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  • The Weekly Genealogist

  • Vol. 10, No. 42
    Whole #396
    October 15, 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.

    New Books and Other Resources in NEHGS Library Catalog

    NEHGS has posted the most recent list of new titles added to the library collections. It includes resources on such topics as the slave families of Thomas Jefferson, Maine cemeteries, Ukrainian genealogy, and Newport, Rhode Island, probate, land, and vital records.

    To see if there is something relevant to your research on this July to September 2008 list, go directly to the New Books page at You can also access the list by going to the catalog’s main search page,, and clicking the “New Books” link beneath the search box. To view more details about any title on the list, simply click the title, which is hyperlinked (underlined), and you will be taken to the full catalog record. The list is sorted in call-number order. If you would like to use any of these new resources, you may do so by visiting our Research Library in Boston or by contacting our Research Services department to have a researcher consult the resource for you.




    What is HathiTrust? A project of major universities, such as the University of Illinois (Champaign); Indiana University (Bloomington); University of Iowa (Iowa City); University of Michigan (Ann Arbor); Michigan State University (East Lansing); University of Minnesota (Minneapolis); Northwestern University (Evanston, Il.); Ohio State University (Columbus); Pennsylvania State University (State College); Purdue Univesity (West Lafayette, In.); University of Wisconsin (Madison); and the University of Chicago, as well as the 10 campuses in the University of California system.

    These schools have been working to preserve the millions of volumes that Google has scanned. No matter what happens to Google, the schools will ensure that the scanned texts will be available in the future.

    You can read more about this project (and why it uses the Hindi word for elephant in its name) in The Chronicle of Higher Education at



    Research Recommendations: The Wordy Shipmates

    by Michael J. Leclerc

    Sarah Vowell, contributing editor to National Public Radio’s This American Life, is one of my favorite authors. She puts an incredibly interesting (and oftentimes hilarious) spin on American history, drawing parallels between our past and our present. Last week Riverhead Books (a member of Penguin Group) released her newest book The Wordy Shipmates.

    This book is Vowell’s take on the Puritans, and their effort to build the “city upon a hill.” As always, she spent much time travelling the area of her focus (in this case, New England), talking to many people, visiting repositories, and actually examining original documents as well as volumes of published materials.

    The following passage from the book is a good illustration of her work:

    There isn’t that much difference between tall tales that start “Listen, my children, and you shall hear” and “Here’s the story of a man named Brady.” In other words, Americans have learned our history from exaggerated popular art for as long as anyone can remember. Revolutionary War soldiers were probably singing fun but inaccurate folk songs about those silly Puritans to warm themselves by the fire at Valley Forge. Right before they defeated that god-forsaken General Cornwallis, of course. Man, I hate that guy.

    In addition to Longfellow and the Brady Bunch, you will meet characters like William Bradford, John Cotton, Mary Dyer, Anne Hutchinson, Cotton Mather, Roger Williams, and John Winthrop. Travelling with her sister and nephew, she visits historic places like Plimoth Plantation, where she meets the “Pilgrim Archie Bunker.”

    Vowell is currently on a book tour to promote the book. She recently appeared with Jon Stewart on The Daily Show, which you can see at

    Her speaking engagements and book readings are available at her publicist’s website at

    Pick up a copy of The Wordy Shipmates and discover the answers to such questions as “What was the Puritans’ pet name for the Pope?” You might also get her previous books Assassination Vacation and The Partly Cloudy Patriot.


    Name Origins

    by Julie Helen Otto

    ARMINIUS (m): Latin version of Germanic name later written HERMANN.


    New On

    New Netherland Connections, Volume 6
    The week, we are adding the contents of New Netherland Connections, Volume 6, from 2001. This represents an additional 2,460 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 19,911 names referenced in the first six volumes (1996-2001). The images of the original journal pages are available from the search results pages.

    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



    Spotlight: More Library Databases

    by Valerie Beaudrault

    Ozark Dale County Public Library, Alabama
    Dale County is located in southeastern Alabama. Its county seat and largest city is Ozark. The Ozark Dale County Public Library has an obituary database on its website, arranged alphabetically by surname. Click on the first letter of the name to access index. The data fields include last name, first name, middle name, and a link (or links) to the scanned image of the obituary. Click on the obituary image to enlarge it.

    Karl E. Mundt Library, South Dakota
    Madison is located in Lake County, which is in eastern South Dakota. The Karl E. Mundt Library in Madison, South Dakota, has an obituary database on its website. The index covers the period from 1930 through December 2007. The data was drawn from the Madison Daily Leader. The index can be searched by last name and first name. The data fields in the search results include last name, first name, middle initial, maiden name, birthplace, obituary date, and page/column. You can request copies of obituaries from the library for a small fee.

    There is a link on the obituary database homepage to the Smith-Zimmerman Heritage Museum website, which has an online cemetery records database for Lake County, South Dakota. The Lake County Genealogical Society has taken on the task of identifying and preserving grave records in Lake County. The database contains 12,000 graves from 17 active cemeteries, three abandoned cemeteries, and four other burial sites. Click on the cemetery link to access the alphabetical lists of graves. The data fields include full name, birth date, death date, and other information. The “Other Information” column includes parents’ names, veteran status, spouse’s name, date of marriage, and more. There is also a map showing the locations of the cemeteries that are part of the cemetery collection.

    Willard Memorial Library System, Ohio
    Willard is located in Huron County, in north central Ohio. According to the library’s website, Willard was known as Chicago Junction. Often the name was shortened to Chicago, which caused confusion because the town was located on the railroad route to Chicago, Illinois. In 1918, Chicago Junction’s name was changed to Willard, in honor of Daniel Willard, president of the B & O Railroad at that time. The Willard Memorial Library in Willard, Ohio, has two vital events databases—births and obituaries—on its website. The data is drawn from the local newspaper, the Willard Times-Junction, which was formerly known as the Willard Times. The indexes contains more than 10,000 records each, with new records being added on a regular basis. The indexes are organized alphabetically. The data fields in the Births index include last name, first name, birth date, parent(s) name(s), newspaper title, newspaper date, and page number. The data fields in the Obituary index include last name, first name, birth date, death date, newspaper title, newspaper date, and page number.

    The library also has a collection of historical pictures on its website. Click on the Historical Pictures link in the index to access them.

    Return to Table of Contents


    Stories of Interest

    History of the Historian
    Although Pierre Berton was an expert on Canadian history, it was not until months before his death in 2004 that he made a major discovery about his own ancestry. You can read the story in The Gazette from Montreal.

    Maverick Cringes at Political Take on Family Name
    Terrellita Maverick’s great-grandfather, Sam Maverick, added the word “maverick” to the American lexicon. The family is a bit peeved at the improper use of the word in the current presidential campaign. Read the story in the Appleton, Wisconsin, Post-Crescent.


    Stories of Interest

    History of the Historian

    Maverick Cringes at Political Take on Family Name
    Terrellita Maverick’s great-grandfather, Sam Maverick, added the word “maverick” to the American lexicon. The family is a bit peeved at the improper use of the word in the current presidential campaign. Read the story in the Appleton, Wisconsin, Post-Crescent.


    Ask the Webmaster

    Q. Why are there missing articles/pages/names in the Register database?

    A. There are a number of pages missing from our Register database as well as some erroneous links. We apologize for these omissions and errors. We are in the process of adding the missing pages. If you find that a page is missing or discover an erroneous link, please email with the volume, page number, and name that is missing or incorrect.

    Each week our IT department answer questions about the NEHGS family of websites:,,,, and Questions can be submitted to For more information feel free to contact the IT department at or Member Services is open from 9am to 5pm Eastern Time, Monday through Friday at 1-888-296-3447.


    Pre-Publication Sale on Indian Deeds

    The NEHGS Sales Department is now taking pre-orders for the new softcover edition of Indian Deeds: Land Transactions in Plymouth Colony, 1620-1692 by Jeremy Dupertuis Bangs. First published in hardcover in 2002, Indian Deeds makes accessible to researchers more than four hundred Native American land references from Plymouth Colony Court records. David Allen Lambert, tribal historian of the Massachuset-Punkapoag Indians, says, “Research in these land deeds will offer greater insight into the genealogical identity of Wampanoag, Nauset, and Massachuset families.”

    We are offering free book rate/economy shipping for orders placed between now and October 17th, 2008 (UPS/standard shipping will be charged at the discounted rate of $5.00). NEHGS members can also take 10% off the retail price of $29.95 for orders placed by October 17th, 2008. We expect to ship books by the end of October.

    To order, please go to or call us toll free at 1-888-296-3447.

    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:

    Tiernan Family in America (Item P4-H25473)
    History of Queens County, Nova Scotia (Item P5-NS0001H)
    History of Clarke County, Alabama (Item P5-AL0007H)
    History of Tuolumne County, California, with Biographies (Item P5-CA0018H)
    History of Waupaca County, Wisconsin (Item P5-WI0033H)

    You can search the entire Classic Reprints catalog online at



    Upcoming Educational Programs

    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


    Untapped Resources: Your Ancestors' Political Affiliations
    Wednesday, October 29, 6:00 PM
    Political parties have shaped the history of America, and all political parties had members! Come discover how to find those party records; including voting, fundraising, and meeting records from the early 1800s to the late 1950s. Find your ancestors' political records with D. Joshua Taylor.
    This event is free and open to the public.

    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.

    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 dining 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 (1710-1774), 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


    NEHGS Contact Information

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    Copyright 2008, New England Historic Genealogical Society 101 Newbury Street, Boston, MA 02116


    Although Pierre Berton was an expert on Canadian history, it was not until months before his death in 2004 that he made a major discovery about his own ancestry. You can read the story in The Gazette from Montreal.

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