Discover your inside story with AncestryDNA®

December 29, 2004

Family Bible Records Online

Family Bible Records posted today by Brian of AncestorsAtRest.comon

WILDER Bible 1840s, probably New England
SHAW Bible 1831-1951
SMITH Bible 1874
HALLADAY Bible 1840s
1850 Bible McClure Brady Duncan Families
1848 Bible Pennsylvania MAUGER BAKER Families
1848 Bible Hyndman & Walker Families
Vermont BIBLE with Hyde family genealogy 1812

Shipwrecks & Passengers/Crew 1830-1873 online

Olive Tree Genealogy has just finished putting online a set of records for all to enjoy.

It is a list of vessels sailing out of Gloucester Massachusetts, and their crews who were lost at sea between the years 1830 to October 1, 1873.

There are 1437 names of those lost, plus the names of 296 Vessels in this set of records. Sometimes passengers were on board, as well as crew members

Olive Tree Volunteers have finished up to 1860 and these online. The rest will follow as completed.

Start at the intro then click through by year for lists of those lost.

Some of the places mentioned where the ships went down are given as Newfoundland, Prince Edward Island, Boston, Maine,and more

There are interesting tidbits with the lists, both of those who died and those who survived. For example the tale of this young man on board the Sevo in 1857, would be great to have if he is your ancestor!

"Winthrop Sargent, a lad of twelve years crawled out to the end of the bowsprit, and as the vessal was going down, grasped a splitting table which floated by, and by his
cries attracted the attention of those on board the steamer, who rescued him with much difficulty"

The story goes on to add "On the return trip of the steamer, young Sargent was brought home,and at two o'clock in the morning,was landed at Eastern point, and lad though he was, commenced his lonely journey of walking to town. He reached his father's house at about four o'clock, and knowing that he slept in a bed-room on the lower floor, tapped on the window. His father immediately awoke and exclaimed, "Who
is there?", "It's your boy Winthrop, " was the reply. Mr. Sargent at first thought it must be the ghost of the lad, as he had given him up as drowned, but young Winthrop had no idea of being taken for a ghost, and soon gave evidence that he was alive and well, which caused great rejoicing in the family. "

Here's an example of what you can find written about those who perished:

"Schooner JOHN FRANKLIN was lost while coming from Prince Edward Island, in the winter of 1858-59. Had several passengers on board, and it is supposed fourteen
persons went down in this vessel. Her Crew list was as follows: John McDonald, Master; Dennis Murphy, Mate, John Cogle, Neil McNeil, Angus Chisholm, Edward Malady. The family of Cogle were among the Passengers"

December 18, 2004

Finding Immigration Records in St. Alban's Border Crossings (USA-Canada)

Many immigrants came to US via Canada as fares were generally much cheaper that way.

In 1895 Canada and USA established a joint inspection system. Passengers arriving in Canada who intended to go on to United States were inspected by US Officials at the
Canadian Port of Arrival, then enumerated on US immigration lists. Immigrants were also given inspection cards which they turned in to US Officials once they were on board trains going to United States. Two sets of records were created - passenger lists and compiled inspection cards.

These CANADIAN BORDER CROSSING records were microfilmed by INS. They cover 1895-1954 and are indexed. They do NOT include Canadians before 1906. After September 30, 1906
both Canadians and non-Canadians are included on these lists.

For more information on the St Albans (Canadian Border Crossing) Lists (including film numbers), see

December 14, 2004

Census, census, census! Using Clues to Find Ancestors

Lorine, of the Olive Tree Genealogy website, answers a question posed on Roots-L mailing list. A case study of how a few clues can lead you in the right direction once you think about what you really know, and where you need to look next.

Q: My Grandparents were: Guy Lucian Martin and Geraldine (possibly spelled Geraldeen) Lyle. My grandfather was supposedly born January, 1899 in Purdy Co. Oklahoma. My Grandmother was (supposedly) born in Tennessee circa 1905. With so, so many sites with conflicting records, one could go crazy!

Lorine's A: Start with the U.S. census - it will help you sort
out family groups. It will also give you birth locations and approximate years, plus parents places of birth and much more (depending on the census year)

First, I'd go to and see what questions are asked on each census. Then I'd start looking for your family, going backwards one census year at a time.

For the ancestors you named above, you have some great clues to get you started -- look for Guy in the 1910 census, see if you can find his parents. He'd be about 11
years old. Same for Geraldine. She would be a 5 year old (or 4 or 6, don't be too concerned if the ages are out by a year or so)

Q: My Grandmother's parents were: Sidney Lyle and Georgia Lovell. Where they were born is a mystery as well, I would presume late 1800s?

Lorine's A: Okay so you have Geraldine's parents names - find them in 1910, then 1900 then 1880 census....get an approximate year of birth and a location of birth for both of them.

Q: My father as well was born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma September 2, 1926. His name was James Kenneth Rothner. Him, of course, I know about, however HIS Mother and father are, to say the least are a mystery!

Lorine's A: You have so many more clues than you realize. You can find your dad and his parents in the 1930 census! He will be about 4 years old. Finding them will give you great clues and you can then work backwards on this family - to 1920, 1910 etc.

Q: His mother's name was Joy Rothner, nee: Davis. She was supposedly born in Tennessee. My grandfather was Frank Rothner, where, when, he was born I cannot find.

Lorine's A: Census, census census... I can't stress this enough. Get those census records from 1930 back, and get your family groups in order. Write down everything you find! Keep careful track of dates of birth, locations of birth,
parents birth locations, etc.

Be sure to keep track of all children, don't just focus on your direct ancestor. You never know when you will need to find out something that will require the name of a sibling or research on a sibling will lead you to the parents.... will get you started, and give you an idea of where to look for the census you need. Once you get back to 1880 it's online for free at

There are some tips and suggestions for using search engines effectively at If you are new to searching, you might not get good results if you don't know
how to widen your searches to allow for spelling errors and mistakes in indexing.

Here's an example of what census research can tell you. I had a quick look in the
1930 census for your Frank and Joy and James Kenneth... It took a bit of time but I found them. Frank's real name is Theodore. That's a good example of family lore being not quite correct. James Kenneth is listed as Kenneth J. The surname is indexed as rothMer, but on the census page itself it is rothNer. (although the surname is a bit smudged and could easily be misread as rothMer)

So it's kind of hard to find them in an index unless you are willing to search under the last name (using wildcards!) and location and check every possibility

Here's where they are: Oklahoma > Tulsa > Tulsa > District 116

Brief extract:

  • Rothner, Theodore, head age 27, b Missouri, md at age 18, father and mother born "United States"
  • Rothner, Joy J? or G?, wife, age 28, b Arkansas, father b Illinois, mother b Texas
  • Rothner,Frank S son 5 b OK
  • Rothner,Kenneth J son 3 b OK
  • Rothner,Teddy son 1 b OK
  • Davis, Mary E., mother in law 61, widow, md at age 31, b Texas, father b Mississippi mother b Tennesee
  • Berry, Sadie, aunt (more details in the census)
  • Davis, Winnie B, brother in law (more details in the census)

I didn't write out all the details, but you can see what a fantastic amount of new facts you have now added to your family tree with one census record!

You now know that your grandfather went by the name Theodore -- and you have some new questions to answer - did he also use the name Frank, or was that a mis-remembered piece of family lore?

You have approximate years and places of birth for your grandparents Theodore Rothner and his wife Joy Davis.

You have Joy's mother's name, approx. year of birth and place of birth.

You have Joy's mother's approximate year of marriage - and can look for a marriage certificate

You have Joy's father's place of birth and you know he died before 1930.

You have a brother for your Joy. You have an aunt Sadie -- it's up to you to find out how she fits into the family. Since the relationship of each person is given re the head of the house, we might expect that Sadie is Theodore's aunt. However you need to take a good look at the census details and keep an open mind. This may be very helpful as you continue backwards on the Rothner & Davis families.

You have an approximate year of marriage for Theodore and Joy, given his age of 18 at marriage, so now you can look for a marriage certificate - the fun just goes on and on! I only looked in one census for one of your family lines - and you have several more to go.

I'm itching to search this family myself, what fun you are going to have!

October 27, 2004

Using Search Engines to Find Ancestors

© Lorine McGinnis Schulze

First posted in response to a question on a mailing list on October 23, 2004

Q: I have been on the temp free list for I did a search under Richard W. BILKEY and soundexed it. It came "Zero Results" Are you saying there is another index I can look under

A: When using search engines, don't limit your searches too much. If you get zero results, widen the search parameters.
  • First tip - Use wildcards to allow for alternate spellings. Instead of BILKEY, try BIL* (the * is a wildcard for any letters after BIL)

    Don't put in the first name. Don't put in middle initials. Think about how the name might have been spoken and recorded at the time. Richard W. Bilkey might have said his name was R. Bilkey. Perhaps he gave his full first name but not his middle initial. Maybe the person recording it put Rich'd for Richard. Maybe the person writing it down spelled BILKEY as Bilkee or Beelkey or ....

    Be creative, try variant spellings and use wildcards.

  • Second tip - for this particular search below, you want to go to and try the spellings and wildcard feature above. Then to see a list of ships from Liverpool to New York in April 1865 follow these steps:

    1. On the Ancestry search box, DON'T put a first or last name. Put the year of arrival as 1865 to 1865.

    2. In the keyword field put apr . Only put 3 letters because if you look at results you get you will see that this is how all the months are indexed - as 3 letter months. So if you put april you'll get zero results!

    3. For Port of departure put Liverpool.

    4. Then hit SEARCH and see what comes up. You'll get a lot of results and you can see that there are many ships - Etna, Kangaroo, Helvetia and so on

    There is another way to get that list of ships -- look up at the top of the Ancestry page where it says

    "You are here: Search > Immigration & Naturalization Records > New York Passenger Lists, 1851-1891 > Results"

    Click on NEW YORK PASSENGER LISTS. That brings up a new page with a search box but look BELOW that search box. See the list of years? Click on 1865. Let the new page load then click on the month you want (April)

    The list of ships arriving in April will appear

  • Third Tip -- Always read the HELP file for every Search Engine you use. All Search Engines are different, you must learn what each can do for you.

    Also see more of my ideas and suggestions re using search engines

Permission granted to distribute this article as long as nothing is changed, and all identifying information and URLs remain. Be sure to include the following footer:

Help File by Lorine McGinnis Schulze of Olive Tree Genealogy at


October 24, 2004

What is a Palatine?

© Lorine McGinnis Schulze

The German Palatinate was divided between two small territorial clusters: the Rhenish, or Lower Palatinate, and the Upper Palatinate. As well as the devastating effects of war, the people living in that region, called Palatines, were subjected to the winter of 1708-09, the harshest in 100 years. The scene was set for a mass migration to America ......

In the spring of 1709, about 7 000 harassed Palatines sailed down the Rhine to Rotterdam. From there, about 3000 were dispatched to America, either directly or via England, under the auspices of William Penn. The remaining 4 000 were sent via England to Ireland to strengthen the protestant interest there.

In 1710, three large groups of Palatines sailed from London. The first went to Ireland, the second to Carolina and the third to New York with the new Governor, Robert Hunter. There were 3 000 Palatines on 10 ships that sailed for New York and approximately 470 died on the voyage or shortly after their arrival.

Their plight did not end there for they were subjected to harsh conditions under the British once in America.

To read more about Palatines see Palatine Genealogy at

Also see

This article © Lorine McGinnis Schulze and may be reproduced as long as all identifying URLs remain intact and nothing is altered

October 18, 2004

Coffin Plates - A Great Source of Birth & Death Dates


The history of Coffin Plates or casket plates is a long, but not very well documented one. Generally made of a soft metal like pewter, silver, brass, copper or tin, coffin plates are decorative adornments attached to the coffin that contain information about the deceased. These plates are an overlooked free genealogical resource. They often contain the Birth date and Death date and can be used as a substitute for vital records.

The oldest ones that I have seen date from the 17th century (1600~1699) and were reserved for people of some stature, in other words people who had money. As time went on more people were able to afford the luxury of a Coffin Plate and with the coming of the industrial revolution the cost of the plates went down so much that by the middle of the 19th century almost every family could afford them.

At the same time that coffin plates were increasing in popularity the practice of removing the plates from the coffin before burial increased. The coffin plates were often removed to be kept as mementos by the loved ones of the deceased. This practice peaked in the late 19th century (1880~1899).

In rare cases the plates are removed when the grave is disturbed for some reason like cemetery relocation. This is more common in Europe were space for graves is at a premium.

Unfortunately these valuable resources are scattered and there has not been a single repository for this valuable free genealogy resource until now. It is my intention to create a coffin plate database and a home for the unwanted plates themselves.

You can see the start of this project at

In some rare cases the plates can contain even more information like place of birth or the occupation of the deceased.

If you want to know more about what things qualify as a true Vital Records there is a good article Genealogy Without Sources is Mythology! at the Olive Tree at




Permission granted to publish this article as long as all identifying names and websites remain intact

October 12, 2004

Pennsylvania Baggage Lists 1809-1819

Early arrival to Philadelphia Pennsylvania were documented in Baggage Lists from 1800 to 1819

Olive Tree Genealogy now has online the start of the Pennsylvania Baggage Lists from 1809. These contain the names of passengers who had to pay taxes on excess baggage. It does not contain the names of passengers who were exempt because their luggage was not over the limit.

I decided to index all names, not just passenger names, but also the names of those shipping luggage or goods, and the names of those being shipped to. Passengers whose names are found also have a list of luggage, so interested descendants should obtain the original film to view the full manifest details. I will be making the images of each manifest available as I have time and space.

Most of the ships also have the image of the manifest online too. I will be putting them all online as I have time, so if the one you want isn't there, just come back and check in a few days.

This is another project of Olive Tree Genealogy to fill in the gaps, and one that I hope to carry on to 1820, which is when full passenger lists began to be archived and are available to us


Copyright Lorine McGinnis Schulze of Olive Tree Genealogy at

Permission is granted to redistribute this article with all identifying URLs intact including this notice

October 5, 2004

One World Tree - The Real Story

What is OneWorldTree?

More than 100 million names!'s new OneWorldTree SM database is one of the largest family tree resources on the web. It's a timesaving resource that draws on decades' worth of family history research. One name match could add entire branches to your family tree instantly.

Is Ancestry charging for user submissions?

NO! Ancestry user submitted records are still free. OWT searches those records plus pay-to-view databases on and gives you the best matches possible. Ancestry will NOT begin selling the gedcoms and family trees that have been submitted to Ancestry World Tree and RootsWeb WorldConnect. The confusion is in the similarity of names - AWT (AncestryWorldTree) versus OWT (OneWorldTree)

How does it work?

OneWorldTree searches thousands of family tree. It gives you information about people and family relationships. You have access to many years worth of research. Be one of the first to use's newest technology to save you time and extra research.

Tell Me More!
Ancestry OneWorldTree is an intelligent search engine that links Ancestry records to family trees through a process Ancestry calls stitching. Ancestry is currently stitching the 1930 census and building trees from the relationship information found there. Ancestry will eventually stitch all of its records including census and vital records, grouping sources by individual. more at

September 12, 2004

Using Census Records to Find Immigration Dates

Copyright Lorine McGinnis Schulze

Have you found your ancestor in census records after his arrival?

The 1900, 1910 ,1920 and 1930 census identify citizenship status, with notations showing the individual was an Alien, or had started the Naturalization process or had his final papers. They also give the year of immigration.

As well, 1920 gives the year of naturalization. What great clues to help narrow the time frame for finding ship passenger and naturalization records!

There are great clues in the 1870 census too! If your ancestor has a check mark in the column "Male Citizens of the United States of twenty-one years of age and upwards" you have a clue that naturalization took place before 1870

You can read more about the value of census records in your search for an immigrant ancestor at

Finding an immigration year from the census would be Step One.

Step 2 would be finding naturalization records. See for further help, and for links to online databases.

Step 3 is finding that ships list. Once you know your ancestor's state of entry, you can search microfilms. Most states are indexed, so this will make
your job slightly easier. You can order films in to a nearby Family History Centre, or have NARA do the job (once you have precise details)

Ycan get a list of film numbers (NARA & FHC) at

Scroll down to the state you want and click on the link, then find the film # you need

The staff of the National Archives will undertake a search of the original records for a fee but you must know the name of the ship, the date of arrival, and the port of arrival.

September 9, 2004

Declarations of Intent, New York 1843-1850

Naturalization is the process by which an alien becomes an American citizen.

Naturalization Records are very important to your genealogical research. They can help you find the date, ship, and port of arrival, and the place of birth for your ancestor.

How much information is found on them will depend on when the naturalization was done. The naturalization process did not have to happen in one court, or in one state. It was not mandatory and not all aliens became citizens, and not all completed the process once they started it.

Before 1906, the declaration of intent generally contains more genealogically useful information than the petition. Petitions before 1906 usually show only a name, former allegiance, and date of naturalization. The declaration may include the alien's exact date of immigration into the United States.

In general, after living in the United States for 2 years, an alien could file a Declaration of Intent (also called First Papers) to become a citizen.

The entire index to Books 7 & 8 APRIL 1843-MAY 1850 for Declarations of Intent, New York 1827-1895 is now online at

These are from the Justice's Court, Albany, New York. To go directly to the start of this index to Declarations of Intent, start at

There are 7 reels of microfilm containing the Declarations of Intent. What Olive Tree Genealogy volunteers have typed up is an index to those Declarations, with page numbers to help you find the original. Instructions for viewing the original Declarations are given online

To see the list of free online databases for New York Naturalization Records, start at

August 30, 2004

I Found My Great Great Grandfather Online -- Now What!!???"

(Verifying Records Found On Webpages)
© Lorine McGinnis Schulze
You just found a church record for the marriage of your great great grandfather, or the record of your 4th great grandparents on a passenger list of a ship to the New World in 1777 - wow! But you have questions - how accurate is this information? How can you verify it?

All records have the potential for error once they have been transcribed. This results in the possibility of culmination of errors with each succeeding transcription. Deliberate altering of the records (such as adding details the transcriber believes are correct; changing the spelling of names etc) results in even more possibility of corruption.

Generations (Versions) of a Record
Each generation or version that a record goes through increases its chance of errors. Researchers should always try to use records as close to the original as possible. Let's go through an actual example:

Many of the records and databases on Olive Tree Genealogy are transcribed from microfim of the original. They can be considered a second generation level transcription. This means they have one chance of human error (assuming the original minister made no mistakes). If the original minister or clerk made errors then they have two changes of human error. These records may be considered as good as book published records in most cases.

Records transcribed for Olive Tree Genealogy from published versions (such as the Marriage Records of the Reformed Dutch Church in New Amsterdam/New York found at and used with permission of the NYGBR who published them in series), are third generation -- having been transcribed from the original to the NYGBR to Olive Tree. Records at 3rd generation level stand a greater chance of error. How useful they are depends on how reliable and accurate the working publication (in this case the NYGBR) is. In this case the NYGBR is considered a scholarly journal, is well regarded, and can be trusted.

The following example is based on an interpretation and explanation of the number of generations an early New York will can go through before it ends up on a webpage or mailing list on the Internet. (originally sent to the Dutch-Colonies mailing list on 10 June 2001)

An Example of Generations in Wills and Abstracts
Generation 1 (original) The original will. Many have been microfilmed by the LDS church
Generation 2 (2nd version/transcription) At the time of probate the will was copied into the book (or "liber") of wills. Microfilm of most of the early libers is available.
Generation 3 (3rd version/transcription) In the 19th Century a copy of the original libers was made. Microfilm of these is available from the LDS church.
Generation 4 (4th version/transcription) Abstracts were done and published as part of the Collections of the New York Historical Society. These are also available on CD-ROM
Generation 5 (5th version/transcription) Those abstracts were either scanned or retyped and made available as on-line databases on webpages.
Generation 6 (6th version/transcription) The Generation 5 on-line abstracts were posted on an e-mail list.

You can see how many times errors can be introduced or parts of the records lost along the way. This holds true for all online records.

So what can you, the researcher, do?

1. Use original sources wherever possible.
2. If you can't use the original source be sure to carefully notate where you found the information. Hopefully you will one day be able to consult the original to verify the transcript.
3. Scrutinize your source - is it reliable? Has it been altered? Was it taken from an original, or was it taken from a source further removed from the original?
4. Research your sources! Find out if there are better published records that are known to have fewer errors. Talk to those knowledgeable in the field, write emails and ask questions.
5. Don't accept everything you see in print. Be a savvy researcher and protect yourself from errors in your family tree.

The question you should ask yourself every time you access a webpage with information is:


The further removed it is, the more chance of error.


This article was written by Lorine McGinnis Schulze of The Olive Tree Genealogy at

Permission to copy is granted as long as the article remains AS IS. No changes may be made to the article and all identifying information and website link must remain intact! This Permission to Copy notice must remain with the article

August 22, 2004

Passport Applications 1809-1817

Passport applications are often a valuable source of genealogical information. NARA has passport applications from October 1795-March 1925. The U. S. Department of State has passport applications from April 1925 to the present.

Some immigrants applied for passports to return home to visit family or friends. These records usually give a place of birth or at least the destination (which is often the home town)

The first passport issued in USA was dated July 1796.

My first new database is an Index to the Register of Passport Applications
1809-1817 for all states, found at

All records on are FREE to use, please let each page load completely then scroll down to find the names.

The index to Passport Records and an explanation of Passport Records as a research tool is at

You can pass this message on to anyone you think might be interested, and if you find an ancestor on any of my projects please let me know!

July 20, 2004

New York Orphanage Records

There were many orphanages and orphan asylums in the 19th century. I have begun transcribing records for New York State orphanages. The records online begin in 1819 with lists of names of Almshouse children, and continue to the early 1900s with lists of names of children in orphanages.

Many of these institutions were founded in New York City to care for destitute children of immigrants from Ireland and Russia, Germany and other eastern European countries. Many immigrants found themselves unable to work and thus were unable feed their children. Women died during childbirth leaving a number of uncared for children. Many women also had illegitimate children that they could not provide for. Husbands died, living behind widows with large families. Some parents were addicted to alcohol or committed crimes and wound up in prison.

By 1850, New York state had 27 orphanages run by public and private funds but the problem of orphaned or abandoned children left behind roaming the streets begging for food was growing.

The Children's Aid Society, founded in 1854, shipped some of these children to homes in the South and West on Orphan Trains. Boys and girls were give a train ticket and sent to the mid-west.

Almshouses cared for impoverished adults and the elderly, and children often shared space with them. Dating back to the colonial era, New York City assumed responsibility for its citizens who were destitute, sick, homeless, or otherwise unable to care for themselves. In 1880, New York state passed a law that ended the practice of housing children in Almshouses with adults, unless they were born there.

To see the lists of orphans and half-orphans in Orphanages in New York state, visit

July 12, 2004

Minorcans to Florida, 1768

Thanks to the hard work of Lucie Servole Myers, Olive Tree Genealogy has an original research project reconstructing names of colonists of Greek, Italian, Minorcan and Turkish origins to Florida in May 1768.

Eight ships sailed under the direction of Andrew Turnbull. Lucie has reconstructed the names of 431 passengers on board the 8 ships. This is a wonderful database and I owe a big thank you to Lucie for allowing Olive Tree Genealogy to publish this online for all to use. The ships are organized in the following immigrant groups:

Passengers from Spain

Passengers from Greece

Passengers from Corsica

Passengers from Canary Islands

Passengers from Italy

Passengers from Balearic Islands

June 27, 2004

Lost Faces -Old Photo Albums Found & Rescued

I've been busy setting up a new corner of Olive Tree Genealogy.I call it "Lost Faces -Old Photo Albums Found & Rescued"

One of my hobbies is going to flea markets and garage sales. Whenever I spot one of those old Photo Albums from the 1800s with family pictures, I have to buy it! I can't bear the thought that the album and photos will be lost or destroyed. Even though they aren't my ancestors, and they can be very expensive, I can't walk away without it.

What I'm doing with Lost Faces is putting online the list of all the albums I have saved, along with the list of photos and other documents (I have albums that contain funeral cards, memorial cards, obituaries, Christmas cards, and hand-written genealogies) and any research I've done on the family. I've also put up some of the photos

I hope that by putting this online, descendants will find a treasure. is the little intro to this new corner of OTG. Read to the bottom and then choose the "List of Family Photo Albums"

I only have a few online so far, but the locations are from England to USA to Ontario and Saskatchewan.

Have a look, I hope you like it and that you find an ancestor there.

June 14, 2004

Images of Ships Passenger Lists to LA, MD & NY online!

Olive Tree Genealogy has been putting actual images of passenger lists online for several months now. So far there are images of the passenger lists of ships to New York, New Orleans Lousiana and Baltimore Maryland.

These are graphics of the actual passenger lists - some are also transcribed, but some are not. The quality of the images varies from crystal clear to very faded, but that's always the fun of research. Reading someone else's transcript or index of a passenger list is okay, but seeing the original list for yourself is always best.

What a great opportunity to find out who else was travelling with great great grandma! I found my own great great grandmother's mother (and g-g-grandma's maiden name) on an image - her mother was travelling with her in 1831 as she made her way to New York City. I wouldn't have known she was her mother without seeing the original image.

Often there are comments about illness, deaths, stowaways, or other remarks. Occupations, places of birth and ages are often given. All these images and lists are free to researchers, as are all databases on Olive Tree Genealogy.

The index to images of ships passenger lists (the actual manifests) is at

May 18, 2004

St. Mary's Church in Philadelphia PA - Pew Rentals, Burials & more!

I have just started putting the Cemetery Records for St. Mary's Church in Philadelphia PA online. The records go from 1788 to 1800.

St. Mary's, built in 1763, was the second Roman Catholic institution in Philadelphia. It was the site of the first public religious commemoration of the Declaration of Independence. Members of the Continental Congress attended
services four times from 1777 to 1781. George Washington worshiped at St. Marys on at least two occasions.


Choose "Search online Pennsylvania Databases" then look under CEMETERY RECORDS. Click on the link for St. Mary's Church Burial Ground, Philadelphia Pennsylvania to begin.

To see the Pew Rentals 1787-1791 List of Names, go to

It may be easier to start at

Choose "Search online Pennsylvania Databases", then click on Church Records - Pew Rentals 1787-1791 St. Mary's Church, Philadelphia Pennsylvania

May 12, 2004

Top Genealogy Blogs

Olive Tree Genealogy Lorine McGinnis Schulze (the Olive Tree Lady) answers questions about genealogy and provides tips for finding those elusive brick-wall ancestors

The Paper Trail Eclectic mix of old documents - you may just find an ancestor's will, land record or general store receipt here!

Past Voices Letters, letters and more letters! Letters from Civil War soldiers, from wives to husbands, sons to mothers, sisters to sisters... This blog contains poignant old letters full of genealogy tidbits.

Ancestors at Rest - The blog for website. Contains death records of all kinds - funeral cards, death notices, cemetery receipts, obits...and more

Family Bibles - Another blog of Family Bible entries and pictures of the births, marriages and death pages

Antique Hunter - If you like antiques or collectibles, this brand-new blog will be one you don't want to miss!

Genealogy News Center Articles on Genealogy research from Genealogy Today website

BlackSheep Ancestors The latest genealogical information on helping you find ancestors in your family tree that were criminals, murderers, outlaws, bandits or scoundrels and that may have spent time in a prison, jail, penitentiary, chain gang or convict camp.

April 26, 2004

Salt Lake City Library - Ready, Set, Go!

© Lorine McGinnis Schulze

Are you ready for a trip to Salt Lake City Library? I just returned from a great time there so thought I'd share a few tips and suggestions.

  • Have a plan before you go. Decide what you want to find out. I made a list of dozens of things I wanted to look for - from a specific ships' passenger lists going to New York, to church records in Iowa to land records for great grandpa in Sullivan County New York 1830s to naturalization records for several of my ancestors in Michigan. [Check for Online Ships' Passenger Lists at or for Naturalization Film numbers at ]
  • Check the online Family History Library Catalogue to find out what they have available. Make a list of the film numbers or book call numbers you need. Write it down on your plan beside each item you want to look for. That saves you time and thinking once there. After a day or two of intensive searching your brain will turn to mush. Your plan will be your salvation, because it is already thought out and organized for searching. [See the FHL Catalogue]
  • Pack a research bag. (Sounds obvious but on my second trip to Salt Lake City, I forgot mine, and had to use an awkward size piece of luggage) Stock it with gum, candies, pencils, pens, small ruler, colored paper for those hard-to-read microfilms, tissue, magnifying glass and aspirin! I always throw in a few granola bars for those needed breaks. There's no need to bother with large manilla envelopes for your photocopies that you are going to find, the Library sells most paper and chart supplies, all at a reasonable cost. Get something on wheels if possible. I bought a small wheely luggage rack that holds my laptop and one extra research bag, great for saving your neck and shoulders from carrying all this heavy equipment.
  • Take bills, not coins. You don't need coins except for the lockers, if you choose to use one. (They do come in handy when you decide to take a break and head to CrossRoads Mall for a sandwhich and coffee!) The Library sells Copy Cards and these are used at the Microfilm Reader-Printers, Photocopying Machines and Computer Printout stations. All costs are low, you won't go broke making your paper copies to take home.
  • Choose your Hotel There is a hotel right beside the Library, so if you don't like to take shuttles or walk too far, that's the one for you. Be sure to request their Genealogy rate! I prefer the hotels further away, and I make use of the free shuttle service they provide. There's pros and cons to both - being nearby you can slip back to your hotel and have a rest in your room if you need to!
  • You're finally at the Library - now what? You can't reserve readers. There are hundreds on each floor so don't panic. There are also hundreds of computer stations on each floor. The only reserves are for the scanners that burn from microfilm to CD ROM (more on that in Tip #9) Be prepared for long lines at the copy machines on the Main Floor during the busy time, and remember to follow the rules for making only a few copies at a time when others are waiting. You can keep lining up as many times as you need until you have completed your copies.
  • Take breaks! Take lots of short breaks, go outside, walk around Temple Square (right across the road) or sit in the little area between the Museum and the Library, and have a cold bottle of water. You can buy one in the Library Snack Room. Even though you don't want to leave at all, because you just know that great grandpa's funeral notice will be on that next microfilm screen, these short breaks will rejuvenate you and stop you from falling asleep at your reader. If you get too groggy you are apt to miss something!
  • Avoiding the rush I like to head for the Main floor US/CAN books area first, early in the morning before it gets too busy. Once the crowds arrive, I head to 2nd floor US/CAN microfilm and spend the rest of the day there. The busiest time seems to be between 11 am and 2 pm, so plan to arrive early.
  • If you feel adventurous, sign up for a half hour on one of the Library's wonderful microfilm to CD ROM machines. For $1.50 you can buy one of their blank CDs and scan and burn microfilm pages to it, to your heart's content. It's a bit tricky but the attendants and volunteers are always happy to help. You cannot use your own CD ROM to do this, you must buy one from the Attendant Window.
  • You need to eat I like to leave the Library, cross the street to Temple Square and cut diagonally to the right to the next gate. Directly across that street you will see CrossRoads Mall. The food court is downstairs. You can also eat in the Library Snack Room if you don't feel like leaving the building. Take your own snack and eat in the Courtyard outside the Library, or if you feel like sitting down and being waited on, go to the restaurant that is part of the next door hotel.


© Lorine McGinnis Schulze of The Olive Tree Genealogy at

Permission is given to copy and reprint this Article without changes. All identifying information and links to websites must be included. This permission notice must also be left intact.


April 3, 2004

Kansas Alien Registrations 1917-1921

After World War I started, all non-naturalized "Enemy Aliens" were required to register with United States authorities as a security measure.

Registrants were from all walks of life. For the State of Kansas the registered aliens represent a broad cross-section of the German-born population of the State.

NARA has a database of this set of records, but it is not indexed, and is tricky to search. I spent time creating indexes for the registrants (over 6,000 names!)and putting them in alphabetical order.

For 120 of the 6,000 registrants there are online digitized images of their registration papers at NARA. This contain details such as year of immigration plus ship name and port of arrival, maiden names of wives, parents' names (including mother's maiden name), place and date of birth, childrens'names and birth dates, siblings names and places of residence, photo,fingerprints, and more.

Those names without online digital images have more details such as place and date of birth, residence, etc. The full records can be obtained offline for these registrants.

The index I have created is for almost 6,000 affidavits filed in the Kansas Judicial District, 1917-1921.

This index is online and searchable at

You can also start at

and follow the link on that page.

I have written out detailed instructions on how to use the online index to find the full records on NARA's online database, and how to order the records for those names without online images.

Enjoy, and I hope you find an ancestor or two :-)

March 25, 2004

Arkansas Naturalization Records Index 1809-1906

In the 1930s and 1940s a statewide project was begun by the WPA Work Projects Administration). This project was to find and photograph Naturalization Records before 27 September 1906.

All copies were to be deposited with INS (Immigration & Naturalization Service) but when the WPA was disbanded in 1942,only a few states and districts were complete.

With the help of a wonderful volunteer, I have begun putting an index online for Arkansas Naturalization Records 1809-1906

As always, all records on all my sites are free to all researchers. Please let pages load fully, then *read* the introduction and explanations before you begin clicking on links :-)

An overview of what records exist for Arkansas and where they can be found is at Arkansas Naturalizations at

March 12, 2004

The JJ Cooke Shipping Lists online - Find Ancestors in Passenger Books of Shipping Companies

Olive Tree Genealogy brings you the Passenger Books of J & J Cooke, Shipping Agents with sailings from Londonderry to Philadelphia Pennsylvania; Quebec; St. John, New Brunswick; and New Orleans Louisiana from 1847 to 1871

These lists can be found in D.2892/1/1-14 Passenger Books of J & J Cooke, Shipping Agents. Sailings from Londonderry to Philadelphia, Quebec, St. John, New Brunswick, 1847-71 (see also MIC.13) in the PRO of Northern Ireland

There are no comprehensive lists of immigrants arriving in Canada prior to 1865. Until that year, shipping companies were not required by the government to keep their passenger manifests. That makes finding passenger lists difficult, but not impossible

The JJ Cooke records are a valuable source for the missing Canadian Ships Passenger Lists for this time period!

They also provide needed passenger lists for Louisiana and Pennsylvania.

The index to the ships I have online so far from JJ Cooke Records is at

Many lists give the passengers ages and places of origin.

February 24, 2004

Ellis Island and Missing Manifests

© Lorine McGinnis Schulze

Ellis Island existed as a processing station for Immigrants entering New York from 1 Jan. 1892 to 14 june 1897 and again from 17 Dec. 1900 to 1924. From 15 June 1897 to 16 Dec. 1900 the processing station was the Barge Office. Luckily for those whose ancestors entered through Ellis Island, there is an online searchable database. Read on for some tips on using this database and finding an ancestor!

Help! I keep getting the wrong passenger list on the Ellis Island database! How do I see the right passenger list??


I search for Theo Davis sailing in 1893. Bingo! A hit! But there's a problen.... the text version shows Theo H. Davis on line 0033 ; when I go into the scanned manifest, it also indicates that he is on line 0033. However, when I click on the icon to magnify the scanned manifest, there are two entirely different people on these lines; in looking at the text manifest, none of the people listed on the text manifest are the same as the people with the corresponding numbers on the scanned manifest.

Lorine's Answer:
This is one of the missing manifests on the Ellis Island database.
You can see from the online manifest that the one that is linked is for the Germanic. According to the text version and the index entry your Theo H Davis sailed on the Teutonic on March 2, 1893. That means this is one of many manifests on Ellis Island Database that is linked incorrectly.

Your next step is to go to Steve Morse's One-Step Ellis Island Search Engine at

Choose MISSING MANIFESTS. Let the page load.

Type in your desired date (Mar 2, 1893) A Reel no. automatically comes up and you are on Frame 1. You can see that this reel goes from Frame 1-756. Look back at the date you entered - it has, in this case, *changed* to Feb 13, 1893 so you know that this reel begins with that date (Feb 13, 1893)

Okay, type in the page number given for Theo (50) in the FRAME field. Hit DISPLAY. You will quickly see that the *wrong* manifest comes up. Now you have the fun of playing around with the frame numbers til you find the date/ship you want.

Ships are on the reel in chronological order, think of this as scrolling through a microfilm reel only you can do it in the comfort of your home.

I put in 500 as the frame I wanted to see next. It's a guessing game, start with anything you think reasonable, you are looking for the first page of ANY ship, for that will give you a date and ship name. From there you will jump AHEAD or go BACK til you are at the date you want.

500 takes you to La Bretagne sailing on 6 March 1893. Close but no cigar... so let's try frame 400. Try it. It takes you to SS Saratoga sailing on 1 March 1893. Getting closer, now you know you have to work *forward* between frames 400 and 500 for your ship. One more from me and then you're on your own - I tried frame 450 and got London sailing on March 3!

Now you know you need to start at frame 450 and work your way in both directions til you find the ship Teutonic.

Have fun! And if you are ever looking for other ships to NY and want to try online lists, use these URLs: NARA & FHC film numbers for NY passenger lists after 1820 Passenger Lists to New York all years Search Engine for online Internet Passenger Lists to NY

This question, and Lorine's answer, appeared on the ELLIS-ISLAND-L mailing list ( on Feb. 15, 2004. The person asking was able to find what she wanted by following these instructions. You can do the same thing for any manifest you need to find. Good luck!

Permission granted to distribute this article as long as nothing is changed, and all identifying information and URLs remain. Be sure to include the following footer:

Ellis Island & Missing Manifests, an explanation by Lorine McGinnis Schulze of Olive Tree Genealogy at


February 15, 2004

Emigrants from England to USA 1773-1776

Are you looking for English ancestors in the time period before passenger lists were kept?

I have an index to Surnames of Emigrants from England to USA 1773 to 1776 now available at

Surnames A start at

There are a total of 1,814 names (Surnames A to G) online, with the rest following as quickly as I can transcribe them. When complete there will be over 6,000 names for you to search.

Remember that this is an INDEX to names along with page numbers for reference.

After finding an ancestor in the index, you will need to obtain the full record on microfilm or in published books. Instructions are given online as to how to do this.


January 13, 2004

1890 Census Substitute - Shareholders Names N. America

Recently I found an old book called "Report of the Superintendent of Insurance of the Dominion of Canada for the Year Ending 31st December 1890"

The book was published in 1891 in Ottawa, and included in its pages are approximately 60 pages of names of shareholders and guarantors for various Insurance and Assurance Companies across Canada & USA.

The date for the list of names is 1890 and the wonderful thing about these is that they include people from all over Canada, as well as USA and Europe.

Each individual has a residence listed, in some cases, an actual street address. What really intrigued me about these lists was that the shareholders' residences included such places as:

Ontario, British Columbia, Nova Scotia, Scotland, New York, Quebec, Vermont, Pennsylvania, NWT, England, Illinois, India, Newfoundland, Manitoba, Cape Breton, Jamaica, Ireland, Kentucky, Tennessee, Massachussets, Minnesota, Ohio, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New Jersey, Channel Islands, France and Wales. (I may have missed a few locations)

These lists can be used to verify that an individual lived in a certain place in 1890. They also contain quite a bit of detail for some entries, which are terrific clues for further research. Here's a few examples:

One listing is for "Edward Rawlings, Montreal" and under his name, labelled as "in trust" are the names Miss A L Rawlings, Miss E M Rawlings, Miss KNB Rawlings, George W Rawlings, HEA Rawlings, and WT Rawlings

Beside Edward's name is his number of shares in the Guarantee Company of North America - 4645, amount subscribed for 232,250, paid in cash 52,610. His children are noted as to their number of shares, amount subscribed for and amount paid up in cash - each child except Miss AL has 5 shares, 250 subscribed for and 250 paid in cash. Miss AL has 6 shares, 300 subscribed for and 300 paid in cash.

It occurred to me that this entry meant that Edward had died, and the rest of the names were his heirs, most likely his children, given the words "in trust". So I checked the online 1881 census at and found Edward and his family living in Montreal (Ste Antoine Ward)

They were:

  • Edward Rawlings b England, 41
  • Lucinda Rawlings b Ire. 39
  • Lucinda Rawlings b Que. 12 [Miss A L from the book?]
  • George Rawlings b Que 8 [George W from the book]
  • Henry Rawlings b Que 5 [HEA from the book?]
  • Walter Rawlings b Que 4 [WT from the book?]
  • Edith Rawlings b Que 2 [Miss EM from the book?]
  • daughter, b. Feb. 1881 [probably Miss KNB from the book]

This gives you some idea of the usefulness of this book Thanks to some wonderful volunteer transcribers I am able to bring these names to you. I hope you enjoy these names, and that you find an ancestor or two.

You can start your search in these lists of names at

Scroll down the page to choose from the following:

  • The Accident Insurance Company of North America (List of Shareholders)
  • The Boiler Inspection & Insurance Company of Canada (List of Shareholders)
  • British America Assurance Company (List of Shareholders)
  • Canada Accident Insurance Company (List of Shareholders)
  • The Canada Life Assurance Company (List of Shareholders)
  • The Citizens' Insurance Company of Canada (List of Shareholders)
  • Confederation Life Association (List of Shareholders)
  • The Dominion Life Assurance Company (List of Shareholders)
  • Dominion Safety Fund Life Association (List of Stockholders)
  • Dominion Plate Glass Insurance Company (List of Stockholders)
  • Eastern Assurance Company of Canada (List of Shareholders)
  • Federal Life Assurance Company (List of Shareholders)
  • Guarantee Company of North America (List of Shareholders)
  • London Life Insurance Company (List of Shareholders)
  • Manufacturers' Accident Insurance Company (List of Stockholders)
  • Manufacturers LIfe Insurance Company (List of Shareholders)
  • North American Life Assurance Company (List of Guarantors)
  • Quebec Fire Assurance Company (List of Stockholders)
  • Royal Canadian Insurance Company (List of Stockholders)
  • Sun Life Insurance Company (List of Shareholders)
  • The Temperance and General Life Assurance Company (list of Guarantors)
  • Western Assurance Company (List of Shareholders)

Enjoy this free database, and please feel free to pass this message on to anyone you think might be interested.