Continuing with my Oral History Series. Today I am going to look at hints and tips.
This is a tip that I think is useful for any research. Review your data and evidence. Note on your research log when you reviewed it, and did you notice anything different?
My Great Aunt told me, back in 1988, that my Great Great Grandmother, Caroline Harris (nee Ellis) was alive when the old age pension was introduced and she and my Great Great Grandfather, Henry were given a pension of around 10 shillings a week.
My immediate thoughts was
- When was this pension introduced?
- How did they qualify?
- Are there any documents, relating to this that have survived?
Essentially these questions are setting the scene for expanding and examining the information that was passed to me. A very quick Google search provided this information. An oral history snippet can be substantiated and therefore in this case, adds credence to the history of my family.
Of course, the bigger question is what did Caroline Harris and her family do before this pension was introduced? I know the answer to that question, but this shows that Caroline’s life was tough and she was provided for, by her children and in particular my Great Grandmother, just as she in turn was provided for by my Great Aunt with assistance from her siblings. In this modern world we have lost the sense of family and the value of extended family.
It is as this point that we can focus on the How, Why, When, With, Who, What and Where of the existence of our ancestors lives, and flesh them out beyond just their names and dates. Indeed, it enables us to see the other disciplines that entwine with our family history and that can be said also with individuals that appear within our One-Name Studies.