any kind of tree,
A spindly twig...
A sapling of little importance,
No forest giant we.

Ethereal whispers,
Persuasive, soft and still:
"Daughter, if you don't remember us...
Who will?"

-- Dot Stutter
Grannie's Hielan' Hame

Where the heather bells are blooming just outside Granny's door,
Where as laddies there we played in the days of long ago,
Neath the shadow of Ben Bhragie and Golspie's loudly stane,
How I wish that I could see my Granny's Hielan' hame.
Away in the Hielands there stands a wee hoose, it stands on the breast of the brae,
Where we played as laddies sae long, long ago, and it seems it was just yesterday.
I can still see old Granny, a smile on her face, as sweet as the heather dew,
She kissed me goodbye, wi' a tear in her eye and said, "Laddie, may God bless you."

-- Author Unknown
My family's ancestry is very old," said one club member, trying to impress the group.  "We
can be traced back to the early kings of Europe."  Then, turning to a lady sitting nearby,
she asked, "And how old is your family, my dear?"  "I don't really know," replied the lady
with a sweet smile.  "All of our family records were lost in the Great Flood."
We are all omnibuses in which our ancestors ride, and every now and then,
one of them sticks his head out and embarrasses us.  
-- Oliver Wendell Holmes
My Great-Grandparents

I am like her, so they say, who was gone ere I was born,
And I walk the self-same way on the paths her feet have worn.

I am like him, so they say, who was gone before I came,
Cheeks and mouth and eyes of gray have been fashioned much the same.

There is that within my face and the way I hold my head
Which seems strangely to replace those who long have joined the dead.

This across the distance far in the body housing me
Both my great-grandparents are kept alive in memory.

-- Edgar A. Guest
I've been doing family history for nearly 30 years,
Diligently tracing my illustrious forebears,
From Pigeon Lake to Peterborough, Penrith to Penzance,
My band of ancestors has led me quite a dance.
Cooks from Kents and guards from Gwent and chimney sweeps from Chester,
There's several cousins, twice-removed, who lived in old Leicester,
There's no one rich or famous, no not even well-to-do,
Though an uncle's second wife's nephew played in goal for Crewe.
I've haunted record offices from Gillingham to Jarrow,
The little grey cells of my mind would humble Hercule Poirot.
I've deciphered bad handwriting that would shame a three year old,
And brought the black sheep of the family back into the fold.
My bride of just 5 minutes, I left standing in the church,
As I nipped into the graveyard for a spot of quick research.
Eventually, I found an ancestor, 90 years deceased,
Who was far more entertaining than a silly wedding feast.
After just 4 months of wedded bliss, my wife became despondent
And named the public records office as a co-respondent.
I didn't even notice when she packed her bags and went,
I was looking for great-granddad's will, who'd died in Stoke on Trent.
But now my 30 year obsession's lying in the bin,
Last Tuesday week, I heard some news that made me pack it in.
'Twas then my darling mother, who is not long for this earth,
Decided to tell me...they'd adopted me at birth!

-- Author Unknown
How many ancestors do you have?

2 parents
4 grandparents
8 g-grandparents
16 gg-grandparents
32 ggg-grandparents
64 gggg-grandparents
128 ggggg-grandparents
256 gggggg-grandparents
512 ggggggg-grandparents
1024 gggggggg-grandparents
2048 ggggggggg-grandparents
4096 gggggggggg-grandparents
8192 ggggggggggg-grandparents
16,184 gggggggggggg-grandparents
32,768 ggggggggggggg-grandparents
65,536 gggggggggggggg-grandparents
131,072 ggggggggggggggg-grandparents
262,144 gggggggggggggggg-grandparents
524,288 ggggggggggggggggg-grandparents
1,048,576 gggggggggggggggggg-grandparents

That should keep you busy for awhile!