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DailyTidings.com
  • It's all relative

    California man receives trove of family history
  • After at least 75 years of being moved from one family closet to another, a sturdy metal box of genealogical treasures has found its way into happy hands.
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  • After at least 75 years of being moved from one family closet to another, a sturdy metal box of genealogical treasures has found its way into happy hands.
    Tim Colvig, of Orinda, Calif., has been researching his Southern Oregon Colvig roots for a number of years and periodically returns to the Southern Oregon Historical Society to see what's new in the collection.
    It was on one of those trips, a few years ago, that he met Ben Truwe, local historian and owner of the Medfordhistory.com website. Since then, Truwe has been updating Colvig with any fresh information he finds during his research.
    About a month ago, Truwe called Colvig to say he had tracked down a box that contained items Colvig would "be very interested in."
    Truwe had found a March 1, 1959, Mail Tribune story about local family treasures, including some Colvig papers, in a box owned by Mrs. Mary Warner, whose maiden name was Colvig.
    "So, I was thinking, I wonder where those are now," Truwe said. "What happened to those?"
    Truwe contacted Vicki Bryden, library volunteer coordinator for SOHS, hoping she could help find a surviving relative of Mary Warner. Bryden wondered whether that relative might be Bill Warner, a former classmate she hadn't seen or talked with for nearly 40 years. She decided to give him a call.
    "I asked him about the box, and right away he said, 'Oh, yeah, I've got the box right here,' " Bryden said. "It was just that easy."
    She asked Warner whether he knew a Tim Colvig.
    "He said no. Then I told him Tim Colvig was his cousin. He was so surprised. He didn't even know he had a cousin."
    Warner said he thought the box had been passed down from his grandmother Mary Warner for at least 75 years and that it had been sitting in his closet unopened for decades. He told Truwe he wanted to give the box and its contents to Colvig.
    Tuesday morning, Colvig visited Warner and opened the box.
    "It was described to me as just a box of documents," he said. "I didn't know it's like a strongbox that a stagecoach driver would throw down on demand."
    "It's about 20 inches square by about 14 inches deep and just chock full of stuff," Truwe said.
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