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Sunday, February 27, 2011

Sunday's Obituary ~ Carl Plum

From the March 4, 1902 issue of the Chicago Daily News;

"Carl Plum, March 3, 1902, beloved husband of Anna Plum (nee Schmitt) and father of Clara Hasse, Nana, Carl E., Julius, Robert and Arthur Plum, aged 62 years and 9 months. Funeral from late residence, 6946(?) Stewart Ave., Thursday at 10 a.m. to Graceland. Cincinnati papers please copy."

Carl was my second great-grand uncle-in law. His wife Anna-Marie was (my second great-grandmother) Elizabeth's sister. Immigrants Carl and Anna were married in Cincinnati, Hamilton, Ohio before relocating to Chicago shortly before The Great Fire of 1871.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

New Year's Resolution Update

The "eat less, exercise more" part of my New Year's Resolutions aside, here's where I am on Week 8 of my genealogy goals for 2011:

My current focus is on my Clarke, Gury, Littrell, and Schmitt lines. Still haven't found the country of origin for the Clarkes or Littrells and progress on both has been painfully slow. 17th and 18th century French Gury and Schmitt records are keeping me busy though so I am still somewhat productive.

Received disappointingly little information from St. Paul's Lutheran Church in Funkstown Maryland, but I am so appreciative of their efforts on my behalf! The pastor and his wife offered wonderful suggestions for further research.
Time to focus on the coroner's report that slipped through the cracks last year.

My first cemetery road trip of 2011 is scheduled for May. Hope all the snow melts before then! Oakwoods is at the top of the list.

Shared a Grandma story or two during my last visit. More incentive to jot down my memories before my memory fails me.

The local genealogy society isn't working for me. Need more idea generation and fewer lectures. Where are my peeps?

Chose this year's conference; FGS in Springfield Illinois in September. Husband will join me making the trip even more fun. Hope to meet some of the bloggers I follow and make a new gen-bud or two!

Photo sorting continues, but grudgingly. Must sprinkle in some creativity to retain my interest. Chose six topics about which I can cut and paste. This week I'll start arranging pictures. That oughta inspire me!

Cleaning and organizing computer files to save space (and sanity).

Back on track at Find A Grave - whew! Contributing during my lunch hour works great (until it's warm enough to walk outside).

And from now until then I'll be Living in the Past Lane.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Sunday's Obituary ~ Lyman John Clarke

From the February 14, 1948 issue of the Chicago Tribune;  

"Lyman John Clarke Sr., Feb. 12, of 605 S Clinton avenue, Oak Park, beloved husband of Marion, father of Lyman J. Jr., and Violet Irene Barlean, grandfather of Linda Diane Clark, son of Elmer E. and Susan Berg Clarke, brother of Clifford and Elmer Clarke, Mrs. Zora Blake, Mrs. Stella Rudolph, Mrs. Edna Hansen, Mrs. Alice Jenkenson, Mrs. Eloise York, Mrs. Irma Froberg and Mrs. Dorothy Thompson, brother-in-law of Mrs. Josephine Bapst. Services Saturday, Feb. 14, 2:30 p.m., at chapel, 124-126 Madison street, at Lombard avenue, Oak Park. Interment Arlington. Member of Prospect lodge, No. 957, A.F. & A.M., Euclid Avenue Methodist church, of Oak Park, and Manager of Darnell Corp."

Lyman was my first cousin thrice removed. His father Elmer Eugene Clarke and my second great-grandfather William Penrod Clarke were brothers born in Funkstown, Washington, Maryland.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Wordless Wednesday ~ Fashion from 1850

I wonder what my ancestors thought of this style

Monday, February 14, 2011

Motivation Monday ~ Create an Assembly Line

Image Courtesy of The Graphics Fairy
Super Simple tip # 4: Henry Ford was right.

Hunting seems to be every genealogist's favorite sport. We'll look in every nook and cranny for elusive clues that may lead us to the catch of the day - a document mentioning our ancestor. Those documents can add up quickly however and soon we're faced with a pile of paper that feels more like a chore than a treasure.

I recently copied 27 French records that referred to my ancestors. Twenty-seven records to transcribe, translate, review, and add to my tree. A task that seemed overwhelming. One day I separated the Gury records from the Schmitt's. More organized, but still daunting. I put the records in chronological order. Then I filed them in the left side sleeves of two old photo albums. Ah ha! Now the project felt managable.

Transcribing the records in French was next. Then I ran each through Google language. My translated transcriptions went into the right side sleeves, next to the appropriate photocopy. I tweaked the records with help from a few French friends, and voilà! I can copy and paste the results into my family tree.

By the second transcription, the handwriting seemed more legible. Translating the records all in a row helped fine-tune many of the "old" words used by the Maire. Posing all my questions at one time prevented my helpers from tiring of me. Hopefully. :o)

At each stage of the project, I felt a sense of accomplishment. By the end, I had twenty-seven new French family members and a long list of new clues. Now I just have to tackle those...

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Sunday's Obituary ~ Carl Magnus Carlson

From the Chicago Daily News, Monday February 12, 1945;

"CARLSON - Carl M. Carlson, Feb 11, late of 2617 N. Seminary av., beloved husband of Laura (nee Olson), fond father of Florence Quinlan and Edward, brother of Hannah Flood and the late Maria Pearson and John. Funeral Wednesday, Feb. 14, at 1 p.m., from funeral home, 2056-58 Belmont av., to Acacia Park Cemetery."

Carl's sister Johanna is my great-grandmother. She and Maria and Carl were close throughout their lives. I know very little about John except for the clue above that he died before Carl and that all four siblings immigrated to Chicago from Börstil (which was later renamed Östhammar), Uppsala, Sweden.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Sunday's Obituary ~ Harry Wilhelm Tolf

Harriet, Harry, Earl, Julia and Oliver Tolf

From the Friday February 7, 1964 issue of the Chicago Tribune;

TOLF - Harry W. Tolf, husband of the late Judith; father of Earl, the late Donald [Oliver], and Harriet Walton; three grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren; brother of Katherine and Raymond Tolf.

Resting at Edgar-Anderson Funeral Home, 4821 N. Damen avenue, until 10 p.m. Friday. Service Saturday at the Johnson Funeral Home, Batavia Ill.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Margaret ? becomes Margaret Jane Shartzer

In the 1860 census, my third great-grandmother Margaret is married to Charles Littrell. They live in Salem Virginia with their two children, John and Mary Ellen.

The 1870 census reveals that Charles had recently married Julia McMasters. Their blended family included a two year old child of their own named Edward. By the 1880 census the family had moved to Springfield Ohio.

Margaret's identity seemed to be lost until one day a clue appeared on FamilySearch. A Margaret Jane Littrell who had been married to Chas. W. Littrell died in 1867. The Family History Library had two films that offered possibilities for me to explore; # 33822 with Marriage Licenses and a Marriage Register, and # 33823 with a birth and death register. I rented both.

I looked at the marriages first. It was frustrating not to be able to find Charles's marriage to Margaret. But I did locate his marriage to Julia on November 21, 1866. Both were widowed. Charles was 32, born in Roanoke County Virginia. Twenty-seven year old Julia had been born in Rockbridge County. Charles' parents are listed as John and Catherine. The Dunker minister who married the couple was John Brubaker.

The birth and death register revealed multiple birth records for children born to Charles and (variations of spellings for) Margaret Jane. Seeing my second great-grandmother's birth in 1858 proved Margaret Jane was indeed my third great-grandmother. The birth record of their first child included Margaret Jane's maiden name - Shartzer.

Sadly I learned Margaret's fate within minutes of learning her name. She and two of her young children died of flux in July of 1867.

The Littrell plot thickens. How could Charles and Julia be married before Margaret died? The answer could be as simple as an error in transcription, but this is a question I hope to answer during my next visit to the FHC.