July 2010 Making Connections

By Family Tree Editors Premium

Photo Finish

Today, I received the March 2010 issue in the mail and was flipping through the pages, when I saw “The Graduates” picture and was shocked to see my maternal grandmother in it!
This picture is of the 1915 graduating class of Constance School in Green Valley, Waupaca, Wis. My grandmother, Edith Anderson, is the teacher. She taught at Constance School for two years until she married. She married the older brother (Alvin Peterson) of the young boy (Harold Peterson) in the picture. Harold and Alvin’s father, Hans Peterson, was on the school board and lived nearby. Edith would have to go to his house to get her pay.

I have an original of this graduation picture and also a copy that my great-uncle Curtis Peterson (another brother of Alvin and Harold) sent, listing the names of the students in the picture. They are Harold Peterson, Esther Jones, Marie Schrohe, Mabel Nielsen and Edith Anderson, teacher. It may be that Esther Jones is a daughter of Sarah Rodwell Jones as suggested in the article. If I can be of any assistance, I would be more than happy to help.

Janet Cosgrove » Yamhill, Ore.

Maureen A. Taylor responds: It’s so interesting when photos are suddenly identified. In my Photo Detective column, I hypothesized that the picture showed children of the historical owners of the home where the photo was found. I knew it was a graduation picture from the attire, props and pose. I worked with Sandi Alex and Judy Mott Strong on identifying the students and the teacher, and we had a couple of ideas but nothing definite. Janet’s key answered all our questions. This photo is a great story—it’s about youth, young love and family. Case closed!

Fab 40

I wanted to thank you and the Family Tree Magazine readers for recognizing my blogs in your May issue. It’s wonderful to see more and more genealogists being recognized for their hard work. I feel privileged and honored to be among them.

I’ve had the great pleasure to meet some of the blog writers in person. They’re a very supportive and giving group.

My “GeneaLife” began with “The Carnival of Genealogy.” The support I received from Jasia of the Creative Gene blog helped me start Maven’s sojourn online. Jasia is one of my very best friends today, and I wouldn’t be here without her. I recently celebrated the three-year anniversary of my alter-ego, thanks in large part to Jasia.

A big “thank you” to Maureen A. Taylor for the compilation. I admire Family Tree Magazine and the work you do. Again, thank you so much for your efforts and the honor.

footnoteMaven » via e-mail

Getting Connected
I read Sunny McClellan Morton’s article “Overcoming the Obstacles” in the March 2010 issue and have a question. I’ve seen stories about finding genealogy information on slave ancestors and, with your article, source records on slave owners, but I’ve never read anything about how those of us with slave-owning ancestors can connect with the descendants of those slaves. I have written family stories that refer to slaves in two branches of my family, and I would like to give them to someone who might connect the names to ancestors. How can I do this?

Mary Sainsbury » via e-mail

Sunny McClellan Morton responds: Kudos to you for wanting to share! There are several ways to get your stories out there. Post scanned copies to Afriquest <>, a free online repository for documents and images relating to the African-American experience. Then post a summary with names, dates and places on message boards descendants might check, on sites such as AfriGeneas <> and USGenWeb <>. If you use a website such < >, consider creating a family tree and sharing the stories there. You also can donate copies of family history materials to local genealogical or historical societies.

Genuine Draft

I enjoyed George G. Morgan’s Document Detective about WWI registration cards in the January 2010 issue. (I had just found cards for my grandfather and my great-uncle from the 1918 registration.)
I noticed a few things about where Morgan’s relative lived and what he did for a living. He was actually quite far from home. The article stated that the card was completed in Cooperstown, ND, near where he worked (and about 85 miles from where I live), which was across the state line from Mason City, Iowa. The cities are close to 400 miles apart, as the crow flies, and you would have to travel through Minnesota or South Dakota.

Farm help was scarce during the war, and he might have been working for a relative or a stranger. His job was listed as “separator tender.” He may have run the threshing machine itself, or he might’ve pitched bundles of grain into the separator’s conveyor. I believe it is more likely the former, as the latter job would have probably had the word “bundle” in the title.

Marilynn Kruger » Sheyenne, ND

Medical Records
In the article “Medical Attention” in the December 2009 issue, you mentioned a number of excellent resources for research. One more that I’ve found helpful is The Cambridge Historical Dictionary of Disease edited by Kenneth F. Kiple (Cambridge University Press).

Lloyd Hosman » Knightstown, Ind.

Big Fans
Happy 10th! My first copy of Family Tree Magazine is dated February 2003, so I’ve got seven-plus years of your fabulous magazine. I’m still not computerized—I have to do it all the hard way—but I get what I need (most of the time) through the mail. Keep up the good work!

Edward Bjorkman » Defuniak Springs, Fla.

I have reached my late 80s and ceased active family history researching some time ago, but for a treat I bought a copy of Family Tree Magazine. It happened to be the January 2010 issue and it absorbed me so much that I read it straight through. It contained everything one could need to pursue this wonderful hobby; I was almost tempted to pick up the threads of my own “brick walls.”

Phyllis Greed » Australia