For the past couple of weeks, I have been visiting with my aged parents in Georgia. From this visit, I was reminded of the goodness of God and how thankful I am that I did not have to visit a nursing home, or see them on a hospital bed. My parents were always young at heart. Dad, showing off his new car, and being in my mother’s presence after two years was precious.
During my trip I stayed with my mother. You see my parents have been divorced for many years. However, in the past 3 years, both of my parents live in the same state of Georgia. I wanted to find something of value to do with my Dad that would be a lasting experience. Looking back, I realize that time spent with my father as an adult is slim to none.
Remembering, how he looked forward to watching the weekly TV Series, “Who Do You Think You Are” An idea came across my mind. I called my father and asked: How would you like to have your very own “who do you think you are” moment? He was excited, and I was interested in searching out information on my paternal side from Savannah, Georgia. (Most of my research has been on my maternal side: US Virgin Islands)
We made plans to visit The National Archives at Atlanta. As we entered the building, we were both quite impressed with the mural displays of historical pictures. After viewing the wall display of World War I Draft Registration Cards of famous persons, we decided to begin our search with World War I draft registration card.
First, we were directed to fill out a research identification card application, once completed we were given a box of draft cards. We looked up my grandfather Charlie Matthews. Lo and behold we found his draft registration card as well as his brother’s. As my Dad closely examined the draft card, his face had the look (as only folks who perform this “act of love” can relate when it’s your first find) of Fascination! From draft registration cards, to census records, and a glimpse of the Freedmen’s Bureau. It was a day well spent.
Yes! The “Who Do You Think You Are” moment did occur when looking at the 1920 census. Still, overall my Dad continues to make use of his research card, with his new interest, new set of friends, and as for me a new conversation with my father. For that I am thankful!