Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Two Degrees of Separation

I've missed some fun while I've been on hiatus.  One of the fun things I missed was a Saturday Night Genealogy Fun by Randy Seaver over at Genea-Musings.

Here's the scoop:
It's Saturday Night, time for more Genealogy Fun!!

The genealogy world was reminded (again) of how time flies, relatively speaking, by the news that there are two living grandchildren of President John Tyler (1790-1862).  This past week there was the Robert Krulwich blog post about persons knowing people who knew famous people long ago.

For this week's mission (should you decide to accept it), I want you to:

1)  Using your ancestral lines, how far back in time can you go with two degrees of separation?  That means "you knew an ancestor, who knew another ancestor."  When was that second ancestor born?

2)  Tell us in a blog post of your own, in a comment to this blog post, in a status line on Facebook or a stream post on Google Plus.
1) Since I'm somewhat limited for time right now, I'll do one line.  On my Dillman/Day line, I met my great-grandfather Clyde J. Wyman Day back in 1973 before he died.  I was about six years old at the time.  I actually visited him several times, and have some vague memories of him as a tall, thin man, rather soft-spoken. 

Clyde was born way back in 1880.  If I make an assumption that he met his paternal grandfather, James Day of Sheffield, Lorain, Ohio, then my two degrees of separation get me back to 1807, when James Day was born.  This is feasible, as James Day died in 1896, well after Clyde was born.  However, Clyde was born in Weeping Water, Cass, Nebraska, so seeing his grandfather would have involved some fairly serious travel for the time for one or the other of them.  I do not have any evidence that they ever met in person.

One thing I can be sure of, though, is that he knew his father, Frank Milo Day.  Frank was born in 1841 in  the vicinity of Sheffield, Lorain, Ohio, though I'm still working on documenting exactly where.  Frank died in 1920 in Weeping Water, Cass, Nebraska, where Clyde was born and grew up. 

So with reasonable certainty I can get back to 1841 in this experiment, and with some feasible assumptions that are left unproven for now, I can look all the way back to 1807.  How did you do on yours?

This and all other articles on this blog are © copyright 2011 by Daniel G. Dillman