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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Can I count him as a relation?


jonbem

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In the process of doing the family tree I have found the details of my "Great Grandma's" older brother.

Private 26959    Oxtoby GW, 1 Btn East Yorkshires, KIA 9/4/17

The thing is, my "Great Grandma"   was my Maternal Great Grandfathers 2nd wife, not the mother of my maternal Grandmother.

Also her older brother had been killed in action before she married my Great Grandfather.

So how do I class him as a relative? Is it Step Great Great Uncle?

Also by coincidence he died the same day as my Great Uncle Frederick Ward, on the other maternal branch of grandparents, on 9 April 1917, Battle of Arras.

Although 12 miles separated where they fought and died.

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I guess it depends on how you view things. I started researching the family tree after my maternal grandmother passed away and was only told then that she was grandads second wife who he remarried and raised the 4 children after their blood mother deserted them when they were still toddlers. As such, I have researched and included all step family members as well as the actual blood line as there have been several instances where a second wife or husband has taken over the role of parenting due to the death or desertion of the blood relation. I do try to make it clear on the tree the difference between parents (i.e., colour coding various branches and with research notes) so that anyone who inherits the information can identify the difference between 'actual' blood ancestors and 'step' family lines. 

 

In the case of military personel who are not direct relations (i.e., related by marriage to an aunt, grandparent or a step uncle)., I still do the research but at a more basic level and keep the photos and records on file or in the note section in case a distant cousin who is more directly related gets in contact searching for info. It is then up to them to dig deeper if they choose to do so. The only variation on this is if the individual was married to a direct relation as in the case of my great grandmother who remarried a navy man after her amicable divorce. My grandfather and his brother changed their Italian surname to his by deed poll when the war commenced and joined the army to serve in WW2. They adored their step father and he left a lot of photos of naval ships, submarines, military personel etc., which I have inherited and added to our tree along with the research I have done on his ancestors as he had no blood offspring so feel it is only fitting that he is remembered as part of our family.

 

Various other amateur genealogists I have spoken to use similar methods or keep separate trees for the blood line and step family lines.

 

Hope this helps

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For much of my life, my mothers parents were Grandad and Grandma (see below). Only they werent her parents, they were her uncle and aunt, unofficially adopting her when she was about 12. Born in 1916, there's no father's name on her birth certificate and her mother was the younger sister of Grandad.

 

(Of course, they were and are always Grandad and Grandma. I have little interest in genealogy)

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