Thursday, February 4, 2010

Treasure Chest Thursday-Grandma's personal address book

How can an old beat up address book that had been sitting in a garage for over 30 years possibly be of any value to anyone? Let's find out.

Earlier last year I was contacted by a distant cousin who was trying to identify and locate every descendant of our gg grandparents, Ernest and Elizabeth Haun, who immigrated to the US from Germany, settling in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. Mine was the last branch he was working on. He had been working for several years and had located the descendants of all of their children but one.

We exchanged quite a bit of information and shared photos. He sent me a picture of our mutual gg grandmother Elizabeth Haun. What a thrill to actually see a photo of yet another person whose genes are part of me!

During our exchange of information, it became apparent that there was one more twig on the family tree that might have some as yet unidentified descendants. We both did some research and one day Rob dropped me an email asking if by chance I had any old address books of my grandmothers. He was thinking that maybe it would contain the name and address of the son of my grandmother's youngest brother. The son's name was Donald W. Mitchell. I didn't know if Donald had ever had any children. If he did they would be the last descendants waiting to be found.

I asked Mom if she knew where Grandma's address book might be. All I could remember was that it was blue. Her answer: in one of those boxes in the garage. The garage isn't quite as scary and dangerous a place as it was a few years ago but there were still several dozen boxes that could contain one little blue address book. After much digging, shuffling and restacking, I found it in the last box! Under the Ms was listed Donald W. Mitchell in Seattle! Even better, Grandma had written in his wife's name - Pat and their daughter's name's Dawn Ann and Gennie Lynn. We are still looking for the daughters of Donald Mitchell but at least now there is something concrete to go on.

The little blue address book is now safe and sound in an archival box at my house waiting for the next time it can be of use. I have already noticed several familiar names from my previous research so who knows how it might prove to be of value in the future.

Copyright 2010, Michelle Goodrum

1 comment:

  1. It's funny you mention the address book. I used to always fill out my grandmother's address book b/c she thought I had neat handwriting. I found one of them in some things I inherited the other day. I almost got rid of it, but I'm glad that I didn't. You never know when I might find a long-lost cousin's address in there.