Monday, December 31, 2012


Harry Norman Gould, son of Harry Whipple Gould & Marie Lindsay
Today is New Year's Eve. This is a day that is celebrated around the world as we welcome a new year. 
 However, in my family it was important for another reason. It was my Dad's birthday. 

   You died back in 1991, but you are always near in my heart. 
When I was a little girl you held me when I skinned my knees, which was often.  You always encouraged me when I would draw because you thought I was good at it. You were always encouraging no matter what I wanted to do. Whether it was moving to Texas, dating a new guy (as long as you thought he was good enough), or joining the police force.  You weren't very good with money, but you tried very hard to make a decent life for me and my brother.    You stayed with us during the difficult times back in 1965.  I'll always be grateful for that. We didnt always agree, but then what teenager ever does.  Raising two teenagers as a single father must have been very difficult.  We only knew what went on in our lives...all the drama that goes with the teenage years.  I never thought of what you must have been going through. 
   You loved us very much, of that I have no doubt. You could tell a good story and you must have known a thousand jokes. 
                Well, I miss all that and I miss you.  So Happy Birthday to you Dad.  
H. Norman Gould age 21
1967 - My Dad with my brother Norm

My Dad with his parents - age 5 months 
Here is my TIP to you today.  Time goes by very quickly in our lives.  Talk to your grandparents, parents, aunts & uncles while they are still here.  Ask them questions about their lives.  Buy one of those books that have questions in them and have them fill it out.  Go through old photos with them and make sure there are names & dates on the back of ALL the photos.  I did this with my Dad only a little bit and I wish I'd done more.  A photo is not worth a thousand words, unless you know who's in it.  When you are in your teens and 20's and even your 30's you don't think it will matter all that much what happened in the past.  But.....then one day, they are all gone and you are left with photos and memories and suddenly you want to know more. 
  • How did your grandparents & parents meet? 
  • How long did they date? 
  • Where were they married? 
  • Did they go on a honeymoon?
  • Where did they live? 
  • Where did they go to school? 
  • Who were their friends? 
  • What were their interests & hobbies? 
  • What were their dreams? 
  • What were their occupations? 
  • Did they travel?  If so, where did they go?
Don't let these questions go unanswered while you have them here - ASK THEM NOW.  You will never regret it, I promise.
Michigan Girl

Wednesday, December 26, 2012


Back on November 20, 2012,  I wrote to you about how to find a maiden name & locating a marriage record.  I specifically referenced Charles E. LUNSFORD & his wife, Myrtle.
I located a marriage index on The Lawrence Register that fit the timeline and the names were C. E. LUNSFORD & Myrtle WISEMAN. 
Next, I asked a contact that I have back in Lawrence County if they would mind looking for a marriage record next time they went to The Briggs Library in Ironton.  She agreed and said she would be visiting in the next few days.  The Briggs Library has a genealogy room, called the Hamner Room, that is loaded with records, books, maps & family histories from Lawrence County & the surrounding area.  I visited the library last July when I was in Ohio.  Great place!
A few days later, the marriage record came in the mail.  Waiting for a record to come in the mail is always exciting .... well, at least for me it is.   Did I get the information/confirmation I needed from this record?  Is Myrtle's maiden name really WISEMAN?  Here is the marriage record. You decide.
Marriage record of Charles E. Lunsford & Myrtle Wiseman
In examining this record I look for evidence that this is the correct Charles Lunsford & his wife Myrtle, who's last name may be Wiseman.  After seeing that this is indeed the marriage record of Charles E. LUNSFORD & Myrtle WISEMAN, the next thing I looked for were parents names for the bride and groom.
BINGO!  There they were. 
  • Charles' parents names are listed as Basil LUNSFORD & Mahala TAYLOR.  Those are the names I have for his parents, based on census records and his birth record.  His age is listed as 25 years, another match to his birth record. 
  • Myrtle's parents names are listed as Henry J. WISEMAN & Sabrina STEWART.  This is the first time I've seen reference to her parent's names, so that will require further research.  Her age on the marriage record is 22 years which is a close match to what is listed on the census records for her and Charles.
    1. Can I now locate Myrtle's birth record?  Answer - Not yet.
    2. Am I able to connect her with these two people by finding her in census records with them?  Answer - YES!  I have found her living with her parents, Henry & Sabrina WISEMAN in the 1900 & 1910 census records in Lawrence County, Ohio.
1900 census showing Myrtle living with her parents & siblings
1910 census showing Myrtle living with her parents & siblings
CONCLUSION - Based on these pieces of evidence, I do believe that I have located Myrtle's maiden name & her family.  One piece of evidence is ok, two is better and three is more to the standard we are seeking.  There are more records that I may eventually locate with further evidence of Myrtle's maiden name - such as her birth record and her death record.  But, for now, I'm satisfied.
I hope this helps you in finding those elusive maiden names.  There are more tricks up my sleeve and these aren't the only ways we have to find maiden names.  This method worked for this particular person. 
Happy Hunting,
Michigan Girl

Copyright ©  2013   Diane Gould Hall

Monday, December 24, 2012

I hope that you each have a blessed Christmas with family & friends.  It's a time to love those we hold dear and to remember all our loved ones who are no longer with us. 
Here are a few photos from Christmases past. 
Circa 1913 - My Dad is the little boy on the left and in this photo are my grandparents, Harry & Marie Lindsay Gould and my great grandparents, Val & Mae Thorp Gould and some grandaunts.
This picture is from about 1918.  My Dad is the young boy and again my grandparents, great grandparents and grand aunts & uncles.
Christmas 1952 - That's me & my baby brother, Norm and our Grandma & Grandpa Gould (my Dad's parents), Harry & Marie Lindsay Gould
Don't I wish I could hug my grandparents or my Dad again?  My Mom is still with us, so her I can hug. 
Enjoy your time with family & we'll talk about genealogy again soon.
Best Wishes,
Michigan Girl

Friday, December 14, 2012


Finding Elizabeth Fitzcharles' parents
A 10 year search ends!

Elizabeth "Bessie" Fitzcharles Lindsay - This is her name.  She is my Great Grandmother.  Grandmother to my Dad.  Born in Scotland in 1864.  Married to William Wallace Lindsay.  Mother of 4 children (that I know of).  Those children were: Ellen W. Lindsay, Marie Wallace Lindsay (she's my grandma), Bessie Lindsay and William F. Lindsay.  I have one picture of her, taken with her husband and 4 children in about 1896. 

The Lindsay family circa 1896 - left to right - Ellen, William Sr, William Jr, Elizabeth, Marie & Bessie
I feel very luck to have one photograph of this family.  
 For the past 10+ years I have wondered who Elizabeth Fitzcharles' parents were.  I knew very little about her.  My grandmother passed away in 1970 and my Dad in 1991.  I sure couldn't ask them.  I knew some things about her life and death. 
  • She married William Wallace Lindsay on 21 May 1886 in Detroit, Wayne, Michigan. 
  • I believe she came over to the United States in April 1886.  I have an immigration record that seems to match and dates from various census records that are close to that immigration record. 
  • TIP: In genealogy we learn that dates don't always match exactly.  Sure...if they do, it's a plus, but they often don't.  That shouldn't stop you in your research.  Dates can be wrong for a number of reasons.  The person giving the date doesn't give the correct one, the person taking the date transcribes it incorrectly or the date is just a guess. 
  •  I knew that her husband filed for divorce in 1912 and that she died in 1914 of cancer of the jaw. 
  • I know she is buried in the same plot as my grandmother and grandfather and other family members. 
        Who are her parents?
        How do I find out who they are?

I wasn't sure how to answer those questions.  Working with the records overseas is a learning process and I'm still learning.  I had tried over the years to locate records on various websites, such as or or  No luck on any of them.

    Here's what happened.  About a month ago, my cousin, Paula, told me that our 2nd cousin was taking a trip to Scotland.  Paula (who, by the way, is now hooked on genealogy, gee, I wonder how that happend?), thought that I should talk to Debbie before she went to Scotland, so I could give her some family information.  I contacted Debbie and sent her a family group record  for William & Elizabeth Lindsay.
TIP: Family Group Records are reports you can create from your database with just a click or two of your mouse.
Note: the name of Elizabeth's father is given as Nicholas Fitzcharles and her birthdate as 20 Jul 1866. His name & her birthdate are listed on her death certificate. 

This group record gave Debbie the information on the family that she would need to do any research while she was in Scotland.  Keeping in mind that cousin Debbie is not a genealogist.  All I said to her before she left was, anything she could find would be greatly appreciated. 
Debbie returns from Scotland and notifies me and Paula via email, that she has found some information that she thinks we will like.  I told her if she'd found anything on Elizabeth Fitzcharles that I'd book a flight and come back there and give her a hug.  She told me "book the flight."
Course now I'm very excited and can't wait to hear of her discoveries.  But, we decided that we would share this information via 3-way conference call on Monday.  That was 3 whole days I had to wait.  Kinda like Christmas.  The anticipation is part of the fun.
Monday morning, 9 a.m.  The phone rings and it's my cousins Paula & Debbie on the line.  Debbie says that while she was in Aberdeen, she had time to stop in at the Aberdeen & North-East Scotland Family History Society.  She mentioned my name and said that I was a member there.  The helpful volunteer looked in their files and found my name and........da da....the family pedigree chart I had submitted with my membership in 2010.  Unfortunately, I had not renewed my 2012 membership.  Lookups are free for members.  So, what does Debbie do?  She joins.  The cost is only $25 and saves any hourly fee charged for looking up records. 

 The volunteer begins looking through records for anyone named Nicholas Fitzcharles who had a daughter named Elizabeth or Bessie or Betsy, born about 1866.  No Nicholas Fitzcharles anywhere in the records.  HOWEVER, there is a John Fitzcharles & Elizabeth McGovern who gave birth to a little girl named Elizabeth on 24 Jul 1864 in Alyth, Perth, Scotland!  The record even gives the dates of the marriage of John Fitzcharles & Elizabeth "Betsy" McGovern as 6 Oct 1854 in Dundee, Scotland. I'm beyond excited.  There it is - the elusive clue, something to work on, a trail to follow, information to try and verify.  This is all we ask for as Genealogists. 

Next Step - Try to verify this information by finding vital records and census records.
There's more to this story
 UPDATE - Since writing this post I have located all the documents necessary to affirm that John Fitzcharles and Elizabeth McGovern are my great grandmother's parents.

I'm off to Scotland.....via computer
Michigan Girl

Sunday, December 9, 2012



Civil War Pension card for Nancy Lunsford

Lately it seems I've been running across a lot of ancestors who served in the Civil War.  Since I'll soon be making my first trip to the southern California National Archives center, it's a good time to review these files. 

I've always found the Civil War to be fascinating study.  Very sad, for sure.  Brothers killing brothers and families torn apart.  The majority of my ancestors who did fight, were fighting for the North.  A few fought for the south.  Just a matter of geography really.  My ancestors lived in the northeast or migrated to the midwest states.  Migration patterns are a subject for another day.  A few of them were right on the cusp, living in northwest Virginia, which became West Virginia in 1863.  Here is a photo shared with me by my cousin Amy (who lives in Denmark).  My ancestor is the one identified as #9 in the photo, Elijah Fisher Gillen.  Elijah is my 3rd Great Granduncle.

So, where do we find these Civil War service & pension records.  You can check first at  Records of more than 6 million men who served during the Civil War and over 2 million pension files can be accessed on the site.

For the detailed, page by page records I go to Fold3.  This is a site that was begun several years ago for the purpose of offering Revolutionary War records to the public.  FREE!  Yes, you can do all of the following things for FREE on this site:
  • Create your own Memorial Pages
    Search & browse all images
    Spotlight images & documents
    Upload images to Your Gallery
    Annotate Member images
    Upload, annotate and print your own images
    View and search Member images
If you want to be able to annotate images, share them with others or create a gallery of images you'll need to pay the annual subscription fee for "full access."  This fee can vary. If you belong to a genealogical society you can sometimes get a deal.  I'm sure there are other ways to get discounts too.  The cost is not horribly expensive.  I paid $39.95 for full access for a year. 


  • Did your ancestor serve in the war?
  • Which side did they fight for - North or South?
  • When did they enlist? 
  • What was their title?  Private, Lieutenant, Surgeon?
  • Were they injured?
  • Were they captured and put in prison as a prisoner of war?
  • Did they desert?
  • Did they die of a disease or injury?
  • Were they killed in action?
I learned when Hannah Wilson Lunceford/Lunsford died from a letter about her pension being dropped. 
Letter dated 4 May 1886 stating that Hannah Lunceford's pension is dropped due to her death

I learned when & where her husband, Pleasant Lunsford died.

Casualty sheet listing Pleasant Lunsford as killed in action

I don't know about you, but I find this information fascinating.  We can read or watch documentaries on TV about the Civil War.  But, it brings it all to life when you have ancestors who lived during that time....and died fighting for their cause. 

There's more to learn from these files, but I'll stop for now.  I hope this has peaked your interest and makes you want to go in there and dig and find out about your own family.  Let me know what you find out.  I'm always interested to hear your stories. 

Back to the 1860's I go,
Michigan Girl

Tuesday, November 20, 2012


HOW TO FIND A MAIDEN NAME and Locating a marriage record
   The Lawrence Register website and Facebook page

Yesterday I mentioned that I would tell you about the marriage record I located.  I've been researching the children of Basil LUNSFORD and his wife Mahala TAYLOR.  They had 6 children.  This is about their son, Chas. Emmit LUNSFORD.
Step 1 - try and locate a birth record for him.  I know that there are many Ohio birth records online. You can check both and for those records.  Those two websites are where I always look first.  Sure enough I located a birth record for Chas. Emmit Lunceford (notice the variation in the spelling).  This record listed his parents as Basil Lunceford and Mahala Taylor.  TIP: Never be too concerned when the spelling of names in records is different from what you have.  Spelling was just not as big a deal back then and of course you always have to account for transcription errors.  Here is what the text of the record looks like.  There is no image.  However, you could find it by looking at the microfilm available at your local family history center.  More on that later.

Ohio, County Births, 1856-1909, Chas. Emmit Lunceford, 1892

name:Chas. Emmit Lunceford

event date:18 Jun 1892
event place:Mason, Lawrence, Ohio
father:Basil Lunceford
father's birthplace:
father's age:
mother:Mahala Taylor
mother's birthplace:
mother's age:
reference number:Bk 4 Pg 148
film number:317728
digital folder number:004016340
image number:00360 
Step 2 - Locate Chas. Emmit Lunsford in census records.    Since it was his marriage I was wanting to learn about I began with the 1910 census, when he would have been 18 years old.  Still living with his parents.  Next, the 1920 census.  BINGO!  I locate a Charles Lunsford of about the correct age & place of birth, living in Ohio with a wife named Myrtle. The 1930 census has Chas. & Myrtle, still in Ohio and now with 2 children.  1940 census - Charles & Myrtle still in Ohio and with just their son, Ralph, living at home.  What is Myrtle's maiden name?  The best way to locate that would be by finding a marriage record.  At least that's my first step in trying to find out a maiden name. 

Step 3 - Look for a marriage record.  I checked all over and  I tried many variations of the surname spelling, swapping Charles' middle and first name, searching by initials only, and any other twist I could think of.  NOTHING!  Darn!
Then it came to me.  There is a wonderful site for anyone with roots in Lawrence County, Ohio.  It's called the Lawrence Register and can be found at
Lawrence Register 

This site is full of incredible record and history for Lawrence County.  It's run by a wonderful lady named Martha Martin.  I had the pleasure of meeting Martha and having her show me around Lawrence County and neighboring Cabell County, West Virginia during a visit this past summer.  Remember - sites similar to this one are all over the web.  Just use your search engine and search for the town, city or county and see what comes up.
HEY!  Did I tell you that this particular website also has a Facebook page?  It's a group called Lawrence Register.  Here's the link: Lawrence Register Group on Facebook

Sure enough, under Marriage Records on this site I was able to locate an index record for C. E. Lunsford to Myrtle WISEMAN.  I had already determined what I believed would be the correct year range for them to have married.  I based that on the age of their children in the 1930 census.  The index gives me a range of years and a volume and page number.  Now I just need to get a copy of the record.  Is the index absolute proof that I have found the record?  No.  However, a copy of the record may name their parents and will give me the date of the marriage.  If the parents names are not included then I will continue to try to find further evidence of Myrtle's maiden name.  Perhaps in obituaries, birth and/or death records of her children and maybe even in newspaper announcements about events in their lives.
UPDATE - See my post on 12/26/12 for a follow up on Myrtle's maiden name.

This is a good start to filling out the facts and events in this couple's history.  I can't wait to learn more.  Try these methods for finding records for your own family and let me know what you find.

Back to my research,
Michigan Girl

Monday, November 19, 2012


Stay tuned for more on this subject tomorrow.  But for now I just have to say that you never know when you will hear from someone in response to a post or message you sent.   Tonight was a good example.  I heard back from someone I had messaged on who is descended from my 5th Great Grandparents.  YEAH!!  He has already given me information I did not have on one of their children.  More on this tomorrow. 

OH!  And I will also be telling you about my hunt for a marriage record and the results.

Michigan Girl signing out for tonight

Thursday, November 15, 2012

LINK to Memorials I have created

Search D. Gould Hall's cemetery records at by entering a surname and clicking search:

Restrict search to


As I've said, there is always something NEW to learn when we are doing family research.  Yesterday I was on findagrave searching for a branch of our LUNSFORD clan.  Specifically Claudius Lunsford RUCKER.  I was able to locate his memorial on the site.  The great thing about his particular memorial was the short bio that the creator had entered.  It stated that Claudius died of "Penetration of bull's horn into frontal lobe of brain."  Now that is something you don't see every day under cause of death.  What was interesting was that there was a link to the Arizona death certificate for Claudius.  Really?  I didn't know you could include links in the bios. 

Today I determined to learn more about links in bios and I was reading "contributor tools" when I came across something else NEW to me.  I can include, on this page, a link to ALL of my contributions on  This way any of you that are reading the blog can go to FAG (FindAGrave) and find out more about our family via memorials.  (see the link above)

I still haven't quite figured out how to include a link in a bio on the FAG site,  but I have learned how to be able to send my readers to my FAG memorials.  So, using the link above just fill in a surname and you'll be taken to any memorials I have created for that surname.

By all mean, if you have questions, corrections or additions, please let me know.  Now, back to the learning tools and see if I can figure out the link in the bio thing.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Who knew blogging could be so much fun?  I'm learning as I go here.  So...if you see errors in my layout, please forgive me. 

I'm trying different formats to see which one works best for me and reads the best for you.  I'm open to suggestions, so if you have any, send them my way. 

I'm going to try to post 1-2 times a week.  Maybe more often if I come up with interesting finds, tips or tricks.  I doubt that I'll reinvent the wheel or anything, but I'm hoping that I can give you some real time experience for working on your family research. 

Let me know what you like, what you don't like and what you might like to see me blog about.  I appreciate your interest and your input.

Bye for now,
Michigan Girl

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Timelines, historic events and military service
The day after the Presidential election in the United States 2012. From what I can gather there are about half of the citizens happy and the other half disappointed. In reviewing our history we know that conflict over politics has gone on since we became a nation. Somehow we have survived it all.
Have you ever looked at a timeline for your ancestors?
    What elections were they involved in?
      Do you know if they voted regularly?
        Which party did they belong to?
          Who were the Presidents during their lifetimes?
          For those of you using personal databases. You can generally run a timeline for your ancestor from the software. It's as easy a click of your mouse. Now, what appears in the timeline is another story. A timeline for their lives is only as good as the information that you input. Except of course for the historic events. I use Legacy Family Tree Software (this is not Family Tree Maker). There are tabs that allow me to click on a title called Chronology (another word for timeline). Once I do this I can see things like how old they were when their mother or father died, their age when their children were born, when they moved form place to place etc. There is an "option" button that allows me to insert various historic events, like US Presidents and US Wars.

          I just used this option for my maternal grandfather. He was born 8 Jan 1883 in Detroit, Michigan and died 27 Sep 1957 in Detroit, Michigan. During his life there were 14 different Presidents and 4 wars. How did these events change your ancestors life? Did they? My grandfather lived through the Spanish-American War, World War I, World War II and the Korean War. He was too young for the Spanish-American War and did not serve in any of the other wars. Did your ancestor serve in the military? If so, what branch, which war? There are several ways to discover the answers to these questions. The very BEST of which is to talk to your ancestor. OK, well, that isn't always possible is it? So what other sources do we have for finding out if they served in the military? Here are a few:

          Look documents that have been saved & handed down through generations. These might be records of service, discharge papers, loan records (when a veteran applies for a VA loan), pension records, photographs of the ancestor in uniform (look for the military insignia), awards or plaques or medals that were given to your ancestor.

          Look online at the various websites that offer information about the wars our ancestor served in. Again, the usual sites are, Fold3 and You might also want to use your search engine, such as Google to search for veteran organizations that would have information about your ancestors service, the people he or she served with and where they served.

          Have you thought of looking on Sometimes when you find a headstone for an ancestor you will see a reference to military service. I've even found them buried in national cemeteries (where only those who served or who are related to those who served are buried. My husband's parents are both buried at Ft. Rosecrans National Cemtery in San Diego. One of my ancestors, Wm. W. Frampton is bured in Kansas and his headstone lists his military unit.

          Look for websites about the military bases or training bases. These are good sources for background and some have photos of the bases and the people who served or trained there.

          So, be vigilent, be persistant and think outside the box.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

It's election day in the United States. I hope that everyone takes the time to exercise this wonderful freedom that we have. I always get excited on election day and voted this morning in my 11th presidential election. Today I thought it would be appropriate to talk about military service. It's through the military that we retain our freedom in this country.
My stepdad Joseph Edward Cornelius in his Navy uniform in 1944. I have "Ed's" discharge papers and a few other records of his service. It's easy to use your search engine ( or or whichever one you prefer) to find out more about the military unit, ship, training station etc. You'll find there are organizations for veterans and families of veterans. You can also post a military page for your ancestor on your tree or on Fold3 My stepdad served on the USS Cook and later on the USS George W. Ingram. I was able to locate web pages that contained the history for both of these ships. I even found photos of the USS Cook.
It's very interesting to read about these historic ships and their battle history. Imagine your ancestor serving on these ships during wartime. What was it like for them? Who were their friends? Were they afraid? Did they write letters home? I always try to put myself in the shoes of the ancestor I am researching. Unfortunately, I didn't spend any time talking to my stepdad about his service in World War II. I remember bits and pieces of conversations about being a Navy SEAL or UDT (Underwater Demoliton Team) member. Thankfully, I have made contact with some of his brother's family and they have provided photos of Ed when he was in the service. That is another reason why it is very helpful to locate living family members. You'd be surprised what has been passed down through the years. It's important that we continue to honor those who have fought for our freedom. From the Revolutionary War to the current situation in Afghanistan and Iraq. Men & women who were our ancestors, have given their time and sometimes sacrificed their lives for our freedom.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

My latest copy of Family Chronicle magazine came today. I'm sitting here reading it. Always more to learn. One of the articles concerns Revolutionary War pension application files. I am already a member of DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution), but would like to add other patriots to my membership. Earlier today I was looking at one of my ancestors, John Frampton, and reading an application submitted to the SAR (Sons of the American Revolution) in 1916 by his descendant John Ross Frampton. I found this application on That got me interested in the Revolutionary War again and then the magazine arrived. Coincidence? I think not. One site that I belong to is Fold3, formerly known as Footnote. This site offers the pension application files for our Revolutionary War ancestors and many other types of files concerning military service. You can even create a military page on the site for your ancestor. I'm learning more as I read and will be back with tips.

Friday, November 2, 2012

It's been too long since I posted. I did that trip to Ohio & West Virginia & had lots of fun and met great people. Seems as though once I returned one thing or another has kept me from posting. That doesn't mean I haven't been busy working on the "family trails." In fact, just last week I received a package from a gentleman that I have been communicating with for about a year. This man doesn't use a computer, so everything we do is via snail mail. You know ..... the old fashioned way. The package he so kindly sent to me was a genealogy of the KING family. This is a line related to me via my Great Grandaunt, Ada Emily HUNTER who married William James KING. They had 6 children. Since Ada is the sister of my Great Grandmother, Florence HUNTER, I have a great interest in learning about her and her family. Here are pictures of William KING & his wife Ada HUNTER
I have several other pictures of Ada and other members of the family. What I'm doing now is going through this 46 page document (which is mostly individual family groups sheets) and comparing the contents to what I already have in my database. Of course, new information has emerged. That leads me to research online and find out more about the family. The next thing you know another lead pops up as I'm researching and off I go to that informaton. Genealogy research is funny that way. You'll be working on one family or branch and the next thing you know, you're off the road and onto another family or branch. But, I guess that what keeps it interesting. At least for me. I never seem to get bored of finding new information.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Friday, July 27, 2012 - Briggs Library, Hamner Room, Ironton, Ohio
First of all, it was exciting just to drive over the Ohio River from West Virginia. Now, I'm in Ohio for the very first time in my life. Driving in the area where dozens of family members lived their whole lives. After having a hearty breakfast (knowing that I probably wouldn't take a break all day), I arrived at the Briggs Library in Ironton at 10 a.m. Now, get the laptop, camera & iPad out and get started. This 7 hours will fly by. The first place I headed was to the family history shelves. These shelves contain the books, folders and binders submitted to the library by people who have created family histories/genealogies. These can simply be a handwritten genealogy, copies of family stories or Bible pages or extensive genealogy charts and group sheets created on computers or by hand. TIP: You may not find these any place else, including at the FHL (Family History Library in Salt Lake City). I located several books pertaining to family names; BOGGS, BOWEN, DUNFEE, HOLDERBY and others. TIP: When looking through these types of books keep in mind all your collateral lines. You may not find your direct line surnames on the label of the book or binder, but they may still be there, in association with those collateral lines.
The BOGGS book I located had a lot of information. I decided that instead of trying to take pictures of every page I would check on Sure enough they had the book and I purchased it. When it arrives at my house I will be able to take my time going through it. Any book that you purchase during your travels or research can always be donated, at a later time, to a library or historical society. Or you could even sell it on eBay. The rest of my day was spent looking at obituary indexes, marriage record, births and court indexes. I gathered a lot of good information and was well rewarded for the time I spent. And, no, I didn't take a break or leave the library for any reason. Good thing I had that big breakfast. Afterward I met my friend at Jim's Restaurant in Huntington for some very delicious and famous spaghetti. Not pasta, but spaghetti. Turns out that President Kennedy ate at this restaurant while he was in office. I hope my photos show up in this post in right places. You know, since I'm out of practice on here. I also hope that the tips I'm including and the links, will assist you in your research. Until later, Michigan Girl

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Researching on the road - Ohio and West Virginia

We have a lot of fun researching our ancestors lives. One of my favorite things to do is hit the road and travel to places my family members have lived. This week I'm in Huntington, West Virginia right on the Ohio River. Lots of family history here and just across the river in Lawrence and Gallia Counties in Ohio. I met up with a local researcher who has a website I've been using for years. It's a great source for Lawrence County Ohio information, here's the link A sister site which is also a tremendous source of information is So, if you have family from southeastern Ohio or Cabell County, West Virginia you will find these websites very helpful. Today I met up with my friend, and we went to Marshall Univeristy, Morrow Room. They have a collection called the Lambert files. It's a collection put together by one man back in the 1930's. He interviewed people all over the Cabell County area and wrote down the conversations. Along with that he collected letters and photos from these people about their families. As a result you have information, much of which is not available elsewhere. I certainly hit pay dirt, including a photo of a 3rd Great Granduncle, Richard Lundsford and one of his wives. In the afternoon, after stopping by Hillbilly Hotdogs for a taste of some local food, we headed for Cabell County Library. My friend has been there many times and knew just what books to pull off the shelves. You should have seen that stack of books. I thought to myself "how am I ever going to get through all those in only 4 hours?" You know, they do close at 6 pm. Well, we did get through them because we worked together. She used my camera to take pictures of the pages and I used my iPad. TIP: When you are looking at all those books and want copies of the pages, take photos with your digital camera or your iPad. For one thing it's much quicker and it saves you a little money. In my case we took over 200 pictures today. Standing at a copy machine would have been laborious, and depending on the per copy cost, I saved from $20-50. Since we want our libraries to stay open and times are tough I suggest you make a donation to any library that you visit. Tomorrow is another day and I'll have more tips and more to report from my current genealogy adventure. Til then, happy hunting, Michigan Girl

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Back after two years away

I started this blog back in 2010 because I wanted to share my experiences in researching my family history. So much has happened since I began this journey back in 2003. New cousins, a new brother, new friends, traveling to new places to do research. Oh my, the things I have done. Of course I couldn't do any of it if it weren't for my wonderful husband, Ron. He has put up with my story sharing, the screams of happiness when I finally get a hit on someone I've been looking for, my hours and hours on the computer, trips to libraries, ordering documents and books, attending genealogy society meetings and traveling without him to do research. Yup, that's the life of the spouse of a crazed genealogist. Did I mention that he does all of that without complaining (too much). LOL! I am going to try this blogging gig again and hope family, friends and others will find my blog and enjoy reading it. It won't be like some of the other blogs that cover other websites or give you hints on now to do this or that. Mostly it will be about the journey and what I find. However, along the way there will be lessons learned by me and by you too. I will include good websites and tips when they relate to the story. That's all I'll say for tonight. For one thing, I'm typing this on my iPad and it's not as easy as using the computer. Bye for now Michigan Girl