Saturday, September 29, 2012

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - What is your matrilineal line?

This week Randy Seaver asks us to post our matrilineal line back to the first identifiable mother.  He then asks us whether we've had our mitochondrial DNA tested, and if so, the result.

Funnily enough, my matrilineal line is the one I've been focused on of late for exactly this reason.  I have not done any DNA tests myself, nor asked relatives to be tested.  But since the mitochondrial DNA test is the one I'd do myself, I decided I should get to tracing that line - something I hadn't done until recently.

Starting with my grandmother:

a)  Mae Gouverneur Cadwalader (1923, Pennsylvania - 2000, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) married J. Harrison Worrall
b)  Mae Drexel Fell (1884, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania - 1948, Dark Harbor, Maine) married Gouverneur Cadwalader
c)  Sarah Rozet Drexel (1860, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania - 1929, Whitemarsh, Pennsylvania) married John Ruckman Fell
d)  Ellen Bicking Rozet (1832, Pennsylvania - 1891, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) married Anthony Joseph Drexel

e)  Mary Ann Laning (1807, Owego, New York - 1880) married John Roset
f)  Mary Ann Hollenback (1783, Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania - 1854, Owego, New York) married John Laning
g)  Sarah Burritt (1750, Stratford, Connecticut - 1833, Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania) married Matthias Hollenback
h)  Deborah Beardslee (d. 1802, Hanover Green, Pennsylvania) married Peleg Burrit, Jr.

I'm confident in this line through Ellen Bicking Rozet.  Persons (e) through (h) are the result of my recent research.  I need more documentation for all of them, but am fairly certain this is how things will shake out.  I confess I've been working with local histories and Find A Grave to get an overall sense of my matrilineal line past Ellen Rozet.  I now need to back this up with various records, of which I presently have few.

Deborah Beardslee is proving to be somewhat of a mystery.  So much so that she is deserving of her own post, so watch for that down the line.  And is why she's currently last on the above list.

The name Rozet/Roset is indeed spelled differently above for Ellen Bicking Rozet and her father, John Roset.  I consistently see each of their surnames names spelled in this fashion - Ellen's with a "z" and John's with an "s".  In general, this line will be the one that tests my skill with spelling variants. (More fodder for a later post.)

As stated above, I have yet to do a matrilineal DNA test.  But once I get more proof of this line, I expect it's something I'll pursue.  I suppose there's no reason not to do this now, but I just feel like I need to know more about the women who carry this DNA before proceeding.

What I do need to get on with is finding family volunteers for DNA tests for other of my lines.   

Thursday, September 20, 2012

What I Did on My Summer Vacation


It's been ages since I've posted anything, and truth be told I haven't done anything genealogical of late that's inspired me to write. Not that I've been completely idle all summer, but my projects have taken a bit of a different turn and I've gotten very little new research done.

Some of the highlights…

The bulk of my time this summer was spent rehashing my Greenleaf line and putting together a heritage book of sorts for a family member's landmark birthday. I used Shutterfly for this project, mainly because I was pressed for time and already familiar with their photo book services. The project was completed, and I'm pretty pleased with the result (as was the recipient and other family members), but Shutterfly really isn't made for projects like this one where I was using as much or more text than images. And I had a hard time getting some of the images customized quite the way I wanted. But I'm extremely pleased with the overall quality, and considering some of the images I used were as low a resolution as they were, the print quality was pretty good. I'm not sure that I'd use Shutterfly again, though given the extensive choices these days. I'm a loyal follower of Denise Barrett Olsen over at the Moultrie Creek Gazette, so I'm going to revisit some of her past posts on electronic publishing and the various options before working on the "revised and expanded" version.

I did some traveling and was able to return to Lenox, Massachusetts - one of my favorite places. This was a short visit, but lots of genealogical connections were made, including meeting some people I've been corresponding with via email for ages. I spent time at two ancestral homes, one being Breezy Corner. The other being a return visit to Windyside, the former Greenleaf home in Lenox, now the Lenox Club. I was invited to stay the night at Windyside, which has guest facilities. The club also invited me to their weekly dinner, which was held in the music room with the large fireplace. A great stop with so many extremely hospitable folks!

 My room at Windyside (the Lenox Club)

For the 2nd year in a row, I've spent Saturday's mornings with my local genealogical society's cemetery committee. We transcribe tombstone inscriptions, checking the stones against any existing records and making updates and corrections, which are then (after much proofreading and editing) submitted back to various organizations including local historical societies and cemeteries, as well as the DAR. Any new research I did this summer was connected to this project, which allowed me to hone my skills in using local resources.


Symbols on the tombstone of Mowry Skinkle, Pine Bank Cemetery.

 In the last few days, though, I've gotten myself back on track with my own research. I expect more posts to come as I dive back into things!