Question of the Week

Were your grandparents born in America? If not, how did they get here (or do they still live overseas)?

Being about the fourth or fifth generation born here, on both sides of my family, I’m really interested to hear stories of people who are not!

9 thoughts on “0

  1. NONE of my Grandparents were born here and only one of my parents was. I can’t imagine 4 to 5 generations of native folk!! Both of my paternal grandparents and my dad were born in Australia. My dad came over here in his early 20’s to attend M.I.T. (shout out to Unca Joe!!), and then got a job in Boston, met my mom, and the rest was history. He’s been back to visit a number of times (and all of my brothers + DH went over with him and my mom in 1999 to visit….total blast.

    Both of my mom’s folks were born in Ukraine. Her mom (my grandma) was left there as an infant (with her grandmother) so that my great-Grandmother could come to this country to try and make a better life for herself. At the age of 9, my grandmother came across the ocean BY HERSELF to meet her new family. She never remembered her mother, and had a younger sister to get to know when she came to this country (she was NOT well received by her sister). When I think about how scary that must have been, I cannot imagine any of today’s kids having the intestinal fortitude to make that journey on their own. My mom’s dad came over from Ukraine as an adult. He had been very badly treated during WWII and never knew love growing up. My mom was born here (in New York City). So, as an Australian / Ukrainian, we are definitely an unusual mix, but I wouldn’t change any of it!!

    1. They may be unusual, but having met your parents, I can also call them completely wonderful! Oh, how I’d love to get your parents and Tim’s parents in a room together. The moms would never stop talking of libraries and the fathers would be cracking each other up so much we wouldn’t be able to tell WHAT they were talking about over the laughter!

  2. My uncle, my mother’s brother, took me on a tour of grave sites around Fredrick, MD, that visited nine generations before me, back to the guy who came over from Switzerland in the 1700s. My father’s family had relatives who came on the Mayflower. So my family’s not new to this country. We have an English friend who is distressed because we can’t trace our families back to 1200, since he can (!). Aunt Gay

  3. My Mother’s father was born in Greece. He came through Ellis Island when he was about 9 or 10 with his family. His name is actually on the wall there apparently. 🙂 He told people though (including my grandmother!) that he was born in NY. He was so proud of being “American.” In fact, he changed his name from Constantine to Charles since it was more American. Sadly, he died in a car accident when my Mom was 9 so I never knew him.

    My maternal grandmother’s parents were both immigrants as well. (Ukrainian and Slovakian) My maternal grandmother though was born in PA.

    So I’m 2nd generation born here on my maternal grandfather’s side and third on my maternal grandmother’s. (Making my Mom 1st and 2nd respectively!) I always laugh at the ancestry shows when people can trace back hundreds of years in the US. We’re very new to the US on my Mom’s side!

  4. We go way back. Grays and Longs in Virginia prior to 1775/1793 when these great great great grandparents were born there. Must have been their prior generation that came over from Ireland, I think. That’s on my mother’s mother’s side. Also on that side were Bells of Baltimore back to at least early 1800’s. On my mother’s father’s side, my great great grandfather and his father were in Frederick, MD in the early to mid 1800’s. (note to Gay – could the reason people thought we looked alike really be because we have ancestors in common!) There were also great great grandparents with West Virginia (then actually Virginia) probably the first generation in this country on that side. (more co-incidence from that line – descendents of that family that came to Florida in the early 1900’s knew Sharon’s husband’s grandfather in a northeast Fla beach town.) Other Western MD ancestors (my paternal grandmother’s parents) were in Thurmont, Hamstead and Woodensburg in the mid 1800s, their parents being born in Germany. So I guess that takes us back to those great great grandparents being born in Germany. I think my paternal grandfather’s parents might have been born in Germany. Whew. More than you wanted to know, I think.

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