09 September 2011

Old newspaper advertisements can tell stories, too

Sharon Tate Moody in a piece for the Tampa Bay Tribune (accessed via TBO.com, 31 July 2011) talks about the importance of paying attention to the advertisements published in the newspapers we consult in search of information about our ancestors.

“Some of us are lucky enough to have inherited family heirlooms. Perhaps they have a special spot in the house where we can admire them and revive memories behind their glory days.

Some of us just have memories of the heirlooms that went to some other relative. My husband remembers his Aunt Ida's piano; actually it was the piano stool that he most remembers. It was one of those round jobs with a seat that would spin around, moving it higher or lower. What rambunctious little boy wouldn't have been delighted with such a "toy"?

Of course, he has no idea what happened to the old piano. But we did recently, and quiet unexpectedly, learn how Aunt Ida got the treasure. The discovery came as I browsed old Dothan, Ala., newspapers.

"Miss Ida Daughety is Voted the Winner" was the headline across the top of the Dec. 24, 1908, issue of the Dothan Eagle. Many questions immediately filled my head. Mainly I wondered what she'd won and what she had to do to get it…”

Read the full article.

Check out this page to see other “genealogy” articles published in this newspaper. Some recent titles include:
·        “Genealogists now can order microfilm records online”
·        “Make the most of government's nosiness”
·        “Fill in the blanks on unmarked graves”
·        “Find your way to ancestral homes – virtually, at least”
·        “Turn to the Internet to solve genealogical mysteries”
·        “Civil War-era treasure from maps, charts”

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