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Thursday, February 7, 2013

Genealogy Packages and Discoveries

The past couple of weeks have been a whirlwind of activity on the genealogy front around here.  My best day was last Monday when I received two items in the mail.  One, a letter from a cousin helping me research my Combs family line, and two, books from my parents.  Boy, it was like my birthday at the mailbox ripping open packages.  The kids, once again, thought mom had completely gone off her rocker.

In the letter there were two marriage certificates.  These certificates are needed to complete the DAR and the GSMD lineage society applications I am still working on.  She had to do battle with an unfriendly court clerk to get these, and I am very thankful that she put up with lady to further our research.  I am sure I am going to get to do that the next time I get back to Indiana.    Oh course, there were a couple of surprising elements to the marriage certificates.

First was the certificate for William Hall and Malira Price.  They are my 3rd great-grandparents who were married in Greene County Indiana on 25 February 1854.  It is a short form marriage register, so no good genealogical information for previous generations, but at least I have something for them.  From the form I see they received the license on the 23rd and had the marriage recorded on March 1st.  There isn’t any other information, not even a pastor’s name, but like I said I won’t be complaining.

Next was the certificate of their daughter Mary Margaret Hall.  She married Willis Franklin Combs in Greene County on 5 September 1877.  I stopped cold in my tracks, because something wasn’t adding up with that date.  I read, and re-read, and read a third time.  Then I went to look at my information on their oldest son Ira in my database.  Ira was born 29 October 1877.  Huh, that is interesting.  Now I wonder all sorts of things:  did they just wait a long time, was this "shot gun", was Ira his son?  I could go on and on.  Oh a puzzle and a family mystery!

The books were equally exciting, and proof that my parents spoil me.   A few weeks back I received two books through inter-library loan that have a significant amount of information on early colonial generations of my family.  I talked excitedly over the phone to my dad about it and he found a gently used copy online and bought them for me.  I jumped up and down with delight when I opened the package.  Tuesday I spent several hours reading and placing tabs in the book for each of the generations to make future look-ups easy.  It is going to take me a while to read and digest all the information presented, but boy is t going to be fun.  I particularly love that there are footnotes, sources, and a bibliography.  If you have any of the following lines check out this 2 volume book set.

It is going to be interesting to read about my ancestors who were from New Amsterdam.  I had no idea I had roots to Norway through one family.  Or that my family owned property in what is now Manhattan (60 acres…imagine what that would be worth today!).  Most unusual, “a husband selling his wife into Adultery”, I can guess what that meant.  I foresee several more days of night time reading in my future.

My most common recent ancestor with the author of this book is William Hayden.  William was born in Braintree, Massachusetts 5 October 1727 and died in Fayette County, Pennsylvania 18 July 1823.  He married Lydia Kierstede who was baptized 14 February 1725 in Staten Island, New York and died 1794-1795 in Hampshire County, Virginia.  This is the listing of their ancestor’s surnames that are covered in the book, all of whom are on my father’s side. 

photo credit: Bunches and Bits {Karina} via photopin cc


  1. Sounds like a wonderful genealogical treasure chest. Have fun!

    1. Thanks! I am learning a lot about the New Amsterdam Colony right now, something I never thought I would need to know about.

  2. Loved your article. Your parents are great!


    1. I think so quite often! It was a great surprise.