Family History Federation

Family Stories… and How I Found Mine, J.Michael Cleverley

Second Hand. As new. Published 2020.

Most books about family history are either a family history filled with generations of dates and places, or a “how-to-do family history.” This volume is neither.

Family Stories …and How I Found Mine starts with the idea that most people today want to know more about their family than simply genealogical basics: names, dates, places, and relationships. They want the stories of their ancestors. How did they live, what were good days and bad? What were their adventures, and what were their failures? That is what I wanted to find when I started a search for my family’s stories.

This book is the result of five years of morning-to-evening research, and travel throughout the United States and to different corners of Europe, in search of these family stories.

On one level, it is an anthology of remarkable people at pivotal points in history. On another, it is a set of case studies. Here are stories I found, and how I found them. Family Stories …and How I Found Mine traces my own successes and failures in unearthing my family. In the end, I knew I had found much more than I ever expected.

Everyone’s possibilities are unique, and their family’s history is unique, as well. One thing I learned was that what worked for me, may not work as well for someone else, and vice versa. I had opportunities to travel, and some people may not. My mother Margie’s sixty years of genealogical research gave me a head start. Others may have to launch their searches from ground zero.

But one thing we have in common is a heritage, and you do not have to reach back to 1066 to find family stories that inspire us. Our own parents and grandparents, and cousins and aunts and uncles, may have treasures of stories waiting for us to find.

Because everyone’s family stories are individual, I tried to steer clear of formulas and templates on the “how to…” level. I did not want my book to be a recipe for finding one’s stories. Simply: here is how I found mine.

You will discover from my experience ways to find yours, too. I envisage your journey will track mine especially in this sense: some stories were easier to find than I expected; some were harder than expected; and sometimes, serendipitously from the blue, a fascinating story popped up that I could never have hoped for.


1 in stock

SKU : SHB029

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