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To my generation: Why you should care about Family History.

posted Feb 25, 2010, 2:00 PM by Christine Merrill
Family History is for old people who have time to work on it, right?  What's wrong with that?  I'll tell you what the problem is:  tons of old paper records and obsolete computer files that nobody can understand when Grandma passes on.  (This is no disrespect to my very computer-savvy family history Grandmother, who is a marvelous exception.)  Sure, your whole family history has been done.  But does anybody know what it is?  Has anybody passed the information on to the next generation?

In Ezra, the children of priests whose genealogy was lost after the Babylonian captivity were denied the priesthood because they could not show that they were of priestly lineage.  (Ezra 2:62)  Here's the newsflash that I've had while I've been working on my family history:  It's not Grandma's responsibility to make sure I know what my heritage is.  And it's amazing how much of that information is getting harder to find as people get older.  I thought that if I wanted my genealogy, I would just ask, and a nice computer disk or some paper copies would be supplied with all the information I need - NOPE!  Someone has some information, but they think that So-and-So has more.  So-and-So claims that he never had any of that, it was Aunt Jane...

Computers have completely changed the nature of Family History, and who is best poised to gather all the information and make it accessible to other family members?  It's us, the people who grew up with computers.  We have to make sure that the information makes it to our generation!

If I've inspired you at all, and you are in my family, you can see the Family History page for more information...and/or talk to me about how you can help.