November 26, 2015

Living On The Edge Of The Census

1914 Chelton Ave, St. Paul, MN – 1895

Sometimes, you just get lucky and find a census record for your family members that shows the actual street address of the house they lived in. I was very lucky to find this census record for my Great-Grandfather John Emil Moline showing their address as 1914 Chelton Ave, Ramsey, MN.  The date is June 1895.  That corroborates the information on a photo I have from my Moline family that shows their house and has the notation the same address.


This is the house the Moline family lived in at the time of this 1895 census.

Who Are Those Other Two People?

Listed in the same household are two “extra” people.  I wonder who Mick Lund, age 28 could be; I suspect that Hulda S. Swanson, age 14 might be a servant. But as they are both from Sweden, are they relatives or just employees?

Living On The Edge Of The Census

Normally, but not always, you will find at least the location of where a family is living listed on the left edge of the census page. Even if it’s just a street name, it gives you a clue, and might prove handy later when you can put the location together with another document or photo.  Also, when you put the street name in your records, make sure to also add the date of the census record too.  If it’s given, having the month and day can help you pinpoint whether or not you have the correct family and approximately when they were born. Census records are rich with information and you have to scan every single bit of it to extract the “gold”.

Excellent, Affordable Genealogy Webinars by Michael John Neill

Genealogy Webinars – by Michael John Neill

There is nothing closer to my heart than telling my friends about excellent genealogy resources.  Even better, these webinars were created by my friend Michael John Neill! You may know Michael from Casefile Clues and now I’m happy to say he has released his Genealogy Webinars to the public.

I hope you’ll take a moment to click the link above and discover some new genealogical information you might never have thought of before.

If you’re in a hurry, I’ll be adding a link to my sidebar so you can return and sign up later.


That Headstone Might Not Be Stolen


John Whitmore’s Headstone: The First One Was Broken In Shipment

We researchers probably hear about headstone desecration more in genealogy circles than the average person, but I’d like to caution my readers to always check to see if there is another facet to the story if you should find a headstone somewhere other than in a cemetery.

It’s entirely possible to find a lone headstone just laying out in a field (sometimes with cattle in attendance).  If it’s an old patch of family land, there could even be others nearby that you wouldn’t even see because they’ve deteriorated in the weather.

You Have A Headstone In Your Yard?

But what about those stones that are broken and used for steps or something in someone’s yard? No doubt at first you would be appalled that someone could use them in such a way.  There could be some simple explanations though:

  • They were not used or approved by the family because there was a mistake.
  • In the process of setting the stone it broke and the mortuary discarded it.
  • A new one was set in place (such as the Medal of Honor one above) and so one of the family members took home the old one and used it in his/her yard.
  • A new owner of a home might not know that the other side of that nice piece of granite in the yard has an inscription on the other side.

Years ago I found a DAR cemetery marker in an antique store in Iowa.  It had no identifying marks on it, and since I’m in the DAR I bought it and brought it home.  Truthfully, I have no idea what to do with it, so it’s just stored away in a safe place.

My final thoughts on all of this is that before you contact any authorities and report anyone, try to find out the facts first.

How To Clean A Headstone – Advice From The Artist

W. D. Breedlove – Bredlow headstone


[easyazon-image-link asin=”0393731693″ alt=”Cemeteries (Library of Congress Visual Sourcebooks)” src=”” align=”center” width=”121″ height=”160″]

Windows Alt Key Codes For Genealogy

A Good Source For Special Characters – Genealogy*

Some of my ancestors were of Swedish extraction, and some of Jim’s were of German, so when it comes time to insert special characters for letters into my genealogy program or emails, I was quite at a loss as to how to type them in Windows OS.

You need to have a numerical keyboard to the right of your letter keys to make this work.  The shortcuts don’t work with the numbers at the top of the board.  You must press the NUM LOCK key for this function to activate.

I made a small cheat sheet for myself of basic letters like this:

ALT and type #

Ä  142   ä 132

Å 143   å 134

Ö 153    ö 148

Here are a few additional symbols.  Try these:

©   Code number 0169

¢    Code number 0162

¥  Code number 0165 (Japanese yen)

£  Code number 0163 (British pound)

€  Code number 0128 (Euro)

This is just a small taste of ways you can make your names and locations more in keeping with how they’re pronounced in other languages.  I found an additional source for these Windows codes, as well as some for the Mac at Penn State’s “Computing With – Accents, Symbols and Foreign Scripts” web page.

*when I wrote this I was meaning one thing, but when I went back and re-read it, it was kind of funny in a family tree sort of way. So, I left it in for humor. :)