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  • The Weekly Genealogist

  • Vol. 15, No. 17
    Whole #580
    April 25, 2012
    Edited by Lynn Betlock, Jean Powers, 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 Database News
    * The Bookstore at NEHGS Announces Two New Titles
    * A Note from the Editor: A New 1940 Census Tool for New York City
    * Name Origins
    * This Week’s Survey
    * Spotlight: Otter Tail County Historical Society, Minnesota
    * Stories of Interest
    * Classic Reprints
    * Upcoming NEHGS Education Programs
    * NEHGS Contact Information


    NEHGS Database News
    by Sam Sturgis, Digital Collections Administrator, and Ryan Woods, Director of Internet Technology

    The Essex Genealogist, Volumes 16-20

    The leading publication for genealogical research in Essex County, Massachusetts, this quarterly journal has been published since 1981 by The Essex Society of Genealogists (founded in 1975).

    Within the pages of this journal are selections of cemetery transcriptions, Bible records, and vital and church records relating to Essex County families. Over the years, The Essex Genealogist also published numerous member ahnentafeln (ancestor tables), as well as verbatim transcriptions of lectures.

    Currently, volumes 1 to 20 (publications years 1981–2000) are available. Additional volumes will be added through the year.

    The database is searchable by first and last name; volume and page; article title; and subject. There are now 160,559 records in this database.

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    The Bookstore at NEHGS Announces Two New Titles

    New Englanders in the 1600s: A Guide to Genealogical Research Published Between 1980 and 2010 (Expanded Edition) by Martin E. Hollick
    $21.95 ($19.76 for NEHGS members)
    Hollick’s New Englanders in the 1600s has become the go-to resource for finding genealogical writing about 17th-century New England families. This expanded edition offers researchers access to more early New Englanders than ever before by covering five more years’ worth of publications and more works published between 1980 and 2005.

    Guide to Published Genealogies in the Library of the New England Historic Genealogical Society
    $49.95 ($44.96 for NEHGS members) Introduction by Gary Boyd Roberts
    NEHGS has collected more than twenty thousand pub­lished family histories since its founding in 1845. Here for the first time is a list of all published genealogies the Society acquired prior to 2011. The collection includes almost every published genealogy on New England fami­lies, plus works on families throughout the United States, Canada, and thirty-nine other countries around the world.

    Prices do not include shipping. Order online or by calling toll free at 1-888-296-3447.

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    A Note from the Editor: A New 1940 Census Tool for New York City
    by Lynn Betlock, Editor

    Reader Richard Fipphen of Fairfield, Connecticut, let us know about a new 1940 census tool for New York City called Direct Me NYC 1940. The New York Public Library digitized the 1940 New York City phone books and created a tool that allows users to move from the phone book listings to the 1940 census schedules on NARA's website. When a person of interest is selected from the telephone book, the address will be mapped on both a ca. 1940 map and a 2012 map. The relevant enumeration district(s) will appear, and entering the name of a cross street will further refine the results. In some cases it may be impossible to narrow the results to one ED; for instance, if a street is on the border of two EDs, you will see two EDs for that street.

    The Direct Me NYC 1940 website also allows users to share stories of who they’ve found in the 1940 New York City census. Here are some examples of notable entries:

    Asimov Candy Store — candy (and cigarettes) store owned by the family of the science fiction author Isaac Asimov, one of a series of such establishments where he worked that were run by his father Judah Asimov. The Asimov family lived across the street. The candy store itself continued for decades afterward under various owners as 'Buggy Bill's' and 'Wetters'; today, the location is ‘CBS Construction & Cabinets.’ Just the year before this, Asimov attended the ‘1st World Science Fiction Convention’ at the 1939 New York World's Fair in Queens.”

    “Ten-year-old Jackie Bouvier, future wife of President John F. Kennedy, living with her parents on Park Avenue the year they divorced.”

    “Found Billie Holiday in the 1940 Census living with her mother, Sadie, and Irene Wilson Kitchings (ex-wife of Teddy Wilson and composer of "Some of Spring). ED 31-1849 p. 18.”

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    Name Origins
    by Julie Helen Otto, Staff Genealogist

    SIBERIA (f or m): Presumably, from the place name [now a vast portion of the Russian Federation encompassing almost all of Northern Asia]. Siberia A. (Scott) Campbell, daughter of Timothy Scott, d. Lempster, N.H., 2 Aug. 1885, age 68. The 1900 U.S. census enumerated eighteen people (both male and female) with the first name Siberia — from Mr. Siberia Ott (b. 1822 in New York) in Aiken, South Carolina, to Siberia Gonzalez, a baby girl (born 1899 in Texas) in Medina, Texas.

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    This Week's Survey

    Last week’s survey asked what time period you would choose if you could travel back in time to visit the ancestor you’d most like to meet. The results are:

    42%, 1800 to 1900
    24%, 1700 to 1800
    20%, 1600 to 1700
    6%,  I can’t decide.
    4%,  1900 to 2000
    3%,  A time prior to 1600

    This week's survey asks you for the geographic location of your time travel destination. Take the survey now!

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    Spotlight: Otter Tail County Historical Society, Minnesota
    by Valerie Beaudrault, Assistant Editor

    Otter Tail County Historical Society, Minnesota

    The Otter Tail County Historical Society is located in the city of Fergus Falls, which is the county seat of Otter Tail County. Otter Tail County is in west central Minnesota. The historical society has made some of its resources available online. First click on the Research tab in the site contents bar to open a new page. Click on the link to the resource you would like to open, located in the contents list on the right side of the page.

    Cemetery Database Search
    The cemetery database contains nearly 85,000 records, and can be searched by last name, first name, and year of death. The way the search function works is a bit different than others I have encountered. You must enter data in all fields in order to retrieve any results. You cannot simply browse through the records by entering a last name or burial year. The data fields in the search results are last name, first name, birth date, and death date. Two additional fields contain links to order further information (internment details and an obituary search) for a fee. Click on the Cemeteries link on the Research main page to open a new page with a list of Otter Tail County cemeteries. Many of the cemetery names in this list link to maps.

    Multi Index Search
    Click on the Multi Index Search link to open the search page. The search fields are last name, first name, business name, township name, and year. You can limit your search by choosing from one of the eleven sources that comprise the database. These are: annuals, city directories, obituaries, pioneer stories, plat books, rural school officers, rural school students, rural school teachers, tax lists, tombstone pictures, and WPA interviews. You can enter information in any of the search fields to start your search. The data fields in your search results are first name, last name, business name, publication year, township name, and document type. There is an additional field with a link to order a copy of the record for a fee.

    Other Resources

    This section contains a description of the location and geography of Otter Tail County, along with a list of its more than sixty townships. The townships are alphabetically listed by name with the range and date of organization. The historical society has provided a link to the Otter Tail County GenWeb site, which includes historical information about the townships.

    Military History
    In this section you will find lists related to the military service of Otter Tail County residents in World War I, World War II, and the Korean and Vietnam wars.

    Fergus Falls State Hospital
    You should read the frequently asked questions section if you had an ancestor or other relative who was a patient at the Fergus Falls State Hospital, or if you are researching someone who was buried in the State Hospital cemetery.

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    Stories of Interest

    Photo Mystery Solved, Then Doubted, Then Deciphered, Thanks to Readers
    A follow-up to last week’s story of interest on identifying a Civil War soldier, this update relates how readers got involved and re-identified the photograph.

    A Pain That Persists: Japanese Americans Scarred by WWII Internments
    In 1942 photographer Dorothea Lange took pictures of Japanese immigrants and Japanese Americans undergoing forced relocation. Sacramento Bee senior photographer Paul Kitagaki, Jr. has been searching for the identities of those photographed — and creating this collection of portraits picturing the same individuals. (There’s also a companion story, and a gallery of unidentified photographs.)

    New Service Allows You to Trace your Irish Heritage from the Comfort of a High End Dublin Hotel
    The Shelburne Dublin offers its guests the services of a “Genealogy Butler.”

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    Classic Reprints

    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:

    • Collateral Ancestry of Stephen Harris, born September 4, 1798, and of Marianne Smith, born April 2, 1805, Item P4-S13419 ($28.00)
    • History of Hartford, Vermont, July 4, 1761–April 4, 1889, Item P5-VT0025H ($52.50)
    • Winders of America: John Winder, of New York, 1674-5; Thomas Winder, of New Jersey, 1703-34; John Winder, of Maryland, 1665-98, Item P4-H27771 ($31.50)
    • History of Hillsdale, Columbia County, New York, Item P2-8252500 ($59.00)
    • Old Gravestones of Ulster County, New York, Item P2-8251000 ($70.00)

    Search the entire Classic Reprints catalog.

    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 NEHGS Education Programs

    New Visitor Welcome Tour
    99-101 Newbury St, Boston
    May 2, 10–11 a.m.
    Starting your family genealogy can seem a little daunting. Let NEHGS help you make sense of it at a free presentation for members and non-members. This orientation and tour introduces you to the NEHGS research facility. You will also have an opportunity to describe your research interests to one of our expert staff genealogists who can offer advice on how to proceed. The program begins with a thirty-minute introductory lecture, followed by a tour of the library.

    Come Home to New England — Session I
    99-101 Newbury St, Boston
    June 11–16
    One of NEHGS’s most popular programs, Come Home to New England offers an intensive week of family history discovery and education at the Society’s headquarters in Boston. NEHGS experts provide individual consultations and useful lectures to guide researchers of all levels in their family history explorations. Participants also enjoy group meals and social events, making every moment of this fun-filled week a chance to learn more about your family history.
    Tuition: $750. Register online.

    More information can be accessed by visiting the events page on

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    NEHGS Contact Information

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    Copyright 2012, New England Historic Genealogical Society
    99–101 Newbury Street, Boston, MA 02116

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Boston, Massachusetts 02116, USA

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