June 2015

I use FindAGrave.com quite a bit. I really appreciate everyone who has photographed graves and posted them to the site.

When you are lucky enough to find your ancestor’s grave posted on the site, be careful. Sometimes, tidbits of information are also posted. It is helpful when someone has posted more clues to your ancestor’s family. You know what I am talking about – the “trees” that are posted, the obituaries that are copied, the links to other graves found on FindAGrave.

Remember, the only record about which you are certain is the photograph of the gravestone. The other information is just what I called it in the previous paragraph – a clue to more about your ancestor’s family. The information may be true, and it may be conjecture. You really have no way of knowing without confirming the information.

Also, do you realize that the photograph is the property of the person who took the photograph? It is not legal to copy the photo without permission from the owner. So if you want to keep a copy of the photo, make sure to contact the owner and ask permission. I have always been pleased that I have been given permission to copy and use. Make sure you keep the “permission” with the photograph.



Newspapers. I have written before on some of the types of information one may find in the newspaper.

But, have you ever found the mention of your ancestor in an ad? Or, in the “100 Years Ago” column?

I have found quite a few of my ancestors in these types of articles. One ancestor I found notice of when there was an ad posted for the sale of his farm. The farm was listed as For Sale, and after it was sold, the same ad was posted with a “Sold” printed across the front of the ad (and the date was included!).

So, don’t just look under Obituaries or Births – look at all of the newspaper.


Have you ever reached a dead-end or brick wall on an ancestor?

I had been looking for information on a particular man who died about 1916. His first wife (in whom I was interested also) had died in the 1880’s. I was particularly interested in the man’s family line, so I requested his death certificate. He was listed in the “deaths” book, but no death certificate was to be found – the book had disintegrated many years ago.

I had looked at the man’s Civil War Pension File. No new information was found, but confirming information was there. This was good. The man’s son, who was the direct line in which I was interested, was mentioned. However, no new info was found.

How was I to find out more about the man and this son?

I decided to look at the probate record for the man’s second wife – the son’s step-mother. I don’t really know why I decided to do this, but was glad I did! I had thought that there would be no mention of the son or his sibling. I thought that his step-siblings may be mentioned.

I discovered that the son was the administrator of his stepmother’s estate! In the records, all of the children were mentioned – even the son’s sibling. There was much more information contained in the record as well.

So, just because the direct line ancestor is not really related to the “new” wife, don’t forget to look in the record.


Hello Everyone,

My normal email, mcgen@cinergymetro.net, is now working.

Thank you for all of your patience!


While I have been updating my FTM files, I have been going through items that I have saved on my computer – to be added to FTM at a later date.

One of the items is a photograph (below) sent to my husband’s grandfather Bringe. (I mentioned this in a previous post quite a while back.) It is addressed to him as living in Sarnia, Ont. I have determined that this means Sarnia, Ontario, CANADA. However, it would have been nice if the caption on the photo had been described with names of the couple instead of what was used. As you can see, the caption is:
Married the 21 of Dec. 1910 – Mommie and Lizzie

I wonder who Mommie and Lizzie are. They are probably the people who sent the card to Albert. However, Albert did not have a sister named Lizzie/Elizabeth/etc. And, who is in the photo? Is it one of Albert’s brothers or sisters? Through much research I still have yet to determine who the couple is. Maybe I will learn more as I clean my computer!


front of postcard Bringe 11 back of postcard bringe 11

Hello Everyone,

My email server is having problems, so my temporary email is:


Please use this email if you need to contact me.

Thanks, Maggie

I want to share with all of you a good experience I had this past Wednesday morning.

I have been researching a family who resided in Evansville, Vanderburgh Co., IN. Family story is that one of the children was adopted by the family. I decided to see what I could do to confirm this.

I called the Probate Division of the Vanderburgh Co. Clerk’s Office. The person who answered was kind and helpful. I told her in which I was interested, and she told me that adoption records are closed. So I asked about the Guardianship Records – it could be that the father was a guardian to the “son” before adoption. The person was very helpful on this matter as well. I was told to write a letter with the information in it (name of guardian, name of child, date) and send it to the Probate Division. Someone in the office will look in the index to determine whether or not there is a guardianship record. There is no charge for this service. They will call me to let me know one way or the other as to a record being found.

If a record is found (I hope so!), someone from the Probate Division will call and tell me what the charge will be for the file to be pulled and copies made.

It is so nice and a good start to the day when something like this happens!


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