31 October 2009

Hannah Frame Vanderlinden Marriage Chicago 1887

This is the marriage license of Frank Vanderlinden and Hannah M. Frame of Kensington, Cook County, Illinois. They were married in 1887 by James M. Belding.
Some quick Google searches of Reverend Belding located the likely name of his search. I've taken to googling just about every minister listed on every marriage license I am working on just to see what I can located.
The marriage license itself was downloaded from the Familysearch site (http://pilot.familysearch.org).
We'll be mentioning this family again in an upcoming article of Casefile Clues. I am hoping that by using the name of the minister, I'll be able to locate church records or something on Thomas and Elizabeth Frame, parents of Hannah. Hannah's younger brother William, was my wife's great-grandfather.

28 October 2009

Google Is Not As Smart As It Thinks It Is

Google doesn't always find what you want. I searched for the Illinois State Archives at Google just now and this lovely map came up with the address and the phone number (which are correct).
The problem is that the link Google brought up (which is purple in the image) first (right next to the map) isn't the Illinois State Archives website. Google wants you to think that it is. It's a site with affiliate links (which are fine), but that doesn't get me where I wanted to go, which was the state archives site. And of course, many of the links take you to places other than what you were looking for in the first place.
Of course, as soon as I clicked I realized I was in the wrong place and went back to get to where I really wanted to go (one of the links UNDER the map). The thing is, I knew what I was looking for, new genealogists don't.
Google is not quite as smart as it thinks it is.
I'm not opposed to people making money, but this site came up first because they optimized their page for Google. It was NOT a fluke. They knew what they were doing.
Always pays to check before you click. And to think.

27 October 2009

10% Casefile Clues Discount

I'm announcing this here because for me Facebook has been acting up all day. We are having a 10% discount on Casefile Clues today until midnight tonight. Blog readers can take the discount here http://www.casefileclues.com/facebook.html whether they are FB fans or not.

26 October 2009

1892 Illinois Probate Guide

The things one finds on http://www.archive.org/ are absolutely amazing. I'm reading partrs of the 1892 edition of A Practical Treatise Upon the Jurisdiction of, and Practice in, the County and Probate Courtsof Illinois, Embracing A Collation of Statutes and Authorities Upon the Settlement of Estates of Deceased Persons; Correlative Relations of Guardian and Ward; ...."

by William Jones and Joseph Cunningham, Chicago, T. H. Flood, 1892.

Lots to learn in there for the genealogist and lots that makes sense once one reads it.

There will undoubtedly be references to this book in upcoming issues of Casefile Clues.

22 October 2009

Back Issues of Casefile Clues and Subscribing

An update on back issues of Casefile Clues.

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 mjnrootdig@gmail.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 samples@casefileclues.com.


21 October 2009

Are your sources really that specific?

The ability to merge sources (particularly census) into a tree at Ancestry.com is really a nice one.

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

Google Maps

I have been experimenting with Google Maps for the Casefile Clues column that I'm wrapping up.

This image includes some of the locations relevant to a 1910 census entry for my wife's great-great-grandfather Louis Demar. He was living 42 West 119th Street in 1910--which is one of the places shown on the map. The other places were important for other reasons and all play a role in completely and accurately analyzing this census entry.

15 October 2009

Issues 1-10 of Casefile Clues

Starting today, we are offering back issues of Casefile Clues in sets. First set will be issues 1-10 and we will continue in that fashion so that subscribers can get the ones they missed easily. Those who want set 1-10 can purchase it through https://www.paypal.com/cg...i-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=8934803 or can email me directly for information.

Those who wish to subscribe to Casefile Clues can do so here.

13 October 2009

Which Copy Do You Have?

One of the necessary items of citing genealogical sources is what copy of a document was actually used.
The image shown here is a handwritten copy of the Declaration of Intent for Rolf Habben, made out in Hancock County, Illinois, in 1886. This image was made from a photocopy of the copy which was contained in the homestead file.
Rolf Habben had a handwritten copy of his declaration of intention.
At one point in time, Hancock County had the originals of these declarations of intent.
There was the "real deal" at the county courthouse, the copy Habben had, and the copy made from Habben's copy that was included as a part of his homestead file.
Then there is the photocopy I have (of the copy in the homestead file).
Then there's this image I made to post on the website.
Then there's the PDF file I made that contained a high quality scan of the entire homestead file (one of the documents in that file was the declaration of intent).
Which copy of a record do you have?
This copy was discussed in this week's edition of "Casefile Clues."

12 October 2009

Back issues of Casefile Clues

Reminder: 12 October is the deadline to subscribe to Casefile Clues and get all the back issues as a part of your Casefile Clues subscription. After 12 October, past issues will be bundled and sold in groups. Thanks for all your support. I appreciate it!

Subscription information is available at:

11 October 2009

Free Sample Issue of Casefile Clues

I am offering a free sample issue of my weekly newsletter Casefile Clues to anyone who requests it. Simply send me an email at mjnrootdig@gmail.com and one will be sent to you (as an attachment).

10 October 2009

Bigger Screenshot of Philip Troutfetter's Statement

For those who were helping me, I have clipped a larger part of the scan from Philip Troutfetter's homestead claim. The word in the red circle is the one I am trying to read.

Clicking on the image will pull up a larger view of it.

Offer on Back Issues of Casefile Clues

If you missed Friday's offer of subscribing to Casefile Clues and getting back issues 1-10 as a part of that, email me at mjnrootdig@gmail.com sometime today (Saturday, 10 October) and we'll get it taken care of.

I forgot to post the offer on this blog yesterday.

09 October 2009

Can't Read it on a BLM Case File

Philip Troutfetter should be a case study in and of himself, perhaps even a whole book of case studies devoted to him.
The two images on this post come from his homestead/preemption claim filed in Colorado. It references earlier claims he had which were relinquished.

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.
It looke like "S ho," but I'm not certain what that means. I thought it might mean "standard homestead" but I'm not certain and that is only a guess. I'm requesting copies of the papers from the National Archives, but it will be a while before they arrive.

What is Casefile Clues?

For readers of this blog who don't know, Casefile Clues is my weekly genealogy how-to newsletter. Each week includes a case study, document analysis, or problem-solving article. Occasionally all three are combined, it just depends upon the family.

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 mjnrootdig@gmail.com.

Any other questions about the newsletter can be sent to me at mjnrootdig@gmail.com, including requests for a sample copy.


08 October 2009

Sample Copy of Casefile Clues

I am offering readers of the Rootdig.com blog a free copy of "Casefile Clues" as a sample--hopefully to encourage readers to subscribe.

Requests for a copy can be sent to me at mjnrootdig@gmail.com.


Patent Database at Ancestry.com 1790-1909

Ancestry.com recently (or at least I just noticed it) a US Patent Database from 1790-1909.

From the Ancestry.com site:
"This database contains invention patents granted from 1790-1909 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). "

While I haven't used the Ancestry.com database extensively, I think I'm going to stick with Google on this one. Google's patent database also starts in 1790 and contains information up to the last few months, according to its website. The Google site for patent also offers searches more flexibility and creativity in terms of searches than Ancestry.com does. The advanced Google search box appears in this blog post with a blue background on the top part of the image.

I am not a big fan of global searches on Ancestry.com. The only time I find a search of the entire site helpful is when the name is uncommon and I am clueless about the person and need a jump start on my research. Otherwise I like to know what I am searching (which probably stems from my control issues). Even names that I think may be uncommon come up too many times on global Ancestry.com searches and I WASTE too much time sifting through all the matches that I do not need.

I found some neat patents on Google just browsing to create this blog post.

A relative in Kansas made an adjustable shoe tree.

A closer relative in Hancock County, Illinois, made a hog feeder. Parts of Fred Trautvetter's patent are shown here as well.

Neat things on the patent database. I think I'll stick with Google's interface with these records. I can also download the patent as a PDF file too. Google will also let me create a direct link to the patent I located and send that in an email, or even post it here:
That link will take you directly to Trautvetter's feed trough patent for those who want to take a look.

05 October 2009

Page number 0

I am not certain what is going on, but this results page at Ancestry.com for Asa Landon in 1860 indicates that he is listed on census page number "0."
If you cannot see it, look in the source citation.
There is not a page 0. I just checked.
I'm not certain what is up with this, but I might just have to stop copying and pasting Ancestry.com's source citation to use as a starting point for my own citations.

01 October 2009

Is She Buried There?

The more I look through things, the more I realize that I also have holes and gaps in my research.

This is the stone for John and Anne Rampley in the Buckeye Cemetery, Walker Township, Hancock County, Illinois. Actually a very pretty cemetery on the top of a hill.
There is no death date for Anne on the stone. I will have to get her death certificate to determine if she really is buried there or not. John and Anne had no children and I know she survived him. My suspiscions are that when she died no one had her death date inscribed on her stone.

10% discount on Casefile Clues 1 October only

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