Saturday, December 31, 2011

A Year in Review With a Plan For 2012

So... At the beginning of 2011, I said that my goals included writing a book to which my family told me "you're crazy" and to blog on a more regular basis.
Well, as of yesterday, I did publish a book.  It was not what I had in mind when I made the goal, but none the less I used Blurb to publish my family genealogy posts from 2011, so it technically means I reached my goal. 

In terms of blogging on a more regular basis I feel I did okay.  Life happens and gets in the way but I was able to post 20 times, this will be 21.  That means I averaged about 1.75 posts per month.  Blogging helped with my research but I feel I still have a long way to go with both.

My goals for 2012:

Research Goal:
  • Explore and source the DRAKE line of my family tree.
Education Goal:
  • Investigate and possibly begin the NGS Home Study Course.
Writing Goal:
  • Write research reports on the HASKINS family line.
  • Finish reading You Can Write Your Family History by Sharon DeBarolo Carmack and actually begin writing my family history.
Blogging Goal:
  • Double my number of posts, so that means I need to post at least 42 times.
  • Increase my number of followers by 25% ( I have 24, so that means I need to have 30 by the end of 2012)
  • Read and apply some of the tips from The Big Genealogy Blog Book by Amy Coffin.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

November A Month to be Thankful

We all grow up with the weight of history on us. Our ancestors dwell in the attics of our brains as they do in the spiraling chains of knowledge hidden in every cell of our bodies. ~Shirley Abbott

Which ancestor are you the most thankful for? Why?

Well that is a very waited and difficult question! Before I can answer this I wonder, what is the "technical" definition of an ancestor?

Ancestor:  A person from whom one is descended, especially if more remote than a grandparent; a forebear. (As defined in the American Heritage Dictionary)

Based on this I guess I would say that I'm most thankful for my great grandfather; Fred Haskins.  Why?  Well I could say many different people but I am thinking of this in the context of my genealogy research.  For whatever reason, Fred didn't tell us much about our family, especially the Haskins side.   This has made my genealogy detective work challenging, fun and exhilerating. 

Because of Fred...
  1. I have better genealogy skills.
  2. I have spent eight years looking for his father and finally found him.  What a rush that was!
  3. I have quested to learn all I can about his ancestors.  I have tracked the family line in the US back to 1630 and learned that my ancestors were founding fathers of Windsor, CT
  4. I have learned how to request military records; I was able to get Semour Haskins, my 4th great grandfather's records from the War of 1812.
  5. I have learned a great deal about Dutchess county, NY especially the town of Amenia.  I have been there three times and LOVE to eat at Three Brother's Pizza.
  6. I have learned how to track down and request primary documents to use as sources. One being his birth certificate which revealed he spent most of his life saying he was a different age than he actually was.
  7. I have learned how to use city directories as a great resource for learning about your family tree.  Fred was born in Rochester, NY @ 118 Thompson, Ward 9.
  8. I ended up taking a wonderful family vaction to the Conneticut shore.  I would never have gone there if I wasn't looking for his father's (George Henry Haskins) grave.
  9. I have become the family genealogy expert, which has included being passed down all of the old family photos.  What an honor -  Thanks Aunt Es.
  10. I have met many very helpful kind people in the world of genealogy whom I wouldn't know as much about my family without them.
This is a picture of Fred, myself, my brother and a cousin at a backyard picnic.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Tombstone Tuesday - Charles W. Drake

This week my blog is being themed around Charles W. Drake.  He is my 3rd great grandfather.

This is his tombstone.

 He is buried in the Marion Cemetery on the Drake plot.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Sunday's Obituary - Charles W. Drake

Today I have decided to post the obituary for my 3rd Great Grandfather, Charles W. Drake.

I selected him because he passed away November 11, 1922, which is 89 years ago this week.

It is hard to read the newspaper clipping that is attached so I have transcribed it below:

Charles W. Drake, passed away at his home on Palmyra street, Saturday, November 11, 1922 at three o'clock in the afternoon, in his eighty-fifth year.

Mr. Drake had been ill a long time and confined to his house for a number of months, being a great sufferer.  A nurse has been in the home for months.  Mrs. Drake also being in very feeble condition.

Mr. Drake was born on March 25, 1838, in Amenia, Dutchess county, N.Y. when he passed the first thirty-five years of his life, moving thence to Wayne county.

He came to Marion from Sodus about twenty years ago, and with his wife had lived here since that time.  He leaves his wife, Mrs. Annagusta Drake; one son, Joseph Drake, of Newark, N.Y. and six daughters, Mrs William Carroll, of Williamson; Mrs. Sarah Haskins of Marion; Mrs Charles Boyle, Oswego, Illinois; Miss Janet Drake of Buffalo; Mrs. Clara White of Buffalo, Mrs. Agnes Hasselwander of Rochester.  There are eight grandchildren, of whom two are Darwin and Fred Haskins, of this town and four great grandchildren.

The funeral was held from the house Tuesday afternoon at two o'clock, Rev L. W. Bumpass, pastor of the Baptist Church, Officiating.  Burial was in the family lot in Marion Cemetery.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

The Ancestors' Geneameme

This is an activity that I decided to participate in for some genealogy fun plus it helps with my research.  I was suppose to post a few weeks ago but life happens!

The rules of this activity are as follows:
  • Read over the following list.
  • Things you have already done or found: make them bold face type
  • Things you would like to do or find: make them italicized (color optional)
  • Things you haven't done or found and/or don't care to find: leave them in plain type
  • You are encourage to add extra comments in brackets after each item
Which of the following apply to you?

Can name my 16 great-great-grandparents
  • George Henry Haskins
  • Sarah L. Drake
  • Jacob VanLare
  • Nellie Bushart
  • Thomas King Robertson
  • Teresa Mary Wagner
  • Henry Ostreich
  • Wilhemlmina Ruth Leisten
  • Abraham Dierx
  • Jozina Johanna Bulting
  • Pieter Vergouwe
  • Catharina Van Bortel
  • Adriaan DeVisser
  • Levina Marie Misjelje
  • Johannes Wisse
  • Maria Susanna Vannxen
Can name over 50 direct ancestors (easily!)

Have photographs or portraits of my 8 great-grandparents
This is Pieter Derks and Sarah Vergouwe, the parents of my grandfather Arthur Derks.

This is Issac DeFisher and Sarah Wisse, the parents of my grandmother Elsie DeFisher Derks.

This is Fred Haskins and Kate VanLare, the parents of my grandfather Vincent Haskins. 

    This is Thomas Robertson and Ruth Ostreich, the parents of my grandmother Ruth Robertson Haskins
Have an ancestor who was married more than three times
Have an ancestor who was a bigamist
Met all four of my grandparents
Met one or more of my great-grandparents
  • Fred Haskins
  • Kate VanLare Haskins
  • Ruth Ostreich Robertson
Named a child after an ancestor (One son's middle name is Marcus somewhat after my dad and our other son's middle name is Vincent after my grandfather.)

Bear an ancestor's given name/s
Have an ancestor from Great Britain or Ireland (A few places include Dorset England, Roxburghshire and Glasgow Scotland)
Have an ancestor from Asia
Have an ancestor from Continental Europe (Many from the Netherlands)
Have an ancestor from Africa
Have an ancestor who was an agricultural labourer (just a few....)
Have an ancestor who had large land holdings (not sure what large would include, but there were many farmers that had large amounts of land)

Have an ancestor who was a holy man - minister, priest, rabbi
Have an ancestor who was a midwife
Have an ancestor who was an author
Have an ancestor with the surname Smith, Murphy or Jones
Have an ancestor with the surname Wong, Kim, Suzuki or Ng
Have an ancestor with a surname beginning with X

Have an ancestor with a forename beginnining with Z (the wife of one of my grand uncle's first name was Zoa)

Have an ancestor born on 25th December (to the best of my ability I don't think so, but I'd like a better way to look through my data base)

Have an ancestor born on New Year's Day (see above)

Have blue blood in your family lines
Have a parent who was born in a country different from my country of birth
Have a grandparent who was born in a country different from my country of birth

Can trace a direct family line back to the eighteenth century (most can be traced back that far)

Can trace a direct family line back to the seventeenth century or earlier (can go back to 1630 in the United States with the Haskins/Hoskins line)

Have seen copies of the signatures of some of my great-grandparents

Here is a sample of my great grandfather Fred's signature. 
Have ancestors who signed their marriage certificate with an X
Have a grandparent or earlier ancestor who went to university
Have an ancestor who was convicted of a criminal offence
Have an ancestor who was a victim of crime

Have shared an ancestor's story online or in a magazine (See my blog .  I translated a newpaper article about my great grandfather's sister, Julia she died as a young child. )

Have published a family history online or in print (one of my goals is to write and publish a portion of my family history)
Have visited an ancestor's home from the 19th or earlier centuries (I have been to town's where they lived but haven't been in an actual house)

Still have an ancestor's home from the 19th or earlier centuries in the family

Have a family bible from the 19th Century (I wish) 
Have a pre-19th century family bible

Sunday, September 18, 2011

A Little Saturday Night Genealogy Fun: What Did You Do On Your Summer Vacation?

Well now that summer is officially coming to an end I am forcing myself to get back to my blog.  I have been feeling guilty about my limited or complete absence from my genealogy.  I haven't had any time to think about or touch it since sometime in July.  I logged on to my genealogy computer for the first time in weeks.  It took an eternity for the updates to process and the security software to make things safe and sound, yet I persevered.  I went straight to my go to sites for ideas to blog about.  I have to start somewhere and low and behold I landed on "A Little Saturday Night Genealogy Fun."   The topic of the challenge for today, what did you do on your summer vacation?

This summer, before my hiatus, I went on vacation to the Connecticut shore.  We stayed in a beach house on Latimer Point in Stonington, CT.  I relaxed, rested and soaked up the July sun.  I also got to spend sometime trekking through a cemetery in the nearby town of Deep River, CT.  Deep River is where my very long lost great, great grandfather is buried.  I found this information within the last year after looking for over eight, so having the opportunity to visit his final resting place and the town he lived in was an exciting part of my trip.

George Henry Haskins is buried in the Fountain Hill Cemetery.  Here are a few pictures from that excursion.

George Henry Haskins was living in Deep River at the time of his death.  He died on September 14, 1925 from Nephritis.  He was 71 years, 6 months and 21 days at his death.  His burial was on September 16.  He died in the New Haven Hospital. 

This is the chapel that is in the cemetery.  George's sister Julia Haskins Frank's funeral was held here.  Julia died on May 20, 1922, age 64 from Bronchial Pneumonia.

This is the headstone of Julia and her family.  Julia Haskin was married to Francis Frank. Francis Frank died on November 3, 1931.  Julia had a daughter Edna, whom married Everett Stickland.  Edna died on June 8, 1911 at the age of 31. She died giving birth to a son, whom is also buried with her.  Everett, her husband, died on April 20, 1948 at the age of 70.  He died from Congestive Heart Failure.

This is the headstone of George's other sister Alma Haskins Foster.  Alma died in Waterbury, CT at the age of 59 on March 25, 1909.  She was married to Willis Foster, also of Waterbury, CT.  He died at the age of 63 on January 19, 1914.

The family members are buried in the Pilgrim Rock portion of the Fountain Hill Cemetery.  They are buried in sections 18 and 19.  Alma Foster, Julia Frank and George H Haskins are the children of George W Haskin and Mary McFarland of Amenia, Dutchess, New York.   The plots in section 18 (four of them) were purchased by Willis Foster.  They were purchased when Alma passed away.  This is the section that George is buried in.

I was sad to find out that George doesn't have a headstone.  If I didn't have the cemetery information I wouldn't have been able to find him.  I have the general area where he is buried but not the exact location.  I have to admit finding out there was no stone was very disappointing and was a little bit of a downer.

After our time tromping around the cemetery, our next stop in Deep River was to the local public library.  My mission was to try to find George's obituary.  I was not successful, again disappointed.

After a wonderful lunch at Kristen's we stopped at the Town Hall.  I was able to enter the vault and look through various resources.  This was really interesting and a little exhilarating.  I got the chance to touch and look through some primary documents. Oh, the things that can keep a genealogist happy!  All in all it was a great day in Deep River and a wonderful memory for my Summer 2011 Vacation.

Friday, June 10, 2011

This is The Face of Genealogy

This is my face of genealogy.  This is a picture of the DeFisher family, which includes my grandmother, her parents and all of her siblings.  This is the part of my family that first got me interested and exploring back when I was in college as a health education major doing a project on medical health history.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Military Monday: Memorial Day 2011

In honor of Memorial Day 2011 I thought that I would write a little about my grandfather, Vincent "Budd" Haskins.  He served in World War II.  He was in active duty from May 23, 1944 until January 23, 1946.  He was a Seaman, First Class in the United States Navy.

His initial training or boot camp took place at Sampson Naval Training Center which is located in Seneca County, NY.  I didn't learn that this is where he did his boot camp until today when I started asking questions about his military career and started looking at documents and pictures.  Interestingly enough this old naval base is less than 45 minutes from my house and is now a State Park with a museum.  We will soon take a visit to check it out!

After his time in Sampson he went to a Naval Training Station in Newport, Rhode Island and then went on to Portsmouth, Va.  He was on the then newly commissioned  USS Shangri-La. from September 15, 1944 until November 25, 1944.  He was on the ship's maiden voyage. While on board he worked in the boiler room and was assigned bunk and locker number 52.   After his brief time on board,  he was stationed at the US Naval Operating Base in Trinidad BWI.  Here his main job was helping to pull seaplanes out of the water.  Rumor has it he stole or "creatively acquired" as I like to say a large tractor from the sea bees.  As the story has been told, the tractor made his job easier and he was able to pull a plane up on to the beach in less than a minute.  I'm not sure exactly how much of this is true!  I plan on actually ordering his military records to get more of the specifics. Needless to say he served his country proudly and helped to protect the freedom we enjoy today.  I do know that he was awarded the World War II Victory Medal.   Happy Memorial Day Grandpa.


Monday, May 9, 2011

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy and History - Spring

Spring. What was spring like where and when you grew up? Describe not only the climate, but how the season influenced your activities, food choices, etc.

When I think of spring....................I think of daffodils, lilacs, lilies of the valley, little league, birthdays and Easter.

Easter meant chocolate bunnies, jelly beans, Sunday church with a new spring dress and Easter brunch with the family.  On Easter Sunday the Haskins family would go to Cinelli's in Sodus for brunch.  It was one of my favorite family outings.  We would all get dressed up and go our for a fancy meal.  Grandpa would order us Shirley Temples.  I also remember getting pumpkin ice cream pie for dessert.  There was one year that it was especially muddy and our big Green Ford LTD got VERY stuck in the mud.  It took the whole kitchen staff to get the car out.  There was mud everywhere!!!

One of my favorite things to do when spring arrived while I was growing up was to go look for the daffodils that were up and over the back hill behind my grandparents house.  I still like to do this but it is harder to find them now, the brush has grown up making it more difficult.  After the snow melted and things started turning green during the weeks between April and May you'd wait for a warm weekend day to take a hike up over the hill.  It was still a little muddy but it was always fun to try to locate the exact spot of the patch of daffodils.  They are located down in a gully back in the thatch.  It was always such a joy when you spotted them.  You'd pick a small bunch to bring back with you; still one of my favorite sights of spring time.

I live very close to Rochester, NY.  So spring also means lilacs and the Lilac Festival.  It is by far my most favorite festival.  I love just getting to walk around Highland Park and smell the fragrance of massive amounts of lilac bushes.  In recent years this has become how I like to spend Mother's Day, however this year the festival doesn't start until the week after Mother's Day.


Saturday, March 19, 2011

Fearless Females: March 19th

March 19 — Have you discovered a surprising fact about one of your female ancestors? What was it and how did you learn it? How did you feel when you found out?

I think one of the most surprising things that I have uncovered so far is the story of my great grandfather's sister, Julia Haskins.
Julia was born on August 3, 1891 in Waterbury, CT.  We are not completely sure of the birth location but that is what is believed at this time.  She was the daughter of George Haskins and Sarah Drake.  Around 1893 Julia moved with her family to Rochester, NY where she lived until her mom and siblings moved to Sodus, NY.  Once in Sodus they lived with Sarah's parents; Charles Drake and Augusta West.
During May of 1898 Julia was out playing with her brother, which we believe to be my great grandfather.  They made a bon-fire and their play went terribly wrong.  Here is a transcription of an article that appeared in The Record, Sodus, NY Friday May 20, 1898.

Fatally Burned!  Little Julia Haskins Loses Her Life By Fire.  Lived Thirty-Three Hours After the Accident.

Last Saturday morning one of the most distressing accidents that ever occurred in Sodus resulted in the death of Julia Haskins, the little six years old daughter of Mrs Sarah Haskins of Rochester.  About eight o'clock that morning Julia and her four years old brother made a bon fire, as they had frequently done before.  They were having a jolly time at their play when the little fellow playfully threw a piece of burning paper at his sister.  It caught on her dress, which was cotton, and in an instant she was enveloped in flames.  Her cries attracted the neighbors.  George Brown was the first one to reach the child.  He picked her up and carried her into the house, where a quilt was thrown around her and the flames were smothered.  Some one sent for the physicians and doctors Myers and Richardson were soon by her side.  They made an examination and found that her abdomen, chest, face, right arm, right side and thigh were horrible burned.  Her hair was also badly scorched as were her lips.  The physicians announced that her condition was most serious and that she was injured internally as a result of inhaling the intense heat from the flames.  They did all they could to relieve her terrible sufferings, but about half past six o'clock the following day she passed away.  During the hours of suffering she bore the great pain with fortitude and seemed to appreciate all that was done for her.  The funeral was held Tuesday afternoon at the residence of Mrs. Charles Drake, Rev. Smith Ordway officiating.  It was deemed best to inter the remains at the Rural cemetery in the village.  The pupils of the public school marched to cemetery in a body, where they deposited a bouquet of flowers in the grave.  Julia came to Sodus last December with her mother, who  is a daughter of Mrs. Charles Drake and they have been with Mrs. Drake since that time.  Julia became a pupil at the public school and her bright face was frequently seen with the other children as they passed through the streets for school.  Her long golden curls and rosy complexion made her an exceptionally attractive little girl, and her cheery disposition made her a favorite with all who knew her.  The sympathy of the entire town goes out to the mother and sorrowing relatives.

I found out this information about 8 years ago when I first started digging into my family tree.  There always seemed to be many secrets surrounding the Haskins side of my family.  No one talked about anything, especially my great grandfather.  I have a feeling he held a great deal of guilt about what happened to Julia, as he was the four year old little brother that was playing with her.  I was saddened by the story, but I think the worst part is the fact that she was buried in the rural cemetery or potter's field.  Her grave was never marked and we don't really know where she was buried for sure.  Her mom, brother and grand parents all were buried in their family plots in Marion.  Julia died a horrible death and was basically forgotten.  I am happy to honor her for at least one small moment in time.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

One Lovely Blog Award

Many thanks to Lisa at The Faces of My Family blog for the One Lovely Blog Award.  It feels nice to be recognized and to see that at least someone is appreciating my attempt at blogging some parts of my family history.  I am happy to accept and to pass it on.  Plus this is a great way to explore other individuals' journeys as well.

The rules of acceptance are :

1.  Accept the award, post it on your blog together with the name of the person who granted the award and their blog link.

2.  Pass the award on to 15 other blogs that you've newly discovered.

3.  Remember to contact the bloggers to let them know they have been chosen for this award.

The blogs that I am passing this honor on to are below.  Please take time to explore and enjoy.
  1. The Scrappy Genealogist
  2. Trace Your Dutch Roots
  3. Are You My Cousin?
  4. From Little Acorns
  5. Grace and Glory
  6. The Historian's Family
  7. Branching Out Through The Years
  8. Documenting The Details
  9. My Ancestors and Me
  10. Ancestors Live Here
  11. Confessions of  Gene-a-holic
  12. Family Tales
  13. Keeper of the Records
  14. Calling All Cousins
  15. A Sense of Family

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Fearless Females: March 12 ~ Working Girl

During the month of March the Accidental Genealogist is providing 31 days of blogging prompts to celebrate Women's History Month.  I has missed the first 11 days...but I'll attempt to try at least a few of these during the rest of this month.

March 12 — Working girl: Did your mother or grandmother work outside the home? What did she do? Describe her occupation.
I'll start with my grandmothers.
My Grandma Derks attended school through the 8th grade.  After her schooling she went to work on the family farm, or the muck as we like to call it.  The farm's main crops were onions and potatoes.  She continued to work on the farm during my mom's childhood.  She recalls being dropped off after school at Aunt Lizzie's house and then walking down to the muck while grandma worked.  They also spent many summers on the farm.  Other things that my grandmother did included working at the senior care house that was next door.  It was run by Mary Kellar, she took in elderly individuals.  My grandmother helped her to take of the people that stayed there.  She also Marion Canning Factory and later worked and retired from Garlock's in Palmyra.  She worked on one of the lines in the factory.
My Grandma Haskins didn't finish high school either.  She worked at Kodak in Rochester with her sister.  She did this until she got married and continued working there until my grandfather went into the military during World War II.  At that time she moved to Marion and lived with my great grandparents.  She then worked in the canning factory.  My dad tells me that during the early 1960's she worked  at a local Marion restaurant.  I don't ever remember her working, she was always at home.
My mom graduated from high school in the late 60's.  After an initial  attending college at SUNY Oneonta she went to the Genesee Hospital School of Nursing in Rochester.  She became an RN and worked at the Genesee Hospital as a nurse on the OB floor.  After she had kids she stayed home to take care of us.  She baby sat for a long time which allowed her to stay home.  When we were older she went back to work as a nurse at the Fairport Babptist Nursing Home.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Thankful Thursday - Fountain Hill Cemetery, Deep River, CT

I have had the best genealogy week!  I had spent the better part of eight years relentlessly searching for my great great grandfather; George Henry Haskins.  This past fall I believe to have found him buried in Deep River, CT. in the Fountain Hill Cemetery.   Pieces of the puzzle just started coming together - new information, better census data via and the luck of a google search.  It was an exhilarating find. The kind that gets your blood pumping, mind spinning and creates the inability to sleep.  Since my find I have been trying to locate additional information to source my findings and confirm that this was in fact my George Haskins. 

In my quest to accomplish this task I have been trying to get his death certificate.  Keyword, trying!!  I have not found success.  I have however found very wonderful helpful people in Deep River, CT.  Based on George's burial in Deep River and his last census record stating that he was living in Saybrook, which later became Deep River I sent a request for his death certificate to the town offices.  They couldn't find him, but the town clerk was great.  She emailed me a few times, looked in different places with no success then finally gave me the name, address and phone number of the caretaker of the Fountain Hill Cemetery.  She said that he might be able to give me the burial information that could assist me.  I called the phone number got an answering machine so....I decided to write him a letter to request the information.  I included as much information as I had related to George's death and vital statistics.  Through additional research I now believed that George's sister Julia Haskins Frank and her family were buried in this cemetery as well as his sister Alma Haskins Foster with her husband Willis.  I wondered if they were buried together, etc.

I waited.  I didn't hear anything and then on Tuesday of this week the phone rang.  It was the caretaker of the Fountain Hill Cemetery.  Jackpot, he had so much information.  It was a great discovery!  I am so thankful for the time and energy that he put into helping me find additional clues and facts to build my tree.  In speaking with him he discussed how he and his wife have be recreating the records of the cemetery.  Much of the original documentation had been destroyed and lost.  They have been going through each individual buried in this cemetery creating a data base for individuals like me who are looking for family information.  We also realized through our conversation that we are distantly related; our trees connect with my 9th great grandfather John Hoskins born in 1659 in Dorchester, MA.  He went on to become one of the founding families of Windsor, CT.  We live in a very small world.  He and his wife are also planning to send me photos of my family members' headstones. 

This summer I would love to get to Deep River.  There are things that I'd like to follow up on.  I was informed that the local paper at the time of George's death was the New Era.  I'd like to try to access it to look for an obituary.  My trip will also include a visit with my new long lost relative, he said that he would be happy to show me around.  Thanks for all of your help.  The genealogy community is very generous and we couldn't find all of the vast information out there without people like the individual caring for the Fountain Hill Cemetery.  Thanks!!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy and History - Week 4: Home

"Home is where one starts from." ~ T.S. Eliot

My home is and always has been in Marion, NY.  My first childhood home is actually the home I lived in when I first got married.  It is a double house that was owned by grandfather.  My parents lived here when they first got married and is the home where I started my childhood.  We lived in half of the house.  It had an eat in kitchen with a booth builtt in.  We had a dining room, a large living room with 2 big bedrooms and one bathroom upstairs.  My brother and I had to share a room.  One of my favorite parts of this house was and still is the side enclosed porch.  It is a great place to relax and read a book.  The house had an awesome backyard where my dad put in a swing and also built me a play house.  There was also a large patch of ferns that we used to play in.  We got yelled at for tromping them down but it was fun to play hide and seek in them.  One of the other great things about this house  was that I lived close to my cousin.  She lived in the other half of the house.  I remember she once packed her suitcase and ran away to my house.  My family owned three houses right in a row.  My grandpa great (Fred) lived right next door and then my grandma and grandpa Haskins lived in the house next to him.  I have lots of great  memories of living so close to them.

When I was in second grade we moved to a house on East Williamson Road, still in Marion.  This is where I spent the majority of my childhood.  That also was a great house.  I had an awesome bedroom; this time all to myself.  When we first moved in my room had red and blue wall paper.  Eventually we painted my room pink and I had pink shaggy carpet (it had like 2-3 tones of pink).  My room had a huge walk in closet, I think you could have put a single bed in it.  It was a cape cod so due to the dormers I had a nook in my bedroom where I kept all my dolls.  It made a great play space.  Our backyard was huge and we lived right near a creek which meant we spent a lot of time getting wet.  Our playroom was in the basement.  This is also where my piano was kept.  At one of the fireman auctions we got a gold colored couch that was kept down there.  My youngest brother used to take the pillows from the couch as use them as hockey goalie pads, some where I think there is a picture of this.  The house had 3 bedrooms, 2 upstairs and one small bedroom downstairs. Actually, it might have been considered a four bedroom because we had another small room downstairs that we stored stuff in.  It had one bathroom, also downstairs. It had one living room and a side sun porch. It didn't have a dining room but did have an eat in kitchen.  It had a fruit cellar, which was a small part of the basement with a dirt floor that was for storing vegetables and other produce.  We lived in this house until I was a senior in high school.

My final childhood home was back on the family compound near my first one.  My dad spent many years fixing up my grandpa great's (Fred) house.  This is where my parent's still live and the house I think of as my main childhood home however it is not the one where most of my childhood memories come from.

Church Record Sunday - Smithfield Church Record; Amenia NY

I was lucky enough to have the caretaker of the Smithfield Burying Grounds in Amenia, NY assist me in looking through the records of the Smithfield Presbyterian Church.  He sent a correspondence with a transcription of members of the Haskins family that were referenced in that resource.  This information helped me find my great, great grandfather George Henry Haskins.  Below is the record as it was sent to me.

Friday, January 21, 2011

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy and History: Week 3 - Cars

So, this week's personal genealogy and history topic is cars.  I didn't get my first car until I was a in college.  It was a blue 4 door Ford Tempo.  I have no idea the year.  My dad got it used.  It was nice - it was the only used car I've ever driven, all  my other cars have been new.  An interesting story about our Ford Tempo was it was stolen right out of our driveway one night (it had the keys in it).  It was later found and returned.  We found out that one of the people that stole the car was someone we grew up living next to when we were younger.  Needless to say she was mortified when she realized whose car they had taken.  I was just happy to have it returned unharmed.

The first car that I purchased was a 1995 SL2 Saturn Sedan.  It was a wine red color with four doors, a moon roof and had a spoiler on the back.  It was a fun first car.  After that I purchased a green Honda Civic, then it was a Honda Accord, moved to a Mitsubishi Endeavor and now I drive a Honda Odyssey (the ultimate mom vehicle).  I remember when I said I would NEVER own a mini-van, oh how things change.

When I was little I remember my parents owning really big cars.  At the time I was learning how to drive we owned a Ford LTD.  It was huge, green and I hated driving it. I wouldn't even drive it to take my drivers test.  I borrowed my Aunt Wendy's car which was much smaller and easier to parallel park.

My favorite cars are black first generation 1955-1957 Ford Thunderbird convertibles. I always like to go to the antique car show with my dad.  I have been doing it for years.  We go every August to the show at the town park in our town. 

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Sunday's Obituary - Sarah Haskins

As I mentioned in an earlier posting I am planning to write a book this year on my family history.  I am currently reading You Can Write Your Family History by Sharon DeBartolo Carmack.  She outlines 19 steps to help you to write a book about your family.  In step 3 she suggests a way for you to organize your research to determine if you have enough to begin the writing process or if need to dig a little more to tie up those loose ends to ensure you can succeed in writing a quality product.  This is what brings me to my post.

I was beginning to compile my Haskins family group sheets and realized I had very little documented factual information about my great-great grandmother; Sarah Drake Haskins.  I was surprised because I feel I know so much about her.  People have told me lots of information over the years but I don't have docments supportiing many of those details.  So...................back to my file box I go, where I have many pictures, obituaries and other papers on members of the family.  (At some point I want to scan them all in to my computer, but that is a different project for a different day.)  In my search I found Sarah's Obiturary.  I don't have her death certificate, which has been added to my things to do list but I was pleasantly surprised to find this treasure.

Sarah lived with her son Fred at the time of her death, which was on Union Street in Marion, NY.  My parents currently live in this house.  My mother swears she will occasionally hear her clanking around from time to time.  (If you say so mom...)

Friday, January 14, 2011

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History - Week 2: Winter

This week's personal genealogy & history challenge is to write about your winter memories from your childhood.  My winters as a child are very similar to the winters I still experience as an adult.  I live in the same town and neighborhood as I did back then.  I live in western New York near Lake Ontario so we get snow!!!  I hate snow, but as a child it wasn't as bad as I perceive it today.  My childhood winter memories make me think of snowmen and sledding.  We had and still have a great sledding hill.  The hill is part of my family's property and many generations of my family have spent quality hours and trips going up and down the hill. A day spent on the hill always means hot cocoa when you are finished.  Gotta love the cocoa!

Probably the thing that I like best about winter is making snowmen.  It is my favorite thing to do with my boys on a snowy but sunny winter day.  I used to make them with my mom when I was little.   We also spent lots of time making snow forts and playing tag games in the snowy yard.  I remember wearing snow mobile boots and having to put my feet in bread bags before putting them on so that they would stay dry.  As I got a little older I had a really cool pair of white and blue moon boots.
Winter Then 

Winter Now

Friday, January 7, 2011

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History - Week 1: New Year's

So I am going to be attempting to participate in the 52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy &  History events sponsored by Genea-Bloggers (one of the ways I will be trying to blog more)  The first week's topic is New Year's.

In my family we didn't really have any so called "traditions" around New Year's.  For most New Year's we were just at home hanging out as a family.  We always watched the Rose Bowl Parade which is something I still like to do but my boys could care less about.  We also would watch the bowl games that were on TV. 

My husband's family had the tradition of having to eat sauerkraut and pork for dinner.  I have been told that it is Polish tradition and you need to eat it on New Year's Day to bring you good luck and fortune in the new year.  We still have to do this - nobody wants the sauerkraut but it gets made and we are subjected to having to eat at least one bite.

Most of these childhood traditions are the same things that we do with our own kids.  I try to reflect on the new year.  I go through our pictures and pick out my favorites to generate a year in review to share with friends and family.  We also seem to begin the cleaning out process and reorganization of the house.  We clean closets, cupboards and get rid of junk.  It is nice to simplify and purge as we start the new year.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy 2011

Well today marks the start of a new year and ends another year that was full of wonderful memories and good times!  As a family, we have had a lot of fun being together and in terms of family research I was very successful.  In 2010 I found George Henry!!!  I'm not sure how many people really appreciate what that discovery meant to me but it was epic.  I have been looking for him for over 8 years and finally with the help Mr. Webb in Amenia, NY and a trip to Connecticut I was able to put the pieces of the puzzle together to locate him.   He is buried in Deep Run Connecticut with his sister Julia and her family.  I am in the process of acquiring death certificates and other information to see what details I can learn.

As far as 2011 goes...........I plan to write a book.  I have already warned my family; their response was "you're crazy."  Oh well.  I am excited to take my family research one step farther.  Not sure exactly the details of my book but that is my project for the year.  I also plan to blog on a more regular basis (regular basis yet to be defined).

Yesterday I asked my family what their favorite memories from 2010 were, some of the responses included:
  • Our hike to Grimes Glen in Naples, NY.
  • Going to the Pirate Maze for fall fun and shooting the canon.
  • Our vacations to Myrtle Beach and Atlantic Beach, especially going in the ocean.
  • Going to see Jake and Addi.
They certainly didn't say having their picture taken 100 million different times, but I appreciate how they humor me and hope they realize it is only going to be worse this year now that I have my new camera.