Welcome!

Welcome!
I realized quickly that I’d have to “think outside the box” to learn about my ancestors. I LOVE to interview people, and listen to stories about "the older days" when life seemed a little slower and simpler. I study USGS maps, plats, read chanceries, look for long forgotten cemeteries and try to help preserve memories people share with me. This blog is ad free, so it's easier to focus on sharing stories. Feel free to sign the guestbook, or join the FaceBook group. Even if we aren't related by DNA, I'd still love to hear about your research efforts and family stories. I am interested in posting (to this blog) stories relevant to the Mecklenburg-Brunswick families.

25 January 2015

Old year book pictures? Have you seen your grandparents' year book?

How long have year books been around? Where can you find old year books? Do you have a year book? Have you seen your parents and grandparents year books?

Fern & Olive Dortch yearbook picture
I've been thinking about teenagers and graduation type things in my personal life. I was telling my kids the other day the story about when I graduated from high school. Our school was on a hill, facing the ocean. We all usually wore sunglasses because the California sun was so bright. A few students asked the principal if we could keep our sunglasses on during the ceremony, because it was so bright, facing the ocean. It had never been done before, (wearing sunglasses during the whole graduation ceremony), but the principal agreed and he and the vice principal wore sunglasses too, to show their support.

A friend copied a picture of Fern and Olive Dortch's year book page for me. (click icon to view full page) They were born and raised in Kankakee, IL. Their father Jasper Dortch was born in Mecklenburg, VA.

On Ancestry.com, I see that there are schools and churches grouped together under yearbooks. A lot of churches publish centennial events that are listed as year books. There are at least 262 listed under schools and churches on Ancestry.com. One is a Presbyterian church in New Jersey in 1894. Some yearbook listings are outside the USA. Sometimes the churches taught schools and had a year book. Here's a site I found interesting with many USA year books, information, and old pictures. You can browse by state: http://www.old-yearbooks.com/

I have always thought my grandpa Sanetra was cool. But when I show other people (including family) his picture now and then pictures of him as a  cool football player, his prom picture, his motorcycle, and that he had acne as a teenager too, then he becomes more real, and you want to learn more about that person. Do you know if your grandparents played sports, liked science, played chess, played a musical instrument or liked to dance? If you haven't seen their year book or asked them if they had one, give them a call. Or ask your parents about it. What was their graduation day like? How much school did they complete? (Previous rural farming generations often did not complete high school, but rather 5th or 8th grade completion was considered sufficient). Have you told your children what your graduation day was like?

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