NCGS library notes

Spotlight on our Vertical Files – Carter

Throughout the years, our librarians and volunteers have clipped and copied loads of news articles and filed them by surname in our library.  Files like these may also include pedigree charts, family group sheets, pictures, and more if members have donated them.

If you have family group sheets, pictures, newspaper clippings, funeral cards, etc. that you would like to donate to our Vertical Files, please contact us!  Our library is located on the 2nd floor of the Niagara County Historical Society located at 215 Niagara St., Lockport, NY  14094.  We are open Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays from 1 – 4:45pm or you can reach us by e mail at: comments@niagaragenealogy.org

Contributor: Jeanette Sheliga of Lockport NY is Vice-President of the Niagara County Genealogical Society, Organizer of the North Tonawanda Library Genealogy Club and a member of APG (Assn of Professional Genealogists)

Society Archives

Society Archives

The following is an article from one of our Niagara County Genealogical Society Newsletters:

October 2003 Issue #4 Volume #25 DOCTORS OF PEKIN 

Source: History of Pekin. Norman Peirce, 974.79 Pek, NCGS Library

Dr. Abraham Hodgeboom lived in Pekin 1837 or earlier. B. 17_ d. May 21? 1849 m. Bata _ Born 1722 d. Mar 7, 1848 ch. Ann lived in Plymouth, Marshall Co., Ind.

Dr. Isaac S. Kidder lived in Pekin various places b. 1796 d. __ m. Elizabeth

Dr. Alfred Poole 1888 lived in Pekin in Eggleston’s house (2998 Upper Mtn) 1870 office in front corner.

Dr. W C Earle 1866-70 Had office ncar Cronkite Tavern 1866 when it burned. M. Agnes __ dismissed from ME Church Jul 4, 1874 lived in Chicago in 1874.

Dr. Clinton Sage Office in rear of home (2965 Upper Mtn) moved to Buffalo later.

Dr. Emmet Pyle? joined N C Med So in 1872 – moved to Mich.

Dr. Walter McChesney 1896 lived in Brosie house 1900 (2975 Upper Mtn). m. Apr I, 1901

Dr. John Foote 1860s Office across from ME Church 1864 m. Mary Jane Foote? Harriet V Foote d. Aug 1855 Who?

Dr. Robt R. Fitzgerald 1901 after McChesney – Pekin a short time then Sanborn.

Dr. Myron Orton 1832-18_ One of first doctors, coming from VT and built house on north cast corner of Townline and Lower Mtn Rd (2967 Lower Mtn) – first president of Niagara County Medical Society.

If you would like to become a member and receive our quarterly newsletter, please see our website to join our society!  http://www.niagaragenealogy.org/membership.html

NCGS library notes

North Tonawanda City Cemetery Sweeney (Tonawanda Rural & Wheatfield)

One of the many cemetery books that we have in our Niagara County Genealogical Society Library is a book with transcriptions of the stones from the Sweeney Cemetery.  The book was created in 1976 and was a bicentennial project of the Historical Society of the Tonawandas, Inc.

The book does have an index in the back:

Here is the Find a Grave link to Sweeney Cemetery: https://www.findagrave.com/cemetery/1973670/sweeney-cemetery.

Our library is located on the 2nd floor of the Niagara County Historical Society located at 215 Niagara St., Lockport, NY  14094.  We are open Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays from 1 – 4:45pm or you can reach us by e mail at: comments@niagaragenealogy.org

If you are unable to easily visit our library to research in our holdings, remember that your membership to the Niagara County Genealogical Society entitles you to one FREE 30-minute Look-up in our Library’s holdings.  More information about our Society, membership and other benefits can be found at: http://niagaragenealogy.org/membership.html.  (Psst: You can apply for a membership and renew online from our website!)

Contributor: Jeanette Sheliga of Lockport NY is Vice-President of the Niagara County Genealogical Society, Organizer of the North Tonawanda Library Genealogy Club and a member of APG (Assn of Professional Genealogists)

Society Archives

Society Archives

The following is an article from one of our Niagara County Genealogical Society Newsletters:

September 1998

Issue #3

Volume #20

SCOVELL – EVANS – WAYS CEMETERY


On the north side of Ridge Rd., where the tracks for the Niagara Falls/Lake Ontario Railroad crosses over and continues down thru Model City is the old Leander K. Scovell buring ground. In an open field behind the barn sits this 140 year old cemetery. Surrounding the stones is a stone fence with a hand-wrought gate that still swings freely on its fossilized large stone posts. Inside the fence are nine visible grave markers and seven readable foot stones. The earliest buriel date found was 1839 and the last, Leander K. Scovell died 1887. Leander and his son Leander W. have long since been removed to the Lewiston Cemetery behind the Presbyterian Church.


1. small stone – SACRED TO THE MEMORY OF ALICE EVANS, DAUGHTER OF BENJ. AND SUSAN EVANS D. June 9, 1839 15 yrs 6 mo footstone (recording #1 & #2 say 31 May)


2. broken stone – L. K. Scovell Died Aug. 22, 1887 70 years footstone L.K.S.


3. broken stone – Leander W. Scovell Born Aug. 7. 1846 Died Aug. 17, 1872 footstone L.W.S.


4. Large stone – SACRED TO THE MEMORY OF BENJ. E. EVANS WHO DIED NOV. 24, 1839 53 yrs footstone B.E.E.


5. Large Stone – ANN EVANS died October 22, 1840 82 yrs Footstone A E


6. Large Stone – JUDITH EVANS Died April 2, 1843 60 yrs Footstone J E


7. Large stone – JOSEPH EVANS SON OF LEANDER AND EMILINE SCOVELL Died May 3, 1844 16 mo 68 days


8. Large stone – BENJAMIN WAYS Died Dec. 22, 1860 Footstone B. W.


9. Small stone – MINNIE A CHILD OF AGE 67 yrs


This cemetery is on private property owned by Mr. Kerion of Corona del Mar, Calif. The land recently has been offered for sale.

Recorded Oct. 1983 by Dorothy Rolling & Donald R. Jerge

Here is the cemetery on Find A Grave: https://www.findagrave.com/cemetery/2675535/ways-cemetery

If you would like to become a member and receive our quarterly newsletter, please see our website to join our society!  http://www.niagaragenealogy.org/membership.html

Uncategorized

Quilts and Family

Join us on October 23rd @ 7:00pm, 215 Niagara St., Lockport NY as Janice Wiegley teaches us dating techniques, history and caring for our family heirlooms. We will also explore the history of quilts and their place in your family history.

Janice is a librarian in the NCG library and a board member. She has been doing genealogy for more than 20 years tracing her Niagara County roots for many generations.

NCGS library notes

A Call for Funeral Cards!

One of my favorite resources in our Niagara County Genealogical Society Library is our Vertical File Collection.  We have file cabinets filled with folders organized by surname.


During my lecture last week on Death Records, I asked the audience to please share copies of funeral cards that they might have in their collections of people that are connected to Niagara County.  We’ve already had some members stop in to share their funeral cards and newspaper clippings with us!

You can e mail scans of the funeral cards to: comments@niagaragenealogy.org or stop in during our library hours Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays from 1-4:45pm and one of our librarians can make copies of the funeral cards on our copy machine. 

We appreciate the help to preserve our Niagara County ancestors!

NCGS library notes

Der Brief —–The Newsletter of the Historical Society of North German Settlements in Western New York and Das Haus

One of the many periodicals that we have in our NCGS Library are the Der Briefs which are the newsletter for the Historical Society of North German Settlements in Western New York and Das Haus.  The are an active group that meets monthly.  You can learn more about them at their website (https://dashausmuseum.org) and read below about joining their organization:

Come visit our NCGS Library and look through the Der Brief along with our many other periodicals that we have.  Our library is located on the 2nd floor of the Niagara County Historical Society located at 215 Niagara St., Lockport, NY  14094 and we are open Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays from 1 – 4:45pm.  

Contributor: Jeanette Sheliga of Lockport NY is Vice-President of the Niagara County Genealogical Society, Organizer of the North Tonawanda Library Genealogy Club and a member of APG (Assn of Professional Genealogists)

Events

Special Interest Group (SIG) Book Discussion The Family Tree German Genealogy Guide by James Beidler

On Thursday, October 3rd, 2019, fifteen NCGS members got together to discuss the book The Family Tree German Genealogy Guide by James Beidler.  This was our very first Special Interest Group (SIG) meeting.  A SIG is a chance for members to get together to talk, share, ask questions, and make connections.  It is different than a Program Meeting where a guest speaker is giving a presentation and there is little time for members to interact.

Many genealogy societies have SIGs.  Some are a repeating topic where they meet once a month just to talk about DNA.  The Rochester Genealogical Society has a few Interest Groups: Computer, DNA, and a Writer’s Group.  You can read more on their website: http://www.nyrgs.org/index.php.  The Ontario (Canada) Genealogical Society also has SIGs.  You can read more here: https://ogs.on.ca/branchessigs/special-interest-groups/.

I wasn’t sure of our membership’s interest in starting a SIG, so I wanted to start with a single topic rather than a recurring one.  I decided to create a SIG that was a Book Discussion group.  That way I could gauge the interest based off of attendance and feedback from our first meeting.  With this format, we could select a book, read it, discuss it, then choose a new book to discuss the next time meeting 3-4 times a year.

I was very pleased and excited with the attendance!  Thank you to those members that were able to join us on the 3rd!  We began with going around the table to introduce ourselves and where in Germany our ancestors were from.  Then we discussed how, if we knew, the area in Germany.  Many of us have yet to find the home village, but those of us that did know had learned it from family telling us, church records, and immigration records.

We discussed things that we learned from the book such as if our German immigrants were first-wave or second-wave immigrants (the majority were second-wave).  We then shared the part of the book where you learned something new.  For me, the section on page 102 where the author talks about Rufnames and naming patterns really hit home with me and made me race to my tree to see if my German family followed the naming patterns as they certainly used Rufnames.  We had time for questions to help share our collective knowledge and then, before we knew it, the hour was over.  It went by so fast!

The group picked out our next two books for discussion.  In March 2020 we will discuss The Family Tree Irish Genealogy Guide by Claire Santry and in June 2020 we will discuss The Family Tree Guide to DNA Testing and Genetic Genealogy (Second Edition) by Blaine T. Bettinger.  

We hope that you can join us!  The SIGs are for members only.  If you are not a NCGS member, please see our website and consider joining: http://niagaragenealogy.org/membership.html.

Contributor: Jeanette Sheliga of Lockport NY is Vice-President of the Niagara County Genealogical Society, Organizer of the North Tonawanda Library Genealogy Club and a member of APG (Assn of Professional Genealogists)

NCGS in the News

High school yearbooks for research

Genealogist Carol DiPirro-Stipkovits found a photo of her uncle, Albert Rossow, in a 1946 North Tonawanda High School yearbook with some commentary that gave her a peek into his life as a young man.

Originally published in Niagara Gazette & Lockport Journal — 09/08/2019 http://www.niagara-gazette.com

Albert Rossow’s 1946 yearbook caption reads, “The US Marines have lost a husky fellow who was with them for two-and-a-half years. Having been on duty on a seagoing ship, this ex-Marine now looks forward to attending college and becoming a veterinarian.”

Paging through school yearbooks can make for laughable moments when we see awkward photos of ourselves but for genealogists, yearbooks can also be an important research tool as my Uncle Al’s caption proves.

When you consider that most research records begin with a birth certificate then hop to marriage, and voting, the childhood years are often lost to time. Researching in yearbooks can give us a peek into these important formative years First and foremost, yearbooks are able to put our ancestors in a time and place. Beyond that, they offer a variety of details we can’t get from traditional resources. Student profiles may include clubs or organizations they belonged to and may even provide insight into what they might have been like in terms of personality. If an ancestor is missing from a particular school’s yearbook around wartime, checking the military yearbooks or annuals might pick up their trail.

If you have an ancestor with a local business, yearbooks can be an unexpected resource. As they are rarely indexed, take your time perusing them to find useful pieces of information. I suggest looking at each name in the class pictures. These are the people they interacted with, forged bonds with and sometimes even married. You may even find a famous classmate!

The Niagara County Genealogy Society library at 215 Niagara St., in Lockport has many. Thousands of yearbooks are available online as well. Many yearbook sites have been created to help facilitate class reunions, but they can help genealogists too. One such site is Classmates.com and while they offer subscription services, you can look through all of their online yearbooks for free. Sign up for a free account then click the “Browse Yearbooks” button along the bottom of the page.

Other free sites are Access-Genealogy.com which is completely free to search and view. By searching “yearbook”, you can peruse the 225 plus results or add other keywords to narrow it down. (ex. New York, college) Archive.org is a favorite for so many genealogical searches and completely free. Just type “yearbook” in the search bar to pull up over 20,000 results. A private, but free, website is the National Yearbook Project at Yearbook. GenealogyVillage.com. A list of US states runs down the left side, which, when clicked, will take you to that state’s page, listing school yearbooks available online by county.

As far as paid sites, my favorite is Ancestry.com which has a collection of 51,000 yearbooks scanned, indexed and searchable online. Searching is free but you will need a membership to peruse the results. Family History Centers and local libraries often have free access on-site. Additionally, Ancestry will offer free access weekends throughout the year so keep a research list on hand to make the most of them.

Yearbooks are one of those “home” sources which many people don’t think of as a family history resource yet they provide us with a fascinating perspective on our ancestors’ lives and serve as important documents of social history.

If you have yearbooks to donate, contact me at noellasdaughter@gmail.com

Carol DiPirro-Stipkovits is the President of the Niagara County Genealogical Society, a guest lecturer and a member of the National Genealogical Society.