Missing Years …

Despite my best efforts to approach my genealogical research in an organized and efficient manner, there are files I still haven’t sorted through. Many of these contain tangential information that doesn’t really move my research forward as much as deepen my understanding of an individual or the times they lived in. Sometimes, though, one of those files contains a forgotten document or notes from some unfinished search that sets me back on the trail and keeps me up until four in the morning. Documents like a marriage license. Continue reading

Filling In the Blanks

One of the seeds of my genealogical research is a set of photocopied Family Group Sheets carefully prepared by my uncle and aunt in the late 1970s and early 80s. They spent more than a decade visiting archives, cemeteries, courthouses, and family members. As they gathered information, they documented their findings by hand on dozens of pages of forms. It was an enormous amount of work … Continue reading

What’s In A Name?

A few years ago, my local Family History Center reopened after an extensive remodel of the building which houses it. Although I find that I spend more time there working on other people’s genealogy than my own, I found myself looking forward to going back. I noticed two things during my first walk-through: 1) the bundles of wire under the desks (kick one and all the computers would lose their internet connection) were gone, and 2) it was a lot smaller. Continue reading