Sally Bruckheimer <sallybru@...>
I have often called unknown relatives and had a lot of success. I
always make sure to point out that my grandmother was ...and that is
your brother's wife's whatever-if I know. I also say how I got their
name and phone number-either >from someone they are related to or through
a phonebook. By the time I have given them the information and offered
more, I have never had any problem with people thinking I am stealing
their identity-I make sure that I give them a lot and promise more.
I have sent out many copies of pictures and descendency charts to show
that I know what I am talking about.
I talked to one man near Boston who was a fourth cousin. That branch
had changed the family name, and I mentioned that there were other
family members in a nearby town who had also changed the family name to
something else. The patriarch of that family had an odd first name,
when I mentioned it the first man said he was playing golf with the
second man's son the next day! I said to tell him that they are
I have often gotten further people to call >from the first contact, so I
mention that so-and-so said that I should call. People often know of a
relative that knows much more than they themselves do.