Thursday, June 25, 2009

An Expensive Habit

Genealogy can be an expensive habit! With the subscriptions, research time, document requests, binders, paper, storage, etc. Let’s not forget travel because you’re going to have to get from in front of the computer one day and do hands on research!! It takes a lot of tools and time to make researching our family trees possible. What I’m finding out is, my family doesn’t quite get the labor of love.

Most of the comments I received are “I don’t know how you do it”, “doesn’t that cost $$$”, “My brain would explode”, etc. I guess, you have to really love what you do in order to understand why people do it. I try to explain to people, it’s just like anything else they may love to do. No one else wants to do it, but for you, it’s easy! Well, genealogy isn’t easy, but for us who love doing it, our minds are already wired to think in these complicated manners. To try to connect the dots with solid lines and figure out how people are related. Painstaking research and most of the time, you get the smallest clues from your research. However, those little clues seem to be the most satisfying.

A path to one’s past is excellent framework to one’s future. Most African-American researchers want to know where they come from. That’s why we research our trees so tirelessly. Our family is fascinated by the clues we’ve come up with. We can see leaving this legacy of information to our children. There is reward in our work. That’s why most of the time, those of us who have to spend the money to get a clue solved don’t mind so much. There is something in it for us.


  1. I totally agree with this. I remember a few weeks back trying to explain genealogy to my manager and the whole concept of not knowing where you are going until you know where you have been. Those of us that hunger for that get the statement. But when you don't have that thirst and don't understand what all is involved in doing the research you just don't get it.

    BTW - I finally set up a blog this week for the Georgia / maternal side of my family. If you get a chance check it out and let me know what you think.

    Mavis (aka Maybelline - nickname one of my aunt's gave me long ago)

  2. My daughter tells me all the time that 'you must have a big brain to remember everyone without looking at the computer'. I just feel like I know them {ancestors} so well. I feel most connected to myself when I'm doing research and writing about it.

    I didn't even mention the family newsletter that I do for the entire family!! That's another expensive habit they don't

    Great. I'll be sure to add you to my blogroll and add me to yours!

  3. Geez, I posted to long drawn out post about how right you are & it seems to have gotten lost in cyber-space!

    Nevertheless, you know we're in this with you Allum, one clue at a time!:-)



Three Column Modification courtesy of The Blogger Guide