Friday, November 11, 2011

A memorable family saga of the 5 sons of Charlie Gisby

What’s in a Name? Brendan Gisby asks in the title of the Foreword to this interesting history family sage. “What’s in a name?” is a question that millions of people ask every day, often chasing down the origin of their own family name. It’s a question that intrigued one of my own ancestors, Benjamin Kendall Emerson, that he traced the history of his own family from the time they first arrived in Ipswich, Massachusetts. A great-aunt gave me the book he had privately published in 1900; my eldest son now has it. Out of curiosity, I just now looked it up online and discovered that it’s been reprinted by Kessenger Legacy Reprints and is available on So who knows where The Five Sons of Charlie Gisby will end up in years to come? Hopefully read and reread as often as I read that book about one branch of my family.
But even more interesting than the question “What’s in a name?” is the question who is there?, because this tells the stories of the people, where they were from, how they got there, what happened to them during their lives It’s an interesting adventure, and Brendan and his cousin Phil Gisby have written a most interesting history of their family.
If you enjoy reading family histories, if the name “Gisby” shows up somewhere in your family tree, or if you’re just curious, buy yourself a copy of this fine book. Brendan Gisby, by the way, is the author of several fine books, including a memoir of his father (The Bookie’s Runner) and The Island of Whispers, being his most recent.
A 5 star read.

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