05 June 2011

This Is The Face of Genealogy

This is a photo of my great grandmother Betsy Peterson Carlsen and three of her grandchildren, including my father. She arrived in St. Paul, Minnesota in 1882 as a single young woman. Born in Sweden, she married Niels Christian Carlsen and they raised a whole houseful of daughters! I work on my family history to learn more about where I came from to find out where my ancestral families lived, whether they served in the military during wartime, to learn about their struggles and appreciate where I am today.I have origins in nine different countries if you include the U.S. My ancestors, their siblings, and descendants are accountants, storekeepers, Post Office inspectors, housewives, a founder of the postal service in Porto Rico, railroad superintendent, fleet truck salesman, tombstone carvers, fire chief, farmers, secretaries, mayor, nuclear physicists, archivist, painter, jailer, professional genealogist, poet, writer, inventor, plasterer, butcher, and so many other hardworking individuals. Yes, there are a few scalawags, but pretty much every family has some of those. I look at that as a chance to find other records that may give a better look into the dynamics of my family.

Among my fellow genealogists/family historians are a former mayor, owners of companies, department store founds and family members, authors, ministers, rabbis, nurses, historians, archivists, librarians, scholars, engineers, active and retired military personnel, storeowners, clerks, judges, county sheriff, police personnel, bus driver, machinist, teachers, professors, students, publishers, housewives, actors, software developers, journalists, photographer, and like with my family, many other occupations. Their religions, ethnic  backgrounds, and education are varied. We share a love of history and family history. We educate ourselves constantly at classes, seminar, conferences and institutes. The Los Angeles Times publication ,LAWeekly,  posted a short item about one event, the Southern California Genealogical Jamboree, and some insensitive person at the newspaper included a denigrating photo. It has since been taken down. Many of my fellow Geneabloggers are posting family photos that show the real faces of genealogy. I hope folks at the Los Angeles Times/LAWeekly view our photos and publish a prominently placed apology to all of us who are family history researchers. What were they thinking!?
Added note: I have been asked where people might view the photo that LAWeekly published. This is a link to it:  http://www.geneabloggers.com/face-genealogy/


TCasteel said...

A houseful of girls...that sounds like a handful :-)
Theresa (Tangled Trees)

Paula Stuart-Warren said...

Seven girls and no boys!