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So far Paul Duryea has created 3 blog entries.

Coins in the Closet?

Is there perhaps a rusty tin or old shoebox in the closet with grandpa’s coin collection sitting somewhere in your house? Could there be a rare three-legged buffalo nickel worth a hundred or thousands resting amidst the old wheat pennies and bicentennial quarters. Most likely, that winning lottery ticket isn’t waiting inside but who doesn’t love a treasure hunt and a chance to dream. These long days of quarantine provide the perfect opportunity to dig out that old tin or box and see what is awaiting inside. Is there gold in Ft. Knox? There wasn't in this particular case. Coins provide a glimpse into history and for those looking for educational opportunities during these times, I offer up the ideas of spending some time learning about the minting process or the distinguished people depicted on the face of those various coins.  One can also seek out the meaning behind commonly seen and used symbols.  A 1980 dollar coin provides a launch point to the women’s suffrage movement and Susan B. Anthony. A 1943 Steel Penny opens the door to a discussion on the country’s mobilization for the war effort, ration books and the widespread impact the war had on the home front. Holding a Sacagawea dollar coin affords the opportunity to discuss Native American history and the numerous contributions made.  Depictions of the glorious bald eagle may spawn an assignment to research whether Ben Franklin (that guy who used to be on the $.50 piece) really lobbied for the turkey to be our national symbol or not. Example of 1944 Steel Penny via Wikipedia Or maybe you are lucky enough to find a particular favorite of mine, the “hobo nickel”, and [...]

By |June 23rd, 2020|Categories: blog, Featured Post|Comments Off on Coins in the Closet?

What Bit Of History Might You Be Able To Tell?

As we are all now are living through the historic COVID19 pandemic, it is prudent to remember that our ancestors similarly experienced history as it happened. And some of them took and saved pictures of those moments. While the number of photos taken annually worldwide has gone from less than a billion to more than a trillion in the last 100 years, that still leaves a lot of photos that can be unearthed, and which have the potential to tell an important story. Perhaps you might be holding one of the few limited photos of a person, place or event and that could be a key part of someone’s family or topical research down the road. If you find yourself digging through old family photos to help pass the time these long weeks of quarantine, take a close look at some of those photos normally easily dismissed because they don’t have recognizable people or places. Old photos are great vehicles to teach or learn about events of the past. And of you come across something interesting, please consider sharing and preserving those photos with the world in some way. View of the damaged S-51 sail. S-51 is visible = photo courtesy of author In the collection of photos from my New York ancestors, I recently came across several images of what appeared to be a damaged submarine or ship of some type. As these were not labeled or dated in any way, a little bit of detective work had to be undertaken. Once scanned and enlarged, one of the photos revealed a faint S-51 on the ship’s sail. From that point, a quick Internet search soon revealed the story and tragic fate of the [...]

By |April 19th, 2020|Categories: blog, Featured Post, KCPL|Comments Off on What Bit Of History Might You Be Able To Tell?

A Time To Reminisce

Reminiscing over family photos is a great way to pass the time over the days and weeks of our current quarantine dominated lives. It’s also a great way to make sure those stories get passed along while those involved are still around to bring that still image to life. It’s a great way to connect generations together and provides the chance to recreate those images from the same location once we get back to normal. Our ancestors did many of the same things we do or can do today. They went to the local zoological park to take in the wonders of the animal world. And although they gazed at exhibits that would not survive to modern times, it provided a much needed break from the daily grind and a chance to see a child’s face light up when seeing a monkey, tiger or elephant for the first time. early 1940s view of Monkey habitat and exhibit at Cincinnati Zoo Their curiosity led them to the observation deck of the Carew Tower where they could gaze out upon the river cities of Cincinnati, Newport and Covington. There they spent a nickel or dime on one of the mounted binoculars to take a closer look at historic buildings like Music hall or Union Terminal. Or perhaps they zeroed in on the traffic on or above the river and marveled at the ingenuity of building the many bridges spanning it. Looking towards Newport from atop Carew Tower in early 1940s Church dominates photo but note the billboard ads for Coney Island and Citizen Kane in the foreground They spent their days shopping in the bustling downtown business districts and making plans [...]

By |April 14th, 2020|Categories: blog, Featured Post|Comments Off on A Time To Reminisce