It is as though our ancestors want to be found. Uncanny coincidences. Olympian luck. Phenomenal fate. Tremendous intuition. Remarkable miracles. We call It, “Serendipity in Genealogy.”
In its Weekly Genealogist newsletter, the New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS) asked recently if readers had had an experience of sheer luck or serendipity which had allowed them to break through a brick wall. They gave the results In the 1 October 2014 issue. About 4,000 readers responded to the survey. Of those, 72% said yes, 23% said no, and 5% said they didn’t believe in luck (which is another way of saying no).
Several readers emailed their stories or posted them on the NEHGS Facebook page. Newsletter editor, Lynn Betlock, shared some of them. One was researching one ancestor at the National Archives and found a document—misfiled—for a brick wall ancestor. In similar fashion, another reader was researching one ancestor only to find a brick-wall ancestor as a witness to a wedding far away from where they were known to be.