Dear Uncle Selah,
I think my plan is to spend a little more time on the Irish side of things. Your 3x great grand nephew - my granddad George Beal- married a lass of double sided Irish. Her name being Helen Green(e). Now I parenthesized that last e because it shows up in records and then doesn't. I'm going for the "e is attached" theory until I find something that says that it wasn't. I have fleshed out a couple of generations on the irish side and I've been able to find some records to coroborate other "facts". Thankfully the Town of Natick in Massachusetts has put records up on rootsweb.
The things that are missing are the things that go back to Ireland. I can admit that I'd always had a "romantic" view of the folks leaving Ireland and coming to America during the famine. That is until I read up on it. And by that I mean from articles written by the observers who lived in Ireland during that god-forsaken time. I could say that I'm sorry that I read the articles because I did have nightmares, but I'm not sorry I read them. I am more proud of the ancestors who made it here that I ever was before. To have lived in Ireland during the time of the famine and the starvation and the expulsion is incomprehensible.
I had recently come across some internent addresses for sites that had to do with Irish immigration and just the other day went to visit. The site was http://adminstaff.vassar.edu/sttaylor/FAMINE/ . This site was my reality check. My dear uncle, how naive I have been. Although I have been diligent about finding the ancestors and getting back to the 1500's ( took me about 30 years but I'm there), and finding collateral lines, my filling in of the "time of their lives" has been sadly lacking. So my hope is that 2012 will have me digging a little more into the life and times on the folks.
As I close I must say thank you to you because I know that during the times I get so frustrated it is you who puts the hand on my shoulder and tells me to take a breath. I picture you in a rocking chair and gently guiding me along. How else could I account for the wonderfully "serendipitous" things that have happened?