Journey to the Past is 4!!!!

01 March 2014 8:04 AM Posted by Brenda L. 9 comments

I have been blogging for four years today.  I wasn't sure I would blog for four months, let alone four years.  Blogging for the past four years has given me far more than what I have given others, I believe.  

I have made numerous contacts through blogging.  I have geneafriends, aka other bloggers, that I can go to if I have questions, or need advice, or just need a pep talk.  I have a support group that is beyond compare.  I have been contacted by numerous family researchers, some related, some not. I enjoy this aspect of blogging the most.  "Cousins" have shared stories and pictures of our related ancestors and I have reciprocated, whenever possible.  Researchers have contacted me with questions and I enjoy interacting and responding with these researchers.  My Michigan research posts have been quite popular and I hear from others telling me how it helped them in their research.  I enjoy helping others.

This past year showed a slight rise in the number of posts I wrote compared to 2012.  I am still not back to my levels in my second year, but I hope to get back on track in 2014.  I haven't run out of ideas, yet , and to think I was worried that I would run out of ideas when I first started blogging.

Thank you to all those who follow, read, and promote my blog.  Thanks to my readers who take the time to leave a comment or send an email.  The feedback is greatly appreciated and motivates me to blog more.  In closing, I will leave you with a list of the top five all time blog posts based on page views.

  1. Gobsmacked-NEHGS has E Books
  2. Ancestor Biography-Otto August Fredricks
  3. Pure Michigan Genealogy:  Migration and Immigration
  4. Lt. Col. Merle M. Glover-Tombstone Tuesday
  5. Sojourner Truth-Tombstone Tuesday (one of my local Battle Creek, Michigan posts) 

Last Day Local: Del Shannon Plays Runaway for the First Time in Battle Creek, Michigan

28 February 2014 6:55 AM Posted by Brenda L. 0 comments


The city of Battle Creek is known for its' cereal history, but did you know that Del Shannon played his hit song, "Runaway" in Battle Creek for the first time?

Charles Westover, aka Charlie Johnson, completed his service in the Army and settled in Battle Creek, Michigan working as a carpet salesman and truck driver.  He found part time work as a musician at the Hi-Lo Club in Battle Creek.  Westover eventually took over a band and became Charlie Johnson.  It wasn't long before he was noticed and signed to the Big Top label.  It was at this time that Charlie Johnson became Del Shannon.

The Hi Lo Club is no longer in existence in Battle Creek, but it was located on Capital Avenue in downtown Battle Creek inside the LaSalle Hotel.  There are excellent pictures at the Del Shannon Hi Lo Club website.

The marker above is at the original site of the Hi Lo Club.  It is a Michigan Historic Site.  Now you know that Battle Creek is known for more than its' flakes, cereal flakes, that is.

(This blog post is to celebrate the history of Battle Creek, Michigan, my hometown for the past 25 years.  I try to post one article a month, on the last day of the month, on the heritage and history of Battle Creek, The Cereal City!)

George Dyer Visits His Brother

27 February 2014 6:30 AM Posted by Brenda L. 0 comments

Mr. and Mrs. George Dyer returned Friday, after spending a week at the home of his brother, William Dyer of Raisin.  Their little child has been very sick with the grip and measles.

The above newspaper clipping was found in the Adrian (Michigan) Daily Telegram on 27 February 1908.  George and William Dyer are the sons of William G. Dyer and Mary Ann Swallow, my third great grandparents.  George and William had a sister, Adeline, who was my second great grandmother.  William Dyer and his wife, Frederica had two sons in 1908:  Harold, age 3, and Howard, age 1.  I do not know which child was sick, but I imagine having the measles in 1908 was a scary thing with the young ages of the boys.  Grip is another name for flu.  Raisin is a township in the county of Lenawee in Michigan.  It is about six miles from Adrian, where George lived at the time.


Workday Wednesday: Zalton Fenn's Business Card

26 February 2014 6:11 AM Posted by Brenda L. 0 comments

Z.M. Fenn is Zalton M. Fenn, the son of Daniel C. Fenn and Elizabeth Poor Fenn, my great grand uncle.  His business card, above, states that he was a manufacturer of pillow sham holders and a dealer in 'Little Giant Tack Puller' in Grand Rapids, Michigan.  Zalton lived from 1850-1908.  I am not sure what year or years that he was employed in this business.  I am envisioning the tack puller would be used on the tacks that are on upholstered chairs.  It looks like I need to check Grand Rapids City Directories to see when he was in business.  This card was found in his grandmother's, (Huldah Rowley Fenn) Bible.


Tuesday's Tip: Maybe What You Are Looking For Didn't Survived

25 February 2014 8:18 AM Posted by Brenda L. 0 comments
Genealogists have been known to search for hours for that one piece of elusive information about their ancestor.  Census records are often the first records we look for when researching our family.  Before you spend hours looking for an ancestor in the United States Census, you want to make sure what you are looking for survived.  We all know about the loss of the 1890 Census, but did you know about other census losses?

1790 U.S. Federal Census

  • About one third of this census was lost.
  • Delaware, Georgia, Kentucky, New Jersey and Virginia were burned during the War of 1812.
1800 U.S. Federal Census
  • Georgia, Indiana Territory, Kentucky, Mississippi Territory, New Jersey, Northwest Territory, Virginia, Tennessee, and Alexandria County, District of Columbia have suffered losses.
1810 U.S. Federal Census
  • District of Columbia, Georgia, Indiana Territory, Mississippi Territory, Louisiana Territory, New Jersey and Tennessee suffered losses.
  • St. Clair County, Illinois and Ohio (all counties except Washington County)
1820 U.S. Federal Census
  • Arkansas Territory, Missouri Territory, and New Jersey suffered district wide loss.
  • Alabama (half of the counties) and Tennessee (about 20 eastern counties) were lost.
1830 U.S. Federal Census
  • The following counties suffered losses:
    • Wabash, Indiana
    • Montgomery, Prince George's, St. Mary's, Queen Anne's and Somerset, Maryland
    • Clarendon District, South Carolina
1840 U.S. Federal Census
  • Losses include Pike county, Mississippi and Clarendon District, South Carolina
1850 U.S. Federal Census
  • Losses include the counties of Contra Costa, San Francisco, and Santa Clara-all in California.
1860 U.S. Federal Census
  • Losses occurred in the following counties:
    • Arkansas - Indian Lands, Little River
    • Florida - Hernando
    • Louisiana - Bienville Parish 
    • Mississippi - Hancock, Sunflower, Washington
    • Texas - Blanco, Coleman, Concho, Dubal, Edwards, Hardeman, Kimble, Knox, LaSalle, McCullock, McMullen, Tarrant, Taylor, Wichita, Wilbarger, and Wilson 
    • Washington - Benton, Columbia, San Juan, Snonomish, and Stevens
1870 U.S. Federal Census
  • Losses occurred in the following counties:
    • Idaho - Kootenai
    • Texas - Archer, Baylor, Concho, Edwards, Hardeman, Knox, Taylor, Wichita and Willbarger
    • Washington - Benton, Columbia and San Juan
    • Kansas - Arapahoe
1880 U.S. Federal Census
  • No substantial losses
  • The Indian Territory, which is Oklahoma now, did not enumerate non Native Americans.
1890 U.S. Federal Census
  • Major losses, less than one percent of the schedules survived.
  • No complete state, county or community schedules survived.
  • A few fragments can be found.  A list of what survived can be found at Family Search.

1900 U.S. Federal Census

  • No losses
1910 U.S. Federal Census
  • No losses
1920 U. S. Federal Census
  • No losses
1930 U.S. Federal Census
  • No losses
1940 U.S. Federal Census
  • No losses
Don't despair if you are looking for census records in lost counties.  Substitutes can be found through tax lists, state census records, and other Census schedules.  

For more information on the United States Census, check these resources:

Digging Deeper-Using Essential Pre-1850 Records by Karen A. Clifford
Map Guide to the U.S. Federal Census 1790-1920 by William Thorndale and William Dollarhide
The Source-Edited by Loretto Dennis Szucs and Sandra Hargreaves Luebking
Family Search Wiki:  Missing and Lost Census-pages for each state




Sibling Saturday: The 12 Fredricks Brothers and Sisters

22 February 2014 1:23 PM Posted by Brenda L. 0 comments
The Children of Otto August Fredricks and Daisy (Graf) Fredricks
Back Row L-R Leona Fredricks Graf, Ray Fredricks, Otto Robert Fredricks, 
Richard Fredericks, Lola Fredricks Brown, Audrey Fredricks Glover
Middle Row L-R John Fredricks, Twin N. Jean Fredricks Kaskinen, 
Daisy (Graf) Fredricks, Otto A. Fredricks, Twin Norman Fredricks, Harold Fredricks
Front Row L-R Kathryn Fredricks Tritten, Marie Fredricks Kurth

The above picture of the Fredricks siblings was taken at the home of Kathryn Fredricks Tritten, in Brethren, Michigan, sometime in the 1960's.  I remember being there as a professional photographer came to the home and set up to take the picture.  I have always admired my grandmother for raising 12 children.  In addition, she took in some of her grandchildren from time to time.  Her home was open to anyone who needed it. 

Daisy (Graf) Fredricks with her 12 children, June 1973

Back Row L-R Audrey Glover, Norman Fredricks, Ray Fredricks, Bob Fredricks, Marie Kurth, 
Front Row Standing L-R Leona Graf, Daisy Graf Fredricks, Kathryn Tritten, Lola Brown, Jeannie Kaskinen, John Fredricks (behind Jeannie), Richard Fredericks, Harold Fredricks(behind Richard)

It wasn't often that the 12 siblings were able to get together all at the same time, but this picture was taken in June of 1973.  It was taken next to the ball field at Brethren Park, in Brethren, Michigan.

You may notice the spelling of Richard's last name.  No, it isn't a typo.  Richard's birth certificate has the spelling of Fredricks as F R E D E R I C K S.  He is the only one of the twelve who uses that spelling.

Where in the World is Nancy Mast?

19 February 2014 3:56 AM Posted by Brenda L. 2 comments
I am an organizer!  I enjoy being organized around the house and with my genealogy.  One of the things that helps me in my research is to create charts.  My "Where in the World" posts help me see where I have gaps in my research.  I hope it helps you, too.  Nancy Mast Graf's chart is a short one as she died at the age of 36.  If you are related to Nancy Mast Graf, please leave a comment. I enjoy hearing from 'cousins'.

Where in the World is Nancy Mast Graf?

FACT
DATE
PLACE OF RESIDENCE
ENUMERATION DISTRICT/PAGE ID./DWELLING
Birth
23 Feb 1871
Walnut Creek, Holmes, Ohio, United States

Census
1880
Walnut Creek, Holmes, Ohio, United States
138/130/72
Census
1900
Liberty Township, Howard, Indiana, United States
68/3B/49
Death
18 Jan 1908
Dickson Township, Manistee, Michigan, United States