Saturday, November 15, 2014

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun -- What Did You Collect as a Youth?

Hey genea-folks, 
it's Saturday Night again, 

 time for more Genealogy Fun!


Your mission this week, should you decide to accept it (cue the Mission Impossible music!), is to:

1)   Most of us collect dead ancestors and relatives now - what did you collect when you were a child or teenager?

2)  Tell us about your collections in a blog post of your own, in a comment to this blog post, or in a Facebook or Google+ post.

Here's mine:

I had several collections between the ages of 6 and 18, including:

*  Baseball cards:  In the early 1950s, I rode my bike all over North Park and East San Diego trying to find stores with baseball cards (5 to a pack, with a slab of pink gum, for 10 cents (?)).  Then I would trade duplicates with my brother, my friends, etc.  In 1954, I had a complete collection of all the cards published by Topps.  Eventually, I invented a dice game to play my own fantasy baseball games - my team usually won somehow.

*  Bottle caps:  I had a collection, usually gleaned from my family, neighbors, and friends who saved them for me.  I also went to grocery stores and asked for them.

*  Maps:  My father's cousin Dorothy subscribed to National Geographic, and I asked for maps from the magazine when they were finished with them.  I also obtained city maps from gas stations and studied them.  This led to making my own maps with rivers, streams, hills, railroads, bridges, highways, stop lights, etc.  In color.

*  Stamps:  My grandfather, Lyle Carringer, gave my brother and I a treasure trove of cancelled stamps when we were 8 or 10 years old.  We got stamp albums and pasted them in, both U.S. and foreign.  Then we started getting uncancelled stamps from my weekly grandfather's trips to the post office, and eventually plate blocks.  He had a worldwide correspondence of stamp collectors.  This became my sick-day or rainy-day activity.  We ended up buying uncancelled stamps for our collection at a downtown stamp shop.

*  Coins:  My brother and I collected coins also - each denomination (up to quarters), each year, each mint, etc.  We had coin books for each denomination/year/mint.  My folks and grandparents saved coins for us to catalog.

*  Bus schedules:  We lived right on the #2 bus line in San Diego, and I collected the schedules for as many lines as possible.  I loved the maps.  From my front window, I noted when a scheduled bus was late, noting the bus number to try to figure out the schedule.  Another sick/rainy day activity.

Collecting things was a big deal for me - it stimulated my curiosity and creativity, gave me goals to achieve, and I learned about geography, money, baseball, maps, etc.  

In my late teens and early 20s, I collected radio station music surveys (Top 40 lists) from all over the country.  From age 20 to 45, I listened for distant U.S. and foreign radio stations, kept a log, made tape recordings, and learned about radio wave propagation.  This was usually an evening and early morning (like 1 a.m. to 4 a.m. activity).  I also collected QSL cards and verification letters from the stations.  Then I started on genealogy and have collected thousands of dead ancestors and relatives.  

The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) 2014, Randall J. Seaver


Carrie Smith said...

Here's Mine!!!

Carrie Smith said...

Here's Mine!!!

True Lewis said...

Thanks Randy! Glad to know your a Collector to! I love the radio record keeping.

Heather Wilkinson Rojo said...

As a little kid I collected books, dolls and stamps. By age 12 or 13 I was already collecting ancestors, so there is not much to blog about here.

Chriss said...

Everything. Coins, stamps, business cards, baseball cards, buttons, pins, and postcards. The postcards were started as my grandmother send them to me whilst she travelled abroad. Most of the childhood collections are gone, though I still have some of those postcards.

Geolover said...

I wonder what happened to all those pointless collections of bottlecaps, purpose-printed (pre-Pokiemon) "trading cards" and matchbook covers?

If landfilled, what would a future archaeologist think of them?

Michael F Harris said...

Here's mine with pix:

Cassmob (Pauleen) said...

I collected shells, books and some stamps.

Bernita said...

I absolutely loved this post. I found your radio record keeping fascinating. I use to do something similar but on a smaller scale. Great fun post. My biggest collections were books, rocks, sea shells, cartoons and funny news clippings (well funny to me).