Census records are the mainstay of genealogical research. One of my favorite census records is the 1895 Minnesota State Census. Not only does it provide much of the information you would expect in a Census – Name, Age, Sex, Race, Place of Birth, and Occupation – it provides information about how long males over 21 have been in the state, how long they have been in the Enumeration District, and if they were a soldier or sailor in the War of Rebellion (Civil War).
When I learned my new cousin (See: Keep Trees Wide, Not Deep) was a descendant of Jessie M. and Nancy A (Mannin) Barnett, I wanted to add a bit more about them and their children into my tree information.
Sure enough. I learned Jessie (and presumably the entire family) moved to Minnesota about March 1883 (12 years and 2 Months before the 1 June 1895 Census) and moved to May Township (Township 134, Range 31) about March 1886 (9 years and 2 months before the Census.) Sarah being born in Minnesota and Albert being born in Kentucky confirms the arrival in Minnesota date. I also learned that Jessie was a soldier in the War of Rebellion. I also received confirmation about several of the children’s dates and places of birth. Finally, the census showed one child, John M. Barnett, whom I had no record of before. The 1895 Census does not provide relationships; however, it is a fairly safe bet that John M was the son of Jesse and Nancy. I tentatively added him to my listing of children and will work to confirm the relationship later.
My transcription notes:
1895 Minnesota Census – Jessie Barnett, Cass County[i]
Enumeration Date was 1 June 1895.
Township 134, Range 31 (May Township)
Name Age Born Res. St/ED Occ. Mos. War
Barnett, Jessie M. 46 KY 12, 2; 9, 2, Farmer 12, Soldier
Barnett, Nancy A. 46 KY
Barnett, Albert M 14 KY
Barnett, Sarah M. 12 MN
Barnett, Martin W 9 MN
Barnett, John M. 7 MN
Barnett, Jessie W 4 MN
[i] “Minnesota State Census, 1895,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MQ6T-52G : 26 November 2014), Jessie M Barnett, Township 134N, Range 31W, Cass, Minnesota; citing p. 3, line 21, State Library and Records Service, St.Paul; FHL microfilm 565,765.
During the last meeting of the Maine Genealogical DNA Interest Group, someone asked if it is better to have a tree that is deep or a tree that is wide. I mentioned that, for autosomal DNA test matches, a wide tree is best. The sheer number of potential 5th and 6th cousins is daunting. But, more importantly, the likelihood of your sharing DNA with a 4th cousin is only 69% and the likelihood of sharing DNA with a 5th cousin is only 30%.[i] Consequently, knowing your 10th great grandparents is of little use in matching DNA cousins. (Consequently, knowing your 10th great grandparents is of little use in matching DNA cousins. There are two exceptions to this, Y-DNA tree (paternal only) is useful for connecting trees on a Y-DNA match. Also, X-DNA can provide a similar usefulness.)
The importance of having a wide tree was exemplified recently. I was contacted through 23 and Me by a, potentially, 2nd to 4th cousin (I’ll call B.J.) I took a look at the match using 23 & Me‘s new She and my aunt Barbara shared 88cM across five segments. My mother shared 50cM across two segments; interestingly enough, I also shared 50cM across two segments. Looking at what segments all four of us share is an excellent example of how sticky DNA segments are. All three of us shared the same sticky chunk of DNA.
We exchanged basic tree information, she mentioned her ancestors were a Mannin and a Barnett. When she said that, I knew we were related and I was pretty sure I knew exactly how. Nancy Ann Mannin married Jessie Monroe Barnett about 1867 in Kentucky. They later moved to Minnesota and settled May Township in Cass County, Minnesota.
A couple more email exchanges and I learned that B.J. and my Aunt Barbara were third cousins their common ancestor was Enoch Mannin. Enoch was one of those pivotal people in my genealogical research and I knew a lot about him and his descendants. I even had B.J.’s mother (but not her father nor her) in my family tree records.
Thanks to 23 and Me for providing the tools to connect with another cousin.
This Veterans Day, like most Veterans Days, I honor my veteran ancestors. This day was originally known as Armistice Day because an armistice – the cessation of hostilities – went into effect on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918.
Today, I also take a look at the men of the Forty-Second Infantry Division, U.S.A. Known as the “Rainbow Division,” Douglas MacArthur suggested its formation from multiple states that would “stretch over the whole country like a rainbow.” The division was created in 1917 from 26 states, including Maine, and was one of the first divisions of the American Expeditionary Force to go to Europe. Douglas MacArthur was promoted to Colonel as the Division’s Chief of Staff.
The photo below is of some of the Forty-Second Division soldiers hanging out at a shell shelter. Two of the men are sleeping, one on the cold ground, the other on what looks to be a really uncomfortable ridge of the shell. However, it is the expressions of the other soldiers that makes me wonder. They are all looking at something off to their left. Two of the men have odd smiles on their faces. I wonder what they are seeing. Something definitely interesting.
Next, we see a commander’s post. It is unclear if this with the 42nd Division’s command post during the Champagne-Marne campaign (15–18 July 1918) or sometime before that.
Finally, the New York Times gives us a glimpse of the 42nd in the trenches. Crowded, guns at the ready, bayonets affixed. Ready for combat.
From March until July, 1918, the Germans were losing about 20,000 soldiers a month on the Western Front. Total causalities were well over 100,000 soldiers a month during the same period. Four months after this picture, the armistice was signed and the bloodiest war in European history (at that time) was over.
Yes, today is a day to remember our veterans and thank them for their service. But it is also a day to reflect upon the “war to end all wars.” As a Vietnam veteran, I wish we could just find a way to only create peacetime veterans and not have any wars. Deterrence is better than battle.
It is seldom that a company angers me enough that I say, “I’ll NEVER, NEVER EVER, do business with that company again.” MyHeritage has successfully achieved that status with me.
I was enticed to use MyHeritage when 23 and Me eliminated their own ancestry trees and transferred them to MyHeritage. My tree was transferred to MyHeritage and I eventually subscribed to them because of 23 and Me’s endorsement. I didn’t find their service particularly useful and decided to drop them.
First of all, it seems that every responsible company I do business with sends a notification a week or two before an automatic renewal takes effect. On rare occasions, when a company doesn’t send such a notification, I have always been able to call them the following business day, have the automatic renewal canceled, and have the money refunded. Not so with MyHeritage.
A few months ago I had gone onto Pay Pal and canceled my automatic renewal. I thought that I was done. But when I was charged, I checked Pay Pal and found there were two entries for MyHeritage. The first one I had canceled. But there was a second entry. It had an expiration date of Dec 13, 1901. I had no idea that I had to cancel that too. I thought, no problem, I’ll just call them, they’ll refund the money, and we’ll be square – No harm, no foul.
I was wrong. I explained I hadn’t used the service in months. I explained that I canceled one service. I explained that I didn’t realize I need to cancel a service that had an expiration date of 1901, to no avail. After talking at length with a “customer service representative” the bottom line was, “We typically don’t refund renewal fees.” Finally, I asked to speak with a supervisor.
I waited several minutes. Finally, the same customer service representative came back. I couldn’t speak with his supervisor, but his supervisor said I could have half my money back and he’d allow the annual subscription to remain active for the year. Certainly, I felt disrespected by the supervisor who wouldn’t even speak with me. An unhappy customer with a problem deserves being spoken to; that is why supervisors usually have the flexibility to go outside standard protocols.
The good news is that I did receive half of my money back ($59.40). The bad news is that I paid half-price for a subscription that don’t want and I’ll never, never ever, use.
I believe Pay Pal is also culpable. Further investigation revealed that MyHeritage’s automatic subscriptions do expire in 80 years. Had Pay Pal displayed an expiration date of Dec 13, 2095, instead of Dec 13, 1901, I would not have missed that I needed to cancel that also,
There are only a handful of companies that I’ll never do business with. Congratulations to MyHeritage, you have made my list.
Could MyHeritage come off my list? Sure; but, they would need to take the next step in making this former customer happy. Have you had problems with MyHeritage and their renewal process? If so, feel free to comment below. I’ll publish some of the better comments.
Grandmother Donna’s playing at the Park Theatre in Youngstown, Ohio reminds me that not everything is on the Internet. It is only by luck and happenstance that I learned of “Chin-Chin” being in Youngstown at all.
I finally had a chance to research the show’s presentation in Youngstown and I couldn’t find much more. After going through my regular sources, Newspapers.Com, Genealogy Bank, and Ancestry.Com, I only had one small ad. Everything I did find came from the Salem News, in Salem, Ohio, about 25 miles away from Youngstown. Nothing from a Youngstown newspaper.
Through the Julius Cahn-Gus Hill Theatrical Guide and Moving Picture Supplement of 1922, under Youngstown, Ohio, I learned there were two newspapers of note in 1922 – The “Vindicator” and the “Telegram.”[i]
The Ancestor Hunt
Next, I needed to see where those newspapers might be available. My favorite site to look for newspapers is The Ancestor Hunt. I went there and did a quick search for “Ohio.” The first of the responses to the search (that weren’t ads) was Ohio Online Historical Newspapers Summary – Exactly what I was looking for.
A search for Youngstown yielded three items.
McKinley Memorial Library – Youngstown Telegram – The link didn’t appear to work. After a couple minutes, it finally loaded the page. They had a browse by title button, I clicked it and then learned that the only year they have for the Youngstown Telegram was 1918. No help there.
Next, was a link to Google News. There were many issues of the Youngstown Evening Vindicator before May 1893, but nothing from 1920.
Finally, was another link to Google News. There were many issues of the Youngstown Vindicator available there. Several papers from March, and April 1920 were available, but many others were missing. I looked at the March 27th image. Page 4 was clearly the Amusements page, but there was nothing there about “Chin Chin” that I could discern. The next paper available on Google News was April 18th, well after the show.
One of the other great features that The Ancestor Hunt pages has is that it typically provides a link to the paid subscription sites so that you can determine which sites might have the newspapers you need. In my case, the Youngstown newspaper search yielded the following:
Ancestry.Com – None – (Confirmation that I didn’t miss anything.)
Genealogy Bank – Daily News 2011 to current. (Confirmation that I didn’t miss anything.)
Newspapers.Com – None (Confirmation that I didn’t miss anything.)
NewspaperArchives.Com – None (I am not currently a subscriber.)
The Chronicling America site then will let you know what locations may have the issues you are looking for. According to them,
The Ohio Historical Society has Microfilm for the Telegram from 1901 to 1936.
The Ohio Historical Society has Microfilm for the Vindicator from 1893 to 1936.
So, I am reminded that not everything is on the Internet and that visits are important. Time for a road trip to Ohio.
“Chin Chin” at Park Theatre, Youngstown, OH
Donna and the cast of “Chin Chin” played at the Faurot Opera House in Lima, Ohio on the 6th of April 1920. We don’t know where Donna played on the 7th, but we now know that she did play the Park Theatre in Youngstown, Ohio, on the 8th. Lima and Youngstown are about 200 miles apart, so I suspect there was another location they stopped along the way.
On April 3rd, The Salem News ran a short article about “Scenes of Arabian Nights in ‘Chin Chin’”
The article mentions that the show will be “one night only.” However, an advertisement for the Park Theatre indicates [erroneously] that it will show “2 Days Only.” It was only there for two shows, not two days. “Chin Chin” played at the Victoria Theatre in Steubenville the following night (April 9th).
According to the Julius Cahn-Gus Hill Theatrical Guide and Moving Picture Supplement (1922), Youngstown was a city of 132,358 (a number directly from the 1920 Census data).[ii] The Park Theatre was a large theater, with a seating capacity of 1,527 and did plays, pictures, legitimate and burlesque. The stage was 36 x 36 feet.[iii]
History of the Park Theatre
The Park Theater was opened in 1901 at 23 S. Champion Street. By 1914 it was operating as a mixed venue having added moving pictures. In 1920, when Donna played there, it was still a mixed venue showing both live shows and moving pictures. In 1948 the theater was purchased by the people of the Grand across the street and converted to a burlesque house. By the 1950’s, it was running X-rated movies.[iv] It finally closed in the 1960’s.[v]
Today, the site is the location of the Youngstown campus of the Eastern Gateway Community College.
Nearby hotels suggested by 1922 Julius Cahn-Gus Hill guide included the Tod House, Colonial Hotel, Salon Hotel, and the Vanier Hotel. The railroads serving the city were the B. & O. and the Erie, Penn.
Visit the Ohio Historical Society and review their microfilm for the Youngstown Vindicator and the Youngstown Telegram for April 8th, 1920 plus 14 days before and two days after for information, articles, advertisements, and reviews of “Chin-Chin.” Note: Mahoning Valley Info Forums indicated that the Main Branch of the Youngstown Library also has the Vindicator microfilm. Need to confirm before going.