- Once infected, always infected. There is no cure for the genealogy bug.
- The ancestry.com subscription is non-negotiable. Pick your battles carefully.
- Never, EVER throw away paper found on the office floor.
- Food. Clothing. Shelter. Computer. The basics of life. Continue reading
Category Archives: Uncategorized
This document was found while out shopping for antiques, and I couldn’t pass it up. My attempts to locate descendants of Julia were not successful, so I’m hoping that one will find me so it can be returned to family! The document is posted below along with the transcription:
The people of the State of New York by the Grace of God free & independent – To all to whom these presents shall come or may concern, send Greeting – Continue reading
Mary Hill’s Legacy webinar “Land Records Solve Research Problems” really solved my research problem!
I’ve posted about some of my successes using land records previously, and how I was able to piece together the 18th century business relationships of my Wasgatt and Stanwood families who intermarried frequently on Mount Desert Island, Maine, by using Hancock county’s digitized land records. (You can read my post here.) Having dabbled in land records, I felt like I had a basic understanding of the info contained and how it could benefit my research. However, I was still a bit intimidated by the terminology utilized in the records, so when I saw Legacy Family Tree’s webinar by Mary Hill entitled, “Land Records Solve Research Problems” earlier this summer, I decided to listen in. (Actually, I ended up subscribing – their series of webinars is excellent!)
Mary did a superb job of explaining the various terms used in land records, the differences in assorted types of mortgage transactions, and how this info can help you in your family history. Probably the most important tidbit I picked up was how records pertaining to multiple individuals (i.e., “et al”) are some of the most important records, as they may contain clues about relationships of the people listed and are often the most helpful in our research. Armed with this knowledge, this past July while visiting the Penobscot County (Maine) Registry of Deeds I spent the bulk of the day happily researching the transfer of Benjamin Stanwood’s three lots located in Northern Woodville as they passed from hand to hand. That evening, back at the hotel, I drew a diagram showing the names and dates of grantors/grantees, trying to see a pattern. Benjamin often mortgaged the property, and the mortgages were frequently sold. The property always ended up back in family hands (you can read here about finding my fourth cousin who currently resides on the property), but I wanted to try and connect each sale through the land records. Some may have considered it a waste of time (why does it matter that that property was mortgaged with a sale to Hayford but mysteriously purchased back from Swett?) but I was determined to trace it’s passing from hand to hand whenever possible and headed back to the Registry of Deeds the next morning to try and find the missing link. THANK GOODNESS I DID!!!
That one missing deed, showing the land was sold by Timothy Hayford to C.T. Bragg and William Hayford, includes a very important statement:
…being the same lots deeded to me by Benjamin Stanwood, late of said township, deceased… Continue reading
None of us were born professional genealogists. Some of us (such as moi!!) have NO aspirations to become one. However, I love genealogy. I am obsessed with it. I strive to do a good job. I cite my sources. I attend conferences. I read books. I listen to webinars. I apply what I learn. I’m long past the stage of simply wanting to get to the next generation; rather, I’d prefer to get to “know” my ancestors better by filling in the details of their lives with information on how they lived, what they did, what they ate, who they associated with. This is what makes genealogy fun.
A few weeks ago I began drafting a short biography of my great-great grandfather, Albert J. Stanwood. I’ve been working on this line for well over 20 years, and thought it would be fun to put together something that I could share with extended family members, starting with Albert, and working my way back to HIS fifth great grandfather and colonial ancestor, Philip Stainwood, the first of the name in the United States. It should be simple I thought, since I have the usual birth, marriage, death, and land records, old letters written from one family member to another, photographs and obituaries and other interesting facts for the family. I’ve taken several research trips to Massachusetts, Maine and Minnesota where the family had lived. Everything should be in order. A tweak here and a tweak there should be all that’s needed. Piece of cake, right? Continue reading
Last Sunday was quite momentous. I actually went to the movie theater. This was only the third time in the last eight years I was willing to give up 3 hours of my time and fork over $15 to see a film, but Lincoln was sooooo worth it! The civil war era is absolutely my favorite period in history, so that was an added bonus.
Leaving the theater, instead of thinking about the war as a historical event, I began to ponder how it affected my ancestors, their towns and communities, and their daily lives. Mostly, how did it affect their families?
At the start of the Civil War in 1861, both the Union and Confederate sides began mobilizing troops. Continue reading
In order to identify our subject’s parents, we first start with known facts, working from the most present information to the past. Family sources stated Jacob (also known as “John” or “Jack”) Meiselman had the following siblings:
- Izzie of Boston, Massachusetts
- Ben, who resided in North Carolina, and who had a son named Michael, who also resided in North Carolina. Ben owned movie theaters.
- Herman (research showed that Herman Benjamin [who sometimes used the middle name Bernard] is the same person as Ben above)
- Lottie Continue reading
I’m home. I’m finally home. Not just home in a house, but home on the East Coast. I’m finally where I belong, in the midst of my ancestors, many of whom died centuries ago.
At the end of March, my husband announced he’d applied for a job in Maryland. By May he’d moved into an apartment, and I was furiously house-hunting for our new, permanent residence online. By July I’d finished preparing our five-acre ranch home in California for market, and on August 13th the day it closed escrow, my son and I loaded up all of my family heirlooms and my genealogical records into a uHaul (would never consider sending such items with the moving company who took the rest of our household belongings!), buckled up the menagerie of dogs, and began our 2,800 mile trip to the Mid-Atlantic! I’m not looking back! Continue reading