Wednesday, July 19, 2017

DNA with Blaine Bettinger

Blaine Bettinger has released a new book on DNA testing for genealogy titled Family Tree Guide to DNA Testing and Genetic Genealogy  It is available to borrow from the Medina Libraries. Find it on the shelves at 929.1072 BET.


































It is an excellent book for those of us who have had our DNA tested for genealogical purposes.


Amy Johnson Crow, Certified Genealogist,
presenter and author, her e-book
31 Days to Better Genealogy is available on
Amazon.com

Amy Johnson Crow interviewed Blaine for her web site and posted it HERE.

Some of the highlights of Blaine's interview are:

  1. Take ethnicity estimates with a grain of salt. Look at the continents that your ancestor came from.
  2. Dig into the DNA matches concentrating on the closest matches first (the most shared CM, which stands for centimorgans).
  3. A centimorgan is a way of measuring shared DNA. Don't bother with matches that share less than 20 CM. It is too hard to prove a connection.
  4. There are three main testing companies:
    1.  Ancestry - has an extremely large database. Because of its advertising campaign, they have a lot of novice genealogists testing.
    2. Family Tree DNA - this is the test used by hard-core genealogists.
    3. 23andMe - has a very large database, but most were tested for medical purposes.
  5. DNA testing WILL NEVER REPLACE traditional genealogy research.
  6. Contact your matches. Some of them will be able to help you build your tree.
Check out Blaine's book and his blog,  The Genetic Genealogist.

Blaine Bettinger




















I used this chart from page 8 of Blaine's book to determine that our family tradition probably was false. We were repeatedly told, by multiple sources, that my great great grandmother Emily ARTIS SWAIN (shown as EAS on the chart) was 3/4 Cherokee. I have had my DNA tested as have three of my siblings. The results are 99-100% European. From the chart below, we should have inherited some DNA from Emily (and we did!) but it doesn't show any Native American ancestry.

Genetic Genealogy Chart

This Genetic Genealogy chart shows (in the light green) shows the DNA you inherit from your ancestors. Notice that as you go back to the fourth generation and further back, some of your ancestors will not contribute any DNA to you.

I have added the initials showing my paternal grandfather's line. While my siblings and I have NOT inherited 100% of our DNA from Emily ARTIS SWAIN, we all have inherited some DNA from her - about 2%. If she were 3/4 Native American, it probably would have shown in at least one of us. 

This is not 100% proof positive that there is no Native American ancestry, because the DNA we inherited from her just might not include the Native American markers, but it does make it a lot less likely. 

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Fruits of Genealogy




A recent article in Internet Genealogy magazine was titled "Forbidden Fruits" which will be discussed more later. But it made me realize that we often equate the results of our family history research in the terms of "fruit".


We call the items we discover the fruits of our labor. We search long and hard and when we finally find the desired bit of history, it is every bit as satisfying as biting into a fresh piece of juicy, ripe fruit.


Birth and marriage records that you probably have at home.
These are low-hanging fruits.
Then there are the low hanging fruits. That is the information that is easy to find such as information you already have at home or, census and vital records discovered on easy to access online databases such as FamilySearch.org or Ancestry Library Edition.



Lastly, are the Forbidden Fruits, the topic of the April/May 2017 issue of Internet GENEALOGY. Sue Lisk, the author of the article, uses the term Forbidden Fruit to discuss the information you find in  other people's published family trees. Some of the fruits of these trees can be diseased, withered or rotten on one side.

She cautions us to to resist adding other people's family trees to our own without evaluating them carefully. She lists six items to look for in assessing someone else's tree:
  1. Is it a healthy tree?
    1. What is the size of the tree? Is it too large? If it has tens of thousand names the researcher probably has not worked on each name individually and carefully. If it is too small, the researcher is probably just getting started and may not have any new information for you.
    2. Do they include the sources of their facts? Information without documentation is pure fiction.
    3. Is the data entered carefully and consistently? Are there lots of misspellings or dates that don't make sense? Like a woman giving birth at either a very young or a very old age.
  2. Study the structure of the tree. 
    1. Does it follow a direct descent from your common ancestor, or is it from a lineal line? Lineal lines might have access to documents that did not get passed on in your line.
    2. Again, do they list the sources of  the material? Verify the data in original sources.
    3. Information on still living individuals should be marked "Private".
  3. Lookout for "grafts". People sometimes insert portions of other people's trees into their own,  intending to come back later and research them more fully. You can recognize grafts by these traits:
    1. They do not list any sources.
    2. They reach beyond the scope of the rest of the tree. If one line is much more fully developed than the rest, it is a graft!
  4. Odd growths on the tree. Often, you will find the same information posted on many people's trees, including the mistakes! When you see this, it means that people have copied someone else's tree into their own.
  5. Examine the crown. Most commonly, the further back you research, the harder it becomes, and necessarily, you have fewer records. Some of the branches won't be as well filled out. If a family tree has LOTS of information going further back, AND the information leads to a famous ancestor or royalty, examine the tree carefully. Check out all connections for yourself.
  6. Watch for falling branches. Other people's trees may contain small mistakes. But because the rest of the tree is well researched and well sourced, you may incorporate the mistakes into your own tree. Check ALL of the information carefully.

Read the complete article and other interesting topics in the magazine. Available at the Medina Library. 


Thursday, July 6, 2017

Hudson Library and Historical Society

Hudson Library and Historical Society
96 Library Street, Hudson, OH
The Hudson Library and Historical Society has a fine genealogy and local history collection that I have wanted to visit for a long time. As they had several non-circulating items on Kanawha County, West Virginia that were suitable for my MASON family research I finally went this past week.

Their "new" 54,000 square foot building opened in 2005. They are a combined library and historical society and so they have historical artifacts beautifully displayed throughout the building.

An antique rocking horse displayed on top of book shelves, high
out of reach of curious youngsters
A quilt depicting the history of Hudson, Ohio
Antique parasols 










































Their local history and genealogy room is on the second floor in the back of the adult fiction and non fiction area. It has its own entrance:

Entrance to the Archives Room

There is a staff desk where you will sign in and read their guidelines for the room. You may be asked to leave large bags in the lockers.

The Archives is always staffed. 
Introduce yourself and explain the purpose of your visit. They will give you a quick overview of the archives. The staff are friendly and helpful.

Do your homework before going. Have a list of which items you want to use. INCLUDE THE CALL NUMBER!

The stacks where most of the histories are shelved.
The study tables are large, and well lit.

Study tables and additional collections.
Around the study tables are special collections:
  • John Brown Collection
  • County Histories
  • Military materials
  • New books - yes, I found some new titles for Medina's collection!!
The copier only costs 10 cents a page. BRING CHANGE.








The Archives also has a microfilm and digitization corner.

Typical microfilm area.
A station for converting VHS & DVD into digital files.

























All in all, I looked at 17 different items for my personal research.

All of the West Virginia items resulted in NEGATIVE results -- meaning I did not find anything useful. Sigh...

But the library also had a number of Maryland and Delaware items that I checked for the surnames of my ancestors from those states.

Voila! I found an entry for William SWAIN in the book Marylanders to Ohio and Indiana by Henry C. Paden. It stated that William served in the War of 1812, which I did not know. It gave his land bounty warrant number and listed his surviving children at the time of his death in 1852 in Ohio.

SCORE!

So, check the online catalog and see if a trip to the Hudson Library and Historical Society is in your future!

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

A. I. ROOT COMPANY

A.I.Root pictured on a promotional
brochure for Root Candles.


Named for its founder, A. I. Root has been in been in business for 148 years. Prior to going into the beekeeping business, Root had a successful jewelry store on the Public Square in Medina.

Medina Gazette 22 July 1870 ad for Root's Jewelry business.
But in August of 1865, A.I. Root became fascinated by a swarm of bees. He  purchased the swarm and began studying bee culture. At that time, whenever honey was collected, it destroyed the hive. By 1869, Root had invented a method for harvesting the honey leaving the hive intact. He incorporated his bee supply manufacturing facilities.

Shortly after, he published a bee journal, Gleanings in Bee Culture, now just named Bee Culture. In the 1870's he first published ABC and XYZ of Bee Culture, the bible of beekeeping. It is now in its 42nd edition.

Masthead for Gleanings in Bee Culture
Bee Culture remains the beekeeper's                                                                           The ultimate beekeeper's
   magazine nationwide.                                                                                         encyclopedia. 



A bee smoker introduced by A. I. Root in the 1870's.


For years, the Root company pioneered beekeeping. They kept bees and were leading producers of honey, causing Medina to be nicknamed "Sweetest Town on Earth."



In 1878, Root sold his jewelry business and purchased the old Medina Fairgrounds on West Liberty Street. That is still the company headquarters.


View of Root Company with the hives, circa 1920's

In May of 1890, The Gazette reported that the Root factory was entirely lighted by electricity.

Another view of the factory.

After World War I, the Root company got out of the honey business and was strictly a bee supply company for a few years. Then a chance encounter with a priest on a tennis court led the company in another direction. The Priest complained that it was very difficult to get an "honest" candle for the church altars,   The church required a certain percentage of beeswax in their candles. In 1931, Root company started making religious candles.



The company expanded and had factories in San Antonio, TX and Council Bluff, IA. In the 1970's  the Texas plant, then the Iowa plant moved into making decorative candles. By 1980, the Medina plant transitioned to the decorative and fragrance candles. On certain days, you can tell by the scent in the air which fragrance the company is manufacturing that day.

Promotion from the 1970's


  • Root provides the candles that illuminate the path at Antietam National Battlefield every year.
  • Over half of all the candles that Root produces go to churches.
  • It is still a privately owned company and the profits are divided among the Root family members.
  • Employed 180 people in 2001; 160 in 2010, 100 people in 2017.
  • They have over $8 million in sales, yearly.
  • Brad Root is the sixth in the Root family to head the company. 
The Root Presidents


SOURCES:
Root Company History

Ohio Secretary of State, Root Company Business Filings

Medina Gazette,  17 Dec. 2008.

"Candle Factory Keeps Medina Busy as Bees", Plain Dealer,  22 July, 2001, page B-1.

"From Bees to Candles", Western Reserve Magazine, Nov.-Dec. 1982, pp.38-41

"Root Abuzz with Tour Plans" by Katie Byard, Akron Beacon Journal, 6 July 2010, page A-1

"Root Candle Has Kept a Light in the Window for Generations, Providing for Church and Home" by Leon Bibb WEWS. Twitter, 7 March 2014.

ReferenceUSA database accessed through the Medina County District Library on 23 Jun 2017.

Historical Highlights of Medina, Eleanor Schapiro, editor, 1966.


Monday, June 26, 2017

Family History Microfilm Program Being Discontinued














The popular microfilm lending program from the Family History Center is being discontinued as of September 1st, 2017. You can still order microfilm until August 31st.

Why is it being discontinued?

  • Because they say microfilm technology is obsolete. Despite numerous studies that say microfilm, when handled appropriately and stored correctly, can last as long as 500 years. Digital technology lasts only as long as it doesn't become obsolete.  Technology changes quickly. Do any of you remember the old paper punch cards? How many of you still have 5 inch floppy disks in your home? Or 3 1/4 inch disks? CDs or DVDs? Or is it all on a USB drive or in the Cloud?





  • Because the company has made tremendous progress in digitizing the microfilm. And they should have the rest of their microfilm digitized by the end of 2020.


But what if the film you want has not yet been digitized? Or if it is only available to view from within a Family History Center? (Which Lisa and I have noticed happening more and more frequently.)

I suggest ordering now any films you have been holding off requesting. Or wait until 2020...

To read their full announcement follow this link:
Family History Microfilm Lending Discontinued



Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Adoption Records



Adoption records can easily be some of the most emotionally charged records that genealogists hunt for. Searching for them can be quite tricky.

In the U.S., before 1850, when Massachusetts passed the first adoption legislation, there weren't any official adoption procedures. The laws vary from state to state about access to the records, with some states not allowing any access. Also, the laws have evolved over time. Here is a helpful timeline:

  • 1851, Massachusetts was the first state to pass legislation for the adoption process. Prior to this, check in the records for guardianship, apprenticeship and indenture records. Most likely, no legal documentation exists.
  • 1917 Minnesota is the first state to make the records confidential - open to the adoptee and the birth parents, but closed to everyone else.
  • Starting in the 1940's, states made the records secret; not even open to the adoptee or birth parents. An amended birth certificate was issued.
  • More recently, states are moving to opening up records, particularly for medical purposes,  if everyone involved agrees to it & registers on a database.

These would be the type of records to search for:
  • Adoption petitions and orders
  • Agency records
  • Bastardy bonds
  • Birth certificate
  • Census records enumerating institutions
  • Church records including baptisms
  • Guardianships
  • Hospital and medical records
  • Legislative records
  • Name changes
  • Newspapers
  • Orphanage records
  • Overseers of the Poor records
  • Probate records
The American Adoption Congress supports adult access to adoption records. Here is their state-by-state breakdown of access to adoption records:




The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has adoption information on their Child Welfare Gateway. They have a 60 page PDF file that has more detailed information about adoption records. Here are the two pages that cover Ohio:




These, and other resources are listed below:

     Access to Adoption Records - PDF file - A state by state listing

Find My Past - Adoption Research

The Legal Genealogist - Chasing Adoption Records

The Source: a Guidebook to American Genealogy by Loretto Dennis Szucs

These two books cover the women and children placed out from the New York City area from 1911 to 1972. They were not necessarily orphans, but were neglected or their parents couldn't care for them:

Orphan Train Riders A Brief History of the Orphan Train Era by Tom Riley

Orphan Train Riders :  Entrance Records from the American Female Guardian Society's Home for the Friendless in New York by Tom Riley

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Rufus Ferris - a Medina Pioneer



Log cabin similar to the ones erected by early Medina pioneers.






 
Rufus was one of the earliest settlers in Medina Village. He was the land agent for Elijah Boardman, a wealthy land speculator in Connecticut (CT).  Here are the basic facts of Rufus' life:
  • Born 21 March 1780, New Milford, Litchfield County, CT, son of Zachariah Ferris & Phebe Gaylord.
  • 1790-1800 census - He is probably enumerated with his father, Zachariah in CT.
  • Married Hannah Platt on 7 May 1801 in Vermont (VT). 
  • 1810 listed in Ferrisburg, Addison County, VT. 
  • Children: (all born in VT.)
    • Harriet Ada – 1802
    • Hiram Platt – 1805
    • Cornelia M. – 1807
    • Daniel A. – 1810
    • Rufus B.D – 1813
  • 1817 had first frame barn built in Medina.
  • Original Member of St. Paul’s Parish in Medina, He was the clerk and a vestryman.
  • Was voted “overseer” of the poor along with Lathrop Seymour. Also was Fence Viewer.
  • 1818 he become Medina's first postmaster. The "post office" was his home.
  • 1820 census, he was in Medina County, Ohio.
  • 1821 Appointed Treasurer of Medina Village, continued until 1832
  • 1830 census, he was again. in Medina County, Ohio.
  • Died 7 Sep 1833, in Wooster returning from Columbus where he had taken a remedy for the cholera epidemic.
  • He is buried in the Old Town Cemetery in Medina.

Those are the facts. But they don't tell the whole story of the man that was Rufus Ferris.

In Northrup's Pioneer History of Medina County, the Ferris family's arrival is described as follows:

     "On the 11th day of June, 1816, Rufus Ferris, Esq., arrived with his family; and, having a number of hands in his employ, soon erected a shanty for their things, and did their working by the side of a fallen tree. Mrs. Ferris had to bake every day, rain or shine out of doors. He soon erected a log house, half a mile north of the Public Square in Medina. He was agent for Mr. Boardman, and his house was open and free for all who came to purchase land in the township. He, with his men, pushed forward the chopping and clearing as fast as they could, and soon had corn and wheat growing on the ground so recently an entire wilderness."

From this, we learn that although it was very rough living for the family, Rufus had the means to hire men to help clear the land. Or rather,  Elijah Boardman provided him "with abundant means for operating expenses."

During the barn raising in 1817, men came from Liverpool and Brunswick and needed stay overnight to finish the next day. Ferris, being a genial host and a fun-loving man, provided two large pails of milk-punch. Described as "sweet, but strong with whiskey", it was quite potent. It soon debilitated the men and several who "drank most freely were on their backs feeling upwards for terra firma."

After the rafter and ridge-pole were in place, "Uncle John Hickox" went up and walked the ridge-pole from one end to the other. This was quite daring in a time when there were no ambulances, x-ray machines or even doctors around. The barn was used as the first court house in Medina.

In 1820 he became a charter member of the Medina Masonic Lodge, and of St. Paul's Episcopal Church, where he was the clerk.

His home became a regular stop on the stagecoach run from Cleveland to Wooster and continued in operation until 1845.

Also in 1820, Rufus wrote a letter to Boardman in Connecticut. Parts of the letter were reprinted in 1979 article in the Medina Gazette. Instead of talking about the progress being made in Medina or land sales, Rufus was complaining about the weather and his rheumatism!

Portrait of Elijah Boardman at the Metropolitan
Museum in New York.
"From the middle of June to July, it was the most gloomy time I ever saw. The south branch of the Rocky River on Smith Road ceased to run. Our fields ceased to look green and we should be at this time but a little better if it was not for the very heavy dews that fall every night....



Was you to see the position that I am this moment compelled to put myself in, in order to write to you, my friend, you would say, 'Curse the rheumatism. Let Ferris along." Here I am... stretched full length on the floor face downwards with my pen, ink and paper in my reach and thus compelled to write."


Described as " Of a genial nature and of a fairly well-to-do family" he was a "popular and much respected citizen." He "devoted himself to entertaining strangers who would be likely to buy Boardman land."


In Joann King's book, Reverend Clark described Rufus as "large for his time -- six feet tall, lean and spare." No portrait of Ferris has survived. Clark also thought Rufus had limited education but was "a man of strong intellect and a smart man, well suited for his frontier responsibilities."

Later in that book Rufus called himself a "Hickory Quaker." This means he was flexible, but strong and tough, like a hickory tree. Many of the FERRIS families were Quakers. He "wore his Quaker hat proudly." But was flexible enough to be a founding member of the Episcopalian church, St. Paul's!

His wife, Hannah, willing fed anyone who came to their door and gave them a bed for their tired heads. When the first family with women and children showed up at her door, she "spatted her hands" for joy. Clark remarked "In the name of every pioneer... I would say of this model of benevolence, Mrs. Ferris, her memory is blessed, may her rest be glorious!"

In 1825, he built a larger brick house to replace the cabin. It had ten rooms and eight fireplaces. The house still exists and is at 325 North Broadway. It has been renovated extensively and Rufus would not recognize it today.

Rufus Ferris house in 1952 as pictured in the book Building a Firm Foundation.
It had already had many renovations, including a squared roof instead of gable.
This picture would be from before its latest renovation.
The house as it stands today at 325 North Broadway. It is law offices
The historic marker next to the house.



















































In 1833, when cholera broke out at the Columbus penitentiary, Rufus traveled there with a remedy. On his return trip, he contracted the disease and died in Wooster.


Rufus Ferris' tombstone from the Old Town Cemetery.
No stone for Hannah, but son Hiram's stone is to the right.



I would like to know more about Rufus' life. What did he do for a living before working for Boardman? What was his relationship with Elijah Boardman? Why did Elijah chose Rufus to be his land agent?

Perhaps future research will answer these questions.

SOURCES:
Medina County Gazette January 24, 1879, p.4
Medina County Gazette March 2, 1951, p. 2
Medina County Gazette June 24, 1968, p. 14
Medina County Gazette Nov 17, 1979

Metropolitan Museum of Art - Portrait of Elijah Boardman

Building a Firm Foundation by Susan McKiernan and Joann G. King
Historical Highlights of Medina,  Eleanor Iler Schapiro, editor.
History of Medina County and Ohio Baskin & Beatty
Medina Coming of Age 1810-1900 by Joann G. King
Memoir of the Life and Character of Mrs. Mary Anna Boardman
Pioneer History of Medina County  N. B. Northrup

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Voters' Records























In the U.S., you have to be citizen to vote. Before the 1820's you had to own property to vote. It wasn't until the 15th Amendment in 1870 that African American males could vote, and the 19th Amendment extended voting rights to women in 1920. There were a few states that had given women the right to vote in local elections prior to the 19th Amendment, but those were the exceptions. Natives Americans' voting rights varied according to time period, location, and tribal status.


Voter registration records are among the most under-utilized by family historians. They aren't discussed in most basic genealogy books. They can be the hardest records to locate. Perhaps that is why they are under-utilized.

So why go to the trouble of searching for voter registrations? They can help fill in the blanks in your family's history. Information found in the records can include:
  1. Name, including middle names.
  2. Date of Birth
  3. Place of Residence
  4. Occupation
  5. Signature
  6. Further tract your ancestor's residences between census years.
  7. Find a spouse. If two adults are registered at the same location with the same surname, a familial relationship can be surmised.
  8. Place of birth. During the 1800's place of birth is listed.
  9. Find naturalization information if your ancestor wasn't born a citizen.
  10. Estimate the year of immigration.
  11. Physical description.
  12. Political affiliation. Usually, Democratic or Republican, but other parties can be listed as well.
  13. Migration - Some registrations include how long they lived in the state, county & precinct.
  14. Find other family members.
1940 California Voter Registration showing Ronald Reagan as a DEMOCRAT!
Notice that it includes his address and his occupation.











This 1954 list still shows Reagan as a Democrat, but now he is listed with his wife, Nancy.
Reagan did not become a Republican until 1962.

Where you will find voter registration lists:
  1. Some are available on Ancestry.com and Ancestry Library Edition. That is where I discovered the Reagan listings above. California in particular has most of their lists up to 1968 online.
  2. FamilySearch.org web site or through their microfilm lending program. That is where I located several of my TAGG family members. Ohio had quadrennial censuses every 4 years from 1803-1911. Look on the site's link to the catalog of microfilm holdings.
  3. Cyndi's List: http://www.cyndislist.com/voters/locality/ As always, Cyndi does an incredible job of locating THE best web sites. Her site includes a lot of foreign voter's lists.
  4. County court house records for the Board of Elections in the locality your ancestor's lived.
  5. Try your favorite search engine. Use the locality and "voting records" and see what turns up.
  6. A GenWeb site with links to voting and tax records:  http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~tqpeiffer/Documents/Free%20Gen%20Records%20&%20Databases/TAX%20&%20VOTER%20Records.htm 

So the next time you hit one of those inevitable brick walls, why not try researching voter registration lists for a break through?

SOURCES:



Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Social Media & Genealogy

Amie Bowswer Tennant


About a month ago at the Ohio Genealogical Society annual conference, Amie Bowser Tennant talked about using Social Media & Genealogy.



She is a very dynamic speaker and she inspired me to explore all the ways that social media can benefit genealogy research.






Immediately, I joined several new groups on Facebook, including one for a surname group for a family name that I have researched thoroughly. I have been in contact with new cousins and we have been exchanging LOTS of photos of our common ancestors. Several of my new-found cousins want a copy of the book I wrote on the family.

She also recommended joining the groups for all the localities you are researching and for any genealogy software or websites. I already belonged to the groups in the areas where my ancestors lived and have found them interesting.



More tentatively, I joined Twitter. Twitter never appealed to me before. It seems geared towards news junkies and people who want to share every thought they have with the world.

But my eyes have been opened!

Twitter limits your "tweets" to 140 characters, so you have to be concise. Most often, tweets include a link to a web site or to a blog post. Often they include pictures. Amie recommended "following" genealogists that you admire or who lecture.

The ones I follow are:
Amie Bowser Tennant
Judy Russell (aka The Legal Genealogist)
Amy Johnson Crow
Joshua Taylor (from the Genealogy RoadShow and current president of the New York Genealogical & Biographical Society)
Lisa Louise Cooke (blogger and podcaster)
Medina County District Library (of course!)
David Allen Lambert

Here are some recent screen shots from my Twitter feed:



I purchased Amy Johnson Crow's book 31 Days to Better Genealogy and am making my way through it. It is only available as a Kindle book. Maybe that will be a topic for a future post.




Notice how all the tweets have hashtags # in them? The # symbol combines with a descriptive word and that becomes a "thread" that people can follow and contribute to. It is also used for searching Twitter.

The @ symbol combined with a name, is your "handle" or how you are identified on Twitter.

The links to web sites, or more often, to blog posts, have been shortened at sites like Bitly so they will fit within the 140 character limitations.

Joining Twitter has exposed me to all sorts of genealogical data that I might not have seen otherwise. And by seeing who your favorite genealogist follows, you learn about other important genealogists that you might never have heard of before.

Example: 
David Allen Lambert. I decided to follow him because Judy Russell follows him. I had NO IDEA who he was. But he has very interesting tweets, like the one that led me to this article on Viking incursions into western Britain from Ancient Origins. Fascinating stuff!

David Allen Lambert
But I had no idea who he was until I googled him a few minutes ago.  He is the Chief Genealogist (wouldn't you love to have that title?) at the New England Historic Genealogical Society. Who knew? Not me!  But now I do.

I am sure there are other great features that will be discovered over the next weeks and months. And there is still Pinterest and Instagram to explore.

Meantime, why not try Twitter for yourself? Or please share your experiences with it in the comments below.

Oh, and if you would like to follow me, my handle is @KathJean55. You can join my other two followers!