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Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Are We Related?

My series of books on my direct McGinnis Family ancestry
D. McGinnis asked Olive Tree Genealogy about our identical surnames:

My name is D. McGinnis.  I was born in Iowa in 1935.  I was just curious if you had come across my line of the mcginnis family.  I have not come across your name in my geanological wanderings.  Are we related somehow?
Olive Tree Genealogy Answer:  The McGinnis surname is one of the most common in Ireland. It is also wide-spread across North America. Without knowing your McGinnis ancestry to compare with what I know of mine, and without knowing if paths ever crossed geographically, there is no way to answer your question.  We could compare DNA results if you had yours done.

Please see my McGinnis family information on my website and see if you spot anything familiar. I have written a series of books on my direct McGinnis line (see image) but I am also working on a book on the 7 sons and 2 daughters of John McGinnis who came from Ireland to Canada in the 1830s which I hope to finish by the end of this year.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

FInding a Ships Passenger List in 1852

Recently Billy F. wrote to ask Olive Tree Genealogy about a ships' passenger list. Here is Billy's email:


I can't seem to locate the ship's manifest on-line - but my cousin sent me a copy of the Ships Manifest. ( so I know it exists ) Our family ( Fields  - 5 family members ) came  over from Liverpool on the SS City of Washington in 1852. Pithin Page  was the Master.

My question is that I noticed that you wrote that ships coming to the States before 1855 had no receiving station - what does that exactly mean? Is there anyway to find out the location ( or most likely ) where the ship docked and let off my anscestors??? Or do you think I will never know the answer?

Can you point me to a place I can go that might be able to give me as much information as possible? Ex. - who did all of these ship's manifests filled out by the Masters get turned in to ???  If they all got saved, someone must be holding them  ( correct ??? )
Olive Tree Genealogy's answer:

Billy you haven't told me where your ancestor landed - America? Canada? Or somewhere else?  If it was in Canada, you have a challenge ahead of you. 


Before 1865 ships passenger list to Canada did not have to be archived. There are some lists but the challenge is finding them as they are few and far between. However there are substitute lists such as Shipping Company Records, Immigration Agent Records, St. Lawrence Steamship Records, etc. See Filling in the Gaps at http://www.olivetreegenealogy.com/ships/canada/ for links to alternate records for pre 1865 immigration AND for details on any that are available only offline.

If your ancestor landed in America you can search passenger lists from 1820 on at Ancestry.com. They have published indexes and images for all ships landing in USA.  In fact I had a quick look and Ancestry.com has published indexes and images for the City of Washington landing in New York in March, July, and October of 1852.

Re your comment that I wrote "ships coming to the States before 1855 had no receiving station" that is not an accurate quote. I assume you are talking about my page online for ships arriving in New York at http://www.olivetreegenealogy.com/ships/tousa_ny.shtml. The accurate quote on my page, which referred only to New York, is "1624-31 July 1855: no receiving station" 

For years after 1855 I provided the name of the receiving station. It is important to understand that a receiving station was an official place that received and processed passengers. That does not mean ships did not land in New York before 1855, it simply means there was no official place to process them.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

More Questions Answered re Relationshp Terms

Ann asked about relationship terms:

What is my sons relationship to a) my first cousin and b) to her children. And what is my sons relationship to my nieces children.
I keep coming up with the same answer to each of the questions but surely they cant be the same??
No they aren't the same. First thing you should note is that you have different generations so there will be some times removed (as in 2nd cousin 3 times removed). Times removed refers to the number of generations between each person.

Then you have cousins versus nieces so right away you have different relationships.

For example the child of your first cousin is your son's second cousin. 
Your first cousin is your son's first cousin once removed

You could try Steve Morse's Relationship Calculator.  Read his instructions and start entering your terms. Also try this Relationship chart as it may be easier to use.




Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Finding Burial or Death Records in 1855 in Ontario

Norma asked Olive Tree Genealogy about her 2nd great-grandfather who died in Ontario Canada in 1855.

I have not been able to find death record and/or obituaries for my 2nd great-grandfather and his eldest son, John Bergey.
 
Henry S Bergey, wife Elizabeth Clemmer, and their first three children moved to Waterloo County around 1848. Three daughters were born between 1849 and 1854 in Waterloo.
 
My curiosity is about cause of death of both father, Henry S. Bergey, d. 17 Feb. 1855 and eldest son, John Bergey, d. 21 February 1855.
Olive Tree Genealogy answer:

Norma, vital records were not kept in Ontario before 1869. That means that deaths in 1855 should be sought in local church burial records and cemetery records. However, even if found, the cause of death is unlikely to be recorded.  

You might be well advised to check local newspapers of the time (if there are any to be found) to see if you can find a death notice. But don't overlook finding out what diseases might have been happening in February 1855. Perhaps there was a cholera or diptheria outbreak, and this would likely have been noted in a newspaper.