Barry's Relatively Speaking: Just "Browsing" Gets Results!

Posted on Nov 04, 2012

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

It's too bad all libraries don't allow browsing in the stacks, i found my most valuable genealogical information one day while browsing in the New York Public Library.

We knew that my great, great grandfather, Patrick Cassidy, had come from County Fermanagh, Ireland, that he emigrated to Washington, D.C. and that he had written some poetry for newspapers of the era. But we didn't know the town he was from or if we have relatives left there.

On browsing this day I found a book entitled "The Poets of Ireland", containing brief biographies of many minor poets. To my amazement, my ancestor was listed there, along with a note that the poems of a Peter Magennis from Derrygonelly, County Fermanagh were dedicated to him. A letter to the National Library of Ireland produced a copy of Magennis' poem written to my ancestor and telling fo their boyhood together in the hills around Derrygonnelly. A few years later I visited this town and found cousins who knew of this ancestor! What's more, they had a copy of the same poem! I not only had my ancestor's birthplace, I had found our Irish branch as well.

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