Monday, December 29, 2014

One Step That Will Improve Your Census Research

Use the instructions to your advantage

They were my family all along but until I read the instructions the facts didn't support that conclusion.

Census For Dummies - Desperately Seeking Surnames

Ancestry Provides Source and Detailed Information for their Record Sets

It's up to us, the researcher, to take advantage of the valuable information that is available regarding the record sets we access. Time and time again, lecture after lecture, session after session we are told "familiarize yourself with the record sets you are working with." In order to correctly draw conclusions, you have to know what the records are saying and how they are saying it.

The longer I spend performing genealogy research the more I understand how valuable that advice is. Now, thanks to a more studious fellow researcher, I am a total believer. You know that saying "you buy em books and you buy em books but you can't make em read them"? That's me, I wasn't reading more than the covers.

Reading the Enumerators Instructions Can Eliminate Frustration

Enumerator instructions for the 1841 England Census 1841 England Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc, 2010.

Henry, Jane, James, Esther, Thomas and Sarah were together as a family unit in the 1841 England Census, right where I expected them to be in Mile End New Town. However, I couldn't get past the ages listed, some were wrong. This looked like my family but the parents were too young to be my family, or so I thought.

There was my Brimson family right where they were supposed to be

Thankfully, a fellow Brimson researcher did read the instructions and pointed out to me that the enumerators were instructed to round the ages down to the nearest 5 years. Why? What sense that makes I have no idea but it is what it is. No matter the reason, if I too round down to the nearest 5 years, this Brimson family becomes my Brimson family.

It is now time to go back and read the instructions, all of them.

Monday, December 15, 2014

In 2014 I Enjoyed The Shiny

December is a time for reflection

December is that time of year we reflect on our accomplishments during the year. What goals did we meet and what goals are we going to need to carry over into the new year? What did we do right and what can we do better next year? What did we enjoy this year and what do we not want to repeat next year? 

Me? I enjoyed the shiny.  

2014 I Enjoyed The Shiny

My 2014 Goals

I set one goal for myself in 2014 and I failed miserably. My plan was to get my digitized documents named properly and filed in the appropriate electronic folder in Dropbox. Needless to say, my digital documents are still patiently waiting for me. No harm done, the documents will be there when I get to them.

Instead of focusing on that goal, I chased various forms of shiny throughout the year. Not intentionally, but you know, shiny just happens sometimes. For example, I finally "got" Pinterest and I love it. I mean I knew what it was and have had boards but I didn't truly understand the power of Pinterest referrals for blog traffic.

That was shiny number one, getting my Pinterest boards in order. I'm still working through them, optimizing my titles and pin descriptions, and they are in much better shape today. Take a look at my boards here and you will see that Pinerest is a very beautiful shiny. 

My own domain name

Also, this year, I decided it was time to purchase my own domain name, which I did. This blog address is now No more Blogspot in the address. My blog is all grown up!

This little adventure pushed me to consider updating the look of my blog. You don't see anything different? Well, that's because another shiny took hold of me when I started researching staying with Blogger or moving to WordPress. This, in turn, led me to learning more about Google Analytics so I could determine what pages were getting consistent traffic on my site.

Through my research on blogging platforms and learning how to use Google Analytics, I found a couple of great G+ communities and several new podcasts that I enjoy listening to very much. Shiny can be very educational. 

Yes, this blog still looks the same. However, I have made the decision to stay with Blogger and have the complete vision of what I want the blog to look like and the message I want to convey. I am excited to get to work on that and plan to have the update completed by February. That is, of course, dependent upon no shiny grabbing my attention and distracting me. Shiny can be naughty at times.

Thank you to my blog followers

I appreciate those that read, share and comment on my posts. It is always nice to have feedback to know I'm not just typing to myself here. I am trying to post more consistently, but I still consider myself and "occasional" blogger.

I am focusing on getting my surnames out "there" to be found by other researchers and hopefully cousins. Hence the Surnames I Seek series of posts along with adding more details and interesting information on my surnames page here. Maybe my surnames will be someone else's shiny.

I hope each and everyone of you met your 2014 goals. If you didn't, I hope you enjoyed the shiny along the way.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Surname Resources Conlin

Surname Research Resources

Conlin Surname Research Roscommon County Ireland

When trying to understand the meaning, locations and depth of my family surnames there are several online resources I regularly utilize. However, from time to time it is necessary to branch out to other resources when a surname is not as common.

Surname resources can be filled with interesting and detailed information and data you will want to bookmark to reference again and again.

Visit my Surnames page to see all the Surnames I'm researching.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Monday, December 8, 2014

Surnames I Seek Conlin


Locations of the Conlin/Conlan/Conlen family I have documented:
  • Roscommon Ireland - 1828
  • Cuyahoga County, Ohio - 1856
  • Audrain County, Missouri - 1860
  • Linn County, Missouri - 1870

Martin Conlin Brookfield Missouri

Collateral Names:
  • Golden
  • McGowan

Conlin Surname Meaning:

Conlan, Conlon. Conlan, Conlon and Connellan are all synonyms (readers outside Ireland who might tend to stress the second syllable - ell - of Connellan may need to be told that in fact it is barely audible, Connellan and Conlan being pronounced almost alike). Several different Irish surnames have been so anglicized. The principal septs so called in English are O Conalláin of Roscommon and Galway and O Coinghiolláin of Co. Sligo: their present day representatives are chiefly found in north Connacht - in Counties Mayo and Sligo. The name is also fairly numerous in Co. Meath and the midlands, where however they are also called Quinlan - ÓCoindealbháin in Irish: they descend from an important sept seated near Trim which traces back to Laoghaire, King of Ireland in the time of St. Patrick, but was dispossessed at the Anglo-Irish invasion. In Munster ÓCoindealbháin, usually anglicized Quinlevan, is sometimes called Conlon. 1.

Read more here

Visit my Surnames page to see all the Surnames I'm researching.

1. Heraldry Database (, accessed 12/7/2014)

Monday, December 1, 2014

25 Days Of GeneaPins on Pinterest

25 Days of GeneaPins with Desperately Seeking Surnames

Not sure that Pinterest and genealogy are a good fit?

I wondered myself and I really didn't "get" Pinterest for a long time. Sure I knew there were lots of fantastic photos of food, homes, clothes and hair styles. But I wasn't quite sure how that translated to other subjects, such a genealogy and how it would help me move my research forward.

I've spent the last month listening to podcasts and watching hangouts that discuss Pinterest tips, tricks and strategy. Yes, it's serious, I'm becoming addicted to learning about Pinterest and I love it! There is a lot more strategy to Pinterest than meets the eye. Pinterest is now a powerful search tool. And, as genealogists, we love to search.

For these next 25 days, I challenge you to search for geneapins, on Pinterest. 

You may (probably will) be surprised at what you find! Remember, when you type a search phrase in the Pinterest search box you have multiple sets of results to choose from: All Pins, Your Pins, Boards and Pinners. In other words...there are a LOT of results, be sure to look at all of them.

Over the next 25 days I'm gong to be working on my genealogy boards on Pinterest.  I would love to hear of anything new you find during your searches.

25 Days Of Genapins

Pinterest is encouraging Pinners to become more social.

You can do more than just re-pin an item you find useful, you can like a pin, comment on a pin and also send a pin to a friend. With the addition of Smart Feed, Pinterest analysts are suggesting that pins with higher engagement are showing up in the feed more.

Yes, there is definitely strategy involved. Don't rely only on what you see in your feed for information and inspiration, search for it and pin it!

Visit my 25 Day of GeneaPins board on Pinterest too!

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Giving Thanks 2014

Thanksgiving 2014

Today, and every day, I am thankful for family, friends and good health. For those I have lost, I am thankful of the time I spent with them and the memories I can look back on with a smile. I am thankful for a home to live in and food to eat. I am thankful I have the ability help others in various ways throughout the year.

I am thankful my country gives me the right to say what I want through the medium of my choice. Through this blog I am able to document and share stories and photos of my ancestors. Through social media I am able to share those stories far and wide and reach cousins I never knew I had.

I am thankful that Google Analytics tells me people are visiting this blog and sharing my content. Thank you to those who subscribe to my blog or follow in a reader. Thank you to those that comment, share, +1 or RT a post and help me share my stories.

For all of these little things and all of the big things the man upstairs allows to happen, I am thankful.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Wordless Wednesday Sally At MU

Sally Conlin University of Missouri

This is my Mother-In-Law her Freshman Year at The University of Missouri. MIZ!

Is that dress not to die for? Love it!

Monday, November 24, 2014

The DNA Puzzle - Excitement Followed By Confusion

My updated AncestryDNA Ethnicity Estimate lists Ireland - 18%. What?

I uploaded my raw AncestryDNA data to FTDNA. Those results state 39% British Isles - this cluster is typical of the British Isles especially Ireland. What?

I ran all the combinations of Ad Mixtures on GedMatch which resulted in an average of 15% Irish in those results. What??

DNA Puzzle Desperately Seeking Surnames

Am I doing this wrong?

I've been actively researching my family history for 13 years. I have not found even the tiniest hint of Irish ancestry. What am I missing? Have I been chasing the wrong families? Is my Irish ancestry way, way, wayyyyy back there and I'm probably not going to find the connection?

Don't get me wrong, it would tickle me pink (or green) if I found my Irish ancestors, but so far it's just not happening.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Surnames Resources Brimson

Surname Research Resources

When trying to understand the meaning, locations and depth of my surnames there are several online resources I utilize. These sources are filled with interesting and detailed information and data you will want to bookmark to reference again and again.

Unfortunately, the only detailed resource I have found for the Brimson surname is through the Guild Of One-Name Studies. If anyone can direct me additional sources, I would be most appreciative.

Visit my Surnames page to see all the Surnames I'm researching.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Not So Wordless Wednesday Brimson

Jane Buell Mallard Brimson Arney
b: 1810 England
d: 1890 St. Lawrence County New York

Jane Buell Mallard Brimson Arney St. Lawrence Cty, NY
Photo Courtesy Anne Cady Find A Grave Contributor.
Used with permission

Tombstone of my 3rd Great Grandmother. This tombstone is the only reference to the name Buell. At this time I am considering that is her middle name, possibly her mother's maiden name. I don't have any other documents that list Buell and at this time I do not know who Jane's parents were.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Surnames I Seek Brimson

Brimson - direct line on my maternal side.

Brimson Surname - Desperately Seeking Surnames

Locations of my Brimson family I have documented

  • Brimson
    • London, England -1838
    • Mere, Wiltshire, England - 1850
    • Saint Lawrence County, New York - 1860
    • Lawrence, Douglas, Kansas - 1900
    • Fort Scott, Kansas - 1908

Collateral Names:

  • Mallard
  • Merys

Brimson Surname Meaning:

The Brimson name origin is unknown at this time. It is possible the name is of Norman origin from an area Northwest of Paris.

Visit my Surnames page to see all the Surnames I'm researching.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Surname Resources Baudermann

Baudermann Surname Klepsau Baden Germany

Surname Research Resources

When trying to understand the meaning, locations and depth of my surnames there are several online resources I utilize. These sources are filled with interesting and detailed information and data you will want to bookmark to reference again and again.

Visit my Surnames page to see all the Surnames I'm researching.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Not So Wordless Wednesday Baudermann

This yearbook page is one of the most fascinating pieces of information I have found relating to my grandfather Joseph A.G. Baudermann.

"He is a socialist, an anarchist, reformer, free-thinker and woman hater."

I would love to know who the woman was that broke his heart. This is before my grandmother was in his life.

Joseph A.G. Baudermann NYU Yearbook 1906
NYU Yearbook, The Violet, 1906, 1.

Joseph was an avid runner, not only for the Irish-American Athletic Club (his father was born in Germany), but on the New York University Track Team as well.

Joseph A.G. Baudermann NYU Track Team 1905
NYU Track Team 1905, 2.

1. New York University , The Violet 1906 Yearbook, New York University Archives, Elmer Holmes Bobst Library.
2. 1905 NYU Men's Track Team, New York University Archives, Elmer Holmes Bobst Library.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

My Veteran Ancestors on Veteran's Day 2014

Honoring my Veteran ancestors. 

The men noted on the graphic are those I have confirmed military service. I have many more ancestors that I have military draft documents, however, I have not found proof of actual service.

I hope to fill out this chart with many more names in the future.

Veteran Ancestors Veteran's Day 2014

I have a special Veteran's Day thank you for my Dad and his two brothers. All three served in World War II.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Surnames I Seek Baudermann

Baudermann - direct line on my paternal side.

Locations of my Baudermann family I have documented

  • Kelpsau, Krautheim, Baden-Wurtemburg, Germany - 1788
  • Essex County, NJ - 1852
  • New York, NY - 1905
  • Middlesex, NJ - 1920
  • Jackson County, MO - 1941
  • Somerset, NJ 1962
Wendelin Baudermann Klepsau Germany
This newspaper entry was my key to Klepsau. 1.

Collateral Names:

  • Evingham/Everingham
  • Hemmer
  • Lucking
  • Wolpert

Baudermann Surname Meaning:

Unknown at this time.

Visit my Surnames page to see all the Surnames I Seek.

Pin this post for later using this image!

Surnames I Seek Baudermann of Klepsau Baden Germany

Friday, November 7, 2014

Allen / Allan Surname Resources

Allen Allan Surname

Frequently referenced resources

When trying to understand the meaning, locations and depth of my surnames there are several online resources I utilize. These sources are filled with interesting and detailed information and data you will want to bookmark to reference again and again.

From the Guild Of One Name Studies:

"The Allan surname (spelled with an 'a') is associated primarily with the Scottish Clanranald of the McDonals Clan (i.e. Cland Donald). The Allen surname (spelled with an 'e') is considered an English surname."1

Visit my Surnames page to see all the surnames I seek.

1. Guild of One-Name Studies (, accessed 11/2/2014.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Not So Wordless Wednesday Allen

My grandfather Charles Scott Allen and his uncle Francis Simpson Allen.

Photo taken around 1920 possibly in Winchester Kentucky. They have very similar facial features and I love my Grandpa's hat! These two obviously had a great relationship.

Charles Scott Allen - Francis Simpson Allen

Visit my Surnames page to see all the Surnames I seek.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Surnames I Seek Allen / Allan - Migration Route

Allen / Allan - Direct ancestral line on my maternal side.


Locations of my Allen / Allan family I have documented


  • Virginia - 1793
  • Clark County, Kentucky - 1844
  • Sumner, Tennessee - 1850
  • Winchester, Kentucky - 1876
  • Jefferson County, Kentucky -1900 
  • Jackson County, Missouri - 1926 
  • Summit County, Ohio - 1938  

Allen Family Migration Route - Desperately Seeking Surnames
Map created using Google Earth

 Collateral Names:

  • Ecton
  • Hart
  • Haggard
  • Merys
  • Schooler
  • Scott
  • Watts

Allan Surname Meaning:

Scottish and northern English: variant spelling of Allen. This is the more common spelling of the name in Scotland and northern England; in Scotland it is often found as an English form of the Gaelic name McAllen (see McAllan). 1.

Visit my Surnames page to see all the Surnames I'm researching.

1. Source: Dictionary of American Family Names ©2013, Oxford University Press, Last Name Meaning and Origins ( accessed September 10, 2014)

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Looking At My Ancestor William Everingham In A New Way

I have been struggling to create a picture of William M. Everingham, who I believe to be my great grandfather. I've documented, in the mind map below, what I know about William and the documents I have found which reference him. My hope was to look at what I already have differently to see where I need to develop a research plan to follow.

What I know about William

In reviewing what I know, I identified several questions and potential starting points. Why is he not indexed with his family in any census? Why can I not find him indexed anywhere? Is it possible he was called to war and killed?

William M. Everingham

I'm facing a wall, it's not built of brick, but it's a solid wall I need to get through. To date, following his sister, Nancy, has not led me anywhere, however, I could apply more effort there. Tracking down William's parents and/or grandparents further is also a avenue I need to follow.

Next steps in my research

Going through this exercise to visualize what I know in its entirety has been very helpful to me. I have pinpointed a couple of research areas I can focus on. I hope to be posting soon that I've been able to find additional information about William.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

National Grandparent's Day 2014 - Allen - Merys

Charles and Gladys Allen most likely taken in the Kansas City Area

Charles Scott Allen   b: 1900 Winchester, Clark, Kentucky
                              d: 1960 Kansas City, Jackson, Missouri
                              m: 1923 Kansas City, Jackson, Missouri

Gladys Irene Merys  b: 1903 Osowatomie, Miami, Kansas
                              d: 1995 Harrisonville, Cass, Missouri

Charles worked for the railroad his entire life. He died of a heart attack while on the job at Union Station in Kansas City, Missouri. Gladys was a homemaker and raised nine children.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Hosting Virtual Meetings via Google+ HOAs

DearMYRTLE and Cousin Russ have published the first in a series of G+ HOAs on the topic of why you should consider hosting a virtual meeting. Their format of choice is Google+ Hangouts On Air (HOAs).

Why? First of all, it's free! You can't do better than free, can you? Secondly, it doesn't have to be a formal "meeting" of a society or group. If you have a client that is across the country, what better way to present your report than in person. With Hangouts, you can.

How you use the application is left to your imagination and endless really.

I recommend getting up to speed with all that G+ and Hangouts have to offer.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

The Great Genealogy Conference Expedition

Can we have too many genealogy conferences?

Yes, I'm really asking that question. Never thought I would but have you looked at an event calendar lately? Busy, busy, busy and that's just the face-to-face events, I'm not taking into considering the online happenings.

For example, this weekend, August 1-2, 2014 there are three conferences, in the Midwest, that I would love to attend. Alas, I have to pick one.

Here are my choices:

Of course I picked door number three and am going to Columbia (MIZ!). As the three conferences I listed are annual conferences, the odds of my attendance at the other two are slim, they keep falling on the same weekend. Needless to say, the Midwest has great options for genealogy conference goers, choosing is the hard part. And having to make these "difficult" decisions lead me to thinking about some things. 

Alternate conference years?

What if conferences alternated years? Hosting a conference is hard, hard work. Wouldn't it be nice to take a break and just have to go through that every other year? Would a conference that is held every other year appear more desirable and actually improve attendance?

Could being chosen as a speaker be a more coveted role? It's possible that speakers could extend their exposure by presenting at more conferences in a more varied geographical area as there would be less overlap in scheduling.

The Great Expedition

What if conferences coordinated their topics and built on each other? The story starts on the east coast and to get "the rest of the story" you need to follow the migration pattern to next conference west, The Great Genealogy Conference Expedition! Could this happen at a state level? The State Society kicks off the In State Expedition and the tour moves around the state to county and local societies that hold conferences? Of course, this would mean collaboration to the 9th degree.

I don't know the answer. I do know that conference planning and hosting is a tough gig (and coordinating an expedition could be a nightmare) but I thought it was worth a shot to throw some alternate ideas out there. There is no rule that says we have to keep doing things the same way over and over, year after year.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Show Me More Reasons To Attend MoSGA's Annual Conference in 2017

Missouri State Capitol

Just 30 miles south of the Stoney Creek Inn in Columbia Missouri, site of the Missouri State Genealogical Association's Annual Conference is Jefferson City, the State Capitol of Missouri.

Missouri State Capitol Building Jefferson City Missouri
The Capitol grounds sit on a bluff above the Missouri River, providing a panoramic view of the surrounding area. The gardens around the Governor's Mansion are beautiful as well. The Missouri State Museum is here as is the Jefferson Landing State Historic Site.

Lewis & Clark Trailhead Park Jefferson City Missouri

Missouri State Archives

Down the hill from the Capitol is the Missouri State Archives for your researching pleasure! Many of you are familiar with and have used the amazing online resources provided by the Archives via the Missouri Secretary of State's office called the Missouri Digital Heritage. This collection is a treasure trove for Missouri researchers.

Missouri State Genealogical Association

If you've not been able to find the records you need from the online collections, you will want to visit the Archives in person. You may find that missing documentation that will help you finish your Missouri First Families application, which is sponsored by the Missouri State Genealogical Association.

I hope I've provided you with additional encouragement to attend MoSGA's Annual Conference and make a research trip of this event. I hope to see you there!

Missouri State Capitol _Governor's Mansion_Jefferson Landing