Follow up on the 1940 Census Search for DNA

April 7, 2012

I should have held off a half hour …

I quickly found the answer to my FB friends answer about her ancestry. I found Joseph and Fannie in the 1930 Census. He was in the Furniture Business, and Fannie was in Fur Manufacturing. In 1930 they were in Manhattan, New York, New York, Enumeration District 31-956.

1930 Census had the question of where the parents were born. All four of the parents were born in Italy.

Took a quick look at the website and used the One Step tool for Ellis Island, and between 1901 and 1904, there were 95 Bracco’s in the list. Waiting to hear back, ‘cause I don’t have enough information for the next step.

So, who said Social Media doesn’t work ??

April 7, 2012

I am friends, on Facebook with a couple of “kids” who were childhood friends of my daughters. Seven Hours ago, I see this post:

My genetic test results are in (although not quite conclusive) and it looks like my theory about the origins of my adopted grandfather still has legs. I am 10% Asian! Mom is going to have to give up some spit to really test the hypothesis though. Even if it isn’t true, at least I know that I’m practically immune to leprosy and I am a super taster! So cool!

Hummmm … 23andme ??? I know that name. So, a quick message back trying to give me something to look for. I was given where he lived in 1930 and 1940, got his name and date of birth. Oh, did I mention that this was in New York City ??? Oh, no.

Having learned about what has done for the  1940 Census, I went there. It took a while for me to learn that the “Bronx” is not in Kings County, where Google Search put it, I went to Bronx county, then New York. What do I know ….

I got down to 6 Enumeration Districts. The key to the success here, was the ability to just look at the Left Column, where the Street Name is usually, BUT with the ability to rotate that image to the Right.


5 ED later, each ED showing Gleason Avenue, if found what I was looking for. Rotating the Image back to normal, I found her Grandfather in the 3-935 Enumeration District at 1996 Gleason. Looks like an apartment building, based on this page was marked with the address.


If Google Maps, street view is correct, here it is


Oh, you want the Census Record ….


What this tells me, is that the Head of Household, her Grandfather and his wife, were in the same place in 1935 (Same House). Elenore was not yet born in 1935. This record shows that she was 3 at the time. Joseph was a Finisher at a furniture factory.

See what one comment on Facebook, about DNA might lead you?

1940 U.S. census, Bronx, New York, New York, population schedule, enumeration district (ED) 3-396, page 20B, family 436, line 31-33, Bracco, Joseph; digital image, ( accessed 04/07/2012); citing NARA microfilm publication T627.


Ten Brick Wall–Homework Assignment

February 15, 2012

Why listen to Webinars?

I have been following the Legacy Family Tree Webinars for a while. Each is rewarding as I learn something from each one. I have heard some of the presenters speak online, and in person. Today was no exception.

I have had the honor of speaking with and hearing Marian Pierre-Louis a number of times, and again, learn from her each time. Today that topic was Ten Brick Wall Tips for Beginners. It’s currently available to listen to on the Legacy Family Tree website.

She has a number of Blogs, that I’ll mention here. Each are worth taking a look at:

However, this one was different for me. If you have been following this blog, I have spent some time talking about a Brick Wall for another Genea-Blogger, Randy Seaver. His brick was is to find the parents of William Knapp (1776-1857). I was hoping that I had missed one or more of her Ten Brick Wall Tips. After reading the research of Randy for William, he certainly covered them. And he did. But his brick wall, for me, is a teaching experience. Give me some experience is researching a Brick Wall.

For me, this webinar was a test. Marian mentioned a couple of times to Review Your Documentation. What I have been doing on this project is reviewing research that has already been done, then to create my own research to see if there was anything, any record, any document that hadn’t been looked at. Randy had great documentation. But, I had to find something new, or at least try to find something.

Marian talked about Verbally Discussing your Research and to Blog Your Brick Wall. Although Randy and I didn’t physically talk, until early February, email and his family file is how this step was accomplished.

But, let me step back a moment. I was looking to see how I really got started with this brick wall. I posted this Blog post in August, 2008 and the first comment was from Randy.

He mentioned that his was researching the Knapp and Auble surnames in Sussex County, New Jersey. Two things struck me, Sussex County is the next county to the north of what I live AND my wife has Knapp’s in her family. We have visited Cemeteries in North Jersey and at least one County Historical Society along the way.

I did a series of about 25 Blog posts on how I use the Family Tree Maker program with this Brick Wall.

For example: Marian suggested we use a Map. There is the Blog Post I did using a Map for this Brick Wall

The blog will give more details, but the Red Box in the upper Right is where William Knapp was born (Dutchess County) and he died in Newton, NJ. The red arrow showed his movement to Middlesex County NJ, where he met and married Sarah Cutter, then in 1823 moved to Newton.


The Blue Line is the Direct route between the two places. (Birth and Death). Having done some research with my wife, her Knapp’s followed that Blue Line and State Route 94 connects those two places.

One of the Question, thus far unanswered, WHY Dutchess County to Middlesex County, then Sussex County?

Marian shared several ways that she tracks what she has and hasn’t looked at. I did that with my To Do or Task List.

In her talk, Marian suggested to create a Time Line. In fact, this was very helpful. One of the issues with this brick wall, was that William and Sarah Knapp weren’t showing up in Census Records. What we did have was Birth Dates and Places for the children.


We can see that William Knapp (son) was born in Woodbridge, New Jersey, then Manning was born in Newton, New Jersey.

Why NOT in Census Records was a question?

A review of the Timeline for Sarah Cutter Knapp (Williams wife) didn’t show much, but still thinking Census, a look at Sarah’s father’s Timeline may show us something.


So, he died in 1823, within a month after William, the son was born. Were they living with Sarah’s parents between 1804, when William and Sarah were married and when they moved to Newton?

One of the reasons, besides the challenge, is that I AM familiar with the Geography where William Knapp lived and died. The question about Why did he move from NY to NJ is one of them. We’re talking about 1777 – 1804. What means of transportation, beside the Why move question. By road, not very easy. BUT, as Marian pointed out, the River, Hudson in this case might have been the most direct route between NY and NJ at that time.

Might his trade, Shoemaker, play a role in this? Don’t know the answer to that yet, but not far from where William was married is Perth Amboy, then a seaport. To ships need folks involved with leather work?

The Place Names haven’t changed much, BUT what did change was that Dutchess County was the Place where William was born. However, later Dutchess County spun off what is now Putnam County. So WHERE, exactly he was born now doubled in size and where the records might be found.

In one of Randy’s blog posts brought up the Naming Patterns that Marian talked about. Randy and I both have reviewed that several times. We do have one unique name of Williams children. Not luck there either.

Marian talked about “Get Local”. That is where I come in. I can get to the Historical Society in Newton in about 20 minutes, and have done that a couple of times.

They have a large library of documentation that is NOT online. That was just confirming what Marian told us. The Knapp Lateral file had 3 or 4 pieces of paper in it.

On my first visit to the Historical Society, I was asked what I was looking for, and I told the gentleman. Sitting at the table, with his laptop computer, a few minutes later, a voice said “you won’t find that information on his death record”. I was looking for Williams parents. Huh? On this laptop, within a minute or two, he noted what records were in the New Jersey Archives.

Needless to say, I did take a day trip to the NJ Archives in Trenton, NJ and found the records “laptop man” had said. The column for the Parents Name was blank. The record I was looking at, was the only record about William that we have been able to find. Sure enough that box was blank. Did William even know who his parents were?

Looked for Probate Records, while at the Archives. No such luck. I did look for several other records, with very little luck. The unlucky records were NOT required by the state at the time, but might be held at the County.

Wasted trip to the Archives, No. But more negative evidence.

Returning to the Historical Society, laptop man, specialized in Deeds. The one thing that hadn’t shown up. So, my question were several. Why weren’t his parents listed, maybe the provider of the information didn’t know. OK, I’ll take that.

There were records of where William and his family lived. In fact, it was just down the street from the Historical Society. But no Deeds. However, there was a transaction that said “Where William Knapp currently resides”. So, no probate, no deeds, may indicate that he never owned property.

While listening to the webinar I am pretty sure, we (between Randy and I) used all 10 Tips for Brick Walls. Looking forward to the Intermediate Class which will come later in the year. Can’t wait.

Lesson Learned: Review, Review, Review and Don’t Stop your research Short.

For me, doing this blog post was one of those reviews to go back and see what else I missed.

Finally, Thank you Marian !!!!

52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy – Life Experiences

February 8, 2012

From Genea-Bloggers:

Week 5 – Life Experiences: Sometimes the challenges in life provide the best learning experiences. Can you find an example of this in your own family tree? Which brick wall ancestor are you most thankful for, and how did that person shape your family history experience?

This challenge runs from Sunday, January 29, 2012 through Saturday, February 3, 2012.

52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2012) that invite genealogists and others to discuss resources in the genealogy community including websites, applications, libraries, archives, genealogical societies and more. You do not have to be a blogger to participate. If you do not have a genealogy blog, write down your thoughts on your computer, or simply record them on paper and keep them with your files.


Sorry for running late on this, but it’s been a long, busy couple of days. Am finally catching up.

Being a RootsTech 2012, in Salt Lake City, was a real boost for me. The best part of the trip was to be able to spend time with Genea-Bloggers. I didn’t try to keep count as to how many of the 90+ Genea-Bloggers who were there that I met, but I think I met most of them. What an awesome group.

I have never been a writer, so this blogging “stuff” is out of my league. However, there are a couple of folks in my family tree who were writers, perhaps not by trade, but did a lot of writing.

My Great-Grandfather, Samuel Worthington, was one of them. I have copies of letters that he wrote “home” during the Civil War. Apparently, he also was a writer for his unit in the Civil War and was published in Ohio.

The second writer, was McHenry Howard. A little distant relative, but his writings provided a lot of detail for the 2nd Maryland Regiment (CSA), again for the Civil War. His writings gave detailed information on that regiment that put in perspective what a soldier’s life was like during that conflict.

But the real hero, for me, was my grandfather’s brother, Josiah Wistar Worthington, Col. V.C., U.S.A. His stories and letters are now in book format Hell and Beyond, a Diary of War and Captivity, Compiled and Edited by Frances Worthington Lipe.

This book is full of Uncle Wistar’s letters “home” telling his story of his captivity during the 2nd World War. He had been captured twice, and the poems, in the letters, helped communicate his experience without those letters being destroyed because of the content of them.

These three writers, brought home, their experience of their war to those their families. My experience of “war” was sent home in the form of audio tapes that I had sent home while I was in Vietnam. One of these days, I’ll have to get them put into digital format.

52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy–Free Offline Genealogy Tools

January 29, 2012

52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2012) that invite genealogists and others to discuss resources in the genealogy community including websites, applications, libraries, archives, genealogical societies and more. You do not have to be a blogger to participate. If you do not have a genealogy blog, write down your thoughts on your computer, or simply record them on paper and keep them with your files. Week #4 – Free Offline Genealogy Tools

Week 4 – Free Offline Genealogy Tools: For which free offline genealogy tool are you most grateful? How did you find this tool and how has it benefitted your genealogy? Describe to others how to access this tool and spread the genealogy love.


Got caught up in a small project for one of my “Free Offline Genealogy Tools”.

I am a member of a group of genealogists that meet monthly at a local (not so local for me) Library. What is great about this group is the Name of the Group. Family History Interest Group.  They have been meeting for a little over 10 years at the Bernards Township Library, in Basking Ridge, New Jersey.

The name of this group, to me, is key. It’s not just about genealogy, but the gathering of Family History. The group meets monthly, except for December, and has a wide range of speakers. Dan Lynch of Google Your Family Tree, Daniel Horowitz of My Heritage, to mention two national presenters. Book authors, TV program producers and many non-members have sharing with the group.

This group has it’s own long list of presenters, each sharing their own experience. Several times a year, a “Round Table” discussion is scheduled, where each person becomes a “presenter” either by asking questions or answering questions that are asked.

The former resource librarian and now the current Library Director has been gathering the speakers and the group for over 10 years. It’s a wonderful, FREE, Offline Resource.

The second Off Line Resource, for me, is the New Jersey State Archives. What I like about it, is that you can prepare for your visit by checking out that they have available before you go, then visit the most helpful group of staff around. They are always willing to show you where to find what you are looking for and some times help you find what you haven’t expected to find.

Lesson Learned: Visit your Local Library and your State Archives.

Open Thread Thursday: RootsTech 2012 Strategy

January 26, 2012

Genea-Blogger, Thomas MacEntee, today asked What our RootsTech Strategy will be for 2012. Please see his blog: Open Thread Thursday: What’s Is Your RootsTech Strategy?

Actually, I have thought about this in preparation for this awesome experience. Having attended several “regional” events, including the New England Regional Genealogy Society event last spring, I know that I don’t want to get overwhelmed with this event.

Trying to be involved with the Conference, as a participant, spending time in the Exhibit Hall, and networking with the 80+ Genea-Bloggers, I am sure that it can be too much to handle.

My plan, follow as much of the planned schedule that I have already planned on, BUT be flexible enough to make changes “on the spot”. There is a lot of opportunities to learn. I want to take advantage of that.

I like Thomas’ term micro blogging. I will have my iPad with me and will try that. I am going to use that to take notes, as I did at the NERGS last spring, but do the note taking in Evernote, which I have been using for Webinar Notes. Now to learn how to Copy and Paste, quickly, between Evernote and Twitter on the RootsTech 2012 AP on the iPad. But, I have a couple of days to learn that.

I hope you will bear with me on this Great Genealogy Adventure.

The Bucket List GeneaMeme

January 25, 2012

Genea-Blogger Jill Ball of Geniaus has started a Genealogy Bucket List GeneaMeme.

Since I am going to RootsTech 2012, I guess I should “get with the program”. So, here it goes:

The Bucket List GeneaMeme

The list should be annotated in the following manner:
Things you would like to do or find: Bold Type
Things you haven’t done or found and don’t care to: plain type
You are encouraged to add extra comments after each item 


  1. The genealogy conference I would most like to attend is… RootsTech 2012. After sitting home, participating in what was being streamed, there was no way that I would miss this year. Lots to learn, but want to catch up with some Genea-Bloggers that I already have met, but want to meet those whose blogs I follow.
  2. The genealogy speaker I would most like to hear and see is… That’s not an easy question to answer. Through PodCasts, Blogs, Webinars, I have heard some of the speakers already. Having been to the FGS conference in Philadelphia a couple of years ago, and the NERGS conference in Springfield, MA this past spring, the Genealogy Society of Pennsylvania Ancestry Day, and a couple of other conferences all add to the list of speakers that I had wanted to hear. But, I am looking forward to hearing the speakers talk about upcoming technical capabilities that are coming our way. A couple of online resources that I don’t quit understand (yet) but want to. I have been through the schedule a couple of times and have picked the ones I want to see / hear, but also think that a couple of them will change.
  3. The geneablogger I would most like to meet in person is… Wow, this is a tough one. As of this time, there are 88 Genea-Bloggers going to be there. The number keeps going up. The short answer, all of the Genea-Bloggers that I haven’t met before. But two Genea-Bloggers who I will catch up with, because I have met them, but Thomas MacEntee, to thank him for ALL that he does for the Genea-Blogging community; Randy Seaver, to have a chat about his Brick Wall; and I can’t forget my Cousin Dear MYRTLE. (just to name a few)
  4. The genealogy writer I would most like to have dinner with is…Most like to …. Too many to mention, too little time.
  5. The genealogy lecture I would most like to present is…. Me, present? I don’t think so.
  6. I would like to go on a genealogy cruise that visits….Missed the Legacy Family Tree cruise this fall, mostly because the port visits would have only made me (us) go back to spend more time. But, keeping an eye on England, Ireland, and Scotland.
  7. The photo I would most like to find is… A photo that was published in a Philadelphia (and area) newspaper, that was reported to have been about my Grandfather, and two of his siblings, on their train ride from Kansas to Pennsylvania, when no one picked them up. The police were trying to locate the family.
  8. The repository in a foreign land I would most like to visit is…When I am able to confirm where my Ancestor came from in England, the repository where I might find more details about his ancestors
  9. The place of worship I would most like to visit is…England, near Worthington Hall.
  10. The cemetery I would most like to visit is …… The family burial ground in Kansas, where my great grandparents are buried.
  11. The ancestral town or village I would most like to visit is…… Capt John’s “home town”, where ever that might be.
  12. The brick wall I most want to smash is… Actually, this one maybe on it’s way down. Capt John’s parents. Close, really close.
  13. The piece of software I most want to buy is….I’m Good.
  14. The tech toy I want to purchase next is …..I’m Good, unless it’s a handheld Cemetery GPS unit.
  15. The expensive book I would most like to buy is…I’m good, or I haven’t found it yet.
  16. The library I would most like to visit is…..Godfrey and the Allen County Library.
  17. The genealogy related book I would most like to write is….Not a writer, so I’ll pass.
  18. The genealogy blog I would most like to start would be about….I’m good. Never thought that I would have one, let alone three.
  19. The journal article I would most like to write would be about… I think I ramble enough
  20. The ancestor I most want to meet in the afterlife is…. My parents, and their parents. Too many stories that I missed while growing up.


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