Family History Through the Alphabet Challenge: U is for … Undecided

Week 21 in the Family History Through the Alphabet Challegne, and even after weeks of thinking about the letter U, I still have not come up with anything specific that I wanted to write a whole blog post on … so hence


I did however come throw around a whole bunch of ideas in my head such as:

Un-be-lieve-able … I did actually start a post on this one, but then changed my mind. It is true – what you find while you are research can be simply mind blowing, it can leave you gobsmacked, and is simply UN-BE-LIEVE-ABLE! Stories of bravery and heroism, stories of tragedy and heartbeak, stories of true courage, stories that simply make you go WOW in amazement! Even stories that make you cringe. It is these stories that really makes your family, YOUR family. And guaranteed along the way you’ll find something that you never even imagined was possible, something that is better that fiction!!

Umbrella … For some reason umbrella kept popping into my head. And while it would be cool to have an heirloom umbrella (particularly the parasol kind – love them) sadly I don’t have any, so I had to omit umbrella from my list.

Unidentified Photos … I know we can ALL relate to this one. We have been fortunate enough to have been given old family photos (or copies of them). Yet we don’t know who they are!!! How dare they not name (and date) everyone on them for us!! I mean how inconsiderate of our ancestors to not think of us 😉 … alas, we must be happy to have the photos – names or no names.

Unregistered Births, Deaths and Marriages … I’m sure I have some of these, but none specific come to mind. But for anyone who was born, married or died in Australian prior to the early 1840s you’re gonna be hard pressed to find records as civil registration didn’t start in Australia until around the early 1840s (note: technically it wasn’t Australia then, rather each state was a Colony in itself).

Unit Histories … Anyone that is researching their military ancestors will love finding that a book has been written on their particular military battalion or company. For me I was researching my great grandfather, Otto Rafael Winter (yes, I have mentioned him before). He was in the 50th Battalion AIF, and then transferred to the 1st Tunnelling Company to dig trenches on the Western Front. I have two books that relate to these battalions: Hurcombe’s Hungry Half Hundred is a unit history relating to the 50th Battalion and Beneath Flanders Fields, relates to the Tunnellers.

Unreadable Handwriting … This is another that I sure every researcher can relate to. You’ve searched, and searched and have finally found the census page that your ancestor is on … but, you get to that page and it is unreadble. Although the census enumerators were ‘learned’ the handwriting of some of them is atrocious. This has also been known to happen with certificates, parish registers, passenger lists, and letters … Couldn’t they just write neater, it’d make our life so much easier!!!

So there you go, that’s my batch of U words for the Family History Through the Alphabet Challenge. Can you see why I ended up undecided? Lots of topics, but none that would warrant a full post, well I think not anyway.

5 Responses to “Family History Through the Alphabet Challenge: U is for … Undecided”

  1. Pauleen says:

    Some good ones in there Alona despite you being undecided. You will always need a brolly if you’re out & about researching…hot or cold. As to writing neatly…it’s probably pay back for our own writing 😉 Heaven help anyone who has to read my work notes…thank heavens for computers.

  2. Catherine says:

    Oh… Alona, I saw a movie on TV just last week about the Australian 1st tunnelling company who blue up Hill 60!!!… Think that was the name of the movie? Agree 100% about the UN-BE-LIEVE-ABLE!!! … Read somewhere that a person had given up reading fiction, after researching family history, because that was better than fiction. Almost UN-BE-LIEVE-ABLE, I guess 🙂 Cheers

  3. Alona says:

    Pauleen – I do like you idea of umbrella, always being prepared. Writing neatly, well I’m thankful that my ancestors wrote, as I do love seeing their handwriting – no matter how neat or messy it was. It still adds that extra little bit to them as a person.

    Catherine – Beneath Hill 60 is about the 1st Tunnelling Coy, so yes, I believe my great grandpa would have been there. Admittedly I haven’t watched the movie. I want to – I have ever since it came out, but have slight trepidation also, as I’m sure it’ll put more things into context, and make things seem more real. But I will get to it sometime.

  4. Catherine says:

    Understand what you’re saying about the movie, Alona… indeed I do.
    re: handwriting… am remembering the delight in seeing my “Mysterious Musician” of a Grandfather’s signature on his admission papers to the Canadian Expediionary Force for WW1. 🙂

  5. Fi says:

    Ahhh yes, unbelievable! I’m often heard muttering ‘Oh my giddy aunt!’ when there’s an interesting find.

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