Thursday, June 18, 2009


I presented a family tree this afternoon and I had to step back and think about the response. When you work on a tree for someone what are they expecting to receive? A printed list of names and dates? A picture of a tree with names on it? What are they expecting? I don't think they expect a lot.

Genealogy of AgamemnonImage via Wikipedia

I started by returning to her the couple pages of information she had started me off with. I opened up my laptop and opened up her tree database and her file. I went through briefly the way the database works showing her the sources and notes for people. I showed her the family view and the pedigree view to give her an idea of what I worked with and where her reports were generated from.
From there I showed her the file with all the documents and photos. She saw the old censuses and the passenger lists with her family on them. There were military records. Marriage record images and actual paper documents from England. There was a will, a map with the family property marked on it and the link to look at the bigger image at her leisure. Death records too.
There were links to the other people connected to her tree and links to a web site about her family's castle (really, truly) with pictures. A very important set of papers had come from Switzerland but were in Italian. I had included an English translation of these papers. There were the wall charts that she had hoped for. The size of them surprised her though. I think she expected a group of 10 people maybe. There were narratives and pedigree charts.
I explained all the items and also explained the differences in sources. We went over some probable connections but I was adamant that they were only possibilities to search out at a later date if she wanted to go further.

I then gave her two computer discs with all this information on it. One for herself and one for her brother all in a printable form. She was a little taken aback. This amount of information was somewhat more than what she thought she would get. The words "you did so much work" kept coming up. I felt very happy knowing I had exceeded her expectations.

The kicker is I was served a wonderful Greek lunch/dinner of spanokapitas, tzatziki, hummous, pitas, Greek salad with amazing olives and Feta and chicken souvlaki. We shared a lovely white wine which to me had the flavor of grapefruits, crisp and aromatic. Then came the dessert of Ekmek Kataifi. I hope to have the recipe for that tomorrow. The patio table was beautiful with a black and white setting and a big white canopy above us. I so wished I had my camera with me for Foodie Friday, Tablescapes Thursday and Give Lori Wine The Rest of the Week. I love my job.

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DianaR said...

Hey Lori ~ Is that a new holiday, "Give Lori Wine the Rest of the Week"? Sounds like a great idea. Just reading what you included in this family history is impressive to me - I'm sure it will be treasured by the family! You deserve all the wine you can get ;-)

Lori E said...

Diana: I think if all of us bloggers band together we can get that holiday passed don't you. I would be great fun and you all would be invited.
Thank you for the kind comment. It means a lot coming from experienced researchers.

hummer said...

Awesome work but even more awesome insight.