|Nearly as nice as a hammock.|
Anyway. Long about the part where the Frogman jumps over the gulf separating the Yips from the rest of Oz, it occurred to me how many of the Oz books involve a search for a particular person, the term "person" being loosely applied, of course, in a land of living tinmen, anthropomorphic quilts, and assorted talking objects. All of these missing friends and family, all of these quests.... This, despite Glinda's Magic Book!
|The eleventh and nineteenth in the series.|
My musings continued, easily linking the idea of searching for family in the Oz books with genealogical research, and I wondered what might happen when two hobbies collide. I have been an Oz fan since childhood, first introduced to that marvelous land--like most of us--through the 1939 film, and its annual television broadcast. By second grade, I was so enamored of the story and songs (and musical theater in general, another nascent love) that I auditioned for--and got, beating out a bunch of no-talent third and fourth graders--the part of the Scarecrow in my elementary school's stage version.
|"If I Only Had an Agent"|
My introduction to the actual Oz books themselves did not come until a few years later. And it was a few years after that when I first became interested in genealogy. The rest, as they say, is--if not history--at least blog fodder. Which begs the question: why am I writing about Oz in a genealogy blog?
Because L. Frank Baum, the man who first discovered Oz and began the beloved series, married Maud Gage on 9 Nov 1882. And she is my ninth cousin, three times removed! (Those of you who follow this blog may take a minute to savor yet another example of my near-miss relationships to prominent people.)
I discovered this--to me--remarkable fact when reading up a little on Baum himself, who was partly of English and Scotch-Irish descent, as I am. I thought it might be fun to see if somehow, somewhere we might be related or connected. Some quick Googlery and Ancestry.com-ing proved that Baum would be a bust ("be a bust, be a bust"--can you hear it too?), but that his wife was more promising. Passing aside her suffragette mother, Matilda Joslyn Gage, I traced Maud Gage's father's line instead. Once I began seeing "Barnstable, Massachusetts" on some of the early births and deaths I thought it likely I'd hit gold if I could just follow ("Follow! Follow! Follow! Fol--" cripes, those tunes are catchy) back a bit further.
And there it was: Lombard. A name I knew from my own family tree. A little more quick "research" (none of this hasty investigating will get me into the NEHGS, that's for sure), and I found the link: Thomas Lombard (2 Feb 1581 - 1663). He was born in Dorset, England, and came to America in 1630, aboard the Mary and John. He settled in Barnstable in 1639, where he was the first inn-keeper, and lived there until his death. His will indicates that he owned books, good fellow, to the value of fourteen shillings. After that, he gets a bit sketchy. He apparently had several wives about whom we know little, with children by each, about whom we know a bit more.
Thomas' oldest son, Bernard Lombard (1608- 1668) is the seven-times great-grandfather of Maud Gage; another son, Jedidiah Lombard (1640 - 1682), is my ten-times great-grandfather. In a further coincidence (or as further proof of just how inbred New England was in those days), another brother, Joshua Lombard (8 Oct 1627 - 1697) is also related to me, although just by marriage. He married Abigail Linnell (1630 - 1662); his grand-daughter Hopestill Lombard (15 Nov 1686- 1756) was the second wife of Joseph Hamlin (20 Nov 1680 - 27 Aug 1766), my eighth great-grandfather. I am descended from Hamlin and his first wife, Mercy Howland (1678 - aft 1721).
And for those of you not entirely confused yet, let me note that the name "Linnell" might ring bells if you are a follower of this blog. Abigail Linnell, Joshua Lombard's wife, was the sister of both Hannah Linnell (17 Apr 1625 - 1701; she married John Davis), a ten times great-grandmother of mine, and Bethia Linnell (7 Feb 1640 - 25 Mar 1726; she married Henry Atkins), a nine times great-grandmother of mine. ("And you were there, and you were there....")
I feel quite confident that if I keep looking, I will be able to find connections to the remaining Linnell siblings: David and Mary and Shubael (oh my)! But rather than look into that now, or see to whom else I can make myself be related, I've got a book to finish reading.
Ozma isn't going to find herself.