The Top Personal History Blogs of 2010.

Last December I  selected what I considered to be the top five personal history blogs of 2009.  I’m pleased to announce this year’s list which has expanded to eleven!

I’ve been asked what I’ve used as my criteria for selection.  Basically it’s the qualities I wrote about in What Everybody Ought to Know About a Successful Blog. Briefly these are:

  • Frequent posts.
  • Consistency.
  • Personal.
  • Short and scannable articles.
  • Uncluttered.
  • Use of graphics, photographs, and video.
  • Catchy headlines.
  • Generous and useful content.

If you know of a blog or you have a blog that you feel deserves inclusion, please let me know and I’ll consider it for next year’s list.

Without further ado, here are the top personal history blogs for 2010, ranked in alphabetical order.  Congratulations to everyone.  Drum role, please!

  • Family Oral History Using Digital Tools. Owner  Susan A. Kitchens  says,  “This site explores how to use digital tools and media to record and preserve spoken memories of family members.”
  • Legacy Multimedia blog. Owner Stefani Twyford says that on her blog “you will read about my passion for personal history, filmmaking techniques, genealogy, and related topics. I will veer off onto other topics from time to time but always come back to the things that make my work and my life a joy.”
  • Owner Hella Buchheim describes her blog as “helping those who want to write a life story.” She has tips on getting started, rules of life story writing, and useful writing prompts.
  • Maureen Taylor. Owner Maureen Taylor says, “As a photo curator, genealogist, and now as a writer and photo identification/preservation expert, the focus of Maureen’s work remains family photography, history and genealogy.”
  • Memoir Mentor. Owner Dawn Thurston says, “My blog is an attempt to participate in the larger community of people interested in life story writing of all kinds and perhaps help a few people persevere in writing their stories.”
  • Shoebox Stories. Owner cj Madigan says, “I revere photographs … I positively swoon over books … I have both a knack and a compulsion to give order to things … And I’m also a whip-smart project manager who makes sure that everything gets done in the right sequence at the right time. All of these strands weave together in Shoebox Stories.”
  • Video Biography Central. Owner Jane Lehmann-Shafron describes her blog as a place for “Advice, essays, samples and inspiration for people interested in preserving their personal and family history through video biography, memorial video, life story and genealogy video.”
  • Women’s Memoirs. Owners Matilda Butler and Kendra Bonnet have put together a wealth of information that includes writing prompts, book reviews, and more. Women’s Memoirs is not strictly speaking a personal history site but there’s a lot of useful material  here for anyone involved in personal histories.
  • Your Life is Your Story blog. Owner Tom Gilbert notes that his blog is a place for “… quality family history and life story news, views, methods, products, links, services…and whatever else catches our fancy.”

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11 responses to “The Top Personal History Blogs of 2010.

  1. I am thrilled to be mentioned two years in a row. I love writing about life story writing and I hope it helps someone be motivated to write theirs. We all have a story to tell and if my blog helps, I feel successful. It is a honor and privilege to be mixed with these other professional personal historians.

    Dan, you know that I read your blog every week with my rss feed and sometimes your aph updates. How will you make the list?

    Thanks for the honor and mentoin!

  2. Pingback: Tweets that mention The Top Personal History Blogs of 2010. | Dan Curtis ~ Professional Personal Historian --

  3. A great list, thanks! I know a couple of these sites and will go check out the others.

  4. Woo hoo! thank you, Dan! Appreciate the honor, and who knew that a site that begins with ‘F’ stands at the head of an alphabetical list? Well, in this case, I do. Shocker, that.

    By the way, I’ve been hanging out in AfterEffects a LOT lately to create the 2nd of a 2-part series on conducting interviews using photo albums. You get to experience that disorientation of looking at an album and hearing the discussion without all the you-are-there cues of being present. That and the voice of my Mom (and me) and Mom’s Aunt Doris’ photo album make the movie fun. Just posted last night. Enjoy!

    • @Susan A. Kitchens. You’re very welcome, Susan. I took a look at your AfterAffects Part 2. It’s a wonderful way to bring the audience right in to the exploration of a photo album. Good work!

  5. Dan,
    Thanks for including my blog on your list! What an esteemed group to be included with . But missing is your blog – the best blog around for personal historians. You’ve inspired me to keep writing so I can be on your list for next year! Happy New Year!

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