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  • The Weekly Genealogist

  • Vol. 10, No. 38
    Whole #392
    September 17, 2008

    Edited by Michael J. Leclerc and Valerie Beaudrault

    Greetings from the New England Historic Genealogical Society! This newsletter has been sent to people who asked to receive it. If you would like to unsubscribe or change your email address, please click on the link at the bottom of the email and follow the instructions provided.

    NEHGS collects, preserves, and interprets materials to document and make accessible the histories of families in America.

    * Video Clips on
    * New Whipple Genealogy Now Available
    * Research Recommendations: Worldnames
    * Name Origins
    * New On
    * Spotlight: California County Resources
    * Stories of Interest
    * New Article on
    * Pre-Publication Offer on New Book from D. Brenton Simons
    * Upcoming Education Programs
    * NEHGS Contact Information


    Video Clips on

    NEHGS is pleased to feature a new video player on our website, The videos are located on the “About NEHGS” page. The new player, provided by RootsTelevision, will allow visitors to watch a variety of videos. RootsTelevision also has a number of great videos from conference interviews to tips and ideas to help with your research. We invite everyone to view videos already posted and to check back regularly to see new ones at

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    New Whipple Genealogy Now Available

    For those with Whipple ancestors, a new compendium is now available. Blaine Whipple has compiled 15 Generations of Whipples: Descendants of Matthew Whipple of Ipswich, Massachusetts, abt. 1590–1647, An American Story. Researched over the course of five decades, this massive work traces the lines of approximately 20,000 descendants, including two presidents (Calvin Coolidge and Franklin Delano Roosevelt).

    Volume one gives historical context while volumes two and three comprise the genealogical section. The fourth volume contains an every-name index and a bibliography of sources. This set is available at the NEHGS research library. For more information visit

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    Research Recommendations: Worldnames
    by Michael J. Leclerc

    My friend Matt Cote recently forwarded me an interesting link. A group at University College London has launched the Worldnames Surname Profiler on their website. The site plots 8 million names, using data that comes from electoral rolls and telephone directories around the world. Covering 300 million people in 26 countries, users can see where certain surnames originated, and where they have migrated to.

    The page is very simple and easy to use. Just type a surname into the box and click Search. The map will then display countries color-coded by the distribution of the surname from low to high.

    Beneath the map, you can see the roots of the surname, the top cities, regions, and countries where the name appears, and the top forenames (first names) that are associated with that surname. Although my surname is a French-Canadian “dit” name and changes four generations back, I decided to test the site with Leclerc.

    The roots of the surname are in France. I discovered that the top five countries for the name are France, Canada, Luxembourg, Belgium, and Switzerland. Other countries displayed on the map with a medium distribution of the name were the United States, the UK, Ireland, Spain, Poland, Germany, Norway, Italy, and Argentina. Low, but still measurable, distribution was found in Australia, Hungary, Japan, India, Poland, Romania, Serbia, and Sweden. The top two regions for the name are in Normandy, France, followed by Quebec in third place. The Centre and Lorraine areas of France round out the top five. The top five cities are all in France.

    The top five first names associated with the name, in order, are: Christelle, Michael, Sebastien, Franck, and Nicolas. Lucky me, I made the top five! If you click on the little down arrow in any of the boxes, the top five results will turn into the top ten results.

    On a lark, I also tested the surname Smith. The top five countries (in order) are: Australia, United Kingdom, New Zealand, United States, and Ireland. The most popular first name: David. John is actually fourth in popularity.

    The site is interesting and fun, and well worth a visit. Check them out at

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    Name Origins
    by Julie Helen Otto

    EMBLEM (f): This is among three names (with CONCURRENCE and OLIVE) singled out by Donald Lines Jacobus as peculiar to Woodbury, Conn., “though rare elsewhere” (Genealogy as Pastime and Profit, p. 30).

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    New On

    New Netherland Connections, Volume 5

    The week, we are adding the contents of New Netherland Connections, Volume 5, from 2000. This represents an additional 3,523 names. The remaining issues of New Netherland Connections will be added in the future.

    Begun in 1996 and continuing, New Netherland Connections is a genealogical quarterly that aims to help people trying to identify and document their New Netherland ancestors and their descendants. It focuses on the Dutch colonial period (1624-1664) In New York and New Jersey. Each issue has feature articles, replies to queries, items of Dutch colonial interest, and queries (of any length) and runs to about 28 pages. This database includes an index to the 17,451 names referenced in the first three volumes (1996-2000). The images of the original journal pages are available from the search results pages. The remaining volumes will be added to the database in the future.

    Subscriptions to the printed journal may be ordered from Dorothy A. Koenig, Editor, 1232 Carlotta Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94707.  She may also be contacted by email at

    Diaries of the Rev. Thomas Cary of Newburyport, Mass., 1762-1808, 1805

    The Rev. Thomas Cary (1745-1808) started his diary in Weston, Massachusetts, in 1762. He wrote his notes opposite the pages of An Astronomical diary: Or, Almanack for the Year of Our Lord CHRIST 1762, which he “bot at Mr. Philips.” His entries are sparse, but invaluable. He continued his diaries until 1806, two years before his death.

    The original diaries are kept in the R. Stanton Avery Collections at NEHGS, call number MSS 640.

    The database contains transcriptions of Cary's notes, done by Marsha Hoffman Rising, CG, CGL, FASG, as well as images of the diaries. Additional years will be added regularly.

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    Spotlight: California County Resources
    by Valerie Beaudrault

    Siskiyou County Library, California

    Siskiyou County is located in northern California on the Oregon border. Its county seat is Yreka. Short histories of the county can be viewed at

    The Siskiyou County Library has three databases on its website, which may be of interest to individuals engaged family history research.

    The Siskiyou County Newspaper Index
    The newspaper index covers the period from 1995 to the present. Some newspapers for the period 1990–1995 are also included in the index. Click on the link to access the search page. Enter a keyword or two in the search box. The data fields in the search results include result number, subject 1, subject 2, name, title, newspaper abbreviation, date on which the article appeared, and the page number. I should note that I was unable to view the search box when using a Mac. I had no problem when using a PC.

    The Siskiyou County Obituary Index
    The obituary index covers the period from 1854 to 1991. Click on the link to access the search page. Enter a name in the search box. The data fields in the search results include result number, full name of the deceased, newspaper title, and date on which the obituary appeared.

    The Siskiyou Pioneer Index
    This database is a searchable index of the Siskiyou Historical Society's annual Siskiyou Pioneer Yearbooks. The data fields in the search results include result number, title, and date.

    Gold Mining in Siskiyou County — A Digital Collection

    Gold mining played a major role in Siskiyou County’s history. According to the Library’s website, gold was first discovered in the Yreka area in 1851 and within a few months there were 2,000 miners working in the area. The Siskiyou County Library’s collections contain many valuable documents, clippings, and microfilm related to the County’s mining history. Currently the following documents are available here: Alphabetical list of Mine Names with a brief history — from Report XIV of the State Mineralogist — 1916 and Report XIV of the State Mineralogist — Mines and Mineral Resources of Siskiyou County — G. Chester Brown — 1916 — full text . The Library plans to make many of these resources available online in the future. They include an index to newspaper clippings from the Siskiyou County Local History Collection, newspaper clippings (full-text- scanned), maps to mine locations, and an index to Gary D. Stumpf's book "Mining in Siskiyou County."

    Butte County Genealogy – Paradise Genealogical Society

    Butte County is also located in northern California. Its county seat is Oroville. According to its official website, the county is known as the “Land of Natural Wealth and Beauty.” Founded in 1850, it is one of California’s original counties.

    The Paradise Genealogical Society has a collection of obituary file cards containing fore than 84,000 records in its library. The majority of these records (75,000) are from the period between 1960 and 2007. There are 9,000 from 1900 to 1959 and 1,300 from 1855 to 1956. The obituaries and death notices are all from Butte County local newspapers. The Paradise Genealogical Society has made the index for the letters A through D available online. Click on the Obituaries link to access the index. The data contained in the alphabetical index comprises full name and birth and death dates of the deceased. Genealogical society volunteers will do look ups for records from surnames beginning any letter of the alphabet for a fee.

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    Stories of Interest

    Making Ancient Connections
    Reporter Stephen Ng in The Star in Malaysia reports on a U.S.-born Chinese man, Henry Tom, and his search for his ancestry.

    Diary Entry May Offer Proof that Baseball Came from England
    America’s favorite pastime may actually by English. Julian Pooley of the Surrey History Centre has authenticated a 1755 diary entry that seems to predate the earliest previously-known reference by half a century. It also places the origins in England.

    Maureen Taylor Tells the Today Show’s Viewers How to Research Family History
    The Photo Detective recently appeared on the Today Show to help Meredith Vieira find her family history. Maureen had previously worked on Vieira’s ancestry in an appearance on The View.

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    New Article on

    Proved, Probable, Possible, Likely, or What? Claimed Descendants of Reuben Paddock of Yarmouth, Massachusetts: A Case Study.
    by Alicia Crane Williams

    In the compilation of any circumstantial case, terms such as possible, probable, and likely are often used. Researchers preparing a case need to be aware of the subtleties among these terms. By definition, no circumstantial case is proved, since it is the lack of hard documentation that makes it circumstantial.

    In a circumstantial case, one first needs to show that something is not “impossible.” From there it is often fairly easy to show that something is possible – that it could have happened.

    NEHGS members can read the full article at

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    Free Shipping Pre-Publication Offer on New Book from D. Brenton Simons

    In association with NEHGS, the University Press of New England is publishing a new book by NEHGS President and CEO D. Brenton Simons. Boston Beheld: Antique Town and Country Views is a collection of more than sixty historical works of art that portray Boston in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Ranging from fine art to folk art and selected from both public and private collections, the works show different aspects of Boston — street scenes, elegant buildings and homes, landscapes and gardens, the harbor — constituting a portfolio of rarely seen views of the city in bygone days. Each image is accompanied by descriptive text highlighting famous landmarks, points of interest, and quotes from famous residents and travelers. A wonderful holiday gift for any lover of art — or lover of Boston!

    You can order the book online at or by calling toll free at 888-296-3447. Cost is $35.00 (or $31.50 for NEHGS members). Economy (book rate) shipping is FREE if you place your order by October 30, 2008. Standard shipping (UPS) will be at a discounted rate of $5.00.

    Did you know that the NEHGS Sales Department offers library-quality copies of over 10,000 rare and out-of-print books? Some titles ordered by recent customers include:

    The Shipleys of Maryland: A Genealogical Study (Item P4-H23637)
    Descendants of Ira Riggan (Item P4-H22399)
    History of Keokuk County, Iowa (Item P5-IA0034H)
    History of Fayette, Maine (Item P5-ME0164H)
    Cape Vincent, New York, and Its History (Item P5-NY0064BH)

    You can search the entire Classic Reprints catalog online at

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    Upcoming Education Programs

    Each year the Society presents a number of dynamic lectures, seminars, and tours for genealogists and the general public. Programs are held at 101 Newbury Street unless otherwise indicated. For more information, please contact Ryan Woods at 617-226-1226 or

    Making the Most of Torrey’s New England Marriages
    Wednesday, September 24, 2008, 10:00 AM
    NEHGS genealogist, David C. Dearborn, FASG, will discuss methodology for effectively using Clarence Almon Torrey's New England Marriages Prior to 1700.

    One Bowl More and Then: Punch Drinking in Colonial America
    Monday, September 29, 2008, 6:00 PM
    Donald Friary, president of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts and director emeritus of Historic Deerfield, will present an entertaining and informative talk on the history of punch drinking in Colonial America.

    Seminars and Tours
    For more information or to register for any of these events, please contact Ryan Woods at 617-226-1226 or

    Correction: The dates of Come Home to New England are incorrectly stated in the recently mailed Education Programs and Research Tours brochure. The program dates are June 22-27, 2009 and August 10-15, 2009.

    Families of Western Massachusetts in 1790
    Saturday, September 20, 2008
    University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA
    Western Massachusetts was a crossroads of migration. In 1790 the population of Berkshire County was 30,291, and that of Hampshire County 59,681, making a total of just under 90,000 — slightly larger than Vermont’s 85,425, and slightly less than Maine’s 96,540. New Hampshire was significantly larger, with a population of 141,855. Join Michael J. Leclerc and Christopher C. Child, editors of the upcoming NEHGS publication Western Massachusetts Families in 1790, for a day-long program examining the history of Western Massachusetts and hear how you can participate in this exciting new book series.
    Registration fee: $75

    National Archives Research Day
    Thursday, October 9, 2008
    The National Archives (NARA), Northeast Region facility in Waltham, Massachusetts, holds a treasure trove of genealogical material. NARA holds both microfilm and original records of the Federal Government dating back to 1790. Highlights of the collection include census records 1790–1930, Revolutionary War records, and an extensive collection of passenger arrival records for the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. NEHGS staff will be on hand to provide consultations and assist you with your research. Registration includes lunch.
    Registration fee: $75

    Salt Lake City Research Tour
    Sunday, November 2–Sunday, November 9, 2008
    Join NEHGS for our thirtieth annual research tour to the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah. Along with more than 70 other participants you are invited to take part in an intensive week of research where you will be aided by expert staff. Daily programming also includes computer tutorials for accessing the library card catalog, research tips and techniques lectures, personalized consultations and group dinning events.
    For more information visit:

    Getting Started in Genealogy
    Saturday, November 15, 2008
    Gov. John Langdon House, Portsmouth, NH
    Join NEHGS and Historic New England for a day-long seminar that will teach you basic techniques for exploring your family history. Learn strategies for using repositories and websites to locate vital record information, organizing a pedigree chart, and documenting your discoveries. If you have interested in becoming your family’s historian, this program is not to be missed.
    Registration fee: $45 for members; $55 for non-members.

    Washington, D.C. Research Tour
    March 8–15, 2009
    NEHGS returns to the nation’s capital to explore its wealth of genealogical resources. Staff will be providing daily consultations at three repositories throughout the city: the Library of Congress, National Society Daughters of the American Revolution Library and the National Archives and Records Administration. An orientation will be offered at each repository at the beginning of the week. Program registration includes two group dinners to socialize and share research.
    Registration fees (includes seven nights’ lodging at the State Plaza Hotel): Single, $2,700; Double, $2,300 per person; Double with non-participant, $2,950; Commuter, $850 (no lodging).

    English Family History Tour
    May 17–24, 2009
    The English Family History Tour to London is an essential research trip for genealogists with British Ancestry. Based at the Society of Genealogists (SoG), researchers will be offered daily classes providing historical context and research methodology tips for working with the extensive record collection of the SoG. The library’s holdings include more than 120,000 books and microforms featuring census indexes; family histories; biographies; service, professional, and trade directories; an apprenticeship index (1770-1774), school and university lists, will and marriage license indexes; runs of Burke’s Peerage and Landed Gentry; a large number of manuscripts arranged by surname; and a miscellaneous card index of 3 million references.
    Registration fees: (includes seven nights’ lodging at the Holiday Inn Bloomsbury) Single, $4,850; Double, $4,550 per person; Double with non-participant, $5,550; Commuter, $2,300 (no lodging).

    Newfoundland Research Tour
    July 12–19, 2009
    Discover your Atlantic Canada family history with NEHGS in St. John’s, Newfoundland. Join expert genealogists at St. John’s premier facilities, including the Provincial Archives – “The Rooms,” the Maritime History Archive at Memorial University, the Registry of Deeds, and A.C. Hunter Library. Together these repositories hold vital records, church records, all census records, voter lists, probate, and land grants the Keith Matthews collection (list of all people who worked in fishery from 16th century to 1850), ship lists, crew lists, logbooks, Irish and English parish records and original newspapers of Newfoundland.
    Registration fees: (includes seven nights’ lodging at the Fairmont Hotel) Single ocean view room, $3,250; Single city view room, $3,100; Double, $2,700 per person; Double with non-participant, $3,550; Commuter, $850 (no lodging).

    Scottish Family History Research Tour
    September 20–27, 2009
    Discover the origins of your Scottish ancestors with the inaugural NEHGS research tour to Edinburgh. This weeklong intensive research program will be based out of Scotland’s two premier genealogical repositories, The National Archives of Scotland (NAS) and the General Register Office for Scotland (GROS). Together these neighboring repositories house the major collections of government and vital records for more than 700 years of Scottish ancestry. The main holdings of NAS include records created by the government of Scotland beginning in the twelfth century, including records of the crown, parliament, legal registers, courts documents, and records of the Church of Scotland. Vital records including birth, marriage, and death from 1855 and parish registers from 1553 to 1854 are maintained by the GROS. Program registration includes lodging at the Sheraton Grand Hotel and opening and closing dinners. Registration fees: (includes seven nights’ lodging at the Sheraton Grand Hotel) Single, $4,750; Double, $4,450 per person; Double with non-participant, $5,350; Commuter, $2,300 (no lodging).

    For more information about NEHGS programs, visit or email

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Boston, Massachusetts 02116, USA

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