I've been working on my genealogy -- a lot -- lately. It has always been a passion of mine, but it has usually been put on the back burner.
On our recent vacation, we came home through Kansas so I could stop and dig. Thomas was bored to tears, but had his Gameboy to help pass the time.
I learned a little. I learned much more when I got home and hit ancestry.com. I'm ready to go back to Clay County and Washington County, KS again because I'm armed with much more info and many more questions.
Several years ago, I called a cousin I hadn't talked to in years to ask her what she knew of our family history. This is a basic beginning step in genealogy: ask living relatives first. She didn't know anything, but she told me her brother did. Well, thing is, my mom couldn't stand her brother and he always kind of "scared" me because of mom. So, I wasn't going to call him.
Instead, he called me. He was elated to find that there was a family member out there who was into the family history. He had two trunks full of stuff that his son did not want. He wanted to give it to someone in the family. Would I like it? Duh, of course I would like it. So instead of me planning a trip to Colorado to get it, he planned a trip to Minnesota and brought the stuff to me. Wow, a great "gift" delivered!
That was the single most best "gift" I have ever received in my life. Ever.
One of the trunks was lined in newspaper. One of the pages of that newspaper had my great-great grandfather's name and a date of February 1879. I surmised from that that my 2great-grandmother had just received the trunk from her father who had just passed. It is a really old trunk and even if it had arrived to my home empty, I would have been thrilled.
But no, that trunk was stuffed. Full of photos and other "stuff." Newspaper clippings, hand-written scraps of paper, etc. It was a genealogical gold mind.
Fast forward to this week. I have all these photos. With all my work, I have discovered some of the photos that I thought were friends are actually related to us. I want to share this stuff with my siblings and cousins. But there are too many pictures to make copies of. I simply could not afford to do that -- even at only .19 per photo. There are too many.
I could write a "book" and print it, but I wouldn't be able to include all the photos and it still would be way too expensive.
I could make a computer disk -- ah, the easiest solution. However, one sister does not own nor does she want a computer.
I have read somewhere that you can make DVDs to play on your TV of your photos. I think this would be perfect. I could make jpegs out of my tree information (family group sheets) easy enough and include those.
Thing is, I'm clueless on how to do this. Is there a software to do this? Plus I'd want an antique-type feel to it. Music would be fun, too. I'm not too keen on narration, as I don't like to hear my own voice. I can make jpegs out of any factual information I want to share to counter the lack of narration.
Does such a software beast exist? In my mind, it is the perfect solution.
I will close with a photo of the road to my second-great-grandparents' home. They lived to the left, a quarter of a mile in. It was gorgeous -- if you love farm country, that is.