Saddleback Valley Trails

South Orange County California Genealogical Society

Vol. 15 No. 10

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

October 2008

Editor: Mary Jo McQueen

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.

Getting To Know Your Ancestors

At the October 18 Seminar, keynote speaker, George G. Morgan, will present the following topics that will be of interest to genealogy researchers: “25 Places Where Family Facts May Hide”, “Bring’em Back to Life: Developing An Ancestor Profile,” “The U.S. Naturalization Process & Documents: 1790 to 1954” and “Colonial & Early American Land Records: The Process & Evidence.”

Please use Registration Form on Page 7.

Introducing George G. Morgan

          In addition to his responsibilities with Aha! Seminars (, Mr. Morgan is an avid genealogist. His interest began at age ten when he, his paternal grandmother and his aunt began discussing his grandmother’s family history extending back before the American Revolution. In the years since then, George’s genealogical research has expanded to include all the branches of his family tree, and he has investigated leads in all sorts of places. Libraries, archives and courthouses are among his favorite haunts, but he will leave no stone unturned, even to the point of tracking down the original 1914 newspapers containing his great grandparents’ obituaries which were in a county board of education records retention facility. He is a master in working with, and understanding, all types of genealogical records. With the advent of electronic research materials, he has become an expert in using software programs, databases, CD-ROMS, Internet mailing lists, message boards, search engines, directories, and all of the major online services.
          George is the author of “The Genealogy Forum on America Online: The Official User’s Guide” and “Your Family Reunion: How to Plan It, Organize It and Enjoy It.” His most recent book is “How to Do Everything with Your Genealogy.”

How Many Reasons Do You Need To Attend The Seminar?

How about:
  1. Starting the day with the free refreshments, which are also served at the morning break.
  2. The chance to win a door prize using the free ticket presented at the door.
  3. The opportunity to hear four presentations from one of the country’s best genealogists, who is a dynamic and entertaining speaker.
  4. Asking questions. After the lectures Mr. Morgan will be available to answer questions and these do not have to relate to the day’s presentations. Ask away!
  5. Perusing the Sales and Display Tables for items and information to assist in your research, or just to make it more fun!
  6. A chance to win the exquisite hand made quilt.
  7. Receiving a syllabus containing lecture notes and handouts on all four topics. It will also include bibliographies and Web sites, resources that can facilitate your research.
  8. The opportunity to mingle with a great group of people who share your love of genealogy.
  9. Pre-registrations must be received by October 15!

President's Message

~Bill Bluett

          I have been thinking about the topics George G. Morgan will be presenting at the seminar on October 18th. One in particular, “Creating an Ancestor Profile”, keeps running through my mind. I enjoy finding additional pieces of information that give me a little more insight into what was going on in the life of my ancestors. That is why I’m looking forward to hearing that particular presentation, as well as the others being presented. I’m sure that by attending the 2008 Seminar you will discover new and useful resources, which will benefit your research endeavors.
          Along these lines, I’ve been formulating some ideas for my presentation at the SOCCGS November meeting. I want to focus on an interesting ancestor from possibly five or six different surnames that I have been researching. Each will be a snippet in the life the one’s selected. These people, in particular, had unique situations and circumstances that occurred during their lifetimes. Part of knowing what created, or lead to the circumstance, is so many times based on what was happening historically at that point and time in the locality, or country, in which they lived. I currently have some information that I have collected since I began my genealogy research. But, more recently, I have been researching historical newspapers, history books, periodicals, and the Internet in order to find specific details, which will give a more detailed account of each ancestor I have chosen.
          Take newspapers, for instance. I have located obituaries, family gatherings, family or friends visiting from out of town, and numerous activities or events in which my ancestor participated. Some have been interesting and enlightening and I will share a number of these in my presentation. History books, (including county histories) have helped me to understand what was occurring in a town or region while an ancestor was living there. In some cases, the information gave me clues as to what attracted them to the area. Even periodicals and society publications have produced information. I’ll share a find that took one family line back to Alsace-Lorraine. Also, the Internet is loaded with all kinds of information. You can start with WIKIPEDIA and go from there. It will give you articles, photos, maps, and much more about anything you would like to know about a particular subject, place, etc. Or, go to GOOGLE and enter a name or location and a great deal of information might show up.
          All of the above mentioned resources have given me a great deal of additional information about the ancestors I will discuss in November. I’m sure that George G. Morgan’s seminar topics will give me even greater insight into finding additional pieces of information that I may add to my presentation.
          I hope you all attend the seminar. No matter where you may be on your genealogical journey you will learn techniques and resources which you may not have yet discovered or utilized. SEE YOU OCTOBER 18!

A Day At The Seminar

Colleen Fitzpatrick, Ph.D., is the author of two of the best-selling books in Genealogy: Forensic Genealogy and DNA & Genealogy. She has also written “The Dead Horse Investigation: Forensic Photo Analysis for Everyone” and “30 Best Photo Quizzes.” These will all be available at the Seminar and will be of special interest to genealogists interested in creative ways of solving family mysteries.

Jacquelyn Hanson – ‘Author’ Jackie is a member of SOCCGS. She has published seven books: “Matilda’s Story,” “Matilda’s Story; The California Years,” “Susan’s Quest,” “Katlin’s Fury,” and “The Parker House and Other Stories.” We hope to see a copy of her newest book, “Evolution of a Southern Boy, The autobiography of Luther Sels.” Luther Sels was “TV’s Uncle Luther.” Ms. Hanson is a graduate of Stanford University School of Nursing, lives in Southern California where she is in business with her oldest son. She has been published in professional journals, and several of her short stories have been published or won awards. She is active with Liga International, Flying Doctors of Mercy, and with the local Natural History Museum.

The SOCCGS Book Sale table is a Ways & Means project for the Society. Bob & Cindy Reilly (949-830-9488) and Eileen Merchant (949-831-1441) are collecting items for the Book Sale Table. Genealogy related books and magazines, fiction, non-fiction & cookbooks are being solicited. You may bring donations to the Saddleback Room, (the Seminar venue) on Friday, October 17, after 4 p.m., or call to arrange drop off. Books may be either soft or hardback and paperbacks are welcome. Please do not bring items to the seminar.

Karla Houlihan, a Personal Publishing Consultant with Heritage Makers, will be available with information and samples. Heritage Makers is committed to helping people archive and organize their photos and memorabilia, write their stories, and preserve their heritage. After all the time and effort put into researching your family heritage, Karla can help ensure that your final summary of your family’s story is presented in a professionally bound, library quality, hard cover book that can be enjoyed by generations to come! Be sure to stop by and see what is available. For a preview, please visit the website,

David Flint - Legacy Family Tree Software. The newly released version 7.0 of Legacy Family Tree has many improvements and new features. David will have informational handouts and will conduct demonstrations of the new 7.0 version. This is a well-rounded and easy to use genealogy program for both beginners and experienced genealogists. Stop by the Legacy table and see for yourself.

The Jewelry Table is back again this year. Karen Schumaker and Patricia Christiansen will display a selection of mostly vintage costume jewelry for your perusal. Great bargains await! This is a SOCCGS Ways & Means project.

The Quilt

Barbara Wilgus & Ginny Jenkins will conduct the drawing for the beautiful hand made quilt at the closing of the Seminar. During the day, tickets will be offered @ $1.00 each, or 6 for $5.00. All proceeds go to support the SOCCGS Genealogy Library, which is located within the Mission Viejo Library.

Dar-Sar & Sees Candy

Bunny & Leon Smith are the local registrars for “Daughters of the American Revolution” and “Sons of the American Revolution,” respectively. Persons interested in either organization can stop by their table for information, or to ask questions. Also, Bunny will have Sees Candy sale forms available for those wishing to do a little early Christmas shopping. We buy at a special price and the society makes a few $$.

Genealogy Information

Barbara Heebner & Shirley Fraser will be at the Genealogy Table offering a “Genealogy Handbook” and “Ancestral Tablet” for sale. Herb Abrams has made a CD with instructions for making your own “Ancestral Tablet.” Herb will be available to answer questions.

Door Prizes

Sandy Crowley will display the many door prizes, which will be given during the day. Be sure to stop by her table and take a look. Every attendee will be a given a door prize ticket. Good Luck!

As you can see, a "Day at the Seminar" will be well spent!

Nominations For 2009

          Chairman of the nominating committee, Diane Hearne, will give a report from the nominating committee regarding nominees for the 2009 Executive Board. At this time nominations will be accepted from the floor. Please have the person’s permission before placing his or her name on the ballot. The slate will be voted on at the November meeting, at which time nominations will again be accepted from the floor. Diane Hearne, Herb Abrams, Jack Naylor and Mary Jo McQueen are the nominating committee members.

Safari News – Huntington Beach In October

          Huntington Beach Public Library, 7111 Talbert Avenue is the destination for the October 22 Safari. Its Genealogy Department has an extensive collection of 16,000 genealogical books and periodicals making it a premier research facility in Southern California. We will leave the LDS parking lot at 9:30 a.m. Please bring a lunch, although some refreshments are available at the library. No dinner plans are made for this day. Some may wish to drive themselves. If not, please be prepared to pay your driver. Contact Bill Bluett for reservations. (See last page of the newsletter.)

In Which Time Zone Do Your Ancestors Live?

~Patricia Ann (Dean) Christiansen

          In the beginning, for me, genealogical research was an on again, off again experience. When we were first married my husband’s mother, Marie, generously shared her research. That was an “on” experience enjoyed by me for a limited amount of time until our family continued to grow. The “off” part then set in.
          I made several trips to Arizona to be with my mother, Rebecca, who spent the better part of two weeks providing me with fascinating information. Mother was as enthusiastic in giving historical information as I was in receiving it. Mother had a memory that wouldn’t quit. There were times when I couldn’t write fast enough. That’s when I learned you should have a recording device with you.
          As our family grew to include seven children and five foster children, time with my mother lessened dramatically. However, she liked my interest in our heritage and in her letters she told me little stories about this or that. Thus my genealogy appetite was whetted and I devoured every morsel she sent my way.
          I now fast-forward 50-plus years. Both my mother and father have passed on; I was laid off from my law office management job after eleven years; the children are grown and married; and my husband has gone to a better place. There are now available hours in each day that I can devote to a different familial nature.
          After receiving five copy-paper boxes of memorabilia from my youngest sister, I knew the course I would take. I am scanning hundreds of photographs and cataloging diaries, ledgers, keepsakes, cookbooks, scrapbooks and a Bible.
          Snippets of history are being composed from information on the backs of the photos and from notations in the old books. These writings are like mini time capsules of ancestral insights, as well the contemporary information I add.
          There are not enough hours in the day since I started inputting names and dates into a genealogical software program. Suddenly my pedigree chart looks like a grand opening mob scene at Wal-Mart!
          Some of the chores remaining deal with the hangers-on that need to be linked; definitive death dates to be established; military records unearthed (after all, if you had two ancestors who served in the Revolutionary War wouldn’t you like to know a little more about them?); children assigned to the correct parents; aunts and uncles needing a home; time lines to perk up your interest; and unscrambling three generations of Jacob Elberfeld’s, each using some of the same names for their children.
          Personally, I don’t care on which side of the blanket an ancestor was conceived; or whether or not a predecessor was caught with his or her hand in the till. I’m just thankful that they were part of the chain that got me here! When these discoveries come to the forefront, they trigger a desire to learn more.
          It is fascinating to learn that there were farmers, preachers, journalists, miners, mechanics, truck drivers, steel workers, oil riggers, glass blowers, tool makers, shoe makers, department store proprietors and dry goods salesmen all in the family. I rejoice in their longevity and business acumen. Am saddened by divorce or abandonment; the loss of children at an early age; and the love story of one of my grandfathers. All were, for the most part, willing and able to provide for their families; little knowing that they were also working for future generations.
          The above assets are tangible factors and then there are the intangible ones. Have you ever suddenly had a thought that led you to look in a certain place or check that convoluted census name one more time? And there it was, the answer you were looking for! There is a problem, sometimes, as to when these revelations arrive. More often than not, my ancestors converge on me and roust me out of bed in the middle of the night.
          Several weeks ago the Hansel’s and Shultz’s ganged up on me, and their clamoring jolted me awake at two in the morning. This continued for five days until their needs appeared to be satisfied. Then, more recently, the Keller’s and Hockman’s pulled the same trick at 4 a.m. I’m still recovering from their poking and prodding; but rejoicing in the resultant findings. I’m certain they’ll be back.
          The Astell’s, Baird’s, Carpenter’s, Dean’s, Fesler’s, Hammon’s, Highley’s, Kelly’s, Linton’s, McConkey’s, Potter’s, Proctor’s, Slagel’s, and a myriad of others, are all impatiently waiting their turns to bombard my brain with their desires to be linked. But why at 2, 3 or 4 a.m.? Where are they reposing that they couldn’t wait until Pacific Daylight Time to make them selves known? In what time zone do these ancestors reside?
          A possible answer as to why they contact me when they do could be that in the middle-of-the-night hours there are virtually no interruptions. In the wee hours no telephone is ringing, no doorbell to answer, no television blaring (unless you’re into infomercials), and my subscription Research Company has fewer hits and I am not blocked out of the 1900 Census. These interruptions all provide distractions, lack of thought continuity, and the possibility of making errors.
          This dissertation is not the voice of complaint; it is a pronouncement from one who is gratefully appreciative of the paths that opened and the discoveries found as a result of “relative intervention.” I’m very pleased with the results when I can commune with my ancestors and benefit from their input.
          My ancestors and I have fallen into a mutually compatible arrangement, they get their time in the middle of the night and I get my nap in the middle of the day.

"If you want to understand today, you have to search yesterday.”

~Pearl Buck

Washing Clothes

'Warshing Clothes Recipe' -- imagine having a recipe for this!!! Years ago an Alabama grandmother gave the new bride the following recipe: This is an exact copy as written and found in an old scrapbook - with spelling errors and all.

          Build fire in backyard to heat kettle of rain water. Set tubs so smoke wont blow in eyes if wind is pert. Shave one hole cake of lie soap in boilin water. Sort things, make 3 piles; 1 pile white, 1 pile colored, 1 pile work britches and rags.
          To make starch, stir flour in cool water to smooth, then thin down with boiling water. Take white things, rub dirty spots on board, scrub hard, and boil, then rub colored don't boil just wrench and starch.
          Take things out of kettle with broomstick handle, then wrench, and starch. Hang old rags on fence.
          Spread tea towels on grass. Pore wrench water in flower bed. Scrub porch with hot soapy water. Turn tubs upside down.
          Go put on clean dress, smooth hair with hair combs. Brew cup of tea, sit and rock a spell and count your blessings.


Paste this over your washer and dryer Next time when you think things are bleak, read it again, kiss that washing machine and dryer, and give thanks. First thing each morning you should run and hug your washer and dryer, also your toilet---those two-holes used to get mighty cold!
[For you non-southerners - wrench means, rinse.]

How many readers remember this?

Have You Tried Google Books?

          Quite by accident I discovered “Google Books.” Late one evening while searching for information regarding Andrew Moore, I typed his name into Google Search. One of the sources that came up was a book, “The Descendants of Andrew Moore.” The location was “Google Books.” I was able to download a PDF file of the entire book! I then found that clicking more on Google’s Home Page brings up “Books!” Since, I have found books on a couple of other ancestors and several relating to counties and town in which ancestors resided. Some of these are certainly available on Heritage Quest. However using Google can be done at home anytime and eliminates the extra step of using a library card to connect to HQ. Another point of interest is, if Google doesn’t have the book, you can find a library that does, by inserting your zip code in the space provided. I am waiting for our next Safari to the Los Angeles Public Library. Google told me that my book is there!
Mary Jo McQueen

"One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries."

~A.A. Milne

September Meeting

          Wow! What a great meeting. Michael Ktratzer gave a very thorough presentation regarding personal websites. He managed to assuage most of our fears of having a site on the big bad Web! Michael is available for Family History assistance at the Huntington Beach FHC. He is usually there on Mondays from 9 a.m. to just after noon. Please feel free to drop in at 8702 Atlanta Avenue, Huntington Beach 92646, 714-536-4736. Michael’s website:
          We were so happy to welcome back Nellie Domenick. We missed her. Cindie & Bob Reilly and Karen Schumaker provided the treats. Thanks to Trish and Sierra for making our treat time so enjoyable.


Please welcome our newest members:
Dinah Beattie, Mission Viejo, She is researching Durrett, Bartholmew (Richard & John) 1734 in Virginia and Seamands, [Seaman, Seamon] Jonathan 1690 in Virginia. Leske from Germany 1853.
Karen Rowell, Ladera Ranch, Researching Anderson, Boston. Karen needs help in how to get birth information when there aren’t any certificates.
Norman A. McLean, Laguna Woods,
          Guests at the September meeting: Woody Bliss, Robert N. Gamble, Jean Johnson, Carol Lobo, Ed Mitchell and Jean Pettigreo.

"Some Websites of Interest to Genealogists"
Where to write for vital records in the US, updated January 2008.
Click on “Databases” to see the free searchable databases currently on this site. There are lots!
The Italian Genealogy Group in New York has most of those same databases online as in the German site plus a few others.
Historical and contemporary maps of the States of the United States.
Many city, and other directories on the site.
You will find lots of military books on this site. Take time to check it out.
Go here to see all that this site has to offer.

Website suggestions this month are courtesy of Pat Nostrome and Donna Hobbs.

New At Ancestry

(Research on the SOCCGS Library Computers)
●   Illinois State Censuses for the following years: 1825, 1830, 1835, 1845, 1855, and 1865
●   The Winthrop Fleet of 1630
IRS Tax Assessment Lists, 1862-1918
Ancestry has several large databases of naturalization records available.
●   U.S. Naturalization Records Indexes, 1794-1995
●   U.S. Naturalization Records - Original Documents, 1795-1972
●   New York Petitions for Naturalization

1894 State Census Of Michigan
While you are on the site go to the home page to see all that is available.

“With hurricanes, tornados, fires out of control, mud slides, flooding, severe thunderstorms tearing up the country from one end to another, and with the threat of bird flu and terrorist attacks, Are we sure this is a good time to take God out of the Pledge of Allegiance?”

~Jay Leno

Genealogy Coming Attractions

Archives Live! The 3rd Annual Los Angeles Archives Bazaar

Saturday, October 25, 2008

          Southern California history comes alive in exhibits by 65 historical collections and archives at the USC – Davidson Conference Center. Browse rare collections, consult with experts, learn about family genealogy, preserving your own history, and numerous other topics. FREE Admission.
          Archives Bazaar visitors receive FREE admission to Exposition Park museums, including the California African American Museum, the California Science Center, and reduced admission to the Natural History Museum (NHM). For more information visit
          NOTE: The Southern California Genealogical Society will be offering free lookups in the 1930 census at this outstanding Los Angeles event. We hope that you'll stop by our booth and say hello.

2009 - Whittier Area Genealogical Society will hold its annual seminar on Saturday, February 28. Keynote speaker will be Curt Witcher, head of the Genealogy Department of the Allen County Public Library in Indiana. Mr. Witcher is a nationally known genealogy authority. Contact Judy Poole, (909) 985-6657, or Christine Johns, (310) 995-8852,


President................................ Bill Bluett.................................
Vice President……..................... Nellie Domenick........................
Recording Secretary…............... Sandy Crowley.........................
Corresponding Secretary............ Pat Weeks..............................
Treasurer............................... Mary Jo McQueen....................
Membership............................ Jack Naylor.............................
Publicity/Webmaster................. Herb Abrams...........................
Librarian................................. Bunny Smith............................
Parliamentarian........................ Shirley Fraser...........................
Hospitality............................... Trish Leard.............................  
Historian................................. Barbara Wilgus.........................
Newsletter Editor...................... Mary Jo McQueen....................

SOCCGS Website @

Mail List:

SOCCGS Library within the Mission Viejo Library;

Marguerite Parkway at LaPaz, (949) 470-8498

SOCCGS E-mail:

Countdown To The Seminar - Are You Registered?

Pre-registration must be received by October 15 / Tickets at the door $25.00, no lunch.
(Seminar information & registration form also available on SOCCGS website.)

SOCCGS ‘2008’ Seminar Registration

Name(s)______________________________________________________ Registration:  _______ @ $20.00
 ____________________________________________________________ Box Lunch:  _________ @   $7.50
Address:______________________________________________________ Total:  $  ___________
City & Zip_____________________________________________________  
Mail to: SOCCGS, P.O. Box 4513

Information: (949) 492-9408 or                           

Mission Viejo, CA 92690-4513