Saturday, February 6, 2016

My Day 4 at RootsTech 2016 - Activities

Well, I'm done!  These four days have been hectic and the time just flies by when you are having fun. I have some pictures from Day 4 in My Day 4 at RootsTech 2016 - Photos.

Here are my Saturday activities as I recall them:

1)  In the Salt Palace Hall D by 8:05 a.m. for the Keynote talks by Mike Leavitt and Doris Kearns Goodwin.  Leavitt had a list of ten memories from his life and asked the attendees (in the hall and online) to vote on which stories they would like to hear.  He did 7 or 8 of them in his 30 minute talk.  Doris Goodwin was introduced by Tim Sullivan of (the sponsor today) and spoke for almost an hour, from notes on the podium with no graphics at all.  The talk was interesting, and highlighted her own life and memories, and also biographical information from her books about Lyndon Johnson, John F. Kennedy, Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt, Teddy Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln.

2)  At 10 a.m. I went off to the Media Hub in the Expo Hall and I set up at the geneablogger table and worked through the remaining posts and updated the blog compendium.  There were quite a few photo opportunities and dropby conversations, and at 11 a.m. I went wandering around the Expo Hall.  I spoke to folks at Findmypast about their new partnerships, and to folks at about syncing and mobile apps.

3)  At 11:45 a.m., I went off to the lunch where Kendall Hulet provided an overview of Ancestry's new features for 2016.  These included the syncing issue with FTM and soon RootsMagic, Searching, Apps, US Probates, Hints, DNA and upcoming databases.

4)  I hurried down for the geneabloggers photo at 1 p.m. thinking they wouldn't do it on time,but I got there at 1:06 (it's a long walk) so I missed my first one in five year.  I went over to the Findmypast exhibit and had my picture taken with my parents' wedding photo on their wall.

5)  Back to the Media Hub to write the Day 3 activities post, then updated the blog compendium again.  Took two long walks around the Expo Hall and took a few pictures of people and things.  Had a visit from the two Scribbit ladies and Wesley Eames of AncestorCloud and we talked about Scribbit and saving memories and stories on their system.

6)  Left after 4 p.m. for the hotel to write this blog post and take a nap before we leave at 6:45 p.m. with Carol Petranek to DearMyrtle's geneabloggers party in South Jordan.  I will have more info about that in a separate post.

Once again I didn't attend a single class today.  I'll catch some of them on the video later.

7)  We head home on Sunday morning, so I will write more about RootsTech after I get back to the desktop computer.


Copyright (c) 2016, Randall J. Seaver

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My Day 4 at RootsTech 2016 - Photos

Day 4 at RootsTech was very busy as always, and now I have a deadline to meet - I have to go meet my wife at 4 p.m. so the commentary will be terse.  Here are some of the photos I took on Day 4:

1)  Before the Keynote session started, Becky Jamison and James Tanner joined me for a photo taken by another attendee on Becky's phone:

2)  Doris Kearns Goodwin gave a 45 minute lecture on her work and the Presidents she has written books about:

3)  In the Expo Hall, I wanted a photo of the front of the large 50 foot wide wall at Genealogy Wall Charts exhibit:

The guy climbing the wall is in the picture, not an actual person.

4)  I talked to Caroline Pointer and Linda McCauley at the Federation of Genealogical Society exhibit:

5)  Janet Hovorka's Family ChartMasters exhibit was always busy.  They have so many beautiful charts!

6)  Jennifer Alford and Terri O'Connell were at the In-Depth Genealogist display in the Expo Hall:

7)  David Lambert, the Chief Genealogist at NEHGS in Boston, has a lot of wonderful books on display at their exhibit:

8)  Diahan Southard was presenting on DNA at Lisa Louise Cooke's Genealogy Gems exhibit;

9)  Had a nice conversation with the Erin Henry ans Keiko Faupula of Scribbit, which was one of the semi finalists of the Innovator Showdown at RootsTech:

That's it from the Expo Hall.  We have the Geneabloggers after party tonight, so I will post photos from that sometime, probably after we return home on Sunday.


Copyright (c) 2016, Randall J. Seaver

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Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - On Hiatus

Since this is the week of RootsTech, Saturday Night Genealogy Fun is on hiatus for a week.  I'm having too much fun at RootsTech!

Sorry about that (I forgot to do it ahead of time).  Check back next week for another fun genealogy challenge.

My Day 3 at RootsTech 2016 - Activities

Day 3 (Friday 5  February) was a busy day at RootsTech 2016 for everyone,and I ran out of time to write about it yesterday.  Here is a condensed version:

1)  Linda had a one-day pass ($19) that enable her to attend the Keynote and the Expo Hall.  We sat in the first wheelchair row back from the stage and next to DearMyrtle.  This worked out really well.

2)  The Keynote presentations were "just OK" in my opinion.  I thought that Naomi and Josh Davis were interesting but not overly inspiring.  David Isay was inspiring and I like the idea of audio stories being saved at the Library of Congress.

3)  After the Keynotes, we went to the Expo Hall and I took some pictures and started to update the RootsTech Compendium post (RootsTech 2016 Conference Blog Compendium - UPDATED!) but got sidetracked with conversations in the Media Hub.  I did get out and take some photos around the hall - you can see many of the photos in My Day 3 at RootsTech 2016 - Photos.  Linda and I got to the lunch line a little too late and had to endure 30 minutes to get a sandwich.

4)  Linda went off around the Hall again, and I tried to finish the blog compendium.  I finally did at 3 p.m.  I took Linda to see Janet Hovorka at the Family ChartMasters booth, to the Legacy Family Tree booth to see Ken McGinnis, and to the Findmypast exhibit to see the marriage photograph wall with my parents on it.  At 3:30, I took Linda back to the hotel and then hotfooted it back to go to my meeting with MyHeritage at 4 p.m.  After that, I returned to the Media Hub and packed up, and went back to the hotel.  

5)  We left at 6 p.m. for dinner at BJs, and then went down to the Marriott Hotel for the MyHeritage After Party.

6)  The MyHeritage After Party was a blast.  There were drinks, hors d'oevres, desserts, games, and music, plus lots of table conversation with folks in attendance.  We had our pictures taken at the photo booth.  We were all given 5 raffle tickets and could obtain more by participating in the games.  There were raffle drawings every 30 minutes, with an iPad and several Kindles as the big prizes.  The big hit was the karaoke floor, where attendees could sing and gyrate as they wished to tunes of their choice.  The King of Karaoke this night was David Lambert who did a great job on his song.  Jen Alford, Drew Smith, Thomas McEntee, Thom Reed and a number of others did this.  

7)  We left at 10:40 p.m. and I pushed Linda in the wheelchair back to the hotel.  Since I hadn't done any real blogging all day, I wrote the Photos post and decided to leave this post until Saturday.

Once again, I did not attend a class due to all of the other time demands.


Copyright (c) 2016, Randall J. Seaver

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Findmypast Announces a Raft of New Partnerships as Part of its U.S. Growth Strategy

I received this press release from Findmypast today:



Salt Lake City: 6 February 2016
Time: 7am MT9am EST2pm GMT

Leading family history site, Findmypast announced today at RootsTech a range of new global partnerships with leading technology providers. This will further strengthen its reach in the U. S. as well as U.K. markets.
The raft of new partnerships include deals with RootsMagic, Legacy Family Tree, FamilySearch, Family-Historian, Puzzilla, Billion Graves and RootsCity. Findmypast will make its vast record collection of more than 8 billion records available to customers via these partners. The rollout of these partnerships will begin in 2016, with exact dates to be detailed later.
Customers using these various family history products will benefit from having Findmypast’s record collection embedded within the actual product in ways that each partner determines will benefit their customers most.  Adding to the excitement, Findmypast also announced that in 2016 it will build on its extensive British and Irish data base by adding hundreds of millions of new U.S. records including the most comprehensive collection of US marriage records available anywhere. 
Commenting Ben Bennett, Executive Vice-President North America and International for Findmypast said:
2016 is going to see us expanding our partnerships across the U.S. Our aim is to provide our customers with more and more records and family history resources to aid them in their family history research.  Regardless of where the customer is doing the research, Findmypast will bring the full benefit of the more than 8 billion records that Findmypast has in order to help them discover more about their family.” 

Taking these essential steps to creating a healthy ecosystem of partnerships will help ensure that those searching for ancestors who have lived in the UK and/or the US can take full advantage of Findmypast’s world class record collections.
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Surname Saturday -- BROOKS (England to colonial Massachusetts)

It's Surname Saturday, and I'm "counting down" my Ancestral Name List each week.  

I am in the 8th great-grandmothers and I'm up to Ancestor #1201, but there are many families missing this deep into my ancestry.  The next known female ancestor is #1249 who is Sarah BROOKS (1652-1720) 
[Note: the earlier great-grandmothers and 8th great-grandfathers have been covered in earlier posts].

My ancestral line back through three generations of this BROOKS family line is:

1. Randall J. Seaver

2. Frederick Walton Seaver (1911-1983)
3. Betty Virginia Carringer (1919-2002)

4. Frederick Walton Seaver (1876-1942)
5. Alma Bessie Richmond (1882-1962)

8. Frank Walton Seaver (1852-1922)
9. Hattie Louise Hildreth (1857-1920)

18.  Edward Hildreth (1831-1899)
19.  Sophia Newton (1834-1923)

38.  Thomas J. Newton (1800-????)
39.  Sophia Buck (1797-1882)

78.  Isaac Buck (1757-1846)
79.  Martha Phillips (1757-1820)

156.  Isaac Buck (1732-????)
157.  Mary Richards (1733-????)

312.  Isaac Buck (1706-1780)
313.  Ruth Graves (1711-????)

624.  Ephraim Buck (1676-????)
625.  Esther Waget (1677-1748)

1248.  Ephraim Buck, born 26 July 1646 in Cambridge, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States; died 21 January 1721 in Woburn, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.  He was the son of 2496. Roger Buck and 2497. Susanna.  He married 01 January 1671 in Woburn, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.
1249.  Sarah Brooks, born 21 November 1652 in Woburn, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States; died after 21 January 1720 in Woburn, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.  

Children of Ephraim Buck and Sarah Brooks are:
*  Sarah Buck (1674-1734), married 1694 Thomas Grover (1669-1739).
*  Ephraim Buck (1676-1721), married 1696 Esther Waget (1677-1748).
*  John Buck (1678-1678).
*  John Buck (1680-1752), married 1705 Priscilla (1680-1736).
*  Samuel Buck (1682-1730), married 1708 Hannah Farmer (1685-1720).
*  Eunice Buck (1685-????).
*  Ebenezer Buck (1689-1752), married (1) 1713 Lydia Eames (1694-1722); (2) 1723 Judith Weed (1694-????).
*  Mary Buck (1689-????), married 1711 Nathaniel Pike.

2498.  John Brooks, born about 1623 in England; died 29 September 1691 in Woburn, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.   He married 01 November 1649 in Woburn, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.
2499.  Eunice Mousall, born about 1628 in England; died 01 January 1684 in Woburn, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.  She was the daughter of 5998. John Mousall and 5999. Joanna.

Children of John Brooks and Eunice Mousall are:
*  John Brooks (1650-1653).
*  Sarah Brooks (1652-1720), married 1671 Ephraim Buck (1646-1721)
*  Eunice Brooks (1655-1732), married (1) James Parker; (2) Samuel carter (1640-1693); (3) 1701 John Kendall (1646-1732).
*  Joanna Brooks (1659-1724), married 1678 David Roberts (1658-1724).
*  John Brooks (1664-1733), married 16845 Mary Bruce (1665-1742).
*  Ebenezer Brooks (1666-????), married 1687 Martha Wilder (1666-????).
*  Deborah Brooks (1669-1704), married John Richardson (1668-1749).
*  Jabez Brooks (1673-1746), married (1) 1694 Rachel Buck (1676-1698); (2) 1698 Hephzibah Cutter (1671-1745).

4996.  Henry Brooks, born about 1592 in England; died 12 April 1683 in Woburn, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.  He married  before 1623 in England.
4997.  FNU LNU, born about 1595 in England; died before 1651 in Woburn, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.

Children of Henry Brooks and FNU LNU are:
*  John Brooks (1623-1691), married (1) 1649 Eunice Mousall (1628-1684); (2) 1684 Mary Champney.
*  Sarah Brooks (1630-1705), married 1650 John Mousall (1626-1698).
*  Timothy Brooks (1638-1712), married (1) 1659 Mary Russell (1641-1680); (2) 1680 Mehitable Mowry (1646-1730).
*  Joseph Brooks (1641-1643).
*  Isaac Brooks (1643-1686), married 1666 Miriam daniels (1649-1688).
*  Lestor Brooks (1645-????).

Information about this Brooks family line was obtained from:

* Nora Emma Snow and Myrtle Mae Jillson, Snow-Estes Ancestry ( Hillburn, N.Y. : 1939).  

* William Cutter, "The Brooks Family of Woburn, Mass.," New England Historic Genealogical Rwegister, Volume 58 (January 1904), page 48.


Copyright (c) 2016, Randall J. Seaver

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Friday, February 5, 2016

My Day 3 at RootsTech 2016 - Photos

I only have time tonight (it's 11:30 p.m. here in SLC) to post photos  with very brief captions:

1) Findmypast has a wall of marriage photos submitted by genealogists.  I submitted mine and it is on the front of the wall - I'm pointing to it:

2)  Here is a photo of most of the front of the Findmypast wall of marriage photos.  Jack and Jackie Kennedy are the backdrop for the framed photos submitted by genealogists:

#0  Jen Baldwin of Findmypast helped put the wall together - her submitted photo is on the backside of the wall just above her head:

4)  Daniel Horowitz of MyHeritage took a selfie with me:

5)  Eric Jelle of Genedocs took a selfie with me:

6)  The Video booth at the Media Hub was busy today - scheduled every 20 minutes.  Here is Angela Walton-Raji with several friends:

7)  I got a photo f Amy Johnson Crow and Devon Noel Lee:

8)  Elizabeth O'Neal (Little Bytes of Life blog) and her daughter came by the Media Hub:

9)  James and Ann Tanner stood still for a minute - I love James' shirt!

10)  The Ancestry Insider and Leland Meitzler ( posed for this photo in the Media Hub:

11)  MyHeritage threw a wonderful after-party tonight at the Marriott Hotel - here are DearMYRTLE and Thomas MacEntee (the emcee of this shindig) wearing their tiaras:

12)  Thomas was one of the karaoke singers with a lady singing Proud Mary (emulating Ike and Tina Turner):

13)  David Lambert won my vote for best performance by a genealogist - I don't recall what he sang but he did a great job!  Who knew?

And now it's Bedtime for Randy.... zzzzzzzz


Copyright (c) 2016, Randall J. Seaver

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RootsTech News: TapGenes Wins First Place of 2016 Innovator Showdown

I received this press release from FamilySearch on Friday, 2/5, afternoon:


TapGenes Wins First Place of 2016 Innovator Showdown

 SALT LAKE CITY, UT—Today at RootsTech, the world’s largest Family History technology conference, TapGenes, won the Innovator Showdown and walked away with $45,000 in cash and prizes.  The Chicago, Illinois-based, firm helps families identify and benefit from key health traits that exist between generations.

In front of a crowd of close to 10,000 live and online viewers, the six RootsTech Innovator Showdown finalists battled for $100,000 in cash and prizes and bragging rights in the rapidly-growing, multi-billion dollar family history industry.  TapGenes was awarded $20,000 in cash and $25,000 in-kind prizes.

TapGenes provides the tools to identify the genetic thread that ties a family together.  Founder, Heather Holmes, got the idea for TapGenes after her father became very ill and the family struggled with multiple roadblocks to share his family medical history that impacted his treatment, care, and recovery.  Heather made it her mission, if her father got well, to make sure this kind of frightening and desperate episode would not be faced by other families.

Holmes has a background in healthcare marketing. In fact, her entire team comes from various fields of the healthcare profession, including computational genetics.

TapGenes uses the idea of “crowdsourcing” to help families create a more complete and accurate family medical history, online, together. The TapGenes platform identifies medical conditions that may run in their family and helps family members understand what steps they can take to live healthier together.

The six finalists were whittled down from 46 applicants from around the world. They had two minutes to win over the panel of five judges and the audience that their product was the most worthy of support from sponsors.

After each moving presentation, there was a four-minute question and answer period between each contestant and the judges.  After all six presentations, the judges selected the top three winners, and the viewing audience selected the People’s Choice Award winner.

With $50,000 in cash and another $50K+ of in-kind prizes and services from sponsors at stake, the pressure, tension, and energy of this event was tremendous.

2016 RootsTech Showdown Winners
  • First Place Judges Choice ($20,000 cash, $25,000 in-kind), Heather Holmes of TapGenes.
  • Second Place Judges Choice ($14,000 cash, $15,000 in-kind), Studio (by Legacy Republic), Technology hardware and software for digitizing hard copy photo albums.
  • Third Place Judges Choice Award ($6,000 cash, $10,000 in-kind), Twile, a web app that populates a visual family timeline with data and media.
  • People’s Choice ($10,000 cash), Twile
This is TapGenes’ second year as an Innovator Showdown contestant.  Holmes credits the great exposure from its RootsTech 2015 booth which focused on FamilySearch data sharing integration, and listening to user feedback as key differentiates in advancing from semi-finalist in 2015 to first place in 2016. Holmes said they plan to use the prize winnings to expand TapGenes worldwide to save lives by making family medical history more available internationally.

 “It’s surreal,” said Holmes.  “When you have a vision of something and you don’t know if it’s going to really happen and it does, it’s like a dream. You hope people are going to love it as much as you do. It’s great to get that confirmation that it resonates with them.”

Holmes says they will use the award money and support to help create TapGenes’ mobile app and to expand locally through additional languages.


The other finalists included Ancestor Cloud, an online marketplace where those with family history needs connect with those who can fill those needs; JRNL, a journaling app for recording memories as they happen; and The History Project , a fun app forcreating mixed media digital time capsules of a life.

The judges for the final round included Amy Rees Anderson, Managing Partner, REES Capital; David Bradford, Chairman of the Board ofFluentWorlds; Dennis Brimhall, former CEO, FamilySearch International; Judy G. Russell, JD , certified genealogist, The Legal Genealogist, and D. Joshua Taylor, accredited genealogist and host of the Genealogy Roadshow (PBS)

The major sponsors of the Innovator Showdown this year include Sorenson Legacy Foundation, Lenovo,, Grow Utah, Utah Technology Council, David Bradford, Woodbury Corporation, Hero Club, and others.

The Innovator Showdown, only in its second year, was designed to foster innovation in the family history industry.


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Launch Announcement: Introducing Family Tree Builder 8.0

I received this information from Daniel Horowitz of MyHeritage this morning:


We're delighted to let you know that we've just released a new version of Family Tree Builder, version 8.0! 

The new version has all of the well-known and loved features of previous versions, including sync, Record Matches, Smart Matching™, charts and more, with a totally rewritten internal infrastructure that adds support for very large family trees (up to 500,000 individuals), and delivers faster performance.

In addition to being much quicker and more responsive, version 8.0 delivers improved data integrity. It's downloadable for free for Windows, with a Mac Extension for Mac users to follow next month.

Our Family Tree Builder team will continue to enhance Family Tree Builder and evolve it in the future, adding new features and making improvements, based on the new infrastructure introduced in version 8.0. We will continue to provide users who like the power and convenience of desktop software with the ideal tool for growing their family tree and advancing their family history research, while the sync allows them to also benefit from having their data online and accessible in a mobile app.

For more information, please see our official blog post:


This is good news for Family Tree Builder and MyHeritage users.  Family Tree Builder synchronizes with a user's MyHeritage Family Tree.

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Findmypast Announces Launch of 10 Million Irish Parish Registers

I received this press release from Findmypast this morning:



Salt Lake City: 5 February 2016
Time: 7am MT9am EST2pm GMT
Leading family history site, Findmypast, announced today at Rootstech that it will launch 10 million Irish Catholic Parish Registers, one of the most important Irish record collections, in March 2016.
Covering over 200 years from 1671-1900 and over 1,000 parishes, Findmypast has worked to transcribe the National Library of Ireland’s online image collection of 3,500 baptism and marriage registers. This is the first time that the collection has been indexed with the images linked online, making the search much easier and the records more accessible. As a result, family historians will now be able to make all important links between generations with the baptism records and between families with the marriage registers.  These essential records cover the entire island of Ireland, both Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic.
Ben Bennett, Executive Vice-President North America and International for Findmypast said:
“The Irish Parish Registers will be a gold mine for anyone with Irish heritage. The 10 million baptism and marriage records will help even more people to trace their Irish ancestors.  In addition to being able to search this valuable collection, customers with family trees on Findmypast will benefit from leads that automatically connect the records related to their family directly to their trees.  The Catholic Parish Registers are a hugely important addition to Findmypast’s Irish collection, the largest and most comprehensive source for online Irish family history research.”


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52 Ancestors - Week 110: #133 Susanna (Reed) Gates (1745-1833)

Amy Johnson Crow suggested a weekly blog theme of "52 Ancestors" in her blog post Challenge:  52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks on the No Story Too Small blog.  I am extending this theme in 2016 to 156 Ancestors in 156 Weeks. Here is my ancestor biography for week #110:

Susanna Reed (1745-1833) is #133 on my Ahnentafel list, my 5th great-grandmother who married #132 Simon Gates (1739-1803) in 1766.

I am descended through:

*  their son, #66 Nathan Gates (1767-1830), who married #67 Abigail Knowlton (1774-1855) in 1790. 
*  their daughter, #33 Abigail Gates (1797-1867) who married #32 Benjamin Seaver (1791-1825), in 1817.
*  their son, #16 Isaac Seaver (1823-1901), who married #17 Lucretia Townsend Smith (1828-1884) in 1852.
*  their son, #8 Frank Walton Seaver (1852-1922), who married #9 Hattie Louise Hildreth (1847-1920) in 1874. 
*  their son, #4 Frederick Walton Seaver (1876-1942), who married Alma Bessie richmond (1882-1962) in 1900.
* their son, #2 Frederick Walton Seaver (1911-1983), who married #3 Betty Virginia Carringer (1919-2002) in 1942.
*  their son, #1 Randall J. Seaver (1943-....)


1)  PERSON (with source citations as indicated in brackets):

*  Name:                       Susanna Reed[1–2]   
*  Alternate Name:       Susannah Gates[3–5]    
*  Sex:                          Female   

*  Father:                      Nathan Reed (1718-1802)   
*  Mother:                    Susannah Wood (1724-1780)   
2)  INDIVIDUAL EVENTS (with source citations as indicated in brackets):   

*  Birth:                       4 December 1745, Woburn, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States[1]   
*  Distribution:            6 April 1803 (age 57), received portion of husband's estate; Gardner, Worcester, Massachusetts, United States[3]   
*  Death:                     18 December 1833 (age 88), Gardner, Worcester, Massachusetts, United States[4]   
*  Burial:                     after 18 December 1833 (after age 88), Old Burying Ground, Gardner, Worcester, Massachusetts, United States[5]   
3)  SHARED EVENTS (with source citations as indicated in brackets):   

*  Spouse 1:                Simon Gates (1739-1803)   
*  Marriage 1:             27 May 1766 (age 20), Marlborough, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States[2]   
*  Child 1:                  Nathan Gates (1767-1830)    
*  Child 2:                  Elizabeth Gates (1769-1778)   
*  Child 3:                  Susannah Gates (1772-1778)   
*  Child 4:                  Simon Gates (1774-1778)   
*  Child 5:                  Anna Gates (1777-1778)   
*  Child 6:                  Simon Gates (1779-1852)   
*  Child 7:                  Daniel Gates (1782-1847)   
*  Child 8:                  Gerry Gates (1784-1784)   
*  Child 9:                  Reuben Gates (1786-1873)   
*  Child 10:                Ezekiel Gates (1789-1809)   
*  Child 11:                Elizabeth Gates (1794-1819)   
4)  NOTES (with source citations as indicated in brackets):   

Susannah Reed was born 4 December 1745 in Woburn, Massachusetts, the daughter of Nathan and Susannah (Wood) Reed[1].  The birth record in the Woburn vital record book says:

"Reed, Susanna, d. of Nathan & Susanna, Dec. 4, 1745"

Susanna Reed married Simon Gates in Marlborough, Massachusetts on 27 May 1766[2].  The marriage record in the Marlborough vital record book says:

"Gates, Simon and Susanna Reed, May 27, 1766"

Simon and Susanna (Reed) Gates had 11 children between 1767 and 1794.  Their births were recorded in 1767 in Stow, the next six from 1769 to 1782 were recorded in Westminster, and the last three were recorded in Gardner.  Four children died in September 1778, probably of a common disease.  Only four of her children lived to adulthood and had families of their own.  

Simon Gates of Gardner died intestate, and left a sizable estate[3].  The widow, Susanna Gates, was named as administratrix on 6 April 1803.  A warrant of partition was issued to Aaron Wood, Matthias Mosman and Stephen Hoar on 7 September 1803.  Their report was filed and allowed on 17 May 1804.

The partition of the estate was very detailed and very complex, due to the large land holdings of Simon Gates.  The appraisal of the real estate totalled $3,796, of which the widow's one-third dower rights amounted to $1265.33-1/3.

The appraisers set off to the widow, Susanna Gates, one half of the dwelling house, 32 acres of the home farm, the 30 acre Conant lot, one half of pew 15 in the Gardner meeting house, and one half of the stable near the meeting house.  This added up to $1,265.33-1/3.

The personal estate was listed in a detailed inventory, and totaled $1,887.25.  Susanna Gates charged herself with this amount, and filed the account  listing the charges and debts paid to many people, totalling $1,287.62.  This left a balance of $599.63 to be distributed to the heirs.  She was granted her one third share ($199.88), and was directed to pay the other five children $79.95 each.

The administratrix filed her account and it was allowed on 17 May 1804, with the balance of $599.65 to be distributed to the heirs as ordered. 

Susanna (Reed) Gates died in Gardner, Massachusetts on 18 December 1833[4].  The record in the Gardner vital records book says:

"[GATES] Susanna, wid. Simon, Dec. 18, 1833, a. 88."

The gravestone for Susanna Gates is in the Old Burying Ground in Gardner, Massachusetts[5].  The inscription says:

relict of
Dec. 18, 1833
AE. 88

There are no probate records for Susanna (Reed) Gates in the Worcester County, Massachusetts probate estate files.

1. Edward F. Johnson,  Woburn Records of Births, Marriages and Deaths [5 Volumes] (Woburn, Mass.: The News Print, 1893), Volume 1, Births, page 206, Susanna Reed entry.

2. Franklin P. Rice (editor), Vital Records of Marlborough, Massachusetts, to the End of the Year 1849 (Boston, Mass. : Franklin P. Rice ,1908), Marriages, page 254, Simon Gates and Susannah Reed marriage entry.

3. Massachusetts, Worcester County, Probate Files, 1731-1925, Case 23,252 Simon Gates Estate, 1803, Letter of Administration; digital images, FamilySearch  ( accessed 12 August 2014); in "Case no 23243-23330, Gates, Sarah-Gay, William, 1731-1881, (images 91-92 of 1069); original records in Worcester County, Mass. Courthouse.

4. Systematic History Fund, Vital Records of Gardner, Massachusetts to the end of the year 1849 (Worcester, Mass. :  Franklin P. Rice,1907), Deaths, page 118, Susannah Gates entry.

5. Jim Tipton, indexed database, Find A Grave (, Old Burying Ground, Gardner, Mass., Susannah Reed Gates memorial.


Copyright (c) 2016, Randall J. Seaver

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