SaddleBrooke resident Mary Felber Owen is 92 years old. She has outlived many family members, including some of her siblings. Over her long and exciting life, she has collected many family treasures. She is as quick as a whip and can remember people and dates. Being aware of her age, she looked at her family’s pictures, letters, and stories and began thinking about what legacy she could leave for her family. That’s when she read my name, Bridgette LeFevre, and that I would be speaking at the SaddleBrooke Genealogy Club.
I am a genealogist with 14 years of experience and have written multiple family biography books. Mary knew then what she needed to do. Sharing bits and pieces of her lineage has proven difficult, as she is the “gatekeeper” of much of her family history. Therein lies the problem—boxes of memories, pictures that only she can identify, and stories galore—but what to do with them now at this stage of her life? Mary needed “a way of keeping it so that [family] could learn from it. To know from whom they came, from where, and what their family was like—how do you transfer boxes full of memories into a form that means something to people later on. I want it to be kept, valued, and seen by my posterity.”
And so we collaborated, and Portraits of the Past: Felber’s & Doherty’s was created. Mary and her family members each now have their own hardbound copy of family pictures, stories, documents, and events in one place. Sharing the book with family members has been nothing short of gratifying. Grandnieces who had never seen youthful pictures of their grandmother, or children who read stories about their parents’ childhood and learned about their great-grandparents’ personalities now have that privilege. A family legacy can now live on and be shared with all generations of family members.
If you are interested in collaborating and finding a place for all of the family history you have collected over the years, call Bridgette LeFevre at 520-343-3719 or check out www.rootsdetectives.com.