Family history moment: An unknown treasure

I was born in Utah, moved to upstate New York as a baby, on to California at 8, and when I got married settled in Boise, Idaho. When I was a little girl I would write letters to my Nana Mink who lived in Boise, and twice we drove from New York to visit her. Because of those experiences Boise felt like home. I didn't realize that I was living in a city and state that would bless me with a wealth of family history and family records.

A few years after I was married, my sister was trying to compile a four-generation pedigree that was very sparse and realized that we had no information about our Nana Mink's siblings. Because I lived in Boise, she wondered if I could help. My father directed me to my Nana's last living sister; she was residing in the old family home on 13th street in downtown Boise. I will never forget my visit with my great-Aunt Gladys. The drive into downtown Boise took my thoughts to former days. The homes here were built in the early 1900s, and it was like stepping into the past as I entered her quaint little home. Aunt Gladys commented that my 2-year-old son looked like her sisters' children. I asked Aunt Gladys for information about her brothers and sisters, their names and birthdays, and she would answer me with bits and pieces of information from memory. A few of my questions were answered with, "I can't remember" or "I don't know." I was grateful for any information at all.

Then she said, "Well, let me go get the family Bible." Recorded on the first page in beautiful handwritten script were all of the names, births, marriages and death dates of my grandmother's family. What a treasure! Later I acquired a picture of my great-grandparents sitting in front of the fireplace in that same home. My grandfather worked as a mason, and he built the fireplace that still stands today.

It is interesting to contemplate the different paths that each of us take in our lives, the people we meet, the places we live and the things we experience. I know that our choices have a direct impact on some of what we experience, but I also believe that we may be guided and directed to certain places or to certain people at a certain time to accomplish specific labors.

It was about a year later that Aunt Gladys moved out of her house to live with her son out of state, and with her went the family Bible. How grateful I was to have been able to meet her and gather the names and dates that I did. The information in the family Bible was just the beginning, but it contained the necessary clues that I needed to gather lots of additional family records. — Alaura Ramsey, Eagle, Idaho

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