Author: mjnrootdig

My Revised AncestryDNA Estimate

AncestryDNA updated my “Ethnicity Estimate” today. As usual, I’m taking this with a huge shaker of salt only to be used on buttered popcorn while watching entertainment. Keeping in mind that these estimates are based on ethnicity reports from submitted tests (and I think a few known migration details from history) and are “further back” that […]

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Reserving the Apples: Part I

On 1 July 1788 Jonathan and Jamime Puffer, along with Matthias Rice and Mary Rice, deeded eight acres in Stow, Massachusetts, to Luke Brooks. Like most deeds during this time and place, a metes and bounds description of the property is included. There’s an interesting phrase after the description of the property’s location: Reserving to […]

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Those Old pre-1900 Published Genealogies

It’s a rush to judgement to say that “old genealogies are worthless.” When analyzing information from pre-1900 genealogies, it’s advised to keep in mind the likely way that information from the book was obtained. Generally speaking, genealogical facts in these publications came from one of three places: other published books correspondence with living family members […]

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Do You Know the Qualifications?

How one gets listed in a record is an important part of the analysis process. It should be fairly obvious how someone gets listed in a death record–at least the principal person. There are other people who may be alive and whose names may appear on a death certificate (the parents, the informant, the doctor, […]

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An Alienist?

I was reviewing some letters from an insanity file from the early 20th century. I had seen them before, but apparently had not read every word on every page. When reading the letterhead on a letter contained in the file, I came across a title I had never heard of before: Alienist. Simply put, it’s an […]

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My Blogs

I maintain the following genealogy blogs: Rootdig.com—Michael’s thoughts, research problems, suggestions, and whatever else crosses his desk Genealogy Tip of the Day—one genealogy research tip every day–short and to the point Genealogy Search Tip—websites I’ve discovered and the occasional online research tip–short and to the point Casefile Clues–information on my genealogy how-to newsletter which focuses […]

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