Saddleback Valley Trails
South Orange County California Genealogical Society

Vol. 13 No. 8 Editor: Mary Jo McQueen August 2006

 P.O. Box 4513, Mission Viejo, CA. 92690

Monthly meetings are held on the third Saturday of each month from 10:00 a.m. to Noon at the Mission Viejo Family History Center Institute Building, 27978 Marguerite Parkway, Mission Viejo, between Medical Center Drive and Hillcrest Drive. Membership is open to anyone interested in genealogy. Individual membership fees are $20 per calendar year; $25 for joint membership. SOCCGS is not affiliated with the LDS Family History Center.

GENERAL MEETING, August 19, 2006
Michael Kratzer
“Cemetery Research”

The main focus of this presentation will be strategies for finding cemetery and burial records by conventional genealogy research means, and by the use of online databases. Mr. Kratzer has performed onsite research in court houses, libraries, and cemeteries across the country. He will share information he has also found in church records and funeral homes, as well as in online grave site locators.
Mr. Kratzer grew up in the Pasadena area and has been involved in genealogy research for over 15 years. He has held managerial positions in the metal finishing trade. Michael currently lives in Costa Mesa with his wife, Brenda. He volunteers at the Huntington Beach Family History Center.

Come, and learn more about this interesting topic!


September 16 - Nancy Huebotter, "Writing and Producing a Family History"
October 21 - Seminar, Dr. George Schweitzer
November 18 - Member-Participation Program. Details to be announced.
December 16 - Annual Holiday Luncheon


Seminar data and a registration form are on page seven of this newsletter. Registration information is also on our website as listed on the back of newsletter. It is not too early to reserve your place for our fifth annual seminar. Those who remember Dr. Schweitzer from the 2003 seminar will be anxious to hear him again, and this will be a great experience for those who have not yet watched and listened to his presentations. Dr. Schweitzer does many of his lectures in costume. He will assume a frontier persona for the Scots-Irish lecture, and become a Colonial during the Virginia presentation. Opportunity tickets for the handmade quilt will be available at the July 15 meeting. Remember, all proceeds from this project will benefit our genealogy library.

The next Safari will be on September 27. Destination will appear in the September Newsletter.


We all enjoyed a great meeting! Bill Bluett earns a “thumbs-up” for an interesting and entertaining program. It is good to know that his speaking capabilities go way beyond introducing our speakers. A list of his genealogy sources appears on page three of this newsletter. Thanks to Cindie Reilly for providing the goodies
Welcome to Marilyn Kowalski, our most recent new member. She lives in Mission Viejo, Searching for REHER, STILL AND LOWREY (Grand Island, Nebraska).
Jane Melford’s membership has been reinstated. Welcome back!
July guests were: W. Richard Armstrong, Dolores Hendley and Ed Reardon. We extend an invitation for them to join the society.

Genealogy is like potato salad - when you share it with others it’s a picnic!


Jack Naylor is the newest member of our library staff. He is the docent for Thursdays, 3:00 to 5:30.
Thanks Jack!

Please think about donating two or three hours a month, or, join the substitute list. Call Bunny Smith, 949-472-8046, if you can help.
Training classes for prospective docents are held on Wednesdays (10-1, except 4th), Thursdays (12-3) and Saturdays (10 to 1, except 3rd). These classes are also open to current docents and members wanting help in using the resources available at the library. If this is not convenient, please call Bunny to reserve a more convenient time.


Hospitality chairman, Leesola Cannon, is requesting tombstone and/or cemetery pictures for display at the August meeting. Do you have a famous ancestor? How about an unusual or very elaborate headstone? Any and all will be appreciated. We enjoyed a good showing of Civil War pictures at the July meeting. Thank you, Leesola, and Barbara Wilgus who helped put up the display.


As of the August mailing we will hold newsletters for members whose previous newsletter has been returned. The post office does not forward third class mail, and it costs 75 cents for each one undelivered. Most of those returned have been listed as “Temporarily Away.” We can also send the newsletter first class if you have a temporary address you wish to share.


Parliamentarian, Donna Hobbs, is heading this new SOCCGS project, which will enable members and others to reach persons with expertise in their area of genealogy interest. Please contact Donna at if you would like to be included. Additions will be published in future issues of the newsletter. The list is available for use at the SOCCGS library.
The following was inadvertently left off the list previously published in the July newsletter:


Any reference made to a person's having been born in Virginia as early as 1728 to as late as 1863 could indicate that he/she was born in any part of Illinois from 1781-1818; any part of Indiana from 1787-1816; any part of Kentucky from 1775-1792; any part of Maryland from 1775-1792; any part of North Carolina from 1728-1779; any part of Ohio from 1778-1803; any part of Pennsylvania from 1752-1786; any part of Tennessee from 1760-1803; any part of West Virginia from 1760-1862.
(Reprinted from Antique Week, Dec 20,1999)


When scanning or photocopying objects such as medals and pins, place a box with a white interior over the object. Then place a black cloth over that, if the scanner cover doesn't close all the way. This protects the scanner cover from scratches, as well as the object itself, and it improves the quality of the scan. (Gift boxes often have white interiors.).

Favorable Action by Wyoming Puts Sixteenth Amendment in Effect

Washington, Feb. 3, 1913--An income tax is now one of the provisions of the constitution of the United States. Wyoming's ratification today of the income tax amendment, the sixteenth change in the constitution and the first since the reconstruction--completed a list of thirty-six states--three-fourths of the union, which have approved the provision.

Becoming responsible adults is no longer a matter of whether children hang up their pajamas or put dirty towels in the hamper, but whether they care about themselves and others -- and whether they see everyday chores as related to how we treat this planet.
~Eda Leshan


Internet: (subscription)
Los Angeles Public Library (L.A. Times - 1881 to 1965)
Library websites across the country
University websites across the country

Microfilm or Microfiche for Local Newspapers (In your area of research.)
Library, Historical Society, Genealogical Society NOTE: If you cannot travel to the area you want to research, contact them by e-mail (or letter). For a small fee, they will do the research and make copies for you.


Carlsbad City Library, Genealogy and Local History Dept., 1250 Carlsbad Village Dr., Carlsbad, CA 92008. (Extensive genealogy book collection for a small city library).
Family History Center, 10741 Santa Monica Blvd.., West Los Angeles, CA 90025. (2nd largest FHC library outside of Salt Lake City, UT). Ph: 310-474-9990 or 310-474-2202.
Family History Centers: in Orange, Mission Viejo and San Diego.
Huntington Beach Central Library, 7111 Talbert Ave., Huntington Beach CA 92648 (Location of collection of the Orange County, CA Genealogical Society).
Los Angeles Public Library, 630 West Fifth St., Los Angeles, CA 90071. Ph: 213-228-7000.
Mission Viejo Library: Home to the reference collection of the South Orange County California Genealogical Society.
Pomona Public Library, 625 South Garey Ave., P.O. Box 2271, Pomona, CA 91766. Ph: 909-620-2043. (Has a large collection of indexes to the U.S. Census, 210 indexes).
Sherman Foundation Library, 614 Dahlia Avenue, Corona Del Mar, CA 92625 (Devoted to the Pacific southwest region, including: California,Northern Mexico, Baja, and parts of Nevada).
Sons of the Revolution Library, Sons of the Revolution Building, 600 South Central Avenue, Glendale, CA 91204. Ph: 818-240-1775.
Southern California Genealogical Society Library, 417 Irving Drive, Burbank, CA 91504. Ph: 818-843-7247.


INTERNET RESEARCH - Search by surname, place or subject. Also, by website, images, groups or news. - Search the same way as google. - Free genealogy website with databases, etc. - Every county in USA listed with databases. - LDS site with searchable databases. - Subscription site with many databases. - Subscription site with many databases. - cemetery transcription library - immigration records - National Archives and Records Administration (NARA).
Heritage Quest - census, books, periodicals. (Available at SOCCGS library.)


Internet (free site), (free site), (subscription), Heritage Quest (available through many libraries)
National Archives - Laguna Niguel, Cole Library - Carlsbad, California, Los Angeles Public Library
LDS Family History Centers: Mission Viejo, Orange, San Diego, Los Angeles
(Compliments of Bill Bluett)

Intellectual growth should commence at birth and cease only at death.
~Albert Einstein

Barbara Barrett Mounds, Oklahoma, USA

I had always been interesting in family history growing up. My parents divorced early and I never knew that much about my dad's family. With the last name of EPPERLY I have never known any others but our family members. When visiting as a child I got to meet some of my dad's relatives in Oklahoma. I came back to Oklahoma from California at 15 years old to live with him and finally got to meet most of them.

I wanted to find grave sites of my great-grandparents on the EPPERLY side. The Epp is pronounced like step. Everyone knew where George S. EPPERLY (1838-1924), my dad's grandfather, was buried -- at Peachland Cemetery, near Bengal, Oklahoma and assumed his wife, who survived him, was buried beside him in an unmarked grave.

I had done lots of census work and traced back their paths from Virginia to Indian Territory before it became Oklahoma in 1907. Oklahoma is a unique state as it had plenty of people as early as the 1830s but most of them were Indians and few early vitals and census records exist. Most vitals on the "Intruders" (or white men) start about 1890.

The EPPERLYs were in Indian Territory about 1898, settling on land freed up after the reorganization of many tribe treaties after the Civil War. They settled in Choctaw Nation in areas down around the Winding Stair and Kiamichi mountains ( This area is south of where the infamous female outlaw, Belle Starr, lived in the Cherokee Nation.

I found my granddad EPPERLY's brother's burial site close to Bengal and a sister's, Emma WILSON, who had moved west around Ti Valley nearer to Blanco in Pittsburg County, Oklahoma. These are very rural areas and the Pine Top Cemetery where my dad's aunt Emma and her husband Richard were buried is off a dirt road about six miles from a blacktop highway.

I looked at the Pine Top Cemetery book many times. There she is: "Wilson, Emma" (Rock) meaning I assume, a rock -- one of sandstone like so many early-day poor people used. Not even anywhere near her husband. As I looked at her entry for about the 50th time I see just below her "Rock" -- small size stone, OK, I'm thinking this may be one of her babies? Who knows?

I looked just above her entry and read again for the 50th time "Plie, Mrs Grandma E." Yes, that's a period -- (Rock) meaning another rock sandstone.

I knew I needed to get down there and take some pictures and started to close the book and in a hurry, said real fast to myself, "poor Mrs. Gramma E. Plie -- they didn't even know her first name."

Gramma E. Plie, E. Plie -- and the hair raises up on the back of my neck.

I made a fast call to my dad on my cell phone and asked him where was his Gramma EPPERLY living when she died? Well he wasn't sure, he was about 10 years old, but remembered his dad riding a horse over there for a funeral and bringing a back another pony for them. None of the family went as it was a two-day ride over.

I am almost jumping for joy as I say, "I think I found Sarah, your Gramma EPPERLY." It all made sense to him, as they usually buried every one where they died back in the late 1920s.

I am so excited about my discovery and the next weekend we had free, my husband and I made the trip, almost three hours down and three hours back and I have memories for a lifetime.

In the photos Emma is next to her mother with rock stone markers. Sarah Jennie Shelton EPPERLY, born January 1, 1850 in Missouri, died April 23, 1928, will forever be known as Mrs Gramma EPlie. No period on the stone, just in the book. She was lost, but now she is found.

So I tell everyone doing family history, nothing is written in stone. You can't rely on tombstones or cemetery books. They all can be wrong. I called the historical society in Pittsburg County and made sure it has the new correct entry for the book. Sarah Jennie would be pleased.
RootsWeb Review, 24 May 2006, Vol. 9,  No. 21

American Epidemics

Genealogical research often involves a detailed search for people who disappear from local records, or migrate to parts unknown. This list of American epidemics may help in finding the cause.

To put the world right in order, we must first put the nation in order;
To put the nation in order, we must first put the family in order;
To put the family in order, we must first cultivate our personal life;
We must first set our hearts right.

Clerk-Recorder Office

South Orange County residents now have a convenient location for obtaining copies of official records. The new branch of the Orange County Clerk-Recorder’s Office is located at 24031 El Toro Road, in the Laguna Hills Civic Center.
Residents may obtain copies of birth, death and marriage records and copies of official property records.

West Virginia Vital Records
The Vital Research Records Project is placing Birth, Death, and Marriage certificates on-line.  Users can search the records and view scanned images of the original records.

Saving Family Treasures: Cased Photographs
~Maureen A. Taylor

Many people are unaware of the type of images issued in cases, and there is also great confusion about such images' care and storage. Let's start by identifying the images themselves. There are three types of nineteenth-century photographs commonly found in cases. Occasionally you'll see a paper photograph in a case, but it's usually because it has replaced an earlier image.

Daguerreotype (1839-1860s) Recognizable due to their shiny metal surface, daguerreotypes are America's first photographs. You have to hold these images at an angle in order to look at them. No matter how tempted you are to take a daguerreotype apart--don't. The image sits on the surface of the metal plate. If you wipe the plate, you'll destroy the image. Each daguerreotype is one of a kind.

Ambrotype (invented 1854) Ambrotypes are a negative image on glass. When backed with a dark-colored fabric, paper, or varnish they appear positive. Ambrotypes are very fragile: the glass is susceptible to breakage, and the backing and photo layer have a tendency to flake off. I don't recommend taking these images out of their case because you can cause damage to the glass and the picture.

Ferreotype or Tintypes (invented 1856) Tintypes were extremely popular during the Civil War period. Itinerant photographers traveled with the troops so that soldiers could send pictures of themselves home with their letters. While these metal photographs were commonly known as tintypes, the images are actually on iron. Photographers sold them in a variety of formats and enclosures from cases to paper mats or even alone. It's easy to confuse an ambrotype and a tintype in case, but you can clarify the identification by using a magnet.

Case Composition - Manufacturers made cases in different sizes, shapes, and formats. In the 1840s and 1850s most cases were wood, but basically any material could be used to manufacture a case. Sturdier models known as “union cases” consisted of gutta percha, a type of tree resin that could be molded and hardened. All cased images consist of various pieces--a fabric liner, a mat (that resembles a picture frame), a glass covering to protect the image, and a preserver (a thin embossed strip of brass that frames the glass and keeps everything firmly in the case).

Storage - Cases vary in their fragility based on the construction materials. Generally wooden and paper cases deteriorate with use and over time. Gutta percha cases can chip and break if dropped or mishandled. I suggest storing each cased image in separate small storage boxes if possible. Several companies manufacture acid- and lignin-free boxes with reinforced corners, including Light Impressions, Hollinger, and Metal Edge.
Using a single cased photograph per box makes keeping together the identification and image a cinch. It's difficult to label an image in a case. You can't adhere a label to it with glue without damaging the enclosure. Rubber bands deteriorate and cause abrasive damage. It's much easier to purchase individual boxes than risk losing the identification. Use a pencil or an “archival” marker to write the identification on the exterior of the box.
Please take care of your early photographs. I've seen too many discarded because they are damaged and unidentified.
(Copyright 2004,, Ancestry Daily News, 26 August 2004)

"Lay hold of something that will help you,
and then use it to help somebody else."
~Booker T. Washington 1856-1915

South Orange County
California Genealogical Society

Mission Viejo, CA


A Family History Seminar
Saturday, 21 October 2006 9 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Registration 8:30 a.m.
Mission Viejo City Hall, Saddleback Room, 100 Civic Center Drive, LaPaz & Marguerite
(located at the North end of the city hall directly across the parking lot from the library)

“Finding Lost Ancestors”
Dr. George K. Schweitzer
Nationally Known Genealogy Author & Speaker


Scots-Irish Genealogical Research
Virginia Genealogical Research
Finding Your Ancestors’ Parents
Questions & Answers

Refreshments - Door Prizes - Drawing for Handmade Quilt

Preregistration must be received by October 18 / Tickets at the door $25.00, no lunch.
(Seminar information & registration form also available on SOCCGS website.)


SOCCGS ‘2006’ Seminar Registration

Name(s) ___________________________________________ Registration: _________@ $20.00 ___________________________________________________ Box Lunch: _________@ $ 7.50 Address: ___________________________________________
City & Zip:__________________________________________ Total: $____________ Telephone:__________________________________________

Mail to:
SOCCGS, P.O. Box 4513
Mission Viejo, CA 92690-4513
Information: (949) 581-0690 or


Come, look with me inside this drawer, in this box I’ve often seen,
At the pictures, black and white, faces proud, still serene.

I wish I knew the people, these strangers in the box.
Their names and all their memories are lost among my socks.

I wonder what their lives were like. How did they spend their days?
What about their special times? I’ll never know their ways.

If only someone had taken time to tell who, what or when,
These faces of my heritage would come to life again.

Could this become the fate of pictures we take today?
The faces and the memories someday to be passed away.

Make time to save your stories, seize the opportunity when it knocks,
or someday you and yours could be the strangers in the box.
~Anonymous Author

Citing Sources From the Internet

Here are three examples:

E-MAIL. Author. (author's e-mail address) "Subject Line." Date of post. Personal e-mail. (Date read).
Example: Andrec, Mike. "New England School of Bandura." 18 April 1996. Personal e-mail. (19 April 1996).
WEBSITE. Author (if known). "Title" (Main title if applicable). Last date updated or revised (if known). (URL) (date accessed).
Example: Ignatius. "To the Trallians." Early Church Documents (circa 96-50 A.D.). 1994. (20 June 1996).
MAILING LIST. Author (if known). (author's e-mail address) "Subject Line." Date of post. (mailing list address) (date accessed).
Example: Tracz, Orysia. "Shevchenko in Love." 1 May 1996. (23 June 1996).

Please notify the membership chairman if you have a change of address.
Newsletters are not forwarded, the cost is 75 cents for each one returned.
Membership: Verl Nash, (949) 859-1419,


South Orange County California Genealogical Society Membership/Renewal Application

( ) New ( ) Renewal ( ) Individual, $20/yr. ( ) Jt. Members, same address $25/yr.

Renewal Membership Number(s) _________________________ _____________________

Name(s) _______________________________________________________________________________

Address _______________________________________________________________________________

City _____________________________ State_____Zip ____________Phone ______________________

Email address:__________________________________________________________________________

Make check payable to: SOCCGS (South Orange County CA Genealogical Society) Check No. __________________

Mail with application to: SOCCGS, P.O. Box 4513, Mission Viejo, CA 92690-4513


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