Sorry for the large gap. I’m in the process of doing some experimental performance of this site which has demanded much of my attention in the past couple of weeks. Finally, though, here are the FamilySearch.org and Ancestry.com Updates and Additions to October 14, 2014.
FamilySearch.org Updates and Additions
FamilySearch.org and Ancestry.com Updates and Additions.
A very large part of my genealogical research over the past twenty years has produced thousands of photographs and other images and naming and cataloging these files required me to permanently label media files with identifying information.
Permanently label media files with identifying information. Insert cursor to the right of the ‘Comments’ line and a scroll box appears. Enter relevant data in the ‘Comments’ box and click ‘OK’ to save and exit.
I have developed a system over the past few years that has been invaluable to me.
I did not develop this universal system until many years after beginning my research. Therefore there are numerous files in my database that do not follow this, but as I edit individuals and data, I change the file names and comments entries as I go along.
Key points in this system are:
File Comments Section
On the file being named and labelled:
Right click on the file in the list
Select the ‘Details’ tab
Insert cursor to the right of the ‘Comments’ line and a scroll box appears.
Enter relevant data in the ‘Comments’ box and click ‘OK’ to save and exit.
Commas (,) separate data for an individual while a semi-colon (;) separates different individuals. The last name appearing first enables sorting file lists alphabetically with last name first. Otherwise, a file search can be done.
Last name, First and Middle Names, birth date (i.e. Smith, George Walter, b. 1961.jpg).
The addition of the birth date enables identifying an individual when there is more than one with the same name.
Husband’s last name, first name; wife’s last name (if different), first name (i.e. Smith, George; Christine.jpg; Smith, George Walter; Foster, Samantha.jpg).
In the comments section I list individuals from left rear to right front or clockwise, as they appear in the image.
Father’s last name, first name; wife’s last name (if different), first name; children’s last name (if different), first name (i.e. Smith, George Walter; Samantha; Grace; John.jpg).
In the comments section I list individuals from left rear to right front or clockwise, as they appear in the image.
If the group is too large to include all names, I list individuals in detail in the comments section of the file data in order from left rear to right front.
Groups of miscellaneous people.
Each individual’s last name, first name, b. date (if more than one with the name); last name, first name; etc. (i.e. Smith, George Walter; Davidson, Thomas; Foster, Helen).
If there are too many to include in the file name, start on the left rear and work to the front right or clockwise, with as many names as possible (i.e. Smith, George Walter; Samantha; Grace; John and family and friends.jpg).
If the group is too large to include all names, I list individuals in detail in the comments section of the file data.
Places, buildings, etc.
List the place data in the file name as follows: Country, State or Province, County, City or Town (i.e. Chilliwack Senior Secondary School; Chilliwack, British Columbia, Canada.jpg).
In the comments section, I list as stated followed by the street address and any other pertinent information (i.e. landmark name, owner, date, background information).
Individual records (i.e. birth, marriage, death, etc.).
For the file name list the last name, first name – record type, relevant date (i.e. Smith, George; Death Record; December 12, 1911.jpg).
In the comments section, also include all other relevant data for identification purposes (i.e. place, other people mentioned, etc.).
Group records that include several individuals (i.e. censuses, tax rolls, passenger lists, etc.).
For the file name list the head of household’s last name, first and middle names, birth date if more than one individual with that name – record type, country, state or province, county, city or town, street address, household (i.e. Smith, George A, b. 1872; 1850 US Census; Beekmantown, Clinton, New York.jpg).
Whatever does not fit in the file name can be included in the comments section of the file.
In almost twenty years of genealogy research, I have found a considerable amount of the sources, data and images on free genealogy databases online. They still exist in large numbers and can be very valuable.
Finding free genealogy databases.
The tough part in some cases is finding them, as most sites created by amateur genealogists and website owners are not optimized for the internet and therefore may not rank well in Google searches.
Be sure to sift through as many links as you can. If the site entered from a Google search result links to other sites, then by all means check them out. It’s important to bookmark any sites you find valuable as it’s very likely that days, weeks, months or even years down the road, you may never be able to find it again.
One tool I find very helpful for finding free genealogy databases is the Google Genealogy Search Tool at the Ancestor Search website. Scroll to the very bottom for the search tool, just one of many on the page. This tool incorporates most of all the search types above it. Just proceed to the next search results once you’ve waded through a set. This is very quick, easy and fruitful.
It is also important to search by other means than just names, such as location, topical sites (i.e. military service, war records, births, deaths, etc.) and dedicated surname websites.
When you begin to study genealogy, the resources that you have are few and far between. Most of us don’t go out and purchase expensive books or buy memberships in larger sites to get the information that we want. We tend to rely more on our own experiences and family members, but the truth is that those resources, while good, won’t carry you back through too many generations before you need some additional help.
Frustration can be an integral part of genealogy research. When it gets to the point where I’m very frustrated and feeling blocked, I create a ‘to do’ note on the person’s record in my genealogy software and turn to a different item. I find when I return later, either with a fresh, clear mind, or having given the database time to make updates, I will find something useful.
While you’re working online on your family tree, the free genealogy database will very often be a life saver. Those of us who don’t, or can’t buy the online access to the many paid databases, use the free ones religiously to find our way through family members. While you may not find all of the things that you want to know, you will find a great deal of information that will point you in another direction you weren’t even aware that you had to explore.
Even paid genealogy sites offer some specific databases for free access. These sites include Ancestry.com, and Fold3.com, amongst others. To search for free records on any given paid genealogy site, find the search link, go to advanced search, and enter the keyword ‘free.’ Most sites will produce a list of all free databases on the site. Also, try a general ‘free database’ keyword search on Google. Be prepared for thousands of search results, but at least it’s a place to start.
It is also important to subscribe to the blogs or newsletters to learn of any time limited free database promotions that may be coming up.
For all of you who thought the free genealogy search was a thing of the past, and that nothing worth having was free any more, take heart. There are literally thousands of free genealogy database sites out there that are waiting for you to come and pick through them and get what you can for your own genealogy.
Patented April 15, 1856
Recorded Vol. 308
25 Feb. 1857
2 Sept – 1857
The image above links directly to the original document. You can access sources, data, images and documents for these and other individuals, by clicking on the name link, or searching the Blythe Genealogy database site using the surname search link and the ‘All Media‘ search link in the left sidebar.
It is recommended to search using both methods as the results can differ greatly due to a glitch in the software that doesn’t connect all images from the bio.
All data for this and numerous others on this site is available for free access and download.
The Story Behind the Starvation of the Lady of Hay
William de Briouse III (25th great grandfather to my children, Erin and Stuart) was the son of William de Briouse II, Lord of Abergavenny (as well as Briouse, Bramber, Brecon and Over-Gwent) and his wife Berthe of Hereford.
He is believed to have been born about 1155 and he died August 9, 1211 and was buried August 10, 1211 in Paris. He married Maud (Mathilde) de Saint-Valéry, Dame de la Haie of the famed tale of the starvation of the Lady of Hay, (…and 25th great grandmother to Erin and Stuart), about 1170 or 1175. Maud de Saint-Valéry was the daughter of Bernard III, de Saint-Valéry and his wife Anora (Avoris).
Hay Castle, location of the starvation of the Lady of Hay and her son, William IV de Briouse.
William III was descended from William de Braose, Lord of Braose, who had received great estates at the time of the conquest in England and had settled at Bramber. William III had also inherited lands in one of either Totnes or Barnstaple through his grandmother, and had also inherited great Welsh estates of his grandfather, Bernard de Neufmarche through his mother, Bertha, including that of Hay Castle in Wales (see right).
During the reign of Richard III, William III was Sheriff of Herefordshire between 1192 and 1199 and a Justice Itinerant for Staffordshire in 1196. Having been with Richard in Normandy in 1195, he received both Totnes and Barnstaple by agreement with his original co-heir.
Upon the accession and coronation of King John (24th great grandfather to Erin and Stuart), and having achieved a place in the King’s favour, he accompanied King John to Normandy in 1200, and was granted all lands he conquered from the Welsh. he was also made Sheriff of Herefordshire between 1206 and 1207. Other lands William III had acquired through various means during these years included Limerick (without the city), custody of Glamorgan Castle, Gowerland, Grosmont, Llantilio (or White Castle), and Skenfrith Castles. , but shortly after he began to fall from favour, although the reasons for this have never been clear.
From records in the Red Book of the Exchequer, it would appear that it was a quarrel about repayment of his agreed debts. The evidence shows that in 1207, he had only paid 700 marks in total, a small portion of what should have been paid based on the agreed 500 marks per year. After being five years in arrears, the crown had the right to seize his estates. It was learned that he had removed the stock, and the king’s bailiff then acted under orders to seize him.
William III’s friends having acted on his behalf, they met with the King and William was permitted to come to the King at Hereford to surrender his castles of Hay, Brecknock, and Radnor in repayment of his arrears. William III, however, failed to make any further repayment of the debt and the King sent his men to demand hostages of William, but supposedly against William’s advice, Maud refused them. Having reached a point of no return, William attempted to seize control of his castles. However, he failed at this and subsequently attacked Leominster. As the royal forces approached, he and his family fled to Ireland and his estates were seized by the King.
William III was harboured in Ireland by friends who promised to surrender him within a certain time. However, they only sent William III when John’s invasion of Ireland became imminent. William III proceeded no further than Wales, however, where he later offered 40,000 marks in return for his lands. William’s wife, Maud, was besieged by John in Ireland and fled to Scotland, where she, her son William and his wife were captured in Galloway and escorted to John at Carrickfergus. Using Maud as leverage, John bargained for repayment of the 40,000 marks. Yet again, however, payment was not forthcoming and William III was outlawed, resulting in his fleeing in disguise to France, where he died.
His wife, Maud, who was largely blamed for his downfall, was imprisoned with her eldest son William IV by John in Corfe Castle (see above) and they were both starved to death there.
The second son, the Philip de Briouse, Bishop of Hereford, returned to England on July 16, 1214, and paid a 9,000 mark fine for his father’s lands. As this son died very soon after, John allowed the lands to then pass to the third son Reynold de Briouse on May 26, 1216, who also, under Henry III, recovered the Irish estates.
Dictionary of National Biography, Vols. 1-21; George Smith; Oxford Press, (1885-1990).
The Complete Peerage of England, Scotland, Ireland, Great Britain and the United Kingdon, Extant, Extinct or Dormant; G.E. Cokayne with Vicary Gibbs, H.A. Doubleday, Geoffrey H. White, Duncan Warrand and Lord Howard de Walden, editors, new ed., 13 volumes in 14 (1910-1959; reprint in 6 volumes, Gloucester, U.K.: Alan Sutton Publishing, 2000), volume I).
The Magna Carta Sureties; 1215; Weis, Frederick Lewis, Th.D. (Baltimore, MD: Genealogical Publishing Co. Inc.), 5th Ed., c 1999.
A Genealogical History of the Dormant, Abeyant, Forfeited and Extinct Peerages of the British Empire; Sir Bernard Burke (1883).
In a previous post, I told the story of David Coon, the fourth great grandfather to my children Erin and Stuart, and his service and death in the Civil War. His father, William B. Coon (about 1789 to August 25, 1854) was also a soldier, but in his case he served in the War of 1812. William was born in Beekmantown, Clinton, New York and was the son of Joseph Coon.
War of 1812 Claim to Bounty Land by William B. Coon, page 1.
War of 1812 Claim to Bounty Land by William B. Coon, page 2.
In 1813, at the age of 24, William enlisted as a Private with the 36th Regiment of the New York Militia under Captain Fillmore at Plattsburgh, New York.
Colonel Zebulon Pike
On January 4, 1851, William B. Coon swore an affidavit before John Kilborn, Justice of the Peace in Canada West, United Counties of Leeds and Grenville, in support of his claim to bounty land in compensation for his service in the War of 1812. According to the affidavit, he, along with his horses and sleigh, were pressed into service March 1, 1813 by Colonel Pike’s 15th Infantry Regiment to go from Plattsburgh to Sackets Harbor, serving seventeen days.
Subsequently, he enlisted August 25, 1813 at Beekmantown, Clinton County, New York, as a Private in Captain S. Fillmore’s Company of the militia commanded by Major John Roberts. He was honorably discharged about December 1, 1813. During this three month period of service, they defended the town of Plattsburgh during the burning of the newly promoted General Pike’s encampment, under command of Colonel Thomas Miller.
War of 1812 Minor’s Claim to Bounty Land, page 2.
War of 1812 Minor’s Claim to Bounty Land, page 1.
A supporting “Declaration on Behalf of Minor Children for Bounty Land” of August 3, 1869 by Harriet (Hattie) Laplaint of Beekmantown, Clinton County, New York states she is the child of William B. Coon, who had been married to Elizabeth Hicks. She further states William B. Coon had died August 25, 1854 and that Elizabeth had predeceased him on September 26, 1842. She was the only child of William and Elizabeth listed and as there were other children by both of his marriages, it appears she was the only claimant for the bounty land. This declaration is witnessed by her half-brother Samuel C. Coon and one Joel Cudworth.
Bounty Land Claim signed by Hiram Southwick.
The “Bounty Land Claim” document signed by Hiram Southwick proves the previous marriage of William B. Coon, although his first wife is not named, stating he was the half-brother of Hattie in support of her claim. William’s first wife Clarissa Haskill had previously been briefly married to Ebenezer (Eben) Southwick and had two sons by him, Hiram and James.
Power of Attorney re William B. Coon’s land claim.
The fate of Clarissa is unknown at this point, but it is assumed she had died sometime between 1826 and 1840, as William married a second time in about 1840 in Ontario, Canada to Elizabeth Hicks. Their children were: Mary Eleanor Coon (born circa 1840) and Harriet “Hattie” Coon (born circa 1841).
William B. Coon’s Military Bounty Land Warrant Certificate.
William died August 25, 1854 in Alexandria, Licking County, Ohio. Unfortunately, this was before he could receive his 40 acres of bounty land in Wisconsin, which then went to his son David, who relocated there with his family prior to his own service in the Civil War.
Keep checking back as I will soon write a post about my children’s other fifth great grandfather, Alanson Adams, the father of David Coon’s wife, Mary Ann Adams. Alanson also fought in the War of 1812, having enlisted along with his brother Gardner in 1813.
Emily Bailey, “David Coon and Family Background,” e-mail message to Christine Blythe, 19 Nov 2006.
Emily Bailey, “William B. Coon Family,” e-mail message to Christine Blythe, 20 Nov 2006.
Coon, William B.; War of 1812 Service File.
Act of Sept. 28 1850 Land Warrant Card – Coon, W.B. and Coon, David.
Military Bounty Land Warrant Certificate – Coon, William B.
Military Bounty Land Location Record – Coon, William B.