Saturday, September 23, 2017

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun -- Carrie Ann's Meme

Randy Seaver of Genea-musing has a new challenge for us:

Your mission this week, should you decide to accept it, is to:

1)  On Facebook, Carrie Ann Smith posted a meme earlier this week and I thought it might be fun for SNGF (Thank you, Carrie Ann!).

2)  Copy the questions below, delete my answers, and put your own answers in.

3)  Post the questions and answers on your own blog, in a comment to this blog, or in a Facebook or Google+ post.  Be sure to leave al ink to your blog post in my blog post.

Here are the choices:

1. Who are you named after?  I don’t think I was named after anyone. There are no Lisas in the family tree except for me. My guess that my mother liked the song “Mona Lisa” and named me after that.

2. Last time you cried?  Sentimental television shows and movies make me cry. So do some books, whether they are sad or happy. 

3. Soda or water?  I like soda, but it’s bad for you, so I drink water.

4. What's your favorite kind of pizza?  Mediterranean with gluten free crust and feta cheese from BJs. 

5. Favorite Flower?  Pansies remind me of my grandmother, Mam-ma. African violets, my grandmother, Nana. I live tulips.

6. Roller Coaster?  No.

7. Favorite Ice cream?  When I could eat ice cream, the best was German Chocolate Cake at Baskin Robbins.  Now it’s chocolate sorbet when I can find it.

8. Favorite book?  Books by W.E.B. Griffin, Tony Hillerman, and Victoria Thompson.

9. Shorts or jeans?   Shorts, except in winter. 

10. What are you listening to right now?  NPR.

11. Favorite color?  blue

12. Tattoos?   Nope. 

13. Favorite thing to eat?  Bananas, chocolate, tomatoes, smoked oysters.

14. Android or iPhone?  Android.

15. Favorite holiday?  Thanksgiving. Love turkey.

16. Night owl or mornings?  Both. 

17. Fave day of the week?  Sunday. 

18. Favorite Season?  Spring and Fall. I love sweater weather! 

19. Favorite Sport?  Baseball is my favorite sport. I also like to watch tennis and women’s soccer. I like to play pickleball.

20. Mountains, Beach, Forest or snow?  Forest, especially if I can bird watch.

Copyright © 2017 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - A Family Heirloom (Actually Two)

Randy Seaver of Genea-Musing has a new mission this week.

Our mission this week is to:
1)  The Family History Hound listed 20 Questions about your Ancestor, and I'm going to use some of them in the next few months.
 2)  Please answer the question - "What heirloom do you have that has been handed down through the generations?"
 3)  Write your own blog post, make a comment on this post, or post  your answer on Facebook or Google+.  Please leave a link to your answer in comments on this post.
This was an excellent challenge for me. I began thinking about heirlooms that I have and that I had not previously taken photos of them. An now looking that them, I realize I need to buy some archival boxes and tissues to preserve them properly. I get my archive advice from Melissa Barker, The Genealogist in the Archives blog writer, who wrote this post about using archival boxes.

So I have two items that meet Randy’s requirement and since I took the trouble to get them out and photograph them both, I am going to write about both items.

Mother-of-Pearl Opera Glasses
The first item is a pair of opera glasses that were given to me by my aunt, Virginia Gertridge, who told me they were owned by her great aunt, Elizabeth Gleeson. Nothing was written down and I don’t remember her exact words as I received the gift. It is possible that Virginia’s mother, Anna Sullivan Hork, had the opera glasses first and then were passed down to Virginia.

Clues about the glasses. They are stored in a leather case which is falling apart. Inside the lid is written “A. N. Wright, Importer, Portland, Or.” Checking, an A.N. Wright was listed in Portland city directories from 1891 to 1906. A.N. Wright was listed on the Watches, Clocks, and Jewelry section of the classified business directory, at 293 Morrison. In the household listings, he was listed as Amos N. Wright, jeweler at 293 Morrison and living at 403 Larrabee.[1]

Looking online for mother of pearl opera glasses brought up several sites selling old opera glasses. This one here has a pair from the 1930s valued at $600. The image looks just like my pair! They seem to have been made in France.

Provenance: Elizabeth Gleeson (1865-1942) was the daughter of John Gleeson and Margaret Tierney. She never married. She may have given the glasses to her niece, Anna M. Sullivan Hork sometime in the late 1930s. They both were living in Southern California before my grandmother moved to Napa with her children in 1940. It was also possible that Anna or her daughter, Virginia, received the glasses after Elizabeth died in 1942. Sometime in 2011 or 2012, Virginia gave the glasses to me.

The second item is a straight razor that belonged to Amos Gorrell (1837-1928). Amos Gorrell was the great-grandfather of my husband. This item came with two notes, one written by Amos’ son, Joseph Norman Gorrell and the other note was typed by Joseph’s daughter, Ada M. Gorrell Thomason. The handwritten notes says:
This razor was given to my Father by Arthur Gorrell, then was sent to me after my father’s death. It is a fine Razor. I think Arthur had it hollow-ground. Keep it in its case.
Ada typed the above note and added, Grandfather Amos Gorrell died I think in 1928. My father, J.N. Gorrell, gave razor to me before he died in 1960.

Sometime later, Ada gave the razor to her brother, George Jospeh Gorrell, who in turn, gave the razor to his son, Norman Gorrell. That is how we have possession of it. I don't have any clues as to who made the razor though. 

Provenance: Amos Gorrell was the son of Amos Gorrell and Leah Wollam. His son, Arthur Gorrell, gave the razor to his father, sometime before Arthur died in 1916. Amos gave the razor to his son, Joseph Norman Gorrell. Joseph gave the razor to his daughter, Ada M Thomason, probably because she was interested in the history of the family. Ada later gave it to her brother, George J Gorrell. George gave the razor to his son some years before he died in 2011.

[1] R.L. Polk & Co, 1906 Portland City Directory, pp. 1165 (Amos N. Wright) & 1353 (A.N. Wright), digital image, ( : accessed 19 Aug 2017). 

Copyright © 2017 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

A Genealogy Vacation

I have recently returned from a twelve day vacation to Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota, Mitchell, South Dakota, and Stanton-Red Oak, Iowa.

In Minneapolis, I attended the three-day International Germanic Genealogy Conference hosted by the local society, Germanic Genealogy Society. This was the first conference and in 2019, our local society, Sacramento German Genealogy Society, will be the hosts! I met lots of genealogists from around the country and the world. Especially exciting was meeting in person, Ursula Krause from Berlin. Some of the classes I attended:
“Finding Your Ancestors in German Directories” – Ursula C. Krause
“World War I Era U.S. Alien Registrations” – Paula Stuart-Warren
“Meyers Orts Gazetteer” – Fritz Juengling
“Die Pfalz: Understanding and Researching in Palatine Records” – Richard Haberstroh
“Baltimore: The Golden Door for Immigrants” – Debra A Hoffman
“Pioneers and Colonists: Background of Germans in Eastern Europe” – James Beidler
The conference was a huge success, and the excitement and buzz heard between the classes was very encouraging. 

After the conference, my friend, Yvonne, and I rented a car to travel through parts of Minnesota, South Dakota, Iowa, and Nebraska. She had some research to do in Owatonna, Minnesota, and I had some to do in Mitchell, South Dakota and Stanton, Iowa. We also got a little sightseeing done, too. More on that later.

Research in South Dakota concerned my homesteading Gleeson and Sullivan families. I visited Holy Family Catholic Church looking for a marriage record. At the Carnegie Resource Center, I found maps of the farming area and addresses and photos of residences in Mitchell. The register of deeds office in the courthouse was the biggest find. I spent part of two days there pulling and copying deeds.

Research in Iowa concerned my husband’s Lundquist families who settled in Montgomery County. Stanton is a quaint little town. We visited the two cemeteries for photos of the markers. Since the Swedish Cultural Center would not open until 1 p.m., we had an early lunch in town. There I read the newspaper I’d purchased at the gas station (love reading local news) and saw that the Red Oak Library had just digitized the local newspapers. We got in the car and drove over to Red Oak to check out that collection. I found about two dozen articles of interest and received those copies. The local historical society has a museum that was open and visited there, too. They also have many archival materials and I may be writing to them soon for some help.

Sightseeing Adventures
I love just driving along the highway and stopping whenever something looks interesting. We stopped at Sioux Falls and visited the falls.

Of course, in Mitchell we had to see the Corn Palace. We also toured the Mitchell Prehistoric Indian Village.

A trip up to DeSmet to visit the Ingalls homestead was very worthwhile. The South Dakota prairie is so expansive!

A suggestion to visit the National Music Museum in Vermillion at the University of South Dakota was the best. There were so many interesting old musical instruments on display. With ipods, we were able to learn of its history and listen to music being played on the instruments.

In Omaha, we visited the Lorenzen Garden and Durham Museum. Between the two, I clocked in over 12,000 steps!

Copyright © 2017 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - 100 Word Genealogy Challenge

Randy Seaver has another great challenge:

1)  This SNGF is based on the 100 Word Challenge ( that school children are participating in around the world.  They are given a word or phrase to write a story about in one hundred words.

2)  Write a short 100 word story using the phrase ",,,the most interesting ancestor I have..." in 100 words. 
The most interesting ancestor I have is my aunt, Lorene Ethel Hork (1923—2013). As our “fun” aunt, she loved hearing stories about our lives. But she lived a great one herself. She worked as a civilian for the Army  in Japan after World War II. Eighteen months later, she and three other young women traveled around the world visiting Asia, the Middle East, Egypt,  and Europe. She returned in 1953 aboard the RMS Queen Mary. Living in San Francisco and San Diego, she worked for the California Department of Motor Vehicles, the same place as her husband, Wally Waldron.

Copyright © 2017 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun -- Your Genea-Bucket List

Randy Seaver’s Saturday Night Genealogy Fun Challenge this week is:

Knowing that a "Bucket List" is a wish list of things to do before death:

What is on your Genealogy Bucket List?  What research locations do you want to visit?  Are there genea-people that you want to meet and share with?  What do you want to accomplish with your genealogy research?  List a minimum of three items - more if you want!

I do have some places I’d like to visit that concerns my genealogy research. I don’t necessarily need to research there but would love to walk on the ground where our ancestors lived. I’d visit the churches and learn about the history of the area at the museums. Perhaps I’d buy a souvenir or two as well.

County Cork where my Sullivan line came from and County Tipperary where my Gleeson and Tierney folks came from.

Lippe county, in particular the towns of Oldenhundem, Kirchhundem, and Altenhundem in Westphalia where my Hork family came from. There, I’d see where the Sommers, Troesters, and Voss families lived.

Kusel in Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany. My husband’s Wollenweber line is from here.

Unterhausen in Wuerttemberg, Germany. My husband’s Voehringer line is from here.

Poszan in Poland that was called Schneidemuehl when Germans lived there. My Sievert family came from there in 1852.

County Cornwall, where my husband’s Davey line is from.

Åsenhöga, Jönköping county, Sweden where my husband’s Nilsson (later called Nilsen) line came from. Also Grolanda, Skaraborgs county, Sweden, where the Lundquist (their American name) family came from.

My daughters have been to Åsenhöga, Jönköping county, Sweden but the other places have not been visited yet. Looks like a month-long vacation at least to hit all of these places.

Copyright © 2017 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun -- Your Unbroken Chain of Gravestones

Randy Seaver of Genea-Musing has another challenge for us today:
For this week's mission (should you decide to accept it), I challenge you to: 
1)  Determine what is your longest unbroken line of ancestral gravestones - how many generations can you go back in time?  Do you have photographs of them?
2)  Tell us and/or show us in a blog post of your own, or in a comment to this blog, or in a Facebook status or a Google+ stream post.
This is a very interesting project. I worked on my father’s line this week and found four generations of female ancestors where I have tombstones. Thankfully either I took the photos or they were photos that my friends took for me.

My grandmother, Anna M. Sullivan Hork, was buried at the Los Angeles National Cemetery.[1]
Los Angeles National Cemetery - photo taken by L. Gorrell ©

Her mother, Anna M. Gleeson Sullivan is buried at Mt. Carmel Cemetery in Anaconda, Deer Lodge Co, Montana.[2]
Mt. Carmel Cemetery, photo taken by L. Gorrell ©

Her mother, Margaret Tierney Gleeson is buried at Mt. Calvary Catholic Cemetery in Portland, Multnomah Co, Oregon.[3]
Mt. Calvary Cemetery, photo taken by L. McCorkle ©

Her parents, John Tierney & Ann Murray, were buried at St. Patrick’s Roman Catholic Cemetery in Fallowfield (now Ottawa), Carleton Co, Ontario, Canada.[4]
St. Patrick's Cemetery, photo taken by S. Swindell ©

[1] Los Angeles National Cemetery, Los Angeles, California, photo taken by L. Gorrell, 1996.
[2] Mt. Carmel Cemetery, Anaconda, Montana, photo taken by L. Gorrell, Summer 1999.
[3] Mt. Calvary Catholic Cemetery, Portland, Oregon, photo taken by L. McCorkle, Summer 2004.
[4] St. Patrick’s Roman Catholic Cemetery, Ottawa, Canada, photo taken by S. Swindell, Summer 2007.

Copyright © 2017 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.

Monday, July 10, 2017

On this day, Birth of William Cyril Hork, July 10, 1899

William Cyril Hork was my paternal grandfather. He was born 10 Jul 1899 in Hamilton, Ravalli County, Montana to John Anton Hork and Julia Sievert.[1]

He was baptized at St. Francis Xavier Church in Missoula, Missoula County, Montana on 16 Jul 1899 by J.B. Carroll, S.J.[2] His parent’s names were listed as Casper A Hork and Juliana Civert.

So had he been born in Hamilton and then the family traveled six days later to Missoula to be baptized? Or had he really been born in Missoula?

The birth certificate for William Cyril was created in 1941 as a delayed birth registration. Three pieces of evidence was used to support his birth date:
  • Family Bible, dated 1866, showed William Cyril Hork born July 10, 1899 at Hamilton; his father  John Anton Hork born in Germany and his mother Julianna Sievert born in Joliet, Illinois; and that he was the tenth child listed in the bible.
  • Mabel M. Lindstadt, Superintendent of Schools of Ravalli County, signed and dated 10 Sep 1941 that Cyril Hork’s name appeared on the school census list of Hamilton School District no. 3 and showing date of birth as Jul 10, 1899, and mother as Julia Hork.
  • Copy of Baptismal Certificate issued on certificate form of church, signed by Rev. Russell White, S.J., pastor of St. Francis Xavier Church, Missoula, stating “Cyril William Hork, child of Casper A Hork and Juliana Seivert was born July 10, 1899 and baptized July 14, 1899.”
These were all sworn before the notary public, E.M. Tucker on 18 Sep 1941.

Once I saw this birth certificate I was anxious to find a copy of the bible. I did finally discover which family line had the bible and they sent digital images of the pages. Now that I see the reference to school records, I need to seek out those, too.

So the baptism record answered the question of where he was born. It stated the birthplace as Hamilton. St. Francis Xavier was opened October 9, 1892.[3]  St. Francis Church in Hamilton began in 1896, and the first eleven years, priests from Missoula's St. Francis were in charge.[4] So it is quite possible that William Cyril had been baptized in Hamilton but the sacrament was recorded in the Missoula church's records.

Baptism, William Cyril Hork, St. Francis Church, Missoula, 1899

Happy 118th Birthday!

[1] State of Montana, Birth Record of William Cyril Hork (certificate copy), 1899, File No. 1266 in Helena, recorded Sep 1941.
[2] Baptism of William Cyril Hork, St. Francis Xavier Church, Missoula, Montana , 1899, Item #1418.
[3] "History," St. Francis Xavier,
[4] "About Our Parish," St. Francis Church,

Copyright © 2017 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

On this day: Birth of Mary Martha Gleeson, 8 July 1863

Mary Martha Gleeson was born in Carleton County, Ontario, Canada on 8 July 1863 to John Gleeson and Margaret Tierney.[1] She was the second daughter and fourth child born to John and Margaret.

She was baptized on 2 August 1863 at St. Phillip’s Catholic Church by Father O’Connell. James Douras and Susan Smith were the sponsors.[2] James Douras was John’s sister, Honora’s husband, or rather, Mary Martha’s uncle. At this time, I don’t know who Susan Smith was. Was she a relative of John or Margaret Gleeson, or was she an in-law like James Douras? [Note: Mary Martha’s brother, John, married a Susan Smith later in 1894, but this was not the same Susan.]

She moved to Dakota  Territory with her parents around 1880 and married her husband, Warren Edmond Gilbert on 9 Sep 1886 in Mitchell, Davison Co, South Dakota. A newspaper article about the marriage:
"Gilbert-Gleeson.  At the Catholic church in this city at 8:30 am Thursday, by Rev. Father Sheehan.  Mary Martha Gleeson, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Gleeson and Warren E. Gilbert, of Grand Forks.  A wedding breakfast was served at 11 o'clock, and Mr. and Mrs. Gilbert took the train east at one o'clock.  They will visit Sioux Falls, Minneapolis, St. Paul, and Minnewaukon before going to Grand Forks, where the groom is engaged in the insurance business."[3]
Before 1900, the family moved to California, where their daughter, Muriel Martha Gilbert was born, 19 Oct 1895.

Mary Martha lived a long life. Here is a newspaper article with photo of her 98th birthday. She lived at the geriatric hospital, Santa Teresita Hospital.[4]
98th Birthday celebration
 She died 14 Sep 1962 in Pomona, Los Angeles County at the age of 99.[5] She was buried at Calvary Cemetery in Los Angeles, but there is no marker.[6]

Happy 154th Birthday, Mary Martha!

[1] St. Phillips Church, Richmond, Carleton Co, Register, vol. 2, 1863, B32, Mary Martha Gleeson; digital images, "Ontario, Canada, Parish registers, 1836-1917,”FamilySearch (  : viewed 7 Jul 2017); citing FHL 1304679 item 2.
[2] ibid.
[3] “Gilbert-Gleeson,” Mitchell Daily Republican, 10 Sep 1886, p 3, digital image, ( : viewed 7 Jul 2017).
[4] “Birthday Girl,” Newspaper clipping, newspaper unknown, July 1961,
[5] "California Death Index, 1940 thru 1997," database,   (; citing The California Department of Health Services Office of Health Information and Research vital Statistics Section, 1962, Los Angeles Co, Mary M. Gilbert.
[6] Calvary Cemetery, 4201 Whittier Blvd., Los Angeles, California, Section G, L1009, grave 2; author visited cemetery 1 Aug 2008 and found no tombstone.

Copyright © 2017 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

On This Day : Marriage of Joseph Muir and Susan Nicholas Davey on 4 July 1854

Susan Nicholas Davey is my husband’s great grandaunt. She was born 11 Aug 1834 in St. Agnes in County Cornwall, England to Thomas Davey and Mary Nicholas.[1] She was the second child of fifteen.

The family, which included five brothers and sisters, left England for America in 1851 or 1852. The ship’s list has not been found but the family was enumerated in the 1851 census in Debtford, London,[2] and on 10 October 1853 birth of the youngest son, Frederick Henry Davey was born in Reading, Berks County, Pennsylvania.[3]

Susan was married twice, but the first marriage was to Joseph Muir on 4 July 1854 in Reading, Berks County, Pennsylvania.[4] The marriage occurred at St. Peter’s Church by Rev. Newton Heston. Joseph was also of Reading.
St. Peter's Church, Reading, Pennsylvania

By 1860 the family, including their son, William Muir, was living in Jeffersonville, Clark County, Illinois.[5] Joseph was an engineer. William was five years old.

Joseph died 10 September 1867 in Jeffersonville and is buried at the Walnut Ridge Cemetery.[6]

Susan later remarried Herman H Wellman. After Wellman’s death in 1897, Susan’s whereabouts are unknown. She last appeared in Cincinnati city directories in 1906 as the widow of H.H. Wellman and then there are no more records. She doesn’t appear in Ohio death indexes.

Someday I’d like to find out what happened to her.

[1] Birth of Susan Nicholas Davey, 1834, Thomas Davey Family Bible, (Cincinnati, Ohio: Moore, Wilstch, Keyes & Company, 1859); transcription done by Mary Davey Korn, granddaughter of Thomas Davey.
[2] 1851 England Census, digital images, ( : accessed 29 May 2012), Kent, Deptford, St. Nicholas parish, page 5-6, household 24, Thomas Davey; PRO HO 107/1585, GSU rol 174822, citing The National Archives of UK, London.
[3] Birth of Frederick Henry Davey, 1853, Thomas Davey Family Bible,
[4] Central United Methodist (Reading, Pennsylvania), Historic Pennsylvania Church and Town Records. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Historical Society of Pennsylvania., Marriages, p 2, Joseph Muir & Susan Davey, 1854; digital images, ( : accessed 27 June 2012).
[5] 1860 U.S. census, Clark County, Indiana, pop. sched., Jeffersonville, page 67, family 511, Joseph Muir household; NARA microfilm publication M653, roll 248.
[6] Find A Grave, database with images (, memorial# 64416459, Joseph B. Muir, Walnut Ridge Cemetery, Jeffersonville IN.

Copyright © 2017 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun -- Fourth of July Memories

Randy Seaver of Genea-Musing has another great theme.

It's Saturday Night and the Fourth of July is Tuesday - let's have some Genealogy Fun! If you're reading this on Sunday morning, or even later, it's not too late for you to participate.

1. Think of the best Fourth of July you remember from your childhood.

2. Think of the best Fourth of July you remember from your adulthood.

3. What will,  you do on the holiday?

4. Write about one, or all, of them on your blog or in Comments to this post, or on Facebook or Google+.

Here's mine:

Childhood Memories
I don’t remember any particular Fourth of July but often my dad barbequed some kind of meat, perhaps hamburgers or a large steak that was sliced thin for sharing. My mom made potato salad or cucumber and onion salad (or maybe both). For dessert we had watermelon or ice cream with chocolate syrup. If the doughboy pool was set up, us kids would swim all day. Some years my dad would drive down to Danville where we found a place to park to watch the fireworks shot from the field at San Ramon Valley High School. Later years when I could drive, I’d take my younger sisters to watch fireworks shot off from Heather Farm Park in Walnut Creek.

Adult Memories
When my daughters were young, we took them to watch fireworks in our Waterfront Park in Martinez. We’d sit on the lawn and oohed and aahed as each one was shot off and then try to choose our favorites. A few years, I directed a week-long Girl Scout day camp during the week of Fourth of July and we always had a camp day on the fourth. The camp would be decorated in red, white, and blue streamers and balloons, and we’d make red, white, and blue sno-cones.

You can see the patriotic board we created in the background.
My daughters and I once marched in the Fourth of July parade in Clayton with the DAR-Anne Loucks Chapter. This was one of the few times I actually bought something red, white, and blue to wear. Unfortunately, I can't find the photos of this event.

This Fourth
This year I plan to march in the Martinez Fourth of July parade with the group, Friends of Alhambra Creek. I’ll wear the Friends of Alhambra Creek 25th anniversary shirt and a Rosie the Riveter bandana. This parade is small and the route short. Mostly non-profits march to give them exposure and to share in the patriotic feelings.

Copyright © 2017 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Happy 6th Blogiversary!

It's been six years since I wrote my first blog post. In this time I have written over 200 blog posts, mostly about my paternal families and my husband's families. I write about my maternal families mostly on my first blog, "Mam-ma's Southern Family."

Most of my blog posts have been about the Hork, Gorrell, Sullivan, and Johnston families. I have also made many "Saturday Night Genealogy Fun" posts and participated last year in the "A-Z Challenge."

This year I've been working on my portfolio for BCG certification and have not written as many detailed stories about my family for the blog. Since I have not decided on which family to write for the Kinship Determination Project (KDP), I've been selective in what I write about for this blog.

Once the portfolio is complete and turned in, I hope to return to writing about the research process and learning more about my family.

Copyright © 2017 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.

Friday, June 23, 2017

On this Day -- the Marriage of Greenlee Bean Selman and Amanda Deborah Oldham, 23 June 1851

My three times great-grandparents, Greenlee Bean Selman and Amanda Deborah Oldham were married on 23 Jun 1851 in Cherokee County, Texas.

Actually, Greenlee Selman married another Selman, Mrs. Deborah A Selman. Here is a copy of the license for the marriage:[1]
“To any Judge Justice of the Peace or Regularly Ordained Minister of the Gospel, you are hereby authorized to solemnize the rites of matrimony between Mr. Green Lee R Selman and Mrs. Deborah Amanda Selman and due return make to within Sixty days after solemnization at my office in the town of Rusk. Given under my hand and seal of ?? In the Town of Rusk this 23rd September AD 1851.
   W.P. Brittain Clerk Co Court, by his Deputy O.G. Woods.”
1851 Marriage License for Green Lee Selman & Mrs. Deborah A. Selman,
Cherokee Co, Texas
Now there is no return recorded in the marriage book. When did they marry? Probably not in the same office on that day. Had the minister forgotten to return the marriage? Or had Greenlee and Amanda married in a different county and it was recorded there?

Amanda Deborah Oldham had previously been married to James Selman. They married 25 November 1841 in Carroll County, Mississippi. James died 10 November 1850 and they had two children:
  • George Washington Selman, b. 22 September 1842
  • Emma Olivia Selman, b. 6 May 1844

James was the son of Thomas Selman and Polly Goodwin and a first cousin to Greenlee Selman, who was the son of Benjamin F. Selman and Sarah Bean. Thomas and Benjamin were brothers.

Greenlee and Amanda had three children:
  • Mary Caroline Selman, b. 28 Jun 1852
  • Robert Louis Selman, b. 4 Apr 1855
  • Sarah Helena “Sallie” Selman, b. 27 Sep 1858, my second great-grandmother, who married Peter Hayden Hutson.
Happy 166th Anniversary, Greenlee & Amanda!

[1] Cherokee County, Texas, Marriage Record, Vol. A, p. 210, licence for Green Lee Selman to Mrs. Deborah A. Selman, digital image, ( : accessed 23 June 2017); citing FHL film 988075.

Copyright © 2017 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Recent Ancestor Photographs

Randy Seaver of Genea-Musing has another great assignment for us.
1)  Do you have photos of all of your ancestors back to the 1850 time frame?  Which recent ancestors do you not have a photograph of? 
2)  Review your files, and list the ancestors for whom you want and/or need to find a photograph.  Also list where they resided and where they died.  Where would you look to find a photograph of them?

3)  Share your answers on your own blog post (and leave a comment here with a link), or on Facebook or other social media.
So here’s mine:

I have photos of my parents, my four grandparents, and seven out of my great-grandparents. I have photos of  ten out of sixteen great-great-grandparents. And I have only two out of thirty-two 3X great-grandparents.

Of my great-grandparents:
I have not found a photo of Johan Anton Hork (1843-1906).

Of my great-great-grandparents:
I need a photo of Vincent Sievert (1823-1890) & his wife Susanna Raduntz (1832-1911). I have tried many years ago by contacting other Sievert descendants. Maybe someday.

Jeremiah Sullivan (1811-1888) and his wife, Mary Sheehan (1822-1892). They died in Todd Co, Minnesota.

Joseph Heinrich Horoch (1804-1857) and his wife Maria Catharine Trösster (1813-1874). They died in Oberhundem, Westfalen. I doubt I’ll find photos of them.

Of my great-great-great-grandparents: The only ones that fit the date criteria are:
Martin Gleeson (1787-1859) who died in rural Canada.

Samuel Johnston (1816-1869) who died in Titus Co., Texas and his wife, Elizabeth McCormack (1814-1891).

Benjamin W. Jones (1822-aft 1861) who died in the Civil War, and his wife, Amanda A Haley (1827-1904). If he had been in the Union Army I might expect to find a photo, however he was in the Confederate Army and I don't even know which unit. This is a big brick wall.

Greenlee Bean Selman (1820-1888) and his wife, Amanda Deborah Oldham (1822-1880). They both died in Texas.

George Wilson Lancaster (1839-1919). He died in Erath Co, Texas. I have a photo of his wife with her second husband.

James Madison Coor (1833-1889). He died in Texas. His wife, Melissa Ann Welch died in 1876 in Copiah Co, Mississippi. They were probably too poor to have any photographs.

Jesse Loveless (1806-1873) and his wife, Elizabeth Nixon (1810-aft 1876). They died in Faulkner Co, Arkansas.

Some of these last group probably never had photos taken of them. However, if anyone out there has a photo of my ancestors, I would love to see it!

Copyright © 2017 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun -- Which Ancestor Moved the Furthest?

Another great genealogy challenge from Randy Seaver of Genea-musing.
1)  The Family History Hound listed 20 Questions about your Ancestor, and I'm going to use some of them in the next few months. 
2)  Please answer the first question - "Which ancestor moved the farthest from their home?"
3)  Write your own blog post, make a comment on this post, or post  your answer on Facebook or Google+.  Please leave a link to your answer in comments on this post.
My great-grandfather, Johann Anton Hork and his brother, Johann Albert Hork, came the furthermost distance from their home.

Both were born in the small town, Oberhundem, located in Kreis Olpe of Westfalen. Anton was born 8 Nov 1843 and Albert was born 10 Aug 1853.[1]

The 27-year-old, Johan Hork, arrived in the United States on 5 Nov 1870 aboard the HMS Idaho.[2] He married Julia Sievert in Joliet, Will County, Illinois.[3] John was a tailor and he took his family west as far as Portland, Oregon:
  • Kane County, Illinois[4]
  • St. Louis, Missouri[5]
  • Detroit, Michigan[6]
  • Grand Rapids, Michigan[7]
  • Portland, Oregon[8]

Later he moved his family to Hamilton, Montana,[9] where most of his children lived the rest of their lives.

John Anton’s brother, Albert Hork, was a Roman Catholic priest. He attended Laurentiacum Arusberg in Paderborn, then St. Francis in Wisconsin, and finally his theological studies at University at Vienna, Austria and American College at Louvain, Belgian.  He became a priest 7 Jun 1884. He served in many parishes in Missouri: Kearney, Central City, Ridgeley, Randolph, Menominee, and St. Libory.[10]

The last church Father Albert served was at St. Louis in Gervais, Oregon. He lived until his death at the St. Mary’s Covent in Beaverton, Oregon.[11]

Distance between Oberhundem, Westfalen and Portland, Oregon is 8,278 km or 5,144 miles.[12]

[1] For Anton’s birth: Kirchenbuch, 1649-1874, Katholische Kirche Oberhundem (Kr. Olpe), Baptism of Johann Anton Horoch (Mikrofilme aufgenommen von Manuskripten im Bistumsarchiv Paderborn.Kein Verleih an europische Genealogie-Forschungsstell), Intl 1257842, Taufen 1826-1847, p 139. For Albert’s birth, Kirchenbuch, 1649-1874, Katholische Kirche Oberhundem (Kr. Olpe), Baptism of Johann Albert Horoch, (Mikrofilme aufgenommen von Manuskripten im Bistumsarchiv Paderborn.Kein Verleih an europische Genealogie-Forschungsstell), Intl 1257843, Taufen 1848-1878, 1853, p 27.
[2] "Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at New York, New York, 1820-1957," digital images, (, film 336, 5 Nov 1870, SS Idaho, line 39, no. 1030, Joh Hork.
[3] St. John's Catholic Church, Marriage (Church) Record of Anton Hork & Julia Sievert, Joliet, Illinois, Marriages, p 13, Hork-Sievert.
[4] 1880 U.S. census, Kane County, Illinois, pop. sched., Aurora, ED 73, p 43c (penned), p. 79a (stamped), dwelling 280, family 392, Antone Hark, (, citing NARA T9, roll 217.
[5] St. Louis City Directory, 1882, p 561, Anton Hork, David B. Gould, Publ., digital image, (
[6] Detroit City Directory, 1883, p 553, Anthony Hork, J.W. Weeks & Co, digital image, (
[7] Grand Rapids City and Kent County Directory, 1885-85, 294, Anton Hork, microfilm, FHL film 1376887, R.L. Polk & Co, Grand Rapids, Michigan.
[8] Oregon City Directory, 1891, p 62, Anton Hork, “U.S. City Directories, 1821-1989” (Beta), (, RL Polk Co, Portland.
[9] 1900 U.S. census, Ravalli County, Montana, population schedule, ED 81, Sheet 15a, p 33 (stamped), household/family 285, John A Hork, digital image, ( : accessed 28 Jun 2011), citing NARA microfilm publication T623, roll 914.
[10] Biography written in Albert Hork’s hand, 20 Oct 1902, original located at Diocese of Omaha, Nebraska.
[11] Ken Hoggatt and Phyllis (Ferrara) Hoggatt, editors, Cemeteries of Washington County, Oregon Vol 1 (Tigard, Oregon: n.p., 1996.), 126-27.
[12] Google search for “distance between Oberhundem, Germany and Portland, Oregon,” 4 Jun 2017.

Copyright © 2017 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.