Saturday, April 19, 2014

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Do Some Random Research

It's Saturday Night - 
time for more Genealogy Fun! 



Your mission, should you decide to accept it (cue the Mission Impossible! music) is to:


1)  
Go to The Random Name Generator and click the red “Generate Name” button at the top of the screen.  You can pick any random name that is generated in successive tries if you don't like or don't want to research the first name generated.


2. Go to Ancestry.com and enter your generated name in the search box on the main search page. If you don't have Ancestry.com, go to http://www.familysearch.org/ and do it there - it's free.

3. From the results, your research target will be the first census result for your generated name.

4. Using whatever online resources are at your disposal, see what else you can discover about your random person and write about it. It can be a formal report complete with footnotes, or just a “research story” about what you tried, problems you overcame, or success you had. Maybe you want to create a research plan for practice?

5. Post about it on your own blog, as a comment on this post, or in a comment on Facebook, Google+ or Twitter.


Here's mine:


1)  My randomly generated name is Monroe Merritt.

2)  I will use Ancestry.com.

3)  On Ancestry.com, the first census match was for J. Monroe Merritt in the 1940 U.S. Census, white, age 69, born in Georgia, residing on Church Street in Byron, Peach County, Georgia.  He had one year of high school education, was a proprietor of a retail grocery store, and was married.  His wife was Susie S. Merritt, age 63, white, born in Georgia.  In 1935, they had resided in Moultrie, Colquitt County, Georgia.

4)  I also found these results for this person:

a)  In the 1930 U.S. Census, James M. Merritt (head, white, age 57, married, first at age 22, born Georgia, , parents born Georgia/Georgia, a salesman, works in a dry goods store) resided in Moultrie, Colquitt County, Georgia at 310 South Main Street.  His wife, Susie H. Merritt (white, age 52, married, first at age 18, born Georgia, parents born Georgia/Georgia) was the only other person in the household.

b)  In the 1920 U.S. Census, J. Monroe Merritt (indexed as Merriot) (head, white, age 48, married, born Georgia, parents born Georgia/Georgia, a clerk in a clothing store) resided at 113 Green Street in Pelham, Mitchell county, Georgia.  The other persons in the household included:

*  Susie Merritt (wife, female, age 43, married, born Georgia, parents born Georgia/Georgia).
*  Bonnie May Merritt (daughter, female, age 21, single, born Georgia, parents born Georgia/Georgia, a teacher in a public school).
*  Virginia Merritt (daughter, female, age 19, single, born Georgia, parents born Georgia/Georgia, a teacher in a public school).
*  Elizabeth Merritt (daughter, female, age 8, single, born Georgia, parents born Georgia/Georgia).

c)  I couldn't find Monroe Merritt in the 1910 U.S. Census.  Nor James, nor any of the children (see below) with their mother.

d)   In the 1900 U.S. Census, Monroe J. Merritt (head, white, born Apr 1870, age 30, married, for 6 years, born Georgia, parents born Georgia/Georgia, a farm laborer) resided  in Pearces, Decatur County, Georgia.  The other persons in the household included:

*  Arlin (?) Susie Merritt (wife, female, born Apr 1875, age 25, married, for 6 years, 3 children born, 3 living, born Georgia, parents born Georgia/Georgia).
*  Arling (?) Zolia (?) Merritt (daughter, female, born Aug 1894, age 25, single, born Georgia, parents born Georgia/Georgia)
*  Lucy Brown Merritt (daughter, female, born Mar 1897, age 3, single, born Georgia, parents born Georgia/Georgia).
*  Virgia Merritt (daughter, female, born Feb 1900, age 3/12, single, born Georgia, parents born Georgia/Georgia).

e)  In the 1880 U.S. Census, Monroe J. Merritt (son, white, age 10, single, born Georgia, parents born Georgia/Georgia, works on farm) resided  in Pearces, Decatur County, Georgia.  The other persons in the household included:

*  Jacob H. Merritt (white, male, age 38, married, a farmer, born Georgia, parents born NC/NC)
*  Emily Merritt (white, female, age 44, wife, married, housekeeping, born Florida, parents born SC/SC)
*  Susan E. Merritt (white, female, age 14, daughter, single, housekeeping, born Georgia, parents born NC/Florida)
*  Mary L. Merritt (white, female, age 13, daughter, single, housekeeping, born Georgia, parents born NC/Florida)
*  Haywood H. Merritt (white, male, age 12, son, single, works on farm, born Georgia, parents born NC/Florida)
*  Lucius Merritt (white, male, age 4, son, single, born Georgia, parents born NC/Florida)
*  no name Merritt (white, male, age 2/12, son, single, born Georgia, parents born NC/Florida)

f)  James M. Merritt is in the Georgia Death Index, 1919-1998 listed as:

*  James M. Merritt, male, white, age 87, died 20 June 1958, died in Ware County, resident of Peach County

g)  James Monroe Merritt is listed in Find A Grave, buried in Byron City Cemetery, Byron, Peach County, Georgia.  He was born 11 April 1871 in Georgia, and died 20 June 1958.  His wife's maiden name is given as Susan Arline Sutton, with a marriage date of 20 November 1893 in Thomas County, Georgia.  There four children are listed with full names, birth dates, death dates, and spouses.  There are links to Find A Grave for his parents and three siblings, but not to his children.  

h)  I searched on FamilySearch for Monroe Merritt and James Merritt with a birth year of 1871 plus/minus 5 years born in Georgia and didn't find anything more. 

h)  After finding the above, I found a Merritt Family Tree in an Ancestry.com Public Member Tree with all of this information, and not much more.  It did ascribe five children to Monroe and Susie Merritt.  

Not bad for 45 minutes of effort (including writing the blog post)!


Copyright (c) 2014, Randall J. Seaver

3 comments:

GeneGinny said...

Here's my effort: http://geneginny.blogspot.com/ It was an interesting and somewhat enlightening exercise, since the first census record that popped up was erroneously indexed.

Jaycie said...

I enjoyed this assignment. Here's my link about "Gus Drake." http://easttexasgenealogy.blogspot.com/2014/04/saturday-night-genealogy-fun-random.html

Laurie Desmarais said...

Here is my entry: "Wilton Barker" http://www.confusethedead.com/uncategorized/saturday-night-random-research