It is amazing the amount of information one can learn from a single online group such as CrochetPartners (it's a group hosted by Yahoo). It could be a simple tip, or a posting about a new fiber or pattern one has fallen in love with, a technique that has inspired, and even historical information.
In February, CP member Lori posted about this website: http://www.lib.ndsu.nodak.edu/grhc/history_culture/textile/index.html. I took immediate interest because:
A. I love anything that has to do with crochet history, and
B. because part of my family roots are tied to Germany.
Intrigued, I asked my local library if they could obtain the books the website referenced. (Now I have a big question: do librarians enjoy receiving hugs of thanks from their patrons??) I had thought that when one requests to borrow books from another library that they could only come from another library within that state. Apparently that's not the case because these materials came from North Dakota! And they're all mine for the next three weeks! :) Yeehaw!
I also learned from the ever wonderful Jean Leinhauser, who happens to own the CP group, a little bit of history about Connecticut. Back in January. Jean offered this golden nugget of information: There was once located in Chester, Connecticut, a factory which produced crochet hooks. On these hooks, dated around 1914, one will find the name Chester stamped upon them. The name of that company? C. J. Bates. They changed the name stamped on the crochet hooks to Susan Bates in the mid-1930s. Because of Jean, I now have an inquiry with the Chester Historical Society to see if they have any artifacts from that time period on display. I eagerly await their response!
What else could one gain from being a member of an online community? I leave finding out the answer to you! There are many, many groups available, waiting for you to join in the fun of learning, sharing, and experiencing new friendships! :)