Monday, July 18, 2011

Take a look at

Create a free online memorial website in memory of your loved ones. Enshrine your photos, memories, and tributes with friends and family. 

Memorials are free to create and use for 30 days and can be commemorated forever for $9.95. There is never a fee for memorial visitors.

Friends and family can add to the memorial.  They can add pictures and stories.  Well worth the fee.  

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Free Genealogy and Family History Forum - Time has forgotten our ancestry, what is a family tree? Where do we get genealogy or family history information? How do we search detailed records? We can assist with all those topics and more. Lets keep our history alive. • Free Genealogy and Family History Forum

Free Genealogy and Family History Forum - Time has forgotten our ancestry, what is a family tree? Where do we get genealogy or family history information? How do we search detailed records? We can assist with all those topics and more. Lets keep our history alive. • Free Genealogy and Family History Forum

Kevin The Bold

They say there was a reason for the name Kevin.  The first hint may come from my grandmothers maiden name, Farrell. If that doesn’t help, her mothers maiden name was Boyle.  Some heavy Irish accents in that house.

Others would suggest the name was more related to the possibility of this little guy resembling Kevin The Bold when he grew up.

In the 1950's Kevin The Bold was a household name.   Kreigh Collins developed a comic strip named Mitzi McCoy.  It appeared every Sunday starting November 7, 1948. Mitzi’s ancestor from the 1500's Kevin The Bold joined the characters on September 24, 1950. Not long after the comic strip was renamed Kevin the Bold.

The story goes that the young shepherd Kevin became a trusted employee of King Henry VIII.  He and his cohorts Pedro and Brett had many adventures that lasted a couple decades.  Many of the strips echoed Mr. Collins own life.  The Collins family took a year off and spent it sailing, and the youngest of the four sons was named Kevin.

Mom either really liked the name or hoped I would end up working for the King.  Obviously any resemblance to the picture above is only accidental. 

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Grave Research Sites

When I started researching my family history, I had no idea why I would be interested in the final resting place.  It was all about family names.  Then I started collecting surnames.  Next I wanted to know about the history behind the name.  Now I want to know where they are buried.  It’s the only way left to honor those that have gone to meet their Maker. (See note below about footnote)

Finding a grave is simple if all the family members have stayed in the same area for 200 years.  What happens when they start moving around to different states or countries?  Worst yet, what if they do not have a final resting place?  That happens more than you would think.  Many don’t get buried or they get cremated and have their ashes spread all over Manhattan.  Did great uncle Jim get buried under the oak tree in the back yard?  Some families can not afford a grave marker.

I performed a “Random Acts Of Kindness” for someone.  (, The making of this web site is a random act of kindness in my opinion.  If you want help, they may be able to find someone to help.)  I spent 7 hours at the cemetery looking at every head stone.  And I knew what cemetery the person was buried in.  I actually started over again and after two rows I gave up.  The office did not have records for those buried on that side of the cemetery???  Three different cemeteries at the same location I guess?  A week later I found the person that had the records and they told me exactly what site she was buried on.  No marker to be found. You learn something new every day.  provides cemetery records on line.  You have to work to get past the advertisements but it pulls information from many different sources.  It’s a last stop for me if all else fails.  It’s mission is to preserve history by mapping grave sites.  You can upload pictures of grave stones, then transcribe the information on the stone.  The information becomes searchable as data is entered.  You can view a map of the a grave site and then view the stone.  A virtual grave yard, where you can honor the fallen with virtual flowers.  Saves on travel expenses.  is the biggest place to look for graves.  It’s focus is on famous people, so if you think you have famous folks in your background, check them out.  They have a huge amount of resources available.  I use and contribute as often as I can. is a picture place.  What would happen if you got together a million people armed with iPhone’s?  Maybe a billion pictures of grave sites viewable on a map.  WOW the potential of this is unbelievable.  If you take a picture with a GPS enabled smart phone you get more than the picture.  When you upload the picture to billiongraves that information is attached to the file.  That helps them pinpoint the location on a map that you can view.  Then you transcribe the information from the headstone on the site.  (Fill in the name, dates, and etc.)  Then anyone can search billiongraves to view the grave site.  Did I say WOW?  They are only a few month old, but I estimate will take over the category in no time.

A few other links that you may find useful. is a site that you can post question about a family name or see questions already posted by others.  There is a lot of information available. has a family history section.  They give history about surnames. a search engine of other search engines. a search engine of family trees. will help you find individuals.

There are a lot of additional web sites that have information for a fee.  You can develop a family tree at no cost on the site.  Can I just say, thank you very much team for changing genealogy research forever.  (Remember that the people create the trees, is it fact or fiction, check your sources, verify the facts.)  I can’t list footnote without an atta boy.  They created footnote pages to honor our hero’s.  There is no charge to view or add to the footnote pages.  Take a look.  Is your ancestor listed there?  It’s a Wiki style site to honor our ancestors.  Go look now.

From a great memorial to the late Betty Ford. (Elizabeth Ann Bloomer)
Born April. 8, 1918 and died July 8, 2011.

First Lady of the United States of America. Born on April 8, 1918, she first married William Warren, before marrying future President Gerald Rudolph Ford in 1948. Together they had 4 children. She became First Lady following the resignation of President Richard Milhous Nixon, and served as the First Lady from August 8, 1974-January 20, 1977. In 1987 she released her autobiography entitled, "The Betty Ford Story" (1987), which was made into a movie the same year. The Betty Ford Center in Rancho Mirage, California, a well-known substance abuse clinic, was named in her honor.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Free Family History Photos | Vintage Photos from History

Free Family History Photos | Vintage Photos from History

Kevin’s Story, Part 12, Force It

So, , , , I decide to force the family history.  I spent two days, first with Yahoo, then Google, then in frustration I  tried  I typed in “who was my Mom’s Grandmother?”  I got something about grandparents day.  Forcing the family history was not working.  Obsessions do not follow logic.  Nor was I able to be logical.  So I wrote a letter.  After another month, I got the contact information and away we go.  I got names for all great grandparents!  This can sometimes be the bridge you need.  With those names I added an additional two generations and 94 cousins to the list.  That was two years ago.  In the last two years we have added almost two thousand more family members.  There are another 25 little green leaves yet to investigate.

Adding names to the family tree doesn’t add a lot of family history.  But, if you have the names, then you get the dates, then comes the Google.  I have only started to research our family history.  Most of the stories have been lost in time.  If the stories were not written down or passed down, you can’t get them back.

Families did not move often.  There could have been major moves to find work or harvest crops but many families stayed in the area for long periods.  If you get stuck, try looking at records for the next town over.  Maybe the next county over.  I was looking for the Grant family in a small county in Maine.  By accident I found a record for another Grant in Maine from a different county.  Come to find out they lived about three miles apart across a river.

To be continued . . . .

July 4th from, a great resource

The United States lost two founding fathers and former presidents on July 4, 1826. Thomas Jefferson, age 83, died at his Monticello home. John Adams, age 90, died a few hours later in Quincy, Massachusetts. His last words were reportedly, “Thomas Jefferson survives,” as he had not yet heard of Jefferson’s death.
In this age of instant access, it’s hard to fathom how slowly word traveled before the telegraph, telephone, and internet. It wasn’t until over a month later, on August 14, 1826, that the news was picked up by The Times in London. The paper published extracts from newspapers which arrived in Liverpool via the ship Canada. One account, reprinted in The Times, tells of “regrets that cannot but mingle with our joy in such a singular dispensation of Providence, as the departure of Jefferson and Adams on the same day, and that day the first jubilee of our independence.”
The Times also ran a piece commemorating Adams and Jefferson the following day from a New York paper dated July 13, 1826.
As noted in the published account above, not only was the coincidence of two of our most important founding fathers dying on the same day remarkable, but the date was also the 50th anniversary of our nation’s most patriotic occasion, the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

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