Weddings are one of the most important family events. They provide great opportunities to celebrate together, and begin new chapters in family story.
This week, I'm celebrating my own wedding anniversary, and I began thinking about all the memories shared with my husband and our excitement about our future.
The origins of wedding anniversaries date back to the Holy Roman Empire, when husbands crowned their wives with a silver wreath on their 25th anniversary. During the 20th century, other anniversaries began to be represented by materials such as “wood,” “pearl ” and “diamond.”
Michael Pugh and Rebecca Griffin, who married nearly three years ago, are an example of this latest trend in the UK called "meshing,” where married couples fuse their surnames.
The couple took part of Michael’s surname “Pu” with part of Rebecca’s surname “Ffin.” Now they are the Puffins.
My colleague Javier showed me an article in the Spanish magazine Zankyou, which discusses marriage as the merging of two family trees, and therefore the perfect occasion to honor our ancestors.
The article suggests some very original ways to not only think about those relatives who have passed on, but actually incorporate genealogy in our wedding celebrations.
One way is with jewelry. Some people choose to wear a special family heirloom, like a brooch, others use their ancestors' rings as their own wedding bands.
Artist Ashley Gilreath takes it one step further. Ashley specializes in creating pieces that fuse heirlooms with their story, and like the necklace below, with genealogy.
On August 10, five siblings from the Waldie family (Arizona, US) "tied the knot" in one shared ceremony.
The ceremonies were held back-to-back with guests enjoying lunch between the services.
Their father, Doug Waldie, said "They think we're crazy or that it's the greatest thing on earth."
The reasons for such a shared event are rather simple: Close siblings wish to share their special day, the guest list for the siblings' family will be the same, people only have to make the trip once if coming from long distances, women need to buy only one new outfit (instead of five), among others!
As family history researchers, we'd raise an eyebrow or two when discovering same-date wedding certificates for siblings. Genealogy aside, I'm sure it was an emotional occasion for all family and friends.
When locating dates of family events - such as marriages - have you discovered any interesting coincidences?
Have you discovered - or even attended - shared weddings in your family?
There are many ways to "pop the question."
This article lists a number of famous marriage proposals. It includes that of King Edward VIII, who abdicated the British throne to marry American divorcee Wallis Simpson, and performer Seal, who proposed to supermodel Heidi Klum in a custom-built igloo on top of a glacier!
Speaking of celebrity proposals, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie recently announced their engagement and are planning to wed in September. Watch this space for a Brangelina special!