Genealogists often focus on locating the vital records of their ancestors. Much effort is spent on trying to sort out where to put each ancestor on the family tree. These are both worthwhile activities. However, it leaves out a big piece of what your ancestor’s life may have been like. Histography can help you fill in that part of the story.
Histography is an interactive timeline that spans across 14 billion years of history, from the Big Bang to 2015. It was created as a final project in Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design. In other words, Histography was not specifically designed as a tool or resource for genealogists. It just so happens that the information in Histography is something that genealogists can make use of.
We are all shaped by the important, historical, life-changing events that happen during our lifetime. Your ancestors who lived through the Great Depression probably held world views, and had habits, that were strongly influenced by their experience during that difficult time.
If you can figure out when an ancestor was born, you can use Histology to get a glimpse of the significant events that occurred in the world while your ancestor was alive. Is it likely that your ancestor grew up with easy access to a telephone? If so, then perhaps that is the reason why you haven’t found many of his or her letters.
Histography includes historical events, technological discoveries, scientific revelations, and more. You can choose to view a variety of events that happened in a particular period or to target a specific event in time. Users can also hone Histology so that it shows them things from a specific category (such as war or inventions).
The Histography website draws its its information about historical events from Wikipedia and self-updates daily with new recorded events. Wikipedia, as you may already know, is the biggest “internet encyclopedia” in existence. Typically, Wikipedia is a quick source to go to if you need to get a general overview about something.
Wikipedia is created thanks to the efforts of volunteers. Some write new pages in the hopes it will be accepted as part of Wikipedia. Others edit existing pages by removing information that is not credible or relevant. It is not unheard of for people to intentionally alter a Wikipedia page so that it includes incorrect or biased information.
The information presented in Histography’s unique interactive timeline is probably correct. Just keep in mind, if you someday come across something that seems “off”, it could be due to someone messing with Wikipedia. Overall, Histography can give genealogists an interesting glimpse of the most significant world events that their ancestors lived through.
Image by PhotoAtelier on Flickr.
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