I’m a genealogical nerd in a big way!
How do you explain the fact that I get up, grab a coffee and start researching the minute I wake up- even when I’m not working with a client! I just research….constantly.
When I’m lucky enough to have a job to work on, it’s like someone gave me a great Christmas present and I get to open it every day and find something new. It’s hard to explain the joy I get from research.
Some genealogists only want to blog, or lecture, or teach. Others write articles or work in archives or libraries. I was surprised to find out that some genealogists will NOT do private client work. It’s just not their thing. They love genealogy but in a different way than me, which is fine. We all contribute to this great profession in different ways. If it wasn’t for the genealogical bloggers, I would not have starting blogging! If not for the lecturers, I would not know a lot of things that I need to know.
I’ve been told that to be successful as a genealogist you have to find your “niche”. I haven’t found that yet. All I know is that I LOVE TO RESEARCH. I’m like a dog with a bone. I dig and dig and dig until I find what I’m looking for.
It’s not unusual for me to be researching late at night, early in the morning and most weekends. This is not a job for me. It’s a passion.
I’ve just finished working with a client who had me do 3 particular people in her tree that she had spent years trying to track down but couldn’t.
What a blast this was! She’s of French Canadian descent and I managed to find all 3 of these individuals. One was (what she thought) Jean Auldjo. Turns out his name was John Allgeo and he was married twice and had about 13 children but only 2 survived. He fought in the War of 1812.
The second person was a woman who she said was called Julie Beaunoyer. Turns out this woman was Marie Angelique Menard!?? It’s too long a story to tell you how she went from that name to the other, but let’s just say that whoever kept the records in the mid 1800s either was barely literate themselves, or hard of hearing….hahaha. Her name was entered at least 12 different ways with every record.
Finally, John Allgeo’s father David. He was from Long Island and moved to Quebec City in 1760. He not only held several positions in Quebec City, he was a lieutenant and commander of a British sloop during the American’s Seige of Quebec and was captured and inprisoned for 2 years! He was brought back to Boston where he remained until he returned in 1778. His life was fascinating.
Reading all the old records make me kind of fall into a trance-like state that transport me to that actual time and I’m that person or living that person’s life. I’m time travelling through the research, and EVERY SINGLE TIME, I learn something new. It’s not a job for me, it’s fun.
If there are any new genealogists out there, may you have as much fun as I have and enjoy this great career doing whatever you love, whether it be blogging, writing, teaching or doing research.
I too am obsessed and were it not for my current job (librarian), I’d love to help people find their ancestors as well..in a way I do, as I help people to learn to use Ancestry Library Edition and that always involves asking them who they’re researching and looking for records. I’ve found at least a couple of documents for patrons and that always feels great 🙂
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It’s a passion and an addiction I think! Glad you enjoy it. It’s the best feeling when you find something for someone that they’ve never seen.