Sunday, December 20, 2009

Festival of Postcards - Faces from the Box

This edition of the Festival of Postcards features all things white. I have scrambled through my treasures to find a submission, but, alas, nothing quite fits the bill.

BUT, since black and white postcards are acceptable, I submit these lovely ladies...two of my unknown "strangers in the box"...dressed in their winter finery. It seems at some time around the turn of the 20th century, it was popular to print pictures on postcards for easy mailing. I know, as I have a number of these mementos, lovely pictures on the front and a postcard on the back. Unfortunately, it is blank, never mailed, with no clue who these folks might be. Maybe they were residents of Elwood, Indiana, where my Hupp and DeHority ancestors lived. Maybe they are from somewhere else entirely. But here they are for your viewing enjoyment.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Blog Carol 2009

The footnoteMaven has called all Geneabloggers to join in for the annual caroling. Picking a favorite carol is difficult…Silent Night is great for a reflective evening, Deck the Halls gets the energy going for the shopping and decorating, cooking while Little Drummer Boy plays in the background. But the one below is one that I look forward to singing along with every year, not exactly a carol, more of a song, and a melancholy reminder to remember the less fortunate.

Mary's first Christmas

Pretty Paper
By: Willie Nelson

Pretty paper, pretty ribbons of blue
Wrap your presents to your darling from you
Pretty pencils to write “I love you”
Pretty paper, pretty ribbons of blue

Crowded street, busy feet hustle by him.
Downtown shoppers, Christmas is nigh.
There he sits all alone on the sidewalk
Hoping that you won’t pass him by.

Should you stop? Better not, much too busy .
You’re in a hurry, my how time does fly!
In the distance, the ringing of laughter,
And in the midst of the laughter he cries

Pretty paper, pretty ribbons of blue!
Wrap your presents to your darling from you.
Pretty pencils to write “I love you”
Pretty paper, pretty ribbons of blue.


Friday, December 4, 2009

Friday's Focus Family: the Hupps of Elwood

Above is a picture of the family of George Washington Hupp and Elizabeth Stokes Hupp, the source of whatever German genes I have. Based on what I know about birth and death dates, in the photo are:

Top row, left to right
Lola M. Hupp (my great grandmother, 1870-1951)
Albert A. Hupp (1878-1947)
Maude Hupp (1882- )
William A. Hupp (1868-1904)
Samuel S. Hupp (1871-1911)

Bottom row, left to right :
George Washington Hupp (1834-1923)
Isabelle Stokes Hupp (1843-1918)

George W. Hupp was born on December 3, 1834, in Shenandoah County, Virginia, near New Market, the son of Samuel A. Hupp and Mary Kipps. Isabelle Stokes was born on May 7, 1843, in Butler County, Ohio, to Jesse Stokes and Elizabeth Hineman. According to George’s obituary, he came as a young man to Indiana in 1859, moving to Elwood in 1862 where he lived the rest of his life. I think this picture must have been from around that time. He does look like a young man headed west looking for adventure.

George and Isabelle were married in 1867. He established the first tinning and plumbing company in Elwood, later opened a hardware store, and much later went into the insurance business. He was a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church and the Odd Fellows Lodge. His home, with much changing and addition, is the current Copher-Fesler-May Funeral Home in Elwood.

It seems the family, like all families had its share of happy and sad times. They apparently liked to travel to Hot Springs, Arkansas, as shown in this picture.

Five children are shown, but three died in infancy. And their son Samuel must have suffered from some type of depression, as a note in the family bible indicates that he committed suicide.

Isabelle’s obituary shows her to have been an active member of the community:

Mrs. Hupp was a lifelong member of the M.E. Church, a worker in its Aid and other societies and a Christian woman who found much for her hands to do and willingly contributed to every good cause. She will be missed in the community where she was so long known and so much beloved.


Sunday, November 29, 2009

Kreativ Blogger Award

Many thanks to TCasteel of Tangled Trees for thinking of me for the Kreativ Blogger Award. It is always a pleasure to find that someone reads this chronicle of my misadventures in this family history search.

Now, according to the rules for this award, I must reveal 7 things about myself, and then name 7 other blogs for the honor. Here goes:

1. My ULTIMATE brick wall challenge is finding the parents of my ggg-grandparents, James Madison DeHority (1819-1891) and Susanna Huffman (1817-1899).
2. Like Tcasteel, I am a mystery lover; favorites are Dame Agatha Christie, Rex Stout and Martha Grimes.
3. I love to knit….there is a certain zen to the movements that is very calming.
4. My favorite countries are France and Ireland. It must be in the DNA. I have been lucky enough to visit both.
5. I have one wonderful granddaughter, thanks to my wonderful daughter.
6. In my next incarnation, I hope to have musical talent.
7. Favorite movie: Charade, with Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn.

The difficult part will be to nominate only 7, as there are so many fascinating stories out there, but my latest list of faves are:

Carrow and Faunt Family Tales
Kathy’s Kampground Kapers
The French Genealogy Blog
The Professional Descendant
We Tree
Donna’s Genealogy Blog

Thanks to each of the above for many mornings of fascinating reading!


Friday, November 6, 2009

The Huguenots

Many thanks to Anne Mordel of the French Genealogy Blog for her introduction to the story of the Huguenots in France in her recent post Huguenot Genealogy-A Bit of Background.My Mauzy ancestors, referenced in a Surname Saturday post recently, were members of this Protestant group, and made their way to North America as a result of the persecution. Anne's chronology of the events is fascinating, and her links to online resources are very helpful. If you also have ancestors from France, be sure to pay her a visit!


Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Tombstone Tuesday


Photo courtesy of

Friday, October 30, 2009

Friday’s Family-Peter and Sallie (Gooding) Mauzy

With the Mauzy surname being the topic for Surname Saturday last week, I thought this might be a good opportunity to look at one of the families on this branch of my tree, trying to imagine their lives.

Peter William Mauzy was born 25 October 1792 in what was called west Virginia. I don’t think this was the state, but rather western land in the state of Virginia, and possibly land that became part of Kentucky. His father was the patriot William Mauzy, who was reportedly present at the surrender of Cornwallis at Yorktown, and his mother was Ursula Arnold, and English lady. In 1792, according to the Richard Mauzy book mentioned earlier, Peter’s parents were headed from Virginia to Kentucky, so perhaps Peter was born along the way.

Sallie Gooding was born 15 December 1795, probably in Fleming County, Kentucky. Her parents have yet to be determined. Ancestry trees list them as Cornelius Gooding and Margaret Scott, while a FamilySearch entry lists Abraham Gooding and Elizabeth Randall. Since one of their children was named Abram Gooding Mauzy, I think the second is a good bet. Neither of these entries are sourced, and I have yet to find other evidence online, so I’ll leave this as an open question for now.

Peter and Sallie married in Fleming County, Kentucky on or about 12 March 1813, when Peter was 20 and Sallie was 17. Together, they had 8 children who survived: Lucinda, Reuben D., William C., Abram Gooding, Martha A., Silas H., Elizabeth and Nancy. Sallie must have been a strong woman indeed! Peter is described as a “powerful preacher in the Old Christian Church”.

They moved their brood, apparently along with grandpa William Mauzy, to land near New Salem Indiana in about 1829, according to county histories. It is easy to imagine their hopes for their family on their new land, visions of the prosperity to come. Sadly, both Peter and Sallie were victims of typhoid fever, according to family lore, after entertaining travelers. Peter died in September of 1832 and Sallie followed in October. Lucinda, the eldest, and her husband Joseph Pattison are credited with shepherding the orphans as they grew up. Because of their efforts, Peter and Sallie’s children grew to adulthood to become teachers, doctors, farmers and merchants, successfully pursuing the American dream.


Sunday, October 25, 2009

The Gift of Music

“I sail my memories of home….”

The words of Judy Collins’ old song run through my mind whenever I’m in the throes of this family history addiction, like Sherlock Holmes and his 7% solution.

I had no intention of participating in the Carnival of Genealogy this month, but I think it was the picture that kept calling to me, the picture of the lovely lady at the piano.

At one time, I aspired to be a lovely lady at the piano. I started lessons very young (see picture), and continued into high school. I don’t remember it being my idea. I think it was my mother’s idea, as she had both my sister and me in lessons. Lessons were expensive enough, so she didn't invest much in the instrument, a worn, old clunker that no amount of tuning would save. For years, I studied with “Professor Michaelides”, a wonderful, OLD man from Cyprus, who had settled with his wife in Norfolk and offered piano lessons. He was very patient with me, and thanks to his training, I even won second place in a piano contest in high school. I can still hear his gravely voice with the mysterious accent telling stories of accompanying singers in Europe….one lady even rehearsed bare from neck to waist, so as not to constrict her breathing. Fascinating stories! That same voice is in my head, saying “Practice, Mary Lou! Practice!” whenever I start something new, or glance at the piano in my living room that sits mostly idle now.

Eventually, I broke his heart when the excitement of high school won out over the practice sessions, and I quit taking lessons. After I had married and started teaching, I did stop by to see him once in his little house. He was so kind and happy to talk. Years later, when I saw his obituary in the paper, I went to my first Greek Orthodox funeral, and had a little cry.

My dad usually sought refuge in the farthest room in the house when I practiced, doors shut. Let’s just say he wasn’t encouraging. I don’t know whether he ever played. I never heard him. But I did find a piece or two of sheet music in his papers after he died, so maybe he did. But he always….ALWAYS…..had classical music playing as he graded papers and planned his lessons. He had a vast collection of vinyl records, and later 8 track tapes and cassettes, mostly classical, but Frank Sinatra, Harry Belafonte (for my mother) and other crooners and artists from the 40’s and 50’s. That’s where it ended. When I rhapsodized over the Beatles, he just shook his head and rolled his eyes.

This was his gift to me, a love of all kinds of music. We have it going all the time in our house. I love to listen….and sail my memories…..


Saturday, October 24, 2009

Surname Saturday

Mauzy, Mauzey, Mauze, Moze
For many years, Genealogical Record of the Descendants of Henry Mauzy, A Huguenot Refugee, the Ancestors of the Mauzys of Virginia and Other States from 1685 to 1910, by Richard Mauzy, 1911, was the definitive work on this family. It boasted responses from Mauzys all across the U.S., 105 pages on the descendants of Henry Mauzy. But it was only breadcrumbs showing the way, none of it supported by documents. Still, it was something.

Since then other researchers have taken up the search. It is generally thought that John Mauzé, born in England about 1675 to Michael Mauzé of France, is the common ancestor for the Mauzys of the U.S.

Dr. Armand Jean Mauzey published his research in 1950 in an excellent article for the Virginia Magazine of History and Biography1. He believes the Mauzé name might have come from the Arabian word “Mauz”, a plantain tree, and may have been adopted during the Crusades. He documents 10 Mauzé families that left France for the British Isles between 1681 and 1724, Huguenots who fled France on the repeal of the Edict of Nantes. The family appears to have come from lands near LaRochelle.

The Mauzys undertook the hardship of escape from France, travel to the British Isles and then to the New World in search of religious tolerance and freedom. How proud and grateful we should all be for their courage.


1. Armand Jean Mauzey, M.D., D.S.C., “The Mauzey-Mauzy Family”, Virgina Magazine of History and Biography 58 (1950), 112-119.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Destination Delmarva

Well, it has been a while since the last posting. The start of school always brings new work for me, which is a good thing, and less time for genealogy, which is not.

Saturday, I was fortunate to be able to attend the Destination Delmarva 2009 workshop at Washington College, sponsored by the Delaware Genealogy Society and the Maryland Genealogy Society. Each lecture that I attended gave me a piece of information I didn’t have before about history and resources that can help clear some of the cobwebs from my research. I knew there was a boundary dispute in the 1600-1700’s around the boundary between Maryland and Delaware, and I knew my Dehortys were on land smack in the middle of the disputed area. Russ McCabe’s presentation gave me a clearer picture of how the land was settled, a few ideas about where my folks might have come ashore, and a nifty new book to read for more information. The Deakyne twins, Sally Burke and Peggy Mealy, reminded me about the importance of investigating all the names in the Orphan’s Court records for possible family connections. Bob Barnes had a fascinating collection of “Black Sheep” ancestors…I haven’t found any yet, but I must have some and now I know where to look. Ed Wright has cataloged the churches of the early period and the records that he has transcribe. Unfortunately, my folks were Methodists, who were not known for their record keeping. But, you never know if the odd Quaker or Anglican might have married in, so, they will be worth a look. And, of course, I took home a couple of new books for the research library.

The weather was horrible, rainy and cold, but a bright spot on the day was meeting fellow blogger Kathleen Ingram. Her enthusiasm and positive spirit were infectious!

What a great day! Now to catch up on my blog reading……


Sunday, September 6, 2009

Melodrama on a Sunday Morning

Still sorting through those pesky Delaware Dehortys, I came upon a newspaper article from the front page of The Logansport (IN) Journal, dated August 20, 1898, with a story about my cousin (3X removed) Tillie DeHority. It is a long post, but fun, so I'll excerpt the article below. The writing is such fun, dramatically telling the story of two young lovers. It was a lesson for me on the importance of looking for newspaper articles of the period to give life to our ancestors' stories.


Here an Obliging Justice Said the Words that Made Them One

Society circles in the little cities of Elwood and Kokomo are just at present all excitement over the episodes of a couple of lovers who ran away to this city and, sometime between Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning are supposed to have been united in marriage by some obliging official possessing the authority to tie knots that are said to bind. The principals in the elopement are prominent in the social circles of both the cities both being residents of Elwood.

The bride is the daughter of the president of the leading bank of Madison county's second city and the groom is a handsome young widower, in the drugs and soda water line. The dramatis personae also includes a wronged wife seeking her lost marriage lines: a young attorney, mutual friend of the principal characters, and a friend of the heroine who was inoocently made to aid in the development of the plot, while the "villian" in the play is supposed to be represented by the irate papa of the blushing bride.

The first part of the story is told by the Kokomo Dispatch as follows:'Tuesday morning Miss Tillie DeHority, a daughter of J.H. DeHority, president of the Elwood National bank and perhaps the foremost man in the commercial life of that place, came to Kokomo for a brief visit with Mrs. Cordis Ovens of West Walnut street.....Miss DeHority had visited Mrs. Ovens here on several occasions. Naturally she suspected nothing when she received a letter from her Elwood friend a few days ago announcing her purpose to 'come over' for a brief time. Invitations were secured for her to a number of social gatherings, functions at which she was to be the houseguest were organized among the younger set, and no effort was spared to make her visit a pleasant one...

Miss DeHority came to Logansport on Tuesday night and here [she was] met by Curt Howe, an Elwood druggist, and attorney Bert Call of Elwood. No record of any marriage license having been issued to Mr. Howe and Miss DeHority appears on the books in the office of the county clerk here, but from an acquaintance of the parties here the statement comes that the marriage license was brought from Madison County by Mr. Howe. The marriage ceremony howeve is said to have been performed here, but even surrounding that there seems to have been thrown a circle of secrecy for, while it is whispered that one of Logansport's very popular and ever-obliging justices in matters of this kind knows more than he is willing to tell, no definite statement has been given out. However, certain it is that when the Elwood young lady left here Wednesday, returning to the home of her friend in Kokomo, she went not as Miss DeHority but as Mrs. Howe.

She, however, failed to apprise her friends at Kokomo of her marriage and she attended an afternoon and an evening social gathering and another on Thursday, as Miss Tillie DeHority, 'heart whole and fancy free.' On Thursday afternoon, however, as the Dispatch tells the story, when on her way to the Ovens home in company with Mrs. Ovens, Mrs. Howe was met by a messenger boy with a telegram. It was from her husband and announced that he would be in Kokomo that night. With many tears and much pleading that her secret be kept she told Mrs. Ovens the whole story. Mrs. Ovens was dumbfounded and greatly distressed at the fact that she had been innocently made to aid in what was evidently an elopement and a match that she was sure would not be approved by the young woman's parents.

Mr. Ovens at once communicated with Mr. DeHority by telephone, laying the story before him. Mr. DeHority asked Mr. Ovens to keep his daughter at his home under any and all circumstances until her brother who he would send on the first train could reach Kokomo. The first train was that reaching there at 10:12 o'clock Thursday night. On it Mr. Howe came, but not the brother of his bride. Whether a truce had been patched up between Papa DeHority and his son-in-law is not known. Mr. Howe went to the Ovens home. His stay was significantly brief, but when he came away his wife was with him. They remained at the Clinton hotel until the 1:45 train, which they took to Elwood.

I've left out the tale of Tillie's friend, who seemed to have misplaced her own marriage license. It was altogether a bad day for poor Mrs. Ovens! The story goes on the give particulars on the families, ending with the note that Curtis Howe's first marriage was also "a runaway match".

I wonder what 18-year-old Tillie had gotten herself into?


Monday, August 24, 2009

Back in time--1820

So, when last heard from, I was trying to organize all the data I’ve collected on the Dehorty family in Delaware to try to identify the father of my brick wall, 3g-grandfather James M. Dehority (1819-1891).

I am most of the way through that, having sorted through census records, probate records, orphan’s court records, tax records, marriage listings in the Delaware Public Archives’ card files, land records, and various mentions in books and journals on the period. I’ll chronicle my thoughts here in hopes that if someone reads this and notices things I have overlooked or errors of any sort, they will be so kind as to leave me a note.

I’ve decided to focus on the time around the 1820 census, as James was born in 1819 (or, by one count, 1816). Either way, he would be under age 5 in 1820. If I count the number of Dehorty men on the census who are of an age to father a child in 1820, I have 15 candidates. If I use information from James’ obituary, that he was orphaned by age 8, then I am looking for someone who has died by the 1830 census, both husband and wife (and the wife could have died prior to 1820). This is a little harder, but I can definitely eliminate 5, so I am down to 10.

Of the 10, there are 2 definite candidates. One Benjamin Doroty of Little Creek Hundred, Kent County, is enumerated in 1820 with 9 people in his household, of which 2 are males under the age of 9 and 2 males of “fathering” age (16-25). Benjamin dies intestate in 1823. The problem with Benjamin is that his wife is listed a s Louvania, and the will to Thomas Dehorty previously mentioned references a James, son of Sarah Silivan (Paternity Search in Delaware).

Research that I just received also finds a John Dehorty in the tax lists of Kent County who is a head of household in 1820, but dies insolvent by 1823 (must be a bad year for Dehortys). Here is where I run headlong into what I don’t know about the 1820 census.
I think that everyone counted in the household was a member of the family, excepting the slave listings. But, could they be related as siblings of the head and his wife, grandchildren, cousins, or in other ways related? This is where my count of 10 could be high. There seem to be a lot of “blended” households on my list. There is a John Dorothy in Duck Creek Hundred, Kent, listed in 1820. Could this be the one from the tax list? Or, might he be listed as a tick mark under a different household? How do I resolve the unnamed gentlemen from the census?

This is going to require some thought.


Saturday, August 15, 2009

Slogging Along

It has been quite the wet week in our little part of Virginia. Downpours and flooding and lots of reasons to stay indoors when you don't have to go out.

It was a good week to get results from a professional genealogist whom I engaged to try to find information about you might be the father of my "brick wall" ancestor, James Madison Dehority (1819-1891) from Delaware.

I received 8 pages of data, an amazing amount found in just 4-5 hours in the Archives. It just goes to show how much more efficient are the folks who know the records of the time like the back of their hands. Some of the information I already knew, but much of it was new to me. He made an educated guess as to the likely candidate from what he found. Rats! This is not going to be a "smoking gun", can't be anyone else but kind of discovery, but a guess made based on a process of elimination.

What became evident very early on was that my organization of information in my FTM program by individual was not going to be the best way to embark on this hunt. So, I have spent every spare moment organizing what I have on the Dehortys of Delaware (sounds like the Kennedys of Massachusetts, doesn't it?....or Kelloggs of Battle Creek?, that's cereal). I decided to organize by census year and group land record and tax record between the given census years to help me zero in on the 1815-1820 time frame. Re-typing and sourcing all this info has been quite the slog this week, but I'm almost ready to merge the data from the professional research. I can only hope that it points with some certainty to one of the families.

I can only hope....


Monday, August 10, 2009

Saturday Night Fun-the Great-Greats

I've been in a real genealogy "funk" lately. DNA test results on a distant cousin that were due July 6th won't be posted for a couple of weeks. I'm waiting with fingers crossed on a report from a genealogist in Delaware doing research on one of my brick walls. Those kinds of things never come quickly enough, do they? And, I just can't translate one more old land record.

To the rescue is Randy Seaver's Saturday Night Genealogy Challenge: Name and place your 16 great-great grandparents. One thing I love about blogs, and Randy's in particular, is that they focus my attention on what I know, and what I don't. It turns out, there's a lot I don't know about these folks.

Let's get started:

  1. John Wesley DeHority, b. 16 Oct 1840, Madison Co., IN, d. 28 Aug 1881, Madison Co., IN. Ethnicity: IRISH.
  2. Jane W. Moore, b. 14 May 1840, Madison Co., IN, d. 25 Aug 1925, Elwood, IN. Ethnicity: UNK.
  3. George Washington Hupp, b. 3 Dec 1834, Shenandoah Co., VA, d. 18 Jan 1923, Elwood, IN. Ethnicity: GERMAN.
  4. Isabelle Stokes, b. 7 May 1843, Butler Co., OH, d. 7 June 1918, Elwood, IN. Ethnicity: ENGLISH.
  5. Abram Gooding Mauzy, b. Feb 1825, Bourbon Co., KY, d. Aug 1905, Rushville, IN. Ethnicity: FRENCH.
  6. Emily R. Jamison, b. 29 May 1828, Bourbon Co., KY, d. 12 July 1873, Rushville, IN. Ethnicity: UNK.
  7. Houston Carr, b. 6 Feb 1821, KY, d.10 Sept 1856, Rushville, IN. Ethnicity: UNK.
  8. Mary A. Dunnohew, 8 Sept 1834, OH, d. UNK. Ethnicity: UNK.

Now, for the other half. These are the folks that I don't know. I do know that in all probability, they are all LITHUANIAN. I just haven't braced myself to tackle "jumping the pond". Since the oldest complete generation that I have are the greats, I'll list them here:

  1. John Douglas (Dobrovolskas), Dates UNK, but born and died in Lithuania.
  2. Anna Urnikas, b. UNK, d. before 1916, Lithuania
  3. Jacob Wychulis (Vaiculis), b. 3 May 1865, Lithuania, d. 3 Apr 1942, Old Forge, PA. Ethnicity: LITHUANIAN.
  4. Anna Burke (Bartkeiwicz), b. 1874, Lithuania, d. 10 May 1951, Old Forge, PA. Ethnicity: LITHUANIAN.

So there you have it! I don't know whether to be pleased about what I know, or blue about what I don't know.

It must be something about August......


Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Are Blogs a Distraction?

Randy Seaver, over at Genea-Musings, poses the question "Are the many blogs being written and read messing us up - are they time-wasters?" To me, that question has two parts.

Are they messing me up? Sure! Reading all the blogs I've followed (not as many as Randy, but still quite a few)does take time. And, it is time taken away from other genealogical pursuits. The same goes for writing a blog. Formulating these pithy, yet profound, observations on life, liberty and the pursuit of ancestry takes time away from other things. And, I haven't gotten the time-management thing down yet.

Are they time wasters? Well, the jury is out on my blog, but the blogs I read are definitely not time wasters. Reading the observations of others never fails to give me a new way of thinking about my own genealogical problem. And, I would have to say that since beginning this blog, and reading others,I have spent more time on my own research so far this year that I had in the previous 2 years combined. I had reached (several) brick walls, and lost the enthusiasm needed to push past them. Of course, the laundry doesn't get done as often...

Far and away the most important reward for blogging are the folks I get to exchange ideas with. Kathleen, over at Carrow and Faunt Family Tales has single-handedly given my Maryland and Delaware research a real shot in the arm. Murmurd's Franco-American and Quebec Genealogy led me to a previously unknown to me family organisation for my husband's family, introducing me to a wealth of research already done that I had no idea about. These are just two examples of several that have profitted my research in only 6 months!

Couldn't we ask the same question of all the resources we use? Are the family trees at Ancestry and Rootsweb really helpful, since so many are unsourced and reproductions of wishful research? Couldn't the same questions be asked of FamilySearch? How helpful is DNA may folks out of the thousands who have been tested actually come up with a helpful match? (Not me, not yet!) And how many of us have spent too much on a book only to find that reference to our surname was only a mention as a witness to a will? And not even someone from our tree!

Is blogging a distraction? Yes, and a welcome one. It has helped me refine my focus, stay on task, expand my knowledge, and make new friends.

I think I'll keep it up!


Tuesday, July 14, 2009

A Vacation Read

Just back from vacation, and trying to get caught up. All the buzz about Genealogy Wise has me over there trying to figure out how it works, and how to find time to fit it all in. (If you haven't already read Greta's excellent post on "Researching, Blogging, Social Networking, and Finding Time", you should. It is definitely a must-read).

Vacation included lots of time on the road. Along with trying to finish knitting a pair of socks, I took along this new book for when the fingers got tired. It turned out I did more reading than knitting. What a find! Marcia Hoffman Rising's The Family Tree Problem Solver: Proven Methods for Scaling the Inevitable Brick Wall has me rethinking some of the ways I have been doing things. She advises researching the families around your family in the census for hints as to female relatives or places of origin. ("Do you mean I have to research all those people too?" Sigh!)
She calls it the difference between searching and researching. She has tips for getting around missing "burned county" courthouse records (my case in Madison County, IN). Plenty of examples help illustrate her recommendations. Full disclosure, I have nothing to do with this book, I just learned a lot.

Now to finish those socks....


Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Strangers in the Box

Thanks to Robert Ragan of the Treasure Maps newsletter for including this piece:

Strangers in the Box

Come, look with me inside this drawer,
In this box I've often seen,
At the pictures, black and white,
Faces proud, still, serene.

I wish I knew the people,
These strangers in the box,
Their names and all their memories
Are lost among my socks.

I wonder what their lives were like.
How did they spend their days?
What about their special times?
I'll never know their ways.

If only someone had taken time
To tell who, what, where, when,
These faces of my heritage
Would come to life again.

Could this become the fate
Of the pictures we take today?
The faces and the memories
Someday to be tossed away?

Make time to save your pictures,
Seize the opportunity when it knocks,
Or someday you and yours could be
The strangers in the box.

Copyright 1997 by Pamela A. Harazim. All Rights Reserved.
May be used in unchanged form for non-commercial
purposes if accompanied by this copyright message.


Saturday, June 27, 2009

Every Trip Needs a Cemetery Visit

Anyone doing family history research knows you can't just drive by a cemetery with an ancestor, even if it is a little out of the way.

This week my DH and I took a short trip from Norfolk, VA, to Abingdon, VA, in the farthest reaches of our state, to witness our niece and nephews at a Suzuki violin camp. This is an awesome thng to see, so many young violinists, learning to play in the mountain beauty. Our travels took us through Carroll County, VA, where lies my 5th great-grandfather, Capt. William Bobbitt and his family.

County histories1 tell a little about William. He lived near Hillsville and the Mountain Plains community of Carroll County. He had several positions of responsibility in the community--surveyor for a road, Captain of the county militia and Justice of the county court. William died in August, 1817.

Finding the cemetery is an adventure. The Quesinberry-Bobbitt Cemetery is located on a small hill, near the intersection of Rte. 682 and Rte. 52 south of Hillsville, next to a cow pasture. The Bobbitt marker is the big modern one amongst all the broken headstones. Very disappointing, but I'm glad to see someone took the time to remember the families buried there. It appears that the Bobbitt headstones have all been broken over time. I guess it won't be a good source for my research, but the photos are still nice to have. Also listed here is his wife, Nancy Ann Mackenzie and their children.


1. John Perry Alderman,Carroll 1765-1815, The Settlements (Alderman Books, 1985) 77-78

Monday, June 22, 2009

It's a brick!

I guess family historians collect strange things. I know that if I find out something belonged to an ancestor, it becomes a treasure and off limits to any downsizing we might undertake. Consider my latest acquisition.

It's a brick. A lovely orange-red, with "Kokomo" on its face, brick. It came from a building, formerly in Elwood, Indiana, called the "DeHority Building". A member of the Elwood Pipe Creek Genealogy Society was kind enough to let me know that the building was being torn down to be replaced by a CVS pharmacy and its parking lot, and also kind enough to go down and get a brick for me, package it carefully with copies of the newspaper accounts of the demolition, and put it in the mail (Thank you, Linda!). How sad! But the building was pretty sad, too. It had pretty much fallen into disrepair in recent years, as you can see from a picture I took a few years ago.

The last DeHority that I knew of to use the building was Robert DeHority, who had an insurance business there, along with other small shops. I don't know what it was before that. The family started a bank, had a general store of sorts, and other enterprises, and maybe some of them were in that building, too. Someday, when I get time, I intend to research the building. That will be after I break down a few more "brick" walls.

For now, my momento will take its place in the garden with my other "Elwood bricks". These I got years ago from an Elwood antique shop. The proprietor told me they once were used as pavers in the streets of Elwood. Aren't they fine?!


Monday, June 15, 2009

The Just Make Up Some Lyrics Challenge

Bill, at "West in New England" has issued the Make Up Some Lyrics Challenge. The song above represents the best a musically challenged family historian can do...but it sure was fun!


Sunday, June 14, 2009

Saturday Night Fun--Sunday A.M.

As much as I would like to participate in Randy Seaver's Saturday Night Fun on Saturday night, I never seem to make it. But I always enjoy the read on Sunday morning.

Here is what I learned this week:

  1. I already loved maps and knew of their importance to research, but I found this Cool Map documenting the population center for the U.S. over pretty much follows my ancestors' travels. I also have a new blog to follow.
  2. Since Ancestry's launch of the Canadian censuses, I've been prowling for my husband's Canadian ancestors online.
  3. I got a brick in the's a meaningful brick, and the subject of a coming blog entry. Stay tuned.


Monday, June 8, 2009

Fair is Fair

I have no horse in this race. I do not descend from Native Americans. All of my ancestors are "come-heres" and probably didn't consider Indians as friends. But fair is fair.

If you don't live in Virginia, or don't have Native American ancestry, you probably don't know that the Virginia tribes--Nansemond, Eastern Chickahominy,Pamunkey, Mattaponi, Rappahannock, Upper Mattaponi, Chickahominey, and Monacan-- have yet to gain recognition from the federal government.

Say, what? That's right. The tribes of Powhatan and Pocahontas are not recognized by the federal government, which means that they get no part of federal money that some tribes have used for college tuition, housing loans and health care.

Joanne Kimberlin, reporter for the Virginian-Pilot in Norfolk, VA, is completing a 3-part series for the newpaper entitled “We're Still Here”1on the history of the tribes' efforts for recognition. Unfortunately, you can't see it online unless you are a subscriber. That is too bad, as it is wonderfully written and comprehensive in scope. Some of the high points from her findings are below (the editorial rant is mine):

  • Virginia tribes signed a treaty with England in 1677 which is in force today. The tribes still present the Virginia governor with a payment of rent each year in the form of a deer or other animal offering, as prescribed by the treaty. Other tribes, who made peace with the U.S. much later negotiated a better deal. It seems no good deed goes unpunished.
  • Recognition now involves completion of a process supervised by the Bureau of Indian Affairs, which involves documenting the tribes' history over several hundred years. This effort has been complicated by Virginia's 1924 Racial Integrity Act, which defined “white” as “having no trace whatsoever of any blood other than Caucasian, and everyone else as “colored”. One public servant in charge of vital records at the time, Walter Plecker, made it his mission to make sure that all records conformed to the Act, forever altering the clear lineage that today's applicants need. As family historians who rely on the public record, we should be stunned.
  • The tribes' efforts at legislative support for their cause over the years is an absolute embarassment. Legislators, who are loathe to protect us from lax gun laws, dilapidated interstate highways and crumbling schools, fear that recognition brings the threat of Indian casinos. Supporting the effort when it suits them and withdrawing support at the eleventh hour seems to be their M.O. Absolutely shameful!

So, what's to be done? VITAL, the blog of the Virginia Indian Tribal Alliance for Life, reported on April 22 that the “Thomasina E. Jordan Indian Tribes of Virginia Federal Recognition Act of 2009”, H.R. 1385, passed the House Committee on Natural Resources and is positioned to be considered by the full House. The bill is sponsored by Virginia Congressman Jim Moran. Virginia's Governor Timothy M. Kaine released this statement:

“Today’s vote by the U.S. House of Representatives to recognize six of the Native American Tribes of Virginia is a major step towards reconciling an historic wrong for Virginia and the Nation. While the Virginia Tribes have received official recognition from the Commonwealth of Virginia , acknowledgement and officially recognized status from the federal government has been considerably more difficult due to their systematic mistreatment over the past century.
“We are proud of Virginia ’s recognized Indian Tribes and their contributions to our Commonwealth. The Virginia Tribes are a part of us. We go to school together, work together, and serve our Commonwealth and nation together every day. These contributions should be acknowledged, and this federal recognition for Virginia ’s native peoples is long overdue.
“Virginia’s congressional delegation, including co-sponsors Rep. Gerry Connolly, Rep. Tom Perriello, Rep. Bobby Scott, Rep. Rob Wittman—and especially bill sponsor Rep. Jim Moran—deserve credit for their work on behalf of the native peoples of Virginia .
“I will strongly support efforts to pass federal recognition legislation for the Native American Virginia Tribes in the U.S. Senate and look forward to assisting in any way I can to help ensure this legislation is enacted into law.”

I hope anyone who reads this and feels moved to add their voice to setting this business right will contact their congressman and ask them to support this bill when it comes to a vote. And if you aren't so moved, I thank you for allowing me this little rant.

(Taking a breath......)

Back to genealogy.


1.Kimberlin, Joann.”We're Still Here”.Virginian-Pilot. 7-9 June 2009:A1+.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

The Puckerbrush!

What a treat to be the proud recipient of the Puckerbrush award! I rather feel like Sally Field at the Oscars! Thanks to Delia's Genealogy Blog for the honor!

Quoting now from Delia's blog on the Puckerbrush:
"The award was created in honor of genealogy blogger Janice Brown by Terry Thornton, author of "Hill Country of Monroe County, Mississippi", who explained that "Janice told us all about the word 'puckerbrush' in an article she posted August 27, 2007 at "Cow Hampshire". Terry elaborated a bit further in a comment: 'On any land allowed to go fallow and left untended, a wild assortment of wild plants grow – in some areas, this wild growth results in such a thicket of plants that it is almost impossible to push your way through the growth.So it is with the growth of blogs --- so many that it is impossible to read them all. But in the puckerbrush eventually a few plants/trees become dominant and influence all who view them through the thick surrounding puckerbrush.And it is those outstanding blogs whose influence spreads beyond just the surrounding rabble of puckerbrush that I'm honoring.' Terry issued this challenge: Henceforth these awards will be called the Janice Brown Puckerbrush Blog Award for Excellence. All blog authors are hereby challenged to name the ten blogs which have influenced their writing the most and list them as a tribute to Janice --- the Janice Brown Puckerbrush Blog Awards for Excellence."

I am inspired daily by bloggers who take the time to share their triumphs and stumbles while pursuing this maddening hobby. Several I have mentioned before and would again here, but someone has beaten me to it: Becky at Grace and Glory,the footnoteMaven,The Small-Leaved Shamrock , Cindy at Everything's Relative. I have nominated these favorites on other occasions and they all deserve a repeat mention. But, new favorites include these five listed below who absolutely represent the Puckerbrush spirit:

1. Craig at GeneaBlogie. His descriptions of his Gines/Guions family research are almost a tutorial on how to develop leads. Plus his Louisiana sojourn is just fascinating reading.
2. Kathleen at Carrow and Faunt Family Tales share with me an interest in families in the DelMarVa. I have learned much from her knowledge of the region.
3. I have only recently discovered Terry at Desktop Genealogist Unplugged. Her vivid narratives bring her ancestors and their stories alive.
4. Debbie, at Debbie's Indiana Genealogy, is a genealogy angel. Her dedication to transcribing records for online access is inspiring.
5. My thanks to M. Murmurd, at Murmurd's Franco-American and
Québec Genealogy
, for his timely information about common Charron/Ducharme ancestors. When he posts, it is always a must-read.

The blogging community is fast becoming a valuable resource for exchanging information and ideas that promote good research. The days spent at the crank of the microfilm reader are gradually being overtaken by days spent reaching out from the keyboard. I know the microfilm days will probably never disappear, but this is definitely more fun!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Main Street, USA

This is a postcard showing Anderson Street, looking North, Elwood, Indiana. I am not sure of the date, but it appears it was never sent, and someone, probably someone little, left his message on the back in the scratches. From the cars on the front, I would guess it was taken in the late 1930's or early 1940's. Very different from Elwood today.

It certainly seems perfect for this month's Festival of Postcards on the theme of "Main Street".

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Memorial Day, 2009

Major Charles M. DeHority U.S.M.C.
May 1, 1943
5th Artillery. 2d Battalion
Somewhere in the Southern Pacific
(back of photo)

To all those in uniform and their families, thank you for your service!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

The Good Earth?

It is a happy coincidence that the topic for the Carnival of Genealogy this month requests submissions about our ancestors' connection to the land. Today is the 88th anniversary of my maternal grandparents' wedding, and both were tied to the land, but in different ways.

I could write about my grandmother, Mary (Wychulis) Douglas. She always had a garden in her back yard...grew the best tomatoes I can remember. But I've written about Grandma Douglas before.

Today, I want to write about my grandfather, Adam Anthony Douglas. He was born in 1895 in Lithuania and immigrated to this country in 1914. He made his living by working for many, many years as a coal miner near Old Forge, Pennsylvania. I remember my grandmother talking about how he would come home from work completely black in coal dust, except for the white of his eyes. As an adult, I visited a Pennsylvania coal mine exhibit that allowed us to go down into a coal mine and demonstrated the harsh conditions of the miners. At one point, the guide turned out the overhead was a black that I have never experienced before or since. I can imagine that the little lights on their hats didn't allow for much visibility.

But the Grandpa I remember was not at all bitter about the experience. He moved to Washington D.C. after WWII and worked for the DC transit company repairing buses. I remember him coming home from work and sitting with me in his chair, reading the funny papers. I still have that chair.
Grandpa passed away in May of 1956, a casualty of the black lung disease that claimed many.

I'm proud to be a coal miner's (grand)daughter!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

An Irish Name

The 13th edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage and Culture features a roll call of Irish names, to which I proudly add the name DeHority.

When I first started doing research, I thought, since we spelled the name DeHority, that it was probably French. My dad, though, had always said we were "shanty Irish", suggesting humble beginnings and strength of character, and surely he was right.

The oldest research that I have on the family has our ancestor landing somewhere, somehow, in Maryland in the early 1700's. This was a George Dahorty, although his name was spelled many ways in records of the period, from Daugherty to Dagity. One of his descendants, Andrew Doherty(1774-1856), described his family's beginnings in Methodism in Pickerington, Ohio, 1812-1905 (H. E. Brill,Gayman Pub. Co., Canal Winchester, OH, 1905):

"About the year 1738, four young fellows were kidnapped on the coast of Ireland, brought to America and sold as indentured servants to pay their passage. One of these young men, George Doherty, was sold to a man who lived on the Delaware coast. He finally died there. What became of the other two is not known. George was the father of Andrew Doherty."

Well, there is no telling how much of this is true. It was probably their oral tradition at the time (and, I did notice that one of the four young fellows disappeared from the story completely). But, after researching probate and land records at the time, I believe Andrew's father was at least the third generation here when he was born about 1744.

Various branches of the family have surnames which include DeHority, Dehorty, Doherty, and Daugherty. In trying to be certain of my Irish claim, I have had my brother's DNA tested, and another DeHority from another branch has joined. Hopefully, more will follow. Our matches with others from the Doherty project at Family Tree DNA convince me I'm in the right place.

Count us as sons and daughters of the Clann ÓDochartaigh!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Saturday Night Fun -- Sunday Morning

Randy Seaver, over at Genea-Musings, has issued his weekly challenge: "What event or person inspired you to start your genealogy research?"

For me, it was the absence of information. As I mentioned earlier, my husband's mother gifted us with a family tree for his dad's family that went back a couple of hundred years. It made me think about what I didn't know about my family. My dad rarely got together with his brother's family, and I could count on three fingers the number of times I could remember seeing his parents before they passed. Just not a close knit family. I knew my mother's family, but not where they were from, other than they were Lithuanian (several Lithuanian dishes had made it to the table when Grandma was visiting). Even when I started research, Dad wasn't very forthcoming with information...always glad to hear what I had found, frequently saying "Oh, yeah, I do remember that", but also a bit bemused that anyone would be interested.

I started with census records and was hooked. Back then, they were only available until the 1910 census, and I took a trip to the National Archives to read the films. It was amazing to me that there was all this information about people who lived so long ago. After that, the hunt was on! Now, I'm squinting my way through online images of land warrants that date to 1715, from the comfort of my home!

So, thanks to my mother-in-law for what she knew, and my dad for what he wasn't telling! And thanks to Randy, for the inspiration!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Vive la France!

I haven't spent a lot of time researching my husband's family. I should. Someday my daughter or granddaughter may take an interest in all this, and I want to have the information for them. But I usually get distracted by the hunt for my elusive DeHoritys.

One thing about researching my husband's family is that it is so darn easy! Until his generation, every one of his ancestors, with one exception, are of French-Canadian stock. Information seems to just fall from the trees! Preserving family history seems to be coded in their DNA. My mother-in-law, God rest her, gave me a family tree that went back a couple of hundred years. I know, not sourced and hearsay and all, but when I started to verify the information, with very few exceptions, it was correct. Amazing!

Another thing that is wonderful about researching these hardy folks is that their wives kept their maiden names. No guesswork here! The Catholic Church records in the Drouin collection are a tremendous resource --"Benjamin Beaulieu, son of Francois Beaulieu and Marie-Louise Rapideaux (marries) Aglae Legault daughter of Dominique Legault and Marie Deguirre". Amazing!

The same sort of luck seems to happen on the Internet. I was browsing for new blogs the other day and the search engine calls up L'Association des Charron et Ducharme, a web site dedicated to the family history of my husband's grandmother's ancestors. The research and information available there is, well, amazing!

If all family history research were this easy, we would all need another hobby to fill the time.

I love the French!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

"Friendly Bloggers Award" - Thank you Gini

What a pleasure to wake up this morning and see this in my mailbox! Thank you, Gini, you've made my day!

This is a completely new experience for me, as most everything about blogging is, so I have set about to try to complete the responsibilities that come with this honor. Another blogging lesson!

I have figured out how to download the image, and post it to the site. I must now send this along to 7 members of the blogging community whose work I enjoy. This may be hard, as there are so many--

Cindy, at Everything's Relative. I know she has already been awarded, but I love the photos and family stories.

Julie, at Genblog. I always learn something, and thanks for the tip on the Irish Genealogical Research site.

Shades of the Departed, because I have inherited boxes of photos, and she has helped me try to date them with her examples....and I love the graphics on her page.

Randy, at Genea-Musings...another reason to look forward to Saturday. He has probably been nominated by many, so just add my name to the list!

Earline, at Ancestral Notes...thanks for reminding me about a genealogical will. I'd hate for all this work to go to waste!

Wibbling Jo...I LOVE the name, and I feel a kindred spirit also new to the blogging game.

Small-leaved Shamrock. I know my DeHoritys are Irish, and this site is a real celebration of Irish-American pride.

So, that's my list! Thanks to all of the above for their inspiration!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Cruising the Choptank River

I am completely amazed that it has been almost 3 weeks since I posted anything here. So much for that resolution about advancing my research every week. Ah, well....I did learn how to knit socks.

Anyway, when last I worked on the research, I was trying to find out where the early Dehorty lands were after attending a wonderful workshop in Maryland. One of the earliest land records that I have for this family is for a George Dehorty who had a survey in 1715 for 100 acres of land called Venture "beginning at a white oak standing in the woods on the North side of Ingrams Creek that (?) out of the south side of Great Choptanks River" (my translation of a Maryland land record, liber FF7, page 121). My thought was to try to figure out where this might be....not that I expect that old white oak to still be there. Googling "Ingram's Creek Choptank River" leads me to a wonderful site called the Choptank River Heritage Center. Here I find that I can take a virtual tour of the entire length of the river. Apparently, Ingram's Creek is now called the Chapel Branch, and there is a historic site called Melville's Warehouse which was an early county seat for Caroline County in the late 1700's. I know I've seen the name Melville somewhere, and checking my notes, I see that George Dehorty's daughter Herodias, mentioned in probate records in 1754 for her brother Absalom, was married to a Melvill. Could there be a connection? I'll certainly have to research this! It certainly looks like they were at least neighbors.
It's the side trips in genealogy that make research so much fun. They are also why it takes me so long to get anywhere....

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Land Record Research

This past weekend, I had the chance to find out a little more (actually, a LOT more) about researching land records in Maryland. Although I have a huge brick wall to climb with my James Madison DeHority, I know he came from Delaware, and I know the Delaware Dehortys started in Maryland in the early 1700's.

The Dorchester Historical Society hosted a workshop presented by John Lyons on his years of research into the Maryland land records. John has reviewed the land records for the lower counties of Maryland, "platted" these properties with software, pinpointed their location and created a wonderful database to organise this information. Having read some of these old patents myself, I can't imagine what a huge job this has been. My eyes start to blur after a couple of hours!

John demonstrated the wealth of information available in these records, some of which are available online. After lunch, John, along with his fellow researcher, John Polk, patiently allowed each of us the opportunity to see if they had information on particular families and see plats of the early land holdings. There were quite a few happy folks in the room that afternoon.

Unfortunately, their research is just now getting to Dorchester County, which is where my people were. I hope they continue to organize this early information, so that someday I'll have a better idea of where my family washed ashore.

If your are a Maryland researcher, attending John's workshop is an opportunity not to be missed! Both John Lyons and John Polk are active on the Lower DelMarVa Rootsweb list, and their posts are usually mini-workshops in and of themselves.

Many thanks to the Dorchester Historical Society for the opportunity! Now, to plan my next trip to the Maryland Archives!