Saturday, August 13, 2011

Family History, Cambridge and Carrying On


Dear Family and Friends,

It’s always interesting to talk to the patrons about their research. A couple of days ago I was doing a scan from the microfilm of a parish register. I asked the patron if it was someone in heimager family and she explain that she was doing a family history for a friend and the record was the marriage of her friend’s great-grandmother. She was planning to give the family history to her friend on her birthday. What a wonderful gift!

I love to see the excitement and watch the faces of patrons when they find a precious record. One lady who had found her great-grandfather on a census was so excited. She asked if people were always as excited as she was. I told her that the day before we heard this loud pounding and it turned out to be one of our patrons who had found a Jamaican record he had been searching for quite some time. He was so excited he started pounding on the table.

Yartz mariage certificate 2

I experienced that same kind of excitement when our daughter Molly sent me a scan of the marriage certificate of my great- grandparents, Frank Henry Yartz  and Eva Ruppert. In one of our previous blogs I explained how Barbara Robertson showed me an index to German marriages in Brooklyn, New York. There was a film number for Frank and Eva’s marriage on the index so Molly ordered it into the Riverton FamilySearch Library. From the film we were able to see the names of 4 of my second great-grandparents.    



Yartz marriage certificate

I think that every time we learn something about our family we learn more about ourself. It enriches our lives to know the names and stories of those who came before us. So now I know the names of my German second great-grandparents, Franz, Louise, Johan and Anna.


Cambridge University

Last Monday on our P-day we took the train to Cambridge with Elder and Sister Sprouse. They are from San Antonio, Texas and recently arrived to work as missionaries in the employment centre. On the train to Cambridge, we were talking about what we wanted to see and a gentleman across the aisle asked if we minded if he joined our conversation. He was a Cambridge professor and very helpful in answering our questions. Cambridge University is made up of 31 colleges, some of which were founded as long ago as the 1300’s. Students usually apply to the individual colleges. Most of the  colleges have a full course of study but there are differences in accommodations, architecture, location and sports. We visited Trinity College, King’s College and Christ College.


Punting the Cam

The River Cam runs through Cambridge. The word Cambridge literally means the bridge over the Cam. A punt is a flat bottomed boat that is propelled through shallow water by pushing against the river bottom with a pole. So punting refers to boating in a punt.Punting

King’s College and the Bridge of Sighs

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King’s College Chapel was amazing. Above the altar hangs Adoration of the Magi by Peter Paul Rubens. I asked one of the college porters if most of the students attended chapel, as each of the colleges has one. He said many of them do and that male students make up the choirs.


Ken ‘minding the steps in King’s College Chapel:


One highlight was visiting the Wren Library in Trinity College. It holds manuscripts and rare books. We were able to see an 8th century copy of the Epistles of St Paul, Isaac Newton’s first edition copy of Principia Mathematics, and A.A. Milne’s original manuscript of Winnie-the-Pooh. Christopher Robin Milne and his father A.A. Milne attended Trinity College as did Isaac Newton, Niels Bohr, Lord Byron, and Alfred Tennyson. We walked down the cloister of Nevile Court where Newton experimented and measured the speed of sound.

Trinity College and Wren Library:

Courtyard by Wren Library, Trinity College, where Newton measured the speed of sound


Christ’s College:


My favorite was Christ’s College with its beautiful courtyards and pathways. Christ's College was established in 1437 to clip_image001train grammar school masters. After the Reformation, it became one of the leading Puritan colleges. In 1625, John Milton, who was a Puritan leader during of the English Civil War and one of the great English poets, attended. The picture of Elder and Sister Sprouse is taken in the Fellow’s Garden. In the garden is a brass plate with the inscription,


The garden was once planted with 300 mulberry trees on order of King James I to establish the silk industry in England. It failed because the wrong kind of mulberry tree was planted and the silk worms didn’t flourish. One mulberry called Milton’s Mulberry because it was planted the year Milton was born, still survives and bears fruit.




Charles Darwin lived in the First   Court, which is where our picture was taken and that of the beautiful window boxes. Darwin developed his interest in botany and geology at Cambridge.







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clip_image006 Christ’s College Heraldic Shield


Souvent me Souvient
Old French, "Often I am reminded")


There is so much history in every place we visit.


We just wanted to say a word about the riots that London and other parts of England have been experiencing. We have not been affected other than our concern for those people who have been misplaced from their homes or who have had their property damaged. We are located in an area of London that has not had any problems and our work at the Family History Centre carries on.

We are about to start our last week of work in the Hyde Park building before we close for refurbishment. We hope to soon open at The National Archives at Kew.


Our love to all!
Love, Elder and Sister Fugal (aka Cheryl and Ken, Mom and Dad, Grandma and Grandpa)

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