Saddleback Valley Trails
South Orange County California Genealogical Society

Vol. 12 No. 11 Editor: Mary Jo McQueen November 2005

 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. Yearly membership fees are $20 per calendar year for individuals, $25 for joint membership. SOCCGS is not affiliated with the LDS Family History Center.

“Preserving Precious Photographs and Documents”

In this presentation, Bill Bluett and Mary Jo McQueen, will address some of the problems facing family historians as they strive to safeguard family heirlooms and paper memorabilia for future generations. Preserving books, newspapers, documents and photographs requires proper storage, proper handling policies and choices about their protection and treatment. Other materials, such as, photographs, videos and sound recordings, and textiles present special problems. We look forward to your attendance!


December 17 --------Annual Holiday Party


Mr. Lloyd Bockstruck gave a stellar performance to an enthusiastic audience at the fourth annual SOCCGS seminar. It was a day well-spent. Due to the outstanding support of our members and guests we are able to obtain prominent speakers, who provide guidance and direction to our genealogy pursuits.
A special thank you to the “gold-star” staff for the hours of work they contributed before, during and after the seminar. You know who you are!


Member, Leon Smith! Just as Leon was looking for sympathy, because he “never wins anything,” his ticket was drawn for the Civil War Nine-Patch quilt. Leesola Cannon sold the most tickets, therefore at the November meeting she will be awarded the table-topper quilt. This was a hugely successful project, thanks to everyone who sold and/or bought tickets. Shortly, we will be adding new books and cds to our library.


There are no safaris scheduled for the months of November and December. Look for 2006 safari information in the January newsletter.


It is time to order candy order for holiday giving. Leon and Bunny Smith will have order forms and information at the November 19 meeting.

We need: Mondays 3-5, Tuesdays 1-4, Wednesdays 3-5 (1st & 3rd).
Please think about donating two or three hours a month. Or join the substitute list.
Call Mary Jo McQueen, 581-0690, if you can help.

Ongoing classes for persons considering becoming docents are held on Thursdays (12-3) and Saturdays (10 to 1). These classes are also open to current docents and other members needing help in using the resources available at the library. If this is not convenient, call Mary Jo McQueen, to set up a special time.

To sit alone in the lamplight with a book spread out before you
and hold intimate converse with men of unseen generations
--such is a pleasure beyond compare.
~Kenko Yoshida


FreeBMD is an ongoing project whose aim is to transcribe the Civil Registration index of births, marriages, and deaths for England and Wales and to provide free Internet access to the transcribed records.
RootsWeb is the proud host of this project.


This site shows the county boundaries for the census years:


The Alberta Genealogical Society (AGS) has created a name index to a collection of early Dominion land files held on microfilm at the Provincial Archives of Alberta (PAA) in Edmonton. Many of these files pertain to homestead lands patented in Alberta between 1870 and 1930.
If you get a hit, the database will provide you with a full name, a legal land description (the section, township, range and meridian numbers) as well as two key pieces of information -- the file number on which the record is located plus what's called the "Ottawa file number." For more information, visit the Alberta Genealogical Society website:


The Salem Witch Trials.

What About Witches? (Salem, Massachusetts).

17th-century Colonial New England (with special emphasis on the Essex County witch-hunt of 1692).


Notable Women Ancestors - Women’s Biographies

Chronicles of the Scotch-Irish Settlement in Virginia - This three volume set is now online. The books consist of information extracted from the Original Court Records of Augusta County 1745-1800 by Lyman Chalkley. This publication is very large, the hard bound volumes contain approximately 600 pages each. Navigation aids are included within the documents, as well as added hypertext links to the index. Other than that they have tried to keep the original formatting as close to the original books as possible. Each volume is indexed..

The Wisconsin GenWeb (WIGenWeb) Tombstone Photograph Project now has more than 56,000 photos online. It includes 56 of the state's 72 counties with more than 600 cemeteries represented.

Paleography: Reading Old Handwriting, 1500-1800, a practical online tutorial is available at the UK's National Archives.

English Handwriting, 1500-1700. An online course.

Need help with Scottish handwriting? See the "Online Tuition in the Paleography of Scottish Documents, 1500-1750."

RootsWeb has a mailing list that may be of interest to researchers trying to decipher old English documents.

Genealogy Encyclopedia-Free genealogical information on Terminology and Meanings of Common Genealogical
Terms and Records.

I think your whole life shows in your face,
and you should be proud of that. ~Lauren Bacall

(Ancestry Daily News, 2005,

From the Trenton Evening Times (Trenton, New Jersey), 12 October 1920, page 2:

Smith and Edward to Turn Sod Today for Vehicular Tunnel.
New York, Oct. 12.--Governor Smith, of New York, and Governor Edwards, of New Jersey, will spade the sod this afternoon in the small park at Washington, Canal and West Streets, to start officially the construction of the New York-New Jersey vehicular tunnel under the North River. Plans for the work were hurried so that the official ceremony might form a part of the general celebration of Columbus Day.
A unit of cavalry from the Essex Troop and a battalion of the Fourth Regiment of the New Jersey National Guard will escort Governor Edwards and his officials. When they reach the Jersey City water front a special ferryboat will take them to Twenty-third Street, Manhattan, from where they will march to the Seventy-first Regiment Armory at Park Avenue and Thirty-fourth Street. They will be received by General George R. Dyer, chairman of the New York State Bridge and Tunnel Commission.
Governor Smith's escort will be the Seventy-first Regiment commanded by Colonel J. Hollis Wells. The New York and New Jersey troops are to march from the armory at 1:30 o'clock to the Canal Street Park along this route: Thirty-fourth Street to Fifth Avenue, to Washington Square North, Waverly Place, Christopher Street, Seventh Avenue to Canal Street and to West Street. The ceremonies at the park will begin at 3 o'clock.

From the Adams Sentinel (Gettysburg, Pa.), 18 October 1847, page 3:

The Charlestown (Va.) Free Press of Wednesday says that the destruction of property in the Valley of Virginia by the recent freshets, will involve a loss of several hundred thousand dollars.
Considerable damage was sustained in Martinsburg. The Woollen Factory owned by Mr. E. Showers, on the Tuscarawa, adjoining the town, was swept off by the torrent of water. His loss is estimated at $100,000. Among the merchants who have been the principal sufferers, are Messrs. John N. Bell, Wm. Miller & Co., J.B. Taylor & Co., Jacob Senseny and Isaac Paul; among the mechanics, Messrs. Sidwell, Brown and Sherer, the proprietors of the large tanneries in Winchester. One establishment alone, Mr. Hartley's, is said to have lost $25,000, and Mr. Wm. Miller from $5,000 to $10,000.
A slip from the Lewistown Gazette says that not a single bridge was left standing on the Juniata. The public works have suffered severely. In the Narrows there are several large breaks, and accounts from above, as high as Hollidaysburg, represent the Railroad as washed away in many places, and numerous breaks in the Canal.

From The Ohio Repository (Canton, Ohio), 06 October 1836, page 2:

SOFT BEDS.--Children and youth who are accustomed to sleep on soft or feather beds during the warm season require more than ordinary force of constitution not to be injured by it. The hair mattrass is best adapted both for summer and winter. It is thought that feather beds tend to induce consumption.

MORNING ABLUTIONS.--In June, 1835, I began the habit of morning ablutions, immediately after rising. After washing every part of my body, I employed friction with a coarse towel, till I had caused a glow over the whole surface. This practice I have continued ever since with the following results:
1. I have not suffered from cold or influenza during the whole time.
2. I have scarcely felt uncomfortable at any time from the cold of the past severe winter.
3. I can perform nearly double the labor that I could before.
4. Neglect of exercise affectes me far less.
5. I sleep better, and suffer very little from fatigue, even when my labors are severe.
6. I am almost entirely free from dyspepsia, and have lost my sallow countenance almost entirely. I am a healthy man.
Moral Reformer

"Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all."
~Dale Carnegie


Until the thirteenth century, most people in England were known only by their first names. They did not have last names (surnames) at all. A few members of England's upper class of society started using an extra name, or surname, to identify the family members. Little by little, the practice of using surnames propagated downward though English society. By the end of the sixteenth century, almost everyone in England had adopted a surname. These surnames were passed down from father to sons and to daughters, indicating family members.
Many of the early surnames were based on a person's relationship with another, their trade, where they lived, or even their appearance or character. For example: Johnson normally means "John's son." Nottingham is the name given to many who lived in Nottingham, England. Smith was applied to blacksmiths, tinsmiths or other tradesmen. Ford would be a name given to someone who lived near a shallow river crossing. Black might indicate someone with black hair or a swarthy complexion.
Indeed, it is quite possible that your name came from England of the late Middle Ages. To be sure, there have been tens of thousands of name changes since then. Your family may not be from England at all, even if you do now carry an English-sounding surname. Yet, it can be interesting to find the original meaning of your surname as it was originally used in England.
If you have an interest in this topic, you might also enjoy these Web sites:
U.S. Census Bureau Distribution of Last Names:
American Surnames by Elsdon C. Smith:

The foregoing article is from Eastman’s Online Genealogy Newsletter and is copyright 2004 by Richard W. Eastman. It is republished here with the permission of the author. Information about the newsletter is available at


As genealogists in today's high-tech world, the importance of using search engines properly is ever increasing. We would like to share some search engine tips that perhaps a few you will find helpful. We use [ and ] to indicate terms that would be written in a search box.
First - The use of quotation marks. When using a combination of words in the search box, the search engine results will include every web page where these words occur anywhere on that page. Using the search term of [family history ] will result in 109,000,000 hits while ["family history"] will result in 5,400,000 hits. Try this with a family name. For example, Flora MacDonald. If I search [Flora McDonald ] in Google it returns 251,000 hits. Putting ["Flora MacDonald"] in quotations results in 29,600 hits. This is far too many hits and primarily relate to a prominent woman in Scottish and American history. However, knowing that the middle name was Hermosa, it makes sense to put ["Flora Hermosa MacDonald"] in the search box and I get two hits. Success!
Second - The use of the minus sign. Using any combination of words in a search box with the minus sign directly next to a word that you DO NOT want to find is also helpful. Using the search term ["Flora MacDonald"-Scotland -Scottish -"North Carolina"-NC ] will eliminate any pages from my search that includes the words next to the minus sign. So I will get only those pages that have my ancestor’s name and do not have Scotland or North Carolina on the site. This reduces the number of sites by more than half, from 29,600 to 12,800 hits. Using quotation marks and the minus sign in combination greatly improves your search results.
Third - The use of the plus sign. The plus sign has the effect of instructing the search engine to give special emphasis to any word where the plus sign is against it. My ancestor’s father was Alexander MacDonald. However, not the Alexander MacDonald who was prime minister of Canada. Using the search term [Flora MacDonald -Scotland -Scottish -"North Carolina"-NC+"Alexander MacDonald"-Canada ] gives me 1 hit that directs me to the correct site. Here we have combined quotation marks with the minus sign and the plus sign.
Fourth - The site search. Let's say that I would like to find Alexander MacDonald, however, I only want to search a particular domain. I would simply use the search phrase ["Alexander MacDonald" ]. Rather than thousands of hits I get 204. Similarly, you could put a minus sign in front of so that it searches all domains except Rootsweb.
Fifth - The title search term. Suppose that you would like to find every site on the Web with the word genealogy in the title. The search box would need the term [intitle:genealogy ], which would result in 943,000 hits. Similarly, use the term [intitle:genealogy ] and you eliminate 3000.
(Mike Jarvis - Excerpted from the CSGA Newsletter, October 2005)

"Books permit us to voyage through time,
to tap the wisdom of our ancestors."
~Carl Sagan

Different Sorts of Kinship, or, What Did Cousin Mean 150 Years Ago?
by Sherry Irvine, CGRS, FSA Scot

It is a census entry which usually sparks the question. You wonder exactly what it means when the record shows a resident of a household as a cousin, or niece, or sister-in-law or any one of the many relationship terms in the English language.
Old Usage: Cousin was taken to mean a collateral relation more distant than a brother or sister, which leaves scope for the word referring to just about anyone who is not a sibling or in the direct blood line. Similarly, the word niece was not always so precise in meaning; back in the 1500s it referred to any female relative outside the immediate family. It could have been used to refer to a granddaughter.
Have you wondered about the use of the term "step?" This word is derived from Old English (OE), arising from a root that appears in OE for bereaved and orphan. That makes sense, for the situation arises from second marriages, often due to the death of a parent. My mother was brought up by her father and step-mother because her own mother died when my mother was six years old. This second union produced one child, my mother's half-brother. Had her stepmother had a child by a previous marriage this would have been my mother's step-brother or step-sister.
The census is unlikely to show such distinctions as "step" or "half"; in other words, what appears as the son of the head of the household may be a son by a previous marriage or a step-son. Be prepared to find kinship terms like cousin and in-law used for situations other than what we assume by these words today. In older documents you may see the term "cousin-german." People with this relationship had a common grandparent, what we know as first cousins.
The Blood Connection May Not Be There: Kinship terms are used now and were used in the past where, in fact, no blood connection exists. We encounter this all the time because most of us are either an aunt or an uncle by marriage. My brother's children refer to my husband as "uncle" but there is no relationship other than his connection to me. Also, many of us use aunt and uncle affectionately for elderly cousins, where a close relationship needs to be expressed or some acknowledgment given to age difference. Close family friends sometimes, too, are called aunt or uncle.
Consanguinity and Affinity: My research into terminology of kinship took me into several reference books and to a number of websites. Consanguinity is defined as individuals who are descended from the same ancestor, and who are therefore related by blood. Affinity is the word for relations who lack a blood connection, step-sisters for example.
The Anglican and Roman Catholic Churches have set out for centuries who may marry whom, expressed in a Table of Kindred and Affinity or as degrees of consanguinity. There is not space here to go into the subject more deeply; it would lead on to considering church law, otherwise known as canon law. Most of what we are familiar with regarding kinship arose from church laws. In fact, "in-laws," those relations we often like to abuse, acquired their name because of the definition of the connections in canon law.
Conclusion: Relationships interest many people besides genealogists. It is understandable that lawyers, geneticists and medical people take an interest. I discovered along the way that mathematicians have taken hold of the topic too and actually created formulae related to kinship and consanguinity. I am relieved that I am unlikely to find a use for an algebraic sort of expression of cousinly connections. Anthropologists are another group taking an interest in kinship and their studies of the topic in a cultural setting could be interesting.
Whether or not these byways of kinship raise your curiosity, it is worthwhile to learn more of the subject. A good starting point is Wikipedia, where you can find several articles on kinship and related topics. Search engines turn up university resources on the subject, and fat dictionaries provide all sorts of interesting examples of usage through the centuries.
A final word of caution--experienced genealogists learn to be ready for all sorts of pitfalls and kinship terminology is one of them. It is a good idea to be wary and avoid quick conclusions as to the precise meaning of a relationship recorded in a register, record, or document.

(Ancestry Daily News, 4 Oct. 2004, Copyright

"Civilization is a stream with banks.
The stream is sometimes filled with blood from people killing,
stealing, shouting and doing things the historians usually record,
while on the banks, unnoticed, people build homes, make love,
raise children, sing songs, write poetry and even whittle statues.
The story of civilization is what happened on the banks."
~Will Durant


• Visit Plimoth Plantation's newly-redesigned website at . You can read four Thanksgiving-related articles (on the history of the holiday, Native traditions of giving thanks, foodways in Plymouth Colony, and colonial fast and thanksgiving days) at You can also read an article on "The Question of Popcorn at the 'First Thanksgiving'" at In addition, the website contains information about the Plantation's exhibit, Thanksgiving: Memory, Myth & Meaning ( (If you are planning a visit to the Plantation this year, be aware that the last day of the 2003 season is Sunday, November 30. For more on planning a visit, go to

• The General Society of Mayflower Descendants website ( provides information about becoming a member of the Society, which requires that you document descent from one or more of the Mayflower Pilgrims. The site also contains historical information.

• The Plymouth Colony Archive Project at the University of Virginia ( contains a tremendous amount of information. Users can click on a variety of headings to learn more about specific topics. Of particular interest are the biographical sketches, an article entitled "Passengers on the Mayflower: Ages and Occupations, Origins and Connections" (, and an excerpt from The Times of Their Lives: Life, Love, and Death in Plymouth Colony, by James Deetz and Patricia Scott Deetz (

• Caleb Johnson's website,, is one of the most comprehensive sources for Mayflower and Plymouth history on the Internet. It features in-depth biographical information, history, genealogy, and full-text primary sources.

• The Pilgrim Hall Museum in Plymouth, Massachusetts (, offers information on the Pilgrim story, images of the museum's unique collections, and an extensive history of Thanksgiving. The Thanksgiving section ( includes two online exhibits: "The New England Child's Thanksgiving," and "The Evolution of the Modern Thanksgiving" as well as information on the 'First Thanksgiving' and the Pilgrims.

The Internet's Most Comprehensive Source of U.S. Political Biography,
The Web Site That Tells Where the Dead Politicians are Buried

This is a great place to find information about that "hard to find politician." You may even have one in your family! Go to the Political Graveyard at


1. Redundant e-mail -- a thank-you to the entire [mailing] list and not to the person.
2. Using all small letters instead of proper English -- just lazy and sloppy.
3. Subject of no use as to what is in the message.
4. Writing too much instead of carefully crafting your message to get a response. Think of the audience -- you have the blink of an eye for someone to read your verbiage. Delete is very quick.
5. Don't send two questions in one message -- send separately for a response.

Ed Maul, RootsWeb Review, 12 October 2005, Vol. 8, No. 41


"Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--I took the one less traveled by,
and that has made all the difference."
~Robert Frost


San Diego Genealogical Society

William Dollarhide and Leland Metzler are the scheduled featured speakers at the SDGS Annual Luncheon and Seminar on January 14 at the Handlery Hotel in San Diego. We will have details in the next newsletter.

Orange County California Genealogical Society - Special Interest Group

The OCCGS New England SIG group meets on the first Saturday of each month, after the general meeting and lecture. The meeting place is in Room D at the Huntington Beach Library. For further information contact Marcia Huntley Maloney, or Bob

Dear Ancestor,
Your tombstone stands among the rest; neglected and alone
The name and date are chiseled out on polished, marbled stone
It reaches out to all who care It is too late to mourn
You did not know that I exist You died and I was born
Yet each of us are cells of you in flesh, in blood, in bone
Our blood contracts and beats a pulse entirely not our own
Dear Ancestor, the place you filled one hundred years ago
Spreads out among the ones you left who would have loved you so
I wonder if you lived and loved, I wonder if you knew
That someday I would find this spot, and come to visit you.
Author ~Unknown


2006 SOCCGS Dues are being accepted now.
Pay now, and get ahead of the holiday rush!
Budget planning for the next year will begin in January.


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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