Family Tree

Going the Distance

What a year 2020 has been.

We’ve had to take stock of our lives in ways we haven’t before. We’re thinking about what really matters. And important things we once put off—like sharing and saving our family stories—have now become a priority. But, because of COVID-19, we’re often not able to tell these stories in person.

Fortunately, in the 100 years since the last major epidemic, we’ve developed many ways of keeping in contact with each other. Interviewing family members from a distance using these resources can bring about its own challenges, but those difficulties pale in comparison to losing the stories that connect us to our past.

“Time is of the essence to talk to your older loved ones, to make sure they don’t feel too isolated, and to try to capture their stories,” says Tiffany Woolf, creator and executive producer of Silver Screen Studios <www.silverscreenstudios.org>, an intergenerational history project shares stories and advice from Jewish community elders to young people. “Their stories may help others who’ve never been through challenging times like this.”

Let’s learn how to interview your relatives from a distance, plus the best tools and techniques for conducting and recording family history interviews.

TOOLS FOR HOSTING LONG-DISTANCE INTERVIEWS

Videochatting

Videoconferencing platforms are the first tools that spring to mind,

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