Genealogy Friday: Listen to your intuition

posted in: Case Study, Genealogy | 1

Several weeks ago I was in an area of the state where my ancestors lived.  I’d not been through that area on a genealogy trip in years and decided to drive around and acquaint myself with the roads.

Scenery when driving around
Scenery when driving around

I decided to drive around and see if I could remember where my McKee ancestors lives.  I’d not been to their land in 15-20 years and could not remember where the land was located.  I couldn’t even remember who had shown us around.  I did know that the person that went on the last trip with me was deceased.  So I had little hope of finding the area.

Yet, it was worth a try.

I had a church to use as a landmark to start.  I began driving around aimlessly in hopes of finding this land.  I wasn’t very confident I’d have any success.

I began to remember how roads connected and put together the pieces in my mind the way you would put together a puzzle.  I passed by one road and something nudged me to turn around and go down a certain road, that included one the surnames related to the McKee’s.

I drove up and down that road twice and something seemed very familiar.  I could feel that I was in McKee territory in my heart.

Oct17111I looked over one house and noticed how the land had all of the landmarks I remembered.  I pulled up into the driveway and talked with the owner.  However, she was young, had just moved to the house and had no information.

I knew it was worth a try, but I was disappointed not to have any more information.

Riding up and down the road I came to a screeching halt in front of a house.  I knew this house.  It is on our family history website, but that’s not why I know the house.  I know the chimney.

I remembered the 15+ years ago that I was told that the chimney was the only original part of the house.  The chimney was built by my McKee ancestor that lived there.

Seeing a truck in the drive way, I was tempted to pull in and talk with the owner.  However, I talked myself out of it.  I’d do it next week when I was back in the area I said.

I continued to drive around the streets and make more landmark connections.  Three times I drove past the road and house again.

I recognized the chimney as the one my 4xG-Grandfather built
I recognized the chimney as the one my 4xG-Grandfather built

I could hear a voice saying “Stop now”.  This seemed foolish and I tried to talk myself out of it but I couldn’t.  The feeling wouldn’t leave me.

So I pulled into the drive and said a silent prayer that I would not get shot.  I had no idea who lived there and what the people were like.

I knocked on the front door several times but no answer.  I went around to the side door and knocked several times but again no answer.  The door was open to the screen door, so I knew someone was home.

I was about to leave, when I heard voices coming across the yard.

I walked over and explained why I was there.  “This may sound silly, but my family lived here 200 years ago I began…”

Beautiful view
Beautiful view

Yeah, what would you say to that?

We talked and I discovered the family was moving out of state and new owners were moving in in five days.  I was shocked, yet pleased, when the family offered to show me through the house.

Wow! I didn’t expect that.

I went on the tour and learned the history of the house.

When I saw the original mantle and chimney from 200 years ago that MY ANCESTOR built, I asked if I could take pictures.  The family was kind enough to grant me permission.

I was amazed at the craftsmanship of this chimney.  This was heavy rock that had been rock masoned.

On top of that the original stone foundation was still barely visible and I was able to take pictures.

The owners even told me about pictures showing the original house, but the new owners had these pictures.  I left my contact information.  We’ll see if they contact me.

I never expected to find this house, but I knew what it was when I first saw it.  This was only because I’d been there years earlier. Oct17_79

I never expected to learn more history of the house, but I did by stopping to speak with the owners.

I never, ever expected a tour of the house and was blessed with just that.

I never expected to be able to take more pictures of the house, but I was able to.

I even received two signs that I had done the right things.  I could feel my ancestors reaching out through the bonds and boundaries of time to speak to me.

I thought about that intuition I had and almost ignored.  How much would I have missed if I’d put off stopping the way I originally planned?

There are occasions when I can feel my ancestors guiding and prompting me.  Today was one of those.

I was so glad that I listened.

Have you ever felt your ancestors guiding and directing you?


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