Before My Time is about the ancestry and extended family of my four grandparents: John Samuel Krentz (Indiana/North Dakota), Margreta Tjode Hedwig (Gertie) Buss (North Dakota), Rosmer Pettis Kerr (Pennsylvania/Michigan), and Evelyn Elvina Hauer (Michigan), and other topics in genealogy and family history.

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Sunday, January 31, 2010

January Ruminations

Before My Time doesn't have an official blogiversary. It began before it began; i.e., I was blogging elsewhere when I wrote my first few family history posts. Toward the end of 2006, I was reviewing the blog where I'd posted them, and it occurred to me that I wanted to collect those posts in a topical blog of their own. I set up this blog and relocated my family history posts here, backdating them to their original dates.

At that point, I had neither seen nor heard of any other blogs with a focus on genealogy. It didn't take long, though, before I realized I couldn't possibly be the only one with this idea, and I looked around for others. If I remember correctly, Dana Huff's Our Family History was the first one I discovered. Her participation in the Carnival of Genealogy led me to Creative Gene, and from there I found myself part of a small community which, since then, has grown large enough to have considerable influence in the genealogy industry.

I've never been particularly 'groupish,' and I don't often participate in memes, carnivals, and such. But I'm enriched in many ways by my fellow genealogy bloggers--I learn, I am entertained, I am encouraged, I am stimulated, I am exposed to new ideas, old photographs, unusual methods, and varying opinions. That's certainly not an exhaustive list, but my point is probably made.

Before My Time is written essentially for an audience that doesn't quite exist--family members who don't read it, ancestors who are dead and don't care, descendants who haven't been born yet. I also write it for myself, as a way of working with the materials I've gathered, organizing my thoughts, and writing them down so I won't forget what I've figured out and what I'm still wondering about.

Nevertheless, the audience that actually does exist--largely my fellow bloggers of genealogy and family history--is a great and treasured stand-in for that other audience, and I'm glad to have the support of such a terrific group of friends.


January Accomplishments

Cheryl and I made Randy's Best of the Genea-Blogs list this week with the series In Search of the Schulte Line. I've already read most of his other picks for the week, and I am honored to be included in such excellent company! Thanks, Randy! And Cheryl, thanks for being half of The Superpower of Two!

Including this one, I've posted 13 times this month. That's twice my overall average (to compute, I included only months in which I had at least one post).

Most of this month's efforts were part of the Schulte series, for which Cheryl and I found a good number of new documents.

I labelled two dozen file folders and filled them with non-genealogy-related papers that were crowding the top of my desk. Now it's only genealogy papers that are crowding the top of my desk.

I finally got my family tree set up!

I decided what my photo book will be about--well, who--and that there will be plenty of text, and I started typing a chronology that includes lots of news articles from Chronicling America and Winona Newspaper Project.

And in the other column . . .

The New Year's Resolution? That baby went down in flames! I intended to do fact-checking and source-writing for one grandparent a day, but at this point I have exactly three grandparents finished, and those were done before the new year even began. I may have to separate the fact-checking from the source-entering, because despite Legacy's fabulous SourceWriter, it's still a job I obsess over, which makes it a time-consuming ordeal, which--well, I'm sure I don't have to tell anyone this tale. Everyone hates this job, right?


Wendy said...

Aw, not the flaming-out of a New Year's Resolution! At least you still have 11 more months to accomplish plenty of other things this year.

I love Legacy for its SourceWriter but, yup, entering every single possible detail is a pain. Sometimes I wish it could just enter the information via telepathy!

Barbara Poole said...

Happy Blogiversary, whatever date you choose.
I especially love your para. about writing for an audience that doesn't quite exist--family members who don't read it...boy that was good. That is how I feel. I think I write mine more for myself, at least in the past few weeks.
I'll be following you as a live in your audience.

Renate said...

I think your ruminitions speak for many of us. I love your description of your non-existant (lol) audience. How wonderful that we (the real audience) can all be here for one another! :)


T.K. said...

Oh, yeah! Telepathy would be great! If that would work for blog posts too, I could manage a daily post on at least two of my blogs.

And I think you're right, Wendy, about the problem of hooking up the source with every detail it covers. It puts a kink in my plan to stick with my direct-line ancestors to get them done. I mean, if you've written up something like a census, which is a source for everyone in a family, there's no sense in just adding it to the parents. While you're at it, it makes sense to add it to all the kids too, which means you have to add or check all their info... and you might as well add the image while you're at it... etc. etc. Well, ya see how easily I can talk myself out of doing that? LOL!!!

T.K. said...

Hey, Barbara and Renate, thanks for stopping by!

Amy Coffin, MLIS said...

We seem to be writing for the same audience. I enjoy your blog very much. :)

T.K. said...

LOL!! Thanks, Amy!

Blog Archive


Our Family in Books: A Bibliography

  • My Ancestors in Books (a library of resources and notes pertaining to Reverend Samuel Stone, Major General Robert Sedgwick, Elder John Crandall, and other early Americans in the forest where my family tree was grown)
  • The Zahnisers: A History of the Family in America by Kate M. Zahniser and Charles Reed Zahniser (Mercer, Pa. 1906)
  • History of St. James Lutheran Church [full title: A little of this and a little of that in the 141 year (1861-2002) History of St. James Lutheran Church, Reynolds Indiana] by Harold B. Dodge, published at Reynolds, Indiana, 2002; 170 pages.
  • Lisbon, North Dakota 1880-2005 Quasuicentennial, published at Lisbon, North Dakota in 2005; 391 pages.
  • The Paschen and Redd Families of Cass County, Indiana by Alfred Paschen, c. 2005 (Gateway Press, Inc., Baltimore, MD); 322 pages.
  • Sheldon Community History: Sheldon Centennial 1881-1981, published at Sheldon, North Dakota in 1981; 376 pages.
  • Sheldon, North Dakota 1881-2006 - 125th Anniversary: The Queen of the Prairie, published at Sheldon, North Dakota in 2006; 498 pages.
  • A Standard History of White County, Indiana, written under the supervision of W.H. Hamelle, c. 1915 (The Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago and New York).
  • The Roots of Coventry, Connecticut by Betty Brook Messier and Janet Sutherland Aronson, c. 1987 (Coventry 275th Anniversary Committee, Coventry, CT); 206 pages.
  • "Elder John Crandall of Rhode Island and His Descendants" by John Cortland Crandall; New Woodstock, New York, 1949; 797 pages.
  • "The Descendants of Robert Burdick of Rhode Island." Nellie (Willard) Johnson, Pd.B.: H & L Creations, LLC.

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