Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Potential breaks in the brick wall

Short of driving to Barren County, Kentucky to research, I have tried just about every possible online and available library resource to identify the parents of my second-great-grandmother Mary Alice Cain Read. Yesterday I tried a new tack in the search by reviewing what I already had on Mary Alice's children. Looking closely at an obituary for one of her daughters, I noticed a detail that I had overlooked which referenced a potentially living niece in Barren County. I was hoping that perhaps this person on the Read side might have information about the Cain family.

Using her name against public records in and a search, I was able to find a potential match. I took a leap that I might find them on Facebook, and sent an inquiry through the Facebook Messenger on the web to the niece's son. Within an hour I had a reply, with a suggestion to check with his Dad, also on Facebook. So I sent another message and went to bed.

This morning I received a reply, I've found some cousins! We're exchanging messages and they're checking local records to see if Mary Alice's parents names are listed in the funeral file from 1955. I'm glad I tried this alternate approach, and it really shows the power of the Internet to connect people across distances.
Photo by Patrick Jones. 7 Apr 2012.
Photo by Patrick Jones. Gardens at Dumbarton Oaks, DC.


  1. Patrick,

    I want to let you know that your blog post is listed in today's Fab Finds post at

    Have a wonderful weekend!

  2. Thanks Jana. Quick update - no record of parents was found...the search goes on.

  3. Wonderful! And going back & reviewing what we've already found is a great way to break through some brick walls, isn't it?


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