Saturday, March 29, 2014

FACEBOOK – HOW IT CAN BE VERY USEFUL IN YOUR RESEARCH

Logo for FB

This past week has been a quiet one for me as far as blogging.  I had knee surgery on March 21st and haven’t really had that inspiration I usually have to write.  

However, this “down time” has given me plenty of time to read other blogs and interact on the genealogy Facebook groups to which I belong.

Being a member of a group on Facebook that is oriented to genealogy or an aspect of research is not only helpful, it’s fun. 

WHAT ARE THE ADVANTAGES? 
  • You get to interact with others who are also researching their families.
  • You learn by the questions posed by others in the group and the answers to them.
  • You meet new cousins.
  • You learn about websites you may not have known about.
  • You get assistance with documents you might have questions about.
  • You learn about a particular area where your ancestors lived
  • You make new friends.
I’m sure the list could go on, but you have the general idea.  

My first experience with a Facebook genealogy group involved an area in southeastern Ohio.  Many many of my ancestors are from the Lawrence County, Ohio area.  They also cross over to Cabell County, West Virginia and into Ashland or Boyd County, Kentucky.  
All those places are right on the Ohio River and easily accessed from one another.  

I had always used The Lawrence Register website, created by Martha Martin and the sister site Miles, Shute & Kouns created by Sharons Milch Kouns.  They have given me a lot of good information on my ancestors.  

Then I heard about a Facebook group created by Martha, called The Lawrence Register.  I can’t tell you exactly when this Facebook group was created, but I would say it’s been a good 4 or 5 years.

From there I branched out and joined the following groups on Facebook:

Allegheny County PA Genealogy
Cabell, Wayne and Lincoln County Genealogy    
Detroit Genealogy group
Boyd County, Kentucky
Mifflin County Historical Society
Daughters of the American Revolution

Other helpful group are:

The Organized Genealogist
Technology for Genealogy
Evernote Genealogists 

I have linked all of the groups above, so simply click on them in order to view them.

Now, what groups or pages may be of interest to you? 
 
Just go up to the search box at the top of Facebook and type in a place or something you want to find.  Let’s try it.

I typed in “Macomb County” a county just north of Detroit, in Michigan.

Here are the choices that came up:

Macomb FB search

You can see that only the top one seems to fit our category for genealogy.

Let’s try another search for a larger county, San Diego, California.

san diego fb

Certainly a few more choices because this is a much bigger county than Macomb. 

You can do the very same thing for Historical Societies, Libraries etc.  Pretty much every organization now has a presence on Facebook.

How active these pages or groups are will vary widely.  Some are pages you simply click on the “Like” icon and you will get notified when there is something new.  

Others are actual groups that are either open (anyone can be a member) or closed (you must be invited or accepted by someone already in the group).

Some of the groups have strict guidelines as to what members are allowed to discuss.  An example is the Organized Genealogist group.  The administrators in this group want to keep it specifically oriented to organization.  I am all for that and like it that way.  It’s why I joined that group when it first began.

What happens if administrators don’t keep track? All of a sudden you have people asking for research assistance, talking about their family problems, asking for lookups, complaining about another website or asking for advice on which printer to buy.  While those may be valid questions, they are not relevant to organizing.  There are Facebook pages that are appropriate for those questions.  

In fact, there is a list of genealogy Facebook groups and pages.  Here is a link to that list, created by Katherine R. Wilson, GENEALOGY LINKS ON FACEBOOK.  You can download the PDF and there are hyperlinks to all of these pages.  What a great resource, thanks Katherine!

Another list that is common on these Facebook groups is a list of the Surnames Being Researched and who is researching them. Is that a great way to find cousins or what?

Just yesterday on the Lawrence Register group one of the members posted an old deed from 1842. Because I have been a member for a few years the person who posted this deed tagged me because she is familiar with some of the surnames I am researching.  My brother is also a member of this group and was also tagged.  

Here is the document.  This document contains several of my ancestor's names.

GILLEN_John_Land deed from Earles estate in 1840_Lawrence County Ohio

Would you like to have someone post a document like this?  I had never seen this and was more than happy to have it. 

I could post so many more examples.  People post pictures, land records, marriage, death & birth records and just about anything you can think of.  Sometimes someone has trouble reading a word or two in a particular document and they will ask for help.  They are blessed with many responses and usually the problem is solved.

If you have not yet taken advantage of this wonderful genealogical resource, I urge you to do so.  

Let me know what you find.  I’m sure there are a lot of pages and groups I know nothing about.  It’s a big country and a big world.  

Happy hunting,

Michigan Girl

Copyright ©  2014   Diane Gould Hall 
(All rights reserved, no use without permission)

Saturday, March 22, 2014

ADDING SIBLINGS TO FINDAGRAVE– AN UPDATE


I have learned, thanks to my readers, that there have been changes on the FindAGrave site, regarding links to siblings.

Prior to this time you were only able to see links to parents and spouses, unless you used a special HTML code to add the siblings.

However, now when you have more than one child listed for a particular parent, the site automatically links to the other sibling or siblings, as well.

Here is the post from the FindAGrave site regarding this change:

“How do a person's siblings show up on their memorial page?
When an individual's memorial page is linked to one or more parent memorial pages, that individual's memorial will show up as a sibling on any other memorial pages that have been linked to one of the parents. The individual's name will show up on the sibling list of their own memorial to help show where the individual was in the birth order of the siblings. Memorials may only be linked to parents and spouses, and sibling links are automatically generated; there is no ability to add sibling links directly to a memorial page.”


When I went to my grandfather’s memorial today here is what I found.

FAG Milne

You can see the siblings are listed, and I know I didn't add them. And, what they have also done is place the current person you are viewing into the sibling list in the correct birth order.

I think this is a GREAT addition to the FindAGrave site!

Prior to this we had to add the siblings manually, using HTML code.  I wrote about this in a previous post which you can find here. ADDING SIBLINGS TO FINDAGRAVE

The only time we will need to use the HTML code is when we don’t know the parent’s names, or there is no memorial for them.  

WHAT IF I’VE ALREADY ADDED THE SIBLING LINKS TO THE MEMORIAL?

Unfortunately, you will now have duplicate lists of siblings on your memorial.

Here is my grandmother’s memorial, showing two lists of siblings.

FAG - Marie

The red area is the list of siblings I added to her memorial.

The green area shows the list added by the FindAGrave site, automatically linking to the parents and therefore, linking to the siblings.

WHAT CAN YOU DO TO REMOVE THE DUPLICATES?

I will remove the list I created by going into the “edit bio” area and removing the HTML code I added.



Simply delete the code from the bio and the extra list of siblings will disappear.

Here is my grandmother’s memorial after I deleted the code.  You can see that there is only one list of siblings.

FAG - Marie one list of siblings

Changes like this one make the FindAGrave site even more useful to researchers and I thank them for adding this feature.

Happy hunting,

Michigan Girl

Copyright ©  2014   Diane Gould Hall

HOW I FOLLOW A TRAIL OF RECORDS & ANALYZE WHAT I FIND–HENRY HART FAMILY–PART 3

Hart collage

MY GOAL:  CAN I PROVE A RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN MY 2ND GREAT GRANDFATHER, HENRY HART & A REPORTED FIRST WIFE? 
 

HE IS REPORTED TO HAVE MARRIED & HAD 4 CHILDREN WITH THIS WIFE, PRIOR TO MARRYING MY 2ND GREAT GRANDMOTHER.
 

I WILL SHARE WITH YOU, IN THIS POST AND UPCOMING POSTS, HOW I FOLLOW THE LEADS AND WHAT I FIND.
 

THIS IS AN ONGOING SERIES.  PLEASE REFER TO PREVIOUS POSTS, IF NECESSARY. 
 
Here are links to the first two posts:
HOW I FOLLOW A TRAIL OF RECORDS & ANALYZE WHAT I FIND - HENRY HART FAMILY - PART 1
HOW I FOLLOW A TRAIL OF RECORDS & ANALYZE WHAT I FIND - HENRY HART FAMILY - PART2

I HAVE RESTATED MY GOAL ABOVE AND WILL RE-STATE THAT GOAL AT THE BEGINNING OF EACH POST FOR THIS SERIES.
 
Let’s now go to the third child of Henry Hart & Sarah Sumner.  

Benjamin Tyler Hart. 
HART_Benjamin Tyler and his wife Mary Campbell_found on Ancestry website_May 2011
BENJMAIN T. HART & HIS WIFE MARY CAMPBELL

Here is the family group record that I received from Judy Haynes who descends from Henry Hart & Sarah Sumner
 
Hart_Henry-typed Family Group Sheet from Judy in Texas_ENHANCED
YOU CAN SEE THAT THIS TYPED RECORD LISTS BENJAMIN HART AS A CHILD OF HENRY HART & SARA SUMNER AND HIS DATE OF BIRTH AS 28 JUL 1820

WHAT RECORDS HAVE I ALREADY COLLECTED FOR BENJAMIN TYLER HART?
  • The above family group record from a descendant, which gives his name & date of birth and states that he was a child of Henry Hart & Sarah Sumner.
  • A marriage record from Westminster, Middlesex, Ontario, Canada from 20 Jun 1843 for Benjamin Tyler to Mary Campbell.
  • An 1850 census record with Benjamin Hart & his wife, Mary & their two sons, William & Alonzo.   NOTE: They are living next door to Hiram Hart (brother of Benjamin) and a young girl named Clarissa, who is the right age to be the daughter of Hiram.  Where is Hiram’s wife, who is also named Clarissa? This is a question I will write down and come back to later.
  • An 1870 census record with Benjamin Hart & his wife Mary and children, Isaac, Harriet, John & Charles.  There are two other people in the household named Ellen William, age 59 and James Johnson, age 20.  They are listed as a domestic servant and a laborer.
  • A record of Benjamin’s death from Michigan, Death & Burials Index, 1867-1995
  • A picture of Benjamin’s headstone from a FindAGrave memorial.
WHAT DO I WANT TO LOOK FOR NEXT?
I have located a death record for Benjamin T. Hart on familysearch.org.  He died 14 Jun 1897 in Clyde, St. Clair, Michigan.  

Male, white, married
Age 26 yrs. 10 mos. 14 days
Place of death – Clyde
Disease or cause of death – Bright’s disease
Birthplace – Canada
Occupation – Farmer
Parent’s names & residence – Henry & Sara Hart, Canada
Date of record – 29 Jun 1898

Here is the document recording his death.  He is the last one on the page.  
(Please click on any image to enlarge it)

HART_Benjamin T_death record_14 Jun 1897_St Clair Co Michigan_pg 1   HART_Benjamin T_death record_14 Jun 1897_St Clair Co Michigan_pg 2

Anyone see that item in red in the list above the document?  His age is listed as 26 years.  Our Benjamin was supposedly born in 1820.  He was married in 1843.  

What am I to think?  Is this the wrong person?  In my opinion, No.

First of all, if I calculate from the date of death 14 Jun 1897 and use the age 76 years and not 26 years, 10 mos. and 14 days, we have a birth date of  31 Jul 1820.  Our information from cousin Judy, says 28 Jul 1920.  Pretty close.  If you look at all of the numbers written on the death record, the writer seems to always have a curl at the bottom of his or her 2’s.  

It is my opinion that the number so easily mistaken as a 2 could easily be a 7.  

HOWEVER, I would hope to find another piece of evidence that this is the correct Benjamin Hart.  

Let’s look at the headstone for Benjamin and see what it says.

HART_Benajamin T & wife Mary C and Laura & Nancy_KinneyCem_Mich_another view of headstone

Don’t you just love it when headstones have more that just a name & year on them?  

Look at this one!  For both Benjamin T. Hart & his wife Mary C. Hart, we have exact dates of birth and death.  I know the two children Laura & Nancy are their infant daughters.

This is pretty good evidence that the death record I found was the correct one.  Can headstones be wrong?  YES!  Just like any other record we find, they too can have mistakes.

How about an obituary?  Let’s go look on genealogybank.com and see if they have something.  Darn, not a thing on that site.

One more piece of evidence that Benjamin died in 1897.  His wife Mary is listed as a widow, living with her son Isaac & his family in the 1900 census.

I am satisfied that the death record is for the correct Benjamin.  

BUT WAIT!

WHAT DID WE START OUT LOOKING FOR?  That’s right, proof that my 2nd great grandfather Henry Hart was, in fact, married to Sally “Sarah” Sumner prior to marrying my 2nd great grandmother, Olive Doten.

Doesn’t that death record for Benjamin T. Hart name his parents as Henry & Sara Hart?  YES!

Have I accomplished my mission on this date.  I would say so.  

There is one more piece of evidence that lists Henry & Sara Hart as the parents of Benjamin Hart.  It’s a Michigan, Deaths & Burials Index, 1867-1995.  Again, we have a little discrepancy.  His middle initial is listed as “J.” instead of "T".   I can’t look at the original as there is only an index on Ancestry.  This could easily be a transcription error.  Given the other information on this index, I conclude that it is the correct Benjamin Hart.

Hart_Benjamin_death index

Is this definitive proof about Henry & Sara’s marriage?  I wouldn’t call it proof, but it’s a start.  At least we have their names appearing together on two different documents.  Although her maiden name is not listed.  

TIP:  Sometimes we have to come to conclusions in our research based on evidence we find that isn’t the proof we’d like.  I would like to find a marriage record for Henry Hart & Sara Sumner.  I would also like to find a death record for Sara Sumner Hart.  I'm not sure if I will be able to find either, but I'll keep looking.

For now, I'll be satisfied with what I do find.

I’m going to stop for today, or I’ll have to publish this as a book and not a blog post.  

OTHER POSTS THAT MAY BE OF INTEREST
Surprise! A birth record where it wasn't supposed to be
Cemetery Records - What can they tell you? How do you use them? 

Happy hunting,

Michigan Girl
Copyright ©  2014   Diane Gould Hall



Wednesday, March 19, 2014

WORDLESS WEDNESDAY - MY FIRST GENEALOGY ROAD TRIP

IN 2007 I WENT TO DETROIT, MICHIGAN - MY PLACE OF BIRTH, FOR MY FIRST GENEALOGY ROAD TRIP

HERE'S WHAT I DID






Happy hunting,

Michigan Girl

Copyright ©  2014   Diane Gould Hall

Monday, March 17, 2014

MEDICAL TERMS OF THE NINETEENTH CENTURY

CAUSE OF DEATH - NAMES

CAUSE OF DEATH – That’s one of the things I always want to know when I’m researching my ancestors.

WHY?  Because, to me, it’s very interesting to see the different kinds of things that people died from during different times in history.  Also, because it will give you a good idea of what types of diseases or conditions run in your family.   

Where can we go to find the definitions for the various causes of death we see on all the records we locate?


You can always use your favorite search engine, Google or Bing or Yahoo or whatever you prefer.

I used Google and typed in “Medical terms in the nineteenth century.”

Here is just the first few choices that were listed.

medical terms in 19th century

Clicking on the very first one brings up an 11 page report listing medical terms from that time period.  That was easy.

Then I got curious and wondered if I could create a list in Legacy, that would show who died of which disease or ailment?

The answer is YES, I can.  Here are some of the results of my search. 
 (Legacy users please go to the bottom of this post to find specific instructions)

For Typhoid Fever (click on any image to enlarge it)

cause of death - typhoid dever

For Dropsy

cause of death - dropsy

And for Consumption

cause of death - consumption

Of course there are many more that I could look up. But, you get the idea.  

How many of our ancestors might have lived longer had they been born in modern times? 

How many of us living today would live longer 100 years from now?  The advances in medicine have been astounding during the past 100-150 years.  

In the 19th century the doctors arrived in buggies or on horseback.  Surgical instruments like the ones below might have been used if needed.
 
country doctor        surgical_kit_of_country_doctor_19th_century_n700077

What kind of unusual causes of death have you found in your family?  

Do you look for the definition of a disease or cause, if you don’t know what it is?

NOTE:  If the cause of death is something that isn’t ordinary by today’s terms, I try to enter a definition.  Now that I’ve typed that statement I realize something.  I should be entering a definition for every cause of death, shouldn’t I?  Because in 50 or 100 years will our descendants know what our definitions were?  Sure, they will be able to look them up, but maybe I will save them the trouble.

Legacy Users – here are the steps I took to create the cause of death list. 
I went to the “search” tab at the top of my screen, then clicked on “find.”
Next, click on the “detailed search” tab.  Here is what I chose for each question:
Look for whom?  Individual
Where to look?  Cause of death
How to look?  Contains
What to look for?  I typed in whatever disease or ailment I wanted to search for
Then click on “Create List” at the bottom of the screen.
If you want to create a list with more information, just use the “Or” option under the second and third condition and repeat the above steps, only enter a different cause of death.

That’s all the fun for today.  Thanks for stopping by.

Happy hunting,

Michigan Girl

Copyright ©  2014   Diane Gould Hall

Saturday, March 15, 2014

SHAKY LEAVES ON ANCESTRY CAN LEAD TO NEW RECORDS

Ancestry top of page

Researching is always fun to me because of the new records & information I run across all the time.

Today I opened Ancestry and there were those inevitable shaky leaves.  I’m not one who will look at each and every one of them, every time I open the website.  However, I do tend to take a “look” to see who they are highlighting.   This has proven valuable to me on many occasions.  

Today I saw a reference to one of my GILLEN clan, Sara Wilson Gillen.  I clicked on it and low and behold I found a record I had never seen before.  And, I don’t mean just a new record for this ancestor, but a new record I didn’t know existed.  Name of this record?

U.S., APPOINTMENTS OF U.S. POSTMASTERS, 1832-1971

Have you seen this group of records before?  

Sure enough, there she is on lines 2, 3 & 4.

FRIEL_Sarah_appointment as postmaster_1934 & 1938_AshlandBoydKentucky

What can this record tell us?

- the obvious – she was working as a Postmaster
- it puts her in a place & time

Of course I entered this information as an Event/Fact in my Legacy database right away.  I included the image and entered this as a source.

What I did next…

I went right back to Ancestry and looked at what other records they might have for me for Sara Wilson Gillen Friel.

I found a 1942 Ashland, Kentucky city directory which lists her as the Postmaster.

1942-FRIEL_Sara G_postmaster_AshlandBoydKentucky

Now I will enter this city directory listing in Legacy as an Event/Fact, including the image.  And of course making sure I cite my source.

There is more on Sara Wilson Gillen Friel, and I intend to document all of it. Adding it to my Ancestry tree and my Legacy database.

I thought I would look in the Ancestry card catalog and see if I can find the U.S. Postmaster list there.  

NOTE:  I have found the card catalog to be quite evasive when it comes to giving me any results.  I’ve been using the Ancestry site now, almost daily, for over 10 years.  Sometimes what seems to me to be a certain keyword will bring up nothing.  

Example:  In the card catalog under keyword I typed in “postmasters.”  The first result I got was “no records found.”

Then I typed in the Title field “Appointment of U.S. Postmasters” and got the exact list that I have cited above in this post.  

Out of curiosity, I cleared all fields and then went back to the “keyword” field and typed in “postmasters” again.  This time the Appointment of U.S. Postmasters came right up.  I can’t figure it out.  My work around is that I just play with both the Title & Keyword fields until I get some kind of results that may be of use.

Let me know if you’ve found any new or unusual records lately.  We know there are thousands of records on various websites and we can only begin to know what a few of them are.  

OTHER POSTS THAT MAY BE OF INTEREST:
Following Leads on Ancestry
Millennium File on Ancestry

Happy hunting,

Michigan Girl

Copyright ©  2014   Diane Gould Hall