"" Writer's Wanderings: New and Old Country Roots

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

New and Old Country Roots

While my husband came from small town roots (see my Monday post), my family came from two distinctly different areas. My mother's side of the family was southern although Mom never really defined that except to say that my grandmother sure knew how to make Southern Fried Chicken. It has been rumored that the roots for that side go back to John Hancock although I have never seen the proof.

My father's side of the family came from Prague in what was then Bohemia, Czechslovakia. My grandfather came on a ship with his parents and nine siblings and passed through Ellis Island like so many other immigrants did in those days. The story was always told that they lost one daughter in the crowd and confusion. Then they found her years later in Detroit but I never heard what became of her after that. The truly interesting thing was that all of the siblings eventually changed their names to a more Americanized version and none of them were the same.

When we are children and young adults we often don't appreciate the roots we have. I wish I had paid more attention. But the stories are still mine to retell--true or not, they are what were told to me.

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