A Legion of Scribblers
While searching through a mountain of scholarly articles on history, I found it hard not to be impressed by the dedication of so many people writing on such obscure topics.
Obscure, that is, until you need information on it and then the subject is front-page-worthy stuff that should have never been neglected.
Gratitude for their dedication is increased by the knowledge that most of them wrote simply out of love for the subject. They didn't make a cent. There may be a slight ego boost but that is more than outweighed by the knowledge that you'll go down in family lore as the eccentric uncle or aunt who wrote about Chinese grocery stores in Bisbee or about the reason why a particular color was used in a state flag.
We need people and preservation like that. As I've written before on this blog, history doesn't wait to be discovered. It can be lost. That unknown legion of scribblers helps to preserve its lessons.