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The Life From The Roots blog topics have changed several times since I began this blog. In 2009, with my first posts, I wrote only about the family history I had been working on for 20 years. Many ancestors lived in New England so it was easy to visit gravesites and towns where they lived. I shared many photo. Years later, I was into visiting gardens, historical homes, churches, libraries that had genealogical collections, historical societies, war memorials, in general, anything to do with history. I enjoy posting autographs and photos of famous people I met or saw.

My New England roots are in Connecticut and Massachusetts, Vermont, and New Hampshire). Other areas include New York, New Jersey, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, and the Eastern Townships of Quebec, Canada.

Please check out the labels on the right side for topics. Below the labels and pageviews is a listing of my top nine posts, according to Google. Four of them pertain to Lowell, MA, three are memorials, one about a surname and one about a discovery I made. These posts change often because they are based on what people are reading.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Visiting the Boston Athenaeum where my 2nd great-grandfather worked

These beautiful red, leather doors greeted me as I was about to enter the Library where my great, great-grandfather worked.  For many years, I've known that he was one of the first librarians of the Boston Athenaeum, but whenever I went to the city, it was always to go to the New England Historic Genealogical Society's Library (NEHGS), and not the Athenaeum.  When the Boston Globe newspaper had an article about changes at the Boston Athenaeum, I thought I finally needed to go and visit it.  Then, a new book Culture Club: The Curious History of the Boston Athenaeum by Katherine Wolff was published and I knew I had to get the book.  Even better, the author was going to give a free lecture to discuss her book and I knew exactly when I was going for my visit, to see the Athenaeum and hear a lecture the same day!  I even managed to get to NEHGS in the afternoon.



Arrangements were made for me to have a tour of the 2nd floor to see where my ancestor, William Frederick Poole would have worked. My tour was given by the archivist who was wonderful, and guided me around and showed me several things, especially things that would have been there between 1856-1869. It was fun putting myself back in that time era. Unfortunately, photography wasn't allowed, but just imagine "a wide array of newspapers and artwork, too, with paintings by Gilbert Stuart and John Singer Sargent and sculptures by Augustus Saint-Gaudens and Houdon." Lots of sitting rooms, 500 newspapers and periodicals, lovely rugs, children's Library, and peace and quiet.
Wikipedia has a lot of information about the Library, pictures, and mention of my ancestor.  

My Poole lineage began in Massachusetts in 1632, but my father was born in Evanston, Illinois. And, Evanston was also the death location of William Frederick Poole. Not until I began doing genealogy did I learn of their early Massachusetts roots, and that was a wonderful surprise.