Sunday, April 7, 2019

They Shall Not Grow Old

This is a post I had meant to make back in November or December, but the research involved overtook me. November was the 100th anniversary. You may have heard about Peter Jackson's new film They Shall Not Grow Old. It's a wonderful film, long overdue, paying tribute to the soldiers of World War I. The best part of  it is the fascinating technology involved in what Jackson did. He took old footage, colorized and cleaned it up and then sync'ed voices and dialogue with the film. The results are simply amazing. HERE is a sample. If you are interested in HOW he accomplished this, there is another bit on YouTube HERE. It's still out there in theaters and I urge you to try to see it.

What also interested me was the genealogical possibilities. Apparently that occurred to other folks as well.  Lisa Louise Cooke recently discussed the documentary portion at the end on the Genealogy Gems podcast.  After I saw the film I wondered just how many men in my tree HAD served in WWI. Now I have covered the service of my grandmother's brother, "Harry" Tapply,  in a previous post. But it took me almost three months to compile a complete list. Some are American, some are from the British side of my tree. Many times, if the name was too common, I couldn't verify the service; there may be some omissions. Some of the older British soldiers served in the domestic "service corps" and some of the Americans in the Coast Guard. However, this is the list I came up with.
Right around 70 men in my tree served. Some gave their lives. I decided NOT to distinguish that here. Service is service. When I think about the men in Jackson's film telling their stories (he used old recordings from the British War Archives) I wonder what my relatives would tell us. I'll bet the stories would be fascinating.

Grandma Katie's Quilt

Katie Cooke Fitzgerald   We've heard the story of Katie's birth in Ireland, her immigrant family, and some tales of their life in Bo...