One of the most interesting books we had in the house I grew up in was a slim volume, spiral bound but with a gray, linen-textured cover. On the front it said "Meine Kinder" in dark red letters (at least, I think it was red). Inside, the pages documented the family line on my grandfather's side (that'd be my dad's dad). As a young girl, I loved thumbing through this book. The beginning of the book had a drawing of a family tree tracing back many generations and then detailed each family (complete with photos) in later pages. This part of my family is the German part, so I could see in the book where and when we had come over to the U.S. from Germany. The book mentioned people I had never met and it breathed into me an idea of bigness, a larger world connection. I was fascinated with this book and the stories I imagined about the people who were in it.
Even at a young age, I knew what a treasure it was to have something like this in our family. Apparently, my aunts and uncles each had a copy of their own. It remains somewhat mysterious to me. I don't know where our family copy is anymore. And looking back, I'm still not clear on who originated the creation of book. I'd love to go through it again and learn about our family history all over again!
My grandparents in the '70s: