30 June 2010

FREE IS FREE (LOOK UPS THAT IS)

Genealogy research is one of the most fascinating experiences of my life, but long ago I gave up on posting messeges on chat boards and through clubs, because it has turned out to be a time and hope waster. I have yet to ever find someone willing to do a little free for me while I do a little free for them. And believe me, when I was newer at this I tried, writing to historical societies and the like and never once getting so much as a postcard in return.

I FIND THAT MOST OF THE "FREE LOOK UPS" are defunct (the e-mail no longer works or the person quit after their first burst of enthusiasm) or used as free advertising by someone who really wants to be paid for genealogy research ; wrong because it's bait and switch.

I'm sure some well meaning souls are really willing to do a little this and that for you for no charge, since they have the books right on their shelf or live next door to the local library, but most of the time when I asked I got no response at all or someone looked something up in the index but would not elaborate without my sending money. Since I live in a major city and have access to several libraries and genealogy societies I have access to research materials that many small towners don't and often all it takes is ordering a microfilm in to research another place in the United States.

SO JUST BE WARY WHEN ANYONE CLAIMS FREE ; YOU'LL PROBABLY GET WHAT YOU PAID FOR.

26 June 2010

IS THAT HANDWRITING HIS? HANDWRITING ANALYISIS and GENEALOGY

Sometimes I find documents with the signature of the person being recorded - a draft registration for instance - and I really want to believe this is the handwriting of the individual.

Now you have to be really careful to assume this is true and resist the notion to get that handwriting analysis book out and get to know your ancestor through his or her penmanship! That is because I have seen a series of documents like these in which man after man seemed to have near identical signatures.

What gives?

Although your ancestor may indeed have known how to read and write (and comic book level reading is reading, this does not imply that they did either a whole lot) they may have carefully signed some documents while their daily handwriting was something else. Others remained at a very basic level in their ability to use penmanship rather than printing and it looks a little, shall we say, second-gradish...

Wait until you have a collection of signatures that appear to match before you get too excited. Some documents you may consider besides draft registrations would be marriage licences and original applications for Social Security.

Christine/Ancestry Worship Genealogy c 2010 All Rights including Internet and International Rights reserved. Please contact me for permission before quoting.

21 June 2010

18 June 2010

THE OLD MAN'S WORLD WAR II DRAFT REGISTRATION is AVAILABLE to the PUBLIC

The World War II draft registration for OLD MEN (ages 44 to 64 years old in April 1942) is now available.

Use this registration information to add to your knowledge of the family before that 1940 census comes out!

The records for the men more age appropriate for fighting during World War II are still closed for privacy because of the privacy laws that cover them: some of them are still alive after all (as are an ever dwindling number of these men recorded.)

Some of the interesting aspects of this information, which is available through the National Archives and some other genealogy databases and resources, is the height and weight, eye color, profession and employer...

and maybe if you're lucky like I was you'll find a handwritten note such as "Wears Glasses and a Mustache!"

15 June 2010

BOOK REVIEW: THE PORCELAIN GOD A SOCIAL HISTORY OF THE TOILET by JULIE HORAN

THE PORCELAIN GOD - A SOCIAL HISTORY OF THE TOILET by JULIE HORAN
Review by Ancestry Worship Genealogy


DO YOU WANT TO LAUGH OUT LOUD ? STUN YOUR FRIENDS WITH FASCINATING TOILET FACTS WHILE EATING THAT BBQ? (On the old television show MARRIED WITH CHILDREN, character AL BUNDY'S toilet flush was quite the punctuation point! Ever since we can talk about this, can't we?)

THE PORCELAIN GOD by Julie L. Horan made me laugh out loud again and again. And, after I lent the book to a male friend, he felt free to ask me what experience I had with using BLUEING in the wash - his white undies you know! Seriously, DID CIVILIZATION actually start with the INVENTION OF THE TOILET?

Believe it or not, people used to worship gods and goddesses who ruled the potty and bowels.

We all have them, we all poop, and then pretend we don't.

Get this! THE GERMANIC tribes hid valuable possessions beneath their potty trenches... sailors went naked up the "head" and held on for dear life as the boat tossed and turned so they could go poo and not stain their clothes... Kings squeezed themselves down the hole to hide from attack and some ran through the sewers below to the river... and for a time, after a female pope was discovered, popes were inspected for maleness while sitting on a throne...

Would you perhaps enjoy using a chamber pot with your least favorite politicians face down in the bottom?

OK I'll leave out the gross stuff... Go get the book!

Christine

BOOK REVIEW BY ANCESTRY WORSHIP GENEALOGY C 2010 All Rights Reserved including Internet and International Rights.

10 June 2010

YOUR EUROPEAN ANCESTORS WERE PROBABLY SURVIVORS OF THE BLACK DEATH

CHANCES ARE VERY GOOD, if you are from European ancestry, that your genes are survivors of the BLACK DEATH - The Plague. I just read a fascinating article in the travel section of the LOS ANGELES TIMES, a paper copy, about tourism to the OBERAMMERGAU area, for the purposes of the yearly passion play, which has been put on every 10 years since the town promised God it would do so, if it were spared the Black Death.


According to SUSAN SPANO, the journalist who wrote the article called IN THE ALPS, A SAVING GRACE, which appeared in the Sunday June 7th edition, "Before the first Passion was staged and the plague abated, almost 100 villagers -died, relatively few compared with southern Germany as a whole, where the BLACK DEATH killed more than a million people.

07 June 2010

NEWSPAPER DATABASES and MICROFILMS are an ESSENTIAL ELEMENT to WRITING ABOUT FAMILY

RECENTLY through a newspaper database that carries hundreds of small town newspapers I was able to break through some research blocks that had truly confounded me. Yes, I'm always working a little bit on my own research when I'm not researching for someone else.

A member of my grandfathers extended family was on the census but the married surname was truly one of the most confused I had ever encountered. It looked like it had been scratched out, erased, and written over again.

I had tried all my tricks to bust through to the correct spelling of this surname. Soundex for starters. Then a series of probable misspellings due to the bad handwriting maybe being transcribed by a hurried typist incorrectly - a's turned into o's and so on.

I actually found an engagement announcementusing a misspelling and then a picture of the bride on a newly acquired newspaper database. I REMINDED MYSELF THAT EACH AND EVERY LETTER OF THE NEWSPAPER HAD BEEN TYPESET and that MAYBE WHEN THE TYPESETTER RAN OUT OF ONE VOWEL OR ANOTHER they decided to substitute!

Not only that but the first name of the groom was listed as Lester, when it was actually Louis.

But now, invigorated by actually having a first picture of this ancestor, an informed intuition took over and I took one more guess at the surname, and was able to find a World War I draft record that most likely was the correct spelling in another databse! I CROSSCHECKED THE ADDRESS and it was right.

SMALL TOWN NEWSPAPERS are valuable because often just reading the page gives us a great idea about the events of the day and what was important to the people in that town. This one appears to be something of a local NATIONAL ENQUIRER! For only two years later - coming up with another misspelling - came the report that the bride was being sued for desertion of her husband! Perhaps this is why I found her living again with her parents on the very next census.

C Ancestry Worship Genealogy All Rights Including Internet and International Rights Reserved.

01 June 2010

I've been reading about the HUMAN GENOME

and the question is, are we are who we are (and what we are) by NATURE or NURTURE and how so! I think that we often ask ourselves who we are like in our family, looks, personality, and character, talents and skills, psychology... and it seems that all these things may be a bit predetermined if the scientists are right...