Now some years later as a genealogical historian, father, and grandfather, I really love family gatherings all the more. Not only for the family time and memories, but also for the exceptional opportunity they afford to enhance what I like to call 'the tapestry of our family history'.
The more inviting we make genealogy, the more we will entice others to join us in our family history, love of genealogy, and our ancestral journeys!
While I fully understand and appreciate their frustration, one of the factors I find that often influences this frustration is what I call the 'Rose-Colored Glasses Effect' and it needs to be avoided in everyone's family history and genealogy work.
Recently I started thinking more and more that I needed to expand my efforts to something even broader. I wasn't sure what it might be, but I knew I was developing an itch to take a step up and undertake a project something that would not only meet my interests, but also to make a difference to folks far beyond my direct reach.
n the many years I have been pursuing my genealogy, ancestry, and family history as a genealogical historian I have been blessed to learn much. Much about family, history, people both living and dead, and how to be what I like to think is an effective genealogist.
Tracing family history always throws up stories because people make stories. It doesn't really matter that these people are related to you - I still maintain that - but mining your own family for stories is as good an option as any.
Contrary to what you read in far too many places, everything you need to conduct your genealogy, family history, and ancestry is NOT online!
I usually don't keep track of numbers, but I realized that I had over 10,000 family members in our family tree, over 6,500 attached documents and photographs, thousands of stories and notes, over 36,000 emails, contact data for over 220 family members, and almost 400 GB of additional data. These numbers immediately led me to create a plan to manage my 'big genealogy data'.
While each family is unique and every writer has her/his favorite tips, I do believe there is an easy path to follow in order to attract more family members to our genealogy work: We need to write about our family histories by following my 'Four E's'.
During this time of grieving and reminiscing, I have strengthened my belief, even more, regarding how important it is that I capture the true people my parents were. There are so many stories, memories, and perceptions of them.
In my genealogy work, when I have collaborated as a team, we have ended up with some of the finest outcomes we could have hoped for. Many of which would not have been possible without collaborating.
Last night I lost my mum. She was 93 and the matriarch of our family. She was also one of the key reasons I fell in love with genealogy and family history. She was the ultimate family historian/genealogist although she didn't realize it.
While I fully understand that journals can be highly private matters, if someone leaves one to another family member(s) or the 'family library' then, at least in my mind, it moves from the realm of 'private journal' to 'history book'. You may disagree with this point of view...