Going through family history pictures for my online exhibits I came across an interesting picture that I have to say I don't remember scanning. One of my favorite things about family history is that there will often be a way go connect ancestors to a larger historical narrative. Many ancestors live through the lives of monarchs, world wars, economic hardships, etc.
The information on the back of the picture caught my eye. It reads: The King got a good Baptist handshake! Stewarts meet Royalty.
The "royalty" mentioned on the back of the picture is King Bhumibol Adulyadej! How did a picture of this man meeting the King of Thailand make its way into my family history?? Well, immediately, I started asking my family members. This is the only conclusion that my aunts and uncles (who would know the origin could come up with). My great-grandmother had neighbors named "Stewart" and they had a daughter that was a flight attendant. She often flew around the world and would take her parents with her. Whether or not that is who the "Stewarts" mentioned on this picture are, the neighbors or not, the fact remains that all the way around the world was a picture of the King of Thailand waiting to be found by a West Texas girl.
I've been sitting on this post for over a year trying to figure out what to say about the picture that I found. This has been a big week for world history. Not only is the American presidential race entering the final stretch (with voting in November), but Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej died. He was the world's longest reigning monarch and had ruled longer than Queen Elizabeth II.
I love family history and the various ways that it can be approached by researchers! I hope that this blog is interesting and inspiring!