New Genealogy Series – Follow Your Past

I have just started watching a new TV series on the Travel Channel called ” Follow Your Past”. It is a great example of “putting meat onto the bones” of your ancestors.

In each episode, the host meets the guests and then identifies at least two ancestors from their family history.  The next step goes beyond telling the story, but they have to live it. Guests have been asked to sleep overnight in a cave to experience where their ancestor lived after they first arrived. Another quest had to skydive to experience some of the fears their grandfather had when he was a paratrooper during the D-Day invasion. What better way to know your ancestor then to try to experience what they did.

It may be hard for some of us to physically actually have the same experiences. Try to read detailed accounts that cover critical events similar experiences and then ask yourself questions that they may have had and describe what they may have seen. This will help make their lives come alive.

Watch a few episodes and then try to envision what your ancestors felt at critical events in their history.

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4 Responses to New Genealogy Series – Follow Your Past

  1. J. Mark Lowe says:

    Steve, I think you clearly see the benefit of experientially understanding your ancestors lives. When we don’t understand how they lived, we miss the how of the ways we are alike or different.

    • sszabados says:

      Thanks. My view of my grandparents changed drastically after I tried to understand how they felt at critical points of their lives. I could never know for sure how they felt but asking the questions let me see how these events built their characters. I think I truly understand my grandmother after I tried walking in her shoes.

  2. Donna Thomas says:

    How does one Go about being on the show

    • sszabados says:

      I wish I knew. It looks like all of this year’s episodes have been aired and I cannot find any information about the show. However, I love the format and I hope more episodes are in the works.

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