Saturday, May 25, 2013

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Ancestral Homes 150 Years Ago

Calling all Genea-Musings Fans: 

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

Here is your assignment if you choose to play along (cue the Mission Impossible music, please!):

1)  Determine where your ancestral families were on 1 June 1863 - 150 years ago.

2)  List them, their family members, their birth years, and their residence location (as close as possible).  Do you have a photograph of their residence from about that time, and does the residence still exist?

3)  Tell us all about it in your own blog post, in a comment to this post, or in a Facebook Status or Google+ Stream post.

Here's mine:

On my father's side:

*  My second great-grandparents, Isaac Seaver (1823-1901) and Lucretia (Smith) Seaver (1828-1884) resided in Westminster, Worcester, Massachusetts.  I do not have a photograph of their residence, and I don't know if the house still exists.  I have not found the location on a map. The household included my great-grandfather, Frank Walton Seaver (1852-1922).

*  My second great-grandparents, Edward Hildreth (1831-1899) and Sophia (Newton) Hildreth (1834-1923) resided in Northborough, Worcester, Massachusetts.  I do not have a photograph of their residence, and I don't know if the house still exists.  I have not found the location on a map. The household included my great-grandmother, Hattie Hildreth (1857-1920).

*  My second great-grandparents, James Richman (1821-1912) and Hannah (Rich) Richman (1824-1911), resided in either Burrilville, Providence, Rhode Island (they were there in 1860) or Putnam, Windham, Connecticut (they were there in 1870).  I do not have a photograph of their residence, and I don't know if it still exists.  I have not found the location on a map. The household included my great-grandfather, Thomas Richmond (1848-1917).

*  My second great-grandparents, Henry Arnold White (1824-1885) and Amy (Oatley) White (1826-1864), resided in Killingly, Windham, Connecticut.  I do not have a photograph of their residence, and I don't know if it still exists.  I think that I have found the location on a map.  The household included my great-grandmother, Julia White (1848-1913).

*  My third great-grandmother, Abigail (Gates) (Seaver) Seaver (1797-1867), mother of Isaac Seaver, resided in Westminster, Worcester, Massachusetts with her second husband, Isaac Seaver (1802-1870).  I am not sure where they lived in Westminster, or if the house still exists.  

*  My third great-grandmother, Elizabeth Horton (Dill) Smith (1791-1869), mother of Lucretia smith, resided in Medfield, Norfolk, Massachusetts.  I am not sure where she lived in Medfield, or if the house still exists.

*  My third great-grandmother, Sophia (Buck) (Brigham) (Newton) Stone (1797-1882), probably resided in Westborough, Worcester, Massachusetts with her third husband, Jonathan Stone (1795-1868).  I am not sure where she lived in Westborough, or if the house still exists.

*  My third great-grandparents, Jonathan Oatley (1790-1872) and Amy (Champlin) Oatley (1798-1865) resided in East Killingly, Windham, Connecticut.  I do not have a photograph of their residence, and I don't know if it still exists.  I think that I have found the location on a map.  

On my mother's side:

*  My second great-grandparents, David Jackson Carringer (1828-1902) and Rebecca (Spangler) Carringer (1832-1901), resided in Columbus City, Louisa, Iowa.  I do not have a photograph of their residence, and I don't know if it still exists, nor do I know its exact location.  The household included my great-grandfather, Henry Austin Carringer (1853-1946).

*  My third great-grandfather, Henry Carringer (1800-1881) probably resided in Perry, Mercer, Pennsylvania in 1863, or in Columbus City, Louisa, Iowa.  I do not have a photograph of his residence, and I don't know if it still exists, nor do I know its location exactly. 

*  My second great-grandparents, Devier James Lamphier Smith (1839-1894) and Abigail A. Vaux (1844-1931) resided in Rolling Prairie, Dodge, Wisconsin, probably with Devier's parents.  If so, I have a photograph of the Ranslow Smith house.  The household included my great-grandmother, Abbie Ardell Smith (1862-1944).

*  My third great-grandparents, Ranslow Smith (1805-1873) and Mary (Bell) Smith (1805-1865), resided in Rolling Prairie, Dodge, Wisconsin.  I have a photograph of their home.  It still exists, but was moved to Old World Wisconsin and restored.

*  My third great-grandparents, Samuel Vaux (1816-1880) and Mary Ann (Underhill) Vaux, probably resided in Burnett, Dodge, Wisconsin.  I don't have a photograph, but know the approximate location of their land from a plat map.

*  My second great-grandparents, David Auble (1817-1894) and Sarah (Knapp) Auble (1818-after 1900), resided in Newark, Essex, New Jersey.  I don't have a photograph, and do not know the location of their house.  The household included my great-grandfather, Charles Auble (1849-1916).

*  My third great-grandmother, Sarah (Cutter) Knapp (1785-1878) resided in New Barbadoes, Bergen, New Jersey with her son, Manning Knapp.  I don't have a photograph, and do not know the location of the house.

*  My second great-grandparents, James Abraham Kemp (1831-1902) and Mary Jane (Sovereen) Kemp (1840-1874) resided in or near Middleton, Norfolk, Ontario.  I don't have a photograph, but I have found the location of their house on a plat map.

*  My third great-grandparents, Abraham James Kemp (1795-1881) and Sarah Sephrona (Fletcher) Kemp, probably resided near Huntingdon, Hastings, Ontario.  I don't have a photograph, and do not know the location of their house.  

*  My third great-grandparents, Alexander Sovereen (1814-1907) and Eliza (Putman) Sovereen (1820-1895) resided in Windham, Norfolk, Ontario.  I don't have a photograph, but have found the location of their house on a plat map.

*  My fourth great-grandparents, Frederick Sovereign (1786-1875) and Mary Jane (Hutchison) Sovereign (1792-1868) resided in or near Delhi, Norfolk, Ontario.  I don't have a photograph, and do not know the location of their house.  

I think that's all of my ancestors alive in 1863 - 7 great-grandparents, 20 second great-grandparents, 11 third great-grandparents, and two fourth great-grandparents.  Note that they resided in Massachusetts, Connecticut, perhaps Rhode Island, Iowa, perhaps Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Ontario.  

I can see that I have some work to do to find the locations of their homes, and determine if their are photographs of the houses available with cousins or online.

Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

Surname Saturday - LAWRENCE (England > colonial Massachusetts)

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

I am in the 7th great-grandmothers, up to number 591, but I don't know her name. So it's on to number 593: Hannah LAWRENCE (1662-after 1726)[Note: the earlier great-grandmothers and 7th great-grandfathers have been covered in earlier posts].

My ancestral line back through two American generations of this LAWRENCE family line is:

1.  Randall J. Seaver (1943-living)

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)

36.  Zachariah Hildreth (1783-1857)
37.  Hannah Sawtell (1789-1857)

74.  Josiah Sawtell (1768-1847)
75.  Hannah Smith (1768-1827)

148.  Ephraim Sawtell (1735-about 1800)
149.  Abigail Stone (1736-before 1800)

296.  Hezekiah Sawtell (1703-1779)
297.  Joanna Wilson (1701-1786)

592.  Obadiah Sawtell, born 14 September 1648 in Watertown, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States; died 20 March 1740/41 in Groton, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.  He was the son of 1184. Richard Sawtell and 1185. Elizabeth.  He married about 1680 in Watertown, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.
593.  Hannah Lawrence, born 24 March 1661/62 in Watertown, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States; died after 1726 in Groton, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.  

Children of Obadiah Sawtell and Hannah Lawrence are:
*  Nathaniel Sawtell (1681-1742) married 1710 Sarah Higginson (1682-1750)
*  Elnathan Sawtell (1683-1717) married 1709 Martha Landon (1683-1748)
*  Ephraim Sawtell (1685-1768) married 1713 (1) Abigail Farnsworth (1687-1753); married 1755 
*  Josiah Sawtell (1687-1690)
*  Helphzabeth Sawtell (1689-????), married 1706 Hannah Foster (1681-????).
*  Esther Sawtell (1690-????), married 1710 Samuel Bowers (1685-????).
*  Josiah Sawtell (1691-1752), married 1713 (1) Lydia Phelps (1688-1717); married 1718 (2) Lydia Nutting (1686-1756).
*  Zachariah Sawtell (1693-1730)
*  Hannah Sawtell (1695-1749), married 1719 Stephen Holder (1687-1757)
*  Abigail Sawtell (1697-1787) married 1716 Joseph Parker (1689-1753)
*  Mary Sawtell (1699-1766), married 1718 Benjamin Parker (1691-1769)
*  Obadiah Sawtell (1701-1749), married 1721 Rachel Parker (1698-????).
*  Hezekiah Sawtell (1703-1779), married 1723 Joanna Wilson (1701-1786)

1186.  George Lawrence, born 1637 in Watertown, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States; died 21 March 1708/09 in Watertown, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.  He married 29 September 1657 in Watertown, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.
1187.  Elizabeth Crispe, born 08 January 1636/37 in Watertown, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States; died 28 May 1681 in Watertown, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.  She was the daughter of 2374. Benjamin Crispe and 2375. Bridget.

Children of George Lawrence and Elizabeth Crispe are:
*  Elizabeth Lawrence (1659-????); married 1681 Thomas Whitney (1656-????)
*  Judith Lawrence (1660-1713), married 1681 John Stearns (1657-1722)
*  Hannah Lawrence (1662-after 1726), married 1680 Obadiah Sawtell (1648-1741)
*  John Lawrence (1664-1674)
*  Benjamin Lawrence (1666-1733), married 1689 (1) Mary Clough (1669-1695); married 1696 Anna --?-- (1668-1716); married 1716 Elizabeth Coolidge (1671-1718); married 1719 (4) Elizabeth Bennett (1663-1738).
*  Daniel Lawrence (1666-1743), married 1689 (1)  Sarah Counts (1670-1694); married 1695 Hannah Mason (1665-1721); married 1722 Maud Russell (1676-????).
*  George Lawrence (1668-1736), married 1696 Mary Hemenway (1674-1741).
*  Sarah Lawrence (1671-????), married 1691 Thomas Rider.
*  Mary Lawrence (1671-????), married 1689 (1) John Earl (????-1704); married 1704 Michael Flagg (1651-1711)
*  Martha Lawrence (1680-1708), married 1697 John Dix (1672-1726)
*  Grace Lawrence (1680-1758), married 1698 John Edes (1680-1721).

Information about the George Lawrence family was obtained from:

Henry Bond, M.D., Family Memorials: Genealogies of the Families and Descendants of the Early Settlers of Watertown, Massachusetts (Boston, Mass. : Little, Brown & Co., 1855)

*  Emily W. Leavitt, "Descendants of George Lawrence," New England Historic Genealogical Register, Volume 46, number 2 (April 1892), page 149.

The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

Friday, May 24, 2013

SCGS Genealogy Jamboree News and App

The 2013 Genealogy Jamboree is just around the corner, June 7th to 9th, at the Los Angeles Marriott Burbank, 2500 Hollywood Way, Burbank. The Family History and DNA conference is held on Thursday, June 6.

The Southern California Genealogical Society Jamboree blog has several announcements today:

*  Jamboree: Class Selection Survey Now Available

*  Free Webinar on June 1 - Sneak Peek at Jamboree

*  #SCGS2013 Genealogy Jamboree App Now Available!

*  Jamboree:  Ancestry Will Scan Your Documents FREE! #SCGS2013

Today, May 24th, is the last day for Jamboree Registration and for reservations for special event breakfasts, lunches and dinners.  It ends at midnight PDT, 24 May.

Walk-in registration will open at 7:00 a.m. for the DNA conference on June 6. Walk-in registration for Jamboree will be open at 12:00 noon Friday and at 8:00 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. Registrations are available for each day, and for the three-day Jamboree.

To register online:
DNA and Family History Conference
SCGS Current and New Members 
SCGS Nonmembers 

Here are some screen shots of the 2013 Jamboree App:

1)  The Dashboard:

There are icons for My Schedule, Exhibitors, Maps, Classes, Speakers, Show Documents, Photo Gallery, Videos, Twitter, Friends, Attendees, Downloads, Facebook, LinkedIn and SCGS Library.

I don't have any classes on My Schedule yet, so i'll show that later.

The only Map available to date is a local street map.  I expect that a map of the classrooms and the exhibit hall will be added.

There are several Show documents available.

There are no entries yet in the Photo Gallery, Videos, Friends, or Downloads areas yet.

2)  The "Exhibitors" icon leads to an alphabetical list of exhibitors:

Clicking on one of them reveals contact information about each exhibitor:

I can click on the "Visited" button after I visit Denise at her booth.

3)  The "Classes" icon on the Dashboard leads me to a choice between "Browse by Day" or "Browse by Track:"

I chose "Browse by Day" and went to Friday, and saw the list of classes available by time, class number, presenter, and class title:

Clicking on a Class, more information is provided:

One interesting item I don't recall seeing is the "Class Notes" button on the class item above - I can tap right into the class notes area o my iPhone or Samsung tablet.

However, the class location is not provided yet.  I hope that it will be!

4)  I added information to My Profile (in the "Friends" or "Attendee" icon, I can't recall!), and was soon added to the list of "Attendees:"

What's missing?  There's no "Official Bloggers" list this year, but if bloggers highlight their posts on Twitter they should be found by Jamboree attendees with the App.

The 2013 Jamboree App seems to be updated on a regular basis.

I need to add the "My Schedule" items (I filled out the class schedule survey this week) and then I'll post the classes that I hope to attend each day.  I also need to add the App to my tablet.

The SCGS Genealogy Jamboree starts two weeks from today - I sure hope to see many Genea-Musings readers and genea-bloggers there!  I'm really looking forward to it.  Linda and I will come on Thursday afternoon on the Amtrak train, and return on Sunday evening to San Diego.  I am not attending the Family History and DNA Conference on Thursday.

The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

Follow-Up Friday - Helpful and Interesting Reader Comments

This week's helpful and interesting, and sometimes challenging, reader comments (and my brilliant repartee) include:

1)  On Dear Randy - How Do I Research My German Ancestors? (posted 21 May 2013):

*  Annick commented:  "You gave very good advice to Dieter. I am in the same boat, but I am from France with NO one on this side of the pond either. My family doesn't really want to cooperate, so I had to fend for myself. I have found lots of leads on Geneanet (great suggestion), I have searched for blogs like yours in French for tips and tricks on how to research in France over the internet, I have gone to each of the "departements" official sites where I know I have ancestors and searched in their on line records (I am sure the Lander in Germany has some too), I have a world subscription at which was very disappointing (over $300 for a total of 25 documents with no hope of finding more), I have paid for a membership in the genealogical society of the department where I have the most ancestors and plan on doing it again in another where I have found some leads (advise I got from numerous American genealogy blogs). And I have downloaded loads of great French Google books for FREE to improve my knowledge of my country's history to allow me to place my folks in the proper context. I am learning so much about the past, if not so much about my family, but this makes me happy anyway and it certainly gives a workout to my brain."

*  bgwiehle offered:  "Your correspondent has 3 major advantages: he knows the language (which helps immensely with older texts and handwriting), he has lived and was schooled in Germany (will be familiar with German geography, history and civil procedures), and he is now in the US (some record-access restrictions in Germany are not applied when looking at the same records in the USA, esp. FamilySearch microfilms).

"Hopefully he has contacts and will find someone with knowledge of his family's origins a couple of generations back. Without a starting place, finding records will be like looking for the proverbial needle. There have been MAJOR population movements in the last 150 years that complicate people's origins in Germany - from the late industrial revolution to the two World Wars to the end of the Iron Curtain and more recent times. Assuming from his query for German ancestors that his family is not Polish, Russian, Turkish, etc. within recent memory (or obvious surname), they might still have been displaced from some other region in Europe.

"Most of the resources you mentioned will be helpful to orient a beginner genealogist. Once past that point, they focus on English-speaking, usually US, descendants of the German immigrants. Even in Crista Cowan's talk on German research last week, the focus was on searching all the US records first - censuses, then naturalizations, then passenger lists, and finally in Germany itself, maybe. Not helpful to Dieter, the new immigrant himself.

"Correction to your point 3): It should not be necessary to subscribe to the World Deluxe subscription at if only German records are needed - subscribe at the German site,

"A MAJOR German website that was omitted from your blog post, is GenWiki [], which has its own mailing lists, family trees (Ortsfamilienbücher & Gedbas), links to regional genealogical societies and many, many other resources. Many of the sub-domains have multiple language options."

*  Ernie Thode said:  "I would also suggest the metasearch site to get 10 different databases at once, including, among other things, Ortsfamilienbücher (local heritage books), submitted family research, and directories (Adressbücher). This is the metasearch site for the GenWiki that bwiehle mentions, kind of a one-stop shopping site. This is available in both German and English."

*  Gary Fredericksen noted:  "Great suggestions. I would like to suggest two additional basic sources - 1) Google "Genealogy Research Germany (or any other country) and 2) review what is on Cyndislist. Both of these give good starting places in addition to what you gave."

*  Jeff Hodge said:  "I just want to point out one of the FamilySearch instructional videos (Randy's list #2). On the second page of that link is a couple of excellent courses in German handwriting. It really helped me with some Bible records figuring out person's names, dates, places, and terms (marriage, etc)."

*  Anonymous commented:  "If one lives in San Diego County, the San Diego Genealogy Society has a German interest group that meets the 3rd Wednesday of the month, 1:00 at the Family History Center in Mission Valley. Next meeting is June 19. Also just posted a new video on YouTube about German research."

*  Bobbie offered:  "I have found good connections on and

"There are a number of German genealogy groups in the US, that may be of some help."

My comments:  THANK YOU all (and I'm sure that Dieter thanks you too!) for all of the great suggestions and commentary.  What a wonderful example of crowd sourcing when the geneablogger has no clue... I completely forgot about Cindy's List!  One thing I tried to do for my list was to make it as generic as possible - for most of the items on my list, you could plug in another country in place of "Germany" and get a decent start on researching in that country.

*  Nancy Marty noted:  "At the moment, I'm frustrated with's new search format. I had saved a census record several months ago and wanted to go back to see the page before and after it. When I entered the person's name for that census year, it first told me there were too many results to list. Then I added the city, etc. and it couldn't find any results! When I looked closely at my saved document, I noticed the name, Schaufert, didn't have the 'c' in it. Previously, Ancestry would have included that in the results. I had to spell it the same way for it to be included in the results. I checked and nowhere did I have an exact box checked. And the new format didn't give me a column on the right with suggestions of other records for this person. I loved that! So far, I can't say I like the new format and the results of the searches I've done tonight."

My comment:  I think that you could have found your previously found record by going to the Shoebox on the Ancestry home page and clicking the "Downloaded and printed records" tab.  A "Best Practice" might be to save every record you want to keep to the Shoebox.  It's just one more click and could save you lots of time searching for it again.  

I don't believe that Ancestry has changed the search algorithms recently, only the search box on the home page.  The "Search" tab fields and settings are "sticky," meaning they are set the way you had them the last time you used them.  It's possible that your earlier search used settings somewhat different than when you tried recently.

*  Sharon said:  "The only way I use is with 'old search.'"

*  Diva Donna commented:  "I'd been able, thru some huge luck, save a search from the really old search page that I continued to use.  I've hated every new search they've come up with.
Now, the only link I had saved, won't bring back that old page, & this new one is worse then the last!  It was so much easier for me to find people in the old search!"

My comment:  "Old Search" is still there, and still works well, at least on the standard Ancestry site (perhaps not on the Ancestry Library Edition site).  You have to go to the "Search" tab, and in the upper right-hand corner, just below the menu ribbon, in very small print, is the "Go to Old Search" link.  The "Old Search" home page even has an "Exact matches only" check box.

My guess is (and I have no inside information about this) that Ancestry will eventually discard "Old Search" and everyone will have to use "New Search" (which will then be the next "Old Search" when another search algorithm set is introduced).  I don't see any benefit to the current "Old Search" and use the "New Search" with all of its' bells and whistles to find my ancestors.

*  T asked:  "How do you make the name collage? I would love to do this as a wall hanging for my family."

My response:  I did the name collage on  I made the different name sizes by putting 5 entries for some, down to one entry for others.

*  Susan Cline asked:  "Here's a question for all you knowledgeable people. Daughter of Moses Barber and Susannah West was Dinah Barber who married Edward Wilcox in 1716. Born was Martha Wilcox abt 1722 in Westerly, RI. She married Daniel Burdick, 1746 in Stonington, CT. Died in No. Stonington 1815. No record of birth in Westerly Town Hall. No record of marriage in Stonington, and no record of death in North Stonington. Not mentioned in her father's will. Does anyone know anything about Martha Wilcox Burdick? Need for Mayflower connection to George Soule."

My comment:  Perhaps someone will read your question and have an answer.  Unfortunately, the "Silver Book" for George Soule (#3 in the Mayflower Families Through Five Generations series) doesn't carry the Moses Barber/Susannah West descendants forward.  

5)  Thank you to all of my readers, and especially to those that make comments on my posts that are helpful, interesting and challenging.   I learn a lot from them!

Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Wish List for Legacy Family Tree 8

I asked for reader comments in When Will Legacy Family Tree Version 8 be Available? (posted 20 May 2013) and received several email and several blog comment responses.  They included:

1)  Bobbie (in comments) offered:  "Many of us still have to create written genealogies from our data. I've got a huge one to do. I use Legacy Family Tree because it provides real footnotes that will renumber and can be moved as I edit the text. However what won't change is the numbering system. I want the ability to stop following lines by removing the individuals and have the genealogy renumber itself. Is that too much to ask?"

My comment:  An example of what Bobbie would like to have would be useful.  

2)  Jasia said:  "I'm not much interested in Legacy version 8. What I'm interested in is a mobile app from Legacy that runs on Android!"

My comment:  And I would like a FREE one that runs on both Android and iOS.

3) Sholom offered several ideas in email:

* The ability to calculate non-direct blood relations are terrific!  But there is no option to print out such a relation that makes any sense.

My comment:  Sholom illustrates his first point with an example from his database:  "Donald Alvey Wallace [752]: John Thomas Van Hart [128637]'s 1st cousin twice removed's husband's 1st cousin 6 times removed's husband's wife's husband's 6th great-grandnephew."  The report goes up and down several lines in one straight line list of relationships.  The bottom line for me is, that the two persons are not related by blood assuming the research is complete and correct.

* The option to include "old style" or "new style" dates

* The keyword "say" before a date (was born "say 1750"); the keyword "probably" before a date; handling the keyword "between" in a better manner for dates.

My comment:  I would like to be able to type the word "say" rather than "about" for a date, since that seems to be the modern terminology for a date guess in the periodical and book literature (e.g., NGSQ, NEHGR, TAG).

Legacy seems to allow some words for dates - about, between, probably, possibly, maybe, after - but not others.  "Say" changes to "Est" and "estimated reverts to "Est".

* Handling counties that change jurisdiction better.  E.g.,  Eaton (now Wyoming) County, Pennsylvania -- the program gacks and tells me "there is no such county named 'Eaton (now Wyoming)' in Pennsylvania.

* Is there any reason why "tags" are limited to 10?

* The ability to footnote a date of birth (or any event), and place of that event, separately.  There are times when I have one source for the date, and another source for the place.

My comment:  I totally agree, and highly recommend that this be included.

4)  My own ideas and suggestions:

*  It appears to me that Legacy does not have a Description field for places that could be used for cemeteries, hospitals, addresses, etc.  It also "loses" those descriptions when it imports a GEDCOM file with descriptions.

*  Legacy creates Evidence! Explained quality sources pretty well.  I hope that they "sign on" to the FHISO effort to standardize data transfer between software programs, online trees, and other sites.  

*  It appears to me that Legacy checks only County creation dates, and doesn't check Territory/Province/State creation and change dates, or Country name changes (e.g., German states before 1871).  There are towns that have changed names also.  I don't know how best to implement this, but it's one of the problems that I'm bothered about, since I've chosen to use modern geolocations which include modern names of towns, cities, counties, states, provinces, countries, etc.

I don't think I want to be entering my colonial place names like Sholom suggests - my classic one is Raby (now Brookline), no county (now Hillsborough), Province of New Hampshire (now New Hampshire), British America (now United States).  Perhaps the software companies can add a table of some sort for each location that has a list of the correct jurisdictions between two dates, and then pick the correct jurisdiction to print based on the event date.  An alternative would be to permit users to add historical jurisdictions and then link them to a modern place name and location.  My stopgap is to note the record repository and historical jurisdiction in my notes.

*  It is difficult to find out how to create and print some reports.  For instance, a Relationship Chart that shows how two persons are related can be created by going to Tools > Relationship Calculator > select two persons to create chart > select Print button to see the chart.  That works, but it is not in the Reports menu.  The directions are in the Help menu.

*  I would love to see the capability to create a book or a report (with an index and table of contents) with embedded word processor Field codes.  That way, the user could edit the resulting report or book (e.g., do what Bobbie wanted - eliminate extraneous families from the work) and the table of contents and index would adjust in the word processor.  

*  The Research Guidance features needs to be updated.  For instance, in the Preliminary Survey list, there are only six Lineage-Linked databases listed, and none of them are newer than ten years old.  In the Suggested Sources, many more resources are now online (e.g., the Massachusetts Vital Records, 1841-1915).  

*  The Source, Information and Evidence Quality should be added to the Source Detail box following the Evidence! Explained guidelines.  However, I really like the Surety Level feature and wouldn't want to see that disappear.

*  I would like to see color coding of family lines, and have them be available in reports and charts.  I would also like to see more use of color on the standard charts - e.g., the pedigree chart.

*  Synchronize with FamilySearch Family Tree such that names, dates, places, events, sources, notes, images, etc. can be added easily.  

4)  We don't want much, do we?  The fact is that Legacy Family Tree has so many features that it is almost impossible for an advanced user to remember them all, and it's impossible for a new or casual user to remember them all.  The Help button is my friend.

If readers want to contribute more suggestions to Legacy Family Tree for Version 8, please add them to comments to this post and I'll add them to the wish list above.

Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

U.S. Military Records FREE on FindMyPast from 24 to 27 May

FindMyPast has announced that their United States Military Records collections will be FREE to access between 24 May and 27 May for registered users (not subscribers, but you do have to register).  The email announcement that I received said:

"In honor of Memorial Day on May 27, and in remembrance of all who died while serving our country, will offer its collection of US and International military records for free in the days leading up to national observance.

"With more than 26 million US and International military records available, is encouraging people to explore and learn about the heroic efforts of their ancestors this Memorial Day. Record sets such as ‘Draft Registration Cards,’ ‘Casualties Returned Alive,’ ‘POWs’ and others will offer a captivating glimpse into the lives and experiences of our veteran ancestors.

"The US and International military records will be available free of charge starting at midnight EDT on Thursday, May 23 until midnight EDT on Monday, May 27. Anyone can access the records by registering for free at"

I wondered what record collections were included, so I went to the home page and followed the links to the Military collections and found this page:

On the left side, there is a box that lists the collections in the U.S. Military Service and Conflict Records:
 I entered the surname "Seaver" (no variants) in the search field, and clicked on the blue Search button.  There were 341 matches (two screens shown):

Right in the middle of the matches was a link about results found in US and world newspapers.  Those are not just military records - they are for a general surname search.

 In order to see the search results, I had to register or sign in. I signed in, since I have a paid subscription.  I clicked on the first match on the list, and saw the Korean War Casualty File record transcription for Edward J. Seaver:

What about the "International" part of the Military record collections?  I went to the "Search records" tab, selected "Military service & conflicts" and searched for "Smith."  I then selected the "Record set" "Show filter" button, and saw a list of military record collections:

Since I have a current FindMyPast subscription, I can access those collections.  I can't tell if a non-subscriber can access them.  When I did my initial search (not signed in), I did not see the International matches (there were 6).

These record collections provide an opportunity for researchers to access Military records for free for a limited time period.

My attitude is that everybody should be applying the Forrest Gump Principle of Genealogy Research - ""Genealogy research is like a box of chocolates - you never know what you're going to find, but you have to look everywhere your 'genealogy gem' might be hiding."

copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

Treasure Chest Thursday - 1850 U.S. Census Record for Albert White Household

It's Treasure Chest Thursday - time to look in my digital image files to see what treasures I can find for my family history and genealogy musings.

The treasure today is the 1850 United States Census record for the Albert White household in Killingly town, Windham County, Connecticut:

The Albert H. White household:

The extracted information for the Albert H. White household, enumerated on 14 September 1850:

*  Albert H. White - age 23, male, a Farmer, real property worth $1200, born Gloucester RI
*  Harriet A. White - age 14, female, born Gloucester RI
*  Maranda White - age 46, female, born Gloucester RI.

The source citation for this 1850 U.S. census entry is:

1850 United States Federal Census, Windham County, Connecticut, population schedule, Killingly town; page 351 (stamped), dwelling #444, family #492, Albert H. White household; digital image, (; citing National Archives Microfilm Publication M432, Roll 51.

To put this census entry into context, Jonathan White, the husband of Miranda (Wade) White and father of Albert and Harriet, died on 19 April 1850 in Killingly.  He and Miranda were also the parents of Henry White, born in 1824, who we visited last week in Treasure Chest Thursday - 1850 U.S. Census Record for Henry White Family.  

The only obvious errors I see in this census entry are:

*  the spelling of their birthplace - "Glocester" should be "Glocester."
*  Miranda's birthplace may actually be Foster RI (according to a county history book and her parents

I found it interesting that the real estate value was assigned to Albert and not to Miranda.

This is the only record I have for Miranda's approximate age - if she's 46 in this census record, then she was born in 1803 or 1804.  A state history book provides her birth date as 25 June 1804.

Miranda (Wade) White died before this census was enumerated, on 27 August 1850.

The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Found Newspaper Articles for Linda's Parents in 1937 in San Francisco

I wondered if any of the online newspaper collections had articles about my wife's parents marriage, or the deaths of her grandfathers, in the San Francisco area.

I checked the GenealogyBank collection for San Francisco newspapers, and noted that they have the San Francisco Chronicle from 1/1/1937 to 12/31/1942.  I did find an engagement article, a marriage application notice, a marriage license notice, and a wedding announcement article in 1937.

The engagement article (dated 10 January 1937):

2)  The Marriage Application notice (dated 1 September 1937):

3)  The Marriage License notice (8 September 1937):

4)  The wedding announcement article (dated 10 October 1937):

The picture is not of my mother-in-law...nor did they "...slip away to Reno..."

The transcription of the article is:

"Young Couple United in Marriage

"Miss Edna May Schaeffner became the bride of Mr. Lee Severt Leland on Saturday, September 11, at Trinity Episcopal Church.

"The bride wore the traditional wedding gown of white satin designed with a train and a lace yoke and collar.  She carried a shower bouquet of orchids, gardenias and lilies of the valley.  Her long tulle veil was held in place by a wreath of orange blossoms.

"Miss Barbara Frahm was the maid of honor and Mrs. S. Blair Mertes was the matron of honor.  They were dressed alike in blue taffeta and carried shower bouquets of talisman roses.  Little Jean Mertes, the flower girl, was in a frock of pink taffeta and carried a basket of pink sweet peas.

"Mr. Al Girot was the best man and the ushers were Mr. Don Armour and Mr. Kenneth Hagist.  After the ceremony, a reception was held at the home of the bride."

5)  Unfortunately, I found no articles about the deaths of Paul F. Schaffner in 1934 (not in Chronicle issues available), or Severt O. Leland in 1940 (not found in Chronicle).

6)  It's always a good idea to check the coverage of every newspaper on the list before you search for a name.

7)  Fold3 has a great collection of the San Francisco Chronicle from the 1860s until 1923.  I've found quite a few articles about the Schaffner, McKnew and other San Francisco families who are my wife's ancestors.

The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

Military Records FREE on MyHeritage Through 28 May

MyHeritage announced today that records in their Military record collections will be available FREE through Tuesday, 28 May.  See the MyHeritage Blog post Memorial Day: Free Access to Military Records.

I wondered what record collections are in the Military list on MyHeritage (and on WorldvitalRecords).  I went to the MyHeritage site, and selected the "Research Tab," and the "Military" link.  That opened a search box, and I entered "Smith" as the surname so I could see the list of record collections.  When the results appeared, I clicked on the "Summary" tab to see the list of collections.  There were 219.496 results in 1,431 collections (only two screens below):

The first 11 record collections listed are:

*  World War II Army Enlistment
*  Service Records of Confederate Soldiers
*  Air Force Register Abstracts
*  British Militia Attestations Index, 1886-1910
*  U.S. World War II Prisoners of War, 1941-1945
*  Korean War Casualties, 1950-1957
*  World War II Reserve Corps Records
*  Revolutionary War Pension Records
*  Record of the Massachusetts Volunteers, 1861-1865, Volume 1
*  U.S. Army Casualties, 1961-1981
*  Vietnam Casualties, 1956-1998

There are many more collections listed, but you can see only a list of 100 collections on the "Summary" tab for some reason.

Of course, most of us would not perform a search for "Smith."  I did an exact search for Isaac Seaver and received 7 matches:

I have not seen several of those exact matches, and will spend some time today exploring them to see if they apply to my Isaac Seaver (1823-1901).

In my opinion, there are enough military record collections on MyHeritage, and researchers should consider using this FREE opportunity to search for military records for their ancestors.

The URL for this post is:

copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

Disclosure:  I have a complimentary Premium Plus family tree subscription, and a complimentary Data subscription, to MyHeritage, which I greatly appreciate.  This does not affect my objectivity in evaluating the MyHeritage products.