Instagramming Great Grandma

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Here is the Kate & Albert Kidd family. The tiniest girl is Celete Laura Kidd, my Grandfather's mom - isn't she cute? She's making a face like Ivy.
I've got a treat for you today -- a guest post by my mom Teresa.   Over the last few years, I've started to understand why family history is important.  Learning the history of my family reminds me that the worth of ALL souls is great in the sight of God.  

Looking for new ways to engage in family history, I asked my mom, the family history expert, to share some ideas via a blog post.  She'll give you something to think about on Sunday.  Enjoy!:

When I was growing up we often took summer vacations to visit my grandmother in a very small town in Eastern Oregon.  I remember old fashioned picnicking near the reservoir, outings to pick huckleberries and piling the buckets to overflowing with fruit for pies and jam, Sunday dinners with platters heaped high with fried chicken and all the wonders a large vegetable garden offers up in August.  
Forever linked to these wonderful food memories are remembrances of my older relatives and the family stories they shared.  As a young girl I would quietly sit and absorb all the old-people conversations about earlier times, and relatives that were long gone.  I’ve loved learning about family history for as long as I can remember.

Little kid versions of my mom and her brother
You say you can’t relate?  I recognize that listening to old stories and old people isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, not to mention the idea of reading microfilms and studying old records in a courthouse.  But I think everyone can find  some way to actually enjoy contributing to family history.  Get creative and think of options that work with your personality.

Do you use Instagram or like taking photos?  Photographs are a great way to preserve family history.  A story from the past is instantly more interesting when there’s a photo with it to help you visualize who was involved.  Pictures also are an easy way to help people start talking about past experiences and family members long-gone.  Nothing gathers people at a get together quicker than pulling out an old photo album.  Putting photos up online to share will have a similar effect and can get family members talking back and forth.

There are many ways to share photos online: Instagram, Flicker, Facebook, as simple email attachments and so on, but there are some sites that are specifically tailored to sharing family history photos.  These are probably the best way to go when you want to share with a lot of people. has made it very easy for you to upload photos of family, heirlooms, marriage certificates, diplomas, places important to the family like old houses, etc.  You can take a picture of a picture that your parents have and get that up online.  After that you can tag the people in the photo and add a description.  It’s done in a matter of minutes, and this site has the benefit of allowing others to comment and add their stories and memories to the photo.

How much time do you spend with photographs on Facebook or Instagram? Consider spending a few minutes of that time this Sunday uploading photos of ancestors on Family Search or sending them out to your extended family.  You’ll get them talking about the people and times, and you will have made a worthwhile contribution to family history while strengthening your family ties. 


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