Lesson 11: Bits 'n' Pieces
Lesson 11 is courtesy of Jean R. Legried, copyright 1996. Her work is
available at: www.rootsweb.com/~newbie. Used with permission. Note:
Lessons with"added notes" italicized are added "Net
Notes" (N2) by DB Dale.
FINDING YOUR PLACE IN HISTORY
This part of doing your family history maybe referred to as putting meat on
the bare bones of statistics. It's making those names and dates come alive
and become people. What impact did your family have upon history and how
were their lives affected by the history of the times in which they lived?
You must revert your thinking to the era in which they lived, i.e. horse
and buggy transportation, no telephones, television, radio, computers (!),
and many other "conveniences" that we enjoy today. You must also become
familiar with the national and regional history of the times in which they
lived. Social customs were much different from what they are now.
You might find it helpful to make (they can also be purchased from
genealogical publishing houses) a timeline of historical events and then
insert your ancestors' births and deaths into the dates.
Write your own history! This is a very important item to be able to pass
on to your children and grandchildren. Some things for you to consider:
1) House/Place where I was born. 13) Our children (differences,traits,
2) Circumstances surrounding my birth. habits, character, talents, hobbies).
3) Tell about parents, brothers and 14) Our home(s)(where we lived,
sisters(include stories about them). why we lived there).
4) Childhood health conditions 15) Political activity.
(diseases, falls, accidents). 16) Good books that I have read
5) Playmates and amusements. and why I consider them good.
6) Religious practices. 17) Recreation(singing,dancing,
7) Economic conditions (Times when sports, etc.)
food and money were scarce) 18) How many times I have moved
8) School, teachers, studies. in my lifetime and why.
9) My chores at home. 19) Travel ad vacations.
10) Sports that I took part in. 20) Children.
11) Courtship and marriage. 21) My hopes for the future.
12) My husband/wife (how we met,
why I love him/her)
Write simply and to the point, like you are talking to someone. Add
pictures and remember to include dates.
How to Write YOUR History
The following is an exercise we did at our local genealogical
society meeting to get the members to thinking about writing their personal
histories: For 10 minutes write as fast as possible on
2) Listtwo dozenthings about yourself
3) What were you doing the day John Kennedy was shot,22 Nov. 1963?
4) What was your bedroom like as a child?
You can write short things about yourself when you have a spare
moment, over lunch,at the doctor's office, while waiting for service
somewhere. Write as things come to you. Then, as you have more time, you
can put it all together into your story.
This is a very involved study and one for which there isn't time or
space to pursue. Using it without the right is the same as theft. In
America there are no laws governing coats of arms but in foreign countries
there are. The mail-order places that offer you "Your Coat of Arms" are
My father sent for one a number of years ago. At the bottom of
the sheet is this disclaimer: "This report does not represent individual
lineage of the Dale family tree and no genealogical representation is
intended or implied." A few Web sites on subject:
Heraldry - Coat of Arms Search -
Site on Barontry:
DAR - Perhaps the best known of these is the Daughters of the
American Revolution(DAR). Actually, there are quite a number of this type
of organization and they fall into several categories: "war" societies
(DAR), early settler and ship societies (Mayflower, National), colonial
societies, nationality (ethnic) societies, religious societies, and royal
and baronial societies.
Sites Added ......................
For DAR go to:
and on Mayflower Descendants: Go To
THE NATIONAL SOCIETY -There's The National Society, First Families
of Minnesota,a society with members whose ancestors were in Minnesota prior
to statehood in 1858. If you believe that you qualify for membership in a
hereditary society, you must do your research very carefully and document
each generation. (dbd) Membership in a few is "by invitation only." Some people
consider these societies "snobbish." THE SOURCE - edited by Arlene Eakle
and Johni Cerny (Salt Lake City,Utah: Ancestry Publishing, 1982) has a
chapter that has a lengthy list. It's your decision to consider why you
conduct genealogical research and whether hereditary society membership has
some meaning to you. My Mother always said that Dad's grandmother, a Ballard,
was a member of the DAR. I looked for a long time but couldn't find the
connection. Did learn that there were once two (2) DARs and actually found
a direct connection through another family line, but have never felt motivated
enough to have my two daughters included.(dbd)
Thousands of these have sprung up in the last 20 years! An
association can start with someone publishing a genealogy of the family and
then organizing a family reunion and then things just keep growing! Others
have been organized for many years. Some associations publish a newsletter
and/or a bulletin, but there is always the big yearly family reunion, some
lasting two or three or more days. Several bibliographies of family
associations have been published. ADDED: For family names being researched
by DBD which have web sites, or sources there are the following: (dbd)
Researching Galyardt name Ballard History
Mrs Barbara Cano, 4201 South 68th St.
Greenfield,WI 53220-2903 /heritage/cousin/ballard.html
Walker Family Histories
The Ballard Newsletter Ballard News Letter
Ballard Listserve Love Family Listserve
Love Family Genealogy Forum
Moore Newsletter http://www.genforum.com/love/
KINGSLEY@aol.com Robinett Family Page list-serve group
Moore listserv group ROBINETT-L@rootsweb.com
Subscribe Walker Footprint Listserve:
Walker Family Histories
How are you going to share your research? This question would
perhaps been better asked at the beginningof the classes because it should
determine how you do your research and how much you are going to do. It is
advisable to say to yourself that when I reach such-and-such a point, I will
publish the material. If you wait until you are "done", you will never
publish! Naming a certain point in your research as a goal is better than
naming a certain date to be completed. Date deadlines are hard to meet in
genealogy! It is also advisable to take orders (and a deposit) before you
publish. That way you won't be stuck with a lot of unsold books.
Publishing can be done many ways:
1) Running off a few copies on a copy machine and putting the pages
into an inexpensive binder of some sort. If you choose this approach make
sure you use acid free paper. Even then the ink will begin to fade in 10
years or so unless you use special artist ink that is guaranteed not to fade.
It's expensive and not usable in all copiers.(dbd)
2) Have copies made in a print shop and have them professionally
soft-bound or hard-bound. Many print shops now have high quality equipment
that will give your finished product a very professional look. This
could be expensive, however.
3) Find a print shop that specializes in short-runs of genealogy
books. This is usually the most economical way to go.
Added: It is important that acid-free paper is used so that your work will
last. Some people use a three-ring binder for their book. Adding pages is
easy using this method but make certain it is a good quality binder. Many
publishing companies advertise in the genealogical periodicals. Contact
several of them for their prices and methods. Talk to your local printers;
and ask if they can meet the other companies' prices because it's always better
to patronize a hometown business.I have printed family genealogies using FTM
and wordperfect. Either Wordperfect or Word provide for publishing today.
If you're thinking about genealogy printing with any kind of production run,
please note TO GO TO LASER PRINT FROM YOUR COMPUTER USING A DIGITAL LASER
PRINTING COMPANY, YOU GENERALLY NEED EITHER TO BE IN PAGEMAKER OR QUARK.
I have spent time with Laser Express and know that a Wordperfect document would
require an additional setup fee. This direct to laser print is the
cheapest way to go if printing in volume. A few of the companies for
third party printing mentioned on the Net during the last year include:
(in addition to Laser Express above)(dbd)
1) Friesen Printers of Altona, Manitoba.
2)Heritage Quest Press-Orting, WA; Oregon
3)Bookbinding Co.-Silverton, OR;
4)Anundsen Publishing Co.-Decorah, IA
5)Desktop Publishing & Printing-Renton, WA.
6)Higginson Book Co - email@example.com
It is VERY important that you do all your research in America before
you try foreign research. Each country is different. Foreign records aren't well indexed
(although they're getting better) and you must have an exact location before you "cross the
water." If you don't know that exact location, careful research here can often find it for you,
or at least give you some very good clues.
It may not be necessary for you to travel to that foreign country either. The Family
History Library has a great deal of foreign records and there are several ethnic libraries
that offer good research sources. There are books that have been published detailing
research methods and materials in foreign countries that can be helpful. Realize, too,
that foreign research is more expensive but it's worth the cost when you make that