Friday, March 16, 2012

Remember the SASE?

Remember the SASE?  That's Self-Addressed Stamped Envelope (SASE) for those born in the era of email and text messages.  When I started doing family history and genealogy research back in the 1980s, letter writing was a key component of research, a way and means to receive information.

I used this neglected form of communication this week in an attempt to goad a distant cousin to provide me with some information.  The gentleman is upwards of 80 years old, a recent widow, and lives several states away.  I found his phone number through an internet search, and contacted him back in November.  The conversation was pleasant, he provided some information, and promised to stay in touch.

The cousin gave me his email address and I fired off a couple of quick emails, but no response.  Perhaps he's not on the computer as much as I am.  Phone calls are tricky, as I don't want to disturb him and also the information I'm looking for is somewhat sensitive - as he is a relative of my 'black sheep' family.  I don't want to jeopardize the connection.

So this week, I typed up an old-fashioned letter, attached printed copies of my emailed charts to him, and sent him a letter via U.S. mail.  I included a SASE, hoping for a reply.

I'm hoping for the best.

1 comment:

Nancy said...

Ah, the hope we have when we reach out to someone we don't know, dropping that envelope in the mailbox ... and waiting. I think it's hard with older folks. Sometimes they don't keep up with technology; sometimes their hands don't want to write; and sometimes they're just private. I hope your relative is thrilled to get a piece of mail with your letter and other information inside (as opposed to receiving junk mail). I hope he responds very soon.

I'm waiting for several SASEs just now. I always send colored envelopes so that when I open my mailbox, I immediately see whether I can start getting excited.

Best wishes to you.