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.

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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.

Society Archives

Society Archives

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

March 2009

Issue #1

Volume #31

RIVERDALE CEMETERY – Lewiston Road Niagara Falls,  New York (Town of Lewiston) Source:  Niagara Co. Cemetery Records, N.C.G. Library, 929.5 Lewiston 
 
Per Niagara County Cemeteries Index (NCGS Lib. 929.5 Index) 

Riverdale is on the south side of Lewiston Road in very good condition.  Records are in good condition in the office on the grounds:  Veterans plot in cemetery in section 10;  425 graves. 
 
DENNIS McDONALD   Section 2   GAR Marker Co. F 10th Regt. N.Y. Vol. Cav. 1836 – 1903  
 
JOHN RIECH    Section 1   Govt. Stone 23rd N.Y. Battery 1827 – 1904 
 
CALEB C. McKEE    Section 1   Govt. Stone 19th N. Y. Battery 1844 – 1905 
 
JOHN H. STAHL    Section 1   Govt. Stone Co. A – 28th N.Y. V. 1838 – 1911   

LEWIS D. BANKS    Section 4   Govt. Stone Co. G – 35th N.Y.Vol. Infantry Co. H – 18th N.Y. Vols. 1842 – 1913   

S.W. ROBINSON    Section 4   Govt. Stone 11th Michigan   Infantry 1825 – 1899 
 
ALBERT J. ADAMS   Section 4   Red Stone 1842 – 1925 Battery F 2nd Pa. Vol. Art.        

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

The Descendants of William Leete

Compiled by Edward L. Leete – 1884, second edition 1934

One of the Family History books we have in our NCGS Library is The Descendants of William Leete.

I did an Ancestry.com search for the Leete surname in Niagara County in their US Federal Census Collection and there were over 100,000 results of Niagara County Leetes.  I did a similar search in Find A Grave and found 13 results of Leetes buried in Niagara County.

If you have Leete’s in your family tree, come visit our NCGS Library.  You can look at our Descendants of William Leete book along with our many other family histories 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)

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

St. Paul’s Lutheran Church Records Martinsville (North Tonawanda, NY) To 1900

The title page says:

St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church Records

Martinsville, North Tonawanda, NY

(Formerly Town of Wheatfield)

Up to 1900

The translated records were transcribed by Norma Stolzenberg, 1985

Note: Pages A through K were taken from Cemetery Records in addition to Church Records.

Here is the FindaGrave website for this cemetery: https://www.findagrave.com/cemetery/2378502/saint-pauls-lutheran-cemetery? 

Come read through our St. Paul’s Lutheran Church Records book along with our many other books in the NCGS Library.  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)

NCGS library notes

Cemetery Records Niagara Falls Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution Niagara Falls, NY March 1937 Mrs. Roy E. Fowler – Regent Compiled by: Mrs. Frank E. Lawrence and Mrs. Charles E. Wooddell

I had the opportunity to visit the DAR Library and National Headquarters a few weeks ago when I attended the FGS 2019 Conference (https://fgs.org/) in Washington, D.C.

I was curious about the DAR building and I found this video about the DAR Library a few days ago on YouTube: https://youtu.be/5sseNwVPxPg.  At about 2:42 into the video, the narrator is talking about the history of the growth of the DAR library collection saying: “The most valuable sources for this expanding collection were the Daughters.  Members generously donated the histories and records of their ancestors.

When DAR State and Chapter Librarian positions were created, even more resources poured in.  A healthy competition between Chapters and States developed, as they attempted to out-do one another with the number of books they donated.  Local Chapters began searching old cemeteries for headstones of patriots and submitting transcriptions from those headstones as well as other local records to expand the variety and wealth of resources of the collection.”

DAR Library in Washington, D.C.:

Shortly after watching that video, I was working on organizing our Niagara County collection of books in our own NCGS library.  I couldn’t believe my surprise when I came across a book titled, Cemetery Records, Niagara Falls Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution, Niagara Falls, New York (March 1937).  Just like the video mentioned, here was a book of cemetery transcriptions put together by a local DAR chapter!  I wonder if they sent a copy of this book to the DAR Headquarters in Washington, D.C.!

According the index, the contents of the book include:Dickersonville (Ridge Rd) CemeteryFilmore (At East Porter – Town of) CemeteryHosmer (Lake Rd.) CemeteryLewiston (Town of Lewiston) CemeteryPekin (Old Cemetery) CemeteryRansomville (Town) CemeteryTower (Tower Corners) CemeteryYoungstown Cemetery

What is so wonderful about a cemetery transcription book like this, is that it was done many years ago (1937) and that the headstones that they transcribed may no longer be there or legible today.
If you’d like to look through our many cemetery books including this Cemetery Records one, please visit our NCGS Library.  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. 


Our library is in need of volunteer librarians.  Please contact Jeanette at jsheliga@me.com if you are interested in learning more!

DAR Library Selfie!!

Attachments area Preview YouTube video The DAR LibraryThe DAR Library

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)