January 26, 2001
Happy New Year and here's a great New Year's package for you! I enclose James Leaf's and Hubert "Buddy" Shenkin's contributions to our Shenkin Family History, completed since the last mailing. They're both wonderful and I know you're going to enjoy them.
And now for some more news: Another cousin, Richard Blalock (great-grandson of Nathan and Rebecca Shenkin), called me from his home in Sacramento, California. Independent of our efforts with these mailings, he has also been researching the Shenkin Family and several weeks ago he found James Leaf, who gave him my name.
After many telephone calls and emails, about two weeks ago, Richard flew to Jacksonville Florida, rented a car, and drove south to meet Ruth Breidenbach, Jim Leaf, Gertrude Stein, Audrey Clyburn, Rhoda Shenkin and her daughter Paula Carver. He also visited the cemetery where his great-grandfather (Nathan) is buried. He then drove north to the Washington DC area to meet me and my family and Bernice Radliff and hers. He interviewed us all and took a lot of pictures. We gave him as much information as we could in such a short time and had a wonderful time with him.
But there's more. Richard has created a Shenkin Family Web Site on the Internet! All the information that Richard and I have been acquiring has been included on it. He has also updated the Family Tree with a massive amount of information (a copy enclosed) and added a lot of the pictures he took during his trip. For those of you who have Internet access, the URL is http://shenkin.olivetree.net/ It's still a work in progress, but I promise you won't be disappointed. (And for those of you who contributed, how does it feel to be a "published" author?)
Richard is a wonderful addition to the family - bright, energetic, and tenacious as a bloodhound when he's searching for information. We owe him a lot for developing the Web Site and enhancing the Family Tree. I'm enclosing a picture of him and his family so you can see what he looks like, together with his mailing address in case you have questions. I know he'd be happy to hear from you. Basha's dates of birth and death remain unanswered and we badly need to know where Jacob and Basha were buried. If we knew that, a visit to the cemetery would solve the mystery of the dates, as well as provide us with other pertinent information.
I hope you're all happy with this latest surprise. I'm sorry not to be able to include photographs in this package, but I didn't want to hold up this mailing while I sorted and copied them. However, I will send out another package in a month or two with copies of the pictures on the Web Site for those who do not have Internet access as well as any new photographs you send me. And if anyone has pictures of Moe Shenkin, please send them to me. I'll have them copied for the next distribution and for the Web Site, then return them safely to you by registered mail.
Love, always, Mary