Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Wishing All a Merry Christmas!


Whether you are spending the holidays at home or traveling to see family and friends, I wish you a
Happy Holiday Season
and a
Bountiful 2013!

© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Blog Caroling with footnoteMaven 2012

Each year footnoteMaven invites us to a day of virtual caroling...this year I join the singalong with Carol of the Bells.





(c) 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Veterans Day 2012

Words cannot express the gratitude I feel.



© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Tuesday’s Tip – Missouri History Museum


If you have ancestors who lived in Missouri, check out the Missouri History Museum! The museum has exhibits and collections sure to be of interest.


History Happens Here! is the museum’s blog. Check out their publications page to learn about their magazine and available books.

Subscribe to the monthly e-newsletter “Genealogy and House History News” to receive the latest information on additions to the Genealogy and Local History Index, new Archives Collection Guides posted online, and upcoming genealogy workshops and lectures.

Information about location, hours, etc. can be found here.

Daily Official Program of Thursday, June 16, 1904, of the Louisiana
Purchase Exposition, also known as the St. Louis World's Fair.
Public domain image via Wikimedia Commons.




© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Remembering 9/11


I didn’t have the television on that morning, so I didn’t hear about the attack on the World Trade Center until I got to work. At the time, I was teaching computer applications at a small vocational rehabilitation school. To think that terrorists so boldly attacked American citizens on our own soil was unimaginable to all of us. It was a difficult day as students and faculty tried to deal with what it all meant for the security of our nation.

Things have changed since 9/11. The new security measures in place at our nation’s airports mean longer waits before boarding flights. It’s inconvenient, but necessary. Osama bin Laden is dead, but unfortunately the threat of terrorism is not. Regretfully there are those who view all Muslims as terrorists; I understand fear, but not intolerance.

On this Patriot Day, I remember those who lost their lives and wish peace and healing for their families. I thank those who protect us from terrorist threats on a daily basis. I pray for tolerance for those who, despite having different religious beliefs, mean no harm and only wish to live peaceably with others.





© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - What Type of Genealogist Are You?


Randy Seaver’s Saturday Night Genealogy Fun post for today asks What Type of Genealogist Are You? The mission for those responding is:

1)  Read Lorine McGinnis Schulze's blog post What Type of Genealogist Are You? (25 August 2012).
2)  Answer the questions, and write about them!!
3)  Share your opinions in your own blog post, in comments on this post, in a Facebook Status, in a Google+ Stream post, or in a Twitter microblog.


There is no doubt that I am the Hunter/Detective type; I love research, for my own ancestors and for those of clients and friends.

Based on that, I am neither a Gatherer/Ancestor Collector (although I know several) nor an Ancestor Finder. And although I have been frustrated at times with collaborative genealogy, I am not a Hoarder; I want share my research but not necessarily in online trees. Not a Junkyard Collector either, although you couldn’t tell that by looking at my desk!

I haven’t submitted any articles to scholarly journals (yet), but I am a Scholar in that I want to have proper source citations and I try to include them even on my blogs so that people will know where I found my information. The longer I am involved in genealogical research, the more I am becoming an Analyzer; in my personal research, I find if I go back and look at documents again, there are clues I didn’t see before!

I wish I were more of a Planner. I try to use research plans and logs, but sometimes I get caught up in the thrill of the hunt, or sidetracked by some tidbit of information, and I get off track.

So there you have it: I’m a Hunter/Detective, with some Scholar and Analyzer thrown in for good measure!


Sherlock Holmes in "The Five Orange Pips"
By Sidney Paget (1860 - 1908) (Strand Magazine)
 [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy Independence Day!

Geni.com posted this great infographic about Independence Day! Do you live in a town with a patriotic name? Have a presidential surname? I remember hearing that one of my paternal ancestors signed the Declaration of Independence but I haven't found any evidence to support that family legend; on my maternal line, I am distantly related to John Adams. However you choose to celebrate the 4th of July, have a wonderful day!


© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Friday, June 15, 2012

Friday Funny - A Census Chuckle!


Marysville Tribune, 13 January 1851,
page 4, column 1; Ohio Historical Society,
microfilm 46242.
"Census Anecdote.

'What is your age, miss?' inquired a gallant marshal of a young lady about sixty, in the — district, the other day.

'What's that to you, Mr. Impertinence?' said the fair one, drawing up and exhibiting a formidable chevaux de frieze of broken teeth.

It is a very unpleasant question but it must be asked. What age shall I place you at? twenty, I should think.

'Yes,' said the old girl, completely molified, 'I think I was twenty last spring,' and the gratified damsel invited our friend to take a glass of wine and call again before he left town."




© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Tuesday's Tip - Newspapers Can Provide Data Missing from Records

Historical newspapers can provide information about events that are missing from the record books. For example, if you have a marriage license, but no return, check the local newspapers to see if a marriage announcement was printed (click here for an example from my own family). In small town papers, you may find other useful information; in city papers, there may only be the names of the bride and groom with the date of marriage.

© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Tuesday's Tip - Finding the Obituary


I didn't find David Franklin's obituary for a long time. Why? Because I was using the year of death as part of my search criteria. David died on 29 December 1932; his obituary was not published until 5 January 1933.

Since many of the smaller newspapers were weekly or biweekly, it could be several weeks after a death before an obituary was published.

Lesson learned: If your ancestor died in December, the obituary may not be published until January!



© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Thursday, April 12, 2012

52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy - Week 14 - State and National Societies


I belong to several state, regional and national genealogical societies including the Southern California Genealogical Society, the Utah Genealogical Association, the New England Historic Genealogical Society, and the National Genealogical Society. All have publications and benefits that are helpful to me in my research.

Of these, I would say I am most thankful for the NEHGS. I am descended from early New England ancestors and the databases and other reference materials available to me through their website have been invaluable in furthering my research on these familial lines.

I also have a particular interest in early American history. Reading their books and periodicals has helped expand my knowledge and provided many hours of enjoyable reading.

Although I am not sure I will ever have the opportunity, I would love to visit Boston and take advantage of the research library and educational programs offered by NEHGS.



52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2012) that invite genealogists and others to discuss resources in the genealogy community including websites, applications, libraries, archives, genealogical societies and more. You do not have to be a blogger to participate. If you do not have a genealogy blog, write down your thoughts on your computer, or simply record them on paper and keep them with your files.


© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy - Week 13 - Local Societies

Because my genealogical research is focused thousands of miles from where I live, I’ve never joined a local genealogical society. However, I am thankful for all that local societies do in preserving records and promoting family history. Without their tireless efforts, much of what we find online would not exist. Local societies have taken on the dirty work of transcribing old, overgrown cemeteries and sitting in dusty courthouses going through record books. What they have produced throughout the years is amazing!

In this new digital age, local societies are joining in the effort to index the 1940 census. Often their cemetery work involves not only transcribing information from headstones but also taking photographs and creating memorials such as Find-A-Grave and interment.net. They continue their efforts within their communities to preserve and promote local history and to educate their members and the public about genealogy.

Despite the fact that I have no ancestors in the area in which I live, I need to join a local society so that the resources we have are available to researchers everywhere!


52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2012) that invite genealogists and others to discuss resources in the genealogy community including websites, applications, libraries, archives, genealogical societies and more. You do not have to be a blogger to participate. If you do not have a genealogy blog, write down your thoughts on your computer, or simply record them on paper and keep them with your files.

© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Monday, April 9, 2012

Motivation Monday – March Madness


Public domain image, from
Wikimedia Commons.

Between “Censusmas” (April 2nd) and Easter, I lost the first week of April, after a crazy March! Here is my status on my 2012 goals:

Client Research
  • Ongoing heir search in the Midwest United States
  • Full family history project as a gift for a family friend’s 80th birthday.

Personal Research and Organization
  • Using the Surname Saturday prompt, I blogged each week about one of my ancestors. With the first week of April included, I’ve made it through all my great-grandparents. Next weekend I start with my 2nd great-grandparents; while I have done considerable research on some of them, there are others who really need some attention!
  • I transcribed four deeds for Amanuensis Monday postings. I did not get as many other documents organized as I wanted; however, I did spend several hours processing (including writing proper source citations) and organizing about 40 documents and photographs. There are still many more to do!

Writing
  • Continued weekly participation in Amy Coffin’s 52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy with a total of four posts in March! I got behind, spent some time catching up and I’m behind again!
  • In March I wrote 20,801 words for blog posts, Examiner articles, and the family history project. I wrote another 23,902 words at 750words.com – a total of nearly 44,703 words!
  • My editorial calendars went by the wayside for March – need to try again!

 Speaking

 Education

Giving Back
  • I went to Wilmington Cemetery to take photos for Find-A-Grave and to research a burial for someone. I took a few photos and created about half a dozen memorials. I was disappointed that I was unable to get good photos because the grass had nearly grown over several of the grave markers in the area in which I was working. I’ll be taking some gardening tools along with me next time.

 So that was March…time to get back to April!



© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Tuesday's Tip: No Land...Only Slaves!

If you are researching African-American ancestry in Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, or Mississippi, you might want to check out the No Land…Only Slaves! series. These books contain slave records abstracted and indexed from deed books. I contacted one of the authors by email for more information. The following books have been published:

Volume 1:  Bossier Parish, Louisiana
Volume 2:  Claiborne Parish, Louisiana
Volume 3:  Caddo Parish, Louisiana
Volume 4:  Harrison, Hunt and Kaufman Counties, Texas
Volume 5:  DeSoto Parish, Louisiana
Volume 6:  Lafayette County, Arkansas
Volume 7:  Panola and Grayson Counties, Texas
Volume 8:  Bienville Parish, Louisiana
Volume 9:  Smith and McLennan Counties, Texas
Volume 10: Fannin County, Texas
Volume 11: Upshur and Ellis Counties, Texas
Volume 12: San Augustine County, Texas
Volume 13: Rusk County, Texas
Volume 14: Travis County, Texas
Volume 15: Cass County, Texas
Volume 16: Navarro County, Texas
Volume 17: Bastrop County, Texas
Volume 18: Hempstead County, Arkansas

Volumes for the following counties and parishes are in the works:

Nacogdoches County, Texas
Pontotoc County, Mississippi
Scott County, Mississippi
Lauderdale County, Mississippi
Madison County, Mississippi
Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana
Sevier County, Arkansas
Red River County, Texas
Lamar County, Texas

For more information, contact:

Slaves & More Bookstore
13215 Twin Oaks Drive
Balch Springs, Texas 75180
214-235-5099




© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Monday, April 2, 2012

And the race is on…


… to find your ancestors in the 1940 US Census, released this morning!

Genealogists have been talking about, blogging about, and preparing for the census release for months. And the system has bogged down with everyone trying to use it at one time.

Don’t yell at your computer (or worse yet, those who have worked so hard to get it ready), don’t kick the dog, just relax and keep your census senses about you. Here are a few things you can try:
  1. Create an account on the NARA site and then bookmark those EDs that you want to look at; this will save a little time as you go back to the site to try one more time!
  2. If you can get to the images you need, download them and look at them offline. I haven’t been able to do this yet, but I have heard that people are having success downloading the images.
  3. Check Ancestry.com and FamilySearch.org; both are uploading images to their servers which are browsable.

Everyone is eager to find their family members, but now that it has been released, the 1940 census is not going anywhere. If you can’t get to the images, do some other family research instead. The images will be there tomorrow, next week, a year from now. In fact, in 6-9 months, we’ll have an every name index!






© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Thursday, March 22, 2012

52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy - Week 12 - Podcasts

Podcasts—hmmm…This is one area of genealogical education/technology that I have not embraced…yet.

On my phone, I do have the app for Lisa Louise Cooke’s Genealogy Gems Podcast. I’ve tried to listen to an episode, but I tend to get antsy when I just sit. I haven’t tried listening while I do something else.

One thing I want to try is to listen while I drive, particularly on those hour-long drives to society meetings or to visit friends in other areas. But to do that, I need to get a phone charger for my car…guess I should go shopping because I have one of those drives coming up soon!


52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2012) that invite genealogists and others to discuss resources in the genealogy community including websites, applications, libraries, archives, genealogical societies and more. You do not have to be a blogger to participate. If you do not have a genealogy blog, write down your thoughts on your computer, or simply record them on paper and keep them with your files.

© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Thursday, March 15, 2012

52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy - Week 11 - Webinars

Webinars are the best thing to come along since sliced bread! The ability to attend quality genealogical programs at little or no cost—what could be better!

For those who want to learn more about genealogy, but who are unable to attend meetings or conferences because of time constraints or physical or financial limitations, webinars are surely a god-send. For the rest of us, it’s an easy way to feed our insatiable hunger for knowledge about all things genealogical.

I have participated in webinars made available by a variety of genealogical societies and vendors. All of them have been worthwhile.

Here are links to two of my favorite webinar providers:
  • Legacy Family Tree – webinars are free at time of live broadcast (usually during work hours in the U.S.) and for a limited time afterward (7-10 days); recorded broadcasts which include handouts are available for purchase [Note: I am a Legacy affiliate; if you click on links on my blog to go to their site and subsequently purchase something, I receive a small commission.]
  • Southern California Genealogical Society – webinars are free at time of live broadcast (Saturday mornings and Wednesday evenings) and afterward are available to SCGS members on the society’s website. [Note: I am a dues-paying member of the SCGS and a volunteer on their Jamboree Committee. I am presenting a webinar in September for which I will be compensated.]


The only thing missing from webinars is the camaraderie and socialization with other like-minded individuals that one can only get in person!


52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2012) that invite genealogists and others to discuss resources in the genealogy community including websites, applications, libraries, archives, genealogical societies and more. You do not have to be a blogger to participate. If you do not have a genealogy blog, write down your thoughts on your computer, or simply record them on paper and keep them with your files.

© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Thursday, March 8, 2012

52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy - Week 10 - Road Trips

I was born, raised, and still live in California, but my roots are elsewhere—from Texas and Louisiana to Kansas and Missouri, up to Minnesota, and all the way back to New England.

The only genealogy road trips I’ve taken have been in the Texas/Louisiana area. My sister lives in Texas and, when I go to visit, we usually plan a two or three day road trip to see some sights and do some genealogy. (She’s not a genealogist, but makes a wonderful courthouse research assistant.)

About 5 years ago, we took my granddaughter along and did a 4-state trip from her home in Texas, up to Oklahoma to visit family, a brief stop in Arkansas (it only counts as a state visited if you actually get out of the car!) and then on to northwestern Louisiana to visit the area in which our Spurlock ancestors settled.

We searched out and visited several cemeteries—Hurricane Cemetery in Claiborne Parish, Mt. Zion (Driskill) Cumberland Presbyterian Church Cemetery in Bienville Parish, and Antioch Cumberland Presbyterian Church Cemetery in Jackson Parish—and paid our respects to the ancestors buried there. I discovered that my sister has a wonderful ability to find tombstones.

We travelled the length of Spurlock Road in Claiborne Parish; I think this road was an original boundary of Ransom Spurlock’s homestead but haven’t mapped it out. We also visited the Bonnie and Clyde Museum and ate at a wonderful restaurant called Ernie’s in Shreveport.

Digital image. Denise Spurlock, 2007.

From a research standpoint, this wasn’t the most productive genealogical road trip, but in terms of making family history, it tops my list! It was a wonderful opportunity to share my passion with both my sister and my granddaughter.


52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2012) that invite genealogists and others to discuss resources in the genealogy community including websites, applications, libraries, archives, genealogical societies and more. You do not have to be a blogger to participate. If you do not have a genealogy blog, write down your thoughts on your computer, or simply record them on paper and keep them with your files.


© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Tuesday’s Tip – Never Enough Time!

Like genealogists everywhere, I love the thrill of the hunt – searching through online databases, records and books for tidbits of information about my ancestors and their lives! I admit that sometimes I get so caught up in the hunt and recording the information in my database that I haven’t always taken the time to properly cite my sources. I made notes on the sources – usually a copy and paste of the information to a text document – with every good intention of writing the source citations later.

In the last year, I’ve changed my errant ways and record my source citations as I go along. But I still have lots of catching up to do. This weekend I spent several hours going through those old documents (some back from November 2009!) and creating the proper source citations in my database. What I’ve learned from experience is that if I’d just done it right the first time, it probably would have taken me far less time!

It reminds me of this quote attributed to Jack Bergman:
There's never enough time to do it right,
but there's always enough time to do it over!

Take whatever steps are necessary to set up a system that makes it easy to create your source citations right the first time! Whether you use the templates available in your genealogy software, free-form citations that you write using Elizabeth Shown Mill’s Evidence Explained as a guide, or templates you create on your own in your word processing software, get that source citation written! It will save you time in the long run.

If you need help, here are three resources to make it easier:




© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Monday, March 5, 2012

Wyatt Scrapbook - So What is Left?

In November 2011, I purchased a scrapbook at an antiques mall in Carson, California. The scrapbook is believed to have belonged to Laurine Wyatt. I am transcribing the articles and documents contained in the scrapbook with the hope that it may be of value to genealogists who may be researching the individuals named.


Over the past two weeks, I posted the few items from the scrapbook that directly mentioned Laurine Wyatt. So what is left?

There are photo corners glued in the scrapbook that now hold nothing so certainly there were other items; I imagine those items were of some value to the individual who last owned the scrapbook.

There are additional items that, in my estimation, lack genealogical value in the sense they do not report vital events in the lives of individuals. But certainly those items represent people, places and events that were meaningful to Laurine.

While working with the scrapbook, I have done some research on Laurine Wyatt that is posted on a public member tree at Ancestry.com. From what I have been able to determine, she never married and has no direct descendants.

Over the next few months, I plan to continue to research Laurine’s life. I also plan to assemble a digital scrapbook containing all of the contents of the physical scrapbook. (I welcome any suggestions for the best place to publish such a digital scrapbook; I would like for it to be accessible free of charge.)

My hope is that one of Laurine Wyatt’s distant cousins will someday claim her legacy.



© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Motivation Monday – Where Did February Go?


Public domain,
via Wikimedia.
My goodness, February flew by—even with an extra day, I didn’t accomplish nearly as much as I had hoped. To review:

Client Research
  • Assisted on two heir search cases—one involving an Irish immigrant to the Los Angeles area and an ongoing heir search in the Midwestern U.S.

Personal Research and Organization
  • Using the Surname Saturday prompt, I blogged each week about one of my ancestors. In last month’s report, I commented that I thought I might not be able to continue at the rate of one ancestor per week. I’m still concerned about being able to maintain the pace. I am getting a little ahead on my posting so maybe my concerns aren’t warranted.
  • I managed to transcribe three documents for Amanuensis Monday postings and organized about a dozen other documents. I would like to pick up the pace here, so in March I plan to process a document a day! 

Writing
  • Continued weekly participation in Amy Coffin’s 52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy, although I was a little late on a couple posts!
  • I have been tracking my word count and in February I wrote 13,762 words for blog posts and Examiner articles. Plus I wrote another 22,406 words at 750words.com – a kind of daily brain dump!
  • I developed editorial calendars for my blogs and for Examiner.com to make sure that I am writing and posting on a regular basis on all.

Speaking

Education
  • Completed my time management assignments for ProGen; as part of this assignment, I developed a client list which includes everything I am working on with due dates and estimated hours to complete. I hope this will help keep me on task!
  • I participated in an excellent Legacy Family Tree webinar Ten Brick Wall Tips for Beginners presented by Marian Pierre-Louis.
  • The Legacy Genealogy Idol Competition (available free on Legacy’s website) was fun to watch. Some great tips were presented by competitors Elizabeth Clark, Marian Pierre-Louis, Michael Hait, and Elyse Doerflinger.
  • Thomas MacEntee of High-Definition Genealogy presented a great Introduction to GoToMeeting designed to give a behind-the-scenes look at one of the popular formats for presenting webinars. I’m scheduled to present a webinar later in the year so it was timely for me.
  • I’ve almost finished reading Annie’s Ghosts: A Journey into a Family Secret by Steve Luxenberg, and still need to write the review of The Family Tree Problem Solver: Tried and True Tactics for Researching Your Elusive Ancestors by Marsha Hoffman Rising. 

Giving Back
  • Signed up as a 1940 Ambassador but haven’t written any posts yet.
  • Signed up for indexing the 1940 census when available.
  • Created two memorials on FindAGrave for deceased family members, but did not get out to a cemetery to take photos.

Enough about February! I do find that writing these updates each month is helping keep me on track to reach my 2012 goals. On to March!



© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Thursday, March 1, 2012

52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy - Week 9 - Cemeteries

My dad, Jasper J. “Jack” Spurlock (1912-1978), and my oldest sister, Gloria Jane Spurlock Chaney (1936-2004), are interred at Lone Grove Cemetery in Lone Grove, Carter County, Oklahoma. Although my mother, Beaulah Belle Yawman Spurlock (1915-1999), is not buried there—at her request, her body was donated to science—she is memorialized with my father. Whenever I visit my sister in Texas, we try to schedule a visit up to the cemetery.

Three of my four grandparents are buried at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, California:

My maternal grandmother, Mamie Olive Martindale Spurlock (1884-1971), is buried at Forest Lawn Cemetery, Houston, Harris County, Texas. I have never visited her grave.

I didn’t know either of my grandfathers and I didn’t know my grandmothers well, but I am grateful that three of the four are buried at Forest Lawn which is reasonably close to my home. By visiting their gravesites, I am able to honor them as well as my parents.


52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2012) that invite genealogists and others to discuss resources in the genealogy community including websites, applications, libraries, archives, genealogical societies and more. You do not have to be a blogger to participate. If you do not have a genealogy blog, write down your thoughts on your computer, or simply record them on paper and keep them with your files.


© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy - Week 8 - Genealogy Libraries

For week 4 on free offline resources, I blogged about my gratitude for public libraries and touted the wonderful genealogical resources available in the Los Angeles Public Library’s History and Genealogy Department. It is where I do most of my library research.

My favorite genealogy library is at the Southern California Genealogical Society in Burbank. An overview of their collections can be found here. SCGS offers genealogical lectures, classes for beginners, and special interest group meetings, all at the library. One can order films from the Family History Library in Salt Lake City and have them delivered to the SCGS library. The opportunities for research are almost boundless.

But the best part of going to the SCGS library is seeing friends who share my passion for genealogical research!


52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2012) that invite genealogists and others to discuss resources in the genealogy community including websites, applications, libraries, archives, genealogical societies and more. You do not have to be a blogger to participate. If you do not have a genealogy blog, write down your thoughts on your computer, or simply record them on paper and keep them with your files.


© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Wyatt Scrapbook - A Letter from Fairyland


In November 2011, I purchased a scrapbook at an antiques mall in Carson, California. The scrapbook is believed to have belonged to Laurine Wyatt. I am transcribing the articles and documents contained in the scrapbook with the hope that it may be of value to genealogists who may be researching the individuals named.


Laurine must have been very ill and much in need of cheering up, based on this letter sent to her at St. Joseph Hospital in August 4, 1928. This delightful letter was neatly folded and kept in the scrapbook in its original envelope. It does refer to another event for which Laurine had a news clipping—the engagement of Ora Beverly Goss and Lucian Leonard Davis of St. Louis, Missouri. Lucian Davis had two younger sisters, Edith and Helen, the likely writers of this letter. [Source: 1920 U.S. census, St. Louis (Independent City), Missouri, population schedule, St. Louis Ward 25, Enumeration District (ED) 510, Sheet 5A, dwelling 66, family 91, Albert S. Davis; online images, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 9 February 2012); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm publication T625, roll 961.]


  





[the envelope]

E. & H. Davis
7577 Warner Ave.
St. Louis, Mo.


                                                Miss Laurine Wyatt
                                                St. Thomas Hospital
                                                Nashville, Tenn.

Room 416
Special Del.

[the letter]
“Just Anytime — Anywhere
Fairyland_

Dear little sick girl, we are thinking of you, and we hope you are feeling better, and will soon be back to the old job. [Every woman's job]

We know you will soon be up and out. We think about you every day, and would love so much to see you. And to, we hope you will be out before the wonderful summer breezes are gone. So you can stretch your arms and feel so free once again.

Everything is at the heigth of its beauty here now. Mother's flowers are all in bloom. We have red roses, yellow roses, pink roses, and white roses. Beautiful red zenias, colorful Petunias, happy larkspurs, towering Tiger Lilies, swaying Hollyhawks, dancing pansies, and Oh! ever so many more.

And I can't forget our rolly, poly vegetable garden. Saucy parsley, peppery radishes, slender pole beans, sqatty lettuce leaves, oderless onions, snippy, nippy parsnips, and red hot jazz mad peppers. Now, what do you think of that for a vitality giving, bone building, garden?

Now we aren't trying to tempt you, or anything like that, but you know these vitality giving, bone building, morsels are what you need, and we are only trying to help the doctor.

And, too, we want to tempt you with these healthy things so you will soon be strong enough to fill our mail tray
—>

Our little fairies wish you nothing but luck. They say they enjoyed their visit very much. I know you must have liked them too. One little fairy goes with everyeach letter to bring you a good message of cheer. Oh! yes we fairies have a Queen, but she never travels away from our Castle ^of happiness. If she did it would crumble and fall away. And so it is a great privilege to have her picture here. —>

This  picture was made especially for you.  —>

I suppose you know there is going to be a happy celebration at Turkey Time. And we shall be speeding toward your city to attend this magnificant affair. [Ora's and Lucian's wedding of course.]


And we hope to see our little friend when we arrive.

You can't imagine who we are, because fairies do not tell their names. So open this book and in it you will the images of two—Alas! —two Monkey Dunks.

Just feel how woozy we are.

Love, Oooze & Wooze”



© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Tuesday’s Tip – Two Great Chicago Resources

Holy Trinity Russian & Green Orthodox Church
Chicago, Illinois
[public domain image, from Wikimedia Commons]
For those researching in the Chicago area, here are two websites you will want to add to your favorites list:

ChicagoAncestors.org, a project created by those wonderful folks at the Newberry Library, includes city directories, maps, architecture and building history, and much more. Click on the TOOLS tab at the top or BROWSE to see all the great collections they have available! The WHAT’S NEW tab will take you to their blog.

Genealogy Online provides access to historical Cook County vital records. Search for birth, marriage and death records from 1872! Access is restricted to birth records 75 years or older, marriage records 50 years or older, and death records 20 years or older. If you find a record, ordering it is quick and easy! For a relatively small fee, you can order a record and download a copy of it in just minutes.





© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Monday, February 27, 2012

Wyatt Scrapbook - A Christmas Letter


In November 2011, I purchased a scrapbook at an antiques mall in Carson, California. The scrapbook is believed to have belonged to Laurine Wyatt. I am transcribing the articles and documents contained in the scrapbook with the hope that it may be of value to genealogists who may be researching the individuals named.


Only two letters addressed to Laurine were in her scrapbook. The first, transcribed below, was signed by B.M.C., her room-mate. Where did they live? Perhaps the YWCA, which seems to have figured prominently in Laurine’s life. How did they know each other? The stationery is from the Executive Offices of The Castner-Knott Dry Goods Company: did the writer work there? Were they both members of one of the groups the YWCA sponsored for young women? I wonder what Laurine gave her friend as a Christmas gift. Did they remain friends for life? I hope someday to learn the answers to my many questions.



“THE CASTNER-KNOTT DRY GOODS COMPANY
NASHVILLE

EXECUTIVE OFFICES


Dear Laurine:

I wish that I was going to be here on Xmas. morning, and I could know you were happy as I want you to be. But I'll think of you even though I'm away.

The atmosphere of Xmas. seems to be on your table. It all goes to prove as I'm going to say - You're one of the sweetest girl's I've ever known, and after all that's what counts in life. Wasn't it Franklin, who said, Character is what God and the Angels know about us.

If I were a  poet I'd write a poem If I were  a rich girl I'd leave you wealth, But since I'm a poor girl I leave you all I have-

My love, with best wishes for Your Health, Happiness, and a New Year of Joy.

Love,


Your room-mate
B.M.C.

P. S. Many thanks for the Xmas. gift, you couldn't have given me anything else that I'd appreciate more.”





© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Friday, February 24, 2012

Wyatt Scrapbook - The Bible Defended


In November 2011, I purchased a scrapbook at an antiques mall in Carson, California. The scrapbook is believed to have belonged to Laurine Wyatt. I am transcribing the articles and documents contained in the scrapbook with the hope that it may be of value to genealogists who may be researching the individuals named.
  

This is one of the few items in the scrapbook that mentions Laurine Wyatt. In what I believe was a short play presented by the John L. Hill B.Y.P.U. (Baptist Young Peoples Union), she was cast in the role of a shop girl. Perhaps because she was a shop girl at Tinsley’s department store? Several of the surnames in the program are familiar from THE FIDELIAN, the class paper of the Fidelis Bible class of the First Baptist Churc

  

“JOHN L. HILL B.Y.P.U

September 14, 1930

6:45 P.M.

THE BIBLE DEFENDED
in a
COURT OF JUSTICE

INTRODUCTION - Leola Schneider

COURT SCENE

DEFENDANT - Holy Bible

Angel - Ila Joyner

Magistrate - Frank H. Leavell

Prosecutor - Leola Schneider

The Spirit of Love - Bobbie Chambers

Witnesses
Education - Mrs. R. B. Brantley
Mother and Child - Mrs. W. O. Gray,
Mary Elizabeth Brantley
Business Man - C. E. Wood
Art - Elizabeth Denmark
Peasant Woman - Lucille Burgess
Science - R. B. Brantley
Shop Girl - Laurine Wyatt
A Passer-By - W. J. Issacs
Music - Mrs. Margaret Smith
An Industrial Worker - Vivian Leffler
Church - Mai Holt
Keeper of the Court - Frank Cummins”




© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Wyatt Scrapbook - The Fidelian - December 29, 1931


In November 2011, I purchased a scrapbook at an antiques mall in Carson, California. The scrapbook is believed to have belonged to Laurine Wyatt. I am transcribing the articles and documents contained in the scrapbook with the hope that it may be of value to genealogists who may be researching the individuals named.


I’m not sure why Laurine Wyatt saved this particular issue of THE FIDELIAN, class paper of the Fidelis Bible class of the First Baptist Church of Nashville, dated December 20, 1931. I did not find her name in it; perhaps it was for the list of names and numbers included on the last page.

The newsletter was printed in red ink so it is not easy to read. I have listed the names of individuals mentioned below the image of each page.

[page 1]
  
[page 2]

 [page 3]

Individuals mentioned on the above page:
Miss Alia E. Landers, Mrs. M. F. Mortimer, Mrs. Harry G. Fisher (Jacksonville, Florida), Miss Margaret Lawrence (Lewisburg, Tennessee), Mr. Whittaker, Mr. Muensch, Miss Kathleen Ligon, Mrs. Baker, Miss Madge Dorider, Mrs. Margaret Rich Ackerman, Miss Christine Lamb, Mr. George Nevins, Ovid Collins,  Miss Frank Hollowell, Ethel Jaques Bradley, Mrs. Jack Steele, Jr., Lois Thomason, Mrs. C. Hamlin

[page 4]
  
Individuals mentioned on the above page:
Mrs. Ida Baker, Mrs. Leslie B. Holmes, Mrs. Herbert P. Strack, Mattie Moore, Mrs. Ben A. Tanksley, Mrs. Willis P. Bearden, Mrs. E. H. Brown, Mrs. Elizabeth Denmark, Mrs. Robert Paull, W. Ovid Collins, John L. Hill, Miss Mai Hite, Mrs. W. P. Wooten, Miss Jennie Parham, Miss Jo Lena Bond, Miss Nina Pardue, Miss Anne Farrar, Miss Marie Stevens, Mrs. B. C. Moses, Miss Lena McAskill, Miss Libbie Tegarden, Miss Bessie Kirkland, Mrs. H. O. Kelly, Miss Irene Million, Mrs. Jas. C. Bartlett, Mrs. L. G. Haswell, Miss Sallie Gibbs, Mrs. H. P. McClurken, Miss Addie Tillou, Miss Addie Wise, Miss Golda Moorman, Mrs. Ella Johnson, Miss Eldridge McKay, Mrs. Evans Sprott, Miss Lois Thomason, Miss Bertha Dixon, Miss Lucille Burgess, Miss Mildred Dortch, Miss Della Rogers, Miss Lurla M. Rollins, Miss Nelle Chaffin, Mrs. F. G. Westenberger, Miss Georgia Herndon, Miss Mayver Moore, Miss Ida France, Miss Ruth Bonner, Miss Evelyn Butts, Mrs. H. B. Thurston, Miss Ruby Stover, Mrs. Maude Parkes, Miss Laura Ryan, Mrs. R. H. Bruce, Miss Elizabeth Neblette, Mrs. J. A. Whittaker, Miss Lottie Holman, Miss Ila Joyner, Miss Nina Smartt, Mrs. R. R. Arterburn, Miss Ruby Shemwell, Miss Emma Baldwin, Miss Ola Maddox.



© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Tuesday's Tip - Wisconsin Historical Society


Sand Island Lighthouse  in Bayfield County, Wisconsin. 
By United States Coast Guard [Public domain],
via Wikimedia Commons

If you researching ancestors in Wisconsin, you will want to check out the Wisconsin Historical Society website.

Click on genealogy in the navigation bar to go to some of the amazing resources they have available:
  • Pre-1907 vital records (literally millions of birth, death and marriage records!)
  • More than 150,000 obituaries and biographical sketches published before 1999
  • Memoirs and other material written by early Wisconsin residents
  • Civil War rosters and research images
  • Historic images

Historical materials include diaries (including one written by a member of the Lewis and Clark expedition), a map and atlas collection, county histories and much more!



© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research

Monday, February 20, 2012

Mystery Monday – “disapointment not married”

While researching another family, I came across this image for a marriage license issued to Pelatiah Safford and Frances Ferris on 20 March 1861 in Union County, Ohio:

Source: "Ohio County Marriages, 1790-1950", Union County marriages,
FHL film number 573777, digital folder 4701456, image 162, Safford-Ferris, 1861;
 index and images, FamilySearch (www.familysearch.org : accessed 18 Feb 2012). 

How sad! What happened? Who was disappointed? My curiosity led to me to see if I could find out a little more about Pelatiah and Frances.

A Fanni Ferris (age 48, born in New York) along with 6-year old Frances Ferris is enumerated in the household of wagonmaker Rowland Lee in Paris Township, Union County, Ohio.[1] There is no woman named Frances or Fanni Ferris in the 1850 census for Union County.

In 1860, P. Safford (age 59 born in Vermont) was enumerated in the household of H. Danforth in Union County, Ohio; Safford was listed as being a farmer with real estate valued at $2,200. An Adaline Safford (age 44, also born in Vermont) was also in the household. [2]

In 1850, Pelatiah was in Union County, Ohio, enumerated with what appears to be his wife Arinbaha(?) and seven apparent children ranging in age from 0 to 19 years.[3]

A quick check of burials in Union County reveals a memorial for Azubah Austin Safford, wife of Pelatiah, died 11 April 1860, buried in Raymond Cemetery. [4] She died just two months before the 1860 census enumeration! Pelatiah died 15 July 1886 and is buried in the same cemetery.[5]

When Pelatiah applied for the license to marry Frances, he had been a widower for a year. Since they were not enumerated with him, his young children may have been living with other family members or others in the community. Did he hope that Frances would help him raise his children?

It appears that Frances “Fanni” Ferris was a widow with a young daughter to raise. Was she looking for someone to provide support for her so she could raise her child?

Who disappointed who?

Pelatiah certainly was not deterred by this turn of events. He married twice in the following ten years: first to Cynthia A. Finch on 4 March 1862 in Delaware County, Ohio,[6] and then to Martha A. Bartlow on 3 June 1871 in Union County, Ohio.[7]



[1] 1860 U.S. census, Union County, Ohio, population schedule, Paris Township, page 184, dwelling 1412, family 1402, Fanni Ferris; digital images, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 19 February 2012), citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm publication M653, roll 1044.
[2] 1860 U.S. census, Union County, Ohio, population schedule, Taylor Township, pages 123-124, dwelling 931, family 916, H. Danforth; digital images, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 19 February 2012), citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm publication M653, roll 1044.
[3] 1850 U.S. census, Union County, Ohio, population schedule, Taylor Township, pages 80B-81A, dwelling 1083, family 1100, Pelatiah Safford, digital images, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 19 February 2012), citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm publication M432, roll 736.
[4] FindAGrave Memorial #27977242, Azubah Austin Safford, created by judy price on 2 July 2008, Findagrave, (www.findagrave.com : accessed 19 February 2012).
[5] FindAGrave Memorial #39763956, Pelatiah R. Safford, created by Rose Marie on 22 July 2009, Findagrave, (www.findagrave.com : accessed 19 February 2012).
[6] "Ohio County Marriages, 1790-1950", Delaware County marriages, FHL film number 391396, digital folder 4016691, image 13, Safford-Finch, 1862; index and images, FamilySearch (www.familysearch.org : accessed 19 Feb 2012).
[7] "Ohio County Marriages, 1790-1950", Union County marriages, FHL film number 573776, digital folder 4701456, image 595, Safford-Bartlow, 1871; index and images, FamilySearch (www.familysearch.org : accessed 19 Feb 2012).


© 2012 Denise Spurlock, Ancestral Trees Research