Time Travel and Genealogy: A Match Made in Time

Back to FutureThe ability to travel through time has always fascinated people. Countless books, movies, and TV shows delight us with the stories of time travelers and their adventures, and I have to admit that if a plot involves time travel that I am more than likely to give a book, movie, or TV show a try. Here is one favorite from each of those categories:
  • Books: The Time Machine by H.G. Wells is a perennial classic time travel book that first introduced to the concept of a time machine, which is a vehicle that allows us to travel through time. 
  • TV: Doctor Who is a British sci-fi series that has been running since 1963 and features the Doctor and his companions as they travel through time. 
  • Movies: Back to the Future is a trilogy of movies that involves time travel to the Old West, 1950s, 1980s, and the year 2015 (the future). The year 2015 has arrived, and some of the future depicted in this movie is reality. However, I still do not own a hover board. 
However, these fictitious characters are not real people and will always make it seem somewhat imaginary. What it you could travel through time and meet your own ancestors? What was life like from your great grandmother or your great great great (insert as many greats as needed) grandfather who fought in the American Revolution? If you have asked that question, you should attend What Time is It?: Putting Your Ancestors in Historical Context, which is part of our Beyond the Basics of Genealogy workshop series. In this workshop, you will travel through time with your ancestors to find what their lives may have been like and discover untapped sources. Locate contemporaries of your ancestor to determine what people and events defined their time. Plot creative timelines that can open new research possibilities, solve mysteries, and bring your ancestors to life!

Beyond the Basics of Genealogy: What Time Is It? Putting Your Ancestors in Historical Context will be held on August 29, 10:00 a.m., at the Central Library/Arrington Auditorium. Workshops  are free of charge, but registration is requested. To register, contact the Southern History Department of the Birmingham Public Library at 205-226-3665 or e-mail us at askgenlocal@bham.lib.al.us. The workshop will be held in the Arrington Auditorium (4th floor) of the Linn-Henley building.

Laura Gentry
Southern History Department
Birmingham Public Library