Saturday, October 31, 2015

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun -- Hallowe'en Memories and Family History

Randy Seaver from Genea-Musing has an assignment today to discuss our memories of Halloween. I don’t have any pictures of me dressed in Halloween costumes and I don’t remember many costumes, but once I was a ghost made from a sheet.

I don’t remember Trick or Treating before we moved to Walnut Creek in 1963. In Walnut Creek, we lived on a quiet country road with about a dozen houses. We would go to these houses first, and then our parents would drive us over to the next block or to another neighborhood where there were more houses.

I made the wizard costume on the right.
Our favorite house on our block to visit was Mrs. Peterson’s. She had freshly baked cookies and homemade fudge. These were delicious treats. She always oohed and ahed about our costumes.  Mr. Gardner lived across from her and his treats for us were usually an apple from his tree and boxes of raisins. At the time we didn’t appreciate the “healthy” treats.

I remember when kids stopped Trick or Treating by the time they got to the 6th or 7th grade. I went out longer because I took my younger sisters, though I didn’t dress up. My brothers went out on their own with pillow cases and would returned with them filled! We had sweet treats for weeks.


Check out the mysterious see-through ghost in
this shot of a party at my parent's house.
I remember my daughter’s years of Trick or Treating. I made many of their costumes and sometimes they picked out ones from the Spirit store. When they came home from Trick or Treating, they would sort out all of their candy and some trading would happen. 

Also as an adult, my parents had Halloween parties where we all dressed up and had pumpkin carving contests. It was a lot of fun.


Copyright © 2015 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

1860 Census Can Reveal Country of Origin

I am participating in the DearMyrtle study group called Tracing Immigrant Origins - Passenger Records Study Group.

The 1860 census revealed more detail in the place of birth than more recent census records. Here is the census for my husband's family, Ludwig & Philapena Wollenweber in Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky.[1]

1860 Jefferson Co, Kentucky census, pop. sched., 2nd Ward Louisville, p 563-64, dwelling 1970, fam 3256, L.W. Wollenweber household, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 28 Jul 2010), citing U.S. National Archives and Records Administration M653, roll 375.
What can be seen on this census for the place of birth are the actual countries. At this time, Germany is not yet a country by the name of Germany, but rather, many small countries and principalities, such as Bavaria, Wurttemberg, Saxony, and Hessen.

I wondered about the instructions for the census enumerator and found the instructions for recording the place of birth.[2]  They were not to put “Germany” unless “no better could be had.” They were to put down the specific state. And this helps us narrow down the place of origin of our ancestors. It’s still not the village town, but it does help.


United States, Department of the Interior, Census Office, Eighth Census, U.S. Instructions,  https://www.census.gov/history/pdf/1860instructions.pdf  : accessed 24 Oct 2015, p. 16.



[1] 1860 Jefferson Co, Kentucky census, pop. sched., 2nd Ward Louisville, p 563-64, dwelling 1970, fam 3256, L.W. Wollenweber household, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 28 Jul 2010), citing U.S. National Archives and Records Administration M653, roll 375.
[2] United States, Department of the Interior, Census Office, Eighth Census, U.S. Instructions,  https://www.census.gov/history/pdf/1860instructions.pdf  : accessed 24 Oct 2015, p. 16.


Copyright © 2015 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - What Were You Doing in 1985?


1) Since this was Back to the Future week, I have a related challenge: Do you recall what you were doing in 1985? Family, school, work, hobbies, technology, genealogy, vacations, etc?

2) Tell us in a blog post of your own, in a comment on this blog, or in a Facebook or Google+ post.

What was I doing in 1985?

  • I'd been married for just 5 years and we were living in our current home in Martinez. No kids yet.
  • I was working for Bay Area Rapid Transit System (BART) as a train operator, probably working on the Concord to Daly City line. Somewhere in storage I have my run notebooks and could probably figure out what shift I was working.  It was probably something like 1130-1930 with Tuesday and Wednesdays off because I had lousy seniority, since I had only been there 7 years.
  • My hobbies at the time did not include genealogy. I was a member of the Walnut Creek Model Railroad Society. I might have been Secretary, but I can't remember when I was first elected. The club meeting days were Tuesday and Friday with our Open House on the last Friday of the month. We also had big shows on the weekends around Thanksgiving. I also attended region model railroad conventions which are just like our genealogy conferences. There were classes, tours, contests, and a banquet.
  • I was also using a computer at home by then, too. My first computer was a CPM based computer that I put together with a help of a friend and I used WordStar as the word processor. I loved writing stories and the word processor was a big help. The printer was a daisy wheel that cost $2500.

I can't remember what else I was doing. I would need to do some digging, such as checking dates on the slides I have stored to see if I went on a trip. But I know it's important to try to chronicle our own lives as well as our ancestors'.


Copyright © 2015 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - "How Did Your Parents Meet?"

Another great assignment from Randy Seaver of Genea-Musings.

Here is my assignment:

1) Do you know how, when and where your parents met?

2) Please tell the family story in your own blog post, in a comment to this blog post, or in your own Facebook or Google+ post.

When I put together a family history of my father, William J. Hork's Gleeson line, I sent out questionnaires for my dad, his sisters, and my cousins to fill out. One of the questions was how did you meet your spouse.

He said that he met Lela Nell Johnston at the Walnut Festival. The Walnut Festival was held yearly in Walnut Creek, California in September to celebrate the walnut harvest. A long time ago, a lot of the valley was covered in walnut orchards and Walnut Creek had a walnut packing house, where the trains of the Sacramento Northern would haul them out.

The Walnut Festival was a weekend affair were one could ride on carnival rides, eat great junk food, and play games. And of course it was a place to meet girls (or boys). Here's a history of the Walnut Festival which began in 1911.

I wish I had a photo of my parents from that time. However I have a shot or two of them as they dated.
1952 in Santa Cruz, California

I attended many Walnut Festivals while growing up in Walnut Creek. Corn on the cob prepared by the Lions Club was always my favorite to eat, and the Scrambler was my favorite ride. I remember tossing ping pong balls into glass bowls and winning goldfish, too!

Copyright © 2015 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Passenger List for the Eliasson (Lundquist) Family

I am participating in the DearMyrtle study group called Tracing Immigrant Origins - Passenger Records Study Group.

We are to provide a link to a passenger list record we have found for one of our ancestors. This passenger list that I found was a treasure, because it took a long time to find.

The family of my husband was Lundquist. The earliest census that I found for them was the 1870. Brothers "Andrew" and Gustave were living next door to each other in Jefferson County, Iowa.

They each had a wife and children. This census gave no immigration data.

This family was difficult to find. I couldn't find any Lundquist families that fit the pattern of the family. Then I remembered about the naming patterns of Swedes. Gustav's and Anders' father's name was Elias. Maybe they were listed with the surname Eliasson?

Sure enough, I found the two brothers and their family on the ship list of the SS Manchester, which arrived in New York 9 Jul 1866.[1]

1866 Ship List for Anders Alfred Eliasson aboard the SS City of Manchester
The image of the ship was also at Ancestry.com [2]:

SS Manchester

---------------
[1] "Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at New York, New York, 1820-1957,"  online images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 1 Jun 2011), manifest, City of Manchester, 9 Jul 1866, line 25, Alfred Eliason; citing National Archives Microfilm Publication M237, Record Group 36, Roll 268.
[2] Photo of S.S. City of Manchester (built 1851), image, Ancestry.com  (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 1 Jun 2011), retrieved by choosing the "ship" link attached to the "Passenger Record" database for the Alfred Eliason search, arrived 9 Jul 1866 aboard S.S. City of Manchester.

Copyright © 2015 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.