The Cemetery Keeper’s Wife–the Office

June 19, 2018

More from my reading of The Cemetery Keeper’s Wife, by Maryann McFadden.

Early on, after “Rachel” arrives at her new home, she is introduced to “The Seven Dwarf’s Cottage”, but officially The Office.

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I had to look through my photograph’s to find a picture, but who takes a picture of the Office, when your mission is the photograph headstones??

Later in the book, her description of the inside of the office was that of someone who had been inside. I have, at least once. I could see the office from the description.

I was trying to locate a grave site, but they didn’t have a database. I had the map, so they told me in what area, so I went.

As I normally do, I tried to find someone who might have inventoried the cemetery. They had, but I am sure it isn’t as accurate as “Rachel” would have had it.

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I think that of all of the times I have visited, have I only seen some one at the office that one time. The database is on the local Historical Society website.

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The Cemetery Keeper’s Wife–The Gate

June 17, 2018

… continuing from my reading of The Cemetery Keeper’s Wife, by Maryann McFadden.

As a researcher or a photographer taking pictures for the Find A Grave website, my first photo is that of a sign or an entrance to the Cemetery. I didn’t have to look hard for that, as I have visited it many times and have taken many pictures of the gate. I try to “book end” the pictures taken at that cemetery. (first and last photo of that series)

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The problem with this is the wires. (no photo editing for me).

There is an interesting part of this cemetery is that the entrance and official location of the Cemetery and where folks are buried, are in two different counties. There is a genealogy point of interest in this. To my knowledge, no one is buried in the county where this cemetery can be found on Find A Grave. But, I digress.

Oh, the sign:

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It’s been around for a while, established in 1857 according to a website. Historic Hackettstown – The Union Cemetery.

On my way out today, this is from the other side of the gate.

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Many parades have come though this gate, the annual Memorial Day Parade. You may hear about this in the book.

As my visit today was shortly after Memorial Day, there are flags all over the cemetery (for a later blog post), but the gate also has a left over of the parade.

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For a small town, they do it up right.

 


The Cemetery Keeper’s Wife–#2

June 16, 2018

More from my reading of The Cemetery Keeper’s Wife, by Maryann McFadden.

We had a hurricane in our area in September 2011. In the book, we hear about the Musconetcong River in this book. From my photograph collection from Union Cemetery, here are a couple of pictures of the results of the rain from that hurricane.

This first one is from the “office”, which you will read about, that wet day.

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The office:

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I do have other pictures of the office, but that’s for another time.

The “Shop”

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Our local Canadian Geese had more “room to play” on this day.

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Read a book ? Not me

June 15, 2018

I can not tell you the last time that I actually read a real book, cover to cover. Well, at least not until something let me to this book.

The Cemetery Keeper’s Wife (08 May 2018) by Maryann McFadden

You know you live in a small town when you can read a book and know exactly where the events described in the book took place. The focus is a local Cemetery. I have posted on the Find A Grave website about 30 photographs from this cemetery, including several that are in my Find A Grave Presentation. Actually, I have 129 photographs from that website, including this one.

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This book is about HER, Tillie Smith.

What kept me reading this book, was the connections between the characters in the book. It also reinforced my interest in moving from Collecting Names and Dates, to gather information that might help tell a story about individuals that I might research.

As I read the book, there was one thing that really didn’t make sense. But, that was answered on the last page of the book. (after the story ended). Just below the answer was a Surname, in that Cemetery, that I have researched.

Small town: This story took place within a couple of miles from my house. I knew of the story, but hadn’t paid much attention to it.

I had to keep reminding myself that it is a Novel. As I could visualize the places in the book. I have pictures of those places in my photo gallery.

The kicker, is that the author lives in the area.

Lastly, there is a small, side story that reminded me of my friend, The Legal Genealogist. But, that’s another story.


Pirates of the Pedigree

April 30, 2018

I am learning more about a new Virtual Event; Pirates of the Pedigree. A 2018 International Family History Expo. I will be adding a direct link to the right column on this blog.

Since it will be a Virtual Event, and my cousin DearMYRTLE will be involved, as she is an Official Booster of the event, I’ll be involved some how, I am sure.

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Can the Find A Grave website be “Cousin Bait” ?

April 16, 2018

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Was talking with a cousin about the Find A Grave website and how we use this repository / resource. The discussion had nothing to do with the “old” vs the “new” look.

Until this conversation, I viewed it as a repository for photographs of headstones, names, dates, that might be on the headstone itself (if readable).

Other information may be on the memorial page, like an obituary, but I do not capture that, but put a ToDo item to find that newspaper article. There may be other hints on the memorial that may also be helpful.

For example:

There is no marker, but he is recorded in a partial listing of graves at Friends Cemetery, Tuckerton, in Leah Blackman’s ‘History of Little Egg Harbor,’ from 1880, pages 206-208.

I hope to get this book in the not so distant future, because I have a number of people in my file that are buried in this Quaker Cemetery.

The other valuable aspect of the website it the relationships that may be included. For example, I can go back from my Dad two more generations using the links that I created or asked to be created. I try to make those links between family members on all of the Memorials of MY family.

I get requests to “add” other information on the memorial, where I just took the photograph. I don’t do that, but ask what the relationship is between that memorial and the requesting person. If they are family, I just transfer the memorial over to them.

I just don’t use that website to “build my tree”.

But, the conversation took an interesting turn. WHAT IF I have a private tree, online, somewhere, but it’s private because I’m not happy with my research or it’s not documented the way I want it, how to I make those, most important, cousin connections.

What about a Virtual Cemetery ?

They can be Public or Private and can be created by a member of the Find A Grave website.

There is a cemetery in Jersey City, Hudson County, New Jersey with 89,133 (as of 16 April 2018) of which 14% is photographed. But, within that cemetery is, what I think, is very unique. A Virtual Cemetery.

OP–Dominican Nuns of former Blue Chapel Monastery: a Virtual Cemetery – Find A Grave

The Dominican Sisters of the Perpetual Rosary (OP) made their first foundation in the United States at Union City, New Jersey in 1891. The monastery became known as Blue Chapel. The Sisters were re-interred in Holy Name Cemetery in 2018.

Of the 90,000 burials, this Virtual Cemetery has 42 memorials.

Why am I re-thinking my use of the Find A Grave website ?

COUSIN BAIT.

I could create a Virtual Cemetery of all of the members of my family and when someone searches for a person in my family should be able to find My Family.

Thanks cousin, never thought about that before.


Re-Reading what you have

April 11, 2018

With a couple of days away from the computer and internet, I had a chance to “read a book”. Better stated, listen to a book as it was read to me while flying from Atlantic City to Florida and back.

The book: Hey, America, Your Roots Are Showing Paperback – February 1, 2012 – by Megan Smolenyak

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I have been to a number of presentations around my home state, where Megan was speaking, as her stories are awesome, and how she discovered the stories. I am also honored to be able to call her a friend. A couple of times I was able to call her up or email her and see if she “wanted a cup of coffee”.

I have had the book for a while, bought a couple for friends, and had it on my phone in Audiobook format, so I listened.

Not changing subject, but what really caught my attention, early in the book, what her references to relationships to some famous people and how they related to each other.

When I listened to the list of characters I was reminded of the We’re Related APP that I have blogged about before. Many, of the names there were mentioned have appeared in the We’re Related APP for me.

Now, I have seen a number of very negative comments about the usefulness of the APP, but I have experienced some ideas and hints for where I might look for my own research.

What was in the book, that I hadn’t realized earlier, is why these famous persons might be related, but that also lead to why I may be related to some of these folk. Colonial Ancestry. Well, I knew that I have that in my tree, but more specifically, many of the folks mentioned was Irish Ancestry. I have very few Irish Ancestors in my current database, that I have more or less proven, but not to the amount that my DNA Results show. When I say my DNA Ethnicity Estimate of 27% Ireland / Scotland / Wales really had to listen.

Just the fact that she may have been involved with some, if not all, of the research on these famous folk allows me to thing more positively about the “famous persons” “line” that was presented in the APP.

As I may have mentioned before, I am using the We’re Related APP Data as an “undocumented” source of information, BUT, I have documented using my DNA Results for my side of the data from the APP. While entered the APP Data, I looked at my exiting working database to see how many profiles from the APP were already in my existing database. Using my existing database and the Shared Matches from the DNA results, I have identified a number of people who do not have an online tree, or a private online tree, based on those shared DNA Matches.

A project that I have been wanted to do, was to merge the We’re Related APP Database with my Master (working) File. By re-reading this book, I am in the process of preparing for that merging of this 2,500 person database, into my 9,000 person database.

That includes bringing my Master Database up to my “new standards” of how I do research and more specifically, how I document my research. Features that were not in much earlier versions of my program and using some of the new features and are in the same program now AND skills, tips, and tricks that I have learned along the way.

Other books, written by Megan Smolenyak include: Who Do You Think You Are?: The Essential Guide to Tracing Your Family History Paperback – December 28, 2010

Maybe a visit to Megan’s Website, http://www.megansmolenyak.com/ will inspire you, as it does me. Her blog, video’s, Newsletter are must reading for me.

Re-reading what I already have, or listening to the book, has encouraged me to get back to my own research, reminding myself that this We’re Related APP work was NOT a waste of time, and maybe, I will get a better understanding about the 27% DNA Estimate is all about.

Thank you Megan


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