- How far back can you trace your family tree?
I'm not the genealogist of the family but my late grandmother kept a lot of records & filled many notebooks with the stories my late grandfather told. I believe my family, at least on my father's side, has been traced back as far as the middle ages in Ireland back when our name was pronounced differently & had an "O" in front of it.
- What is the most interesting (or strange) thing you've heard about one of your relatives?
I've always enjoyed the story behind our family crest, tho' accounts vary depending on which relative I ask. It would seem that back during the aforementioned middle ages one of our family risked his life to protect a nobleman by slaying a bear or some such wild animal & was presented with the honour.
We're also descended from Arthur Middleton, who signed the Declaration of Independence. But as for the most interesting story... well, I plan to write that one myself.
- How do you feel about legacy names like John Henry Smith IV or naming children after other relatives?
I would love to place a Roman numeral after my name but, alas, my grandfather wouldn't have it. My great grandfather, James Andrew N. named his son, James Andrew Jr. But when my father was born grandpa declared "No son of mine is going through the hell of being a 'Junior'!", & thus Dad became Patrick Andrew N. My parents partially continued the tradition by naming me after both my grandfathers & thus I became James Joseph N. I am honoured to be named in such a manner.
- Would you consider yourself and/or your family to be traditional?
I have two parents, a mother & a father, who have been married to each other for the past thirty five and a half years. Sadly, in today's society that is becoming more & more non-traditional.
- What is one tradition you have passed on to your children and/or plan to pass on to them?
I will have no children of my own but one family tradition I will take into my own home is the fondue on Christmas & New Year's eve. It was begun by my parents shortly after they were married simply to make use of an unusual wedding gift so it would not have to be given away.
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