Sunday, February 10, 2019
At Journey's End, New Tasks Emerging
Home again. It's been a productive research trip, although one which was very different from the usual tour through libraries or archives. To interview family members, explore the old homestead, or even traipse through family burial grounds takes a different kind of time than scrolling through microfilms or even reading listings in book form.
These are the research formats which take time to unfold. Conversations will meander over their natural course and interviewees take time to warm to the subject—let alone the interviewer. I may not have retrieved volumes of documents in this past week's research journey to northern Florida, land of my grandmother's roots, but I did return with loads of material.
All that material needs to be transformed into usable formats, the type where I can refer back to my notes and recreate the episodes when I gleaned the information for the first time. Some of that information is simply waiting to be harvested from my memory and ensconced on paper—before I forget the details I traveled so far to obtain.
In the meantime, it's been two weeks since I last checked up on my research progress on the four family trees I've been building. Don't be surprised that absolutely nothing has happened on the trees for my father, my mother-in-law, or my father-in-law. Remember, this past half year has been devoted to focusing on my mother's southern roots, thanks to preparation for the research course I took at SLIG this past January, and this very trip I've just completed.
Even progress on my own mother's tree slowed while I was out, driving through Suwannee County in search of more details on just what unfolded in my McClellan and related lines, in and about Wellborn. Not surprisingly, I was only able to add sixty nine names to my mother's family tree to bring that tree's tally up to 16,828.
Every single one of those names was added in the past week, thanks to a visit to the Suwannee Valley Genealogical Society library, where I met another McClellan descendant—from a line I wasn't even aware existed. Now that I and my distant cousin—fifth, to be exact—have compared notes, I'm documenting my way from this other researcher's progenitor down to the present. All told, I'm sure I'll add much more than just the sixty nine names I've found this week. These things, however, take time to prove their position on the McClellan tree—something which I not only enjoy doing, but which makes for a satisfying finish to a productive week of research.
With such a late arrival home last night—er, make that this morning—I'll continue the portion of my normal count which focuses on DNA testing progress tomorrow. Traveling across a continent can take time; factor in the three hour time difference, and it makes for a very long day, indeed. But that's not the only reason I'm postponing the count on my DNA test progress. As it turns out—and quite timely, as well—in the midst of my research trip, I've made one particularly pertinent discovery about one of my DNA matches.