The rumor on my Wife's maternal side had always been that somewhere in their ancestry, they were related to Mary Todd Lincoln -- Abe's beloved wife.
On our anniversary trip to Kentucky some years ago, we traveled across the southern border to the scary town of Jellico, TN to root out some family roots and dig up some long dead relatives...figuratively of course.
We also stumbled upon a wonderful Tennessee History Center about an hours drive south in Knoxville that had an impressive collection of genealogical material related to the area. We dug, we read, we printed and spent the better part of a day piecing together the puzzle pieces of her long dead ancestors.
We ended up at back at the Jellico cemetery taking gravestone etchings with crayons and paper we picked up at the local Dollar store, feeling pretty confident that we knew even less about the origins of the age old family relationship to our 16th President's wife.
Fast forward to a few days ago when my Wife noticed that the local chapter of the Daughter's of the American Revolution(DAR) were holding a meeting to discuss, among other things, possible candidates for year end scholarships.
Now, my Wife was one of those over-achieving scholarship queens at her high school and walked away with considerable spending cash to see her through her first semester of college and the ever important Rush Week.
To me, the whole idea of researching, applying for, and smiling for the local papers photographer as you are handed checks on your way out of town is relatively foreign to me. So with the knowledge that my Wife's pre-college strategy to let her good grades do the talking and donated funds do the walking, it wasn't all that much of a surprise when she shoved the article concerning our local DAR group meeting into my face and said, "our daughter's need to join the American Revolution."
More than a decade away from their first day of Rush Week, I pondered why my beloved was suddenly concerned with our offspring's college funds.
All that much.
But like a 75% off After Christmas Sale banner can draw my Wife's attention from several miles away, through the thickest fog and the haze of millions of swarming locusts, so does the prospect of free money for our daughter's future
Fortunately, our research back in the green hills of her maternal family's stomping grounds did indeed reveal that somewhere back in her patriotic gene pool, she had Grandfathers and assorted relatives (8 generations back - yep, they've been here that long!) that donned the red,white,and blue and raised their muskets in defense of our new nation.
So with a little more research and verification, DAR membership should be in our daughter's future, and their chances for yet another scholarship solidified.
A by-product of all this interest in her Mom's family history rekindled a desire to discover whether or not the Mary Todd Lincoln connection was true or not.
Onto the net I went and what I found...will have to wait for yet another blog posting.