Friday, July 27, 2012

A Researcher's Best Friend

In addition to researching my own family, I also research the family of one of my town's founders. I've been on the hunt for this family's story for over 5 years. I've found much, but know that there's much more to find. I know that I could read newspapers on microfilm from now until I'm cross eyed. This family was written about every time the husband went fishing or the wife hosted a tea.
My fellow researchers are always keeping an eye out for the family name. We alert each other if we find an item of interest. On Tuesday I met up with one of my research buddies and imagine my surprise when she presented me with a book she found at a local garage sale for a whopping .50; the paternal family history of the wife of my research project. It is well sourced and indexed and takes the family line back to the immigrant ancestor and the 1700s. Of course, I've found some incorrect information. But that's to be expected in a secondary source. For me, the clues and stories are the most important thing. I'm beyond excited to pick through this volume with a fine toothed comb. Thanks friend, for having my back. I hope I can return the favor some day.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

The Side Streets of Genealogy.

I've taken my direct lines across the pond but don't have the funds to subscribe to the world archives right now, so I'm currently researching collateral lines and doing some reverse genealogy in hopes of finding living relatives in the US. This has proven to be as fun and even more revealing than researching the direct lines. My grand parents and great grand parents were a bunch of goodie two shoes but some of their siblings and children got up to some mischief which has been very entertaining to uncover. The 19 year old aunt who got herself in the family way and ran away from home. She was obviously found and got married to the child's father a month before the birth. But that marriage didn't last long and ended in divorce. She later married the widower of her own sister and than at least once more. There's the mystery cousin that no one knows anything about, but there she was on the 1930 census living with her grandparents (my great grandparents). She was 15, for heavens sake. How could no one not know anything about her? And why were her younger brothers living as boarders in CA when the rest of the family was in MT? These side lines will keep me busy while I save my pennies for the World subscription and can continue my direct lines in Europe. This is why I LOL when I hear people say their research is DONE! It's not done, you just quit looking.