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                                                      An Amazing Story!


    Several years ago I began working on my family's genealogy, picking up where my parent's left off.  I surfed the internet looking for clues to my ancestors and found an ad written by a person who was looking for information on the same Richie ancestors I was looking for.  I sent an email and explained my relationship to this family.  I got a reply back the same day, telling me that I had found a cousin I never knew existed.  Through my mother's side of the family, I found I was cousin to this lady's husband!  I was SO excited!  After our initial exchange of information, Elaine and I kept in touch, emailing each other regularly several times a day.  We found we had much in common and enjoyed sharing our daily lives with each other.  Over the last few years we've jokingly said that she and I must be related because we are just so much alike. 

    I had recently gotten an email from another unknown cousin in Texas, requesting information on ancestors from my father's side of the family.  I replied to her email immediately and made a connection.  She supplied me with the parent's names of my father's maternal grandparent's.  With that new information, I was able to look for and find even more information, going back one more generation.  I was ecstatic!  One night, after I'd received and answered Elaine's last email of the day, I began surfing, looking for more information on this family.  I did a search on Google, looking for the name William Robert Bynum, and for every web site that Google found containing that name, I would check it out.  I believe it was the third page I tried where I found my long lost ancestor.  However, there was a huge surprise waiting for me there.  There was Elaine's name and email address on the same page!  WHY?  I kept reading, and learned that we shared an ancestor!!!!  After all these years of joking about being related, I had found positive proof  that we are in fact COUSINS!!!!! 

    I emailed Elaine immediately and copied the information that I found into the email.  I was almost too excited to sleep that night.  Waiting for her to check her email the next morning was torture!  To find out that I was related to her through my father's side of the family and also to her husband from my mother's side  of the family just blew both of us away!  For several days, Elaine sent me photos and documents and gedcoms, giving me all the information she had on our shared ancestry. 

    I cannot satisfactorily put into words the emotions I experienced from this HUGE discovery.  But my enthusiasm for genealogy has multiplied a thousand fold.  Sometimes those brick walls come tumbling down in the most unexpected ways!

To visit MY COUSIN Elaine's page, go to:  http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~hemlockhill