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  • The Weekly Genealogist

  • Vol. 15, No. 9
    Whole #572
    February 29, 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.

    * Historic Map Works Available to NEHGS Members on
    * NEHGS Database News
    * A Note from the Editor: Eighteenth and Early Nineteenth-Century Student Records Online
    * Name Origins
    * This Week’s Survey
    * Spotlight: Various Funeral Home Records
    * Stories of Interest
    * Classic Reprints
    * Upcoming Education Programs
    * NEHGS Contact Information


    Historic Map Works Available to NEHGS Members on

    NEHGS is pleased to announce that members now have access to the Historic Map Works database through our website, Historic Map Works is a third-party database produced by ProQuest and subscribed to by NEHGS. It contains a collection of over 1.4 million high-resolution, full-color historic maps of places in the United States and around the world. The contents include more than 800,000 U.S. property maps from the late 1700s to the present day; more than 100,000 antiquarian maps covering the world from the 15th to 19th centuries; city directories; atlases; bird’s-eye-view maps; and more. 

    You will find a link to this database by logging into, dropping down the Search menu, and selecting External Databases, or by going directly to You must be logged into in order to see the link. Please note that access to Historic Map Works, as with our other external databases, is not available to our institutional members.

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

    New York: Long Island Cemetery Inscriptions, 1652-1910

    This database was created from a typescript set of cemetery inscriptions donated to NEHGS by Josephine C. Frost between 1912 and 1914. The original typescript volumes are numbered 1 to 12, but only ten volumes remain, volumes 6 and 10 being lost to time. Inscriptions for 98 cemeteries are included in the collection, all from cemeteries on Long Island, in Kings, Queens, Suffolk, and Nassau Counties. The inscriptions range from 1652 to 1910. This database contains 13,000 records from those cemeteries.  A complete list of the cemeteries included can be seen here: New York: Long Island Cemetery Inscriptions, 1652-1910.

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    A Note from the Editor: Eighteenth and Early Nineteenth-Century Student Records Online
    by Lynn Betlock, Editor

    Increasingly, biographical information about students who attended educational institutions of higher learning is being made available online. A colleague recently alerted me to an important new database on the Litchfield [Connecticut] Historical Society website: The Ledger.

    The Ledger is a comprehensive online searchable database that presents the stories of two nationally significant educational institutions, the Litchfield Law School and the Litchfield Female Academy. The Law School, founded by Tapping Reeve in 1784, was the first of its kind in the country and attracted over 1,200 students from thirteen states and territories. Sarah Pierce founded the Female Academy in 1792 which drew an estimated 3,000 girls to Litchfield over the school’s forty-one year history.

    "The words, artwork and personal belongings of the students together with biographical and genealogical information will now be available at a user’s fingertips. The Ledger links materials held in private collections and by various public institutions together, providing users with as much information as possible on each individual student.”

    Genealogists should particularly note the following request: “If you have any additional information on an existing student or feel that you may know of a student who attended one of the schools and is not included in the database please contact the Curator of Collections at 860-567-4501 or”

    The Litchfield Historical Society owns the Reeve House and Law School, open to visitors from mid-April to November. For more information, visit

    Colonial Collegians, a database on, features 5,477 biographies of students who attended American colleges before the American Revolution. The colleges include Harvard, Princeton, Yale, the College of Philadelphia (now the University of Pennsylvania), The College of William and Mary, Dartmouth College, King's College (now Columbia University), Rhode Island College (now Brown University), and Queen's College (now Rutgers University), the medical schools at King's College and the College of Philadelphia, and the Reverend William Tennent's "Log College" in Pennsylvania for prospective Presbyterian clergymen.

    Another school database is available on the NEHGS website. Pupils and Teachers of Mrs. Rowson's Academy, 1797-1822, was complied by Jane C. Nylander. The database contains the names of 658 pupils and teachers known to have attended Mrs. Rowson’s Academy, a school for young ladies, in Boston, Massachusetts.

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    Name Origins
    by Julie Helen Otto, Staff Genealogist

    ELPHLEDE (f): Elphlede (Lyon) Janes (1749-1792) of Woodstock, Conn., who m. ca. 1768 Eliphalet “Uncle Liff” Janes (1743-1835) of Sturbridge, Mass., was a daughter of Moses Lyon (Yale 1735) and his wife Grace Child. Eliphalet and Elphlede were ancestors of American painter Norman Perceval Rockwell (1894-1978) (NEHGS NEXUS 11 [1994]: 62-63; Gary Boyd Roberts, Notable Kin, Volume 2 [1999], p. 28). In 1749 use of this rare Anglo-Saxon name was a sure sign of antiquarian tastes. Elphlede’s father probably took her name from writings of the Venerable Bede (ca. 672/73-735) or other Anglo-Saxon writers, about St. Ælflæda of Whitby (653-714) [sister of Oswy, King of Northumbria]; several later Anglo-Saxon princesses of the ninth and tenth centuries bore the name, or close variants.

    Elfleda Janes
    (1804-post 1860), daughter of Almarin and Polly (Fay) Janes and granddaughter of Eliphalet and Elfleda (Lyon) Janes, later married a Peter Wormwood (Frederic Janes, The Janes Family: A Genealogy and Brief History of the Descendants of William Janes, the Emigrant Ancestor of 1637 [New York: J.H. Dingman, 1868], p. 197); as “Alphida” she was living with him and their family at Manlius, N.Y., in 1850, and as “Alphleda” in 1860 (1850 U.S. Census, Onondaga Co., N.Y., Town of Manlius, Series M432, Roll 567, p. 67, #1018-1048, lines 22-28; 1860 U.S. Census, same place, Series M653, Roll 829, p. 171, #207-208, lines 29-34). Elfleda (Powell) Rogers (no dates in Janes, pp. 141-42, or VT VRs) was a daughter of Rowland and Mary (Janes) Powell of Richford, Vt.; her mother (1753-1813) was a sister of Eliphalet Janes above. Elfleda (Gibbs) Chamberlain (b. 1792), daughter of Zephaniah and Lucinda (Janes) Gibbs of Sturbridge, Mass., was named for her grandmother, Mrs. Janes above (Rev. Martin Lovering, History of the Town of Holland, Massachusetts [Rutland, Vt.: Tuttle Publishing Co., 1915]., p. 550; Janes, p. 192).
    Elfleda (Elfreda?) Belknap
    (b. 1773), daughter of William and Anna (Burke) Belknap of Holland, Mass., m. there 7 Nov. 1793 David Anderson (1744-1817). I have found no obvious relation to the Janes family, but perhaps her parents admired the name. And “Elfledya” Blashfield was born at Brimfield, Mass., 30 March 1774, daughter of William and Lois (Lumbard) Blashfield; as “Alphleda” Blashfield, she married 23 Dec. 1798 John Bishop, at Brimfield (Brimfield VRs, pp. 19, 163).

    Two more bearers of this name were first cousins Elfleda (Sherman) Trask (1797-1858), wife of Azel Trask of Wales, Mass. (next to Brimfield), and Willington, Conn., daughter of Daniel and Sarah “Sally” (Dimick) Sherman; and Elfleda “Fleta” (Dimick) Pendleton (1804-1858), daughter of James and Anna (Charles) Dimick, and wife of Lyman Pendleton of Wales (she appears as “Alfleday” in her marriage record). Both were granddaughters of Gideon and Sarah (Davis) Dimick of Brimfield and Wales, Mass. (One of the true joys of tracing their sometimes very obscure families was using Absalom Gardner’s scurrilous history of Wales, Mass., in the Corbin Collection at NEHGS; Mr. Gardner thought Azel Trask an annoying idiot [“was rather lazy withal” seems the kindest he can manage], and despised James Dimick.)

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    This Week's Survey

    Last week’s survey asked if you have genealogical connections to American presidents. The results are:

    34%, Yes, I have one to five connections.
    31%, No.
    25%, I’m not sure.
    8%, Yes, I have six to fifteen connections.
    2%, Yes, I have sixteen or more connections.

    This week's survey asks whether any of your ancestral surnames were changed. Take the survey now!

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    Spotlight: Various Funeral Home Records
    by Valerie Beaudrault, Assistant Editor

    Funeral home records can contain a wealth of information for genealogists. There are a number of funeral home records databases online and onsite. Many cover time periods into the mid-twentieth century. The databases may be found on a number of different types of websites. The following is a sampling of what is available.

    Marshall County Funeral Home Records, Tennessee
    The Marshall County Funeral Home Records database is one of the resources available on the Marshall County Genweb website. The county is located in the central part of the state. The information in this database has been abstracted from the records of the London Funeral Home, which is in Lewisburg, the county seat. The records are for deaths that occurred from 1938 to 1941. They are organized alphabetically by surname, then given name. Click on the first letter of the surname to open the page containing the records. The information provided for each individual includes last name, first name, sex, race, date of birth, place of birth, age, date of death, place of death, place of burial, marital status, spouse, father, mother, informant, and funeral home name.

    Rich Funeral Home, Indiana
    This funeral home database is on the Kokomo-Howard County Public Library website. Howard County is located in central Indiana. Kokomo is its county seat. This database is an index to the records of the Rich Funeral Home, a family business, which was in operation from June 1893 through October 1956. The index was created from photocopies of the company’s records. The data fields in the alphabetical index include name of the deceased, record number, place of death, and notes. The notes field includes age at death, and abbreviations for the cemetery in which the deceased is buried. There is a chart at the end of the introduction page that provides a listing of burial dates and corresponding record numbers. There is also a key to the abbreviations used in the database. The original records for the Rich Funeral Home are in the possession of the Stout Funeral Home in Russiaville, Indiana.

    Dolph Funeral Home Records, Michigan
    The Dolph Funeral Home Records database is on the website of the Bentley Historical Library at the University of Michigan. Dolph Funeral Home was located in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Ann Arbor is in the southeastern part of the state. It is the county seat of Washtenaw County. The records in the database cover the period from June 1937 to September 1952, when the funeral home closed. You can browse the index by last name or by date of death. The data provided includes full name, residence, and death date. If you would like a copy of the full record you may contact the library via email to request it. Because the original records are fragile, the library will transcribe the information from the original records to a photocopy of the original form found in the record book.

    Skaurud Funeral Home Index, Norman County, Minnesota
    The Norman County Genealogy Society prepared and made available the Skaurud Funeral Home Index. Norman County is located in northwestern Minnesota. The city of Ada is the county seat. The Skaurud Funeral Home was located in Ada. The database covers the period from 1913 through 1945. It is in PDF format. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the files. The records are grouped into seven files: 1923–1929; 1930–1935; 1936–1938; 1939–1941; 1942; and 1943–1945. Each file contains an alphabetical listing. The data fields in the files include name/residence (where the deceased lived), age, date of birth, date of death, place of death, location of the funeral/clergy involved, and cemetery name.

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    Stories of Interest

    Fugates of Kentucky: Skin Bluer than Lake Louise
    “In an unusual story that involves both genetics and geography, an entire family from isolated Appalachia was tinged blue.”

    Playing Kitchen Detective: Home Cooks Try to Recreate Family Recipes; What Did Grandma Put in her Kugel?
    “There's a new obsession at the intersection of genealogy and foodie culture —reconstructing beloved, long-lost family recipes.”

    351-Year-Old Will Sparks Bitter Dispute
    A case concerning a 1661 bequest by an Ipswich, Massachusetts, resident that benefited the town’s public schools is going to the Massachusetts Appeals Court later this week.

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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:

    • A Brief History of John Valentine Kratz and a Complete Genealogical Register (Item P4-H17151, $53.50)
    • Descendants of Valentine Hollingsworth Sr. (Item P4-H14766, $44.00)
    • Genealogical History of the Family Semple From 1214 to 1888 (Item P4-H23367, $24.00)
    • Town History of Weare, N.H., from 1888 (Item P5-NH0205H, $37.50)
    • History of Clarendon, N.Y., 1810-1888 (Item P5-NY0149H, $44.00)

    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 Education Programs

    New York Family History Day
    Tarrytown, New York
    Saturday, March 17

    Join the New England Historic Genealogical Society and for New York Family History Day on March 17 at the Westchester Marriott in Tarrytown, N.Y.

    We invite you to join us for a special day of discovery and exploration. Full day registration is just $44, and includes free parking. You will also have an opportunity to register for a private one-on-one consultation with an expert NEHGS staff member. Only a few slots are left for consultations. To learn more or to register, visit

    An American Journey
    Watertown, Massachusetts
    Sunday, March 4
    2:30–4:30 p.m.

    NEHGS is a proud co-sponsor of An American Journey, produced and performed by the Revels Repertory Company. This original musical theater production brings the story of American immigration to life in partnership with Watertown’s Arsenal Center for the Arts. The 90-minute production finds Italian, Irish, and Eastern European Jewish immigrants on a passenger ship bound for America circa 1907. Sharing their music and songs, their dances and their dreams, the diverse group of travelers become one, as they leave their hardships behind and steam toward America, the land of hope and promise. Rhonda McClure, NEHGS Senior Researcher and an expert on American immigration, will give a pre-conference talk at 2:30 p.m. Learn more about finding your family in records, which can bring you closer to understanding how they lived and why they chose to immigrate.

    Revels Repertory Co. is the touring ensemble of Revels, Inc., the national performing arts company that presents the Christmas Revels in ten cities across the U.S. The show is appropriate for adults and children ages six and up and includes audience participation.

    Tickets: $20 adults ($18 for NEHGS members), $12 students/children 12 and under. Visit for tickets. NEHGS members may enter the discount code NEHGS2012.

    NEHGS and TIARA Irish Genealogy Seminar
    NEHGS, Boston
    Saturday, March 24
    9:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m.

    Join NEHGS and TIARA (The Irish Ancestral Research Association) for a seminar on Irish genealogy. NEHGS Library Director Marie Daly, an expert Irish genealogy researcher, presents From Bantry Bay to Derry Quay: Irish Geography for Genealogists. Irish poet and writer Kieran Furey shares Tales from Roscommon and stories of the famine. After the morning's presentations, participants are invited to use the NEHGS research library for the day. This program will sell out very soon! Fee: $10.

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    NEHGS Contact Information

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Boston, Massachusetts 02116, USA

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