Sunday, April 24, 2016

Sunday Search: Genealogy Shows Return!

While many television shows are wrapping up for the season, there is another batch of programming that is just starting their new seasons. While Who Do You Think You Are? started it’s short season a few weeks ago and is already approaching the finale, Genealogy Roadshow has yet to begin with PBS scheduling the premier for May 17th at 8:00pm. Here is the preview for the new season:

Thankfully for many of us, having the genealogy shows starting now allows us to indulge in our passion for family history without having to miss some of our favorite dramas and sitcoms. While I am a fan of both, it is nice to take a break from the fictional world to watch people discover new aspects about their ancestors. And, in reality, some of the connections that people make to historical events and people would not be accepted as plausible in the eyes of many television producers. History will trump fiction just about every time. I have seen it and I have experienced it firsthand… it is hard to believe the stories that the facts provide sometimes.

What is also interesting to watch during this time of year are shows like “TURN: Washington’s Spies” on AMC which bridges the gap between history and fiction not only in the story itself which has elements of both but in the production as well. While you may watch scenes taking place in colonial Philadelphia in reality, many of those scenes were filmed in Colonial Williamsburg. It is actually quite interesting to watch an episode and see some of the buildings that I had walked by and through just last summer.

In fact, Colonial Williamsburg has started a sweepstakes this year for fans of both the show and the historic site. All you have to do is tweet at @colonialwmbsurg using #IspyCW every time you catch a glimpse of the colonial capital during each episode of TURN: Washington's Spies, for a chance to win. The winner will receive the following: roundtrip airfare for two, a $500 gift card, two nights' hotel stay at the Williamsburg Lodge, and two Colonial Williamsburg admission tickets.

This is one of my favorite photos from our trip to Colonial Williamsburg last summer... 
While these three aforementioned shows are quite different from one another I hope that the results are the same. I believe that history is an essential part of our knowledge and understanding the world around us and knowing your own family history can have the same impact on understanding ourselves. And the best part about it, at least for me, is that this is a never ending process. I know I will never be able to learn about every aspect of my family history let alone history in general but that doesn’t stop me from learning, researching, and sharing what I know with family, friends, colleagues, and anyone who reads this blog. After all, we must preserve history and perpetuate the ancestral knowledge that we have worked so hard to obtain in the hope that every succeeding generation knows just a little bit more.