Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Wedding Wednesday -A Legacy of Weddings

June 28, ????

This is a date permanently etched in our family's history.
Alice Fleming and Michael Connery were married June 28, 1893

Pauline Connery (daughter of Alice and Michael) and William F Ryan were married June 28, 1928

Elizabeth Mary Connery(daughter of Alice and Michael) and Donald Hansen were married June 28 1941 (my parents)

Alice Ryan (daughter of Pauline Connery) married George Sterling II June 28, 1951

William F Ryan II (son of Pauline Connery Ryan) and Barbara Brown were married June 28 1956

At least one more of my cousins also share this anniversary date. Who says the Irish aren't sentimental? Alice and Elizabeth wore the same dress.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Military Monday - Dan Hardie in the Spanish American War

Dan Hardie left his home in Ohio at a young age determined to travel to world seeking adventure. At the age of 20 he enlisted in the U S Army. He joined the 1st Texas regiment and was assigned to Company F also known as the Belknap Rifles. They were based in San Antonio, Texas. During the war, his unit served in Cuba. Below is a photo of the camp in Cuba. Camp Columbia was established in 1898 outside of Havanna.
(photo courtesy of Marilyn Silva)

After the war, Dan Hardie settled in Miami, Florida where he became both the Fire Chief and the Sheriff of Dade County. Still later, he managed a casino on South Beach and owned a boat marina in Miami, FL on the Miami River.

Friday, June 24, 2011

SCGS Jamboree 2011 - The Last Day

Sunday, after the 2 Breakfast meetings, there were a total of 4 one hour blocks of time to attend presentations.

My first choice was "Something WIKI This Way Comes" with Drew Smith. Drew discussed wikis and why we should consider adding to the entries if we do have additional information. Since a wiki is a collaborative endeavor, our additions can help with accuracy. For instance you might add a link to your society's web site on a local library, or government website.

Later, I moved on to Daniel Pottenberger's presentation on "FamilySearch 2011 and Beyond". Daniel explained the updated FamilySearch Website. He also discussed new filters, wiki pages, online research courses, and access to the Brigham Young Family History Archive.

After lunch at the infamous "Blogger Island", it was time to head out to the tent for Lisa Louise Cooke's live podcast of "Genealogy Gems". Lisa's first guest was a handwriting analyst and graphologist Paula Sassi. Paula did an analysis of a letter submitted by Heather Wilkinson Rojo. It was a letter written in the 1890s and Heather said that the analysis was very accurate for what is known about her ancestor. Later Bruce Buzbee of Roots Magic made an appearance and 2 audience members played a genealogy game for prizes. Lisa is a real pro and made it look easy. It seemed that everywhere I looked in the audience I saw GeneaBlogger members.

The final session I was able to attend was "Researching Your Chicago Ancestors From Afar" presented by Nancy E Low (aka SassyJane). Nancy had a plethora of online sites for researching and suggestions for little used methods of exploration. New to me were ideas like searching the Recorded of Deeds, and Building Permits. Checking for marriage records in Crown Point, Lake, Indiana was also mentioned as a research idea. Crown Point was the Gretna Green of the Midwest.

With the end of the last session at 3pm, people seemed to gather again at Blogger Island as people began saying good-bye and snapping last minute photos. It's over until next year.

Monday, June 20, 2011

SCGS Jamboree - Saturday

Saturday the breakfast meetings began at 7:30 AM. The one on "21st Century Marketing for Genealogy Societies" given by Thomas MacEntee was recorded and also broadcast live as a webinar. I had planned to catch it that way but had trouble accessing the wifi. I'll watch it at the SCGS website.

At 8:30 Janis Martin presented "Unclaimed Persons: Every Life is Worth Remembering". I have been a part of this group since it began 3 years ago. In fact, I blame them for my facebook addiction. Joining facebook was a requirement to participate in the group. I think this group serves a very worthwhile purpose and really enjoy participating.

"20th Century Public Records" with Tom Underhill was full of alternate ways to search for people. He mentioned some unusual sources such as property records, military unit sites, and e-Bay. Tom was very interesting and had a fun presentation.

Next was "Blogger Summit 2" a roundtable panel discussion featuring Dick Eastman, Joan Miller, Elyse Doerflinger, and Kathryn Doyle. Some of the topics discussed were affiliate marketing, finding your blog niche, copyrights, disclosures, and privacy policies. It was a spirited discussion moderated by Thomas MacEntee with lots of questions from the audience.

Lunch was a hot dog and soda purchased at the outside concession stand. I took it back to Blogger Island in the Exhibit Hall since there wasn't a chair to be had in any of the eating areas. Eventually there were some vacant chairs at the Island and some more Bloggers appeared with their lunches. Everyone compared their experiences and took lots of pictures. (Just search for Jamboree 2011 on facebook or google to find pictures).

After lunch, I attended Daniel Horowitz's "Family Tree Builder 5.0: What's New in the Next Generation of Genealogy Software. Daniel is connected with and explained how the software works to match cousins and resides in the "cloud". I actually recently had a connection to my great-grandmother's grandfather find my tree recently and make a match. He lives in Norway and I plan to meet him when I am in Norway next Spring.

My final Saturday session was with Kerry Bartels and was "The Many Facets of the National Archives Website". It was a 90 minute session with lots of info about a subject I know little about. It was extremely informative but I will still keep Kerry's syllabus handy as I explore the website.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Who is Your Most Recent Unknown Ancestor?

Hey geneaphiles, it's Saturday Night again - time for more Genealogy Fun!!

Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to:

1) Determine who your most recent unknown ancestor is - the one that you don't even know his or her name.

2) Summarize what you know about his or her family, including resources that you have searched and the resources you should search but haven't searched yet.

3) Tell us about it in your own blog post, in a comment to this post, or in a status on Facebook.

My most recent unknown ancestor is the father of Leopold Peterson b 1851 in Sweden. Leopold came to the United States in 1870, landing in Massachusetts. According to the 1892 Chicago voters roll, Leopold applied for citizenship in Massachusetts and his oldest child was also listed as having been born in Massachusetts.

Going through the marriage records for 1873 did yield the correct record for Leopold Peterson who married Caroline Neilson in Boston on 11 Aug 1873. According to the marriage index Leopold's parents were Peter and Anne. How helpful! Using the Boston City Directory for 1873, I found the minister on the record Rev George S Noyes was at the Bethel Church on North Square in Boston. I have also looked for his parental information on his naturalization application but all it says is when he came here and that he came from Sweden.

I have also checked the Swedish records on FamilySearch and checked out the Norwegian Emmigration records on the Digitalarkivet. Next I will try to find out where the records of the Bethel Church might be housed in hopes that they are more complete. I hope they would yield the parents last names or at least the county in Sweden if not the actual parish. I am surprised that Leopold's origins are so elusive since Leopold is a relatively unique name in Sweden.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

SCGS Jamboree - Day 1 revisited

Last week I said that I would write in more detail about the Jamboree. On Friday morning the Marriott lobby was full of Geneabloggers meeting each other and renewing previous friendships. It was fun to meet our virtual friends in person and put the names to real faces. The Geneablogger Welcome Bag Team of Amy Coffin, Linda and George Lenertz, Thomas MacEntee, and Joan Miller assembled an awesome collection of goodies. The contributing vendors are: Ancient Faces,, Family Chart Masters, Family Roots Travel, FamilySearch, Family Tree Magazine, Family Tree DNA, GeneaBloggers, Genealogy Bank, Genealogy Gems Podcasts, Genealogical Publishing Company, Geni, Heritage Makers, Legacy Family Tree, Light Impressions, My Heritage, National Institute of Genealogical Studies, Maureen Taylor - The Photo Detective, Photos Made Perfect, Roots Magic, WikiTree, and World Vital Records. Whew! I love everything and will enjoy sharing it via the Genealogy Room at our library or as door prizes at our genealogy group monthly meetings. I parked all my stash in my room since it was too much to carry around in addition to my laptop and a 435 page syllabus.

At 1 pm the Jamboree officially opened with a First-Timer Orientation. I skipped that since I was there last year. On Thursday night I had picked the presentations I wanted to attend. A difficult chore since I could only choose 3 of the 30 sessions offered. I tried to select the presentations that were on topics that I was less familiar with.

Friday I attended Thomas MacEntee's session "They're Alive - Searching for Living People" because I felt it would help me with my work on Unclaimed Persons. Thomas discussed various search engines, some of which were new to me. He also talked about using social media and unlikely places such as court records and alumni associations.

My second session was with Drew Smith, of The Genealogy Guys Podcasts, on the topic of Understanding Copyright and Plagiarism. Drew's talk included what can and what cannot be copyrighted and well as what is considered in the public domain. In this era of "copy and paste" the distinction between permission to use and attribution is an important consideration.

The final session I attended on Friday was presented by Stephen Morse, PhD titled "From DNA to Genetic Genealogy: Everything You Wanted to Know but Were Afraid to Ask". Dr Morse is also the creator of the "One Step" site. He gave a very clear presentation covering chromosomes, DNA, genes and defined SNiP and STiR as well as marker and allele. I feel more comfortable with the subject now. This is a pretty new area of genealogy and we are beginning to recognize more inherited traits and medical conditions.

It was truly a mind boggling day and I can only hope that I absorbed all of the useful information that was presented. The day finished with a salad in my room while I decided which of the available 50 seminars I wanted to take. Boo! I could only pick 5!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Jamboree Day 3

2 sessions down and I'm about to go watch a podcast given by Lisa Louise Cooke. This morning Drew Smith spoke about Wickis and how to use and post on them. Later I attended a session on Family Search 2011 What's New?

When I get home next week - i hope to write more about the sessions I attended in detail. Since Friday I have attended 12 hours on instruction on the various areas of genealogy. There was a total of 120 hours of presentations to choose from. Mind boggling and amazing!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Jamboree day 2

It's not even 8 AM and the lobby is full of genealogists blogging and checking their e-mail. I came down about 7:15 and was far from the first person here. Thomas MacEntee is speaking at one of the breakfast sessions and it is also being webcast for those not at the meeting.

Last night I selected the presentations I hope to attend today. It was difficult since there are 10 sessions in every time period. Today there is the opportunity to attend 5 sessions. The first one I'll attend is Janis Martin's talk about Unclaimed Persons. Then 2 more before the lunch break.

SCGS Jamboree - Day 1

Today the Jamboree started at one o'clock and offered 3 1 hour sessions. What an awesome choice of topics to pursue! I'm trying to pick topice I'm mot too familiar with, so I chose Copyright and Plagiary with Drew Smith and A DNA presentation by Stephen Morse. I think they were wise choices as I learned a lot. Another class I took was about finding living people. Thomas MacEntee had lots of good hints. I hope it will help me to locate "Unclaimed Persons".

The Geneablogger Radio show was well attended tonight! There were about 20 people watching Thomas try to do a radio broadcast. A great time was followed by the Ice Cream Social for Geneabloggers. I have pictures, but they say what happens in Burbank stays in Burbank!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Tech Tuesday - Educating Myself

Wow, what happened to the month of May? I just realized that I didn't do much blogging. I looked back at the month and realized that I had spent the month on webinars. What a wonderful source of education. I learned about creating web sites and have now set up 2 websites on There were 2 webinars for that.

I watched 2 webinars by Thomas Macentee about Google docs and forms. I now have new tools to play with on the websites and in other areas.

I learned more about storing photos from Maureen Taylor. Now I just need to put my knowledge into practice.

There are lots of free webinars out there you just need to look around. Some of my favorite places for locating webinars are,, Legacy Family Tree, and Roots Magic. The Southern California Genealogy Society is also sponsoring a series of webinars. Most webinars are archived by the host for later viewing if you are not available at the scheduled time. is a great place to find what is coming up and when. You can even add it to your google calendar.

Monday, June 6, 2011

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History - Books

Week 23. Books. What was your favorite book, or who was your favorite author from your childhood? What do you like to read now? Books or other formats? This challenge runs from Saturday, June 4, 2011 through Friday, June 10, 2011. Amy Coffin of the We Tree blog ( has yet another successful series on her hands: 52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History

I have always been a reader. Our house was only a block from the library and I had a card from the time I was seven years old. I love to read almost anything, including cereal boxes (we couldn't bring books to the table) and telephone books. Once I looked through a Hungarian phone book to see if there was a family connection in Budapest.

As a child after graduating from Dick and Jane, I moved into the Bobbsey Twins followed by Judy Bolton and Nancy Drew mysteries. Cherry Ames (nursing) and Vicki Barr (stewardess) were career orientated series. I also read the Hardy Boys mystery series. Soon I graduated to Agatha Christie and other mystery authors.

I still love mysteries and read Robert B Parker, John Sandford, Mary Higgins Clark among others. I have always used the public library system still do. I am a very happy user of the digital library operated by our local library. I can check-out books from home to download to my computer and then read them on my nook. No more late fees!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Surname Saturday - Hansen of Asker, Akershus, Norway

My Hansen line is from Asker, Akershus, Norway. Asker was once the name of a farm which grew to become a town in the county of Akershus. Asker is the plural form of the word Ask which means Ash Tree. In 1948, Asker was incorporated into the city of Oslo. Geographically Asker is a coastal area but it also has hills and woods. It is also known as a gardening area as it is rural in nature. My great-grandfather was born at the Garnison Menigheten parish in Oslo, Akershus, Norway. He always referred to himself as coming from Asker, Akershus, Norway. According to the 1875 census Asker had a population of 9611 living on 1333 farms.
Asker within the county of Askershus

Askershus within Norway.
images courtesy of Wikipedia

Friday, June 3, 2011

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy and History - Week 19 Bedroom

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2011) that invite genealogists and others to record memories and insights about their own lives for future descendants. Week 19. Bedroom. Describe your childhood bedroom. What furniture did it contain? Were there curtains, wallpaper or paint? Was it messy or clean? Did you share a room with your siblings?

I grew up in an 8 room Victorian house in the Chicago suburbs. The house was built around the turn of the 20th century. There were 4 bedrooms on the second floor. The room I shared with my sister Suzy overlooked the backyard. The furniture was Black Walnut. There was a double bed with a large arched and carved headboard. There was also a hi-boy chest with doors that concealed the drawers. The bedroom set also included a dressing table with a three section movable mirror. The room had 2 closets. My sister and I shared one and the other was reserved for Mom and Dad's extra storage. Mom kept her formal wear and their riding boots and jodhpurs there. One side of that closet had built in drawers and a cabinet on top. Later Suzy and I moved into the smaller front bedroom when the 3 littler girls needed the bigger room. As compensation for losing the bigger room, we got new bedroom furniture. It was a cherry twin set with both a chest and dresser. We had a matching round table to put between the beds.

I do remember a set of tulip patterned quilts that we used as bedspreads for a while, but cannot recall wall colors or curtains. The bigger room did have a small window set very high into the wall and there we displayed our "Storybook Dolls". (out of the reach of little hands)

My daughter used parts of the Black Walnut bedroom set for several years until we moved to a more modern house and bought the kids new furniture. The furniture was passed on to another family.