The one thing every genealogist will tell you is that no family story is ever complete. If someone tells you they have researched their family back to Adam and Eve, you can rest assured that they have no documented evidence to back up their claims. Very few families have no mysteries, and even fewer genealogists have no brick walls. My brick wall for many years has been the Davidson family. Each generation has caused its own problems, and that will probably continue into future generations.
Researching the Davidson family tree has been an exciting journey and one I doubt will ever be complete.
I began researching the line in 2011 with just a name, my now ex-husband’s father’s name. Finding his birth certificate was a walk in the park; however, the fact that there were two register entries under two different surnames with the same reference made me realise the line wasn’t going to be a case of straight forward research. Nothing could have prepared me for the fascinating stories that unfolded as I picked away at the layers.
First, there is the couple that never married but raised several children together and the forgotten family in a town not 20 miles away. Second, there is a bigamist with three wives and at least 20 children. Finally, five years after finding the bigamist, an embezzler began to creep out of the archives.
I’m sure, however, that this is just the tip of the Davidson iceberg. Who knows what stories are still lurking in the archives, lost and forgotten?
Even telling the story is difficult; there isn’t a specific point when I know the rumours started. I will tell the rest of the story over the coming weeks, beginning around 1832 in the parish of Midmar in the County of Aberdeenshire, just 15 miles away from the city of Aberdeen. This point, I believe, will cover the period in which I understand the man we will come to know as ‘The Embezzler’ was born.