Sunday, June 12, 2016
Revisiting Perry County
Summertime is traditionally the season to get away from the routine. Change pace. Travel.
Since I've had Perry County, Ohio, on my mind lately, I've been pulling up research records and reviewing my progress on my mother-in-law's family history. After all, the main prompt for all this review activity has been the opportunity to launch a DNA project focused on that specific location. I've been working on that family history for as long as my husband and I have been married, and believe me, there is a lot to review.
For some reason, though—despite our imminent entrance into the official summer vacation travel season—pursuing the paper chase of the Flowers, Gordon, Metzger, Snider, et al, lines in Perry County hadn't prompted me in the least to think of planning a research trip to Ohio. See how stuck on computer-aided research we can become?
It's time for me to take that research back out into the real world.
Yes, we had always hoped to take another trip back east to visit an aunt in Chicago and an uncle near Perry County, but somehow, I never even considered the possibility that I could go hunt down a few local documents in the process. Yes, DNA testing is on the travel agenda. But how could I forget the basics?
Right now, our extended family is in the throes of schedule juggling, to insure that all interested parties can be in the same place at the same time. Considering all those busy people, this can be a challenge. On top of that, some local genealogical and historical repositories don't exactly keep a 24/7 schedule, making it difficult to set up an itinerary that gets us to all the right stops at the right times.
Once we make the flight back east, that road trip from Chicago to Perry County brings us through two other locales that figure strongly in our family history: Lafayette and Fort Wayne in Indiana. With limited travel time and packed schedules, it will take a pretty sizeable shoehorn to squeeze in all the visits on my dream list, but it won't happen at all if I don't set up a spreadsheet to lay out all the parameters. And limited time frames mean careful preparation before we even buy the tickets for our flight—not to mention, assess what document needs there are in those family history files.
For the next few days, we'll revisit Perry County on paper, check past posts as well as database records to see what needs to be done. Such travel opportunities as this don't come often, so when they are here for the asking, the key is to maximize the opportunity.
Above: "The Brook in the Woods," 1887 painting by Indiana impressionist Theodore Clement Steele, member of the Hoosier Group; courtesy Wikipedia; in the public domain.