Cecil Whig - - A••END A FREE -

of­ten hear about all the other peo­ple who lived dur­ing the time. What about the guy sell­ing George Wash­ing­ton his eggs?”

But why would peo­ple need pro­fes­sional as­sis­tance when they have ac­cess to the in­ter­net? Ac­cord­ing to Mary Man­nix, who will lec­ture on re­search­ing the War of 1812 and World War I, there are large chunks of records that ex­ist solely in print form.

“Only a small per­cent­age of stuff is on­line,” Man­nix said.

At the same time, she noted the ad-

vent of in­ter­net re­sources as ex­tremely ben­e­fi­cial to ge­neal­ogy re­search, es­pe­cially for in­ter­ested non-pro­fes­sion­als. Now peo­ple can ca­su­ally look into their an­ces­try with­out sac­ri­fic­ing their cur­rent jobs. Man­nix is just there to show peo­ple where to look.

“It’s al­most as if the tech­nol­ogy boom has been the perfect breed­ing ground for ge­neal­ogy,” she said. “It’s a phe­nom­e­non.”

It may also be a uni­fy­ing force. Hait told a story about how he and a much older friend from an­other state dis­cov­ered that they both de­scended from the same colo­nial Mas­sachusetts set­tler. Sud­denly, he said, they seemed more like kin to each other.

“It’s a lot harder to judge peo­ple harshly when they might be your fam­ily, or when you start to think of them as fam­ily,” Hait said. “There comes a sense of be­ing part of a larger com­mu­nity, a larger fam­ily.”

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