29 December 2009
Credit card payments are processed through PayPal. If you want to send a check or money order, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll send you a paper form to print out and send in.
Writing Casefile Clues every week has been great fun. I've written followups on some families readers of my Ancestry.com columns were familiar with and have been working up some new ones as well.
Recent topics have included:
Volume 1, Number 1--"Lessons from an Estate Record"
Volume 1, Number 2--"Passport Records"
Volume 1, Number 3--"Preemption Claim"
Volume 1, Number 4--"Multiple Parents"
Volume 1, Number 5--"Finding a Chicago Christening"
Volume 1, Number 6--"The Civil War Pension File of Riley Rampley"
Volume 1, Number 7--"Looking for Ira's Lucretia"
Volume 1, Number 8--"Platting out Thomas Sledd's Heirs"
Volume 1, Number 9--"Finding and Analyzing Pre-1850 Census Records"
Volume 1, Number 10--"Getting from One Ira to Another"
Volume 1, Number 11- "The Homestead Application of the Heirs of Rolf Habben"
Volume 1, Number 12-"Is the Wrong Name Correct?"
Volume 1, Number 13-"Brick Walls from A to Z"
Volume 1, Number 14-"Jumpstarting Your Research"
Volume 1, Number 15-"Finding Geske and her Girls"
Volume 1, Number 16-"A Lot on Barbara's Lots"
Volume 1, Number 17-"Starting to Get Help from a Professional"
Volume 1, Number 18-"Analyzing a Biography"
Volume 1, Number 19-"Public Sale"
Volume 1, Number 20-"Charting an 1870 Census Search"
More information is on the Casefile Clues website. Join us!
22 December 2009
More information on our trip is available at http://www.rootdig.com/slctrip.html.
Regisration with a credit card can be made via this link.
After you make payment, please print out the registration brochure on our website http://www.rootdig.com/slctrip.html.
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21 December 2009
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Remember, no stamps, nothing to mail, a few minutes and you are done. And your subscription will keep on giving all year! And at $15 a year, the price is not too bad either!
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18 December 2009
In an effort to keep me quiet (which is not often successful, by the way), Cyndi has added the following page to her site:
Your relatives can't get more Southern than that!
17 December 2009
What I really need to do is determine who might have been there in 1885 as that is the year of the bulk of the records in Ancestry.com's database. The "Source Information" from the Ancestry.com site is:
- Nebraska. Cass County. “County Census, 1876-1882.” Microfilm RG220, 9 rolls. Nebraska State Historical Society, Lincoln.
- Nebraska. Lancaster County. “County Census, 1860-1880.” Microfilm RG207, 4 rolls. Nebraska State Historical Society, Lincoln.
- Schedules of the Nebraska State Census of 1885. NARA Microfilm Publication M352, 56 rolls. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration
Always read the description before searching any online database.
16 December 2009
15 December 2009
Spend a week in Salt Lake and learn about your ancestors with help and guidance as needed. I provide consultation and one on one help with trip participants. Our numbers are kept low so that everyone gets individual help as needed.
More information on our trip is located on our site at http://www.rootdig.com/slctrip.html
Questions can be sent to me at email@example.com.
14 December 2009
13 December 2009
- there is still room for my 2010 Salt Lake City Research Trip which runs from 27 May until 3 June 2010
- the main trip page is http://www.rootdig.com/slctrip.html
- the page to make online payment is http://www.rootdig.com/slctrip_paypal.htm
- questions can be sent to me at firstname.lastname@example.org
There may be a page with a bad link that I haven't caught yet. Please accept my apologies for the error.
We'd love to have you join us in 2010!
12 December 2009
11 December 2009
10 December 2009
Ancestry.com has released a new (or improved) Nebraska State Census--I have a hard time keeping track-it 1860-1885.
- Frank Goldenstein
- Annie Goldenstein
- Tjoda Goldenstein--actually Tjode (my great-grandmother)
- Renhert Goldenstein--actually Bernard
09 December 2009
Effective Saturday, the charge for back issues 1-10 will go up to $5.50. PayPal is taking more of a "ding" out of it than I thought. You can purchase them here: http://www.casefileclues.com/2009/10/bac Back issues of Casefile Clues are grouped in sets of ten. The next set will be 11-20. The price of back issue sets will remain at $5.50.
07 December 2009
04 December 2009
- inclusion of citations
- creation of PDF version
- inclusion of illustrations
Casefile clues focuses on records, methods, and analysis. Request a sample by sending an email to email@example.com.
Interested? You can subscribe for just 3 months for $6 or an entire year for $15. The price is reasonable and we'll do our best to jumpstart your research.
- 3 months for $6--a quarterly subscription--this is the credit card option. Email me for alternate payment options.
- 1 year for $15--this is the credit card option. Email me for alternate payment options.
Don't take my word for it. Read reviews and discussions from a variety of bloggers:
- Reclaiming Kin
- Notes that Matter
We'd love to have you subscribe to Casefile Clues.
Angela McGhie, President, National Capital Area Chapter, Association of Professional Genealogists, has allowed me to post a sample letter and more information here.
"Proposed renovations at the National Archives will affect all researchers. As you have probably heard, if the proposed changes materialize, much of the research space at the National Archives inWashington, D.C. will be converted to offices, exhibits, and otheruses, and research services will have to be reconfigured in a much smaller area. To assure that research resources are enhanced, rather than diminished, we again appeal—urgently--for your help.
There is an extremely important congressional subcommittee hearing later this month. The hearing of the Subcommittee on InformationPolicy, Census, and National Archives, which oversees NARA, will examine the National Archives mission. The proposed changes at Archives-1 will be discussed. The new Archivist of the United States, David Ferriero, will testify."
More information, including a sample letter can be downloaded from any of the files below--Word version, PDF version, or RTF version. Please keep letter to the point and personalize it. Angela has allowed me to post versions of her letter and more information here:
- /ProposedrenovationsattheNationalArchives1.doc--Word Doc File
- /ProposedrenovationsattheNationalArchives1.pdf-- PDF File
- /ProposedrenovationsattheNationalArchives1.rtf -- RTF File
Spread the word!
This post can be linked to directly at:
Registration gets you:
- help with pre-trip planning
- morning lectures (optional)
- onsite help (twenty minute consultations as can be scheduled and "drop in" help as needed).
We always have a great time and make great discoveries. More information on the trip is available on our site http://www.rootdig.com/slctrip.html. Many like to go with a group, especially if they have never been before or don't have anyone "from home" going with them. You don't have to have a roommate.
Registration is $200 until 15 December and does not include, travel, hotel, or expenses.
02 December 2009
30 November 2009
Recent issues of Casefile Clues have included:
11- "The Homestead Application of the Heirs of Rolf Habben"This column discussed the homestead claim of the deceased claimant's heirs. Included is a discussion what types of records are typically in a homestead file, why the copies look so strange, and what other documents should be researched as a followup.
12-"Is the Wrong Name Correct?"This column discussed a name that appeared on the surface to be incorrect. A 1910 Chicago census enumeration seemingly had the wrong last name for a household member. Further research hints that the individual unofficially changed his name ca. 1909.
13-"Brick Walls from A to Z"
This column was a quick run-down of suggestions for breaking brick walls. It was a reprint of an earlier column of Michael's from several years ago. We don't often use older material (this has been the only time, but deadlines got the best of me and this was a very popular piece).
14-"Jumpstarting Your Research"
Just a few ideas to get you brainstorming.
15-"Finding Geske and her Girls"
Losing a an ancestor on the other side of the pond and finding her in the United States. This required using a variety of records and techniques to find this 1880 era immigrant when her "new" married name was unknown.
16-"A Lot on Barbara's Lots"
A 1900 era probate failed to mention how an estate's real property was disposed of. Finding those deeds revealed quite a bit of genealogical information, even though the actual amount of property and its value was relatively small.
17-"Starting to Get Help from a Professional"
My initial column in an ongoing series on working with a professional, focusing on being focused, deciding what to research, why certain things are researched, and staying within a budget.
18-"Analyzing a Biography"
This column encourages readers to go back and fully analyze all those county "mug book" biographies they have. Several techniques for analysis are included through an extended example. I even made a major discovery just in completing the analysis on this 19th century biography.
Our discount runs until midnight tonight. After that the regular price returns.
Response has been good and there is still time to subscribe to my weekly how-to genealogy newsletter at the discounted rate of $12 a year. Readers who would like to give Casefile Clues as a gift can do so by including that information (name, email) in the instructions section of the payment page.
There are several interesting things coming up in Casefile Clues, including discussion and analysis of new information in several families we've been following over the last few months. And of course, there's always citations and a discussion of what didn't work, and why certain techniques and approaches were tried.
28 November 2009
To make effective use of this database, one has to use the guides to learn the district number for the desired part of the state one needs. This can be found using the microfilm guide compiled by NARA for the state in question. Searchers cannot simply search based by county.
I wrote an article on using the lists a year ago for the Ancestry.com blog: http://blogs.ancestry.com/circle/?p=2760
It needs updating for those individuals whose names are not unusual and are city dwellers. I'm trying to use the database to find some Watsons in Pennsylvania and there are several. When I've had time to sit down and work it out, we'll blog about it.
One thing about the title here that is somewhat misleading, the majority of thse records are in the 1860s. The VAST majority. The title says 1862-1918, but don't let that lead you astray.
27 November 2009
- Father-can't enumerate he who is not yet born.
- Mother-with her parents, probably in Marcelline, Linn County, Missouri.
- Wilbur and Grace (Mortier) Johnson [paternal grandparents]--city of Rock Island, Illinois.
- Ola and Anna (Apgar) Lake [maternal grandparents]--Marcelline, Linn County, Missouri.
- Joseph and Eva (Trask) Johnson [great-grandparents] --city of Rock Island, Illinois (probably)
- Henry and Caroline (Freund) Mortier [great-grandparents]--city of Rock Island, Illinois
- Marie (Desmarais) Apgar Verikios Williams [great-grandmother]--Chicago, Illinois
- Samuel Otto Johnson [great-grandfather]--Galesburg, Knox County, Illinois
- Jennie (Kile-Smith) Trask [great-grandmother]--Galesburg or Peoria, Illinois
We'll have wait for the census to be released to find out if I was right or not.
25 November 2009
The image shown in this post comes from the 1872 Chicago City Directory for Thomas Frame.
We'll discuss searching these directories at Footnote and interesting discoverings made about Thomas Frame in an upcoming edition of Casefile Clues.
- Me--I was so not here in 1940.
- My parents--they weren't around in 1940 either.
- Cecil and Ida (Trautvetter) Neill [my paternal grandparents]--Prairie Township, Hancock County, Illinois.
- John Ufkes [my maternal grandfather]--Bear Creek Township, Hancock County, Illinois.
- Dorothy Habben [my maternal grandmother]--Prairie Township, Hancock County, Illinois.
- Charles and Fannie (Rampley) Neill [paternal great-grandparents]--St. Albans Township, Hancock County, Illinois--maybe in West Point or maybe on the farm, not certain.
- Fred and Tena (Johnson/Janssen) Ufkes [my maternal great-grandparents]--Bear Creek Township, Hancock County, Illinois.
- Mimke and Tjode (Goldenstein) Habben [my maternal great-grandparents]--Prairie Township, Hancock County, Illinois.
- Anke/Anna (Fecht) Habben [my maternal great-great-grandmother]--Elvaston, Hancock County, Illinois.
I'll work on my in-laws later. My own family as recently as 1940 I can pretty much do off the top of my head.
23 November 2009
One of the marriage licenses in this post is 49807 from Cook County, Illinois, for Albert Haakman and Eleanor M. Frame. I'm not certain what the spots on the license actually are, but they are several licenses before and after the one shown here.
Eleanor Frame is a first cousin of my wife's grandmother. I've been working on the Frames for an upcoming issue of "Casefile Clues."
A few others in this same series also had spots as well. I have posted 49808 and 49806 as well (numbers in upper right hand corner). They won't show in the "right order," but all three are here.
Plans are still underway for my 5th annual research trip to the Family History Library in Salt Lake City: 27 May through 3 June 2010
Pre-trip planning via a private website for those who wish to participate
Availability to ask questions of Michael and other group members before we leave
Help preparing for time in library
1 on 1 consultations with Michael (both 30 minute scheduled sessions and drop in questions) as needed. More than one 30 minute consultation if time allows.
Early registration ends 15 December. More information is available at
21 November 2009
19 November 2009
Thanks, Tina, for the review. I appreciate it.
Several months ago, I wasn't certain I would have enough material to write weekly a column of this type. I've got a topic list through the first of the year and usually when I write one an idea for another pops into my head.
Remember, whether you subscribe to Casefile Clues or not, writing about your genealogy and organizing the information you have is an excellent use of your time.
18 November 2009
- Using Ancestry.com 26 March 2010
- Using Familysearch.org 27 March 2010
- Using Family Tree Maker -2 days-4 and 9 April 2010
- More Problem-Solving- 16 April 2010
- Searching Free Online Scanned Books - 30 April 2010
We've brought our prices back to old levels--$35 a day. Handouts are included, lunch is on your own, or you can brown bag it.
Sessions are held in state of the art computer facilities and each attendee will have their own computer to use. Registration is limited, but you do not need to live in the Carl Sandburg district to enroll.
Galesburg is easily accessible via interstate. The college has no housing, but there are several motels within a mile of the college. Questions about the workshops can be sent to me at either firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.More information (including registration details) is available at http://www.rootdig.com/sandburg.html.
Gift subscriptions to my weekly newsletter Casefile Clues are $15 per year--you can give as many as you want. There is no wrapping necessary.
Here is how it works:
- click on the link to order the gift subscription via Paypal
- in the "instructions" section, put the person's name and email
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If you don't see the instructions section, do not worry. When you order a gift subscription, Paypal will tell me that YOU ordered a GIFT subscription and it tells me you ordered it (including giving me your email). If there are no instructions, I will contact you and get those details from you manually. It is that easy. You can specify when you want the subscription to start.
If you do not specify when the subscription starts, it will start the week of December 25.
If there are questions about giving gift subscriptions, just ask me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A subscription to Casefile Clues is the perfect genealogy gift for your genealogy friend who has helped you out, given you advice, etc. Every issue is packed with methodology and research suggestions. And at $15 a year, the price isn't too bad either.
17 November 2009
15 November 2009
13 November 2009
12 November 2009
11 November 2009
I'm having a great deal of fun writing Casefile Clues and interacting with readers and fans, both on Facebook and our website http://www.casefileclues.com. Give it a try.
Riley was born in Coshocton County, Ohio, in 1835 and died in Walker Township, Hancock County, Illinois, in 1893.
His 207 page pension file gives quite a bit of information on him and his wife, Nancy.
Fortunately Riley came home or I wouldn't be writing this post. Some soldiers are not so lucky and we should be grateful for their service. Riley and two of his brothers were in the war at the same time. As a parent, that is hard to imagine.
I was reminded of this when a Casefile Clues reader located the husband of our subject Geske Fecht using the reverse name approach. He was actually Boede Heien, but they listed him in the coroner's report as Heien Boede.
- help with pre-trip planning via secure website
- ability to send Michael problems before the trip
- morning optional lectures from 8 until 8:50
- consulations with Michael (at least two 20 minute consultations at library and "on the fly" questions can be asked when I'm not in consultations).
- small, limited number of participants so everyone is able to ask questions as needed.
Registration and more trip details are on our site at http://www.rootdig.com/slctrip.html
We'd love to have you join us. Register by 13 November and get free year of Casefile Clues, my weekly how-to newsletter.
Issues 1-10 can be purchased as a set for $4.30. You do not need a PayPal account, just a major credit card. If you'd rather pay another way, email me for information.
2 August 2009--Volume 1 Number 1--Lessons from an Estate Record
9 August 2009--Volume 1, Number 2--Passport Records
16 August 2009--Volume 1, Number 3--Preemption Claim
23 August 2009--Volume 1, Number 4--Multiple Parents
30 August 2009--Volume 1, Number 5--Finding a Chicago Christening
6 September 2009--Volume 1, Number 6--The Civil War Pension File of Riley Rampley
13 September 2009--Volume 1, Number 7--Looking for Ira's Lucretia
20 September 2009--Volume 1, Number 8--Platting out Thomas Sledd's Heirs
27 September 2009--Volume 1, Number 9--Finding and Analyzing Pre-1850 Census Records
4 October 2009--Volume 1, Number 10--Getting from One Ira to Another
If you are not a subscriber, you can subscribe here via our site. Newsletters are sent via email as a PDF attachment unless an intext email is requested.
05 November 2009
04 November 2009
Presentations are engaging, enlightening, and entertaining while remaining informative. A letter from a recent conference chair with comments from attendees can be viewed here. I do not stand behind the lectern and read my handout. I enjoy sharing my research experiences with others in a way that motivates them to explore new sources, methods, and research procedures. Case studies are always presented in a way that enlightens about the resource and methods being used.
I'd love to present at your workshop, conference, or seminar.
- Information about me can be viewed here (as well as a partial list of topics).
- Information on recent engagements can be viewed here.
She passesd along the comments that were received regarding the recent Illinois State Genealogical Society Conference where I was the main presenter. The comments were positive and included:
- very engaging
- kept it interesting
- good technicals
- very dynamic with a great sense of humor
Those who want to read more can click on the image of the letter and read it for themselves.
It was a great conference and I'm grateful the committee asked me to present.
Casefile Clues, Michael John Neill's weekly genealogy how-to column, is available exclusively through www.casefileclues.com. It is no longer distributed via Eastman's newsletter.
What is Casefile Clues?
Casefile Clues is Michael John Neill's weekly how-to genealogy column. Casefile Clues is not copied and pasted text from other articles or press-releases. Rather, it is fresh material drawn from Michael's own research experiences in nearly twenty states and seven foreign countries. Casefile Clues discusses the thought process of how to analyze and interpret documents; how to problem-solve; and how to decide "where to go next." Michael has been actively involved in genealogy research since the mid-1980s.
Columns are clear always have a lesson bigger than the family or area being discussed. Subscribe to Casefile Clues and see how reading short case studies can help you in your own research. Annual subscriptions are just $15, pretty reasonable when you consider that gets you one article every week for an entire year--especially when compared to the prices of other genealogical magazines. I have researched families in most Eastern states and several European countries. The content varies with respect to time periods and locations and I am always open to suggestions from readers. I don't always solve each of my brick walls; however, articles always discuss procedures and methods in an attempt to break them down.
For the past ten years, Michael has written over six hundred how-to genealogy columns for Ancestry.com and Dick Eastman. Now his columns are being distributed from his own site http://www.casefileclues.com/. Email addresses of subscribers are never sold or shared and the website and newsletter are free from advertisements. No advertisers means I am dependent upon readers to help "get the word out," which I truly appreciate. No advertisers also means that within the usual limits, I can say whatever I want and not be concerned with making an advertiser mad. There are no ads to pull. We would love to have you subscribe and see how Casefile Clues can give you ideas to grow your own family tree.
02 November 2009
However, in this case (and in others I won't post here), I just cannot figure this out. Keep in mind, I have no degree in computer programming, but I do have two mathematics degrees so I did have to take a just a little bit of logic.
The tree I entered included a Mary Liddell, born in 1820 in Haltwhistle, England to Robert and Jane Cowing Liddell. These are the suggestions I received for Robert:
- Some dude "compiled" from member trees who was born in 1866 and died in 1622. What code allowed for that to be a compilation into one person?
- Some dude born ca. 1862 who was living in 1901 (hence the census listing). Even if the age of Mary is off by 20 years (meaning she was born in 1840), her father would still have to be born in the early 1830s at least.
- A third dude born in Pennsylvania about 1874.
If you want me to use the "leaves" and the matches at Ancestry.com seriously, you gotta do better than that. Did they accidentally program things in some funny modulo arithmetic or some number base I happened to miss?
Don't get me wrong, I like the actual records Ancestry.com has and their indexes, I use them on a very very regular basis and have made great inroads with their actual indexes (including breaking down on twenty year brick wall). But this automatically compiled stuff and generated list of "leaves" as matches leaves me cold and wishing for trees without leaves.
Give me trees and I'll work on connecting the leaves myself.
31 October 2009
28 October 2009
27 October 2009
26 October 2009
22 October 2009
Your subscription starts when you sign up. I'll usually send the issue that "just ran" when you sign up, unless it somehow slips my radar (you can always ask me if I forget). I've started grouping back issues in groups of 10 for those who weren't subscribers earlier. When you subscribe, I can send you every issue since the last set of back issues "cut off." That way if you get the back issues, you have as complete a set as you want and I'm not messing with selling individual back issues.
So anyone who subscribes now or in the near future can get issues 11 until when they started at no charge--just ask.Back issues 1-10 can be purchased with a credit card for $4.30. You do not need a PayPal account, just a major credit card. Those who wish to pay by check can email me for information at email@example.com. This allows me to make back issues available to those who want them keeping paperwork and procedure to a minimun.
To request a sample copy of Casefile Clues, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
21 October 2009
However, one must be careful not to indicate that a source says something it does not. The reasons are pretty obvious--but here's an example with the names changed.
Thomas Smith was born in Harford County, Maryland, on 2 May 1865 and you have three primary sources to back it up. The 1880, 1900, 1910 and 1920 census all indicate he was born in Maryland. Let's say that they all point to a year of birth of 1865
Yet if you aren't careful when you tie the census record to his date and place of birth, you seemingly indicate that the census indicates he was born on 2 May 1865 in Harford County, Maryland. I've never seen a census between 1880 and 1920 that provides that specific of a place of birth.
Shouldn't you create a "new" place/date of birth that is 1865 in Maryland and tie the census source to that?
Or am I just a stick in the mud?
20 October 2009
15 October 2009
Those who wish to subscribe to Casefile Clues can do so here.
13 October 2009
12 October 2009
Subscription information is available at:
11 October 2009
10 October 2009
I forgot to post the offer on this blog yesterday.
09 October 2009
Philip Troutfetter should be a case study in and of himself, perhaps even a whole book of case studies devoted to him.
I have circled in red what I cannot read. The larger image (posted first) shows the entire "answer" and the second image shows zoomed in portion. Clicking on either image will bring it up larger in the browser.
Casefile Clues is not a genealogy "news" letter. There's not news about new sites, new software, or what famous person has had their family researched. There are plenty of sites, blogs, and newsletters that provide that information.
Casefile Clues is intended to give you weekly reading to actually help you with your own genealogy. Case studies and families cover a variety of areas and time periods, all gleaned from research I have done on my children's ancestors which covers a fairly large range of geographic regions.
Columns are meant to be easy to read and easy to understand. That doesn't mean the problems are easy to solve. I just don't believe that reading about genealogy methodology has to be tedious.
Citation of sources is extremely important and every document is cited as close to the rules of Evidence Explained as I can get. Occasionally I will make a mistake and I encourage readers to bring that to my attention so if can be mentioned and corrected in the next possible issue.
We have beginners and advanced researchers reading Casefile Clues. My goal is to help everyone with their research.
Casefile Clues is only $15 a year and comes weekly in your email--either as PDF file or as an in email message.
More information about Casefile Clues is on our Casefile Clues site http://www.casefileclues.com
Subscription information is at http://www.casefileclues.com/subscribe.html. There are no ads on the www.casefileclues.com site and the newsletter is ad-free as well. That way, there are no advertisers to worry about making happy or irritating!
A PayPal account is not required to use a credit card. Those who wish to inquire about other payment options (check, money order, etc.) can contact me directly at email@example.com.
Any other questions about the newsletter can be sent to me at firstname.lastname@example.org, including requests for a sample copy.
08 October 2009
"This database contains invention patents granted from 1790-1909 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). "