Climbing Family Trees: A Genealogist's Pay by Brenda Sanders

Climbing Family Trees

More great stories, poems, and helpful hints about genealogy and searching for your family's roots from the twin authors of "Climbing Family Trees: Whispers In The Leaves"

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

A Genealogist's Pay by Brenda Sanders

“A Genealogist’s Pay”
Brenda Sanders
One day I was doing some miscellaneous research at the local library, thinking I should go home or go visit someone. All at once I heard my name being called. I went to the front desk and was introduced as a genealogy expert to a couple. That usually embarrasses me a bit. I found out that this young woman and her husband had come down from another state to search for her father’s records. She had tried to find something about him for 20 years now, starting her search when she was only 11 years old. She was given some dates and places, but the information was only about half right.

I led her to some Vital Records books and we even went on-line at the computer. I was able to find his obituary that said he died in Tennessee. I found his birth record and remembered that she wanted to go by the funeral home, so I ran down there and gave them the new information. While I was there, the funeral home Director gave them some information about living relatives and called another location to fax over a death certificate. He also gave them directions to her father's grave. She got very emotional when she learned that he really was dead, but she needed to know.

It was really rewarding to be a part of this. I never know how my day is going to turn out! It made me feel good to make a difference in someone's life. In the morning she had told me that she didn't want to leave the area until she had found what she came for, even if she had to sleep in the truck. She now has lots of relatives to meet. I hope her new family will treat her like family. Family is really all that matters.

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