02 December 2013

Elizabeth Shown Mills: Advice on How to Research Family History, Parts 3 and 4

The New York Times has now published the last two helpings of research advice for the family historian.

In week three ESM responds to questions under the headings:
A Reconstruction-era Ex-Slave Businessman
Clues to Origins and Parentage of an Enslaved Man
Tracing Jamaican Roots
Records for a New York-New Jersey Couple
Naturalization Files for New York
Name Change at Ellis Island?

In week four the topics are:
Research Stalemates on the American Frontier
Identifying an Immigrant’s Place of Origin
Why Genealogy?

In addressing the last question, Why do we do it? ESM writes:

Acknowledging our personal pasts, reconstructing the lives of our ancestors and restoring them to human memory can validate the struggles they invested in creating the world we now enjoy. Genealogical research is our way of preserving for future generations a clearer understanding of the personal and societal inheritance that we will pass on to them.
She also refers to a 2012 essay, “In Andalusia, Searching for Inherited Memories.” and the French psychologist Anne Ancelin Sch├╝tzenberger, "whose professional career has defined a hypothesis called the ancestor syndrome.”

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