Tuesday, March 17, 2009

My Irish Roots

Every year, Americans by the millions claim to be Irish and celebrate St. Patrick's Day. Every year, I am puzzled by the people who ask why I'm not wearing green. Every year, I answer, "I'm part Irish. Does that count for anything?" And every year, no one's impressed.

In fact, my last name "Hood" is Irish. My paternal great-great-grandfather emigrated from Ireland through South Carolina, where he married Catherine Smith. They settled briefly in Mississippi and then moved to
Alabama around 1850, in a settlement near or in Montevallo. After he died, my great-great-grandmother moved to an area near Birmingham, where my father was born in 1909.

I know nothing about the Irish Hoods, despite searching through Ancestry.com's vast store of records. I also don't know much about my father's Hoods since his parents were divorced in about 1912 and his
mother disconnected Daddy from his father (Robert Holland Hood) and his family. I did, however, attend my grandfather's funeral at Oak Hill Cemetery in December 1969 even though I had never met him in life.On St. Patrick's Day, curiously, I feel more Irish than most of those celebrating throughout the nation. On this day, then, I'll wear the green in my blog.

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