The link below is to an article that takes a look at 5 common mistakes made when researching census records.
So I am re-tracing my tracks and re-looking at the information I have. You ever get that feeling that you know you have the right information, but others think they are right as well? Funny thing, most people have an easier time tracing back the male family line, for me it’s the female line.
So here is my thing. I am starting over with my family tree. So I will start with my father’s parents:
Alvin Ulmont Ealstman/Hodgdon (Texas Alvin Ranger) married Geneieve Mary Ellen Still on Feb 26, 1919. They had 3 daughters: Cecila Agnes brn Nov. 13, 1921; Patience Mary Bertha brn Feb. 11, 1924; Betty Carol brn Dec. 14, 1927. Betty died at the age of 5. Some time after her death Alvin left Geneieve and his 2 daughters in New York. He was into Rodo’s and that is how he met my grandmother Mary Ellen Buck brn Dec. 14, 1916. Funny, I never noticed it before but both Betty and Mary were born on the same day, just 11 years apart.
Alvin’s parents were Bertha Edith Wade (although he always told my father it was Weeks) and unknown Ealstman. Now I know that back then they tend to reuse family names. From what I have found out on Bertha and her parents/siblings is there is no one with the names Alvin or Ulmont. She is also single on the 1900 Minnesota census and living with her mother. She was listed on two 1895 census’; One living in Todd county, Round Prairie township, MN and then in Strens county, Sauke Center Ward 2, MN. The latter one was done on 13 Jun and the first one on 20 Jun.
Bertha’s parents were John Henry Wade brn 1835-37 in New York and Agnes Jane Furman brn 21 Jan 1837 or 40. They had 14 children. Now this is where it starts to get iffy. Who were John’s parents? I have on one tree them being John Henry Wade Sr. and Samantha Hayford, but with doing some looking around, I am not sure. I found a military record for a Henry Wade brn 1 Feb 1836 and parents are Henry Wade and Hayford, but he was living in New York at the time (1862-3) and my John Henry was already living in Minnesota. How do I know that? Well the 1860 census said so. He also had at least 1 daughter at the time; who was born in Minnesota. I find it hard to believe that my John would have traveled all the way back to New York to enlist into the military. I also found a Henry J. Wade who enlisted in the Civil War in Jun 1863 in Olmsted, Minnesota (The same county he was living in at the time). John seemed to use both John and Henry as first names. On some of his census he lists his father as being born in New York, but on one of then it says Rhode Island. I also found that He lived near Samuel Furman, who is Agnes’ brother. There is also a Elias and Emma/Anna that are on the same Census. I found a John May who seems to be living next to them as well.
Agnes’ parents are Elias Furman and Anna Emma Lathrop. Some people have her listed as Anna Margaret, but on the 1880 Census her name is clearly Emma on it. On the 1850 Census she is listed as Anna. If we go with the re-using of names, we see that Agnes has a daughter names Anna and another one named Emma. Anna’s middle name is Margaret, so I am not quite sure what to think. Unless Anna was Anna Margaret Emma. Food for thought and I will have to look up the census to see is there could be any match.
Well this is as far as I have gotten on the new tree. I have been spending most of my time looking up census’ and other records. I have even checked findagrave.com and came up blank. Most people have John Henry Wade with a death date of April 1894; but I have yet to find a record to prove that. So it leaves me to wondering maybe he did not die and maybe he left his family for whatever reason.
Well all I know is this is one hard case to crack.
As Always………… Happy Hunting!!
Some times I wish I had a time machine. Honestly, I don’t know which is worse having a writers block when writing a book or hitting a brick wall while working on your family tree. Looking at my DNA results, I was connected to other Furman’s, but no Wades. So it has me wondering, do I not have the gene for a Wade or am I really not related to the Wades at all. Nothing seems correct. I know my grandfathers name, both of them; but After e-mailing one of his daughter’s daughter-in-law, she said she thought her mother-in-law said he might have been adopted. My grandfather said his mother’s name was Bertha Weeks. Only problem, I can not find a Bertha Weeks. Bertha Wade had a sister Anna Margaret, who married a Weeks. I have found that alot of things my grand father had said is not true.
It would be so nice to have a time machine and go back in time to see for myself. It would also have been nice if the government had kept better records of births as well. Ahhhhh, once could only wish. So now I am left with having to go back to my limited paperwork and play detective while connecting the dots. On top of all of this Ancestry.com’s website is down, some ddos thing. I guess it’s good because I was thinking it was my computer and I rebooted it yesterday. I also started a group on Facebook called Wade descendants genealogy. I am hoping it will help us to connect to more family and figure out the right connections. I found two other groups on Facebook, one I know I am not connected to and the other one I am still waiting to be approved for.
Just had a thought, I need to find the military record I have for my grandfather. I know he was a bugler. I really should be more organized. So I am off to retrace my tracks once again.
As always……………Happy Hunting!!
So I check my ancestry.com account today and my results were finally in. According to the results I am 86% European and 14% West Asia. Break that down to 40%Italian/Greek, 20%Scandinavia, 10% Europe West and 5% Great Britain. Ok, I always thought I was 50% Italian because my mom is 100%, both sets of her grandparents come from Italy, so why then am I only 40%? I am half of my mother and half of my father.
What I am surprised with is that when I look at matches who I have a good possibility of being family with, are all from my dad’s lines. I also did not find a match to the Hodgdon family line, but I have a few connections to the Wade line. Hodgdon is suppose to be my grandfather’s father’s line and Wade is his mother’s line. So this only leads my to believe that my g-grandfather is not of the Hodgdon line and what my grandfather’s daughter’s daughter-in-law said about my grandfather being adopted is probably true. I mean looking at the picture of my grandfather and his Supposed father, they look nothing at all a like. Now my grandfather’s half brother, sure looks a lot like his father, even the blonde hair. So now the hunt is on to find out who is the real father of my grandfather.
I was not expecting much from the DNA test on my grandfather’s side, seeing as how the sample was not from a male and ancestry says you will get results from your mother’s side. Honestly I am still very stumped on trying to figure out my mom’s side.
Anyways. I am off to play detective and try to crack the code of where in the heck I hail from and who my family really is. The test did not show any Native American, so maybe it’s all a story just like who my great grandfather is as well.
As always………… Happy Hunting!
So I finally ordered my DNA test from Ancestry.com. I just checked and it is at the post office now, so I am hoping I will get it tomorrow. I have been wanting to do this test for a long time now. I hope it will answer some questions I have had. It will be great if I am connected to new family who may be able to answers questions as well.
So I will post again after I take the test and get my results.
You know what I am talking about if you have ever started a family tree. There you are filling in all this great information you have on family members, names, birth dates, where they were born, and their parents; when all of a sudden you hit the dreaded “Brick Wall”. You look ever where for more information, the next name in this amazing puzzle of who your family is. You get on the phone and call every family member you can think of and to no avail, no one has any information. Not even a clue or hint as to who it could be. This is the all dreaded “Brick Wall”. It is never fun when you hit one and it can be quite depressing, aggravating, and annoying. I have hit many of these brick walls over the years. It is one of the main reasons I stop working on my family tree. There are times that I find walking away for a bit is good, it gives my brain a chance to think.
I thought I was doing great, but then I was contacted on Ancestry.com by a stranger who informed me that I had the parents wrong for one of the people on my tree. I have been searching and searching to find the right parents or the puzzle piece that fits, but there is no such luck. It’s like this family just popped out of thin air. Which is not good, considering it’s a very big part of my family line that is now wrong. This is the time when it would be great to have a time machine,(sigh, if only they were real).
So how does one get past the brick wall? Well sometimes it is going back over the information you know is correct and looking for any clues that might leading you in right direction. Maybe call those family members again and pick their brain some more. Leave a message on Ancestry.com, or other family tree websites. Search out bloggers who have the same family names as you (you might get lucky and stumble on the right one). I find myself wishing a lot of times that the government was more organized in the past as we are now and kept better track of family information. I am sure I am not the only one who feels this way.
I am hoping to pay for the DNA testing through Ancestry.com and see the connection it gives me. It would have been great if my dad was still alive and could have done the test as it would have given me much better connections. I have 2 brothers, but I don’t think they would do the test or if they did, I would have to pay for it. They are only interested in the family tree if it brings them into money some how. I am sure there are others out there with they same type of family members.
With so many websites like facebook, twitter, pintrest and so on, use them to help get through that brick wall. You just may find a new family member while your at it.
So lets keeping on searching and as always……….Happy Hunting!!!
Or should I say 1 step forward and 3 steps back?
So in between running around to get a birthday gift for my daughter’s 2nd birthday, food, supplies and setting up, cooking for her birthday party, my mind has been thinking and re-thinking about finding my connection to the Wade family. It seems that there are more lies than truth. I spent most of today with my mom (car shopping for her). We came back to my place and were sitting down talking, soon the conversation switches to Alvin and his parents. My mom tells me why she never liked my grandparents. She said that my grandfather had left my grandmother and wrote to her (my mom) and told her to leave my dad to go and be with him and he would take care of her and her kids. My mom said she did not like my grandmother because she could no understand how my grandmother could do nothing when she knew my grandfather was taking little 3-4 year old girls into the basement of the government housing they live in to molest them. I asked her who told her he was doing this and she said my father told her. I did not know my father that well, but I knew him enough. I asked her how he would know his dad had done this. I mean unless you walk in on it, as a kid you really would not have known. From the information I have found on Alvin, it seems there is a lot my dad did not know about his own father. My dad had filled out Alvin’s death certificate and there is a lot he was wrong on. Such as the year Alvin was born, The birthplace, and the mother’s last name. Also I remember my dad telling me how he took Alvin to see his 1st wife before he died. Well it was not his wife, but his daughter, his wife had died in 1974. Alvin passed away in 1990.
Now about Alvin supposedly molesting little girls, I don’t know about other parents of little girl that age, but there is no way in heck I would let my daughter at 3 or 4 be outside wandering around the neighborhood alone. Keep in mind this was taking place back in maybe the 40’s, 50’s or 60’s. As for my grandmother turning the cheek to this? No one knows what went on in her home when it was just her and Alvin. Alvin had already left his 1st wife with his 2 daughters, what would stop him from doing it again? I can say that I never felt I was in any kind of danger when I was around him. My memories of him are very few, he spent a lot of time in his bedroom (he did not sleep with my grandmother when I was kid), If he did molest little girls, then why did my mom find okay for me and my sister to be around him? We spent 2 summers with my grandparents and before we moved to another state my mom left us with him and my grandmother for about 2-3 weeks. Kind of hard to call the kettle black when you did the same thing. So all of this leads me to think that maybe he never did molest little girls. I don’t know why my dad would have said something like that and again how he would have even know about it.
My mom also said that Alvin had divorced his first wife, but according to Alvin’s oldest daughter, he never did. I think his daughter would have known if her parents divorced. Now Alvin did change legally change his name, so I have been told. His daughter also said that she thought he was adopted. Well thinking about that, I can see that being so. I know the 1900 census has his last name as Ealstman, but in 1910 it’s Hodgdon. William could have adopted him. The one thing I know for sure is that Alvin and his siblings did not talk much about each other or their parents. A lot of what Alvin told his son’s about his family seems to be lies or not all truth. It seems all the sibling except one got away from their parents as fast as they could. Makes one ask their self why? Heck I am not the best mom, yet I still can’t get on 20 year old son out of my house, lol. One thing is for sure, I plan on getting the DNA test done through Ancestry.com when I have the money, maybe that will shed some light on things and hopefully answers some questions.
So until another day……….. Happy hunting!!
So I thought I would start with working backwards on my family tree. So here it goes. We will see if this works out, lol.
My name is Christine M. Ranger, I have 2 brothers Wayne A. and Kenneth J. and 1 sister Deborah A.
My father’s name was Richard Allen Ranger and my mother is Margaret Ann Attenello.
Richards parents were Alvin Ulmont Hodgdon/Texas A. Ranger and Mary Ellen Buck. The story on his father’s name is that Alvin wanted to be a Texas Ranger but couldn’t because he was part Native American and back in the early 1900’s they were not allowed to be a Ranger, so he legally changed his name to Texas A. Ranger. in addition to this story I was told that he also changed his name because he was married to a Genevieve Mary Still. They had 3 daughters, Cecila Agnes, Patience Mary Bertha, and Betty Carol. Betty was killed on her way to school, being run over by a car. Cecila seen the whole thing. Sometime after Betty’s death Alvin left his wife and 2 daughters in NY. I am not sure when he met his 2nd wife Mary. I have heard that Alvin never divorced his 1st wife. My mother said he had to have because he was a Jehovah Witness and the Elders from the hall he belonged to required him to prove with documents that he divorced his 1st wife. Now I don’t have any of these documents and neither does one of his daughter’s daughter-in-law. She said they never divorced.
So the plot thickens. I have no census record of him ever showing a divorce and no marriage certificate of him and Mary. I was also told that Alvin was born in North Dakota, but no record of birth was recorded supposedly for the year he was born.
Now specking of his birth, I have 3 different years. 1. Jan 1898 2. Jan 18993. Jan 1900. I have conflicting information for the first 2. The 3rd one is coming from his daughter. My grandfather never talked about his parents or siblings. He had 1 brother, 7 sisters, 2 half brothers and 2 half sisters.
Now Alvin’s Parents were William Henry Hodgdon and Bertha Wade/Weeks. Okay, so here is the deal with his parents. I was told by my father, who also is the one who filled out Alvin/Texas’ death certificate that Bertha’s last name was Weeks. Again there is no supporting record of this. There is a Weeks in the family, but it is Bertha’s sister Anna Margaret who married John Charles Fremont Weeks. Bertha was reported as living with them on the 1895 Census, but she is also listed as living with her mother at the same time. So how is she able to be living in two different places at the same time? Could it be 2 different people? Well both are 19 at this time, the only difference is the spelling of the name With her sister her name is spelled Bertha and with her mom it is Bertie. So it seems both her sister and mom listed her as living with them.
Now on the 1900 census it get’s more interesting because Bertha (Bertie, which must have been a nickname for her) is listed as living with her mother and her son. Now Bertha’s last name is still Wade and her son is listed as Alvin Ealstman. Also listed on there is where the parents are from. On Alvin both his parents are from Minnesota. All the dates add up right for the births of all three, Jennie (Bertha’s mom), Bertha, and Alvin’s. So who is this Alvin Ealstman? I do know that one of Bertha’s sisters was raped by a Native American, so could Bertha have been as well? Or could it have been a different man? Maybe she was in-love with this man and was going to marry him but he died before they could and she found out she was pregnant. Now thinking back in those times, it was very frowned upon to have sex before marriage but it does not mean it never happened. I think chances of it being so are pretty slim though. I have searched all over the internet for the name Ealstman and always come up blank. Now spelling was not a strong point back in those days either and there was no auto-correct or spell check button. Most of the time the name was spelled they way it sounded. So again who the heck is this Alvin Ealstman? Alvin daughter’s had said once that she had heard that Alvin was adopted. Now if we look at the 1900 census it says on there that Bertie has given birth to 1 child and that 1 child is living at the time. Plus if you see the picture of Alvin and one of his mother there is no way she can DENY that is her son. I will have to keep scratching my head on this one.
Now for Alvin’s father. We have been told that his name is William Henry Hodgdon. He is listed on a lot of census’ with Alvin as his son, but here is the kicker. I have a 1900 Census for North Dakota that has William on it. He is with 2 of his children and is divorced. The only time he was in Minnesota was at some time when his son was born in 1887. He had not been working for 4 months and his son had been out of school for 8 months. On a 1910 Census we have William and Bertha together, it says they have been married for 12 years, which would mean they were married in 1898, so why in 1900 is he listed as divorced if he was married and Bertha listed as single the same year? Williams youngest child was born in 1893. 9 years it seems before Alvin was born. Bertha was also 18 years younger then William and she was his 3rd wife.
Now in the picture above is William and Bertha Hodgdon with Ernest their only other son (he looks to be about 21/22 yrs. old), and sisters Bernice, Elizabeth, Ada, and Edith. Now if you look at all the girls, they look just like their father and Look at Ernest, he looks like his dad, but has the cheeks of his mother.
Here is Alvin, who is about the same age as Ernest in the picture above. Alvin has brown hair and does not look as much like his father, where Ernest has blonde hair just like his sisters. Sorry, but to me Alvin looks nothing like William, there fore it bring me to believe that he is not Williams son. Maybe he was treated as an outcast, could be why he never talked about his parents and siblings. Maybe because it was a disgrace that Bertha was raped by a Native American, that they never spoke of it?
I just find it very interesting how after connecting with family members I find out I am not the only one who heard stories of there being Native American blood in the family. Maybe Bertha is part Native American, she sure has the high cheek bones. Growing up I always thought my grandfather looked part Native American. The skin color and cheeks.
Well, I am off to pick my brain and pull my hair out some more hunting down the truth, so til next time…………Happy hunting!!
While working on my family tree today, I stumbled on someone’s tree on Ancestry.com and she had a link to her blog. So I thought what better way to not only help me sort through all this information I have and figure out what is right and what is wrong, but also connect with other family members who can help me with this long and tiring process. And hey it’s a good way to connect to others who are connected to my family in one way or another.
So, please bare with me as I figure out how to not only sort through my tree, but also blogging.