Saturday, December 26, 2015

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun (SNGF) - What did Genea-Santa Bring You?

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) What gift that you received for Christmas is your favorite for genealogy purposes? Book, magazine, hardware, software, website subscription, research time, DNA test - what was it, and how will it affect your genealogy research?

2) Tell us about it in a blog post on your own blog, in a comment to this blog post, or in a comment on Facebook or Google+ in response to this post.

 Come on, spill!  And it's OK to respond to this in the days after Saturday too!

My response:

I didn't get any genealogy-related gifts this year, just clothes and stuff.  But we got a priceless family history gift - a 2016 photo calendar with pictures of Tami's family each month as they grew up in 2015.  She gets them from Shutterfly and we now have about five years of them.  

This calendar will rekindle memories of 2015 with our daughter and grandchildren - the holidays, the birthdays, the overnight visits with us, the school shows, etc.  

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Copyright (c) 2015, Randall J. Seaver

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Surname Saturday - CARTER (England to colonial New England)

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 #1189 who is Johanna CARTER (1647-1698) 
[Note: the earlier great-grandmothers and 8th great-grandfathers have been covered in earlier posts].

My ancestral line back through two generations of this CRISPE 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)

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

74.  Josiah Sawtell (1768-1847)
75.  Hannah Smith (1768-1824)

148.  Ephraim Sawtell (1738-1800)
149.  Abigail Stone (1736-1800)

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

594.  John Wilson (1672-1717)
595.  Elizabeth Foster (1673-1742)

1188.  John Wilson, born about 1652 in probably England; died 01 February 1735 in Bedford, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.  He was the son of 2376. John Wilson and 2377. Hannah James.  He married about 1672 in probably Woburn, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.
1189.  Johanna Carter, born about 1647 in probably Hingham, Plymouth, Massachusetts, United States; died before 10 November 1698 in probably Woburn, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.  

Children of John Wilson and Johanna Carter are:
*  John Wilson (1673-1717), married 1694 Elizabeth Foster (1673-1742).
*  Hannah Wilson (1674-1676).
*  Hannah Wilson (1677-????)
*  Susanna Wilson (1679-????), married (1) Stephen Richardson (1676-1712); (2) 1716 Daniel Snow (1674-1717); (3)1722 Daniel Simonds (1690-1732).
*  Dorcas Wilson (1680-1727), married 1700 Richard Hildreth (1677-1760).
*  Elizabeth Wilson (1683-1712), married 1704 William Simonds (1679-????).
*  Ruth Wilson (1685-1728), married 1703 John Franklin (1682-1738).
*  Sarah Wilson (1687-????).
*  Francis Wilson (1690-1765).
*  Ebenezer Wilson (1693-1693).
*  Samuel Wilson (1695-1747).

2378.  Joseph Carter, born about 1604 in England; died 30 December 1676 in Woburn, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States. He married about 1644 in probably Hingham, Plymouth, Massachusetts, United States.
2379.  Susanna Chamberlain, born about 1616 in England; died after 10 March 1697 in Cambridge, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.  She was the daughter of 4758. Henry Chamberlain and 4759. Jane.

Children of Joseph Carter and Susanna Chamberlain are:
*  Joseph Carter (1645-1706), married 1669 Bethia Pearson (1653-????).
 Johanna Carter (1647-1698), married 1672 John Wilson (1652-1735).
*  Henry Carter (1648-????).
*  Susanna Carter (1649-1708), married 1674 Henry Summers (1643-1724).

4756.  Thomas Carter, born about 1584 in England; died before 25 June 1652 in Charlestown, Suffolk, Massachusetts, United States.  He married before 1604 in England.

4757.  Mary, born 1586 in England; died 1665 in Massachusetts, United States.

Children of Thomas Carter and Mary are:
*  Joseph Carter (1604-1676), married 1644 Susanna Chamberlain (1616-1697).
*  Thomas Carter (1607-1694), married (1) 1640 Anne Williams; (2) 1679 Elizabeth Jefts.
*  Samuel Carter (1616-1681), married 1638 Winifred Harwood.
*  John Carter (1618-1692), married (1) 1643 Elizabeth Kendall (1613-????); (2) 1691 Elizabeth Grouse (1620-1691).
*  Mary Carter (1619-1673), married 1639 John Brinsmade (1615-1673).
*  Hannah Carter (1620-????), married 1643 William Greene.

Information about this Carter family line was obtained from:

*  Samuel Sewall, History of Woburn, Middlesex County, Massachusetts (Boston, Mass. : Wiggin and Lunt,  1868)

*  Massachusetts Town Vital Record books 

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Copyright (c) 2015, Randall J. Seaver

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Friday, December 25, 2015

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks - Week 104: A Two Year Recap

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 extended this theme in 2015 to 104 Ancestors in 104 Weeks. 

I started with my eight great-grandparents, then did my second, third and fourth great-grandparents in ahnentafel number order.  Last week, I finished my 4th great-grandparents with #127, Sarah (Martin) Putman (1792-1860).  I have collected all of these posts on my Ancestor Biographies page (

I am not writing a post this week because it is Christmas Day.  

Now, I'm wondering if I should continue with the 5th great-grandparents.  There are potentially 128 persons on that list, so it should take about two years (since I don't know all 128 persons, I only know about 100).  

The benefits of doing the 52 Ancestors posts the way I'm doing it are:

*  I revisit each ancestor, review the paper and digital information that I have for them, and look for material that I may have missed.

*  I search Ancestry, FamilySearch, FamilySearch Family Tree, Findmypast, MyHeritage, Geni, Mocavo, Fold3, Google Search, and Google Books for online records that I may have missed over the years.

*  I critically review the names, relationships, events, dates, places, media and sources for the person, and try to make them as uniform and consistent as possible (so that the information for the person is consistent with other persons).  

*  I write Fact Notes for many of the Events, then integrate them into the General Notes for the person in a somewhat chronological order.  

*  I create an Individual Narrative report in RootsMagic that I can copy and edit into the 52 Ancestors weekly blog post, including source notations.

This process is very beneficial for me - I think critically about each person, I discover more material, I make my notes and sources more complete and consistent, and I provide a narrative report for each ancestor which serves as Cousin Bait for other researchers and probably cousins. It provides a theme post for Friday mornings on Genea-Musings!  I feel like I am advancing my family history research each week.  

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Copyright (c) 2015, Randall J. Seaver

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Merry Christmas to All!

There is a reason for the season! Thank you, God, for your Gift to the Earth. 

Merry Christmas to all of my Christian readers and friends. I hope that this day finds you healthy, happy, with family and friends, and that Santa brings you everything you desire.

We are visiting the home of our younger daughter, son-in-law, two granddaughters and toddler grandson today.  We had our older daughter and two grandsons last weekend and enjoyed seeing the boys with their gifts, telling family stories, and eating wonderful stuff.  We will probably come home on Saturday with the two granddaughters and grandson for the weekend.  

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Thursday, December 24, 2015

'Twas the Night Before a Genealogist's Christmas ...

I received this parody of Clement Moore's masterpiece via email back in the mid-1990's, the author is unknown to me. Kimberly Powell at the About Genealogy page also has it on her site.

'Twas the night before Christmas
When all through the house
Not a creature was stirring,
Not even my spouse.

The dining room table with clutter was spread
With pedigree charts and with letters which said...
"Too bad about the data for which you wrote;
Sank in a storm on an ill-fated boat."

Stacks of old copies of wills and such
Were proof that my work had become too much.
Our children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugarplums danced in their heads.

And I at my table was ready to drop
From work on my album with photos to crop.
Christmas was here, and such was my lot
That presents and goodies and toys I'd forgot.

Had I not been busy with grandparents' wills,
I'd not have forgotten to shop for such thrills,
While others bought gifts to bring Christmas cheers,
I'd spent time researching those birth dates and years.

While I was thus musing about my sad plight,
A strange noise on the lawn gave me such a great fright.
Away to the window I flew in a flash,
Tore open the drapes and yanked up the sash.

When what with my wondering eyes should appear,
But an overstuffed sleigh and eight small reindeer.
Up to the house top the reindeer they flew,
With a sleigh full of toys and 'ole Santa Claus, too.

And then in a twinkle, I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of thirty-two hoofs.
As I drew in my head, and bumped it on the sash,
Down the cold chimney fell Santa--KER-RASH!

"Dear" Santa had come from the roof in a wreck,
And tracked soot on the carpet, (I could wring his short neck!)
Spotting my face, good 'ole Santa could see
I had no Christmas spirit you'd have to agree.

He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work
And filled all the stockings, (I felt like a jerk).
Here was Santa, who'd brought us such gladness and joy:
When I'd been too busy for even one toy.

He spied my research on the table all spread
"A genealogist!" He cried! (My face was all red!)
"Tonight I've met many like you," Santa grinned,
As he pulled from his sack a large book he had penned.

I gazed with amusement--the cover it read
Genealogy Lines for Which You Have Plead.
"I know what it's like as a genealogy bug."He said
as he gave me a great Santa hug.

"While the elves make the sleighful of toys I now carry,
I do some research in the North Pole Library!
A special treat I am thus able to bring,
To genealogy folk who can't find a thing."

"Now off you go to your bed for a rest,
I'll clean up the house from this genealogy mess."
As I climbed up the stairs full of gladness and glee,
I looked back at Santa who'd brought much to me.

While settling in bed, I heard Santa's clear whistle,
To his team, which then rose like the down of a thistle.
And I heard him exclaim as he flew out of sight,
"Family History is Fun! Merry Christmas! Goodnight!"

--Author Unknown

To all, I wish a very Merry Christmas, and I hope Santa brings you a special gift for your family history.

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Treasure Chest Thursday Post 293: Frederick and Ruth Seaver in Leominster (Mass.) High School Yearbooks

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  1927 Leominster (Mass.) High School Yearbook entry for my father, Frederick Walton Seaver (1911-1983):

The transcription of my father's entry on the page for "Suggested Desires of the Sophomores" is:

"FREDERICK SEAVER . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  A Second Rudolph Valentino."

A source citation for this entry is:

The Leonine: 1927 (Leominster, Mass.: Pupils of Leominster High School, 1927), page 30, "Suppressed Desires of the Sophomores," Frederick Seaver entry; digital images,, ( : accessed 23 December 2015.

My father was 15 years old when this was published!  Who knew he wanted to be a Valentino?  What a noble desire.  I laughed out loud when I saw this.  Too bad there isn't a photograph, but he was just a lowly sophomore in 1927.  He left Leominster High for his final two years of high school because of discipline problems - he went to several "prep schools," probably on a sports scholarship (football and baseball), including Cushing Academy in Ashburnham, a prep school in New Jersey (something like Kingsbury?), and finally graduated from Worcester Academy (in 1930, I think).  

I wanted to see if any of his siblings were in the Yearbook collection on also, and I found only his sister Ruth in the 1925 Leominster yearbook.  Unfortunately, Ancestry has only the 1925 and 1927 yearbooks for Leominster High School.  

Aunt Ruth's entry in the 1925 Leominster High School Yearbook is:

Her entry, with a picture, says:

"Her air, her manner, all who saw admired"

We always associate Ruth with a chicken farm.
I wonder why?  Ruth has scored many musical
hits with her fine soprano voice.  We know that some
day Grand Opera will claim her, and her's wishing her
lots of success.

Ruth was a senior in 1925.  A "chicken farm?"  It must be an inside joke.  

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Copyright (c) 2015, Randall J. Seaver

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Twelve Days of a Genealogy Christmas - Randy's Version

A genealogy oriented version of the Twelve Days of Christmas is available on the Internet - see Kimberly Powell's site at

Several years ago, I decided I would do my own based on using computer genealogy, my own needs and my own research:

On the 12th day of Christmas,

My true love gave to me --

Twelve Revolutionary War pension files with the Family Bible pages included (12)

Eleven passenger lists clearly written (22)

Ten WorldConnect entries of elusive ancestors (30)

Nine message board postings from distant cousins (36)

Eight probate files (40)

Seven census pages (42)

Six deed abstracts (42)

Five newspaper obituaries (40)

Four marriage records (36)

Three family Bibles (30)

Two draft registration images (22)

And a new name in my family tree. (12)

I've put the total number in parenthesis of each item - if you sing the song all the way through, going one number at a time.

My true love is a busy girl, isn't she?

But, but, but ... that would take all the fun out of the ancestor search, wouldn't it?

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Copyright (c) 2015, Randall J. Seaver