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The Daily Genealogist: DNA Testing Helps with Family Histories

(Stories of Interest) Permanent link
 
Betlock Lynn

Lynn Betlock
Editor

DNA Testing Helps with Family Histories
An overview of what’s possible with today’s DNA technology.

The Daily Genealogist: Mournful, Angry Views of Ireland’s Famine

(Stories of Interest) Permanent link
 
Betlock Lynn

Lynn Betlock
Editor

Mournful, Angry Views of Ireland’s Famine
A review of Ireland’s Great Hunger Museum, newly opened in Hamden, Connecticut.

The Daily Genealogist: Getting Married in Israel

(Stories of Interest) Permanent link
 
Betlock Lynn

Lynn Betlock
Editor

Getting Married in Israel: Why It So Often Means Hiring a Detective

“Jews [in Israel] who want a marriage license must first prove they are Jewish in accordance with Orthodox tradition, which means they need to have been born to an uninterrupted line of Jewish mothers. Such a pedigree can be difficult to prove, especially for the children of Israel's largest immigrant community, the former denizens of the Soviet Union, many of whom spent years obscuring their Jewish roots to avoid discrimination.”

 

 

 


The Daily Genealogist: Your Relationship to New York

(Surveys) Permanent link
 
Betlock Lynn

Lynn Betlock
Editor

Last week’s survey asked about your relationship to New England. More than one answer could be selected. 4,118 people answered this survey. The results are:

  • 32%, I was born in New England.
  • 20%, I used to live in New England.
  • 27%, I currently live in New England.
  • 91%, One or more of my ancestors was born in New England.
  • 88%, One or more of my ancestors lived in New England.
  • 8%, I have never been to New England.
  • 3%, I have no New England ancestry.
  • 2%, I don't know if I have any New England ancestry.

 This week’s survey asks about your relationship to New York. Take the survey now!


The Daily Genealogist: Valentines Online

(A Note from the Editor) Permanent link
 
Betlock Lynn

Lynn Betlock
Editor

In honor of Valentine’s Day tomorrow, we present links to several valentine collections held by historical societies.

The Wisconsin Historical Society presents a Valentine’s Day card gallery featuring 99 valentines from 1840 to 1980. An accompanying brief history of Valentine’s Day greeting cards highlights the role of Worcester, Massachusetts, native Esther Howland in popularizing the exchange of valentines.

WBUR, Boston’s public radio station, told the story of Esther Howland for a Valentine’s Day segment last year. You can listen to an audio clip and view a slideshow of valentines created by Esther Howland that are now part of the collections of the American Antiquarian Society in Worcester.

The American Antiquarian Society also features an online exhibit, Making Valentines: A Tradition in America, which includes five sections: origins, early valentines, Esther Howland, George Whitney, and Victorian valentines.

The Maine Historical Society’s Maine Memory Network showcases valentines from its collections in an online slideshow.

A brief podcast from the Minnesota Historical Society entitled “Believe Me True: Victorian Valentines, 1840–1890," highlights valentines from the Society’s collections. An article about valentines in the Minnesota Historical Society collections, published in Minnesota History in 1981, is available online


The Daily Genealogist: Seeking Out Our Ancestors Is Becoming A Global Phenomenon

(Stories of Interest) Permanent link
 
Betlock Lynn

Lynn Betlock
Editor

The Search for Family Roots: Seeking Out Our Ancestors Is Becoming A Global Phenomenon
A Whistler, British Columbia, newspaper features the story of how John Barker uncovered his roots in Tantallon, Saskatchewan.

The Daily Genealogist: Family Secrets by Deborah Cohen

(Stories of Interest) Permanent link
 
Betlock Lynn

Lynn Betlock
Editor

Family Secrets by Deborah Cohen: a Review
The English newspaper, The Telegraph, offers a review of Family Secrets: Living with Shame from the Victorians to the Present Day by Deborah Cohen.

The Daily Genealogist: Family Recovers Stolen 300-Year-Old Bible

(Stories of Interest) Permanent link
 
Betlock Lynn

Lynn Betlock
Editor

Family Recovers Stolen 300-Year-Old Bible
A stolen Bible containing seven generations of family information was located in Georgia and returned to its owner in Ohio.

The Daily Genealogist: Ancestral Valentines and Love Letters

(Surveys) Permanent link
 
Betlock Lynn

Lynn Betlock
Editor

Last week’s survey asked what potential NEHGS tours readers would be the most interested in. 2,527 people answered this survey. The results are:

  • 32%, Albany, New York
  • 28%, Allen County Public Library, Fort Wayne, Indiana
  • 19%, Nova Scotia
  • 5%, Newfoundland
  • 14%, Quebec
  • 9%, Ontario
  • 17%, Belfast, Northern Ireland
  • 25%, Dublin, Ireland
  • 25%, Edinburgh, Scotland
  • 35%, London, England

 This week’s survey asks about ancestral valentines and love letters. Take the survey now


The Daily Genealogist: Ophelia

(Name Origins) Permanent link
 
Julie Helen Otto

Julie Helen Otto
Genealogist

OPHELIA (f): The lovely, pathetic heroine of Shakespeare’s Hamlet. Ophelia Carrington, daughter of James and Patty Carrington, was born in Wallingford, Conn., on April 18, 1815 (Connecticut Vital Records to 1870 / The Barbour Collection, on AmericanAncestors.org). In the 1850 census, 1,802 women and girls named Ophelia were listed; in the 1940 census, 13,707 were enumerated with the name.

The Daily Genealogist: The Historic Union Cemetery, Redwood City, California

(Spotlight) Permanent link
 
Valerie Beaudrault

Valerie Beaudrault
Assistant Editor

The Historic Union Cemetery, Redwood City, California

The Union Cemetery is located in Redwood City, California, which is on the San Francisco Peninsula. It is the county seat of San Mateo County. The cemetery was established by May of 1859. By 1878 there had been nearly 400 interments, and specific large lots were designated for fraternal organizations and the Grand Army of The Republic (GAR). On the website’s main page you will find questions about an individual buried in the cemetery. Click on the Answer link to open the burial record page containing the answer to the question.

People
Click on the People link to open a new page to search for individuals buried in the cemetery. Then click on the Search the People Database. The database may be searched by first name, last name, year of death, and burial plot identifier. The search results include the name of the deceased, date of death, burial/plot identifier, and source of the information in the record. The date of death information varies. In many cases you will find only the year of death. Click on the name link to open a new page with more detailed information. The view location link will take you to a map showing the location of the plot. You will also find a list containing the names of individuals buried nearby and a list of individuals with the same last name buried there. In some cases you will find a transcription of the deceased’s obituary, links to external sites, photographs, and stories.

There are a number of other links on the main People page. These include People with Stories, People with Pictures, People with Find-A-Grave pages, and “All the People with Extra Information.” Click on the links to access lists with name links. Click on an individual’s name to view his or her webpage. The Find-A-Grave list includes links to each individual’s Find-A-Grave page. You can use the Fraternal Groups with Plots in the Union Cemetery link to access the following organizations: Grand Army of the Republic (GAR), Independent Order of Odd Fellows (IOOF), People in the Free and Accepted Masons (Masons), United Ancient Order of Druids (Druids), and Improved Order of Red Men (RedMen). Clicking on these links will take you to each group’s pages, which contain a description of the organization, photographs, and name links for the members. Click on the link to view the members’ webpages.

Markers
This database catalogs many of the markers in the cemetery. The data fields include marker name, exists, photos, plot, people listed, and source. The data can be sorted by any of the fields just by clicking on the heading. Click on the “P” in the photos column to view the photograph. Each “P” is a link to a different image of the gravestone.

Archives
The Archives page contains links to a variety of resources, including maps of Redwood City, burial lists, newspapers and research, documents, The Journal of Local History, stories, and photographs.


The Daily Genealogist: Homer

(Name Origins) Permanent link
 
Julie Helen Otto

Julie Helen Otto
Genealogist

HOMER (m): The Greek epic poet, author of The Iliad and The Odyssey. Homer Micaijah Daggett, b. Attleborough, Mass. 27 Jan. 1821, was (with his twin Homer Naphthali) a son of Ebenezer and Sally (Maxcy) Daggett. In the 1790 census, three men are listed with the given name Homer: Homer Boardman of New Milford, Connecticut; Homer Potter of Queensbury, New York; and Homer Sacket of Warren, Connecticut. In the 1850 census, there were 2,907 men with the name; and in 1940 there were 89,632.

The Daily Genealogist: California and Wisconsin Library Resources

(Spotlight) Permanent link
 
Valerie Beaudrault

Valerie Beaudrault
Assistant Editor

Historical Newspaper Archives, Torrance Public Library, California

The city of Torrance is located in the southwestern region of Los Angeles County, California. It was incorporated in 1921. The Torrance Public Library has made available on its website a collection of resources related to the city’s history. This collaborative project involves the Torrance Historical Society, the Friends of the Library, and the City of Torrance.

The library’s website contains a newspaper database and a city/phone directory database. Both databases, which contain more than 100,000 digitized images, are full-text searchable via the same search function. Enter a keyword in the search box; choose the database to search, and number of results per page. The library staff has provided search strategies to help you get the best results. Click on the Advanced Search Tips to access them. You can also browse the individual newspapers and city/phone directories by date. Browse links may be found below the search box.

Historic Newspaper Archive
The newspaper database covers the period from 1913 through 1969. The database includes the following newspapers: The Torrance Press, originally The Peninsula Press (1949–1964), and The Torrance Herald (1914–1969). Click on the link in the search results to open a full-page image of the original newspaper in PDF format.

Historic City and Phone Directories
The Torrance and South Bay area city/phone directory databases cover various years between 1922 and 1975. Click on the link in the search results to open a full-page image of the original directory in PDF format.

Local History, La Crosse Public Library Archives, Wisconsin

The city of La Crosse is located in the southwestern part of Wisconsin, along the Mississippi River. It is the county seat of La Crosse County. The La Crosse Public Library Archives has many genealogy-related resources in its collections. Indexes to a number of them have been made available through a library database. Click on the local genealogy database to access the database. The resources include obituaries (1904–1960; 1968–1969; 1983–present); births (1987–present); marriages (1987–present); divorces (1992–present); and cemeteries.

The index is searchable by first name and last name. (Note that parents’ names should be used when searching births.) Select the database or databases that you want to search. You can also choose sort order, gender, and number of results returned from drop down lists. The data fields in the search results are name(s), event date, report date, and source. In the source field the data also includes the residence of the individual named in the record. The data fields in the cemeteries search results are name, birth, death, and cemetery. Click on the browse link to view a more detailed record, including remarks. Click on the cemetery name to open a new page with a brief history of the cemetery, including a map showing its location.


The Daily Genealogist: Great Enthusiasm for the Old Connecticut Path

(A Note from the Editor) Permanent link
 

Lynn Betlock
Editor

Last week we featured an article by Jason Newton, an NEHGS member, on his Old Connecticut Path project. Jason reported great interest in the topic from Weekly Genealogist readers. In the past week, his Old Connecticut Path website was visited by over 4,000 first time visitors and the project’s YouTube videos were viewed by visitors from 47 U.S. states and the District of Columbia!

Here are excerpts from just a few of the many comments sent to Jason Newton:

Jan Welch of Clifton, Virginia:
Just yesterday my husband and I drove from Westborough, Mass., through Hartford on our way to Virginia, where we live, and as we were driving I wondered if anyone had been or was able to trace the path. My family connections are many, and include Stephen Hart, Anthony Howkins, John Lee, Nathaniel Foote, William Buell, Josiah Churchill, and dozens of others. Thank you for tracing the path. Now I will make it a priority to follow as much of the path as much as possible from the material you have provided. Perhaps next summer.

Martin Marix Evans of Towcester, Northamptonshire, England:
I was very interested to see your announcement in the NEHGS enewsletter, as I live five miles from Towcester where Thomas Hooker met up with Samuel Stone, then a resident of the town, before setting off for Boston in 1633. I admire your enterprise in rediscovering the Old Connecticut Path. People are very interested in buildings but, here in the UK, find it harder to engage with landscapes. The tracing of ancient pathways reveals so much in history.

Donna Brock of Wayland, Mass.:
I saw the information about your Old Connecticut Path project on the NEHGS Weekly Genealogist newsletter and felt compelled to write. I live on the Old Connecticut Path in Wayland, Massachusetts. At the end of our street, on a small island right before the road intersects with Boston Post Road, is a rock with a plaque to mark the significance of the road and Rev. Hooker. [Readers might find a 2010 New York Times article on the Boston Post Road (between Boston and New York) to be of interest. — LB]

Ric Skinner, GISP, of Sturbridge, Mass.:
Your research into the Old Connecticut Path is fascinating! I completed a project in 2009 with a small grant from The Last Green Valley to map the route of the Indian Bay Path through Sturbridge. The report is available online. My primary source document was Levi Badger Chase’s field map, used when he walked the route across Massachusetts, and his book, The Bay Path and Along the Way.

David W. Chester of Sherborn, Mass.: I had always wondered about the Old Connecticut Path but then dismissed it as undoubtedly long lost to interstates, state highways, malls, developments, and suburban blight. Now you have rekindled my interest in the path, the famous trek, and perhaps, as you suggest, catching a glimpse into our distant past. The Rev. Thomas Hooker was the brother of my ancestor, Dorothy (Hooker) Chester. 


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