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Way back in the genealogy dark ages, in the early days of the Internet, most of us had no idea how much good (and bad! oh, so much bad!) genealogy information would eventually be on-line. In 1998, when (comparatively...) there was almost nothing on-line for genealogists, I was told by the owner of my nice little local ISP that the two groups of people driving much of the development of the 'Net were genealogists and porno consumers ~~ people willing to pay to fuel their addictions ;-)

Even now, however, despite the tremendous amounts of information that is now on-line, there's even more that isn't. A recent trip to the Danvers Archival Center {where they now fortunately allow digital photography of much of the manuscript collection} reminded me just how true this is ;-)

I took over 350 pictures in two visits, so I'm just going to share a few highlights here. [Some of the other pictures may make appearances in future diaries.....]

Four generations, left to right: great-great-great grandmother (and 4th cousin 5 times removed, or 5th cousin 5 times removed, and so on....tangled New England families) Louisa Page Weston (1823-1909), great grandmother Jessie Sears Learoyd (1870-1952), great great grandmother Caroline Weston Sears (1845-1927), and great aunt Helen Learoyd (1894-1984).

Sears Weston four generations

A cousin's notes mixed in with old family photos:

Sample notes page family

A whole folder of photocopies of newspaper articles about the dramatic family events I wrote about here:

Learoyd trial p54

One of my brick walls.... argh! At least I'm not the only one who doesn't know.....Robert Kent Sears (my great-great grandfather) was the grandson of Betsy Wilkins and the mysterious John T. Sears, and Betsy wouldn't tell him, if she did know.

Sample notes Sears argh

One of the fun bits that make all the research interesting ~~ a souvenir from when my great-great-great grandfather went to Niagara Falls in 1839:

William Low Weston Niagara Falls tourist certificate 1839

So, as much as there is on-line, it's still worth visiting the archives/historical society/library near where your ancestors lived, if you can.... you never know what you might find ;-)

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