It’s time for some family history! I don’t remember if I told you in the past, but one of the reasons that I’m obsessed with Scotland is that this is one of the places where my ancestors are from. I grew up in a family that is very much into genealogy and knowing where we came from. My dream of seeing Scotland with my own eyes finally came true in December of 2002 when my friends David Hammond, Dominoe Reed, James Jenkins, Nicole Hayes, Makaylee Jensen, Julie Linton and myself went on a little vacation to the United Kingdom.
Years later, these are the memories that I still hold from this trip:
- Staying at the Amsterdam Hotel in London, not too far from Hyde Park
- Eating my first “proper” fish & chips
- Visiting the mission home (Dave had recently returned home from serving in London as a full-time missionary.
- Eating a battered Mars Bar at the Maid Miriam Cafe’ in Nottingham (close to the statue of Robin Hood)
- Seeing Westminster Abbey and Big Ben for the first time
- Learning that Tower Bridge is not London Bridge and that the original London Bridge had been sold so some guy in Arizona
- Strutting down the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Walk
- Seeing the Tower of London and the Queen Jewels
Since there were seven of us, and we were in the U.K. for seven days, each of us chose what we wanted to do for the day. I remember Julie’s day was going to see Wimbledon since she is very much into playing tennis. On James’ day, we took the rental car down to Wales, since that’s one of the places where his ancestors came from. I remember going to Stonehenge on somebody’s day and trying to figure out how those people lifted those heavy stones, so many years ago.
On my day, we drove the rental car up to Scotland and stood on the bank of Loch Lomond, and this was where Dave and I even sang the song, Loch Lomond.
On my dad’s side of the family, I have a lot of the surname Wallace. I thought it would be cool if I could find some link to William Wallace (of Braveheart fame). Sadly, there’s no record of William Wallace ever having children. Odds are he had illegitimate offspring, though. Back then, a favorite past time for the young men was to shag any girl who would let you (or didn’t necessarily let you).
On my mother’s side of the family, I have always been told that the surname Lee comes from Ireland. Sure enough, I followed their chart into Ireland as far as I could. I soon discovered that before Ireland, many of them also came over from Scotland (just like my dad’s side of the family). If the records I’ve seen are correct, I have links to royalty (James II of Scotland and Robert the Bruce), it is quite possible that my dad’s ancestors actually paid taxes to my mom’s ancestors!
I have found a line that links me to kings’ of England, Scotland, France, Prussia, and Wessex!