Carolyn Schott wrote the book Visiting Your Ancestral Town as part of the Yes You! Yes Now! series. These series are “created especially for the action-oriented person who wants to try something new and wants to find out about it now.” Visiting Your Ancestral Town is a wonderfully written book designed to help someone as they make plans to travel either locally or abroad.
Carolyn Schott is “a travel expert who started her adventures just like you; not knowing where to start or what to do.”. As you read this informative book, you can learn from her mistakes and experiences about travel dos and don’ts. While the book is not a thick one, only about 88 pages, you will find yourself taking your time reading and pondering her adventures. I know when I read her book, it made me long to travel to the lands of my ancestors – Ireland, Scotland, England and Italy.
As Carolyn talks about the people and places she meets, it makes me wonder with excitement what adventures lie ahead for me when I finally get to travel. I know by reading her book, I will know some of the things to plan for. For example, she learned early on the importance of having a good map for the time period you need. You should make sure the locale is the one you need by verifying the name of the town for that time period. It would be sad to travel over seas to a place only to discover your family never lived there. Preparing beforehand is a very important part of pre-planning and can also save you money and heartaches.
Some of the things she discusses are:
- Chapter 1 – Why Do This?
- Chapter 2 – What It Will Be Like
- Chapter 3 – First Steps
- Chapter 4 – What You Need
- Chapter 5 – When Things go Right
- Chapter 6 – When Things Go Wrong
- Chapter 7 – What’s Next?
- Chapter 8 – Tools
After reading her book, I now feel more confident that I have the tools I need to plan for a visit to my own personal ancestral town. The tips she gives can help the beginner traveler as well as advise those that have traveled in the past from making repeated mistakes. If you are taking this trip for family research, using this guide for planning can give your more time to plan on your genealogical endeavors.
As Carolyn ends her books she writes, “Connecting with your family’s history and visiting the places where they once lived can help you get a deeper sense of who you are and where you came from. Your journey may not always lead exactly where you plan. You may encounter unexpected people or events along the way. Embracing those serendipitous experiences becomes a part of your journey, a part of the history you are creating as you search.”