26 February 2011

Surname Saturday - Coursault

My husband's maternal grandmother was a COURSAULT - Julia Coursault to be exact. Of all the children of Charles and Appelina Coursault, Julia is the most elusive. The couple had several daughters, three were  married at Christ Church in Philadelphia.

I beg your indulgence while I degress for a moment. Christ Church is located on Second Street just above Market. It has been called The Nation's Church. Organized in 1695, this church saw the likes of George Washington and Benjamin Franklin. While the people there were very helpful in our genealogical search when we went, it is still an active church. It does still hold two Sunday services in the Episcopalian faith and a Communion Service each week. The burial grounds, located at 5th and Arch, are the resting place of five of the signers of the Declaration of Independence.

Julia (b 13 June 1885) married Morgan G DEYOE. She died in December 1945 and is buried at the Mt. Peace Cemetary in Philadelphia. Anne (b. 13 March 1899) married Michael RAYMOND on 26 April 1916. She was also chrismated as a child in Christ Church. Marie (b. 1895) married Charles BLACKMAN on 25 November 1912 in Christ Church. Helen (b. 1902) married Frank Fred Falcon on 5 January 1921 at Christ Church. She was buried on 11 June 1930 in the Northwood Cemetary in Philadelphia.

The 1900 census also shows a daughter Katie born in 1887, son Leon born in 1890, son Prosper born 1892 and a daughter June born in 1899 in addition to Julia and Marie. Helen would not have been born yet but Anne simply does not appear here with th efamily then.

The girls' mother - Appelina - was also buried in Northwood. She died in December 1927 and was buried there on the 14th of that month. Her burial records are located at Christ Church.

Charles Coursault was the son of Leopold and Catherine Coursault. I have also found Charles' name recorded as Edward.

22 February 2011

StoppingPoints.com Adds New York Landmarks & Historic Sites Guide

StoppingPoints.com, a guide for discovery of historical markers and points of interest throughout the United States, this week has launched another new and extensive guide which thoroughly covers the historical landmarks of New York.

The New York StoppingPoints guide displays and pinpoints over 3,000 markers within the state, including properties listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Most markers are grouped and mapped by city, county, and also individually, allowing history researchers, genealogists, preservationists, and geocaching hobbyists to easily locate them when visiting "The Empire State".

The simple map pages allow for browsing the NY markers in major cities such as Albany, Buffalo, New York City, Niagara Falls and Rochester - viewing the historic sites as they are pinpointed.

Bill Lawson, Editor-in-Chief for StoppingPoints.com, stated "We believe our New York historic site guide is one of the most comprehensive guides of the state anywhere, and easily superior to the state's own museum site which is error-prone, does not provide maps, and is listed out in a much less usable manner."

"New York's historical markers highlight some of the most interesting sites from the early history involving the founding of America. The mixture of Dutch history, British history, Native American Indian history, the American Revolution, famous patriots, and fantastic architecture all combine to make New York an important place that has a diverse and rich cultural background."

The new section allows users to navigate by New York counties, boroughs and cities in order to view the maps pinpointing historical markers in each area. The historical sites are pinpointed throughout the state by dozens of small, blue-and-yellow "NY" marker icons, such as for the page for Manhattan’s historical buildings and places:


Some of the most fascinating markers include the “Headless Horseman Bridge” of Sleepy Hollow, Iroquois/Algonquin/Mohawk sites, places frequented by “Moby Dick” author Herman Melville, and architectural treasures such as the Flatiron Building and the Empire State Building. The Monroe County page exemplifies the great variety of historical and cultural sites in New York such as the Rochester Street Historic District, the Genesee Lighthouse, the George Eastman House, an early Quaker meeting house, the Seneca Trail, and Susan B. Anthony’s home:


The release of the New York section also marks the official launch of new members’ features at StoppingPoints.com. The free member registration was released from beta and allows members to add photos, submit new points of
New York Historical Landmarks: Flatiron Building, Old Dutch Church of Sleepy Hollow, Susan B. Anthony House, the Statue of Liberty, and Genesee Lighthouse.
interest, and provide more information about landmarks within the guide.

"Addition of member features marks a whole new era for StoppingPoints," said Lawson. "These features now allow our guide to be much more participatory and user-generated content will allow our guide to grow much more rapidly on the framework of technological best practices we’ve already developed."

StoppingPoints will continue to enhance and expand the New York history data and innovative site features. Upcoming features will likely include tools for users to add comments, record cemetery gravestone information (in support of genealogical research), and more easily share information with social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook.

Courtesy of PRLog

21 February 2011

Facebook offers Family Village

Provo, UT— Funium announced today the integration of its forthcoming Facebook game, Family Village, with FamilyLink’s We’re Related on Facebook, a top 300 social application. Still in limited alpha development, Family Village is the first free Facebook-based game to connect and unite real families as players explore their family trees while building an online FarmVille™ and CityVille™-like community. FamilyLink’s massive database provides Family Village players with access to billions of online records for a unique family discovery experience of their ancestors and living relatives. These genealogical and family history records contain information such as birth and death dates, birthplaces, and much more, and tie in with game characters providing users with a realistic and deep connection with their relatives.

“Most computer games eventually lose their luster for players who reach some prescribed goal. Even FarmVille average usage is starting to shrink,” stated Jeff Wells, Funium CEO. “Conversely, Family Village engages players with not only Facebook friends, but living relatives in a quest to discover their ancestors and family history.”

While players have fun building fortune, houses, businesses, immigrating family members, and assigning jobs, Family Village matches inputted data with relevant real-world documents about the users’ living and deceased relatives such as census records, newspaper articles, marriage records, and other documents. Players can then examine the records, print them, or store them in their personal game library.

Courtesy of PRLog

New Collaborative Tools Help Improve your Family Tree

FRANKLIN LAKES, NJ - Savvy genealogists have long known the benefits of building their family tree online in a collaborative environment.  A common approach is to find other genealogists who are searching the same surname in hopes of exchanging genealogical data to minimize their own research efforts. Today, ourFamily•ology unveils two new collaboration features aimed at helping subscribers build their family history.

The first new feature allows genealogists to search for a common ancestor and see basic data from anyone’s tree that has enabled this feature.  Users can also contact and exchange information in hopes of sharing research.

The second feature gives the ability to share documents with other subscribers. There are only a small percentage of genealogical documents available online.  Genealogists need to do field research to uncover and document their family history. ourFamily•ology now provides a tool where subscribers can share their findings such as wills, probate records, photos, birth certificates, and more.

“Sharing documents and ancestry information is important for the preservation of your family history.  Our new features combined with our existing collaboration tools are helping users to build reliable trees,” said Brandy Sacco, founder and owner.“  Last year ourFamily•ology became a certified FamilySearch affiliate to give users the ability to - access, add, exchange data, and collaborate with those contributors.  Another feature allows users to invite relatives to help build their family tree.

ourFamily•ology is the only family tree builder that offers a simple way to visually see your progress and provides an accurate rating guide. For the first time, genealogists can easily gain a sense of ‘the big picture’ of where they are and what they should work on next all at a single glance.

Sign up for a 100 day free trial.  No credit card is necessary.

Courtesy of PRLog

20 February 2011

Black Sheep Sunday - Margaret Still update!

In an earlier post I mentioned having a hard time confirming the father of my great great great grandfather George David Still, born in 1808 in Chester County, PA. His mother was Margaret Still born in 1788 in Chester County, PA. That much I have documented from many sources. That much I am certain.

I also have documented proof that George had a brother David who was born in 1823. I also knew that Margaret bought 3 plots of land in East Fallowfield Township, Chester County, PA in 1829. She died in 1872 in East Fallowfield Township.

I went to the Chester County Archives the other day hoping to answer three questions: 1. Who fathered George and David? 2. Was Margaret ever actually married or was she a Still by birth? and 3. If she was not married or widowed, how could a single white female afford to buy that much land in 1829?

So ... I still do not have a clue who fathered my George. However I have a possibility for David which shines a whole unfavorable questionable light on my Margaret. There were several Stills in nearby Uwchland Township, Chester County and I think Margaret was born into that family (father was Charles). In 1837 there was an inquest indicating that David Phipps - a yeoman - with Margaret Still did fornicate and "beget a male bastard child." The court ruled in favor of Margaret and David was ordered to pay -- just like our child support today. In the court paperwork, a Jacob Still made promise that Margaret "a single woman" would appear and a John Phipps did so for David Phipps.

Other records show that a John Phipps of Uwchland Township was married and had nine children one of whom was David. Other records indicate that Jacob was one of Margaret's brothers. I believe that Charles Still fathered Margaret, Jacob and a Henry Still but I am still working on the documentation. The pieces and time frames all fit but I still like (no pun intended) proof and certainty.

Now Margaret's brothers - Jacob and Henry - were found to be opperating an illegal tavern in Uwchland Township called Compass about that same time.

To summerize:
Who fathered George and David? -- George no clue still. David was fathered by David Phipps.

Was Margaret ever actually married or was she a Still by birth? Most likely she was and remained single but I am still searching for some other documentation on this as I have records indicating single and others indicating widowed. No marriage announcements have been found.

If she was not married or widowed, how could a single white female afford to buy that much land in 1829? Brothers ran tavern. Two children yet no husband. ... more and more questions and speculations remain on my Black Sheep Margaret Still.

02 February 2011

A Call For Help -- Pomeranian Genealogy

I am writing an article titled, "How to Find Ship Records for Your Pomeranian's Genealogy" and I have to admit until I took this assignment I had never heard of Pomeranian Genealogy. So ... I had to say yes!

I did find one very useful website which gave me some insight. I have learned: Pomerania, which literally means along the sea in Slavic, was located along the southern Baltic Coast on both sides of the River Oder. The area was settled in the 5th century by Slavic tribes Pomorzanie and Polabs.

Being Slavic, I am excited to jump into this new area. My only hope is that I do not get "lost" in my research.

Have you heard of Pomerania? Do you have suggestions as to where I should look? Thank you!
Locations listed are located in Pennsylvania (USA), unless otherwise noted in post.