Saturday, November 9, 2013

Who Tries to Plan a Research Trip in Winter?

In the midst of the Holiday Season no less? Me, that's who.

I've got 5 vacation days that I need to use between now and the end of the year. So, I came up with the brilliant idea to finally do a trek to the Ancestral Homelands (Martin County, NC) or to the North Carolina State Archives, which, believe it or not, I've still not ventured to even after all these years of on and off research.

I can't decide which one to do or whether I should try to do both.

Traveling to Raleigh to the State Archives would only be about a 3 hour drive and if I wanted to do more than one day, I could probably overnight with relatives.

Traveling to Williamston, NC would be a 4 to 4 1/2 hour drive and if I decided to do more than one day, I will need to make lodging arrangements.

As far as the actual research part of the trip, if there is anything to be found, I could probably find it in the State Archives and would only have to venture to one location. On the other hand, venturing to the ancestral homelands would give me an opportunity to finally see the area where at least 4 generations of my ancestors lived, toiled, struggled, and preserved, and right now there's a big part of me that needs that connection. In addition, should I need to try to venture to an old forgotten cemetery, this is actually the perfect time of year to try to do that as the foliage and weeds are dying in preparation for the winter months.

One thing is for sure, should I decide to go ahead and do one and maybe two research trips in the next few weeks, I need to put a plan together for what I want to look at, documents I hope to find, etc.

Would you try to plan a research trip at this time of the year? I would love to hear your thoughts, pros and cons for attempting to do a research trip at this time of the year.