Looking Back: A genealogy journey

Archie Starcher, Carthage, Missouri (circa 1960)

No, this is not a reference to the opening lyrics of Garth Brooks’ great country-western song The Dance; this is a reference to our lineage – – where we came from, and who played a role in the person we are today.

Over the past few years, the field of genealogy has experienced a meteoric rise in popularity. Multiple companies now offer the general public DNA testing that can provide greater insight into our ancestry and linked relatives. In addition, to facilitate building family trees, multiple companies offer software programs and provide supporting links to census data, yearbooks, cemetery files, birth, marriage, and death records, military records, etc. Many of these same resources are also available through libraries including the Carthage Public Library. The boom in amateur genealogy has resulted in families scurrying to find old scrapbooks, photo albums, and family Bibles that may contain clues to the past. One of the best sources of information is newspaper archives that may house engagement and marriage notices, obituaries, personal interest stories, and more.

Using these various resources, one family descendant has recently developed a profile of one of Carthage’s noted citizens – – Archie E. Starcher. He was a husband, father, businessman, philanthropist, volunteer, civic contributor, sports enthusiast, and more. Not only do profiles such as this provide a written historical record for current and future family generations but they help to keep alive the memory of those important to us.


Perhaps the young Emperor Meiji in the movie The Last Samurai said it best, “We must never forget who we are or where we come from.”

Click here to access the profile and see an example of what you too might develop as you look back and embark on your own genealogy journey.

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