Thursday, January 24, 2008

A Piece of Paper Out of Nowhere

This is another in the Ancestry Insider's series called Serendipity in Genealogy.

Click to enlarge on Featurepics

"When it came time to make a trip to Delaware from our home in Alaska, it was a big adventure, and our main focus was to gather as much information as possible and bring it home to sort out." Steve and Nancy Lealos would spend almost two weeks researching Nancy's genealogy. They called and visited anyone and everyone with any information.

Steve says they would be at libraries, courthouses and other locations from the moment they opened until the moment they closed. He praised the staff of these institutions. "They helped every way they could."

Their hard work hit a dead end with Nancy's great-great grandfather and the time had come to go.

While I was taking some last photographs on a lawn, I happened to see out of the corner of my eye an older piece of yellow legal paper on the ground. As I picked up the paper, I was absolutely stunned to realize that I had in my hand a handwritten document that was at least 50 years old, written in ink without a smudge on it, that listed Nancy's great-great grandfather, his parents, his wife's family and continuing back even further with parents, husbands, wives and children, with dates, places, etc.

To add to the amazement, they could find no reason for the paper to be there. "No one knew about it, no one claimed it." On a lawn in Delaware a piece of paper had appeared out of nowhere.


Adapted from "Out of nowhere," Steve Lealos, LDS Church News, 19-January-2008, p. 16.

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