Sunday, June 26, 2016

Which Death Information Is Better? Susan Bentz Hamman/Hammond

About 2 months ago I sent for 5 death certificates and 1 birth certificate for my maternal Hammond side of the family in Remsen, Iowa.  It took several long phone calls to find out where to request information and then all my individual requests needed to be notarized….ugh.  I have waited very impatiently for the information to arrive and it finally did…yea!! 

When I opened the envelope I was disappointed to find out that the birth record I requested for my grandfather James Jacob Hammond….they couldn’t find…ugh. (see the post Celebrating the Life of James Jacob Hammond).  I have 2 different baptismal certificates with 2 different names for my grandfather, so, I think it’s a name issue.  I am guessing I will next try to get a copy of his Social Security application to see if there was a birth certificate used there and what the name was.

Shortly after I sent the above request I found a microfilm through the Family Search and was able to read it at the local Family History Center.  That film contained death info from 1908 when my maternal great-grandmother Susan Benz Hamman/Hammond died and my great-great-grandmother Kate Hamman/Hammond (Susan’s mother-in-law) also died.  I found the following information:
Susan Hamman transcript 1 Susan Hamman transcript 2
My first thought was the shock of knowing that Susan died at age 29.  I knew from an obituary I had found online that when she died she had 6 children under the age of 9 but to actually see her age was difficult.
Mrs. Henry Hammond died at the family home here last Thursday evening at 8 o'clock. She had been ill for nearly a year from the dread disease, cancer. She had been at Sioux City and LeMars twice in the hopes of obtaining relief but all treatment was in vain. In her death she leaves motherless six children, all less than nine years of age.
Susan Bentz was born in Worthington, Iowa, August 20, 1878. When 8 years old her parents moved to LeMars and later, about 16 years ago, they moved to Remsen. In 1898 she was married to Henry Hammond and to them six children were born which are now left without a mother-the best friend and most loving adviser anyone ever had. She also leaves to mourn her death a sister and three brothers: Mrs. Clara Rieling, of Emery; Jake Bentz, of Emery, S. D.; Henry Bentz, of Granville and John Bentz, of this town, all of which were present at the funeral which was held from St. Mary's church Saturday forenoon at 10 o'clock. The bereaved and motherless children have the sympathy of the community.
                                                       [The Remsen News, Remsen, Iowa, May 28, 1908, submitted by Mary Kay Krogman]

I remember thinking when I had a copy of the Death Transcript that the Death Certificate I had paid for and was waiting for was a waste of money….until I got it.

Hamman Susan death certificate 1908 highlighted
  • While the first death transcript has the basic information that Susan died of cancer it isn’t until I look at the death certificate that I see she died of cancer of the cervix uterus which she had for about 2 years.  (Her last child Joseph was born in 1907.) 
  • It’s interesting that in the first record Susan’s parents are from Germany and in the second they are from Luxembourg.
  • I know from the second one that Susan is buried at St. Mary’s cemetery in Remsen, Iowa.
  • I think it’s interesting that in both notices it is Susan’s mother who is giving the information and not her husband Henry.  It’s also interesting in the obituary that there is no mention of Henry.
  • In both notices Susan is listed as Mrs. Henry Hamman and not by her given name Susan.
I am glad that I was able to get both of the records.  The first, the Death Transcript gives me the basic information and the Death Certificate gives me some additional information, definitely worth the cost and hassle.  I was able to get copies of death certificates for Susan’s parents also but after more looking….I think there must have been 2 ‘John and Mary Bentz’ families in Remsen since both of the Mary Bentz have different maiden names…ugh…back to the drawing board on that one.
I would appreciate any additional information or corrections you may have.
Enjoy the journey,


Friday, June 10, 2016

Photo Friday-Who is the woman in the picture?

I have pictures of my paternal great grandmother and one of my paternal great-great grandmother. I’m not sure who the picture below is of.  I am thinking it is one of these 2 women but need your help. I have no photographer information.  Do you see a resemblance to either of the 2 women I can identify below?

I know that the picture on the left is a picture of my paternal great-grandmother Carrie Terry Warner (see blog posts about Carrie’s letters).  I know that the picture was taken most likely in the late 1870s or early 1880’s in NYC because the photographer was Rockwood of Union Square N. Y. I have been able to verify that he who worked in NYC at that time.  Carrie lived about 65 miles East of New York City but attended a Normal School in Trenton, N.J. from 1879-1881.  She made the trip from Peconic, N. Y. to Trenton going by boat, train, carriage and ferry.
The picture of the woman on the right is of my paternal great-great grandmother Sarah Hughes Rowan (see blog post Rowan and Hughes Family).  Sarah was born, raised, married and lived in New York City.  She died in 1885.
Carrie Terry Warner   Sarah Agnes Hughes Rowan
 Would love to hear your thoughts and opinion and any other information you’d like to share.

Enjoy the journey,

Monday, June 6, 2016

Southern California Genealogy Jamboree-What an end to Jamboree!

Yesterday was day 4 of the Southern California Genealogy Jamboree in Burbank, California.  This was the final day….until next year and what a great end it was for me.  I had 3 great classes and yet another wonderful surprise!

The day started with a class presented by Trevor Hammond entitled Getting to Know Fold3.  While I use Fold3 to look for my military ancestors’ records I know that I am not using all the features and search engines available.  Trevor was able to help us see many features and explain how Fold3 is constantly improving.  Now I also need to go in and complete memorial pages for my 2 known maternal Civil War Veterans-Joseph Cornell and Portis Coolbaugh (see previous blog posts).  If you have Military connections be sure to check out Fold3.  There are many pictures there from various wars and they are always looking for help in tagging people in the photos.  I also just had to ask Trevor about his Hammond line since that is one I research as well.  (We will need to correspond and see if he are related.  If we are, I will let you know in a future post.)

The second session of the day that I attended was presented by Kathy Warburton entitled Back Home in Ireland: Following the Trail to Patrick Murphy’s Origins.  Kathy had great reminders to gather all the information you can in the US first before going overseas.  (I have a Swedish ancestor Ebenezer Barry with a definite brick wall and this is a good reminder for me to look at neighbors in the area of Brooklyn he lived to try and find some other connections to Sweden.)  Kathy continued to give us tips and strategies for doing research like looking at name variations, coming forward in time to find ancestors children and grandchildren for information and to learn about the history of the country you are heading back to for information of the time your ancestor left.  She concluded by sharing a study she had done with very little basic information that showed how possible it was to find that elusive ancestor.  She gave me hope that I can find Patrick and Susan Hughes in Ireland one day….soon.

My third session of the day was presented again by Trevor Hammond entitled Finding Your Family on Newspapers.Com.  I have been thinking of getting a membership and after listening to all the great features on and all the options to make researching easier like being able to save your clippings, being able to have a search tagged for following so that if anything new comes along you will be notified.

After lunch there was a drawing in the Exhibit Hall done by My Heritage.  The last number called happened to be mine and I won a deluxe subscription for a year!  How exciting!!  I already use My Heritage and I’m interested in seeing all the Deluxe addition features which I currently don’t have but should be very helpful.  Thank-you My Heritage for giving me a great ending to a wonderful weekend!!  I rarely win anything so this was some treat!

On the last day they asked us to wear T-shirts that commemorated our home towns.  Mine is a map of Long Island with the older lighthouses on it created by Don and Linda Lubov.
Fellow bloggers and friends, J. Paul Hawthorne and Diane Gould Hall, from The San Diego Genealogical Society compare their add ons to their name badges.  Also note the beads denoting that people are ‘Bloggers’.

I was glad to spend some time with big time blogger Randy Seaver also from San Diego.  Please check out Randy, Diane and Paul’s blogs for useful information for researching your ancestors.  Thank-you to Randy and Diane for mentioning my blog posts in their blogs.  I am so very new at this and enjoy learning from these 3 very talented people.  I am honored to call them my friends!

Something that always amazes me about Jamboree is how nice and helpful everyone is.  People came from all over.  I even met a couple from Anchorage (my birthplace) and we saw each other frequently during Jamboree.  Many friendships were made and so much information was learned.  Now to just have the time to put what I’ve learned to practice.  Stay tuned for future findings.
I hope you will be able to join us one day.

Would love to hear your comments and any information you’d like to share.

Enjoy the journey,

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Southern California Genealogy Jamboree-Exciting Day 3

Day 3 at Jamboree was another great day of learning and meeting people along with an exciting end to the day!

This morning I was able to attend 3 great sessions and talk to some interesting and very nice people.

My first great session was presented by Jim Brewster entitled Getting Your Results Is Just the Beginning.  Jim has a great personality as a speaker and was able to show us many of the features on our Family Tree DNA website that will help us make those family connections that can help break through some of those brick walls.  Now I should be able to start making a little better progress toward making those cousin connections.  I also found a lot more information available to me on my page then I knew  was there before.

My second great session was presented by Geoff Rasmussen entitled Using the Latest Legacy Family Tree Software.  Geoff is a great speaker and I always enjoy listening to him when I have the opportunity.  He was able to show us many of the newer great features that the Legacy Family Tree program has to offer.  Like most technology we use there are so very many features that are available to make our life and researching easier that we don’t take advantage of.  I can’t wait to start using color coding of my family branches to help make family lines stand out.

My third great session was presented by Dr. Thomas Jones entitled Organizing Evidence to Overcome Record Shortages.  Thomas was able to take us step by step through how to find and organize information that comes from a variety of  sources that are not as common and organize them into valuable information.  He compared the process to taking a box of 200 puzzle pieces, many torn, discolored or missing and figuring out how to put them into as best a picture that you can to find out more about some ancestors.  The analogy was a great way to explain what we do as genealogists.  The answers we search for are not always right there for the finding.  He led us through an Irish case study that was amazing to watch.  I now feel a little more hopeful about finding some information on my Irish line and others when the typical information is so scarce.

Fellow blogger and friend Diane Gould Hall (Michigan Family Trails) and I were able to talk once again to Katherine Borges who is an enthusiastic, knowledgeable instructor and very easy to talk with.  Thank-you Katherine for your help and advice!

There is a large Exhibit Hall with many vendors for us to talk to.  While at the Family Tree DNA booth I was glad to be able to meet the author of Genetic Genealogy: the Basics and Beyond  Emily D. Aulicino.  Even though I have an undergraduate degree in Biology DNA for genealogy was a struggle.  I have enjoyed Emily’s book and found it an easy read with a lot of valuable information.  She is a teacher and able to present the information in a way that makes sense and the reader comes away with a wealth of information.  Emily has books to sell and I would highly recommend you stop by and see her while at Jamboree.  Thank-you Emily!

I was happy to see that so many of us from the San Diego Genealogical Society were able to make it to Jamboree.  We were able to get the word out and be able to take a group picture this morning.  Hope we didn’t miss anyone.  Our group includes fellow bloggers: Randy Seaver, J. Paul Hawthorne, Diane McClure-Lott, Diane Gould Hall and Kitty Cooper.

The day ended by attending a delicious banquet dinner.   The guest speaker, Kenyatta D. Berry: Secrets from PBS’ Genealogy Roadshow was a wonderful treat.  Kenyatta gave us some interesting insights about the filming of Genealogy Roadshow.  She was entertaining and refreshing, a true genealogist who happened to wind up on a reality TV Show and strives to keep the show as true as possible to the work genealogists do daily.
Kenyatta Berry

The most exciting part of the day for me came after Kenyatta finished speaking and was asked by our hosts the Southern California Genealogical Society to pick the winning ticket in a raffle.  My name was chosen and I am the very happy winner of a free registration to next year’s Jamboree!  WOW!!!  Can’t wait!!
IMG_3453 IMG_3452

What an EXCITING end to the day!  Thank-you to the Southern California Genealogical Society!!

Would love to hear your comments and any information you’d like to share.

Enjoy the journey,

Friday, June 3, 2016

Southern California Genealogy Jamboree

This is my 4th time coming to this wonderful Jamboree.  I had to take a break for a couple of years but am glad to be able to be back here.  I am always amazed at the high energy level here.  So many people excited and eager to learn more about doing genealogical research, finding new technology, records and websites.  I am also pleased with meeting people who enjoy the same thing I do and reminded of how helpful and friendly people can be.

I’ve had 2 full days of great classes and thought I’d share some tips I’ve learned.
Yesterday, I attended a great workshop presented by Paula Stuart-Warren entitled What next?  Workshop for developing Step-by-Step Research Plans.  Paula had some great practical ideas for looking at a document and determining what to do next.  I think the 2 things that really resonated with me were:
    • don’t work alone-find someone to work with.  Different perspectives and knowledge levels give you lots of good ideas.
    • when you get a new document jot down your first impressions and your questions/next steps.  I thought about the death record I had just found the day before of my maternal Great-Grandmother Susan Bentz Hammond.  I knew she died young of cancer but seeing her age listed as 29 years really shocked me.
Another great workshop yesterday was presented by Paul Woodbury entitled Developing a DNA Testing Plan.  Paul gave us a good plan for deciding who to do DNA testing on to help you with your research.  I realized I need to find some family members who were siblings of my paternal Great-Grandmother Sarah Rowan King in order to help me in my research on her mother Sarah Hughes Rowan.  So, I’ll be looking for the descendants of Joseph and William Rowan and Mary Rowan White.

This morning I went to two roundtable discussions-one on DNA and one on Genealogy.
During the Genealogy roundtable I sat at a table where the topic was  Irish Ancestry with Sheila Benedict leading the discussion.  I was able to get some great ideas for finding information in Ireland including several websites (like Ireland X O and Massachusetts Catholic Order of Foresters) which should be of some help. 

During the DNA roundtable I sat at a table where the topic was Y-DNA and Other Projects at Family Tree DNA with Katherine Borges leading the discussion.  Katherine was very helpful in answering our questions about Family Tree DNA and taking part in some of the Projects available.  I learned a few new things about reading my DNA profile and was pleasantly surprised to find out that she is a Project Administrator on the Warner Surname Project through Family Tree DNA where we have my father’s (Warner) Y-DNA.  Talk about an inside track to find out information!  I also leaned that my father’s lineage goes to Haplogroup G and that is believed to be from Wales.  We found the name of a man from Wales on the project who is matching my father.  A new contact to make!

I also had the pleasure today to attend a session presented by Drew Smith entitled Organizing Your Genealogical Communications.  Drew had some great tips on organizing your mail, email and participation in groups such as Facebook.  I know its difficult as you make more contacts and search for more and more information to keep it all organized.  This was a good time for me to hear this because with the continued contacts I make I feel it’s more difficult keeping it all straight.  And as my fellow blogger Diane Gould Hall (Michigan Family Trails) has also helped me see there are features I haven’t been using on the tools I have such as Evernote that can also help.  It was nice to meet Drew Smith and George Morgan of the Genealogy Guys podcast and let them know how much I enjoy listening to their podcasts.

Well, I’m exhausted and tomorrow is a new day.  What great new finds will there be?

Would love to hear your comments and any information you’d like to share.

Enjoy the journey,