It wasn't until I had one remaining grandparent alive that I realized the urgency of preserving oral history from relatives. I was lucky enough to record a handful of memories from my grandmother before she passed. It also spurred me on to talk to my mother, aunt and uncles about their stories about our family history.
For years, I remember hearing stories about my ancestors - their struggles to start a new life in a new country, what they called "Gold Mountain" (in our case, Canada) in hopes of giving their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren a better life than they had. (I have also written a piece about this topic in this The Source article.)
The first project I completed was a video about my great grandfather's laundromat in Saskatoon. Not long after completing the project, I shared it with my friends and family. One of my cousins remarked that he never knew about his great-great grandfather. He was happy to learn more about his roots. Sadly, our grandpa died when he was very young. He says he only knows grandpa through the stories we have told him.
A couple of years ago, I joined a local group called Saskatchewan Film Pool. There was a project that called for local film makers to choose a subject that tied to an aspect of the province's history. While researching for the project at the Saskatchewan Archives, I found an actual photograph of the laundromat when it was still open in the 1960s or 1970s before it closed down.
I'm pleased with how this mini-documentary turned out. I hope you enjoy it.
Who can you talk to learn more about your family history?
I'd love to help you preserve your family history.
Connect with me here.