Barry's Relatively Speaking: Revelation Opens the Door

Posted on Oct 06, 2012

Barry's Relatively Speaking shares the personal experiences and stories of genealogists found in the Everton Genealogical Helper Magazine collection on Idane shares the following experience.

With mother's passing in 1975, I inherited the task of answering relatives researching their mutual ancestors, a new interest for me. The years following, I learned the pain of unsuccessful digging and the excitement and joy of discovery.

Finally came the search for mother's paternal grandparents, with only their names, Edward Graham and Matilda McGowan of Joliet, Illinois for reference. In that direction I felt the presence and urging of my Grandpa Tom Graham, dear old gentleman to whom I was closely attached until his death in 1929. But I was unable to make headway.

One afternoon in late 1977 I felt I must take a nap. I dropped into a deep sleep. Suddenly mother was sitting in a chair, looking out the front window. I saw her clearly; her hair was not white as in her last years. As I stood near her, she turned to me and questioned, "Have you checked Wilton Run?" I awoke, trembling from head to foot, and hurried to check an Illinois map - thinking to find some river or country road called Wilton Run. None - but there was Wilton Center in the same county as Joliet.

Needless to say, the research and correspondence following unlocked doors throughout Illinois and Missouri.

For months I dared not tell anyone this experience; the trembling and weeping held me back.

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