Random Acts of Kindness

Today I had a fun little side trip that hopefully assisted in another woman’s family history search.  She lives in Montana and had found my contact information on the Random Acts of Genealogical Kindness website.  I’d heard about it through Genealogy Gems Podcast and thought it would be a fun thing to do and could possibly help me in my own search too.  So I had signed up and this lady emailed me requesting some assistance in getting an obituary from a relative that had passed in 1979.  She added that if it was possible to find his grave, she’d appreciate a picture of the headstone.  I replied to her saying that I’d do my best to get to it during the coming weekend.

And I was off….

I did a bit of searching online first to see if the man happened to be listed through the Ohio Genealogical Society or even on Find a Grave.  No luck there.  I then took a look at Ancestry to see if there were any interesting listings about his death record.  I did find a mention of his death and the date matched what my contact had given me.  After that, I figured it would be best to go down to Newark, Ohio and check out the catalog of obituaries that the Licking County Genealogical Society has on hand.  I’d been there about a year ago and they had explained that they do their best to get clippings of all the obituaries in the local newspapers and have been doing so for a very long time.

Unfortunately the hours that they are open are quite limited (1pm-4pm most days) and so I had to wait for a day when I’d be off work and able to get there.  Saturday was the only day I could make it.  I got there moments after 1pm and knew just where to go.  There were three listings under the same last name and fortunately they did have the one I was looking for.  I paid the 15 cents for a copy of the obituary and saw that the man was buried in Indiana.  Not much else I could do to assist in the lady’s search, but I hoped that the information included would help confirm some details she may not have known.

I’m glad I took on the task and look forward to more.  It made me realize that I should really take a moment to make a list of missing items that could help clear up some questions that I have and then ASK FOR HELP.  My time is unfortunately limited and I can’t travel all over the country/ world to get the answers.  So it’s time to start thinking about who I will ask about through the Random Acts website!

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