Heritage day teaches community about genealogy


The Museum of the Shenandoah Valley hosted its 9th Annual Heritage Day event. Several historical societies came together to help the public learn more about genealogy. 

“A lot of people don’t know that these places exist and so coming to a great event like this, it really brings out the word that we’re here and we’re here to help you look for your family,” said researcher Margaret Hotchner. 

Margaret Hotchner has been interested in genealogy since she was a teenager.

“I moved from Arlington, Virginia and moved to Rockingham just to learn about my family,” said Hotchner.

In addition to learning more about your family’s history, experts also discussed how to protect your family heirlooms. 

“You don’t want to have a lot of light blasting in on your pieces, you don’t want the temperature and relative humidity to fluctuate a lot,” said art conservator Fran Ritchie. 

Fran Ritchie says tangible items are just as important as documenting the history. 

“A way that you can understand yourself and your family is also through the objects that we collect and that we pass on. So it helps tell a story and it helps you understand what life was like for other people,” said Ritchie.

There were also door prizes from ancestry.com and some lucky winners received annual memberships or DNA kits. 

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