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– June 29, 2011
Chasing Rainbows is a layered portrait of an English family spanning a time period from the early eighteenth to the late twentieth century. The author begins with her six times great grandfather William Rainbow, born around 1710 in the village of Cotesbach, Leicestershire and traces his descendants to the present day. This genealogical journey takes in the world of the Victorian actor, the Edwardian journalist, the Passive Resister and the gory details of a shocking crime. We travel from farming in rural Leicestershire via silk weaving in Coventry to the USA and Australia. This account of an ‘ordinary’ family peopled with extraordinary characters is based on primary research collected by the author during the last 25 years with the individual stories set solidly in historical context. Written originally to organise and preserve her research Paula Jeffery’s genealogy stories took on a life of their own and her interest in history and detective work combined to produce a compelling account of family life during the the past 300 years. The journey was peppered with mysteries: What was the motivation for a young man to run a razor across the neck of his girlfriend while she slept? Why did a mother and daughter both die suddenly at the age of twenty-one? How was a runaway apprentice linked to the gruesome murders of the Tickners in Hobart, Tasmania? Whether you have a specific interest in the Rainbow family or a passion for family history this book affords a fascinating glimpse into the lives of our ancestors.
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