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Importing And Ancestor

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tr _rjght, 1S93, by American Press Associa' ' üonj CHAPTER IV. S LONDON - THE FREPARATION OF A PED1GREE. My first care on my return to London -was to write and dispatch to my father ,■1 long letter. In the letter I gave kim the names, place of residence and all the particulars I had gathered in regard to our distinguished ancestors. This I did in order that he might speak understandin?ly n breaking the great news to our family and the town. Also I sent a letter to Prudy, uuder cover to Captain Shrinip, in which I told her tobe oí goodebeer, that all was going well for us. 1 told her that she would probably hear soniething of my success in my mission through my father, by way of Rev. Nantucket Sperm or Captain Shrimp. I remained in London over a fortnigkt after dispatching my report to my father, and I was hard at work every moment of my time. I had at my disposal uulimited means and was determined to brilliantly conclude what I had so successfully commenced. My first care was to look up the pedigree of Sir Arckibald and Lady Eleanor Johnson of Thetford KorfolK. , I went at once to the Herald's college ■or College of Arms, in Doctor's uiüions, wÊere all pedigrees have been entered since the founding of the college by Richard III in 1483, and there I spent half a day to good advantage. My time was not spent in "prospecting" the oíd ïiinstj' records of the college, but in "prospecting". the old nmsty hangers on j of the place - men who have grown old. bent and gray auaong the ancient manu scripts and pondéreme tomes. About the Herald's college are to be j found a score or more of poor devils. somewhat like onr "shyster" lawyera. j wbo eke out a subsistence by exarnining ! and making transcripts froto the old records. To this not a few of the mimber add the less legitímate, but far more remunerative, business of I ing genealogies. These men are really among the best legitímate genèalogists j in all England, for in the fabrication of j false genealogies they are compelled not j oiily to be thoroughly up in all the fcrue genealogical records, but also to i stantly delve in piles of old manuscript ' and histories. In a chat with one of the j officers of the college I leamed the name ■ of one of the oldest and most expert genealogical workers in both the legitímate and "shyster" lines of the business. I found this man without difficulty and was so well pleased with him that 1 enguged him at once. He was a üne i .looking old gentleman and in dress ! fected the clerical. I soon discovered that he particularly prided himself upon j Iris ingenuity in the fabrication of bogus eneaíogies. He had worked out huntireds that had "passed mtister" in England, and as no man in all Great Britain vas better posted in genuine gies, not one of his fictitious works could i be gamsaid, howevíir much its imacy might be suspected. My work was easy for him, as it was ! nearly all of a square and legitímate I kind. Much to my surprise I found I that this old genealogical chief had a t liis command a full corps of assistants- inen glad to be called upon by him to lend a hand in a good job. As soon as he found that the cost of the work was a secondary consideration with me, Mr. Roberts- the name of this prince of genealogists was Richard Roberts - at once sent a man to the British museum, where are kept many records pertaining to genealogies; another to make transcripts of the parish registers in Norfolk and others to exploring the printëd collections of genealogical information, such as the books of the peerages, baronages, baronetages and county histories, he himself working in London in the College of Arms. The register books kept by the hralds and their assistants contain the pedigree. arms and all the leadiug facts and events in the history of a family; therefore, to begin with, there is found in the Herald's college a ricli mino in which to delve in the very outeet, Indeed the Herald's college, London, is i mine of wealth i: which Americans in want of ancestors may profitably dig. Mr. Roberts gave me the genealogy of Sir Archibald Johnson fairly and truthI ally as far back as it was traceable ja the records. To this he added as a labo: of love a mythical genealogy runnhr.; back to the year 870, wtaen Thetford was sacked by the Danes. In the battle with the Danes he caused one Geoffroi Johuaton to perform "prodigies of valor." All this was written out upon a most formidable looking parchment, to whk-h were attached all the seals obtainable legitimately or otherwise. Altogether, it was a most substantial and well to du looking document. To the true genealogy of Sir ArchitwUd Johnson waaaddsd the mime o ta great-graudfatEër, Wálter" Jöhiisoi), as only son of Sir Archibald anti Lady i lileanor Johnson, who migTated to i America a íf.w years before the death ol ' lus father, and ther che record ended. to be taken up by m y family in the Uniteú States. As Mr. Roberts and his assistants were experts at such work, I had them get up a magnificent genealogical tree, adding the Johnsons in the United States to date, and devoting a corner to the family anns, all in colors, and the whole work on the finest vcllum. Th'us I had the tree - a .beautifully constructed genealogical table- and appended to that a long and very interestmg family history. We managed to take into our genealogical table - at my snggestion - from history a certain Lady Axbella Johnson, daughter of Thomas, fourteenth earl of Lincoln, wife of Isaac Johnson. This lady, it appeared from the account exhumed by Mr. Roberts, accompanied her husband to New England on board the Eagle, whose name was changed in her honor to the Arbella. Sne diod in Salem, Mass., in 1030, abont two uionths after her arrival in America. While my geneaiogists were at work upon the pedigree of Sir Archibald and Lady Eleanor, 1 had theii coffin plates polished up and retouehed in spots. Also I caused to be made for my sisters and mother a few gold ornamenta set with handsome gems and bearing the faiuily crest, bracelets and all else being of ancient patterns. They were the best counterfeits of ancient family jewels that could be turned out in London by an expert at such work, an artist immensely patronized on the sly. I next invented a very pleasing and romantic fiction of these jewels having been deposited by Sir Archibald with a certain barrister- his lawyer- as a secret trust, to be delivered to the heirs of his son Walter when personally applied for and under certain conditions, one of which was that the person applying must remove his remains to America, in j accordance with his dyiug wish. This ! trust bound not only the counselor at ! luw, but also his heirs, with uiuch more i that I put into the story to make it plausible. CHAPTER V. A.GALN IN AMERICA- ÜRKAT WOEK IN THE PASONAGESSIT OEMETERY- MY KATHER IX THE PRESENCE OF THE ASHKS OF HIS AMCESTORS. On my arrival in New York with my prizes I purchased magnifieent caskets for both Sir Archibald and Lady Eleanor, telegrapliing my fatbei' what I was about, and that the caskets were to be supposed to come from England. As may well be iinagined, there was a grand social upheaval in Pasonagessit when my father made known the contents of my London letter and announced that I was about to sail from England in charge of the remains of his great-grandfather and great-grandmother, Sir Archibald and Lady Eleanor Johnson. Nothing else was talked of in the village. At first a few venerable dames called to talk over the groat family event with my mother. Then the Bradfords began to cali, and soon there was a grand rush of both yoting and old. Pasonagessit precipitated itself upon the Johnson mansion. All this time my father was busy. He had f ound what he had long needed - an occupation - and was in his element. He at once bought a large plat of ground in the Pasonagessit cemetery and announced that he in tended to remove to it tho remains of his father, mother, grandfather, grandmother and all his ancestors, whose tombs were scattered through New England in several distant and neglected graveyards. He became so interested and so thoroughly in earnest in this work that he almost con vinced himself that the remains about to arrive from England were really those of his great-grandfather and great-grandmother. He immediately gave orders for the disinterment and removal to Pasonagessit of the remains of liis father, motber and other ancestors whose graves were in New England, a work he would never have thought of had it not been for his having first undertaken the great enter„prise of bringing over from England his great-gran dparen ts . The event was naturallypleasingto the pride of my mother and sisters. Therefore when they saw my father wholly absorbed in the new undertaking and sparing neither pains nor expense in carrying out his plans their enthusiasm became almost boundless. Nearly every dav thev were out to where lie was gaged ia superinteuding the vvork of layiug out his burial lot. The county surveyor was employed, and the sites of all the proposed torubs were traced and permaneatly marked. Rev. Nantucket Sperm, Captain Shriinp and all the chureh officers were led out to the churchyard and soleumly consulted. In explainmg his plans iny father was in his glory. Here would be the tombs of Sir Archibald and Lady Eleanor; adoining would be those of my greatgrandfather and great-grandmother, and so on down. Indeed, froin quite an accidental beginuiug, my family were in the thick of what might be termed a grand sepulchral boom. üthers, too, caught the infection, and there was a general overhauling of tombs and brightening up of the Pasonagessit graveyard. Soon it had been so beautified that all in the village were proud of it. When my father was informed of my arrival in New York, he at once dropped all his work and joined me. Never before had I seen the old gentleman so thoroughly in earnest and so filled to saturation with any hobby or uudertaking. When 1 took him to the undertaker'8 and showed him the splendid and costly caskets in which reposed the remaina of Sir Archibald and Lady Eleanor, he was much affected. 1 then pointed out the famiiy aruis on the coffin plates and exiiibited to him a number of the silver gilt buttons of my great-great-grandfather. To luy astonishment, while 1 was glibly rnnmag on about these things, the oW gentleman sttdd#nly broke down. Ijvtmmst hipatf1 "una.niy ifcfflüöftiv h said, 'T can't üelp i f', iny sonf' and be sobbed aloud. .. Tliis exhibitiou _r ttü?tif; on the part il tny icood father brouglit tears to iny sye.s, and we wept together. The undertaker, who of course knew üow very ancieiit the remains were, was quite surprised at stich an outburst of grief. Addressing my father, he said: "My dear sir, your excellent relative departed for the better land a very long time ago. Yon could not have had the pleasure óf a personal acquaihtance with him." "I cannot htlp but weep," said my father. "He was, you must know, sir, my great-grandfa'her - one to whom I am indebted for my ver}' existence. Can I stand in the presenee of his remains, sir, and not be moved? No, sir; I owe to his ashes tlie tribute of a few tears." The undertaker gave my father np aa being one of the inconsolables. As the man of coffins moved away my father turnea histearful eyesupon meandsaid: 'Saín, vvho knows but by some strange chance you have hit ïipon my real greatgrandfather and great-grandmother: Archibald an-J Eleanor, Sam- both old family names. 1 have often and often heard my father say that his father came from Norfolk, England, and Thetford- Thetford sounds familiar. í feel, Sam, that God guided you on your mission! 1 feel, my son, that I am standing in the presence of the bones and , ashes of my ancestors!'' To hear my father talk in this manner was very affecting, and we both left the rooms of the undertaker with red and tear dimmed eyes. To te Continued.


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