Whispers from the Past.....
How It All Began...

In 1976, as the result of a school History project, I begin researching my family.  Forty-two years later, the desire to find one more generation, another missing branch, the surname that has eluded me for a decade, is still just as strong.  Had anyone told me then that I'd go from three generations on a pedigree chart to thousands of names and relatives, I probably wouldn't have believed it.

I haven't made this journey alone though.  Countless hours were spent with my grandmother, Alta Leona Driver Grantham, picking her brain for every tiny thing she could remember about the family.  Many nights I kept her up till the "wee hours" of morning taking notes, asking questions and listening to stories.  She was never hesitant to tell you anything  she knew about our relatives.  There are skeletons and she brought them out of the closet.  She always said that we couldn't do anything to change the past and I might as well know the truth about it.  I can't tell you how much I appreciate that.

One of my favorite memories is sitting in my grandmother's living room late at night listening to her and Aunt Ruth reminisce.  I always got to miss school when Aunt Ruth came to visit, because Mother thought I needed to hear the history of my own family more than that of the world.  I wish that I could bring those days back just for a few hours, there are so many unanswered questions that I would love to ask.  Aunt Ruth was the family historian.  She put what she knew together in a little book and years later, her work became the foundation for my research. Her dedication to keeping the family history alive has meant a great deal to me in my own work.  She was a wonderful lady and she is deeply missed.

Thank you Aunt Ruth for the roots.  I only wish you could be here to see all the wonderful leaves on our family tree.

Your Mother is always with you.
She's the whisper of the leaves as you walk down the street.  She's the smell of certain foods you remember, flowers you pick and perfume that she wore.  She's the cool hand on your brow when you're not feeling well.
She's your breath in the air on a cold winter's day.
She is the sound of the rain that lulls you to sleep, the colors of a rainbow. She is Christmas morning.

Your Mother lives inside your laughter.  She's crystallized in every teardrop. A mother shows every emotion .......... happiness, sadness, fear, jealousy, love, hate, anger, helplessness, excitement, joy, sorrow... and all the while, hoping and praying you will only know the good feelings in life. She's the place you came from, your first home, and she's the map you follow with every step you take.
She's your first love; your first friend, even your first enemy, but nothing on earth can separate you. Not time, not space...not even death!

Author: unknown
Why Whispers from the Past?

I've encountered numerous brick walls during my research.  If you've spent any time working on genealogy, you know how frustrating it can be.  My mother, Mary Ruth Grantham Corbin Black, was my biggest supporter when it came to research.  She always wanted to know about the family but according to her, she could never remember the names and who belonged to which family, so her solution was to have me do the research and she would enjoy the end result.  I can't tell you how much I miss her because when she passed

Mary Ruth Grantham Corbin Black

away, I realized just how much she really helped with the research.

It was more than financial support, she made phone calls, she made copies, she talked to people, she went along to endless cemeteries, but more than anything else, she was always excited when I found a new relative and she was always there to share in the frustration of things not working out.

One thing that my mother always said about my research was that she believed my ancestors whispered in my ear where to look.  I've always had a knack for knowing which road to turn down, what book to look in, which name out of hundreds to write or call and she attributed that to a connection with my past.  She seemed to feel that because I cared so much about who they were, they guided me.  So when I decided to create this site, the only logical name was, Whispers from the Past.  Now that mother's no longer here to cheer me on, I just hope that she's visiting with my long ago ancestors and that she remembers to whisper every now and then.

                                                                         "That which is not written, is lost forever."