Just in time for the June Genealogy Blog Party, here are two pages from this newest family memory booklet, and a few lessons learned along the way toward preserving this family history:
- Maps help readers follow along as ancestors migrate or take a trip (as in the page at top, a 1917 trip from Cleveland to Chicago).
- Photos personalize the story and bring readers face to face with faces and places from the family's past. I included lots of photos!
- Include quotes from ancestors to keep their voices alive for descendants who never met them. I had quotes from interviews, letters, a diary.
- Include a timeline to give descendants a better sense of what happened, where, and when. I constructed this last, after I pieced together the entire story.
- Include sources for that rare reader who asks: "How do we know that?" The actual booklet has a few document excerpts but full documents are sitting in my files.
- Caption all photos. I have 2 pages of captions at the end of the booklet, with lots of details, including a reminder of the relationships between people in the photo and the readers ("Mary Slatter's older sister" is an example, plus an explanation that Mary Slatter was my husband's paternal grandmother).
This is only one way I'm sharing my family's history with the next generation. More ideas are in my genealogy book, Planning a Future for Your Family's Past.