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Obstacles to Researching Old Places and Times

Obstacles to researching old places and times can be very challenging. My fellow writers and researchers trying to piece together activities that happened over 100 years again is a pain. I’m just happy I’m not trying to research something older. There are very few papers, pictures or even people around old enough to help out on the subject. That is why we have to rely on newspaper accounts for our current research. Sadly, the person(s) assigned to scan in those old newspapers onto the microfilm did not do a very good job. Since I have to view each page for tidbits of information it would have been nice to be able to read each of the pages. There is no telling how much great references to the people and the places I am trying to find and are missing.

There are very few alternatives in this area as the next county over’s paper burned down twice over the years and the second newspaper runs out after 1909. We may end up having to make a couple of trips to the University of Florida’s library to fill in the holes if their copies of the newspaper are in better shape. We emailed the program coordinator of the Florida Digital Newspapers at the college to check her copies before we make the trip down. It would be an all day thing so I am making a list of all the whited out and too faded editions that I need to copy and hope to find more information.

I think it would be sweet to be able to go back in time as an observer with our modern cameras disguised as an old-fashioned one so that we can get more pictures that have been lost over the years and to see for ourselves the people and places we are writing about. Of course, talking to people during that time would be great too. But then you have to be extremely careful to not change anything or make any kind of impression on the people during any of the times we visit.

We have completed 1904 and have updated the Hotel Guestbook and the employee list. Now we are moving on to 1905. That promises to be a very interesting year with lots of different changes for the county. We won’t list what we found in 1904 here but save that for the book.

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