Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Sunday, October 28, 2012

ANCESTRY DNA


DNA

Have you had your DNA tested? I am participating in the Ancestry DNA project  (http://dna.ancestry.com) and highly recommend it.  For those of you unfamiliar with this, earlier this year Ancestry.com members were offered, by invitation only, the chance to have their DNA tested.  Now Ancestry.com is offering the test to nonmembers as well. The price is quite reasonable compared to other companies I investigated.

Once you notify Ancestry that you want your DNA tested and pay the required fee, you are mailed a plastic vial.  In this vial you place a saliva specimen and then you mail it away in the envelope provided. A few weeks later Ancestry will send you an e-mail with your results.  The results consist of a pie chart showing your ethnicity, along with an explanation of how to interpret the results. But, best of all, you are given possible cousin matches for other Ancestry members who have had their DNA tested.  If the people have online trees, you are able to view them to see where they are similar to yours. If you don’t have an online tree, don’t worry. You can e-mail the person and exchange information that way.  I scan my pedigree charts and/or family group sheets and forward them on for their review.

My potential cousin list consisted of several people who are possible 4th through 6th cousins and numerous people who are potential 5th through 8th cousins.  As more people get tested, Ancestry adds the results to its database and, if you match someone, they are added to your list.  This is a great incentive to stay a member!


I have been going down my list of matches methodically checking the surnames and residences of people on online trees.  When I find a person who has ancestors who resided in the same counties as mine or if they have the same surnames (especially unique names), I e-mail the tree owner with a summary of my family tree.  I have not yet uploaded my tree.  If my matches don’t have online trees, I e-mail them and give them a brief summary of the places my ancestors resided and some of the surnames.

Some of the hits are positively stunning. For instance:
  • One person has Turners born in Perry County, Tennessee. My 2nd great grandmother’s maiden name was Turner. She lived in Perry County too.
  • One match has several Magruders who lived in Prince George’s County, Maryland.  Julie Magruder was my 3rd great grandmother. She and her family lived in Prince George’s County. This same person has a Beall who died in Prince George’s County. My 6th great grandmother was Sarah Beall. She lived in Prince George’s County. I’m pretty sure this person is a cousin.
  • One person has a Pritchard in Wales. My 2nd great grandmother’s name was Pritchard, and she lived in Wales.  This may be where we connect.
  • One hit had numerous ancestors from Lincolnshire, England. Many of my lines go back to Lincolnshire.  My Taylor line originated in Lincolnshire. This person has a Taylor also.
  • One person has Prathers and Spriggs in Prince George’s, Maryland. I have Prathers and Spriggs there too.
  • One person has a Spalding in Chelmsford, Massachusetts. My Spaulding line populated Chelmsford.


Other results are harder to assess. For example:
  • A few people have ancestors in Perry County, Tennessee, where my Brashear, Turner, Horner and Russell lines lived, but their surnames are different. It is entirely possible that these are just names I have yet to discover and hang on the tree.
  • Quite a few people have ancestors from Windham, Connecticut, but not my surnames. My surnames there are Barber, Dewey, Gaylord, Munt, Phelps and Randall. Other people have ancestors from Tolland, Connecticut, where I have my Pearl and Scripture lines.
  • Several folks have ancestors in Henrico, Virginia, where I too have ancestors.  My surnames there are Allen, Burton, Cooper, Hatcher, Landon and Stovall.
  • One lady has ancestors from Sherburne, Chenango, New York, as do I. Our surnames don’t match, but it is interesting since Sherburne is not that big a town.

There are other people who have trees posted online but they are very unpopulated so it is hard to really know where the hits lie. Every Ancestry match won't be a cousin, but it is simply amazing how a little test can produce so many on point results. 

All in all, it is great fun. I am finding new cousins and meeting many others. It’s a small world.  Give DNA a try!


ILLUSTRATIONS BY:

Dover Publications, Inc., Mineola, New York, Electronic Clip Art, Trees & Leaves, 2004.

Dover Publications, Inc., Mineola, New York, Electronic Clip Art, 1565 Spot Illustrations and Motifs, 2007.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

CANADIAN BORDER CROSSINGS


Tonight I decided I would investigate my Scots-Irish ancestors who lived in Canada. New York is not far from Canada, and I have traveled through customs in Niagara Falls many times.



On Ancestry.com there is a database called “Border Crossings: From Canada to U.S., 1895-1954.” In this database, I found Alexander Stewart, my great grand uncle. These are some of the gems I discovered:

  • His arrival date (2 Oct 1916)
  • The port of arrival (Niagara Falls, New York)
  • The departure contact (his wife Elmor [which should be Eleanor])
  • His age (50) and his birth date (apx. 1866)
  • His race (Irish) and his nationality (Canadian)
  • His occupation (bricklayer)
  • His address (786 Palmerston Avenue, Toronto)
  • That he had been in the U.S. before from 1888 to 1893 and that he was returning to work.
  • His destination was Buffalo, NY, to a residence on 18 Chippewa.
  • He is listed as 5’8”, of medium complexion, with grey eyes and brown hair with no distinguishing marks.

There was no photo; it was a card type record.


Ancestry.com also gave me a clue that there was another record in the same database for Alexander Stewart. From this record I learned:

  • His arrival date was 5 Aug 1923
  • His port of arrival was Lewiston, New York
  • His wife’s name was Eleanore.
  • He was 57.
  • He was born in Toronto, Canada.
  • His health was good.
  • His address was 40 Sparkshall Ave.
  • He intended to be in the U.S. for two months.
  • He was not coming because of an offer of employment.
  • He had not been deported or in jail.
  • He was not a polygamist or an anarchist.


I then took the addresses (786 Palmerston Avenue and 40 Sparkshall Avenue in Toronto) and put them into Google maps. I not only got the location, but I also saw a picture of the homes that are there and a view of the neighborhood. 

That's quite a bit of information for one night. Sometimes you get lucky!




ILLUSTRATION FROM:

Dover Publications, Inc., Mineola, New York, Electronic Clip Art, Advertising Cuts of the 20s and 30s, 2003.

CITATION SOURCE:

Record for Alexander Stewart, Arrival date 2 Oct. 1916, Ancestry.com. Border Crossings: From Canada to U.S., 1895-1954 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010. Original data: Records of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, RG 85. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration. National Archives and Records Administration; Washington, D.C.; Manifests of Alien Arrivals at Buffalo, Lewiston, Niagara Falls, and Rochester, New York, 1902-1954; National Archives Microfilm Publication: M1480; Record Group Title: Records of the Immigration and Naturalization Service; Record Group Number: 85.

Ibid., Record for Alexander Stewart, 5 August 1923.



Sunday, October 21, 2012

HOLLAND, MICHIGAN

I thought I would take a break from my ancestors and research someone else’s lines.  My husband, Jeff, has kindly let me “borrow” his Dutch ancestors.  His paternal grandparents lived in Holland, Michigan (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holland,_Michigan), a town known for its Dutch heritage. Jeff’s grandmother was Cordelia Jekel (1892-1965). Cordelia, known as Cora, married Thaddeus Hadden in 1913.

Immigrants Statue, donated by the Dutch province of Drenthe to commemorate Holland’s Sesquicentennial

Holland, Michigan was settled in 1847 by Dutch Calvinist separatists who were escaping persecution in the Netherlands. This group came to Michigan under the leadership of Dr. Albertus van Raalte. If you would like to know more about some of the Dutch migrations to this country, here are some good articles:
  • Robert P. Swierenga, "The Western Michigan Dutch,” Paper presented to the Holland Genealogical Society, Holland, Dec. 11, 2004, Robert P. Swierenga – Publications (http://www.swierenga.com/hgspap1204.html: accessed October 21, 2012).
Jeff did not know much about his grandmother’s family so I had to do a little sleuthing.  After searching Ancestry.com, I discovered that Cora was born in Michigan but her parents Jennie Grevengoed (1862-1946) and John W. Jekel (1862-1940) were born in the Netherlands.   I found a Jennie Jekel , buried 17 September 1946, on a transcribed burial list from the Pilgrim Home Cemetery in Holland, Michigan (1) The 1900 U.S. Census shows Jennie Jakel married to John W. Jakel and living with daughter Cora H. and William F. Also in this household is an Arie Gr*Ed, an 80 year old widowed father-in-law who was born in the Netherlands. (2) The 1910 U.S. Census shows Jennie married to John W. Jekel and having two children: Tora [Cora] and Wilford [William]. (3) Arie is not listed in this Census so he may have died.  Jeff said that he believes Arie’s last name was something like “Gravengood.”  After more searching, I came to the conclusion that the name is Grevengoed.  I found an Arie Grevengoed on the transcribed burial list from the Pilgrim Home Cemetery; his burial date was 6 Jan 1902. (4)
As I found this information I placed it into Family Tree Maker.  Shaky leaves would appear giving me more leads.  The first clue was from the Smith Family Tree. It showed Arie’s name as Arien van Greevengoed born 11 May 1820 in Putten, Gelderland, Netherlands and a death date of 3 Jan 1902 in Holland, Michigan.  The birth and death dates and locations matched my research.  The Smith Family Tree stated that Arie’s father was Hendrik Dirksen vanGrevengoed (1783-1857) and his mother was Steventje Herentje Ariens (1790-1876). (5) As I clicked on each of those names I came up with yet more ancestors. And even more after that. Good clues!!
I continued on to the next shaky leaf. This was from the Grevengoed Family Tree. This too had Arie’s name as Arien van Greevengoed, and he was born in Putten. (6) Numerous ancestors were listed.
The next shaky leaf was the Pijll Family Tree. Again, Arie’s name is Arien van Greevengoed, born in Putten. This family tree gave the name of Arie’s wife as Coendertje Baatje along with a marriage date of 29 Nov 1854 in Nijkerk GLD. (7)
The Ancestry shaky leaves are really helpful.  They are not always accurate, but they can give you fabulous hints for further research.  I've learned quite a bit about Jeff's Dutch ancestors today, and he is pleased that I helped him discover this information.
Here are some pictures from Holland, Michigan, taken a few years ago. 






CITATION SOURCES:
(1) Burial Listing, 09/17/2010, Pilgrim Home Cemetery, City of Holland, Michigan (http://www.cityofholland.com/sites/default/files/fileattachments/Burial%20Listings%209-17-10.pdf: accessed October 21, 2012).
(2) Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004. Year: 1900; Census Place: Holland Ward 3, Ottawa, Michigan; Roll: 738; Page: 13A; Enumeration District: 127; FHL microfilm: 1240738.
(3) Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2006. Year: 1910; Census Place: Holland Ward 3, Ottawa, Michigan; Roll: T624_670; Page: 18A; Enumeration District: 0161; Image: 116; FHL microfilm: 1374683.
(4) Burial Listing, Pilgrim Home Cemetery.
(5) Ancestry.com, Smith Family Tree, Owner sixvanx(http://trees.ancestry.com/tree/23739051/person/1969357457?ssrc=&ftm=1: accessed October 21, 2012).
(6) Ancestry.com, Grevengoed Family Tree, Owner robertguyny64 (http://trees.ancestry.com/tree/25429258/person/1823299922?ssrc=&ftm=1: accessed October 21, 2012).

(7) Ancestry.com, Pijll Family Tree, Owner Eugene van der Pijll (http://trees.ancestry.com/tree/16389757/person/371839642?ssrc=&ftm=1: accessed October 21, 2012.






Wednesday, October 17, 2012

GENEALOGYBANK FINDS BOYDENS IN VERMONT



Today I decided to experiment with Genealogy Bank (www.genealogybank.com).  I’ve tried it in the past and have found that the results vary greatly depending on which state you search.  Results depend also on the name you are searching. Were your ancestors public or private people? Were they active in politics? Club joiners? Did they own a business? Even if your ancestors liked to stay out of the limelight, there are usually marriage and/or death notices to be found.

I did a search in Vermont for the name “Boyden” with a keyword of “Guilford” and got 165 documents. Two hours later I was filled with information about my Boyden line.  Here’s a sampling of what I found.

  • Probate court notices
  • Town events where Boydens were Committee members
  • For sale notices of Boyden businesses
  • Help wanted ads by Boyden business owners
  • Death notices
  • Fascinating human interest stories involving people named Boyden
  • Records of political conventions that Boydens attended
  • Lists of letters at the post office belonging to Boydens
  • Names of the heads of household in Guilford, which included Boyden and a number of my surnames.
  • Reports from the court house containing lists of the composition of juries, which included Boydens and other surnames in my tree.
  • A list of town officers, which included a Boyden.
  • Accidents involving Boydens
  • Hotel arrivals of Boydens and other ancestors
  • Boyden goods sold at a cattle show and fair
  • A list of Revolutionary soldiers buried in Vermont, which included Boydens
  • Marriage notices
  • Nominees for office
  • Court case results


I found the estate notices especially helpful in confirming approximate death dates as well as relationships.  In addition, I now know some of the types of businesses that my ancestors owned as well as some of their occupations.  I also know their political leanings and the names of people they associated with. 

Even if you don’t find an ancestor, old newspaper writing is quite entertaining. The press included many every-day events that would never be published today.

Thanks to GenealogyBank, I now have a vivid picture of the lives of my Boyden ancestors who lived in Guilford, Vermont.  Then, out of curiosity, I did a search for “Cutler” and “Guilford”; I got 263 hits. I think I will save that for another day.




ILLUSTRATIONS BY:

Dover Publications, Inc., Mineola, New York, Full Color Electronic Designs, Full-Color Victorian Vignettes, 2002.

Dover Publications, Inc., Mineola, New York, Full Color Electronic Designs, Full-Color Men and Women Illustrations, 2001.




Monday, October 15, 2012

DISCOVERIES ON THE SHIP FRANCIS



My ninth great grandfather was THOMAS BOYDEN (1613-1682). Tonight I discovered some of the details of his journey to New England using a combination of research on Ancestry.com and the Internet.  Using the Ancestry database “Passenger and Immigration Lists Index,1500s-1900s,” (1) I located his name.  This record gave me an annotation that referenced The Pioneers of Massachusetts by Charles Henry Pope.  Ancestry also had a database for this publication. In the "Pioneers of Massachusetts" database (2), I learned that Thomas Boyden came to this country on the Francis of Ipswich.

When I put the phrase “Francis of Ipswich passenger list” into Google, I got numerous hits.  One of the best search results was entitled “Passengers of the Francis” by the Winthrop Society (3). On this website I learned that the Francis sailed from Ipswich, Suffolk, England in April of 1634 under the guidance of Master John Cutting. The date of record is 12 November 1634. Apparently, the ship arrived safely in Massachusetts Bay although some of the passengers perished during the voyage and others never boarded the ship. Thomas was listed as 21 years of age. No wife is listed.  He gave an oath of allegiance at Ipswich.

On The Olive Tree Genealogy website, I also found a transcription of the passenger list for the Francis (4).  At the end of the list was a note by Robin L. Holden, Sr., web master for “JEFFCO Upstate NY Genealogical Research and the HOLDEN Surname, which declared that the passenger names “Just Houlding”  and “Richard Houlding” were transcribed incorrectly and that the correct names were Richard and Justinian Holden.  Suddenly a bell went off.  The name Holden sounded familiar and, sure enough, I have a RICHARD HOLDEN in my family tree. The passenger list stated that he was 25. If the ship arrived in 1634, he would have been born around 1609—the exact date of the Richard Holden in my tree.

Robin referenced a book entitled The Planters of the Commonwealth in Massachusetts, also an Ancestry.com database. (5) On "The Planters of the Commonwealth in Massachusetts, 1620-1640" database, I learned that Richard Holden was from Lindsey, the County of Suffolk, and that he arrived in 1634. My Richard Holden was also from Lindsey.

So it appears that I may have had at least two passengers on this ship.  As always, further research is necessary, but it was an exciting night!



ILLUSTRATIONS BY:

Dover Publications, Inc., Mineola, New York, Electronic Clip Art, Old-Fashioned Nautical Illustrations, 2002.

CITATION SOURCES:

(1) Gale Research. "Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, 1500s-1900s" [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc, 2010. Original data: Filby, P. William, ed. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, 1500s-1900s. Farmington Hills, MI, USA: Gale Research, 2010. (http://search.ancestry.com: accessed October 15, 2012), entry for Thomas Boyden.

(2) "The Pioneers of Massachusetts (1620-1650)" database, (http://search.ancestry.com: accessed October 15, 2012), entry for Boyden, citing The Pioneers of Massachusetts, a Descriptive List, Drawn from the Records of the Colonies, Towns and Churches, and Other Contemporaneous Documents by Charles Henry Pope, Boston, Massachusetts, Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1900, reprinted Baltimore, Maryland, Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1998, p. 61.

(3) “Passengers of the Francis” by the Winthrop Society (http://www.winthropsociety.com/ships/francis.htm: accessed October 15, 2012).

(4) "The Francis 1634 England to New England," The Olive Tree Genealogy, 2012 (http://www.olivetreegenealogy.com/ships/francis1634.shtml: accessed October 15, 2012).

(5) "The Planters of the Commonwealth in Massachusetts, 1620-1640" database, (http://search.ancestry.com: accessed October 15, 2012), entries for Richard Holden and Justinian Holden, citing The Planters of the Commonwealth , Part I, A Study of Emigration to New England In Colonial Times, p. 122.



Sunday, October 14, 2012

NICKNAMES AND GENEALOGY



My 2nd great grandfather’s name was THOMAS BRASHEAR. However, if you do a search for “Thomas Brashear” in Perry County, Tennessee on Ancestry.com, you will not always find him. In the 1860, 1870 and 1880 U.S. Censuses he is listed as T.M. Brashear. There are a number of other people named Thomas Brashear in that time period, but they are not the right one for my tree.  It appears that Southern men liked to go by their initials. J.R. Ewing, the character in the television show “Dallas,” comes to mind. This is an example of why nicknames are so important.  

I knew my aunt ELIZABETH TAYLOR WRATTEN as “Aunt Betty.”   She did not like the name Elizabeth. If you search for “Elizabeth Taylor” in Oneida County, New York, on Ancestry.com, you will find others by that name who are not my aunt. If you search for “Betty Taylor" you will find her in the 1930 and 1940 U.S. Censuses.  Even her gravestone is inscribed “Betty Taylor Wratten.”

Nicknames can be tricky. For example, did you know that Nancy is a nickname for Ann, that Mattie is a nickname for Martha and that Lig is a nickname for Elijah? (1) If you have an ancestor named Helen, she could have been called Nell, Nellie, Elly, Elsie or Lena. (2)

So when you have an ancestor who is hard to find, try searching for variants of the name.  Here are some links that will give you some ideas:

  • “A Listing of Some 18th and 19th Century American Nicknames,” History and Genealogy Unit, Connecticut State Library, 2012 (http://www.cslib.org/nickname.htm: accessed October 14, 2012).


If you want to purchase a book on this topic, I recommend:


Being aware of nicknames can mean the difference between a brick wall and a leafy family tree.



ILLUSTRATIONS BY:

Dover Publications, Inc., Mineloa, New York, Electronic Clip Art, Old-Fashioned Silhouettes, 2001.

Dover Publications, Inc., Mineola, New York, Electronic Clip Art, Trees & Leaves, 2004.

SOURCE CITATIONS:

(1) “A Listing of Some 18th and 19th Century American Nicknames,” History and Genealogy Unit, Connecticut State Library, 2012 (http://www.cslib.org/nickname.htm: accessed October 14, 2012).

(2) Ibid.


Wednesday, October 10, 2012

GENEALOGY TRAIN WRECK


I’ve been on a fast moving train lately. The train visited the New England Historical Society, the Allen County Public Library and countless cemeteries. I’ve been accumulating new genealogy books and magazines, new CDs about my surnames and many eBay genealogical “finds.” I’ve been downloading webinars daily.  I’ve had my DNA tested and have contacted countless DNA hits. I am even listening to the book Mayflower by Nathaniel Philbrick (http://www.amazon.com/Mayflower-Story-Courage-Community-War/dp/0143111973) on my way to and from work. Talk about information overload. The paper pile has risen to an all-time high. Today I realized that the train must slow down before it crashes and burns.  That train, of course, is me.



And so today I am filing the many sheets of paper into their appropriate surname binders while listening to the fine webinars from the Family Tree University Virtual Conference from last month.  I am not even going to add a bunch of links and footnotes to this post. Sometimes you have to step back and take a breath.  I know that if I carefully examine all the material I have amassed I will start to see a clearer picture of my ancestors.

The hourglass of time does not stop, but sometimes you just have to let the sand flow and not try to outrun it. 

ILLUSTRATION BY:

Dover Publications, Inc., Mineola, New York, Electronic Clip Art, Advertising Cuts of the 20s and 30s, 2003.

Friday, October 5, 2012

DAUGHTERS OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION

The Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) is a "nonprofit, nonpolitical volunteer woman's service organization" that was founded in 1890. Its goal is to promote historic preservation, education and patriotism. (1) It is open to "any woman 18 years or older who can prove lineal, bloodline descent from an ancestor who aided in achieving American independence." (2) Documentation must be provided for each statement of birth, marriage and death. The Revolutionary War service of her Patriot ancestor must also be produced. 

I have always wanted to join DAR as I believe I have at least one ancestor who served in the American Revolution. It is on my very long "to do" list. 

One of the things I noticed when I visited Greenwood Cemetery in Birmingham, Michigan, was a gravestone with a DAR insignia marker. I had never seen one before. 




Of course, I had to research this topic. Apparently, there is a special procedure that must be followed in order for a grave to have a marker, and the markers must be officially approved. Here are some websites I found should you want to know more about this custom. 

  • Daughters of the American Revolution National Society, Frequently Asked Questions, 2005, National Society Daughters of the American Revolution (http://www.dar.org/natsociety/faq.cfm#HG6: accessed October 5, 2012).

I was curious about Rosemary Thurber Smith, the woman who had this marker, so I looked her up on Google. If I am correct, Rosemary Thurber was an 
artist. See AskART: The Artists' Bluebook, Worldwide Edition, 2000-2012 (http://www.askart.com/askart/t/rosemary_thurber/rosemary_thurber.aspx: accessed October 5, 2012).






ILLUSTRATION FROM:

Dover Publications, Inc., Mineola, New York, Electronic Clip Art, "Old-Fashioned Silhouettes, 2001.


CITATION SOURCES:

(1) "What is DAR?" "Become a Member," Daughters of the American Revolution National Society, 2005, National Society Daughters of the American Revolution (http://www.dar.org/natsociety/become_member_whatis.cfm: accessed October 5, 2012). 

(2) "How Do I Join the DAR?" "Become a Member," Daughters of the American Revolution National Society, 2005, National Society Daughters of the American Revolution (www.dar.org/natsociety/become_member_how.cfm: accessed October 5, 2012).


Wednesday, October 3, 2012

SMITHS AND TAYLORS, OH MY!


ecause common surnames are hard to trace, I have purposely avoided tracing my Taylor ancestor (HARRIET TAYLOR) who married someone named Henry Smith. According to the wonderful genealogy the Taylor family prepared back in 1933 (1), Harriet and Henry had several children. Today I got courageous and gave this family a try.

It is not uncommon in family genealogies to find occasional errors and missing information.  My Taylor genealogy indicates that one of Henry and Harriet’s children, William Smith, married a Sarah Traflet. This name was unique so I thought it would help me narrow down my William Smith.  When you are searching for ancestors with common names, it is helpful to look for associates of this person with unusual names.  Unfortunately, Traflet did not produce anything useful when I searched for it on the Internet. After fooling around with the spelling, I realized that the name was actually Trafelet.  When I put “Sarah Trafelet Smith” into Google I came up with a Find A Grave record (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=93575352) (2) that was indeed my Sarah, and it was loaded with information about her husband, children, grandchildren, brothers and sisters.  Sarah is buried at the Rose Hill Cemetery in Spartansburg, Pennsylvania, along with a number of her children (my second cousins 2X removed):

William Jacob Smith (1879 - 1967)
Eugene Gerald Smith (1884 - 1973)
Elizabeth M Smith Bennett (1887 - 1964)
Lydia I Smith Engstrom (1892 - 1975)

Citation (3)




As I clicked on each link on the Findagrave site, I came to more and more ancestors. I now have several new names and dates to add to my family tree. That’s what you call a productive day in genealogy land.

I love exploring the resources of different states, so I am elated that I have several Pennsylvania ancestors to research. Also, I just might have to do a field trip there!

What have I learned today?
  • Don’t be afraid of common surnames!
  • When searching, use unique names that might be associated with your common surname ancestor.
  • Be aware that names are spelled in many ways, including misspellings.
  • Use family genealogies as a guide but not the letter of law.
  • You have to love Find A Grave (www.findagrave.com)!



ILLUSTRATIONS FROM:

Dover Publications, Inc., Mineola, New York, Electronic Clip Art, 1200 Ornamental Letters, 2007.

Dover Publications, Inc., Mineola, New York, Electronic Clip, Art, Full-Color Old-Time Vignettes, 2002.

Dover Publications, Inc., Mineola, New York, Electronic Clip Art, 1268 Old-Time Cuts and Ornaments, 2006.

CITATION SOURCES

(1) Genealogy of the John Taylor Family, compiled by Bayard Taylor, Clinton, New York, August 25, 1933.

(2) Find A Grave.com, Memorial 93575352 (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=93575352: accessed October 3, 2012), memorial for Sarah Trafelet Smith (1855-1918), Spartansburg, Pennsylvania.

(3) Ibid.

Monday, October 1, 2012

JUMPING OUT OF THE RUT AND FINDING EBER


don’t know about you, but I often get stuck searching the same surname or state while neglecting many other perfectly fine surnames and states. So today I decided I would get out of the rut, live on the wild side and venture into a new state.  Vermont came to mind so I thought I would give it a try.  I have no shortage of surnames in this state: Barber, Boyden, Cutler, Haynes, Myers, Nichols and Roberts.

I started with a Google search for “Vermont genealogy” and had a fabulous time checking out the genealogy societies, archives and museums. Then I decided to narrow my search down to Windham County and found a website called “Welcome to Windham County Vermont Local History and Genealogy” (http://www.usgennet.org/usa/vt/county/windham/index.html). I clicked on Vital Records, and here I found a page of links. Under Church Records, I found a link to “Marriages 1814-1839 Performed by missionaries of the Baptist Church In West Vermont and Central New York” (http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~nyononda/CHURCH/firstbaptistchurchsyr.html). 

So here I was back again in Central New York. I did a quick scan of the names and whose baptism do you think I found? EBER CRANDALL! If you have been following my blog, you will know that Eber has been a real pain because there appear to be countless not-the-right Ebers.  Of course, this Eber’s baptism did not correspond with the Eber I had been looking for either. I was struck by the irony of the situation. Here I was trying to break out of a rut and explore a new state and new surnames and I get thrown back into New York with Eber.



It reminds me of the phase "Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you are going to get."

ILLUSTRATIONS BY:

Dover Publications, Inc., Mineola, New York, Electronic Clip Art, 1200 Ornamental Letters, 2007.

Dover Publications, Inc., Mineola, New York, Electronic Clip Art, Full-Color Old-Time Vignettes, 2002.

CITATION SOURCES:

Forrest Gump. Dir. Robert Zemeckis. Perf. Tom Hanks, Robin Wright, and Gary Sinise. 1994. Film.