Passing on history to the next generation

I was looking for a marker in McGavock Cemetery this morning when a family came up to me to ask a question.

This was their first time at McGavock. They proudly introduced me to grand-dad, “who was 90 years old today,” Dad, Mom, and their teenage grandson who is planning on becoming a history teacher.

The mother was directly descended from Abraham Lincoln they proudly explained to me.

Thomas Jefferson Williams (d. 1935) fought for the 120th IndianaBut what was most interesting was seeing three generations standing before me. What a treasure it must have been for that young teenage boy to walk through McGavock for the very first time with his grandfather, who was born in 1917!! Thousands of Civil War veterans were still alive when his grandfather was a teenager.

Think about that. This old man, who looked like he was in his 70s, is a living connection between Civil War veterans and a generation of young people who will probably be alive to witness the 200th anniversary of the start of the American Civil War in 2061.

If you know someone alive that is eighty years or older how about talking to them about sitting on grandpa’s lap as a young boy or girl. There’s a good chance” grandpa fought in the Civil War.”

One thought on “Passing on history to the next generation

  1. Preserving our history is so vital. You make a great point with this topic…that our history is vanishing right before our eyes. Now is the time to record the events and history by the people who saw it occur…or who knew someone who lived it. Get those stories from Grandpa and Grandma…with video equipment being so inexpensive…there’s just no excuse.

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