Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Travelling to France with Google Earth

For this blogpost, I have decided that it was time to share my "Woo Hoo" moment when I had located and visited my paternal Pipe`, (Andre` C. Guerin)'s town of birth in France. He was born, 21 June 1889, in the small farming town of Chauffour-les`-Etre'chy. I had previously come to learn how intertwined family history research is with photography and old family photos. Even though I had begun to play around with the Google Earth program, it had not dawned on me in the least bit, how cool it would be to locate and map out some of my ancestor's addresses! So, lo and behold, I needed to be struck with the perverbial "epiphany"; to advance to the next level of my family's journey.
Below, in the next few frames, you will see the result of each phase of my search for Andre`s home town.

This first image shows an overall view of the area in France. His town is located immediately to the right of the yellow push pin.

The next image is zoomed in to show you the basic landscape of the region.

The 3rd image, above brings you closer to the community, and you can now view the individual homes and various buildings, along with some foliage.

The 4th image here, though a bit out of focus, gives you a better idea of each individual property. While I was viewing these images at Google Earth, I remember thinking to myself, how awesome it would be to be able to travel back in time using this program to view our ancestor's hometowns as they were during their life!

The 5th and final image brings you right down to street level, and you can easily maneuver down some of the same streets as your ancestor did, right in their very own childhood town! This particular view is of Grande Rue, which is just one road that winds through Chauffour-les`-Etre'chy.
So, now I am on a personal mission to travel to all of my ancestor's locations right from the comfort of my own office.