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  • 2002 Archive

  • Vol. 4, No. 13
    Whole #69
    June 28, 2002

    • Two New Books on New York State Research from NEHGS
    • The Great Migration — in print and online
    Irish Genealogical Conference, September 27–28, 2002
    New Additions to Searchable Databases on
    • July 10 — "An Introduction to Using"
    • Upcoming "Genealogy in a Nutshell" Lectures
    • New Research Articles on
    • New from the NEHGS Committee on Heraldry
    • Coming Soon in the July 2002 Register
    • New Mayflower Families Book in the Online Bookstore
    • Favorite Ancestor Feedback
    • Circulating Library Update
    • NEHGS Library Closed on Thursday, July 4

    Two New Books on New York State Research from NEHGS

    New York State Probate Records: A Genealogist's Guide to Testate and Intestate Records
    by Gordon Remington, FASG, FUGA

    This book was created to provide genealogists with the tools needed to locate probate records in New York State from the past 300 years. The guide also gives practical information on how to access those records through the Family History Library in Salt Lake City as well as in New York's sixty-two County Surrogate Courts, and other repositories.

    The book is soft-cover, 161 pages in length. $19.95 plus shipping.

    or call 1-888-296-3447 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Eastern time), Monday through Friday.

    New York State Towns, Villages, and Cities: A Guide to Genealogical Sources
    by Gordon Remington, FASG, FUGA

    "No one knows New York research better than Gordon Remington. In this compact book, formatted in easy-to-use tables of New York towns and their records, Remington provides more pertinent information for the genealogical researcher than most 200 page texts. Difficult New York research will become much easier now that this guide is available." —Marsha Hoffman Rising, CG, FASG

    The book is soft-cover, 70 pages in length. $17.95 plus shipping.

    The Great Migration — in print and online

    Researchers interested in the Great Migration will be pleased to learn that an article by Robert Charles Anderson, FASG, director of the Great Migration Study Project, will appear in the Fall 2002 issue of New England Ancestors. The article, entitled "Personalities of the Great Migration," features profiles of immigrants William Hatch and William Hannum.

    The complete Great Migration Newsletter, Volumes 1–10, is now available for purchase in paperback. This is the first and only volume to contain all forty issues of the newsletter — more than a decade of scholarly research on the first immigrants to New England. The book is 354 pages in length and it is priced at $19.95 plus shipping. To order, please call 1-888-296-3447 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Eastern time), Monday through Friday.

    In other Great Migration news, the new electronic Great Migration Newsletter Online has been extremely well received. After the announcement in the last enewsletter NEHGS was deluged with new subscriptions. NEHGS members can sign up for an electronic subscription for only $10 per year. Subscribers to the Great Migration Newsletter Online can access an exclusive, subscribers-only section of, where the newsletter is posted on a quarterly basis. Subscribers will also receive the added bonus of biographical sketches not yet available in print. New sketches will be added regularly.

    An essential companion to the Great Migration books, the Great Migration Newsletter Online offers feature articles on a variety of topics, including the settlement of early New England towns, migration patterns, seventeenth-century passenger lists, church records, land records, and much more. Each issue contains a comprehensive literature survey. The Newsletter compliments the individual Great Migration sketches, and addresses the broader issues that are key to understanding the lives and times of New England's first immigrants.

    To subscribe, call toll-free 1-888-296-3447 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Eastern time), from Monday through Friday.

    If you have questions regarding the Great Migration Study Project or the Great Migration Newsletter Online, please email

    Irish Genealogical Conference, September 27–28, 2002
    Co-sponsored by TIARA (The Irish Ancestral Research Association)

    Join us for the fifth NEHGS Irish Genealogical Conference in Braintree, Massachusetts, on September 27 and 28, 2002. The conference will take place at the Sheraton Hotel in Braintree, just 10 miles south of Boston. The program will include two days of lectures on Irish genealogical research from some of the top experts in the field. Attendees may opt to attend one or both days and may choose to attend a dinner banquet and two luncheons with featured speakers. A selection of books and CD-ROMs will be available for sale throughout the conference.

    You may download a copy of the conference brochure and the registration form online.
    You can mail in a registration form or you can register with a credit card by calling NEHGS toll-free at 1-888-296-3447, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Eastern time), Monday through Friday.

    New Additions to Searchable Databases on

    Massachusetts Pensioner's Receipts, 1799–1807
    This database compliments the Massachusetts Pensioner's Receipts, 1829–1837, database. It contains original receipts for Revolutionary War soldiers who received pension payments for their service. Completely searchable by name, this database includes images of the original pension receipts which contain the original signatures and marks of the soldiers. The original documents are available in the NEHGS manuscript collection, SL/MAS/38.

    Massachusetts Vital Records to 1850
    We have added two new towns to the database of vital records from the published volumes. The addition of Sharon and Tisbury brings us to almost 200,000 birth, marriage and death records in 14 towns. The other towns available are: Cambridge, Charlemont, Conway, Hinsdale, Hopkinton, Montgomery, Nantucket, Newton, Oxford, Palmer, Pelham, and Peru.

    Search our databases online at /research/database/.

    July 10 — "An Introduction to Using"

    Learn how to use the NEHGS website to advance your research! In this free class, website administrator Darrin McGlinn will offer a step-by-step live demonstration of the Society's website, Participants will have the chance to explore the site in depth, ask questions, and become more comfortable using a constantly growing number of online databases and research tools.

    The program will be held on July 10 at 11:30 a.m. in the Education Center at 101 Newbury St., Boston. Advance registration is not required. This class will next be offered on August 14 at 6 p.m.

    For more information, please call 617-226-1209 or email

    Upcoming "Genealogy in a Nutshell" Lectures

    The "Genealogy in a Nutshell" series continues with:

    • "Sons of Liberty: Researching Your Revolutionary War Ancestor" by David Lambert, on Saturday, June 29

    • "New Sources for the 'Century of Lost Ancestors,' 1750-1850" by Gary Boyd Roberts, on Wednesday, July 3, and Saturday, July 6

    • "Case Studies in New England Native American Research" by Marc Choquet, on Wednesday, July 10, and Saturday, July 13

    All lectures take place at 10 a.m. Advance registration is not necessary.

    For more details about NEHGS education events, please visit

    New Research Articles on

    New Column: Genealogy & Technology
    Grafted or Grown? Getting the Right Limbs on the Family Tree
    by Rhonda R. McClure

    Maine Soldiers in the Civil War
    by Russell C. Farnham, CG

    New Hampshire
    Genealogical Resources at the New Hampshire State Archives
    by Sherry Gould

    Royal Descents, Notable Kin, & Printed Sources
    On "Classic" Genealogies Updated by Present-Day Family Associations: Criticism and Suggestions
    by Gary Boyd Roberts

    New from the NEHGS Committee on Heraldry

    The Balliol Roll, edited by Bruce A. McAndrew, has just been published by the Committee on Heraldry of the New England Historic Genealogical Society.

    The Balliol Roll is the earliest known collection of Scottish coats-of-arms, probably created between 1332–1340. It consists of thirty six coats-of-arms, beginning with those of Sir Edward Balliol, King of Scots. The book discusses the Balliol Roll in its heraldic context and provides detailed analysis of its content, along with consideration of the complex historical situation that existed following the death of Robert I (Bruce), King of Scots, in 1329.

    The book is soft-cover, 79 pages in length. $35 plus shipping.

    Coming Soon in the July 2002 Register

    The first article in this issue is Mary Foxe and her two husbands, Lawrence Hazard and Samuel Johnson, by Leslie Mahler and Melinde Lutz Sanborn, and contains largely new information. Torrey and others had assumed that Samuel Johnson was the father of his wife's daughters; this article shows their father was Lawrence Hazard. One of the daughters, Hannah, married John Foskett, and this article substantially corrects the accounts of John Foskett's wives. Based on the descent of Boston real estate purchased in 1654, the article establishes which Samuel Johnson was Mary's son.

    Part 1 of Michael Boonstra's article on "King" David Chesebrough of Newport traces the successful life of a Stonington-born merchant in Newport, with extensive and interesting detail from collections of letters of Ezra Stiles, Thomas Hutchinson, and others. The author identifies David's first wife by finding her mentioned in her father's will as an unborn child. Portraits of David and his second wife are reproduced at pages 224-25.

    Brendan O'Donnell identifies the parents of Clarissa (Huntington) Bingham by careful analysis of indirect evidence in Connecticut and New Hampshire, in the absence of a birth, baptismal or marriage record for Clarissa. Her connections to two prominent New Englanders, Daniel Webster and the Rev. Eleazar Wheelock, are crucial.

    Richard Langsford of Gloucester, Massachusetts, first appears there in 1719, and John Bradley Arthaud traces his descendants into the mid-nineteenth century. Most descendants stayed in Gloucester but several did not appear in its published vital records. Fortunately, the administrations of the first three generations of Langsford men identify most of the family.

    Part 2 of Walter and Mary (Fry) Harris of New London continues with the third generation sons and their descendants. There are numerous marriages into the Rogers, Tinker and Manwaring families, as well as to Harris cousins. Gale Harris's account of Joseph Harris of Dutchess County 1737–1745 breaks new ground, upsetting a 1953 compilation formerly thought reliable.

    New England Articles in Genealogical Journals in 2000 indexes articles in seventeen journals; this is expected to become an annual feature. Surnames, places, and some subjects have been indexed. Places have been indexed since looking at articles on families in ancestral towns can be an excellent way of learning about new sources. We hope many of our readers will discover new material.

    Henry B. Hoff, Editor of the Register

    New Mayflower Families Book in the Online Bookstore

    Just released! The popular Mayflower Families through Five Generations series (also known as "the silver books") adds a new volume. Volume 16, Part 2: John Alden covers the fifth generation descendants of John Alden's daughter Elizabeth.

    Favorite Ancestor Feedback

    The "Feedback" question in the Winter 2002 issue of New England Ancestors was "Who is your favorite ancestor? Why?" The magazine staff received an overwhelming response to this question. A small selection of reader submissions were published in the Spring and Summer issues of the magazine, and several more will be published in the Fall issue.

    Because the response to this question has been so positive, we will publish additional submissions here in the enewsletter on an ongoing basis. If you would like to contribute information on your favorite ancestor, please send your story to Lynn Betlock at

    Thank you to all past and future contributors!

    "My paternal grandmother"
    by Ellen (Fraser) Brown

    One of my favorite ancestors is my paternal grandmother Mary (Rusco) Fraser (1871–1930). Her ancestry is traced back to immigrants to colonial Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Connecticut. Immigrant William Rusco and others, with Rev. Thomas Hooker, founded Hartford, Connecticut. Descendants of each, my great-grandparents Benjamin and Wealthy (Prescott) Rusco/Roscoe, met and married over two centuries later in Ohio. Great-grandmother Wealthy descended from immigrant James Prescott who came to Hampton, New Hampshire, in 1665.

    "A staunch citizen, wily soldier, and straightforward New England farmer"
    by Joan DeLunger of Cayucos, California

    At Bunker Hill, third-great-grandfather Moses Fellows (1775–1846), having one charge of powder left and no ball, put it into his gun, rammed it home, left the ramrod, took aim and fired, killing one of the enemy. He was twenty years old. My favorite ancestor's diary allowed me to follow a staunch citizen, wily soldier, and straightforward New England farmer. He died at ninety years old and
    was survived by his wife of sixty-three years for another seventeen years.

    Moses enlisted 5 times, served 4 years in the field and was chosen with 6 other men by the citizens of Salisbury to help encourage enlisting Minutemen. His Company marched to the Canadas under General Benedict Arnold, he fought the Battle of the Block House, Battle of Bennington, and survived Valley Forge. His first enlistment expired in Canada. Discharged, he and some other men
    started the 500 mile trip home on foot. On the way, one man shot a partridge, another a crow. After skinning the birds they put the partridge skin on the crow and sold it at the first tavern they came to for some rum to cheer their spirits.

    His father planted an apple tree started from seeds Moses had saved. It became one of the best apple orchards in the area. Some years Moses made 100 barrels of cider. Many trees were grafted from the main tree and were bearing fruit 100 years later.

    Called Sergeant by comrades, Uncle Mose by friends and Grandsir by grandchildren he loved to prime and shoot his old rifle for July 4th celebrations. In the cemetery in Salisbury, South Road Village, N.H. a granite monument to the "Soldier of the Revolution" was erected over his
    remains and which, I believe, is still there.

    "Because of the adventures he had"
    by Norman Pratt of Wappingers Falls, New York

    Benjamin D. Nichols, my great-grandfather, is my favorite ancestor because of the adventures he had during his lifetime. Born in Bristol, R.I. in 1831, he ran away at 14 and joined a whaling ship, which took him to the Sandwich Isles. He later joined the Navy and patrolled the Pacific coast. He jumped ship in Valparaiso, bound for the gold fields in the West, but returned home before reaching his destination. Eventually he tired of wandering and became a jeweler. He died in 1926.

    "A lovely lady who could make do"
    by Elizabeth Barber Lusk

    Favorite ancestor: Lovisa Lathrop Gains Smith (1763-1838)
    I had my third great-grandmother's name, a lock of her hair, questions and intriguing 1870 family notes: "Mama remembers her grandmother as a lovely lady who could make do wonderfully under most distressing circumstances. She made "small beer" she bottled in Bennington jugs, "slings" served in loving cups and made the family medications from dried "yarbs" she gathered". Finding proof of her Lathrop connection took seven years!

    Circulating Library Update

    To make order processing easier for both members and the NEHGS customer service team, circulating library shipping rates will be standardized. Effective the week of July 1, there will be three shipping choices:

    Standard Shipping (Delivery time 1-8 days),
    Standard pricing will use the UPS rate by geographic zone, ranging from $6 to $9 for up to 3 books, plus $1 for each additional book.

    Economy Shipping (Delivery time 1-3 weeks),
    Economy pricing is $5 for up to 3 books, plus $1 for each additional book.

    Rush Shipping Two-Day
    Rush pricing is a surcharge of $20 in addition to the standard shipping price.

    NEHGS Library Closed on Thursday, July 4

    The NEHGS Research Library and offices will be closed on Thursday, July 4, in honor of Independence Day. The library will be open as usual from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Wednesday, July 3, and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday, July 5, and Saturday, July 6.

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