Sunday, February 28, 2010
Remember back issues can be purchased here http://www.casefileclues.com/2010/02/ordering-back-issues-1-30.html
and a year's subscription can be processed here
Saturday, February 27, 2010
I'm travelling home from the Family History Expo in St. George, Utah, Sunday, so my responses to emails will generally have to wait until Monday or after. Anyone who subscribes before Monday will be sent issue 31, so go ahead and join us if you have not already.
I had a good talk with a few subscribers while in St. George which has given me some additional motivation and a few ideas for upcoming topics and concepts.
The research I hired in Chicago is progressing and I'll be working on a couple of updates on that topic. I am still looking forward to seeing what the employment records of the Pullman company had to say.
We'll be revisisting a few families I wrote up nearly ten years ago for the Ancestry Daily News, when it was a regular ezine. There will be updates and expanded commentary as I now can make things about as long as I want to (within reason, of course) and illustrations can be included which adds greatly.
Again, thanks to everyone for their support of Casefile Clues and keep spreading the word. It is appreciated.
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
There were nearly twice as many responses to the reader survey than I had hoped for. As a result, I gave away two subscriptions to those who submitted entries.
Sunday, February 21, 2010
Issues 1-10 for $5.50
Issues 11-20 for $5.50
Issues 1-20 for $11.00
Issues 21-30 for $5.50
Issues 1-30 for $15.50
Issues are sent as attached PDF files. If you need other sets, email me for a price quote.
Can't believe this was number 30!
Subscriptions received after this posting will start with issue number 31.
Friday, February 19, 2010
Thursday, February 18, 2010
Wednesday, February 17, 2010
I'm giving away two full registrations to attend the expo (does not include banquet). That's quite a bargain.
The first two emails sent to firstname.lastname@example.org will win. It might be several hours before I notify you you are the winner, but the two earliest time stamps will win.
The original report had quotation marks that the investigator had placed around his questions. I am assuming this was done so that his supervisor knew precisely what questions he asked. When I typed up the document I replaced these double quotes with single quotes because I had already placed double quotes around the transcription. I'm starting to wonder if I should have left off the double quotes around the entire transcription which meant I could have left the quotation marks as the investigator placed them in his report.
If anyone has thoughts, please let me know. If you're not all that concerned about single versus double quotes, that's ok.
One of my goals at Casefile Clues is to make things clear for the reader. Another is to give the reader something to follow as a guide. Some of those details are still in flux as a style guide is developed.
A lot of the discussion about style and citations takes place behind the scenes because while I think readers appreciate the inclusion of citations, I'm not certain everyone wants to be in on the discussion. If that's a wrong interpretation on my part, let me know!
Tuesday, February 16, 2010
We will be sending out an online survey for subscribers in the near future. Think about what you like and would like to see change at Casefile Clues. All comments will be read and consideration will be given. And, as usual, I appreciate all the support I have received for Casefile Clues.
And if you aren't a subscriber, now would be an excellent time to join the ranks.
Monday, February 15, 2010
Sunday, February 14, 2010
Issue 29 will be sent out, but most likely not on Sunday. Early this week is looking like the expected delivery date...so if you have been putting off subscribing, there's still time.
Upcoming topics in the near future are:
- working on the Trask family in St. Louis 1820-1880 to see if/how the Andrew we discussed fits as a potential relative
- analyzing the War of 1812 pension file for Levi Rhodes
- update on hiring the professional
These I'mworking on in the relatively near future. Suggestions for future topics are always welcomed. There are several pieces planned for a little bit later down the road.
Thanks--as always feel free to let others know about Casefile Clues and feel free to send me suggestions.
Friday, February 12, 2010
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Thursday, February 11, 2010
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
This is a clipping that was located on him in the Quincy, Illinois, newspaper from 1905.
I have the county records of his insanity case.
Getting records from the state hospital is on my list of things to do.
If you need webpages with more information or need someplace to send your friend for more information, these are good pages to use:
What Makes Casefile Clues Different
About Casefile Clues
They can always email me at either email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tuesday, February 9, 2010
Casefile Clues readers in St. George.
Monday, February 8, 2010
first cousin of my great grandfather that I forgot I had. Will post
updates if there are any major discoveries.
Michael John Neill
Weekly How-to Column Casefile Clues
Subscribe now and I'll start your subscription off with issue 28. More interesting things are on the way.
Sunday, February 7, 2010
Friday, February 5, 2010
In honor of crossing this milestone, we're offering Fans the chance to subscribe at the old annual price of $15.00. The offer can be accessed by clicking here to make a credit card payment.
If you need other payment options, email me at email@example.com
Thanks for all the support guys...I appreciate it.
Thursday, February 4, 2010
Tuesday, February 2, 2010
This originally appeared in the Ancestry Blog on 24 February 2008
The Baby is Thick and Fat: Clues in 1880s Letters to Nebraska
Local gossip. Worries about money. News about the children. The content of the letters is not all that extraordinary. But when they are written by your relative in 1887, they take on additional significance.
A cousin sent me digital copies of three letters written by my ancestor Lina Ufkes in the late 1880s. Like any record, they need to be fit into my ancestor's life. And they need to be analyzed for additional clues.
Written to Whom?
It would have been easier if Lina had specifically named the letter’s recipients, but the greeting on each letter is "Dear brother-in-law and sister"--no specific salutation. To determine the likely recipients, I had to look at the families of both the writer and her husband.
Lina Ufkes had no sisters of marriageable age in the late 1880s. This eliminated her family. Her husband, John Ufkes, had only two living sisters in 1887--one in Nebraska and one in Germany. Since the letters mention relatives known to have been in Nebraska in 1887 and indicate that greetings should be passed on to them, it seemed reasonable the Nebraska sister was the intended recipient.
In addition, the individual who sent me the letters obtained them from her grandmother who had cared for an unmarried son of the Nebraska sister (from whom she suspected her grandmother got the letters).
From all this I came to the conclusion that Lina was writing the letters to John and Antje Ufkes Harms who were living in Franklin County, Nebraska in 1900s. My reasoning and conclusions about the letter’s recipients are included in my transcriptions of the letters, and in my genealogical software package.
Getting a Date
Of the three letters, only one is dated (20 September 1887). One of the undated letters mentions the birth of a son, Bertus, on the 10th of March--"a thick and fat baby." This same letter also mentions the recent marriage of the pastor (unnamed) and the engagement of the pastor's sister to a neighbor, Tonjes Goldenstein. By learning the dates of these events, I was able to narrow the date of this letter to 1887 or 1888. One letter remains undated.
Who Is Mentioned?
Lina mentions several people in her letters. I already suspected who several of them were, but in order to reduce the chance of incorrect conclusions, I referred to information already known about Lina and John's family. In the letter mentioning the birth of her son, Lina actually mentions all her children. Son Johann (age eleven or twelve) is helping his father on the farm; Trientje, Lina, and Hinrich are going to school. Gerhard is too young for that, but does attend Sunday School and son Eilt has been sick for the past month.
In the apparent second paragraph of this letter, Lina asks the Harmses to send greetings to “Uncle Rolf” and to “Eilt and Trientje and Hinrich Habben.” The last three individuals mentioned are nephews and a niece of John Ufkes, children of his sister Christena Ufkes Habben. They were easy to figure out. Her husband was named Rolf and is apparently the “Uncle Rolf” mentioned in the letter.
I was confused. Why did Lina refer to Rolf as “uncle” when he was clearly John's brother-in-law? Did she make a mistake? Was the translation done? It turns out both Lina and the translator were right. It was I who very nearly jumped to the wrong. Rolf Habben did marry John's sister, Christina; but she was his second wife. His first wife was the sister of John Ufkes’s mother. This was why Lina referred to Rolf Habben as an “uncle” instead of a "brother-in-law." This is a good reminder to never attempt to “fix” a document by correcting it while transcribing.
In a future column, we’ll discuss a few other items Lina mentions and indicate how those items were researched. In the meantime, getting the letters was a real treat for me and analyzing them caused me to revisit some research that I had not looked at in quite some time.
Here are some tips regarding family correspondence:
~ Review the family structure of the letter writer, including extended family and family by marriage. Some individuals may only be mentioned by first name.
~ If the letter is in a foreign language, consider getting more than one translation, particularly if the handwriting is difficult to read.
~ Try and place every person in the letter--even those that are not relatives.
~ Do not “correct” the document. Comments about potential errors can be added separately where they clearly do not appear to be part of the document itself.
~ Never give up hope. I had been researching Lina for more than twenty-five years before I learned of the existence of these letters.
~ Try and track down your own extended family for such materials. These letters were sent to me by a relative who descends from one of my great-great-grandfather’s sisters.
The following items from the Cook County, Illinois, area (highly summarized here) are a part of the research contract:
- William Frame name change petition
- Real estate documents for three Chicago area addresses
- Pullman Collection research on several family members
Two items have been partially researched with some success. Updated details will be published in future issues of Casefile Clues.