Thursday, June 30, 2011

Genealogy Serendipity Moments - Facebook

First, I want to thank my forty-one followers and all of you who have spent time reviewing my blog posts. In just two months I have had over 2000 page views. A special thank you to Randy Seaver for his two recent highlights of my posts. Geneabloggers by Thomas MacEntee, which has over 1900 genealogy blogs listed, also recognized Gopher Genealogy. As a newby in the blogging world I find it educational and a valuable resource in my growth as a genealogist.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Genealogy Education - Enhance Your Research

Genealogy Education - Enhance Your Research

Susan LeBlanc, BGS/FH, AG®[i]

In trying to understand the concept of genealogy education, we turn to the Merriam-Webster Thesaurus, which provides the following definitions of the words.
Genealogy: the line of ancestors from whom a person is descended.
Education: the act or process of imparting knowledge or skills to another.
In combining the two, we can develop a reasonable definition for the focus of this paper.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Book Review: The Twig

Lauren Kessler, Stubborn Twig, Oregon State University Press, Corvallis, Oregon, 2008, Pgs. 308.

Audience: Genealogists and Historians with an interest in Japanese immigration and assimilation in the United States around the time of World War II.

Purpose: This book addresses the experience of immigration to the United States and the racial hostility encountered by Japanese immigrants. As a secondary purpose, it is the history of a Japanese family and their experiences over three generations in Hood River, Oregon.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Genealogy Serendipity Moments - Riggs/Craven Family

A couple of years ago I was working with a client and she wanted to find her grandmother's father. All she knew about him was that his name was William Craven, he was born in England and had abandoned his wife Martha Jane Anthony Craven and child Dora Craven, who was born in about 1868 in Oregon. Dora marries Joseph Alonzo Riggs in 1883 in North Powder, Baker, Oregon.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Father's Day Honors - Part 2

When our mother remarried after the death of our father it was a huge adjustment for my siblings and me. We don't really use the term stepfather, which I have never really liked the sound of. While he did step into a role in meeting the needs of our mother, we were not quite ready to have someone fill the role of our father. His twenty-one years of patiently guiding our lives has won him over to all of us, some more than others. For me this is kind of a turning point. I want to call him something more than the husband of my mother. Do you have any suggestions for such a title?

Friday, June 17, 2011

Father's Day Honors

My Father Roger Stanley Olsen

In honor of Father's Day I want to share a letter I wrote to my mother, brothers and sister three years ago (2008) on what would have been our father’s seventy-third birthday. I wrote the original and then sent it to my family asking them to add their thoughts. They added their personal thoughts, and then I resent it out as the collection of our thoughts. It is something that we need to continue.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Genealogy Serendipity Moments - The Unvarnished Truth

In the course of doing genealogy research we occasionaly come across what might be considered unvarnished truth. Usually this can be a rather shocking surprise revelation about a family member we are not expecting. Many times when I am working with clients they like to tease me with tidbits of information and then let me discover what they already know. Today I will share a collection of these moments of revelation that lead to unexpected consequences.

Monday, June 13, 2011

The Genealogist's Bucket List

Last Sunday, in the Parade section of our local newspaper, there was an article on America's Bucket List 2011. Reading through it helped me to realize that genealogists probably have a different focus on the items that they would include on such a list. The term "bucket list" supposedly originated from the term "kick the bucket" and is related to preparing to die. We all have an undetermined amount of time to accomplish all that we wish to do. Whenever I am faced with major surgery, I often realize there are loose ends that need to be tied up before surgery. Then I make a little progress and once again fall behind following surgery.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Book Review - Who Do You Think You Are?

Megan Smolenyak, Who Do You Think You Are? The Essential Guide to Tracing Your Family History, The Penguin Group Inc., New York, New York, 2010, 205 pages.

Audience: This book was written to compliment the television show “Who Do You Think Your are?” and is directed to people desiring to know how to go about researching family history. It is applicable to all ranges of genealogical researchers, providing key tools for successful research.

Genealogy Serendipity Moments - Family History Center Fun

This is a day late as I worked in our family history center yesterday and then on a project for my sister in law. This will be a two-part post, but they are interconnected. First, a brief explanation about the title of this blog. The name Gopher Genealogy relates to how I do genealogy research. We all do our research a little differently, but the way I research developed from practice and successful results. Often we must dig deep and hard to get the information we need. It requires a mindset of looking at the big picture.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

This Is The Face of Genealogy

My love for genealogy goes back to my high school years. I credit my paternal grandmother, Zella Alice Straw Olsen, with encouraging my interest in family history. She is shown above with her grandfather Daniel Tidd. My grandmother fed my interest by introducing me to family members who had information to help me in my search. She and other family members gave me family artifacts that helped me come to know my ancestors better. (For more on her ancestors read the Daniel Tidd story under research projects.)

Saturday, June 4, 2011

What To Do With a Sick Genealogist?

You know how it is; you wake up with the achy bones, sneezy nose and sore throat. Is it a cold or the flu or a combination of the two? In Spanish it is called gripe, in French influenza, in German grippe; but whatever you call it, it is miserable stuff. This has been through our house numerous times this spring and I managed to escape the evil curse until this week. For that I am very grateful, as I had several lectures to give and the last thing I wanted was to loose my voice.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Genealogy Serendipity Moment - Drake/Hau Family

Part 3

Working on the Hau family we have had many pleasant surprises. The one we share today is my favorite. This one required that we be persistent and check every possible connection for this family. After doing the basic online research for the Hau family, we turned to online family submitted files.