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  • Vol. 16, No. 04
    Whole #619
    January 23, 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.

    * Ancestry Day with NEHGS
    * NEHGS Promotes David Allen Lambert to Chief Genealogist
    * Irish Genealogy Study Group
    * Rediscovering the Old Connecticut Path
    * Name Origins
    * The Weekly Genealogist Survey
    * Spotlight: Public Libraries of Saginaw, Michigan
    * Stories of Interest
    * Searching Our Classic Reprints Catalog
    * Upcoming Education Programs

    Ancestry Day with NEHGS

    Sheraton Boston Hotel, 39 Dalton St., Boston, Mass.
    Saturday, March 2, 8:30 a.m.–5 p.m.

    NEHGS and are pleased to invite you to attend Ancestry Day with NEHGS on Saturday, March 2, 2013. This day-long program will offer classes and sessions to help you get the most out of your family history research. Whether you are new to genealogy or have been researching for many years, you can learn new techniques, methodologies, and make the most of the resources available at NEHGS and Details and registration

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    NEHGS Promotes David Allen Lambert to Chief Genealogist

    David Allen Lambert, who joined the NEHGS staff in 1993 and previously served as the NEHGS Online Genealogist, was promoted to Chief Genealogist, a role that will allow him to assist members and others pursuing their family histories.

    David is available to answer questions via the new Ask a Genealogist online portal on the NEHGS website, Visitors to the NEHGS library in Boston can also speak with David just inside the main entrance, where he provides genealogical assistance. Brenton Simons, NEHGS President and CEO said, “We’ve seen an increase in traffic to our library and having David available to these patrons — as well as our online visitors — is an important part of what NEHGS provides: expert assistance to everyone.”

    David Lambert has more than thirty years of research experience and has spoken at numerous national and regional conferences on a wide variety of topics. He has also appeared on several national and local television programs including, most recently, the PBS show History Detectives. He has particular interest in military research, as well as Native-American, Canadian, and New England research. David is the author of five books, including A Guide to Massachusetts Cemeteries.

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    Irish Genealogy Study Group

    The Irish Genealogy Study Group will meet on Saturday, January 26, 2013, between 9:30 and noon at NEHGS. This is an informal group gathered to talk about research problems and share solutions. Everyone is welcome to come and join in. During this session, the group will discuss accessing Irish records from the Family History Library, among other topics.

    Contact Mary Ellen Grogan for more information.

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    Rediscovering the Old Connecticut Path
    by Jason Newton, Guest Author

    “Mr. Hooker and most of his congregation goes to Connecticut.” So wrote Massachusetts Bay Colony governor John Winthrop, commenting on the May 1636 migration from Cambridge, Massachusetts, to Hartford, Connecticut. The group’s route, the Old Connecticut Path, is one of America’s earliest westward migration trails. My ancestor, Rev. Thomas Hooker, and his family walked two weeks through the wilderness to reach their destination. In 1640, another ancestor of mine, Roger Newton, followed the Path to Hartford, where he studied for the ministry and met his future wife, Mary Hooker, Thomas Hooker’s daughter.

    I have undertaken a family history project to rediscover the route of the Old Connecticut Path from Cambridge to Hartford. Along the way I have found many other ancestors who followed the Old Connecticut Path west to the Connecticut valley towns of Windsor, Wethersfield, and Hartford.

    Although the Old Connecticut Path served as an important route for almost a century, it has now largely vanished from view. In some places, the Path is hidden in plain sight; in other areas, only dim traces remain. Rediscovering the Old Connecticut Path has required exploring woods and forgotten byways to find traces of the Path and confirm the markers described in histories. After 375 years of human settlement and development, places still exist along the Path where it is possible to experience the wilderness as it might have appeared to the earliest travelers. The most evocative places are found between Sutton, Mass., and Tolland, Conn.

    Videos and photos on my Old Connecticut Path website introduce the Path and allow viewers to see the route at ground level. The Old Connecticut Path is an ongoing project, and I invite you to explore the website and then return from time to time for further updates.

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    Name Origins
    by Julie Helen Otto, Genealogist

    NATHANETTA (f): From the male name NATHAN + diminutive suffix –etta. Nathanetta Frances (Arey) Gray, born 13 May 1860, the daughter of James R. and Lucy (Grush) Arey, died in 1890 in Rhode Island. Nathanetta was likely named after her maternal grandfather, Nathan W. Grush. (“Richard Arey and Some of His Descendants,” Register 87 (1933):18; Rhode Island Statewide Death Index, 1890–1900, #1890-714–17.)

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    The Weekly Genealogist Survey

    Last week’s survey asked about whether any of your ancestors worked on a railroad or mass transit system. 3,358 people answered this survey. The results are:

    • 48%, Yes, one or more of my ancestors worked for a railroad.
    • 7%, Yes, one or more of my ancestors worked for an urban area’s transit system (subway, trolley, streetcar, cable car, etc.)
    • 7%, Yes, one or more of my ancestors helped to build a railroad or urban transit system.
    • 15%, I don’t know if I have any ancestors who worked for a railroad or transit system.
    • 22%, No, I have no ancestors who worked for a railroad or transit system.

    This week’s survey asks about maritime ancestors. Take the survey now!

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    Spotlight: Public Libraries of Sagniaw, Michigan
    by Valerie Beaudrault, Assistant Editor

    Resources of the Public Libraries of Saginaw, Michigan  

    The city of Saginaw is located in east central Michigan. It is the seat of Saginaw County. The Public Libraries of Saginaw have made a number of genealogy and local history resources available on the library website. Click on the Genealogy & History tab to select an option from the drop down list.

    City of Saginaw Cemetery Search
    This database is an index to three of the City of Saginaw’s cemeteries: Brady Hill, Forest Lawn, and Oakwood. The index can be searched by first name and last name. The search can be limited to a specific cemetery or can include all three. The data fields in the results are cemetery-section-lot, first and last name, date of birth, date of death, and view. Click on the View link to open a new page with a detailed record. The data fields in the detailed record include name; gender; race; veteran status; date of birth; age, cause, place, and date of death; cemetery name; section/lot/space; marker; date of burial; cremation; and funeral home. There are links to maps of each of the cemeteries.

    Obituary Index
    The obituary index contains more than 200,000 obituaries from The Saginaw News. The index is an ongoing project with both older and more current issues of the newspaper being added daily. Enter a name or other text in the search box and click on the appropriate search button. You can search by name only, full record, date only, and name and date. Search results can be sorted by name or date. (I entered “measles” in the search box and 35 results were returned.) The data fields in the search results may include name, maiden name, spouse’s name, date married, spouse’s death, child of, age, death date, death place, and miscellaneous. Under miscellaneous you may find church, cemetery, cause of death, and funeral home. There is a link to the obituary request procedures at the top of the search page.

    Saginaw City Directories
    The city directory database covers the period from 1866 through 1940. Page images have been digitized and uploaded to the website. Enter a keyword in the search box. Use the first dropdown box to limit your search to a specific five-year increment. Please note that the year of the directory is in the link to the PDF image on the directory page. In most cases it does not appear on the page image itself.

    Saginaw Images
    The Maxwell K. Pribil Digital History Collection comprises three image collections: the Headstones of Saginaw County Collection, which contains photographs of headstones from seventeen cemeteries; photographs taken by the Goodridge Brothers, who were “among the first African American photographers to operate professionally in the nation” and owners of the Goodridge Brothers Photography Studio in Saginaw between 1864 and 1922; and the Voorheis-Hemmeter Family Collection. The collections can be searched or browsed one at a time or all together. Search results include descriptive information and a thumbnail image. Click on the thumbnail to enlarge it.

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    Stories of Interest

    When a Genealogy Hobby Digs Up Unwanted Secrets
    “Amateur genealogists, beware. Researching your ancestry doesn't always turn up heroes and royalty. It may turn up a felon, a bigamist or another unsavory character.”

    Document Deep Dive: The Menu from President Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Ball
    Paul Freedman, a Yale University historian, deconstructs the event’s bill of fare.

    Library of Congress Has Archive of Tweets, But No Plan for Its Public Display
    “The Library of Congress is busy archiving the sprawling and frenetic Twitter canon — with some key exceptions — dating back to the site’s 2006 launch. That means saving for posterity more than 170 billion tweets and counting, with an average of more than 400 million new tweets sent each day, according to Twitter.”

    Gene Detectives ID “Anonymous” Men in Registry
    “Scientific sleuths identified 12% of ‘anonymous’ men in a genetics registry with publicly available genealogy records."

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    Searching Our Classic Reprints Catalog

    The 12,000+ books listed in our Classic Reprints catalog are made to order. These books are high-quality reproductions printed on acid-free paper and bound like library books. Most titles are available in both hardcover and paperback.

    We are now in the process of upgrading the search function in our online store. While this process is underway, our search functionality is limited. If you have a question about whether or not NEHGS offers a particular rare, hard-to-find, or out of print genealogy, local history, or biography, please email with your search request. Please include as much information as possible, including (if available), title, author and year of publication. We will respond promptly and let you know whether or not we offer the title for sale and, if so, will provide item numbers and prices. Please note that we are unable to search within a book for specific information, since we do not have these books in stock. The binding and printing process takes four to eight weeks.

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    Upcoming Education Programs

    One Colonial Woman’s World: The Life and Writings of Mehetabel Chandler Coit
    99–101 Newbury Street, Boston
    Wednesday, February 6, 6–7:30 p.m.

    In her new book, One Colonial Woman's World: The Life and Writings of Mehetabel Chandler Coit, Michelle Marchetti Coughlin reconstructs the life of Mehetabel Chandler Coit (1673–1758), the author of what may be the earliest surviving diary by an American woman. A native of Roxbury, Mass., who later moved to Connecticut, Mehetabel began her diary at the age of fifteen and kept it intermittently until she was well into her seventies. A previously overlooked resource, the diary contains entries on a broad range of topics. An extensive collection of letters by Mehetabel and her female relatives has also survived, shedding further light on her experiences. Mehetabel's long life covered an eventful period in American history, and this book explores the numerous — and sometimes surprising — ways in which her personal history was linked to broader social and political developments. The lecture will be followed by a book signing. Free and open to the public

    London Research Tour
    May 19–26, 2013

    Experience the wealth of information available in London's archives as NEHGS returns to the U.K. Participants will enjoy one-on-one consultations, guided research at the Society of Genealogists and The National Archives, and two group dinners. Daily educational activities include lectures and tours by the experts from the SoG, The National Archives, and NEHGS. NEHGS experts Christopher Child and David Dearborn will accompany the group. Details and registration  

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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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New England Historic Genealogical Society
99 - 101 Newbury Street
Boston, Massachusetts 02116, USA

© 2010 - 2014 New England Historic Genealogical Society