The Pride of Penzance

Mark J. Price wrote an article in the Akron Beacon Journal (OH), about a genealogist who started out to document her grandfather’s genealogy, and ended up writing the history of a colony of Cornish immigrants from the early 1900s.
Excerpt from the article:

Afaraway land whispered to Linda Mann. She could not ignore its lilting call.

Her grandfather, Richard Henry Mann Jr., had told many interesting tales about his native Cornwall, England. He spoke of the Vine Cottage on Trewarveneth Street in his hometown of Newlyn. He described exotic locales such as Penzance, Mousehole, St. Michael’s Mount, Zennor and Land’s End.

“I used to hear my grandpa tell about the stories over there,” the 58-year-old Akron woman said. “It intrigued me because he had this Cornish accent, and I just had to see the place. I had to see what he was talking about.”

In 1988, Linda Mann took a vacation to the southwest tip of England, a former tin-mining region better known today for its fishing and farming. In a sense, she never came back.

I wish I had more time – there are some areas around my family’s history that I’d like to really research and then write about. I could easily see myself in this woman’s place, and I know I’m not the only one. Many of us trying to research our family’s history will find ourselves easily sidetracked. You start accumulating information about an area or an event in an ancestor’s life, and you find more information, and you think “I can’t just discard this information, even if it doesn’t pertain to my family”.

With the web being the way it is, there is an opportunity to take the little bits of information we pick up, that might not be the most relevant concerning our family’s genealogy, and to put it out there on a page or two, and go add it to Google and Yahoo. Chances are, somebody somewhere is doing some research that is in parallel to your own, and while you may have different surnames and families, at some point your family shared a common history.

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