Family History Requires Patience and Courage

There is an important lesson in genealogy. It’s that it requires patience.  And the sooner you start the better chance you have of getting your hands on things. Also, when family feuds are involved, you need even more patience for family artifacts. But if I’m not a rarity, I know they will come.

Since December, I’ve been flooded with a desire to do more family history work. I’m working on a ‘short’ scrapbook that features my mother.  Thanks to digital scrapbooking, I’m finally getting around to doing this project that I’ve meant to do for so many years!

Magdalena Hoppe Geiszler's Photo Album
Magdalena Hoppe Geiszler’s Photo Album

In February, I received the prize of all prizes. A vintage photo album with 30 pictures of Geiszler family members that I had hoped to someday see. I think this is one of many albums that were ‘lost’ during a family squabble that I never dreamed I’d lay eyes on. (Lesson: STOP THE FAMILY FEUDS!)

Lizzie Geiszler Greener and her husband name from Geiszler Photo Album

My cousin had taken out all of the photos and organized them into a white, 3-ring binder with sheet projectors. He had typed up the names of everyone. I’m so glad he did this. Had the photos been in this album, exposed to the rapid deterioration of the cloth album, they would be in worse shape. Sadly, the photo album smelled so bad and was in less than ideal shape. It is no longer in existence. Oh, how I wish I had it earlier so I could properly preserve it.  (Lesson: Dig Your Stuff Out of the Attic, Today!)

The album gave me faces for Mary Elizabeth Geiszler Greener and Catherine Caroline Geiszler Bricker, the daughters of my 3rd Great Grandfather Joseph Geiszler. Catherine Caroline was only 4 months old when her father died. There are also a number of individuals in the photo album who I do not know but wish I did.

My quest for more family history has been interesting. I’ve had to develop patience and courage. Now, I just have to have more patience to temper my excitement of recent discoveries. I still have a youngbfamily to raise and record for our posterity. Ahh… it does feel pretty awesome though.

Devon Noel Lee

Devon Noel Lee

Devon Noel Lee is passionate about capturing and preserving family stories so no one alive today has to be researched, or forgotten, tomorrow. She has authored 6 how-to books, a memoir, two published family history biographies, and over 60 family scrapbooks. She's an enthusiastic speaker who energizes, encourages, and educates at the same time.

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