|Rick and I at SLIG|
(Picture taken by Roylene Bailey)
Despite the current craziness in my life, I was actually able to attend the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy this past week which is held annually at the Radisson in Salt Lake City, Utah. I attended my first SLIG back in 2009 and took the course "Research of the Gulf South" with Mark J. Lowe . It was such a wonderful experience that I have made it a tradition to return to SLIG each year. Last year I was able to take Advanced Methodology with Tom Jones and this year I took Forensic Genealogy with Melinde Lutz Byrne . I highly recommend SLIG to anyone who enjoys the opportunity to ramp up their learning and who loves an excuse to gather with other genealogist. I have gained so much from taking classes from some of the finest genealogist in the country, in addition to learning from the experience of others who are traveling the down the same path in research. While we all have varying levels of expertise, I learn something from everyone and welcome that opportunity.
In addition to daytime classes at SLIG, there is the opportunity to take a variety of one hour classes offered in the evenings. I couldn't resist the chance to attend Mark J. Lowe's lecture entitled "Whiskey, Brandy and Family Migration." Mark has a wonderful ability to entertain while he instructs and I enjoyed his lecture very much. His class reminded me that I need to share a story or two about my Alabama moonshiners! Stay tuned for that post!
This year I had the added benefit of meeting a couple of bloggers whom I follow and admire. Judy G. Russell of The Legal Genealogist and Anne Gillespie Mitchell from Finding Forgotten Stories were both in attendance and were just as wonderful in "real life" as they are on the internet.
I can't talk with other genealogist without noticing their love of family. They truly love family---the living and the dead. This year at SLIG, a friend made the comment that as we work and associate with each other over the years we all become family too---we feel those connections with each other, we care about and worry about each other and those ties to each other become strong, whether we share a common ancestor or not. As I have watched the events unfold around the country this past year, the good and the bad, from personal triumphs to tragedies of all kinds, my thoughts have often gone to those that I know from that particular part of the country and then to the people and families that live there in general, most of whom I do not know. As I have formed relationships with both those that I work with on my family lines and those that I have met online or at the various genealogy events I attend, I see that genealogy has not only helped me to know and love those that have passed onto the other side, but it has made the world a smaller and friendlier place in general. So while I love researching in the dusty records of repositories, I will continue to find ways to connect and interact with othes because after all, it truly is "All About Family."
Copyright © Michelle G. Taggart 2013