Sunday, March 24, 2013

Searching for Cousins

On the way home from RootsTech 2013, my husband and I stopped in Baker City, Oregon overnight. While we were snowbirding in Arizona this winter, we met a couple from Baker City and it occurred to me to share several obituaries for tangential Bartshe family members [we're talking 4th cousins here] I had obtained last year. Much to my surprise, these folks were good friends with one of the Bartshe granddaughters who had lived and died in Baker City and were able to put me in touch with her daughter. We arranged to have dinner last night in Baker City. Not only did the daughter come, but she also brought her uncle, brother to these sisters and grandson of John Riley Bartshe, my great-great-grandfather's first cousin.
We spent almost 3 hours sharing stories about our families. I'm sure the waitress was wondering if we'd ever leave! Cousin Joe told some fascinating stories about how his father's family came to eastern Oregon. And at 78 he's still farming the same land settled back in 1860.
I tried not to snow my newfound cousins with all of my research during dinner, but will be sending them a packet of information soon. They had made copies of a few old photos for me and I promised to send them digital copies of family photos I have.
I'm hoping this encounter will lead to a long and productive relationship. Have any of you had success connecting with previously unknown cousins? I'd love to read your stories.

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