Posted: March 15, 2010 Filed under: Genealogy | Tags: Link Love
Not a good start to the week. Here on the East Coast we’ve been drenched by a truly disgusting nor’easter — a big, soggy storm that arrived on Friday and is still goofing up the neighborhood today. The main casualty in my household is my sinuses, which have been incubating an infection and like the barometric pressure about as much as my cats like the vet. Meh.
Today I am curled up with my laptop, a cup of tea and some leisurely but scintillating reading.
• Last week Herstoryan put up a great contribution to the first edition of the Carnival of African-American Genealogy. This carnival addresses the important question of how documents of slave ownership should be treated by the genealogy researcher. It reminded me of Edward Ball’s 1998 book “Slaves in the Family,” in which he dissected his own family’s slaveowning history, and made a plea for similar families to open their personal archives to further genealogical study. A few weeks ago, one of my daughters asked me, “Did our family ever own slaves?” I’m fairly sure the answer is no, given their ancestors’ economic status and immigration timeline. But it can’t be definitively ruled out, an answer which saddened my daughter, but shouldn’t be swept under the rug, especially if it eventually affects someone else’s family research. Herstoryan’s post is great, and she links to a fascinating discussion of this topic opened by Luckie at Our Georgia Roots.
• I’m a 50-50 Irish-German equation, ethnicity-wise. Interestingly, it was my Irish-American dad who was gung-ho on Deutsch, and he urged his kids to study it as seriously as we dared. Despite many daunting wrestling matches with word order and noun declensions, I eventually managed to get a double degree in German and journalism. Alas, my German has grown very rusty over the years. So I’m reading German-language blogs to polish it up; the Internet is a marvelous thing. Recently I found two genealogy-related sites: Abenteuer-Ahnenforschung (Genealogy Adventures), a beautiful blog by Hamburg-based Andrea Bentschneider, and Timo Kracke’s Genealogie Tagebuch (Genealogy Diary), which has a fun, chatty style. The reading is slow going for me (I’m ashamed how slow), but hopefully I’ll start getting better.
• Finally, in honor of my official invalid status, I offer a handy list of archaic medical terms and their modern translations, always useful when one is evaluating death certificates. Not that I’m that sick. Just … cranky.
But listen, the week has only begun. Here’s hoping for new discoveries and edifying reading.