While going through my family information in preparation for the trip I have noticed one thing about my research plans. It has been a recurring theme that is just unavoidable. I won’t find everything on the Internet.
There is still an awful lot of work that can only be done in an actual building that holds items that provide information. This means using books, microfilms and other resources. It could be an old fashioned concept but one that is still necessary in family history research. The building can be an archive, library, historical society, court house, university library or family history centre.
I will admit that I love to go into libraries and just be with the books. I will go through dozens of books checking for specific and obscure information that could relate to my family history.
The darkened microfilm room with everyone intently staring at the images is a very peaceful place, except of course when you get the one microfilm reader that squeaks at every opportunity.
Then there is the one thing that brings a smile to all faces and it is when someone expresses a very excited “yes” to signify that they have found the piece of information they have been looking for and it has solved a problem. They realize their excitement has broken the silence and they quietly do a little happy dance in their chairs.
One person is usually found to be mumbling quietly to themselves, a sign of madness in some places but not a family history library. They are usually the ones who didn’t find what they were looking for and are trying to figure out where to look next.
The library is a place where you can find direct information on your family or information that will help expand your family’s history. Either way you will be enhancing your experience by leaving home to do research in an actual building.
©2010 – Blair Archival Research