Research in review

This past week I started going through some of my mother’s stuff.  Some of it is from her genealogy research and some is just stuff she inherited from her mother and grandmother.

This included a cigar box I remembered sitting on my great grandmother’s dresser for year.  In the box is a big stack of prayer cards.  Some of them I have scanner, still have a lot more to scan.

Card 1

Card 2

I also found an old account book of my great grandmother from the 1930s.

page 2 and 3

Rent of a house was $12 a month.  Amazing that my great grandparents grew up in the poor to working class area of Buffalo and still had to worry about these small amounts.  Prices have gone up quite a bit in 90 years.

Today, I will continue with my scanning and looking for more interesting tidbits from my family’s past.



Wednesday Wedding review

Six and a half months before my birth my parents decided to get married in Washington, DC.  He was from Lancaster, Ohio, she was from Buffalo, NY.  He was a marine, she was a clerk in the navy.

I have no idea who the witnesses are but I did find a letter to my mother from Stanley asking her to call and talk to his daughter.  I was able to find the daughter on Facebook.  She was able to fill in a couple blanks about my parents.



An odd comment

A random thought came to me today.  It was odd and needed to be put out there.

In the song Iko Iko you have the lyric: My grandma and your grand-ma were sit-tin’ by the fire My grandma told your grand-ma “I’m gon-na set your flag on fire.

That made me think of my wife’s 6th great grandfather Jacob Countryman.
In the 1925 Countryman Genealogy book, Alvin Countryman writes:
“In the destruction of the Dutchtown settlements by the Indians and Tories, October 20, 1780, to the surprise of everyone, the house of George Countryman remained unharmed, since it was well-known that there was not a more staunch Whig in the neighbourhood. This circumstance remained a mystery, however, until the close of the war. George had a brother who had followed the Johnsons and Butlers to Canada, who was with the horde of invaders on the occasion named. He was a masked man and supposing his wife was at the time at the home of his brother, his entreaties to have it spared prevailed, and it stood a seeming monument to savage mercy. After the war his brother sent word from Canada to George, informing him why his house was not burned and spared the incendiary torch–assuring him also that had he known at the time that his own wife was not in it, he would have seen that smoke with the rest.
So at some point the descendants of Jacob can sat to the descendents of George My grandpa said to your grandpa I’m gonna set you house on fire.
Not really important but just needed to get this tidbit out of my head.
Songwriters: Barbara Anne Hawkins / Joan Marie Johnson / Rosa Lee Hawkins

Iko Iko lyrics © EMI Music Publishing, Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC
* 1925 Countryman Genealogy
* Jacob Countryman United Empire Loyalist Ancestors and Descendants in Canada and the United States


Wednesday in review

IMG_20120817_194054This is my wife’s great aunt and uncle on her father’s side.  A side I need to review and clean up.  But it is also a side with a mystery.

Lisa’s father and uncle were both full babies born 6 months apart.  The birth dates are correct.  The family unspoken secret is that Edna was the mother of one of the two boys most point and wink to my father in law as her son.  The father was the same.  Secrets.

But, there was a younger brother that looked exactly like my father in law.  The middle brother does not at all.  The youngest brother knew the truth and took the secret to the grave.

I will need to get a shovel and search this one out.

Wednesday – recap

no info (2)

Me and my father probably in 1970 or 71.  I know very little about my own family, no idea what city this was in or how old I was when it was taken.  A very distinct family trait is the inability to talk about anything.  This is just another example of it.  I have other old photos from this time that I may post that I have little or no information about.

Are the lines true?

Ancestry has a beta version of a new feature that is lighting up social media called TrueLines.  The idea is to find common ancestors to your DNA matches.

I have tried to find a good explanation of what exactly it does but can’t get much information.

truelines search

What I gather is it triangulates two DNA profiles with a non DNA profile in each profiles tree.  I am assuming that it compares segments that match between the two and looks at the respective trees to see if they line up.

From my searches through the lines I have some really good pieces of information.  The best information comes when the other user has a public tree that is well sourced.  The least useful are DNA profiles that are not connected to a tree.

There have already been too many unconnected DNA profiles and the number keeps rising.  It seems that when the major DNA companies have their holiday sales they get a lot of people to test but not many that are interested in genealogy.  Those that test because the were asked by the family genealogist need to get connected.  If the test taker is ok with the asker they need to let them manage the profile and add them to a tree.  Or the asking genealogist should build a small tree for the test taker to connect to.  This way they can keep some interest in genealogy and possible add to the tree they get.

Ancestry also added a tagging system to our trees.  I would like to be able to tag the potential ancestors that appear in the TrueLines filter.  Something so I can help prioritize where I do in depth searching and not waste time would be helpful.

Overall, I find the new feature useful.  It can be made better by us the users.