The NARA facility can be a genealogists best thing to happen, or it can be the most frustrating, experience possible. This agency has offices in several districts around the US.
The closest to me is in Atlanta, GA. I am told they have a new facility there now. No longer at Fort McPherson.
We live an hour or so away, from southeast’s N.A.R.A
So we took the ride over to see what’s new..
Well, we signed in on their blotter, did the paper work you “gotter,”
They showed us in, and all the things to view!
They had rolls and rolls of census, enough to jar your senses,
Some went back to eighteen double o.
We were shown about the Soundex, how to use the index,
When she got through we’re really hot to go!
I was really feeling lucky, so I took a reel out on Kentucky,
And put it on a machine they call a reader.
I almost had it shredded, before I finally got it threaded,
And finally made it through that ten foot leader!
The printing looked like locusts, before I got it focused,
And began looking for those folks from long ago.
They were Smiths, Jones and Meeders, jumping at me from that reader,
And told of many things I could not know!
Hey, Now ain’t this neat, I found my Uncle Pete!
I always thought he’d married my Aunt Ruth!
And here it lists his brother, could there maybe be another?
It shows a fellow here named Rufe!
Now, with all these questions, I’m getting indigestion,
Trying to make out all the wrong from right,
Now I am confused, my curiosity‘s been abused,
And my note pad’s scratching is a fright!
Hidden among the others, I found my great grandmothers,
So I guess this trip is what you’d call a blast!
Now I don’t feel so much alone, since I dug up that old bone,
How I’d love to meet my family from the past!
I suppose some day I will, when I meet them on that hill,
Then I’ll ask old Uncle Pete, “Hey what’s the deal?”
I’ll ask about his life, and about that other wife,
And how come they weren’t mentioned in his will?
I’ll quit now, with all this blabber, cause it doesn’t really matter,
As it happened long ago and “over the hill.”
If I were a lawyer, instead of a sawyer,
I’d probably would not contest this will!