Author: mjnrootdig

Playing Grammar Cop in a 1763 Will

[reposted from our old blog site’s post in 2015] Part of the 1763 will of Joseph Daby from Middlesex County, Massachusetts, reads “…was my Sons Viz Daniel Daby Deceased…” A superficial reading may interpret the word “Sons” to mean that Joseph had more than one son. The intent in this rendering is to indicate that […]


An 1822 Court Case Mentioned in the Newspaper

Newspapers can be great ways to learn of court cases. This December 1822 reference to Aquilla Jones from the Franklin, Missouri, Missouri Intellingencer (available in digital format on is one such example. The legal notice suggests that Aquilla is suing John Earthman for $500. The legal notice does not indicate what the suit was over. However the […]

Citation Creation and Error Reduction

We are usually told to cite our sources because it allows us to go back and find things again if necessary and it assists us in the analysis of information. Another reason: Reducing errors created by the researcher. Creating citations after the research has been done can be time consuming, tedious, and repetitive process. For […]

The Death Certificate for Jurgen Albers and a Different Burial Place

The February 1938 death certificate for “Juergan Albers” indicated that he was buried in Nashville’s Woodlawn Cemetery on 26 February–just two days after he died. No mention is made to Nashville’s veteran’s cemetery where he has a military headstone. The 67-year old Spanish American War veteran was employed as a civil engineer for the Tennessee […]

An Interment Card For Jurgen Albers

This card for Juergen Albers appears in’s “U.S. National Cemetery Interment Control Forms, 1928-1962“.  The card is full of information about Jurgen, his military career, his burial, and–interestingly–his son. The card appears to have been written on by several people: a typist–John P. Sasser or probably a clerk a red pencil writer a pencil writer–apparently […]

More Brick Walls from A to Z

This article originally appeared in the Ancestry Daily News  on 11 May 2007. Last year we looked at Brick Walls from A to Z (reprinted at Unfortunately most of us still have brick walls. In recognition of the many attempts we make to break them down, this week we include an additional list. A is for […]

A Picture of Aunt Lucinda–the Shaker With Descendants

This is the first time I have ever found a relative’s photograph in an archival collection in any library. And a wonderful picture it is. It can be very easy to overlook special collections at regional, college, and university libraries in our ancestral search. Any archival collection has the potential to contain material on a […]