Friday, May 18, 2012

Cleaning Up The Letter V

I've started a project cleaning up my database. Whenever I finish a letter of the alphabet, I'll write a blog post to report about what I learned about the surnames that start with that letter.

5 names that have a V surname makes for quick work and unfortunately no finds. But I do have an idea about one of them. We'll see what the books at ACPL can do for me.

Next up is the letter W. It will take a 2-3 weeks to get through.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Cleaning Up The Letter U

I've started a project cleaning up my database. Whenever I finish a letter of the alphabet, I'll write a blog post to report about what I learned about the surnames that start with that letter.

I love quick letters. The only thing I found with the U surnames in my database (all 8 names) was that I had never recorded the place of birth and place of marriage for Louis Ulsamer. I had the records that told me where he was born and married, but I never filled in that field in my database. 

Look for the letter V cleanup tomorrow.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Cleaning Up The Letter T

I've started a project cleaning up my database. Whenever I finish a letter of the alphabet, I'll write a blog post to report about what I learned about the surnames that start with that letter.

After a great week at the NGS conference, I was able to finish up the T surnames in my database. Not many names, but I did find one new thing. I found Mary Elizabeth Thompson, widow of Melancthon Eleazar Washburn, living with her married daughter in 1910 in Indianapolis. 

Look for the letter U and V cleanups coming very quickly.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Highlights from NGS 2012

I think I have finally recovered enough from a fun filled week to recap my favorite things about the National Genealogical Society's 2012 Conference in Cincinnati.

The 1848 Cincinnati Panorama
Patricia Van Skaik gave an excellent opening presentation that detailed the panorama and what they are doing with it in a digital world. If you missed the opening presentation, check out her TEDxCincy talk that covers most of it. Also take some time to explore the 1848 Cincinnati Panorama website and see what details they have attached to the image. It's amazing how much you can see on such a small image and how much we can add to it with our research.

The Indiana Genealogical Society Booth
I spent a lot of time at the IGS booth signing up new members and answering Indiana research questions. I had a great team helping me and allowing me to attend my carefully attended sessions. It was great to meet so many people from across the US with an interest in their Indiana ancestors. We also signed up a bunch of people to our free e-newsletter. You can sign up too by inputting your email into the box on the top right of the IGS homepage.

Genealogy Buddies
I was thankful to have lunch covered by other IGS board members so that I could spend some time with my genealogy buddies. My lunch crew seemed to consist of Linda McCauley, Laura Cosgrove Lorenzana, Susan Clark and Becky Wiseman, plus or minus a few others.

I also was able to meet lots of new friends and spend some time with people I have met at other conferences. Hanging out with my genealogy buddies is my favorite part of genealogy conferences.

The Potholder
FamilySearch hosted a blogger's dinner on Tuesday night. Amy Johnson Crow and I both thought that they had given us potholders for gifts.

But flipping it over, revealed a Techtrap. It should come in handy with future genealogy travels.

Genealogy Education
Even though I spent a lot of time at the IGS booth, I also made sure that I could attend some great sessions over the conference's 4 days. I highly recommend all the lectures that I attended:
  • Focusing on Pathways 'cross the Ohio River with J. Mark Lowe
  • Using Kentucky Equity and Criminal Court Cases to Complete Your Research with Gail Jackson Miller
  • Orphans No More: Records of the Indianapolis Orphan Asylum 1851-1941 with Harold Henderson
  • Documentation: The What, Why and Where with Thomas W. Jones
  • Ohio Cousins May Have Migrated: Did Family Records Go Along? with Paula Stuart-Warren
  • Research Reports for Ourselves: More than a Research Log with Paula Stuart-Warren
  • Information Overload? Effective Project Planning, Research, Data Management & Analysis with Elizabeth Shown Mills
  • The Nuts and Bolts of Publishing Your Family History with M. Theresa Baer and Rachel M. Popma

The Meeting of The Moms
A conference in Cincinnati meant free room and board with my parents. It also meant bringing my mom downtown on Saturday to meet my friends, experience the genealogy scene and have lots of people tell her how wonderful I am. My mom was also able to meet my genealogy mom, Linda McCauley. J. Mark Lowe, Who Do You Think You Are? genealogy celebrity, was even kind enough to meet my mom and take a picture with both of my moms.

These are just a few highlights from an excellent week. Thanks NGS for a great conference! My next conference is Midwestern Roots in Indianapolis on July 20 and 21.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Cleaning Up The Letter S

I've started a project cleaning up my database. Whenever I finish a letter of the alphabet, I'll write a blog post to report about what I learned about the surnames that start with that letter.

I didn't think I would finish the letter S before heading to NGS this week, but somehow I did. The list of S surnames in my database was the longest and it held a few hidden gems.
  • Found Johann Diabold Schilling and wife Maria Kym in the 1850 US census. The census lists Susquehanna Township, Lycoming County, Pennsylvania as their residence, but I think there was a boundary problem with the census. I have found many of my Limestone Township relatives in the 1850 Susquehanna Township pages.
  • Found a photo of Leslie Merritt Stull on his naturalization papers...that I entered into my genealogy database 2 years ago. Not sure how I missed that one.
  • Found William Stull living in Halton County, Ontario where his wife had received a land patent. Crazy.
  • Found Peter Lampman Stull in California in 1870 and Denver, Colorado in 1880. He's another one of my Canadians that immigrated.
  • Found John Franklin Swoyer and wife Sarah Ann Eck in records for the Kelchner Funeral Home in Jersey Shore, Lycoming County, Pennsylvania. Now I just need to find a transcription of that cemetery to see if Franklin's brother was also buried there.
I'm taking a break from cleaning up my genealogy database to spend time learning and hanging out with my friends at the NGS conference. I don't have many surnames that begin with T, U or V, so I'll be starting the Ws by then end of the month. Hopefully this cleanup will be done by the end of June.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Favorite Things in Cincinnati

Many genealogists will be heading to Cincinnati next week for the National Genealogical Society's annual conference. Having grown up in the Cincinnati suburbs, I thought I would share a few of my favorite things in the Cincinnati area.

Cincinnati Chili
Make sure to try some spectacular Cincinnati style chili while in town. Who cannot love something topped with a ton of cheese? Plus you have to want something that uses chocolate as a spice. My mom keeps me stocked up on cans on Skyline Chili.

Grater's Ice Cream
Grater's ice cream made 2 gallons at a time with a French pot process. Make sure you get a flavor with "chocolate chips." They pour melted chocolate into the ice cream while it's churning and it makes such wonderful, giant chunks of chocolate. I love black raspberry chip (and most of the other flavors). If you can't make it to Cincinnati, they will ship you pints or you might find it in your local store.

Jungle Jim's
With a tag line like "A Foodie's Paradise," Jungle Jim's International Market goes far beyond a normal grocery store. Jungle Jim's is a must stop on every visit to Cincinnati for me. I have to stock up on all my favorite crazy foods. It is definitely worth the trip just to experience it once.

Spring Grove Cemetery
Spring Grove Cemetery is a beautiful, old, park-like cemetery in Cincinnati. The first internment was in 1845 and contains over 150 years of Cincinnati history. Take a drive or walk through the cemetery and experience some of the great monuments. And if you have relatives buried in Spring Grove Cemetery, they have their records online. (I just wish more of my "rotating Cincinnati ancestors" had ended up there.)

I can't wait to visit my grandma while I'm in town. But she would probably think it was odd to have a bunch of genealogists show up at her house. She already thinks I'm weird enough for wanting to hang out in cemeteries.

I'm looking forward to seeing lots of friends again and meeting new ones. I'll be in charge of the Indiana Genealogical Society's booth. So if you can't find me anywhere else, check there.