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post #1 of 21 Old Feb 6th, 2008, 4:32 pm Thread Starter
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A Gift From Our Mother

I have a couple of questions with what to do with this gift. It is my turn to get my mother's 67 years worth of diaries (the 1930's to the early 2000's). My sister in Tracy has kept them for the family since Sept. of '03 when she passed, and I will look at them for a month or two until physically taking them in the car with me to Maine for my other sister. She's waiting for them to come home to the old farmhouse where most of the diaries were written. Doug has some diaries in his family too. How many others?

I know that my mom was into lists. At the end of each year are lists of topical events of the day, family events, costs of food and money matters. Money was always tight as my dad and my mom were both educaters with five kids. My sister has said that it was interesting to read the views of our mother during the war and her teenage years along with being a mother in the early 50's and 60's. I will not have the time or ambition to read them all like my sister did but will be looking for certain things like Birthdays and Christmas, to see if they got more gifts than me. Or, just look for the lists at the end of each year.

I have thought that the first thing to do is make a copy/scan. Painstakingly flipping pages, pushing a button and waiting many times over and over. Is that my only option or can I take them somewhere like Kinko's to have them do it? Is there software for diaries?

Lastly, I will look at things to post here while I have them. For some reason, I want to see those lists.It must be part of me to want to see those first. Is there anything else I should look for quickly that would be interesting?

Roger
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post #2 of 21 Old Feb 6th, 2008, 4:39 pm
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... family events...
... political events...
... personal observations...
... tender moments with children, i.e; first words, steps.. etc..

...............
J.M.J...
Dcn Channing

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post #3 of 21 Old Feb 6th, 2008, 6:21 pm
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Roger,
That is so cool your mom kept a diary for so many years. I think you may enjoy reading it more than you think. Especially the early years when you had to walk uphill both ways to school and back in 5 feet of snow. It would be great to have them copied so you could read at your leisure. Like on a sunny morning on the porch with a big fat stogie and cup of coffee. I bet Kinko's would do it for you at a price. But personal info could be harvested and there goes your chances for running for the whitehouse. I would give the job to a grand daughter.

Brian Ley
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post #4 of 21 Old Feb 7th, 2008, 3:53 pm
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Any chance you could use a digital camera with enough definition to be able to read the pages?

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post #5 of 21 Old Feb 7th, 2008, 4:01 pm Thread Starter
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That just might work. I have several tripods. I'll try it.

Roger
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post #6 of 21 Old Feb 7th, 2008, 5:19 pm
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What a great find. I recently found out that my dad has all the love letters written between my grandma & grandpa during the various wars. This stuff offers a priceless snapshot at family history.

You definitely need to archive them in some way. Scanning or taking spics should work.

One thing you could do is to create an online Blog and start posting them. You could take your time and go through them whenever you get the chance, but it would be a good way to preserve these things in a way that allows a lot of folks to share in the experience. Unless there's anything really scandalous, of course.

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post #7 of 21 Old Feb 7th, 2008, 5:39 pm
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Hi,

I have one thing to say, "you lucky lucky bastard"

I've been researching my family tree for a few years, and have little to nothing apart from a few photos and the odd post card from my parents. I would make every effort to read them. You might like to get extracts published, there just might be a good book in there amongst all those pages.

Rgds
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post #8 of 21 Old Feb 8th, 2008, 7:10 am
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I too am one of the lucky ones, 20yrs. ago after mom passed my dad sold the house and my brother and sisters and I were packing up the house for him when I discovered that my mom kept a "Baby Book" for me and it was hidden away all these years. No one had any idea that it existed, it was full of pictures and her thoughts about my early life, boy what an insight into a wonderful woman. It is something I will treasure forever. Just thinking about it now makes me realize how much she is missed.

Pat Rourke
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post #9 of 21 Old Feb 25th, 2008, 10:51 am Thread Starter
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Re: A Gift From Our Mother

Here is the start of my late mother's diary when she was just 10 years old in 1937 in Dover-Foxcroft, Maine. Her handwriting gets much better over time. Do 10 year old kids today write in cursive? My family is just starting to get all 67 years copied to disks. One of my sisters has read them all and is now starting to copy/scan a book at a time. She said that there are many references of the war from a teenagers perspective and that my mother kept lots of lists too. She was a huge movie buff and probably had seen just about all the movies of the day.
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Roger
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post #10 of 21 Old Feb 25th, 2008, 2:32 pm
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Re: A Gift From Our Mother

Quote:
Originally Posted by RMoore007
Here is the start of my late mother's diary when she was just 10 years old in 1937 in Dover-Foxcroft, Maine. Her handwriting gets much better over time. Do 10 year old kids today write in cursive? My family is just starting to get all 67 years copied to disks. One of my sisters has read them all and is now starting to copy/scan a book at a time. She said that there are many references of the war from a teenagers perspective and that my mother kept lots of lists too. She was a huge movie buff and probably had seen just about all the movies of the day.
What a treasure, Roger - and a blessing. Be forever thankful.

While going thru all the 'paper trail' left be my Mom's passing last year, I found a diary written by a great-great-grandmother whom I never had the pleasure to meet. Her handwriting resembled that in your attachment, but get this - she wrote in poem style!! I've never known anyone to do that, and it's amazing how clear and concise all the entries were when describing the day's events. I wuz blown away, and so thankful that the diary survived through the generations and ended up in my generation for safe keeping. Haven't decided yet what to do with it, butt it'll come to me, I know.

Thanks for sharing your 'find', Roger.
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post #11 of 21 Old Feb 25th, 2008, 2:53 pm
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Re: A Gift From Our Mother

I have to echo what others have said ... what a treasure. I have no solution to your dilemna, but I am green with envy that you have it and that I don't.
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post #12 of 21 Old Feb 25th, 2008, 3:16 pm Thread Starter
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Re: A Gift From Our Mother

Thanks for your replies. It's been over four years now since she left us with the diaries. I really couldn't even read them until now. But time has made it a little easier and now I want to look into the past a little more and find out who I really am. It seems that all of my brothers and sisters are ready to read them now, too.

And just this morning, I went to a funeral of an 86 year old business associate named Margarette. Been doing sub-contracting with her since she was just a kid of 69 years. She was married for 48 years. Her son and granddaughter gave moving accounts of her life. Catholic ceremony. Very nice.

Roger
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post #13 of 21 Old Feb 25th, 2008, 4:13 pm
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Re: A Gift From Our Mother

My condolences for your loss of your friend, too.... Children are our legacy..

...............
J.M.J...
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post #14 of 21 Old Mar 4th, 2008, 12:09 pm Thread Starter
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Diaries from 1943, 1956 and 1963.......

I borrowed three years of mom's diaries from my sister. The June 12th date is my 5th birthday. Just wanted to see what I received for gifts.

"A busy day, Mom and Papa were over this a.m., brought presents for Roger, took Eldric and Mary's wedding gift up to them. Vicki had her lesson at 11, had the party at 1:00. Roger got a cowboy shirt, gun + holster, suspenders, kerchief, lots of toys, T shirts. We got him a pr. of grey dungarees and a tool chest. Mom ordered a sweet cake-decorated cowboy style. Went to Skowhegan after Wayne. At 6:30 ate, lunch, went to the wedding at 8-10. Mrs. Eveleth baby-sit." I know that there is a picture of me wearing all this stuff too.
1943,1956 and 1963............



Nov. 22nd in the 1963 diary is a little unnerving. I'll post if you're interested.

Roger
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post #15 of 21 Old Mar 4th, 2008, 12:53 pm
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Re: Diaries from 1943, 1956 and 1963.......

....I remember that day as I sat in 4th grade class.... our whole school prayed for his soul and the inevitable cataclysm the "adults" in our world were about to unleash..... I didn't sleep for days, watching the sky for missiles.... I may have been only 9 years old, but I remember...


If you don't mind sharing, I would like to know what she was thinking on that day.

...............
J.M.J...
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post #16 of 21 Old Mar 4th, 2008, 1:10 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Diaries from 1943, 1956 and 1963.......

Quote:
Originally Posted by cfell
....I remember that day as I sat in 4th grade class.... our whole school prayed for his soul and the inevitable cataclysm the "adults" in our world were about to unleash..... I didn't sleep for days, watching the sky for missiles.... I may have been only 9 years old, but I remember...


If you don't mind sharing, I would like to know what she was thinking on that day.
Nov. 22nd, 1963....I've transcribed it exactly as she wrote it.

"Took Wayne up at 10:30, went over + had my hair set at 1:00 and also took car in to have a new generator. While into Jay's, I heard the tragic news of President Kennedy's assassination. It was a blow to the whole nation and made the country sorrowful and in tears. Watched TV coverage of the tragedy all evening. Also killed in this was a policeman J. Tippett in Dallas Texas, assassinator is believed to be Lee Oswald."

She went on the next few days saying how much everyone was glued to their television sets that weekend. The 22nd was on a Friday. I remember the principal of the school coming into each classroom and telling us the news. We all got to go home and watch TV right after his announcment. I was 12 years old and in 7th grade. I watched my parents and grandparents cry more than once that next few days.

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post #17 of 21 Old Mar 4th, 2008, 1:37 pm
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Re: A Gift From Our Mother

You are a very lucky man indeed. I am 67 yrs old. My parents both passed away 60+ years ago. I would give my eye teeth to have what you have.
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post #18 of 21 Old Mar 5th, 2008, 2:04 pm
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Re: A Gift From Our Mother

Quote:
Originally Posted by RMoore007
Thanks for your replies.
now I want to look into the past a little more and find out who I really am.
If you start to head down the route of researching your family tree please PM me first. Lots of folks spend money before they need to. I've been at the game a few years and have made all the mistakes I care to make, and have learnt a great deal and know lots of people who have far more knowledge than I and are always willing to help.

Enjoy reading the diaries, you truly have something to be treasured.

Rgds
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post #19 of 21 Old Mar 5th, 2008, 2:17 pm
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Re: Diaries from 1943, 1956 and 1963.......

Thanks, Roger... "Never forget!"....

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J.M.J...
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post #20 of 21 Old Mar 5th, 2008, 7:25 pm Thread Starter
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Re: A Gift From Our Mother

Quote:
Originally Posted by myk_edwards
If you start to head down the route of researching your family tree please PM me first. Lots of folks spend money before they need to. I've been at the game a few years and have made all the mistakes I care to make, and have learnt a great deal and know lots of people who have far more knowledge than I and are always willing to help.

Enjoy reading the diaries, you truly have something to be treasured.
Thanks for all your comments and interest.

My cousin on my mothers side researched years ago in Maine and is a member of the Mayflower Society. We're related to three families on the Mayflower. One of my sisters is now the caretaker of our family farmhouse built in 1850. She sleeps in the same room where my grandmother was born and died and where my mother was born and died. All our family is buried right out back too. There are pictures around the house going back to the early 1900's. And especially within the years of my mom's diaries. Lots of pictures to coinside with her writings. Someone in my family needs to get busy and get scanning. And we need to get all those old pictures on disc too.

Roger
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post #21 of 21 Old Mar 6th, 2008, 6:06 pm
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Re: A Gift From Our Mother

Quote:
Originally Posted by RMoore007
Thanks for all your comments and interest.
All I can say is "Go for it"

Get that stuff on line, There are plenty of folks out here who love to read family history stuff, me included. my family history is boring when I look at it, but I do have Charles Dickens on my tree. On the other hand my wife has Matthew Quital on her tree.

http://www.lareau.org/quintal.html

please post more of the diaries, if not here, get a web site set up. This is history which we should all be interested in.

Rgds
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