Thursday, December 1, 2016

My Hometown - When Daughters Ask - Part 1 of 3

My Hometown
When Daughters Ask
Part 1 of 3
My wife, Nancy, and I are very fortunate that each of our three grown daughters have developed a serious interest in their family history. Nancy and I are more than pleased, and proud, to encourage that interest and share our extensive research, datebases, and writings, of course, to kick-start their own research… which they are doing, each in their own ways.
Silver Dollar City, Thanksgiving 2016
Allison King, Annette Lamb, Arrion Rathsack

Holiday interchanges are always critical since two of the three live in different states, so we are only face to face a few times each year. This post was kicked off, a few days after the Thanksgiving Day holiday, a few days before our oldest daughter, Annette, was ready to leave. Her interests include timelines and places (maps, places to visit, etc.) she says. Annette and Nancy have already published two family history books together, so it is always interesting to see where these discussions lead.

Shameless promotional plugs:

Nancy brought out two projects she had worked on lately, to share with Annette, to see if either caught her eye. For the first one, Nancy had built folders of information on the decades of her paternal grandfather, who was sort of a ‘black sheep’ in the family. It has taken years to build a decent history of him, since her family didn’t want to talk about him. There are still a few holes to fill in, but there is a story to be told one day. Annette showed interest, of course, but no new sparks seemed to fly… until she came across a photo from about 1914 of her three-year-old grandfather standing beside a pond/lake with “Longfellow Gardens, Minneapolis” written on the back. The ‘place name’ caught her attention. She immediately wondered if this “place” still existed and got to work on her computer.

She soon located “Longfellow Gardens” as a current part of the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board [] and started to muse about a possible visit next summer as part of a previously planned trip in the vicinity. Wouldn't it be neat to have a similar photo, now, with her standing where her three-year-old grandfather had stood, over a hundred of years ago.

She also mentioned she knew someone who had worked with the parks there at one time. Was he still there? The pondering and planning continued, along with further discussion of Nancy's project research.

My point in posting this is how important it is to let the next generation pick and choose their own topics/subjects of interest in our family history studies. When they pick something that excites them, then perhaps the work we have done will become real to them, not just boring vital records and cute stories. They will move ahead with their own research that will add depth, detail, and context to what we have begun… that we would likely never have done, ourselves.

Part 2, tomorrow, will continue with another example… that second project...

Families are Forever! ;-)