Wednesday, January 27, 2010


Welcome to Swiss Kin! Here you will find anything related to basic genealogy and Swiss genealogy. My weekly posts will range from genealogical techniques for Switzerland to photographs to Swiss food recipes. I’m excited to get started.

First, let me introduce myself. I’m Meg, named after my Swiss great-grandmother whom I’ve never met in this life. I’ve felt a strong connection to her throughout my life and when I started getting interested in doing genealogical research, it was to her family I gravitated. I’ve gained experience and a love for her and for Switzerland as I’ve researched.

I’ve always loved a good mystery or an exciting treasure hunt. I naturally enjoyed anything having to do with history, archaeology, searching, questioning, or finding!

Think of my joy as a 7 year old as I dug up an old nail out of the hard Idaho dirt with only a stick as an archaeological tool. Or imagine how much I loved driving past two old, abandoned pioneer log homes every day riding to elementary school on the bus. Every day I strained my eyes trying to look as deep into the windows as I could during those few 3-5 seconds allowed to me by the speeding bus. And when my family moved to Kansas, I reveled in the creaky old floor boards of our town's historical Carnegie-donated library. And when we traveled to Georgia one year, all I wanted to do was find an old plantation to walk around. It just so happened that the one we found was not one of the regular museum type ones. It was not yet fully restored and it had an active archaeological dig happening at the time and we got to hear about and see some of their findings. The drizzly, misty day was the perfect setting for feasting my eyes on the ancient family cemetery full of moss covered headstones. Oh, how I loved it. If you love genealogy, you’re not thinking I’m nuts.

I went to Brigham Young University for college. This is the only school offering a Bachelor’s degree in Family History-Genealogy. At the time, I had declared Family History-Genealogy as my major, but was also interested in Archaeology. One semester I took a beginning class in Archaeology and one in Genealogy. Either I was meant to study Genealogy or my very old, white-haired, boring, monotone-voiced, tough-grading Archaeology professor is to blame for changing the course of my life! The next semester, I took the Family and Law in American History class and as I rolled the microfilm in the dark of the library trying to read the beautiful script of the census taker and searching for members of my family I had never known, I found my “calling.”

I will not say I enjoyed every minute of school. I mean, school is tough! But I did really, really like it. I chose to focus my degree in Germanic research. For my internship, I focused on looking for four Swiss generations. I spent the first of the summer looking for what I could at the Family History Library and then went to Switzerland for two weeks to search in the old, un-microfilmed church records of Frutigen, Switzerland. I graduated in 2003.

While in school and for one year afterward, I worked for the Center for Family History and Genealogy at BYU as a teachers’ assistant, computer lab assistant, and office assistant. I taught family history lessons to the Beginning Family History students, kept those lessons updated, edited one of the Center’s genealogical publications, went to genealogical conferences representing the Center, and helped organize BYU genealogical conferences. It was a great job. After school, I also did private genealogical research for clients until my first child was born.

I’ve since been taking care of and loving my three children and dabbling in genealogy here and there. Now I feel like it’s time to get back into genealogy on a more dedicated level, so here I am! Thank you for reading and ENJOY!!!