So I am completely in love with Google’s Newpaper Archive.
I know it’s actually been around for a couple of years now, and I know they recently announced they won’t be adding any more to it. This hasn’t stopped me from being completely engulfed in it the past few days.
I’ve always had a mild interest in genealogy and can trace my family history back to a man named John Landers who was born in 1710 in Germany. This has pretty much summed up what I do on Googles archives – I search for my family – anything and everything. I’ve found everything from whole articles about my grandfather’s cooking school to hospital admission records.
The “neatest” one I’ve found had to be my great-great grandmother’s obituary from 1939, which read that she “was a well-known resident” of her hometown, and that she had a son who lived in Brooklyn, New York.
The most touching had to be a snippet about my great-grandfather’s funeral, which read that it was, “postponed due to the late arrival of a son from Vietnam.” The son arriving late was my grandfather, who served in both Vietnam and Korea.
The saddest I found was from Daniel’s family, in which his great-grandparents had lost a baby. I know that a child passing away was more common during those times, but the snippet was entitled “Little Boy Succumbs.”
For the record, I don’t use the news archives to snoop or to pull up dirt on people. Even if I wanted to, there isn’t much dirt to find where we’re from. I use it to gain an insight to my family, to understand who they were. I know that a lot of them were rural farmers, which is great. I think it’s so important to know who we are and where we come from.
Hmm, it seems that in my searching, I may have just made a huge discovery. More on that tomorrow…