Destination: Yesterday
8/1/2005
You don't need a time machine to travel back to your ancestors' day and experience life as they knew it — just attend a historical re-enactment. We'll help you find the right events for your research.

As a kid, I loved the school days when my teacher cranked up the big-reel projector and treated the class to an episode of the You Were There series. This collection of black-and-white films transported us students back in time, allowing us to witness some of America's most important periods in history. Mesmerized by scenes of Washington crossing the Delaware, I wished I really was there.

I still have an insatiable appetite for the past. Like most genealogists, I want to learn about my ancestors' clothes, food, politics, jokes, games and music. But I no longer have to daydream about going back in time. I've discovered a "time machine" that lets me glimpse my forebears' day-to-day experiences firsthand: historical re-enactments.