Book Review: In Their Time. A Timeline Journal for Placing Family Events into Historical Context 1000-2076.

The following book review was written by Bobbi King:

In Their Time. A Timeline Journal for Placing Family Events into Historical Context 1000-2076.
By Roger L. Dudley. Published by Warfield Press LLC., Prescott AZ. 2012. 793 pages.

This is a very clever idea of a book.

It furnishes a handy format for recording timelines of world events in the lifetimes of our ancestors.

Roger Dudley has put together a neat system of journaling the events occurring within a person’s lifetime. He begins in the year 1000 and ends in the year 2076, surely enough time for our kids to keep the record going.

The left side page has a list of significant world events, and the right side page is an empty, lined page. You write the names of the people living during those times on the empty page. It’s an effortless way to write down the names of our ancestors near the current events of the time.

An introductory page offers instructions on how best to use the book, with a page defining the abbreviations used throughout the text.

After a few years of collecting names of cousins and grandparents, there comes a time when we need to write their stories. Besides documenting the dates and places, we need to write about the times in which they lived. The times when our fathers burned the autumn leaves in the alley, when city side streets were dirt, when trains had cabooses, and when there was no electricity, indoor plumbing, nor computers, and when text messaging was furtively getting a small folded note passed from your classroom desk to your compatriot in the back.

This journaling guide will help get you started.

In Their Time. A Timeline Journal for Placing Family Events into Historical Context 1000-2076 is available from Amazon at http://goo.gl/yZWcmP and from other fine bookstores.

15 Comments

It’s such a simple idea, I wonder why nobody thought of this before, as a collection of family members in a book, conveniently next to the timeline. Great idea.

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    I wondered that too. Probably because it looks like a ton of work. Going through and listing all those events, being accurate about them, likely a tedious lot of work at the time, but great benefit for us.

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But… if it were an editable computer program it would be even more useful…

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At only 9 x 7 I am a little concerned that there will not be enough space on the pages as it moves into the 19th and 20th centuries to record all the people you might want to record. Does anyone else have this concern? Or am I over-thinking how this journal should be used?

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    Linda,
    With a page per year (after about 1770) and two pages during wars and other jam-packed years – I think it would be wonderful if people had too much information to fit on the right hand side of the page.
    As to those who want it “computerized and on-line” this is designed to be free of the worries of digitized world that must be updated periodically or it will eventually become unusable. There is a need for FIXITY in this world that the folks determined to go paperless will not recognize until it is too late.

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No reflection on the book, but don’t you wish that resources such as this were offered in an online (continually updating) format? I don’t buy the “how to” books anymore because by the time I get them and read them, they are already out of date. Besides, aren’t we all supposed to be trying to go paperless?

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Here’s an option for creating a timeline on-line that can be used for a family tree as well as a number of other things. I have only played around with it briefly a long time ago but it may me helpful to some.

http://www.preceden.com/

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RootsMagic has a timeline feature now built into version 6. No extra typing needed. And you can print reports for anybody you want. The book idea’s great for those who aren’t into computerized genealogy, and for those who like to have results in their hands, to be read at odd moments when relaxing. Paper still has its advantages, too. Trees will always be one of
our best renewable resources, even with multiple positive uses.

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As I am writing the story of each couple, I would have a time line including each person born/died at that time. I would put it at the back of the book, I think. I would need an editable timeline, and space would be a problem, yes? My family goes back to the Mayflower. Would events be sparse enough to leave space for individuals to be listed? Or would I be reworking the time line to allow space? Trying to think this through before I start making it. It would have to be a vertical line. I’m going to investigate both sites given above. Maybe one is already what I need.

And the paper vs. cloud….I’m going back to paper. I will have on line, on my computer and printed pages. My peers don’t understand how to read a pedigree and they are not interested in viewing it on line. My older relatives don’t compute. Handing the printed off story to the individuals has been the most successful. My research, my time, my ink, my paper. What’s not to like?

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I am having the same concerns. I googled the book and the only “review” is the promo above by Dick, and a place to order on Amazon. It is asking if I want to be the first to review. So we are in the dark about this book and how it looks and how it works. I have the same concerns about space. It was released in June of 2013 according to Amazon. Can that be true? Or is that a typo?

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Click on the book cover to see what it looks like inside. It’s pretty much what I expected: many historical facts on one page–line items–and lines given on the facing page for very brief notations of ancestors. Basic but it would still be interesting to look at once a researcher fills in the facing pages.

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I bought a remaindered book in a second-hand bookshop some years ago that did much the sane thing, but it had far too much space for early events and not enough for the 19th century, where most of my ancestor information was. Also this one was geared towards British history and no doubt the new one is geared mainly to America. It’s more instructive to generate your own historical timeline with ancestors ‘locations in mind, even if not so convenient..

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Thanks Carol, I clicked, Signed in on Amazon, and found lots of pages to review. Like the organization but do not like the sometimes obscure timeline entries. Eva: Good suggestion, I have a huge historical events timeline book but again based more on Europe Weighs about five pounds but no room for names and comments on my ancestors. However, I am thinking you may be correct, just take the events that apply and make my own timeline that applies for the areas in which they lived…all over the world. I bought a couple of used history books at yards sales and library used book sales, on European, US, and World History and use these as references but would make sources for a more specific, limited time line for our ancestors in their own time and land. Thanks for the tips everyone. I also clicked on the suggestions above: http://ourtimelines.com/index.shtml, Interesting. Here’s to all of the dedicated family historians! Regina in Florida, USA

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