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. 8
    Whole #310
    February 21, 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
    * Massachusetts Vital Records, 1911-1915 Now Available in Library
    * Name Origins
    * Autographed Copies of Guide to Massachusetts Cemeteries
    * Article on Women's Obituaries in Historical Newspapers
    * Research Recommendations: Hospital Records
    * Spotlight: Sharlot Hall Museum and Archives, Arizona
    * From the Online Genealogist
    * Stories of Interest
    * Upcoming Public Lecture Series
    * Upcoming Education Programs
    * NEHGS Contact Information


    New Databases on New

    New England Historical and Genealogical Register - Just added 2000

    The New England Historical and Genealogical Register database is one of the most frequently used on We are working to bring the database up to date to include the most current issues of the Register. This week, we add the four issues of Volume 154, published in 2000.

    Return to Table of Contents


    Massachusetts Vital Records, 1911-1915 Now Available in Library

    The NEHGS library has finally received the greatly anticipated microfilms of the Massachusetts Vital Records, 1911-1915. The films are now available in the microtext department on the fourth floor of the library. Volumes 50-53 of the 1913 deaths are not yet available. We are working on creating an electronic index for these records to include on our website.


    Return to Table of Contents


    Name Origins
    by Julie Helen Otto

    EGIDIUS, AEGIDIUS (m) – Latin for GILES.

    Return to Table of Contents


    Get Autographed Copies of Guide to Massachusetts Cemeteries

    The NEHGS Sales department is offering personally inscribed copies of the hugely popular work Guide to Massachusetts Cemeteries by NEHGS Online Genealogist David Allen Lambert at the discounted price of $15.00!

    Now a researcher can quickly gain information on:

    • cemetery names
    • year of the consecration of the cemetery, or the oldest known gravestone or burial
    • location of the cemetery
    • printed and manuscript sources for the cemetery
    • contact information for the office affilliated with the cemetery

    This book contains many previously undocumented burial grounds as well as citations to published transcriptions of gravestone listings in places such as the New England Historic Genealogical Society, the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution, and the official series of Massachusetts vital records to 1850. A must for those with ties to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts!


    To order, please call 1-617-226-1212. Prices good through February 28th, 2007, while supplies last.

    Return to Table of Contents


    Article on Women’s Obituaries in Historical Newspapers

    A popular resource provided to NEHGS members through the website is the Early American Newspapers database (also known as America’s Historical Newspapers). “Reading the Lives of Women through Their Obituaries: With Tips for Searching in Historical Newspapers” provides a glimpse into one of the many uses for the database. Read the article at

    NEHGS members can use the Early American Newspapers database at

    Return to Table of Contents


    Research Recommendations

    Hospital Records
    by Michael J. Leclerc

    Spending a great deal of time at the hospital with my mother this week, my thoughts turned to the significance of hospital records in genealogical research. Modern records may be difficult or impossible to obtain due to privacy laws, especially since the passage of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). Since the privacy clause went into effect in 2003, access to health information has been greatly restricted.

    Older records, however, are often more easily accessed. In the NEHGS manuscript collection is a volume of admissions to Boston City Hospital from 1867 to 1870. The information in this unique volume includes patient registration number; date of admittance; name of patient; amount of times previously admitted; the hospital ward they were admitted to; rate of their individual board costs; age; married or single; occupation; disease of the patient; place of birth; residence (including street address for city residents); when discharged from the hospital; final results of their stay; surgeon and physician assigned to patient; and remarks. In the remarks field you will often get the date of death, or a variety of personal remarks about the patient's stay at the hospital. This register is also available online at

    Many records from the hospitals (Hôtel-Dieu) at Québec and Montréal are available on microfilm. Early records are available online through the Programme de Recherche en Démographie Historique at The information contained in these records varies, but usually includes at least the patient’s name and date of hospitalization. Causes of death are sometimes included, and occasionally one can find references to places of origins for patients.

    Hospital records from the Revolutionary War can be found in “Continental Hospital Returns, 1777-1780” by John W. Jordan in April, 1899, issue of The Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography. In addition to summary information by state or regiment, the work includes information on individuals. One can find, for example, a list dated December 8, 1778, at Chester showing that Robert Bromwell of Dean’s Company in the 5th Maryland Regiment was sent to the hospital at New Windsor with bilious fever.

    Try searching library catalogs with the term “hospital” to see if records might be available for a facility in your area of research. Remember to also use other words such as asylum or clinic.

    Return to Table of Contents


    Spotlight: Sharlot Hall Museum and Archives, Arizona
    by Valerie Beaudrault

    The Sharlot Hall Museum was founded in 1928. According to her biography on the museum’s website, Sharlot Mabridth Hall was born in 1870. She traveled with her family from Kansas to the Arizona Territory in 1882. The family raised horses and mined gold on Lynx Creek. Sharlot Hall wrote about frontier life in the Arizona territory, expressing her thoughts in prose and poetry. In 1909 she was appointed to the position of Territorial Historian, the first woman to hold territorial office in Arizona. In 1927 she moved her collection of artifacts and documents into the Old Governor's Mansion and opened it as a museum.

    Located in Prescott, the Sharlot Hall Museum is the largest museum in central Arizona. The Sharlot Hall Museum Library and Archives “collects and preserves archaeological, cultural, and historical materials related to Yavapai County and Northern Arizona.”

    Online Resources
    The online genealogical resources of the Sharlot Hall Museum and Archives include obituary and cemetery databases, a census index for Yavapai County, and an index of residents at the Arizona Pioneers' Home.

    Newspaper Obituary Index Project
    This index is a work in progress with records being added on a daily basis. The obituaries come mostly from Prescott, Arizona, newspapers. The information found in the obituaries may include information about funeral services, burial sites, the deceased’s occupations and their involvement in civic and religious organization, or the information may be limited simply to name and date of death.

    The database can be searched by surname and given name. Search results include last name, first name, publication title, and publication date. Click on the name link to view the detailed record. The data fields in the detailed record include the name of the deceased, newspaper title, date of the obituary, page and column numbers, date of birth, place of death, date of death, cemetery name, date of birth, and name of funeral home.

    Yavapai County Cemetery Database:
    The Yavapai County Cemetery Database was started in 1989 by the Northern Arizona Genealogy Society. Sources for the data in the index include grave markers; obituaries from Yavapai County, Arizona, newspapers; mortuary and death records; the Social Security Death Index; and files and records in the Sharlot Hall Museum Archives. Over 70 cemeteries are indexed in this database. Burial lists, maps and additional information for Yavapai County cemeteries are available at the Sharlot Hall Museum Archives and Library.

    The database can be searched by surname and given name. Search results include last name, first name, date of birth and date of death. Data fields in the detailed record includes name of the deceased, place and date of birth, place and date of death, cemetery where buried, plot marker information, name of spouse, names of parents, occupation, and remarks. The remarks include information from the death certificate, such as cause of death or length of time lived in the area.

    Census Indexes
    The 1870, 1880, 1900 and 1920 censuses for Yavapai County, Arizona have been indexed by the Sharlot Hall Museum. The data fields recorded in the index include last name, first name, age (1920 only), occupation (1920 only), precinct/enumeration district, and page numbers. To search the census index you must enter at least part of a last or first name in the search box. Only one year may be searched at a time. The search results include name and page information.

    Arizona Pioneers' Home Resident Index 1911-2000
    In 1911 the Territory of Arizona established the Arizona Pioneers' Home in order to take care of “aged and infirm Arizonans.” The home was initially a “men only” institution and most residents were miners. A woman's wing was added to the home five years later in 1916. Still in existence today, the Pioneers' Home admits “pioneers” who are over 65 and have lived in Arizona for over 30 years. The database can be searched by surname, given name, and county of origin. Search results include last name, first name, county, and book and page number information.

    Other Resources
    Since 1997 the archives department of The Sharlot Hall Museum has edited a weekly column, “Days Past,” for the local newspaper. These columns are focused on the history of Yavapai County and the surrounding region. You may browse through the articles or run a keyword search of the articles and photographs in the database. This database is a work in progress with articles being added on a regular basis.

    Return to Table of Contents


    Stories of Interest

    Nominations Open for 2007 Filby Prize for Genealogical Librarianship
    Each year the Filby Prize for Genealogical Librarianship is awarded for outstanding contribution to the field. Nominations are judged on several criteria. For additional details, or to nominate your favorite librarian, visit https:/ The prize is awarded at the National Genealogical Society’s Conference in the States, and comes with an award of $1,000.

    Return to Table of Contents


    From the Online Genealogist

    My ancestor’s brother in New Brunswick, Canada, was on a census listed as an employee of the Icrr or ICRR. What does this stand for, and what would he have done?

    Your relative was a railway worker for the Intercolonial Railway (more commonly abbreviated as IRC or ICR), which existed in Canada from 1872 to 1918. Moncton, New Brunswick, was one of the main hubs for the ICR in the 19th century. You can find out more about the ICR and the history of “The People’s Railway” at


    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


    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 and Saturdays at 10:00 A.M. unless otherwise stated. Advance registration is not necessary.

    Future programs for the first quarter of 2007 include:

    March 3 (Saturday at 10:00 am), Marie Daly, New Visitor Welcome and Library Tour
    March 7, Joshua Taylor, Creating Your Personal Genealogical Website
    March 14, David Lambert, Getting the Most from NEHGS Databases
    March 17 (Saturday at 10:00 am), Shelley Barber and Marie Daly, Researching Immigrant Documents: The Prendergast Letters
    March 21, Martin Hollick, New Englanders in the 1600s
    March 28, Rhonda McClure, Using Your Computer for Genealogical Analysis


    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 March-November 2007:

    Writing Your Family History: Organizing Your Material and Getting Started Saturday, March 31, 2007
    Seminar in Boston

    Genetics and Genealogy Saturday, April 21, 2007
    Seminar in Boston

    Research Day at NARA Northeast Region Wednesday, May 16, 2007
    Location: Waltham, MA

    Come Home to New England #1 Monday, June 18–Saturday, June 23, 2007
    Tutorial program with consultations in Boston

    Come Home to New England #2 Monday, August 6–Saturday, August 11, 2007
    Tutorial program with consultations in Boston

    English Family History Research Tour to London Sunday, September 9–Sunday, September 16, 2007
    Lodging: Holiday Inn Bloomsbury

    Research Tour to Salt Lake City Sunday, October 28–Sunday, November 4, 2007
    Lodging: Salt Lake Plaza Hotel

    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