In 2001, Utah Senator, Senator Orrin Hatch, introduced a bill to Congress making October Family History Month. He said “By searching for our roots, we come closer together as a human family”. 2001 isn’t that long ago. In 2001 I was a newlywed and recent college graduate trying to find my way in this world. I had no idea at that time that I would be on this wonderful genealogy journey that includes a genealogy blog and podcast. I had no idea that my research would take me back to 1858 Arkansas making me the 6th generation Arkansan in my family. I had no idea that I would be able to trace my family lineage from slavery and be able to join the Sons and Daughters of the US Middle Passage lineage society. I had no idea that I would be able to find photos of my 2X great grandparents. I’ve said it once and I will say it again, I just never know where this journey will take me. This journey blesses me everyday, and for that I am truly thankful.
I celebrate family history throughout the year. But in October I like to reflect on my research, and I am more intentional about sharing my blogs and podcasts more. This year I want to give a friendly reminder that your family history is just as important as people we read about in books and watch on TV. So even if you aren’t interested in going to the library to read microfilm or tracing your family lineage, there are other ways you can contribute to your family history.
- Organizing family recipes
- Cemetery/headstone cleaning
- Cemetery/headstone contributor to websites such as findagrave.com
- Plan a family reunion or a small family gathering
- Create a family scrapbook or shadow box
- Create a family address/phone number list
- Organize and identify people in family photos
- Create a family calendar with family members birthdates and anniversaries
Family history more than names and dates. Family history is about your past, present, and future; remembering and honoring your family’s past while making memories for future generations. No matter where you are in your research, beginner or advanced, I hope you will take the opportunity during Family History Month to learn something new about your family and share it with others.