Ask More Questions
Its been a very long time since I made a Blog Post and this is perhaps my first public one. I usually make posts a page. However this is too short to be a page and perhaps there is a value in a quick post.
I recently received a phone call from a 100 year old woman wanting help with her genealogy and her DNA. How could I turn that down? When I met with her she gave me 2 unsolicited pieces of advice. “Ask more questions and keep a diary of names, dates and places.”
Anyone who gets to a certain age feels this way, as they muse about their parents or grandparents and wonder what they did or remembered about some historic event. However more importantly we care about how they felt. If we are lucky to inherit stories, letters or maybe even a diary we get more of a feel for the answers to our unasked questions. Whatever we are lucky enough to have it hardly ever seems like enough.
I remember when I began doing genealogy at seventeen I interviewed 3 of my new husband’s great aunts.
I was incredulous that none of them knew where their parents were born in Sweden. And of course I am not immune… I never talked to my Dad about his service in the Pacific Theatre during WWII. Several years after he died I was able to research that service as a newly minted soldier in the Marine Corps. I was lucky to have a transcript of an interview he had done for the Camp Tarawa project. I had letters and I corresponded with his best friend who knew.
My father’s last words to me “When you come back, bring questions with you.” Yes, ask more questions…ask them now.
If you have not read my Page Reformed Genealogists: Turning Trees into Stories it might help with those QUESTIONS.
Kelly Wheaton Copyright 2021 All Rights Reserved.