When Richard Allen’s grandfather was choosing a homestead in Idaho’s Pocatello Valley in the early 1900s, he picked land on the side of a hill.
“He noticed the sagebrush was much taller there,” Allen said. “He figured that if the sagebrush grew well, the wheat would grow well.”
The land was harder to clear because of the slope, but “he had better crops,” Allen said. “That’s an illustration that you may have to put a lot more effort in initially, but in the end, you’ll reap greater reward.”
It’s one of many lessons Allen learned from his grandfather and other ancestors he has come to know through genealogy research.
Allen, director of the Richland Family History Center, will be on hand Sept. 12 with other genealogy enthusiasts for the Tri-City Genealogical Society’s fall seminar.
The event, from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., will include four sessions by award-winning genealogist William Dollarhide. They’re on genealogy basics, main American migratory routes from 1750 to 1800, Civil War genealogy and finding living relatives online.
Dollarhide’s books will be for sale, and historical photos and artifacts will be on display. Registration is $35 and is available at the door.
John Covey, society president, said the event is appropriate for beginners and experts alike.
The local group dates to 1961, with the mission of providing education and tips on genealogical research.
Covey said learning about his ancestors has been fascinating. Doing the research “gets you some interesting results. And it gets you to know history because you have to know about history to understand” what your ancestors experienced, he said.
For Allen, genealogy also leads to greater self-understanding.
“It gives us a sense of identity for our own lives” to know where and who we come from, he said. And, “you learn things from your ancestors’ stories that can help you in your own life.”
Like he did from his grandfather’s story of choosing the sloping land and working hard to see it prosper.
The fall seminar is at Reata Springs Baptist Church, 2881 Leslie Road, Richland. For more information, go to www.tricitygenealogicalsociety.org.
IF YOU GO
What: Tri-City Genealogical Society fall seminar.
When: 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Sept. 12.
Where: Reata Springs Baptist Church, 2881 Leslie Road, Richland.
Cost: $35. Registration is available at the door.