Friday, February 18, 2011

Friday Fascinations: Family and Phantoms

Yesterday I talked about inspiration.  Today, I want to share some of my own experiences.

I few weeks ago awoke with a name in my head:  Marie Owens.  I didn’t know anyone by that name.  I asked my husband and others.  The name rang no bells.  So I went to Google and found that slightly over 6 months before, an amateur historian by the name of Rick Barrett had succeeded in having her recognized as the first female police officer in the Chicago and in the United States.  She joined the Chicago Police in the 1890’s (I live in New Jersey).  Her parent fled the Famine in Ireland and settled in Ottowa,Canada.  I don’t know why her name came to me.  She has become a phantom that follows me wanting to be heard.  If Rick Barrett reads this or any member of her family, I am not insane…just Irish.  I would love to connect.

I have also been followed by my great-grandfather, Michael Kenney.  He came to America in 1842 at a young (but indeterminate) age.  He may have been sent here as protection from the sins of his father. He also may have serve in a Brooklyn Irish Brigade in the Civil War.  He was in his late sixties or early seventies when he gave birth to my grandfather.  If anyone has information, contact me.

Somewhere in my psyche I know that these are stories I am suppose to tell.  Whether it is as non-fiction or Historical fiction or fiction based on their lives (but they and I will know that it’s about them).

So those are the people/characters that are haunting me now.  Who is invading your dreams? What are the stories you are supposed to tell?