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Open Thread Thursday: Who Inspires You?

Genealogy Inspiration

Genealogy Inspiration

This week’s topic for Open Thread Thursday is:

Who inspires you when it comes to genealogy and family history? Whether you are on the path to a professional career or setting up a business in the genealogy industry, or you pursue genealogy for the sheer pleasure and challenge, there must be some person, event or thing that inspired you. Let us know your “backstory” of genealogy inspiration.

NOTE: there is a catch . . . see below!

Post your responses in the comments or at a post on your own genealogy blog and place the link here in the comments.

* * *

There’s only one rule to this week’s challenge: you can’t list me as your inspiration.  Seriously. There are so many others who deserve recognition right now. This is not a ploy to have a big group hug or set up a mutual admiration society.

I want this to be positive. I want this to be informative as well as heartfelt.  Why? I’m hearing from quite a few folks in the genealogy field that all the fun has been sucked out of it for them lately.  Instead of picking fights and tearing each other down, let’s take a minute and express our thanks for what works and those who’ve worked hard to get us where we are today.


This is a great topic for this week’s Open Thread Thursday! And please, if you have a topic you’d like to see discussed among your genealogy blogging colleagues, please contact us and we’ll take it under consideration.

Disclosure:  Please see Disclosure Statements for more information on my material connection with genealogy vendors and organizations.

©2013, copyright Thomas MacEntee

9 thoughts on “Open Thread Thursday: Who Inspires You?

  1. (inspired) A high school teacher who taught me the organizational skills that allows me to be successful not only in Family History, but in life and work as well.

  2. There are so many people who inspire me. I will not name specific names because I don’t want to leave anyone out, but I draw inspiration from a number of professionals (both those who are Certified Genealogists and those who are not), and even from beginning genealogists who have decided to embark on the journey to explore their roots). But, ultimately, the main source of my inspiration comes from my ancestors. After all, it is because of them that I began doing genealogy in the first place, and continue my quest to find more answers even after more than 24 years of doing research. In particular, I credit my grandparents. Their decisions to get on those boats provided for me the opportunities I have today, and I am forever grateful.

    Thanks for this interesting open thread, Thomas!

  3. Who inspires me in my genealogy efforts? A good question all genealogists should answer.
    At the head of my website, I recognize my uncle, Fr. Thomas J. McIntyre, who introduced me to family history and then shared all of his work with me long before he died. And, he didn’t quit there. Nearing the end of his life and in the hospital, he generously provided his DNA so that I would have the data to be able to trace my male line. Actually – even at 90 years old and very frail — he thought DNA testing was a pretty cool idea.
    So to Uncle Tom, thanks for getting me started, introducing me to both the living and deceased of my family, giving me the gift of the McIntyre DNA, and most of all for your inspiration and encouragement to dig further and bring those Irish dirt farmers to life.
    He believed, as I do, that by remembering those who came before us their incredible courage and perseverance will live on in our hearts and minds.

  4. Funny you should ask when I just thought about this question this morning. Thankful Thursday: Followers.

    My mother was, and perhaps still is, my inspiration. She passed away in December. Throughout this month, I’ve posted so many things that she loved discussing with me. She’s not alive to read these posts and it’s been kinda rough. But those who follow my blog, and my children when their older, are my new living inspirations. Mom was the one who started it all when I was a babe. She shared the love of her family with me. I hope to keep that love going. My readers give me someone to share with right now, and I can’t thank them enough

    So perhaps you were looking for people who teach, discuss, etc in the genealogy community that inspire us. If that’s the case, then I would have to say Elizabeth at From Maine to Kentucky . I have enjoyed the way she shares her facts from the ‘technical’ to the personal level.

    Hope that meets the requirements for the thread.

  5. I got started in genealogy a few years before I retired (worked last day April 28,2008) — when I took possession of my maternal grandmother’s old grubby trunk. It turned out to be full of indeed, junque, but also her grandfather’s Souvenir Album (which I now blog about, trying to inventory it page by page), and her brother’s papers about genealogy when he was joining the Holland Society in New York (our Terwilliger line). Once started I found helpful people everywhere – cousins, strangers, forums. The people at freeBMD inspired me to volunteer for them for a year or so, as a ‘pay-back’. The inspiration for digging deeper, and beginning blogging came from several people: TMcE, Judy Russell, Jill Ball, Bill West, and so very many others. I mustn’t get started naming names because there truly were – and are – so many. With an almost-zero budget, I’ve been inspired by the many free webinars online, the courses and workshops both online as well as those put on by our BC Genealogical Society and partners. I have several cousins who are truly inspiring with their willingness to help, to add information, to tell stories I never heard or understood. Genealogy gave me a much bigger view of “who I am” — a much more positive view. Genealogy research itself inspires me to continue growing and developing as a person not only as a researcher. Cheers to all of you wonderful people in the genealogy world whom I’ve “met” only online.

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