Friday, January 31, 2014

52 Ancestors: #5 George Marlin Blackmore (1865-1949)

George Marlin Blackmore, the son of Thomas Greenslade Blackmore and Jane Frances Lemon, was born in 1865 in Livingston County, Illinois.  By 1880 George and his parents were living in Nebraska.  In 1887, in York, Nebraska, George met and married Mary Elizabeth “Polly” Blincow.

George and “Polly” had eight children (Henry, Clifford, Ada, Mattie, Harold, Leonard, Reba, and George)


Henry Irvin;  born 1888 in Nebraska; died 1898 in Colorado.

Clifford Franklin: born 1890 in Nebraska; married Mary Blincow; married Anna; died 1970 in California. (A more complete bio is included in this series for Clifford.)

Ada Florence:  born 1891 in Nebraska; married Edward Loesch in 1913; died 1982 in Colorado.

Mattie Hazel: born 1893 in Kansas; married Otis Mallory in 1914; died  1958 in California.

Harold Robert: born 1895 in Colorado; married Florence Moore in 1923; married Alta Gwynn in 1935; died 1979 in Colorado.

Leonard: born 1898 in Colorado and died 4 months later.

Reba Martha: born 1900 in Colorado; married Emery Harlow in 1921; died in 1974 in Colorado.

George Raymond: born 1904 in Colorado; married Nettie Wright; died 1967 in Colorado.


At various times, George’s occupation was listed as teamster, house carpenter, farmer, owner of a meat market and owner of the Granite & Winfield Stage Line.


George died on 13 November 1949 in Rifle, Colorado and was buried in Rose Hill Cemetery in that city.  

I would like to thank Amy Johnson Crow for the idea for this blog stream.  Her blog is  No Story Too Small.

Friday, January 24, 2014

52 Ancestors: #4 Clifford Franklin Blackmore (1890-1970)

What type of black spider would reside in Hemet, California in 1912?  I’m guessing that it was a black widow.


According to a 1912 newspaper clipping Clifford Blackmore, who was born in 1890 in McCool, Nebraska, suffered from a bite of a black spider in Hemet, California and was recovering well.  At this time, it appears that Clifford's parents and siblings were still living in Colorado (newspaper clippings and city directories).  So Clifford must have been either visiting or living with cousins in the Hemet, California, area.  Since the article didn't say anything about him visiting, I am guessing that he was living there. 


Clifford married Bertha Jane Bryan in 1914 in Riverside County, California.  The wedding announcement stated that his parents were in California at this time. 

Clifford and Bertha had 4 children; the three boys were born in California and their daughter was born in Arizona.  They had land patents in the Casa Grande area of Arizona and spent some time there.  According to one of their sons, their “house” was four poles with canvas sides.  Because of the heat during the summer, Bertha and the children returned to California while Clifford improved the land.


Clifford’s occupation was listed as stationery engineer for Indian Irrigation Services in the World War I draft registration card.   I would really like to know what a stationery engineer did.  Clifford worked in the oil fields according to the 1930 and 1940 census records and the family lived in Brea, California.  This area, near the California coast, had many oil fields and wells even in the 1950s.  In fact, you can still see pumps working and some huge oil tanks are still being used. 


Bertha died in 1943 and Clifford married Anna.  I believe her name was Anna Beatrice LaValley and she may have been married before.  Clifford built a house in Yucaipa, and Clifford and Anna lived in the house until Clifford died in 1970. 





Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Back to Presentations: Lots of Changes; Any Ideas?

For the past two years, I haven't made any presentations for genealogy.  I was asked to give a 6 hour beginner class at a local public library (in March), which I have done before.  The format is three 2-hour classes, and I have done this probably 10-12 times between 2006-2011.  So... No problem.  Right?

Well, I started looking at my power-point presentation and syllabus and I realized that so many things have changed since 2010.  Just think:  the 1940 census; all of the changes; findmypast moved into the US market; SCGS Jamboree and their live-presentations; RootsTech; etc.  And these are just things I could quickly come up with.

Therefore, I am going to have to completely redo the entire class presentation and syllabus.  If you have been researching for some time, have you really thought about the number of changes that have been made in the past three years?  Have you realized what changes have occurred that you have calmly accepted as the "norm"? 

I am looking for suggestions as to what you feel are the most important topics I should cover in a beginning class for genealogists.  I am talking about those who don't know what a pedigree chart is; who aren't sure what the definitions of ancestor and dependent are; who really don't know anything about census records, etc.  As I said, I've taught this class numerous times and have, according to former students, great success.  BUT, I want to make sure that I'm providing up-to-date information and giving them all of the best methods and resources to help them become excited about the search and be successful in their results.  Please send your response to or  Thank you.

Friday, January 17, 2014

52 Ancestors: #3 Olga Wilhelmina Engdahl Poe (1894-1954)

How did two 14 and 16 year old girls from Sweden get from New York to Montana in 1907?  I wish I knew;  it's one of my mysteries.

Olga was born in Sweden in 1894 in Sweden and she immigrated in 1907.  I have found her listed in a passenger list and she had traveled with her sister Hilma Engdahl.  The two girls listed Montana as their destination and they had an aunt living there.  I have been unable to find the aunt, or that family.  I would really like to know how these two girls, 14 and 16 or 17, traveled from New York to Montana.


After the passenger list, the next mention of Olga was in the 1920 census as the wife of Thurman Allen Poe, and living in Sparks, Nevada.  I know that she married Thurman Allen Poe, because of family information.  However, I have no documents regarding the marriage.  Thurman Allen’s brief bio was in 52 Ancestors:  #2 in this series.  I found numerous mentions of Olga and her children, particularly her daughters, in the social columns in Reno and Sparks newspapers.  Unfortunately, I don’t have any other documents with her mentioned.


Sometime after Olga and Thurman Allen divorced, Olga moved to California.  She died in 1954 in Berkeley.  Her obituary was included in the Reno newspaper. 


Since Olga and Thurman were my biological paternal grandparents, I would appreciate collaborating with anyone with knowledge of this family.  I would truly appreciate any photos, copies of documents, or even knowledge of where documents could be found.


This blog was written in response to Amy Johnson Crow’s blog challenge: 52 Ancestors in 52 weeks on her blog:  No Story Too Small.

Note:  I am having difficulty putting in links to Amy's blog.  Please search for it in your browser and read the challenge.





Friday, January 10, 2014

52 Ancestors: #2 Thurman Allen Poe (1888-1979)

Thurman Allen Poe was born in Grayson County, Texas in 1888. He died in 1979 in Sparks, Nevada.   I have not found him in the 1900 census, but in 1910 he was in Grady County, Oklahoma.  He married Olga Engdahl about 1919 in Nevada.  Why did he move to Nevada?  How did he meet Olga?  How did he get from Oklahoma to Nevada? 


Thurman Allen, or sometimes listed as Allen Thurman, spent the rest of his live in Sparks, Washoe County, Nevada.  Thurman and Olga had five children, and one son, Clifford, died at about age 8.  Raymond Verne Poe was my biological father.  The three daughters were born between 1924 and 1934.  Since I don’t know if they are still living, I will not write more about them.


Thurman and Olga divorced and I believe that Thurman married a Myrtle Dailey about 1960.  I don’t know anything more about Myrtle or any children she may have had before marrying Thurman. 


If someone has photos of Thurman, Olga or Raymond, I would appreciate copies.  I am still looking for documentation of the facts that I’ve presented.  I would enjoy collaborating with anyone researching this Poe family line.


This blog posting was inspired by Amy Johnson Crow in her challenge of writing about 52 ancestors in 52 weeks.  No Story Too Small


Tuesday, January 7, 2014

52 Ancestors: #1 Raymond V. Poe (1920-2006)

Raymond was born in January in 1920 in Reno, Nevada.  He died in 2006 in Oakland, California.  He was married at least 3 times, and perhaps 4.   I believe he was married first to a Marian, and had two girls.  My mother was his second wife and I don't believe I ever saw him after I was about 6.  I was the eldest of 3.

Ray was married to his third (or fourth) wife the longest and I believe he had 3 children in this marriage.  I have tried to contact children from this marriage in order to get photos or documents but have not had much luck.  I don't want to bring up bad memories or discuss Ray or his relationships, but since this was my biological father and his ancestors are my ancestors and my children's ancestors, and my grandchildren's ancestors (You know what I mean.) then I'd like to have photos in my files as well as documents that may be with these people. 

Of course, as with any of my research, if you are related, or have information about anyone I write about, I would be glad to collaborate.  Unfortunately, with this family, I have very little I can share with you. 

This blog was written in response to Amy Johnson Crow's challenge in the blog  No Story Too Small

Saturday, January 4, 2014

52 Ancestors: The Challenge

While catching up on reading blogs I came across this blog by Amy Johnson Crow's:  No Story Too Small

She's set a challenge:   52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks.
The challenge: have one blog post each week devoted to a specific ancestor. It could be a story, a biography, a photograph, an outline of a research problem — anything that focuses on one ancestor.

So, I signed up.  What better way to meet a couple of my goals including writing blogs consistently and writing mini-bios of my ancestors?

Now the decisions:  What day of the week am I going to post?  Which ancestor and/or family do I start with?  Should I include my husband's family also?  Will I need to include collateral lines to find 52? 

Friday, January 3, 2014

New Start - 2014

Happy New Year to all!!

I hope I still have a few readers.  Even if I don't, I need to write regularly, and so this blog will probably be part journal, part genealogy discoveries, and part "cousin bait" for the future.

I'm back to blogging; I hope regularly. 

I'm back to genealogy; I hope regularly. 

I'm back to presenting and teaching; I hope regularly.

This is a New Year.

So, I'm putting the past behind me.  I'm starting over with ALL of my family research.  Yes, I had computer problems.  Yes, I had been saving my files to an external hard drive.  Unfortunately, I didn't realize that my genealogy program files weren't in my documents or someplace that I was actually backing up.  No, I didn't have a cloud backup or anything that allowed me to sync with other devices.  So when my computer "crashed", even specialists couldn't recover my lost files.  That's now in the past.

What have I learned?  What am I going to do differently?

Before I assume that everything is backed up, I am going to make sure that all of the different parts.  Backing up isn't helpful if  I can't retrieve the files.

I'm going to get cloud storage and use it regularly.  Again I'm going to make sure I can retrieve the files.

I have a new tablet and I'm going to get a new laptop.  (I'm using one of my husband's old ones temporarily.)  I will make sure that the tablet and laptop "communicate" with each other, particularly with regards to genealogy files. 

My new family files will have sources for facts as I input the information.  This will take me longer, but I won't have to spend hours, days, months, going back and adding sources.  Hopefully some of it will be quicker because of my experiences and improved skills.

I am going to return to making presentations at FHSA chapter meetings and giving free beginning classes (5-6 hours) at public libraries in order to share the joy, excitement and wonder of family discovery with others.

Lastly, for now, I'm going to try to put the fun back into genealogy as many have been discussing on other social media outlets. 

Again, Happy New Year to all and I hope we find at least one brick wall crumbling down.