Sunday, January 3, 2010

Library, Schmi-brary

I am very excited to participate in Amy Coffin's fabulous 2010 challenges - 52 Weeks to Better Genealogy.  What a great way to stretch our mind, maybe look in directions we have no considered, and do something productive each and every week.

The first challenge was to visit our local public library and see what kind of genealogy books are available, including the reference section.

Unfortunately, I have left the libraries of the U.S. behind.  Gone are the days when I can sit with my laptop in the Dover Public Library's "Delaware Room" or, even further in the past, the Bridgewater Public Library of my childhood and young adulthood in Massachusetts (and that said, the Bridgewater one is suffering terribly - it is nothing like it used to be; it is only open 14 hours a week).

For the next 10 months, I have the Osan Air Base Library at my disposal.

And the genealogy books?

Sadly lacking.

There are roughly half a dozen genealogy how-to books.  End of story.  (However, in contrast to the library in Bridgewater, the Osan library is open 7 days a week, and I am incredibly grateful for that!  I am a regular patron and make frequent use of their children's section for my son and homeschooling.)

That said, I do think there is a small, untapped genealogy-community here.  I visited the Community Center today and am going to try to facilitate a genealogy group to meet once a week or twice a month for discussion and workshops.  Perhaps as people meet one another, they would be able to share resources.

For example, I have a personal library with more than half the Mayflower silver and pink books, as well as other books (such as the Philip Delano, Robert Cushman and Richard Church books).  I also have a small number of other genealogy books and CDs purchased through NEHGS, Heritage Books, and directly from the authors.

I depend heavily on my personal library and NEHGS for long-distance research, and hope I can help other genealogists here, since our library lacks these resources.


  1. First, thank you for participating in the challenge.

    Second, when I get around to doing the challenge myself, you'll see that my small branch library only has about half of a shelf's worth of genealogy books.

    Third, I live near the Clayton Genealogy Library in Houston, TX. It's a big national genealogy library. Should you ever need anything from there, let me know.

  2. Thank you Amy, you're so kind! I should have mentioned that I do have access to the NEHGS lending library and a Family History Library (yes, in S. Korea!) here... I just need to learn how to use the public transportation system, so I can get to the city. Then hope the volunteers at the FHL speak English (because my Hangul is limited to the traditional greeting of "May peace be with you", "yes", and "thank you"). :)

  3. Wendy, don't forget you have Google Books online, and with New England roots, you will probably find some useful books there. Good hunting!

  4. True! I make extensive use of Google books. :-D