Infamous Relatives? You had one

Kandinskyesque

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There are tales of a "Black Douglas", a Scottish warlord who reputedly cut off an enemy chief's head and carried it around with him until, in a battle with that enemy's forces that was going poorly, he pulled out the head and threw it at them, causing them to retreat, nonplussed, into private life. Don't know how much truth there is to it, but it does sound like something my Uncle Dan might do.
The original "Black Douglas" was right hand man to Robert the Bruce, who carried Scottish King's heart around his neck to the Holy Land. He was a pretty nasty piece of work in battle.

Nigel Tranter wrote a historical novel titled "Black Douglas" about one of his 15th Century ancestors, which inspired the Red Wedding in George RR Martin's "Game of Thrones".
All pretty interesting novels if historical fiction is your thing.

These characters make todays "gangsters" look quite soft in comparison.

Speaking of which my paternal grandfather's brothers also settled in Glasgow and became quite notorious in the illegal bookmaking fraternity around the docks area.
Their grandsons (around my age) have become quite notorious gangsters among the current drug dealing gangs, one was "assassinated" a few years ago.

Of course, sharing a surname with these characters (I take nothing to do with them) worked against me back in '96 when I was arrested by the cops in the area of Glasgow where this family are known. The cops refused to believe my blood connection was in name only.

My maternal grandfather's brothers emigrated from Ireland to become cops in 1950/60s Queens NYC. I'm not sure if they were any better.
 

Hey_you

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My father’s step-dad was a conman associated with the Lost Dutchman goldmine legend. He went by “Crazy Jake” and was notorious around the Superstition Mountains area of Arizona in the 60’s- 70’s. He took lots of money from folks thinking he knew where the lost gold was. My dad spent his teenage years packing mule trains and setting up camps for these phony expeditions into the mountains.

He also conned many women into supporting him during these pursuits, one of these was my grandmother for 9 years. He ended up most of his later years in prison and has since passed away.

Here’s a YouTube documentary on the guy if anyone is interested. The production is kind of hokey.

I have spent some time prospecting the Superstition Mountains! Around the American Girl Mine. I knew the man that owned it. I even found gold there!
 

d barham

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It’s been a while but my great grandfather (X 26 or so) Robert Fitz-Urse was brother to Reginald Fitz-Urse, a knight in the court of Henry II.

Henry was at odds with the Archbishop of Canterbury. One day in court Henry exclaimed “who shall rid me of this meddlesome priest?” Uncle Reggie and two or three others went to the archbishop and murdered him in truly gruesome fashion.

Some accounts have him being banished to Ireland, some have him being sent on Crusade to the holy land to atone for his misdeeds.
 
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Kandinskyesque

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I'm related to ex-Louisiana governor Huey P Long aka The Kingfish
Even I've heard of the Kingfish, John Goodman played him in a movie in 1990s, if my memory serves me correctly.

I'm not entirely sure how accurate the movie was to his real life, it's unlikely his whole story could be told in a couple of hours' worth of drama, but I also remember reading a few articles on him pre internet. I recall thinking of him as a complex but fascinating character.
 

boris bubbanov

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I don't know for sure, but I always remember that, while we get lined up this famous person and that one, we're no doubt also related to some addict laying in a gutter in Richmond, VA or some basser who assisted Cromwell or William the Conqueror. My sense is, there's always more bad ones than good ones. We should be required to account for the bad, if we are to claim the good.
 

David Barnett

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I don't know for sure, but I always remember that, while we get lined up this famous person and that one, we're no doubt also related to some addict laying in a gutter in Richmond, VA or some basser who assisted Cromwell or William the Conqueror. My sense is, there's always more bad ones than good ones. We should be required to account for the bad, if we are to claim the good.

Not to mention the probability in America of having ancestors who owned slaves.
 

Fretting out

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Not to mention the probability in America of having ancestors who owned slaves.
Not very high

Only the wealthy were owners

People today/revisionist’s would like us to believe that everyone had them…..

what’s considered the one percent today would be equivalent to the one percent of the past that were owners
 
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suthol

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Great grandfather on mother's side was a state politician late 1800s - early 1900s a close friend of Sir Henry Parkes and involved in our constitution.

Great grandfather on my father's side was transported to the colonies for stealing a loaf of bread.

I guess I have crims on both sides of the family
 




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