Monday, October 14, 2013

October is National Family History Month ....Tell Those Family Stories

Utah Senator Orrin Hatch introduced a resolution on September 12, 2001 to designate October as Family History Month. 

The words of the resolution read: 

"We look to the family as an unwavering symbol of constancy that will help us discover a future of prosperity, promise, and potential".  The resolution went on to say: "Interest in our personal family history transcends all cultural and religious affiliations.
It passed by unanimous consent.

Family History Month is a great opportunity to learn about your heritage while making new memories with your family.  It is a time to consider how you might become more engaged in learning about and preserving your family history and heritage. 
It is a perfect time to compile your own memories and begin gathering other family stories.  Every family has its own history - the events, personalities, and traditions that make the family unique - and collecting these singular stories and memories is one of the most meaningful ways you and your family can honor your older relatives and preserve family traditions.
Recording family stories on audiotape, videotape, or in legacy journals, brings family members closer together, bridges generation gaps, and ensures that your family stories will be preserved for future generations.  Whenever I speaker to audiences, 
I stress the importance of "Telling Your Story" to pass on to future generations. Through telling specifically your family's stories, you also give a greater insight into the general times, and circumstances in which you and they lived. 

On my website I write : Storytelling is a special folk art.  To me, folk art is simply art made/performed by ordinary "folk" for ordinary "folk".  Folk artists attempt to freeze their memories into their art and help to preserve the culture and customs of everyday life.  With Reflections and Magnolia Memories, I hope to offer a time capsule, of sorts, for future generations, giving a glimpse into the everyday lives of everyday people in our region. 
I place my books in the category of creative memoir writing . I use my poems to "Tell My Story".

Some ideas to get started telling your family's story might include :

Writing a biographical sketch. 
Sharing someone's life story. 
Sharing a story from your youth.  
Telling stories about life when you were a child. 
 Recording the history of your family heirlooms. 
Recording the origin of things and stories about how you came to have them.  Compiling a cookbook of favorite family recipes and any stories that go with them.  Making copies of family photos. 
Scrap-booking Your Family Heritage.


You can read more of my stories and stories of the south in my books: