Friday, June 19, 2009

My Most Embarrassing Genealogy Moment

1974 - Mom and Me, Future Reunion Crashers

Mom (the voice you're most listening to on this blog) is one of the greatest cheerleaders you'll ever meet when it comes to helping you find your ancestors. Even so much so, that she'll take a trip to a family reunion with her daughter that ISN'T her family.

Yep. My husband's family was having a family reunion, and I wanted to take my girls to meet family we didn't know they had. My husband was out of town, and my in-laws weren't going. I knew ONE lady that was going to be there. So I begged Mom to come with me, in case I got lost. If only I'd known!

We got to the place where the reunion was, but the instructions were a little confusing. They said "in the white building". There were two white buildings! Assuming the right one was the building surrounded by cars, I led her and my two girls into a swarm of people.

Everyone smiled and nodded. I put my brownies on the table with all the food and sat them down. We got the girls plates and I smiled some more. No one said anything to me, but this wasn't strange, since I'd never met any of them. Finally I saw a big table with the family's printed history sitting on it, abandoned. I told Mom I was going over to check it out, because we had no pictures or stories of any kind from this side of the family. I was excited.

I mosied over and started looking through it. How confusing. There wasn't a single Burris! I stopped an elderly lady and asked, "Where are the Burisses?"

"There aren't any Buriss lines in our family," she states.

"Isn't this the Buriss Reunion?" I timidly ask, showing her the paper with the instructions.

"Nooo." She tries really hard to let me down easy. "But it looks like you have the right place."

I got back to my mother (cheeks flaming) and whispered we were in the wrong place. I grabbed my brownies and we booked it out of there. We tried the other white building, and sure enough, THAT'S where my husband's family was. They had no idea there was a second white building at that park, let alone another reunion! What were the chances?

So folks, the lesson is, no matter how sick you are bringing the family history to the family reunion because no one looks at it, bring it anyway. You never know WHO might benefit! :D


  1. What a story! I would have been really embarrassed, too. It was nice of the lady not to laugh at you. :-) I hope you had fun at your reunion anyway.

    Take care!

  2. Oh my goodness-I'm glad it turned out good for you. And it'll be something you and your Mom can always look back at and smile.

  3. Tina, I'm glad she didn't laugh too. Maybe she was inspired, because I might have given up right then and there. It WAS fun, and I learned some things about the Buriss family that would have been lost.

    Tipper, Mom and I laugh about that story often. Good times. :)

    Thank you both for stopping by!

  4. Oh my funny.

    I found your blog by searching surnames on for Burris.

    Now I'll have to read more of your blog to see if we are related...

  5. Dee it would be my daughter's husband that is from a Burris line. I will point her towards your name.