We make the long, tiring and costly journey twice a year because we love family and they are important to us. And like anything you place importance upon, you make time for it. Or at least, do your best to find some time to invest. You are willing to brave the journey of sitting in a flying metal tube with a toddler for hours on end.
What is it about railway stations that conjures up ghosts of the past? I'm standing on the platform in Pastavy (or Postavy), deep in the Belarussian countryside, almost exactly 100 years since my friend Stu Seidel's grandfather, Julius Seidel, stood on this same platform (or one very like it) and boarded a train to start a new life in the New World.
These basic rules fit so very well with what we, as genealogy and family historian fans should be practicing in our own communities if we want to attract more folks, especially family members, to our shared love of working on our genealogy and our passion for understanding our family history and ancestors.
The genealogy community is, by and large, a very sociable, caring, and sharing one. While we all enjoy the vast amounts of materials that are out there for us to access electronically (so free and some not-so-free) it is important to remember that we, as genealogists, each need to pay-it-forward every so often.
"Scott. You look like you are carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders. Lighten up, kiddo!" I must have heard this phrase from my parents a million times. Now as I spend my career working in the field of genealogy at Onward To Our Past®, I think it is an apt phrase for many who pursue their ancestry, genealogy, and family history.
My biggest breakthroughs, most significant finds, and most amazing discoveries have all come from not who I already knew, but from new associates, allies, mentors, and researchers who I had never known before I employed my system of casting the widest net possible whenever I hit a bumpy patch in my work.