Last year, 2011, was affected by my ongoing recovery from Guillain Barre Syndrome, which hospitalized me from October through to mid-December 2010. In February 2011, I returned to work, and yes, I now admit it that was too soon. My recovery and the lingering mobility challenges I face meant that we could not travel as we might have wanted. The impact was no conference attendance! But still, some research work did get successfully completed.
I was able to find and trace the sensational Vermilyea murder that occurred in Belleville, Ontario in 1934 and is connected to my wife's Faulkner family branch. I recounted in a series of posts some of the Irish immigration experience that my family would have experienced in their 19th century immigration to North America.
I was able to scan the four volumes of diaries left by my wife's great grandfather Louis Henry Wagner documenting his experiences from December 1872 through to November 1891, from the time he was in his teen years through his education, his first marriage, the birth of my wife's grandfather, the death of his first wife and eventually through to his second marriage. They provide a fascinating glimpse into life in 19th century rural Ontario, Canada, seen through the experiences of a young man trying to establish himself.
I obtained the court records concerning the trial of my third great grandmother, Rosannah Mitchell (nee Dowds) that lead to a series of posts about the calibre of the evidence used to convict her and send her to prison for eight years.
Most importantly, I was able to connect with a number of 'new' cousins whom I had not had the pleasure of knowing, which then lead to sharing family information and photos. These connections are invaluable to me!
So what beckons in 2012? Well, more recovery and on a personal note, and especially important, is retirement and, with that, the ability to dedicate more quality time to genealogy - attending society meetings my work schedule didn't permit, attending at least one conference, furthering my genealogy education that I have only been able to dabble in.
Most importantly, in 2012, as a retired person, I will be able to spend time doing what I like to do best - hanging out with my wife and sharing all the experiences that life brings us! It should be a great year!