July 4 is big day for celebrations. The Family Curator is blowing out four candles to mark four years of blogging, and enjoying the fireworks in honor of an even bigger celebration.
When I launched The Family Curator in 2007, my only objective was to document my progress with a classroom project involving high school girls and my grandmother’s old letters. I never could have foreseen that those articles would have led to new friendships, and new opportunities in research and writing. I thought Arline’s letters were better than daytime tv, and my students must have agreed. They transcribed over one hundred original letters from 1905 to 1918.
Since that time, I’ve exchanged my teacher’s desk for my home office, but I am still chipping away at Arline Kinsel’s mountain of letters, documents, and photographs. The original cardboard beer boxes that transported things from grandmother’s trunk to me have been replaced with archival storage folders and boxes. My computer and external hard drives are filling up with scanned images, and my head is spinning with stories.
The peculiar thing about blogging (especially when you are just starting out) is that you often feel like you are writing into a vast void. The occasional comment may spark the reminder of life “out there,” but blogging can be a lonely occupation. I was stunned by the comments and encouragement from blogging family historians; it seemed that there were other people who loved old stories, too.
And then, there was footnoteMaven and Shades of the Departed. fM’s email was filled with encouragement and an invitation to write a guest post at Shades. One article turned into a conversation and introduced me to a blogosphere of wonderful writers and genealogists. I count myself fortunate to be a part of the Shades staff, and to share the excitement of genealogy with so many others.
This year has been a difficult one, but the days have been lighter because of my genealogy blogging friends. You know who you are, and I do thank you from the very bottom of my heart. Instead of recapping the year in this post, I am going to highlight past Blogiversary posts and raise a glass to “many more.”
Here are a few milestones along the way: