Sunday, February 28, 2010

Medals Awarded Winter Games 2010

Just as the athletes in Vancouver, we bloggers who eagerly sought to complete various tasks for our Winter Olympics were awarded our medals yesterday at the end of the closing ceremonies. I may not have had Michael J. Fox present to consider me as a new Canadian, but I did have my music on my Ipod and many new internet sites to search and new blogs to read to keep me company as my torch was distinguished. At least I know I there is London to look forward to anticipate.

Here are my medals:

Saturday, February 27, 2010

52 Weeks to Better Genealogy- Google Maps

I first started to play with this just a few days ago when I saw it on the list of Tasks for the Winter 2010 Geneablogger Games and decided that not only did I need to get back to it because I was catching up (slowly) on the challenges, but also because I really had fun with it then, and wanted to experiment more to become more familiar.

I decided to use this as a chance to overview St. Mary's County, Maryland and in particular St. Clement's Island and Leonardtown. These locations were the first places that my Raley (spelled Railey then) line landed in the United States a few hundred years ago.

The map is interesting, but when you add the satellite view on top of that, it just adds such dimension not only literally but in terms of bringing those places that we cannot visit at the drop of a hat to life. I for one intend to utilize this site more often.

52 Weeks to Better Genealogy- Challenge 8

If I did everything thing right, this is one of several blogs I have written in advance as one of my last tasks for the 2010 Winter Olympics. In this task, we are to prepare several posts in draft mode and pre-publish them. I am currently sitting at a semi-state basketball game and counting on a win (confidence).

This past weeks challengs was to discover online map collections. The map collections mentioned for this challenge were the American Memory Collection at the Library of Congress, the David Rumsey Library Collection, and the Perry-Castanada Library Map Collection.

I chose to see what I would find on Ohio County, Kentucky since we are planning a research trip to there in March and I thought it might assist me in my preparation.

Here are my results:

There were no results. How about that! I found nothing on any of the sites that cenetered on Ohio County, Kentucky.  Well, not quite. I did get moved somehow to the Kentucky Geological Survey University of Kentucky site where I did find a report written on the groundwater resources of the county. I know that the oldest rocks(Mississippian) were deposited 350 million years ago, that the highest elevation is 800 feet, that 90% of the population uses public water, and that the groundwater is hard to very hard. Very interesting, but none of that will help me on my research trip.

However, we are going to the Kentucky State Archives next week and I am sure that my mother will uncover just the maps we will need for our trip to Ohio County later this month. I have learned so much from each of the challenges, and this one has been challenging, and the only one that did not meet my needs at this moment. I will not however, not give up on this one, and I am sure will revisit it at another time when there are other maps I am seeking.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Final Tally for the 2010 Winter Olympics

What an experience this has been!!! I have loved every moment, even those moments when technology would not behave and cooperate, such as when I followed all the directions to load my Wordle list onto this page in order to prove that I have completed the task. A printed copy is currently sitting on my desk, but will not be on this blog until sometime next week after I have some additional work done on the computers.

I know more of my blogger pals out in cyberspace, and have enjoyed the camaraderie with my fellow competitors as we each learn new tasks and cheer each other on. I am caught up on some of my items on my 'to do" list, and feel energized to move forward with more.

Given all that, here are the last additions to my tasks, and my final tally:

1) Go back and Cite Your Sources!

30 sources- Gold medal

not where I wanted to be, but progress

2) Back Up Your Data!

Completed Tasks A, C, & D

3) Organize Your Research!

Completed tasks A, B, C, D, & E  for a Platinum Medal

4) Expand Your Knowledge

Completed Tasks A, B, C, D, & E if you count that it was done 3 times on Wordle, but refused to load onto Blogger; I do however have a copy of it sitting on my desk and I will learn learn how to load it this week or else.

I will call it a Platinum Medal

5) Write, Write, Write!

I did not do task A because I want to spend some more time thinking about this before I add other pages.

B) Scheduled
C) 2 are scheduled to load on Saturday while I am at a basketball tournament
D) This is completed in preparation for Task B
E) Completed yesterday as I start deciding how I want to make some changes to this blog
F) I am now up to date with this by pre-publishing

Platinum Medal

6) Reach Out & Perform Genealogical Acts of Kindness!

Completed tasks A, B, D, F, G  for Platinum Medal

Timeline of Martha Ann Cozart

After some attempts to start this timeline on the site TimeToast, I decided that I would follow the steps of a fellow blogger (Tina Lyons from Gen Wish Listgenwishlist.blogspot) and just list my timeline here. The good thing is that I have set up an account (free) with TimeToast, and never being one to walk away from a challenge, will soon return and learn how to work the program to my satisfaction. I will let you know how it goes.

Timeline of Martha Ann COZART

Born about 1849 in White County Illinois to Samuel Nicholas COZART and Rocksanna WRIGHT.

Census records for 1850 list her at 11 months of age, living in District 13, White County, Illinois with her parents and 4 older brothers. She was the youngest by 10 years.

The census of 1860 lists her as 11 years of age, living at Township 5 Range 9E, White County, Illinois with her parents as the only child.

Martha marries Lemuel TUCKER on 20 Sept 1866 in White County, Illinois.

19 October 1866, my great-grandfather John Rankin TUCKER was born.

The rest of the children born to Lemuel and Martha Ann were as follows (all in Ilinois):

Amanda Ellen was born 2 March 1869
Samuel H. in 1872
George Raleigh 4 Feb 1876
Unnamed daughter 14 Nov 1878
Anna Belle  30 Nov 1880
Fronie  Date u/k
Minnie Jane  Nov 1881
Melvinia "Millie"  8 Nov 1883

Martha's husband Lemuel, dies on 2 Sep 1885.

On 12 August 1890 Martha applies for her husband's Civil War pension benefits as his widow.

On 6 February 1894 Martha marries for the 2nd time to Jeremiah SHELTON in White County, Illinois.

She died 30 March 1910 in Carmi, White County, Illinois at the age of 61. She is buried in Hamilton County, Illinois, which is where the SHELTON family has their family cemetery.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

2010 Winter Games- An Update

As we near  the end of these games, I find myself taking a moment to see all the benefits this experience has provided for myself.

I have learned how to use Google Mapsgoogle maps, and their street view feature. I spent some time developing a detailed and comprehensive plan for backing up all of my research files and a security plan for my hard copies and photos as required by this competition.

I am much more organized than I was two weeks ago as well. My photos are all in one location, scanning is well underway, files on the computer are being organized into folders that are easier to find when I need them, and my information is archived onto external drives and placed into safe locations away from my computer should anything happen.

I have also joined 2 socities that have been on my list for the past few weeks (St. Mary's County Maryland Genealogical Society and The Kentucky Genealogical Society), have increased my list of blogs I follow (although there are many more I am reading and will put on my list), and am starting slowly to add photos to Find - Grave

So, as of this post here is where I stand:

1) Go Back and Cite Your Sources!   Silver medal

2) Back Up Your Data!  Not Sure- I have completed tasks A & C, half of D

3) Organzie Your Research!  Platinum medal

4) Expand Your Knowledge    Silver medal

5)  Write, Write, Write!   Bronze medal

6) Reach Out & Perform Genealogical Acts of Kindness!  Platinum medal

If my calendar is correct I have today and tomorrow to finish my to do list. I am hoping (always remember that sometimes life gets in the way) to get some more sources cited, focus on some of the writing tasks, and to see if my technological skills will behave and in the process make some improvements to my blog page.

I want to thank you all for the nice comments and the new additions that have come along. We all have so much to learn from each other. Do not hesitate to send a note when there are suggestions for improvements as well as those great notes of encouragement (keep em coming!)

Til next time, Kim

Monday, February 22, 2010

New Cousins

One of the greatest gfts that comes with the interest in genealogy, especially in the computer generation, is the connections that spring up.

For example, my world has grown tremendously since I took the plunge and decided to try my hand at blogging. Yes, there have been stumbles along the way but I am learning more everyday and now I wouldn't trade you crazy guys for anything.

Another gift of the computer and genealogy is my ever growing family! Any one who reads many articles about genealogy will eventuallycome across those that suggest the importance of message boards and placing queries regarding specific questions about your family.

During one of my "Wandering Weekends" (a term I made up last year on here to describe those times when I just get on the computer and see where my hands will take me- therefore wandering) I got on Rootsweb to see what I could find out about my Raley side of the family and St. Mary's County, Maryland. 

Well, since I had never looked at information on that site about this county before, i did the only logical thing and started at the beginning and read/scanned every entry for every month since the page was established several years ago. No one can say we genealogists are not persistent. 

I learned 2 things- there is a regular reunion for a group called the "Marylanders to Kentucky" and one name in particular kept showing up in connection with this group and my RALEY surname. I decided to send a note to this lady to ask her when the next reunion is (they are apparently hed every 2 years and travel between Maryland and Kentucky).  To shorten this long story- she is a RALEY cousin, was born and raised in my neck of the woods, travels back here regularly, and jusy happened to be availale to meet for dinner and a long chat tonight!!

You would think we had known each other for our whole lives, and I look forward to getting to know her better. I  have another "cousin" who lives nearby that needs some prayer and attention right now, and another I recently met through the computer.

Its an amazing gift- this genealogy world we live in.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

2010 Winter Games Update

Well, today I did get some things done on my "To Do" list, but never as much as I hope.

Under Expand Your Knowledge:

Task D: I spent some time today reading several articles intended to increase my knowledge base. That included some past issues of magazines that I keep carrying around with me for those moments when I had a spare moment.

Under Write, Write, Write!:

Task F: I made 2 more entries, yet I am still behind, but I will catch-up, and learn much more in the process!

Under Reach Out & Perform Genealogical Acts of Kindness!

Task F:  I mailed away my membership for the Kentucky Genealogical Society and St. Marys Maryland Genealogy Society

I am not putting up a tally tonight. There is more to do, more to achieve, and I would like to concentrate on that tonight as I clap for those who are doing moves on the ice I haven't been able to do since I thought I was a hot shot years ago.

Even if you don't "officially" compete in these Olympics, every task on the list is worthwhile and a great way to expand your knowledge, get some of those "to dos" off your list, and to protect your important work.

Stay with us. We have much to learn from one another.

52 Weeks To Better Genealogy- Challenge # 6

This challenge asks me to utilize my local library and to see what databases and referances are available online through my local library.

In my case I have two different libraries to consider for this: Willard Library, which serves as the 3rd largest genealogy library in the state of Indiana, and the Evansville Vanderburgh Public Library system, which has many benefits as well.

Willlard Library has several databases online, including:  The Newspaper Index (microfilmed indexes of Evansville newspapers from 1821-1860), Marriage Index for Vanderburgh County Indiana marriages(1920- 1979), Postcard and Photograph Indexes, as well as GenealogyBank and HeritageQuest that are available online when I enter my library card information. Willard also has access to AncestryLibrary when you go in and use their computers free of charge, but are limited to one hour in fairness to others.

The Evansville Vanderburgh Public Library has several online databases that are helpful for me including NewsBank, the Evansville Local History Database, Browning Genealogy  Database, Cyndis List, Getting Started in Genealogy, Many of the State Archives, as well as FamilySearch.

What I love is that there are so many resources availble to us from our libraries, and am grateful for this challenge as an excuse to spend some time devouring them.

Check out what your library has. You may be surprised.

The Evansville Vanderburgh Library has many other internet resources

52 Weeks to Better Genealogy- Catching Up

As you know, I tend to get behind in my tasks when a thing called "life" gets in the way, and participating in Amy Coffin's 52 Weeks to Better Genealogy one of my behind tasks. I love her ideas, and actually made a list of the ones she did last year to use as future blogs if i ever need an idea.

This entry is from Challenge # 5- Play With WorldCat

I actually have played with it a few times since the challenge was announced. The first thing that I learned was to write my search term as "SURNAME"  family history. When I did this I was pleasantly surprised to discover several books that existed about members of my family in which I had no idea.

For example, I am a descendant through the Cozart, Cossairt family who came to the United States by landing in New Jersey in the 1600s. When I entered "Cozart family history" in the search box, a book surfaced called "A genealogy of the three branches of the Bumpass family...John Bumpass (1736-1813)...Samuel , who died in 1776... Winnifred (1745-1819), who married Anthony Cozart III in 1739..  written by William Moses Jones. A 2nd entry for this book goes into further detail by discussing these three branches, including the connection to Plymouth.  What was confusing about the entry was that it stated "no libraries with the specified item were found.'  That was confusing to me since i thought the purpose of Worldcat was to tell me where to find the results.

In another case for my Raley Family, I was referred to an internet site for further research and to a county repository for loose family papers.

In all three cases I was thrilled. I have new information to seek out, and other sources to use in verifying what I know at this point. One source builds to another, etc. and I can see the definite benefit of WorldCat and will place it in my arsenal.

Update on the Winter Games

Although I do not have much to show for in my medal count for the past few days, the experience itself is so much more valuable.

My focus today was Category 6- Reach Out & Perform Genealogical Acts of Kindness!

Task A; Comment on a new genealogy blog (to me) was easy and I found several that struck a chord for me to leave a comment on.

Task G: Use the Follow feature on a Blogger-based genealogy blog  and follow one or more blogs. I definitely added to my Google Reader tonight, first by viewing some of the newer blogs that have been featured recently, and then by starting to read some of the other blogs that are participating in the Winter Games. I love reading what others have to write, but the irony is that in doing so I did not even get through all the Olympic participants to view tonight in order to move on to some scanning I had planned.  How do those of you that subscribe to hundreds of blogs do it? Everyone has so much to say.

So my count tally to date is rather small, but I am learning and growing in the experience.

To date: Back Up Your Data- I have earned a medal
Organize Your Research:- Silver Medal
Reach Out & Perform Genealogical Acs of Kindness- Silver Medal

Tomorrow I hope to spend some time on citing some sources that need my attention, figure out why DropBox is fighting with me, expand my knowledge of maps, and catch up on 52 weeks of genealogy challenges.  Whew! We'll see how that goes!

In the meantime, take a moment to use the symbolism of the Vancouver Olympics and the stories of athletes who have overcome obstacles in which no one believed they would walk again, or run, or compete and how they broke through their own brickwalls just to be in the moment as inspiration to try "one more avenue" for that elusive ancestor or piece of documentation that has to be out there somewhere in your own travels today.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Winter 2010 Olympics- An Update

This is one of those nights when I can't sleep with so much on my mind so I thought it was the perfect time to open the laptop in the dark and address some of the tasks and categories for the Winter Olympics.

I began this with much excitement and unfortunately sometimes life gets in the way (needing to buy a new router (those of you who read this blog know that I must have a ghost who curses electronics), our girls basketball team is in the throes of basketball tournament fever (and that's BIG if you live in Indiana!), and so on. However, I have been able to dedicate some time to my categories.

Category 2: Back Up Your Data

          Task C: Back up all your data using a flash drive, an external drive, CDS, DVDs, or an online source.
                 I happen to use all of the above at this time. Every time I download my pictures from the camera, 
                 I immediately save all new data to 2 different external hard drives. One of them goes in a  
                 waterproof safe and the other leaves the house. (This is happening approx. 1x a month) After any
                 info is downloaded or added to my FTM program I save it to a flash drive and also to one of the
                 external hard drives.
          Current count in Category 2: 1 medal

Category 3: Organize Your Research

          Task C: Organize at least 20 photos into photo albums, sctapbooks, collages, protective holders, etc.
                I am currently taking a scrapbooking class called "Library of Memories" from Big Picture  
                Scrapbooking and our current asssignment invloves this very  
                task, except on a larger scale. So I have just organized a couple years of photos over the past 2
                weeks with more to go.

          Task E: Create at least 20 data entries in your database, or scan 20 photos, or scan 20 documents.
                I am currently scanning a couple small albums of my mothers that are full of cemetery photos and
                houses that family members have lived in throughout Illinois, Indiana, & Kentucky. As of this
               writing that numbers to approximately 75 photos (and they are also being immediately being
               backed up.
          Current Count in Category 3: 2 medals

There is much more to do and I am really looking forward tomorrow to reading several of the new blogs I haven't looked at yet, as well as learning how to add photos to Find a Grave, and some of the other tasks.

In the meantime, say a little prayer for my girls here in Indiana will you? They are playing at the next level tomorrow and I would really like to see them move up to semi-state, especially since this is senior year for some special ones to me.

Until next time, keep plugging away and may you find much success.


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Tomstone Tuesday- 16 February 2010

Virgil Stiff  1896-1977

The Genealogy Games- Winter 2010

Hi to all those who live in the so-called warmer climates and have not been hit with some sort of snow or blizzard this winter. After our last winter blast that fell overnight Sunday with several more inches the kids are out of school for 2 days, cars are sliding through the intersections, and one more politician has suddenly decided to resign from the Senate, our own Evan Bayh. Whatever your feelings, its just one more knock on a crazy time that historians will be able to write about in years to come.

I failed to establish a plan of attack in my competition for the Winter Olympics and felt I had better get down to a few plans and ideas at this point since the opening Ceremony is over and unexpected withdrawals and changes are aflutter in Vancouver and I would not want that to derail my plans.

So my categories are: Cite Your Sources, Back up Your Data (perfect for one who is fighting this issue right now), Organize Your Research, Expand Your Knowledge, Write! Write! Write!, and reach Out and Perform Random Genealogical Acts of Kindness. Each category has a list of tasks, A through F or G, so tomorrow I set up a small table to let you know how I am doing within each category and my medal total.

I love this idea so much for its unconventional manner in assisting me in getting a list of tasks completed that are already sitting inside my "to do" binder. I plan to use it as the beginning of a training regiment of maintaining focus.

Please keep in there with us as we work through this process.

Until tomorrow, Kim

Saturday, February 13, 2010

2010 Winter Games- Let Them Begin!

I have been amiss in the past week to ten days in my blog activities for a variety of reasons, the best being that her high school basketball team is currently in the throes of tournament time (and won quite a "barn burner" tonight-one of those "Indiana terms that seems to surface every year in February.)

Regardless, I was pleasantly pleased to see on Geneabloggers that there is an Olympic event for genealogists. The 2010 Winter Games have several sports, including the ones I plan to participate in: Back Up Your Data, Organize Your Research, Expand Your Knowledge, and Write! Write! Write! In each category there are a list of tasks to complete. The more done during the Olympics, the better the medal.

For example, in Write! Write! Write! the tasks include: write a summary of what your blog is about and publish it on your blog, participate in a genealogy or family history related carnival, and write a brief biographical sketch on one of your ancestors.

I really like this for several reasons: an opportunity to globally participate with other bloggers in a fun event, its a reminder to stick to those New Year Resolutions I made on this blog just a few weeks ago, and it gives me some new tools to investigate and try out in my family research.

Consider partciapting in this fun exploration. Even if you only complete one task in one category you are one step farther than you were yesterday!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Wordless Wednesday- 10 February 2010- a small town jail

This is the jail for Maunie, White County, Illinois in its hey day. I have to admit that more than one ancestor spent a night there. It's not in use today, but stands as one of the reminders of an earlier age.