GenealogyandFamilyHistory.com http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com In Search of Our Common Heritage Fri, 19 Sep 2014 12:00:02 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.2 Revolutionary War Pension Records Restored, Consolidated, and Explained, Part I http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/revolutionary-war-pension-records-restored-consolidated-explained-part/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=revolutionary-war-pension-records-restored-consolidated-explained-part http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/revolutionary-war-pension-records-restored-consolidated-explained-part/#comments Fri, 19 Sep 2014 12:00:02 +0000 http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/?p=1422 Editor’s Note: Lloyd DeWitt Bockstruck’s groundbreaking book, Revolutionary War Pensions Awarded by State Governments 1775-1874, the General and Federal Governments Prior to 1814, and by Private Acts of Congress to 1905, identifies and recreates the Revolutionary War pension files generated prior to the disastrous fire in the War Department on November 8, 1800, and a

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Editor’s Note: Lloyd DeWitt Bockstruck’s groundbreaking book, Revolutionary War Pensions Awarded by State Governments 1775-1874, the General and Federal Governments Prior to 1814, and by Private Acts of Congress to 1905, identifies and recreates the Revolutionary War pension files generated prior to the disastrous fire in the War Department on November 8, 1800, and a second and even more disastrous fire on August 24, 1814 with the British invasion of Washington. Mr. Bockstruck has not only identified many of those pensioners whose files are commonly believed to have been lost, but also reconstructed in varying degrees their contents. More than 16,500 pensioners are featured in this work.

The Introduction to Mr. Bockstruck’s book explains the legislative and archival history of the Revolutionary War pension records and identifies the existing sources – primarily the pension records of the Original Thirteen States and various Congressional sources – that the author utilized in this massive attempt at evidentiary reconstruction.

This article, published in three parts, is excerpted from that Introduction. Be sure to read the next two issues of “Genealogy Pointers” or visit our blog for parts II and III:

Revolutionary War Pensions Awarded by State Governments 1775-1874, the General and Federal Governments Prior to 1814, and by Private Acts of Congress to 1905 is an attempt to identify and recreate the Revolutionary War pension files generated prior to the disastrous fires of 8 November 1800, and 24 August 1814, during the British invasion of Washington, D.C. The second fire effectively eliminated all of the pension files from 1776 to 1814. Despite these record losses, it has been possible not only to identify many of those pensioners whose files are commonly believed to have been irretrievably lost but also to reconstitute in varying degrees their contents.

Among the largely overlooked sources used to do so were the pension records generated by the governments of each of the Thirteen Original States. The state governments had their own programs and in varying degrees preserved many of their pension files. The private acts of Congress are another major source utilized to recreate the missing pension files. Both of these sources may supplement or complement the records in the regular Revolutionary War pension series, micro-publication M804, Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty-Land-Warrant Applications Files, 2,360 rolls.

The earliest authorization for Revolutionary War pension files was by the resolution of 26 August 1776 of the Continental Congress. Because the Continental Congress was without money and any real executive power, it had to rely upon the individual states to implement and fund the pension programs. Congress could do no more than make the recommendation. Each state was responsible for determining eligibility and for granting final approval of each applicant from within its borders. The amount of the pension was either half-pay for life or during the disability of the officer, soldier, or sailor who had lost a limb or had been disabled in the service so as to be rendered incapable of earning a livelihood.

At the national level The Papers of the Continental Congress, 1774–1789, micro-publication M247, 204 rolls, and Miscellaneous Papers of the Continental Congress, 1774–1789, micro-publication M332, 10 rolls, include a significant amount of material pertaining to individual pensioners. John P. Butler’s five-volume Index, The Papers of the Continental Congress, 1774–1789 (Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Service, General Services Administration, 1978) provides access to these records. In addition the thirty-four volume set, the Journals of the Continental Congress 1774–1789 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1904–37) is equally valuable. Access to the latter is provided by Kenneth E. Harris and Stevens D. Tilley’s Index: Journals of the Continental Congress 1774–1789 (Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Service, General Services Administration, 1976).

Central Treasury Records of the Continental and Confederation Governments Relating to Military Affairs, 1775–1789, micro-publication T1015, 7 rolls, contains important financial records about Revolutionary War pensioners. Includes ledgers of pension payments made to Revolutionary War invalids, widows, and orphans of Pennsylvania for the period 1785–1804.

The eight-volume set Documentary History of the First Federal Congress of the United States of America, March 4, 1789–March 3, 1791 (Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1972 ff.) is also useful. The Public Statutes at Large of the United States of America (Boston: Charles C. Little and James Brown, 1848) I, 454–58, giving the names, ranks, and percentage of pensioners paid by the Secretary of War in 1796 expands the list of identifiable pensioners.

Veterans and their next of kin unable to qualify under statutory authorized pensions resorted to private acts by Congress. Unbound Records of the U.S. House of Representatives, 10th Congress, 1807–1809, micro-publication M1711, 10 rolls, contains such petitions.

Supplementing the published sources is the online database Unbound Records of the U.S. House of Representatives, 10th Congress, 1807–1809 Papers of the War Department, 1784–1800, created by the Center for History and New Media at George Mason University by bringing together 55,000 documents from more than 200 depositories and 3,000 collections. The documents have been digitized. It does suffer from some misinterpretations of forenames and surnames.

End of Part One. Join us next week, as Part Two will resume with a discussion of U.S. pension statutes enacted after 1776.

Image credit: United States Marines near Reading, Pennsylvania, ink drawing by Arman Manookian, Honolulu Academy of Arts, 1920s. Arman Manookian [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

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Deciphering Old Handwriting in Genealogy http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/deciphering-old-handwriting-in-genealogy/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=deciphering-old-handwriting-in-genealogy http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/deciphering-old-handwriting-in-genealogy/#comments Tue, 16 Sep 2014 12:00:45 +0000 http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/?p=1430 Just about anyone who takes genealogy seriously is destined to face the challenge of reading original or microfilm copies of records written in an unfamiliar cursive style. If your research takes you back to at least the 19th century, you’ll encounter census records, wills, deeds, and multifarious other records written in old handwriting that you’ll

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Just about anyone who takes genealogy seriously is destined to face the challenge of reading original or microfilm copies of records written in an unfamiliar cursive style. If your research takes you back to at least the 19th century, you’ll encounter census records, wills, deeds, and multifarious other records written in old handwriting that you’ll strain to decipher. Records from the colonial period will elicit a double take if you’ve never seen them before. You’ll run into “ff” where you might expect an f,” and an “f” will actually stand for “s.” The ancient abbreviation “Maps” should be read as “Mass” for Massachusetts. The letters “U” and “V,” as well as “u” and “v,” were used interchangeably. On the whole, the following lowercase letters are most difficult to read, especially in 17th-century documents: “c,” “e,” “h,” “r,” “s,” and “t.”

Tips to Deciphering Old Handwriting in Genealogy – Abbreviations

Once you’ve figured out what the letters are, you’ll need to bone up on old abbreviations for terms in common usage today. For instance, “o.s.p.” is short for “died without issue.” “Yt” stands for “that.” “Als” signifies an “alias.” “D.v.m.” means “died while mother was living,” while “d.s.p.” also means “died without issue.” Did you know that “B.L.W.” means bounty land warrant, or that “do” was short for “ditto, or the same as above,” a notation you’ll encounter repeatedly in census records?

The challenges don’t end there. One has to learn to decipher numerals as well as letters. Even after you get familiar with a certain era’s lettering, you may find that what was conventional in 1700 is unrecognizable 50 years earlier. Then, of course, there is the problem of individual styles of writing.

Utilize Resources to Get You Going

For the novice, decoding early handwriting can be an intimidating task.

If you are a beginner, you may wish to save yourself time and headaches and get your hands on Kip Sperry’s excellent handbook, Reading Early American Handwriting. The books is the best tool we know of for teaching you how to read and understand the handwriting found in documents commonly used in genealogical research. This guide explains techniques for reading early American documents, provides samples of alphabets and letter forms, and defines commonly used terms and abbreviations. Perhaps best of all, the volume presents numerous examples of early American records for the reader to work with. Arranged by degree of difficulty, from the relatively easy-to-read documents of the 19th century to those of the 17th, the documents showcase examples of handwriting styles, letter forms, abbreviations, and terminology typically found in early American records. Each document–there are nearly 100 of them at various stages of complexity–appears with the author’s transcription on a facing page, enabling the reader to check his/her own transcription. This strategy allows the researcher to attain proficiency in reading the documents at a natural rate of progression

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The Forgotten War of 1812, Part I http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/forgotten-war-1812-part/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=forgotten-war-1812-part http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/forgotten-war-1812-part/#comments Sat, 13 Sep 2014 12:00:07 +0000 http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/?p=1408 Today and tomorrow, September 13-14, 2014 marks the 200th anniversary of the defense of Fort McHenry and the City of Baltimore. As most of us are taught as children, it was the defense of the fort that inspired Francis Scott Key, a Washington, D.C. attorney seeking the release of an American prisoner and watching the

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Today and tomorrow, September 13-14, 2014 marks the 200th anniversary of the defense of Fort McHenry and the City of Baltimore. As most of us are taught as children, it was the defense of the fort that inspired Francis Scott Key, a Washington, D.C. attorney seeking the release of an American prisoner and watching the bombardment from shipboard, to write the poem, “The Star Spangled Banner,” that years later became our national anthem. However, beyond our national anthem, many people are hard pressed to explain anything about the War of 1812.

In an article for Slate, “Happy 200th Birthday, War of 1812! A primer on America’s most bumbling, most confusing, and most forgotten conflict” James M. Lundberg, an assistant professor of history at Lake Forest College, says it so well:

Like Avogadro’s number or the rules of subjunctive verbs, the War of 1812 is one of those things that you learned about in school and promptly forgot without major consequence.

There are plenty of reasons for this. The War of 1812 has complicated origins, a confusing course, an inconclusive outcome, and demands at least a cursory understanding of Canadian geography. Moreover, it stands as the highlight of perhaps the single most ignored period of American History—one that the great historian Richard Hofstadter described as “dreary and unproductive … an age of slack and derivative culture, of fumbling and small-minded statecraft, terrible parochial wrangling, climaxed by a ludicrous and unnecessary war.”

When Congress declared war against Great Britain on June 18, 1812, the country was divided on whether or not to even fight it. The New England states that had been most affected by the offensive British practice of “impressment” seemed the least willing to pursue military action. In order to have the manpower, states put forth their own militias, whose records are a boon to genealogical researchers. Books like Virginia Militia in the War of 1812, Kentucky Soldiers of the War of 1812, Roster of Ohio Soldiers in the War of 1812, and Muster Rolls of the Soldiers of the War of 1812 (North Carolina) each contain thousands of names often with other pertinent details like rank, dates of service and where these men served.

When it came time for these militiamen to fight, the results were mixed. Some units were filled with unruly men loath to follow orders, while other units suffered from a lack of good leadership:

No one more fully embodied the pathetic state of early American military might than General William Hull, the bloated and incompetent governor of the Michigan territory charged with the initial matter of marching into Canada. Entering present-day Ontario from Detroit at the head of an ill-trained troop of 2,000 militiamen, Hull met with little initial resistance, but his triumph ended there. Upon hearing news that the British had taken Fort Mackinac at the northern tip of Michigan, Hull panicked and pulled his men back to the American fort at Detroit. When he received a bogus document warning of a vast force of Indians on the march, Hull lost it. Barely coherent, stuffing his mouth with so much tobacco that the juice ran down his face, and crouching to avoid imaginary artillery shelling, Hull yielded Detroit without any real fire from a smaller force of British Canadians and Indians. Incursions to the east didn’t go much better that fall. The war was just a few months old, and the entire Michigan territory had fallen into British hands.

Not all of the battles went as poorly as the infamous surrender of Detroit. The Battle on the River Raisin was fought in and around Frenchtown (now Monroe), Michigan from January 18 to 23, 1812, and was one of the four principal campaigns of the War of 1812 engaged in by the Kentucky forces. Following the massacre of American forces at Frenchtown – including as many as 60 Kentucky soldiers – patriots exhorted one another with shouts of “Remember the Raisin,” which gave the new nation the “vengeance-fired impetus” to wage the remaining battles of the War of 1812. The book Remember the Raisin! is a bipartite volume containing detailed biographical and genealogical sketches of nearly 100 officers and enlisted men who served on River Raisin, and complete rosters of the Kentucky soldiers who saw action there.

Please see Part II for additional discussion on the War of 1812.

Image credit: By Dr.frog at en.wikipedia (Transferred from en.wikipedia) [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons

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Overcoming the Brick Wall Through Cluster Genealogy http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/cluster-genealogy/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=cluster-genealogy http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/cluster-genealogy/#comments Thu, 11 Sep 2014 12:27:56 +0000 http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/?p=1415 Editor’s note: The following article, originally appearing in “Genealogy Pointers,” is excerpted from Emily Anne Croom’s book, The Sleuth Book for Genealogists: Strategies for More Successful Family History Research. Cluster genealogy is the idea that ancestors did not live in a vacuum but in a cluster of relatives, neighbors, friends, and associates. Studying the history

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Editor’s note: The following article, originally appearing in “Genealogy Pointers,” is excerpted from Emily Anne Croom’s book, The Sleuth Book for Genealogists: Strategies for More Successful Family History Research.

Cluster genealogy is the idea that ancestors did not live in a vacuum but in a cluster of relatives, neighbors, friends, and associates. Studying the history of one person naturally puts the researcher in contact with members of this group, as witnesses to each other’s documents, as neighbors, as in-laws, as fraternal brothers and sisters, as business partners or clients, and so forth. Our ancestors often migrated in family groups, as church congrega¬tions, or as a group of neighbors. They often lived very close to other family members. They worshipped with, went to war with, bought land from, and were buried near friends and relatives.Although we may not know the names of this group when we begin researching a focus ancestor, we must train ourselves to look for its members.

Some researchers call this the “whole family” approach or the “big picture” approach. Regardless of the name, the principle is the same: We cannot have long-term success if we limit ourselves to a one-name/one-person approach.

When research begins on a focus ancestor, the genealogist may know nothing more than the ancestor’s name, with perhaps a date and place of marriage or an entry on a census record. If applicable, after 1850, the next effort is often to find that person in the context of a family within other census records. Then we move to other basic sources – such as vital records, wills and probate files, family Bibles, church records, and newspaper obituaries – to find names, dates, places, and relationships in the life of the target ancestor. We branch out into land records, military and pension files, naturalization documents, and other sources that sometimes identify the spouse, children, birth and death information, or parents.

We compile at least two family group sheets from this information: one with the focus ancestor as a parent in a family, the other with the ancestor as a child. These two nuclear families are the beginning of, and an important part of, the ancestor’s cluster. Sometimes these charts are all we need to move back in time to the parent and grandparent generations.

When we cannot find direct statements of the events, names, dates, places, and relationships we need for our focus ancestor, we search for clues and evidence wherever we can find them to get the answers indirectly. The cluster is often the path toward these clues. Some clusters provide more help than others, and some are easier to identify than others. However, one thing is certain: a researcher has a much greater chance of success when studying the cluster than when clinging to one name as the sole subject of the research. The progress report in chapter seven and the case studies in chapters ten and eleven [of the author’s book, The Sleuth Book for Genealogists] are examples of the use of cluster genealogy to find answers.

Why use the Cluster Genealogy Approach?

Consider these reasons for the cluster approach: In family papers and oral traditions, each child may remember or record different facts about a parent; we put the facts together to get a more complete picture.

  1. For some ancestors, answers are simply not found in documents they themselves created. If Major Grace sells his land to Stark Brown, he may not mention that he inherited his land from his father. However, when Stark Brown sells the same land to Pleasant Luster, the deed may name Major’s father as the original patentee of the land.
  2. Some ancestors left few records themselves; the only way to learn about them is through records that others created. One Mississippi man “disappeared” for a few years from his researcher; then, in someone else’s diary, she found that he had gone to California during the gold rush. Ancestors who owned no land, for instance, will not usually appear in the deed books, except maybe as witnesses to others’ transactions. Why were they asked to be a witness? Maybe the seller was a brother-in-law, a cousin, or the nearest neighbor. The other person’s transaction places the ancestor in that place at that time, alive. That one piece of information is sometimes very important.
  3. When several people by the same name lived in the same county at the same time, their nuclear families and close associates are sometimes the keys to sorting them out. We want to find the right elusive ancestor, not just anybody by the same name.

Who is the Cluster?

When you run into that old brick wall in your search, what are your options? Give up on that line and go to one likely to have more information readily available? Get on the Internet with query after query: “I need the parents, grandparents, wife’s maiden name, birth date and birthplace, and names of in-laws of Donald Doe of Whatever County, Iowa. I’ve looked everywhere, and all I can find is that he came to Iowa as a young man just after the Civil War. Will share information”?

A query such as this says several things: (1) The descendant may have little or nothing of substance to share in return, (2) the descendant probably has not looked everywhere, and (3) the descendant may not have a clue of what to try next. That is not an uncommon predicament for researchers at some point along the way. What about the option of researching for the next of kin?

The would-be researcher in the query needs to list everything known about the ancestor and make a research plan. This time, it is cluster time. The disclaimer is that some searches do come to a real dead end before you are ready, but the good news is that many tough searches can be solved. The successful ones often involve the cluster. The cluster includes the next of kin, extended family, neighbors, friends, associates, and other people of the same surname.

Image credit: By vastateparksstaff [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons, Uncle John Redd’s Family Bible showing his death in 1938. Used in blog 3/2012. ZAR.

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Noble Ancestry Leads to the Saint in Your Family http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/noble-ancestry-leads-saint-family/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=noble-ancestry-leads-saint-family http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/noble-ancestry-leads-saint-family/#comments Sun, 07 Sep 2014 12:00:01 +0000 http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/?p=1400 Are you related to a saint? Would you know where to look to find out if you are? Lineage records and works on the royal or noble ancestry of Americans command the attention of researchers hoping to learn if they are descended from one of the early saints. Since all of the 275 saints identified

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Are you related to a saint? Would you know where to look to find out if you are? Lineage records and works on the royal or noble ancestry of Americans command the attention of researchers hoping to learn if they are descended from one of the early saints.

Since all of the 275 saints identified in Alan Koman’s 2010 book, “A Who’s Who Of Your Ancestral Saints,” are in the direct line, or are the aunts or uncles of 24 royal or noble figures possessing American descendants, the task facing the researcher is clear: Consult the accepted works of royal/noble lines to determine if your ancestry intersects to one of theirs.

A major link for many searching for their saintly ancestor is through the Order of the Crown of Charlemagne, and several books are available just for those who can trace their pedigree through these lineage records.

Noble Ancestry – More than Charlemagne

A considerable amount of literature exists on the subject of royal and noble ancestry, and you may find your relatives go back to another noble line. “Ancestral Roots of Certain American Colonists” describes 398 pedigrees of colonial Americans that are traced from one or more of the following ancestral lines: Saxon and English monarchs, Gallic monarchs, early kings of Scotland and Ireland, kings and princes of Wales, Gallo-Romans and Alsatians, Norman and French barons, the Riparian branch of the Merovingian House, Merovingian kings of France, Isabel de Vermandois, and William de Warenne.

The Royal Descents of 600 Immigrants to the American Colonies or the United States Who Were Themselves Notable or Left Descendants Notable in American History,” updated and expanded in 2008 by author Gary Boyd Roberts, outlines the pedigrees of no fewer than 688 American lines to royal/noble ancestors. “Royal Families: Americans of Royal and Noble Ancestry” has three volumes to help link you to your noble past. In just the second edition, nearly 900 new Dudley descendants are included through the sixth generation. It is an essential work, even if you already own the first edition, as likely several million Americans can prove their descent from this noted governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony.

The Saint in Your Family (Not Just Your Mother)

Finally, if you are able to climb your family tree high enough to establish your relationship to an American with royal or noble ancestry, you may be just one step away from discovering your saintly forebear. If your forebear is related to one of the 24 figures in “A Who’s Who Of Your Ancestral Saints,” your connection is secured.

Following are the names of historic men and women of the European Middle Ages with people in their family trees whom Christianity has recognized as holy:

  • Aethelred II “the Redeless,” King of England
  • St. Alfred the Great, King of Wessex and England
  • St. Edgar “the Peaceful,” King of England
  • Edmund “Ironside,” King of England
  • Edmund I “the Magnificent,” King of England
  • Edward “the Elder,” King of England
  • Edward I, King of England
  • Eleanor of Aquitaine, who married (1) Louis VII, King of France and married (2) Henry II, King of England
  • Eleanor of Castile, who was the first wife of Edward I, King of England
  • Bl. Eleanor of Provence, who married Henry III, King of England
  • Henry II, King of England
  • Isabel of Mar, who was the first wife of Robert I the Bruce, King of Scotland
  • Isabella of France, who married Edward II, King of England
  • John Stewart of Balveny, First Earl of Atholl
  • Mathilda (aka Eadgyth) of Scotland, who married Henry I, King of England
  • Mathilde of Flanders, who married William I the Conqueror, King of England
  • Matilda of Huntingdon, who married (1) Simon de St. Liz, Earl of Huntingdon and Northampton, and married (2) David I, King of Scotland
  • Philippa of Hainault, who married Edward III, King of England
  • Robert I the Bruce, King of Scotland
  • Robert III Stewart, King of Scotland
  • Saher de Quincy, First Earl of Winchester, Magna Charta Surety, and Crusader
  • Stephen of Blois, King of England
  • William de Plumpton, Knight and High Sheriff of Yorkshire
  • William I the Conqueror, King of England

Image credit: By Carington Bowles (publisher) (British Museum [1]) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

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The Ark and The Dove Adventurers http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/the-ark-and-the-dove-adventurers/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=the-ark-and-the-dove-adventurers http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/the-ark-and-the-dove-adventurers/#comments Wed, 03 Sep 2014 11:58:29 +0000 http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/?p=1380 On November 22, 1633, the 358-ton “Ark” and the 26-ton “Dove” departed from the Isle of Wight carrying the founders of the Maryland colony. (The “Dove,” badly damaged in a storm, returned to England for repairs before rejoining the “Ark” several months later in the Antilles.) The two ships ultimately landed at St. Clement’s Island

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On November 22, 1633, the 358-ton “Ark” and the 26-ton “Dove” departed from the Isle of Wight carrying the founders of the Maryland colony. (The “Dove,” badly damaged in a storm, returned to England for repairs before rejoining the “Ark” several months later in the Antilles.) The two ships ultimately landed at St. Clement’s Island in southern Maryland on March 25, 1634.

The 125 passengers of the “Ark” and the “Dove” sailed at the behest of Cecil Calvert, the Catholic Lord Proprietor of Maryland, who stocked the vessels with enough food and supplies to last, hopefully, for an entire year in the wilderness. At the outset, Lord Baltimore, as the proprietor was also known, expected Maryland to become a Catholic refuge for his co-religionists. In the end, he was remarkably successful in attracting far more Protestant countrymen “by offering them free land and the customary political rights that landholders in England enjoyed. Calvert also promised real religious liberty for virtually all Christians.” In fact, it was Calvert’s Maryland–and not Roger Williams’ Rhode Island–where religious freedom and the separation of church and state first gained a foothold in the New World.

Given this heritage, nearly three centuries later, in 1910, a number of descendants of Maryland’s founding families formed The Society of The Ark and The Dove in order to perpetuate the memory of its pioneers and to promote fellowship among their descendants. Over the years, the Society has encouraged research in early Maryland history and supported a variety of commemorative institutions, such as the Historic St. Mary’s City Foundation.

The book, “The Ark and The Dove Adventurers,” published under the auspices of The Society of The Ark and The Dove, is an important contribution to Maryland genealogy and history by the organization.

Edited by noted Maryland genealogists George Ely Russell and Donna Valley Russell, “The Ark and The Dove Adventurers” furnishes “documented accounts of the first settlers of Maryland in 1634, followed by compiled genealogies of their descendants, if any, extended to the fifth generation when possible.”

The first part of the book describes the family and descendants of Sir George Calvert (Cecil’s father) the first Lord Baltimore. The remainder traces the progeny of the following passengers: James Baldridge, Major Thomas Baldridge, Anam Benum, John Briscoe, William Brown, Leonard Calvert, Thomas Cornwallis, Ann Cox, William Edwin, Cuthbert Fenwick, Captain Henry Fleete, Richard Gerard, Richard Gilbert, Thomas Greene, John Hallowes, Nicholas Harvey, Richard Lowe, John Neville, Richard Nevitt, John Price, Robert Smith, Ann Smithson, Robert Vaughan, and Robert Wiseman. “The Ark and the Dove Adventurers” concludes with a list of passengers who are known not to have had descendants and some later arrivals previously and erroneously claimed as 1634 descendants.

Complete with a name index to 6,000 individuals, “The Ark and The Dove Adventurers” is the new starting point for 17th-century Maryland genealogy.

Image Credit: MIT.edu

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New England and Canada’s Maritime Provinces: Differences in Record Keeping, II http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/new-england-and-canadas-maritime-provinces-part-ii/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=new-england-and-canadas-maritime-provinces-part-ii http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/new-england-and-canadas-maritime-provinces-part-ii/#comments Mon, 01 Sep 2014 19:00:41 +0000 http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/?p=1386 Editor’s Note: This post is by Dr. Terrence M. Punch, CM FRSAI, FIGRS, CG(C), the leading authority on immigration into Canada’s Maritime Provinces. In this two-part article, Dr. Punch explains the differences in record keeping between the New England states/colonies and the neighboring Maritimes, which some future New Englanders used as a stopping-off point. Part

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Editor’s Note: This post is by Dr. Terrence M. Punch, CM FRSAI, FIGRS, CG(C), the leading authority on immigration into Canada’s Maritime Provinces. In this two-part article, Dr. Punch explains the differences in record keeping between the New England states/colonies and the neighboring Maritimes, which some future New Englanders used as a stopping-off point. Part I of this article, originally published in last week’s “Genealogy Pointers” and here on this blog, concerned the differences between New England and Maritime census and citizenship records. Persons with Scottish or Irish ancestry should refer to the linked notes following this article for more information about possible family connections in the Maritimes.

A reminder from last week: There are four potential stumbling blocks when working with Canadian Maritime records. To reiterate them briefly (points one and two are in last week’s post): 1. Canada has no federal records prior to 1867. 2. Different citizenship – British subjects going and coming until 1947. 3. Canada has a different pattern of governance. 4. Canada is affected by a lack of/incomplete records.

 

Maritime Provinces – a Different Path to Governance

 

The third point is a different path of governance. Nova Scotia was founded as a royal province. Many of the thirteen colonies had been established by corporations, such as Virginia; by proprietary grants, as were Pennsylvania or Maryland; or by religious groups such as Plymouth Bay or Rhode Island. In Nova Scotia’s case there was no lord proprietor, nor a tradition of townships which elected their own officials and largely governed their local affairs. Control was vested in a governor and council appointed by the mother country. This model continued until the attainment of responsible government in 1848.

In 1759 Nova Scotia’s mainland was divided into five original counties: Halifax, Lunenburg, Annapolis, Kings and Cumberland, but merely for administrative convenience to permit the setting up of county land registries, probate courts and the appointment of local petty officials. Until the charter of Halifax as a city in 1841 there were no self­ governing municipalities in Nova Scotia, hence there isn’t much to seek in terms of local governmental records prior to the 1840s. New Brunswick was part of Nova Scotia until 1784.

Nova Scotia and New Brunswick did indeed have townships, mainly in areas settled by New Englanders in the 1760s and 70s. There survive a number of useful township books, in which at least the births and marriages of the proprietary or shareholding families were recorded, along with such information as the earmarks of cattle and the like. Some books were well kept while others were not, or have been lost.

If you seek the sort of records possessed by many a town clerk in New England, you will be disappointed in the Maritimes. The governing establishment made sure that the townships enjoyed little self-government in any of the ways that mattered. Democracy in the political sphere was as dreaded as enthusiasm in the religious.

A major consequence of this record deficit has been to render church registers of much greater significance to genealogical researchers. The best served communities in this respect are Halifax and Lunenburg. In both cases, some church registers go back to the first settlement in the mid-eighteenth century. Apart from some Acadian French registers, fewer than a dozen church books predate the coming of the Loyalists in the 1780s. Speaking generally, Anglican/Episcopalian records are the oldest we possess. Since people availed themselves of the services of the only church around, the Anglican records frequently registered the baptism of children to parents who were any of several other Christian denominations (more information about these records here). Congregationalism was largely supplanted after 1783 by the rise of Baptist and Methodist churches in the region. Presbyterianism prevailed in some areas like a Scottish settlement, while Lutheranism was strongest in Lunenburg County, Nova Scotia, settled by Germans. Substantial Roman Catholic congregations existed in wherever there were Acadian or southern Irish populations.

 

Scarce Records

 

The fourth and last consideration to remember is the fact that Maritime records are a challenge to the researcher who seeks to find a wide variety of records upon which to draw for genealogical evidence. As already mentioned, the records of naturalization are scanty, passenger lists are scarce, and until quite recent times, the conservation of records was primitive, resulting in the destruction by mold, carelessness and abuse of a great part of the written heritage.

There is little sustained and dependable funding for historic matters. What is done tends to be piecemeal or directed towards one-shot projects rather than to the more mundane, but far more important, goal of finding, conserving and general preservation of records. Private individuals and small local societies have performed yeoman service in this field. Without those loyal volunteers and the professional staff of the Archives, the situation would be much worse. As matters stand, the researcher must use his or her ingenuity to sniff out documentation of use in the quest.

Notes and Tips for Those of Irish or Scottish Ancestry

For a list of early church registers held at the Nova Scotia Archives, see Terrence M. Punch, Genealogical Research in Nova Scotia, new revised edition (Halifax: Nimbus Publishing Limited, 1998), pp. 70-82.

Terrence M. Punch is the author of rich collections of source records: Erin’s Sons: Irish Arrivals in Atlantic Canada, Vols. I, II, III, & IV (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 2008 – 2010), and Some Early Scots in Maritime Canada, Vols. I, II, & III (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 2011-2012).

Image Credit: By Creator, Israel de Wolf Andrews [Public domain] via Wikimedia Commons

 

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Fair Use Copyright Explained in Carmack’s “Guide” http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/fair-use-copyright-carmacks-guide/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=fair-use-copyright-carmacks-guide http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/fair-use-copyright-carmacks-guide/#comments Wed, 27 Aug 2014 12:30:03 +0000 http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/?p=1374 When you find information in a book, article, or online source and you want to quote or paraphrase it in your genealogy, when must you cite the source? If you quote the information and cite the source, can you use as much of the information as you want? The answers to these questions fall under

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When you find information in a book, article, or online source and you want to quote or paraphrase it in your genealogy, when must you cite the source? If you quote the information and cite the source, can you use as much of the information as you want? The answers to these questions fall under the copyright principle of “Fair Use.”

According to “The Copyright Permission and Libel Handbook,” by Lloyd J. Jassin and Steven C. Schechter, “Fair use is a privilege. It permits authors, scholars, researchers, and educators to borrow small portions of a copyrighted work for socially productive purposes without asking permission or paying a fee.”

Sharon DeBartolo Carmack addresses these and other concerns of fair use in her book, “Carmack’s Guide to Copyright & Contracts: A Primer for Genealogists, Writers & Researchers.” With this guide in hand, you will be able to determine:

  • What are your rights to your own genealogical discoveries?
  • What can/should you do if someone has infringed on your copyright?
  • When do you need to ask someone’s permission to reprint their work?
  • What are works in the public domain and how to find them?
  • Can someone tape your lecture without your permission?

While the guidelines of fair use are applied uniformly, as Ms. Carmack demonstrates, “the devil is in the details.” Fortunately, you can learn a lot more about the nuances of fair use and other important aspects of copyright law – especially as they impinge on the genealogist – in “Carmack’s Guide.” For example, while it is generally sufficient to cite the source you use, in some cases you must actually request the permission of the copyright holder. Similarly, even though a work may be in the public domain (e.g. the papers of George Washington), if an institution or an individual owns the originals, you may need to obtain permission and/or to pay a royalty fee before you can refer to the work in your family history.

In scarcely 100 pages, the “Guide” gently informs its readers about all aspects of copyright law. Each chapter lays out a specific principle of copyright or contracts and then addresses the topic with situations specifically applicable to genealogists.

Vetted by copyright attorney Karen Kreider Gaunt, “Carmack’s Guide to Copyright and Contracts” is the first comprehensive guide of its kind written expressly for genealogists. For more information on “Carmack’s Guide” click here.

Image Credit: By Columbia Copyright Office [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Editor’s Note: This article originally appeared in an archived edition of Genealogy Pointers. You can subscribe to receive this newsletter via the signup box on the sidebar of this blog.

 

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Canadian Maritime Provinces and New England: Differences in Record Keeping, I http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/maritime-provinces-and-new-england-record-keeping/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=maritime-provinces-and-new-england-record-keeping http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/maritime-provinces-and-new-england-record-keeping/#comments Tue, 26 Aug 2014 13:10:43 +0000 http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/?p=1363   Editor’s Note: Terrence Punch is the leading authority on immigration into Canada’s Maritime Provinces. In this two-part article (part I published below) Dr. Punch explains the differences in record keeping between the New England states/colonies and the neighboring Maritimes, which some future New Englanders used as a stopping-off point. Persons with Scottish or Irish

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Editor’s Note: Terrence Punch is the leading authority on immigration into Canada’s Maritime Provinces. In this two-part article (part I published below) Dr. Punch explains the differences in record keeping between the New England states/colonies and the neighboring Maritimes, which some future New Englanders used as a stopping-off point. Persons with Scottish or Irish ancestry should refer to the link in Footnote #4 for more information about possible family connections in the Maritimes themselves. This post was written by Dr. Terrence M. Punch, CM, FRSAI, FIGRS, CG(C).

From the perspective of most of North America, the New England states and the Canadian Maritime provinces are near neighbors, sharing many cultural and genealogical similarities. Yet, an international border separates them and the story of their settlement and record keeping reveals some differences that affect genealogical research. Let’s look at four of these potential stumbling blocks.

The first thing to remember is that the Maritimes were not part of Canada until 1867 or afterwards, which means that there are no records at the federal level until then. This gives Americans about a 90-year head start. The second point to keep in mind is that people born in the Maritimes or coming there from the British Isles before 1947 were British subjects when they sailed from Britain and remained so over here. The third thing to remember is that the pattern of government evolved quite differently. A fourth matter to recognize is that record keeping was not very assiduously carried out here and that, when records were created, they were not always preserved for posterity. Each of these facts impinges on what records were required, and therefore, exist to be utilized by researchers now.

These facts are so important that we should reiterate them briefly: 1. We have no federal records prior to 1867. 2. British subjects going and coming until 1947. 3. We have a different pattern of governance. 4. Incomplete records.

Absence of Canadian Federal Records

In the absence of the many federal records which are familiar in the USA, this means that there exist no national census records for Canada until 1871. Those in the States began in 1790. That means that you must look for census records created on the local or provincial level before 1867. There are bits and pieces of population reports, but there are few surviving province-wide records before Confederation. Prior to that date there were census surveys made in the 1770s for a few areas of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. An incomplete 1798 census of Prince Edward Island was published as an appendix to an out of-print history of the island.1 For Nova Scotia, one or two counties survive from the 1817 census, a bit more of the 1827 census, and most of that made in 1838. Again the 1851 census survives for just three counties.2 You can take some comfort in the knowledge that at least one census exists for each area of the province before 1860. New Brunswick did a nominal census–the first in the region–in 1851, but parts of that are lost.

There are also the lists of parishioners prepared by Abbe Sigogne in Digby and Yarmouth counties at various times between 1816 and 1844. Another census substitute is the poll tax lists compiled between 1791 and 1795 in Nova Scotia. These at least tell the names of men over the age of 21 in each district.

Canada’s founding document, the British North America Act, mandated that a nominal census be taken in 1871 and every tenth year thereafter. Those for 1871, 1881, and 1891 are available online at the Library and Archives Canada. The returns for 1901 and 1911 are also online. The transcriptions for all of these offer the option of viewing the digitized originals as well. The 1921 census has been released but in general can be viewed only at pay sites. Given the sloppy spelling, poor penmanship, and sometimes the quirks of the individual census taker, not to mention the illiteracy of many people in the earlier census periods, it is prudent, indeed necessary, to track a family through several decades of returns to ensure greater accuracy.

For the diligent seeker, there is recourse to petitions to the Legislature for various purposes. People sought funds for schools, roads, churches, lighthouses, and a dozen other reasons, and these are well worth the search. A road petition would have been supported by virtually an entire community and thus serves as a kind of census substitute. The heyday of this sort of petition was between 1802 and 1860, although these dates are by no means exclusive. The Archives hold some polling and voters lists which can be used for much the same purpose of standing in for a population return when no other exists.

Citizenship – Complicated by British Roots

An area where the difference between our two countries is most apparent is records concerning citizenship. Following its independence, the United States expected its residents to be or to become American citizens. In the Maritimes the issue did not arise until the late 1940s, except in two or three unusual circumstances. There was not the same emphasis upon a formal process of naturalization of foreign citizens, mainly because people from what is now the United States were considered to be already British subjects until 1790. The same was true for immigrants from the British Isles down to the twentieth century. The English, Scottish, and Welsh war brides after two world wars partook of the same British citizenship as native-born Canadians until the passage of the Canadian Citizenship Act in June 1946, effective 1 January 1947. People born in Canada were transformed from British subjects into Canadian citizens that New Year’s Day.

As a consequence, the only naturalizations that took place were those of some of the “Foreign Protestants” who wished to vote in the earliest elections for the House of Assembly3. Whereas many among the multitudes of Irish, German, and British immigrants who settled in the United States followed the process: declaration of intent, petition, oath of allegiance, and final papers, such was not the case here. Consequently, there will be no helpful paper trail of this kind.

In practical terms for researchers, the different legal requirement affected our record keeping in another major way. Little care was given towards keeping track of the passengers on the hundreds of vessels that disembarked emigrants prior to Confederation. By consulting publications such as my Irish and Scottish seriesand other books, you will see at once that it is necessary to comb dozens of assorted types of records to find even a few indications of who came in which ship or even when they arrived here. Bureaucracy here had so cavalier an attitude in this respect that they seldom made lists, and usually when they bothered at all, they saw no reason to preserve them.

A substantial portion of the Scottish Highlanders were put ashore at remote points along the coast by skippers who wished to avoid regulations and customs officers. A considerable part of the Irish arrivals before 1820 simply crossed over in coastal vessels from the Newfoundland fishery and carried on as before in their new location. Passenger lists survive for no more than 5% of the Scottish and about 8% of the Irish immigrants to the region before Confederation.

Part II will be available next week. Please follow this blog, sign up for the Genealogy Pointers newsletter (on the sidebar), or visit us again next week.

1. Duncan Campbell, History of Prince Edward Island (Charlottetown: Bremner Brothers, 1875), pp. 207-224.

2. For details consult Genealogist’s Handbook for Atlantic Canada Research, Terrence M. Punch and George F. Sanborn, Jr., eds., 2nd edition (Boston: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1997), pp. 78-80.

3. See Kenneth S. Paulsen, “The Provincial Election of 1758: The First Vote in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia,” The New England Historic Genealogical Register, ClVI (2002), pp. 159-164, and Terrence M. Punch,” Naturalizations of Foreign Protestants, Nova Scotia, 1758,” The Nova Scotia Genealogist, XXI (2003), pp. 61-66 . For a wider listing see Lloyd deWitt Bockstruck’s Denizations and Naturalizations in the British Colonies in America, 1607-1775 (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 2005). www.genealogical.com.

4. Terrence M. Punch, Erin’s Sons: Irish Arrivals in Atlantic Canada, Vols. I-IV (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 2008-2010), and Some Early Scots in Maritime Canada, Vols. 1-111 (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 2011-2012).

Image Credit: Rigobert Bonne [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

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Early Settlers of Pennsylvania http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/early-settlers-of-pennsylvania/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=early-settlers-of-pennsylvania http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/early-settlers-of-pennsylvania/#comments Fri, 22 Aug 2014 13:00:51 +0000 http://www.genealogyandfamilyhistory.com/?p=1350 Because of its unique immigration policy, Pennsylvania led the way in colonial America in the ethnic diversity of its early settlers. Among early settlers of Pennsylvania, we find English, Irish, and Dutch Quakers; German and Swiss Mennonites, Anabaptists, and Pietists; and Ulster Presbyterians, the Scotch-Irish frontiersmen. The first “ethnic migration” to be officially documented –

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Because of its unique immigration policy, Pennsylvania led the way in colonial America in the ethnic diversity of its early settlers. Among early settlers of Pennsylvania, we find English, Irish, and Dutch Quakers; German and Swiss Mennonites, Anabaptists, and Pietists; and Ulster Presbyterians, the Scotch-Irish frontiersmen.

The first “ethnic migration” to be officially documented – mainly in the form of ships’ passenger lists, records of indenture, naturalization records, land records, tax lists, and sundry church records – began in southeastern Pennsylvania between the 1680s and 1720s. These early records include the earliest passenger arrivals in Philadelphia in 1683, the Swiss and Rhineland arrivals in Philadelphia and a host of other groups. Immigrants from Germany’s Rhineland area and the German-speaking cantons of Switzerland arrived in southeastern Pennsylvania by the thousands.

Looking for the most authoritative works on Pennsylvania’s German and Swiss immigration? Eshleman’s “Historic Background and Annals of the Swiss and German Pioneer Settlers of Southeastern Pennsylvania, and of their Remote Ancestors,” explores the background of the great sectarian movements in Germany, Switzerland and Holland, and focuses attention on the Mennonite families who later emigrated to Pennsylvania. As many as 300,000 German and Swiss immigrants and settlers have been identified in this work. In addition, all three volumes of “Pennsylvania German Church Records” can be found here, with volumes one, two and three also available individually. These records refer to approximately 91,000 individuals and include births, baptisms, marriages, and burials. They identify people and their relationships to one another–not only parents and children, husbands and wives, but witnesses and sponsors as well.

A more overarching resource on Pennsylvania’s immigration, the Family Archive CD provides a wealth of information on the earliest settlers of the Keystone State. This particular CD contains data on places of origin, dates of arrival, places of residence, ages, occupations, names of wives and children (with details of births, marriages, and deaths), and a host of other details derived from nine respected Pennsylvania reference works. This collection also contains a single electronic name index of 200,000 entries, which allows you to search all the volumes quickly and effortlessly.

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons, “Pioneer Settlers building Adventure Galley on the Youghiogheny.” This image is from the publication, “History of the Ordinance of 1787 and the Old Northwest Territory.”

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