Kate Voegele is one of my favorite musicians. She’s on tour right now so some friends and I headed down to the House of Blues last night to hear her perform with Natasha Bedingfield. It was pretty amazing! If you haven’t heard her music, you really should check it out. She writes most (all?) of her own stuff. Her voice is soulful and honest and earthy and I am not a music critic so I’ve run out of adjectives. But, I am a music lover and let me tell you, this girl has got it!
You know me well enough by now to know that my brain thinks in genealogy – surname origins, pedigrees, DNA, nature vs nurture, strands of talent and interests that run through generations. You know what that means. I did a little root digging this morning with Kate’s latest CD, Gravity Happens, playing on my iTunes.
I’ve got a lot to do today so I only had time for a cursory search. I didn’t get past her father on her paternal side of the family. According to the 1920 U.S. Federal Census the Voegele surname could be German, French or Russian. I’ll have to ask her someday which it is for her.
Her maternal grandfather was born in Ohio. His parents were both immigrants. Alfred Percy Finn Lahey immigrated to the United States from Canada in 1926 with his wife and one young son. His wife, Jewel Jacobs, was born in Scotland. She immigrated to Canada where she met and married her husband and then followed him to Ohio.
That’s as far as I got this morning (is it still morning? I was up so late last night I hardly know). I’m intrigued by the story of this couple. I wonder how much Kate knows about her great-grandparents. Why did Jewel leave Scotland? Did she come with her parents or as a young adult? How did she and Alfred meet? What prompted them to move to Ohio?
Family history is about so much more than names and dates and relationships. It’s about these people and the lives they lived and the decisions they made that brought them to a certain place in time. All of those collective choices leading to you being born in the time and place you were born in and being afforded the opportunity to live your life and make your choices.
In Kate’s case (at least in this one strand of her ancestry) it was a steady migration southward…Scotland…Canada…Ohio…the House of Blues in Los Angeles. I guess Gravity Happens!
See why I love genealogy?