Sunday, March 1, 2015

CHURCH RECORD SUNDAY–Gordon & Dorothy Hall

HALL_Gordon_cert of church membership_Rolando methodist_25 Mar HALL_Dorothy_cert of church membership_Rolando methodist_25 Mar

Dorothy & Gordon Hall were my husband’s parents.  They joined the Rolando Methodist Church in San Diego, California on 25 May 1956, “publicly confessing Jesus Christ as Lord & Saviour.”  Signed by George M. Hayle, Pastor

HALL_Ron with his parents_NiagraFalls_1955_cropped
Dorothy & Gordon Hall with their son, Ron in Niagara Falls - 1955

Happy hunting,
A_michigan girl
Copyright ©  2010-2015   Diane Gould Hall

Saturday, February 28, 2015


Dorothys box - outside  Dorothys box - open
Yesterday I noticed that I did not have a signature saved for my husband’s father, Gordon Charles Hall.  Gathering the signatures of ancestors is one of my favorite things to do.  I wrote a post about them, what they mean and where to find them back in December 2013.
Here is the link to that post Signatures & Handwriting - What they tell us

I knew that I had a box of “important papers” from my husband’s mother, Dorothy.  I’ve gone through the box before.  She loved to save things and was very neat and organized about it.  Her sister, Delphine “Honey” Long, was the same way.  Had I looked at every piece of paper in the box?  I didn't think so.  I retrieved the box from it’s place in the office closet.

  HALL_Dorothy_her metal box from Buffalo
As I began to look for a piece of paper that would contain my father-in-law’s signature, I came across new and revealing items.
TIP:  Maybe it’s just me.  But, when I find a box of “goodies” that has belonged to one of our family members I get pretty excited.  It’s like you can’t look at everything fast enough and you can’t take it all in.  Maybe you only go through some of it and then you get interrupted, distracted or have to take care of everyday life things.  Whatever the reason, ALWAYS go back to these boxes and make sure you’ve properly inventoried every item.  By inventory, I mean scanned and saved to your computer and added to your software database.

Among the many envelopes in Dorothy’s box was one from San Diego Federal Savings & Loan with this written on it – “all papers for 4634 67th including trust deed & title insurance.”  The envelope was postmarked 31 Mar 1959 and addressed to Mr. and Mrs. Gordon C. Hall.
Here is a photo of it.

HALL_Dorothy_evelope from SD Federal

As I went through this one envelope, I did find Gordon Hall’s signature.  While I was at it, I also found Dorothy’s.  Realizing I hadn’t saved her signature yet, I scanned, cropped, saved and added them to my Legacy database.
HALL_Gordon_signature on installment note_Feb 1958_SanDiegoCalifornia HALL_Dorothy_signature on installment note_Feb 1958_SanDiegoCalifornia

Then I began to look inside other envelopes in the box.  I found Gordon Hall’s dog tags from World War II and other important papers relating to his service to our country.  I sat down with my husband and we looked at several items.  He reminisced about his parents and we smiled at some of Dorothy’s entries in her date books.  I will share more about those in another post.

Today I plan to continue to go through this box and take care of what I started months ago, when I first located this box while cleaning out the office closet.  Life does have a way of distracting us.  But, sometimes, it’s twice the fun when you go back and find treasures you didn’t find the first time.
Office closet Clean Out & Organization Project
Office Closet Clean Out - The Finished Project

Happy hunting,
A_michigan girl
Copyright ©  2010-2015   Diane Gould Hall

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

TUESDAY’S TIP–Photo repair and restoration

BRIGHT_Daisy_old faded picture_emailed from Lynn Goodbody
GGrandmaThorpeGould & her sons-circa 1920
MILNE_Joseph & Irene with their mother_circa 1894
We all have them.  Photographs needing restoration that have been passed down from our parents, grandparents or even further back.  In some cases we may have more current photos that need repair.

I have used a professional restoration service, a family member who has talents and myself, in order to correct/fix these photos.

For the very simple ones my own talents with Microsoft Office 2010 Photo Editor work fine.  I even use Paint and Photo Shop Elements for some repairs.

However, when it comes to the tough jobs I have to ask for help.
I used a professional service here in San Diego and was extremely happy with the results.  This is an owner operated business called Hartworks Photo Restoration & Graphic Design.  Please click on the link to be taken to his site at

Here are examples of his work:

MILNE_Andrew C_portrait photo scanned by me from original
My great grandfather Andrew C. Milne who died in 1892
MILNE_Andrew C_5 x 7 restored portrait
MILNE_4 generations of women_BOWDEN_HUNTER_BOGGS & MILNE_original photo
A four generation photo from 1907
1907-MILNE_Florence nee BOWDEN with her mother Florence HUNTER_grandmother Susan BOGGS & daughter Dorothy MILNE_restored photo
Standing - my great grandmother Florence Hunter, my grandmother, Florence Bowden.  Sitting is my great great grandmother Susan C. Boggs and my Aunt Dorothy I. Milne
GILLESPIE_Susan_tin type pic of her age 16_scanned by me
My great grandmother Susan Gillespie in the 1870's
GILLESPIE_Susan_portrait photo_age 16_restored photo
To say I was pleased goes without saying.  These are old photos and the third is a tintype.  These are direct line ancestors and having these photographs of them is wonderful.  Being able to actually see the people in the photographs, even better.

The other person I have asked to help me with photographs is my brother, John.  He does not restore photos professionally, but he is quite good at it and he enjoys it.
Here is an example of one he did just this past week for me.  I needed to include this photograph in my recent Amanuensis Monday blog post and he really helped me out.  Thanks John!

MacNICHOL_Allan_headshot cropped from newspaper article
My grand aunt's husband, Allan E. McNichol
MacNICHOL_Allan_headshot cropped from newspaper article_fixed & cropped

Quite an improvement.

Please tell me about any of your experiences with photo restoration.
MYSTERY MONDAY - Unidentified Family Photos
TUESDAY'S TIP - Dragging & Dropping Pictures into Legacy 8 Media Gallery

Disclaimer:  I have no affiliation with, nor get any remuneration from Hartworks Photo Restoration & Graphic Design.  I make no claims and give no guarantee on the quality of work you may receive.  I claim no responsibility for the outcome of any services rendered by Hartworks.
Happy hunting,
A_michigan girl
Copyright ©  2010-2015   Diane Gould Hall

Monday, February 23, 2015


What does Amanuensis mean anyway?
To put it simply, it means a “person employed to write what another dictates or copy what has been written by another.”

As many of you know from reading previous posts on my blog, my maternal grandmother left a spiral notebook, which I call her journal.  In it she left recipes, a list of 183 family members and their birth dates and some death dates, a list of anniversaries and other various lists or things that were important to her.  It’s a treasure that I cherish.

Today I’m going to be transcribing her list of names & dates from December.  I’m sad to come to the end of my grandmother’s journal posts for birth and death dates.  However, there is much more in her journal and I will keep on posting other transcriptions. 

For the previous posts transcribing January through October, please click on these links.
Amanuensis Monday - Transcribing my grandmother's journal - January
Amanuensis Monday - Transcribing my grandmother's journal – February
Amanuensis Monday - Transcribing my grandmother's journal – March
Amanuensis Monday - Transcribing my grandmother's journal – April
Amanuensis Monday - Transcribing my grandmother's journal – May
Amanuensis Monday - Transcribing my grandmother's journal – June
Amaneunsis Monday - Transcribing my grandmother's journal – July
Amanuensis Monday - Transcribing my grandmother's journal – August
Amanuensis Monday - Transcribing my grandmother's journal – September 
Amanuensis Monday - Transcribing my grandmother's journal – October

Here is the page from her journal.  This journal was begun when my grandmother, Florence L. Bowden, married my grandfather, Joseph A. Milne, in 1906.  She was just 18 years old at the time.  This journal is very old and falling apart.  I have digitized all the pages and have the original stored in a safe, archival box.

Here is my transcription of this page, with some annotations.  I have indicated the family connection in brackets, even thought it’s not part of the document.  I thought you’d like to know who these people are to me.  And, for any cousins out there reading this, maybe you’ll find it helpful.

I’ve added whatever photos I have of the family members named in this list. (See below)


NANCY     Dec 8  [2nd cousin]
KATHLEEN   Dec 12 [3rd cousin]
KATHLEEN  Dec 15  Duplicate name
LYDA TUFTS SEIGLE  Dec 14  ‘88  [wife of 1st cousin twice removed]
ED HOGUE  Dec 16  ‘06  died Sep 11  ‘73  [husband of 1st cousin once removed]
ALLAN MACNICHOL  Dec 25  ‘91  died July 4  ‘61?  [husband of grand aunt]
*  Nelson’s girl  BREHMER  Dec 18  ‘31 
CORNELIA KING   Dec 7  ‘14  [2nd cousin once removed]
NORMAN GOULD   Dec 31  ‘12 [my Dad]
JOAN ESTHER MILNE  Dec 20  ‘15  [my maternal aunt]
*  PAUL PLATZ  Dec 20  ‘19 
JAMES MORRISON  Dec 19   Aug 27  ‘58 [aunt’s husband’s father]
EDNA MORRISON  Dec 28   Mar 1  ;67  [aunt’s husband’s mother]
*   GRACE SEARLS  Dec 23  ‘90  Dec 12, 1960
NORMAN HAROLD GOULD  Dec 31  ‘12  Duplicate
*  SYLVIA PASKE  DEC 31  ‘15 
CHAS.  KING  Dec 31  ‘87 [1st cousin twice removed]

That’s a total of 19 names.  I am very fortunate to have this kind of list from my grandmother.
I have placed an asterisk * next to the names I have not yet connected to our family.
FIVE of the names are still waiting for me to find their connections.  I have them in my Legacy database as unlinked individuals.  Were they friends of my grandmother & grandfather, neighbors, or are they all family?  Two of the names appear to be duplicates and one name is crossed out.

In the lists from the other 11 months of the year, there are also names that aren’t yet connected.  I keep looking from time to time and link them as I identify them.

This month I have photographs of five of the people on the list.

Left to right they are, Lyda Tufts Seigle, Allan McNichol, Joan Milne Morrison and Chas. King

   TUFTS_Lida_headshot cropped from pic of her and Arthur_1916   MacNICHOL_Allan_headshot cropped from newspaper article_fixed & cropped  Milne_Joan_circa unknown  
And the fifth person is my Dad.  I have many photos of him through the years.  Here are a few of them.
Dad with his mother on the steps_circa 1914
My Dad with his mother, Marie - 1914
Gould Family around dining table_probably 1924
The Gould family - 1924
H. Norman Gould-1933-cropped
Dad in 1933 - age 21
GOULD_Patricia & Harry_Norman_bringing Diane home from hospital_Mar 1950_DetroitWayneMichigan
My parents bringing me home
GOULD_Norm_Marie_Diane & Norm II_on the day we left Pompano_May 1965_PomBchFlorida_cropped
Dad, his mother, me & my brother Norm - 1965
GOULD_H Norman with his daught Norlaine & Virginia at airport_1981_DetroitMichigan
Dad reunites with his daughters Norlaine & Virginia - 1981
And here’s my favorite picture of me and my Dad on my birthday in 1981.
GOULD_Diane with her Dad Harry Norman Gould on her birthday in 1981
Happy hunting,
A_michigan girl

Copyright ©  2010-2015   Diane Gould Hall

Saturday, February 21, 2015


FINK_Henry & Freada_2-13-1944_edited
Henry A. Fink & his wife Freada Doller Fink - early 1950's



The name Fink comes from my husband’s side of the family.  His mother’s maiden name was Fink.  I’ve been fortunate to have known many of the Fink family members during our marriage.  We’ve lost quite a few of them in recent years, but their memory lives on in children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

This has been a difficult family to trace.  A cousin (whom we recently lost) was also doing family research and had difficulty tracking down early Fink records.  I was able to interview my husband’s Aunt, Delphine Irene “Honey” Fink Long (1919-2011) and she did provide me with some information.   Here is what I know up to this point. 
George August Fink was born about 1863, possibly in New York, died between 1892 and 1900.  Married Barbara Ludwig 16 Nov 1892 in Buffalo, Erie, New York.  Barbara was born 13 Jan 1863 in Germany and died 5 Jul 1935 in Buffalo, Erie, New York.  George and Barbara had one child, their son, Henry August Fink, born 14 Jan 1893 in Buffalo, Erie, New York, died 17 Jan 1954 in San Diego, San Diego County, California.  Henry married Freada Emma Doller on 8 Oct 1911 in Fort Erie, Welland, Ontario, Canada.  Freada was born 24 Aug 1895 in Buffao, Erie, New York and died 1 Mar 1981 in San Diego, San Diego County, California.

 (Click on any image to enlarge it)
FINK_Henry August_birth record_14 Jan 1954_BuffaloErieNew York
Birth record for baby Fink, later named Henry August Fink
DOLLER_Meta Freada_birth record_24 Aug 1895_BuffaloErieNew York_enhanced & made darker
Birth record for Meta Freda Doller (later known as Freada Emma Meta Doller Fink)
Marriage record for Henry Fink & Freada Doller 8 Oct 1911 in Fort Erie, Welland, Ontario, Canada
Henry & Freada grew up in Buffalo, New York.  In 1935 they moved their family (which included their four children), to San Diego, California.

Here is Freada as a young girl & with her grandson, Ron.
FINK_Freada_nee Dollar-1901-6 yrs old   FINK_Freada as a young girl with bow in hair_New York   Freada & Ron-1951
Their children were:

Elwood Reynolds Fink 1912-1997, married Esther May Shurgour 1915-2003
Dorothy Beatrice Fink 1913-1993, married first Floyd O. “Ted” Brown and second Gordon Charles Hall 1917-1966.  Dorothy & Gordon are my husband’s parents.
Willard Henry A. Fink 1916-2008, married Mary Charlotte Horn 1920-2003
Delphine Irene “Honey” Fink 1919-2011, married Marion Nelson “Bud” Long 1914-2005

This is the Fink home on Shannon Drive in San Diego, California.

Henry and his sons and daughters had worked at Consolidated back in Buffalo, New York and transferred to San Diego.  They were the largest family group to work at the General Dynamics Plant in San Diego. 
Their was an article, including a group photo, of them in the San Diego Union Tribune newspaper. 

Left to right in this photo are: Floyd “Ted” Brown (husband of Dorothy Fink), unknown male, Willard Fink, Elwood “Al” Fink, Dorothy Fink, Delphine “Honey” Fink and their Dad, Henry August Fink.

FINK Family & Floyd BROWN_in photo when they all worked at General Dynamics_circa 1940s_San Diego CA

Henry & Freada Fink are buried at Mt. Hope Cemetery here in San Diego.  You can find their memorials here on FindAGrave #31820256 and #31820183.  Each of their children are linked to their memorials.

There is so much more that I want to learn about the Fink family.  I need to learn who George Fink and his wife, Barbara Ludwig’s parents were.  When did Barbara come over to the United States from Germany?  So many questions.  Maybe I’ll get some answers this spring when I make a trip to the Family History Library in Salt Lake City?

If you think you might be related, even remotely, to anyone mentioned in this blog, please contact me!

Happy hunting,
Copyright ©  2010-2015   Diane Gould Hall

Monday, February 16, 2015

TOMBSTONE TUESDAY–Nathaniel Cutler (1659–1714)

Copy of CUTLER_Nathaniel_headstone_1659-1714_OldBuringGround_WakefieldMiddlesexMassachusetts_enhanced
Transcription of headstone: “Here lyes the body of Mr. Nathaniel Cutler, Aged 55 years and 2 months; who deceased June the 7th, 1714, Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord.”
Nathaniel Cutler is the first husband of my husband’s 6th great grandmother, Elizabeth Underwood.  This headstone is the second oldest headstone that I have a photograph of, for our family.  He is buried at the Old Burying Ground, Wakefield, Middlesex, Massachusetts.

Here is a record of his birth.

Massachusetts, Births and Christenings, 1639-1915
Name:     Nathanoll Cutler
Gender:   Male
Birth Date:   12 Mar 1659
Birthplace:   Reading, Middlesex, Massachusetts
Father's Name:     Nathanoll Cutler
Indexing Project (Batch) Number: I04483-8 , System Origin: Massachusetts-EASy , GS Film number: 890236

Nathaniel Cutler married Elizabeth Underwood on 24 May 1700 in Reading, Middlesex, Massachusetts.

Here is a record of their marriage from Massachusetts.

Massachusetts, Marriages, 1633-1850
Name:    Nathaniell Cutler
Gender:    Male
Spouse:    Elizabeth Underwood
Marriage Date:    24 May 1700
City:    Reading
County:    Middlesex
Source:    Family History Library, Salt Lake City, UT, Film # 0890236.

A record of their marriage can also be found in New England Marriages prior to 1700 by Clarence Almon Torrey, Volume 1, page 413.  Here is a transcription of the record.

“CUTLER, Nathaniel & 1/wf Elizabeth UNDERWOOD; 23 May 1700, 24 May; Reading {Cutler 325; Underwood 1:6; Goodrich 101; R. Wheeler 118; Tingley-Meyers 270; Reg 58:319}” 

This would make Nathaniel 41 yrs. old at the time of their marriage.  It seems likely that he had at least one other wife prior to Elizabeth, but I have not located any records for another marriage, yet.  Further research needs to be conducted.

I have no records for children born to Nathaniel & Elizabeth, again, seemingly unlikely since they were together 14 years prior to his death.  Elizabeth went on to marry the direct ancestor of my husband, Theophilus Clark(e) on 24 Feb 1718 in Reading, Massachusetts.  She and Theophilus had at least 3 children together.

Right now, that is the extent of what I know of Nathaniel Cutler.  I have found a few other records that may name his parents, but have not verified those sources yet.  I’m certain there must be more information out there as Massachusetts has some excellent records available.

You can find Nathaniel’s memorial at #21241718.

If you think you might be related, even remotely, to anyone mentioned in this blog, please contact me!

Happy Hunting,
Michigan Girl

Copyright ©  2010-2015   Diane Gould Hall

Thursday, February 12, 2015


picture of lady on bed with tb_fixed
Courtesy of public domain, painting by Cristobal Rojas

It was Tuberculosis.  Also known for many years as consumption, phthisis, pulmonalis and the wasting disease.

There was a program that recently aired on PBS called “The Forgotten Plague.” You can go to this link and scroll down to watch this show online.  It also may be repeating on your local PBS station.

I watched this episode because I knew that we had family members who had died of this disease.  I knew for sure that my own maternal great grandfather, Andrew Charles Milne, died of it at age 36 and that my husband’s paternal great grandfather, Ellmer E. Bright, had died of it at age 30. Both men died in the late 1800’s.
There was no cure for this horrible disease until 1946 when the antibiotic streptomycin was discovered.  Until then people suffered for years and sometimes decades, or died quite quickly.
The Mayo Clinic gives this definition of Tuberculosis
“Tuberculosis (TB) is a potentially serious infectious disease that mainly affects your lungs. The bacteria that cause tuberculosis are spread from one person to another through tiny droplets released into the air via coughs and sneezes.
Once rare in developed countries, tuberculosis infections began increasing in 1985, partly because of the emergence of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. HIV weakens a person's immune system so it can't fight the TB germs. In the United States, because of stronger control programs, tuberculosis began to decrease again in 1993, but remains a concern.
Many strains of tuberculosis resist the drugs most used to treat the disease. People with active tuberculosis must take several types of medications for many months to eradicate the infection and prevent development of antibiotic resistance.”

Another definition can be found on Wikipedia at this link:

There has been a recent resurgence of this disease throughout the world and some strains are becoming resistant to treatment.

I wondered how many people in our family, that I was aware of, had died of this disease?
I ran a report in Legacy 8 for “cause of death” equal to “tuberculosis” or “consumption” or “phthisis.”  I would have listed the cause of death based on whatever record I located, so I knew it could be any of those words.

The report produced 12 names from my database.  I’m certain many more of our family must have died of this disease, since it effected so many worldwide.

However, here is the list based on the information I currently have. Click on the image to enlarge it.

Those who died of tuberculosis with death date

The earliest death on this list was 1874 and the latest was 1918.

Who in your family died of this disease?


If you think you might be related, even remotely, to anyone mentioned in this blog, please contact me!
Michigan Girl

Copyright ©  2010-2015   Diane Gould Hall