Something I've always loved about this hobby is the thoughtfulness and kindness found within the genealogical community, with most people sharing their finds and helping out.
Today this was exemplified by two emails which arrived in my inbox overnight from one of the lovely people who belong to Find A Grave (wonderful site where you may often be able to find headstones in far distant cemeteries).
He had photographed the headstone of George E & Eda M (CRAWFORD) HENDERSON, and then gone on to do some research about them, found my WorldConnect db and brought the headstone photo to my attention. Not only that, but suggested that I also look in the same cemetery, Mountain View Memorial Park, Barstow, San Bernardino Co, California, for their son George C HENDERSON. He hadn't submitted the latter's headstone photo, but the lovely people who had, also had his obituary listed, which has enabled me to track down at least some of the descendants on Facebook. Don't yet know if they are at all interested in their HENDERSON ancestry, time will tell.
Another recent story is that of the far flung impact of a casual comment after a committee meeting last week.
One member mentioned that his family solicitor was a FAIRBAIRN, and he'd mentioned to him that he knew someone (me) heavily into researching FAIRBAIRNs.
At this point in the story I was privately a bit dismissive as very few of the FAIRBAIRNs in New Zealand appear to come from the Scottish Borders families that I'm researching most heavily. He then mentioned that the chap concerned had been born in Samoa. Likelihood of connection didn't rise at this point, but I did remember that many years ago I'd squirreled away some information about a James FAIRBAIRN of Glasgow who had been a policeman in Samoa. Again, no known connection, just information that may well come to be of use later. And so it turned out.
I pulled out the information and re-examined it for further clues, "just in case".
Sure enough, this was the solicitor's father, and I found sufficient information to identify James' birth in Govan in 1901, shortly after the Scottish census for that year. By now you'll have guessed there's a point to this story. No, at the time I'd squirrelled away the information I had no known interest whatsoever in Glaswegian policeman. But time moves on. Descendants of the family of James and Mary Bell/Mabel (THOMSON) FAIRBAIRN had moved to Glasgow, and yes, this James was one of them.
I've been searching all over the world for this family, found descendants in Washington State, Brisbane, Leicester, knew some had emigrated to Canada, and only recently had found one of them in Saskatchewan in the 1916 census on the FamilySearch Record pilot (which resource seems to have vanished now, so timing was everything there). But no-one ever knew any had come to NZ, let alone were living in my next door town.
Alf and I have now met, and he has provided some more leads for families in the States, and we've swapped our known information. Now I have to work to co-opt him into the FAIRBAIRN dna project to determine whether or not, and if so, how closely, our respective Eckford families may be related.