Category Archives: Genealogy

Motivation Monday: Summing Up June Goals

So, in the beginning of June I laid out my goals for the month. Which, was a big step considering I got off track for a few months (which is probably to norm for me). The good news is that I feel I did ok for the month. No big stellar steps taken, but baby steps are there.

My goals for June were:

Writing: Most of my time has been spent with writing or working at IDG, I want to get back to blogging here, on my personal blog at least once a week. I am working on a weekly calendar to keep my time divided for everything I need to do.

One of my goals is to write a book on one of my families this year, I have not started that at this point. But, it is still something I want to do. It might move to be a goal for next year. Jen Holik told me that I needed to read Sharan DeBartolo Carmack’s book, You Can Write Your Family History. I need to get a copy and move from there.

I have started a book project and have the chapters I want already in place, plus a few of the chapters have been started on. I need to put this in my weekly calendar so that I can move the project forward.

For the month of June, I wrote 4 posts for this blog. I also wrote 2 articles for my Examiner Column, an article for Irish Times Remembered and posted to my photo blog 2x (no writing there, lol). 

So, I feel that I did very well this month with writing. Next month, I will be launching a new blog related to travel and photography and will probably spend a lot of time on that. I also have plans to redo this website in the very near future, so writing might be in the back seat for now as I plan all of the changes I am going to be making.

Organization: This seems to be the area that will never be complete! Just this past week I cleaned my desk off again. I made some file folders and got many things filed, now I just need to get a file box for all of them. I also still need to go through all of my family files and get them cleaned up and organized. I also might put together some files for the places I am researching to keep up on the history of that specific area (thanks to Pat Biallas of Geneajourneys for this great idea).

The good news here is that I went through a large pile of genealogy related papers and have them all filed (I still need a file cabinet for them) in folders. I need to go through the ones that are in a file box and make sure I have the files set up the way I did the new ones. The exciting part of this is, I have all of my records together that need to be transcribed. I figured it best to keep them away from the folder they belong in until I get this completed. I seem to work better when I have the certain steps I need to do completely mapped out in writing (or by different folders). So, I hope to move on that sometime this year.

Education: I am into month 4 (I believe) of ProGen 15. So far, I am loving the opportunity to have monthly discussions with my peer group. Second best is going over everyone’s assignments. Personally, I am a visual learner and I tend to learn more by looking at everyone’s assignment rather than the reading. I am trying to stay ahead on this, but it seems that I usually get my assignment in just in the nick of time. Need to get ahead of this, that way I can have the rest of the month to work on everything else.

ProGen goes well, still getting the assignment in within the last two days or so. But, the important part is that I am still in the game and working towards this. This is a long program to commit to and there are times when I ask myself why I did this and then I remember that it is to make me a better genealogist and to really take a look at the business aspect of genealogy. I am not 100% sure if I plan to be a for hire researcher, but if I do, I am prepared.


As for July, I am not setting any goals for the month. Personally, I have way too much going on for the month to try to commit to doing anything that needs to be done.

Also, I cannot believe it is July already. 2012 is going fast!!!

How did you do in the month of June with your goals?

Finding Ireland in Irish Lives Remembered

Today is a big day for me. A few weeks back, I received an email asking me if I would like to contribute to a new digi mag based on Irish research. I was super excited and honored to be asked to write for something that I was not a part of and for someone who I did not know.

I have written for myself on this blog a few years, I write over at The In-Depth Genealogist now and then and usually I have a monthly column as well. But, for someone to reach out and ask me to write about my Irish ancestors and my research, that truly touched me. So, I took a few days and compiled some of my posts here what information I have and wrote my article, which I titled Finding Ireland and sent it in to Irish Lives Remembered.

Today while reading my email, I read through my Y-IRL list and was excited to see that someone shared a new Irish digital magazine. Yep, for Irish Lives Remembered. I was super excited to see my words in print. So, while I was at a stop light I clicked through and found my article. Yay! It looked absolutely beautiful. The whole magazine does.

This month there is a 24 page section on Cork, which includes Irish genealogy resources. Those researching Irish ancestors can understand that any place that lists resources for your Irish ancestors, is a good thing to read. I cannot wait to dig into this.

Thanks again to Eileen, for asking me to write about my Irish ancestors and research. I was truly honored to do so.

To read the Irish Lives Remembered Magazine, click here. Make sure to read pages 37 – 39 for my article, Finding Ireland.

This Weeks Mystery Has Been Solved

Earlier in the week, I wrote a post about things I learned in the 1940 Census on my great-great uncle, John O’Connell. You can read the original post here. It seems for a few years, he owned a restaurant in Hudson Falls, NY and I wanted to find out the name and see if said restaurant was still open. Thanks to my friend Terri on Facebook, I know have the information.

Last night, Terri was kind enough to post on my Facebook wall that she had found the name of the restaurant and she also left me a link to where she found the information on Ancestry.

Here is a cropped version of the record.

Twin Acres was the name of his restaurant. I googled it and did not find a listing for it. I will however be setting an alert on Ebay to see if I can find anything there.

The next question is, who is the Mary listed under John? John had a sister Mary who married three different times. Could this be her, between husbands?

Thanks to Terri and all my friends on FB who take the time out to help each other with all the genealogy questions. If you are not on Facebook, I highly recommend any genealogist to open an account. It is a great way to network and get help with your research when you hit a block!

What Were your Ancestors Doing in 1940

With the release of the 1940 Census in April, most genealogists have been spending time mining the census for any information they can find on their family. We have spent many hours trying to locate each ancestor to see how they were living in 1940, how did the depression affect them?

I was excited this week when I found my great-great uncle John O’Connell in the 1940 Census (thanks to all who indexed the state of New York, I found this with a shaking leaf on Ancestry.com). Not only was he still living with his wife, they also had a boarder.

John’s wife Beatrice was a music teacher and worked all 52 weeks of the year. how exciting to read that, given the times and how tight money was, I am amazed that she still had work. According to the census information, she worked for a private company. So, she could have been self employed or worked for a company. She did not work for the public schools.  She worked 8 hours per week. But, the important piece is that she is working.

John was lucky too! He worked all 52 weeks at a restaurant, that he owned at about 70 hours per week.

John O’Connell household, 1940 Census, Glens Falls, Warren, NY. Ancestry.com

John’s lived at 61 Sherman Ave. and his home was valued at $6,000 which is not so bad, it could definitely have been worse.

I would like to find out what restaurant John owned. I have already looked through the directory records on Ancestry and have not found any information on the restaurant. The only information that was given pertained to John, himself.

O’Connell, John. US City Directories, 1937 Glens Falls, NY. Ancestry.com

This tells me that John and Beatrice lived in a house at 61 Sherman Ave (same place as 1940 Census). John had business (bus) and it was in Hudson Falls (HF). I was able to determine the HF = Hudson Falls because another listing showed someone employed (emp) in Schndy (Schenectady).

So, do you have any thoughts how we can figure out what restaurant John owned? At this point, I have not looked at deeds or probate records for him.

*As a side not, I do know that by 1942 John was employed by Luzerne Villa from the US City Directory.*

NY State Census Records

Last week, Ancestry released the New York State Census records for 1892, 1915 and 1925. I had already looked through the 1892 on Family Search and have that document saved on my hard drive, but I was excited to add it to my online family tree, finally.

My hard to research, Irish, O’Connell line was in NY for many years and I was excited to be able to look at them through these newly available records. The most important thing I learned is that my great-great grandfather, John O’Connell told the census taker in 1925 that he was naturalized in Rutland, VT in 1874! I am excited to have another tidbit of his life and hope to be able to find the record.

Of course, with a name like John O’Connell it will probably take forever to flush him out!

Have you had any recent luck with new records online? Please share your stories!

Motivation Monday: June Goals

Here we are, the middle of 2012. How fast time flies. This year has been busier than I expected and because of this, I had to take a minor break from my genealogy goals. I have been busy in the genealogy world with The In-Depth Genealogist (IDG) and the planning for all we want to do there. But, I digress. The In-Depth Genealogist has nothing to do with what I want to do here on my personal blog and in my genealogy research.

June Goals:

Writing: Most of my time has been spent with writing or working at IDG, I want to get back to blogging here, on my personal blog at least once a week. I am working on a weekly calendar to keep my time divided for everything I need to do.

One of my goals is to write a book on one of my families this year, I have not started that at this point. But, it is still something I want to do. It might move to be a goal for next year. Jen Holik told me that I needed to read Sharan DeBartolo Carmack’s book, You Can Write Your Family History. I need to get a copy and move from there.

I have started a book project and have the chapters I want already in place, plus a few of the chapters have been started on. I need to put this in my weekly calendar so that I can move the project forward.

Organization: This seems to be the area that will never be complete! Just this past week I cleaned my desk off again. I made some file folders and got many things filed, now I just need to get a file box for all of them. I also still need to go through all of my family files and get them cleaned up and organized. I also might put together some files for the places I am researching to keep up on the history of that specific area (thanks to Pat Biallas of Geneajourneys for this great idea).

Education: I am into month 4 (I believe) of ProGen 15. So far, I am loving the opportunity to have monthly discussions with my peer group. Second best is going over everyone’s assignments. Personally, I am a visual learner and I tend to learn more by looking at everyone’s assignment rather than the reading. I am trying to stay ahead on this, but it seems that I usually get my assignment in just in the nick of time. Need to get ahead of this, that way I can have the rest of the month to work on everything else.

Where are you with your goals for the year?

 

Amanuensis Monday: Wilhelm Jonas Naturalization Record

165

United States of America

State of Illinois,

Cook County

Pleas, before the honorable EW Burke one of the Judges of the Circuit Court of Cook County, at a term thereof begun and held at Chicago, in said county and state, on the third Monday (being the 15th day) of October in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred 4and the Independence of the United States the one hundred 19th.

Present, Honorable EW Burke one of the Judges of the Circuit Court of Cook County.

Jacob J. Kern States Attorney,

James H. Gilbert Sheriff.

Attest Frank J Gaulter clerk,

On the 23d day of October A.D. 1894, being one of the days aforesaid, came Wilhelm Jonas an alien, into court, and applied to be admitted as a naturalized citizen of the United States, and it having appeared to the satisfaction of the Court that the said applicant has resided within the limits and under the jurisdiction of the United States, for and during the full term of five years last past, and one year and upward immediately proceeding date hereof, in the State of Illinois, and that during said term of five years he has sustained a good moral character, and appeared to be attached to to the principle contained in the Constitution of the United States, as well disposed to the good order, well being, and happiness of the same, and two years and upwards have elapsed since the said applicant filed the declaration of his intention to become a citizen of the United States, according to the provisions of the several Acts of Congress heretofore passed on that subject; and he having now here, in open Court, taken and subscribed the oath required by those laws to support the Constitution of the United States, and to renounce and abjure all allegiances and fidelity to every foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty whatever, and more particularly all allegiance which he may in anywise owe to Emperor of Germany whereof he was heretofore a subject.

It is Therefore Ordered and Adjudge, by the Court, that the said Wilhelm Jonas be, and he is hereby admitted to all and singular the rights, privileges and immunities of a naturalized citizen of the United States, and that the same be certified by the Clerk of this Court, under the seal of said Court accordingly.

My Afternoon at The Archives

Today, I took some time out of my busy day to actually do bit of researching for my Jonas line. One of my goals is to NBC able to prove/disprove is Wilhem Jonas (my great-great grandfather) is related to Johann Jonas (who lived in the same general area and who’s children share the names of Wilhelm’s).

A few months back, I found the index record for both of their naturalization records on ancestry.com. At that time, I printed each index out knowing I would go to find their actual paperwork at IRAD. This morning, I decided today was that day. After I found the print outs of the index, I grabbed a quick lunch and set out on my mission.

Once I got to IRAD and requested my film, I sat and searched through the first roll of film. I was so upset because the index told me exactly what page I should find the record on and it was no there. I rewound the film, set it to the side and moved on tithe next roll. This roll was supposed to hold the record for Johann Wilhelm’s, I went to the page it listed and did not find him. I scrolled through every book that was on this roll and found zilch! I was disappointed, to say the least.

I went back to the desk and spoke with the lady that was kind enough to assist me. We again looked at my ancestry index print out and decided we would try another volume. The index showed it should be volume 76 and I had already been through 73-76 and found nothing. So, looking at the printout, I suggested we try 78. The 8 could easily have been mistaken for a 6.

While the lady looked for that roll of film, I went back to my first roll to see if Wilhelm’ would make an appearance. When I first started rolling through the film, I did not understand that there were multiple books on a film. I quickly went to the second book and then rolled forward to get to the correct page number, and there he was, Wilhelm’s Jonas! I was so excited. I printed off the paperwork and got ready for the next roll.

                    165 United States of America State of Illinois, Cook County Pleas, before the honorable EW Burke one of the Judges of the Circuit Court of Cook County, at a term thereof begun and held at Chicago, in said county and state, on the third Monday (being the 15th day) of October in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred 4and the Independence of the United States the one hundred 19th. Present, Honorable EW Burke one of the Judges of the Circuit Court of Cook County. Jacob J. Kern States Attorney, James H. Gilbert Sheriff. Attest Frank J Gaulter clerk, On the 23d day of October A.D. 1894, being one of the days aforesaid, came Wilhelm Jonas an alien, into court, and applied to be admitted as a naturalized citizen of the United States, and it having appeared to the satisfaction of the Court that the said applicant has resided within the limits and under the jurisdiction of the United States, for and during the full term of five years last past, and one year and upward immediately proceeding date hereof, in the State of Illinois, and that during said term of five years he has sustained a good moral character, and appeared to be attached to to the principle contained in the Constitution of the United States, as well disposed to the good order, well being, and happiness of the same, and two years and upwards have elapsed since the said applicant filed the declaration of his intention to become a citizen of the United States, according to the provisions of the several Acts of Congress heretofore passed on that subject; and he having now here, in open Court, taken and subscribed the oath required by those laws to support the Constitution of the United States, and to renounce and abjure all allegiances and fidelity to every foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty whatever, and more particularly all allegiance which he may in anywise owe to Emperor of Germany whereof he was heretofore a subject. It is Therefore Ordered and Adjudge, by the Court, that the said Wilhelm Jonas be, and he is hereby admitted to all and singular the rights, privileges and immunities of a naturalized citizen of the United States, and that the same be certified by the Clerk of this Court, under the seal of said Court accordingly.

 

Searching roll number 3, I was able to easily locate Johann Jonas. I printed his information and moved forward. I wanted to find the intent and petition paperwork as well.

In order to find the intent and petition paperwork, I needed to look at a tool that is a handwritten, alphabetized book that has been filmed. Not an easy task! After about 15 minutes, I had to give up because I needed to get to school to pick up my daughter. So, I asked the nice lady if they can pull the rest of the paperwork for me and mail it to me. She said that she would handle it for me.

I love the way that IRAD handles things for upon. They will search for me, free of charge, and print everything out. When they mail it to me, there will be a bill for printing fees. $1 for the first page and .20 for each additional page. Not too shabby if you ask me. The only real problem I the amount of time it will take. Which is usually 4 – 6 weeks.

But, to get this paperwork, I will wait patiently. I have many other records waiting for me to transcribe them. I need to get to work, soon!

What Have I Been Up To

Since I have not been blogging here lately, I thought I would take some time to explain what I have been up to in the past few weeks. Hoping that all of my readers will understand why I have been very quiet here and on my Finding Our Ancestors Facebook page.

To start off with, I have started a new project with my closest genealogy friends; Stephanie Fishman (also my genea buddy) and Jen Holik. In the past month, we have been spending most of our free time over at The In-Depth Genealogist. Which started a digi mag for all genealogists. It now is a digi-mag with its own website, facebook page and twitter account. This idea came to us one day and has been growing very fast. We are ever thankful to all of our friends, family and genealogy community for helping us grow so quickly. We have many great things planned for IDG and hope that you will follow us on this journey.

I am also three and a half months into the 18 month ProGen15 course. Last month, we had to create a research plan for our research. I chose to do mine on my German, Jonas line. I have spent so much time this past year researching this family, it only seemed fitting to create a research plan on the family. As an FYI, I had many small research plans on this family already created, I have many questions that I am trying to answer and to do this, I knew I needed to narrow the information down and focus. But, to put something together that my peers would be critiquing scared the crap out of me. I guess it is like a big case of stage freight. Would they think I had no clue what I was doing? Would they think I did not belong amongst them? These are the crazy questions that went through my head as I put this assignment off. But, on the very last day, I pulled myself together (thanks to the insistance of my genea buddy, Stephanie) and got to work. What I came up with was crazy, since I waited so long to do this! I spent three hours, pulling information from each source and creating a research plan, in the form of a timeline. By doing this, I was able to see that I had some conflicting information and would need to search for more primary sources to find the truth to the conflicting information. Mind you, none of the conflicting information had to do with what I was searching for. My research plan is to help me find the parents of Wilhelm / William Jonas. With this timeline, I added dates of that were given in each source and what it told me about Wilhelm / William. Then, I went back and sourced everything I could. The sourcing is what took most of my time on this assignment, which I am glad I did. Otherwise, I probably would have overlooked the conflicting information and where that information came from. Click the following link to view my research plan, Research Plan – Terri O’Connell. By the way, I worried about nothing. I got great feedback from my peers!

I also just finished reading Hey, America, Your Roots Are Showing by Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak. All I can say is if you have not read it. Please, put it on your to do list. It was definitely worth it!

Also, I have been watching all of the great genealogy tv shows currently airing, Who Do You Think You Are? which airs Friday’s at 7pm CST on NBC and Finding Your Roots which airs on Sunday at 7pm on PBS. I absolutely love genealogy on tv. I have just put a request in to hold African American Lives so that I can watch Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr.’s older shows that I missed when they first aired. Hope to go and pick it up today.

Watching any of these shows, I watch for some sort of glimpse into the past of my ancestors, be it the same period of time, same place or, if I am lucky enough a common ancestor (so far nothing on my direct line, but maybe a hit on the hubby’s). Please support genealogy on tv, we need to keep the ratings up so that it gets renewed for another season. WDYTYA? will be digging deep into the southern roots of Paula Deen next week. Personally, I cannot wait! Paula reminds me so much of my Grandma Richmond (last face it, its the southern drawl). I will definitely be in front of the tv for this episode.

WDYTYA? And Family Connections

On 4 May 2012 Who Do You Think You Are? invited us in to share the genealogy of Rashida Jones. To be honest, I did not know much about her or her family. As I googled away to see what I could find out, I was surprised to see that she was daughter of Quincy Jones and Peggy Lipton. After doing a bit more digging, I read that Quincy had already been looking into his genealogy and was featured in one of Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr.’s shows on PBS.

What really excited me was the connection Quincy Jones has to George Washington because the General appears in my darling hubby’s tree as well. I was so excited to see what the connection really is and how they all fit together.

I should have known that they would focus on Rashida’s maternal line. Specifically, Peggy Lipton’s mothers line. Nothing on Quincy’s family because it had been researched already. The information that was given to Rashida was very in-depth, bringing her family right into the middle of WWII.

As always, the show was put together to bring out every emotion they can. From the family they are investigating to the person watching the show. I am sure that many tears had been shed.

For me, I need to go and search for Dr. Gate’s other productions to find the one with Quincy Jones. Once I am able to watch that, I will be blogging about it.

Have you had a connection made through watching Who Do You Think You Are? Please share with us what family finds you have made watching these shows on television.

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