When the annual A to Z Challenge begins on April 1, 2023, Molly’s Canopy will participate for the fifth time in the month-long blogging marathon. My theme this year is Endwell: My High School Years — including a smattering of family history.
In 2017, I blogged about Whispering Chimneys: My Altamont Childhood, where my genealogy journey began in my family’s Albany County farmhouse — sharing stories about my earliest sense of family and relatives.
In 2020, during the COVID lockdown, I returned to my childhood in Endwell: My Elementary Years to explore how my interest in family, ancestors and heritage germinated once my family moved to the suburbs circa 1957.
In 2021, I revisited my early adolescence in Endwell: My Early Teen Years as I came of age in the early 1960s – amid rock concerts, world events and memorable visits to family.
In 2023, I’ll chronicle my late adolescence in Endwell: My High School Years – rolling out the next chapter of my own story from A to Z at one letter per day (minus a few Sundays) throughout April.
Many thanks to former high school classmates who helped refresh my memory of events we participated in together. And heartfelt gratitude to my late mom, Peg (Laurence) Charboneau, who saved many high school documents in my “baby box,” so I still have them for reference.
The Sixties bring a new outlook
Although the geographic setting is the same, my perspective changed as the rebellious Sixties unfolded – and with it came a new, activist outlook that would carry me into young adulthood.
• My inspiration: Genealogy bloggers who wrote about their own lives during previous challenges.
• The rationale: We spend so much time searching for our ancestors and telling their stories that we forget to tell our own. As family historians we owe it to posterity to include ourselves in the mix.
• The impetus: Not getting any younger, so there is no time to waste in getting these stories out there.
Leaving a historical diary
Have you ever wished your ancestors had left letters or a diary — some tangible record in their own voice? I know I have, and I don’t want to be guilty of the same omission. So, I intend to tell the next part of my own story during this year’s #AtoZChallenge.
My plan is to blog about my late teens in Endwell, N.Y. — the Broome County suburb where I grew up with my parents, two younger brothers and two younger sisters. Here and there, I’ll also examine how my heritage quest intersected with my teen years.
• Time & Setting: Late 1960s in a small suburban community west of Binghamton, N.Y.
• Backdrop: Maine-Endwell Senior High and the other youth gathering places that became my social, academic and political focus in my late teens — plus a couple of road trips.
• Players: Me; my immediate and extended family; neighbors, friends, classmates, and other like-minded teens.
Please take a seat and get comfortable. On April 1 the curtain rises on Endwell: My High School Years. See you then!
Meanwhile, please take a moment to visit this week’s other intrepid Sepia Saturday bloggers.
© 2023 Molly Charboneau. All rights reserved.