Thursday, January 22, 2015

Treasure Chest Thursday - Apollo-Soyuz Decal and Letter

This is a letter and decal that my father received while he was working for NASA at the Kennedy Space Center. It was issued on June 16, 1975 in anticipation of the Apollo-Soyuz launch on July 15, 1975. The Apollo-Soyuz mission was the first joint US-Soviet space flight and marks the last flight of an Apollo spacecraft.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Wedding Wednesday - Marriage of Catharine Creeden in 1780

This is the one of the oldest marriage records I've found for a Creeden in the US. According to this record from the Pennsylvania Archives, Catharine Creeden married Daniel Calloughhorn on April 10, 1780.

Marriage Record of the Swedes' Church, (Gloria Dei.) 1750-1810, Page 342
This may be the same Catharine Creeden that I found in an Indentured Servants List from 1772. Both records had locations in Philadelphia, PA.

This is from the Record of Indentures of Individuals Bound Out as Apprentices, Servants, etc. and of Germans and Other Redemptioners in the Office of the Mayor of the City of Philadelphia, October 3, 1771 - October 5, 1773 and shows that a Catharine Creeden from Ireland was indentured to Christian Grover on May 16, 1772.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Genealogy Do-Over Week 2 and My Original Quest

The topics for Week 2 of the Genealogy Do-Over are setting research goals, conducting a self-interview, and conducting family interviews. The data from the interviews should help to set the research goals. The idea this week is to go back to square one and start with yourself. I have to admit that I haven't done that much documentation on myself or my immediate family. I knew I wouldn't be able to complete this in one week, but I did make some progress.

Conducting a Self-Interview
I have to admit that I haven't done that much documentation on myself or my immediate family. One of the suggestions this week is to use a Family Group Sheet to document facts about ourselves. I looked at several of them and decided that they weren't the best format for a single person with no children! Most have room to record events for a husband, wife, and their children, so at least 2/3 of my Family Group Sheet would be blank.

I decided to look at the Individual Report from Family Tree Maker which lists facts, notes, and sources for an individual. So far, I've scanned in and sourced my birth and baptism certificates. I have a current resume that lists my work history and other forms with my list of residences since I was on my own, but the information isn't in my family tree database. I need to check with my Mom to see if she has my certificates for First Communion and Confirmation. I can see that I still have a lot to document!

Conducting Family Interviews
I'm lucky to have the results of an interview with my Dad. In 2000, he wrote down what he knew about his family and that was the basis for my original quest. Our initial research goal was to find information on his great-grandfather Timothy Creeden's family and that elusive location in Ireland. At that time, I wasn't focused on creating and documenting a complete family tree.

My Dad's information on his Creeden family
In 1994, one of my uncles gave me Descendant Reports on my Mom's side of the family, so that was the starting point for several more of my lines. Since I'm doing more of a "go-over" than "do-over", I took a look at the Family Group Sheet created by my family tree software for my parents and my sister. Similar to my own data, the basic facts are there, but there is still a lot to document.

Setting Research Goals
These first research goals should be based on the initial data from the self and family interviews. They should be specific goals and not a broad goal such as "trace my family's Irish roots". Too funny, since that was my original goal! Based on what I've had time to review, here are some of my initial research goals:
  • Verify my father's date of birth, location, and parents.
  • Verify my mother's date of birth, location, and parents.
  • Verify my parents' date of marriage and location.
I'm setting similar goals for each of the "facts" in my Family Tree database for my immediate family. While I feel that I "know" this information, I don't have actual proof for much of it. I'll also add research goals for each of the statements in my Dad's interview. I definitely haven't completed the Week 2 tasks, but I'm planning on using what I have so far to move on to Week 3.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Sunday's Obituary - Johanna Creedon Keefe and Bridget Dowling Keefe

According to the 1915 History of Clinton County, Johanna Creedon Keefe and her husband John Keefe came to Clinton County, Ohio in 1858. Their son Timothy Keefe was married to Bridget Dowling in 1872 in Clinton County. Timothy lost his mother and wife within two weeks of each other in 1892.
 From the Wilmington Clinton Republican on January 7, 1892: Mrs. Joanna Keeffe, of near Centerville, a member of the Catholic church, was buried in Sugar Grove cemetery Sunday.

 From the Wilmington Clinton Republican on January 21, 1892: Bridget, wife of Timothy Keefe, died at the family home in Wayne township Jan. 17, 1892, in the 55th year of her age. It is only two weeks since the venerable mother of Mr. Keefe died. The funeral of both mother and wife occurred in the Catholic church, in Wilmington. Interment at Sugar Grove.

The Keefe family lived close to my Creeden family in Clinton County, so I've wondered if Johanna was related to them. Both families have probable ties to Clondrohid parish in County Cork, Ireland, so it looks like a good possibility.

From the Cemetery Records of Clinton County, Ohio, 1798-1978, Johanna is buried in Section 4, Lot 27 in Sugar Grove Cemetery. She was born in Ireland and died on 1-1-1892 at the age of 88. That would place her birth year around 1803. The entry says she was the widow of Timothy Keefe. I think this is a mistake in the entry and it should read the "mother" of Timothy Keefe. Bridget is also buried in Section 4, Lot 27 and there is a note in the entry saying "Kin Patrick Regan, cousin".

Friday, January 9, 2015

Genealogy Do-Over - Week 1 Progress

I've almost made it through Week 1 of the Genealogy Do-Over! This has been absolutely great for getting things more organized. I think I have a good start on developing a system of organizing and naming my digital files. I've also identified research logs to use and done an inventory on my most of paper files and resources.

Setting Previous Research Aside
For those of us doing more of a "go-over", it was suggested that we work on organizing our digital and paper files. I've inventoried most of my paper files, books, and other paper research materials. I still have one box to go, but now I know where everything is. That alone is a huge improvement!

I took a long look at my digital filing system and made some improvements. My plan is to migrate existing files to my new Genealogy folders as I need them. This is intended to be flexible and I'll definitely be making adjustments as I learn more during the Do-Over.

My top level Genealogy folder is starting out simply with two folders: Surnames and Places. Places is broken down by folders for countries and then regions such as states and counties. These will hold maps, histories, and collections of records related to a specific place.

Folders for each individual will be placed in the appropriate surname folder under Surnames. The individual folder names will be named as follows: LastFirstMiddle_BirthYear-DeathYear. For married females, the maiden name will be listed after the married last name.

The example above shows some of the folders in my Creeden surname folder. The Others folder is for individuals where I haven't found a definite connection to my family. I've found it easier to keep track if I separate these into their own area.

An example of an individual folder is shown below:

I usually wind up with multiple files in each category, so I find it easier to navigate when they're separated into folders. The Research Log in this folder is the individual summary spreadsheet from I downloaded the CensusTools spreadsheets years ago, but haven't been consistent with using them. This is my favorite one since it shows at a glance whether or not each possible record for an individual has been found.

My file naming convention shown above is:
Name_Document Description_Date_ImageOrPageNumber_Source. For sources, I'm using a 2 or 3 character code such as FS for FamilySearch, AC for, F3 for Fold3, and unk for the dreaded "I don't know where I got this"! As I save new files, this naming convention will allow me to easily see where I found the document and the "unk" code will not be used.

Preparing to Research
If I can stick to #1 and #2 in the next section, that will go a long way in improving my research preparations.

Establishing Base Practices and Guidelines
These are the top procedures I'm committing to:
  1. Decide what I'm searching for before I search.
  2. Review what I've already done before searching.
  3. Update my research logs as I search. Use the CensusTools "ResearchLog" for a quick summary. For a detailed research log, I'm going to try the Research Log posted by Thomas MacEntee.
  4. Cite sources properly.
  5. Use consistent naming conventions when saving documents.
  6. Slow down!
To Do:
This is definitely a work in progress, but these are the things mentioned in the Week 1 topics that I'd like to complete:
  • Inventory that last box of paper genealogy files.
  • Create a digital index to my top paper and digital files.
  • Inventory my digital files and migrate the ones I need. My plan is to migrate files for individuals as I research them.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Fourth Blogiversary - January 4, 2015

It's hard to believe that it's been four years since I started Kathryn's Quest!

A few highlights from the past year were:
  • Breaking through some brick walls for my Maryland Councill ancestors by following a trail of land and probate records. 
  • Finding more relations for my Maryland Sparks ancestors.
  • On the Ohio side of the family, the Immaculate Conception Church where my Creeden, Niehaus, and Pulskamp families worshiped celebrated its 150th Anniversary.

This year, I'm planning on participating in the Genealogy Do-Over led by Thomas MacEntee of Geneabloggers. I'm hoping to get everything more organized and to improve my research skills.

Happy Blogiversary to the other blogs that started on this date: Family Tree Gal and Indiana Dillmans! A big thanks to Geneabloggers and to all who emailed, posted and followed my blog. Hope to hear more from you in the coming year!

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Sorting Saturday and the Genealogy Do-Over

One thing I want to accomplish as part of the Genealogy Do-Over is to establish a better filing system for my genealogy digital and paper files. Right now, some of it works and some of it doesn't. My paper files are especially in need of sorting. My digital system mostly works for me, but it also needs some sorting and I need to make it more consistent across all of my surnames.

I'm planning on doing more of a Genealogy Go-Over as some people are calling it, so one of my goals for Week 1 is to take a look at how I've organized my files and create an index to my most important documents.

These are the types of documents that I'd like to be able to find in an instant. I'll update this list as I organize my files and use it to create my Top Document index.
  • Birth
  • Baptism
  • Marriage
  • Death
  • Census
  • Probate
  • Land
  • Military
  • Newspaper