Thursday, January 16, 2014

My blogiversary!

I cannot believe it's been six years since I started writing this blog. Writing about genealogy has been such a blessing. I have had people find me through this blog and reach out to me for help. I have used this as an outlet for all my frustrations whenever I hit brick walls (which has been and continues to be quite frequently!). I have used this blog to celebrate all my genealogical victories, both big and small. I have used it as a record of my journey and of my growth as a genealogist. I have shared what I have learned in the hopes of helping others learn as well. But I think most importantly, I have found so many cousins (or they have found me), both close and distant, and many times I have been able to share with them things about our common tree that they didn't know, but more often than not they have been the source of invaluable knowledge - records, photos, letters - as well as kinship and friendship. So I'd just like to take a moment to thank everyone who has read me over the years. Hopefully six years from now, we'll all still be here - further along in our research and cousin networks, but still searching, always searching for more answers!

You can read my original blog post here.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Wedding Wednesday: Olga Butt & Lawrence Ferris, June 13, 1936 in Kew Gardens, Queens, New York

First, let's just put it out there: Olga Butt is an unfortunate, unfortunate name. But seeing as she got a fancy schmancy European education, lived in a beautiful neighborhood in Queens, NY and was well off enough to get a big write-up in the Society Page of the Long Island Sunday Press, I guess I wouldn't mind having her name after all...

Olga Butt (1913-1999) was my first cousin 3 times removed. Her mother, Margaretha/Marguerite/Margaret, was the sister of my great-great grandmother, Meta Ricklefs Haase. Olga was actually born Olga Cornelius but her father, Oscar Cornelius (who actually comes from a very old Long Island family, like my family on my mother's side of the family) seems to have disappeared pretty early on and I assume Olga was formally or informally adopted by her mother's husband, Sheldon Clayland Butt. Which makes things so much fun when you're trying to do a genealogy search for someone. We've all been there. You know what I'm talking about.

So anyway, this past week I found Olga's wedding announcement, which is fun, since I never even knew her married name, but I don't really know anything about her and finding side branches is fun but not the overwhelmingly exciting kind that is finding someone you're directly descended from. But this announcement actually emphasizes the importance of pursuing those side branches. Why? Because a few of my direct ancestors are actually mentioned in the article - you just never know where people are going to show up!

My great-grandmother, Helen Haase Stutzmann, who I know very little about, was the matron of honor (she and Olga were cousins, and apparently close ones at that). My great-grandfather, Frederick Stutzmann, was the best man - so my great-grandparents were the two most important people there besides the bride and groom themselves (well, & I guess the bride and grooms parents). But my favorite part was reading that Helen and Frederick's 2 daughters, Faith and Helen, were the flower girls. Helen Stutzmann Gorry was my grandmother. She would've been 4 years old as the flower girl. How I would love to see photos of that wedding!!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Wedding Wednesday: Timothy Cronin & Ellen Casey apply for a marriage license, 1912

When it comes to our recent family history (think the last 100 years or so), there can be many pieces of evidence out there revealing or supporting a family tree fact...of course, we're lucky if we can find just one but it's always a good idea to keep looking for more, something that can support or back up (or sometimes, refute) what we think we already know. In the case of marriages, you can have a church record, a non-religious record, a wedding announcement in a newspaper or church bulletin, and in my case here, a record of application for a marriage license. This would be for my great-grandparents, Timothy Ambrose Cronin and Ellen Marie Casey. And as you can see, not only does this blurb in The Brooklyn Daily Eagle from Oct. 11, 1912 give notice to that marriage license application, it also provides my great-grandmother's maiden name, both of their ages, and the addresses at which they lived. All information I already have, as it were, but if you didn't have it already, there it would all be in one short, tiny announcement. And as I already stated, it's nothing but a good thing to find other sources to back up what you already know. Timothy and Ellen were married four days later on Oct. 15, 1912 at Our Lady of Perpetual Help, a Catholic Redemptorist parish in the Sunset Park section of Brooklyn. Timothy was 33 and Ellen was 19. They had 2 children, including my grandmother, and remained married until Timothy's death in 1948.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Military Monday: Dan Cronin reports for draft, St. Patrick's Day 1941

This picture and caption are from the Long Island Daily Press. Daniel F. Cronin reported for the draft and was inducted into the Army at the Jamaica Armory on St. Patrick's Day, 1941. He was 27 years old and a Freeport, NY police officer. Dan was my grandmother's brother and my grandfather's best friend. My grandfather, Clifford Raynor, was also a Freeport police officer, so I guess they did that together. Uncle Dan died before I was born - I think he was also my mom's godfather. He's the man pictured on the left.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Grandma's wedding china

Mary Cronin Raynor's wedding china - Homer Laughlin's Eggshell Nautilus line. This particular set was made in 1946 and the pattern is N1402, which has a blue band with a wheat laurel edge, and a floral pattern on edge and center.