Sunday, October 9, 2016

The first postcard of my journey

Four generations of my maternal line.

This is one of my favorite pictures in the world. It was taken in the early 50's and shows four generations of women. The cute baby on the left is my mother. The woman holding her was my grandmother. The woman on her right was my great-grandmother and the women in the far right was my great-great-grandmother. They were all born in Argentina and so was I.
They carried different last names because, unlike in many other countries in Latin America, it is not customary to inherit the mother's maiden name to form a double family name. But what I find both interesting and beautiful is that their family names were from different origins: Perez from Spain, Balbiani and Ortalli from Italy, and Chanquet from France.
They all spoke Spanish, and so do I. However, according to my family's oral tradition my great-great-grandmother Graciana Chanquet also spoke French and I can't help wondering what would this picture look like if my great-great-grandmother was the baby. Who were these other four women? What language did they speak? And why was Graciana born in Argentina?
This is how the journey through my Matrilineage starts and that is the first postcard I share from it.
To be continued...


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