Getting Out of My Habits

All of us have research habits based upon previous experience. Those habits often stem from where our relatives lived (and what records were generally kept and are accessible) and what has worked for us in the past. It is important to get beyond  some of those habits so that we do not overlook sources that […]


Standardizing What We Should Be Transcribing: Born in the State or Country of Tioga

  Records with clear errors present challenges to transcribers. Actually they only present transcription challenges when the handwriting is difficult to read. Transcribers are supposed to transcribe records as they appear, not as they wish they would appear and not as they are “supposed” to appear. The directive is fairly clear. When the handwriting is […]

White Trash: A History of Class in America

The genealogist who fails to understand social history does themselves and their ancestors a grave injustice.  It is in an attempt to broaden my understanding of social history that I decided to purchase the somewhat provocatively titled, White Trash: The 400-Year Untold History of Class in America after seeing it mentioned on Elizabeth Shown Mills’ Evidence Explained […]

Twenty Years Elsewhere

It all depends upon your angle. Louis Demar was born in Clinton County, New York, in the 1850s. He lived there until approximately 1900 when he moved to Chicago, Illinois, where he stayed through 1920. Most of the time he worked for the Pullman Car Company and it’s likely job opportunities were what brought him […]

Spring Break Webinars-Brick Walls

    Already Given This hour-long presentation (aimed at advanced beginner and intermediate researchers) will focus on research approaches to get you past “brick walls”. We will look at reasons why we have “brick walls” and how we may be making our own “brick walls.” Focus will be on problem-solving, getting past assumptions, realizing what […]

A Google Book Reference for a 1764 British Convict

Periodic searches of GoogleBooks are necessary for just about every ancestor, no matter how unlikely it may seem that their name will appear in print. James Rampley was a resident of County Suffolk England who was transported in 1764 to the Americas. He appears in Peter Wilson Coldham’s The Complete Book of Emigrants in Bondage, 1614-1775 (Baltimore, MD, […]

World War II Draft Registration Cards–Old Men’s Draft

Ancestry.com recently announced an update of their “U.S., World War II Draft Registration Cards, 1942.” This draft registration is commonly referred to as the “Old Men’s Registration,” registered men who born on or between 28 April 1877 and 16 February 1897 and was conducted on 27 April 1942. The following states are currently in the database […]

The Lucky Seven Children of Kentucky’s Nelson Sledd

The “Kentucky, Death Records, 1852-1963” on Ancestry.com is an excellent source for those with Kentucky connections.  The ability to search based upon parents’ names is a wonderful way to query the database. That’s exactly what I did to locate seven children of Nelson Sledd of Nicholas County, Kentucky. I wanted to see what information they provided on Nelson, […]