Sunday, December 30, 2012

Biggest Genealogy Accomplishment - 52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy

Week 42: Biggest Genealogy Accomplishment. What do you feel is your biggest genealogy accomplishment? What were the steps you took to get there, and what was the end result?

I fell hopelessly behind on these prompts, but wanted to get this one in before the end of the year!

My biggest accomplishment so far has to be finally finding some information on my elusive Irish great-great-grandfather Timothy Creeden. Finding information for Timothy took a lot of persistence, some help from researchers in Ohio where Timothy lived, researching nearby Creeden families and some incredible luck. I had searched and gathered what records I could find for several years as I described in one of my first posts about my Irish Brick Wall.

Over the years I made some wonderful contacts and one of them asked about possible records for Timothy when she was researching another family in Mercer County, Ohio. Another researcher there mentioned that there were two probate records for Timothy: one for his will which I already had and another for his guardianship of Roseanna Creeden. This was the first I had heard about the guardian's records.

I knew that Patrick Creeden of Clinton County had a daughter Roseanna and a son Timothy, but I hadn't been able to find anything about them. Patrick's will proved to be key and I was very fortunate that many of the Ohio probate records I was searching for were available on FamilySearch. The will gave me enough clues to pursue other information, including Guardian's Bonds naming Timothy as guardian of Roseanna in Clinton and Mercer counties. Information on Patrick's daughter Julia from the Sisters of Charity gave me enough information to find her death certificate. The certificate named her parents as Patrick Creeden and Mary Coakley. Having both parents' names and a date of birth led to Julia's baptismal certificate which showed that she was baptized in Clondrohid Parish in County Cork, Ireland.

There is still much to investigate, but the end result is that I now have a probable family and place of origin for Timothy!

52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2012) that invite genealogists and others to discuss resources in the genealogy community including websites, applications, libraries, archives, genealogical societies and more.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas!

Wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas and best wishes for a happy, healthy New Year with lots of new genealogy discoveries!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Witnesses and Neighbors - Mappy Monday

I posted earlier about the trail of probate records and Guardian's Bonds that helped to link my great-great-grandfather Timothy Creeden to Patrick Creedan's family in Clinton County, Ohio. The bonds showed that Timothy was named guardian of his half-sister Roseanna shortly after their father Patrick's death in Clinton County in 1883. The guardian's bonds were filed in Clinton County until 1887 when the probate case was moved to Mercer County, Ohio. I still had a nagging doubt that there could be a second Timothy Creeden that made the move from Clinton to Mercer, so was looking for some additional proof that this was my Timothy.

The witnesses on the Mercer County bond were Henry Beathler and John H. Siebert. I had a copy of the 1888 atlas showing Timothy Creeden's section of land in Hopewell Township in Mercer County, so I decided to see where the witnesses lived. The witnesses were close neighbors to my Timothy! I am still looking for that ultimate record that shows Timothy's birth date, location, and/or parents, but I think I can be reasonably sure that Timothy was the son of Patrick Creedan.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Daniel Creedon - Sunday's Obituary

This obituary was published in Irish World on July 22, 1899. Daniel Creedon was born around 1819 and died at the age of 80 on June 16, 1899. The obituary mentions that his remains were taken to Clondrohid (in County Cork, Ireland), so it is possible that he is a relation to my Creeden families. The Patrick Creedan I have been researching was born in 1814 and his children were baptized in Clondrohid.

   By the death of Mr. Daniel Creedon, which took place at Gurteenroe street, Macroom, June 16, another of the links which connect the missionary labors of the Apostle of Temperance with the present time, has been removed.  Mr. Creedon was aged 80 years. He received the Father Mathew Temperance Pledge in 1840, and was a faithful advocate and strict adherent to its principles to the last.  He was connected with the movement for Irish libery in '48, and was prominently identified with the later movement of '67, his house during the latter period having been the recognized rendezvous of the members of the Brotherhood.  He was a well-known and respected member of the community, and the large cortege that accompanied his remains to Clondrohid testified to the esteem in which he was held by the people of the town and district. The meeting of Macroom Board of Guardians and Rural District Council were adjourned as a mark of respect to his memory.  His son is master of the Workhouse.

In the Irish 1901 census, a Timothy Creedon lived on Gurteenroe Street in Macroom and his occupation is given as Master of the Workhouse. In Guy's Postal Directory of 1914, Timothy is still listed as Master of the Workhouse and Daniel Creedon is working there as a clerk.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Sister Mary Felix/Creeden Death Certificate - Amanuensis Monday

Julia Creeden was born in County Cork, Ireland in 1842 and lived in Clinton County, Ohio with her family by 1860. She entered the Sisters of Charity convent in Cincinnati, Ohio in 1870 and took her vows in 1872 when she received the name of Sister Mary Felix. She died in 1918 and is buried at the Sisters of Charity cemetery in Mount St. Joseph, Ohio. The death certificate pictured below was listed on the FamilySearch site under "Mary Creedon or Felix".

Name: Sister Mary Felix (Creedon)
County of: Hamilton
Township: Delphi
Ward: Sisters of Charity Mother House
Event date: 22 Feb 1918
Event place: Delhi, Hamilton, Ohio
Residence: Delhi, Hamilton, Ohio
Gender: Female
Death age: 75y
Marital status: Single
Race: White
Occupation: Nurse
Birth date: 01 Jul 1842
Birthplace: Ireland
Burial date: 25 Feb 1918
Burial place: Mt. St. Joseph, O.
Father: Patrick Creedon
Father's birthplace: Ireland
Mother: Mary Coakley
Mother's birthplace: Ireland
Informant: Sister Ernestine(?)
Cause of death: Lobar pneumonia
Undertaker: Geo. Engles, Mt. St. Joseph, O.

The source given on FamilySearch is: "Ohio, Deaths, 1908-1953," index and images, Mary Creedon Or Felix, 22 Feb 1918; citing Delhi, Hamilton, Ohio, reference fn 10432; FHL microfilm 1984229.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Sisters of Charity Archives - Church Record Sunday

I posted earlier about the will of Patrick Creedan of Clinton County, Ohio and my hopes that it would provide enough information to determine if he was the father of my great-great-grandfather Timothy Creeden. The will was probated after Patrick's death in 1883.

There was some unexpected information about his daughter Julia Creeden in this provision from Patrick's will: "Two portions shall be paid to my son Timothy. One of which is his own legal right, and the other being the legal right of my daughter Julia, (who is now a religious in the Convent of the Sisters of Charity) but if my said daughter Julia should demure to this transfer of her right in favor of her full brother Timothy, then she shall have full control over her legal portion." 

Julia was in Clinton County, Ohio in the 1860 census, so Cincinnati would have been the closest place for her to join the Sisters of Charity. I contacted the Sisters of Charity Archives and received some interesting information about Julia's life. She came to the Sisters of Charity of Cincinnati in 1870 and took her vows in 1872 when she received the name of Sister Mary Felix. The Sisters told me that she worked at St. Mary's Hospital in Pueblo, CO from 1888-1902 and St. Vincent's Hospital in Santa Fe, NM starting in 1905. She returned to the Motherhouse in Cincinnati at some point and she died on February 22, 1918. She is buried in the Sisters of Charity Cemetery in Mount St. Joseph, Ohio.

In addition to the information, the Sisters sent a picture of Julia! I wasn't expecting that and hadn't even thought to ask for one. With the information on the name she took and her date and place of death, I found Julia's death certificate listed under "Sister Mary Felix or Creedon". It said she was born in Ireland on July 1, 1842 and her parents were Patrick Creedon and Mary Coakley. This information was a match for a baptism record on the RootsIreland site. According to the baptism record, Julia was baptized as a Roman Catholic on July 3, 1842 in Carricapooka in the parish of Clondrohid, Ireland. Parents were Patrick Creeden and Mary Cokley and sponsors were Daniel Cokley and Honora Creeden.

I'll follow up with some additional posts on Patrick's will and the probate records in Ohio that lead me to believe that my Timothy is Julia's brother. Thanks so much  to the Sisters that work in the Sisters of Charity Archives for providing the information on Julia! With this information, I finally have some good leads on the origins of my Creeden family.

The Sisters of Charity of Cincinnati have a very interesting history including their work as nurses during the Civil War. Additional resources are available here, including a list of publications about the Sisters.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Guardian's Bond - Amanuensis Monday

This record is a Guardian's Bond from the Mercer County Ohio Probate records. It is an important record to me since it helps to confirm a link between my great-great-grandfather Timothy Creeden and the Creeden family headed by Patrick Creeden in Clinton County, OH. In the record, Timothy is named guardian of Patrick's daughter Rosannah.

Rosannah's father is stated here to be Patrick Creeden of Clinton County and in Patrick's will he names Timothy as his son. Timothy was appointed as guardian of Rosannah in Clinton County shortly after Patrick's death in 1883. Timothy bought land in Mercer County in 1884 and was living there by the time of this record in 1887. The two men that witnessed the bond were living near Timothy in Hopewell Township in Mercer County and they were all listed as farmers in the census. A bonus is that the Probate Judge H. H. Pulskamp is also one of my ancestors!


Know all Men by these Presents, That we, Timothy Creeden, John H. Siebert, Henry Beathler, are held and firmly bound unto the state of Ohio, in the sum of five hundred Dollars, for the payment of which we do hereby jointly and severally bind ourselves, our heirs, executors, and administrators.
   Sealed with our seals, and dated at Celina this 5th day of October A.D. 1887.
   The condition of the above obligation is such, that, whereas, the above bound Timothy Creeden has been appointed by the Probate Court of Mercer County, Ohio, guardian of the person and estate of Rosannah Creeden, an imbecile, aged about 32 years June 1887.
   Child of Patrick Creeden deceased late of Clinton Co. O. which appointment the said Timothy Creeden has accepted.
   Now if the said Timothy Creeden will faithfully discharge all his duties as such guardian, as is required by law, then the above obligation to be void, otherwise to remain in full force.

This bond approved in open Court, this 5th day of October A.D. 1887.

The document is signed by Timothy Creeden, John H. Siebert, Henry Beathler, and H.H. Pulskamp, Probate Judge.


THE STATE OF OHIO, Mercer County,
I, Timothy Creeden Guardian of Rosannah Creeden an imbecile do solemnly swear and affirm that I will faithfully and honestly discharge the duties upon me as such guardian, as I will answer to God.

Signed Timothy Creeden
Sworn to and subscribed before me this 4th day of October A.D. 1887.
Signed H.H. Pulskamp
Probate Judge

Amanuensis Monday is a daily blogging theme which encourages the family historian to transcribe family letters, journals, audiotapes, and other historical artifacts.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Ohio Probate Records on Family Search - Tuesday's Tip

If you have Ohio ancestors, be sure and check out the Ohio probate records available on the FamilySearch site. The information is arranged by county and is in the form of images of the actual probate book pages. There are wills, estate settlements, guardian's bonds, naturalization records and other types of court records. The images are not searchable, so here are a few tips for browsing them.
  • Many of the volumes have a separate index book that lists names alphabetically. If you find an ancestor in the index, the entry will point you to the volume and page number for the actual record. 
  • If there is no index volume, each book usually has its own alphabetical index in the front.
  • Some of the collections have multiple volumes in one set of images. If this is the case, the page numbers start over for each volume and there is a separate index in the front of each volume.
  • If you are certain of a date and don't find an entry in the index, try browsing the volume for that date anyway. I found one estate settlement that did not have an index entry.
  • Each image is usually a photo of two pages in the ledger, so be sure and pan around to see everything.
  • The image numbers do not match the page numbers, so it takes some trial and error to find a specific page.
  • The pages on the website listing the volumes for a county have a scroll bar on the right-hand side. I missed this the first time I was looking and didn't realize there were quite a few more books available.
  • For estate settlements, there may be entries in different years for partial and final settlements.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Patrick Creedan's Will - Amanuensis Monday

Patrick Creedan was born around 1814 in Ireland and lived in Clinton County, Ohio for many years. He died on June 19, 1883 and is buried in the Gaddis Cemetery in Wilmington, Clinton County. I believe that my gg-grandfather Timothy Creeden is Patrick's son Timothy named in the will. Timothy was named guardian of Patrick's daughter Roseanna shortly after his death and continued as her guardian when he moved to Mercer County, Ohio. I found the will in the FamilySearch Ohio Probate Records in the volume for Wills 1886-1889 Vol 3-4.

Following is Patrick's Last Will and Testament as filed in the Clinton County Probate Court.

Last Will and Testament of Patrick Creedan of Wayne Township, Clinton Co. Ohio.

In the name of God, Amen.
     I, Patrick Creedan, being of sound mind and memory, make this my last will and testament, to wit:- After all my just and lawful debts are paid, I will and devise that all my property, real and personal, shall be transferred into the possession of Timothy Keefe and held by him as trustee to be dispersed by him as follows. viz; After my decease all of my personality shall be sold to pay my funeral expenses and all other legal debts. Also all my real estate to pay the residual  of my debts in case the return from my personality should be insufficient and having full and certain confidence in the said Timothy Keefe. I entrust to him (and without bond) the management of my possessions real and personal to be disposed of in the manner herein mentioned.

     Two Hundred Dollars shall be appropriated for my funeral expenses, including my daughter Phebe Catherine, deceased, funeral expenses and also masses for soul and those of my deceased family.

     2nd After the above mentioned claims are duly paid the balance of my funds in the hands of my executor Timothy Keefe shall be divided into eight equal portions and devised as follows. viz; Two portions shall be paid to my son Timothy. One of which is his own legal right, and the other being the legal right of my daughter Julia, (who is now a religious in the Convent of the Sisters of Charity) but if my said daughter Julia should demure to this transfer of her right in favor of her full brother Timothy, then she shall have full control over her legal portion.

     One portion to be to my son John being his legal share.  One portion to my daughter Hanna Jane being her legal share; One portion to my son Patrick William being his legal share and two portions to my daughter Rosanna in consequence of her feeble mental condition. I bequeath said Rosanna a double portion. Finally I bequeath to my grand-child Elija Bernard the son of my daughter Johanna deceased one portion the legal share of my said deceased daughter Johanna.

     In witness hereof I hereby put my hand and seal in Sixteenth day of May in the year of our Lord one thousand eight-hundred and eighty three in the presence of       Patrick Creedan

 The will is witnessed by Michael O'Donoghue and Bridget Keefe.

Amanuensis Monday is a daily blogging theme which encourages the family historian to transcribe family letters, journals, audiotapes, and other historical artifacts.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Monday Madness - Cracks in my Irish Brick Wall

One of my first posts was about my Irish Brick wall for my great-great-grandfather Timothy Creeden. The only records I have for him are after his arrival in the US and they just state his origin as "Ireland". I knew that there were other Creeden families in Clinton County, Ohio where I found my first records for Timothy, but I couldn't find any definite links to the other families.

The family I thought had the best possibility of being related to Timothy was headed by Patrick Creedan in the 1860 US Census for Clinton County, Ohio.

Timothy was born in 1846 and this says that a daughter Johanna/Joanette was born in 1846. The Timothy listed here was born in 1853 and the place of birth was listed as Ohio. I didn't think this was the right Timothy at first, but kept it open as a possibility.

The 1870 census shows that Johannah was born around 1851, so what if Timothy and Johannah's ages had been switched in the 1860 census?

Timothy moved to Mercer County in the mid 1880s and Patrick's son John lived there in his later years. I also saw a Roseanna Creeden in the Mercer County census listings for 1900-1920, but her death certificate didn't have her parents' names. She was in the Mercer County Infirmary during that time and listed as insane.

I have been unable to find Timothy's death certificate or an obituary. The church records were destroyed by fire, so I thought there might be some information in the funeral records. A couple of researchers in Mercer County found that those had also been destroyed, but mentioned that there was a probate record for a Timothy Creeden that was the guardian of a Roseanna Creeden.

I knew that FamilySearch had added Ohio Probate Records a few months ago, but I hadn't made much use of them yet. The records are not searchable, but I found that many of the volumes had an index of names. According to FindAGrave, Patrick Creedan died in June 1883, so I decided to try and find his will.

The Probate Records I found established a fairly certain link between my Timothy and Patrick's family! Patrick's will left shares to his sons Timothy, John, Patrick William and to his daughter Hannah Jane. He also left his daughter Julia's share to Timothy as her "full brother" and due to Julia being a "religious in the convent of the Sisters of Charity". He left two shares to his daughter Rosanna "in consequence of her feeble minded condition" and left his grandson Elija Bernard his daughter Johanna's share due to her being deceased.

I followed a trail of Settlement Records, Testamentary Records, and Guardian's Bonds that showed Timothy was named guardian of Roseanna shortly after Patrick's death. According to one record, the case was moved to Mercer County when Timothy moved his family and ward there around 1885. I also found the corresponding probate record in Mercer County that showed he was guardian of Roseanna.

I think this is a pretty good case that Patrick Creeden, born 1814 in Ireland is Timothy's father. The only Creedens I've found in Mercer County are Timothy, John, and their families and Roseanna. I have a note from another researcher that Patrick married Hannah Jane Hoover in 1851, so if that is correct, she was Patrick's second wife and is not the mother of Timothy or Julia. I still don't know a location in Ireland or the identity of Timothy's mother, but it is exciting to finally have a few family members for him!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Sunday's Obituary - Anna Lee Pulskamp Creeden

This obituary for my grandmother was published in the Immaculate Conception Church Parish Monthly for February, 1935. The church is located in Celina, Ohio.


   As the year of 1934 was nearing its close, the Messenger of death once more summoned away from our midst a well known and highly respected member of

   the parish. Mrs. Robert Creeden, Anna Lee nee Pulskamp, passed away from this earth unexpectedly and in the prime of her life, December the second, 1934. However she was well prepared, having received all the Sacraments for the dying.
   Left to mourn her sudden departure from our midst, is her bereaved husband, Robert Creeden and son to whom she gave birth November 21st, 1934, her parents Mr. and Mrs. George F. Pulskamp, her brothers Andrew, Hugo and George and her sisters Mrs. Bernard Rapien, Mrs. Robert English and Mrs. Clarence Art and a large number of relatives and friends.
   Her funeral took place in the Immaculate Conception church, December the fifth, Reverend Geo. Hindelang offered the Mass for the departed, Rev. Albert Gerhardstein was deacon, Rev. Augustine Halter, subdeacon, and Rev. Joseph Biegler was master of ceremonies. The pastor delivered a short, consoling sermon. Father Augustine performed the last rites at the cemetery.
   While she was taken away from our midst, she will long be remembered by all who knew her, and we kindly ask all to pray for the repose of her soul.
   Mr. Robert Creeden and little son are now making their home with his parents Mr. and Mrs. Charles Creeden where the child is being taken care of by Mrs. Creeden.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Daguerreotype - Mystery Monday

My grandmother gave this photograph to my mother, but the identity of the woman in the portrait is a mystery. My mother's family was from Queen Anne's County, Maryland and the surrounding areas. Some of the surnames in her family are Sparks, Councill, Willis, Chilcutt, Godwin, Davis, Adams, Harmon, and Meredith, so it's possible that the woman is from one of these families.

The photograph is in a case which opens up and has a plush velvet-like material on the left side. I think this is a daguerreotype and the case and the woman's clothing could provide some clues as to when the photograph was taken. Her jewelry looks metallic and looks like it was enhanced in the photograph. The photograph is behind a glass plate which is very reflective and a bit tricky to capture with my little digital camera.

The outer case looks like a Union Case which might date it to sometime in the 1850s or 1860s. A Union Case was a mixture (or union) of shellac and wood fibers that were pressed into a steel mold. The Daguerreian Society has some good information on the history of daguerreotypes.

I'm hesitant to handle this too much as it's already showing some damage and has been in a humid climate for a long time. I'd love to hear from anyone that recognizes the woman or has ideas on how to trace the photograph's origins a bit further.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Sunday's Obituary - Parish Death Notices

The Immaculate Conception Church of Celina, Ohio published a monthly devotional magazine that also contained information on births, deaths, and marriages in the parish. This summary of deaths in the parish for 1934 was published in the February 1935 Parish Monthly in Celina, Ohio. (Click on the picture for larger view.)

John Gast was my GG Grandfather and Anna Lee (Pulskamp) Creeden was my grandmother.

Other names listed are Theresia Barga, Rita Matilda Schulte, James Cantwell, Bernard Stretholt, Leonard Hirsch, Mrs. Peter Stachler, George Durbin, William Maehlman, Theresa Bosken, Benette May Ellen Craft, Henry Beckstedt, Charles Zumberge, Fred Weber, William Barth, Wilbur Barth, Sarah Mrs. Phillip Beiersdorfer, John A. Heckler and Mrs. Margaret (Jacob) Schunck.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Sunday's Obituary - Sister Mary Jean Durbin

This obituary was published in the Immaculate Conception Church Parish Monthly in February 1935 in Celina, Ohio. While most of the magazine contains devotional readings, the first few pages contained quite a bit of information on births, deaths, and marriages in the parish.

   The Rev. Pastor received word January 28th of the death of Sister Mary Jean Durbin. She departed this life January
24th, 1935, having reached the age of 26 years. She was a Dominican Sister of the Congregation of Our Lady of the Sacred Heart, Grand Rapids, Michigan and made her profession in the year 1931.
  Sister Mary Jean Durbin was the daughter of Mr. Thomas Durbin and Mary nee Puthoff and was born at Celina October 4, 1908.

   Although the family moved to Michigan several years ago, they are nevertheless well remembered by the members of the Immaculate Conception Parish.
   The Pastor extends his sympathy to the bereaved family and with Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Durbin kindly asks the members of the parish to remember the departed in their prayers.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Sunday's Obituary - Daniel Sparks

Daniel Sparks was the brother of my great-grandmother Arianna Sparks and was from Queen Anne's County, Maryland. I wasn't having much luck finding any information on Daniel when I ran across this snippet of news published in the Baltimore Sun on May 30, 1915. I knew that their sister Martha Sparks was married to Robert Councill.

With the clue that he was living in Seattle, I was able to locate a couple of death notices published in the Seattle Daily Times on Feb. 24 and Feb. 26, 1937. I knew that Daniel was born around 1860, so this fits that he was 76 years of age in early 1937. With this new information, I hope to be able to verify that this is the correct Daniel and find some details on his life in Seattle.

SPARKS -- Feb. 24, 1937: Daniel Sparks; beloved husband of Lee Ella. Services Thursday, 2 p.m. at Johnson & Hamilton's. Friends invited.

Sparks, Daniel-- Route 9, Box 735, 76. February 24.

From FindAGrave, Daniel Sparks is buried in Mount Pleasant Cemetery in Seattle, King County, Washington.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Ancestor Legend - 52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy - Week 33

Week 33: Ancestor Legend. What is your favorite ancestral legend or family lore? Who originally told the story and what was the claim? Have you been able to prove the story true or false? What steps did you take to do so?

Lima News depiction of the courthouse on Sept. 2, 1923
One my favorite family legends was told by my father about his grandparents, Sheriff Charles Creeden and his wife Anna. In the story, the sheriff, his wife, and two brothers that had been deputized defended the Mercer County, Ohio Courthouse and Jail from an uprising that occurred during a celebration for the new courthouse opening in 1923.

From an earlier post: As my Dad's story went, the Klan had a parade in town, most likely as an anti-Catholic demonstration. Their leader was arrested for disturbing the peace and was being held in the Mercer County Jail. Members of the KKK showed up to demand the prisoner's release and a standoff ensued. Charles was at the front door of the jail and his wife Anna was at the back door. She was said to be a very good shot! The group came up and demanded that their leader be released, but Charles said that wasn't going to happen. The gang said, "Who's gonna stop us, you and what army?". Charles pointed to the roof where his deputies and members of the Knights of Columbus were standing with guns raised and said, "That one!". The story gets a little hazy as to what happened next, but some kind of melee broke out and there were injuries on both sides.

My Dad's story ended with on a humorous note with one of Charles' brothers resigning as Deputy Sheriff. and leaving town while wearing Charles' best suit! I was able to prove that most of the story was true from publications from the Mercer County Historical Society and newspaper articles. The newspaper accounts said that the sheriff and his men turned the fire hoses on the crowd to disperse them. As far as the brother leaving in Charles' best suit, I'll probably never know the answer to that. His brother Joshua was a Deputy Sheriff and left town for Michigan, so my guess would be that part of the story is about him and there probably is some truth to it.

Part of the courthouse legend was that Charles' wife Anna Niehaus Creeden was the jail matron and an excellent sharpshooter. One of my Dad's stories said that she did some target practice with Annie Oakley! I haven't been able to prove this, but Annie Oakley was born in neighboring Darke County, Ohio and she often returned to Ohio.

Another intriguing legend from my Dad was that Charles' father Timothy Creeden may have had a child with a Cherokee woman. I haven't found any information indicating that this is true or false. I obtained the Guion Miller application for an Ida Creeden married to a Timothy, but this Timothy was alive in 1906 and mine died in 1899. I recently found Timothy, Ida, and their daughter Nellie in the 1900 US Census in Arkansas, so I can safely rule them out. I am currently investigating a curious birth record for a David Creeden, born to Timothy Creeden and Manda Bolls in Clinton County, Ohio where Timothy lived. David's birth date is the same as Timothy's son Daniel and the writing on the birth record could be read as Daniel instead of David. I haven't found any other trace of David or Manda so far and I cannot find a separate birth record for Daniel. This one is still a work in progress.

52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2012) that invite genealogists and others to discuss resources in the genealogy community including websites, applications, libraries, archives, genealogical societies and more.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Those Places Thursday - London, England

The Olympics coverage of London has me nostalgic for my trip to the UK in 1990. It was a wonderful vacation that started with a couple of days in London. We spent our first day walking around the city and taking in some of the historic sights. Our time there was much too short, so I hope to go back some day!

Royal Guards at the Tower of London

North entrance of Westminster Abbey

St. Paul's Cathedral

Big Ben

The Tower Bridge

Monday, August 6, 2012

Matson Family Research Section 3-2a - Amanuensis Monday

This continues Section 3 of the Matson family research from correspondence between researchers in 1903. Sections 3 contains details about a John Matson from some early Chester County, PA records. He married Hannah Norbury in 1741 and died in 1748. Hannah married George Swedley after John's death and this section lists details from the wills of Hannah and George.

8-21-1765   Will of George Swedley Jr. of Willistown, mentions wife Hannah and several children.

1798-1810   Will of Hannah Swedley of Willistown, dated 7-4-1798, probated Oct. 31, 1810.
                         Mentions - sons Richard Matson, Jacob Matson.
                         sister - Sarah Hall
                         granddaughter Hannah, dau. of Richard Matson and several Swedley children.
                     Eus. - son, Jacob Matson and son-in-law, Benj.
                     Cox, husband of daughter Hannah.
                     [The Swedley genealogy gives 3 sons of John and Hannah Matson - Richard, Jacob
                      (as above) and Joseph. The latter was probably dead when this will was made.]

Amanuensis Monday – An Amanuensis is a person employed to write what another dictates or to copy what has been written by another. Amanuensis Monday is a daily blogging theme which encourages the family historian to transcribe family letters, journals, audiotapes, and other historical artifacts. Not only do the documents contain genealogical information, the words breathe life into kin – some we never met – others we see a time in their life before we knew them. A fuller explanation can be found here. Amanuensis Monday is a popular ongoing series created by John Newmark at Transylvanian Dutch.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Mystery Monday - Church photos

The nuns pictured below are from my Dad's photo collection, but the picture is not labeled. They may be from the Immaculate Conception Church in Celina, Ohio where he grew up.

The church and priest pictured below are also from my Dad's photo collection. We scanned these in a few years ago and he did not know where they were taken.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Matson Family Research Section 3-1 - Amanuensis Monday

This is the first page of Section 3 of the Matson family research from correspondence between researchers in 1903. This page contains some details about a John Matson from some early Chester County, PA records. He married Hannah Norbury in 1741 and died in 1748. His estate was left to Hannah and no mention was made of any children.

                                                       John Matson
                                       Chester County deeds, wills, etc.

This man was in Edgmont about 1741-5, and was probably a brother of Morris Matson. 
From Swedley Genealogy:-
Thomas Norbury took up 125 A. in Newtown Twp. 1683. About 1684, he m. Frances, widow of Stephen Hugh of Springfield, by whom he had 10 children prior to 1712:-
Stephen, Jacob, Deborah, Thomas, John, Philip, Mary, Hannah, Sarah, and Rachael.
Jacob Norbury, b. 9-30-1687; m. about 1721 Alice ------. She m. (2) 1727 Richard Farr
(3) 1746 Thomas Hall
Jacob and Alice had two children:-
   Sarah, b. 1722; m. (1) John Warren
                                 (2) Samuel Hall
   Hannah, b. 6-25, 1724; m. (1) 9-5-1741, at Middletown Friends' Meeting, John Matson of Edgmont. He died 1748 and she m. (2) 12-22-1757 at Gosbeu? Meeting, George Swedley (b. 1719; died in Willistown 12-1-1765).

1743-4     Will of Richard Farr of Edgmont, dated 5-14-1743, probated Oct. 8, 1744, mentions "daughters-in-law" [ie. step-daughters] Sarah Warren and Hannah Mattson.    Will Bk. 13 p. 167.
1748         Letters of Adm. on Estate of John Matson, late of Easttown, ?, granted July 16, 1748 to his widow Hannah Matson.
   Adm. Doc B. p. 56. Original Papers 1163.

Amanuensis Monday – An Amanuensis is a person employed to write what another dictates or to copy what has been written by another. Amanuensis Monday is a daily blogging theme which encourages the family historian to transcribe family letters, journals, audiotapes, and other historical artifacts. Not only do the documents contain genealogical information, the words breathe life into kin – some we never met – others we see a time in their life before we knew them. A fuller explanation can be found here. Amanuensis Monday is a popular ongoing series created by John Newmark at Transylvanian Dutch.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Follow Friday - Finding Aids for the Albert Casey volumes on Ireland

This week I was looking for information on the O'Kief, Coshe Mang, Slieve Lougher and the Upper Blackwater in Ireland volumes by Albert E. Casey. The 16 large volumes making up the Casey collection contain a huge collection of Irish records covering parts of County Cork and County Kerry. I found several good sources of information on the volumes:

  • The Cork Past and Present site has an alphabetical index of the volumes for County Cork and County Kerry. From the index pages, I used my browser's Find function to search for the information available for specific volumes (e.g., Volume 7).
  • County Kerry Genealogy has a nice summary of the contents of each volume in The Casey Collection and partial extracts of some of the data for County Kerry. They also have a very useful PDF file with finding aids for locating information in the volumes, including batch numbers for FamilySearch records. The batch numbers are very handy for finding out which records are indexed in the FamilySearch IGI. One tip on the batch numbers is to put a dash before the last number when entering the batch number on the FamilySearch search screen (e.g. C70078-1 instead of C700781). Entering a batch number and surname helped me narrow down which volumes contained the most data on my surnames.

Follow Friday is an ongoing series at GeneaBloggers and was suggested by Earline Bradt of Ancestral Notes.

Mistakes - 52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy - Week 28

Week 28: Mistakes. Genealogy research mistakes are wonderful learning experiences. They can be blessings when they show you how to improve your genealogy research. Which genealogy research mistake in your past has provided the most benefit to your present? How did you discover the mistake and what steps did you take to correct it? Sharing about these experiences will help others who are figuring out their own ancestral paths.

One mistake I made was to accept published information without verifying it myself. I'm sure this is one of the most common mistakes that beginners make. For some of my lines, I was thrilled to see trees going back into the 1600s or even earlier. I was in gathering mode and eagerly added the new names to my tree. I've since been going back and retracing some of those steps to see what is valid and what is speculation.

Another mistake was not paying enough attention to small details that could be important clues. I posted earlier about the mystery of my ancestor Timothy Creeden and his wife Mary Matson being designated as first cousins on their marriage license. I had obtained the marriage license a few years ago, but didn't look into the "first cousin" angle any further since it didn't match up with the other data I had. It seemed impossible for a more recent immigrant like Timothy to be related as a first cousin to a family that went back many generations in the US. When I started taking a closer look at the Matson information, I realized that the dates for Mary's grandparents didn't add up, so there may be an opening there for one of Timothy's grandparents to have married into the family.

One more mistake was sharing too much information with people that published the information online. Even though I had emphasized that a lot of it was speculation, some of those trees are still floating around. I still don't hesitate to share information, but I am more careful about what I share.

So, what have I learned? Don't jump to conclusions, don't overlook details, verify every bit of information, and be cautious when sharing information!

52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2012) that invite genealogists and others to discuss resources in the genealogy community including websites, applications, libraries, archives, genealogical societies and more.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Matson Family Research page 4 - Amanuensis Monday

This is Page 4 of the Matson family research from correspondence between researchers in 1903.This page contains several marriage dates as well as some mentions of early Swedish immigrants to Pennsylvania. The John Matson in my family tree was born around 1758 and the possibility that he descended from the one listed here has been suggested to me. I don't know who the parents of my John Matson were, so I'm keeping it in mind as a possibility.

Matson Marriages

Nov. 5, 1740   John Matson and Katherine Gregory at St. First Presbyterian Church of Philad.     See Records.
April 16, 1754   Joseph Mattson and Jane Steers, at Christs (P.E.) Church, Philad.   See Records.

The following are from the records of Old Swedes (Gloria Dei) Church, Philadelphia.
Sept. 20, 1752    Catharine Matson and Erick Mulereu
Oct. 29, 1756      Israel Matzon and Mary Pedrick.
July 8, 1765         Elizabeth Matson and Benjamin Daffield.
March 16, 1780   Israel Mattson and Catarine Moffin
Dec. 20, 1794      Rebecca Matson and Christopher Hoest
May 25, 1799      Jonas Matson and Mary Key.
                            Marriage license granted (See Pa. Archives)
Janry. 4, 1775      Mary Matson and Edward McDaniel.
(Other marriage records will be found in the data concerning Peter Matson and the children of Morris Matson below.)

Since writing this, I have found the following-
1641   "In the third expedition [from Sweden], on the 'Kalmar Nyckel' and 'Charitas', 1641, came - Heindrich Matsson...
     Chester Co. Hist., p. 11.
Aug. 8, 1672   "Whereas comp. has been made unto me by Jan Cornelis, Mattys Mattyson, & Martin Martinson, Inhabitants in Ausland in Delaware River" -- stating that they had possession of a parcel of meadow land upon the Island near their plantation at Calcoone Hooke, and that a patent covering it had been given to Israel Holmes, order made by Gov. Lovelace.
Chester Co. Hist. p. 13.
Sidenote: Austland (was Amosland) is in Ridley Twp., Chester Co.

A couple of notes on the ships mentioned:

From Wikipedia, "The Kalmar Nyckel (Key of Kalmar) was a Dutch-built armed merchant ship famed for carrying Finnish and Swedish settlers to North America in 1638 to establish the colony of New Sweden. A replica of the ship was launched at Wilmington, Delaware, in 1997."

From New Sweden Immigrants on Rootsweb, one of the passengers arriving in 1641 on the Charitas was "Hendrick Matson the Finn, a boy
To receive 10 R.D. as yearly wages with 10 daler copper money at the start. In 1644 a laborer, cultivating tobacco at the plantation on the Schuylkill. Was hired as a soldier by Printz on October 1, 1646, served until March 1, 1648. In 1648 a freeman."

Amanuensis Monday – An Amanuensis is a person employed to write what another dictates or to copy what has been written by another. Amanuensis Monday is a daily blogging theme which encourages the family historian to transcribe family letters, journals, audiotapes, and other historical artifacts. Not only do the documents contain genealogical information, the words breathe life into kin – some we never met – others we see a time in their life before we knew them. A fuller explanation can be found here. Amanuensis Monday is a popular ongoing series created by John Newmark at Transylvanian Dutch.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Sports Center Saturday - Celina Boosters Swimmers

My father remembered stories about his mother being a swimmer and participating in events at Grand Lake near Celina, Ohio, but didn't have any details. I was lucky enough to find the picture above that includes my grandmother and her twin sister in their Celina swimsuits!  The picture shows The Celina Boosters for the Grand Reservoir near Celina, Ohio on June 26, 1928. My grandmother Anna Lee Pulskamp Creeden is on the far right in this photo and her twin sister Emma Lee is #5. I found this picture in the Celina, Ohio Sesquicentennial book by Joyce Alig of the Mercer County Historical Society and Joyce kindly gave me permission to post it.

This excerpt is from an article in the Lima News, published on July 15, 1928, shortly after the picture was taken. The one-day tour on which the Celina Boosters Friday visited 12 Ohio and Indiana cities, proved an efficient method for spreading publicity and accumulating good will for Celina and especially Grand Lake and the parks... The initial stop was at Rockford. The delegation then proceeded to Ohio City, Van Wert, and Decatur, Ind. The Celina band gave concerts at each city. At Decatur, the party was served ice cream at the Cloverleaf creamery. Sounds like quite a party!

Grand Lake, St. Marys State Park, Ohio
The picture above is from Wikipedia. Grand Lake was constructed as a reservoir for the Miami and Erie canal and at one time was the world's largest man-made lake. The park has been a popular place for boating, hunting, fishing, swimming and picnicking for many years. More pictures and info on the park are here.

Sports Center Saturday is a series suggested by Susan Petersen of Long Lost Relatives.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Celina, Ohio 1953 - Those Places Thursday

These pictures were taken by my father in Celina, Ohio in July 1953. I believe these are from a parade on July 24, 1953 to celebrate Ohio's Sesquicentennial (1803-1953). I love seeing a glimpse of what his hometown looked like back then!

The float above has Miss Mercer County on it. Zooming in on the dates showed 1803-1953, the dates of Ohio's Sesquicentennial.

I was curious about the movies playing in the theater they were passing. Young Bess is about the life of Elizabeth I before she became queen and starred Jean Simmons, Stewart Granger, and Deborah Kerr. In The Atomic City, an atomic scientist's son is kidnapped by enemy agents. It starred Gene Barry, Lydia Clark, and Michael Moore.

From an article in the Lima News about the parade, there were floats depicting modern and pioneer life and people dressed in a variety of historical garb.The sign on the side of the wagon says "Karch Stone" and is referencing the John W. Karch Stone Co. quarry near Celina. There is a mention of it in the Mercer County Ohio History 1978 book that says all stone was transported by horse and wagon in the early 1900s. If anyone can explain why the wagon looks like a hearse, I would love to know!

Update from an email I received: There is a cemetery next to the quarry (Swamp College) and this could be the carriage used at the cemetery with Karch’s name on it for advertising the quarry.

The Chamber of Commerce float wraps it up with "Come Back to Celina" on the back!