Saddleback Valley Trails

South Orange County California Genealogical Society

Vol. 18 No. 8

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

August 2011

Editor: Gary Schwarz

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 - 20 August 2011

“FamilySearch Historical Records Collection: Navigating the Results of the Indexing Project”
Presented by
Jean Wilcox Hibben

FamilySearch Indexing continues, but already, its results are being shared with us all on the new Historical Records Collection. Located at, this is one of the most exciting and accessible tools for genealogists. Learn how to access this new – FREE – site and navigate its user-friendly pages to locate documents and other pertinent data that will break through brick walls and cause them to crumble. Also covered, how to properly cite the sources you will find on the website and access the records that are not physically displayed.

About the Speaker: A Board Certified genealogist, Jean Wilcox Hibben has been involved in family research for over 30 years. She is a member of the National Genealogical Society (NGS), the Genealogical Speakers Guild, the Association of Professional Genealogists, and the Corona Genealogical Society. Jean maintains a website with information about her presentations, CDs, projects, etc. - She is a volunteer at the Corona Family History Center where she trains family history consultants and is also a volunteer at the Pacific Region Facility of the National Archives in Riverside County. Jean says, “My goal is to assist others in their efforts to connect generations (past to present), completing the family circle.”

Safari News

There are no safaris scheduled during August. The regular schedule will resume in September.

Meeting Location

Until further notice the SOCCGS monthly meetings will be held in the main building at the Mission Viejo Family History Center.

Genealogical Definitions

Patronymics – Patronymics is the practice of creating last names from the given name of one's father. For example, John May’s son Robert, would become Robert Johnson. Robert Johnson's son Neil would become Neil Robertson. Problematic for genealogists!

President's Message

~Bill Bluett

This past month, I have had two interesting genealogy finds. The first was on the Internet while I was performing my docent duties at our Research Center in the Mission Viejo Library. The second interesting find was during my “California Cornish Cousins Conference” weekend in Placerville, California. So, it doesn’t matter where you are when researching. You could be at a library, on the road, or in the comfort of your own home. Isn’t that a great concept?

My first new discovery was on the docent computer at our library. Somehow, I ended up on a website titled “California Digital Newspaper Collection” - - and the search was free. I put in the surname Bluett (because a lot of my research is in California) and began browsing through the newspaper article titles. One article was titled “University of the Pacific—Commencement”. The newspaper was the “Sacramento Daily Union” dated June 19th, 1861. The article had a listing of students that had given an address (or speech). The student that caught my eye was J.W. Bluett. The address he delivered was titled “Our County”. James W. Bluett is my great grandfather who became a Methodist Minister 1869. The University of the Pacific (UOP), which is the oldest University in California, has always been associated with the Methodist Church. Now, I’m wondering, did James attend UOP and did he graduate?

My first thought was to contact a gentleman in Berkeley by the name of Dr. Stephen E. Yale. He is an archivist for the California-Nevada United Methodist Church Conference area. Dr. Yale had given me laser copy photos of my great grandfather more than 10 years ago and information indicating where he had served as a minister throughout Northern California in the 1870’s and 1880’s. Dr. Yale gave me the name of the archivist at the Holt-Atherton Library on the UOP campus in Stockton. Within a day, Michael Wurtz (the archivist) sent me an e-mail that basically said the following:
  • James W. Bluett of Nevada City, California, is listed in the student list for the “Senior Preparatory” Department of the University of the Pacific in the 1860-61 and 1862-63 “Catalogue”.
  • He is not listed in the catalogs before or after those two.
  • He is not listed in the alumni directories that were published in later years.
  • The “Senior Preparatory” is pretty much as it sounds – a prep school of sorts that the University had connected to it for many years.
  • The prep school was much larger than the University (about 40 students) as there was a Senior and a Junior Preparatory Department (combined about 60 students).
It seems as though James attended the prep school for at least two years. But, he did not graduate from UOP. I do not know what a university education would have cost in the 1860’s. His closest family members did not have that kind of money. They all worked as miners in the “gold rush” country, but at least he was associated with the school and received some education at that level. It’s one more item that I can add to his list of accomplishments.

My second interesting find turned out to be as a result of the information I received at the research facility in Placerville during the “California Cornish Cousins Conference” weekend. My great uncle’s father-in-law, George W. Kimble, mentioned in last month’s newsletter, was a very interesting and accomplished man. He was a geologist, surveyor, and a civil engineer. He owned and supervised mining operations in El Dorado County in the latter half of the 1800’s. In the early 1900’s, George was the Civil Engineer for the State Engineering Department on survey crews that were working to improve the roads to Lake Tahoe for motorcar access. He worked on the road to Donner Lake to the north of Lake Tahoe and the roadway from Placerville to South Lake Tahoe shortly thereafter. In 1911, he was involved in the proposed road survey around Lake Tahoe. Following this work, George became the superintendent of the Placerville Water Works for about 9 years. He passed away in March of 1923. My family and I travel to Lake Tahoe nearly every year. Now, when I drive those highways in that region, I will be thinking about George Kimble and all the work he put into those roads for the benefit of future generations.

There are so many different ways that we can approach researching our ancestors. I hope that each one of you will continue to share any new research methods and information that you might come across that would be helpful to all our society members. Our newsletter is a great resource for our 200+ members. Please direct any helpful hints you may have to our Newsletter editor or share your information at our monthly meeting during the “Brick Walls and Genealogy Research Suggestions” segment prior to our refreshments break. We all have something that we can share. Share Your Knowledge With Us!!

July Meeting

Nancy Huebotter gave an excellent presentation on the values of developing a timeline for a family or an individual family member. Timelines help the researcher incorporate historical events into the ancestor’s life as well as helping to see the “holes” in one’s research.

Members providing refreshments were: Michellea David, Dale Larson, Patricia Yocky, and Pat Merritt.


This month we welcome four new members.

Rebecca & James Burgess, Mission Viejo, CA, Searching for Patterson, Bucknum, Oothoudt, Lewis & Anner.

Bunny Carpenter, Laguna Woods, CA, Searching for William Aaron Davis, Salt Lake City, Utah. Born in 1913.

Robin Dreis, Laguna Hills, CA, Searching for Capps in North Carolina, 1750; Boone in Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Kentucky, 1700; Parham & Wilson in California, 1900.

Marci Glidden, Ladera Ranch, CA,

Four guests attended the July meeting: Renee Gonzales, Peggy McGlone, Shirley P M Olson, & Carol Tomac.

Michella David has a new email address:

"2011 Seminar"
Curt B. Witcher is coming October 15!

We are beginning to receive reservations for our 10th Annual Seminar. So, it is not too early to send yours in. We expect a full house for Mr. Witcher's first visit to Mission Viejo. Members, please note that reservations are processed on a first come basis, and the capacity of our venue is 125 persons. You will find a Reservation Form on the last page of this newsletter. Tell your friends! Information is on the SOCCGS Website.: or (949)-581-6292

Attention Fellow Genealogists!

~David Flint

Next January I will try something a little different for the program at our monthly meeting. I would like to have a program presented by our members sharing ideas and information about your favorite technology gadget that you use in your genealogy research. This will NOT be a super-techie program that is hard to follow or understand. This program is intended to have our own members share in simple, easy-to-understand language how they have effectively used their technology gadgets to help them with their own research. With the increasing amount of genealogy research moving to computers and online sources, this may be the program where you find out how to better use your home computer in your research, or a new gadget you had not thought of trying, or how to make use of one you already have but don’t know how. It should be fun!

I am also asking for volunteers from our membership to present a short segment during the program. The plan is to have about six to eight people making presentations of 5-10 minutes each, plus some time for general questions. We have a lot of members who have knowledge of current technology and computer gadgets, so please consider think of your favorite gadget or technology item, how you use it in your genealogy research, and what you can share about it with the members of our group. This can also be a show-and-tell session, so please plan to bring your gadgets with you for your part of the program, provided that you can carry it in by yourself! No cranes, forklifts or other heavy lifting equipment will be available to assist you.

If you would like to participate in the presentations during this program, please contact me at or call me at (949) 551-6300. Let me know what you would like to present, and I will select the most and best items that we can fit into the time available. I hope to be overwhelmed with volunteer presentations! Please help to kick off the new year and make this a fun and interesting program by sharing with your fellow genealogists.

A Trip to Ukraine (Part II)

~Gary Schwarz

My next location to be visited was a Schwarz chutor that was out all by its lonesome with no modern names to identify it, near a small river. We turned off the main road and drove through a small town and then a small village and then after asking a pedestrian for some directions found what appeared to be my chutor (estate). Four houses were dispersed over the area. One about fifty yards up from the road, was what appeared to be the ruins of a large manor house surrounded by trees almost hidden from view. Another ruin, just up from the road with the roof collapsed and no door frames or window frames, looked like it had been inhabited with in the last 20 years. A house of typical German-Russian style construction downhill from the road about 20 yards still had a roof but no window panes. It appeared to have been inhabited within the last 10 years. Another structure of unknown style construction also appeared to have been lived in within the last 10 years. The existence of the German-Russian style house and the location determined from Dr. Stumpp’s map leads me to the deduced conclusion that this was a Schwarz chutor where my ancestors had lived.

In searching for my next chutor, Inna (our interpreter) learned from an older man near the road that there were three villages adjacent to each other and that they were all put under one jurisdiction as a village with a Russian name, Stryukova (coincidentally sounding like our interpreter’s name) but that Chutor Schwarze had been that part of the village across a bridge. After crossing the bridge, we saw many typical German-Russian style houses, one in which some of my ancestors may have lived.

We looked for still another Schwarz chutor. Alex, our driver, and I had to do some trail blazing through some brush (we could have put a machete to good use if we had one) that had overgrown a dirt track running through trees forming a windbreak between some fields. There were no buildings in the middle of the field, but I took a picture anyway. There might have been some buildings in the tree line back and across about a quarter to a half mile, but walking there would have put us in Worms after dark.

We drove on to Worms, a village originally settled by German colonists, including my ancestors. Our guide, Karoline Fromm, had arranged for our group to stay in the homes of Ukrainians living in German-Russian houses built in the 1800’s. I have three census documents that have numbered entries for residences. All the numbers were different in each of the censuses. I never figured out where each of the census takers started their numbering and so couldn’t find my ancestors house. Anotoli and his wife, our hosts in Worms, also prepared dinner and breakfast for us. After breakfast we went to what had been the Reformed Church but had been used as a storage building by the Bolsheviks after the revolution. The first thing the Bolsheviks did was to remove the steeples and either destroy the churches or use them as barns, storage buildings or community centers. This Reformed Church is now an Orthodox Church. Russian/Kievian (Ukrainian) Orthodox is the main religion in Ukraine.

After leaving Worms, we drove on to Rohrbach, my and my cousins’ other ancestral village, which was about five miles away. Most of the German-Russian built structures had been demolished and the stones used in other construction. Apparently, one of the main reasons land having German-Russian structures on it is purchased is for the stones in the houses to be used in construction at other sites. We also met an older woman (Rosa) who was of German-Russian descent and had been sent to Siberia with her family during World War II. She said, “They didn’t have medical attention and died like flies.” She was allowed to return to Ukraine after German-Russians were “exonerated-pardoned”. She was allowed to return but not to the village from which she was exiled. The policy was, those exiled wishing to return to Ukraine, could not return to their own village. Rosa ended up in Rohrbach.

The focus of the trip consisted of members of the group visiting their villages and cemeteries. We did find some cemeteries that had German-Russian tombstones that had legible inscriptions, but none for our ancestors. For German-Russians, an iron cross was commonly used as a grave marker. These probably rusted away or were used in gates for fences of later village inhabitants. Each village we visited provided additional insight into German-Russian heritage. Many village schools have created tiny but good museums of their village history.

Intermixed with our village and chutor searches were visits to palaces, museums, restored churches, forts, a huge panorama depicting defense of Sevastopol during the Crimean War, a reserve of the steppe (Askonia Nova) having land which has never been cultivated, the historical Potemkin Steps in Odessa, and a ballet at the Odessa Opera House.

Karoline (of German-Russian heritage) our Ukrainian guide was able estimate the pothole avoidance slowdown into travel time to make sure we made all our appointments and had great meals and no problems with places we spent the night. Karoline introduced us to her grandmother, Olga Fromm, whose efforts had been crucial in restoring a church in the village of Johannestal (Ivanovka) northeast of Odessa. Bob’s Ukrainian team minimized the language barrier. Very few of the Ukrainians we met spoke English. Arriving in Ukraine was a bit of a culture shock (elevator doors were about three feet wide, two Ukrainian doors for one USA door), but by the time we left, our group had acclimated to the country. Personal and emotional moments were had by all group members.

Newsletter Submissions

~Gary Schwarz - Editor

I wish to thank members who have submitted articles for publication in the newsletter. Please continue to submit your articles of genealogical interest. Submissions should be submitted by the Wednesday after the monthly meeting. The articles should be a text or MS Word attachment, emailed to the editor and have a Subject line: “SOCCGS Newsletter Article – article title or description”.

Genealogy Software

Animap - shows state and county boundary changes and when they occurred at different times in the history of the United States. Included with Animap is Sitefinder. Sitefinder will tell you which county a city or town is or was in.

  • From the Family Tab choose the individual for which you wish to create a timeline.
  • Click the Research Guidance Tab.
  • Click the Timeline Square.
  • This will create a baseline time line from birth, births of children, marriage, and death.
  • You can edit and add custom events to this timeline.

  • Roots Magic
  • Choose “File, Print a Report”.
  • Highlight “Lists” on the left side of the window.
  • Use the scroll bar on the right side of the window to find and select the report titled “Timeline (Chronology) List.”
  • Choose the individual or group timeline list.
  • Select the options desired like “Include Place”.
  • Select settings desired like Fonts, Layout, and Sources.
  • Click “Generate Report” to view or print a report.

  • PAF or Ancestral Quest
  • Neither PAF nor Ancestral Quest has a predefined timeline report and building a custom report can be tedious. Most PAF users just create a timeline manually in the notes for an individual.
  • A custom report can be built using “Search, Advanced Focus/Filter”
  • Choose and select the “Custom Tab”.
  • Select the “Define Filter” button and define your timeline report.
  • Preview, refine or print your report.

  • Family Tree Maker
  • Select “View, Timeline”.
  • To format a timeline select “Format, Timeline Format”.
  • This timeline report uses vertical lines for the dates and a horizontal bar for individuals and world events that are inserted in the timeline.

Irish Census Records

~Herb Abrams (suggestion)

The National Archives of Ireland site at: has a free search for the 1901 and 1911 Irish Census.

2011 Genealogy Events

August 1-72011 AHSGR Convention presented by The American Historical Society of Germans from Russia in Salt Lake City, Utah,

October 15South Orange County California Genealogical Society presents its annual seminar in Mission Viejo, CA, this year featuring Curt B. Witcher, a manager of the Allen County Library, Fort Wayne, Indiana.

October 22Clark County Nevada Genealogical Society presents its CCNGS Fall Family History Seminar in Las Vegas, Nevada, “Gardening Your Roots, A Genealogy Series”,

Ways and Means

~Jim Thordahl – Ways & Means Chairman

Ralphs’ Community Program - We have received a check from Ralphs in the amount of $171.87. During the last quarter 46 households participated in the Ralphs Community Program. They were: Abrams, Barry, Cramer, Crowley, D. (initial only), Dill, Domenick, Elster, Flint, Frankel, Gahran, Harley, Irey, Keyser, Lancey, Larsen, Laventure, Lobo, Luckman, Mauzey, Mc Queen, McGuigan, Merchant, Merritt, Murtha, Nash, Naylor, Nolen, Penland, Petrime, Poff, Reilly, Reinhold, Roy, Ryu, Schwarz, Sheean, Smith, Taylor, Thordahl, Weeks, White, Wilgus, Witte. Was your name missing? Two households were listed by number only. This suggests that their Rewards Card data are incomplete.

Remember! September starts a new “Ralphs' year.” We must re-enroll. Pick up a “Scanbar letter” at the August meeting. A “Scanbar Letter” can also be downloaded from our website. If you are a new SOCCGS member or have not yet enrolled, it’s easy. Get a Ralphs rewards Card, if you don’t have one. Present a copy of the “Scanbar letter” which contains our code at checkout the next time you shop at Ralphs. You may also enroll on-line at If you have a question call or e-mail: ; ph: (949) 492-5334.

Quilt Raffle - The sale of Quilt Raffle tickets began at the July meeting. Sales totaled $51. That is a great start! Tickets (6 for $5 or $1 each) will be available at the August and September meetings and at the Seminar 0n October 15. The final event at the Seminar will be the drawing for the winning ticket.

“You never know what you can do until you have to do it”                   You have to write short biographies
~Betty Ford (1918 – 2011)                                                                                     for your genealogy.

Brick Walls & Genealogy Research Suggestions

Member Jackie Hanson has a new genealogy fiction book out. She will have books available at the October seminar.

Virginia Dunk updated us on her search for information on her Civil War great-grandfather. She thought he had served in New Mexico with Kit Carson. She found him through He was buried in the Rosedale Cemetery in Los Angeles. The Post 55 Site Monitor of Civil War Vets at Rosedale Cemetery informed her that her great grandfather had enlisted in California and that his unit then marched to New Mexico. He was a 2nd lieutenant when mustered out.

Victoria Crayne made up a notebook to interest her young granddaughter in genealogy. Victoria had her searching for how children lived at certain periods in time. Her granddaughter had fun with it and told Victoria that she was now going to find out what mothers did during those time periods.

It ain’t over 'til it’s over.                   Have you read every film in Granite Mountain? It ain’t over.
~Yogi Berra


President, Seminar & Safari
Chairman_______________________________ Bill Bluett___________________
Vice President / Program Chairman _____ David Flint___________________
Recording Secretary____________________ Sandy Crowley_________________
Corresponding Secretary________________ Pat Weeks_____________________
Treasurer______________________________ Mary Jo McQueen_______________
Historian______________________________ Barbara Wilgus________________
Hospitality____________________________ Barbara Heebner_______________
Hospitality____________________________ Sharon Keener_________________
Librarian______________________________ Bunny Smith___________________
Membership_____________________________ Jack Naylor___________________
Newsletter Editor______________________ Gary Schwarz__________________
Parliamentarian________________________ Marilyn Kowalski______________
Publicity / Webmaster__________________ Herb Abrams___________________
Ways & Means___________________________ Jim Thordahl__________________ 

SOCCGS Website @

Mail List:

SOCCGS Research Center, Mission Viejo Library;

Marguerite Parkway at LaPaz, (949) 470-8498

SOCCGS E-mail:

Use this form to send with your dues payment

South Orange County California Genealogical Society Membership/Renewal Application

 ( ) New   ( ) Renewal      ( ) Individual, $20/yr.      ( ) Joint Members, same address, $25/yr.
 City_____________________________________ State_______ Zip _____________ Phone__________________
 Email address:__________________________________________________________________________________
 Make check payable to: SOCCGS
 Mail with application to: SOCCGS, P.O. Box 4513, Mission Viejo, CA 92690

South Orange County
California Genealogical Society

Mission Viejo, California


A Family History Seminar
Saturday, October 15, 2011 - 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
(Doors Open 8:00 a.m.)
City Hall, Saddleback Room, 100 Civic Center Drive, Corner La Paz & Marguerite
(North end of the city hall directly across the library parking lot.)

“An Ancestor’s Life – Pulling It All Together”

Curt B. Witcher
Renowned Lecturer & Manager of the Allen Co. Library Genealogy Dept. - Ft. Wayne, Indiana


“Doing the History Eliminates the Mystery”
“Fingerprinting Our Families – Using Ancestral Origins as a Research Key”
“An Ancestor’s Death – A Time for Reaping”
“The Road Not Taken - Mega Internet Sites Off the Beaten Path”


Refreshments - Door Prizes - Drawing for Handmade Quilt
Sales Tables and Displays

Pre-registration must be received by October 12 / Tickets at the door $25.00, no lunch.
(Seminar information & registration form are also available on SOCCGS website.)

Use this form to register for seminar. Send with your check for payment.

SOCCGS ‘2011’ Seminar Registration

 Name(s) ___________________________________________________________ Registration: ______ @$20.00
 ___________________________________________________________________ Box Lunch:    ______ @ $9.00
 Address: __________________________________________________________ Total:   $__________

 City & Zip: _______________________________________________________
 Telephone: _________________________ E-mail:____________________________________________________
 Mail to: SOCCGS, P.O. Box 4513                               Information: (949) 492-9408 or
          Mission Viejo, CA 92690-4513      

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