#125: Cousin America, By the Numbers


125.1  Back in #123  I showed a chart with 11 different ladies by the name of America Hatfield…and I suggested figuring how each America was related to the others as a useful exercise in kin wrangling. I did this myself by simply comparing the 11 Americas “one by each” as my Grandmother used to say…and putting the results in the form of a grid. This straightforward tack is the “brute force” approach…as opposed to a more analytical approach that might save a little time.

chart 438

125.2  But to double check my results, we will today go thru a more methodical analysis. Well work off Chart 438, which is Chart 437 with the 8 generations clearly marked out…the marriage of Valentine and F is cross-generational…I moved F back to her own generation, Generation 5. And you’ll notice that H is the daughter of 2 Hatfields, Wallace and Melvina. Thus each of the other Americas will be related to H in 2 different ways…once thru Wallace and once thru Melvina. And here’s the grid we’ll use…

grid 1

125.3  I have included separate rows and columns for the double relationship to H…calling them H-mel for her mother and H-wal for her father. Now looking over Chart 438, the closest relationship is between A and B…that of niece and aunt. No America is in the direct line of another…so we’ll find no mother/daughters or grandmother/granddaughters. Every other relationship is some kind of cousin, either straight numbered or removed…thus each square on the grid has been supplied a C for cousin and an R for removed.

125.4  Now with this type of grid…where everyone gets a column along the top and a row along the side…every relationship will appear twice. For example, B‘s relation to E would be in the row-B/column-E square…and also in the row-E/column-B square. You could fill them all in if you liked…I chose to record each relationship just once. As a consequence, there is no need for an A-column…all of A‘s relationships will be found in the A-row…likewise, no K-row, since all of K‘s will be in the K-column.

125.5  Looking at Chart 438, you’ll also notice that F, G, and H-wal are 1st cousins, the daughters of brothers Matt, Ransom, and Wallace. When another America is related to one of them, they are related in the same way to the other 2…so I have colored their rows and columns yellow as a reminder. And finally, since when dealing with relationships at the bottom of the grid you have to scoot over to the right past empty squares, I will flip the chart around to make “getting lost” less likely.

grid 2

125.6  So let’s begin with the removeds. Americas that are in the same generation on Chart 438 are straight numbered cousins, not removed, so we can remove the “R” from their squares.

grid 3

125.7  The removed cousin relationships can be easily seen comparing generations…many are once removed, like J to K…the furthest is J to C, 4 times removed. We’ll fill those in…

grid 4

125.8   With the removeds done, we next find the degree of cousins. And to do that, we needn’t  compare the 2 Americas to each other…we simply stay in the generation of the older one. For example, J is in an older generation than D. We have the removed…to get the degree, we compare J to Joseph B., who is D‘s ancestor in J‘s generation…in this case D‘s grandfather. But there is a complication…2 of the oldest Hatfields, Joseph gen 1 and Ephraim gen 2, each had 2 wives, thus 2 sets of descendants. Since some of these lines are started by half-brothers, all the descending cousins will be half-cousins.

125.9  And right away, we see that J and K are set aside from all the other Americas, being the only 2 descended from Joseph gen 1’s 2nd wife.  Thus, to J and K, all the other Americas are half-cousins…J and K themselves are full 2nd cousins, since J is the 2nd cousin of K‘s father William. (Remember, we’re “ignoring” the removeds since they’ve already been entered into the grid.) Likewise, since Ephraim gen 2 has 2 lines, the descendants of hs son George will be halves to the descendants of his sons Valentine gen 3 and Joseph gen 3.

chart 439

125.10  I’ve boxed these half-brother lines in black in Chart 439. Everybody in Box W is some degree of half-cousins to everyone in Box X. Likewise, one generation down, everybody in Box Y is a half-cousin to everybody in Box Z. But here’s where it’s easy to get tripped up…how are I and Melvina related to all those others in gen 4 to their left? After all, I and Melvina aren’t in Boxes Y or Z. And this is true…but everybody in Boxes Y and Z is also in Box W, along with I and Melvina! Thus I and Melvina are full cousins to all the Y’s and Z’s…in this case, their grandfathers, Ephraim gen 2 and the first Joseph Jr. are full brothers, not half brothers. And you see H right on the border…half cousin to those on the left in Box Y and full cousin to those on the right in Box W.

125.11  I know…you’re thinking: Is this what you meant by “methodical anaylsis”? Sure…absolutely. At any rate, keeping all this in mind…fill in the degrees…and I would suggest doing that after marking off the half cousins.


125.12  Finally, we check my results above with my first go-around, done “by hand”….

by hand

…and I notice 2 discrepancies….which is fine…that’s why we double check in the first place.


125.13  So it’s back to Chart 438…and it turns out in both cases I was right the first time…woo hoo!

chart 438 check

125.14  And we get our final answers in the grid below below. Not for nothing, the name America is the feminine equivalent of Americus, a German version of the Latin Aenrichus….derivative forms include Henry, Heinrich, and Enrique…not to mention Americo in Spanish and Amerigo in Italian…just so you know. Next week, we’ll lay the Hatfields to rest…so to speak…for now anyway…catch ya then… 



Copyright © 2013 Mark John Astolfi, All Rights Reserved


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