Family Found – My Genealogy Search and Research Tips

Bennettsville Visitor's Center

One of my most memorable evenings was January 20, 2015.  I opened my email and on the subject line of one email in particular were the words Family Found! That email would prove to be the long lost key to opening many doors in my genealogy search.

I sat there stunned just staring at the subject line. Could it really be what I had been hoping for? A response to my “Letter to the Editor” of the Bennettsville, SC newspaper?

As you can see below it was indeed the response to my letter.  That email blossomed into so much more than just a mere response. It became the fulfillment of so many hopes and dreams, not just for myself but for other family members as well.

Family Ancestry Search
Email Response to my Letter to the Editor

Several months prior to receiving that email I had begun researching my family tree. Genealogy research was something that my aunt had been encouraging everyone to do.

Throughout the years she would hand out sheets of paper or cute little scrolls that she had made with the names of family members from times long ago. Two of those names were Solomon and Jacob and she also included a brief description of how it all began.

Genealogy Search where it all began
Cotton Fields surrounding the Bostic’ ancestral home.

If you were to ask me where those sheets of paper or little scrolls are today, my answer would be, “I do not know.” Who would have known that the day would come when I would long for those little pieces of treasure that held the key to who I am?

I remember picking up the phone one evening and calling my aunt. The conversation went something like this, “Aunt Vicky!! Do you remember those little scrolls that you made with the names of the two brothers?” Her response was, “Hi Leah, yes honey”, before she could get another word out, I said, “oh good, I need to find my family.” LOL!!!

Genealogy Search
Bostic Family Tree

She actually gave me the information that I was requesting while still on the phone. Prior to ending the call she said, “I knew the time would come when someone would be ready to know their family and I would have the information waiting so that they would be able to begin their journey of discovering who we are.”

The phone conversation with my aunt and the email that I mentioned all took place several years ago. From that point forward many wonderful things have occurred.

  1. Relationships have been formed that will never be broken.
  2. Two family reunions have happened.
  3. ancestry.com and old newspapers have become my reading material of choice. (old newspaper articles and obituaries can give you a wealth of information when searching for your ancestors).
  4. I’ve become the go to person for other people who are beginning their genealogy search.

With each week, month and  passing year, I’ve learned something new about my “Bostic” family, a name that is music to my ears. I guess the words of Dale Carnegie still hold true today, “There is no sweeter sound to one’s ear than the sound of his name.”

DISCOVERY

This ancestry journey has helped me to discover so many things, especially about myself.

Prior to genealogy research whenever anyone would asked me that “dreaded question of what my passion was, my answer would  always be, ” I don’t have a  passion.” After making the statement of not having a passion, I would begin to tell them all the reasons why it’s okay not to have a passion.

Whether I believed those reasons or not is neither here nor there; because if you were to ask me that question today my answer would be, “genealogy research of my family and YOURS!! Not that I’m nosy or anything.” LOL!!!

I love bringing people back to life, imagining what they looked like, sounded like and what they may have gone through to make them who they were.

Throughout our lives we all make a footprint in the sand; and there will come a  time when someone will begin their journey of discovering who we were and what our lives were like.

Please continue to follow my weekly blog as I share my genealogical journey and numerous tips on researching your family tree.