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Treasures or trash - what we save

In everyone's life, at some time, we are faced with sorting through the material goods of the most beloved people in our lives.

Parents, grandparents and others have lived lives that included passions for music, art, furniture, hunting and what they thought important to them is what remains for us to sort out when they pass away.

The amount of "stuff" can be staggering in some cases. It isn't a character flaw of our loved ones, simply these "things" held importance to them.

Unfortunately, no two people have the exact same tastes in life so what do you do with the items that you find unnecessary to keep and no one else you know would like them. For general use items there are shelters that need clothing. Stores like Salvation Army, Savers and Goodwill can use household items.

And your local historical society should be considered to preserve examples of the period in which your loved one lived and perhaps even on a more personal level.

At the Douglas County Historical Society, we are not only interested in your relative or friend as a loved part of your life but also as a member of the community and history of Douglas County. We would love to have a file of the story of everyone who ever lived in Douglas County, but that would be impossible and impractical. However, we will begin a file on your loved one if materials are brought to us to establish that file. This would include birth certificates, communion, immigration papers, graduation announcements and finally a death certificate so that in the future, your relative or friend will be found again in research by a family member or as a part of the fiber of Douglas County. If your grandmother sang the Star-Spangled Banner at the start of the first Blues baseball game, we need to save that information. If you great-grandfather worked on the Alaskan Highway, we need to save that information.

In everyone's life we have unique moments where we are involved or witness and share the story with others as a part of our oral history.

Help us preserve those stories and people from your history in Douglas County so that they will live forever as a part of the history of us. One day all of the storytellers from your family will be gone. Help us preserve not only the history of Douglas County but of your family's contribution to the community as well.

The Douglas County Historical Society is open to the public 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday-Friday and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at 1101 John Ave., Superior. For information, call (715) 392-8449, go to www.DouglasHistory.org or email DCHS@DouglasHistory.org.

Tony Tracy is the executive director of the Douglas County Historical Society.

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