Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Blasts from the Past - Tuesday's Tip

I've been on a newspaper binge since revisiting Old Fulton NY Postcards over the weekend while playing with Caroline Pointer's too addictive 48 Hour Genealogy Ephemera Challenge (seriously fun, by the way). One thing led to another and four days later I'm still obsessed with the Binghamton Press of the 1920's, 30's and 40's.

I found an article about the citizenship course my grandfather was taking on the same page as three stories about the repeal of Prohibition. Another article about a cousin's junior high graduation below a story about the Lindbergh kidnapping. Talk about historical context!

The best part, however, has been sharing some of the articles with my senior relatives. I'm blessed that my father, uncle and aunt who were growing up during those days are tech savy. I've emailed them copies of articles and been delighted with their responses. Phone calls, lengthy emails, quick thumbs ups and thank yous have been coming in. They have shared memories - or the lack thereof - sparked by virtual clippings of property transfers, school performances, wedding announcements or church dances. And they're asking for more! It's been a grand way to spark dialog.

So, today's tip - act as a virtual clipping service for your relatives. Don't inundate them - one or two a week is more than enough. You may learn far more than you imagined!

Photo Credit: AttributionNoncommercial Some rights reserved by ancient history

8 comments:

  1. What a wonderful way to prompt a dialog! I imagine you are "mining" quite a few more gems, just from the conversation starters you've already sent. What a great idea! And now...I'll have to dig up some clippings from that "Nolichucky Roots" region in which we share a common interest...

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  2. I love your suggestion...however, I'm the only tech savvy person, and that's not saying much. Thank for reminding me about Old Fulton NY Postcards, such a great site.

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    1. You're right, Barbara. It doesn't work so well with the non-techies (and I have those too). I have pulled things up on the computer when visiting, but it's not the same.

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  3. This is fantastic! I think you know that putting my ancestors in "historical context" is what I love to do. The contrasts you found in your newspapers are remarkable. I'm glad to hear your relatives enjoyed it, too.

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  4. Neat idea, Susan! I'll have to try this with my in-laws. They're not tech savvy but they do email. Don't you love finding those stories? I went looking for an obituary and got totally absorbed in an account of the Galveston hurricane. What, distracted? Not me!

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  5. Some of my favorite things found using Fulton History were a whole bunch of drawings my now 83-yr-old uncle did as a kid and mailed in to the Brooklyn Daily Eagle. He's an e-mail user, so I sent him links to lots of them, which he liked - he was still very proud of them, 70+ years later.

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    1. Exactly, Katie! My family are having a blast with the clippings. That alone is worth the moments it take to share them.

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  6. My folks have gotten alittle bit of tech-savvyin the last couple of years.

    I send them stuff by email, they download and review, and then call me up to talk to me about it.

    Step by step, I suppose.

    Dee at Shakin' the Family Tree

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