St Clair Cemetery, Mt Lebanon, Allegheny Co, PA

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Friday, October 09, 2009

Sometimes Letting the Fingers do the Walking Works Wonders

No web site? How can that be? In this age and time, how can a small town historical society not be online? It seems, well, it seems so quaint.

I've been digging around in Sweden with the help of some online friends to try and find more documentation from the 1874-1877 time frame in Stockholm. We've made some progress and I hope more is to follow.

In the meantime, I took the time to go back and look at what I really have in the way of documentation from the state of South Carolina. There's work to be done.

After letting my fingers do the typing, the search in the probate court of Charleston left me with no more information than I had. Early family lore says my great grandparents were married there. If so, Charleston doesn't know it.

I checked the 1880 census in the place they moved and found them there. Of course, Orangeburg County searches had me pulling out my hair in vain. You just can't do a lot of online research there.

I found the birthdate of the couple's oldest child which is in 1880. So, logic tells me the marriage had to happen sometime between September 1879, which is when she got off the boat in New York, and the birth of the child. Logic says it, but there's no proof.

Time to let my fingers do the walking. I called the church at which the family were members in the 1880s. A very sweet older lady answered the phone. We chatted and then she asked for the surname. When I told her, I found out that my great uncle had worked for her brother in law and that her husband is kin to the wife of this same great uncle. Coincidence?

She didn't know of any records as she is only a sometimes volunteer, but I hope she found the common names of our blood lines sufficient that she will dig some in the past.

I also asked her about the local historical society and she tells me they just aren't real active. How can that be? Oh, I shudder at the thought.

Then, she pops up and tells me that my great uncle and his wife were very active members of the historical society. Perhaps there is more information to be found there!

The historical society is only open for a few hours a week and, of course, they are not open today.

So, while I haven't really found any evidence for my genealogy bug, perhaps, letting my fingers do the walking today will unearth a new treasure.

Tip of the day. Be sure to contact those old small churches. Their older members may dredge up some memories of some of your kin. Just another reason to smile as their memories get added to my memory bank.

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