Yes, No, Maybe…

Genealogy research moves at a slow steady pace most of the time. Sometimes research can move in leaps and bounds and then come to a screeching halt. In those cases, I hope you were wearing your seat belt! The whiplash of excitement and frustration can leave you dazed.

Today is the perfect day to tell you what I have learned in the last week.  It was more of a seatbelt kind of week.  It all started with DNA test results.  All three DNA tests I ordered with the New Year’s sale had results posted last Monday, April 10th.  For each account, I quickly logged in to view matches and estimated origins.  I also created a gedcom file for each person to upload to their family tree.

I decided to take a quick look in Family Search and Ancestry.com before uploading the gedcom files to ensure I had the most complete tree possible for DNA matches to view.  The first search was for the DNA profile for my husband’s grandfather.  The family tree I have for him is on the limited on the paternal side.   Grandpa John’s grandfather was the entryway ancestor on this line.  John Pope (Poppe) arrived in the United States from Germany in the early 1880’s.  By the late 1880’s he is living in San Francisco and owns a brewery with his partners.

To my surprise, there was a new hint for John Pope (1862-1917) at Ancestry.com.  It turns into a jackpot moment! The hint contains a passport application from 1909.

The passport application confirms John Pope was born 3 April 1862 in Sandbostel, Germany.  It also gives us new information that he immigrated to the United States about the 10th of April 1881 aboard the SS Salir from Bremen.  The application also states John Pope had been living in San Francisco since 1889.  The biggest jackpot was John Pope listed he had become a naturalized citizen in the Superior Court of San Francisco on 30 March 1904. YES!

After my celebration dance at the dining room table, I took the time to analyze each piece of information.  This is when my YES turned into a NO.  It also ties into why today is a good day to tell this story.  Today, April 18th, is the 111th anniversary of the 1906 Earthquake in San Francisco.  The 1906 earthquake killed approximately 3,000 people and left over 80% of the city in ruins after the fires broke out. Most genealogists who do research in this area divide their research into before and after 1906 due to the fires and the documents which were destroyed.

The naturalization papers filed in 1904 are most definitely gone.

I was still really excited to share this new document with Grandpa John this past weekend when we visited for Easter.  On Saturday, my husband spent some time with his grandfather assisting him with some computer issues. While they were occupied, I took the Pope binder off the shelf to browse. Grandma Shirley was a genealogist and did an incredible amount of research in the pre-internet days.  She left 3-ring binders for each family with all the research she had accomplished.  About 10 years ago I scanned everything in the binders to ensure the information is not lost in case of disaster.

I realized flipping through the binder this weekend, I had not done a complete job of scanning documents.  I had scanned all the certificates, newspaper clippings, photos, etc.  I did not scan the handwritten notes in the pockets of the divider pages.  This was a major mistake.

In the binder divider, I found this sheet:

These undated handwritten notes are in Grandma Shirley’s handwriting.  They clearly state the original filing of the naturalization paperwork.  They also state the papers were re-filed with the courts in San Francisco on 26 March 1908. MAYBE…

The rest of this week I already have planned but next Monday or Tuesday, I will be in San Francisco trying to get copies of the re-filed naturalization paperwork. It has been a fun ride in the last week.  I am glad I had my seatbelt on.  Hopefully we will continue this story by returning back to YES.

Blog Birthday Fail

OOPS!!  I missed my own blogiversary this month.  The bad news is the anniversary was two weeks ago. The good news is I was in Virginia talking all things family history with my Mom and her cousins when I missed the big day.

My mom’s cousins flew to Virginia for a visit.  I had been in town the few days before their arrival so I stayed an extra day for some family time.  We spent the day traveling to Page County, Virginia.  I was able to show them the area my ancestors helped found in the mid-1700’s.  The highlight was driving to the Strickler-Louderback house.

The Strickler-Louderback house is on the banks of the Shenandoah River in Page County, Virginia.  My 3rd great-grandfather, David Strickler, built the brick home that stands today.  The Strickler’s owned the home for many years and then sold it to the Louderback family.  It was so fun to share this history with family!

Happy 6 Years to my blog!!

So This Is What They Look Like – The John B Fuller Family

Cousin Bait is defined by genealogists as putting your research online as bait for unknown cousins to find you and compare information.   It works.

Late last fall I found another way for cousin bait to work.  This time I was contacted by a man through Ancestry.com regarding my husband’s family.  I replied to him with confirmation that my husband is a descendant of John Buchanan Fuller who passed away in 1938 in Custer, Nebraska.

Our next round of emails revealed the twist.  This man was not a cousin.  He had purchased items from an estate sale.   Using the information on the back of a photograph, he had done a search on Ancestry.com to find someone who was researching the family.  He had for sale a photograph of the John B. Fuller family together at his funeral.

After a couple of quick checks to ensure this was a legit deal, I purchased the photograph.  The original photograph from 1938 arrived approximately a week later.  I was thrilled to find that not only were names listed on the back of the photograph but someone had written names on the front to indicate who belonged to each name.

Fuller Family at funeral of John B Fuller, December 12, 1938.

It was time to take a look at the research I had already completed for the family.  I was hoping to match up the names on the photograph to the names in my family tree.  I was happy to see I had already identified the family unit mostly using census records.

John Buchanan Fuller and his wife Emma Jane Shipman had ten children.  The first three did not survive childhood.  My husband’s great-grandfather, Percy, was the first child to life to be an adult.  He was followed by Gladys,  Clara, Clarence, Roy, Irene, and Alma.

The family was based mostly around the towns of Ord and Custer, Nebraska.  I also found an obituary for John B. Fuller that painted a fuller picture of the family and their life in Nebraska.  You can read the obituary here.

After realizing the names on the photo matched up with the children of John, it was easy to identify the people marked as me and mom.  Genevieve, Emma Opal, and Liata are all grandchildren of John B Fuller.  Unfortunately, not everyone in the photo is identified.  I suspect a couple of the younger people are also grandchildren of John B. Fuller.

My mother-in-law was very excited to see this photo.  She did not know her grandfather, Percy.  Percy and his daughter did not have a good relationship due to Percy and Lauretta Palmatier divorcing when Grandma June was young.  This was the first time my husband’s family knew what their family looked like.

I have added to photo to FamilySearch so it is available for everyone.  I want to make sure it will not be lost to history a second time. If you would like a digital copy of this photo without the names added in I am happy to share my tiff file!

 

Wedding Wednesday – Giacinto Maglione and Maria Anastasia Salarano

January started with my being dragged into a genealogy black hole.  Haha! Let’s be serious.  It was more like I jumped in head first since I was so excited. The culprit was digitized civil records for the small town in Italy where my father’s paternal line originates.  I have found over 25 birth, marriage, and death records to date.  I still have more records to locate but they are taking some time since I need to scan page by page for differing date ranges.

This marriage record for Giacinto Maglione and Maria Anastasia Salarano is one of the documents I have found.

According to church records, Giacinto and Maria were married 8 June 1867.  This document says that on 11 June 1867, three gentlemen presented themselves to the town hall to vouch that the wedding occurred.  It further states that Giacinto Maglione, 46 was the son of the deceased Stefano Maglione and the living Maria Gianotto.  All the above were born and live in Cossano.  Maria Anastasia Salarano, 22,  daughter of the peasant (living) Michele Salarano and the deceased Maria Bonello.  All the above were born and live in Cossano.

I am very curious to know the story of Giacinto and Maria.  I have found no indication that Giacinto was previously married.  This is usually stated clearly in the church records.  His line for previous marriage has a line through it.  He is from a family who is more financially stable or has money since he is not referred to as a peasant.  Also, since Maria is only able to leave a mark, while Giacinto leaves a signature, she has less education.  Their children were born after the marriage occurred. I wonder what brought them together.  Was it love, arranged marriage, financial deal?  I will probably never know.

My favorite part of this document is the end.  There is a signature from Giacinto and a mark made by Maria.

Out With The Old

My blog is officially back online!  The small problems I was having two weeks ago with the blog were actually bigger problems.  A huge thank you to my hubby (aka Chief Technology Officer) for delegating my issues to Justin in Canada.  Justin does technology for a living and made it possible to move my blog from one host company to another without losing any data.  I am really excited about a more stable environment.

To celebrate the big move to Go Daddy, I decided to give my blog a new look.  I have chosen the twenty seventeen theme from WordPress.   The clean look really appeals to me.  Also, I get to display a photo of one of my favorite oak trees I see on my walks on Mt. Burdell.

I hope you enjoy the new look!  Time to get back to the regularly scheduled program – Genealogy!

 

A Few Technical Difficulties…

I am currently having some issues with my blog.  You may notice that the entire right hand side of the blog is missing.  Just a little problem….

I have contacted my family’s CTO (Chief Technology Officer), aka husband, to help me get this fixed.  This is definitely an opportunity to update the blog since I have not done so in a couple of years. There may be a new look for the blog when I am up and running again.

Hopefully, I can pull this off in the next few days!  I have had an incredible genealogy month and have so much to share!!

Wedding Wednesday – Charles Francis Dempsey and Josephine Amelia Gamble

Dempsey – Gamble Original Marriage Record

 

My grandmother still holds the original marriage record for her parents, Charles Francis Dempsey (1894-1986) and Josephine Amelia Gamble (1894-1976).  I had the opportunity to digitize this document a few weeks ago at Christmas time.  It blows my mind that there are original documents in our family that are almost 100 years old!

I, T.W. Rosensteel hereby certify that on the 11th day of Feb one thousand nine hundred and 20 at St. Joseph’s Charles F. Dempsey and Josephine A. Gamble were by me United in Marriage.

in accordance with license issued by the Clerk of the Orphans Court of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania.

Numbered 13723 Series L              T.W. Rosensteel, Rector

First Genealogy Black Hole Of 2017

Genealogy researchers all laugh at the memes about getting sucked into an online genealogy black hole.  We can laugh because we have all done it.  Some of my favorite memes come from the Twisted Twigs on Gnarled Branches blog.  They are pretty on point and funny.

Tonight is shaping up to be one of those nights for me.  The infamous genealogy black hole has sunk its claws into me.  I was just going to check FamilySearch quickly to see if the church records from Cossano Canavese, Italy have been digitized.  They have not but…. there are now civil records from the town available and they are digitized!!!

Who cares if they are in Italian?! I have done enough research to read some key words, the months, and count to 31 (handy number to match with the days of the month.)  For everything else is Google Translate.

Who cares if they are not indexed?! They are browse-able and I have dates for most of my family after hours spent with the church records on microfilm.  I jumped right in by finding my great-grandparents marriage record.  They are on the right hand side of the page.

Civil Marriage Record of Matteo Ciardonei and Adele Siletto, Cossano Canavese (Torino). 

 

The only thing that has stopped me from working through as many birth, marriage, and death records as possible is my children.  They demanded dinner tonight.  The good news is they are now asleep in bed and I can go back to my wonderful black hole.  I have to thank my kids though because dinner gave me time to create a plan of attack so no one gets missed.

Wishing you all a successful genealogy black hole of your own in 2017!

Adding A Sibling To The Family Tree

There are many family trees posted to the big genealogy websites.  My personal opinion about these trees, in relation to my own research, is they should be used a hints.  I always try to contact the tree owner to see if they have any sources of their information.  I am cautious about the online trees but I am also optimistic.

Towards the end of the summer, I received a hint about my grandfather’s family on My Heritage.  I took a look at the family trees posted and noticed a sister named Anastasia Adele Ciardonei was part of the family structure.

My grandfather, Celio Capelli, immigrated to the United States in March 1920 at the young age of 5 after the death of his mother, Adele Siletto.  Upon the ship’s arrival in New York, my great-grandfather, Matteo Ciardonei, was detained at Ellis Island after being diagnosed with tuberculosis.  My grandfather’s aunt (Adele’s sister) Mary Siletto Capelli, traveled from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to pick up my grandfather from Ellis Island.  Matteo was deported back to Italy and Celio became part of the Capelli family. Sadly, Matteo passed away a little over a year later in Cossano Canavese, Italy.  My grandfather grew up in Pittsburgh in the home of his Aunt and Uncle, Mary and Frank Capelli, with his cousins as his siblings.

I had heard a story that Adele Siletto had passed away in childbirth.  I considered this story very likely to be true.  When reviewing the family trees at My Heritage, it seems I had finally might have proof of this story.

I contacted a friend on Facebook, Lily, who lives in Cossano Canavese, Italy.  You can read about how we were introduced and the wonderful presents she gave to me here.  I had received the church death record for Adele Siletto from Lily last year.  What I did not know at the time was to ask if there were any records for this possible sister, Anastasia Adele.

I asked Lily to take another look at the church records to see if there was a birth record for Anastasia Adele Ciardonei in the same month Adele had passed away.  Lily became my hero once again when she sent a digital copies of Adele’s death record and Anastasia’s birth and death records.

Adele Anastasia Antonia Ester Ciardonei was born on 12 September 1919.  Her mother, Adele Siletto, passed away a few days later on 18 September 1919.  Anastasia was baptized two days after her mother’s death on 20 September 1919.  Sadly, she did not survive and passed away when she was 29 days old on 10 October 1919.   Just 5 months later, Matteo and Celio would be on a ship steaming towards the United States.

My heart breaks for Matteo Ciardonei.  In less then a year he loses his wife and newborn daughter, tries to reach a better life in America but is deported, and leaves his son with family on another continent.  I am also so eternally grateful for the decision he made to leave my Grandfather with Mary and Frank Capelli.

I want to send a huge Thank You to my extended Italian family who placed Anastasia’s name on an online family tree.  Without their help, I would not have been able research this important story in my family history.  Every piece of the story adds up to explain how so many decisions came to be.

A New Idea To Display Your Family Tree

My house was dominated last year by the movie Inside Out.  This is an animated Disney movie which played on repeat in my house.  You can also find lots of fun games, kids activities, and shop for anything about the movie at Disney Movies.

rich_insideout_header_6017c389

The main characters in the movie are the emotions which control an eleven year old girl named Riley.  Joy, Sadness, Anger, Fear, and Disgust run headquarters in the brain where core memories are stored.  The core memories create these islands which represent different aspects of Riley’s personality (family island, friendship island, hockey island, etc).  When you view the islands from headquarters you see lots of color and neon.

At this point you may be asking yourself, “How does this tie into genealogy?!”

Like all things Disney, the movie not only sells merchandise, there is a game you can download onto your phone for your kids to play.  I was playing the game and working my way through family island when I noticed this:

inside-out

A NEON FAMILY TREE!!!  This would be the coolest way to get family interested in your family tree.

I have since amended my dream list of what I would do after winning the lottery to include a neon family tree to hang up in my mommy cave. I just need to start playing the lottery!  I need to take a safer route and ask Santa!