Thursday, April 01, 2010

Shared information will outlive you

Sometimes I worry about how much to post online, especially since I plan to publish a book about one of my family lines. I shouldn't worry. The information I share will outlive me, while most of the things I keep a tight hold on will be lost when I'm gone.

One of my Twitter friends sent out a list of 25 popular genealogy blogs. Fortunately, I decided to check them all out before retweeting. Some were interesting to me, many were not, but the next to last one on the list got my attention. The author was in the U.K., where some of my ancestors lived. But he hadn't posted in months. I thought, why is this the most popular blog when he doesn't write that often? I skimmed the page and saw that he had been a prolific blogger - until December. The last post said he was dialing 999 and going to hospital.

What? I looked, in vain, for anything more recent. Was this another April Fool's joke? Finally, I went back to the 25 list and saw a note that said he had passed away, and the date was a few days after that last post. Oh, and the 25 list was from last year.

I feel so sad, for someone I've never met. It's haunting see Genealogue, Hugh Watkins' web page, and see that last post. But scroll down - there's five and a half years of genealogy searching and tips. Hugh's work is still out there, in cyberspace, to help anyone he can.


A rootdigger said...

Isn't that the best way to go........
Happy all doing what you love all the way to the end.
What I wonder was it unexpected this call 991 or was he in a prolonged illness and he was feeling ill at the time of his blog. If he had problems too at his old age. Any way he should be remembered.

I have noticed in germany the books rmemebered by people like me. They are desired the most by people like me. The old books which are rare in content, those old books which spoke of who lived in what village and who married who. Heinrich Borstelman, Dr. Raven. Now Heinrich Porth books are there, but they fall apart to easily. another one I learned of is Otto Puffahrt. And his son is collecting now too. Someday your book will be welcomed by others looking to learn all they can on your line and area. YOu go girl.

Elizabeth said...

That is so encouraging. Thanks!

How does the phrase go?- We reach farther because we stand on the shoulders of the ones who came before us.