Monday, February 6, 2012

Swedes in Texas – Finder of Lost Cousins, et al.

Submitted by Pat DuBose

As a youngster growing up, I was not inquisitive, nor do I recall my cousins being curious, about where our Swedish grandparents came from or how they got to the small South Texas farming community of Kenedy in Karnes County.  I remember the slight mention that my mother was of English/Scottish descent when we were with her parents and siblings, but neither side of the family showed the slightest interest in genealogy.  My dad worked for a very large oil field services corporation that moved its employees around every few years as they were needed elsewhere, so there were 5 moves before I finished high school.  We visited Kenedy over the years, perhaps only yearly, so I didn’t learn all that my Kenedy cousins learned about either side of the family.

Fast forward, through my 53-year marriage to a South Carolina native and the rearing of our two sons, to a time recently when my husband began to write a book containing family stories he heard as he grew up.  Now, the DuBose family is very well documented, and the history in America began in 1686, when 4 brothers emigrated from Dieppe, Normandy, France, settling in what is now South Carolina. 

I learned from the Sumter branch of the DuBoses to be aware of and very interested in genealogy.  They are noted for seeing humor in life and for being good story tellers - my husband’s book will contain those stories heard at the dinner table, family picnics, and reunions over the years.

All that interest in ancestors and stories stirred in me an intense desire to look for my family.  I joined and, after dredging up long-forgotten bits and facts, began to collect family members.  I reconnected with first cousins in Texas, and through, found a young second cousin there who shares my interest in genealogy.  We exchanged information and facts we remembered about our Swedish and English/Scottish ancestry.  It was a beginning, but it was not much.

The most exciting and important accident I have experienced in my young genealogical life, however, was finding the Web edition of the book, Swedes in Texas, in Pictures and Words.  The person responsible for scanning and editing this treasure is David Borg, and through exchanging emails with him, I became acquainted with (subset of What a bonanza that website has been!  Through the site, I have exchanged information and photos with a heretofore unknown Swedish cousin in California and 2 more I never knew existed in Texas.  I now have stories, names and photographs of ancestors I never knew, and I would never have made such connections without this website and that book.  What a thrill!  What a satisfying and heartwarming experience this continues to be.  So many blanks have been filled.  I am so very grateful, and I’m excited to go on with the journey. 

Pat DuBose

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