Thursday, December 22, 2016

Blog Caroling - Mary Did You Know?

Once again footnote Maven has invited us to go blog caroling with her!  It is a longstanding tradition of hers and this year I thought I would join the group.

To quote fM, " I challenge each of you to blog or post to Facebook your favorite Christmas Carol - Blog Caroling. We'll all sing along! (Blog Caroling is posting the lyrics, youtube video, etc. of your favorite Christmas carol on your blog.)"

I have always loved Christmas Carols from the time I first learned "O Tannenbaum" in both English and German.  I was probably in first or second grade.  Over the years I have had many favorites according to the season and my mood during a particular season.  

A couple of years ago, I heard a new to me Christmas Carol.  Although it wasn't as new as I thought, it was very new to me and made a huge impression on me.  "Mary Did You Know?" is now one of my favorite Christmas Carols.  When I hear it, I think of the 15 or 16 year old Mary preparing for the birth on her child.  I wonder how scared she must have been and what she would have thought had she known what was ahead of her.

According to Wikipedia: "Mary, Did You Know?" is a Christmas song with lyrics written by Mark Lowry and music written by Buddy Greene. It was originally recorded by Christian recording artist Michael English on his self-titled debut solo album in 1991 (English and Lowry were both members of the Gaither Vocal Band at the time). It reached No. 6 on CCM Magazine's AC Chart.[1] Lowry would record the song several times himself, most notably with the Gaither Vocal Band on their 1998 Christmas album Still the Greatest Story Ever Told.
The song has since gone on to become a modern Christmas classic, being recorded by many artists over the years across multiple genres.

My favorite version is by the Pentatonix since I love acapella.  Listen here

Here are the lyrics to "Mary Did You Know"

That your baby boy will one day walk on water?
Mary, did you know
That your baby boy will save our sons and daughters?
Did you know,
That your baby boy has come to make you new?
This child that you've delivered,
Will soon deliver you.
Mary, did you know
That your baby boy will give sight to a blind man?
Mary, did you know
Your baby boy will calm a storm with his hand?
Did you know,
That your baby boy has walked where angels trod?
When you kiss your little baby,
You've kissed the face of god.
The blind will see
The deaf will hear
The dead will live again.
The lame will leap
The dumb will speak
The praises of the lamb.
Mary, did you know
That your baby boy is lord of all creation?
Mary, did you know
That your baby boy will one day rule the nations?
Did you know,
That your baby boy is heaven's perfect lamb?
This sleeping child you're holding, is the great I am.
Happy birthday Jesus!
A very merry christmas to all of you!
Please remember
Jesus is the reason for the season!
Published by
Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.
Song Discussions is protected by U.S. Patent 9401941. Other patents pending.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Surname Saturday - The Leahy/Lehys of Bulgaden Parish

Bulgaden Parish Church
County Limerick, Ireland

Recently, I received two inquiries about my connection to the Leahy family.  One was via an message and the other was though MyHeritage dna. The dna match is to a Leahy branch that settled in Canada in the 1820s and the message board connection is to a Leahy who is still in Ireland whose aunts still live in the same area the Connerys lived in.  So I decided it was time to learn more about my Leahy ancestors.

My great-grandmother Mary Leahy was born 5 January 1827 to Patrick Leahy and Ellen McCarthy and baptized on 6 January 1827 in Bulgaden Parish, County Limerick, Ireland.  She married Patrick Connery of Kilfinane, County Limerick, Ireland on 4 March 1851 in Bulgaden Parish.  Patrick Connery and Mary Leahy had eleven children including my grandfather Michael Joseph.

Tracing and recording the births and baptisms of these children I have been able to determine the siblings of Mary Leahy.  As far as I have traced her siblings are:Thomas, Michael, Roger, John, Elizabeth, and Catherine. Based on the Baptismal records of Mary and her siblings their Leahy aunts and uncles are:Patrick, Mary, Thomas, Roger, Ellen, Michael, John.  The only unique name in these two generations of Leahys of Limerick is Roger.

Leahy and Lehy are interchanged on a regular basis.  I have seen both a Roger Lehy and Roger Leahy in the church records and until older records are available I will have to accept that my Leahy line will end in 1790 with the birth of the first Roger Leahy.

Friday, November 11, 2016

Veterans Day 2016 and A Life Well Lived!

Wanda and Gus
50th Anniversary

Today is Veteran’s Day and I salute all of my friends and family who have bravely served our country.  I also want to especially remember my father-in-law Gus Gulyban who died 6 November 2016, just five days before his ninetieth birthday.

Gus was born in Martins Ferry, Belmont County, Ohio to Gus and Mary (Fendrick) Gulyban.  They were both Hungarian immigrants who braved a long sea voyage to come to the United States for a better life.

As Gus grew up, he watched his coal miner father go off to a dangerous job with a metal lunch box in hand.  On his father’s return home, Gus would watch his father go down to the basement and try to remove the coal dust before going to the kitchen for dinner.  Mary, his mother would remain home to raise the three children (Gus, Mary Elizabeth, and John) and prepare the meals.  She also would cook for the church when there were funerals and other activities.

Gus attended public schools in Martins Ferry and St Mary’s Catholic Church.  He never out ended the habit of kneeling beside his  bed to say his night prayers.  As soon as he finished high school, Gus joined the United States Navy for the duration of World War II. 

After training at Great Lakes, Gus was assigned to ships in the Pacific, serving on the USS Zebra and the USS Lindenwald from which he was discharged. After the navy, Gus settled in Chicago where he was employed by AT&T. While working the night shift at AT&T, Gus met the love of his life, Wanda Peterson, a single mother of two children, David and Patricia.   Gus and Wanda fell in love and married on 1 Dec 1949.

After several years in the city, Gus and Wanda moved to Wheaton, IL where they had purchased a house.  It was there that their daughter Susan was born in 1952.
The family continued to grow and thrive.  In 1956, just before David was to graduate from high school,  the family build another house in Wheaton, to make room for Wanda’s widowed mother.  This enabled Wanda to continue working for Illinois Bell while Gus continued working in Chicago, walking to and from the train station daily.

 Gus joined the Knights of Columbus at St Michael’s Church in Wheaton, achieving the rank of 4th Degree ( the patriotic arm) and becoming a member of the Color Corps.  Gus also volunteered as a counter of the Sunday collection.  This was a task he performed weekly until they moved to Florida in 1983.  Gus had retired from AT&T and after selling the house in Wheaton, they purchased a condo in St Petersburg, FL just a block from the beach.  Not one to sit around, Gus established a lawn care company which he named “WANGUS”.  He then proceeded to take care of the condo grounds as well as several other nearby properties.  He even had a vanity license plate “WANGUS”.  

In the 1990’s Wanda and Gus moved to a bigger condo in Clearwater, where they lived a quieter livfestyle.  That was to be their final move.  Wanda’s increasing health issues limited the traveling they could do.  When Wanda was required to move into an assisted living facility, Gus visited her every day at both lunch and dinner time.  Between times he would often do laundry or grocery shop.

Sadly, in 2010, Gus’ health required his move to assisted living as well.  Wanda and Gus were now in different wings of the same facility.  He still visited Wanda as often as he could until her death in January 2011.

This is the man my children knew as their grandfather.  He was cheerful, generous, patriotic, religious, loving, and honest!  I can’t imagine a better example for a child to emulate.  I am so proud to have known and loved him.

Monday, September 5, 2016

Making Connections through Online Trees

On August 25, a private message popped up in my facebook feed and it was dated 12/09/2014! Where was it before and what triggered its appearance? The message was essentially that the author believed he was related my husband through the Heinrich Wilhelm Timke b 1777. After not finding the surname Timke in my husband's tree we even speculated that it could be a Swedish connection. Comparing our online trees, we were able to confirm that they were 6th cousins once removed with the connection being Tobias Detrich Sempsrott in Asendorf, Germany. Since we have both done DNA testing, Now we can find the rest of the story. Unfortunately I am doing the "Do Over" and need to enter 6 generations of a large German family before I can begin playing with this new information!

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Maternal Ancestors

Here is your assignment if you choose to play along (cue the Mission Impossible music, please!):

1) Review your Pedigree Chart (either on paper or in your genealogy management software program) and determine the age at death of your female ancestors back at least five generations (and more if you want to).

2)  Tell us the lifespan years for each of these ancestors.  Which of your female ancestors in this group lived the longest?  Which lived the shortest?  

3)  Share your results in your own blog post, in a comment to this post, or on Facebook or Google+.

Here are my results of this challenge:  
Elizabeth Mary Connery         1917 – 1977  60

Alice Fleming Connery           1872 – 1962   90
Henrietta Burbach Hansen    1888 – 1960   72

Mary Leahy Connery              1827  - 1896    69
Mary Hennessy Fleming       
Eva Schmitz Burbach              1859 – 1932    93
Dorette Cristensen Hansen   1857 – 1887    30

2nd Great-Grandmothers
Elisabeth Kronenberger       1832  1872         40
Catharina Caspari                  1825 – 1913      88
Karen Dorthea Chrisensen   1833
Anna Toth Caspari
Ellen Mc Carthy Leahy           1807
Catherina Schaf  Burbach      1798 – 1834     36
Johanne Sophie Johanesdatter   1829 – after 1901   72+
Mary O’Donnell  Hennessy     1790  - abt 1833

3rd Great grandmothers
Anne Margarete Olsdatter     1808 - ?
Mari Pedersdatter
Catherine Gros Burbach     1763 – 1800      37

Anna Catherine Braun Schaf

Based on the current lack of death dates I cannot give the average life spans for each generation, but based on the current information in my file my great-grandmother Dorette Cristensdatter Hansen had the shortest live span, dying at the age of 30, having given birth to 7 chldren over a 10 year period.  

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun! Meet my 2nd Great-grandparents

our mission, should you decide to accept it (cue the Mission Impossible! music) is to:

1)  We each have 16 great-great grandparents.  How did their birth and death years vary?  How long were their lifespans?  

2)  For this week, please list your 16 great-great grandparents, their birth year, their death year, and their lifespan in years.  You can do it in plain text, in a table or spreadsheet, or in a graph of some sort.

3)  Share your information about your 16 great-great grandparents with us in a blog post of your own, in a comment to this blog post, or on Facebook or Google+.  If you write your own blog post, please leave a link as a comment to this post.

I only know 14 of my 16 second great-grandparents and I don’t have all of their vital dates.  All of mine are from Germany, Ireland, and Norway.  I will say that the church records from both Germany and Norway are excellent.  Unfortunately the Irish records are both sporadic and illegible.  Here is what I do have on my second great-grandparents. I have sorted them by country.
Patrick Leahy born about 1805
Ellen Mc Carthy born about 1807
Patrick Connery born about 1794
Ellen Drake born about 1800
John Hennessy born about 1784 – died 10 Oct 1833
Mary O’Donnell born about 1790 – died about 1833
Daniel Kristensen born 1817 – died after 1865*
Karen Dorthea Christiansen born 1833 – died 1928?
Martin Hansen born 1829 – died after 1865*
Johanne Sofie Johannesdatter born Oct 1829 – died 1901
Georg Burbach born 1825 – died 1897
Catherina Caspari born 1825 – died 1913
Phillip Schmitz born 1834 – died 1906
Elisabeth Kronenberger born 1832 – died 1876
*After 1865 because they are noted in the 1865 Norway census

This exercise has shown me where I need to do more research for the missing death information.  It is also interesting to note that my Granddaughter (born 1999) was born in the same town in Germany as her 4th great-grandmother Elizabeth Kronenberger.

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun! Family Tree Statistics

Here is your assignment if you choose to play along (cue the Mission Impossible music, please!):

1) My friend and colleague Linda Stufflebean posted J
UST FOR FUN – 4 X 6 = 24 FAMILY TREE QUESTIONS on her blog this week, and I thought we could answer half of the questions this week and half next week.

2)  Here are the first three questions:

*  What four places did my ancestors live that are geographically the farthest from where I live today?
*  What are the four most unusual given names in my family tree?

*  What are the four most common given names in my family tree?

3)  Answer each of the questions based on your own ancestors, not the collateral lines.

4)  Share your answers with us in a blog post of your own, in a comment to this post, in a Facebook post or a Google+ post.  Please provide a link to your response if you can.

The four places that my ancestors lived that are geographically the farthest from where I live today are:
Oberselters, Hessen-Nassau, Prussia - My Burbachs who immigrated in 1856.
Oslo, Akershus, Norway - My Hansens who immigrated in 1894

Ballylanders and Kilfinane, County Limerick, Ireland - my Flemings and Connerys who immigrated in the 1880s and 1890s.

Milwaukee, Milwaukee, Wisconsin where my Schmidts were established in the 1840s.

The four most unusual given names in my family tree are:
Dafin Hansen(b 1801) married Mari Olsdatter in Nittedal, Akershus, Norway.
Hubertus Burbach (b 1798) married Catherine Schaaf in Oberselters, Hessen-Nassau,Prussia.
Dorette Christensdatter (b 1857) married Johannes Adolf Waldemar Hansen in Oslo, Akershus, Norway
Adolph Halfdan Hansen (b 1880) married Henrietta Burbach in Milwaukee, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

The four most common given names in my family tree are:  
Mary (3), Patrick (3), Adam (2) and Anna (2)

For this project I created a gedcom file of only my direct line ancestors in Family Tree Maker and imported it into Legacy Family Tree and used the Statietics Report.  Had I used my full file including the collateral lines and all siblings the results would have been much different.

Monday, February 22, 2016

World Thinking Day and My Scouting Life

You can sell a lot of cookies to hungry high schoolers!
Today February 22, 2016 is World Thinking Day celebrated by Scouts and Scouters around the world to commorate the joint birthday of Lord and Lady Baden Powell the founders of the Scouting movement.
My scouting life began with Brownies in second grade.  The meetings were held after school and I think in a school cafeteria.  In 4th grade I became a regular Girl Scout and wore the green dress with long sleeves.  If I remember correctly, badges earned were worn on the sleeve. In 7th grade I graduated to the Junior Scout level and the uniform changed to a green gaberdeen skirt and white blouse.  A badge sash, worn diagonally, displayed our badges and by then we had quite a collection.

I went to camp several summers and learned to cook over a camp fire, made a buddy burner using a tuna can, strip of corrugated cardboard coiled inside the can and coated in melted parafin.  A large can similar to a large juice or coffee can was placed over the tuna can as a cook top.  We learned to cook food in foil packets.  Digging a latrine was an adventure but most of us preferred to avoid using it.

Fast forward about 18 years and our son wanted to join Cub Scouts.  At the meeting the Cub Master said they really needed an assistant in order to admit new scouts.  So my husband volunteered as an assistant and I took on a den (group of 1st year Cubs).  The den meetings were held at our house and all of the boys could walk to and from the meetings.

At that time Girl Scouting was not available where we lived so some friends and I helped it get started.  After we were chartered, I took on a Brownie troop as well as theCub Den. My daughter wasn't really old enough to be official but she was a Brownie from kindergarden until 3rd grade. (maybe she was the first ever Daisy) My brownies did a lot of Cub Scout things since I felt the support and training was lots better at the Cub Scout side of the equation.  Pack-O-Fun anyone?

My kids stayed in Scouts for a long time.  My son became an Eagle Scout and my daughter styed in Girl Scouts into High School.  They went to day camps and resident camps, marched in paradesand sold Calendars, Cookies, and Popcorn. They learned to cook and sew and most of all we watched them become confident young adults.

Fast forward to 2005 when I began living with my daughter and her family at Fort Knox, Ky.  My daughter was a co-leader for her older daughter's Brownie troop.  She was also a helper for her son's Cub Scout den. I was quickly added as a helper and helped plan crafts and meetings.  There was a very strong Scouting community on the base and the Scouting Community even had a building to call their own for all the meetings.  There were even lockers to store supplies so that they didn't have to be taken back and forth all the time.

In 2008 our move to Texas involved, once again, finding a troop for one Boy Scout, one Brownie Girl Scout, and one Daisy Girl Scout.  As always there were never enough leaders so I went to the Daisy meetings, my daughter went to the Brownie meetings and also to the Boy Scout meetings.  Later the Girl Scout/Brownie meetings merged since there were several families with sisters at different levels and it was easier to have one meeting.  We continued to do all the traditional Scout stuff and there were program changes over the years but Scouting is still the same leader molder. My last camp out was in 2012 when we slept on the floor in a 1940s building  and the temp was 19 deg.  We kept the fire going all night long.

My grandson is an Eagle Scout and both of my granddaughters are working on their Gold Awards.

One of my brothers received his Eagle Scout Rank and his daughter is currently Scout Master for her 3 sons.

It is interesting that those of us who were Scouts and 2nd and 3rd generation Scouts.  As a former Scout leader, I understand why it is associated with National Margarita Day

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Cousin Bait Wins Again!

I have been working on re-doing my family tree as part of the 2016 Genealogy Do-Over and in the past week I entered the Baptism records of 29 children that were born between 1820 and 1834 in the tiny village of Oberselters, Hessen-Nassau, Germany.  The six families involved were Burbach (3 brothers) Muller ( I don't know yet if the Mullers were related) and  Pabst families.

Susanna Burbach had moved to Wurges after her marriage to Johann Georg Meurer and her children were Baptized in Wurges.  Susanna's daughter Anna Maria Meurer married Andreas Hassler and they remained in the area.

This week sent me an email that someone had posted a message on my account.  The message was from Patrik Hassler in Germany!  Patrik wrote that Susanna Burbach Meurer was his 3rd Great-grandmother and he still lived in the area.  He found my tree on and was looking for family in the United States.  My 2nd Great-grandfather Hubert was a brother of Susanna Burbach!! Another cousin found. Whoot!!

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Serendipity Times Two - Unexpected Finds!

Things you find on the way to somewhere else!  I am taking the "Family History Writing Challenge" from Lynn Palermo and decided to write the story of my Great-Great-Grandmother Catherine Caspary and her decision to immigrate to the United States in 1856.

Catherine's story begins in 1851 in Villmar, Hessen-Nassau, Germany.  She is married to Georg Burbach and has a young son Adam.  How and why did this young couple decide to leave Germany and go to America and why Milwaukee, Wisconsin?  This is the basis of the story I am writing.

While researching their method of travel to America, I realized that I didn't know their port of departure.  What did I know?  I knew from Georg's naturalization papers that they arrived in New York in July of 1856 and Georg was born in 1824.  So I went to and selected the New York Passenger lists.  I entered the following criteria:  Name Georg; birth year 1824 +- 2yrs; place of birth Germany; arrival 1856.  I got only 26 returns!

There they were Georg and Catherine SUMBACH and their sons Hermann and Johann.  Traveling with them is Anna Caspari who is likely Catherine's sister and Anne Marie Becker.  They had sailed on the ship "Mary Ogden" from Le Havre, France.

Later I went to to see if there were any records for my Georg Burbach that would be of help with my story.  Imagine my surprise to see his name on a marriage record in New York state!  He is listed as the "father of the groom".  This is the record of the marriage of his second son John (Johann) to Steffonia Grumber in 1875 at Brooklyn, Kings, New York.  I knew about John and Stephanie's marriage since they and their children lived close to Georg and Catherine in Milwaukee.  I hadn't yet looked for their marriage other than the 1880, 1900, and 1910 census returns.  I am glad since I would have wasted a lot of time.   I had no reason to believe John had ever left Milwaukee after his arrival as a two year old in 1856.  The next mystrey to solve is why did he go to New York for a bride?
Job training, arranged marriage, they met in Milwaukee and her family moved to New York for work?  What do you think?

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Roots Tech 2016 and the Challenge issued

Today was the opening day of Roots Tech 2016 and I watched the opening keynote session.  The common theme for all the speakers was story telling.  The speakers were all inspiring and made me realize just how important the stories are to those living now.  All of the finalists in the Innovator's Summit are about capturing the stories verbally, through the written word, or in photos.

This month I have also entered the Family History Writers Challenge sponsored by Lynn Palermo.  I will write the story of my Great-great-grandparents Georg Burbach and Catherine Caspary.  Their story begins 1851 as a married couple with a young son.  It will include their journey from Villmar, Hessen-Nassau, Germany to Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA.  I want to show their triumhs and sorrows.

As part of the Family History Writers Challenge, I will be attempting to include dialog and descriptive scenes in the story.  Part of the challenge is that I will need to make some assumptions about George and Catherine along with interweaving the facts of their lives.  This challenge lasts for a month so I hope to become comfortable with this type of writing.  If I succeed, I will develop other stories of my ancestors.

Friday, January 29, 2016

The 10 Day Blog Makeover Challenge - The Last Day

Today is the last day and what have I done?  I selected a new color pallette for the blog after reviewing hundreds of color combinations.  I really had to think about the viewpoint I wanted the
blog to imply.  I think that I achieved the look I wanted except for the logo.  I haven't quite figured out how to add that. 

Here it is:

I also looked at fonts and changed a few and added some bolding.

Another challenge was to create a blog mission statement.  It was easy because the point of my blog is two-fold.  First to write about the things I learn and do while researching my ancestors and second as cousin bait.  The cousin bait really works as I have made contacts in Norway, Ireland, and Germany as well as Florida, Texas, and California through my blog.

I am also doing Thomas MacEntee's Genealogy Do-Over and DearMYRTLE's "Finally Getting Organized" challenges and will begin Lynn Palermo's Family History Writing challenge in February.  Let me know how you like the changes!  I am very open to suggestions.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016


Saturday Night Genealogy Fun -- Two Degrees of Separation

Calling all Genea-Musings Fans: 
 It's Saturday Night again - 
time for some more Genealogy Fun!!

Here is your assignment if you choose to play along (cue the Mission Impossible music):

1)  Using your ancestral lines, how far back in time can you go with two degrees of separation?  That means "you knew an ancestor, who knew another ancestor."  When was that second ancestor born?

2)  Tell us about it in a blog post of your own, in a comment to this blog post, in a status line on Facebook or a stream post on Google+.

For my 2 degrees of separation I will start with my maternal grandparents:
 I (b 1942) knew my maternal grandmother Alice Fleming Connery(b 1872) who, in turn, did not know her grandfather John Hennesy ( b 1784) and her grandmother Mary O'Donnell (b 1790) as they both are recorded as having died in 1833. 

 My maternal grandfather Michael Connery (b 1861) probably also did not know his grandparents Patrick Connery (b 1784)and Ellen Drake (b 1800).  I don't know if Michael knew his maternal grandparents Patrick Leahy (b 1805) and Ellen McCarthy (b1807) since I have no death information for them.  

All of my maternal ancestors were born in County Limerick, Ireland.

On my paternal side, I knew my grandfather Adolph Hansen (b 1880) for only 4 short years before his death in 1946.  Adolph never met his paternal grandfather Martin Hansen (b 1829)since Adolph's father Adolf was illegitimate and never lived with his son.  Martin had been a soldier in Oslo and when his military service ended he returned to his village of birth to marry and raise a family.  Adolph's paternal grandmother Sophie Johannsdatter (b1829) raised her son Adolf in Oslo and was living with Adolph's brother Thorolf in the 1901 census so I believe it is very likely that Adolph knew her.

Adolph probably knew both of his maternal grandparents Daniel Kristensen (b 1817) and Karen Dorthea Christiansen (b 1833) since he lived with their daughter Magna when he first immigrated to Chicago.  He also worked for his uncle Oscar Daniels.

I  knew my Grandmother Henrietta Burbach (b 1888)  and she knew her maternal grandfather Philip Schmitz (b 1834)  but her maternal grandmother Elizabetha Kronenberger died in 1876 before Henrietta's birth.  

Henrietta also knew both her paternal grandparents Georg Burbach (b 1825) and Catharina Caspary (b 1825) since they all lived on the same street in Milwaukee and her father and grandfather worked together.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

The Genealogy Do Over 2016 - Sorting Saturday

I have signed up for Lynn Palermo's Family History Writing Challenge during February.  The concept is "One Month to a First Draft".  As I was trying to decide who to focus on, I thought that I would choose my Great-great-grandfather who emigrated from Germany to Wisconsin in 1856 with his wife and two small sons.  Then I had a second thought: what if I wrote about his wife and her feelings about leaving the village she was born in and traveling to a new world.  This will mean sorting through my files looking for items that will help me fill out the flesh for her story.  There will be some research as I have uncovered a new twist to her story while doing some preliminary research.  Can't wait to get started.

I have also joined the Blog Makeover Challenge.  It's a short 10 day project led by Daniela Uslan of "Blogging on Your Own Terms".  My blog will begin it's sixth year in February and I thought a makeover was in order.  I won't be changing the name of it but I will be making cosmetic changes.  So far I have written a mission statement and currently I am sorting through color combinations to find the best representation for the blog.  When I first designed the blog it was enough to just have something that went with the title.  Now it is time to refine the look of my blog.

I realize that these are BSO's to distract me from the Genealogy Do-Over but I am doing them along with the Do-Over.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - My 2016 Genealogy Education Plans

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun -- Your 2016 Genealogy Education Plans

It's Saturday Night - 
time for more Genealogy Fun! 

Your mission, should you decide to accept it (cue the Mission Impossible! music) is to:

1) What are your genealogy education plans for 2016?  Local society meetings or seminars?  Regional or national conferences?  Weeklong institutes?  Genealogy cruises?  Podcasts?  YouTube Videos?  Webinars or Hangouts On Air?  Magazines?  Websites?  Blogs?

2)  How much time do you invest in Genealogy Education?  Why do you do it?

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

My genealogy education plans for 2016 are as follows:

I am participating in the 2016 Genealogy Do Over led by Thomas MacEntee and beginning a new family tree evaluating and entering all sources as I enter each individual.  As part of the Do Over, I am also evaluating genealogy programs to decide which one I will choose to replace Family Tree Maker since support will end on 1 Jan 2017.  I still have my original research there but will try not to refer to it during the Do Over.

I am also participating in Dear Myrtle's Finally Getting Organized mission for this year.  I will be re-organizing my paper files as I work on the Do Over.

I will be watching webinars from Legacy Family Tree, Illinois State Genealogy Society, Southern California Genealogy Society, and others as I find them.

I am not attending RootsTech 2016 but I will be watching the live streamed lectures.  I attended FGS/RootsTech 2015 and it was amazing!  Everyone should attend something like this once in their lifetime.

I attend our monthly meetings of the Schertz Cibolo Valley Area Genealogists group and am happy to present a topic when asked.

I am not going to the SCGS Jamboree this year, but will be going to Salt Lake City with a local genealogy group in June so I hope that in the first half of the year I will have learned enough to take full advantage of the opportunity and solve some brickwalls.

I have taken 4 genealogy cruises in the past six years and they are wonderful occasions to learn and explore and may do one this year but haven't signed up for one yet.

Oh yes!  I for got to mention that I will participate in the Family History Writing Challenge sponsored by Lynn Palermo, the Armchair Genealogist! 

All of these goals should keep me busy in 2016!!

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Genealogy Do-Over Day 12 - What I Have Done

As I began the Do-Over, I determined that I would create new databases in two different programs.  In each program, I began with myself and added my parents and grandparents. As I added them to the databases I entered the sources I had to prove the information.

I had gathered birth, marriage, and death certificates for my parents and made a note of what I still needed to gather or request.  I don't have baptizmal certificates for either of my parents but I do know when and where they were baptized because it was noted in the book that their marriage was recorded in.
As I scan images, I want to be able to store them in a way that they will be accessible to both software programs.  After playing around with several ideas, my solution was to create a folder named "Genealogy Media"  inside will be individual family folders.  This will mean that I can scan to one place and access for both data bases.

I have established a workflow that I hope will halp me to work smarter not harder!  As I begin to work on a family I will first gather any documents that I have and scan them into a media folder.  As I enter facts for each individual they will be sourced and dosuments will be added to the record. The documents will then be filed in an appropriatly labeled file folder. After I have entered what I know I will begin also adding internet search results comptete with proper sources.

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Your Ancestor Score for 2016


Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Your Ancestor Score for 2016

Hey ahnentafelists (new genea-word!) - It's Saturday Night!!!

Your mission, should you decide to accept it (and I hope more of you do than participated in the last several SNGF challenges), is to:

1)  Determine how complete your genealogy research is.  For background, read Crista Cowan's post Family History All Done? What’s Your Number? and Kris Stewart's What Is Your Genealogy "Score?"  For comparison purposes, keep the list to 10 or 11 generations with you as the first person.  

2)  Create a table similar to Crista's second table, and fill it in however you can (you could create an Ahnentafel (Ancestor Name) list and count the number in each generation, or use some other method).  Tell us how you calculated the numbers.

3)  Show us your table, and calculate your "Ancestral Score" - what is your percentage of known names to possible names (1,023 for 10 generations).

4)  For extra credit (or more SNGF), do more generations and add them to your chart.

5)  Post your table, and your "Ancestor Score," on your own blog, in a comment to this post, or in a Facebook Status post or Google+ Stream post.

My number is a measly 11.32%!  I really thought I was doing much better than that!

Possible People
No. Sum1
(sum 2/Sum1)
1           1
 1           1
2            3
 2           3
4            7
 4           7
1X Great -
8           15
 8          15
2X Great -
16         31
16         14
3X Great -
32         62
32         13
4X Great -
64       127
64         10
5X Great -
128     255
128          4
6X Great -
256     511
256          2
7X Great -
512   1023
512          0

I have documented 58 out of a possible 512 ancestors to the 9th generation.  My Irish ancestors have proven to be the most elusive.  It was all those fires you know!