Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Pedigree Charts & Community

I think one of the things all genealogists use is the pedigree or ancestor chart.

Even though we make extensive use of technology to organize and store information, these charts help us see what we have already discovered (with regard to basics - birth, marriage and death), and what blanks still need to be filled.

Personally, I have the handwriting of a fourth-grader.  It isn't graceful or even feminine looking, much to my despair. 

Fortunately, I have a laser printer, and hopefully that will keep future generations from having to squint at my badly-written charts in fruitless attempts to decipher them!

As I go through the family and print the charts (using my son as the starting person for chart #1), I will also be taking the time to add more brick walls to my sidebar.  Hopefully by having them front and center (or front and left!), someone may recognize a name or place, and be interested in working on a family together.

One of the things I love about genealogy is the sense of community.  How I miss walking into the FHL in Dover, Delaware, and chatting with the volunteers as I sat down to crank through the microfilms I ordered on a monthly basis!

I miss being able to "talk genealogy" to someone who is just as enthusiastic as I am about it. 

However, I know there must be somebody here who shares my interest.  How do I know?  Because I have been bringing my no-longer-needed genealogy periodicals (mostly New England and Mayflower centered) to the library and placing them in the book swap, and somebody has been taking them!

Armed with that knowledge, I have approached the community center on base about establishing a genealogy group.  Even though I move in 9 months, it would be nice to meet other genealogists here.  I am planning for a once-a-month meeting schedule, but am flexible and open to changing it to greater frequency and different days.

My idea is to have casual discussion, workshops, and perhaps even a field trip to the FHL in Pyongtaek (yes, there are LDS Family History Libraries in South Korea!).

While my husband is always willing to listen to me explain a genealogical puzzle or rave about a new discovery, I miss hearing the same stories from others.  I have my fingers crossed that the group will attract at least a few people, and that we can give each other that same sense of community that seems so much easier to find back in the U.S.

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