Norwalk Senior Center

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NSC Genealogy Club: Short Stories

This section will change each month. If you have a story to share that you would like to appear here please email it to the club address.

1. The song Yankee Doodle is associated in two ways to our family history - the Governor of Connecticut's job, and 2) the family that wrote the tune were our colonial neighbors in Wilton-Norwalk where the song originated. 

2. Norwalk's “Macaroni” in the French and Indian War 

In 1755 Norwalk soldiers and their wives lead the charge and the spirit of the French and Indian War. The Norwalk militia, called the Connecticut Volunteers, prepared for battle that later occurred in upper New York. While wives made hats decorated with colorful chicken plumes for the Volunteers, a small group of them with their fifes and drums practiced. Colonel Thomas Fitch V, eventually the Governor of Connecticut, wrote the melody for their jingle “Yankee Doodle,” then led his corps up today's Rts 53 and 7 to Danbury, and west to New York. 

With the fifes, drums and plumes, they were a colorful, spirited band. As they attacked the French at Ft. Crailo, near Rensselaer, NY. Dr. Richard Schackburgh observed the site from the safety of the fort. The plumbs, tune and spirit inspired him to add lyrics to the jingle — “Yankee Doodle went to town riding on a pony. Stuck a feather in his cap and called it macaroni...” — This became our signature song for the American Army until the War of 1812. Do you have family or friends whose relatives date back to the chicken plumes and macaroni of 1755? 

3. Have you received a hint from your genealogy program? Hints can be true or false or a partial truth.  Sometimes they can open a door to the past - 1620 type of past. Sara now has multiple family members on the Mayflower.