Monday, April 30, 2012

Mary's Last Record

My paternal grandfather's family left Ohio in the 1880s and by 1940 there weren't many relatives still around there.  One person who was was Mary C. Allen Evans (I have no idea what the 'C' stands for, though I'd love to know).  Mary was my great-great-grandfather's older (by fourteen years) sister.  She married Thomas J. Evans when my great-great-grandfather was a baby.  They had six children.

At the time of the 1940 US Census, she was living in Girard, Trumbull, Ohio where she had spent most of her life.  She died on 30 April 1940 (72 years ago today), eighteen days after the census enumerator visited her home.

Mary C. Evans Family
210 E. Howard St., Girard, Trumbull, Ohio; ED 78-67, image 14
Interestingly, Mary is listed as completing the 8th grade.  This would mean she was likely in school until not long before her marriage.  Considering she came from a poor family with many mouths to feed, I'm a little surprised she got as much education as she did.

About a week after she spoke with the enumerator, she began seeing a physician for 'carditis,' which she later died from (as well as old age, she was 85).  I think it likely the 1940 US Census was one of the last (if not the last) record Mary helped create.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Albert in 1940

One person I really wanted to find in the 1940 US Census was my great-great-grandfather's brother, Albert Rendle Croad.  He lived in Salt Lake City for many years but died in Arizona.  I wanted to know which locale he was in at the time of the census.  I did a quick search through Salt Lake City directories and found him living at 132 B St., Apt. 1 (which just happens to be a few blocks from the Family History Library).

I was able to find him in ED 30-120, image 22, with his wife and son:


All three had 4th grade educations.  Lucy was the land lady of their apartment house; Albert R. was a houseman at either the Whitehouse (1940 city directory) or Reid Hotel (1941 city directory).

Albert was the youngest of fourteen children and the only one in the US still alive in 1940.

Monday, April 23, 2012

A Find and a Surprise!

I've bemoaned the fact that I wasn't able to find many of my Ohio and Michigan ancestors recently.  I also said that I was done looking for them until those states were indexed.  Well...

I had some free time last night and a hankering to tackle my missing people.  The only problem is I've looked through all the EDs where I thought they'd be, and in some cases neighboring EDs just in case.  Since I'd seemingly exhausted all avenues, I didn't really know what to do next.  I still don't in several cases, except one. My grandfather and his family were living on W South St. in Jackson, Michigan in 1940.  In 1940 that was on the city line.  I looked through the EDs within the city limits which I thought applied to W South St. and found nothing - not even the street!

Well, last night I re-examined some ED maps and saw that there was one for a place called "Southland-Woodland."  Wait a minute, W South St. is awfully close to a Woodland Cemetery - could there be a connection?  So I looked at that map and sure enough, it seemed to cover my area.

From there I went to the ED for Southland-Woodland.  Good news is that that the ED began with W South St.  Bad news is that it is 74 pages long. Best news?  My grandfather and his family were at the top of page two!

But wait, who's that at the bottom of the household?  Turns out, my great-grandfather's mother, Mary/Marion Wood Allen was living with the family.  Since she disappeared from city directories I had assumed she had died before the 1940 US Census.

Finding out that Mary was alive in Jackson in 1940 is wonderful.  I had been looking for her death information in Manistee pre-1940.  Time to change the game plan!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Oh, The Places You'll Go!

I've been doing a lot of indexing of the 1940 US Census.  It has has gotten to the point where I've done quite a bit of "traveling" and I wanted to start a list with all the different places I've been while indexing:

California:
Alameda County
Amador County
Butte County
Calaveras County
Colusa County
Contra Costa County
Fresno County
Glenn County
Humboldt County
Imperial County
Los Angeles County
Kern County
Kings County

Colorado:
Pueblo County

Kansas:
Sedgwick County

Ohio:
Franklin County


Oregon:
Lane County

Michigan:
Allegan County

New Hampshire:
Cheshire County

Virginia:
Lynchburg


(last updated 13 April 2012)

Not surprisingly, all the states I've worked on thus far are ones of genealogical interest to me.  Clearly, California is my main focus and I think it likely that it will stay that way.  Ohio and Michigan are two other states I'll work on quite a bit.  Since I wasn't able to find many of my Ohio and Michigan relatives, I'm anxious to help get searchable indexes up for those two.

Disclosure: I am in no way affiliated with FamilySearch beyond being in their Blog Ambassador program.  I was not prompted or remunerated by anyone to write this post.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Writing a Family History Book with Pinterest

I paid little mind to the Pinterest band wagon until seeing what Heather had been able to do concerning genealogy on the site.  It got me to thinking and I realized Pinterest could be an excellent organizational tool in writing my family history book on my Bergers.  I decided to play around with a "Berger Book" pin board:
Screen shot of "Berger Book" pin board
I uploaded many of the images I'm going to use in the book.  I also made sure the pin description mentioned where the image will go within the book:
Screen shot of what will be the final image in the "Berger Book"
The book itself is written, I just need to add the images and footnotes with source citations.  Once the footnotes are done, I'll add the images and use this pin board to help remind me what I want to include and where.

I had considered offering the book for free but considering the amount of work that has gone into it (so far I've put in over two years on the project), I might scrap that plan.  Instead I'll just point interested people to this pin board.  If after seeing the images they still want the book, they can go purchase it on whatever self-publishing location I eventually pick.

I'm still playing around (and familiarizing myself) with Pinterest, but so far I like the genealogical possibilities.

The pin board for the "Berger Book" is here if you'd like to check it out:
http://pinterest.com/leaheallen/berger-book/

Disclosure: I am in no way affiliated with Pinterest.  I received no remuneration for this post from anyone.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Comparing WWI Draft Registration Records

Although my great-grandfather was still in Italy during WWI, his brother, Nicola, was in the US.  Nicola filled out a draft registration card which I found on Ancestry.com:
WWI Draft Registration Card for Nicola Lapiccirella from Ancestry.com
If you are able to read that, then you're a superhero.  I sure couldn't.  Well, parts of it that is, like the most important part: 'Nearest Relative.'  I was able to make out the fact that Nicola had listed his brother (my great-grandfather), as his "nearest relative" but the rest of the section was a blur.

This discovery occurred some years ago.  I was disappointed but then filed it away and moved on... until this evening.  This post by the Ancestry Insider inspired me to look for Nicola's card at FamilySearch.

Bingo:
WWI Draft Registration Card for Nicola Lapiccirella from FamilySearch
The FamilySearch image is a thousand times better - and best of all is the fact that it gives credence to something I was told but had no proof of: my great-grandfather served for Italy during World War I.  Under my great-grandfather's name is his address:
Thank you so much, Ancestry Insider!  Now I really do have to investigate Italian military records...

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Census Adventures Concludes... For Now

I think I'm pretty much done looking for people in the 1940 US Census until an index comes out (at least for California, Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania).  In summation, I found a lot of people (my mother's side, all in California)... and didn't find a lot of people (my father's side, all in the Midwest).  I found people where they were supposed to be, couldn't find people where they were supposed to be, and accidentally found some people I hadn't even started looking for yet.

Here is a run down of my ancestors looked for and found... or not found (hat tip to Begin with 'Craft' for the idea):

Found
Maternal Grandmother (Chico, Butte, California)
Maternal Grandfather (Elkhorn Twp., San Joaquin, California)
Gladys Viola Healey, great-grandmother (Elkhorn Twp., San Joaquin, California)
Elmer John Shinn, great-grandfather (Elkhorn Twp., San Joaquin, California)
Gideon Gottlieb Berger, great-grandfather (Chico, Butte, California)
Georgiana Wellons, great-grandmother (Chico, Butte, California)
Lauren Everett Healey, great-great-grandfather (Alameda, Alameda, California)

Missing
Niels Christian Nielsen, 3rd great-grandfather (Alameda, Alameda, California)*
Paternal Grandfather (Jackson, Jackson, Michigan)
Paternal Grandmother (Warren, Trumbull, Ohio)
Joseph James Allen, great-grandfather (Jackson, Jackson, Michigan)
Daisy May/Marie Croad, great-grandmother (Jackson, Jackson, Michigan)
John Grant Allen, great-great-grandfather (Jackson, Jackson, Michigan)
Mary/Marion Wood Allen, great-great-grandmother (Manistee, Manistee, Michigan)^
Joseph/Giuseppe Lapiccirella, great-grandfather (Warren, Trumbull, Ohio)
(Maria) Nicoletta ? Lapiccirella, great-grandmother (Warren, Trumbull, Ohio)

*likely not enumerated, died 4 April 1940
^unknown whether living in 1940 or not, not in 1940 and later city directories so probably deceased by the time of the census.

The above does not include the dozens of aunts, uncles and cousins found and looked for as well.

So am I going to sit around and wait for the census to be indexed? No.  I don't feel right just waiting for someone else to do all the indexing, and besides, why should they have all the fun (and indexing is fun, at least I think it is)?  It is also very easy to do.  So far I've done over a dozen batches for California and one batch each for Colorado and New Hampshire.  Have you started indexing yet?  If not, why?!
  

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Further Hits and Misses of the 1940 US Census

After my previously mentioned early discoveries, I spent yesterday looking at California records at Ancestry.com.  I never was able to access http://1940census.archives.gov until after midnight.  But, it was okay because roughly half of my ancestors alive in 1940 were in California, as well as many more collateral lines.

I managed to find my grandfather in rural San Joaquin County with his parents on their farm.  Then, once the cities of Oakland and San Francisco were loaded, I really got down to business and found lots of aunts, uncles, and cousins.  I was not, however, able to find someone I especially wanted to find, my great-great-grandfather's sister, Nona Lenore Healey Vaughan in San Francisco (even though she lived on the same street as her sister, who I easily located).  Oh well, back to the drawing board!

I also dipped my toe into indexing yesterday.  I've only done one batch so far but I'm planning on spending a good chunk of this upcoming weekend on the project.

Once I was finally able to access the "official" website I immediately started looking through Ohio and Michigan records for my father's parents and their families.  I struck out all over, but I was also pretty tired by that point. Now that my real world obligations are done for the day, I'm planning on re-searching for my Ohio and Michigan branches - hopefully I'll find someone this time around!
My grandfather and his family in the 1940 US Census
Elkhorn Twp., San Joaquin, California
Disclosure:  I am in no way affiliated with any of the companies or websites linked to or mentioned in this post; nor did I receive anything from anyone for writing this post.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Early 1940 Discoveries

I thought California would be one of the last states to appear on Ancestry.com due to how large and populous it is.  I'm glad I was wrong!

So far, I've found my great-great-grandfather (in Alameda, Alameda, California), and my grandmother and her parents (in Chico, Butte, California) in the 1940 US Census.  The best discovery?  My twelve-year-old grandmother was one of the chosen few asked the supplemental questions.  I think she'll get a kick out of that when I tell her.
My great-great-grandfather in the 1940 US Census
Alameda, Alameda, California

Sunday, April 1, 2012

In 1940... (Part 2)

The rest of my ancestors who should appear in the 1940 US Census:

Niels Christian Nielsen (my great-great-great-grandfather)
Age in 1940: 90 (died 4 April 1940)
Residence: with daughter, Lillian Monteiro, at 2421 Webb Ave., Alameda, Alameda, California
ED: 1-16

Lauren Everett Healey (my great-great-grandfather)
Age in 1940: 66
Residence: 1013 Willow St. or 2063 Alameda Ave., Alameda, Alameda, California
ED: 1-24 (1013 Willow St.), 1-23 (2063 Alameda Ave.)

The Berger family (my grandmother and great-grandparents)
Age(s) in 1940: 54 (Gideon Gottlieb), 48 (Georgiana), 12 (my grandmother)
Residence: 329 Salem St. or 518 Flume St., Chico, Butte, California
ED: 4-7 (329 Salem St.), 4-8 (518 Flume St.)

The Lapiccirella family (my grandmother and great-grandparents)
Age(s) in 1940: 51 (Giuseppe), 48 (Nicoletta), 9 (my grandmother)
Residence: 706 Oak St. SW, Warren, Trumbull, Ohio
ED: 78-37

The Shinn family (my grandfather and great-grandparents)
Age(s) in 1940: 62 (Elmer John), 41 (Gladys Viola), 14 (my grandfather)
Residence: rural, San Joaquin, California
ED: 39-22 or 39-23 or 39-24

Only 1 more day!!!