Don Taylor Genealogy – Privacy Policy

With all the talk about the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and Privacy Policies, I thought I’d update mine.

Don Taylor Genealogy Privacy Policy

I do not share personal information with third-parties nor do I store information collected about your visit to this blog for use other than to analyze content performance through the use of cookies, which you can turn off at any time by modifying your Internet browser’s settings except as described below.

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This privacy policy is subject to change without notice.

Chester Parsons and the 1820 Census

Census Sunday
Brown/Sanford/Parsons Line
By Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.Following ancestors through all the census records is often difficult, particularly in census records before 1850, when only the head of household was named. Tracing my 4th great-grandfather, Chester Parsons was straight-forward from the 1880 census back to the 1850 census, even on to the 1830 Census, while Chester was in Saline, Michigan. Before that, he was a young man in someone else’s household not in Michigan. The path to understanding is to take what you know, hypothesize what should be, then see if research fits.

What I think I know.

  • Chester was born on 1 December 1799 in Sandisfield, Berkshire, Massachusetts.
  • Chester married his first wife in Greene County, New York in 1824.
  • In May 1826, Chester and his young family moved from New York to Saline, Washtenaw County, Michigan Territory.
  • He and his family appear in 1830, 1840, 1850, 1860, 1870, and 1880 censuses. The family seems to have been very stable living in Saline, Michigan, for over 60 years.
  • Chester’s father, John Parsons, died in 1813 in Greene County, New York.
  • In 1820 Chester would have been 20 years old.

My Speculation.

Because Chester probably lived with his father when his father died in 1813 and Chester probably resided in Greene County when he married in 1824, I presume the 20-year-old Chester also was living in Greene County during the 1820 Census. If so, who was he living with?

Search & Results

A quick search on Family Search of all families with the Parsons surname living in Greene County, New York in 1820 yielded four candidates, Samuel, Orrin, Albert, and Stephen. I’m looking for any of those people that might have Chester living with him.

Samuel Parsons – This Windham household consists of 1 Male (Age 26-45) and no other males. Chester’s oldest brother was named Samuel and would have been 33-years-old. This Samual is possibly, even likely, Chester’s brother.

Orrin and Samuel were enumerated next to each other in the 1820 Census.

Orrin Parsons – This Windham household consists of two males (one 16 to 26 and one under 10. There is also a female 16 to 26 in the household. Chester’s 2nd oldest brother was named Orrin and was 25 at the time. It is likely this was him with his wife, and first, previously unknown, son.

Albert Parsons – This Windham household consisted of five individuals, apparently Albert age 16-26, male 10-16, and male under 10 and two females, one, an apparent wife 16 to 26 and another age 10 to 16. There is no known Albert Parsons in my research before this. I will probably need to do more research to determine this Albert’s place in the family or determine he isn’t related. In any event, Chester is not in that household either.

Conclusion

Chester’s father John died in 1814. It appears that Samuel and Orrin each married and established households of their own. Chester, his brother John, and their mother were probably either missed in the 1820 Census or were living in the household of someone without the surname Parsons in Greene County, New York.

Further Research

  • It is possible that Chester and family lived with sister Mary/Polly in 1820. Research Mary/Polly Parsons’ life.
  • It is possible that Chester and family lived with a female sibling of John Parsons, Jr. Research the lives of the other Parsons of Sandisfield, Massachusetts that located to Windham, Greene County, New York between 1800 and 1820.

My Genealogical Year in Review – 2017

Dontaylorgenealogy.com

My blog received the most significant amount of effort from me during the year. I wrote 143 posts during the year – A couple of months with 14 posts, a couple of months with nine posts, but the result was 2.75 posts per week. My goal is to post a minimum of once every three days, so I met my goal by posting an average of once every 2.5 days. My number one post was the same as post as in 2016, “Why I’ll never do business with MyHeritage Again.” I guess people like to read rants.

My second most popular blog posting concerned learning of a half-sister for my mother. In “OMG – Another Half-Sibling,” I write about learning that my mother has a half-sister that no one ever knew about. A woman, given up for adoption in the 1930s, through Ancestry DNA learned of her biological family, and I had the opportunity to be a part of the discovery. I had the enjoyable experience of traveling to Chicago and meeting her and her daughter. It was a great experience.

Number 3 on my blog posts was a surprise. Website Review: Lost Cousins didn’t provide much insight on their website. Instead, it pointed out to me some of the weaknesses in my data and research citations.
Search Military Records - Fold3

Number 4 was a posting about “Family Tree Maker for Mac 2.1.” I had become frustrated with Family Tree Maker when a previous version had corrupted my source citations. I returned to Family Tree Maker last year and have subsequently updated to Family Tree Maker for Mac 2017. I am pleased with the decision. It isn’t as robust as some other products, like Roots Magic, but has an actual Mac interface, which I prefer to Windows runtime emulators. If Roots Magic had a real Mac interface, I’d be hard-pressed to decide which I would use.

Number 5 is the main menu for my Brown family tree activities. When I am in communications with folks about my genealogical activities, I suggest they watch my four primary family pages, My mother’s line Brown-Montran, my biological father’s line Roberts-Barnes, my wife’s father’s line, Howell-Hobbs and my wife’s mother’s line, Darling-Huber.  I have done more research on my Brown-Montran tree, so as I might expect that tree had the highest number of visits.

I receive the most significant number of compliments and “that was interesting” statements from individuals regarding my Donna Montran vaudeville articles. For me, learning of Donna’s trunk and the photos and news clippings that it contained has provided insight into Donna’s life. My process of digitizing them, incorporating them into a much more extensive Donna Montran story is one of the most enjoyable activities in which I engage.

Scarborough Historical Society

My number two area of activities is with the Scarborough Historical Society. Certainly, I have become their “technology guru” and an important resource for people who come to the society and museum with genealogical questions. I am slowly beginning to know about the vast genealogical resources there. If you have ancestors in Scarborough, I can probably help you find resources. I also manage their Blog site, Scarborough Historical Society dot Org and serve on the society’s Board of Directors.

Genealogy Groups

Greater Portland Chapter of the Maine Genealogical Society (MGS)

I am the Treasurer of the Greater Portland Chapter of MGS. I regularly attend meetings with them.  Additionally, the Chapter president has appointed me to be the “Officially Designated Representative” (ODR) to the Maine Genealogical Society. As the ODR I am a board member on the MGS and participate in their board meetings.

Maine Genealogical Society

Besides being the ODR to the MGS, I am also an assistant webmaster for their website – Maine Roots dot Org. I don’t do design activities; instead, I keep up with routine maintenance activities adding user accounts, changing prices on items for sale, etc.

Scarborough Public Library Genealogy Group

I organized and lead a Genealogy Group at my public library.

Other

I am a regular participant at the Maine Genealogical DNA Interest Group and manage their website. I am a regular participant at the South Portland Library Genealogy Group.

Finally, add the MGS annual Fall Conference, the MGS Spring Workshop, and Summer Genealogical Fair and, somehow, I seem to keep busy. They say the key to a great retirement is to keep busy. I guess I am doing so and loving it.

Conclusion

I hope you enjoy my blog articles. I will try to do a few more reviews of services; they seem to be my most popular postings. If you don’t subscribe to my blog, please do so. Also, I intersperse affiliate advertising on my blog. I try not to make promotion the focus of my activities. As a matter of fact, I endeavor to keep them unobtrusive. However, they have the potential to help offset my costs (although they haven’t so far). Your use of my links will be much appreciated.

The most amazing thing about 2017’s significant discoveries was that they weren’t even thought of in 2016. So, I’m excited to learn what developments 2018 will bring. I expect them to be things I haven’t thought of yet. Hopefully, your new year will be as exciting as I anticipate mine will be.

 

Hypothesis: Lenora Busbee’s Parents

Howell/Vinson/Busbee Line
By Don Taylor

[Occasionally, I am asked about my process of solving difficult genealogical process and breaking through brick walls. The following describes one of my methods.] 

Lenora Busbee is one of the brick walls I have on my wife’s Howell/Vinson line. Lenora seems to have been called by several names, Eleanor, Ella, Elnora, and Lenora. When I have a brick wall I try to take a logical approach to breaking down the wall. Sort of shake the tree and see what might fall out. My steps include:

  1. Determine what my genealogical question is.
  2. Define what I know.
  3. Define what I surmise and/or what my hypothesis is.
  4. Develop an approach to answer my genealogical questions.

My Question

The simple genealogical question is what are the names of the parents of Lenora Vincent (Née Busbee).

What I think I know:

Lenora went by several name, Elnora, Eleanor, Lenora, and Ella. She was born between 1817 and 1827 in North Carolina and she married John Vincent/Vinson about 1844. All records I have discovered indicate her maiden name was “Busbee.”

What I surmise or hypnotize:

Because she was born in North Carolina and was married in North Carolina, I assume she was in North Carolina during the 1840 Census and she will show in the 1840 Census as a child between 13 and 23.

Approach

My approach is to look at the 1840 Census for Busbee/Busby families and analyze which family she is likely to have been a part of and determine if her likely parentage. With some luck, I thought I might even be able to determine which family is hers.

Results

For this type of search, I like to use Ancestry.Com. For search criteria, I used:

  •             Last Name: Busbee (Exact & Similar) and
  •             Location: North Carolina, USA (Exact to the Place)

The search yielded four results showing Busbee/Busby families in North Carolina during the 1840 Census.

Name              County             Females

Jas F Busby     Gates County 1 female under 5
1 female 20-29

James Busbee Wake               1 female 15-19
1 female 40-49

Mary Busbee – Wake              1 female 15-19
1 female 20 to 29
1 female 40-49

Johnson Busber – Wake          1 female 15-19
1 female 20 to 29
1 female 40-49.

(Note: The Mary Busbee household of 1840 also included one male 10 to 14 which I will use below.)

Analysis

Start LookingJas F. Busby – Unlikely
The only male in the house from 30 to 39 years of age. The 1 female 20 to 29 is most likely his wife.

James Busbee – Possible
The female age 40-49 is likely James’ wife, but the female 15 to 19 might be Lenora.

Mary Busbee – Very possible
It is likely that Mary Busbee is the female 40 to 49. That leaves two females in the household, one 15-19 and one 20 to 29.

Johnson Busber – Possible, but unlikely.
The surname is similar but not the same sound; however, Johnson does have females living with him that could include Lenora.

So, I am going to assume that James Busbee or Mary Busbee is likely Lenora’s parent.

1850 Census

James Busbee shows in the 1850 Census with his apparent wife Elizabeth, and two boys. The female 15 to 19 could still be Lenora.

The only Mary Busbee in the 1850 Census in North Carolina is the 24-year-old Mary living with an apparent husband, Larking Busbee. No help there.

1830 Census – In 1830 I would expect Lenora to be identified as a female aged 3 to 13.

The Alford Busbee family consisted of two females one under 5 and one 20 to 29. Mary Busbee would have been 30 to 40 years old then so Alford is not likely the father.

The Polly Busbee family consisted of one male under 5, one female 5 to 9 and one female 30 to 39. This family has the exact same makeup as the Mary Busbee family of 1840.

The Ransome Busbee family consisted of one male under 5, and two females under 5 and one female 15 to 19.  Again, this could not be the Mary Busbee family of 1840.

Finally, there is a William Busby living in Northampton county, who has two females under 5, one, female 5 to 9 and one female 20 thru 29 living with him.  The female 20 to 29 is unlikely to be the Mary who would be from 30 to 39-years-old.

Conclusion

My look at the potential parents for Lenora are down to only two likely sets.

  1. James & Elizabeth Busbee of Wake County, North Carolina. A well-to-do family consisting of three boys, 2, ages 5-9 and one age 15-19 and one girl age 15 to 19.
  2. Unknown & Mary/Polly Busbee, née unknown of Wake County, North Carolina.
    A modest family consisting of a single mother, one boy, age 10 to 14, and two girls one 15 to 19 and one 20 to 29.

There is one more bit of information which may help. In the 1850 Census, there is an Eliza Beasley living in the John & Lenora Vinson household. I have long thought that she is probably related to either John or Lenora. Beasley is close enough in sound to Busbee that she could be a spinster sister of Lenora. If so, she would have been 5 to 8 years older and would fit the older girl profile in both the 1840 and 1830 census records for Mary/Polly Busbee. The 1840 Census indicates that living in John’s family was a girl who is presumed to be his sister Nancy, so this Eliza is unlikely a sibling of John.

Future Action

  • Determine the names of the children of James and Elizabeth Busbee of Wake County, North Carolina.
  • Determine the names of the children of Mary/Polly Busbee née unknown of Wake County, North Carolina. Mary/Polly appears to have died or remarried before 1850.

I’ll look closely at these families as my next step the next time I research the Howell/Vinson/Busbee line.

————- Disclaimer ————-

 

Maine Marriage Records

By Don Taylor

photo of hole in a brick wall
Hole in Brick Wall – Photo by counterclockwise via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

I recently had the opportunity to be a Genealogy “brick wall buster,” which is a person who helps someone break through their genealogical brick walls. They say teaching a subject helps the teacher learn the topic even more. Likewise, helping others with their “brick walls” is an amazing process wherein I learn so much more. Anyway, one of my querists wanted to know, How to find marriage records in Maine.

As I thought about how I would approach the question I thought of several Wikis and ask the person if they used the Family Search wiki. She said, “No.” As I went through the day, I realized how few people knew about the two best genealogy wiki sites on the Internet. Everyone I spoke to during the day used Family Search and Ancestry.Com, but none of them ever used either of the two wikis.

I prefer the Family Search wiki. http://familysearch.org/wiki.  It seems to always provide the answer to my research questions.  For example, a search for Maine Marriage Records brings me to a page about the differences in records before 1892, between 1892 and 1922, and since 1922.

The Ancestry Wiki: http://ancestry.com/wiki/ is also a hidden gem – a fountain of information. Many people have subscriptions to Ancestry and many others access Ancestry through their local libraries, but I found few use the Ancestry Wiki. The results received from searching the Ancestry Wiki for “Maine Marriage Records,” was not quite as clear as Family Search but did quickly lead me to a Maine Vital Records page, which also told me all I needed to know.

The Maine Genealogy Network is one of my favorite sites for specifically Maine research. They have many Maine Specific databases, see http://www.mainegenealogy.net/databases.asp for a list of them. There is also a great article about “Finding Maine County Marriage Returns”

http://network.mainegenealogy.net/profiles/blogs/maine-county-marriage-returns, which explains methods to access some of the early Maine marriage records that may exist.

Scarborough Records

For Scarborough Records, the Cumberland County Marriages from 1786 thru 1886 may be browsed on the Family Search site at https://familysearch.org/search/catalog/553508. Look for the camera icon at the bottom right to see the images.

Image of Book Cover - Vital Records of Scarborough Maine.

There is a great book, Vital Records of Scarborough, Maine by James H. Wick published by the Maine Genealogical Society (MGS). The book is currently out of print and unavailable from the MGS, however, Minerva indicates it is available at several libraries in the area, (See https://tinyurl.com/ycb5ga9x) including the Scarborough Public Library. We also have a copy of it at the Scarborough Museum which may be viewed at the museum.

Also at the museum, we have several boxes of microfilm.  As an example, one of the boxes, Number 225, is a reel of “Town Records Births prior to 1891 with some dates to 1908, deaths ca. 1819-1891, intentions of marriage and marriage records 1816-1879.  I need to find a way to get these digitized and available or, better yet, find where someone else has already digitized these records.

Do you know of additional Maine Marriage Record sources available?  If so, please let me know through the comment form below.