Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Continuing Family History

As a family historian and amateur genealogist, I have found that delving into the past is a great adventure. It is interesting and exciting to learn about our ancestors and what their lives were like back in the “olden days.” There is something exhilarating about finding that lost relative and knocking down that brick wall!

But, in our quest to learn about the past history of our ancestors, are we forgetting about our families of the present?  Are we keeping up with entering new arrivals into our families?  Are we recording stories about our lives of today for future generations to enjoy?  We need to be recording these things as well so that our children, grand children  and great grand children will have first-hand knowledge of our lives and not have to just read about what the world was like when we were growing up in history books. We need to remember that someday we will be gone and someone (hopefully) is going to be looking for us!

Now that we have computers, it is so easy to start a journal of our lives and keep a running record of events. There are also web hosting locations where you can post your family tree either for free or for very little money. You can create settings where just family members are allowed in or you can leave it open for public viewing, the choice is yours.  If you do set it up where only family members are allowed on your website, be sure to record passwords for access so that when you die, others in the family are able to get in and continue your work. I presently have one website set up as family access and have one other family member listed with administrator duties.

Make your family history come alive with photographs and stories of both those of ancestors and of current members of the family. Don’t let precious stories slip away and become distant memories.

You never know when someone else in the family will be bitten by the genealogy research bug. For some it comes early in life and for others, not until our golden years. In my case, it took the death of my mother to really become interested in doing more research. Granted, I had records already compiled from my father’s side of the family because of my earlier generations doing the research in order to become members of D.A.R.

In case you are not familiar with D.A.R. it stands for Daughters of the American Revolution. There are several other organizations that one might like to join such as the C.A.R. (Children of the American Revolution) or S.A.R. (Sons of the American Revolution).

There are also southern organizations such as S.C.V. (Sons of Confederate Veterans) and the United Daughters of the Confederacy for those with Southern roots, if you wish to join.

With the passing of each generation, my family tree is blooming and becoming a forest! I am one of these people who love to not only research direct descendants but also collateral lines, so my files are becoming very extensive. I only pray that when I am gone, my work will be preserved for future generations to explore and enjoy.

1 comment:

  1. It's interesting Kay that you talk about preserving our history now for future genertations. It is more difficult today to do that with technology the way it is. I have so many letters from my ancestors but today we just text, email or phone. We don't write things down. We need to think about how to preserve heirlooms and record events for our future children.