Thursday, November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving

Today is Thanksgiving Day in the US.  Families and friends gather to enjoy a feast and to give thanks for all that we have.  I have so very much to be thankful for.

I am most thankful that my great grandparents immigrated to the US.  They left everything that was familiar with the hope of a better life in a new country.  Because of the risks they took, I’ve had the privilege to live in freedom my entire life.

How lucky I am!!

Monday, November 24, 2014

A Rose is a Rose is a Rose…………….???

But I’m beginning to wonder if all the Roses I’ve found are of the same family.  I’m up to my neck in Roses and trying to make sense of it all.

The Roses got from Maine, to New York state, to Wisconsin.  But how? Why?  Based on census and land records, I have some idea of when they moved west and then west again. 

I am truly grateful for online resources such as the Atlas of Historical CountyBoundaries at Chicago’s Newberry library. They have an interactive map that shows how county boundaries changed over time. New counties were formed from old ones; and larger counties swallowed up smaller ones. 

I’m also grateful for historians who so carefully logged people and events and published their findings, especially before states began official recordings of vital statistics.

No doubt it will all come together eventually, but I’m in overload just now.

Heading back to the library.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

A Fork in the Road: Bohemia or Maine?

I’ve opted for Maine for now – at least until I hit the brick wall that’s bound to be there.

My focus had been on Poland for my ancestors and on Bohemia for my children’s paternal ancestors.  Bohemia is a tough nut to crack if you have no idea where to look for ancestral villages.  I’d done some research on their paternal grandmother’s ancestors in Maine (as noted in my blog post of Jan 13, 2013), but put that aside to concentrate on the more difficult Bohemia connection. I figured the Maine part would be easier so I’d save that as a reward for my first Bohemia success.  It’s a long wait.  Who knows if I’ll ever get anywhere there.

Then I mentioned to my son that one of his ancestors from Maine had fought in the Revolutionary War.  That really sparked his interest which, in turn, has motivated me to give the Bohemia quest a rest for a while and dig into the Maine folks.

Like most, the typical response I get from family when I talk about genealogy is: “That’s nice”.  So  his interest is a BIG deal.

I’m fortunate that the Indian River County Library has an outstanding genealogy department.  Because of our seasonal snowbird population, we seem to have much more interest in the northeastern part of the US than in Florida.  (Like California, most folks here are from someplace else. It’s always surprising to find a native Floridian who is older than 30.)  The collection about Maine is huge including vital records for every county and many cities.  And I’m looking at online resources I hadn’t used before now.

It’s always fun to start off on a new tangent. Finding new information is great fun. Even finding earlier mistakes is fun because it means progress.  And there are new problems to solve.  In my earlier post I asked: Just how many Solomon Rose’s can there be?  At least four in Maine.

It turns out that Solomon Jr. is really the third.  The fourth Solomon broke the chain but started a new one when his son John set in motion a string of Johns who begat more Johns.  Got to try to keep them straight.  Who’s on first?

In the meantime, I’m rereading microfilms from Polish churches in order to make digital copies that I can make somewhat readable so that I can work at making connections.  Keeps me off the street.