Thursday, April 12, 2012

The Camera, The To Do Lists and Today's Research

Copyright 2012, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

My advice, from today's research stop at the Library of Virginia, said advice goes for any research facility:

1.)  Take your camera.  In this Archives facility they will photocopy records for you (read this well, I am talking the ARCHIVES, not the LIBRARY collection, HUGE difference).  The Archives is for the most part, original records, ya, the one that your great so and so actually held in his hands and maybe, signed.

So, here at the Virginia Archives they will only run 25 photocopies ON paper for any one patron on any one research day.  I believe they said the copies are 50 cents, per, but, I won't swear to that.  But, by signing my life away,  (just kidding), I was able to use my camera to take as many photos of the documents as I wanted.  I took 97 photos of 2 chancery cases from Princess Anne County and 2 other photos of another set of records.  So, what did I get for my 95 chancery case photos?  One case was not that exciting, it was great, don't get me wrong, but, compared to the second case I pulled, it was not that exciting.  Case # 2 turned out to be the HIT of the day, maybe the week.  It was the settlement of my great great grandfather's estate and included the signature of my great great grandmother and of my direct line great grandfather (see his below).

2.)  Use your family history data base program's power of the to do list.  Now, believe me, I am not the best at this, but, I will put items on a to do list while I am researching, even if I don't think I will ever get to the depository.  I add stuff, leave it sit there, and if it gets done some time, great, if not, it sits there.  I have items on this Virginia Library and Archives to do list that are well over 4 years old.  I don't let them haunt me, but, there they sit.  This AM I printed off the to do list for the Virginia Archives and Library and found I have more than 16 pages of items, well over 85 items.  Well, I'll be danged!  One of the things on this list was to get a copy of these chancery cases.  Well, I'll be danged!  I did not remember those items, but, I went digging and found them.  DANG!  It was a good research day.

Tomorrow I go back, taking that to do list AND the camera.  Yipee!

* Chancery Chancery Records Index for Princess Anne County Virginia 1881-004, Plaintiff John Dews and Wife, Defendant William Banks, etc. Indexes for Chancery cases for Virginia can be found at the Library of Virginia web site.

** On edit, I do not believe they allow scanners of any kind at the ARCHIVES.  They let me use Sony, but NO flash!

*** Hope this reads right, I am not proofreading, as you can probably tell!  LOL


Barbara Poole said...

Dang good report. And a great hint about using the To-Do List, no matter where the record might might just get there. Don't forget to charge the camera tonight!

Gini said...

Great idea, I am going to put my "To Do" list in my FTM to work. Happy researching, Carol!

Kathy Reed said...

I'm glad you finally had a good day. You deserve it. So lucky they will even let you USE a camera. I've been so many places where they will not permit you to use them.

Karen said...

You have inspired me once again, this time to make better use of my program's "To-Do" list. I'm so glad you got the chancery cases and all that lovely data!

Lynne Carothers said...

Your post came certainly at the right time for me! Sunday we leave for TN to do some digging around. Walt's family is a big deal in Franklin and I know the family that is there has done some work. I don't know at what level their work has been. I hope to visit libraries, etc. to get some primary source material.

I was not aware that some places don't allow scanners. I received a FlipPal for Christmas and was hoping to use it. I will hope that it will work where we go.
Anyway, thanks for the information.

Happy hunting!

Carol said...

Thanks everyone, and yes, Kathy Reed, I was surprised and thrilled about the camera, you are right, not all Archives or Libraries or societies will allow cameras, even with out the flash. But, if I did not have the camera today, I would not have my 97 pages. I might be able to get them the next trip to the archives, but, mmmm, we all know about life tripping us up, what if I cannot go back??

Lynne, call each library or repository and ask! Some allow scanners, some allow on certain collections. ASK before you go! Have fun!

Ginger Smith said...

So glad to hear you had a great day! And great that you were able to use your to do list! Good luck tomorrow too! Keep us posted!

Michelle Goodrum said...

Wahoo! Gr-gr- grandpa's estate settlement always makes for a greaaat day.

Power to the to do list!