Friend or foe?



Today I am back at Duke University’s Bostock library to hopefully uncover information that will help fill in some leaves on the family tree and provide a general idea as to when my ancestors arrived.
After my unsuccessful last attempt at finding the microfiche which held the Binghamton City Directories, these helpful library folks tracked down the microform (totally different shape and size and material!) that held the 1857-1860 records I was looking for.
I got a quick goosebump chill as I headed down to where the microfilm readers are, anxious as to what I would find. I encountered this machine, the ST Viewscan and wondered if it would be my friend or foe today. I’ve never touched anything like this before and consider myself research challenged when it comes to more ancient technology ;-). I’m hoping to add the photo but the blog is not allowing it.
There was nothing too exciting in what I found other than potentially confirming a family member. However, I now know what they did for a living and know where they lived and potentially see how the Sullivan and Lynch families got together just from living on the same street. More to piece together now!

As long as I’m here…


…I may as well blog.

I am sitting in Perkins library at beautiful Duke University after canvassing the campus looking for this place. I paid my 5 bucks to park, asked a student for help finding the library and was happy to escape the 90 degree heat when another kind student swiped her card to let me in.

I knew where I was headed once I got in as I called earlier in he day to confirm they had what I was looking for, the city directories for Binghamton, NY years 1857-1860. I was on a mission, I found the rows of cabinets and the correct drawer with ease. I did not find the microfiche with the catalog number I was searching for. After several unsuccessful pulls of other nearby drawers (that doesn’t sound right?!), I was still out of luck. The reference person assisted but she too couldn’t locate it. Hopefully I will get an email from the person who manages the fiche. It just figures really that this one item that’s probably rarely accessed has gone AWOL.

What am I hoping to find in the fiche? Perhaps some answers as to when my original Sullivan ancestors arrived here, what they did for a living, were there other family members I don’t know about? One thing about ancestry research is that you have to constantly confirm what data you learn of through any resources you can find and this is a very tedious process. But seeing as this is the first time I’ve had to travel (15 minutes from home) to secure this knowledge, I’ve done pretty well so far!

I hope I get an email tomorrow about the fiche’s location, but for now I’ve at least enjoyed some quiet alone time which is priceless even if I did have to pay 5 bucks for it!