Sometimes all it takes is a “new” name to open the door to an entire set of memories. My grandmother-in-law remembered a fair amount about her family originally. After a little research, I located the maiden name of her grandmother, which she had not originally remembered.

As soon as I mentioned that last name, more memories came to her mind. Sometimes all it takes it a word or a name to unlock an entire set of memories.

Always go back and re-interview that person when you have located new information.



One response

  1. I had a similar experience with my father when asked about aunts and uncles on his mother’s side of his family. He was unable to remember them, but his youngest sister sent me the names. As soon as I mentioned their names to my father, he recalled them immediately and began relating information to me about them. He then drew out a rough map of the town where he was born, showing where family homes were located, and particularly a covered bridge which crossed the nearby river. It also gave him the “bug” to begin research himself.

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