Wednesday, July 4, 2007

How Much Are We Like Our Ancestors?

Our forefathers and foremothers forged this country. How much are we like them now? Could we have done the difficult job of scratching out a farm, town, or country like they did? I've wondered how much of that indomitable spirit is in us after several generations. I hope I carry even a seed of those hardy folks.

Mary and John Nelson came across the plains in a covered wagon. Then my great-grandfather and grandfather opened a mercantile in Fergus Falls, MN. They farmed, ran a store, and preached. I'm from a long line of circuit riding preachers. I think life is busy, can you just imagine?

These pictures are of Mary Charity Hartshorn Nelson, my great-grandmother. Since my grandpa was 80 when I came into the world, I'm a little closer generationally than most people to the early 1800's. Mary was born in 1848. My grandfather in 1883. And, I'm not that old:-) I personally wanted to see if I could see Mary Charity in me. Some feature, look, familiar turn of the head. What do you think?

Have you ever compared yourself to your ancestors to see what you see? Have you wondered if you have any personality quirks that are just like someone above you on the family tree? Have you ever wondered if your grandparents from generations past would be glad to know you? Have you thought about what it cost those who went before to create a life that led to your life?

I'm always full of curiousity, but I'm so thankful for the people that created this nation through adventurous, ambitious, and determined dreams and goals.

PS Come visit my personal blog for a tour of the real Virginia City, MT.


  1. Ang,
    I think your eyes and your hair look like Mary's.
    Hope you had a happy 4th!!

  2. Angie,
    Your profile is the same as Mary's. Interesting post. Yes, I've wondered about my grandparents and great-grandparents. You've got to appreciate how hard our ancestors worked. It has gotten us to where we are today.

  3. Angie,

    Great post. You know how I love researching my family history. You need to record your family history on They provide free webspace just for genealogy. You'd be amazed at all the hundreds of people that have contacted me and sent me photos of my ancestors through other lines and generations that my side of the family didn't have. For anyone who may be interested, my famiy website is:


  4. I don't know how it cut off but that last part is Genhome.htm.