This blog is about the story of my family here in America. We arrived in the 1630s as Puritans, and became the common folk of the New World.

Tracing the maternal line of your genealogy

The maternal line of your genealogy means the women. And I am always surprised by the number of people, including women, who think of the maternal line as *not really being family*. That is, the people who are surprised that everyone in my ancestry wasn't named Hall.

I still have the Hall Family Bible in my possession, and I recently gave the Family Bible to one of my cousins who just got married. She took her husband's last name, as did all of the women who have owned this Bible since 1881. By tradition, this type of Bible is handed down to the eldest daughter when she marries. I held onto it for fifteen years (I'm the the bachelor uncle) because it was in danger of being forgotten. I called it the Scinto Bible, because that was the married name of my grandmother, who owned it until her death in 1999.

Four generations in my family.
Isabelle, Marcellaine, Susan, and Robert
When the Family Bible came into my family, it was the Steele Bible, given to my great-great grandmother Susan Steele (nee Hume) when she married in 1881. When it was given to Susan's daughter, it became the Larochelle/Hume Bible, as the name changed with the two marriages of Isabelle. By the way, Susan wrote down the names of her parents, Peter and Isbell Hume (nee Scott), which was in 1852. You can see how this gets confusing, as with the marriage of each maternal generation, the name changes.

The Bible stayed in the possession of Isabelle's daughter, Marcellaine, for over 50 years. At this point, it was largely forgotten, but it sat safely on a bookshelf all of that time. In 1995, while visiting my grandma I discovered it, and she was surprised that the family information, which she had looked for, and not found, was not at the end of the Bible, but was between the Old and New Testaments. For a genealogist, there is nothing more precious than a Family Bible. It really should have gone to my mother when she married, but it didn't. If it had, it would have been the Hall Family Bible, as that was her married name.

When Grandma Scinto died in 1999, the family Bible was the only thing that I wanted from her estate. It seemed to puzzle people, since it wasn't the Hall Bible. It had nothing to do with my surname, but it had everything to do with my family. I realized that to keep this Bible in the family I would have to wait patiently for the Scintos girls to grow up and get married. Hopefully this Bible will stay in the family forever.
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