A Southern Girl’s View… President’s Day | Houston Editorial Photographer

Today is President’s Day…  I never in a million years thought that my perception of President’s Day would be any different this year as opposed to previous years or even yesterday morning to be honest.   BUT somehow one bit of information made THIS president’s day very different.   Yesterday morning my intent was to write about my trips to the various presidential homes that I have visited in my lifetime…   Monticello (Thomas Jefferson); The Hermitage (Andrew Jackson); Lyndon B Johnson’s home; Abraham Lincoln’s boyhood home;  and homes of both John Adams and John Quincy Adams.

John Quincy Adams

However, yesterday afternoon I received an email from my sister who had found our missing link in our father’s ancestral line.  With that missing link revealed she then in a matter of a couple of hours went back 4 generations to Henry Adams, who with his wife, 8 sons and 1 daughter arrived in Braintree, Massachusetts in the year 1638.   Yes I said 1638 – 8 years after the founding of the Massachusetts Bay Colony and 31 years after the founding of the Jamestown settlement in Virginia.  However, the most important note about this specific Henry Adams (my 10th great-grandfather) is

John Adams

that he is the 2nd great-grandfather of President John Adams and the 3rd great-grandfather of President John Quincy Adams.    What does that make them in relation to me?    John Adams would be my 3rd cousin 8x removed and John Quincy would be my 4th cousin 7x removed.   It has taken us over 20 years to get to this point and there are still documents to retrieve to confirm the thin connections but still it is just incredible.   Incredible not so much because of the connection to the presidents but mostly because I never knew my father’s mother or father or beyond that.   My paternal grandfather died before I was ever born and my paternal grandmother died when my father was very young and there are no pictures of her in existence nor is there anyone living who knew her then.    Beyond her name and pictures of my paternal grandfather, I knew nothing else of my father’s ancestors.   So here I sit on President’s Day in awe of the long line of men who came before me (famous and not).  In awe of their bravery to come to a world completely unknown and try to start over from nothing and fight for survival.  In awe that my family has been in this country for 373 years.   I sit in awe of President’s Day…