Every once and awhile, it’s really good to do something different in your research. I find it keeps me from getting burned out on my larger goals and lets me have a little bit of fun. I was on my way home from a frustrating day at the DMV when I decided I was going to find out once and for all who Bell Brodie is.
My first step is to gather what I can from the letter. I’ll probably have to come back to this letter and re-analyze it many more times. I hope that I’ll be able to find more nuggets of detail as I learn more. To start though, I want to just have something to get me jump started.
- Bell Brodie is writing to her “Dear Cousin”.
- The letter is dated for September 1866 and is addressed from London.
- Bell mentions that “Your mother and Alick” were staying with Bell. She even addresses the woman staying with her as Aunt several times in the letter.
- Bell calls the person she is writing to, “Dear Jennie” in the middle of the letter.
- Bell mentions the fun they had when she sailed up the Hudson in New York. Though she says next that she wished Jennie and Alick had been there at the time.
- Bell tells Jennie several things to tell Alick, making it seem like Alick is not present even though in the beginning she mentioned he’d been staying with her 10 days.
- On the 3rd page, Bell mentions Jennie’s mother again and this time mentions “Allie/Attie/Altie” sending his love to Jennie and his father.
- Bell mentions Sister Hellen is getting married the next week and will live at Port Stanly.
These are the more obvious clues I picked from the letter. I’m going to start with these and go from there. If you’ve picked out anything more obvious that can help identify Bell Brodie, please let me know! I welcome any assistance.
Without even consulting my family tree file, I also know this letter came from the records of my Great Grandmother Llewellyn. This means it’s connected to my paternal Moore/Thorward lines in the New Jersey and New York area.
I’m not in any rush for this project. What I’m really trying to do, is learn how to be smarter about all the information that I have on hand. I feel like I might be missing some vital information that’s hiding between the lines. It’s all part of the process on being a more experienced, and more advanced genealogy researcher.