Research Thoughts

A “Shiny!” Distraction

This past weekend I became distracted. Headed off onto another path, and away from my intended goal. But that’s o.k. On Saturday I gave a talk about land records at the Menasha Public Library. It went well, and we ended with a great give and take conversation, with everyone sharing their own experiences in the archives and with the records. I had included in one of my slides the Campbell homestead, and in the course of the talk mentioned that not everyone was able to identify a home as still standing, and still being lived in by the descendants of the builder – in this case his great-grandson. At the end of the talk I was asked to go back to that slide, and a woman asked me whose house it was. When I told her she said “that’s MY family!” I had found a cousin of my husband’s. She is only just starting her search on this side of the family, and does not have any photos. Thus my distraction. Since Saturday I have been hunting and gathering and preparing photos and information to share with her. So much fun to have seen her face when I showed her a picture I had in the Dawson file, and she clasped her hands and said “that’s my dad!”

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