American Ancestors New England Historic Genealogical Society - Founded 1845 N.E. Historic Genealogical Society Seal View Your Shopping Cart Join NEHGS
  • 2007 Archive

  •  Vol. 9, No. 22
    Whole #324
    May 30, 2007
    Edited by Michael J. Leclerc 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.

    * New on
    * Nova Scotia Heritage Event in Boston
    * Come Home to New England
    * Autographed Copies of Three Books by David Hackett Fischer
    * Name Origins
    * Address Change Reminder
    * Research Recommendations: Citing Your Sources
    * Spotlight: Ventura County Genealogical Society Archives
    * From the Online Genealogist
    * Stories of Interest
    * Upcoming Public Lecture Series
    * Upcoming Education Programs
    * NEHGS Contact Information


    New Databases on New

    Vital Records of Watertown, Massachusetts, 1630-1825

    Citation Information: Vital Records of Watertown, 1630-1825. (Online database: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2007), (Watertown Records. Prepared for publication by the Historical Society. Watertown, Mass. 1894-1906.)

    The vital records of Watertown were published in four volumes by the Historical Society of Watertown between 1894 and 1906. These records contain 4,548 births from 1632-1823; 2,560 baptisms from 1652-1819; 2,804 marriages and 970 marriage intentions from 1642-1825; 946 deaths from 1630-1818; and 358 burials from 1666-1899. The records also include 6 church admissions from 1691.

    The West precinct of Watertown was set off as the town of Waltham on January 4, 1738. Waltham vital records may be searched in our Massachusetts Vital Records to 1850 database. The records of Watertown Farms, which was set-off as the town of Weston on January 1, 1712, are published in: Town of Weston. Births, deaths and marriages, 1707-1850. 1703-Gravestones-1900. Church records, 1709-1825. Appendix and addenda, Cent society, gleanings from the town files, bits of genealogy, errors, indexes, &c. Call number: F74.W74 W57 1901.

    Images of the original book pages may be viewed from each search results page by clicking on the “Image” link.

    The four original volumes are available in our Boston Research Library, call numbers F74.W33 W3 V1-V4.

    Return to Table of Contents


    Nova Scotia Heritage Event in Boston

    The Nova Scotia Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, in cooperation with the Boston Parks Department, is introducing Connections, a kick-off event to this year’s ParkArts program. They will provide toe-tapping entertainment featuring Celtic music, Highland dancing and a special feature where Bostonians can search online with the Nova Scotia Archives to discover their Nova Scotia roots. The festival will be held Friday, June 1, 2007, noon to 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday, June 2, 2007, 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. (times are subject to change) at Copley Square, Boston.

    The Genealogical Association of Nova Scotia will have a booth at the event to discuss family history questions.

    This event is free and open to the public. For more information about Nova Scotia or the event, go to

    As part of the celebration, NEHGS is hosting a special lecture, The Nova Scotia - New England Connection from the 18th to the 20th Centuries, by Dr. Allan Marble of the Genealogical Association of Nova Scotia, at 2:00 P.M. Saturday, June 2. The one-hour lecture will be held at the Society in the 2nd floor Sloan Education Center. Among the positions held by Dr. Marble were President, Genealogical Association of Nova Scotia; President, Genealogical Institute of the Maritimes; Board of Trustees, Public Archives of Nova Scotia; and President, Royal Nova Scotia Historical Society. He has written numerous articles and books on Nova Scotia history and genealogy, including Nova Scotians at Home and Abroad; The Descendants of James McCabe and Ann Pettigrew; Deaths, Burials, and Probate of Nova Scotians, 1749-1799, from Primary Sources; and Deaths, Burials, and Probate of Nova Scotians, 1800-1850, from Primary Sources.

    The lecture is free and open to the public; no registration is necessary. For more information, contact Marie Daly at or 617-226-1231.

    Return to Table of Contents


    Come Home to New England

    The Society's Annual Come Home to New England program will be held twice this summer. In addition to special lectures available only to Come Home participants, each attendee will get personalized, one-on-one consultations with NEHGS staff experts. In addition, participants get access to the NEHGS research library during times when it is normally closed to the public. For more details about the programs, participating staff, fees, and other details, visit:

    Come Home to New England #1 Monday, June 18–Saturday, June 23, 2007
    Tutorial program with consultations in Boston, featuring Marie E. Daly, David Curtis Dearborn, F.A.S.G., Michael J. Leclerc, and D. Joshua Taylor.

    Come Home to New England #2 Monday, August 6–Saturday, August 11, 2007
    Tutorial program with consultations in Boston, featuring Marie E. Daly, David Curtis Dearborn, F.A.S.G., Henry B. Hoff, C.G., F.A.S.G., and D. Joshua Taylor.

    Return to Table of Contents


    Autographed Copies of Three Books by David Hackett Fischer

    NEHGS has a very limited number of autographed copies of the following best-selling books by the renowned author David Hackett Fischer:

    Washington's Crossing
    At the core of an impeccably researched, brilliantly executed military history is an analysis of George Washington's crossing of the Delaware River in December 1776 and the resulting destruction of the Hessian garrison of Trenton and defeat of a British brigade at Princeton. Fischer's perceptive discussion of the strategic, operational and tactical factors involved is by itself worth the book's purchase. He demonstrates Washington's insight into the revolution's desperate political circumstances, shows how that influenced the idea of a riposte against an enemy grown overconfident with success, and presents Washington's skillful use of what his army could do well. Even more useful is Fischer's analysis of the internal dynamics of the combatants. He demonstrates mastery of the character of the American, British and Hessian armies, highlighting that British troops, too, fought for ideals, sacred to them, of loyalty and service.

    Hardcover, 564pp, 2004, Normally $35.00, Now $32.50!

    Paul Revere's Ride
    It is rare when a scholarly history will appeal to a general readership, but such is the case with this book. Part biography of Revere and part history of the battles of Lexington and Concord, it places the "midnight ride" in the broad context of American resistance to Great Britain as just one of many similar actions taken by Revere and others.

    Soft cover, 464pp, 1995, Normally $21.95, Now $18.95!

    Albion's Seed: Four British Folkways in America
    This cultural history explains the European settlement of the United States as voluntary migrations from four English cultural centers. Families of zealous, literate Puritan yeomen and artisans from urbanized East Anglia established a religious community in Massachusetts (1629-40); royalist cavaliers headed by Sir William Berkeley and young, male indentured servants from the south and west of England built a highly stratified agrarian way of life in Virginia (1640-70); egalitarian Quakers of modest social standing from the North Midlands resettled in the Delaware Valley and promoted a social pluralism (1675-1715); and, in by far the largest migration (1717-75), poor borderland families of English, Scots, and Irish fled a violent environment to seek a better life in a similarly uncertain American backcountry. These four cultures, reflected in regional patterns of language, architecture, literacy, dress, sport, social structure, religious beliefs, and familial ways, persisted in the American settlements.

    Soft cover, 972pp, 1991, Normally $29.95, Now $26.95!

    Each book is autographed by the author. Very limited quantities are available, so orders will be filled while supplies last. Prices do NOT include shipping and handling ($7.50 for the first book and $2.00 for each additional book). To order, please call 1-617-226-1212. Sale prices good only until June 7th, 2007 (while supplies last).

    Return to Table of Contents


    Name Origins
    by Julie Helen Otto

    PEG, PEGGY (f) – Nickname formed from MARGARET.

    Return to Table of Contents


    Address Change Reminder

    As we start the summer season, we would like to remind our members to notify the membership department of any seasonal change of address you may have. Early notification will ensure timely delivery of your mail and magazines from the Society. Please contact us at or by telephone at 1-888-296-3447 if you have an address change.

    Return to Table of Contents


    Research Recommendations

    Citing Your Sources
    by Michael J. Leclerc

    As genealogists we know the importance of citing our sources. Every statement of fact must be documented with the source information. This allows you to go back and review your research when you discover conflicting information. It also allows future genealogists to go back to your original sources and confirm your findings.

    In published works, these source citations appear most often as endnotes or footnotes. Endnotes group all source notes together at the end of each chapter, or at the end of the text, before the index. Footnotes appear at the bottom of the page where the cited fact appears. The standard for compiled genealogies today is to use footnotes. This allows readers to quickly glance down and review the source of the information, as well as any explanatory text you may have. It also ensures that when photocopies of pages are made, the notes concerning the text are photocopied at the same time.

    When writing a compiled genealogy, you will discover that the same information appears in multiple places in the text. For example, birth information appears for an individual both in their own sketch and in their parents’ sketch, where they appear as a child. In addition, a single source may reveal several facts. A death record, for instance, may give a date and place of birth as well as the date and place of death. How do you prevent writing the same full citation over and over again?

    In times past, writers used Ibid., Op. Cit.and Loc. cit. to assist with this problem. Ibid., short for the Latin ibidem, “in the same place,” (always set in Roman type, not Italic), refers to the work cited in the note immediately proceeding. Op. Cit., short for the Latin opera citato, “in the work cited,” and Loc. Cit., loco citato, “in the place cited,” are used in conjunction with the author’s name to replace the title and publication information for a work cited earlier. All three of these abbreviations, however, can lead to incredible frustration on the part of the user. One might see pages of Ibid. in the footnotes. Worse yet, imagine a reader discovering “Anderson, op.cit., p. 381” in footnote 173 and having to read page after page back, only to discover that the full citation appeared in footnote 5.

    For these reasons, Ibid., Op. cit., and Loc. cit. are no longer used. They have been replaced with a shortened reference. The shortened reference includes the author’s surname with a shortened version of the title in italics. The shortened title often appears with a hereafter note at the end of the full citation. If the citation refers to a multivolume work, the volume appears before the page reference, separated by a colon. The example below illustrates multiple citations to The Great Migration Begins.

    Robert Charles Anderson, The Great Migration Begins: Immigrants to New England 1620-1633 (Boston, Mass.: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1995), 1:197 (hereafter TGMB).

    Anderson, TGMB, 1: 273.

    It can also be helpful to include a bibliography at the end of your book that lists all of the full citations for your sources. This will make it easier to cross-reference the short titles.

    Return to Table of Contents


    Spotlight: Ventura County Genealogical Society Archives
    by Valerie Beaudrault

    Ventura County is located on the Pacific coast in the southern part of California. It forms the northwestern part of the Greater Los Angeles area. Its county seat is Ventura (formally known as San Buenaventura). Oxnard is the largest city.

    The Ventura County Genealogical Society has made a number of online resources available to family history researchers. The Society’s volunteers continue to extract records for uploading to the website.

    Cemetery Records
    The cemetery list contains the names and addresses of twenty-one cemeteries with transcriptions for just over half of them. Among the cemeteries with transcribed records is the Japanese Cemetery in Oxnard.

    Census Records
    The following census record transcriptions can be found on the website: 1860 Census for San Buenaventura Township; 1870 Census of Township No. 1, Santa Barbara County (including Ventura County); and the 1900 Census of Simi, as well as links to the 1880 and 1900 census of Ventura County, which are part of the US GenWeb Census Project.

    Court Records
    There is a Guardianship Records Index for the period 1873–1993, set up alphabetically by surname. The data fields include full name, file number, and year. Index users should be advised that, because the index covers 120 years and the dates recorded mm/dd/yy, it is unclear whether 11/08/77 refers to November 8, 1877 or November 8, 1977.

    Death Records
    This database is an index to Ventura County Death Records for the periods 1872–1905 and 1906–1908. Data fields include date of death, surname given name, age sex, marital status, miscellaneous, years, months and days. The information in the miscellaneous field might include the name of the cemetery where the deceased is buried or the deceased’s occupation.

    Immigration Records
    The Immigration Records comprise four indexes to Naturalization Records and Declarations of Intent for the period from 1873 through November 1911 (Books 1 – 8). It should be noted that in some cases the names of witnesses have been included.

    Land Records
    There are three land records databases on the site — the Spanish and Mexican Land Grants in Ventura County and alphabetical grantor and grantee indexes to Ventura County Deed Records for the period 1873–1917.

    Marriage Records
    These databases are indexes to Ventura County Marriage Records for the periods 1873–1928 and 1929–1940. They are indexed alphabetically by groom and by bride.

    Military Records
    Military records include the following: two databases of Ventura County Veterans of World War I (newspaper listings) and a link to Records of California Men in the War of the Rebellion, 1861–1867, from the California Genealogy and History Archives.

    Miscellaneous Records
    The Miscellaneous Records include transcriptions of three city, county and business directories and a list of victims of the St. Francis Dam Disaster.

    There are two obituary indexes. The obituaries in the Index to Obituary Notices from Ventura County Newspapers have been extracted from thirteen area newspapers and cover various time periods between 1870 and 2007, with most falling between 1870 and 1937. The other index is to Fillmore Newspaper Obituary Notices, 1916–1996. The obituaries are from four Fillmore newspapers. There is also a separate index to Maiden Names, which gives maiden name, married name, and death date.

    Probate Records
    The probate records in this section include Will Book abstracts extracted from Will Book 1 for Ventura County. The original records can be found in the Ventura County Recorder’s Office. The data fields include page, name, residence, date signed, date died, date filed, and named relatives. There is also a Probate Records Index for the period 1873–1993. As with the other court records indexes, users should be advised that, because the index covers 120 years and the dates recorded mm/dd/yy, it is unclear whether 11/08/77 refers to November 8, 1877 or November 8, 1977.

    Voter Records
    Voter registration records can provide a great deal of information for family history researchers. The records on this site include the Great Register, 1866–1869, for portions of Ventura County included in Santa Barbara records. Data found in the index includes name, age, nativity, occupation, residence, and date of registration. In addition there are the Ventura County Great Register for 1890; Voter Registrations for 1904 for Conejo, Hueneme, Pleasant Valley and Simi Precincts; Great Register of 1912 for Camarillo and Conejo Precincts; and Voter Registrations of 1916 for Camarillo Precincts 1 and 2. The 1904 Voter Registration index noted above even includes the height of the registrant and other physical markings such as scars.

    There is also county history information, a historical map of Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties, photographs of people and places in Ventura County, and biographical information about early county residents.


    Return to Table of Contents


    From the Online Genealogist

    The 1860 United States Federal Census lists Edward K. Geyer, born about 1827- Maine, Residence 1860 – Charlestown, Middlesex, Massachusetts on page 6 as an Inmate of the State Prison. Do you know if any of the prison records are still available and, if so, how would I go about locating them?

    The Massachusetts State Archives has the microfilm of the Charlestown State Prison for 1805–1930. These were microfilmed by the Family History Library in 1994. You can also borrow these from NEHGS, or your local FHL Library.

    Indexes (items 1-7) 1805–1930 Entries of convicts (items 8-9) 1805-1824 Commitment register (item 10) 1818–1840 (FHL US/CAN Film # 1977970); Commitment registers 1840-1882 (FHL US/CAN Film # 1977971); Commitment registers 1882–1930 (FHL US/CAN Film # 1977972); Warden's memorandum of prisoners 1858–1902, and recommitment register 1805–1831 (FHL US/CAN Film # 1977973 Items 1-2).

    The Massachusetts State Archives can be reached at:

    Secretary of the Commonwealth
    Massachusetts Archives
    220 Morrissey Blvd.
    Boston, MA 02125
    Telephone: (617) 727-2816
    Fax: (617) 288-8429

    NEHGS does not own a copy of these microfilms. We do have a related item in our archives: a leather-bound volume with handwritten record of the medical treatment provided to inmates at the Massachusetts State Prison in Charlestown. End sheet has "Robert Clark Esqr Records commencing Jan 1816". Most entries just list the date, surname and treatment although a few provide more detail. R. Stanton Avery Special Collections Department, Call Number # Mss 538.

    David Allen Lambert is the Society’s Online Genealogist. If you would like to ask him a question, contact him at or visit his blog at For more information about the Online Genealogist visit Please note that he will make every effort to reply to each message, but will respond on a first-come, first-served basis.

    Return to Table of Contents


    Stories of Interest

    PBS’ NewsHour television show recently interviewed CEO Tim Sullivan and Craig Scott, CG, president and CEO of Heritage Books in Maryland, about genealogical research. Read a transcript of the interview or listen to an audio recording at

    A newspaper story profiling World War II veteran Hamlin Caldwell Jr. of Toney was discovered by a Hamlin Caldwell in Ohio who was doing a Google search for his name. A few e-mails later, the same-name cousins, both with a passion for genealogy, met Saturday. Read the full story in The Huntsville Times at

    Return to Table of Contents


    Upcoming Public Lecture Series

    Our lectures explore a wide range of research skills and sources and are free and open to the public. They are offered in the Richardson-Sloane Education Center at 101 Newbury Street on Wednesdays at 10:00 A.M. unless otherwise stated. Advance registration is not necessary.

    Mystic River and the Boston Jewish Community, Prof. Ellen Smith
    May 31, 5:00 PM (Thursday)
    Please join us for a reception and lecture by Ellen Smith, Brandeis professor and acclaimed author of The Boston Jews. In the early 20th century, the Mystic River communities of Chelsea, Malden, Everett, East Boston, and Revere had some of the largest populations of Jewish immigrants in the United States. The Boston Globe described them as the forgotten Jews of Greater Boston, who created “bustling, thriving enclaves near the mouth of the Mystic River.” Come hear about this fascinating history of Jewish immigrants in the Mystic River communities, as well as the Boston neighborhoods of the West End, Dorchester, and Roxbury.

    New Visitor Welcome & Library Tour, Marie Daly
    Wednesday June 6, 10:00 AM
    New visitors will be welcomed, given a chance to introduce themselves, meet other new visitors, describe their research and have knowledgeable staff advise them on how to proceed. The thirty-minute welcome will be followed by a tour of the library.

    Boston Streets: City Directories, Maps and Photographs Online, Connie Reik
    Saturday, June 9, 10:00 AM

    For more information about lectures offered by New England Historic Genealogical Society, please go to the Education homepage at or call 1-888-286-3447.

    Return to Table of Contents


    Upcoming Education Programs

    Each year the Society presents a large number of lectures, seminars, and tours for genealogists.

    The following major programs will be held May-November 2007:

    Come Home to New England #1 Monday, June 18–Saturday, June 23, 2007
    Tutorial program with consultations in Boston, featuring Marie E. Daly, David Curtis Dearborn, F.A.S.G., Michael J. Leclerc, and D. Joshua Taylor.

    Come Home to New England #2 Monday, August 6–Saturday, August 11, 2007
    Tutorial program with consultations in Boston, featuring Marie E. Daly, David Curtis Dearborn, F.A.S.G., Henry B. Hoff, C.G., F.A.S.G., and D. Joshua Taylor.

    English Family History Research Tour to London Sunday, September 9–Sunday, September 16, 2007
    Lodging: Holiday Inn Bloomsbury. Features Christopher C. Child and David Curtis Dearborn, F.A.S.G.

    Research Tour to Salt Lake City Sunday, October 28–Sunday, November 4, 2007
    Lodging: Salt Lake Plaza Hotel. Features Jerome E. Anderson, Maryan Egan-Baker, Christopher C. Child, David Allen Lambert, and Rhonda R. McClure.

    For more information about NEHGS programs, visit or email

    Return to Table of Contents


    NEHGS Contact Information

    We encourage you to email this newsletter to others who might be interested. To subscribe or view back issues of eNews, please visit

    NEHGS eNews, like all of our programs, is made possible through the generous contributions of our members. For more information about giving to NEHGS visit

    To view the website of the New England Historic Genealogical Society, please visit

    To become a member of the New England Historic Genealogical Society, please visit

    Copyright 2007, New England Historic Genealogical Society
    101 Newbury Street, Boston, MA 02116

    Return to Table of Contents

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

© 2010 - 2014 New England Historic Genealogical Society