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Monday, October 25, 2010

Status Report

Wow - time does fly!  Here we are in the middle of October and I haven't posted a blog since mid-September.  Well, actually I have - several in fact.  They are, however, in the "edit" phase meaning that I need to check some dates and other facts before printing them. 

I've been knee deep in photos and census records and passenger lists and other paraphenalia for months now, putting together my book.  My goal was to have it finished in time to distribute as a Christmas gift to family members.  Not surprisingly, and thankfully so, My Publisher decided to have a 50% off sale this month - most likely to prod people like me who have projects "hanging" to finish them off so that they won't be slammed in December.  Well, I took the hint and moved into "sprint" mode to finish.

I know there are some errors and certainly some things I wish I had gotten in, and some things I totally forgot to get in, etc. etc.  It's done though and happily, off to the publisher.  I'm very happy with the result.
Technology has enabled my generation to do what no other generation before us has been able to do....preserve our history.  All the boxes of photographs, birth, baptismal and marriage certificates, newspaper clipppings, letters....all these can be put together in one book that can be handed down for generations.  Genealogy has become very popular - it seems that Alex Haley set off an avalanche of interest when he published Roots. 

I've never traveled to Germany - my ancestral home - but if I did, I would want to know where my family lived, maybe go to that spot, maybe even to the cemetary where they are buried.  How would I know how to do that if it weren't recorded somewhere?  Now it is....or a lot of it anyway.  I may never get to go, but my children may.  My brother or his kids may.  Or maybe their kids....or theirs.  I want to rest assured that I did what I could to facilitate their interest - if they have any - in finding their ancestors. 

I would like my mother to know that I cared for her photographs and that I respected her efforts and sacrifices to keep her family afloat during those awful years of the depression.  I would like my dad to know that I cared enough about him to find things out about his biological mother that I'll bet even he didn't know. 
I was blessed during this process to meet a number of family members I didn't know before - some I didn't even know about!  I am thankful that I was able to make these connections and strengthen bonds. 

I'll keep posting here as I remember stories or vignettes about my own life.  I want to post the stories that my parents told me about their own lives.  I don't remember them all right now but they come back to me now and again. 

I hope that you find some value in reading all of this.  I couldn't fit these details into the book but perhaps I can print these out and they will serve as a sort of "appendix".  Stories are best when told aloud but you have to know them in order to tell them.  Here they are - read them, remember them and tell them to your own children.

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