Barry's Relatively Speaking: They Got Together

Posted on Oct 25, 2012

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

I had come 6,000 miles by plane, train, and car from Washington State to northern Sweden to visit my father's birthplace. Then my cousin showed me a picture of her son by a stone with "Ringvattnet -Per Zakrisson - 1726" on it. It was about 50 miles away --1 had to see it! He was my 4th great grandfather! We drove a long torturous road to the top of the mountain and stopped by a sign which read "Ringvattnet" Where was the stone? A man came out of a nearby house dressed in work clothes and started walking around the back of the house. My cousin called him over.

"Hello, we have brought our cousin who is from America to see this stone with Per Zakrisson on it. He is a descendant of his." I handed him my battered copy of my chart with myself at the bottom and going up to Per Zakrisson and his father, Zakris Larsson, his father, Lars Zakrisson, and his father, Zakris Larsson, who had come from Finland before 1646. He gazed at it for a moment and said loconically, "Yah, I have these ancestors, too."

I nearly died. That I could have come so far, that we happened to stop in front of this house, that he had decided to come out of his house at that time, that he had also been interested enough to find his ancestors. Fate, or someone, brought two descendants of one man, separated by 255 years and 6,000 miles together. Per Zakris-son's first son, Zakris, his ancestor, and his descendants had stayed there, while PerZakrisson's second son, Daniel, my ancestor, and his descendants, had moved on. I wondered later, if somewhere, those people were saying, "Isn't it nice that they got together!"

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