|Linda McDaniel Smith|
41 Piwarski Circle
|Dear Cousins & other researchers,|
I have been working on the genealogies of the following families for 26 years. And these are not all of my lines by any means; they are just all that could be put on this site at any one time. Many of the people I've interviewed in person, by phone, and by correspondence over these years are long gone. Many are gone that I wish I could have interviewed.
Every single life in these genealogies is unique; every single life has an interesting story to tell. Some will tell their stories, some will not. It is important that all researchers try to give an accurate picture of the people behind the names and dates. I want to try to know who they were, what their dreams were, what was important to them.
Yet, in that process of trying to "flesh out" the people of the past, we must not forget the people who live in our own households in the present. We must not forget that our own children have dreams and aspirations they might not tell us if we don't ask. Maybe a "personal interview" with them would help us, as well as future generations, to know them better.
How about our own parents? Sometimes in digging for deeper and deeper roots, we skim over the importance of the people who raised us. I know there are good parents and extremely bad parents, parents who are basically mentally and physically well, and some who are not, but all parents are human. All parents make mistakes because they are, first of all, an individual human being before they are anyone's son or daughter, mother or father, sister or brother.
My passion for genealogy started at the age of eight -- which was also the age at which I accepted Christ as my Savior. He gave me the heart for life, and an overwhelming love of family; a love so encompassing, that I want no life taken for granted. And Jesus was interested in genealogy, too. Both the Old and New Testaments give an ancestral account from the very first pages; not for the purpose of becoming members of exclusive clubs, or to brag about in the right circles, but because God himself created family as an extension and indication and picture of his love and grace. A family unit that works as God intended is a blessing that echoes through generation after generation, and gives each child a headstart on life. A family unit that does not is a curse that will also be felt for generations, and will set up obstacles that only the hardiest descendants can overcome.
So, I hope you will enjoy reading about the histories of these families, especially if it is also your own history. It is as accurate as time and patience and people's memories and written records could make it. It may not be the best history you've ever read, but, at least, maybe it won't be the worst. Yes, you will find mistakes, and, hopefully, if you do, you will let me know so they can be corrected. Where there are disputes about dates or marriages, etc., I will try to put forth all sides.
Just let me know. I am always interested in hearing from a family member, and never, ever, do I want to leave anyone out if I can possibly learn of an unknown member of these greatly extended and widespread families.
Linda McDaniel Smith