For the past 10 years or so, when I have conducted my genealogical research I have focused on special states and countries. I thought I was lucky since my ancestors seemed to live in just a few states -- Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin and California. Yeah, a few relative retired and died in Florida or Arizona but that was a small minority. One of my grandmother's cousins did live for a time in Minnesota but I thought that was an aberration. However, today I found out that I have relatives and their families who lived and died in other states -- South Carolina, Iowa and more families in Minnesota.
A few weeks ago I "found" my 8th great grandparents Oster and Afra Hober. I was thrilled and so proud of myself until I read a few days later, that I have 1024 8th great grandparents. Okay, well, I only have 1022 left to research! I did for the first time "locate" 8th and 9th cousins. I didn't think those actually existed! My research "discoveries" are begetting more research "discoveries". This is way too fun!
But not all "discoveries" are always happy ones. I did find out that I was related to the Gebhard line (that is good news and we share the common ancestors of Oster and Afra Hober). Upon further inspection, I noticed that the three little boys named William, Charles and Henry (aged 7, 5 and 2) all died on the same day. The above photo is their tombstone. I have to imagine that there was some sort of tragic accident to take the lives of all three little ones on the same day. How very sad it must have been for their parents and siblings!
Back to research ... and this time looking at a few more states ...