20 February 2010

52 Weeks, #8 - Online Map Collections

I love maps. I have a county maps for every state I do research in. I have county maps. I have township maps. I have city maps. I have historic maps. They are amazing research tools. Some websites that I use regularly:

Historic Map Works
Library of Congress - American Memory
David Ramsey Collection

Try googling the location you want a map of-you might be surprised at what you find. Google maps is great for make custom maps. This summer I visited Minneapolis and created a map with pin points for every house my ancestors lived in. You can attach notes as well to those points, saying, for example, when the family resided in each location.

My favorite map is a map of landowners in Scioto County, Ohio in 1875 from the Library of Congress.

SNGF - Genea-gasms

It's Saturday night and time for some fun... 
From Randy Seaver over at Genea-Musings:
Think of any number of genealogy events or moments that make you have a genealogy happy dance, an ah-ha moment, or a genea-gasm. 

1)I e-mailed someone about a record on Ancestry.com. Turns out he's a cousin. Who directed us to another cousin, who happens to live in the same city as my family. Who's daughter lives a block away from my parents. Read the whole story here.

2) This past summer I went on a research road-trip. I found a lot of information, quite a few gasms, and attended the Linner family reunion. I love small towns. Everyone is super friendly and helpful. For example, while in Pipestone, Minnesota I was at the Pipestone County Historical Society and Museum. The old family house in town is still standing. The librarian looked at the address, told me the owner is a member, and called her up to see if she would let us look at the house. The owner was more than willing, giving up a tour. The house has been remodeled a few times, but the basement was still original, built by my ancestor.

3) I was contacted by a cousin who had pictures and records that I'd never seen, including a picture of my great-grandfather and his sister as children and their mother's wedding picture with her second husband. He was able to fill in a lot of blanks for me.

4) A few days ago I found That family, the one who liked to avoid census takers. Well, they're enumerated on the 1855 New York state census.

4) Someone had posted a picture on Findagrave for my Linderman family. It's a family stone that lists the parents, the paternal-grandfather, and all but two of the children, with their birth and death dates. Using that information I was able to find the family in the censuses and learned that my ancestor was a Civil War veteran (with a pension file).

18 February 2010

Finding That Family

Things have been pretty quiet here lately, which I apologize for. Life has a habit of happening, not to mention those shiny and distracting Olympics.

Two films I had orders through the local family history center (otherwise known as SCGS) came in. The first is the 1825, 1835, 1845 Steuben County, New York state censuses and the seconds is the 1855 Allegany County, New York state census. For Steuben County, a few towns seem to be missing. I need to do some research and double check when they were created and what the closest towns are, just in case. The second film got me excited. Most of us have that one family that managed to avoid census enumerators time after time. For me, it's the family of Emerson and Mary (Nichols) Rutter. They were married in August 1832 in Worcester County, Massachusetts.[1] Their eldest surviving son was born in June 1837 in Smithfield, Providence Co., Rhode Island.[2] By 1842 they were living in Cuba, Allegany County, New York (along with several of Mary's siblings).[3] However, they are not in the 1840 and 1850 censuses. I've search every way I can think of, even going page-by-page. Mary's siblings are there, but not the Rutter family. The first census I have them on is the 1856 Iowa state census.[4] According to it, the family has resided in the state 0 years (they don't appear in another census until 1870). The 1856 Iowa state census gave me the hope that the family might have still been in Allegany County, New York for its 1855 state census enumeration. Going line-by-line I went through the town of Cuba. First I found Rufus Nichols and Aaron and Caroline (Nichols) Stone, enumerated one right after the other. Then I literally let out a shriek when I found the Rutter's.[5]

Emerson and Mary are listed with their four sons. According to the census, the family has resided in the town for 17 years and Emerson is a land owner. Someday I'll get to that courthouse to look up records...

[1] Affidavit of Marriage for Emerson Rutter & Mary Nichols in Mary E. Rutter, mother's pension application no. 223,150, certificate no. M.O.C. 193,691, for service of Philip H. Rutter (Pvt., Co. K, 12th Iowa Inf., Civil War); Case Files of Approved Pension Applications..., 1861-1934; Civil War and Later Pension Files; Department of Veterans Affairs, Record Group 15; National Archives, Washington, D.C.
[2] Alonzo John Rutter (Pvt., Co. K, 21st Iowa Vol. Inf., Civil War), pension no. Inv. 242-406, Case Files of Approved Pension Applications..., 1861-1934; Civil War and Later Pension Files; Department of Veteran's Affairs, Record Group 15; National Archives, Washington, D.C.
[3] Son Hollis E. Rutter was born 15 Apr 1842 in Allegany Co., NY.
[4] 1856 Iowa state census, Delaware County, Delaware, population schedule, p. 700-701 (stamped), dwelling/family 28, for E. Rutter; digital images, "Iowa State Census Collection, 1836-1925," Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : downloaded 25 March 2007); citing microfilm of Iowa State Censuses obtained from the State Historical Society of Iowa via Heritage Quest, roll IA_52.
[5] 1855 New York state census, Allegany County, population schedule, Cuba, p. 25 (penned), dwelling 196, family 206, Rufus Nichols; FHL microfilm 501952.
     1855 New York state census, Allegany County, population schedule, Cuba, p. 26 (penned), dwelling 197, family 207, Aaron Stone; FHL microfilm 501952.
     1855 New York state census, Allegany County, population schedule, Cuba, p. 36 (penned), dwelling 257, family 304, Emerson Rutter; FHL microfilm 501952.

03 February 2010

Wordless Wednesday - Norman Rockwell's Four Freedoms

Today is Norman Rockwell's birthday.

Is this poster still relevant today?

Image from the Library of Congress' American Memory.