Tuesday, 2 April 2013

A-Z 2013 - 'B' is for BLACK SHEEP

Digging up the ancestors (not literally, I hasten to add!) it's been interesting to see what they got up to, where they travelled to, etc. Equally interesting are the 'secrets' that the passage of time has revealed to their descendents!

So, far, I've found no axe-murderers or poisoners, but one or two have had a brush with the 'law'! :-o

Searching the Royal Navy record of my G-Grandfather, Edward Meyers, brought to light some interesting (and previously unknown) details. Apparently he was one of a hand-picked crew sent to escort Princess Alexandra of Denmark on her journey to England to marry Queen Victoria's son, Prince Albert. Quite an illustrious addition to his career, he became a Petty Officer, 1st Class.

However, when I examined his Naval record, I found that he spent two short spells in Lewes Gaol! I've yet to discover the reasons for his detention, but being only a matter of a few weeks each I am assuming it was probably for some misdemeanour related to alcohol or behaviour ashore!

So, my view of this relative who had previously always seemed beyond reproach when talked of by senior members of the family has been slightly skewed - reinforced by the array of tattoos his Naval records also revealed! This is the only picture I have of him - outside one of the shops he owned after retiring to become a Greenwich Pensioner!

Another 'altercation with authority' was closer to home - my Father, who lived under an assumed name for 40+ years! :-o Those of you nosey curious enough to know more can read the story here !

Thankfully, these accounts reveal that my own 'black sheep' don't appear to have inflicted trouble on other people - but these little anecdotes are more fun than just simply recording their births - deaths and anyway, it's what happened during the '-' that makes all the difference!


  1. I enjoyed the story about your dad! Your parents. I had really good parents too, my father has passed on, I care for my mom...

    I think sometimes our parents feel like they are protecting us by not telling things, it is really sort of a cute story and harmless! www.sandysanderellasmusings.blogspot.com

  2. An assumed name for 40 years??? Amazing. I will have to read that story.

    Ironically I am the self-proclaimed black sheep of my family. I just looked at everyone else's lives and knew I was a touch out of step. Not all bad though.

    Chuck at Apocalypse Now

  3. Family is a mixed bag. None are perfect and it sure makes life interesting!

  4. I can't imagine how difficult living under an "assumed" name for 40 years without telling anyone must have been! And what a wonderful privilege your G-Grandfather had (escorting the princess, not spending time behind bars) LOL

    Tales of a Pee Dee Mama

  5. Hi Sue .. I remember your father's story ... and your grandfather was in prison down here (Sussex) ..

    So interesting to find out these snippets ...

    Cheers Hilary

  6. Your posts come just as I have been thinking about 'old' family members in their youth - and the secrets and shames of the past - some of which would not seem so shameful now. Wonderful posts.

  7. I love digging into my ancestry. There are always these little surprises--"Wow! Grandpa was human!" Very nice story.

  8. I think this is an absolutely wonderful tale. Hearing about the past and knowing it's your own bloodline. It's something I've considered doing, but one of those things I have never got around to. Maybe one day...

    Enjoy this continuing journey into your past. It sounds fantastic.

  9. What a great story the tales of your ancestors would make.

  10. Interesting post! Many thanks for the follow too :-)