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  • The Weekly Genealogist

  •  Vol. 13, No. 5
    Whole #464
    February 3, 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.

    * Coming Soon In the Winter 2010 Issue of American Ancestors Magazine
    * In Memoriam: William Wardwell Treat, 1918–2010
    * Research Recommendations: Cyndi's List
    * Name Origins
    * Spotlight: Cemetery Databases
    * Stories of Interest
    * Sale on Charts
    * Upcoming Education Programs
    * NEHGS Contact Information




    Coming Soon In the Winter 2010 Issue of American Ancestors Magazine

    Beginning with the winter 2010 issue, the title of the NEHGS magazine will become American Ancestors: New England, New York and Beyond. Our new name reflects a more inclusive, national mission. At the same time, we remain committed to providing the best resources and advice for New England and New York research. Coming in this issue:

    • Opening the Ozarks: First Families of Southwest Missouri, 1835–1839, by Marsha Hoffman Rising, CG, FASG
    • The Joys of Prosopography: Collective Biography for Genealogists, by Robert Charles Anderson, FASG
    • The First Settlers of New York in 1624, by Henry B. Hoff
    • The First Settlers of Quebec, by Michael J. Leclerc
    • Tracking Migrating Families: The Records of Old Settlers Organizations, by Paula Stuart-Warren
    • Garrisons in New England: “. . . Whereto They Are Orderly Assigned”, by Todd Macalister
    • Looking at, by Kenyatta D. Berry and Michael J. Leclerc
    • Three Generations to Scotland: A Unique NEHGS Research Tour Experience, by Megan Houlihan, Laural Porter Houlihan, and Janis Bailey
    • Hair Sense and Sensibility, by Maureen A. Taylor
    • Philatelic Genealogy Update: An Initial Assessment of the Genealogical Value of Old Envelopes and Postcards, by James R. Miller

    Also in this issue . . .

    • Genetics & Genealogy: Beyond Genealogical DNA Research: Examining Genetic Health Profiles
    • Manuscripts at NEHGS: Documenting Maine’s Muscongus Patent and More: The Henry Augustus Peirce Papers
    • Diaries at NEHGS: Excerpts from the Diary of Rebecca Boylston Clark of Brookline, Massachusetts, 1804
    • Tales from the Courthouse: Turbulent Topsfield: A Tale of Two Ministers
    • Focus on New York: Some Favorite Upstate New York Resources

    And, as always, news of NEHGS and the world of genealogy, upcoming NEHGS programs and tours, new publications, notices of family association events, genealogies in progress, and DNA studies in progress.
    Subscription to American Ancestors is a benefit of NEHGS membership. If you are not a member, you may join online at, or call toll-free 1-888-296-3447, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, Eastern time.

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    In Memoriam: William Wardwell Treat, 1918–2010

    William Wardwell Treat, of Stratham, N.H. and Naples, Fla., a long-time Society benefactor, died in Naples on January 10, 2010, at the age of 91. An NEHGS member since 1998 and a Life Member, he was also a member of the Society’s Henry Bond Heritage Society and Founders' Society. At the time of his death he was a nominee for Honorary Trustee Emeritus.

    In August 2000, the Treat Family Rotunda was dedicated and opened in what had been the Society’s once under-utilized lobby. For many years the home of outside commercial tenants, the Treat Family Rotunda serves as a beautiful and highly functional reading room and occasional meeting space.

    Mr. Treat was a retired diplomat, banker and judge. He was born May 23, 1918, son of Joshua and Clara (Atwood) Treat of Winterport, Me., and a descendant of Robert Treat (c1622-1710), colonial governor of Connecticut. He was a graduate of the University of Maine and Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration. He received an honorary doctor of laws degree from the University of Maine in 1992 and the University of New Hampshire in 2001. He was appointed a judge of probate in New Hampshire in 1958 and served until his retirement in 1983. In order to improve the administration of probate law throughout the nation, he organized the National College of Probate Judges in 1968 and served as its first President. He was the author of a three-volume text, Probate Law, published in 1968.

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    Research Recommendations: Cyndi's List
    by Michael J. Leclerc

    Researching in a new location means identifying new resources to examine. With the advent of the internet, even locations that you have been researching for years can suddenly have a vast number of new resources appear suddenly overnight. One of the most useful, and most popular, websites to assist you in locating online resources is Cyndi’s List of Genealogy Sites on the Internet.

    Cyndi’s List is operated by Cyndi Howells of Washington state (In the interests of full disclosure, I must inform you that Cyndi has been a good friend of mine for many years). It started as a list of links that she provided to her local genealogical society. In 1996 she made them available online, and by 1997 she had already received a million visits. By the time it celebrated ten years, there were more than a 250,000 links and more was averaging 2 million page hits per month. Cyndi’s List has been featured in Time, Newsweek, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, ABC World News Tonight, and NBC Nightly News amongst others.

    The homepage is the Main Category Index, with high-level categories listed in alphabetical order, from Acadian, Cajun & Creole to Writing Your Family History. Within high-level categories are sub-categories, such as General Resource Sites, Government & Cities, Military, Queries, Message Boards & Surname Lists, Societies & Groups, etc. Beneath this sub-categories are links to other websites, with short description beneath each link. The site can be easily browsed, or you can use the easy search feature to find specific topics.

    Fewer people in genealogy work as hard as Cyndi does. She is a one-person operation, working tirelessly to add new links and fix broken ones. Her site has helped countless individuals find the information they need to get past brick walls. And she has become very well known.

    I will relay a brief story here, but only if you promise not to tell her you heard it from me. A few years back, at one of the national conferences, a commercial organization brought in Donny Osmond to promote the launch of their new website. Those of you of a certain age will remember him on the Andy Williams Show, and Donny and Marie. Those of you who are younger may remember him as the recent winner of Dancing With the Stars. Upon being introduced to Mr. Osmond, his response was “You are THE Cyndi!”

    Cyndi’s List should be in the bookmarks of every genealogist, from beginners to the most advanced. Whether you are looking for information on the United States or the United Kingdom, Antarctica or Outer Space, you will find it at

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    Name Origins
    by Julie Helen Otto

    HAZELELPONI – In 1 Chronicles 4:3, Hazelelponi was the sister of Jezreel, Ishma and Ishbash. One example is Hazelelponi Willix (ca. 1636-1714), daughter of Balthasar/Belshazzar Willix and his first wife, Annah ____ , who was for a time a servant of Henry Waltham of Weymouth, Mass. (Register 5 [1851]: 13). She married firstJohn Gee of Boston and Martha’s Vineyard, and second Obadiah Wood.

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    Spotlight: Cemetery Databases
    by Valerie Beaudrault

    Mammoth Cave National Park Cemetery Database, Kentucky

    Mammoth Cave National Park is located in south central Kentucky. It is the world's longest known cave system, with more than 367 miles of explored caves. Approximately 1,800 individuals are buried in more than 70 cemeteries within the park.

    The database can be explored in a number of different ways. You can browse through the burial database, which is organized in a table format. You can search through the database by cemetery, name, and dates. The data fields in the table include cemetery name, last name, first name, birth date, death date and inscription. Click on the data field column header to sort list by that particular field. To navigate from one search option to another, click on the “Other Searches” button. This will bring you back to the main search page where you can select the option you want.

    You can search for the burials in a particular cemetery by selecting it from the drop down list. Under the sort by cemetery option you will also find a link to a park map with the locations of cemeteries marked on it. Under the search by date option you can enter a birth year or death year in the search box to find all individuals meeting the date criteria. To search by name choose a surname from the drop down list.

    Washington Historical Society, Missouri

    Washington is located in the east-central county of Franklin in Missouri, on the Missouri River. The Washington Historical Society, founded in 1959, is focused on preserving the history of the town.

    WHS has made available a listing of cemeteries in Franklin County and their locations. For most of the cemeteries there is a map link. For about twenty-five of them you will find links to lists of the individuals buried in the cemeteries. The data provided in these lists includes full name, date of birth, date of death, and gravestone inscription.

    Raleigh City Cemeteries Preservation, Inc., North Carolina

    Raleigh is the capital of North Carolina. It is located in Wake County in the center of the state. Raleigh City Cemeteries Preservation is a not-for-profit organization that promotes the preservation and restoration of the three city-owned cemeteries (City, Mt. Hope, and O’Rorke cemeteries), in partnership with the City of Raleigh and others. There are burial records databases on the website for two of the three cemeteries — City Cemetery and O’Rorke Cemetery. Click on the Cemeteries button in the homepage contents list to access the individual cemetery pages.

    Established by the North Carolina General Assembly in 1798, City Cemetery is the oldest cemetery in Raleigh. As noted on the website, burials include founding fathers of Raleigh, legislators, free and slave African Americans and stonemasons from Scotland and England who helped build the state capitol building. There are approximately 2,000 records in the database. The information in the database was compiled from a number of sources.

    There is a GIS map for City Cemetery that allow researchers to search the cemetery online by name, date of birth, date of death, and grave marker location. The map includes both grave information and marker photos. Instructions on how to use this function are provided on the City Cemetery main page. Please be advised that the GIS map function does not work with the Safari browser.

    The link to the database file is at the bottom of the web page. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the database, as it is in PDF format. The data fields in the database include surname, grave location information, birth date, death date, and other data. Information found in Other Data includes such information as spouse’s names, military service, approximate age at death, race of the deceased, and cause of death.

    O'Rorke Cemetery, sometimes called the Catholic Cemetery or Potter's Field, was established by John O'Rorke in 1858. There are about 300 records in the database. The information in the database was compiled from a number of sources. The data fields include name, birth date, death date, burial space information, and notes.

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    Stories of Interest

    Randal Keynes: When Darwin Is In Your Family Tree
    National Public Radio’s Fresh Air program recently featured an interview with conservationist Randal Keynes, great-great-grandson of Charles Darwin, who discusses his family’s history.

    Self-Absorbed? Don’t Blame Me, Blame My Genes commentator Rich Jaroslovsky discusses the pluses and minuses of having genetic testing done by companies such as 23andMe: “there’s a chance the services, two of which also provide ancestry information, turn up things you’d rather not know. If you can get past those issues, they represent perhaps the ultimate in self-absorption.”

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    Sale on Charts

    The NEHGS Book Store is happy to offer all charts and forms with a 10% discount for one week only! Choose from the following:

    Ashburton Genealogical Form

    Bramwell Generation Chart

    Bramwell Single Family Chart

    5-generation descendant chart ($4.99)

    9-generation fan chart ($9.99)

    15-generation pedigree chart ($4.99)

    23-generation Ahnentafel chart ($7.95)

    38-generation Ahnentafel chart ($7.95)

    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:

    • Dover Farms, Massachusetts, in which is Traced the Development of the Territory from the First Settlement in 1640 to 1900. (Item P5-MA0132H)
    • Joseph Goldsmith, 1796-1876, and His Descendants (P4-H11865)
    • Governors Island, New York: its Military History Under Three Flaggs, 1637-1922 (item P5-NY0184H)
    • History of Delaware County, Pennsylvania,, from the Discovery of the Territory Included Within its Limits to the Present Time [1862] (Item P5-PA0199H)
    • History of Macon County, Illinois, from its Organization to 1876. with Biographical Sketches (Item P5-IL0138H)

    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 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:


    An Introduction to African-American and Cape Verdean Genealogical Research Techniques
    Wednesday, February 17, 2010, 6:00 PM
    Join us for an introduction to research methods and sources for African-American and Cape Verdean ancestry, including primary and secondary sources available in the collections of New England Historic Genealogical Society and beyond.

    Researching African-Americans in Pre-Civil War New England
    Wednesday, February 24, 2010, 6:00 PM
    This lecture will discuss the primary and secondary sources available at NEHGS for researching your African-American ancestors. Discussion on how to best utilize materials such as vital records, probates, deeds, and newspapers will show you how to further expand your knowledge of your pre-Civil War New England ancestry. A wide range of sources from family manuscripts to internet resources will give you the clues to trace your family tree.


    Seminars and Tours

    Online Boston University Certificate in Genealogical Research
    Boston University’s Online Certificate in Genealogical Research will help you reach the next level of professionalism. Whether you are a serious amateur, a budding professional, or an expert with a CG®, this rigorous 14-week program will help you take your genealogical work to the next level. NEHGS members get a 10% tuition discount.

    Winter Research Weekend Getaway
    February 4–6, 2010
    NEHGS’ “Weekend Research Getaways” are among the most popular programs we offer. Escape to 99 Newbury Street in downtown Boston and experience a guided program with one-on-one consultations and expert reviews of your research. Whether you are a new genealogist or a longtime member, this three-day onsite visit to NEHGS is certain to advance your research — and you make new friends too. Registration includes breakfast, daily lectures, and group dinners to share your progress. For more information visit

    Technology Seminar
    March 26–27, 2010
    Explore the important relationship between technology and genealogy with NEHGS experts. You will have hands-on training learning how to customize your internet experience, build your own electronic databases, and gain valuable insight into using genealogical software for the preservation and sharing of your family history. For more information visit

    Irish Genealogy Research Tour
    May 23–30, 2010
    Discover your Irish heritage with the New England Historic Genealogical Society. This weeklong guided research tour will give you access to a treasure trove of records in Dublin and the benefit of consultations with some of the foremost experts in Irish genealogy. Your tour features guided research at various repositories in central Dublin, including the General Register Office, National Library, National Archives, and Registry of Deeds, among others. Daily programming includes tutorials, research tips and techniques lectures, personalized consultations and group dinning events. For more information visit

    For more information about NEHGS programs, visit or email

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    NEHGS Contact Information

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

    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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