Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Retirement Means Cultivating Family Trees

Whenever I'm in a social situation with people of a certain age inevitably the subject of ancestors and genealogy comes up. As we get older it seems we have more time to think about our heritage and wonder where we came from. Having worked as a librarian most of my life, I was the logical candidate for the job of finding my family's people, compiling data, cataloging it all.

Several years ago I was contacted by a few very dedicated relatives who were well into the genealogy of my husband's family. So I had a good head start. One even managed to find the connecting generation for our 2 family lines and eventually sent a 4 foot long family tree. The others had done a lot of work but no one had gone back far enough to find the connections.

Newly retired and of a certain age, I'm resuming my search for family. I was really certain that by now everything would be digitized. Not only is it not but when you find relevant material you have to pay for a membership to access it. It's really too bad that I can't find online what I need on these miserable snowy days when I can't leave the house.

So I'll be contacting the local Polish Genealogical Society once the weather starts to get warmer and the Latter Day Saints who have microfilmed millions of records and I will continue searching the old fashioned way.

While my husband's family is about 75% complete, there's still my mother's family for whom I have some information. And I have almost nothing on my father's family. While the names may not be Smith or Jones, it turns out that these names are fairly common.

So many names to wade through!


  1. Oooo! You're doing what I've always wanted to do!! Or rather, wanted someone else to walk me through while they do it! Ha! Ha! I'm enthralled by the "Where do you come from" show about the celebrities genealogy. I sure wish someone would do that for me!!...Guess I have to become famous first!...Fat chance! ^_^

  2. I can't complain too much since other people did a lot of preliminary work. But I'd still like it to be a lot easier to do the rest.