Tuesday, March 24, 2015

An Introduction to Family History for Canadian Finns - March 2015

On Sunday last, many of us met at the Scandinavian Centre in Burnaby, BC for An Introduction to Family History for Canadian Finns, sponsored by Vancouver's Canadian Friends of Finland. A very pleasant afternoon indeed. Thank you to the Friends for organizing this event and for inviting me to participate.

Here is a .pdf version of my same handout on North American Immigration and Census. This includes starting links for your research. If you have a specific question or would like further information, please contact me.

The Scandinavian Genealogy Group, sponsored by the Scandinavian Cultural Society and the British Columbia Genealogical Society, meets in Burnaby at the Scandinavian Centre, 6540 Thomas St
 Burn­aby, BC V5B 4P9, most months. Our next meetings will be Saturday, April 18 and 16 May, 2015. All interested in researching their Scandinavian roots are welcome. These are informal sessions where experienced members will help where needed with on-line and off-line research. See our Scandinavian Genealogy Group's webpage on the British Columbia Genealogical Society website for information and research links.

Watch for our Group at Midsummer in Burnaby at the Scandinavian Centre, June 20-21, 2015 in the Icelandic Room. We will be there with displays and resources And members will help you to get started with your family history research or give you ideas on getting over a brickwall.

Sunday, February 01, 2015

Ten (10) Rules for a Productive Genealogy Week

 "10 acres - Olivet Cherry spraying outfit, Kelowna, B.C." 1900-1910. Photographer, John Woodruff (1859-1914). Credit: Canada. Dept. of Mines and Resources / Library and Archives Canada / PA-020982. John Woodruff apparently took many photography trips for the Canadian government. If anyone has more information about him, please contact me.1

 My computer found this list which it says I wrote 2 years ago. Post-New Year's resolution blues maybe?

This started out, I think, as a list of only 5 because that was the title. This is in fun, of course. (But a couple of these really do work, especially #8. And I know I need to take #7 to heart.)

1. Don't get yourself into any dull routines, like usually getting started on your biggest (or worst) project first thing in the morning. Life is just too crazy to plan.

2. Forget about putting away all that stuff in piles on your desk. These things are all important; you'll need them soon and it's easier for you to remember how far down the pile they are than which shelf or file they belong in.

3. Check your e-mail, Facebook and Twitter accounts constantly. You never know when something (or someone!) exciting might pop up.

4. Try not to even think beyond today's deadlines – one day's work is more than enough to worry about.

5. When you think of a new project, get started on it right away! Don't wait to finish all those others half-done.

6. Never make a list with more than one day's to-dos. It just looks 'too busy' to see all your work laid out neatly with daily/weekly tasks, objectives and goals.

7. Taking a stretch or snack break interrupts your work; don't do it. And don't take a day off with friends either. After all, they'll always be there when you do really need them.

8. Read a novel every chance you get. You'll always find a good quote or idea.

9. Don't ask for advice or look for help for a task or project. You can figure it out faster all on your own – right?

10. Remember 'life is just a bowl of cherries'. Oops, I don't really like cherries much, but eating Prunus avium or Prunus cerasus is much better than contemplating a 'chair of bowlies', especially in a pie.


    "Life is Just a Bowl of Cherries",Jack Hylton, 1931: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0x4U1NiJ7PI
    Life is just a bowl of cherries: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Life_Is_Just_a_Bowl_of_Cherries
    A Tale Of Pits and Stems in Paradise (and a recipe), Green Bin: http://meandmygreenbin.blogspot.ca/2012/07/cherries.html


    1 "Commissioned Photography" by Jim Burant, Library and Archives Canada (LAC), in Moving Here, Staying Here, on-line    exhibit.


Wednesday, January 07, 2015

Bonne Année! New Year, new genealogy plans.

Bonne Année, postcard mailed in 1909 to Nimes, France. 
From my 'family tree' postcard collection. Carte Postale; publisher's mark "H. K. C."

For me, it has been a very slow start to 2015 as I have been sick, although even while too ill to work or even read, it seemed I had a lot of plans going through my mind. Once I woke up determined to officially change my name (an idea that lingers); another time I decided to swap rooms (I think as both my room and the library are full of  `stuff`).  

I`ve given up that last idea but if some young`un turns up soon I may ask to have some furniture moved around. Once I was getting better, that swap idea did seem to make Thomas MacEntee`s 2015 Genealogy Do-Over 13 week plans more appealing. People are adapting this to their own situations, so I will do that too.

Just before Christmas, after reading quite a lot of how-to-dos, I had set up a brand new set of geographical and family computer folders and a new (still empty) Legacy software database for my recently launched SAGGERS surname study

I then spent a few happy hours adding new-to-me newspaper stories (mainly to do with WW I) and I had also set up a SAGGERs community on the Lives of World War I website.  And I had double checked my marriage information for my known Canadian Saggers families, intending to submit this to the Guild of One-Name Studies

Oh, yes, I had also decided to start using Clooz for the study and Evernote too and planned to spend a day learning more about using each of these two programmes. 

This all came to a crashing halt - now I really need to get myself going again. 

So, for my `2015 Genealogy Do-Over` I will concentrate only on the above. This should give me a good start to the study but will no doubt enliven my other family history work, especially in Legacy, as since I started in the olden days `before PCs and Macs`, I have never gone back and added media to my older entries. That could be my next do-over, but not quite yet :-)

Thomas`s  Genealogy Do-Over has certainly struck a chord with many. Have a look at his plan for the 13 weeks. I particularly like that he`s built in time for thinking and planning. And yes, there is a Facebook group and already lots of posts and additional activities.

Interested? There`s still time for you to join in. Now I'm off to sweep up my desk. And to slot my new SAGGERS study folders into Dropbox so there won't be any excuse not to file even when I'm away from home.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

12 Days of Christmas - Guild of One-Name Studies

The Guild of One-Name Studies has a '12 Days of Christmas' series right now.

Follow along to see the many Yule related surnames Guild members are researching.  (Links to the first in the series are on the bottom of the webpage.)

Alas, I'm pretty sure the only Christmassy surname I have in our trees is - CHRISTMAS!
But that is a very good one, I'll admit.

My great great aunt, Ellen Saggers, married Jesse Christmas  21st of June, 1862 at Tewin Parish Church in Hertfordshire, England.

And yes, both CHRISTMAS and now SAGGERS (mine) are surname studies registered with the Guild.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Na's Christmas card list - 1945

One of my often neglected personal projects is to transcribe more family documents. Among the most useful things I inherited, genealogically speaking, were a few address books. Sometimes I wish I'd seen Na's while she was around to answer questions, although her writing is pretty clear.

The latest one I'm doing is a little notebook from my maternal grandparents used in the 1940s mostly to list letters received and sent. How quaint these lists must seem to some! Will genealogists a hundred years forward analyze computer lists of  our 'Merry Christmas' tweets and Facebook 'Happy New Year' updates, I wonder?

At this time, my grandparents, Amy (née Irwin) and Walter Scott, were living in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada where grandpa was working for Dominion Glass. In 1945, my mother, their only child, then in the Canadian Army, was still in Washington, DC, USA. Her name isn't on this list, but there is another list for letters sent and received in December - they had sent her 3 letters in December and an "Xmas box".

It appears that this list is for mailed cards, so other cards were likely hand delivered.

The following names are from my Na's handwritten list of 46 names, almost all surnames, for cards and letters sent "for Xmas 1945". I'm transcribing all names from the book, cross referencing them with other lists and building a FAN list for my grandparents, but this is the only Christmas list.  (A FAN list is for Friends, Associates, Neighbours - a research technique made popular by Elizabeth Shown Mills.1)

I do know who almost all these people must have been, although there are a few left to verify.  Many of these cards and letters went to family and friends in Newdale, Manitoba, Canada where my grandmother was born and my grandparents had previously lived. If you are interested in Newdale, please see my Newdale Genealogy website.

The three with just their given names, Ann, Hattie and Sam, were my grandpa Scott's sisters and brother; Irwin, St. B. was F. W. Irwin in St. Boniface, Manitoba whose address is given on another page in the book. (The ones that interested me most were the Martin and Pollock names. More about those another time.)

If you think there's a connection here, please be in touch.

Lavery L
Congdon L
Young C
Stewart C
Laurence L
Irwin L
Carmichael C
Rose C
McCallum C
Macmorine L
Pollock C
Pattison C
Hattie L
Sam L
Redpath C
McNichol C
Grayston C
Mein C
Adams C
Graham L
Hawryluk L
Stewart L
Duthie L
English L
Kingdon C
McTavish (Grace) C
Kaatz C
Martin L
Riches L
Sing C
Irwin St. B C
Carmichael M. G. L
Drummond L
Walkey C
McTavish Eva C
Dale C
Brock C
Hodges C
Clarke C
McT, Myrt C
Wiggins C
LeRoy C
Laurence D. C
Myler C

1 See Elizabeth Shown Mills website, Historic Pathways, for more about the FAN principle.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

All I Want for Christmas - Blog Caroling

Footnote Maven's Blog Caroling logo

In honour of the season, once again Footnote Maven is sponsoring Blog Caroling for the geneabloggers. I'm a bit late singing along, but here goes.

All I want for Christmas is - SAGGERS

All I want for Christmas is lots of Saggers,
lots of Saggers,
many Saggers!

They can be from anywhere, I don't care,
outer space,

No matter spelt Sigger, Sogger,
Saggars, or Laggers, or the research muddy.
Just send me LOTS of SAGGERS for my study!

Hear someone else sing the original song, "All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth" which is only a bit older than I am. (We're now classics.)

Warning - TOO CUTE! Click here to smile.

As some will realize this song brazenly promotes my 'new' Saggers One-Name Study or Surname Study.

Happy Christmas, Grandma Sarah!
(No, sorry, there's none of your Dandelion wine left for the toast. But I have some Islay whiskey for your pudding, Can't leave out other grandma's side of the family.)

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Places That Mattered to the Rogers / Scott family, Vancouver BC

City Hall and Carnegie Library, Vancouver, B. C. 

Coloured postcard; divided back; private collection. A "B" in a circle card; #35.

The Vancouver Heritage Foundation will soon add the Commodore Ballroom to the Foundations's list of Places That Matter to Vancouverites. While checking out the event details, I realized that 125 local places are now included.

As some will know, at heart I feel I'll always be a Vancouver, British Columbia girl. So I thought I'd like to make a list of Vancouver places that mattered to my family and to me as I was growing up.

These Vancouver places (in no particular order) sprang to mind - you will sense some personal themes.

Little Mountain -  Queen Elizabeth Park - where our Na took us to 'hike' when my brother and I were young. No fancy facilities then, and still quarry remains to be seen.

Robson Street - around Burrard. No high class shops in 'my day', but a great variety of small ones. A certain deli, I remember, but what was it called? (not Freybe's.)  For a look back in time, see this film posted at YouTube by BC History- "Robson Street in 1964 aka Robsonstrasse".

The Carnegie Library - this building still stands at Main and Hastings Streets, but when  I was little it was the BIG library for the city and a museum was upstairs. Today there's still a library there and I think it's the only one that is open year round, holiday or no.

Vancouver City Hall grounds - where I often picnicked with a friend and a sandwich. Seemed a grown up thing to do at the time.

Mountain View Cemetery - here  a good number of family members rest.  My dad used to take me when he visited. I so wish I had had a little notepad and pencil then. His dad worked at the cemetery; as a boy my dad helped him.

Jericho Beach - some summer nights and fall nights, my mum would pack up food, my dad would bring the camp stove, and we'd be off to eat our dinner by the sea. Not so much fun for Mum, I'm guessing, but I don't really remember her complaining; we were happy enough with canned pork and beans.  Sometimes we went to Second Beach too.

Vancouver Public Library, Burrard and Robson - This building opened as Vancouver's main library just in time for a birthday visit in 1957. The building is still there, but no longer is it a public facility. (And no, I'd rather not think about that.)

Stanley Park - mainly I remember we frequented the area around Lost Lagoon but my Na loved to walk and walk; sometimes we went to the 'Pitch and Putt'. And we all (except Dad) went to see live musicals at Theatre Under the Stars (TUTS) too.  Check out the interactive Stanley Park history timeline here

I'd want to include Simon Fraser Elementary School  - both my brother and I went there. Sad to say, but the building we knew was demolished quite a while ago. And maybe I'd add Eric Hamber Secondary as we both went there although neither of us was graduated. And perhaps even the Normal School where I was first 'in school' as a guinea pig...

And there were a few Vancouver restaurants that could be on our list - Scott's Cafe downtown, the Artistocratic on Granville at Broadway, the Palm Dairy, close to home on Cambie Street, the Marco Polo in Chinatown (with its Chinese smorgasbord) and my childhood favourite, downtown Woodward's mezzanine cafe where Mum and I would have Friday night supper on our shopping nights. I always thought I'd write an experimental novel based on the snatches of conversation I overheard there.

Now I have to find out which places my baby brother would want to add to this Rogers - Scott family list. A certain Cambie Street corner gas station will be one, I'm pretty sure. 

Which Places that Matter belong on your own family's list?