Spending time with my collectibles is a huge part of why I collect — and I don’t mean the dusting! In fact, one of the reasons I blog is because I love the time to spend examining and researching each object. I truly believe this is a huge part of the value of collecting as a hobby.
Two recent news stories reminded me of this fact.
The first is a matter of maps and historical mysteries… The British Museum’s recent re-examination of a 16th-century coastal map of the Tidewater coast of North Carolina has revealed hidden markings that may show what happened to the so-called American Lost Colony. While this colony was the second English settlement on the North Carolina coast, it was the first settlement to include civilians, including the legendary Virginia Dare, the granddaughter of the colony’s governor, John White. Virginia was born within weeks of their arrival to the settlement in 1587 — making Virginia Dare the first child of English descent born in the Americas.
Now, I’m not saying that all map collectors have a map of this magnitude; but even that vintage shell oil map may lead to a discovery, a road not taken, a connection you’ve not made before. Who knows what mysteries you might solve — or even find?
Speaking of connections, this next news story discusses how genealogy may help provide evidence that proves humans are continuing to evolve. Your family tree alone may not seem like much, but when combined with others, it provides scientific information:
“Studying evolution requires large sample sizes with individual-based data covering the entire lifespan of each born person,” said Dr Lummaa. “We need unbiased datasets that report the life events for everyone born. Because natural and sexual selection acts differently on different classes of individuals and across the life cycle, we needed to study selection with respect to these characteristics in order to understand how our species evolves.”
Doesn’t that all just inspire you to go antiquing, to organize those family records? It certainly makes me want to raise that bidding paddle!