Friday, June 27, 2014

Finding Annie in New York

From census records and her death certificate I knew my 2nd great-grandmother was from New York.  My burning question was how she got from New York to Savannah in the 1860s??  I knew I needed more details about where she was from but wasn’t finding anything definitive until I was able to discover her father’s name “Albert Graham” on her 1910 Montgomery, Alabama death certificate.  I combined Albert’s name with Annie when searching on FamilySearch one day and hit pay dirt!  An index of New York births and christenings revealed a record from the First Dutch Reformed Church in Rochester, Ulster, New York with Albert Graham as the father and Anna Rebekkah Graham as the child.  It lists the birthday as March 13, 1832 which is two days off from the March 15 listing in the family bible, but the year does match.  And it revealed a potential name for Annie’s mother: Rachel Cole.

I still need to find more documentation, but it’s pretty exciting to narrow down the possibilities from a whole state to a county and town AND to find a possibility for her mother’s name. Census records showed Albert in 1850, in Ulster County, but not Annie, when she would have been 18.  Perhaps she moved out to work elsewhere??

New York, Births and Christenings, 1640-1962, index, 13 March 1832, First Dutch Reformed church, FIRST DUTCH REFORMED CHURCH,ROCHESTER,ULSTER,NEW YORK, FHL microfilm 823668.; : accessed 10 May 2014.

"Alabama, Deaths, 1908-1974," index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 14 Apr 2013), Annie Rebecca Davis, 17 Jun 1910; citing reference cn 289, Department of Health, Montgomery; FHL microfilm 1894077.

Friday, May 30, 2014

Notes from Maureen Taylor's full-day seminar

Back in October, Family Album Journey made a sojourn to a terrific full-day seminar put on by the Georgia Genealogical Society featuring Maureen Taylor, the Photo Detective.  I’ve purchased and read several of Maureen’s books and try to use her advice and knowledge when I look and share my own archival photographs.

Some of the new ideas I learned and plan to apply:

1.     Transfer my cassette interviews to digital!!! (Note: I finally contacted my “Virginia Davis”** cousins about these recordings.  They were very excited about getting them.  I did the transfer into digital. )Now I just have to:
2.     Upload and send cousins the digital files
3.     Double and triple check the source citations on my website, including citations for photographs from my own collection.
4.     Look again at Reel Genie

5.     Find some timeline reference books to enhance my timelines with historical and cultural context.

**I have two Davis lines in my family tree.   I believe they are unrelated, although my mom likes to talk about the "Twelve Davis brothers" legend she heard as a child, which apparently is a common myth in many families of common surnames.  My grandmother's Davis line was from Virginia, my grandfather's from Georgia, at least as far back as I've researched.  If genealogy weren't confusing enough...

Saturday, May 24, 2014

More babies!

Time for the girls now.  These are girl cousins of the Davis brothers.

Annie Josephine Davis
This photo is labeled Annie Josephine Davis.  She is the daughter of John Bart Davis, who my mother new as Uncle Bart.  He was the brother of my great-grandfather William A. Davis.    Annie was named for her grandmother, Annie, and her mother, Josephine.  So Uncle Bart must have thought highly of his mother.  Being the youngest of the family, he may have inherited some of the family photos and artifacts and perhaps he passed that down to Annie Josephine.  I don't have any information on her besides this photograph.

Kathleen Clark
Next is Kathleen Clark, daughter of Marion Armstrong Clark who was my great-grandmother's (Florence Armstrong) sister.  My mother tells me that Florence lived with her family in the early 1940s.  She was very senile at the time and would talk a lot about "Marion."

You'll see in both the photographs, that these young children are both holding props.  In Annie Josephine's case, it's a cat!

Unfortunately I don't have pictures of them as young women.  As a researcher, finding out more about these cousins could possibly uncover more information about our shared ancestors - Benjamin Armstrong, Eliza Ferguson Armstrong, William Hunter Davis and Annie Rebecca Graham Davis.  The cousins descendants might have information and photographs that I don't have.  Again, more research leads, so little time!