While typing the title of this blog, I typed “My First Blob” by mistake. Or maybe that’s what it will be. I don’t know but I hope not because this website is the culmination of over forty years of research, travel, digging, ruining my eyes by staring at a computer for thousands of hours, but more important, a lot of fun for me. Just because I am obsessed with and committed to my life’s work, which just happens to be finding dead people, it doesn’t mean that anyone else will be interested in it. Yet, I happen to think my tag line – Helping People Find Their People – is brilliant. For that is what drives this passion. I have found my people, and continue to do so. It just gives me a thrill like nothing else to discover another ancestor, and be able to get to know him or her and have the honor of telling their story and helping them to never be forgotten, and being a part of their life. I love doing that for other people too. There is something really wonderful about finding out who came before you and understanding your own history in relation to the history of all other human beings in the continuum of human existence. OK, so maybe that’s a little lofty, but that’s how I relate to it. When you find out that your great great grandfather immigrated to America, only to lose an arm on a hill in Virginia during the Civil War, it brings history home to you. Especially when you find a photograph of him, with his wife but without his arm, posted on a website by a distant cousin and you are able to visit his grave and put flowers on it. Somehow, history comes to life then because it’s your family who fought and paid a price for your place in this country. Sometimes, you even find some ugly sad stuff about an ancestor, but strangely it just makes you love them more because you know they had tough times, like we all do, and lived lives of “quiet desperation” as Thoreau writes. The common human thread through us is that we all have hopes, dreams, joys, tragedies and disappointments, no matter which century you inhabit or battle you fight. We’re all searching and trying to exist the best way we know how. Some of us do it better than others. Either way, EVERYONE has a story and their life matters. That is my firm belief.

After losing so many people over the last few years, I realized that I wanted to share my forty years of research and work with whomever is looking for it, now or in the future. Life is short and nobody is guaranteed more years. But once the information is on the Internet, I figure it won’t really be lost. So that is one of my motivations for launching a website…to share it. I have spent years of scanning photos, asking questions, digging in libraries and archives, writing and just generally asking questions about those who came before me. But what is the point of all that documentation and work if it sits in a binder on my shelf, I ask you? So here I am with my own website sharing my people with people. I love genealogy! I welcome all manner of “copy and paste” of the information and especially the images I have worked so hard to find over the years. I am a visual learner and need to see a face to know a person, so images are important to me. Thank you for logging in and I hope you enjoy my genealogy! This is for you Mom and Dad, Connie and Ford, Nannie and Papa.

 Gina Sammis

April 2016