Many years ago my cousins gave me To Our Children’s Children : Preserving Family Histories for Generations to Come and its companion, To Our Children’s Children: Journal of Family Memories. These two books by Bob Greene and D.G. Fulford make a great Christmas gift. Their concept is to create a personal family history in writing to hand down to future generations.
I like the two-book format. Because a journal with prompts and plenty of recording space ensures history is actually recorded. But if funds are tight you could get by with just To Our Children’s Children: Preserving Family Histories for Generations to Come.
Greene And Fulford
The authors emphasize the importance of not making the compilation a dreaded task. In fact, they look at the myriad of questions as a menu. Thus, 0ne selects as many or few of the prompts as one wishes to answer. Some may not even be applicable to your family.
Greene and Fulford cover all the bases. The key to writing a family history is to gather the facts first. This includes recording dates of marriages, births, and deaths. Then, flush out the basic facts with details of what family ancestry you can remember and record.
To Our Children’s Children: Recording Life
The next step is to record your life and that of your spouse. Hopefully, this will be an easier part for most. Here you are sharing your actual experience. Historical research is not needed. Yet, this is an important part of the process presented in To Our Children’s Children.
The final chapter from the authors is titled Hard Questions: Extra Credit. This short section only contains thirty writing prompts to choose from. However, they are deep philosophical questions one might ask once they have experienced life.
This year, the same cousins and their Mom created a beautiful wedding gift. A hardcover pictorial album accompanied by a written history of my grandparents. I do not know if they were inspired by their own copy of To Our Children’s Children. But, I believe Greene and Fulford have written a guide which will help you preserve and share your personal family history.