About

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About This Blog:  Sharing

My goal for this blog is to share the many things I have learned about genealogy during the past thirty plus years.  The plan is to cover a wide range of topics such as research tips, searching on line, interesting stories, plus more.  I love writing and talking about all things related to genealogy, plus I love to help others who have this “obsession”.  I am from Western Pennsylvania so I have the most experience in that region.  However I have gained knowledge in so many more states as I have “chased” my ancestors across the country.

About Me:   My Genealogy Background:

As mentioned above I am from Western Pennsylvania, Pittsburgh to be exact.  I have loved genealogy and history ever since I was very young.  While my cousins would run the other way when my grandmother told stories about the past, I would stay and listen even when it was the same story repeated over and over.  From a young age I would question my parents and grandmother about their families and was fascinated by the tales of my ancestors.

I “officially” started my journey in genealogy around 1980 when I was in college.  For a history class (history was my major) I had to write about my ancestors and how their experiences fit in with immigration patterns.  This is when I first sat down with family members and did a real interview; recording all the names, dates, events, and places.

These interviews raised as many questions as they answered and I was hooked.  Genealogy fit right in with my love of history, making it more exciting because it was my own history.  My great grandfather (Eugene Ellsworth Lammay) was of particular interest.  He had abandoned his family and disappeared.  It became a fascinating mystery as well as my brick wall that I am still trying to solve today. 

When I began back in the 1980’s there was no internet.  I had to do my research the old fashioned way.  I visited cemeteries, made trips to the library, and sent for death certificates and other records.  I even tried to find and connect with other living descendants by going through telephone books and mailing letters.  I am actually thankful for this experience.  While all the online databases and information are wonderful I still think the old fashion methods are important and necessary to do the most complete and accurate research.

That said, I have been using on line sources for my research since its beginning.  I would not have found half of what I know about my ancestors without the internet.  However it can be challenging with all the information that is out there.  I have learned so much over the years and am still learning every day.

Finally, a note about the picture next to "About Me" above.  This is not actually me, I am old but not that old! The person is my great grandmother Margaret Woodhull Bird.  I love this picture because I am so lucky to have the earrings she is wearing in the picture.