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Michael Talibard
07 April 2007, 02:51 PM
In Using Reunion 9, because of slow updating of very long indexes (indices?), there have been a lot of posts recently mentioning databases with tens or even hundreds of thousands of people.

I am relatively new to genealogy, and have never had the opportunity to talk with anyone who had such a large database. I find it puzzling. My own modest collection of a few hundred have all been directly checked in the appropriate Registry office or equivalent by either my sister or myself. The database is thus a record of our personal researches and we KNOW exactly how we are related to those people.

The time required to do this for 100,000 people would be such that I just can't believe it has happened - unless there are large teams of researchers working in consort. Otherwise, one would need to work every day throughout a more than natural lifespan. And there are always some facts one just can't unearth. So how are all these names asembled? Are they 'borrowed'? I wouldn't put any name in my family file unless I knew pretty directly that it belonged. And why keep all those thousands of names in a single family file? I just don't get it.

In asking this, I am not criticising anybody else's way of using Reunion: it is a free country. I am asking only because I genuinely don't understand the purpose of that sort of file.

Dennis J. Cunniff
07 April 2007, 05:02 PM
Well, only large databases allow answers to questions like, "Who are some famous descendants of X & Y ?"

In honor of Jersey, let's pick Sir Philip de Carteret and his wife Rachel Paulet.

Imagine you're their descendant. Who else is? If you've got a database related only to your direct ancestors, your answer has to be "I don't know". If you have a larger database, including descendants of your ancestors other than yourself, you can answer "Alexandra Shan

ttl
07 April 2007, 06:31 PM
I have two basic databases. One is my "master" file, with about 1,000 people in it, all fairly well documented by my father or me. I have another file into which I have imported gedom files from the internet and the LDS Ancestral File. This second file has two purposes. One purpose is simply fun. The other purpose is to serve as a cheat sheet for my personal research. The imported data may not be accurate, but it gives me a place to start and in my case I'm finding that I'm able to verify most of what I've been able to follow up on.

In some cases, there are very well documented databases you can tap into. For instance, there are several generations of descendants from the passengers of the Mayflower that are documented by the Mayflower Society, and if a researcher is able to make a connection to someone in that list, then the whole rest of the database can be accepted without skepticism.

My files are pretty small compared to some, but until the speed of using them become too slow to tolerate (I'm nowhere near that point), I can't think of a single good reason not to keep all the data in one file (unverified data notwithstanding).

dseifert
07 April 2007, 11:32 PM
I am relatively new to genealogy, and have never had the opportunity to talk with anyone who had such a large database. I find it puzzling.

Mr. Talibard,

I have always been puzzled by the exact same thing. I'm having trouble getting straight facts about both of my grandfathers. I cant imagine searching information pertaining to thousands of people who have lived thousands of years ago. Sounds very interesting but absolutely boggles my mind!

Michael Talibard
08 April 2007, 07:04 AM
Well, only large databases allow answers to questions like, "Who are some famous descendants of X & Y ?"Ah, I begin to see . . . chasing famous names! That doesn't attract me much, but chacun a son gout.
In honor of Jersey, let's pick Sir Philip de Carteret and his wife Rachel Paulet. Imagine you're their descendant.I have very little doubt that I am. The mathematics say so.
Who else is? Well, everybody else is who has their roots in my part of the world, plus many others. Go back 500 years, and you have over a million boxes in one ring of the fan chart. He must be there somewhere, and probably many times over. Tracing one of these lines of descent would be nice, I guess, but it would only be a millionth part of my ancestry, distinguished from the rest by the false glamour of celebrity (or that's how I'm inclined to see it).

Derrick
08 April 2007, 04:22 PM
I have two basic databases. One is my "master" file, with about 1,000 people in it, all fairly well documented by my father or me. I have another file into which I have imported gedom files from the internet and the LDS Ancestral File. This second file has two purposes. One purpose is simply fun. The other purpose is to serve as a cheat sheet for my personal research. The imported data may not be accurate, but it gives me a place to start and in my case I'm finding that I'm able to verify most of what I've been able to follow up on.

Exactly. I actually have about 50 family files I've compiled or imported, which vary as I download and cull them, and a main one with about 11,000 folks--parts of which deliberately chase down extended family, but I try to avoid that. I reckon that the other family files are the equivalent of theories I'm trying out, or books with hints to chase down. I have no idea how I could have the time to physically enter 100,000 folks much less verify them; I can barely hold on to 11,000. And since the fun part of genealogy, at least to me, isn't the mere data, but the stories and narratives behind the data, the richness of it is usually in "thickening" the narratives that I have, not in spinning out further ones.

I must say, though, that one thing I like about genealogy is that it allows for varied interests and approaches, and I'm grateful for the work of others that I can plumb, however it's been collected. If other folks didn't put together other kinds of work than mine, I'd have a much harder time.

linders
08 April 2007, 05:29 PM
I guess "us" people with 40,000 or more are just weird. Sorry about that. I've been working on mine since 1970 and they just add up.

Dennis J. Cunniff
08 April 2007, 10:13 PM
Well, of course, if you're satisfied with a mathematically likely descent rather than a tracable one, you wouldn't need Reunion at all....

Michael Talibard
09 April 2007, 05:45 AM
Well, of course, if you're satisfied with a mathematically likely descent rather than a tracable one, you wouldn't need Reunion at all....Oh yes, I certainly do need Reunion.

I have been thinking some more: for me it all depends how far back you go. If you compare, say, 100 to 150 years ago (call this Search A) with 500 or 1000 years ago (Search B), then the meaning of what you may find changes fundamentally. Here are some of the differences:

1. In Search A it is possible to identify all 16, 32 or 64 of your ancestors, and even (if you are lucky) to write mini-biographies of most of them. Not true of the many millions in Search B

Tim Powys-Lybbe
09 April 2007, 07:12 PM
In Using Reunion 9, because of slow updating of very long indexes (indices?), there have been a lot of posts recently mentioning databases with tens or even hundreds of thousands of people.

I am relatively new to genealogy, and have never had the opportunity to talk with anyone who had such a large database. I find it puzzling. My own modest collection of a few hundred have all been directly checked in the appropriate Registry office or equivalent by either my sister or myself. The database is thus a record of our personal researches and we KNOW exactly how we are related to those people.

The time required to do this for 100,000 people would be such that I just can't believe it has happened - unless there are large teams of researchers working in consort. Otherwise, one would need to work every day throughout a more than natural lifespan. And there are always some facts one just can't unearth. So how are all these names asembled? Are they 'borrowed'? I wouldn't put any name in my family file unless I knew pretty directly that it belonged. And why keep all those thousands of names in a single family file? I just don't get it.

In asking this, I am not criticising anybody else's way of using Reunion: it is a free country. I am asking only because I genuinely don't understand the purpose of that sort of file.

I think the answer to your question lies in the fact that you can work with your father and either he or you check particular facts, you don't both go and check the same fact.

One day you may get back to some ancestor that someone else has researched, Your question then is whether you accept that person's work as reasonably valid or are you to go through it all again? If the other researcher does not give his sources, as is found on so many internet sites, then you would be right to say "I don't believe it" and start afresh. At least you would know what to look for and this will save you eons of time wondering who might have begat whom. On the other hand if the other researcher gives his sources and discusses any problems within them, you may be more likely to accept what he is confident of. You may even do for him what you do for your father, accept his work with very little further questioning.

At present you are talking of working through registry office records. This takes you back to 1837 in England and Wales. If you can get back to that period, you will have to move to parish and other records. I take it that you and your father will accept them as adequate for your purposes, much as early parish records hardly given enough information to identify people. But this may take you through a couple or so centuries further back in time and you may be lucky and find quite a few people on your way.

Finally you run out of register offices and of parish registers. You are into whatever other documents may have survived. At this point you may find that there are a few books published by various people who have gone through the primary records and constructed a few genealogies, giving their source materials. If you are lucky, you will be able to bolt on to these and greatly extend your files.

So, you may one day have a database with thousands of people in it. To do this you need both luck in finding people whose ancestors can be found and more luck that others have researched a fair few of them. You will still be entering people one by one after carefully checking that you are happy with the facts another has presented to you. But your progrees can be remarkable in adding people in large numbers.

If you are not lucky to find either forbears or forbears that others have researched, you can try another strategy: to research people for whom information is known and perhaps to bring that up-to-date. You will still be doing genealogy, just they won't be the same family that is yours, but your contribution and help to others may be magnificent.

I have been lucky and have entered in a little over 20,000 over the last ten years. Some are better researched than others and some need more work doing on them. A few links I have struck out as the support was not good enough. But if I could not do this with my own forbears, I think I would have looked for antoher family as I rather enjoy the detective work that is genealogy.

kmuch
09 April 2007, 09:31 PM
In Using Reunion 9, because of slow updating of very long indexes (indices?), there have been a lot of posts recently mentioning databases with tens or even hundreds of thousands of people.

I am relatively new to genealogy, and have never had the opportunity to talk with anyone who had such a large database. I find it puzzling. My own modest collection of a few hundred have all been directly checked in the appropriate Registry office or equivalent by either my sister or myself. The database is thus a record of our personal researches and we KNOW exactly how we are related to those people.

The time required to do this for 100,000 people would be such that I just can't believe it has happened - unless there are large teams of researchers working in consort. Otherwise, one would need to work every day throughout a more than natural lifespan. And there are always some facts one just can't unearth. So how are all these names asembled? Are they 'borrowed'? I wouldn't put any name in my family file unless I knew pretty directly that it belonged. And why keep all those thousands of names in a single family file? I just don't get it.

In asking this, I am not criticising anybody else's way of using Reunion: it is a free country. I am asking only because I genuinely don't understand the purpose of that sort of file.
-----

My Reunion file is about 13,000 people. Like most folks, I began with my own ancestors and discovered that documenting their siblings and other relatives often resulted in information useful in tracking down some elusive kin. I do NOT import large databases from unverified sources; I've been working on my genealogy for more than 20 years.

Subsequently, I got interested in the settlement patterns in part of Virginia (the Northern Neck) and began entering people I found in the records of the early counties. They account for about half of my file, and I'm not finished yet. I have begun a similar project with a part of Quebec, but it's still in its infancy. And I have a separate file for medieval genealogy, which grew out of my research on Anglo-Norman society, dating from 35 years ago when I was in graduate school.

So I guess my answer is that I use different parts of my Reunion files for different purposes. Luckily, Reunion is flexible enough to handle all of them. (Now if Reunion would just provide links for apprenticeship and godparenthood .....)

Kathleen

martha
10 April 2007, 04:18 AM
In Using Reunion 9, because of slow updating of very long indexes (indices?), there have been a lot of posts recently mentioning databases with tens or even hundreds of thousands of people.

I am relatively new to genealogy, and have never had the opportunity to talk with anyone who had such a large database. I find it puzzling. (...)

The time required to do this for 100,000 people would be such that I just can't believe it has happened - unless there are large teams of researchers working in consort. (...)

Michael, many of us have been doing research on our families for decades, and do collaborate with relatives. I do all the European research for the family because I read and speak several languages and have access to original records; my cousins do the USA/Canadian work because they have access to records there. Ditto for the South African and Australian family members.

That said, as an historian, I also use Reunion to try to rebuild Jewish families and communities that were murdered and utterly destroyed in WWII. Those databases very quickly add up to tens of thousands..Since I work on that every day for hours at a time, I might add one hundred people a day without batting an eyelash, and sometimes even more!

I think your wonderment at the mega-databases is fully merited, unless you know all the reasons why people use Reunion! Reunion, by the way, is THE perfect foil for the historical work I do! There is no better program in existence!

Martha

Michael Talibard
10 April 2007, 03:05 PM
O.K. - Many thanks to Dennis, both Tims, Don, Derrick, Linda, Kathleen and Martha for their interesting replies. I have taken note, and I'll now get on with my researches and maybe in about 5 or 10 years time, I'll kick off another thread with a report of how my ideas have changed.

Blaise A. Darveaux
10 April 2007, 11:09 PM
One thing that is probably obvious, yet hasn't been mentioned in this thread, is whether you are researching a pedigree or a descendancy of an ancestor (also called "one name studies"). If I were just finding my ancestors I would only have 368 names, but I chose to find the descendants of my surname great-grandfather. That alone is over 600 people. If you go back to the immigrant of my surname (ca 1650), his descendants in my database (which is far from complete) is 5887. And, no, I haven't secured birth, marriage, and death certificates of any of these people. Most names were obtained from compiled marriage records (typed lists from handwritten parish records). That's good enough for me at this point. It took my months to methodically check the 60 shelf feet (or more) of indexes to get to the point I am at.

I actually envy people like you who seem to actually have time to dig up primary docs. It seems like the last few years 95% my precious little genealogy time goes into reading ReunionTalk :-/

--Blaise A. Darveaux

rspoonz
11 April 2007, 03:33 AM
Michael, many of us have been doing research on our families for decades, and do collaborate with relatives. I do all the European research for the family because I read and speak several languages and have access to original records; my cousins do the USA/Canadian work because they have access to records there. Ditto for the South African and Australian family members.

That said, as an historian, I also use Reunion to try to rebuild Jewish families and communities that were murdered and utterly destroyed in WWII. Those databases very quickly add up to tens of thousands..Since I work on that every day for hours at a time, I might add one hundred people a day without batting an eyelash, and sometimes even more!

I think your wonderment at the mega-databases is fully merited, unless you know all the reasons why people use Reunion! Reunion, by the way, is THE perfect foil for the historical work I do! There is no better program in existence!

Martha

Martha. Up to now I have been a PC owner so have been using 'The Master Genealogist' as my genealogy application of choice. I recently moved over to Mac so I bought Reunion. I have yet to be convinced that 'There is no better program in existence!'. Please would let me know what makes you believe this. To put it another way, please convince me that it is better to use Reunion than it is to run TMG under parallels!

Frank
11 April 2007, 11:06 AM
...please convince me that it is better to use Reunion than it is to run TMG under parallels!I don't think Martha or anybody else will convince you that one program is better than another. Only you can convince yourself. If you want to believe something is better than something else, that's what you'll believe. Or your experience will change your mind. This is like asking a pianist who plays a Yamaha piano to convince a Steinway player that the Yamaha is better, or asking a Mercedes owner to convice a Lexus owner that the Mercedes is better, etc., etc. Different strokes...

rspoonz
11 April 2007, 11:48 AM
I don't think Martha or anybody else will convince you that one program is better than another. Only you can convince yourself. If you want to believe something is better than something else, that's what you'll believe. Or your experience will change your mind. This is like asking a pianist who plays a Yamaha piano to convince a Steinway player that the Yamaha is better, or asking a Mercedes owner to convice a Lexus owner that the Mercedes is better, etc., etc. Different strokes...
It makes for a good discussion though!

AE Palmer
12 April 2007, 12:58 PM
Martha. Up to now I have been a PC owner so have been using 'The Master Genealogist' as my genealogy application of choice. I recently moved over to Mac so I bought Reunion. I have yet to be convinced that 'There is no better program in existence!'. Please would let me know what makes you believe this. To put it another way, please convince me that it is better to use Reunion than it is to run TMG under parallels!

As others have already stated, only you can convince yourself. That said, I have found Reunion to have some powerful advantages:

martha
13 April 2007, 09:05 AM
Martha. Up to now I have been a PC owner so have been using 'The Master Genealogist' as my genealogy application of choice. I recently moved over to Mac so I bought Reunion. I have yet to be convinced that 'There is no better program in existence!'. Please would let me know what makes you believe this. To put it another way, please convince me that it is better to use Reunion than it is to run TMG under parallels!

Since Frank replied, I actually wasn't going to reply to this, but since Arnold did, I don't want you to think I didn't have an answer for you. I have very specific needs when I database a whole community that no longer exists, and Reunion is the most flexible program on the market. I can tailor it to whatever needs to be done: I can use symbols in different cells to mean different things, such as murdered, survived a concentration camp, escaped, joined the partisans, or whatever - and then search for that symbol and get a list of the people who suffered a particular condition represented by that symbol. I can create as many categories of events, facts, or notes as I need and they are treated as natives in Reunion. The notes sections are practically unlimited. I could go on and on singing Reunion's praises, but as Frank said, only you can determine what program is best for you.

Martha

Al Poulin
13 April 2007, 09:53 PM
-----

I have begun a similar project with a part of Quebec, but it's still in its infancy. And I have a separate file for medieval genealogy, which grew out of my research on Anglo-Norman society, dating from 35 years ago when I was in graduate school.
Kathleen

Kathleen:
Please expand a bit on what part of Quebec you are working. Most of my ancestry is in Quebec and their migration from colonial days in Quebec City downstream along the St. Lawrence River and south in the Beauce region toward Maine is fascinating.

Also, could you be more specific about your Anglo-Norman research? Many of my French Canadian ancestors originated in Normandy. Also, my wife's "Irish" surname clan (Waldron) is Norman, not Celtic. And at two separate gatherings in County Mayo, I have been told and also shown photographs as to how I resemble the father of two brothers at the most recent event and the uncle of a lady five years before that.

bunzino
14 April 2007, 09:21 PM
Did someone say this and I missed it? My data only goes back to my g-grandparents because my grandparents immigrated here.

Until I get to an LDS library, I'll only have a few hundred names in my database.

Nina

dseifert
14 April 2007, 11:19 PM
Did someone say this and I missed it? My data only goes back to my g-grandparents because my grandparents immigrated here.

Until I get to an LDS library, I'll only have a few hundred names in my database.

Nina

I'm in the same boat Nina. My grandparents came from Hungary in 1905. I dont know how to find records on their ancestors

kmuch
16 April 2007, 07:47 PM
Kathleen:
Please expand a bit on what part of Quebec you are working. Most of my ancestry is in Quebec and their migration from colonial days in Quebec City downstream along the St. Lawrence River and south in the Beauce region toward Maine is fascinating.

Also, could you be more specific about your Anglo-Norman research? Many of my French Canadian ancestors originated in Normandy. Also, my wife's "Irish" surname clan (Waldron) is Norman, not Celtic. And at two separate gatherings in County Mayo, I have been told and also shown photographs as to how I resemble the father of two brothers at the most recent event and the uncle of a lady five years before that.

My Quebecois settled the region along the St Lawrence between Quebec and Montreal, especially Cap-de-la-Madeleine, Becancour, Batiscan, and Ste-Anne-de-la-Perade (add appropriate accents) in the 17th century.

My Norman research was on the Scoto-Normans and Anglo-Normans in the 12th century. Only a few of my French Canadians had Norman roots, and they don't tie to any of the earlier ones as far as I know.

Kathleen

ttubach
17 April 2007, 02:21 AM
I'm kind of late in this, but here's my take on the large database...

I have many GEDCOM files that when merged date back to 850 or so, with names lost in translation (REGAND%LFF&* and such) so... I decided to just cut everything off before 1300 and work on verifying what I have from that point 'till now. The problem now is verifing what has supposedly already been verified!
I need to take a trip to SLC! I wish the genealogy library was all digital (scans and such)

To each their own!

ttl
17 April 2007, 10:04 AM
I need to take a trip to SLC! I wish the genealogy library was all digital (scans and such)This raises an interesting question that someone here might be able to answer: are there things available in Salt Lake City that can't be ordered at a Family History Center? In my limited experience, there was nothing I couldn't get on microfilm locally if I was willing to wait a week or so to get it.

theKiwi
17 April 2007, 11:42 AM
This raises an interesting question that someone here might be able to answer: are there things available in Salt Lake City that can't be ordered at a Family History Center? In my limited experience, there was nothing I couldn't get on microfilm locally if I was willing to wait a week or so to get it.

I don't know about availability to local Family History Centers, but nothing beats getting up from the chair, walking to the wall of cabinets of film and getting out 5 more rolls right there and then :-))

Cheers

Roger

Judd Stiff
17 April 2007, 04:53 PM
This raises an interesting question that someone here might be able to answer: are there things available in Salt Lake City that can't be ordered at a Family History Center? In my limited experience, there was nothing I couldn't get on microfilm locally if I was willing to wait a week or so to get it.

There are a few films that are "restricted" and cannot be sent to local Family History Centers due to limitations imposed by the "owner of the data" when the original copying was done. These restrictions do not apply to very many documents and are clearly noted in the FHL Catalog.

Betty Miessner
17 April 2007, 06:55 PM
...are there things available in Salt Lake City that can't be ordered at a Family History Center?
Well if you're not ashamed to ask for help, the volunteers at the various desks, especially International, are wonderful!
BettyM

Al Poulin
17 April 2007, 11:09 PM
I don't know about availability to local Family History Centers, but nothing beats getting up from the chair, walking to the wall of cabinets of film and getting out 5 more rolls right there and then :-))

Cheers

Roger

Not only that, but there are the Family Histories and Biographies on the Main Floor and the region specific books on three other floors. Many of the books in my area of interest in the US/Canada Books section on the Third Floor, such as histories and compilations of vital records in specific localities, are listed in the Family History Library Catalog with the notation: "There are no film notes available for this title." Even for those books that have been filmed, it is much quicker to handle the hard copy, being able to flip through the hundreds of pages to find the few that are relevant and to copy those along with the title and explanatory pages. And only by browsing the shelves have I found many items of interest.

You can get a sense of the availability of books of interest to you, and also the collections of periodicals issued by the historical and genealogical societies, by checking the Family History Library Catalog at
http://www.familysearch.org
Caution, I find that using the catalog can be difficult. Even after several visits to the library and multiple search sessions online from home, I sometimes need the help of the expert on-site staff and the volunteers to find items that I know are, or should be, in the library. Hint: If the Place Search is frustrating, try Keyword Search.

STEVE
18 April 2007, 07:37 AM
...are there things available in Salt Lake City that can't be ordered at a Family History Center?

I was told (in their orientation lecture) that there are a few historical items that do not circulate, other than that, everything is available at your local FHC.

OTOH... If you ever get the chance to go --- GO! It's not until you've stood in the middle of one of the main rooms and just stared at all those cabinets full of microfilm --- that you realize how totally hopeless our task is...


STEVE ;-)

Al Poulin
18 April 2007, 09:28 AM
Quoting myself, I said:

Many of the books in my area of interest in the US/Canada Books section on the Third Floor, such as histories and compilations of vital records in specific localities, are listed in the Family History Library Catalog

I should have said: ... such as histories and compilations of data from vital records....

Bryce Self
07 January 2008, 06:58 PM
-----

...Subsequently, I got interested in the settlement patterns in part of Virginia (the Northern Neck) and began entering people I found in the records of the early counties. They account for about half of my file, and I'm not finished yet...

Kathleen

Kathleen, I also have an interest in the Northern Neck. Could we talk off-forum?

Bryce Self
Redwood City, CA

jep111
08 January 2008, 01:03 AM
This raises an interesting question that someone here might be able to answer: are there things available in Salt Lake City that can't be ordered at a Family History Center? In my limited experience, there was nothing I couldn't get on microfilm locally if I was willing to wait a week or so to get it.

Hi Tim-

I go to FHL quite often, last time was the beginning of December for two weeks (first week with NEHGS, second on my own). You are correct that any films can be ordered from your local FHC, but there is so much more at FHL...

Books. Maps. Microfiche. All in staggering amounts. CD-ROMs. All with the added luxury of just walking to the shelf and picking them up. If this film provokes a question, no waiting for two weeks for a possible answer. Two to three minutes, maybe.

I spent one of the weeks doing a pro-bono project for a family whose DNA project raised some interesting questions. I basically spent the entire week data-mining a hundred years of southern Virginia records in two parishes for everyone of six surnames, and substantial records for many others. I acquired copies of records from over 60 films, every known published account in books and magazines concerning the subjects. I will be six months or more preparing this report - but one film at a time would have taken me untold years, and would have deprived me of access to period maps that allowed me to plot where people lived, died, etc.

I think I save money by going to SLC, and I like the totally immersive experience. There's not a lot of distractions...

While I have all the subscriptions to the major databases, and a wonderful state library a few minutes away, I still keep a FHL list in Notebook. Everytime I find something that can be better addressed in SLC, I jot it down. When the list is big enough to justify 4 or 5 days, I go.

Cheers!

John

kmuch
08 January 2008, 06:48 PM
Kathleen, I also have an interest in the Northern Neck. Could we talk off-forum?

Bryce Self
Redwood City, CA

Sure. You may write me at much-dot-bookdr-at-gmail-dot-com. Let me know what families you're researching.

Larry Jelf
01 May 2008, 04:16 PM
I have just read through four pages on the forum. isn't it great that we have a place where we can post questions or statements and receive answers of all kinds? And all this without any rancor or disturbing rude disagreements?
I took a hiatus from my genealogy for a few years and am now back at it and have too much physical difficulty to go traipsing around, searching through libraries (unless I got a really bugging urge to uncover a particular bit of info.). I like the chase of names and I do read parts of biographies that people post. I just can't consume all of the family history of each person (I can hardly handle my own autobiography) which I don't expect to complete. It is nearly 370 pages and far from complete. We don't know how interesting or lives have been until we start writing it down. I was prompted by a very wise man to do so.
The discussions have been interesting and enlightening. I am glad this forum exists. as to why do genealogy, I like to know "Where I come from." I know where I'm going. Thank you again,Leister.

S McCormick
22 July 2008, 12:22 AM
I thought I'd post this here, since I find that I'm rapidly adding new "connections" to my Family File.

I have chosen to enlarge in this way for two reasons: 1) I believe that by checking ALL the named connections I may have a better chance at finding "enriching" information on family members. 2) Secondly, I'm very interested in how families intermingle (intermarriages not truly on the direct line).

By adding all the peripheral relatives as they show up, I have more information to work with.

But the main reason for my post today is just to share some joy and excitement. At my request, my sister found a letter our great uncle had sent her in 1943 which enclosed reminiscences from his first cousin about her early life. I have been transcribing this into a word processor, since my sister's letter was old carbon copies which are beginning to fade and thus are becoming very hard to read.

The material is fascinating. A family group (which included this cousin's family; the family of a paternal uncle, including his father-in-law; and my great-grandfather's grandfather with two of his daughters who were sisters to the narrator's mother) took three wagons (Conestogas) from Wabash County, Indiana to Mankato, Minnesota. So far, I have transcribed 5 pages and have added 15 names to Reunion. This includes the important first name of my (three-great?) grandfather Shafer and the exact relation of "Aunt Hannah" to my grandmother. (This last is important because Aunt Hannah is part of one of my very earliest recollections.) It is also interesting to find that this cousin called my grandmother "Emma Kate," because I only remember relatives referring to her as Em.

I have always said that my sister and I were the third generation of my family to teach; it turns out I was wrong. My great grandfather also taught, making us the fourth generation and my niece the fifth! All the bare facts I find out about my father's family are exciting, but these stories of this cousins memories are even more exciting!

I just thought I'd share this joy with you.

Sue

rnkiii
22 July 2008, 11:15 PM
Sue,
Being a 'native' of Mankato, MN, that name 'popped' out at me in your post. And though I've not yet found any Shafers or McCormicks in my families' trees it is always interesting to run across the name of one's home town in someone else's work.

I know I was certainly fascinated and amazed when a distant cousin sent me a excellent recording of a 1939 radio broadcast, from Mankato, of an interview of my GG Aunt on the occasion of her 100th birthday. And hearing her voice and her recollections of coming to Mankato on a steamboat from St. Paul and then having to move 2 or 3 times due to Indian attacks in the area.

Best of luck with your transcription.

Bob K.