Friday, December 30, 2005

Gmail Manager

Earlier this year Kindred Matters posted about a Firefox extension called ScrapBook, which allows users to save bits of text, images or entire webpages to their hard drive.

Now there's another great Firefox extension: Gmail Manager. If you have multiple Gmail accounts for different mailing lists, interests, eBay, etc., you should find this add-on extremely useful.


Translations as you type is the site I use the most to translate German to English, but AJAX Translator is more fun to use.


Thursday, December 29, 2005

A new surname...but what is it?

It's funny how one can set out to research a particular family, find a few records and walk away with little on that family, but all kinds of info on a "new" family line. After initially wanting to find as much as possible about the LANKAU family in Halberstadt, it was clear that this was not their home before the 1840s. The good news is that Halberstadt was the home to at least one ancestral family well before 1840 and church records have provided three new surnames.

There would be a fourth "new" surname, but I can't read the surname of Johanne Sophie Justine OEHME's mother, which was listed in Johanne's and David ARNECKE's 1829 marriage record. The name appears to be CAWE, but it could also be LAWE or LACOE. Other apparent instances of the name in the records seem to show it as LAUE, which at the moment I believe to be the most accurate.

I've had someone much better at reading German records take a look and they also are unsure of the actual spelling. It looks like I'll have to track down this woman's burial record by ordering one or two more rolls of microfilm in the upcoming months. (Unfortunately, her baptism and marriage record are not available on FHL microfilm.) Until this gets solved, I'll either hold off on making a page for the surname or temporarily create an "unknown" page.

[, , , ]

World's oldest person

Reuters: Ecuadorean woman, 116, is world's oldest person.


Funny, as always

Genealogue: Government Agency Comes to Genealogist's Rescue and Top Ten New Year's Resolutions for Genealogists.


Wasting time with the census

While looking for an online transcription of an 1850 census at home (without access to Ancestry), I was lucky enough to find what I needed. The results were a little unclear, though, as the ages differed a bit from the 1860 census I had just entered into my database. Never mind that, what caught my eye was a household listed on the same page which had a man, age 90, and woman, age 112. Wow! What are the odds of that? Not very good, as it turns out. The transcription incorrectly attributed the 112 to a girl who was just 12. The mistake was clear after viewing the census image.

A few minutes later while using HeritageQuest, I noticed that the age option in their census search went all the way up to 150. I've been using HQ for a few years and never paid attention to that part of the form, at least how high it went. The funny thing is, it needs to go higher according to some census forms.

For example, the image on the right is from page 183 (1) from the 1870 census of Worcester (4th ward), Worcester County, Massachusetts.


WWI photos

Damn Interesting: Color Photos From the World War I Era.


August N. Rick

Marie D. RICK's 1911 baptism record notes that one of her sponsors was "Augustus N. Rick," but there is no known RICK male by that name. I think we've got a pretty darn good handle on our RICKs in St. Louis (and back in Baden), so this baptism record stands out.

I believe that this may be a reference to Marie's grandfather, who is known as August RICK (Sr.). August was baptized simply as August RICK in 1830, so either Marie's baptism record contains an error or August did indeed have an unknown middle name. Nickolaus?

[, ]

Kindred Matters

Lee is putting Kindred Matters on hiatus. Hopefully the blog does indeed return next summer, if not sooner.


FHL microfilm fees

Dick Eastman is reporting that FHL microfilm fees are increasing in a couple of weeks. It's still one of the cheapest ways to research, but I'd be curious to know why the price hasn't gradually increased over the years rather than instituting a 70% increase.


Can you hear the crickets?

Wow, two posts in the last month. It's a good thing I'm not being paid for this stuff.

Here's the deal. I am constantly messing around with my web template. I'm never happy with a layout because I have no discernible artistic skills. Take a look at CSS Vault and CSS Zen Garden and you'll see some of the stuff I wish I could do. The CSS isn't that big of a challenge. I just cannot create a great looking site or even try to replicate things I see. I know what I'd like to design, but Photoshop is a beast and like I mentioned, I'm not artistic.

In addition to coming up with yet another layout for next month and eventually doing something with the Blogger template, I'm still plowing through the KOCH and WIEDEY church records. I hope to be done with this branch by spring.

I've found a mistake in earlier research and will post that story soon. It's nothing as major as having to unlink or delete a family branch. I screwed up with a record that's interesting in a historical context, but not genealogically.

I've made some progress on a Colonial family and hope to do more with that very shortly.

I've also been working on other assorted German families. One of these days I'll become more focused...

The next few months should yield lots of records to confirm prior research and, hopefully, provide new details.

[, , ]

Monday, December 12, 2005

Obit Humor

How often does an obituary make you laugh? The obituary of Wilma Eckert may not seem funny to most folks, but if you're a Cardinals fan you probably understand the end of the second sentence and depending on your view of the situation it may make you chuckle.

To those unfamiliar with Ray King and the Cardinals, or baseball in general, allow me to provide some background details. King is a lefthanded relief pitcher, a valuable commodity in baseball, especially to a manager like Tony La Russa, who has been known to use -- some might say overuse -- his bullpen. I believe King was generally considered to be an above average reliever. In 2004, after being acquired from the Atlanta Braves in a trade, King had what I thought was a pretty good year on a team that got to the World Series. In 2005, King struggled. It was eventually reported that his father was terminally ill, ultimately passing away late in the season. There's no doubt it was a tough situation for King.

Down the stretch and into the playoffs it became clear that La Russa had lost confidence in King and essentially benched him. King then announced that he wanted to be traded. It seemed that the situation had calmed down, when King was recently traded to the Colorado Rockies for two players the locals don't seem to be all that impressed with.

I didn't care either way what happened to King in 2006. He said he would get in better shape and have a better season. On the other hand, could the team really keep a guy around that didn't see eye-to-eye with the manager and had expressed his desire to be elsewhere?

Anyway, I got a chuckle from the obit, which I found on a message board from the local newspaper. It reminded me of the obituary from earlier this year in which a man wanted his son to criticize what had been going on with the National Hockey League.