My spouse and I headed down to Fredericksburg, Texas, where my parents live, on Thursday and Friday so I could do a little genealogy work with Mom, who is 81. I do all the computer stuff on Ancestry.com and Family Search and PAF, but Mom is the one who has written all the letters requesting records over the years and viewed all the microfilm before stuff became available online. She has wonderful, extensive files of documentation - birth and death certificates, baptismal and marriage records, obituaries and Social Security applications, and so on. I don't think Mom has had much if any formal genealogy training, but she was a history major and obviously recognizes the need to get primary sources whenever possible.
I need to go through all her stuff and get copies of what I don't have, and cite this stuff as sources in our PAF and Ancestry.com family trees. My parents have also amassed quite a collection of old family photographs. I scanned some of these on this trip and will be using them in future blog posts. There's a lot more to do, though, so we'll be going back in about a month for another two- or three-day visit.
If you ever go to Fredericksburg, I highly recommend staying at the Camp David Bed and Breakfast. The owners are Bobby and Molly Sagebiel. Bobby's family helped settle the Fredericksburg area and he has lots of cousins in the area. There was a copy of his family history and family trees in our cottage and I enjoyed perusing it. Molly, who graduated from my Houston high school the year before I started there and later served as our alumni director, makes awesome breakfasts which she then delivers to your cottage in the morning. Plus, Molly can read and translate old German script, so I may have a job for her to do when we go back next month (stay tuned for an upcoming post!).
© Amanda Pape - 2010