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  • The Weekly Genealogist

  • Vol. 13, No. 27
    Whole #486
    July 7, 2010
    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.

    * Twenty Families of Color Back in Print
    * This Week's Survey
    * Research Recommendations:
    * Name Origins
    * Spotlight: Austin Genealogical Society, Travis County, Texas
    * Stories of Interest
    * Sale on Titles from Gary Boyd Roberts
    * Question of the Day
    * Upcoming Education Programs
    * NEHGS Contact Information




    Twenty Families of Color Back in Print

    NEHGS is pleased to announce the publication of a paperback edition of Franklin A. Dorman’s Twenty Families of Color in Massachusetts: 1742­–1998 , which has been out of print for several years. The twenty families include the descendants of Quawk Barbadoes; James E. Biddle; Isaiah Butler; Andrew Camps; John Ceasar; Joseph J. Fatal; John T. Hilton; Peter M. Howard; Aaron C. Joseph; William Kellogg; Primus Lew; Henry G. Lewis; Stephen Maddox; Betsy Raymond; Thomas Revaleon; George W. Ruffin; Carter Selden; Edward Skeene; James Monroe Trotter; and Amintus Weeden.

    At the time of the book’s publication in 1998, Byron Rushing, former CEO of Boston’s Museum of Afro-American History, wrote, “Frank Dorman has . . . proven that the historical resources of the non-rich and non-famous are rich, pregnant and lying in wait to be delivered by the skillful use of traditional genealogical research combined with a respect for oral history.” 6 x 9, paperback, 524 pages. Includes foreword by James O. Horton, illustrations, index. $29.95.

    You can buy the book at the NEHGS Book Store.

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    This Week's Survey

    Last week we asked you how long you have been researching your family. The results were fascinating. Few readers are brand new. Only 7% have been researching for under 5 years. The survey broke down research experience into five-year increments from 5 to 30 years, then asked for those researching from 30 to 40, or more than 40 years. Responses were almost evenly split between all of these categories, with only 6% separating the lowest (20 to 25 years) and the highest (30 to 40 years).

    Less than 1 year, 1%
    1 to 5 years, 7%
    5 to 10 years, 12%
    10 to 15 years, 16%
    15 to 20 years, 13%
    20 to 25 years, 11%
    25 to 30 years, 12%
    30 to 40 years, 17%
    More than 40 years, 12%

    This week’s survey asks about age groups. We can’t tell how individuals answer, so your secret is safe!

    Take the survey now!

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    Research Recommendations:
    by Michael J. Leclerc

    Researchers at the University of University of Sheffield and the University of Hertfordshire recently launched an interesting website about eighteenth-century London. London Lives, 1690 to 1800: Crime, Poverty, and Social Policy in the Metropolis contains more than 240,000 pages culled from eight London archives, as well as materials from fifteen datasets from other projects to provide access to historical records with more than 3.35 million names. The project is designed to “assess the role of plebians in the evolution of social practices in the modern metropolis.” That said, it is a valuable resource for researching poorer ancestors who lived in the city.

    Among the materials newly available are the poor relief records from three major parishes: St. Botolph Aldgate (which straddles Middlesex and the eastern boundary of the City of London), St. Clement Danes (Westminster), and St. Dionis Backchurch (City of London). Settlement and workhouse records from the parishes of St. Martin in the Fields (Westminster) and St. Luke Chelsea (just west of the built-up area of London) are also included. Because of the sheer volume of records, not all parishes could be included, but examining the records available from these parishes will illustrate what may be available in your ancestors’ parishes.

    Records from the Carpenters Company represent information available from guilds and association charities about their assistance to the poor. The records of St. Thomas’s Hospital include detailed information from the admissions and discharge registers. Other data includes an index to wills proved at the Prerogative Court of Canterbury; Boys Recruited into the Marine Society, 1770–1804; British East India Company: Salary Paid to ‘Clerks,’ 1760–1820; Fire Insurance Policy Registers, 1777–1786; The London and Westminster Directory, 1774; and Old Bailey Associated Records.

    Images of records are very high quality, and a transcription of the information on the page appears below. The names are searchable by last name (surname) or first name (forename), and you can add date limitations, searching the entire database, or limit your search to individual datasets. One interesting feature is the ability to link documents for the same individual together, and to create a picture of the individual’s life.

    If you have ancestors who lived in eighteenth-century London, you may find information about them on At the very least, you may find new sources for your research.

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    Name Origins
    by Julie Helen Otto

    ALMARIN, ALMORAN (m): This name appears to be derived from ALMORAN, a character in “Almoran and Hamet” (1761), an “Oriental tale” by the English author John Hawkesworth (ca. 1715–1773).

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    Spotlight: Austin Genealogical Society, Travis County, Texas
    by Valerie Beaudrault

    Travis County, Texas, is located in the south central part of the state. The county seat, Austin, is also the state capital. The mission of the Austin Genealogical Society (AGS) is to advance genealogy through wide-ranging research and education, and support the preservation of the heritage of Austin, Travis County, and Texas. Click on the Records tab on the homepage to access a variety of resources.

    Vital Records: Births, Marriages, and Deaths
    Early Travis County Births covers the period from 1873 through 1878. By order of the Texas legislature, birth registrations commenced May 3, 1873, and stopped August 21, 1876. Birth registration books were found in 25 counties, including Travis. Data fields include parents’ names, child’s name, and date of birth.

    Travis County Marriages, 1846-1882, is organized into two sets of alphabetical files — one by bride and the other by groom. Data fields include bride’s name, groom’s name, date of marriage, minister’s name, and page and book number.

    St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Austin, Texas, Marriage Records covers the period from 1853 through 1875. The church was originally organized as St. Patrick’s Church in the fall of 1852. After 1864 it became known as St. Mary’s Catholic Church. The data fields include entry number, date of the marriage, name of groom, name of bride, names of witnesses, and note.

    AGS Travis County Cemeteries Project was developed from an ongoing project to transcribe the tombstones for all of the cemeteries in the county. The master list contains the cemetery name, date transcribed, directions, the transcriber’s name or a request for someone to transcribe, and the status. For cemeteries that have already been transcribed, there is a link which opens a new cemetery specific page containing data from the tombstones in the cemetery.

    Oakwood Sexton Records comes from a volume in the Austin Public Library. It is described as follows: “The above title is written on the front and back of an apparently homemade book. The pages are of a heavy gray paper, which have survived years of existence in excellent condition. This record is in the Austin-Travis County History Collection at the Austin Public Library, Austin, Texas.” It covers the period from 1859 to 1866. Data fields include date, name, cause of death, age and remarks.

    Census and Voter Lists
    There are two voter registration lists in this section. One is for 1873 and the other for 1892. The 1873 list provides voter’s name, rate and precinct number. The 1892 list provides more information. The data fields include full name, address, precinct, race and nationality. There is also a transcription of the 1850 federal census for Travis County.

    There are two databases under church records. The first comprises baptisms of the First Southern Presbyterian Church, Austin, Texas, for the period from 1875 through 1893. The information provided includes name of the child or adult being baptized and date of the baptism, as well as the names of the parents of the children being baptized. This information was originally printed in the Austin Genealogical Society Quarterly.

    The second database comprises baptisms and burials for St. David's Episcopal Church, Austin, Texas, from the Parish Register for the period from 1859 through 1866.The data fields include the person’s name, parents / sponsors of the individuals being baptized, and the type and date of the event (baptism or burial). All of the burials, unless otherwise stated, took place in Austin Cemetery, now known as Oakwood Cemetery.

    There are two databases under school records. The first is for the Texas German and English Academy for the period 1876 through 1902. The data sources are ten volumes or ledgers of accounts; teachers' daily registers of attendance, and model roll books of attendance and grades. The data fields in the database include name, age when enrolled or attended, parent or guardian, age when enrolled, and comments. The second database contains the names of graduates of Austin City Schools Graduates of Austin City Schools for the period from 1882 through 1900.

    The Travis County Naturalization Records database was drawn from the “Complete Index to Naturalization Records of Travis County,” prepared by the State Wide Records Project of the Works Progress Administration. The data fields include name, record references, name of the court, country of birth or allegiance, birth date or age, date of proceedings, the nature of the proceeding and remarks.

    The Travis County Poor Farm Ledger database was taken from the “List of Paupers at Poor Farm” at the Austin History Center. The data fields include the name of the pauper, date when first entered the Poor Farm, age, sex, nativity, color, date of discharge, reason for discharge, remarks and other information.

    Austin History Center Newspaper Index comprises entries from the subject index to microfilmed copies of the Austin newspaper, which was compiled by the staff and volunteers of the Austin History Center. The index covers the period from July 26, 1871, through December 21, 1877. This list includes items taken from the following subjects: accidents, deaths, drownings, funerals, murders and suicides.

    1872 Austin City Directory contains about 1,400 names. The data fields include resident or business name, occupation/employer, and residential or business address.

    1903 Austin Confederate Veterans contains an alphabetical list of residents of the Confederate Home on June 6, 1903. The information was taken from the 1903 Austin City Directory.

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    Stories of Interest

    A Glimpse from the Dawn of Photography
    The Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts, recently unearthed a hidden treasure. The 1839 daguerrotype of the Pont Neuf in Paris may have been taken by inventor Louis Daguerre himself.

    For Negro League Players, a Measure of Recognition
    Members of the Society for American Baseball Research are raising money to install gravestones (at a cost of $700 each) for member of the Negro Leagues.

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    Sale on Titles from Gary Boyd Roberts

    The NEHGS Book store is happy to offer 20% off the following titles by Gary Boyd Roberts for one week only.

    Ancestors of American Presidents, 2nd Edition: Normally $39.95, On Sale for $31.96

    Best Genealogical Sources in Print: Essays by Gary Boyd Roberts: Normally $50.00, On Sale for $40.00

    Notable Kin, Volume 1 , Normally $30.00, On Sale for $24.00

    Notable Kin, Volume 2, Normally $30.00, On Sale for $24.00

    Royal Descents of 600 Immigrants, Normally $75.00, on sale for $60.00


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

    • Descendants of John Wirebaugh (1821-96) (Item P4-H27846)
    • Kissam Family in America, from 1644-1825 (Item P4-H16938)
    • Alphabetical Index of Revolutionary Pensioners Living in Maine (Item P5-ME0120H)
    • Record of Wills in Woodford County, Kentucky, for the Period of Years 1788-1851 (Item P5-KY0040H)
    • Records of the Swedish Lutheran Churches at Raccoon and Penns Neck, New Jersey, 1712-1786 (Item P5-NJ0136H)

    You can search the entire Classic Reprints catalog online at If you would like a list of FAQs and search tips for the Classic Reprints catalog, simply send an email with "Classic Reprints" in the subject line to

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    Question of the Day

    You are invited to submit research questions to David Allen Lambert at Please note that he will make every effort to reply to each message, but will respond on a first come, first-served basis. In some cases he may need to refer individuals to the NEHGS Research Service for more in-depth research services for a fee. You can view more questions of the day at

    While transcribing gravestones recently I noted two abbreviations I have never seen before. Can you tell me what K.F.M. and I.B.B.H. stand for?

    K.F.M. or K of FM stands for the Knights of Father Matthew. This nineteenth-century organization was organized in Ireland to promote abstinence from alcoholic beverages. Ladies who belonged to this organization were the Ladies Auxiliary of the Knights of Father Mathew (L.A.K.F.M.).

    I.B.B.H. is an abbreviation for International Brotherhood of Blacksmiths and Helpers. The International Brotherhood of Blacksmiths was organized in 1889, and helpers were added in 1901. This organization merged with the Brotherhood of Drop Forgers in 1919. In 1954 the group merged with the Brotherhood of Boilermakers. You can find out more about the current organization 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 99 Newbury Street unless otherwise indicated. For more information, please contact D. Joshua Taylor at 617-226-1226 or

    You can view a full listing of upcoming programs:


    New Visitor Welcome & Library Orientation
    Saturday, July 10, 2010, 10:00 A.M.
    Wednesday, August 4, 2010, 10:00 A.M.
    Starting your family genealogy can seem a little daunting at first. There is so much information found in a variety of locations. Let NEHGS help you make sense of it all by attending this FREE lecture for both members and non-members. This talk introduces you to the NEHGS research library, located at 99 Newbury Street in Boston. Founded in 1845, NEHGS is the country’s oldest and largest non-profit genealogy library and archive. With more than 15 million artifacts, books, manuscripts, microfilms, journals, photographs, records, and other items, NEHGS can provide researchers of every level some of the most important sources of information. You will also have an opportunity to describe your research interests to one of our expert genealogists on staff, who can offer some advice on how to proceed. The program starts with a thirty-minute introductory lecture and will be followed by a tour of the library and its vast holdings. Make plans to start your genealogy with this great tour.

    Using the NEHGS Library Catalog and Digital Library and Archive
    Wednesday July 21, 2010, 10:00 A.M.
    The NEHGS online library catalog contains records for all the holdings in the Society’s library collections, including books, periodicals, manuscripts, microfilm, electronic resources, and more. It is considered the first stop for researchers as they prepare to use NEHGS library resources. The Digital Library and Archive is included in the online catalog and can be searched either on its own or together with all the non-digital titles held by NEHGS. It provides members with online versions of books, manuscripts, and archival materials. The digital titles include city directories, vital records, family and local histories, bible records, and Research Services case reports. This lecture is intended both for genealogical researchers who have never used the catalog or Digital Library and for those who have used them but may want tips on how to get the most out of them, either by way of advanced searching or by the use of features (such as preferred searches, email alerts, and record saving and sharing) which they may not have encountered before.

    About the Speaker: Jean Maguire is the Society’s Technical Services and Serials Librarian. Her duties include cataloging materials for the library, managing its serials collection, and maintaining the library computer system. Jean joined the NEHGS staff in 1999 after receiving her Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science from Simmons College. Jean also has a B.A. from Regis College and studied at the Université de Nice in France.

    Seminars and Tours

    Come Home to New England
    August 9 – August 15, 2010
    Experience NEHGS first-hand during a week of guided research at our library in Boston during Come Home to New England. Daily lectures — including a tour of the research library, technology topics, and general methodologies — provide a unique research experience for any genealogist. Group dining events, one-on-one consultations and extended library hours ensure you a successful and meaningful week of research at NEHGS.

    Quebec Family History Tour
    September 26 – October 3, 2010
    Discover the records of Quebec during a week of research in Montreal Researchers will explore the Société Généalogique Canadienne-Française (SGCF) and the Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec (BAnQ). Daily consultations with expert genealogists, lectures, and group meals will provide you with the tools and resources necessary for a successful and beneficial week in Montreal.

    Salt Lake City Research Tour
    October 31 – November 7, 2010
    Join NEHGS for our annual research tour to the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah. You are invited to join fellow researchers and NEHGS members for a week of intensive research aided by expert staff. Lectures relating to organizing your materials, accessing the library catalog, and other research tips and techniques are included along with group dining events and personal consultations.

    For more information about NEHGS programs, visit or email

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    NEHGS Contact Information

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    Copyright 2010, New England Historic Genealogical Society
    101 Newbury Street, Boston, MA 02116

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New England Historic Genealogical Society
99 - 101 Newbury Street
Boston, Massachusetts 02116, USA

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