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  • The Weekly Genealogist

  • Vol. 16, No. 15
    Whole #630
    April 10, 2013
    Edited by Lynn Betlock, Jean Powers, and Valerie Beaudrault


    Greetings from the New England Historic Genealogical Society! 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
    * Attend the NEHGS Annual Dinner Honoring David Gergen
    * Old Photographs of Two Remarkable Libraries
    * A Featured Blog: AncestryInk
    * Name Origins
    * The Weekly Genealogist Survey
    * Spotlight: On Eternal Patrol
    * Stories of Interest
    * Four Connecticut Titles on Sale at the NEHGS Bookstore
    * Upcoming Education Programs

    NEHGS Database News
    by Sam Sturgis, Digital Collections Administrator, and Christopher Carter, Digital Collections Coordinator

    New York Genealogical and Biographical Record, volume 31–35

    The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record is the premier genealogical journal devoted to scholarship on families residing in New York State and surrounding areas. Published quarterly since 1870 by the New York Genealogical and Biographical Society, the Record features compiled genealogies and transcriptions of Bible records, census records, church registers, newspaper extracts, muster rolls, wills and deeds, and proceedings of the NYG&B.

    This week, we have added volumes 31–35, containing more than 47,000 additional name records. The database currently contains volumes 1 through 35, publication years 1870 to 1904. Future volumes will be added periodically.

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    Attend the NEHGS Annual Dinner Honoring David Gergen

    NEHGS Annual Dinner
    Friday evening, April 19, 2013
    Four Seasons Hotel, Boston

    We invite you to attend the NEHGS Annual Dinner, a benefit for “Connecting Families. Advancing History, A National Campaign for the New England Historic Genealogical Society.” David Gergen, senior political analyst for CNN, will be honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award in American Public Service at the event.

    Gergen has served as White House adviser to four U.S. presidents — Nixon, Ford, Reagan, and Clinton — and currently serves as professor of public service and director of the Center for Public Leadership at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. The dinner will be hosted by CNBC anchor Bill Griffeth. Gergen will speak on “Leadership: From First Families to Our Family.” To register for this special event, please sign up on our website by Thursday, April 11.

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    Old Photographs of Two Remarkable Libraries

    I think most genealogists will be captivated by these 1874 photos of the Cincinnati Public Library on Retronaut. Information about that era of the Cincinnati Public Library is provided at Ohio Memory. Photographs of the New York Public Library stacks, 1907–1911, will also appeal to library lovers.

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    A Featured Blog: AncestryInk

    Our latest blog profile features AncestryInk, written by Jane Sweetland. Here, Jane introduces her blog:

    As an adult, busy raising my family on an island off the coast of Massachusetts, I wasn’t interested in local history or family ancestral stories. An avid interest in maritime history, however, pulled me into other branches of historical research. Eventually I became associated with an underwater salvage team out of Provincetown searching for the wreck of a silver-laden ship belonging to Charles I that went down in the Firth of Forth. Researching shipwrecks in Edinburgh and St. Andrew’s in Scotland captivated me. As I discovered, history and genealogical research are inseparable. And the tales provided by captain’s logs, church records, and old cemeteries are exciting! I relentlessly pursued connecting the dots, closing circles, and finding how the lives of quiet, local people intertwined or made a difference as larger historical events unfolded around them.

    An unresolved family mystery ultimately led to the creation of my blog AncestryInk: I had no idea who my great-grandfather was. Everyone in the family refused to talk about him. He was like Lord Voldemort in the Harry Potter books: “He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named.” My great-grandfather was a Scot from Maine, a man of the sea who reportedly had “a woman in every port.” That was all I knew. My research took me well over two years. I drew from the resources of Facebook, original family letters, the NEHGS research library, NEHGS and Ancestry online databases, Maine libraries and historical societies, Maine cemeteries, Family History Library microfilm, and much, much more.

    I found that my great-grandfather, a master mariner who sailed between Nova Scotia, Maine, and Pennsylvania, married three times, and fathered ten children between 1882 and 1920 - even though he was on the high seas almost continuously! One of his wives divorced him, his second and third marriages may have been bigamous, and he abandoned many of his children. I found plenty of evidence for why he might not have been spoken of.

    A desire to expand my research skills during this process prompted me to enroll in the Boston University Genealogical Research Program. I gained so much valuable information that I felt moved to share what I was learning by creating AncestryInk. A secondary interest in photography seems to mesh nicely with blog writing and, I hope, enlivens the experiences and information shared there. I discovered I come from a long line of seagoing folks and island inhabitants, and I am currently working on a project about an 1846 shipwreck off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard involving my ancestors.

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    Name Origins
    by Julie Helen Otto, Genealogist

    The Turkic ruler Timur (1336–1405) — conqueror of central Asia, patron of the arts and responsible for vast numbers of deaths — was lame, and described in Persian as Timur-i Lang (“Timur the Lame”). This epithet entered the European languages as TAMERLANE or variants thereof. The English playwright Christopher Marlowe wrote a two-part tragedy, Tamburlaine the Great, in 1587 or 1588 (published 1590, still performed) which proved a milestone in the development of blank verse in Elizabethan drama. “Tamerlane” was also the name of a poem by Edgar Allan Poe, which was published in 1827 in Tamerlane and Other Poems.

    In 1862, Tamerlane Burt (b. 1798) died at Berkley, Bristol County, Massachusetts; he was doubtless related to the Burt family of Taunton, Mass. Tamerlane Olmsted died in Saybrook, Connecticut, age forty years, in 1829. The 1850 census lists six men named Tamerlane in Alabama, Georgia, Illinois, Massachusetts, and Ohio; the 1940 census lists three, in Florida and Wisconsin.

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    The Weekly Genealogist Survey

    Last week’s survey asked how you share your genealogical information. 3,898 people responded to the survey. The results are:

    • 94%, Email
    • 63%, Postal mail
    • 54%, Telephone calls
    • 46%, Online message boards or forums
    • 49%, Genealogical or historical website
    • 18%, Published book or article
    • 18%, Commercial website
    • 12%, Lectures and presentations
    • 10%, Personal website
    • 11%, Social media website
    • 5%, Personal blog
    • 2%, Someone else’s blog
    • 2%, Instant messages
    • <1%, Twitter
    • 14%, Other

    This week’s survey asks what century is of the greatest interest to you in your genealogical research. Take the survey now!  

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    Spotlight: On Enternal Patrol
    by Valerie Beaudrault, Assistant Editor

    On Eternal Patrol

    “[T]he primary purpose of this site is to honor the men of the U.S. Submarine Force by attempting to put faces to as many of the names on the lists of lost submariners as possible.” Since 1900 more than four thousand men have lost their lives in submarines, with the largest number of them being lost during World War II, between December 7, 1941 and September 2, 1945.

    The site is organized by eras — Pre-World War II; World War II; and Post-World War II; and Additional Losses (which documents men lost while serving on submarines that were not sunk). You may select an era from the contents menu on the left side of the page to view a listing of the men lost during that particular era. The data fields in the alphabetical list are name and photo. Click on the name list to open the individual’s memorial page. The data fields on this page include rank/rate, service number, birth date, from, decorations, ship, date of death, location, circumstances, and remarks. The remarks field includes place of birth. If there is a photograph, it is displayed on the person’s memorial page. Select the Boats list for the appropriate era to open a page with a listing of American submarines and submarine tenders that lost at least one man during that period. The data fields here are number and hull number of submarine and total number of men lost. Click on the submarine’s name to access the list of those who died.

    There is a search box on the homepage and a link that will enable you to view the Full Name Index of men with personal memorial pages. There are also links to Sources and Acknowledgements; Privacy policies, Lost Submarines by Month, and Discrepancies in Numbers of Lost Submariners.

    (Today marks the fiftieth anniversary of the loss of the USS Thresher off the coast of Cape Cod, Massachusetts, on April 10, 1963. This past weekend families of those who died gathered in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, where the USS Thresher was built, to mark the anniversary of the submarine disaster. For two stories on the disaster, click here and here.)

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    Stories of Interest

    Prototype of Digital Public Library of America to Launch in Boston this Month
    “The beginnings of the first public, national, on-line library will soon be unveiled in Boston — home to the country’s first publicly supported municipal library.”

    Short on Graves, China Turns to Sea Burials
    “Prices for graves are skyrocketing, driven by decades of unbridled development and scarce city land. The government’s answer to this conundrum: sea burials.”

    Walking in the Footsteps of his Ancestors
    In 1793, Loyalist William Walker left North Carolina for Canada, where he was granted land in Grimsby Township and Clinton, Ontario. His descendant, William Timothy Walker, recently made the 820-mile journey, on foot, from Orange County, North Carolina, to Lincoln County, Ontario, in 68 days. (His blog — listed incorrectly in the article — can be found here.)

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    Native American Titles on Sale at the NEHGS Bookstore

    The Bookstore at NEHGS is offering 15% off on four Native American resource titles through April 11, 2013.

    Genealogical Notes: First Settlers of Connecticut and Massachusetts: Sale price, $21.21

    Stamford Town Records, Volume 1, 1641-1723: Sale price, $29.71

    Colony of Connecticut Minutes of the Court of Assistants, 1669-1711: Sale price, $21.21

    Hartford County, Connecticut, County Court Minutes, Volumes 3 and 4, 1663-1687, 1697: Sale price, $16.15

    To receive the 15% discount, enter the coupon code CT413 into the coupon field in our online store or mention this code when ordering over the phone at 1-888-296-3447. Prices good through April 17, 2013, while supplies last. Cannot be combined with other discounts, including the 10% NEHGS member discount.

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    Upcoming Education Programs

    New Visitor Welcome Tour
    Saturday, April 13, 1:30 p.m.
    99–101 Newbury Street, Boston, Mass.

    This free orientation and tour introduces you to the resources available at the NEHGS research facility in Boston. With more than 15 million artifacts, books, manuscripts, microfilms, journals, photographs, records, and expert staff to help you navigate it all, NEHGS provides the access you need to research your family history.Registration not required.

    NEHGS Preservation Roadshow
    Sunday, April 21, 9–4:30 p.m.
    99–101 Newbury Street, Boston, Mass.

    Join experts from NEHGS and The Northeast Document Conservation Center for a full-day seminar on preserving your family photographs, papers, books, and more. Learn how to take care of your family’s documents, both past and present. During the"roadshow," experts will give advice on caring for your own family’s materials.

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    NEHGS Contact Information  

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    Copyright 2013, 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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