I know that the economy is bad and I know that there are many of you that are struggling, so I hope you will take this request in the spirit that is offered: if you are drawn to give, if not, enjoy what I have to share with no remorse.
You see, I'm working on this project to investigate and write about the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) veterans who are buried in the GAR plot in Mountain View Cemetery in Oakland. This is not a surprise to those that know me, as I've been talking about it a lot...here's a picture of the memorial at the site:
For many of the soldiers, I have been able to locate information about them at a minimal cost and through subscriptions to databases I carry for my personal genealogy work, but some of them are absolutely elusive. Others, I have a just a hair of info and would like more. But getting more costs money.
My plan, especially for those with little info, is to send away for pension records. I am able to obtain a basic packet on a soldier from the National Archives for $25. I don't have an exact number of packets I need to order, but it is more than just a few which makes my financing of this a very slow process, and frankly, I'm worried about the project dragging out. I'd rather not be working on this in 5 years.
I feel passionately about telling these stories, and I would like to share parts of them on this blog, as well as getting them published, when the research is done.
So when considering what to do, I thought about the recent trend of micro-financing, and so what I'm proposing is micro-investing. If you would like to help sponsor this work, I would be so grateful. I would let you know what soldier you are sponsoring and share their story with you and when I publish or share the info with one of their family members I will be sure to credit you for supporting the research.
I am not a non-profit, so you cannot claim this on your taxes, but you will have the satisfaction of knowing that you are contributing to telling the stories of these veterans who fought so long ago to keep our country whole and bring freedom to thousands. There is even the chance that you could be sponsoring the research for the story of one of the black soldiers and their officers who were at even greater risk if they were captured in battle.
One stone reads: "Gone but not forgotten." I would like to make that phrase actually live for these men.
If you would like to donate, go to the PayPal link in the sidebar. You can send funds to me at firstname.lastname@example.org once you've logged in. If you prefer not to use PayPal contact me at email@example.com for instructions. I am glad for any amount you may wish to contribute.
Please watch my blog in the coming weeks, as I begin the process of telling the stories of these veterans on this site.