I enjoyed the new Genealogy Roadshow, right after Antiques Roadshow, last evening on PBS. I assume most of you saw it, recorded it to watch later, or plan to watch a later broadcast. You should do that. And, set your recorder for the whole series, while you are at it. Most PBS stations will rebroadcast this first episode, set in Nashville, on Saturday. Each local station will have variations, of course.
This is the genealogy show many of my genealogy friends have suggested and have been waiting for. PBS is the perfect venue. It is about ordinary people, like you and me, who have questions about the family history, who have heard stories they want confirmed, or want to know if they are related to X (historic figure, cinema or music star, sports figure, etc).
From the central filming location in Nashville, in front of a live audience (standing around the table, not in seats), several stories were shared and confirmed or disconfirmed by two professional genealogists, Kenyatta Berrey, president of the Association of Professional Genealogist (APG), and D. Joshua Taylor, president of the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS). They each did a fine job presenting their information and many documents on iPad and large monitor as well as in interacting with the people. The setting this week was in an historic mansion in Nashville. Next week the stories are told from a setting in Detroit.
The overall production was excellent and the pace of storytelling was very good. The final story was the most compelling and heart warming. A young woman had no knowledge of her father, had never seen a photo of him, and felt this "entire half" of her existence was a mystery. The researchers had not only learned much about him that they shared, but showed selected photos that she immediately identified with. And, they had flown in a cousin who brought a full photo album of more photos of him and many relatives. Very touching. I look forward to your comments on the show.