Saturday, July 26, 2014

SNGF: Ahnentafel Roulette

Once again, Randy Seaver of Geneamusings blog, has posted his Saturday Night Genealogy Fun (SNGF) challenge, and I'm tired enough from gardening to need some respite. So.....

1. What year was one of your great-grandfathers born? Divide this number by 80 and round that number off to the nearest whole number. This is your "roulette number."

My father's father's father, Alvah Clyde SHARP, was born in 1871. 1871/80 = 23.39, rounded off to 23. I'm beginning to suspect that everyone's number is going to be 23.

2. Find the person in your ahnentafel chart with that number. Who is that person and what is her vital information?

Number 23 is my father's mother's mother's mother, Elizabeth MOHR, b. 17 Dec 1838 in Germany, d. 1 Mar 1888 in Houston, Texas. She married Herman SONNEN in New Orleans, Louisiana, ca. 1858.

3. Tell us three facts about that person.
4. Write about it in a blog post....

I don't know a lot about Elizabeth, but I'll see if I can come up with 3 facts.
   * Elizabeth and Herman had at least 9 children born between 1860 and 1879.
   * The family moved from New Orleans to Houston between February 1871 and March 1873, based on children's birthdates.
   * Elizabeth is buried in the family plot in Washington Cemetery, Houston, Texas. Her maiden name is misspelled "Moore" on the tombstone.
   * At the time of Elizabeth's death in 1888, she apparently still had relatives living in New Orleans and St. Louis, Missouri, as her very short obituary in the Houston Post ends with "New Orleans and St. Louis papers please copy."

I have tried numerous times over the years to identify Elizabeth's family with no success. If anyone has any suggestions for finding them, please let me know.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

SNGF: Semi-Random Research

Tonight's Saturday Night Genealogy Fun challenge from Randy Seaver is to do a little semi-random research.

1) We're going to do a little bit of Semi-Random Research tonight...
2) Go to your family tree database of choice (you know, like RootsMagic, Reunion, Ancestry Member Tree), and determine who the very first person on your list of C surnames is. Or the first person on your list of J surnames. Or P surnames. Or any other name you need to research. Your choice!
3) What do you know (or not know) about this person based on your research? It's OK to do more research if you need to - in fact, it's encouraged!
4) How are you related to this person, and why is s/he in your family tree?
5) Tell us about it in a blog post of your own, in a comment to this blog post, or in a Facebook Status post or Google+ Stream post.  

So...I opened up my FTM2014 Swicegood database, which focuses on my maternal lines, and selected the letter "E".
The first person under "E" was "Sarah E".
No last name listed.
So I went to that name in my database and discovered that I had neglected to enter the Surnames for most of the children of Levi Henry BROOKSHIRE (1854-1923), a first cousin of my great-grandfather, Charles Christopher BROOKSHIRE (1872-1947). I never met Pop Brookshire, but his wife was my idol growing up, so I heard lots of stories about him.
The only information I had on "Sarah E Brookshire" was a birthdate of May 1888 in prob. Cooper Co., MO, based on the 1900 census.
Searching Ancestry, FamilySearch, and Mocavo, I did not find any additional information on Sarah E Brookshire from Cooper County, Missouri.
She is not listed with the family in the 1910 US Census in Elbert County, Colorado. I did not find any records for her in Elbert County, Colorado (or elsewhere in the state). One of her brothers, Houston George "Hugh" Brookshire was living in Clayton, Norton Co., Kansas in 1915, so I also searched Kansas records. Nada.

Since Sarah seemed to be a dead-end, I decided to see if I could fill in some blanks on her parents, Levi Henry BROOKSHIRE and Alice Orena DAVIS and their other children. FindAGrave proved to be a great resource for this family. I spent the better part of two hours following links to various family members on FindAGrave and verifying the birth/death dates through Ancestry and FamilySearch.

I'm too lazy to list everything I found on this family. Suffice it to say, it was a couple of hours well spent.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

SNGF: My Father's Mother's Paternal Line

It's Saturday Night Genealogy Fun (SNGF) night again. Randy Seaver's challenge for tonight is to answer the following questions:

1)What was your father's mother's name?
2) What is your father's mother's patrilineal line? That is, her father's father's father's ... back to the most distant male ancestor in that line?
3) Can you identify male sibling(s) of your father's mother, and any living male descendants from those male sibling(s)? If so, you have a candidate to do a Y-DNA test on that patrilineal line. If not, you may have to find male siblings, and their descendants, of  the next generation back, or even further.
4)  Tell us about it in your own blog post, or in a comment on this post, or in a Facebook or Google Plus post.

1) My father, Alva Curtis SHARP (1917-1978), was the second son of Harold Herbert SHARP (1893-1934) and Virginia Corine MELDRUM (1896-1980).

2) Virginia MELDRUM's paternal line is as follows:
     -father = David James MELDRUM, Jr. (1867-ca.1908)
     -grandfather = James Braithwaite MELDRUM (1840-1876)
     -great-grandfather = David MELDRUM (1819-1901)
     -gggf = Unknown

3a) Virginia MELDRUM had two brothers and one sister:
     -John Harvey Sonnen MELDRUM (1899-1989) married at least twice, but I don't see any sign of children from either marriage in census or other records. The obituary I have for him is minimal, thanks to his being a member of the Neptune Society.
     -Curtis Braithwaite MELDRUM (1904-1975) married Gladys W. WOOLLEY in Harris County, Texas in 1930. They had two daughters. No Y-DNA there.

3b) Stepping back a generation, David James MELDRUM had two brothers and a sister.
     -William L. MELDRUM (1869-?) I lose after the 1900 census, when he's living with his mother, who is now on her third marriage. He is now 30 years old and still single, working as a gardener (following his father's and grandfather's occupation).
     -John H. MELDRUM (1870-1894) died unmarried of tuberculosis.

3c) Stepping back yet another generation, James Braithwaite MELDRUM only had one brother, William MELDRUM, who died just before his first birthday back in Leeds, England, before the family emigrated to the United States.

4) You're reading my blog post, which turns up ZERO candidates for MELDRUM Y-DNA from my father's mother's line. Bummer.