Saturday, October 31, 2015

Saturday Webinar: "50 Year View - What I've Learned Climbing My Family Tree"



Genealogist Tom Kemp looks back over 50 years of genealogical research in his 7 May 2014 webinar, "50 Year View - What I've Learned Climbing My Family Tree."  Although I found my mother's birth parents in the late '90's, I've only been doing genealogy in earnest for about 5 years, so I look forward to seeing what he has to say.  It's great to have someone go over the long view.

Legacy Family Tree offers some free webinars, but these represent only the tip of the iceberg in their library.  You can check out their their holdings here.

To be honest, these are amazing prices.  I am not a subscriber (yet) and I'm not affiliated with the company, but I just had to promote them.



© 2015 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Family Friday: Grenfell

This Kodachrome slide was taken in 1951 (when I was four) at Mother's birthplace* in Lawrence County, South Dakota, . The old guy in the overalls with the ax is Mother's father William Richard Grenfell (1879-1956).

The woodpile behind us provided fuel for his heating and cooking. Every winter the wind blew the snow into a deep drift between the house and the woodpile but when Dad offered to build a lean-to just outside the back door and move some firewood there Grandpa Grenfell rejected the suggestion, giving as his reason, "If that place was good enough for my father, it's good enough for me!"

[From my personal collection]

This was the last trip we took in travel trailer #2 and you can see a wider view of the house and farm here.

*I am referring here to the mother who raised me, Bernice Grenfell.

© 2015 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Brick Wall: Notes on Solomon Hartley Part 2


Some places mentioned in the record for Solomon, George, and William Hartley in Philadelphia (between 1798-1817).  Camden, New Jersey, across the Delaware River, is where the parents of Mary Gwinnup (Solomon's wife) moved to, probably in the late 1780's/1790's.  Just a few thousand meters away, yet due to record loss New Jersey has so much less information in the same time period as Pennsylvania.  

When Solomon Hartley's sons George (1805-1880) and Abner (1813-1890) answered the father's place of birth on the 1880 Census question, neither put Pennsylvania.  George had Solomon from Germany, and Abner had Solomon was from Poland.  Not Pennsylvania, not England.

This must explain why I was hitting a brick wall with Solomon.  Hartley was likely not his original last name!  Perhaps it was similar to Hartley, or perhaps it was something completely different.

Using the city directories at PhilaGeo ("Greater Philadelphia GeoHistory Network")  I was able to work out some facts about Solomon's presence in Philadelphia. There were other Hartleys in the area, including (all years are uploaded at Internet Archive via PhilaGeo's Resources):

1785
Hartly, Martha, shopkeeper, Vine b. Front and Second-streets
Hartley James, merchant, Arch b. Second and Font-streets
Hartley and Potts, iron merchants, Water b. Market and Arch-streets
Hartley Conrade, baker, Front b Vine and Race-streets

1791
Hartley James, iron merchant, 18 & 33, Mulberry St.

1793
Hartley James, merchant, 18, Mulberry St.
Hartley Philip, plumber and glazier, 31, Pewter platter alley
Hartley John, shopkeeper, 164, No. Second St.

1794
Hartley Elizabeth, widow, (back) 298, No. Front St.
Hartley James, merchant, 11, Mulberry St.
Hartley Martin J. shopkeeper, 164, No. Second St.

1795
James Hartley, Iron merchant (Arch or Mulberry St, Beginning on the North side near the Delaware.)
John M. Hartley, Shopkeeper (Cross New-street or Elm-street)

1796
Hartley James, iron merchant, 11 Arch st.
Hartley James, Merchant, 18 Arch st.
Hartley John M., shopkeeper, 164 No. Second St.

1797
Hartley James, merchant, 18, Arch st.
Hartley Martin, shopkeeper, 164, north Second st.
Hartley Wm. mariner, south fourth, between Plumb [probably Plum] and Shippen st.

1798
Hartley Elizabeth, widow, Noble st.
Hartley George, mariner, Duke st.
Hartley James, gentleman, 114, north front st.
Hartley John, shopkeeper, 164, north Second st.

1799
Hartley George, rigger Duke st
Hartley James, gentleman 114 north Front st
Hartley Martin, shopkeeper 164 north Second st

1800
Hartley Thomas, taylor 54 south Water st
Hartley George, rigger Duke st
Hartley John, shopkeeper 164 north Second st
Hartley James, liquor store near the ferry Market st.

1801
James Hartley, gentleman
John Hartley, shopkeeper

1802
Hartley Elizabeth, widow, 198 N Second
Hartley George, rigger, Steinmetz wharf
Hartley George, rigger, Noble above Front
Hartley J. shopkeeper, 164 N Second
Hartley John, shoemaker, 133 Plumb [Plum?]

1803
Hartley George, rigger Noble above Front & Steinmetz's wharf
Hartley Martin, shopkeeper 164 N Second
Hartly Elizabeth, widow 198 N Second

1804
Hartley George, rigger, North wharves near Callowhill and Noble above Front street
Hartley Martin, shopkeeper, 164 N Second street
Hartly Elizabeth, widow, 198 N Second street

1805
Hartley George, rigger North wharves near Callow-hill and Noble above Front
Hartley John M. shopkeeper 164 N 2d

1806
Hartley H. segar maker back 21 north Fifth
Hartley George, rigger North wharves near Callowhill and Noble above Front
Hartley John M. shop keeper 164 north Second

1807
Hartley George, rigger north Wharves near Callowhill and Noble above Front
Hartley John M. shopkeeper 164 north Second
Hartley Mark, cabinet and chair maker 35 south Front
Hartly Ezekiel, segar maker 38 Budd
Hartly G. and F. coppersmiths 88 south Water and 89 Front
Hartly Joseph, upholsterer 272 south Second
Hartly Solomon, rigger Emlen's court

1808
Hartley Mark, cabinet and chair maker 35 south Front
Hartley Ezekiel, segar maker 38 Budd
Hartley George, coppersmith 99 south Front
Hartly G. and F. coppersmiths 88 south Water and 95 south Front
Hartley George, rigger north Wharves near Callowhill and Noble above Front
Hartley John M. shopkeeper 164 north Second
Hartley Joseph, upholsterer 272 south Second
Hartley Joseph, upholsterer 272 south Second [not sure if this was duplicate or there are 2 men]
Hartley Thomas, instrument maker 123 Swanson
Hartly Solomon, rigger Emlen's court

1809
Hartley Mark, cabinet and chair maker 35 S. Front
Hartley Ezekiel, segarmaker 38 Budd
Hartley Geo. and Francis, coppersmiths 95 S. Front
Hartley N. tinsmith 164 north Second
Hartley George, rigger north Wharves near Callow-hill and Noble above Front
Hartley John M. shopkeeper 164 north Second
Hartley Joseph, upholsterer 272 south Second

1810
Hartley Mark, cabinet and chairmaker 35 and 75 south Front
Hartley Ezekiel, segarmaker 38 Budd
Hartley Nicholas, tinsmith 164 north Second
Hartley George, rigger Warder's wharf & 16 Noble
Hartley John M. shopkeeper 164 north Second
Hartley Joseph, upholsterer 272 south Second
Hartley Soloman, rigger 43 Coates'

1811
Hartley Daniel, tobacconist, 158 N. Second
Hartley Ezekiel, segarmaker, 38 Budd
Hartley George, rigger, Warder's wharf and 16 Noble
Hartley John M. shopkeeper, 55 New
Hartley Joseph, upholsterer, 272 S. Second
Hartley Mark, cabinet & chairmaker, 35 & 75 S. Front
Hartley Nicholas, tinsmith, 164 N Second
Hartley Sidonia, milliner, 310 S. Second
Hartley Solomon, rigger, 43 Coates'

1813
Hartley Daniel, tobaconist 158 north Second
Hartley Geo. rigger Bright's wharf and 16 Noble
Hartley John M. gentleman 55 New
Hartley Joseph, upholsterer 272 south Second
Hartley Mark, cabinet and chairmaker 146 Locust
Hartley Nicholas, tinsmith 189 north Second
Hartley Solomon, rigger 49 Browne
Hartley Wm. reedmaker, back 208 High

1814
Hartley Daniel, tobacconist 158 north Second and 43 Key's alley
Hartley George, rigger Bright's wharf and corner Key's alley and Second
Hartley John M. gentleman 55 New
Hartley Joseph, upholsterer 266 south Second
Hartley Mrs. of Matthias, tayloress 499 S. Front
Hartley Nicholas, tinsmith, 189 north Second
Hartley Solomon, mariner back 49 Browne (N.L.)
Hartley wife of Ezekiel, 38 Budd
Hartley William, reedmaker back 208 High

1816
Hartley Daniel, storekeeper 276 north Second
Hartley Elizabeth, widow 175 north Front
Hartley George, rigger Bright's wharf
Hartley John M. gentleman 55 New
Hartley Joseph, upholsterer 266 south Second
Hartley Mary, widow 38 Budd [likely widow of Ezekiel, as this was his address]
Hartley Nicholas, tinsmith 189 N 2nd & 84 Vine

1817 
Hartley Daniel, storekeeper 276 north Second
Hartley Richard, tinplate worker 9 Pfieffers alley
Hartley George, rigger Bright's wharf
Hartley George, dry good store 24 N. 2d
Hartley John M. gentleman 55 New
Hartley Joseph, upholsterer 266 south Second
Hartley M & Mary glovemaker Pegg st. [undoubtedly Mary Gwinnup]

1818
Hartle Isabella, widow 130 Coates'
Hartley Daniel, 345 High
Hartley George, dry good store 24 north Second
Hartley John M. gentleman 55 New
Hartley Joseph, upholsterer 266 south Second
Hartley M. widow back 37 Newmarket [possibly Mary Gwinnup]
Hartley Nicholas, tin plate worker 12 Heyde's court
Hartley Samuel, silversmith 10 Trotter's alley

1819
Hartley George, dry goods store 24 north Second
Hartley Henry, labourer back 29 Prime
Hartley John M. gentleman 55 New
Hartley Joseph, upholsterer 266 south Second
Hartley M. widow back 37 Newmarket [possibly Mary Gwinnup]
Hartley Nicholas, tinplate worker 4 Heyde's court
Hartley Samuel, silversmith 61 south Fifth

I found two William Hartleys.  One in 1797 who was a mariner, and one in 1815 who was a reedmaker (either for an instrument or comb).  One or both of these men may of course have been a relative of Solomon, but I think I find a more compelling argument for the George Hartley, rigger, who was in the area since 1798, and who stopped appearing in the record after 1817, as the brother of Solomon mentioned in May Jarvis's summary.  He had the same profession as Solomon.  Solomon's wife, Mary Gwinnup, had been married to Anthony Onetto before she married Solomon, and she had 3 children with Onetto--Joseph, John, and Elizabeth ("Betsey").  Joseph Onetto later married Martha Lame, daughter of blacksmith Caleb Lame, who just happened to live at the exact same address in 1802 as George Hartley ("Lane[sic] Caleb, blacksmith, Noble above Front").

George Hartley also has a very interesting Seaman's Protection Certificate:

My transcription:

City of Philadelphia ss(?),
I Matthew Clarkson Mayor of the said City do hereby Certify that George Hartley Mariner son of George Hartley Labourer of Dantzig, where he was born, and arrived at Philadelphia--from Amsterdam----did this day take and subscribe before me the Oath of Allegiance prescribed by an Act of the General Assembly of the Common Wealth of Pennsylvania pass on the 13th day March 1789,--
five feet nine inches, dark compl.
Germany, Dansick
In testimony whereof, I have hereunto subscribed my name and affixed my seal the--Third day of July 1794
Matthew Clarkson (signed), Mayor

Depending on the time period, Danzig could be in either Germany or Poland, so this certainly doesn't exclude this George Hartley, son of George Hartley, from Danzig/Gdansk.  I have tentatively linked George Hartley as a possible brother of Solomon Hartley.



© 2015 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Working on Wednesday: John Sowell (About 1715 - 1755), Planter

The only document we have regarding this paternal six-times great grandfather is his will, written on March 28, 1750, in which he described himself as "Being Verry Sick and weak in Body But of Sound and Perfect Memory Blessed be God for the Same[.]"*

However ill John may have been at the time he made his will he didn't die for nearly five years and the document wasn't presented for probate until the February Court in Bertie County, North Carolina, in 1755.


Source: Library of Congress Geography and Map Division Washington, D.C.]

Unfortunately (for us), John didn't mention his occupation (as is sometimes to be found in old wills) but it's clear from the bequests that he was a landowner. His eldest son, also named John, was named as inheritor of "all my Land and Plantation whereon I Now Live[.]" The younger John was also to receive "a Legesie Left to him By his Grandfather Richard Sowell a Legesie of ten Pounds ten Shillings and four pence Virginia Currency to be Delivered to him when he Comes of age[.]"*



[Wills, Vol 28-30, Sco-Sut, Ancestry.com. North Carolina, Wills and Probate Records, 1665-1998 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2015. Original data: North Carolina County, District and Probate Courts.]
   
This father didn't leave his two younger sons, James and Francis any land but each was to receive a "Steal trap," a gun and some livestock. James's bequest also included "one Set of Cuppers Tuals" and "my Negro boy Robin" and his brother was left one "Set of Shewmakers Tuals" and "Twelve Pounds Virginia money to be Paid out of the Estate."

John's beloved wife Ann (Worley) Sowell and their four daughters "Mary[,] Elisbeth[,], Feriby[,]** Ann" were to share equally in the remainder of the estate and that the girls "may have their Portions Delivered to them when they come to the age of fifteen years old."


[Wills, Vol 28-30, Sco-Sut, Ancestry.com. North Carolina, Wills and Probate Records, 1665-1998 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2015. Original data: North Carolina County, District and Probate Courts.]

*At the time none of his children were of age as is noted with each bequest.
**Thereby confirming the name of the testator's father.
***Feriby, my direct ancestor, married Thomas Ward and their great granddaughter Martha Heath Hardy is my great great grandmother.

© 2015 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Book Shelf: Coronado Beach, San Diego, 1900

This 40-page promotional brochure touted the attractions of Coronado Beach (especially The Hotel Del Coronado) in 1900.




[Coronado Beach, California. Source: Internet Archive, Contributor: Library of Congress, Digitizing Sponsor: Sloan Foundation]

Note that hunting and fishing were prominently listed among the activities available to visitors.



And golf.

[Coronado Beach, California. Source: Internet Archive, Contributor: Library of Congress, Digitizing Sponsor: Sloan Foundation]


To read more about the Hotel Del Coronado, here is the Wikipedia entry.


© 2015 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Monday Madness: When Your Computer Gets a Virus and You Can't Access Your Online Genealogy

It's just one of those days.

Earlier this year I tried to get Family Tree Maker, but for some reason I could never get my computer to accept the activation code and thus couldn't download the program.  I had been excited to use the database to group all people who were born or died in a particular place so that I could look for vital records and wills/probates in one area all at once, or all of the people who were born within a certain year range (for instance to find all men who were within the age-range to be in the Civil War), among other advanced functions that I can't do with the online version of Ancestry.  Alas, it was not to be, and Ancestry has discontinued the CD-ROM version.  So I'm waiting for the next incarnation to try it again.  Bummer.

Today my browsers keep going to a fake AT&T phishing page, so I will be spending my precious genealogy time on getting rid of this computer pestilence.

This is a very good reason to have an offline version of your tree!  Consider this a cautionary tale.








© 2015 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Sunday Drive: Vaga-Bus

The only thing I know about this photo is that it was taken in Long Beach, Washington, probably in 1948. Food trucks have come a long way since then.

[From my personal collection]


© 2015 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Brick Wall: A Summary of Notes About Solomon Joseph Hartley, part 1

Solomon Hartley's only known signature, from his 1803 Seaman's Protection Certificate.  It looks like it says Salomon.  The confident script leads me to think that he knew how to write.


The origins of my 4th great grandfather, Solomon Joseph Hartley (1775-1815), remain elusive.  I will summarize what I know about him.

My Hartley line: my father's father, George Hartley, Jr, is at bottom left.


Solomon's grandson James Hartley married Mary Jane Tibbetts, half sister to family historian May (Tibbetts) Jarvis.  May Jarvis had this to say about Solomon:


From my personal copy of "The Hartley Family" by May Jarvis.
Although the evidence I have found indicates that Solomon was more likely born at the beginning of the American Revolution, the tidbit about his having a brother kept my eyes open for another Hartley male in the area when Solomon died.

The first record I definitely find for Solomon is his Seaman's Protection Certificate on 3 November 1803, in Southwark, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania:
Found in Ancestry's database, "U.S., Atlantic Ports Seamen's Protection Certificates, 1792-1869"; originally from The National Archives and Records Administration; Washington, D.C.; Proofs of Citizenship Used to Apply for Seamen's Certificates for the Port of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1792-1863.  These certificates can also be found for free in the image-only "Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Seamen's Proofs of Citizenship, 1791-1861" at FamilySearch.
I originally sent for and received a copy of this certificate from the National Archives a few years back, and there is more than just this image.  My transcript of the certificate:
Note: Content of actual record of Solomon Hartley (n. 9566 Soloman Hartley, 2 Nov).  The certificate is folded, with info on each side:
(inside)
Commonwealth of Penn.
Phildelphia County
Personally appeared before me the Subscriber one of the Justices of the Peace forsaid county, James Creed(?), who upon his sollemn Oath Sywreth and Sayeth, that Solloman Hartley to his certain knowledge was born at Pitsborough in the Commonwealth aforesaid, said Solloman is about twenty eight years of age, five feet five inches and three quarters high, brown hair, near unto black, blue eyes and dark complexion, a scarr under his left chinn on the upper part of his neck.  A mark or scarr on the upper joynt of the little finger of his right hand--  Said Solloman Hartley acknowledges no government but the government of the state of Penn and generally the Government of the United States of America of whome he claims citizenship--
 Sworn and subscribed before me Given under my hand and Seal the 2nd day of Novem. 1803
James Creed(?) (signed)
Salomon Hartley (signed) (might read Solomon)
Wm Robinson(?) (signed)

 (outside)
 I would thank the Gentleman at the Custom house to Inform me what he desires to be done, the written is what has on all ocasions been Practized--I believe the Gentleman will find by the Late law of Congress some Person to Vouch on Oath (for the Person to achieve this protection) where the person was born, and the person vouching the only by person to be sworn, and the only Subscriber, nessessary but if the custom house officer acting will Point out the mode, if any other, I will thank him, subscribe Myself.
Wm Robinson (signed) (last name unclear)
One of the Justices of the Peace for the County of Philadelphia according(?) in the District of Southwark

So I guess he didn't have a witness available.

So this is where Solomon was willing to officially claim he was from, Pitsborough (now known as Pittsburgh).  This surprised me as I have seen an almost exclusively East to West migration pattern during this time period, but this indicates Solomon was born on the Pennsylvania western frontier, about 1775, and made his way to Philadelphia to be a mariner.

From what I can figure out, the village of Pittsborough grew around Fort Pitt in the 1760's (Fort Pitt was previously Fort Duquesne).  Life was hard, as indicated by this Wikipedia excerpt about early Pittsburgh:
The Iroquois signed the Fort Stanwix Treaty of 1768, ceding the lands south of the Ohio to the British.[19] European expansion into the upper Ohio valley increased. An estimated 4,000 to 5,000 families settled in western Pennsylvania between 1768 and 1770. Of these settlers, about a third were English, a third were Scottish-Irish, and the rest were Welsh, German and others.[20] These groups tended to settle together in small farming communities, but often their households were not within hailing distance. The life of a settler family was one of relentless hard work: clearing the forest, stumping the fields, building cabins and barns, planting, weeding, and harvesting. In addition, almost everything had to be manufactured by hand, including furniture, tools, candles, buttons, and needles.[20] Settlers had to deal with harsh winters, and with snakes, black bears, mountain lions, and timber wolves. Because of the fear of raids by Native Americans, the settlers often built their cabins near, or even on top of, springs. They also built blockhouses, where neighbors would rally during conflicts.[3]
Increasing violence with especially the Shawnee, Miami, and Wyandot tribes led to Dunmore's War in 1774, and conflict with Native Americans continued throughout the American Revolution. In 1777, Fort Pitt became a United States fort, when Brigadier General Edward Hand took command. In 1779, Colonel Daniel Brodhead led 600 men from Fort Pitt to destroy Seneca villages along the upper Allegheny.[3]

Was Solomon's family among those who migrated during that time?  And this brings up another question for me, what ethnicity was Solomon??

For a long time I just assumed he was English, although one of my Hartley relatives thought he might be Dutch.  Hartley is a good English name, right?











© 2015 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Family Friday: Slater/Norville

This is my birth mother Alta Mae Slater (1917-1986) and her husband Holmes Smith "Pete" Norville (1925-1989) taken about 1970 in Palos Verdes, California.

[Courtesy of Olive Slater-Kennedy]


© 2015 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

FREE -- Family Tree Legacy Webinar: Billions of Records, Billions of Stories"


Devin Ashby, a Community Advocate for FamilySearch, is featured in "Billions of Records, Billions of Stories":
Volunteers around the world have now indexed and arbitrated over 1 billion records. This class will discuss the current initiatives of the FamilySearch Indexing community and provide an in-depth look at some of the stories being told.

Presentation starts at 4:38




© 2015 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Gone for Soldiers: Abraham Heath (About 1740 - 1807), Soldier (Part VI)

After their defeat by the British at Germantown, Private Abraham Heath, along with the rest of Washington's Continental Army, marched off to spend the winter at Valley Forge. While he was there the Virginia troops were under the command of General George Weedon. Abraham's term of service was due to expire in February 1778 and I'm sure he was looking forward to his release.

lith and publ. by P. Haas, Wash. City. Haas, Philip, active 1837-1863, lithographer, about 1843.
Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.]

["Encampment at Valley Forge 1778" by George W. Boynton (engraving) - Sparkes, Jered "The Life of George Washington" Boston: Tappen & Dennet 1843"The Cooper Collections of American History" (uploader's private collection)Scanned by the uploader, Centpacrr..
Licensed under PD-US via Wikipedia htps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Encampment_at_Valley_Forge_1778.jpg#/media/File:Encampment_at_Valley_Forge_1778.jpg]


We first learned about Abraham Heath's service through The Valley Forge Muster Roll* which led us to take a closer look at his records in the National Archive.

[The Muster Roll record for Abraham Heath]

Below is the Muster Roll of Captain Nathaniel Fox's Company for the month of December 1777 with Abraham listed fourth from the bottom of the right column.

[Regiment : 06th Regiment, 1776-1778 (Folders 165-177); 6th Regiment, 1778-1779 (Folders 178-180). Ancestry.com. U.S., Revolutionary War Rolls, 1775-1783 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2007. Original data: Revolutionary War Rolls, 1775-1783; (National Archives Microfilm Publication M246, 138 rolls); War Department Collection of Revolutionary War Records, Record Group 93; National Archives, Washington. D.C.]


You can read my earlier posts about Abraham Heath's military service here: Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V.

*Although we knew that he had been an active participant in the Revolution, we thought that he had served in the Virginia militia.


© 2015 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

DNA.LAND Results In!

DNA.LAND just began, so I think it likely there will be more features and more matches, but as of this writing they had 7107 genomes upload.  You upload your DNA file from AncestryDNA, 23 and Me, or FamilyTreeDNA, then DNA.LAND in turn gives you relative matches (if you have any) and their ethnicity estimate.

Since this is an American database, and my mom has much deeper American colonial ancestry, she has always had about twice as many DNA matches as my father, whose maternal lines are all from Scandinavia. As expected, my mom has the first matches, to what is likely a man and his mother (or possibly aunt), based on the names and email given (which I've blanked out):

Mom's matches so far.

A detailed look at the right side shows recent and ancient shared segments.  At this point you can't click on any of the chart for more information, including the exact location of the matches, but again, this is a brand-new site:


ETA: the [Show/Hide Table] DOES show where the matches are, my mistake!

Dad doesn't have any relative matches yet.

DNA.LAND is using Dr. Joe Pickrell's Ancestry program for the ethnicity estimates.  According to the FAQs on DNA.LAND:
Ancestry detection is an experimental feature and we are currently working to improve it, including a feedback page so that users can provide input to help us improve the algorithm.

I will show the ethnicity estimates for my parents using results from AncestryDNA, Eurogenes K13 on GEDmatch (I think a good standard test for people of mostly or all European ancestry), FamilyTreeDNA, and DNA.LAND.

Mom's AncestryDNA estimate

Mom's Eurogenes K13 (from GEDmatch)

Mom's FamilyTreeDNA estimate


Mom's DNA.LAND ethnicity estimate.  This is way less specific than the others.
My mom's ethnicity estimates typically include quite a bit of Iberian, which surprised me at first but makes sense since she has some known French ancestors in Virginia.  She also tends to have Caucasus area indicators.  Otherwise she is mostly English/Scottish/Irish with some German, so even the simple DNA.LAND estimate is reasonable.

My dad is half Scandinavian, and about 1/4 English and 1/4 German (according to his paper trail).  He has had some surprises in his estimates--either about 1% Native American (AncestryDNA and Eurogenes K13) or about 6% Ashkenazi Jewish (FamilyTreeDNA and DNA.LAND).  Like Superman and Clark Kent, those two ethnicities never show up together in one test.  I cannot account for either of these ethnicities in his paper trail, so I am curious what his 1.22% other is in DNA.LAND.

I'm guessing that it is likely South Asian, as DNA.LAND seems similar to FamilyTreeDNA.

Dad's AncestryDNA
Dad's Eurogenes K13


Dad's FamilyTreeDNA estimate

Dad's DNA.LAND estimate

So far so good for a new site.  I look forward to what DNA.LAND will turn into.





© 2015 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.

Monday, October 19, 2015

Monday Is for Mothers: Lydia Willcox (1775 - 1869)

The daughter of Obediah and Sarah (Talcott) Willcox, this paternal fourth great grandmother spent her whole life in New Hampshire. She was born on November 22, 1775, in the town of Surry in Cheshire County.

[Ancestry.com. New Hampshire, Birth Records, 1659-1900 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations. Inc., 2013. Original data: “New Hampshire, Birth Records, through 1900.” Online index and digital images. New England Historical Genealogical Society. Citing New Hampshire Bureau of Vital Records, Concord, New Hampshire.]


[The American Atlas: Or, A Geographical Description Of The Whole Continent Of America ... Engraved On Forty-Eight Copper Plates, By The Late Mr. Thomas Jefferys, Geographer to the King, and Others. London, Printed and Sold by R. Sayer and J. Bennett, Map and Print Sellers, No. 53, Fleet-Street. MDCCLXXVI. Source: David Rumsey Historical Map Collection]

There are more records I will share with you from Lydia's 94-year lifetime, but I have run out of time here in France where it's after midnight and time for bed. Adieu for now.

© 2015 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Sunday Drive: Clam Taxi

The only note on this Kodachrome slide from around 1950* reads "Pismo Beach" and there's enough information to be gleaned from the hand-painted signs on the truck itself to identify it. Bill Lovern and his wife Ruby, transplanted Texans, ran a clam and tackle shop in Oceano which also offered 24-hour towing service. From an interview a reporter with the San Luis Obispo Tribune had with his daughter Betty in 1989 we learn more about the "taxi" (and you can too by following this link):
"He had converted a 1929 Model A Ford ice truck into the 'clam taxi.' He added benches, a ladder shaft and power winch. Most customers, however wanted rides to and from their favorite clam digging spots. If they didn’t have some, Bill Lovern offered advice."

[From  my personal collection]

I love the internet!


*The slide could have been taken as early as 1948 but probably not later than 1951.

© 2015 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Tip: Don't Just Rely on the Search Function When Using Newspaper Databases

"Dehesa Doings," San Diego Union (San Diego, CA), p 5, col 4, 8 Aug 1892; digital image, GenealogyBank.com (http://www.genealogybank.com: accessed 17 Oct 2015).

The info above was found doing a "Hartley" search.  Since newspapers often had recurring columns I thought to search "Dehesa Doings" to possibly find other tidbits in other issues.  But instead I got this:

Oh, come on, I just found Dehesa Doings three minutes ago!
I am assuming the optical character recognition just doesn't read it as Dehesa Doings (and who knows what it thinks it says).  While it may not be an ongoing column like I thought, the term "Dehesa Doings" DOES appear at least once for sure!  So what should I do?

I went page by page through other issues close in time to this one.  This is a bit tedious, but not only can it help you catch information missed by OCR, it also gives you a feel for what the newspaper was like and what kind of information you can realistically expect to glean from it.

Unfortunately I haven't found a graceful way to search newspapers this way on GenealogyBank, as they don't provide an easy way to browse papers--you have to search through them, which is different.  So I narrowed down to the specific paper I wanted, and then typed in a date range (in this case San Diego Union and August 1892--alternately, you could just type in a specific day and year):


Then I ordered by Oldest (you an order by Oldest, Newest, and Best):



Note the varying quality of the scans, even in one issue (in this case, all the results in this screenshot are from the August 1, 1892 issue).
No wonder the OCR doesn't find every word from the scanned images--just look at what it has to contend with!


After looking at a number of issues I realized that "Dehesa Doings" was not a regular heading, but I could depend on page 5 in any given issue in that era for information on local people, with the leading title "Local Intelligence. In General.":

"Dehesa Doings" in the larger context.

Every newspaper database I've used has to deal with the same OCR problems.

Many states now have historic newspapers to browse through, like the Historic Oregon Newspapers.  I use this database to find my Oregon ancestors.  When a search for my 2nd great grandfather William Nosler's death notice or obituary came back with no results, I used his known death date (3 Dec 1914 in Coquille, Oregon) to narrow down and search page-by-page, issue-by-issue, to find his obituary:
No doubt the fuzzy print threw off the OCR.  This example also shows how discrepancies can occur in newspapers--the Oregon death index indicates he died on the 3rd, while this report indicates he died on the 5th.  Mrs. George Hartley is my great grandmother Minnie (Nosler) Hartley"Dies in Coquille," The Coos Bay Times--Evening Edition (Marshfield, Oregon), 7 Dec 1914, p 1; digital image, Historic Oregon Newspapers (http://oregonnews.uoregon.edu/ : accessed 17 Oct 2015).


Here is the obituary in the larger context:
These obituaries are often found later in the issue, but more well-known citizens' obituaries might be featured on the front page.




Oh, so maybe I should have searched for William H. Nosler, then?  Nope (and using capitals or not didn't matter, either):

But I just found his obituary in there!




While using Search is a great way to use newspaper databases like GenealogyBank or Historic Oregon Newspapers, it is really just the tip of the iceberg. You've got to really spend some time looking at newspapers, page by page, to know how to use them.






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