Giveaway sponsored by Ancestry.com
This handsome man is my grandfather, Alphonsus Dominic Pittman (the cute kids are my aunt and dad). People called him “Al” or A.D.. I knew him as Poppy. He died when I was eight years old, but I’m still getting to know him, thanks to a time travelling machine called Ancestry.com.
That’s a screen shot of a link I emailed myself with a digital image of the 1925 New York state census. The other day I was checking out some new alerts in my Ancestry account, and it came up. This is the page I printed at home, with Poppy listed as a 17-year-old student at a school I never knew the name of. I only knew that he was orphaned young, and was sent away to school in “Boston” by the village priest.
I read down the list of students, and wondered which had befriended my grandfather, so far from home. I googled the named of the school, and found a satellite map of the site, realizing we had probably driven by there on our road trip from Arkansas to Newfoundland a few years ago. I wondered why he, alone among his siblings, chose to return to their island home as an adult, and what my life might look like had he chosen differently.
You see why I call it a time travelling machine.
I first learned about Ancestry.com when I was a guest at their headquarters five years ago. I’ve been travelling through time with my (and Patrick’s) ancestors ever since. It’s been an amazing ride.
Starting in January 2014, I’m going to share some of it with you in a monthly series that I hope will inspire you to spend more time exploring and sharing your own family history. Ancestry.com has kindly offered to sponsor this series, and is offering some incredible gifts to go along with it.
Starting with a free 1-year World Explorer membership, valued at $299, that you can keep for yourself, or pass along as an extraordinary Christmas gift for someone else.
Here’s what you’ll be able to do with your World Explorer membership:
- Search the entire Ancestry.com collection of records from all over the world (all historical records from the U.S., plus records from 15 other countries).
- Build, grow and share your family tree online, then attach photos and documents.
- Connect with the world’s largest online family history community and find distant relatives.
- Record video and audio stories of your family history so friends and family can join in.
- Manage and share access to your family history so friends and family can join in.
A free Ancestry account lets you create family trees and connect with other members, so don’t hesitate to get started. But the upgrade lets you dig deeper and reach further with direct access to a mind-blowing collection of digitized records, as well as some other cool benefits. It would be a great gift for siblings to pool together and give their parents or grandparents, one that gives back to future generations. The gift of time travel keeps giving and giving. An Ancestry family tree is easy to share, export, or turn into a book.
So, let’s get started. While the other giveaways from this week will close at 11:59 CST tonight, I’m going to extend this one over the weekend, to 11:59 pm CST Sunday. Simply leave a comment here to win, and YES, INTERNATIONAL READERS, this time that means you too!
This concludes the epic holiday giveaway week at Planting Dandelions. I’m so appreciative of the terrific sponsors who support this space and understand how much I value my readers. Thank YOU for participating and showing them that we’ve got a good thing going here. Your shares and entries make a big difference to the time I can plough back into this garden. Here’s a list of all four giveaways, in case you’ve missed one.
Best of luck and warmest holiday wishes to all! xo