My sister just sent me an article about how bocce is becoming more popular among young'uns - that is, people in their 20s and 30s. The article even goes so far as to explain that for bocce, 20-somethings and 30-somethings really do count as young'uns. I'm wondering if this is related to the phenomenon that is the latest knitting (and crocheting) craze - are we as a generation just now discovering the favorite joys of our grandparents? Just a thought.
Speaking of grandparents and ancestors, I'm still obsessing over genealogy, which I can almost, but not quite, blame on saltcod
. :) (Not really; I have only myself to blame.) I've been poking again at my family tree - the fun comes in because now I can add galagan
's as well - this all has new layers of meaning because of the coming progeny. (And I have saltcod
to thank for help with galagan
's side of things.)
But it's a fascinating endeavor - there are enough branches that go far enough back that when I get tired or frustrated poking at one, there's always another one to switch to. When you get back into the 17th and 18th centuries, they all have the same names, for generations and generations, and it's veryhard to figure out who is who and how they are all connected.
Still no pirates or famous people or royalty or black sheep. I'm working on that.
But. I am particularly intrigued by loops - brothers marrying sisters, for examples, or cousins marrying. (We have a few of each of those.) It makes me realize how a lot of these people had a limited pool of potential partners to choose from (just a few families in a specific area). And the other thing I'm getting fascinated with is childbirth and family size and the implications of pregnancy histories for the women I'm looking at. For the most part, in the 19th century, most of the families had 4-8 children (with some having many more, of course). But in the 17th or 18th centuries, it looks like families of 10-15 children were far more common. And I know that it was a different era and things were different economically and sociologically and all that. You can look at the spacing of children, and see if maternal mortality can be linked directly to a particular child's birthdate. And it occurred to me this morning - most of what I'm looking at is based on existing records - christening/baptism records, census records, marriages, gravestones.... So it is still an incomplete picture of how many pregnancies
there really were. All the miscarriages and stillbirths most likely are not reflected there. So - when I see a list of 10-15 children born circa 1800-1820? That probably means somewhere in the neighborhood of up to 20 pregnancies for that one woman. Wow. It's just amazing to contemplate.
Anyway. These are the things my brain is turning over today.