December 18, 2017
Community News Latest News | Poll Questions | Long Creek | Tax Reform | Opioid Epidemic

Happy Mother’s Mother’s Mother’s Day — and so on

Community Author:
Post Date:

Happy Mother’s Day this coming weekend. And Happy Mother’s Mother’s Day. And Happy Mother’s Mother’s Mother’s Day …

As a genealogist, I certainly do mean that, and what a great opportunity to give more thought to our foremothers.

Let’s just start by thinking of the female lines of the mothers who are still with us.

The longest female line of those living in my birth family (since I don’t have daughters), goes through my sister. We start with my niece, Stephanie (Taylor) Zimmerman, mother Maureen (Moore) Taylor and grandmother Joyce (Steeves) Moore.

In my husband’s family, we have Hannah DelGiudice, mother Lisa (Saucier) DelGiudice and grandmother Claudette (Saucier) Saucier.

If you do even that much, you have recorded (and I hope will share with your family) something worthwhile.

You also have begun working on the mitochondrial DNA line, which is passed only through daughters, although sons do receive the mitochondrial DNA. My sons have my mitochondrial DNA, which came from my mother. My niece and nephew have it as do my sister and my brother. But the males in the group cannot pass it on, so each of their children will have the mitochondrial DNA of their own mother.

The mitochondrial DNA line of Joyce Steeves Moore continues with her mother, Edith (Roberts) Steeves, Etta (Eldridge) Roberts, Agnes (Bray) Eldridge, Mary (Payne) Bray, Clarrissa (Doolittle) Payne, Lozette or Lucette (Blakeslee) Doolittle, Hannah (Dunbar) Blakeslee, Elizabeth (Fenn) Dunbar, Mary (Thorpe) Fenn, Mary (Benton) Thorpe, born 1642; and her mother, Alice (Purden) Benton.

Although Roman Catholic Church marriage records have led to Franco-American records often being more comprehensive than many civil records, even these may have bumps in the road.

When I tried to continue Claudette (Saucier) Saucier’s mitochondrial DNA line, I found next her mother, RoseAnna (Chamberland) Saucier, Edith (Chasse) Chamberland, Margueriette (Pelletier) Chasse, Julie (Dominique Rau) Pelletier, and possibly Claire (Gaudreau) Dominique Rau.

That’s what I have so far. Certainly, I hope to add to it, and I do plan to have my own mitochondrial DNA tested at some point. As recommended by geneticist Dr. Tom Roderick, I have read “The Seven Daughters of Eve” by Brian Sykes. His definition of Eve is not the Eve of the Bible, but rather “mitochondrial Eve,” which is the earliest woman found so far who is presumed to have been an ancestor (though not the only female ancestor) of everyone on Earth.

Just a reminder that the 6 p.m. Wednesday, May 15, meeting of the Penobscot County Genealogical Society will be held at Cole Land Transportation Museum, 405 Perry Road, Bangor. The free program, which is open to all, is a talk I have written about looking for information and records of U.S. military veterans. Among the items we will view are military honor rolls which local non-military organizations have given to the museum, and Purple Heart medals that have been given to the museum for display.

For information on researching family history in Maine, see Genealogy Resources under Family Ties at Send genealogy queries to Family Ties, Bangor Daily News, P.O. Box 1329, Bangor 04402, or email

I suppose that if you’ve participated in an event just once, it’s not officially a “family tradition,” but we’re hoping it will become one.

On April 27, Roxanne Moore Saucier, husband Gaelen Saucier, sister Maureen Moore Taylor and nephew Christopher Taylor became a team for the Parkinson’s Bowl-athon at Sports Arena in Bangor.

How meaningful can a couple of hours of bowling be? Of course, we hope that the money we raised will help the Maine Parkinson’s Society to provide respite care for those caring for someone with Parkinson’s on a day-to-day basis.

Secondly, it was an opportunity for Gaelen and I, married for 40 years, to find a new activity that we could do together, something that has been a challenge in the 10 years that he has used a wheelchair since becoming paralyzed in a fall from a ladder. Bowling is still a challenge, since the wheel rim forces him to throw the ball a bit awkwardly, but he can do it on his own and enjoys it.

Third, it was a chance for a family activity before Chris Taylor earns his associate degree on May 11 from Eastern Maine Community College.

Also, the Maine Old Cemetery Association meeting, set for 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, May 18, at the Palmyra Community Center, intersection of US Route 2 and Madawaska Road, Palmyra, will feature a 9:45 a.m. presentation by Ann Foss, “Comprehensive System for Recording Cemetery Information.”

Registration is $3 at the door. Reservations are needed only for lunch, choose ham, tuna or egg salad sandwich on white or wheat bread. Send preference by May 10 to Ann Foss, PO Box 280, Palmyra, ME 04965-0280, or or 938-2947. Cost of lunch is $7 at the door.

For information on researching family history in Maine, see Genealogy Resources under Family Ties at Send genealogy queries to Family Ties, Bangor Daily News, P.O. Box 1329, Bangor 04402, or email