Echo of the Past documents my journey in rediscovering my roots after my last computer was destroyed and I lost the 10,000 names on my family tree.

I'm an ethnic mutt. My background is varied and the world is small; it's likely that my research will help somebody, somewhere, so please feel free to use me as a source if need be.

Feedback is more than welcome, and I read any and all comments I get. I'm also up for trading links. If you're interested, email me at: PrettySiren@gmail.com with "link request" as the subject line. (Genealogy and history sites/blogs only please.)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Found a Family Pic from 1910!!

I know it's been awhile since I've updated, but that's mainly due to the immense pain of losing all of my research when my last computer had a meltdown. Moral of the story: backup your back ups -- and back those up too.

But I'm back in the genealogy game today, and I came across a rather spectacular find during my first perusal of ancientfaces.com

Click the link to read the poster's description (and also to see who originally posted this). The poster describes Curtis Cole, perhaps his brother Charlie, and some relatives. Well, the time and place were right, so I say, "Mom, come look at this photo, and tell me who the young men on either end are."

And mom comes up and says to me, "That's Grandpa Archie [on the left] and Uncle Bert [on the right]!"

Now, seeing as how the pic is circa 1910, you've probably deduced that Archie can't be Mom's grandpa and nor can Bert be her uncle. That's because Archie is Mom's mom's mom's step-dad. In other words, he's my great-great grandpa (as he adopted my great-grandmother). My great-grandmother's older half-sister, Jess, went on to marry Uncle Bert (her step-uncle). (The announcement literally came in the form of her walking into the living room and saying, "Mom, Dad, I'm marrying Uncle Bert.")

And they were such great guys. I wish I knew them, because not a day goes by where I don't hear a story about the things they did or said. They're very much alive to me, even now. But today (or technically yesterday, now) was the first time I ever saw their faces. (We don't have many family photos.)

On a side note, I will be revamping the layout. I like the background and all, but the narrow width is so 2004 and not conducive to larger photos.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Yeah, I Actually Wrote That: Hey you! Be a human: the compassion post

Yeah, I Actually Wrote That: Hey you! Be a human: the compassion post: As I was eating my breakfast yesterday morning, I stared at the battered, lifeless corpse of former Lybian dictator Muammar Gaddafi, and had...

Wednesday, September 2, 2009


So, it's taken me so long to update, because I've sprained my wrist and it's hard to type. But, I plan on doing an update on my Eckles side of the family. I recently became acquainted with my third cousin on the Eckles side and he had some interesting info, such as facts about their military service, to share. I plan on linking his Civil War site in the post, so stay tuned!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

More Ancestor Articals (and some useful general history articles)

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I've written many articles on my ancestors, historical cousin, and just really on history in general. I've done my research and I've made sure my articles are as historically accurate as possible. Hopefully, my articles will be of some interest to some of you who want to learn more about the people behind the names.

I also wrote some general historical articles that might shed some light into the way our ancestors lived for some people.

*Note: the direct links to the articles are highlighted in red. Simply click, and you will be taken to the correct page.

Ancestor Articles:

1. History and origins of Christianity (For those of you who are able to trace your genealogy back to the Biblical patriarchs. It's a rather general article, but some interesting tidbits as well.)

2. Biography: Queen Christina, King of Sweden (King Christina was modern Europe's first and only female king. She never had any children, but many people alive today are related to her through shared ancestors (which makes her the cousin of many modern people, such as myself).

3. Biography: Philippa of Hainault, Queen Consort of Edward III

4. Biography: Queen Margaret of Scotland (I'm a direct descendant of St. Margaret, Queen of Scotland. She was canonized in the 1200's and a truly inspirational woman.)

5. Biography: Marie Antoinette (Marie Antoinette's direct line of descent has died out, however I and many others alive are her cousins, nieces, nephews, etc.)

6. Biography: Matilda of Boulogne

7. Biography: Blanche of Castile (She was the Queen Consort of her husband and later Dowager Queen and Queen Regent for her son, Louis.)

8. Biography: Mary of Burgundy (Though, personally, I refer to her as Marie de Bourgogne, as that's what she would've been called in her native tongue. Very tragic figure, you lived a short life.)

Historical Articles:

1. The first people of the world (This article takes us back in time spanning from the first bipedal hominids to walk the Earth to the first great city states in ancient times.)

2. What race were the ancient Egyptians? (Where they black? Were they white? Were they from Mars? [Joking on that last one] This article answers the age old question: what race were they?)

3. What is the Stone of Destiny? (This article is definitely a read for anyone who's descended from the Biblical patriarchs, ancient Irish kings, Scottish royalty, or English royalty. It's about the Stone of Destiny, or the Stone of Scone. In its lifetime, the stone was said to have been Jacob's pillow stone in the Bible. It was taken to Ireland and was the Blarney stone. The stone was split and half was given to the King of Scotland. Scottish monarchs were crowned atop it until the English captured it. Scottish college students stole it in the 50's and returned it to Scotland and -- I'll just let you read about it in the article. One thing's for certain though -- that stone's had a helluva rockin' -- pun intended -- life.)

Sunday, August 23, 2009

New Link and Success

New Link

As you can see, if you scroll down to my links, I've added a new link: Elegant Survival. The site is owned and operated by M-J de Mesterton, and its tag-line "Stylish Living on a Shoestring" says it all. I would definitely recommend it to ladies (and gentlemen) of all ages who are interested in refinement.


It took a little a lot of digging, but I've found the first name of Isom Wakefield Sparks's wife (who I mentioned in my previous post). Her name is Amy E. Yocum, my great-great grandmother. I don't know much about her, other than her mother (or was it her grandmother?) lived to be 110. I'm still doing some research on that line, but I've always suspected the "E." in her middle name stood for Elizabeth. She descends from German Catholics whose surname was originally Joachim (it was changed in the early 1800's). I'm not Catholic, so I don't know for sure, but it seems that a lot of the Catholic women in my family tree bear the middle name Elizabeth. But that could just be a stereotypical assumption on my part. (Any one have any ideas?)

One thing I do know about Amy E. Yocum is that she is descendant from a woman named Anna Merkel (I remember this off the top of my head). Through Anna Merkel, I'm the 7th cousin, twice removed, of Laura Bush. (I'm related to her husband three different ways on another side of my family -- but that's a different story.)

So yeah. I've definitely got some more research to do on this line. I've done it before, so it should be difficult now. Right?

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Tada! Family Tree -- Activated

Alright, so I took the lazy option, screen capped it, and then blacked out the names of living relatives. All of my editing looks craptastic, please forgive me for that. But I typed an explanation at the top of what you're exactly seeing, for those who aren't familiar with FamilySearch.org's family tree software.

Family Tree

As you can see, it only goes to the fifth generation. When I talk about certain ancestors on this blog, I might make screen captures of their family tree, so you can see how they're interrelated, etc.

The reason the parents of Paul Jones Campbell and Dorothy Keith are blank is because we know nothing about them. They are my maternal grandfather's parents and our family hasn't spoken to him in almost forty years. If you have any information on the parents of Paul Jones Campbell and Dorothy Keith, I would highly appreciate it.

The only info I have on Paul Jones Campbell is that he was born in 1894, possibly in one of the Carolinas. He died in Alabama (in or near Scotsboro) in the late 70's. Dorothy Keith was born c. 1905. She died at the age of 29, sometime in the 1930's when my grandfather was very young. My grandfather's stepmother claimed that Dorothy Keith was "of the Boston Keiths".

I'm still looking for the first name of Isom (Isum) Spark's wife. I had it on my old computer, so I'm confident, with digging, I'll be able to find it again; however, I know she was a Yocum (and that the family name was originally Joachim before her birth).

EDIT: Because of the layout of this blog, you have to click the photo to see the whole thing, as it's cut off on the blog.

Family Tree

Sooo, I've gotten some feedback and many people are interested in seeing my family tree. Right now, I've got over 1,000 names on there, so I obviously can't post the whole thing. But I'm working on that.

I can either draw it out poorly with my electronic drawing tablet or I can somehow finagle some screen captures that come off as sensible (blacking out the names of living relatives, of course).

But yes. I just wanted to let those who are reading know that I am working on the family tree issue and I should have it resolved soon enough.

Until then,
Stay tuned!

P.S. If you have any suggestions, feel free to let me know!