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Seeking Guardianship records in Ontario County, New York.

(New York) Permanent link
 
David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question: I need help finding some guardianship papers which filed in Victor, New York circa 1889. Any ideas of where I can look for these records online as I live near Chicago.

 

Answer: The town of Victor, New York is located in Ontario County, the probate records for the 19th century are not online however.  The records for Ontario County guardianships are available from 1795-1924 on microfilm from the Family History Library in Salt Lake City. You can order the appropriate film(s) to be sent to a center near you in Chicago. The microfilm list in question can be found online here: https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/show?uri=http%3A%2F%2Fcatalog-search-api%3A8080%2Fwww-catalogapi-webservice%2Fitem%2F229551


Researching the land of your ancestors from Ireland.

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David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question:  I have found my ancestors land in the Griffith's Valuation of Ireland.  What I would like to do now is contact an office in Ireland to find who owns the property currently before I visit Ireland.

 

Answer:  The Valuation Office in Ireland is available to contact for research.  They can confirm who the current land occupiers of the land your ancestors once resided upon.  You can reach them for further information at: http://www.valoff.ie/Research.htm


The key to unlocking historic cemeteries in Boston.

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David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question:  I recently went to a historic cemetery in the South End of Boston.  However when I got there I found the gate was locked, and was not sure how to get in.  Obviously I am too old to hop a fence at 82, so how can I get into this location.

 

Answer: A variety of the old Boston cemeteries are commonly kept locked.  This list includes: Phipps Street Burying Ground and Bunker Hill Burying Grounds in Charlestown; Bennington Street Cemetery, East Boston; North Burying Ground and South Burying Ground in Dorchester; Eliot Burying Ground, Roxbury Market Street Burying Ground, Brighton; Hawes/Union Burying Ground, South Boston; and the South End Burying Ground.

 

This effort is to protect the cemetery from vandalism, not from genealogists.  If you would like to visit one of these historic cemeteries simply call the day before and arrange it.  The Boston City Parks and Recreation office at the Mount Hope Cemetery can arrange this for you by calling 617-635-7361.  You can also learn more about the South End Burying Ground online at: http://www.cityofboston.gov/parks/hbgi/SouthEnd.asp


Searching for a relative from World War I who was buried overseas.

(Cemeteries, Military Records) Permanent link
 
David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question:  I am looking for where my great-grandmother's cousin Walter Archer was buried overseas.  He was buried in France where he was killed in 1918.

 

Answer:  Online you can search the burials of American veterans from World War I and World War II.  I locate an entry for a Pvt. Walter S. Archer, with the 316th Engineer Regiment, 91st Division in the U.S. Army.  He is buried at Plot F, Row 15, Grave 33 at the Meuse-Argonne American Cemetery in Romagne, France.  You can request a photograph be taken of this monument for you and your family.  To search this database go online to www.abmc.gov/search/wwi.php


Choice of the Massachusetts Vital Records to the year 1850 ending date.

(Boston, Massachusetts, Vital Records) Permanent link
 
David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question: Why was the year 1850 chosen as the cut-off date for the vital records series of Massachusetts?

 

Answer: My understanding for the choice of the year 1850 was due to the start year of statewide vital records. The Massachusetts Secretary of State required Massachusetts cities and towns to make a return of their births, marriages, and deaths in 1841.  The adjustment to 1850 allows for the fact some towns were not diligent to return all births and marriages.  The least amounts of returns arriving from a community was the city of Boston.  The return for births for Boston did not get adequate until the early 1850’s.


Looking for an ancestor who rented property in 1908.

(Massachusetts) Permanent link
 
David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question: What is the best method to locate the name of the owner of a rental property in Brockton, Massachusetts in 1908?

 

Answer: I would suggest examining the microfiche of Brockton City Directories ca. 1907-1910 at NEHGS.  These would be the best option for determining a resident, regardless if they were the property owner.  We do have in house access to Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps however this will only indicate the owner of the property.


Looking for vital records during the 1870's Whitman, Massachusetts.

(Massachusetts, Vital Records) Permanent link
 
David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question:  I am searching for various residents of Whitman, Massachusetts in vital records from the 1870's.  When I search in the Mass. Vital Records on your website I can not even locate Whitman during that decade.  What am I doing incorrect?

 

Answer:  The town of South Abington was incorporated on March 4, 1875 from parts of Abington and East Bridgewater, Mass.  During half of the 1870's and until 1886 the community now known as Whitman was simply called South Abington.  The vital records from 1875 to 1886 can be located by selecting the town South Abington, and for post 1886 to 1915 use Whitman in your searches.


Researching Masonic records from New York State.

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David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question: I just finished reading examining your database on the members of the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts.   I had a grandfather who was a Mason but all of his Mason lodges were in New York State.  Is there a a place I can find out about his Masonic membership?

 

Answer: Most Grand Lodges will perform genealogical searches free of charge.  This is not the case with the Grand Lodge of New York.  Each genealogical request from New York is $35.00.  Their website claims that you will typically receive " the name of a member's lodge; his occupation when he joined; his age at the time of joining; the dates of his Masonic degrees; and a date of death, if he remained a member in good standing throughout his life."  To find out more about ordering New York Masonic records go online to: http://www.nymasoniclibrary.org/library/genealogy.htm


The Society of the War of 1812.

(Lineage Societies and Fraternal Organizations, Massachusetts, Military Records) Permanent link
 
David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question:  I have confirmed by a pension of my ancestor from the National Archives that he served in the War of 1812.  I live locally in Boston and I am excited to partake in celebrations for the upcoming Bicentennial.  I would also like to know if the Society of the War of 1812 is still active?

 

Answer:  The Society of the War of 1812 in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is still active.  You will want to contact their President John T. Manning :  JManning@ma1812society.org    They maintain a website with information about joining their organization at www.ma1812society.org

For a female member of your family they may consider membership with the United States Daughters of 1812 - http://www.usdaughters1812.org/


In search of a passenger who may have never reached New England.

(Massachusetts) Permanent link
 
David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question:  I am looking for information on a Giles Butler who was sailing for New England in the 1630’s from England.  Hoping he may be a relative of my Butlers.

 

Answer:  According to the scholarship of Robert Charles Anderson published on The Great Migration there is a reference to your Giles Butle.  This appears in the second series covering immigrants 1634-1635 [p. 515].  Anderson states “On or about 5 April 1635, ‘Gyles Butler’ of Marlborough, Wiltshire, laborer or husbandman, embarked at Southampton on the James of London.”  Anderson goes on further to comment “There is no evidence that this man arrived in New England”.  My own personal speculation is that the gentleman died on the passage over, or may have died soon after arriving and no record of his death was recorded.


Searching for early Charles Street Jail records in Boston.

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David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question: The brother of my great-great grandfather was a small time criminal.  I understand from family correspondence he was at the jail in Boston on Charles Street ca. 1878-1879.  Do you know when I can locate these records in Boston?

 

Answer:  The records for Boston's Charles Street Jail do exist at the offices of the Boston Archives and Records Management.  For the years 1878-1879 you will want to examine the Daily Record of Inmates, 1875-1880 (vols. 33-34).  The records are arranged chronological and include the inmate's name; age; sentence; offence for imprisonment; and their fines.  To find out more about this collection and arrange an appointment to view the records: http://www.cityofboston.gov/contact/?id=135


Revolutionary War pension restrictions for widows.

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David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question:  I realize that most Revolutionary War pensions were not granted to 1818.  But I recall you mentioning in a lecture about disabled men getting pensions earlier.  Also, when were the last changes to the pension laws for Revolutionary War widows?

 

Answer:  In 1776 half pay was granted to officers and men who became disabled during the war and were not able to earn a living.  This pension was granted and would last for the duration of their disability.  The last of the Revolutionary War veterans died in the 1860’s, however their widows lived on until the early 1900’s.  Because of the amount of widows there were a variety of Acts passed regarding a widow’s qualification.  In 1838 the widow needed to be married to the pensioner before 1794, and this was extended in 1848 to allow marriages before 1800.  In 1853 the requirement of when the widow married the veteran was abolished.  And finally in 1878 a widow could apply for a soldier’s pension as long as he participated in any battle or engagement, or served at least fourteen days in the service.


Remembering the last veteran of World War I.

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David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question:  I understand that Frank Buckles who died earlier this year was the last American veteran of World War I.  Are there any veterans alive today that can still claim Armistice Day being in the service back during the Great War?

 

Answer: There is all but one veteran remaining.  Mrs. Florence Green was born at Edmonton, London, England in 1901.  She is currently still living with her daughter who is in her 90's.  Florence is the last survivor of World War I.  She served England with the Wome Royal Air Force 1918-1919. 


What does the gravestone abbreviation D.O.L.L.U.S. mean?

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David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question:  This fall I found a gravestone with an abbreviation I have never seen.  Can you tell me what group a lady would have been involved in with the abbreviation of D.O.L.L.U.S?

 

Answer:  I belive that the Dames of the Loyal Legion of the United States is the full name of the group you found.  This is the auxiliary of the Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States. This organization was created for officers of the Union Army from the Civil War. The Dames organization was incorporated in 1899, and are still active today.  Their website can be found at: http://suvcw.org/mollus/dollus/home.htm


Digging for resources in Hampton, N.H.

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David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question:  I am looking for my early ancestors from Hampton, N.H. will I find any records online if I join NEHGS?

 

Answer:  There are many resources for Hampton, N.H. families you can search on NEHGS.  However you may specifically be interested in George F. Sanborn and Melinde L. Sanborn's work titled Vital records of Hampton, New Hampshire : to the end of the year 1900. Boston, Mass: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1992. (Online database. AmericanAncestors.org, New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2009) available online.  The following description describes the collection: Hampton, New Hampshire, first called Winnacunnet, was settled in 1638 by the Reverend Stephen Bachiler (ca. 1561–1656) and a small group of followers from Newbury, Massachusetts. While settlement had commenced in the summer of that year, the church was dedicated by Mr. Bachiler on 14 October 1638, the date usually considered as the beginning of the town. But the grant from the government of the Province of the Massachusetts Bay (which exercised control over the area at the time), was given on 6 June 1639, when Hampton was "allowed to be a town and hath power to choose a constable and other officers." Thus the town of Hampton officially dates from 1639. This volume is also available in our Boston research library, call number F44.H3 S26 1992.

 

Searching for S.A.R. membership applications.

(Military Records) Permanent link
 
David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question:  Does NEHGS have copies of the applications for all of the Sons of the American Revolution chapters across the United States?  Is it possible to order a copy if the member is deceased?  My great-uncle was a member in the 1930's.

 

Answer:  NEHGS does not own a physical copy of all the applications for S.A.R. Chapters located at the headquarters in Louisville, Kentucky.  However if you visit NEHGS you can access these applications from 1889 to 1970 from our library subscription to Ancestry.com    If you can not visit NEHGS, or do not have access to Ancestry.com you can order a copy from the S.A.R.  To request a living member's application for the benefit of your own membership, or obtain a copy of a deceased members application for $10.  You can find out more details online at: http://www.sar.org/node/132


An occupation dealing with Flax in the 19th century

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David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question: My ancestor in the 1871 Census for Scotland states his occupation as a hatcheler.  Do you know what this occupation was?

 

Answer:  A Hatcheler worked on carded flax, by combing and cleaning the flax seed out.  The flax industry was very important in the 19th century.


A Massachusetts Colonial fine imposed for removing stones from the beach.

(Boston) Permanent link
 
David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question:  I read my ancestor was fined for taking rocks from the beach in the 17th century in Massachusetts.  Why would this be the case if they were merely stones?

 

Answer:  According to The Book of the General Lauues [Laws] and Libertyes published in Cambridge, Masss in 1648 it was illegal.  Specifically it was
illegal to remove any "Ballast" stones "...no ballast shall be taken from any towne shore by any person whatsoever without alllowance under the hands of the select men upon
the penalty of six pence for every shovel-full so taken."


In search of a Civil War band from Maine.

(Military Records) Permanent link
 
David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question:  In a history of Oxford County Maine I learn that my ancestors brother Lucius Allen was in the "Third Maine Band" during the Civil War.  I can not find any reference to this band or regiment.

 

Answer:  According the to records of Civil War Soldiers enlisted in Maine your relative was in a band.  However he was in the Band attached to the 3rd Maine Infantry.  To learn more about this regiment and where they were during the Civil War go online to: http://www.itd.nps.gov/cwss/regiments.cfm.  Select from the options - Union, Maine, and "3" for the regiment.


Massachusetts Divided Hearts during the Revolutionary War - Loyalist Research

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David Allen Lambert

David Allen Lambert
NEHGS Online Genealogist

Question:  I recall hearing NEHGS published a list of some Massachusetts Loyalists.  Will this ever be placed online for members to research?

 

Answer:  The book by David E. Maas, Divided hearts, Massachusetts loyalists, 1765-1790 : a biographical directory. (Boston, NEHGS, 1980) is the book I believe you are referring to.  This resouce can be searched online on our website directly through this link:  http://www.americanancestors.org/search.aspx?Ca=099&Da=80


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