|This is the type of research I like: figuring out who made this wrench, when, and what for. It's a tractor wrench and was most likely made by Case.|
Still, someone had to be doing it. A significant chunk of our budget comes from the fees people pay us to do the stuff they can't track down online, like finding copies of ancient obituaries in the L'Anse Sentinel (the paper is not digitized). Our deceased past president, the guy who died in 2013, loved doing genealogical research. It fascinated him; he was quite happy to put in many hours trying to track down lost branches of people's family trees. I'm really hoping our new member who says she's interested in genealogy turns out to be as much of a fanatic as Jim. I get bored after about the first 15 minutes, and for sure I have no desire to make trips up to the Michigan Tech archives, other historical societies, or a Mormon history center. There are local history topics I'd like to do some in-depth research on, but they're slightly more macro than one family tree.
Anyway, the fact our newest member seems enthusiastic about both local history and genealogy has me hoping we'll be able to slide a few of the research requests we get to her. If she actually likes doing it, she's bound to be both better and faster at it than I am.
*At the time, fruit came on railcars in huge crates; it got bagged locally. The Old Man, a teenager at the time, was bagging oranges for Cohodas. Whenever he spotted a rotten orange, he'd toss it to one side. Cohodas, who went on to make so much money he's got a building named for him at Northern Michigan University, stopped him. "No, no, no. You don't throw the bad ones away! You put one rotten orange in with eleven good ones in the bag. No one will complain about just one bad orange when the others are all good." Cohodas gets remembered now as a great philanthropist because he donated a lot of money to NMU, but every time I see the name I think about him being willing to screw people over the price of an orange during the Great Depression. Yet another example, I guess, of the old saying that behind every great fortune there is a great crime. . . or a whole lot of little ones.