Saturday, March 2, 2013

Teaching Genealogy Again


The past year has seen me accept a new position and make a move to a new university setting - Stetson University in DeLand, Florida.  One of the things I knew I would miss from Widener University (Chester, PA) was my work with their Osher LifeLong Learning Institute in Exton, PA. There I had the wonderful privilege of teaching beginning genealogy to a group of individuals who were learning for the "love of learning!" Each week they asked questions and tested me, but together we were able to create new family history's for them, and work to find their missing relatives.  This work kept me connected with my heritage of family genealogy - and resulted in my work on this blog.

When I moved, I feared I would lose this connection. But now, just a year later, two lifelong learning institutes have opened at Stetson - one in Celebration and one at the historic campus in DeLand. And once again I'm working with lifelong learners to learn more about genealogy.  Today I'm getting ready to teach this week about writing the family history - and how there are a multiplicity of ways it can be done today. Blogs included!  I then realized that I had gotten away from blogging during this past year of moving - and thus this entry!

I love that we can now easily share - on a blog - all about the family. Pictures and stories that can be easily accessible to the rest of the family.  Although publishing can be done much easier today than before, blogging  seems to work for me. I can write in short spurts - and immediately publish what I've discovered.

So what genealogy finds have occurred since I've been in Florida? The largest has been an ancestral chart drawing produced by my grandmother and her sister (Fern Daisy Fox Yoder and Margaret Fox Glass) in 1923 of their memories of their family history.  A photo won't do it justice - so you will just have to believe by description.  It is in the shape of a circle - hand drawn - with 5 generations of names (that they knew of) on the wheel. What is fascinating is that the wheel, whenever possible focuses on the women in genealogy - not the men! I can't help but wonder if this was their message that they believed in the Equal Rights Amendment, giving rights to women, proposed in 1923! Fern, would have been 26, married for 4 years, with a 2 year old daughter in 1923. So I went hunting for a picture of her, and found this one. This had to be taken when mom was just about 1 year old in 1921.

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