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31 August 2011

Wedding Wednesday: A wedding and an Anniversary, Tues 12 May 1914

The continuing saga of attempts to find archived newspapers of the Des Moines Register and Tribune, from Des Moines, Iowa has reminded me of a common mistake we all make....'Don't Assume'.  In my case, don't assume those were the only papers for Des Moines.    For as you can see I found a great article in about the wedding of my aunt on the 27th anniversary of her parents in the Des Moines Daily News:
Des Moines Daily News | Des Moines, Iowa | Tuesday, May 12, 1914 | Page 6

A little surprise to mentions a reception at the Hanlon home 'Fifty-eighth and Douglas Street'.  I knew my grandpa had sharecropped property at the site that is now Merle Hay Mall (58th and Douglas), but I did not know they had a home there!  This confirms the marriage date of my grandparents and the marriage of my Aunt Rose.

30 August 2011

Tombstone Tuesday: Baby's Graves in Des Moines, Iowa, Christa and Benjamin Frederick

I continue to search for news archives for the Des Moines Register and Tribune, with no luck.  What I can find, however, are articles from Des Moines of national interest thanks to Google's news archives.

As I scanned articles relating to cemeteries in Des Moines, I came across this heartbreaking news story of a couple who's 2 babies had died of a lung disease.  The father was serving in the military, the young mother, having no money, just wanted to make 2 gravestones for her babies graves. This article comes from the Pittsburg Press, October 8, 1972

This article from the Montreal Gazette, October 5, 1972, expands further on the story of this poor family.  I wonder how this story ever ended?

29 August 2011

OH OH MidwestAncestree has been bad!

MidwestAncestree sent a note to the Ancestry Insider a few weeks ago about the use of FindAGrave photos in trees.

Please go to Ancestry Insider's blog for all the dirt!  

Mystery Monday: Solving mysteries in old newspapers

It breaks my heart to know people suffer for years wanting to know a bit of information when the answer could be as close as a visit to the local newspaper office.  My brother in law, Dennis (1942-1993), I am told, spent his whole life wondering who his 'real' father was. His mother had remarried and her 2nd husband had adopted him.  His mother refused to discuss the issue.   On a recent visit to Julesburg, Colorado, the answer was found in the newspaper article publicizing his birth:
"Mr. and Mrs. Tracy Butler are the parents of a son born Friday.....".  The answer had been there all along.

Today I wanted to spend some time reseaching other mysteries in old newspapers and was trying to find a source for old issues of the Des Moines Register or the Des Moines Tribune when I came across this  story in a Lewiston, Maine newspaper about a Des Moines Register article from 1932:
The article title is "Newswoman gets surprise in search for past" and details the attempts by Dix Hollobaugh as she researched proof of her birth in order to obtain a passport.  The story details how a woman dropped her baby off at the YWCA in Des Moines, Iowa.  Again, answers found in the local paper! 

Now, if I could just find those old newspapers from Des Moines online! 

28 August 2011

Sentimental Sunday: Remembering my son, Nicholas Ryan Webb 16 Sep 1979 - 26 Aug 2006

Nick died of unknown causes in the early morning hours of the 26th of August 2006 in Des Moines, Polk County, Iowa, in his Sherman Hill apartment where I went to rouse him to get to work on Monday the 28th of August 2006 since his employer had called me wondering where he was.  Not having a key, I had to call the police.  I was always a worrier, and truthfully, that day I didn't know what to think....but furthest from my mind was that he was dead. 

Did you know that even though a date of death can be established, the date that goes on the death certificate is the day the body is found?  That is why Nick's death certificate shows 28 Aug 2006 as his death date. 

At his funeral I read this poem by Alastair Reid:

may have killed the cat; more likely
the cat was just unlucky, or else curious
to see what death was like, having no cause
to go on licking paws, or fathering
litter on litter of kittens, predictably.

Nevertheless, to be curious
is dangerous enough. To distrust
what is always said, what seems
to ask odd questions, interfere in dreams,
leave home, smell rats, have hunches
do not endear cats to those doggy circles
where well-smelt baskets, suitable wives, good lunches
are the order of things, and where prevails
much wagging of incurious heads and tails.

Face it. Curiosity
will not cause us to die--
only lack of it will.
Never to want to see
the other side of the hill
or that improbable country
where living is an idyll
(although a probable hell)
would kill us all.
Only the curious
have, if they live, a tale
worth telling at all.

Dogs say cats love too much, are irresponsible,
are changeable, marry too many wives,
desert their children, chill all dinner tables
with tales of their nine lives.
Well, they are lucky. Let them be
nine-lived and contradictory,
curious enough to change, prepared to pay
the cat price, which is to die
and die again and again,
each time with no less pain.
A cat minority of one
is all that can be counted on
to tell the truth. And what cats have to tell
on each return from hell
is this: that dying is what the living do,
that dying is what the loving do,
and that dead dogs are those who do not know
that dying is what, to live, each has to do.

21 August 2011

Jones Cemetery, Wayne County, Iowa

Continuing with stories from the book "100 Years of Wright Township History 1855-1955" by Ortha Green...which can be found at the Corydon, Wayne County, Iowa library....This story tells of a mass grave along the northern edge of the cemetery.  Also, the oldest grave in the county is believed to be that of Matthew Barker who died August 8, 1848,

19 August 2011 - Genealogy Link Exchange - Genealogy Link Exchange
Came across this website today. At first I thought, 'oh no, one of those computer generated links site', but au contraire! A real person is behind this site and she has started doing an EVERY NAME index of some wonderful historical books from the United States Midwest.

She is taking suggestions for future if there is a book you have been wanting to get through, drop her a line!

The book that brought me to the EveryNameIndex site was the 1879 History of Dallas County, Iowa.  So, after you find a name in the index you can find the book online here: .

14 August 2011

Promise City Cemetery, Wayne County, Iowa

From the book "100 Years of Wright Township History 1855-1955" by Ortha Green, which can be found at the Corydon, Wayne County, Iowa library....this page is about the Promise City Cemetery.  Picture shows the township trustees in 1963:  Clark Thomas, Maurice Kent, Mose Sager and Orlie McMurry.

09 August 2011

Talented Tuesday: Lineages By Luana

As much as I fancy myself a knowledgeable researcher and genealogist, I do know my areas of weakness, and the biggest one with genealogy is microfilm and microfiche.  The thought of sitting at one of those microfilm readers looking through roll after roll of records makes my arm start to hurt and my eyes go blurry.

What's a person to do?  Well, I just signed up for the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy's Jamuary 2012 conference and this time I am determined to be organized and have a plan.  To that end I decided to start my "List of things to research" now, instead of procrastinating til the last moment (again).  That would mean, however, facing that dreaded microfilm reader.

To the rescue, Luana Darby of Lineages by Luana.  I had met Luana when we were both students in a research class at the Salt Lake Institute in 2007.  I was impressed with her enthusiasm and knowledge of the vast diversity of records available at the Family History library in Salt Lake.  So I sent her an email, and started a little google doc spreadsheet with a couple of the records I needed and  VOILA!  In a day or two I had filled in quite a few records I 'desperately' needed and she had copied them back to me. 

Talented for sure, Luana is my nominee for 'Talented Tuesday' in genealogy research!

08 August 2011

Military Monday: Sgt Dean Busse 1943

This summer has been filled with working (for pay) or working on genealogy.  A couple weeks ago we made a quick trip up to Julesburg, Sedgwick County, Colorado to visit relatives and pay a visit to the newspaper office.  The Julesburg Advocate is not available online (except for the years 1898 and 1899).  Thank goodness for my little Flip-Pal mobile scanner!  The newspaper had all the original newspapers in their basement and I was able to go to the birth, marriage and death dates of relatives and find some info.

Sergeant Dean Busse was the pride and joy of a hard working farm family in Julesburg, Colorado.  The hopes and dreams of his parents were with him.  He was the only one of his sibling to attend High School, where he became class president.  And after enlistment he rose quickly to Sergeant.  Mystery still surrounds his death in an airplane crash off Australia during the Second World War.

07 August 2011

"The best cook of 1905"

This is another excerpt from the book  "100 Years of Wright Township History 1855-1955" by Ortha Green.  The book can be found in the Corydon, Iowa library.

"From the beginning down to the present, all Wright township women were good cooks....and one of the best cooks of 1905...(was) Mrs. Eva mouth waters at the thought of Eva's fine grained Burnt Sugar Cakes, every one perfect and topped with thick icing..."

Does anyone happen to know what Eva Clark's maiden name was or to whom she was married?

I'll have to bake up one of these cakes and see what it's like this winter.

06 August 2011

Good Water Church, Wright Township, Wayne County, Iowa

I made a trip back to Appanoose and Wayne Counties in Iowa earlier this summer and found a few little gems.  This is the story of the Good Water Church, published in  the book "100 Years of Wright Township History 1855-1955" by Ortha Green.

An excerpt:  "Since the lumber was obtained along the Good Water Creek, the name became 'Good Water Evangelical United Brethern Church.'  The neighbors soon shortened the name and for years the church was known simply as 'Good Water Church'.  The church was abandoned and on February 15, 1934 the Iowas [sic] Conference of the Evangelical Church sold the property..."