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  • The Weekly Genealogist

  • The Weekly Genealogist
    Vol. 13, No. 41
    Whole #500
    October 13, 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.

    * NEHGS Autumn Dinner
    * Family History Day
    * Research Recommendations: 500th Issue of HisGenHighlights/eNews/The Weekly Genealogist
    * Name Origins
    * This Week's Survey
    * Spotlight: Indiana Databases
    * Stories of Interest
    * Beekman Patent Volume 10 Now Available
    * Upcoming Education Programs
    * NEHGS Contact Information




    NEHGS Autumn Dinner

    The New England Historic Genealogical Society cordially invites you to its autumn dinner featuring a presentation on The Last Muster: Images of the Revolutionary War Generation, by Maureen Taylor, October 22, 2010, at Concord’s Colonial Inn, 48 Monument Square, Concord, Massachusetts, 5:30 p.m. Reception with a 6:30 p.m. dinner. Kindly R.S.V.P. by Friday, October 15, to Kelly McCoulf, 617-226-1220. Spouses and guests welcome. Please make checks payable to NEHGS. Dinner $95 per person.

    A remarkable work of documentary history, The Last Muster is a collection of rare nineteenth-century photographic images including daguerreotypes, ambrotypes, and carte de visite paper photographs of the Revolutionary War generation. This extraordinary collection assigns faces to an un-illustrated war and tells the stories of our nation’s founding fathers and mothers. The array of images includes veterans, loyalists, Native Americans, African Americans, children who witnessed battles and aided soldiers, and women who nursed the wounded and even took up arms themselves.

    Maureen Taylor is an internationally known photo identification expert who teaches seminars on photographs and family history. As the author of a number of books and magazine articles, Maureen has been featured in media outlets including The Wall Street Journal, The Boston Globe, MSNBC, and the PBS Ancestors series. She is a past staff member of NEHGS and a frequent contributor to the Society’s publications.

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    Family History Day

    NEHGS and invites you to join us for our second Family History Day on Saturday, October 16, 2010, at the Seaport Hotel and World Trade Center Boston. Come and explore the world of genealogy, listen to engaging lectures, meet with expert staff, digitize your important family documents, and learn more about how the incredible resources at NEHGS and can help you find your family.

    Whether you're new to family history or have been researching for many years, this unique event promises to deliver a learning experience for every genealogist. The day features more than a dozen lectures, including getting started in genealogy, organizing research materials, getting the most from your NEHGS and memberships, and best practices in family history research.

    Make plans to join us for an incredible day of family history fun. Our first "Family History Day" sold out quickly. SPACE IS LIMITED, so we encourage you to register now to guarantee your spot. Learn more at

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    Research Recommendations: 500th Issue of HisGenHighlights/eNews/The Weekly Genealogist
    by Michael J. Leclerc

    In 1999 the Society decided to start an electronic newsletter. More than a decade later, the newsletter has grown from a small news listing to a weekly publication with an online blog. Today is the five hundredth issue of that newsletter.

    The first issue was published on August 4, 1999. It was edited by Michael Caito, who was also in charge of creating the first iteration of the website. The newsletter was then called HisGen Highlights, and was emailed to subscribers on a biweekly schedule. This first issue had seven stories: the publication of the first volume of Middlesex County in the Colony of Massachusetts Bay in New England: Records of Probate and Administration October 1645-December 1660 by Robert H. Rodgers; the mailing of the July 1999 issue of the Register; the Society’s participation in the FGS conference inSaint Louis; education programs; the upcoming launch of the first website; and an update to the Quincy Project (a collaboration between the city of Quincy, Massachusetts, and the Society to microfilm and digitize records). The entire newsletter, available only as text, was less than 500 words.

    Michael left the Society in 2001, and I briefly took over editorship, along with overseeing the second generation of (the first to offer searchable databases). An HTML version of the newsletter was introduced, with links to sites with additional information on stories. The content still focused mainly on the Society’s activities, serving as a marketing tool for the Society. Lynn Betlock, who was then Director of Marketing, became editor, and in August of that year eNews went to a weekly format. One of the more memorable articles at that time was one written by Lynn of the trip she and I took with Laura Prescott to the FGS conference in Davenport, Iowa. We were originally scheduled to fly there on September 11, 2001, but ended up driving by car.

    In late 2003 Rod Moody joined Lynn as co-editor until she went on maternity leave in January 2004. Rod was sole editor until February 2005, when he left the Society to return to Seattle. Under Rod’s editorship, eNews started to include more content, with staff and members writing articles for the newsletter and website. I resumed editorship, with Valerie Beaudrault as co-editor, when Rod departed.

    Over the last five years, the newsletter has changed focus to become an integral part of our publication offerings. The majority of the newsletter is now content focused. Julie Helen Otto has a weekly column on name origins. Valerie’s spotlight on websites is a very popular feature. And my own Research Recommendations column endeavors to provide interesting tidbits on general research and methodology, publishing, websites, and other topics of interests to genealogists. Originally limited to NEHGS members, the newsletter was opened to all genealogists in 2001. Subscriptions have almost doubled since 1999, with 32,000 current subscribers, and the newsletter has grown to become as important to our members as the website and the Register.

    Just a few weeks ago, the latest change was implemented in coordination with our new website at The name was changed from eNews to The Weekly Genealogist. In addition to the email version, there is also a blog version on our website, entitled The Daily Genealogist.

    The blog allows us to get breaking news to our readers faster than we can with the weekly email. You can subscribe to RSS feeds, so you will always be notified when new items are posted. Our plan is to expand the blog to include even more information about family history and the genealogical community. One of our most popular additions is the weekly survey, which has seen thousands of people answering questions about their research, tools, and methodology.

    The complete newsletter archive will soon be available on Until then, you can still access past issues on Five hundred issues of any publication is a tremendous achievement, and one that is not attained by many. As the editors, Valerie and I are very grateful to the staff for their hard work in creating content, and to our readers, without whom we would have little purpose in existing. We hope you will continue to find our newsletter interesting and informative, and will read it for many years to come.

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    Name Origins
    by Julie Helen Otto

    ELECTRA (f): Although similar (and by some used interchangeably), this name is not identical to ELECTA. The original Electra, daughter of King Agamemnon and Clytemnestra, supported her brother Orestes after he killed his mother and her lover Aegisthus.

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    This Week's Survey

    Last week’s survey discussed ancestors whose main language was not English. We asked how fluent you are in your ancestral language. 74% of respondents are illiterate in their ancestral tongue, and cannot read, write, or speak the language. 14% can read the language, but cannot write or speak it. 7% are fluent in their ancestral tongue, being able to read, write, and speak it. 4% can read and write, but not speak the language. And 1% can speak the language, but cannot read or write it.

    This week’s survey asks about images you have of your ancestors. For which generations do you have photographs, portraits, or other visual images of the people? Take the survey now!

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    Spotlight: Indiana Databases
    by Valerie Beaudrault

    Vigo County Public Library, Indiana

    Vigo County is located in western Indiana. Terre Haute is the county seat. The library has made some of its resources available on its website.

    Vigo County Marriage Records
    The database currently covers the period from 1818 to 1951, and contains thousands of records. Click on the Search the Marriage Index link to open the search page. The database may be searched by groom’s last name and/or bride’s last name and may be limited by year. You may also search for all marriage records during a particular year. The data fields in the search results include groom’s first, last and middle names; bride’s first last and middle names; and the month, day, and year of marriage. There is also a link to a digital image of the license. Click on the link to open a new page containing the image. The image files are in PDF format. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to view them.

    Wabash Valley Obituary Index
    This database indexes obituaries published in five Terre Haute, Indiana, newspapers for the period from 1900 to present: Terre Haute Tribune, Terre Haute Star, Buyers' Guide, Evening Gazette, and Saturday Spectator.

    Click on the Search the Obituary Database link to open the search page. The database may be searched by last name, first name, month and year. The data fields in the search results include last name, first name, middle name, title (Mr., Mrs., Miss, Sr./Jr., and son/daughter), age, year, month, day, page number, and newspaper abbreviation. You will find a link to an explanation of newspaper title and other abbreviations on the search page. Photocopies for obituaries from the Wabash Valley database listed in the index may be requested for a fee.

    City Cemeteries, Logansport, Indiana

    Logansport, is a city in Cass County, located in north central Indiana. The city has a burial database on its website. Cemeteries in the database include the Mount Hope Cemetery and the Ninth Street Cemetery. Mount Hope Cemetery, the third largest cemetery in Indiana, is located north of the city. There have been more than 82,000 interments since the cemetery was established in 1857. Established in 1828, Ninth Street Cemetery is located east of the city. Several pioneers are buried there, as are veterans from the Spanish American War, Revolutionary War, Civil War, Blackhawk War, Mexican American War, WW1, WW2, and Korea.

    Click on the Burial Search link under Services to open the search page. The search fields for the Burial Information include last name, first name, year of interment, and veteran status. You can choose from the following cemetery options: Catholic Mausoleum, Columbariam, Cremains, Mt. Hope Cemetery, Ninth Street, and Protestant Mausoleum. If you only have the plot owners’ information, you can also perform an Owner Information search by last name and first name. The basic search results include occupant name, location and date of burial. Click on the name link to open the detailed record. The data fields in the detailed record include occupant name, burial location, cemetery name, date of birth, date of death, date of burial, funeral home, gender, age, and veteran status. The owner information is also provided.

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    Stories of Interest

    Man With English Family History Dating Back to 1410 Told He Can’t Live in UK
    The Mirror is reporting on Stephen Hewitt, a man who was raised in England, married there, with parents and children who live there, and with roots in the country dating back to 1410. He has been told to leave the country.

    Charles Kilroy and Laura Revell Win Jersey City ‘Oldest Family’ Contest
    Kilroy and Revell responded to a call by the Hudson County History Advocates and the Jersey City Free Public Library for the longest roots in the county. Mary Lou Vreeland Muller, however, beat them out for the county-wide prize.

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    Beekman Patent Volume 10 Now Available

    The latest volume of the Settlers of the Beekman Patent series by Frank J. Doherty is now available. Volume 10 covers the surnames from Paine to Rogers, and is available as a book or as a CD-ROM. Prices are exclusive of shipping.

    Order Volume 10, Printed Volume, $85.
    Order Volume 10, CD-ROM, $34.95.
    Order Volumes 1 to 10, CD-ROM, $180.

    You can also order these items and any other volumes of the Settlers of the Beekman Patent series by calling toll free at 1-888-296-3447.

    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:

    • Early Annals of Newington, Connecticut (Item P5-CT0103H, Price $41.00)
    • A History of West Mystic, Connecticut, 1600-1985 (Item P5-CT0321H, Price $37.00)
    • History of Dwight, Illinois, from 1853 to 1894 (Item P5-IL0111H, $33.00)
    • Rowley, Massachusetts, Town Records, 1639-1672, Volume I (Item P5-MA0087H, Price $44.00)
    • Delaware County, New York, Deaths, 1819-1879, from the Delhi Gazette (Item P5-NY0414H, $39.00)

    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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    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 99–100 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 at .

    Seminars and Tours

    Family History Day
    October 16, 2010
    NEHGS and invite you to join us for our second Family History Day on Saturday, October 16, 2010, at the Seaport Hotel and World Trade Center in Boston. Come and explore the world of genealogy, listen to engaging lectures, meet with expert staff, digitize your important family documents, and learn more about how the incredible resources at NEHGS and can help you find your family. Space is limited, so we encourage you to register soon to guarantee your spot. To learn more, or to register, visit

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    NEHGS Contact Information

    We encourage you to email this newsletter to others who might be interested. To subscribe or view back issues of eNews, please visit

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    To become a member of the New England Historic Genealogical Society, please visit

    Copyright 2010, New England Historic Genealogical Society
    99–101 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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