Before compiling a Hereditas Book, detailed genealogical research is carried out in order to build a family tree for each branch.
Working backwards, using parish and government registers, military papers, immigration and census documents etc., each ancestor is carefully studied to ensure their rightful place in the tree. It’s often possible to go back as far as the 16th or 17th century, but the further back one travels, the more difficult it is to be accurate, unless the person was a well-documented member of society or the nobility. Unfortunately, a trail can sometimes run cold, especially if they lived in an area where records are scarce.
As a child, I didn’t understand the significance of talking to my grandparents about their lives. They had knowledge of our family’s past which is now forever gone because I didn’t ask them about their childhood, their parents and grandparents, their siblings. Their schools and jobs, their friends, their homes. Their struggles and triumphs.
It’s only now, as I grow older, that I realise exactly what has been lost. I have so many questions and there is nobody who can answer them. Although there are many resources online, they provide only the barest details of a person’s life. They don’t give us any insight into what our ancestors truly experienced.
Imagine if you had something to pass on to your grandchildren with answers to all the questions you never thought to ask your own grandparents. A book they will treasure, for it will be the story of how they came to be. A history of all the people who came before them, who toiled the land or in factories, or who built successful businesses and put bread on the table, a roof over their family’s heads. Theirs was often a struggle for survival in a world which is vastly different to the one we know today.