Wednesday, March 28, 2007

CVGS Research Group today

We had 12 at our monthly CVGS Research Group today. Each month, I summarize the genealogy news - especially new databases or web sites - for the past month and read it at the meeting, and then I send it to the member email list so that all members benefit from it, and the links are correct.

We discussed several brickwall problems today. First, Dorothy can't find parents for her Patrick Leary, born in Ireland in 1843, came into NY in the early 1850's, and settled in Buffalo NY. The group suggested getting a death certificate, looking for an obituary and checking the NY State census records to find out more info about him and his life.

We talked about, and I demonstrated, some of the tricks in finding people in the census - using wild cards, given names, spouses names, parents names, age and birthplace, etc. For instance, Dorothy's man was indexed as Patk Leary in 1870 and Patrick Lary in 1900.

Bonnie asked about finding Railroad records - we suggested checking for articles and Googling to find records.

Penny is going to a family reunion in April, to meet the family members found via email, and was wondering what to take with her. We suggested info about her side of the family, pedigree charts, family stories and pictures, etc.

Jeanne has a great-grandfather who died in Chula Vista in 1924 - he was born in Belgium in 1855, and has a very unique surname - Van Orshoven. She has only one census record and his CA death certificate. We suggested that she look at the mailing lists and message boards, WorldConnect and Ancestry family trees, Google his name, and try to find an obituary. While we talked, I did most of those tasks and the only hits we got was a Benelux mailing list - in Flemish. so we tried to translate on Google, but they have French and German, but not Flemish or Dutch services. She will try to get translation help on a Benelux message board.

Phyllis wanted to know how to find out what happened to her step-mother, Rosa (Darling) Goodwin, who disappeared in 1950 in central Nebraska, leaving her husband and two small children. She and her sister have checked local newspapers and mailing lists/message boards. We suggested trying to contact Rosa's brother's family and police records.

Marie is trying to find the maiden name of Minerva, born about 1843 in Indiana, who married Thomas Crosby, and resided in Indiana. We suggested finding an obituary for her, marriage and death records for her children, and perhaps a mention in a county history book.

All in all, it was an interesting two hours. I used the laptop and had a decent wireless signal, and was able to find things on the Internet occasionally to help out. We used Shirley's projector and had no hookup problems - we're learning!

The really great thing today was that everybody in attendance contributed to the conversation today, and hopefully learned something. The members who attend often bring documents resulting from the brickwall discussions and suggested solutions.


Anonymous said...


I am Mary Van Orshoven from San Diego California. Jeanne's relative is also my great grandfather. My grandfather was Joseph Leo Van Orshoven (Joseph Van Orshoven's oldest child) Please contact me for more information. We met Marc VanOrshoven from Belgium about 7 years ago. Have documentation (in german) on family history.

Thomas Vanden Berghe said...

Hi , my name is Thomas Vanden Berghe from Waregem Belgium , 49 y , MD , Radiologist , and I make enquiries about my mother's family , her name is Maria Van Orshoven , indeed also in Belgium an uncommon name . We have made up a FULL ancestry tree up to the 1600's , a book in flemish , it is probable that all VO's ( including the Marc VO you mention ) descend from one single person .
About 10 years ago I came into contact with some USA VO's , now I am trying to renew my family tree with an update , and also checking the data that I already have .
I am especially interested in the USA emigrated great grandfather in question , since he probably is the link between our families . Anyone interested can contact me on thank you .