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April 10, 2009

Easter Bunny's Family Tree Found!

Breaking news - yesterday a little girl named Alice was playing in the garden of an old house in England when she fell down a large rabbit hole. Before climbing out she made a unique discovery. In a small wooden box under a pile of rabbit fur hats Alice spotted a yellowed letter. The letter was addressed to "Dear Easter" and signed "Uncle Wiggily", and it provided details of an interesting family tree!

The complete letter has been transcribed below:

Dear Easter,
I'm glad you asked about your family. Time is getting short for me and I think I'm the only one left who knows the stories of our family.

Your great-grandfather, Bugs, was one of three brothers (Bugs, Peter and Brer). The brothers left their home and sailed for America in the late 1800s. The ship they were on was caught up in a terrible storm and the brothers had to tie themselves to the mast. The ship sank but Bugs, Peter and Brer were lucky enough to find a plank and they climbed up on it and drifted for several days until they were rescued by the SS Lollipop.

When they got to Ellis Island, the customs officials changed the brothers' last names before allowing them to leave the ship, and so the three branches of our family began.

Bugs, Your great-grandpa, kept his Bunny name. Peter's was changed to Cottontail and all his descendants have kept that name. Brer's name was changed to Rabbit and it is from his line that our famous cousins White and Velveteen descend.

Great grandpa Bugs later met and married your great-grandmother Bunny Fufu. I don't know anything about her parents. My cousin Willy Bunny has photos and her family bible but he is stingy with the family information and refuses to share. Apparently Bunny Fufu's family bible was tossed into a fire by Indians when they attacked the settlement where she and her parents lived, but Bunny's father leapt into the flames and saved the bible. I wish Willy would not be so secretive with the information!

It gets a bit confusing, but Velveteen Rabbit, your mother, was your father Energizer's second wife and his third cousin once removed. It wasn't unusual for cousins to marry each other, but it does get confusing as we all seem to have large families.

Velveteen's father (your maternal grandfather) was Peter but I don't know too much about your mom's side of the family. I did hear there was an Angora in there somewhere way back. Some say she was a Princess and Peter rescued her from pirates!

Of course you know your grandparents - Buster and Trix. One day you should ask your grandma Trix why she calls your grandpa Buster by his nickname "Hassenfeffer" whenever she is mad at him, it's a cute story.

I've done some research on our family but am stuck on your great-great-grandmother. That would be your Great-Grandpa Bugs' mother. Great-Grandpa Bugs' father (your great-great-grandpa) was named Cadbury but I think your great-great-grandma was left by aliens. She is my brick wall. I know Cadbury called her Flopsy and they had 54 children but even though I've searched everywhere, I can't find what her SIRname was.

I guess I should tell you about the family scandal involving your Great great grandpa Cadbury Bunny. My Aunt Babbity told me she heard the grownups whispering about this when she was little. It seems that Cadbury's father fell in love with a chicken and Cadbury was the result of that love match! This might explain Cadbury's strange behaviour....

Well Easter, I think I've given you enough details to confuse you, but I hope I've gotten you interested in learning more! I know where some of the graves are of your ancestors and will take you there one day if you want to go. It's just a hop, skip and jump away.

Give my best to all the little children when you make your rounds this year,

As ever,
Uncle Wiggily


Becky Thompson said...

What a delightful story. Are they related in any way to the Graveyard Rabbit?

Tex said...

ha! what fun.

M. Diane Rogers said...

Very clever. I heard that Bunny Fufu (aka Fifi) was an actress though. Her family was so scandalized by her chosen profession in those days that she inherited nothing - not even that family Bible, but now, thank goodness the Bible is not lost at least.

Old Census Scribe said...

I remember Uncle Wiggily. His stories were in the Saturday Toronto Telegram in the 1940s.
from the
Old Census Scribe

Olive Tree Genealogy said...

Very interesting re Uncle Wiggily being a published author! I hope the family stories he told Easter weren't fictitious

Olive Tree Genealogy said...

I didn't know Fufu was an actress! So Easter has a famous ancestor in his lines.

Judith Richards Shubert said...

I'm so glad Uncle Wiggily was brave enough to tell Easter about Great-great-grandpa Cadbury. He has given me the courage to go ahead and write the cousins about their own G-g-grandpa whom Sam Houston put in jail in the 1800s.

Anonymous said...

What great timing! My grandson just today asked if the Easter Bunny was for real! His classmates teased him all day about believing in the Easter Bunny! Now I can show him the truth.
Genealogy Addict

Miriam Robbins said...

All I remember about Little Bunny Fufu is that she had this terrible habit of hopping through the forest, scooping up the field mice, and bopping them on the head. Bully!

Olive Tree Genealogy said...

Becky, I think there's a very good chance that Graveyard Rabbit is a distant cousin - probably from Brer's line.

Elizabeth O'Neal said...

Little Bunny Fufu had a better fate than Little Rabbit in the Woods: he went inside and was quickly fried.

(Hopefully I'm not the only one who knows that song...)

Anonymous said...

I remember Uncle Wiggly and as a child playing the board game. It was so nice of him to leave his story behind.

I still have that game tucked away. It must be 40 years old.

Unknown said...

You forgot the "funny uncles"

Bud Rabbit and Lou Leporello.

Anonymous said...

I saw no mention of Roger Rabbit. Where might he fit into all this?

Anonymous said...

Very clever!
I'm glad you didn't forget Uncle Wiggly. I recently bought a copy of his 1913 "memoirs" for 25 cents at a used book sale, just to be sure that his writings survive.

Diane B.