Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Viewing a Family Tree at My Heritage

My Heritage now offers pedigree views of family trees. This was a desperately needed modification.

In this view, you can see the ancestors of a person.

My Heritage originally offered only a "family view." If you clicked on a person, you saw one line of ancestors and could not click back to the original person. This made navigating a tree frustrating.

I discussed this issue three years ago.

My Heritage became an important factor in genealogy research when the DNA testing site 23andMe enabled customers to link to My Heritage to display family trees.

My Heritage is free to sign up, but a subscription charge must be paid to add larger trees and access records.

My Heritage offers its own autosomal DNA testing services. The price for a kit is in line with the other testing companies. DNA tested at My Heritage is compatible to upload to GedMatch.

If you tested your DNA elsewhere, you can upload the file for free to My Heritage for an ethnicity estimate and family matches. No subscription is required to access this information.

I have found many more matches from United Kingdom at My Heritage as compared to the other testing companies.

In the examples below, the tester's parents were from Ireland. At other testing sites, he has many distant matches. At My Heritage, he has several close matches.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Tracing Another Sister of Patrick ODonnell

A death certificate from California confirmed that I accurately tracked a sister of my maternal great great grandfather, Patrick Francis ODonnell (1856-1931).

Patrick's obituary from the Bayonne Times listed a sister I did not know about: Kathryn Mason Kennedy of Stockton, California. (The mother of Reverend Charles Leo ODonnell was another sister, Mary.)

The earliest record I could find for Kathryn was the 1885 New Jersey State census in Bayonne. She was Kate Mason, living with Charles Mason.

In September of 1885 in Bayonne, Margaret Mason was born. I have not found a birth certificate for her filed with the State. She was baptized at Saint Mary's Church in Bayonne, which was frequently used by the family.

Kathryn's next appearance was in Brooklyn, New York in the 1900 federal census. She was widowed, age 48, with two children:

Magarite C Mason, born September 1885 in New Jersey; and
John D Mason, born April 1889 in Connecticut.

I do not know how accurate this is, but for the question of children, Kathryn had listed four children, three still living.

I have not found Kathryn in the 1910 federal census.

In the 1920 census, Catherine Kennedy, widowed, was living in Bridgeport, Fairfield County, Connecticut with John D Mason, age 30. Daughter Margaret was living in San Francisco, California with husband James Joyce.

In the 1930 census, Kathryn had joined her daughter in Stockton, San Joaquin County, California.

Catherine Kennedy died in Berkeley, Alameda County, California on September 20, 1939. Her parents were listed as Peter ODonnell and Margaret Gallagher of County Donegal, consistent with the records of her siblings. Catherine's place of birth was listed as Killybegs. From this I also learned that her husband's name was Patrick Kennedy.

This certificate arrived ten weeks after my request.

I do not know what became of Kathryn's two husbands, Charles Mason and Patrick Kennedy.

Kathryn's son, John Daniel Mason, served in World War I. He twice stayed in Togus, Maine at a National Home for Disabled Soldiers. I do not know what became of him.

Thank you MJ for the medical terminology

Kathryn's daughter, Margaret, had one daughter, Grace Catherine Joyce, born in 1917 in California. Grace married Robert John Duggan (1913-1991) and had children and grandchildren.

I would like to find out when and where Kathryn's husbands died and if she had more children.

Monday, March 26, 2018

Amanuensis Monday: Letter of Ward Family from Bloomfield New Jersey 1842

Dr I M Ward
66 N Pearl St

Bloomfield Sep 5 1842

Dear Doctor

No doubt you have been looking for
an answer to your letter to Horace in regard to Nancy
Barton, written about two weeks since. It is one week
to day since Julia called on Nancy and I supposed
that Horace had written to you on the subject until
Saturday when he told me that he had not, and
desired me to write. Nancy informed Julia that she
had just engaged to stay with Ms Matthews for six
shillings for weeks, but that if she had known that
you wanted her before she would have been glad
to come. Ms Richards and Emily left here last
Friday morning for Philadelphia. We proceeded down
the old road as far as the junction of the turnpike when
Emily was suddenly taken with flowing very copiously
immediately turned about and came up the turn-
pike and at home as soon as possible. Emily was put to
bed and the Dr was in attendance in a few minutes.
As yet nothing further of consequence has taken place
but he thinks a miscarriage inevitable sooner or later
and the consequence may be very serious. In addition
she has a light attack of Bilious Remittent fever and
is confined to the bed pretty much all of the time.
Ms Richard remains also with us untill something deci-
cive shall take place in regard to Emily. Philice has
been herefor a week or two and on Saturday she was taken
sick- pain in the breast- headache nausea +e she is
confined to the bed and the Dr prescribes for her every day
Emily and Philice have both been bled and physiced
to their hearts content I should think but we must
obey the Drs direction. Julias health has suffered some
from excitement. She has had more pain and pressure
in her breast and her cough is increased. She has taken
one powder and though it relieved her a little, since
which she has not taken any more. I have ? a his time
after time that if she gets sick again, it will be her own
fault, as she has the remedy in her power but is too
thoughtless or careless to use it. There is considerable
sickness about at present mostly of a Bilious character.
We shall be happy to hear from you whenever
convenient. Much love is sent from all to all.

I remain yours truly

Oliver P Hanks

Dr Isaac Moreau Ward (1806-1895), the recipient of this letter, was practicing medicine in Albany, New York in 1842. By 1850, he had returned to Essex County, New Jersey and was farming in Clinton, later known as Irvington.

Dr Ward's wife was Mary Ogden Rankin. They married in 1832 in Newark.

The author of this letter, Oliver P Hanks, had married Dr Ward's sister, Julia Ward (1822-1843), in 1838 in Bloomfield. Julia died a year after her husband wrote this letter and is buried in Bloomfield Cemetery.

The Horace mentioned in the letter could be another sibling, Horace Hinsdale Ward (1808-1845). In 1831 he married Mary C Keen of Bloomfield.