I missed Friday evening's broadcast of Who Do You Think You Are? due to the fact I was still installing and configuring my new satellite dish in the motor home. Luckily, I was able to watch the program later on Hulu.com at http://goo.gl/ITtTJ. Best of all, the online version had very few commercials.
In this week's program, Edie Falco wanted to trace her roots to learn about her mother's side of the family. Edie's great-grandfather George took his mother's name Megrath, not his father's name Brown. Edie's family believed his family was from Wales. Edie first found that the 1920 census lists George as 43 years old at the time and his birthplace was Wisconsin with his father listed as born in England. There was no connection to Wales.
Edie went to Milwaukee, Wisconsin to find George's baptismal record. In Milwaukee, she found the record and his father's name was Charles Childs Brown and he was married to a woman named Kate. George was two years old when his parents were divorced. Apparently, Kate took her maiden name again and George was raised with that name, which he used the rest of his life. Kate later became a nun. Further searches found that Kate was born at sea, the daughter of Dorothy and Ralph Kindley, a master mariner from England.
Edie Falco then went to England to search records, ending up in the town of Penzance where Dorothy Kindley died at age 28, just two years after Katherine was baptized. The young daughter apparently was then raised by her grandmother. Edie then learns that Ralph died of fever in 1840 near New York on board a schooner traveling from Africa. Katherine lost both her parents before age 10, explaining why she lived with her grandmother.
While not as compelling a story as some of the earlier episodes featuring other celebrities, this week's episode with Edie Falco perhaps is more typical of what most of us find in our own family trees: hardships, early death due to diseases, and ancestors who emigrated to find better lives.
You can watch the entire episode by clicking on the image below.
Next week's episode of Who Do You Think You Are? will feature actor Rob Lowe. The show is broadcast on Fridays at 8 PM Eastern time. Check your local listings for the time and channel near you.
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