Monday, July 4, 2016

Kickin' it with Lost Babes (Melinde Lutz Byrne) and Salt-n-Pepa

When I was a kiddo, my grandma told me that people did not have "relations" until after they were married. I was young and naïve and keen to believe her, and that sneaky bias stuck with me for years; even though my mother was blatantly 6 months preggers with me in her wedding photo. In fact, that same grandma was with child when she was married, but perpetuated a lie that I would carry into my genealogical strategies. I had not realized how much that discrimination had impacted me until I ran into issues with genealogy math (the child date of birth minus 9-10 month gestation period and presto they-must-have-been-married-at-this-point) and finding records to verify my hypotheses. This theme kept popping up and I decided to do something to break me of the mindset that people did not have "relations" until after they were married.

This is where Melinde Lutz Byrne's book Lost Babes: Fornication abstracts from court records, Essex County, Massachusetts, 1692-1745 comes into play. Besides minute book entries of depositions, implied births, fines (some contested), and fornication cases where couples did not intend to marry, using this book helped break me of the idea that couples waited. The abstracts provide you with sample women and/or couples in order to: 1.) study the record groups, 2.) do the genealogy math to see likelihoods, and 3.) challenge your preconceived notions that are hiding within. I do not have ancestors in this time period or region, but I have developed a smarter approach for it.

Match that up with Salt-n-Pepa and you have fancy plans. I suspect that many already have at least one of their songs on your music playing device. I went through a phase where I wanted to be Spinderella, with dope beats and fly clothes, doing the Roger Rabbit or Running Man. Personally, Black's Magic is my favorite album of theirs and my favorite album cover.

If Salt-n-Pepa is too much for you, then study Lost Babes with a little Herb Albert and the Tijuana Brass, specifically, !!!Going Places!!!

Melinde Lutz Byrne Lost Babes: Fornication abstracts from court records, Essex County, Massachusetts, 1692-1745 on Amazon, but also at a local library.

Salt-n-Pepa, The Best of Salt-n-Pepa.