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Showing posts from September, 2016

Mexican War Soldiers - A Project You Can Help With

Looking for a way to give back to the genealogical community?  An awesome preservation indexing project has begun that may be of interest to you.
The U.S. National Park Service's Palo Alto Battlefield National Historical Park partnered last month with the Federation of Genealogical Societies for the purpose of developing a database of  individuals who served in the U.S.-Mexican War. The project will be ongoing - after the estimated 130,000 soldiers are entered to a searchable database, military unit information and related documents will be scanned and added. You can help - just email Patricia Rand at projects@fgs.org.

The Adoption Trend

In the past six months I've been approached by two clients who had adoption inquiries.  I used to be contacted by folks who were adopted and were searching for their birth parents but lately, I've noticed a different trend.
The first individual discovered she was adopted while she was at college.  Her assigned roommate swore she knew someone back home that looked identical to her.  This was before Facebook and email so seeing a picture or contacting the "twin" had to wait. In the spring of her freshman year the client visited the roommate's home and upon entering, roommate's family remarked about the resemblance.  Unfortunately, the client wasn't able to meet this "twin" because the "twin" was out of town as it was her spring break, too.  Everywhere the client went that week she encountered people who called her by the "twin's" name.  Finally, someone showed her a picture and indeed, there was a striking resemblance.  A f…

Citation Dilemma - Attributing Parent Marriage Info on a Child's Ancestry Page

About a month ago I was contacted by an Ancestry user who inquired the following:  "How could George Mitchell Long marry Sarah Ford in 1807 in Tennessee when he wasn't born until 1849?"
Excellent question!  I went to my tree and checked the birth and death dates for the couple and their child and didn't see that I had an error so I suspected my tree was confused with another; that was my reply.
Yesterday, I received a more detailed response which brings up an excellent point.  Under sources, I had saved for George Mitchell Long (Jr.) his parents' marriage record.  It does not show under Facts, of course, since the marriage took place before George Jr. was born. The record does not show Jr. or Sr. either since the Sr. hadn't yet had a son so there was no Jr. at the time of the marriage. 
Why did I have the parents info on the son's page?  I put the record there so when I write kinship determinations I can pull everything from one page.  I can understand how t…

A New Way to Identify Name Variations

I was reading the article Guild of One-Name Studies Is Now Available at FamilySearch.org in The Genealogy News recently and thought I'd  check out the database on Familysearch.  On a few lines, I trace everyone who has that name in the US in an attempt to make a connection across the pond.  Stop and read the article and then come back to my blog.
If you followed the articles link to Familysearch, (added here in case you didn't), and you enter a surname in the search field, you probably were disappointed.  I know I was!  I first added HARBAUGH and got links to everything but Guild Of One-Name Studies.  I know family historians, some quite renown, have traced the name back to a HARBO who was a court scribe in the 1200's in Denmark.  I expected to find that and more but all I got were records of Harbaughs.
I then typed in LEININGER and got lots of IGI records but nothing for the Guild of One-Name Studies.
Then it hit me!  On the left hand side, I should have scrolled down an…

Researching at the National Archives

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My two most favorite locations to research are the Family History Library in Salt Lake City and the National Archives (NARA) in DC.  Actually, NARA is by far the archive that I hold dearest to my heart as it's the place where I am able to hold in my hands documents that my ancestors held years before.  It's a connection like no other!
It was my final day in the Capitol and as I was headed to the airport in late afternoon, I had with my my suitcase.  My sister-in-law had dropped me off at the commuter station close to her home at 9 AM and it was a straight line to the archive.
Took this pic as I came up the steps from the train:
The building isn't crooked - I was after being on the road for several days!
This view is of the researcher's entrance - it's around the side of the building from where the public enter to view the exhibits.  Think National Treasure's entrance.
Going through security was not a problem and the guards pleasantly directed me to the locker …

Researching at the Daughters of the American Revolution Library

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Recently I had the opportunity to research at the Daughter's of the American Revolution (DAR) Library in Washington, DC.  I was attending an educational conference and at its conclusion, had an afternoon free so a colleague who is a DAR and I decided to join forces on a research trip.
Since we didn't have much time we took a cab from our hotel.  There had been a wicked storm the prior evening so there were tree limbs littering the street and work crews trying to open closed roads. The taxi driver got us as close as possible due to this situation.

I had already checked out of the hotel so I had my suitcase with me when I arrived.  I know the DAR has gotten a lot of  flack over the years for some of their policies but I must say that these were the nicest people I had met in DC on this trip so far.  The guard said to put my suitcase in a corner and he'd watch it for me.  We got a visitor's sticker and were directed to the library.
My colleague and I split up and I had t…

Researching at the Library of Congress

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I had always wanted to go on the other side - the nontourist side - of the Library of Congress to research.  On a Saturday afternoon in July I parked my rental car in a great (well, not really, more about that later) spot behind the Madison Building.  The library is housed in more than one building so go online to check out their holdings and where they are located before you visit.
Although the purpose of the library is to be used by Congress, adult researchers may access the holdings by obtaining a Reader Card.  You can complete most of the information online ahead of your trip to save time - just follow this Pre Register link.
Be forwarned that children may not obtain entry to the holdings.  A high school student might but there is a process involved so make sure you follow the directions and have secured the necessary paperwork.  Gotta love the government!
After going through security I was directed to the left hallway by the guards to obtain my reader's card.  I presented my …

Making the Most of Your Research Trip - Part 8 - Last of a Series

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It was the dawning of my last day of my research trip to Pennsylvania and was hoping for a miracle to find the burial location with a date for my husband's 3 x's great grandfather.  I also wanted to confirm church records of where another of his 3 x's great grandfather's was buried in a second cemetery.  The cemetery had no record of that burial but it was listed in church records.
After a quick breakfast and checking out of the hotel I was on to Antietam Cemetery.  I drove the rental car as close to the family plots as possible.  I hadn't mixed the bleach in the water to clean the stones as per the Reverend's instructions as I was afraid I'd spill it in the car and wreck the carpeting.  The Walmart in Waynesboro carries bleach tablets.  We don't have those in my Walmart!  They were perfect as I only had to pop one in the spray bottle and then add water.  No worries about spilling a bottle of bleach.
Since it wasn't yet 8 AM the dew was still cover…