Saturday, October 15, 2011

Combing Research Trips With the Living and the Dead!

One of the toughest things about genealogy research is combing the living and the dead.

Let me clarify!

First of all, I love my living family.  They have helped me become who I am today, both through tears and frustration!!  They are near to me.  They are dear to me.

Second, I love my ancestors, and those that have passed on that are really not that far back in my genealogy.  I love the detective work that goes along with piecing their lives together.

I do not like combining the two. 

While raising a young family, I found it difficult to spread out my research on my dining room table when I knew I might be called away to pick up a child, bring something out of the oven, answer a phone call, etc.  I was never quite sure what I would find when I returned, for the dining room is the hub of our home.  I didn't have a genealogy room that I could simply close the door on.

When we would take a trip, my husband would try to find some time for me to dash into a library while he held the kids at bay in the children's section, or entertain them while I labored in a cemetery.

He never once complained, for we are both library people.  But, we didn't have the chance to spend hours, like we would both love!

Then comes Salt Lake City.

 Mr. Kerry's family was centered in Utah, so we would go there quite often.  Many of my genealogy friends would give me envious glances when they heard I was off to Utah again.  But, most of these trips involved activities with the living - weddings, reunions, funerals, etc.  I cherish those times, but there was never, ever a time for research in the genealogy mecca known as the Family History Library.

Once, when in Utah for a wedding, we stayed in the hotel adjacent to the FHL.  For two days, I longlingly looked out our window as we dressed to go to dinners, rehearsals and then, the wedding.  When the events were over, we arrived back at the hotel when the library only had twenty minutes before closing.  I dashed through the doors, found what I needed, printed it off and had five minutes to spare.

My dream is to go to Salt Lake and learn and research and come away filled with knowledge, sources, and lots of avenues I have not yet pursued.  The Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy beckons me, and I want to come!

I can dream, can't I? 

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