It all started with last names…
I was fascinated by the “chain of last names” I could form if I kept all my ancestors last names. You see, in Puerto Rico everyone hast two last names: thier father’s first last name, followed by their mother’s first last name. On top of that, women do not change their last names when they marry (usually). So most people in Puerto Rico have two last names, and both of those are different from their spouse’s.
Always the puzzle solver, I learned all of them: my mother’s , my father’s, and all four of my grandparent’s. Then I became curious about my great-grandparent’s last names…and then it was too late.
I became a genealogy addict.
I spend hours on end reading census documents, draft registrations, baptism records, and of course birth , marriage and death certificates. It’s a fascinating rabbit hole to sink myself into. Through my ancestors I’ve learned more about myself than I could have imagined. I come from a proud line of jibaros, slaves, veterans, seamstresses, truck drivers, all hard workers. If any of them had given up I wouldnt be here today.
That’s why I need to know everything about them.