It seems that no matter how many times I ‘carefully’ review the documents, notes, photos and other family history memorabiliathat I’ve collected over the years, I aways find additional ‘Treasure’ when I look at them again. Why?
Part of the answer lies in the fact that some of the information didn’t have meaning in earlier reviews. Since that time, I’ve found additional information about my family and that knowledge has unlocked the previously ‘valueless’ data. In other cases, I simply hadn’t thought to look for information elsewhere on the document that I was holding.
Case in point. Recently, I opened my mothers old ‘Book of Remembrance’ to see if she had written any notes in the margin about of the families in my current research project. I’ve had her Book of Remembrance for many years and long ago ‘carefully’ went through it page by page to make sure that I’d captured all of her data and research. However, for some reason, my eyes were only drawn to the typewritten fronts of the pages and her handwritten notes in the margins. I was totally blind to the documents she had glued to the back of many of those old family group sheet pages.
When I found the first document on the back of a page this week, I stared at it as though it was a ghostly apparition. How could I have missed it earlier? As I continued to thumb through the pages, more documents ‘appeared’.
I don’t know why she glued birth, marriage and other certificates to the pages, but there they were and will always stay. I’m now busily scanning them and printing copies on acid-free paper for my files. The originals are starting to decay with time and the effects of the glue and in a few short years will turn into crumbled dust. But for now, I’ve found treasure and it had been quietly sitting on a shelf in my office for years waiting to be discovered again.
The principles of this story can be repeated in any of our family history collections. They are full of treasures that we just need to find. Glean these treasures from your own files and then wait a while and do it again. Just as rocks always seem to regrow in fields, family history treasures always turn up when we carefully review our family history documents and files