Friday, April 29, 2016


Elizabeth O'Neal of the Little Bytes of Life blog is reviving the old genealogy blog carnivals with her Genealogy Blog Party challenges. Her first one has a Doctor Who theme where I could visit an ancestor as the Doctor's companion or be a Time Lord myself and the ancestor would be my companion. I would have the opportunity to ask the ancestor any questions. I could help them solve a problem or decide to tell them I was their descendant. It sounded like a fun idea for a blog post.   

So, if I were a Time Lord....

First of all, my name would be Doctor Whowhatwhenwhyandhow. (That's the original family name.The other guy had his named shortened at Ellis Island). Being a traditionalist, I'd dress in a big coat, wear a floppy hat and wear a loooong scarf. And the first thing I'd do is....break the rules!

Why are you surprised? The other guy breaks them all the time.

Then I'd take my TARDIS back to Boston in 1820 to....

Wait! I need a Companion (and here's where I break the rules). I make a stop first in Charlestown,
Massachusetts in the year 1805, to persuade a young lady named Anne Mayhew to take an adventure and go on a short trip with me. Once we're inside the  T.A.R.D.I.S I engage her in a
conversation and ask her about her parents, and their grandparents. I make sure to have K-9 my
robot dog record everything we talk about so I have a record. After all, it's not every day one gets to talk with their 4 x great grandmother.

Eventually we arrive at my destination, Boston in 1820 where we leave the TARDIS and seek out a young apprentice blacksmith named John Cutter West. I tell him I have a blacksmith business in Maine for sale and ask if he'd be interested in buying it. But first, he'd have to tell me about himself because I want to be sure I'm selling it to a man of character. I suggest the three of us go to a local tavern for something to eat while we discuss the matter.

All goes as planned. I get young John to tell me about his family, where he was born, what life was like in the town he grew up in as K-9 records it all through the small microphone on the collar of my coat. The mystery of my 3x great grandfather's  parentage is solved at last.

As the night wears on I notice Anne and John exchanging long glances and realize there is a danger
to the space time continuum and my very existence if nature takes it's course. I bring the conversation
to an end by telling John I have others I need to meet before I sell my business. I help Anne out of her chair and after bidding John goodnight, walk her back to the TARDIS.

We return to 1805 Charlestown. I had decided to tell neither of my ancestors who I am. Better to keep things simple. We say goodbye and I return to the 21st century. I've broken down two brick walls on my family tree in one trip.

My TARDIS sits in the back yard cleverly disguised as a yellow tool shed, waiting for our next
trip. There's the mystery of the identity of my 5x great grandfather Caleb Coburn's wife yet to be solved.


Linda Stufflebean said...

Great story. I love that you used the idea of selling a business to a "man of character" as your ruse to get to know him.

Nancy said...

How fun, Bill. And how creative of you to solve two mysteries with one trip. I must remember that the next time I have a trip to go back in time.