During the 1980’s, my interest in family history started to perculate. As a teenager, I was fascinated by Dad’s boyhood stories about life on an out island, and as you would expect, his stories included names of family and friends that impacted him, both in Green Turtle Cay and Nassau. I took crude, handwritten notes as he explained their relationship to me. Needing to visualize faces, my pursuit for photographs began. However, a camera was considered a “luxury item” on this remote island, which explained the scarcity of pictures. Hurricanes often destroyed the few pictures that did exist.
Thirty years later, we are overwhelmed with the capabilities that technology advancements provide from digital photography, to online forums and research tools, to websites, email and FaceBook that allow us to connect, collect, share, inquire and research from devices as small as a phone (which can also function as a camera!)
For those that may not be aware, one of these tools that has continued to spark my interest in research is an image collection stored by Family Search. This resource has helped to confirm dates, proper names and identify parents, cause of death, occupation, etc. The searching process is tedious, but I have often compared family research to an archaeologist’s excavation site.
A CASE STUDY…the photo above is a sample page from the Birth Registers, indicating a son born to Pa Wes and his wife Lilla on August 14, 1887. Collective family knowledge only recalled one son of Wes and Lilla, Herman, born April 21, 1890. This additional child, a son, was discovered while I was searching for other records. Searching the death records would possibly confirm that this son died as an infant or early toddler, a tragedy that often occurred during those times.
Here’s the link to the record database and a brief description: https://familysearch.org/search/collection/1922411
Bahamas, Civil Registration, 1850-1959. (Civil registration, including births, marriages and deaths, for the Bahamas)
This collection will include records from 1850 to 1959. The records include births, marriages, and deaths from civil registration in different districts of the Bahamas. Earlier records are handwritten in narrative style; later records are handwritten in formatted records. The text of the records is in English. Records are listed in chronological order.
While family research involves a combination of methods and tools, this one by far has been most rewarding for me! If you have a few hours to spare and a specific curiosity, grab a cup of coffee and let the search begin.