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Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter

A Weekly Summary of Events and
Topics of Interest to Online Genealogists

Vol. 5 No. 16 – April 15, 2000

This newsletter was sponsored by Ancestry.com,
a leader in providing print and electronic
research information to genealogists.

To learn about Ancestry.com’s
state-of-the-art online genealogy databases
and other fine products,
visit the company’s three Internet properties,
MyFamily.com, Ancestry.com, and FamilyHistory.com

Past issues of this Newsletter
are available at:
http://www.ancestry.com/learn/columns/eastman.htm


Copyright© 2000 by Richard W. Eastman. All rights reserved.

If you do contact any of the companies or societies mentioned in this newsletter, please tell them that you read about their services in this newsletter.


IN THIS ISSUE:

- "Ancestors" Returns to PBS
- Another Fire at National Archives’ Washington National Records Center
- Fire at Société Généalogie Lanaudière
- Immigrants to Pennsylvania, 1600s – 1800s CD-ROM
- Online Searchable Database of Mexican War Officers
- Abbreviations & Acronyms: A Guide for Family Historians
- Martha Ballard’s Diary Online
- More Legal Problems for DeCode Genetics
- From The Mailbox: More on DNA
- Carrying Stones to Stonehenge
- Home Pages Highlighted


- "Ancestors" Returns to PBS

"Ancestors" was a ten-episode television series that aired on Public Broadcasting in the United States in 1997. The series has been rerun on many PBS stations since that date. The producers of "Ancestors" now are returning with thirteen new episodes, beginning in June 2000. The new series will feature a new format.

The series highlights records that family historians use, such as newspapers, immigration records, military records, and the census. Each episode includes personal stories of family history discovery, along with expert instruction from the nation's top genealogists and librarians. The producers promise that seasoned genealogists will gain as much from this series as those who have an interest in family history research but don't yet know where to begin.

Those who attended the GENTECH2000 conference in San Diego in January saw a sneak preview of the new "Ancestors" series. I saw that preview and can report that it looked great. Another preview has been shown to some members of the Federation of Genealogical Societies.

As always, PBS stations control their own schedules. While the program might be shown on Tuesdays on one PBS station, another station a few hundred miles away may show it on a different evening. You will need to contact your local PBS station for their schedule. Luckily, most PBS stations post their schedules online well in advance of the broadcast dates.

For further information about the new "Ancestors" series, look at: http://www.kbyu.org/ancestors/press/


- Another Fire at National Archives’ Washington National Records Center

The following announcement by John W. Carlin, Archivist of the United States, was released this week:

On Wednesday, April 5, 2000, a second fire was discovered by employees in a stack area at the Washington National Records Center, a storage facility operated by the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). The employees extinguished the fire with hand-held fire extinguishers and were subsequently assisted by the Prince Georges Fire Department. No one was injured by the fire.

Although we currently estimate that perhaps as few as ten boxes of records sustained fire damage, I am extremely concerned about the situation. The fire department determined that the cause of the fire was arson. The fire department, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF), and the National Archives are actively pursuing the investigation.

In the meantime, I have implemented a number of initiatives in an attempt to prevent any reoccurrence and to protect the safety of the staff and researchers, as well as the records stored at the facility.

--- Increased presence of roving guards patrolling the building

--- Further tightened access to records storage areas.

--- Camera surveillance in appropriate areas.

--- Audible alarms on all emergency exit doors.

--- Enhanced supervisory coverage.

The ATF is currently reviewing NARA security procedures and will make recommendations for further enhancements.

The Prince George's Fire Department is offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to the apprehension of the individual/or individuals responsible for the fire.

John W. Carlin
Archivist of the United States


- Fire at Société Généalogie Lanaudière

Another recent fire has destroyed the resources of the second largest genealogical collection in the province of Quebec. Sadly, this is the second loss the society has suffered in as many years. The following is an announcement from the Société Généalogie Lanaudière:

Fire Destroys Valuable Genealogical Collection

Do you have ancestors from the region of Lanaudière, which includes the counties of Berthier, Joliette, Montcalm and L'Assomption? Even if your ancestors originated from somewhere else in Quebec you would have appreciated the resources available from the library of "La Société de Généalogie de Lanaudière", which was reputed to have been the second largest genealogical collection in the province of Quebec.

It is with great sadness that I must report the destruction of this valuable collection on March 22, 2000 due to a fire. The SGL had suffered a loss two years ago when a water pipe burst on the upper floor of an old school where the collection was housed. They subsequently moved to part of the main floor of a two-story building and rebuilt the lost collection as best as possible. On Tuesday March 21st volunteers eagerly painted the walls in the other section of the main floor in anticipation of doubling the space for administration and collection areas. About 1 a.m. early Wednesday a cab driver reported a fire.

Unfortunately the firefighters could not save the library equipment or collection. The SGL is counting it as a total loss except for the publications they have available for sale. The cause of the fire is believed to have been an electrical fault.

The losses included both men and women sets of the blue Drouin, consisting of 113 volumes for marriages of French Canadians between 1760-1935. This resource consists of 49 volumes for those marriages indexed by surnames of "hommes" and 64 for "femmes". The dictionary included the date and place of marriage, the names of both parents of each of the spouses and "dit" names. Names of prior spouses were given for any widows or widowers who were remarrying.

These two sets form the largest index to French Canadian marriages. Only about a dozen libraries in the world have a set of the men's Drouin and another dozen the women's. Very few had invested in both sets of these "unpublished" treasures, as had the SGL.

The library also had the PRDH (Programme de Recherche en Démographie Humaine), a 47-volume "repertoire" of baptisms, marriages, burials and census of old Quebec. Other "repertoires" from all over Quebec, parts of the United States, Manitoba, Northwest Territories and other areas of North America where large groups of people of French descent settled in parishes or communities.

Many other lost resources were personal family histories, many Acadian books, Quebec Archives series and much more. The vice-president had just advised the membership at a meeting a week earlier that there were about 4,000 volumes in the total collection. In addition the microfilm viewer-printer worth about $15,000, six other fiche and film viewers, the photocopier, computer, printer, tables, chairs and other equipment has been destroyed.

How You Can Help

Claude Amyot, President of the Société Généalogie Lanaudière, and the Board are working diligently to rebuild the library collection and replace the equipment. Those interested in helping may do so by joining the society, contributing books on Quebec genealogy, purchasing publications from the sales inventory or making a donation. Cheques or money orders can be made out the society and mailed to them at the address as follows:

Société Généalogie Lanaudière
CP 221 Joliette, QC
J6E 3Z6
Canada

Other Details

A list of publications for sale and membership information can be found at the society's site: http://www3.sympatico.ca/durand.gauthier/sgl/#membership.

The Société de Généalogie de Lanaudière, formed in 1981, today numbers about 600 members. The society sponsored GenWebLanaudière project can be found at: http://www.rootsweb.com/~qclanaud/index.htm. Volunteers Roger Hetu and Denis Charest maintain this site, which lists some of the former resources and current researchers willing to help you find your Quebec ancestors from this region.

For example, The Charest-Bouthillier-Ferland database holds all of Lanaudière's marriages for 200,000 brides and grooms that occurred between the 17th century and 1935. The data was compiled on cards by Mr. J.A.N. Ferland, a Quebec notary, and computerized by Denis Charest and Lise Bouthillier of the Société de Généalogie de Lanaudière. If you have ancestors from the Lanaudière region (Berthier, Joliette, Montcalm, L'Assomption) for which you need marriage details, you may email Denis at decharest@pandore.qc.ca. In your request please state the names of both spouses for whom you wish to know the parents or other marriage details.

With your help this disaster can be overcome and the society will be enabled to assist those with Lanaudière and other Quebec ancestors to find their roots.


- Immigrants to Pennsylvania, 1600s – 1800s CD-ROM

This week I had a chance to use a new CD-ROM disk produced by the Banner Blue Division of genealogy.com (formerly known as Broderbund). "Immigration Records: Immigrants to Pennsylvania, 1600s – 1800s" works in conjunction with Family Tree Maker version 3.02 for either Windows or Macintosh. It also works with the free Family Archive Viewer, version 3.02 or higher. None of this software is included on the "Immigrants to Pennsylvania, 1600s – 1800s" CD-ROM; you must obtain it separately. I have written frequently about how to use the BannerBlue/Broderbund CD-ROMs with Family Tree Maker, so this week I will skip over the mechanics of that process. Instead, I will focus on the data included on this CD-ROM disk.

"Immigrants to Pennsylvania, 1600s-1800s" was produced in collaboration with the Genealogical Publishing Company. The CD-ROM contains scanned images of several different books that have previously been printed by Genealogical Publishing Company. The books include:

  • "William Penn And The Dutch Quaker Migration To Pennsylvania" - This scholarly study of the Dutch Quaker immigration to Pennsylvania names all of the settlers in Germantown during the years 1683-1709. Details were collected from various sources, including wills, personal correspondence, and obituaries. The study follows William Penn's travels to Holland and Germany and discusses the resulting settlement of the Dutch and German Quakers who accepted Penn's invitation to relocate to Pennsylvania.
  • "Immigration Of The Irish Quakers Into Pennsylvania, 1682-1750, With Their Early History in Ireland" - This work is a combined history of Quakers in Ireland and Pennsylvania. It not only provides details of the Quaker migration to Pennsylvania, but it also examines the social life of the Friends. The Appendix, comprising fully one-third of the volume, includes biographical sketches and abstracts of certificates of removal received at various monthly meetings. The information collected at monthly meetings ranged from details of birth, marriage and death, places of residence in Ireland, names of family members, dates of immigration, and places of residence in Pennsylvania.
  • "Quaker Arrivals At Philadelphia, 1682-1750, Being a List of Certificates of Removal Received at Philadelphia Monthly Meeting of Friends" - This volume consists of a chronological list of Quaker immigrants who registered, upon their arrival in Philadelphia, with the Philadelphia Monthly Meeting of Friends. Since a large number of the Quakers who immigrated into the Province of Pennsylvania took up residence in Philadelphia, the Philadelphia Monthly Meeting of Friends was the largest Quaker meeting in the province. Based on the certificates of removal from the Meetings of Friends of which they were members in other countries and colonies, listing of an individual generally provides the following information: name, date of certificate, former place of residence, former meeting, date of receipt, and other details of quaint and useful interest. For genealogical purposes, these removal records are important because they tell you where your ancestor lived before moving to Philadelphia.
  • "Emigrants To Pennsylvania, 1641-1819, A Consolidation of Ship Passenger Lists from 'The Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography'" - This collection of ship passenger lists from "The Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography" ranges from brief name lists to full-blown articles giving passengers' places of origin, occupations, wives and children, dates of arrival, etc. With minor exceptions these lists document the ships’ arrivals at the port of Philadelphia between 1682 and 1819 and identify approximately 6,000 immigrants, mainly British and German, the majority being named in two extensive lists of indentured servants and apprentices. Most of these lists were transcribed from manuscripts in the possession of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania.
  • "Pennsylvania German Pioneers, A Publication of the Original Lists of Arrivals in the Port of Philadelphia from 1727 to 1808" 2 Volumes - The most complete collection of colonial passenger lists ever published, these two volumes comprise all the original lists of persons who arrived in the port of Philadelphia between 1727 and 1808. The lists were assembled from state archives and give the names of 38,000 immigrants, names of ships, dates of arrival, and places of origin. Since no other port maintained such extensive and continuous records, this work is foremost among compilations of its kind. Volume I covers the period 1727-1775 and contains 324 ship passenger lists, including captains' lists, signers of the oath of allegiance, and signers of the oath of abjuration. Volume II covers the period 1785-1808 and includes 182 additional lists, in many cases giving ages, occupations, and birthplaces. All names and variant spellings are listed in the Index, which comprises some 450 pages and 50,000 references. This publication is a reprint of the work originally compiled for the Pennsylvania German Society.
  • "Names Of Foreigners Who Took The Oath Of Allegiance To The Province And State Of Pennsylvania, 1727-1775 With Foreign Arrivals, 1786-1808" - This work is a comprehensive list of "foreigners" (mostly Germans) who immigrated to Pennsylvania between the years 1727 and 1775, and again during the years 1786-1808. The following information is available in this book: full name, the name of the ship on which a person sailed, date of arrival, port of origin, and, in some instances, ages, names of wives, and names of children. With an index of about 35,000 references.
  • "A Collection Of Upwards Of Thirty Thousand Names Of German, Swiss, Dutch, French And Other Immigrants In Pennsylvania From 1727 To 1776" - This work consists mostly of 319 ship passenger lists. Arranged by date of the ship's arrival, each passenger list notes the name of the ship and its origin. Also included is a listing of over a thousand settlers who came to Pennsylvania from other states. There is an index of ships and an 84-page index of surnames.
  • "Record Of Indentures Of Individuals Bound Out As Apprentices, Servants, Etc. And Of German And Other Redemptioners In The Office Of The Mayor Of The City Of Philadelphia, October 3, 1771, To October 5, 1773" - Excerpted from "The Pennsylvania-German Society Proceedings and Addresses," XVI, 1907, the vast majority of the passengers cited herein sailed from British, Irish, or Dutch ports, though some passengers certainly were of German origin. Altogether about 5,000 individuals are listed, and the information given for each of them includes the port of embarkation, exact date of arrival, name of person to whom apprenticed or indentured, residence, occupation, term of service, and exact price of apprenticeship or indenture.
  • "Passenger Arrivals At The Port Of Philadelphia, 1800-1819" - The Philadelphia "baggage lists" are the oldest federal passenger lists in existence. Compiled in accordance with a law made to exempt in-coming passengers from paying duty on their personal belongings, they provide proof of immigration in the first two decades of the 19th century. In the lists are the names of the passengers, and in many cases there is data on such items as passengers' ages, nationalities, former places of residence, occupations, destinations, and the names and relationships of accompanying family members. In all, there are about 4,767 ship lists with about 40,000 passengers identified--most from Great Britain (especially Northern Ireland) and Germany. For convenience all of the passengers' names have been arranged in a single alphabetical list.

This CD-ROM contains scanned images of each page from the original books. These images obviously contain every word from the original books, but the text is not easily copied into a word processor or other program. Instead, each page is treated as a separate picture.

I found that the CD-ROM disk contains an excellent index to all the names mentioned. I was able to type in a last name and then (optionally) a first name. Within a second or two I was looking at a list of all the occurrences of that name. I could then click on any occurrence, and almost immediately I was looking at the original page that contained a reference to that name. I was able to print any page on my local printer. The images that I found were always very clear and easy to read, both on the screen and on the printed copy made by my rather ancient LaserJet printer. The printed copy also shows the page number and contains a reference to the original book that contained this particular page. I wish that all CD-ROM disks included such source references on their printouts!

The "Immigration Records: Immigrants to Pennsylvania, 1600s – 1800s" CD-ROM is an excellent reference for anyone researching English Quaker, German, Dutch, Welsh, Scottish or Irish ancestry in Pennsylvania. To be sure, the data on this CD-ROM has been available for some time in printed volumes. However, you would need to pay two or three hundred dollars to purchase all the books in printed form. Instead, you can obtain the same information on CD-ROM for $29.99 (U.S. funds).

For more information about the "Immigration Records: Immigrants to Pennsylvania, 1600s – 1800s" CD-ROM, look at: http://www.familytreemaker.com/501facd.html


- Online Searchable Database of Mexican War Officers

A new database available online may be of interest to anyone with ancestors who served in the Mexican War. The Aztec Club of 1847 prepared this database. The Aztec Club of 1847 was founded in Mexico City at the time the American Army occupied that capital during the Mexican War. Its original members represent most of the major figures of the Mexican War and a significant group of those whose fame would come fifteen years later as leaders of the Union and Confederate armies in the Civil War. Quoting from information on the Society’s Web site:

Many of the Aztec Club’s original members later opposed each other in battle. Examples include George B. McClellan and Pierre G. T. Beauregard, both members of the Aztec Club serving together on General Winfield Scott’s staff in Mexico, who led opposing armies during the Civil War. Ulysses S. Grant and Simon Bolivar Buckner battled at Fort Donelson. In 1847 Captain Robert E. Lee, also a member of the Club, commended a red-whiskered young Lieutenant, Ulysses S. Grant, on his initiative and daring in battle. When Grant and Lee met face to face at Appomattox Court House that eventful day in 1865, their conversation began with reminiscences of Mexico. After the Civil War, the bond even stronger than before, these warhorses came together to perpetuate the unique bond they shared. The Aztec Club grew and thrived as it evolved from a military society into the hereditary one that exists today.

The site features two different search methods: the first being a full-name search based on first name and last name, and the second being a search routine by last name only. Search results typically yield both historical and genealogical information. At the end of each record, bibliographic source codes are provided.

For instance, here is the information displayed when searching for Henry F. Clark:

ID:937
Record:422
First Name:Henry
Middle Name:F.
Last Name:Clark
Suffix:
Birth Date:
Birth Year:
City Born:
State Born:PA
Death Date:0510
Death Year:1887
City Death:Washington
State Death:DC
Branch:USA
Academy:West Point
State Appt:PA
Rank Mexican War:1st Lieutenant
Service Unit:2nd Artillery
Ship:
Aztec Club:
Notes on Military Service:2nd Lieutenant, 2nd Artillery, June 18, 1846; 1st Lieutenant, 2nd Artillery, September 8, 1847-March 3, 1857; Bvt. Captain, September 13, 1847, for gallant and meritorious service during the Battle of Chapultepec, Mexico; listed in 1st division under Major-General Worth; wounded, September 8, 1847 at the Battle of Molino del Rey, Mexico; Captain, 10th Infantry, March 3, 1855, declined; Captain, Staff, Commissary of Subsistence, January 12, 1857; Major, Staff, Commissary of Subsistence, August 3, 1861; Colonel, Staff, Additional Aide-de-Camp, September 28, 1861-May 31, 1866; Bvt. Colonel, September 11, 1863, for meritorious service during the campaign in Maryland; Lieutenant-Colonel, Staff, Assistant Commissary General of Subsistence, June 29, 1864; Bvt. Brigadier-General, March 13, 1865, for meritorious service during the Battle of Gettysburg, PA; Bvt. Major-General, March 13, 1865, for meritorious service in the Subsistence Department during the Civil War.
Notes on Civilian Service:
Sources:W624; R15; B110; CU80-81

The sources listed at the end of the above citation refer to documents where the original information was found. Of course, you would want to review those sources as they may contain more information not contained in the above abbreviated citation. The source codes are explained on the Web site.

Note that this database only contains information about officers who served in the war, not enlisted men.

To access the Aztec Society’s Searchable Database of Mexican War Officers, go to: http://www.walika.com/aztec/search1.htm

My thanks to Betty Breithaupt for telling me about this valuable resource.


- Abbreviations & Acronyms: A Guide for Family Historians

Kip Sperry has written a number of books that are valuable to genealogists. His latest work has just been released: "Abbreviations & Acronyms: A Guide for Family Historians." I haven’t seen this book yet, but the announcement sounds great:

Puzzled by baffling abbreviations you encounter in your research?

Get unpuzzled with this long-overdue reference from Ancestry. Quickly look up the meanings of baffling abbreviations, acronyms, and other cryptic contractions like ARC BIRDIE, DAMRUS, FOIA, GEDCOM, NAIL, Xpofer and thousands more.

If you haven't already come "eye-to-I" with some of these incomprehensible initials, you surely will before long. And even though they often hold the key to further enlightening research, it's impossible to know the meaning of them all, regardless of your level of expertise.

In A&A, compiler, Kip Sperry, presents an exceptionally detailed list of meanings for:

    • abbreviations
    • alphabetic symbols
    • initials
    • contractions
    • and shortenings of words.....those that are found both in original records and in printed sources. The listings, along with a brief explanation or description of each entry, are arranged alphabetically and appear just as they would in the original documents.

    Ideal for genealogists, historians, reference librarians, and others who often work with documents that contain abbreviations or acronyms.

    8.5" x 11" paperback. 199 pages

"Abbreviations & Acronyms: A Guide for Family Historians" retails for $16.95 (U.S. funds). However, Ancestry is selling it for a bit less at: http://shop.myfamily.com:80/ancestrycatalog/product.asp?pf%5Fid=1957&dept%5Fid=10201000


- Martha Ballard’s Diary Online

Martha Ballard was born in 1735 in Oxford, Massachusetts. She married in 1754 and soon moved to Hallowell, Maine, where the couple had nine children. Until her own death in 1812, Martha was a midwife who delivered 816 children between 1785 and 1812.

Martha wrote extensively in her diary every day. Luckily for future generations, that diary has been preserved and has now become the subject of a book, a film and a Web site. Quoting from the Web site:

Through Martha's diary, however, we can learn a great deal about her life as a healer and midwife, mother and wife. We come to realize that Martha Ballard was a respected member of the community, depended upon by the inhabitants of Hallowell, Maine from 1785 until her death in 1812. Through her diary, we can also glimpse the lives of the town's other inhabitants--the ordinary people who are normally invisible to us when we look back into the past. Her diary enriches, deepens, and complicates our understanding of everyday life in early America.

Martha’s diary provides a fascinating glimpse into the world in which she lived. The Web site details her life but, even better, gives great lessons in how to study history, how to do genealogy research, and how to use primary sources, and even gives detailed information about midwifery and herbal medicine. The site describes itself as "a site that shows you how to piece together the past from the fragments that have survived."

Martha Ballard’s diary is scanned in its original form and is available online. The site also has transcriptions of the diary that are easier to read. The transcribed text version of Martha Ballard's diary at this site is the work of a dedicated husband-and-wife team, Robert R. McCausland and Cynthia MacAlman McCausland. For nearly ten years they spent their evenings transcribing verbatim Martha Ballard's 1,400+ handwritten pages, making no attempt to correct Martha's spelling or other "mistakes." Obviously this was a tedious task as Martha Ballard’s handwriting is very difficult to read.

To view this fascinating Web site, go to: http://DoHistory.com/

My thanks to Kathy Amoroso for telling me about this fascinating resource.


- More Legal Problems for DeCode Genetics

In the January 15, 2000 newsletter and again in the March 11, 2000 newsletter, I wrote about a new company being formed, called DeCode Genetics. The company was first formed in Iceland but since has incorporated as a Delaware corporation. DeCode Genetics describes itself as "an Iceland-based genomics and health information company." The company recently announced that their genealogy database with all known Icelanders for the last 1100 years is to be available on the net later this year. Their research techniques should prove valuable to genealogists everywhere.

DeCode Genetics plans to go public and is expected to generate a lot of interest in the financial community, as well as amongst genealogists. However, a co-founder who is demanding a stock certificate for his stake of 481,200 shares now has sued the company.

In papers filed late Monday in the Delaware Court of Chancery, Ernir Snorrason alleged that the company "wrongfully sought to terminate" his right to 256,637 of those shares. The company repurchased these shares, allegedly in accordance with an August, 1996 agreement, signed shortly after the company re-incorporated from Iceland to Delaware.

Snorrason said in his lawsuit that the company's claim that it could lawfully repurchase a percentage of his shares when it terminated his employment was invalid because he had never been an employee or a contractor. When DeCode was founded, Snorrason and company president Kari Stefansson each owned 35 percent of it, and two other shareholders each owned 15 percent.

This is not the first legal problem for the new company. In January, Iceland's newly-formed Genealogia Islandorum said it planned to sue DeCode for alleged copyright infringement of Genealogia's genealogy database. DeCode said at the time that in 2000 it would publish its database of Icelandic genealogy on the Internet. One of the main owners of Genealogia, Urdur Vereanei Skuld, is a rival of DeCode in Iceland.


- From The Mailbox: More on DNA

Last week I wrote about a project conducted by Brian Sykes, an expert in genetics at Britain's Oxford University. He checked the DNA of dozens of men named Sykes and found that they all seem to have descended from the same ancestor. Several people wrote in the following days to mention other studies underway that use DNA samples to study genealogy or related topics.

Several people wrote about Dr. Scott Woodward of the BYU Microbiology Department. In fact, Dr. Woodward was giving a speech last Saturday, about the same time that I sent the newsletter. Dr. Woodward spoke about "Genealogy of the World: A Molecular Approach" to the Utah Valley PAF Users Group meeting and he referred to Sykes work. Woodward then described what he has done in analyzing Egyptian mummy families by DNA analysis and even matching up Dead Sea Scroll fragments by DNA analysis of the parchment to see what pieces came from the same animal. Now he is involved with a major study of genealogy and DNA. They are collecting blood samples and 4-generation pedigree charts of thousands of people to see what the markers are for families, groups, etc.

You can read more about Dr. Scott Woodward’s work at: http://genotype.byu.edu


- Carrying Stones to Stonehenge

This week a team of volunteers began pulling a huge three-ton stone from the Preseli Mountains in Wales to Stonehenge. The ambitious project aims to follow in the footsteps of the ancient builders of the famous monument on Salisbury Plain, Wiltshire. However, the 40 volunteers who set off in glorious sunshine from Mynachlog-ddu, near Haverfordwest, found the task to be harder than expected. On the first day the group traveled only a mile. They hope to average about three miles a day and to finish the 240-mile journey in September.

Twenty volunteers at a time are pulling the stone using "yokes" with the others guiding it by its side. Protective sheets are rolled out in front of the stone, which is the size of a large table, to protect the road surface and the rock itself. The trek, which will mainly be undertaken at weekends, will include taking the stone across the Bristol Channel on the route that may have been used by Neolithic workers.

Some experts say the inner ring of the monument is made of bluestones, which were carved out of the Welsh mountains before being heaved on sledges and boats to the Wiltshire site. The year 2000 team will use a wooden sledge to drag the stone overland and a replica of a Neolithic boat to transport it across the Bristol Channel in a bid to demonstrate how our ancestors may have built Stonehenge. The stone will be loaded on Stone Age boats called currachs for the journey across the Bristol Channel before being transported along the River Avon to the Kennet and Avon Canal. It will then be dragged the final 26 miles to the Stonehenge site.


 - Home Pages Highlighted

The following is a list of some of the genealogy-related World Wide Web home pages that have been listed recently on http://www.rootscomputing.com:

Update to the 1853 genealogy on the descendants of Thomas and Margery (Baker) Nash, originally compiled by Rev. Sylvester Nash. This project was begun in 1953 and publication is anticipated for 2001. Over 20,000 Nash descendants are presently in the database: http://www.hevanet.com/drothery

An Arkansas Connection is devoted primarily to providing information on various surnames that are connected in some way with Pike County, Arkansas: http://www.themyers.org

A genealogical resource for those researching the family names of Key, Keye, Kee, Keys, Keyes and Kees.: http://www.themyers.org/keystothepast

MIGenWeb-Gazette - News, announcements, special reports and genealogy advice from the MIGenWeb Project about Michigan genealogy and local history: http://www.egroups.com/group/migenweb-gazette/

The Frees and Geesey Family Home Page of the Frees/Freese family in Canada, New York and Ohio and the Geesey/Giese/Gysi family in Switzerland, Pennsylvania and Iowa: http://www.familytreemaker.com/users/b/r/u/Mona-J-Bruce/index.html

KIBBE family back to 1588 in England: http://www.zianet.com/kharbst/genealogy/page8.htm

To submit your home page to this newsletter, enter the necessary information at: http://www.rootscomputing.com/register.htm. Due to the volume of new Web pages submitted, I am not able to list all of them in the newsletter.


Are you interested in the articles in this newsletter? Would you like to learn more or ask questions or make comments about these articles? Join this newsletter’s online discussion group on CompuServe’s Genealogy Techniques Forum. CompuServe members using Netscape, Internet Explorer or CompuServe 2000 can go to http://go.compuserve.com/GenealogyForum. If you are using Classic CompuServe, you can GO ROOTS.


If you would like to submit news, information or press releases for possible inclusion in future newsletters, send them to richard@eastman.net. The author does reserve the right to accept or reject any articles submitted.


DISCLAIMER: This newsletter is being written and sent via e-mail at no charge. I expect to write one new issue on a more or less weekly basis. However, life sometimes interferes, and the need to earn a living may create an occasional delay.


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About the author: Dick Eastman is the forum manager of the four Genealogy Forums on CompuServe. He also is the author of "YOUR ROOTS: Total Genealogy Planning On Your Computer" published by Ziff-Davis Press. He can be reached at: richard@eastman.net