Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Just the Snow Plow

Drift outside our side deck, 27 January 2015

Just the Snowplow?
You may have heard about the Blizzard we had yesterday here in Massachusetts. We live in Central Massachusetts and we figure about 30 plus inches fell. This made me think about the incident of the snow plow.

Where I grew up in Cranston, RI, we had a few years of snow much like what fell here yesterday. One day, while I was in high school, my mother, who did not sleep well and was hard to wake up in the morning, came into the kitchen at breakfast where my father and I were eating our cereal and juice. 

He put on the coffee and she sat down sleepily and said, "I had a tough night. I thought it couldn't be a dream because it was so loud. I sat up in bed trying to hear the noise on the street outside. Suddenly, I realized it was just the snowplow and I laid down and went back to sleep."

It was July.

We never let her forget it. 

Monday, January 26, 2015


Nancy Wheldon (1772-1840)
Row #1, Grave #308-10-004, GPS 41.41678 N - 71.97185 W

Nancy Wheldon was born about 1772 in Stonington, New London, CT.  On 16 Dec 1792, she married Andrew Gallup in Groton, New London, CT. They were married by Rev. Valentine W. Ratburn. There is a vital record of this marriage.

She was only 20 years old at the time of her marriage and she was living in Stonington at that time. That is the only evidence that she was from Stonington. Her parents names are not recorded in the Gallup Genealogy (2009) on (page 187)

It is possible that her maiden name was spelled WELDON. Andrew and Nancy had six children before Nancy died on 30 September 1840.

 Her gravestone shown here says she was 71 which helps narrow down her birth year but really can't be relied on. 

Andrew and Nancy were lucky that they did not lose any children to disease or accident that I can find. Their first child was born in 1794 and the last child was born in 1814. Three are buried in this graveyard.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Week Four: SLOW DOON

12 John St. Dalbeattie, Scotland, Google Maps, 2015
Slow Doon
Week 4
"Slow doon on lost paths"
("Don't run if you don't know where you are going")
Neil Wilson Publishing (May 31, 2011)]

"Where did my ancestors live in Dalbeattie, Scotland?" is an important part of my Scottish Do-over Project. Without Google Street View, I would just have a list of house numbers and street names with no real "picture" in my mind. This is something I never thought would work. I rationalized that so much time had passed, that any old address would be long gone. [Scotland Census Forms]

In the 1891 census, this row of "quarryman cottages", is where my great grandparents lived. You can see the numbers on the doors except for the white door where I placed the arrow. The next door is marked 13, so, this must be 12 John St. Dalbeattie. In the census records, there is a column for number of windows. Assuming this is for tax purpose, I see that in several records, my family may have occupied both 11 and 12 as family members became old and migrated to Dalbeattie. From this screen shot, you can see that is possible.

Being curious about what I am finding out in this project, I discovered a Web site (history section) and Facebook page created, called "Dalbeattie Matters".  It is for the present day community of Dalbeattie and is really interesting and much better that the first Web site, I found years ago whose Webmaster did not answer my queries. Now that old site still says 1999. I've learned to not use Web sites that are not updated.

I have now transcribed five birth, marriage and death records. In this case, the death record is the one I need. My great grandmother, Jane Hannah, wife of John Broadfoot, died at 12 John St. 

Wait (for the next post) so you see what they can see out the window....

Example of how I am transcribing records:

Jane Hannah Broadfoot  Statutory Death Record

Transcription of Death Record from original document obtained at Scotland's People, 2014

Citation of Record
Scotland. Kirkcudbrightshire Stewardry. Dalbeattie District. Registers of Births, Marriages and Deaths. Digital images. Scotland, Scotlands People. : 2014

1. Dalbeattie District. Kirkcudbrightshire Stewardry. Register of Deaths, 1895: entry 19, Jane Hannah Broadfoot; digital image, Scotlands People. ( : accessed  22 December 2014)

11. Dalbeattie District.  Kirkcudbrightshire Stewardry. Register of Deaths, 1895 entry 19. Jane Hannah Broadfoot.

Also: 1895 Broadfoot, Jane  (Statutory Deaths 864/00 019), page 7 line 19 date 2 April 1895

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Emeline C. GALLUP

Photo by Brian Zoldak, 2014, used with permission
Emeline C. Gallup (1821-1828)
Row #1, Grave #308-10-003, GPS 41.41676 N - 71.97183 W

Teenage Emeline C. Gallup is not buried with her parents in this cemetery.  (They are buried in Waterford, New London, CT.) 

It is a bit unusual for this to happen as they have no other children buried here. It could be that she was living in this area when she passed away. Her mother, Content Wheeler Gallup had seven children born in the years between Emeline's birth and her death.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Sentimental Sunday: Seeing God

Photos by Midge Frazel, 19 Aug 2014
All Saint's Church, Warwick, Rhode Island
"I saw God."

Last August, while on my self-titled, Cranston Adventure, I wanted to visit for a few minutes at some of the stops along my autobiographical timeline, so that I could write about my childhood. Next to the Pontiac Library in nearby Warwick, I took a few photos of the All Saint's Church (111 Greenwich Ave.). I didn't remember to take a photo of the church sign but it is fairly readable at Google Street View. I think my photos make a nice collage. The bright red doors are like cardinals in the snow.

My parents were married in the Episcopal Church near where my grandparents lived. I think my grandmother's Schofield ancestors may have been Anglican in England.

So, when my parents moved to "The Plat", this is the nearest church that is Protestant. My father, being raised as a Baptist, didn't like this church because it is "high" church so it couldn't have been long before they found a young Congregational minister who was starting a church across from Garden City and my parents joined that church. 

But during the time I went to the Preschool-Kindergarten at All Saints, I clearly remember the inside of the church (it was very red) and the room upstairs where I went to Sunday School. 

After church, we went home, and had lunch. I can still see, in my mind's eye, my mother standing in our kitchen, with a dish towel in her hand, wiping a clean plate, asking me what I learned at Sunday School. I told her they read us a Bible story and then, I rode the tricycle around the room. If only religion was this simple.

But, on this particular Sunday, I said something unusual happened. "God came to see us!", I said. My mother nearly dropped the plate she was drying. Of course, to a small child, an Episcopal minister looks very god-like as they wear the black cassock and the white collar. I told her that he asked me about the Bible story and I told him about it. He said I was a good girl, patted me on the head, and told me to go play. 

Oh, my mother tried to explain that he was the minister but I remembered they called him "Father" and I was not convinced. I had met God, and that was fact.

To this day, when someone says, "God", this man's face is what I see. 

Friday, January 16, 2015

Week Three: GUID AS A WINK

Hand drawn Family Tree by Midge Frazel, 1970-1971
Photo by Midge Frazel, 2015, magnet purchased from Ellis Island store

Guid as a Wink
Week 3
"A nod's as guid as a wink tae a blind horse"
(Always ensure you make your meaning clear)
["Haud Yer Wheesht!" Your Scottish Granny's Favorite Sayings by Allan Morrison Neil Wilson Publishing (May 31, 2011)]

As you can see by the photograph above of my hand drawn drop down style chart, I have been researching my Scots since the 1960s. The paper this is drawn on is blueprint paper given to me by my late father-in-law because I was taping sheets together. My father-in-law didn't like talking about family but he did admire my stick-to-it attitude so he gave me the biggest piece of paper he could find and watched me add names. I didn't have family group sheets until 1972. I designed my own.

Interviewing Elders
Interviewing the youngest great aunt in my father's line was an experience everyone should have. She was my great grandmother's youngest child and she was born in Scotland. We corresponded a bit before I got married, moved, changed jobs and put my genealogy aside. I am still looking for her place of burial.

First Focal Family
This week I am focusing on my great grandfather, John Broadfoot and his wife Jane Hannah. Most of their children came to America. John outlived his wife and married again and had four or five more children. His second wife outlived him. He is the granite in my blood. John was a monumental mason and granite hewer.

His son, Thomas, was my grandfather. Thomas died before I was born. Thomas's brother, John, is the ancestor of my California cousins. Recently, one of them went to Dalbeattie, Scotland and took photographs. Naturally, I was interested in the gravestones, so their cousin who has a brother who lives in that town, took the gravestone photos and emailed them to me. 

They asked me an important question that I should have been able to answer. "Where did our family live in Dalbeattie?" So, that is where this quest begins. I have births, marriages and deaths. I have census records. They were a disorganized mess. I am confirming each one, making sure they are:

  1. Saved in my timeline at Scotlands People.
  2. Printed from my printer 
  3. Saved to my backup drive, to my tree and to my Flickr account.

The records need to be printed because of the information at the top of each original image. There is a numbering system that I finally understand. You pay for each search so if you are going to do this, you must gather all your information from family, from gravestones, and from every INDEX that you can find. I wasted a LOT of money and time by not knowing that. I even took a course and didn't understand that.

But now, we can use Google Maps to find the house numbers and streets. It is amazing! 

Jane Hannah, my great grandmother (1851-1895)
John Broadfoot, my great grandfather (1853-1926) 
John Broadfoot's second wife Margaret Tait (1862-1943)

My father told me that his father, Thomas, and his father, this John, did not get along. While he was in high school, my father was in a play. They put talcum powder in my dad's hair to make him look older. My father was unprepared for his father, Thomas, to stand up and shout from the audience. "Damn it, he looks just like my old man!" My dad was so embarrassed. 

My grandfather left Scotland and left his old man behind and never went back. My father found his father dead on the kitchen floor where he had taken his own life. Alcoholism and depression got him. I am glad to have a story even if it is not a pleasant one. Finding balance is key.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015


Photo by Brian Zoldak, 2014, used with permission
Phebe E. Gallup (1824-1842)
Row #1, Grave #308-10-002, GPS 41.41676 N - 71.97183 W 

Daughter of Nehemiah Mason (spelled incorrectly on this gravestone as Nehemih) and Huldah (Wheeler) Gallup, Phebe was only 18 years old when laid to rest in this burying ground. 

Phebe was born on 8 February 1824 in Groton, New London Connecticut, and died 30 May 1842 in Ledyard, New London, CT. She was the seventh child born to Nehemiah and Hulda Gallup. 

Saturday, January 10, 2015


Merkland Farms, by Richard Dengate, used with permission
Slow Fires
Week 2
"Slow Fires Mak Sweet Meat"
(Take your time to achieve perfection)
Neil Wilson Publishing (May 31, 2011)]

I knew when I started my do-over that I would get a lot of questions about my Scots so I spent some time looking for a few new-to-me resources. What I didn't expect was to have people being so nice as to help me out with my quest. 

Setting Goals
Setting goals is something I don't mind doing but as I do so I see that I am moving too fast through my "over the pond" research. So, I am only including my ancestors that DID NOT come to America.

I find that it is not as much fun as my New Englanders and their gravestones. I prepared by spending money and buying more credits at Scotland's People. I decided to purchase Elizabeth Shown Mills, book,  Evidence Explained in digital format. (look in the bookstore for it)
struggled to get it installed correctly and all of a sudden it was working. Ah, the mysteries of Technology.

I focused my goals on my Broadfoot and Hannah lines for ONLY three generations. The digital copies and the paper copies need to be examined and transcribed. Scottish people keep repeating names over and over. Two men who are first cousins can have the exact same name based on their common grandparent.

Fortunately, I interviewed my paternal family when I was young. They were interested in what I learned. I had fun doing it and it encouraged me to tackle learning family history. 

Scottish research is a bit different. I actually start with the women! I found marriage records to be valuable. Death records are better than American death records. 

Geography matters and I have not taken the time to study it. With our network of global genealogists, I found people to help me. They are willing to help me with the locations and sources.

As I am working with BOTH indexes and original records, I am much better at searching than I used to be. 

This week, I focused on getting the printouts from Scotlands People in order. The photo above was the beginning of the FOUR hours I spent doing that. Genealogy is not for wimps.

I spent over an hour developing a "special" naming convention for the digital files.  It will look like this:

Profile_Surname (married name)

Birth_Surname (maiden)_First name_Year


Death_Surname_Married_Surname (maiden)_Year

Baptism_Surname (maiden)_First Name_Year

Census_ Year_ Surname_Surname

I discovered one line to be Ulster-Scots, so I have new learning to do. 

Family Search. Basic Scotland Research 
Strategies UK Census Collection
Family Search. Scotland Indexed Historical Records

Tuesday, January 06, 2015


Photo by Brian Zoldak, used with permission, 2014

Hannah Gallup Carter (1820-1846)
Row #1, Grave #308-10-001, GPS 41.41677 N - 71.97183 W 

The eternally weeping willow mourns for this young wife and mother, Hannah Gallup. Daughter of Nehemiah Mason Gallup and his wife Huldah Wheeler, she was the fifth child of eleven children. She married Eleazer W. Carter, of Norwich, Connecticut on 24 Mar 1844. Henry R. Knapp married them in Preston, CT. Hannah was 23 years old at the time of marriage and Eleazer was 22 years old. Eleazer's father was John Carter.

Hannah and Eleazer had a daughter, Mary E. born 20 June 1845. At the time of her mother's passing on 13 Jun 1846, Mary was only a baby. As was the custom in New England, her husband buried her with her mother and her maternal grandparents in the Gallup Burying Ground in Ledyard, CT. 

As Hannah's mother was no longer living, Eleazer left his daughter with Hannah's sister, Eliza Gallup to raise. Eliza had married her cousin Asa Lyman Gallup in 1840. This was the custom of the time as Eleazer was a young widower who was not from the area. Eliza and Asa lived on Asa's father's farm in Ledyard and little Mary lived with them until the time of her marriage in 1869.

Eleazer married again in 1848 to Alona M. Boyton in Worcester, MA and they lived there for the rest of their lives. Eleazer's Masonic card lists his occupation as stair builder. He and his second wife had no children. He died Worcester, Massachusetts. 

Hannah Gallup8 (Nehemiah Mason7, Nehemiah Mason6, Henry5, Benadam4, Benadam3, John2, John1)

Hannah was my 3rd cousin, 4x removed.

Hale Transcription: Carter, Hannah, wife of Eleazer W., and daughter of Nehemiah M. & Huldah Gallup, died Jun 13, 1843, age 25 years. 10 mos. Note that death year is incorrect it should be 1846.

Sunday, January 04, 2015

Sentimental Sunday: Year in Review

Blog Journal 2015, photo by Midge Frazel

Year in Review 2014
Meeting Goals

Today, I am remembering the last month of 2013 where I found my Quaker family in Adams, Massachusetts with the help of a single email. I knew this was going to be a stellar year. I still hope to go to the Quaker meetinghouse and see those gravestones for myself as I didn't get there last summer.

It was fun investigating my childhood neighborhood using city directories and plat maps from the City of Cranston, Rhode Island. In August, I returned to spend a day there and discovered that researching can be a great healer of broken hearts. 

A couple shopping hours in Garden City also helped. I still have Sentimental Sunday posts to write about my day there. I can't wait to go back. I'd like to take a couple photos of my high school, the masonic temple and the church where I was baptized.

In February, I returned to my photo organizing project and contributed to Maureen Taylor's newest book. That's fun! I got a lot of my heritage photos organized, scanned and in archival boxes. I still have so many more to go!

In March, I investigated my famous Schofield family and found records of their life in Saddleworth, England.

Some of my Find a Grave requests paid off and hubs family research started to go better and better. I gained several gravestone photos without leaving home. They were located where I thought they should be and the did show information I didn't expect.

Blogging about my ancestor, Avery Denison's bullet hole ridden gravestone was a big hit in April. Then, I returned to working on Hubs family Parmenters where many graves have weeping willows.

Highly Caffeinated Genealogist

I ranted about "Minding Your Own Beeswax" and plan to rant more unless I get more highly caffeinated. Thank heavens for my Keurig. Caramel Vanilla is my favorite coffee there days.

Next up was more investigation of my Rhode Island ancestors and found the new project of the Rhode Island Cemetery Commission very helpful. I loved finding Joshua Barber's (empty) burial ground with gravestones moved but the sign still up. Imagine, someone took a photo of the location!

Blogging about heritage gardens and heirloom jewelry was great fun and I want to investigate this more. We started organizing hubs military records and scanning his medals with my Flip-Pal.

Finally, I worked with several other genealogists on photographing and researching a whole cemetery. I have so much information that it had to be put off until 2015.

I am participating in the Genealogy Do-Over by getting my Broadfoot great grandparents and their ancestors in the right order and re-reading all the records again.

Keeping a blog journal (on a simple calendar) really helped me meet my goals and find ways to blog about them. Finally something that worked and it cost just a couple of dollars.

Here's to a wonderful year of discovery!