|The Mortensens: circa 1940 (my husband's father is the boy in front on the left)|
Gerda is the pretty young woman on the far right.
I got interested in genealogy, shortly after my father passed away six years ago. He came from a family of twelve, out of Northern Ireland. My mother's side is Canadian from Nova Scotia, with roots in Scotland, the United States and France.
I was equally fascinated with my husband's side of the family since his father is Danish and we had willingly embraced the Danish culture and much of the Scandinavian way of life.
A wealth of information was available for my side of the family, and a good deal on my mother-in-law's side, but the Danish branch was, shall we say, quite bare.
Initially, I was given two fragmented and not terribly useful pieces of information about the Danish family from Copenhagen. Only through dogged determination (along with an obsessive focus that allows me to spend hours looking at online Danish books from old world Censuses and Churches) have I managed to piece together the bulk of the relationships on the Mortensen side.
With one exception: my Father-in-law's Aunt, Gerda
Here are the two pieces of information I was initially handed regarding my husband's father's family.
From my mother-in-law, in an e-mail dated, April 29, 2010
Farfar (Hans Svend-Aage Mortensen)
Parents unknown - Grew up in an orphanage with his sister Gerda Mortensen
From my husband's aunt Lis, in Denmark, an e-mail dated, March 25, 2012
I am sorry, but I can not help you about Gerda. I do not know when she has bithsday.
She was that type who never told you how old she was.
Farfar was older than Gerda.
They were both brought op on a fosterhome
Farfarwas born the 29, of marts and dyed in december 1970
I've come a long way, but as yet, Gerda is still undiscovered in any record books online. I have much work to do!