Monday, October 25, 2010

Breaking news from National Archives

I received my National Genealogical Society Quarterly over the weekend.  This "Postcard" was included with it from the National Archives.  I wanted to post a scan of it to share the great news.

I am so excited about this new way to order files from the archives instead of "snail mail" with the filling out of the proper forms, etc.

Just another way to love the advances in the way research has been and can be done over the years.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Taking a break from Ireland and searching for my GERMAN ancestors

It begins with the following email from my Great Aunt Betty who has been searching for our ancestors for 20+ years.

according to Aunt Sissy:  the one that was killed in a mine explosion  was:
John W. Schweinsberg    aug. 1839 or 1840     Germany    died,24 apr. 1867  (his wife was)
Catherine Elizabeth Lindeman,,,24 oct. 1843  /14 oct. 1912    Hesse Cassel   Germany
her father::: Conrad Lindeman
her Mother:::Dorothea Coleman
after John was killed she married a Manus Boyle,,   he already had several children and his wife died, then togeather they had children... he was quite a bit older than she was, maybe it was a convienince marriage???
1, Ludwig Schweinsburg:::::4 aug.1861   Hazleton   
2.Henry Philip Schweinsberg:::13 Jul. 1863 HZL.
3. Lewis Schweinsberg:::-------Humbolt
4.Maria (Mary) Schweinberg:::  Nov. 1865    HZL.
5* William Schweinsberg::::28   Dec.  1870  Harwood, Luzerne, Pa.
some where in there the name was shortened to Swinesburg, also Swinsburg

do you have these people already?     aunt betty

Unfortunately, my aunts are not big on saving "documentation" to back up the family connections.  A lot is by stories that have been passed down.  At their ages 70+ 80+ they have a lot of "old" memories that I will never have and that is a wonderful thing.

I guess this is where I need to come in and find the "proof" needed for our family line.  I hope to find something to connect and fill in all the holes that we keep tripping in.  I feel my dog Maxwell has hit our family line like my backyard and keeps digging up holes as I am filling them in.  Bad dog and Bad lack of records.  

I will be searching  Pennsylvania newspapers, cemetery, mine company and court records trying to hunt down any clue to John William's parent's and so on maybe find more on the family in Germany even.  I will also search message boards hoping for a connection that is also on the search for facts and truth in the family stories.  

Happy hunting for all of you who are lost in family stories and mysteries. 

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

A "NEW" ancestor name found in Michael McKenna records.

The next public record I can find on Michael McKenna is a treasure. that helps us to get back one more generation on this family line.

Form for a Naturalized Citizen to apply for a passport.

• Michael applied for a passport May 17, 1922.

• He was planning to board the Cedric June 17, 1922 and visit County Monaghan, Ireland for a period of two months. Seeing this tells us that he must have went to Ireland to get Thomas Leo Corr prepared to join the family in America. I think this because, Tom arrived a few months after he was planned to return in October 1922.

• Michael lists his home address as 496 8th Avenue, New York, NY.
• His occupation is Hotel Proprietor.
• Date of Birth stated again as January 6, 1886. By now you see you see the birth date varies from record to record, this is typical for that time in many countries. Here in the US it didn’t become a law in many states until the age of Social Security and the draft held for World War 2, when many men had to go back and get a delayed birth certificate.

The most precious piece of evidence this form gives us is the name of Michael’s father. It says, “My father, FRANK MCKENNA was born in County Monaghan, Ireland and resides at dead.” Well that explains what happened to dear dad who wasn’t with the family in the 1901 census and gives us one generation back in the family line. Now we just have to find mom. Another wonderful thing is this application includes a picture of Michael himself. As you can see government ID pictures have not gotten any better of the years.

This passport application also indicates that Michael had a passport before. The former passport was issued at the Custom House in New York City in 1920 but has since been cancelled. I wonder if he encouraged another family member to come over during the last visit he had. It also means there might be another brother or sister that emigrated from the homeland.

Now on to find more clues about the last passport and look at the ship manifest for the Cedric he mentioned in his application.  Look for the ship he may have been on in 1920 see what other information may be found.  Maybe I will be able to find more information on his father.  I am also very interested in finding the moms name. 

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Looking more into Michael, Sarah and Maggie Mckenna to find clues to the homeland.

Before jumping to far back in Ireland's records I am going to look into the U.S. records to see if there are any more clues on the family.  We still have no names for the parents and I want to see if there are any other siblings in their own household?  I know already of one Ann, who was already married to James Corr and had her own little family at the time of the 1901 census.  How many others were there?  Lets see what more I can find here in America to look for clues.

Find and examine more records for Michael and see what else can be found on his sisters.  Hoping for the parents names to come up!!!!!
I decided to look at Michael McKenna a little more.

Since Michael was living in New York during the time of the World War I & II drafts lets check out the draft cards.

Searching through the WW I draft cards which was filled out on September 12, 1917, I find Michael McKenna
·         32 years of age at this time and lists his birthday as January 6, 1886.  
·        His residence is 266 West 35th Street, New York, New York. 
·        He lists himself as a Naturalized citizen at this point in time. 
·        Occupation is – Business Owner, Prop. of Café which is located at 496 Eight Avenue. 
·        The nearest relative he lists is Marie Kate McKenna who resides at the same address of   the Café, 496 8th Ave, New York, New York.  Could this Marie Kate be his sister Maggie, who accompanied him on the ship to America?

Well this record doesn't really give us to much "new" information.  It does, however, give us a birth date for Michael.  We also know he was a naturalized citizen so we can now I will look for his naturalization documents.

The Declaration of Intention was filed August 2, 1907.  Looking at this we learn or confirm the following information about Michael.
  • He is 5' 8" tall and weighs 137 pounds.  His hair is black, eyes are blue and he has 2 scars about left eye.
  • Birthday is January 7, 1886 and was born in Monaghan, Ireland.
  • Occupation is Bartender.
  • Resides at 368 W 23rd Street, New York, NY.
  • He arrived to America after leaving Londonderry, Ireland about the ship Caladonia.  He arrived on or around April 30, 1906.

The Petition for Naturalization for Michael McKenna was filed April 18, 1912.  We learn or confirm the following information.
  • Residence was 497 8th Ave, New York City, New York
  • Occupation is listed as Bartender
  • Again lists his birthdate, arrival date and gives us the date he filed his intention.
  • Peter Burke & John Reilly, signed as witness to his filing of petition.  I can't make out what Peter's occupation is but he lives at 449 W. 43rd street.  John Reilly is a Hotel Keeper and he lives at 497 8th Ave New York City.  
In looking back again at the WWI draft card Michael is the owner of a cafe located at 496 8th ave. His sister (?) Mary Kate McKenna was living at that address.  Is that the neighboring building or was it downstairs in the same building from where the witness John Reilly lives at in 1912?

    Michael McKenna completed and his Oath of Allegiance was filed on July 23, 1912.  Which would have been around the time he was finished with his 5 year required residence of the U.S. in order to become a citizen.

    We really don't find any new information on the family in the naturalization records of Michael.  We just see a bit more into Michael's life.  I hope to be able to post a gem or two in the next couple of posts.

    Thursday, August 12, 2010

    Lets go back in time -- Michael McKenna and family back in Ireland

    This posting I hope to uncover a little more about Mike Mckenna and his 2 sisters.  Since Mike and Maggie didn't immigrate to the US until 1906 they should be in the 1901.  I am not sure of the arrival of Sarah,  I guess we will see if she is in Ireland as well in the census.

    Check out the which is the Archives for Ireland site. I am able to see the images of the 1901 census. It is quite easy to do a search on this site. The following fields help narrow down the search a great deal; name, age at census, religion, county and parish.

    I found the family with only a bit of effort. The family is living in the townland of Tullylone in the County Monaghan. Interesting thing is no parents are listed in the family.

    • Parents not with children, probably passed away.
    • Head of house was a single brother named - Peter McKenna. Peter was listed as a Cattle Dealer.
    • Two sisters listed – Margaret and Sarah both seamstresses.
    • Two brothers listed – Michael and John. both scholars
    • Everyone was born in County, Monaghan, were Roman Catholics and could read and write.
    • They lived in a small 3 room house. They had a Cow house, Calf house, Piggery, and Barn on their property.

    Looking at the census records just a few doors down is a sixty-one year old Patrick McKenna and his wife Mary who is fifty-five years of age. Patrick is listed as a farmer. I wonder what relation they are if any relation at all. I will look into that couple at a later time.

    We at least can narrow down the years Sarah immigrated since she was in the 1901 census.  We still have no idea who the parents were.  Perhaps while looking at more US records we can hunt down and discover their names and where they were from.

    Where do we look now and for what?
    1.  Parents names
    2.  Sarah McKenna passenger records
    3.  Michael, Sarah and Maggie in US Census records
    4.  Did the other brothers immigrate as well and if so when?

    Friday, August 6, 2010

    Just in... Records for Michael McKenna the Uncle that met Thomas Leo Corr in NY

    Who is Michael McKenna?  Why was Thomas Leo Corr listed as meeting him when he arrived in New York?  Was Tom going to live with him?  Was Michael providing him with a job or education?  What was Michael’s story?  Did any other family members arrive earlier than him or was he the first of the family to move to this land of oppurtunity?

    I started off knowing a few things about this mystery man.   He had to be the brother of Anne McKenna the mother of Tom.  He was in this country before November 4, 1922 when his nephew arrived.  Having his address which was listed on the Passenger list as 196 Eight Avenue, NY in 1922, I start searching New York City directories to see if he can be found.  The following was discovered:

    1920 New York City Directory
    McKenna Michl (McKenna & Ginnity) 196 8th Avenue

    1916 New York City Directory
    McKenna, Michl. (McKenna & Ginnity) h496, 8th Avenue

    I found an interesting article in the 
    New York Tribune, Wed July 21, 1920.  
    "Physician Wins Point In Liquor Permit Fight"

    After reading that article you may scratch your head thinking what happened.  This is what happened to make such an event occur.

    At the stroke of midnight, on January 16th, 1920, America went dry. There wasn't a place in the country (including your own home) where you could legally have even a glass of wine with your dinner without breaking the law. The 18th Amendment, known as the Volstead Act, prohibited the manufacture, sale and possession of alcohol in America. Prohibition lasted for thirteen years.  Source:

    I have more to say about that topic and what I believe may have happened to the McKenna’s during that time.  I plan to cover unproved theories in a later posting.

    What I do know from the about City Directory information is that Michael McKenna arrived here before 1916.  This narrows my search a bit for when he came to this country.  It was before 1916. 

    Step 2: Look for NY real estate transactions for Michael McKenna.  I searched the Library of Congress website.  They are working on a project called Chronicling America and have access to various newspapers.  I searched all the papers listed in NY.  On June 14th, 1910 the following listing was found in “Recorded Mortgages” which appeared in the New-York tribune . 

    6th ave, 852; Saloon lease; 4 stry brk; June 11; demand 6 per cent:  Michael McKenna to George Ehret; $4550; attorney, Edward M. Burghard, 129 Broadway.

    I have a feeling that could be the Michael McKenna I am looking for.  I check the 1908, 1909 & 1910 City Directory again and this is what I see for the address listed in the newspaper.

    1908 New York City Directory
    McKenna, Michl   beer 852 6th ave, h503 W 52nd

    1909 and 1910 New York City Directory
    McKenna, Michl  liquors 852 6th ave, h854 6th ave

    Both directory listings show us that Michael McKenna was the same guy written about in the Real Estate transactions section of the newspaper.  His business address is the same.  He lived at two different addresses between the years 1908-1910. The question that needs to be answered is this the same Michael?  Now we will check public records to help us prove this is our guy.

    Step 3:  If this is our Michael, he arrived in America before 1908.  With this date it will be easier to search for ship passenger records because it narrows down the time period needed to search.  Perhaps, we could also find out who his father was from such records.

    Try to find a Michael McKenna from Monaghan, Ireland and I am guessing his birth year to be close to his sister Anne which would make him born 1880-1890.  I did a passenger immigration search at 

    Wow, Michael McKenna is a popular name.  I narrowed down the long list  by entering the following information; Birth year 1885 +/-5, Birth place Monaghan Ireland, and arriving before 1908.

    A ship record of the Caledonia, which on April 21, 1906, departed from Liverpool.  It arrived at the Port of New York on April 30, 1906. 

    Among the passengers was a young man by the name of Michael McKenna, who was 20 years old he was traveling with his sister Maggie. 
    Michael was listed as a farmer his last residence was Monaghan, Ireland and his final destination was New York.  Michael and his sister Maggie paid for their own passage to America.  Michael and Maggie were planning to meet their sister Sarah McKenna who lived at 18 W. 10th street, New York.

    This record gives us so much information to find Michael and his sisters back in the homeland. 

    The next posting I will uncover Michael McKenna and his sisters in Ireland to get a better idea of who they were and find out about their parents.

    Tuesday, June 8, 2010

    Just in.... more on Kathleen Corr & her family

    The last post I said I would be investigating Kathleen's brother a little more.  Patrick Clinton was the brother listed on the ship record.  Kathleen listed that she would be staying with him in Newark.  Patrick's address is listed as 144 Hudson Street, Newark, NJ.  Doing a street name search in the 1920 census I found Patrick living at the address Kathleen listed.

    Here is “Patrick” well it is actually Joseph P. Clinton living at 144 Hudson Street he is 20 years old and his occupation is a Conductor on the Street Railway. The time he arrived to America is listed as unknown.  We will have to find him somewhere else pin down a date of immigration.

    You will see he is living with an Uncle and Aunt Frank and Margaret Smith.  Frank was born here in America but Margaret is listed as being born in Ireland and became a citizen in 1890.  So I guess we will have to look closer at Margaret to see if she was related to your Great-grandmother Alice Hannaty, Great-grandfather Owen Marron or Mr. Clinton.  

    I bet if we look we will find Joseph / Patrick in the 1911 Ireland census.   Another wonderful thing is that on Friday (I have been checking every day since I saw they were working on getting records up) the National Archives of Ireland web site just listed the 1901 census online so I will also look there.   Maybe we can figure out when Owen Marron passed away from both years of Ireland's census records.

    Well I found the Clinton/Marron family in the 1901 census of Ireland kind of quickly.  I had the birth county of Meath listed for Kathleen and started there.  No luck, so I searched a County Monaghan which was the last address listed on Kathleen’s ship passenger records.  No luck. 

    Now where do I look I wondered?  Looking at a map of Ireland there is a small county between Meath and Monaghan called County Louth so I checked there.  

    There Kathleen was with her family. Thomas Clinton, Alice Clinton, Patrick J Clinton, Kathleen Marron and a boarder James Ferguson.

    Looking at this page you can see Thomas Clinton, Kathleen’s step-dad worked at the railway works.  I guess this where Patrick found his calling in the 1920 census working on the Street Railway.  We also see that Patrick is 3 years younger than Kathleen so there is a good chance that it is her ½ brother.  I will know more when I find death record for her father Owen MarronI am hoping there will be a record of it – at least a cemetery record.

    Searching the 1911 census I can’t find the family using Kathleen Marron’s name.  No luck.  Ok, maybe Patrick Clinton.  Found them.  Alice is again remarried this time to a man named John Mc Carney who is a tailor and they are all living on Dublin Street in Monaghan. Looking back at Kathleen’s passenger list record we know this was the address listed as her mother’s address.  We also see more ½ siblings under the name Clinton; Bernard and John Thomas.  (I guess this is around when she stopped using her birth father’s name.)

    I am taking a guess here but perhaps Kathleen learned her dressmaking skills from this step-father.  That is the occupation she has listed on her ship passenger record.

    With all these wonderful puzzle pieces about Kathleen's life before she arrived to America we find new family members to search for, clues as to why maybe she left Ireland.  I think if I was having a new step-dad every couple of years I would want to leave also.  What happened to her father is my big question to find out the answer to was he sick? Did he die during the fighting going on over there?  What happened to Mr. Clinton?  When did her younger brother come over to America?  (We know it was between 1911-1920 because we found him in the census records) Who was the Aunt he was living with in 1920?  I wonder if her other brother Bernard also made the voyage over to America or did he stay in Ireland?

    Lots more to come........

    Thursday, May 27, 2010

    Something about Kathleen

    Well I thought I would add more about my dear Kathleen Marron Clinton Corr.  I still had a question what was this Clinton name all about.  Don't tell me the former President snuck himself into my records.  Let me check out what other pages they have on Kathleen to go along with the one naturalization document I have.  Here we got a clue!!!

    When she arrived to this country she came with the name Kathleen Clinton.  No wonder I couldn't find her arrival under Kathleen Marron.  Is that a married name?  Was she married in Ireland before she arrived?  If so did her husband come with her?  What happened to him - that she was able to get married in 1926 only 5 years after she arrived?  I guess I will now look for her ship passenger list information.

    Now I am off to the Ellis Island website to find out more.

    List or Manifest of Alien Passengers for the United States.  S.S. "CEDRIC" passengers sailing from Liverpool, April 30th 1921.

    You will find Kathleen "Clinton" on line #11.  Her age is listed as 24 she is a Single Female.  Her occupation is listed as Dressmaker and she is able to read and write English.  Nationality is Great Britain, Race is Irish.  Her last permanent address was in Monaghan, Ireland.  The closest relative and their address that she left in Ireland is:  Mother - Mrs. Clinton on Dublin Street, Monaghan, Ireland.  Her final destination is listed as Newark, NJ.
    This page just told us that her mother was now remarried and is now a Mrs. Clinton and not Marron.  So Kathleen used her step-fathers name.  I am going to assume her father died.  I will have to check on that and see what happened to him.  Check out the handwritten note going over her typed information

    Let's find out what page 2 holds for us.

    After 10 days at sea they finally arrive at the New York port on May 9, 1921.

    This page we will be looking at line #11 to continue with Kathleen's story about coming to America.  We see that her brother paid her passage to come over.  She had never been to the United States before.  She would be joining a relative, her brother, Patrick Clinton who lives at 144 Hudson Street, Newark, NJ.She was planning to stay in the US for at least 6 years.  Now we get to her physical description.  Kathleen isn't a very tall person only being 5' 2" tall.  She has a dark complexion and dark hair and her eyes are brown.  It is also listed that she has a mark on her left eye.  Remember in the Naturalization papers it lists that she had a scar on the left side of her forehead?  I wonder if I can get a picture of her to figure out what they are trying to describe.  I guess I will have to make a call to a family member that is in NJ that can check her sons home.  It also lists her place of birth as Old Castle, Ireland.

    With these new records to look over we find another family member name to look into.  Who is this Patrick Clinton.  Is he a step-brother? half-brother? or a full brother using the step-dads name?  I am now going to look into the 1920 census to see if Patrick is in Newark, NJ a few months before and see if I can find out when he came over.

    Thomas Corr's Better Half -- Kathleen Corr

    I like to think us wives are always the better half :-)  Anyway.

    Tom's wife was a bit of a hunt - could not find her in the ship records.  I know she came over here as Kathleen Marron - what else.  So I figured where else to look???? Naturalization records, of course.

    She applied in the U.S. District court of the Southern District in New York, NY.  Her name is listed as Kathleen Corr formerly Kathleen Clinton and Kathleen Marron.  (Clinton where did that come from I wonder? The family had no knowledge of that name.)

    It lists her age, address and occupation which is being a housewife.  She has a scar on the left side of her forehead. Her complexion is light and she has Brown hair and gray eyes.  She lists her nationality as Irish/British.  She was married to Thomas Corr on June 9, 1926.  Tom was born in Monaghan, Ireland on July 4, 1904 and he entered the US on Nov 5, 1922 and he was Naturalized on June 8, 1928 at Bronx, NY.

    Having the date of Tom's naturalization listed is wonderful.  It would shock you how many Tom Corr's there were that got naturalized it is like finding a needle in a haystack.  Now I have a date to look into.  It even gives his application # even better.

    Next we see her children's names and their dates of birth.  I knew her oldest son's birth date but that was it.  Here they all are:

    James born April 22, 1927
    Thomas born June 16, 1929
    Alice Nov 14, 1932
    Kathleen April 6, 1938  all born in and now reside in NY.

    Kathleen's last place of foreign residence was Monaghan, Ireland and she entered the US under the name Kathleen Clinton (There is that name again).  She arrived May 9, 1921 aboard the ship SS Cedric.

    With this wonderful new information in hand I have some more searching to do.

    It is like I told the family I am hunting for... It is like sitting down in front of a 5000 piece puzzle with no box lid picture to use as a reference.  Genealogy can be a great challenge but you have so much fun piecing it together.

    Wednesday, May 26, 2010

    More on Thomas Leo Corr - Ship passenger record

    The last post I shared the 1911 census images that provided me with the proof of Thomas Corr's age and family.  When I found the passenger record information I was so excited about seeing his name I forgot to look deeper into it.  The years after 1910 provided more information then older ship records did.  The country started getting a little more pickier on who they let in.  More questions were asked of the passengers and a more detailed health examination was done on the immigrants before they were allowed to step foot on U.S. soil.

    The first page shows us his name Thomas Leo Corr, his age 18, occupation is Assistant Victualler, he is able to read and write and speak English.  Nationality is Great Britain his race is Irish.  He was born in Monaghan, Ireland.  The nearest relative from where he came from:  Father, James Corr lived at Church Square, Monaghan.  His final destination is New York, NY.

    This is page 2 of Thomas Leo Corr's ship passenger manifest record.  He had a ticket to his final destination and his father paid his way.  He was carrying at least $50 while on his trip to the U.S.  He was planning to join with his Uncle Michael Mckenna who lived at 195 Eight Avenue, New York, NY.  He was planning to stay for at least 10 years in the United States.  He was of good health.  The following describes his appearance to us.  Complexion: Fresh, Hair Color: Brown, Eyes: Blue, Height: 5' 7", Body marks of identification:  Mole on Right Eyes.  Place of birth was Monaghan, Ireland.

    With this information I now know he had at least one family member living in the United States already.  My next step is to find more about Michael Mckenna his uncle.  This was the brother of his mom Anne Mckenna Corr.  I am going to look for them both in NY City / Bronx directories as well as the 1930 Federal Census.

    I am hoping I have a little luck with finding Tom Corr and his Uncle Michael McKenna in NY.

    Thursday, May 6, 2010

    Corr Family from Ireland, part 2

    I was planning to post a few days ago but my asthma has been getting the better of me.  Sometimes I feel as if my nebulizer is just an extension of my body.  Anyway, enough about me.

    Well as you know, I found Thomas Leo Corr on the passenger list landing in New York.  Showing this to the grand kids they thought maybe he lied about his age he should be older then is listed.  He was running from the law for supplying the "bad" army with guns.  I figured it was possible, people didn't always know their birthdays others just lied.  I guess having huge "Sweet Sixteen" parties back then wasn't as important as it seems to be today.  The gun supplying thing I could look into...maybe there was a warrant out or something.

    I figured if I could find a birth record or something.  Little did I know how much was missing in Ireland records.  So much was destroyed over the years during wars with England and the religious wars.  Yes, Ireland took a census every year for many years some were even very detailed.  The only ones left after everything is 1901 and 1911.  To think I complain about the U.S. 1890 census being destroyed at least we have all the others.

    I took a chance and looked in the county he had listed on the passenger list.  In 1911 in County Monaghan, house #5 in Church Square in the town of Monaghan you will find the James Corr family with a 6 year old child Thomas Leo Corr.  This age would put his birth about 1904 which agrees with the ship passenger record.  This census also gives me information about the rest of the family.

    Check out the links in order to see the wonderful information found to help me along with this families history search.

    As you can see the father James Corr (which was the name they had listed in the family bible) was a Cattle Dealer and Victualler.  Not sure what a victualler was I had to look it up.  One definition was, a person who sells provisions to an army another was Grocer.  Which would go along with supplying things to the "bad army" like the grand kids thought.  I think providing the enemy with anything even beef/meat would be looked down on.  On the next page, Form B - House and Building Return, it shows (# 5) had a "shop" on their property.  So he probably had a butcher shop or something similar.

    I was happy to report my 1911 census findings to the grand children and they seemed very happy with what I found for them so far.

    I am doing a lot of reading about Ireland and the area the family came from in order to better understand where they are coming from.  Would you know it I found a mess of Reilly's living by the Corr family.  It would be funny if that ends up being my hubby's family.  His Reilly's haven't been in this country very long either. Hhhmmm.  

    Tuesday, April 27, 2010

    Corr Family from Ireland

    Here they are the couple that started this quest for family history knowledge by their boys.

    Well, after a few weeks again of not hearing anything and just about giving up on the Corr family I was contacted once again. Debbie Corr, Matt's wife ran over to my home with an old family bible in hand. She turned it over trusting me to take great care of it since it is falling apart. She tried to photocopy it - but it just didn't work. I took the Bible and promised to be careful.

    The first thing I did after was sit it down on the table and take digital pictures of the opening pages that let us know when and where it was made. I then turned to the family info pages and took pictures of each page. Then the family treasure was closed up and placed it inside an archival storage box I had. I figure it should be safe in there till I get it back to the family. I plan to give them the box to help keep it safe.

    I am posting the pictures of some of the family pages just incase someone reads this and can find a link to help share history with me and other members of the family.

    After entering all the names and information into my FTM program, I started a quick search on Thomas Leo Corr who was the Corr family known to have immigrated to good old USA. It didn't take very long for a ship passenger manifest to come up. There he was the first name on the list Thomas Leo Corr, last residence was Managhan, Ireland and his father is James Corr just like the family bible said. I quick saved that to a file and shot a quick email to both Matt and Joe Corr telling them about what I did with their bible and the attached first bit of information I was able to find on their Corr family.

    I will update more on my searches in the morning. Have a wonderful genealogy dream filled night.

    Monday, March 29, 2010

    Home Decorating - by a Genealogist

    Well you are probably scratching your head wondering, "How does someone obsessed with family history decorate?"  OK, probably not but I figured I would show you anyway. 

    Lets start with the dining room.  Some people might think it a bit strange to have pictures of tombstones hanging up near a dining table.  I believe tombstones are "art" in a way and a lasting memorial to all the ones we love.  The small collection of gravestone pictures are from both my family and my husbands.  The heart shaped stone in the middle is for my father-in-law who only lived to be 26 years old before he was taken away from his family to be with our heavenly father. You will see him in the top left picture playing with his train set.  That is one thing my husband remembers about him.  His love of trains. He shares the stone with his father who passed away eleven years later. The young man in the picture below my father-in-law was his older brother Michael Reilly.  Mike passed away at a young age also.  He was only 19 years old when he died.  I just couldn't imagine being their parents watching their two young sons die before they really had a chance at life.  I pray all the time that I will never have to deal with that heartache.

    The next spot is my "reading area"  it is in the room next to the dining room.  I picked up this wonderful "FAMILY" picture at Boscovs for only $17 and thought it would be a perfect addition to my reading room.  Yes, on the floor next to my chair is the doggie bed.  They just have to be by me at all times so they get their own little spot.  You say, "What does a genealogist read?"  Well, reference books on genealogy, of course.    also have a good amount of history books to help place my ancestor in certain time periods.  My imagination sometimes runs wild thinking about how gg-grandpa or ggg-grandma fit in to certain eras.  That side table is also a file cabinet.  I keep all the "Ancestors" I am researching at the moment in that drawer so I can pull them out and look over the notes and sources I have on them.

    The rest of the wall displays are throughout my house.  On top of the piano you will see pictures of my son and nephew along with pictures of me and hubby when we were little.  Oh yeah, can't forget "Hamburger" the fish.  Johnny named him, what a silly name for a fish.  I am not very artistic so I use decals on the wall to imitate painting or stenciling.
    My "Family marriage" wall ends with present generation with hubby and I in the middle.  Our parents are next up, grandparents and then great grandparents.  I didn't have wedding photos for everyone but dug up the couples pictures I was looking for to include on my wall.  I do have a few more I would like to add.  I am afraid it would overcrowd the wall so I might start another collection of the older generations. 

    We have been in this house for 3 years now.  I am still not finished with all the rooms.  It takes me a while to decide on furniture, carpeting, etc.  Every room will be decorated with personal meaning and family.  I plan to decorate my husbands office with a large "Antique" world map.  He travels a lot with business and this way he can mark all the countries and states he has been.  He is also a marathon runner and I plan make a few shadow boxes to display his medals, certifcates, finish line pictures, runners bibs, etc.    We just picked out the furniture we were getting just have to find a truck to borrow to pick it up.  I also have the area rug picked out just need to have it delivered as well.

    That is my home decorating for now.  I do have a few other "family" walls and such but I didn't want to completely put you to sleep. 

    Thanks for reading.

    Wednesday, March 24, 2010

    New family genealogy troubles.

    Well, as you know from a few posts back my hubby's cousin is getting into the "genealogy thing."

    She emailed me last night saying, "I think you have the wrong Henrietta for my Pop, Joe's mom.  She died in 1985 and her last name was Coffee at the time."  (She had remarried and her new husband was Joseph Coffee.)  She goes on to say that she attended the funeral in 1985 and the last name "Zeigler" was never mentioned.  I thought to myself, She was being buried as a Coffee not as a Zeigler.  Plus, cousin was just a child then, so how much did she remember.  I know I don't remember much of my great-grandma's funeral.

    So she was wondering how come I had Joseph Reilly's mom listed as Henrietta Zeigler?  For she never heard that name so it can't be the right name.

    She also saw in a 1920 Newark, NJ census a Joseph Reilly married to a Helen and they had one child Edward.  She was sure that had to be the correct family since Pop had a brother Edward.

    It took a lot of self control and calming down before I wrote her back.  How dare she question my work?  She is only a newbie. Ok, I know I have to get over that.  I can really be a bratt at times.

    I scanned and forwarded a copy of Pop's (Joseph Reilly) death certificate which had his parents names listed.  His mother was Henrietta Zeigler.  The informant was none other than........... dear cousins, MOM.  I said, "Maybe you should ask your mom what she might know."  I then sent her a copy of the 1920 Census page I had from Newark NJ.  The family highlighted was Head:  Joseph, Wife: Henrietta, Son:  Joseph, Son: Edward. 

    What dear cousin forgot to remember is, we can't make the family history up from stories and our memories.  How many times are our memories incorrect in some way.  I then had to mention there are probably 50 different Joseph Reilly family's in Newark at that time.  Most of them had at least one son with the same name.  Also we need to keep in mind birth order, Joseph was older then Edward but still a small child and would be with the family.  We need to be more selective at which family we claim as ours.

    This morning I got a response email saying, "If the Death Cert. says that is her name it has to be true."  You know me I wrote another long response letting her know Public Records are sometimes wrong.  Records are only as good as the people that gave the information can remember or want you to know.  That is why we should always check multiple records. 

    I had to admit I didn't look into this woman very much - I was to busy focusing on others, that happens.   I filled out and mailed a request letter for Henrietta's SS-5 form first thing this morning.  Hopefully, this will clear things up and also give us her parents names. 

    That is all I have to say for now.  Helping a friend with a 20 year old Brick Wall.  I remember before I even started researching and was just a kid she was trying to find these people.  I used to tag along.  Yeah, she is 25 years older than me.  I have a thing with having older friends.  I guess, I always related better with people my parents or grandparents ages.  My husband tells me, I am an 84 year old woman in a 34 year old body. LOL.