Covid-19–a Time to Renew your Knowledge-Level

This twilight zone between having access to the vaccines and being covered by their protection is time to renew and build your research knowledge. Although libraries and archives are still closed to the public, the benefits of their information are still available.

Let me share with you what my latest Smithsonian Magazine includes–

  1. “The Lost History of Yellowstone,” by Richard Grant with stunning photographs by Andrew Geiger. (Smithsonian Jan-Feb 2021: 32-55, 116-17.) This article debunks the myth that this amazing and great national park was a wilderness untouched by humans: Nez Perce, Crow, Shoshone, Blackfeet, Flathead, Bannock , and peoples from the Hopewell culture (Scioto River area of Southern Ohio) and Clovis (New Mexico) lived and roamed this beautiful land for centuries. The article describes the evidence from Yellowstone obsidian–“volcanic glass that forms when lava cools rapidly, making the sharpest edge of any natural substance on earth.”
  2. A series of articles on “Artisan America” of considerable significance, in my opinion. These articles include may examples of artistic expression by Americans over time: “Making the Nation,” by Glenn Adamson and other writers, pp. 68-97. As always, the photographs are an art in themselves. And you will be amazed at the people you may never have heard of who were prominent in their time for the art they left behind.

Too often we study our ancestors in a vacuum, sometimes created as deliberate myths to focus an agenda in the minds of students and citizens; sometimes of our own making because we have limited our study to that information we already know without the benefit of expanding our knowledge of the environment and context in which our ancestors lived. This current issue of the Smithsonian also includes an article on election frauds from the past. Did we think that the claims of our 2020 election was unique?

Read and study what you read during this moratorium of access. You will be so glad you did. Your favorite genealogist, Arlene Eakle

PS I visit the post office every day to collect whatever is there. One of these days, I’ll describe the differences in what I order to be delivered and what is actually delivered for my view. I also mail stuff every day to family, clients, friends. Every day something comes in and something goes out. Stay tuned!

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