Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Falling out of my tree

I have boxes of family photos and memorabilia that travelled with me on my move from Ontario.  I always hoped when I retired that I'd start organizing them.  But I didn't.

However, looking at dad's love letters to mom (see my Valentine's Day post) got me feeling nostaligc and that feeling prompted me to haul those plastic boxes out from under my bed.

What treasures they contain !

My maternal grandma and grandpa
Bert and Sybil Tupman
February 8, 1915

Right now I'm feeling overwhelmed and regretful and excited.  Quite the emotional mix.  Overwhelmed -- because it's hard to know where to start.  Regretful -- because so many pictures hold images of people I can't identify.  I keep wanting to call mom to ask who these people are.  But mom died in 2007 and I didn't take the opportunity to talk to her about them while she was alive. 

And excited -- because I have started.

A lovely sketch by my grandpa, Bert Tupman, from his school-boy days circa 1907.

I don't know how to organize the information I am gathering.  There aren't just photos but six school sketch books of work by my granda Bert Tupman,  a piece of fretwork by his father, James and several birth, death and marriage certificates.

Grandpa Bert Tupman's birth certificate.

I know I want to do a  family tree.  Other family members have already collected some of this information and I need to assimilate that.  I thought I'd use  WORD to create the tree but that didn't work, then I switched to EXCEL but no luck there either.  Right now using small recipe cards to get a sense of who begat whom. 

I found this weathered newspaper artcle from 1925 about my Great grandfather leaving his stationmaster's job in Yeovil, Somerset.  With some difficulty I transcribed the article and saved it in WORD.

OMG !   I just realized something.

All this stuff just relates to the Tupman side of the family.  But there are three other sides to be sorted out!

I'm gonna need  more index cards !


  1. Sybs;
    I think I have the original Birth Cert. Says the same as your copy. Barb has the scrap book with all the other info. Will try to get it back from her. If I remember rightly, GGMarriott was a Thorpe before marriage.

  2. I think we all have the same idea to do this when we retire. I still haven't done mine either, but I did manage to get them all into the same location (step 1 right!). I sometimes forget I can no longer call anyone to help me put names to the faces. My folks were born in the early 1900's so I have lots of really old stuff. They are still fun to look at and I can make up my own stories about the people I don't recognize! Have fun. B.

  3. Sybil, I almost got tears in my eyes reading this post! Makes me want to ask my mom and dad lots of questions while they are still here. Hard to imagine that one day they won't...they are in their upper 70's now. Thanks for visiting my blog. Hope to see you again!

  4. Thanks Betty and Kathy,

    Two sides of the same coin. Kathy you're lucky you still have your folks with you. Don't put it off. Make a date. Get out the pics and ask them. Sometimes, tomorrow never comes.

    I know.


  5. Figuring out how to organize the stuff you have takes some time and thought. I've tried a few different systems, different things work for different people. But when you find or devise a system that works for you things will soon get easier. :)

  6. Ingebrita,

    I'm getting quite excited about it all but also still feeling overwhelmed ...

    Thanks for your encouragement.


  7. Hey "ingebrita" ... you're Barbara,

    Thanks for visiting my site.

    Best wishes, Sybil

  8. Sybil,

    I research the Tupman families around the world. If you would like to know more about your Tupman ancestors then let me know and we can arrange to exchange information.

    Best regards,


  9. Note: I contacted Alan and have since joined his Tupman family facebook page. He continues to urge me on, and shares the information he has collected through the years. I'm now sucking my cousins into this fascinating undertaking.


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