Thursday, March 31, 2011

Fearless Females - Profile of Mary Ann Matson

March 31 — Pick one female ancestor and write a mini-profile (500 words or less).

Mary Matson in 1919
My great-great-grandmother Mary Ann Matson was born in Clinton County, Ohio on Sept. 11, 1851. She was the youngest of the 13 children of Asa Matson and Dorothy “Dolly” Clevenger. Mary's parents were born in Virginia and migrated to Clinton County, Ohio in the early 1800's. Four of Mary's brothers served in the Civil War and two died in the war while another was wounded.

On December 10, 1868, Mary was married to Timothy Creeden in Clinton County. She was 17 and Timothy was 22. Timothy was an Irish immigrant, born in 1846 in County Cork.

In the 1870 census, Timothy and Mary “Credon” have a son named Patrick born in November, 1869. Timothy is listed as a farmer and they are living in the Richland Township next door to or with Mary's brother John Matson. Tragedy struck when Patrick died at the age of three in 1872. In the 1880 census, they are still in the Richland township and they have children James, Lizzie (Mary Elizabeth), Dennis, and Daniel.

In January 1884, Mary and her family moved to Mercer County, Ohio where they bought 40 acres of land in the Hopewell township. (Details on Mercer Land Purchase) Tragedy struck again when their son James died in 1889 from typhoid fever. He was only 17 years old and is buried in Old Buck cemetery in Hopewell Township. John Matson is buried next to James.

Mary at her boarding house
Mary and Timothy's son Edward was born in April 1884. They had 4 more children in Mercer County: Ida Belle, Julia, Charles, and Joshua. Timothy died in December 1899 and left the land to Mary. On September 29, 1901 Mary granted a mortgage to Bessie Copeland for part of the land. Mary had already moved the family to a boarding house in town in Celina, Ohio. In the 1900 census, Mary is living with the six youngest children at the boarding house. Daniel is working for the railroad and Edward is a clerk. Charles and Julia are attending school while Ida Belle and Joshua are still at home. In 1910, Mary is listed as the Proprietor of a Boarding House and three of the children have jobs while living at the house with three boarders. More deaths struck the family as her son Charles lost his son Carl in 1912 and her son Daniel lost both of his children in 1915 and 1916. In 1920, only Joshua is still at home, although Ida Belle and her husband are possibly living at the house. Mary's occupation is listed as "None", so perhaps she was able to retire by then.

Mary died in 1925 at the age of 74 in Mercer County, Ohio. (Mary's Obituary) She had been a devout member of the Immaculate Conception Church while living in Mercer County and she was buried in the Catholic cemetery there. Several people from Clinton County attended her funeral, including some of her Matson family. She lived through a lot including the Civil War, the deaths of two children and three grandchildren, and her husband's early death, but was able to make a living and raise the younger children by herself.

Once again, in honor of  National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Fearless Females - Words of Wisdom

March 30 — Did you receive any advice or words of wisdom from your mother or another female ancestor?

I was going through some old letters recently and ran across a card from my mother that said "Keep Smiling!". I don't even remember what the crisis of the day was, but I feel very fortunate that she is always there for encouragement when things get tough and for advice on all kinds of practical matters.

Once again, in honor of  National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month..

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Fearless Females - Trading Card

March 29 — Create a free Footnote Page or a Genealogy Trading Card at Big Huge Labs for a female ancestor. Some of you may have created your own card back in September 2009 following Sheri Fenley’s post over at The Educated Genealogist. This time, the card is for your female ancestor. Tell us about who you've selected and why and then post a link to what you've created.

Jimbob Chilcutt posted a template for Ancestor Cards on his MyFamily Chilcutt site, so I decided to choose a Chilcutt ancestor to try out the template.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Fearless Females - Friends

March 28 — Do you remember your mother’s best friend? Your grandmother’s? How and where did they meet? How long were they friends? What activities did they share?

My mother and her best friend Laura met when we moved into our neighborhood in Florida. I was four years old and Laura's daughter was about the same age as me. They came over to introduce themselves shortly after we moved there and we all hit it off. My mother and Laura shared a lot of activities with the kids, including Girl Scouts, dance recitals, shopping trips and camping trips in the Keys. Laura was always at the center of the activities and used to take us horseback riding and to the beach. We used to have a great Halloween celebration in the neighborhood and Laura's wicked witch with her big boiling pot was legendary! Laura passed away a few years ago and I know my mother still misses her.

Once again, in honor of  National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month..

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Eugene Willis - Sunday's Obituary

I had tried finding a date of death or obituary for my great-grandfather Eugene Willis with no luck. Finally, I located this note from October 8, 1951 in the Chester (Pennsylvania) Times that said he had been admitted to the hospital with abrasions of the elbow and knee. I also located several memorial notes in his memory signed from his children each year on October 8. However, I still couldn't locate an obituary. So, did he die from the injuries described here?

I went page by page in the October 1951 editions of the Chester Times to see if I could find anything and finally found the obituary on October 12 which said he died on October 8, but didn't give a reason. My mother was able to fill in some details and said that he had a bad fall down the stairs of the duplex that he lived in and also injured his head. He didn't recover from the head injury.

From Chester Times, October 12, 1951:

Eugene S. Willis
Funeral Held Thursday
  Rev. H. N. Reeves jr.; pastor of the Linwood Methodist Church, conducted funeral services Thursday for Eugene S. Willis, of 1 Naaman's Creek road, Ogden, who died Monday. Mr. Willis was buried in Hiram Memorial Gardens.
  Pallbearers for Mr. Willis were his four sons-in-law, Royce Councill, of Ogden; Jacob Rosenberger, of Soudertown; Paul Dutt, of West Chester, and Frank Bass, of Dover, Del. and two nephews, Edward Willis jr. of Boothwyn, and Russell Rosenberger, of Souderton.
  He is survived by four daughters, Mrs. Frank Bass, Dover, Del.; Mrs. Royce Councill, Ogden; Mrs. Jacob Rosenberger, Souderton; Mrs. Paul Dutt, West Chester; three sons, Edward and James Willis, Chester, and William Willis, Ogden; 11 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

This is one of the memorial notices that was published on October 8, starting in 1952.

This was the final memorial notice that I found, published on October 8, 1963 which was very sad.

The four daughters were Edna Councill, Pauline Rosenberger, Oleda Bass, and Edith Dutt. Eugene was also survived by his ex-wife Pearl who had remarried. I had hoped the obituary might solve some mysteries like what his middle initial stood for, his exact date of birth, and confirmation of who his parents were, but the date of death should help in tracking down some other records. Also, a bit of a mystery, I could find no record of Hiram Memorial Gardens, but there is now an Edgewood cemetery in the location where his ex-wife Pearl is buried. Her obituary also said Hiram Memorial Gardens, so it must have changed names at some point.

Sweets - 52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History - Week #13

Week 13. Sweets. What was your favorite childhood candy or dessert? Have your tastes changed since then? What satisfies your sweet tooth today?

My favorite sweets have always involved chocolate and nothing was more decadent than a slice of chocolate layer cake from Ronnie's Restaurant in Orlando, FL. Ronnie's was a local Jewish delicatessen/diner style of restaurant, but it was the bakery attached to it that we loved when I was growing up. We all had our favorites-- my Mom and Aunt Doris loved the chocolate eclairs, my sister loved the big gingerbread man cookies, but for me, it was the chocolate layer cake. This was no ordinary piece of cake. It was several inches high with layer after layer of of dark chocolate cake with rich fudgy icing and a dollop of whipped cream on top.

Sadly, when the old Colonial Mall in Orlando was torn down, the owner of Ronnie's declined a spot in the new shopping center and retired. He also refused to sell the name to anyone, so that was the end of Ronnie's. It was a bit of a strange place. If you've seen the Soup Nazi episode of Seinfeld, he had nothing on Ronnie's. When you walked in, there were velvet rope separators for the lines like you'd see at the movies. One line was for parties of 1-2 and another for 3 or more. People that got in the wrong line were scolded and sent to the back of the line. They had a strict no substitution rule and there was a charge for sharing an order. Sweet breakfast rolls were served until 11am sharp and snatched off the tables after that. If you were in line and didn't get a table until after 11, no rolls for you! Still, nobody cared about the rules since the food was great and it was one of the local favorites in Orlando. Oh, for one more piece of that chocolate layer cake!

I'm still a chocoholic today and one of my favorites now is a good piece of chocolate from Angell & Phelps Chocolate Factory in Daytona Beach, FL. They've made homemade candies for over 50 years and are still going strong with their local store and an online business.

Fearless Females - Immigration

March 27 — Do you know the immigration story of one or more female ancestors? Do you have any passenger lists, passports, or other documentation? Interesting family stories?

The United Kingdom
I have not had much success finding definite passenger lists or immigration documentation for any of my ancestors.

In 1845, my Pulskamp ancestors Herman Heinrich Pulskamp and his wife Maria Katherine Steinke Pulskamp came to Franklin County, IN with their children, but I don't have any documentation on what ship they came over on.

My Niehaus ancestors Carl Theodor Heinrich Niehaus and Catharina Panshar Niehaus came over in 1865 according to Wildeshausen emigrants, but I've been unable to find a passenger list for them.

My mother's ancestors were all in the US by the 1700's, but I don't have the lines traced back far enough to know who the immigrant ancestors were.

I have a possible passenger list for my gg-grandfather Timothy Creeden on the United Kingdom in 1866. If that is the correct list, it appears that he came alone. He married in Ohio in 1868 and his wife's family also goes back into the US to at least the 1700's.

Some interesting info on the United Kingdom ship:

The UNITED KINGDOM was a 1,305 gross ton ship, length 245ft x beam 32.1ft, clipper stem, one funnel, three masts(ship rigged for sail), iron construction, single screw and a speed of 10 knots. There was accommodation for 96-saloon cabin, 182-forward cabin and 244-steerage class passengers. Built by Robert Steele & Co, Greenock, she was launched for the Anchor Line on 13th Jun.1857. She started her maiden voyage on 4th Aug.1857 when she left Kingstown (Dun Laoghaire, Ireland) for Madras with troops of Irish regiments for the Indian Mutiny. Her first Glasgow - Quebec - Montreal voyage started 15th Apr.1859 and on 30th Nov.1859 she started the first of her winter sailings between Glasgow and New York. From Aug.1865 she sailed to New York only, and on 19th Apr.1869 left New York for Glasgow and disappeared with the loss of 80 lives. [North Atlantic Seaway by N.R.P.Bonsor, vol.1,p.451] [Merchant Fleets by Duncan Haws, vol.9, Anchor Line]

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Fearless Females - Education

March 26 — What education did your mother receive? Your grandmothers? Great-grandmothers? Note any advanced degrees or special achievements.

My mother attended the teaching college of West Chester College in Pennsylvania for a year. She decided to pursue a business degree instead and transferred to Goldey College in Wilmington, Delaware where she received an Associate degree in Business. My father's mother graduated from high school, but I don't know any details on my other female ancestors.

Once again, in honor of  National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month..

Friday, March 25, 2011

Fearless Females - Mother and Child Relationships

March 25 — Tell how a female ancestor interacted with her children. Was she loving or supportive? A disciplinarian? A bit of both?

This will be a short post today since I don't have much information on this. On my mother's side, I know that her mother was loving and her father was more of the disciplinarian. He was outnumbered with four daughters and no sons! My father was raised by his grandparents and always spoke fondly of them, but beyond that I don't know much about the relationships between my female ancestors and their children.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Fearless Females - Physical Resemblance

March 24 — Do you share any physical resemblance or personality trait with one of your female ancestors? Who? What is it?

I've always been told I take after my father's side of the family with respect to looks and sense of humor, so I guess part of the credit (or blame!) for that would go to his mother and female ancestors. It is interesting to look at the family resemblances through the years. My Mom compared baby pictures of my father, my sister, me, and my nephew and they were hard to tell apart. I also exchanged some childhood pictures with a second cousin on my father's side and we were shocked at how much we looked alike as children.

Once again, in honor of  National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month..

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Fearless Females - Timeline for Anna Niehaus Creeden

March 23 — Create a timeline for a female ancestor using your favorite software program or an online timeline generator such as OurTimelines. Post an image of it or link.

Custom Timeline For Anna Niehaus Creeden 1888 to 1968

1837-1901 : Reign of Queen Victoria (Hanover) from before birth until age 13

1881-1896 : 5th Cholera pandemic from before birth until age 8

1885-1888 : Grover Cleveland president of US from before birth until age 0

1888 : 70...77 rpm musical records at age 0

1888 : Great Blizzard of 1888 - 400 deaths at age 0

1889 : North Dakota enters the union - 39th at age 1

1889 : South Dakota enters the union - 40th at age 1

1889 : Montana enters the union - 41st at age 1

1889 : Washington enters the union - 42nd at age 1

1889-1892 : Benjamin Harrison president of US from age 1 to 4

1889 : Holerith invents the punch card at age 1

1890 : Wyoming enters the union - 44th at age 2

1890 : Idaho enters the union - 43rd at age 2

1890 : Battle of Wounded Knee at age 2

1890 : Oklahoma organized as a territory at age 2

1891 : Mormon prophesy of 'coming of lord' by 1891 unfulfilled at age 3

1893 : Movies at age 5

1893 : Nikola Tesla invents Radio (not Marconi!) at age 5

1893 : New Zealand is 1st to grant women right to vote at age 5

1893-1896 : Grover Cleveland president of US from age 5 to 8

1893-1897 : US Financial panic, depression from age 5 to 9

1894-1895 : Chinese-Japanese war (1) from age 6 to 7

1894 : Plague in Hong Kong and China - 1 million die at age 6

1896 : Utah enters the union - 45th at age 8

1896 : Supreme court approves separate but equal segregation at age 8

1897-1901 : William McKinley president of US from age 9 to 13

1898 : Spanish American 1-year war at age 10

1899-1923 : 6th Cholera pandemic from age 11 to 35

1899-1902 : Boer war from age 11 to 14

1900 : Galveston Hurricane - 8,000 killed at age 12

1900 : Boxer rebellion in China at age 12

1900 : Hawaii organized as a territory at age 12

1901 : Commonwealth of Australia founded at age 13

1901-1910 : Reign of King Edward VII (Saxe-Coburg) from age 13 to 22

1901 : Oil discovered in Texas in significant amounts at age 13

1901 : First British submarine launched at age 13

1901-1908 : Theodore Roosevelt president of US from age 13 to 20

1901 : US President William McKinley assassinated at age 13

1901 : Max Planck formulates the Laws of Radiation at age 13

1901 : Third law of thermodynamics postulated (W. H. Nernst) at age 13

1903 : Nikola Tesla patents logic gates at age 15

1903 : Airplane at age 15

1904 : Radar at age 16

1904-1905 : Russian-Japanese war from age 16 to 17

1907-1958 : Marriage to Charles Creeden (1886-1958) from age 19 to 70

1907 : Plastic at age 19

1907 : Oklahoma enters the union - 46th at age 19

1908 : First child Carl Edward Creeden born at age 20

1908 : Tunguska atmospheric object explosion at age 20

1909 : North pole reached by Matthew Henson of Robert Peary's exp. at age 21

1909 : Union of South Africa formed at age 21

1909-1912 : William Howard Taft president of US from age 21 to 24

1910 : Japan annexes Korea at age 22

1910 : Halley's Comet at age 22

1910-1936 : Reign of King George V (Windsor) from age 22 to 48

1911 : Robert F. Creeden born at age 23

1911 : South pole reached by Roald Amundsen at age 23

1912 : Carl Edward Creeden dies at age 24

1912 : Arizona enters the union - 48th at age 24

1912 : Titanic sinks at age 24

1912 : New Mexico enters the union - 47th at age 24

1912 : Alaska organized as a territory at age 24

1913-1920 : Woodrow Wilson president of US from age 25 to 32

1914 : Mary Mae Creeden born at age 26

1914 : The Bra at age 26

1914-1919 : World War I from age 26 to 31

1915 : Einstein's Theory of Relativity at age 27

1916 : Sonar at age 28

1916 : Irish Easter Rebellion at age 28

1917 : Russian revolution at age 29

1917 : US enters WWI at age 29

1918-1933 : Prohibition from age 30 to 45

1918-1920 : Flu epidemic - 25 million plus die from age 30 to 32

1919 : League of Nations instantiated at age 31

1919 : Shortwave Radio at age 31

1920-1929 : Roaring 20's from age 32 to 41

1920 : Women receive right to vote in USA at age 32

1920 : Palestine established at age 32

1921-1924 : Warren G Harding president of US from age 33 to 36

1922 : Insulin made available to diabetics at age 34

1925 : Scopes trial on Evolutionary Theory at age 37

1925-1928 : Calvin Coolidge president of US from age 37 to 40

1926 : Sound in Movies at age 38

1927 : Holland Tunnel opens (New York City) at age 39

1927 : 1st transAtlantic solo flight - Lindbergh at age 39

1928 : Television at age 40

1928 : Penicillin discovered by Sir Alexander Fleming at age 40

1928 : Video Recordings at age 40

1928 : Geiger Counter at age 40

1929-1939 : Great Depression from age 41 to 51

1929-1932 : Herbert Hoover president of US from age 41 to 44

1929 : Stock Market Crash at age 41

1930 : Pluto Discovered at age 42

1931-1933 : Chinese-Japanese war (2) from age 43 to 45

1933 : Radio Astronomy at age 45

1933 : Armstrong invents FM modulation at age 45

1933 : Soviet communist party purge at age 45

1933-1945 : Franklin D Roosevelt president of US from age 45 to 57

1934 : Longshoreman's strike - 35,000 on strike for 83 days at age 46

1935 : Dustbowl at age 47

1935-1936 : Abyssinian war from age 47 to 48

1936 : Reign of King Edward VIII (Windsor) at age 48

1936 : Helicopter at age 48

1936 : Spanish Civil War at age 48

1936-1952 : Reign of King George VI (Windsor) from age 48 to 64

1937 : Nylon (by DuPont) at age 49

1937-1945 : Chinese-Japanese war (3) from age 49 to 57

1938 : Germany annexes Austria at age 50

1939 : Aircraft Jet Engine invented (by Ohain) at age 51

1939 : Digital Computer at age 51

1939-1945 : World War II from age 51 to 57

1940 : 1st black general in US army at age 52

1940 : Color Television at age 52

1941-1945 : Manhattan Project from age 53 to 57

1942 : Nuclear Reactor at age 54

1942 : Magnetic Recording Tape at age 54

1945 : Hypertext at age 57

1945 : US drops the bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki at age 57

1945-1952 : Harry S Truman president of US from age 57 to 64

1945 : United Nations formed at age 57

1946 : The Bikini at age 58

1946-1989 : The Cold War from age 58 until after timeline

1947 : India and Pakistan emerge from ex-British India at age 59

1947 : UN partitions Palestine to Jewish and Arab sections at age 59

1947 : Transistor at age 59

1948 : 33 1/3 rpm musical recordings at age 60

1948 : Arabs attack Israel on the day it is inaugurated at age 60

1948 : NATO formed at age 60

1948 : Israel inaugurated as state at age 60

1949 : 45 rpm musical recordings at age 61

1949 : Soviets detonate first nuclear bomb at age 61

1949 : Apartheid policy in South Africa at age 61

1950 : World pop. est. at 2.4 billion at age 62

1950-1954 : McCarthyism from age 62 to 66

1950 : Bunche 1st black to win Nobel Peace Prize at age 62

1950-1953 : Korean War from age 62 to 65

1951 : Electricity from Atomic Power at age 63

1952 : 1st Thermonuclear Device Detonated at age 64

1952-2050 : Reign of Queen Elizabeth II (Windsor) from age 64 until after timeline

1953-1960 : Dwight D Eisenhower president of US from age 65 to 72

1954 : Racial segregation in schools ruled unconstitutional at age 66

1955 : Fiber Optics (by Kapany) at age 67

1955 : Invention of Velcro at age 67

1955 : Warsaw pact formed at age 67

1955 : Introduction of Salk Polio Vaccine at age 67

1956 : Ocean liner Andrea Doria collides with the Stockholm, sinks at age 68

1957 : Sputnik Launched - 1st (artificial) satellite at age 69

1958 : Charles Creeden dies at age 70

1958 : Integrated Circuit at age 70

1958 : Stereo LP recordings come into usage at age 70

1958 : US space agency (NASA) established at age 70

1958 : FM Stereo Broadcasts at age 70

1959 : Hawaii enters the union - 50th at age 71

1959 : Alaska enters the union - 49th at age 71

1959 : 1st nuclear powered merchant vessel, Savannah at age 71

1960 : World subsurface circumnavigation by US sub Triton at age 72

1960 : Pantyhose at age 72

1960 : 1st weather satellite (Tiros I) at age 72

1960 : Laser at age 72

1961-1970 : 7th Cholera pandemic from age 73 until after timeline

1961 : First human in space - Yuri Gagarin at age 73

1961-1963 : John F Kennedy president of US from age 73 to 75

1961 : 1st US manned spaceflight - Alan Shephard at age 73

1962 : Cuban missile crisis at age 74

1962-1965 : Vatican II from age 74 to 77

1963-1968 : Lyndon B Johnson president of US from age 75 to 80

1963 : Pres. Kennedy Assassinated at age 75

1963 : Compact Cassette Recordings at age 75

1963 : 1st artificial heart at age 75

1964-1975 : Vietnam War from age 76 until after timeline

1964 : US civil rights bill at age 76

1965 : Blacks riot in Watts neighborhood, Los Angeles at age 77

1965 : 1st spacewalks (US, USSR) at age 77

1966 : 8-track tape players at age 78

1966 : 1st soft landings on moon (US, USSR) at age 78

1967-1970 : Nigerian civil war from age 79 until after timeline

1967 : Marshall 1st black supreme court justice at age 79

1967 : Six day war: Israel-Arabs at age 79

1967 : Physicist John Wheeler coins the term Black Hole at age 79

1967 : 1st human heart transplant at age 79

1968 : Robert Kennedy assassinated at age 80

1968 : Martin Luther King assassinated at age 80

I used OurTimelines to generate the original timeline for this. While it's an interesting tool, the timeline produced was too unwieldy to include in a post as html and blogger was having problems saving it. It was also way too big to create a graphic from a single screenshot. I wound up saving the printable version as text and then ran it through a couple of the tools at to remove extra characters. I'm sure there's an easier way to do this, so I'm curious to see what others came up with!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Fearless Females - Movie

March 22 — If a famous director wanted to make a movie about one of your female ancestors who would it be? What actress would you cast in the role and why?

Sheriff Creeden and his wife Anna
I would choose my great-grandmother Anna Niehaus Creeden. She was born in 1888 to German born Henry Niehaus and Anna Rohrer Niehaus who was also of German descent. In the 1920's, Anna took an active role as Jail Matron of Mercer County, Ohio while her husband Charles Creeden was the County Sheriff. She had a reputation as being an excellent sharpshooter and one family legend says that she knew Annie Oakley and did some shooting with her. They lived during some exciting times with prohibition, major bank robberies, and Klan uprisings. Another family story says that Anna helped defend the new courthouse during a mob riot. They had some tragedies in their life too, from the death of their first son Carl when he was only four years old and later the death of their daughter-in-law after childbirth. For the actress, I'm thinking Sandra Bullock due to her independent spirit and German ancestry.

Once again, in honor of  National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month..

Monday, March 21, 2011

Fearless Females - Tender Moment

March 21 — Describe a tender moment one of your female ancestors shared with you or another family member.

I mentioned on the Fearless Females Lunch post that I have a lot of facts on my female ancestors, but don't know too much about what they were like. I don't know of a tender moment that was shared other than by those that are still living. I know in my family, one of those special moments was when my parents and I saw my nephew for the first time right after he was born. I'm sure that kind of moment was shared by many of my female ancestors, but unfortunately, they've been lost in the mists of time.

Once again, in honor of  National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month..

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Julia Dorothy Creeden Balleweg - Sunday's Obituary

Julia Dorothy Creeden Balleweg was born on November 10, 1888 in Celina, OH and died on April 22, 1967. She married Lorenz Richard Balleweg on May 29, 1913 and they made their home in Pueblo, CO. She was the daughter of Timothy Creeden and Mary Ann Matson Creeden. This obituary was published in the Pueblo Chieftain in April, 1967. I obtained these notices by requesting them from the Pueblo City-County Library.

Mrs. Julia D. Balleweg, 225 Jefferson, April 22, Mother of Richard Balleweg, Englewood, Colo.; Raymond Balleweg, Cedar Ridge, Calif.; George Balleweg, Los Angeles, Calif.; Mrs. Margaret Mary Summers, Evergreen, Colo.; Mrs. Ruth Summers, Pueblo, Robert Balleweg, Beulah; Mrs. Theresa Jeanne Pachek, Colorado Springs. Also survived by 19 grandchildren. Member St. Patrick Parish, Bishop's Guild, Altar and Rosary Society. Preceeded in death by her husband, L. R. Balleweg, in 1948. Services announcements later.

This notice was published in the Pueblo Chieftain on April 25, 1967: Mrs. Julia D. Balleweg. Services St. Patrick Church, Rosary recitation 7:30 p.m., Wednesday and Mass of Requiem 9 a.m. Thursday. Interment Mt. View.

This death notice was also published in the Pueblo Chieftain:

Balleweg -
Mrs. Julia D. Balleweg of 225 Jefferson. Service announcements later.

Fearless Females - Brick Walls

March 20 — Is there a female ancestor who is your brick wall? Why? List possible sources for finding more information.

My shortest tree so far is for my Adams line. I've only been able to trace this tree back to my gg-grandmother Ruth Edna Adams Willis on the female side. She was born around 1839 in Delaware and was married to William Martin Willis. There was a Mary Adams age 55 living with Ruth and William in the 1860 census, so that could possibly be her mother. In the 1850 census, there is a Ruth E. Adams born about 1836 living with another family. There is also a Mary and Margaret Adams, both age 47 in the 1850 census in a different county than where Ruth is living. Ruth lived in Delaware and Maryland, so I need to further investigate the sources for each county that she lived in. There is a lot of information on the Delaware and Maryland GenWeb sites that I haven't fully investigated yet.

My Creeden tree stops at Timothy Creeden, born in 1846 in Ireland. I don't even have a first name for his mother, so I think this is my toughest brick wall. I posted everything I've tried so far on this tree here:
My Irish Brick Wall

My female lines in Maryland all stop around the early 1800's. There is some extensive research on some of the family surnames in that area in the 1700's, but I have been unable to hook my family up to the earlier families so far. The lines that were researched left Maryland, while my families stayed there. That applies to my ancestors in Queen Anne's County, MD in the Councill, Meredith, Sparks, and Chilcutt families.

Sources for more information:
  • Organize what I already have to make sure I haven't missed anything
  • Redo searches on Ancestry, FamilySearch, and other sites to see what's new
  • Fully investigate sources on the GenWeb sites for counties they lived in
  • Investigate the Maryland archives available online
  • Investigate vital records for Maryland and Delaware
  • Post on the message boards
  • For my Irish line, keep up with the new records coming on line at the Irish Genealogy and the Roots Ireland sites. 
  • Investigate other Creedon families living nearby in Ohio.
Once again, in honor of  National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month..

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Movies - 52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History - Week #12

Week 12: Movies. Did (or do you still) see many movies? Describe your favorites. Where did you see these films? Is the theater still there, or is there something else in its place?

We saw a lot of movies when I was growing up. We didn't have VCRs, movie rentals or cable TV then, so if you didn't see a movie when it came out, it was a long wait for it to be shown on TV. The first movie I remember seeing in the theater was Mary Poppins. This was followed the next year by The Sound of Music which is still a favorite. We used to go to the Saturday matinees a lot and I remember seeing Disney movies, westerns like True Grit and The Wild Bunch and comedies. Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid was another favorite. We also watched movies on TV and favorites were The Wizard of Oz and the Alfred Hitchcock movies like Psycho and The Birds.

In my teenage years, we didn't have Twilight, but we had Dark Shadows! We also had disco with Saturday Night Fever and musicals like Grease. The Star Wars and Star Trek movies started in the 70's and we eagerly waited for each installment. For comedies, we really enjoyed the Pink Panther movies and the start of the spoof movies with Airplane!.

When we first moved to the town I grew up in, there was just one theater. They added a second screen and later turned it into a multiplex cinema with 10 screens. The theater is still there, but the small mall that it is attached to hasn't done well and is mostly used for offices now. A second mall opened in the 70's and had a theater with two screens. That one has closed and the mall has fallen on hard times. All that's left in the mall now is a small JCPenney's, a GNC store and a hot dog stand.

I still see a lot of movies, but tend to watch more at home than in the theater. I am really behind on my viewing at the moment and plan to catch up with some of this year's Oscar winners.

Fearless Females - Surprising Fact

March 19 — Have you discovered a surprising fact about one of your female ancestors? What was it and how did you learn it? How did you feel when you found out?

When I found my Willis great-great grandparents in the census, I talked to my Mom to see if she remembered any of her grandfather's siblings. She told me about her great Aunt George (Georgeanna) that she remembered from when she visited her grandparents as a young girl. Aunt George worked out on the farm with a couple of the Willis brothers and in the evenings she used to enjoy her whiskey and smoked a corncob pipe! We had a good laugh about it and were wishing that we had a picture of her. It's definitely not the kind of thing you'd find out from the census!

Once again, in honor of National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month.. Corncob pipe picture from wikipedia.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Fearless Females - Shining Stars

March 18 — Shining star: Did you have a female ancestor who had a special talent? Artist, singer, actress, athlete, seamstress, or other? Describe.

There have been a lot of musicians in my family and a few artists and singers. Pictured at left are my grandmother Anna Lee Pulskamp Creeden on the violin and her sister Emma Lee Pulskamp Art on the piano. My great-grandmother Anna Niehaus Creeden was an artist and we still have one of her oil paintings in the family. My mother and her three sisters sang on the radio when they were in school. Sure wish I had a recording of that!
Once again, in honor of National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month..

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Happy St. Patrick's Day! I always think of my Irish ancestors on this day. My gg-grandfather Timothy Creeden came to the US from County Cork, Ireland. While I don't know exactly where he came from, I saw the Creedon name in several places when I visited County Cork. It's a beautiful country and I hope to get back before too long! Here are a few photos from one of my trips.

Looking away from the Cliffs of Moher

The Village of Sneem

The grounds of Blarney Castle

A few of the 40 shades of green!

Fearless Females - Social Butterfly

March 17 — Social Butterfly? What social organizations or groups did your mother or grandmother belong to? Sewing circle, church group, fraternal benefit society or lodge? Describe her role in the group.

I don't know if my mother's ancestors belonged to any social organizations. I remember my mother being involved with school activities as I grew up, but I don't think she belonged to any formal organizations. My father's family was involved in groups associated with their church. The newspaper clipping below lists my great-grandmother Anna Niehaus Creeden as an officer for the ladies auxiliary of the Knights of St. John in 1936. This group was affiliated with the Immaculate Conception Church in Celina, OH. Several of my father's female ancestors were members.

Late update: I found out that my mother was a member of Alpha Iota Sorority while she was at Goldey College!
Once again, in honor of National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month..

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Fearless Females - Lunch

March 16 — If you could have lunch with any female family member (living or dead) or any famous female who would it be and why? Where would you go? What would you eat?

I'd have lunch with my grandmothers and great-grandmothers in the early 1900's. Everyone could bring their favorite dish and meet up at my gg-grandmother's boarding house in Ohio. It would be so interesting to meet these women. I have many facts on them, but don't really know much about what they were like in person. While we're fantasizing, the special guest of honor would be my gg-grandfather's mother from Ireland so that she could tell us where she comes from, her and her husband's names and if Timothy had any siblings!

Once again, in honor of National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Fearless Females - Six Word Memoir

Did anyone else find these to be really difficult? Here is one to my grandmother Anna Lee Pulskamp Creeden:

Twin. Wife. Mother. Gone too soon.

Here's another to my grandmother Edna Catherine Willis Councill. I always found it a bit strange that my mother and her sisters called their parents by their first names! I cheated a little on the nickname we used for her which was Mom Mom.

Edna and Royce Councill - Edna to daughters. MomMom to grandkids!

This last one is from memories of my father trying to get a picture of Edna. She really didn't like having her picture taken!

Hid from camera. Giggled a lot.

Once again, in honor of National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month.

Monday, March 14, 2011

One Lovely Blog Award

Thanks to Alison at My Family Puzzles, Christine at So That's Where I Get It From, Dee at Shakin' the Family Tree, and Frances at Fantastic Electrisoil for nominating me for the One Lovely Blog Award! I really appreciate it!!

We are given very few rules for accepting the award and they are as follows:
1. Accept the award, post it on your blog together with the name of the person who granted the award and their blog link.
2. Pass the award on to 15 other blogs that you’ve newly discovered.
3. Remember to contact the bloggers to let them know they have been chosen for this award.

I'm still fairly new to blogging, so these are blogs that I've looked at while getting started and found them to have interesting content and/or layouts. Frances you are on here since I was making this list up before I got your nomination! Thanks again for the nominations!

Fearless Females - Newsmakers

March 14 — Newsmakers? Did you have a female ancestor who made the news? Why? Was she famous or notorious? Did she appear in the social column?

We don't have any newsmakers in our family as far as I know, so I will feature someone with the same surname that has piqued my interest. Siobhan Creedon Lankford was born in 1894, Mourne Abbey, County Cork, Ireland to Patrick and Mary Creedon. Her memoir The Hope and the Sadness was published in 1980, but is now out of print. At the outbreak of World War I, Siobhan was working in the Mallow post office and joined the IRA as an intelligence officer. She was eventually dismissed from her position in the post office because of her intelligence work. The memoir recounts her childhood growing up on a small farm in Ireland with her Creedon family as well as her activities as a spy for the IRA. I am on the lookout for a copy of the book since I'd really like to read about her Creedon family in Ireland. As of now, it is not available and there are no libraries anywhere nearby that have a copy.

Once again, in honor of National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Fearless Females - Moment of Strength

March 13 — Moment of Strength: share a story where a female ancestor showed courage or strength in a difficult situation.

Mary Ann Matson Creeden (left) at her boarding house in Celina, OH
My great-great-grandmother Mary Ann Matson Creeden was widowed in 1899 at the age of 48 and still had six children at home. She mortgaged part of the family farmland and bought a house in town in Celina, OH to run as a boarding house. The 1900 census showed that 2 of the grown children worked while the younger ones went to school. Mary made money by renting out rooms in the house. Renters were provided room and board including meals and laundry. The sign on the house above Mary's head says Ice, 7c a day, so it looks like she was resourceful on finding ways to make extra money. It couldn't have been easy to raise the children alone, but they made it through.

Once again, in honor of National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Illness and Injury - 52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History - Week #11

This is a weekly challenge from GeneaBloggers called 52 weeks of personal genealogy history.

Week 11: Illness and Injury. Describe your childhood illnesses or injuries. Who took care of you? Did you recuperate in your own bed, on the couch in front of the television, or somewhere else?

I had some of the normal childhood illnesses like chicken pox, colds, and the flu. The worst was when I had bronchitis that seemed to hang on for a few weeks. My Mom was the one that took care of me and I usually recuperated in my own bed until I felt better. My worst injury was one that required a few stitches to my knee after I fell and hit a sharp edge of a concrete slab behind a friend's house. There weren't many specialists in the small town I grew up in, so my Dad used to take me to an allergist that was about an hour away. My family was very fortunate and there were no major illnesses or injuries while I was growing up.

Fearless Females - Working Girl

March 12 — Working girl: Did your mother or grandmother work outside the home? What did she do? Describe her occupation. 

My mother in DC in 1951
My mother worked at the Dupont Chemical Company during the summers while she was attending Goldey College in Wilmington, DE. After graduation from Business College, she moved to Washington DC and worked as a secretary for the NPA and Veterans Administration in the early 50's. She returned home and worked for General Chemical in Claymont, DE and then moved to Florida where she worked at the Patrick Air Force Base as an Executive Secretary. After marrying my Dad, she worked for NCR in Dayton, OH while my Dad finished college. She stayed at home when my sister and I were younger and then returned to work as a secretary when I was in high school in Florida.

My maternal grandmother worked in a factory doing sewing, along with a couple of her sisters. They had moved from Maryland to Lansdale, PA to find jobs. My grandparents met while working for this factory which is something I didn't know for the "Where They Met" prompt! I don't have any information on whether or not my father's mother worked outside the home.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Fearless Females - Death Comes to Young Mother

March 11 — Did you have any female ancestors who died young or from tragic or unexpected circumstances? Describe and how did this affect the family?

My grandmother Anna Lee Pulskamp Creeden died at the age of 24 on December 2, 1934 in Celina, OH a few days after giving birth to my father.

My great-grandparents Charles and Anna Creeden raised my father and he lived with them until he went to college. My grandfather relocated to Dayton, OH and while he was involved in my father's life, it was at a distance. My father lost touch with the Pulskamp side of the family when he moved away from Ohio. My grandmother had a twin sister Emma Lee that lived until 2001, so I'm sure many things would have been different if Anna Lee had lived her full life. Anna Lee's obituary is below.
Death Comes to Young Mother Sunday Noon - Dec. 2, 1934
Mrs. Robert Creeden succumbs to complications following childbirth
Body removed to home of her parents Mr. and Mrs. Geo. Pulskamp, North Walnut Street - Funeral Arranged For Wednesday Morning

   Mrs. Anna Lee Pulskamp Creeden, wife of Robert Creeden of 325 South Walnut street, succumbed to complications following childbirth on Sunday at 12 o'clock at Gibbons hospital.
   On November 21, the Creedens were made intensely happy by the arrival of a son, but that happiness has been turned to grief only 10 days later with the death of the beautiful young mother. She died well fortified with the last sacraments of the Catholic Church.
   Mrs. Creeden was born in Celina the twin daughter of Mr. and Mrs. George Pulskamp, June 11, 1910 and had reached the age of 24 years.
   On December 27, 1930, she became the bride of Robert Creeden the only son of Postmaster and Mrs. Charles Creeden and they were indeed a happy couple.
   Mrs. Creeden was a devout Catholic, a member of the Daughters of Isabella and Auxiliary to the Knights of St. John.
   Surviving are her grief stricken husband, the 10 day old son, Robert Jr., her parents, Mr. and Mrs. George Pulskamp, her twin sister, Emma Lee, the wife of Clarence Art, her sisters Marie, the wife of Ben Rapien of St. Bernard; Antoinette, the wife of Robert B. English of Southgate, Kentucky, three brothers, Andreas of Sebastian; Hugh and George Jr., at home, and a host of other relatives and friends.
   The body has been removed to the home of her parents at 623 North Walnut street, where it will lie in state until the time of the funeral, Wednesday morning at 9 o'clock at the Church of the Immaculate Conception.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Fearless Females - Religion

March 10 — What role did religion play in your family? How did your female ancestors practice their faith? If they did not, why didn’t they? Did you have any female ancestors who served their churches in some capacity?

Immaculate Conception Church, Celina, OH
My Dad's family were members of the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Celina, OH and it played a big role in their lives. My grandmother Anna Lee Pulskamp Creeden was in the Daughters of Isabella and Auxiliary to the Knights of St. John. My great-grandmother Anna Niehaus Creeden was in the Rosary-Altar Society and also in the Auxiliary to the Knights of St. John. My grandmother's twin sister Emma Lee Art directed the Woman's Choir for a 50th Anniversary mass and celebration for my great-grandparents George and Mary Pulskamp.

I don't have details on my Mom's ancestors yet, but have seen mentions of their membership in Methodist, Presbyterian, and Baptist churches in Maryland.

Once again, in honor of National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Fearless Females - Family Document

March 9 — Take a family document (baptismal certificate, passenger list, naturalization petition, etc.) and write a brief narrative using the information.

This is the marriage certificate for Royce Rufus Councill and Edna Catherine Willis. They were married on June 25, 1925 in Chestertown, Maryland by W. Gibson. Chestertown is the county seat of Kent County, so I'm not sure what the CEC1 stamped in the county name means, although there is a neighboring Cecil County. I've seen Royce's name in some online trees as Rufus Royce Councill and notice here that his name is given as R. Royce Councill. However, his birth certificate says Royce Rufus and he was listed as Royce in other documents and newspaper clippings that I've seen.

Once again, in honor of National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Fearless Females - Letters and Einstein sighting!

March 8 — Did one of your female ancestors leave a diary, journal, or collection of letters? Share an entry or excerpt.

I don't have too many letters from my female ancestors and nothing like a diary or journal. I recently acquired a letter written on July 11, 1970 by my step-grandmother Hilda Kleinhenz Creeden. She was born in 1903 in Mercer County, Ohio and died in 1990. She contracted tuberculosis in her 20's and the letter is remembering her stay in a facility in Albuquerque, New Mexico. She lived to be 87 which was amazing considering all she went through. Here's an excerpt from the letter:

"Yesterday Miss Leona Wint and I had a little reunion. Out of 18 patients we knew in Albuquerque in 1930 when we were victims of the Great White Plague we are the only two left. We spent so many hours horizontally and so many hours vertically. During our stay there, the patients able to would go the Union Station to see what celebrity they could see on the back platform as the train pulled out. I was there the Sunday noon before I came home, guess who I seen, "Old Einstein". I was hoping to see some good looking Movie Star."

Thanks to Marj B. for sending me the letter!
Once again, in honor of National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Fearless Females - Favorite Recipe

March 7 — Share a favorite recipe from your mother or grandmother’s kitchen. Why is this dish your favorite? If you don’t have one that’s been passed down, describe a favorite holiday or other meal you shared with your family.

This is my Mom's recipe, but I'm not sure where she got it from. We had lots of fun rolling out the dough and decorating these sugar cookies every year at Christmas time. These were a special treat that we only had once a year!

Cookie Jar Sugar Cookies

2/3 cup shortening (Crisco)
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp grated orange peel
2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
4 tsp milk

Thoroughly cream shortening and sugar. Add egg, beat in until light and fluffy. 
Add vanilla, grated peel, mix thoroughly. Sift dry ingredients together and stir into creamed mixture alternately with 1 tsp of milk at a time.
Divide dough in half. Chill at least one hour. (We usually left it overnight.) Keep 1/2 chilled while rolling other half.
Roll 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick. Cut with cookie cutters or glass.
Put on greased cookie sheet. Sprinkle lightly with sugar. Bake in moderate over (375) for about 10 minutes. 
Makes 2 1/2 dozen.

Mix confectioners powdered sugar, 2 tsps vanilla, 1/2 stick margarine and hot water until desired thickness and frost.

Once again, in honor of National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month.