Kissing Cousins?

 Posted by at 12:02 am  Nick's Blog
Dec 122016

Now don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I used to go to family reunions just to pick up girls. But hey, if it happens it happens, right?

I know, you’re asking yourself what the heck this has to do with RVing but trust me, I’ll get there. And even if I don’t, remember that this blog isn’t just about RVing, it’s about our lives and whatever we are doing at the time. But back to the subject at hand.

Genealogy is an excellent hobby that fits well into the RV lifestyle. (See, I told you I’d get there!) It’s one thing to know that your great-grandfather served in the Union Navy during the Civil War, like my paternal great grandfather John Sanders Stephens did. But it’s something else entirely to be able to find the cemetery where he is buried and see his headstone.


The RV lifestyle gives you the freedom to do that. You can not only visit old cemeteries, but also historical societies, county courthouses, libraries, and other places where you can research your family tree to your heart’s content.

Of course a lot of that information can be found online. But it’s a lot of fun and you feel a real connection to those who have gone before you when you can walk in their footsteps like I did in Ludlow, Kentucky, when we visited the Stephens home where my great-grandparents lived, where my great grandfather died, and where his funeral was held in the parlor.


Last night my cousin Rocky Frees sent me a passenger list from the ship Chili, which sailed from Liverpool, England in 1827, bound for New York with my paternal fourth great grandparents aboard. Rocky’s research reveals that this branch of the family came from the Isle of Man, which is located in the Irish Sea between England and Northern Ireland. He also posted pictures of the family burial plot in Cleveland, Ohio.


I remember reading in her blog that our pal Nancy Kissack, who spends a lot of time exploring the Pacific Northwest coast in her motorhome, taking amazing photos and flying kites, also has origins on that same little island, which is only 221 square miles. So maybe we’re related somewhere way back in history. Does that make us kissing cousins? Hey Nancy, close your eyes and pucker up!

If you’re not into genealogy, and you enjoy solving mysteries and doing research, either online or in person, give it a try. You might be amazed at who you’ll find hanging out on your family tree!

If you are doing your Christmas shopping online please consider clicking this Amazon link or the Amazon Search box at the top right sidebar of this blog. When you purchase an item on Amazon from our link we earn a small commission, which helps us offset the cost of publishing the blog.

Congratulations Fran Rooks, winner of our drawing for a 16GB USB3 flash drive donated by John and Kathy Huggins from Living the RV Dream, which has all current shows of the Living the RV Dream podcast, along with their Radio Days recordings and  show notes, and e-files of all three of their books. We had 216 entries this time around. Stay tuned, a new contest starts soon.

Thought For The Day – You can tell a lot about a woman from her hands. For instance, if they are wrapped tightly around your throat, she’s probably upset about something.

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Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  4 Responses to “Kissing Cousins?”

  1. Nancy you better look out, you may have found that red headed step child.
    By the way Nick,are there any redheads in your family

  2. Isn’t that just fascinating? My paternal grandfather came from the Isle of Man. We are all Manxmen in my family, or Manx for short. I have a Book of Grandmothers that lists my family back to the 1700’s. Now if I can just find it, it may prove we really are kissing cousins!! Wouldn’t that just be the bees knees??

  3. This this what you’re looking for

    Google Isles of man parish registration 1500 to 2009

  4. Thought of the day – was great!!!!!

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