Friday, February 26, 2016

AncestryDNA Results Came In : Ethnicity Estimates

My AncestryDNA results came in last week, and above are the graphics for the ethnicity estimates.  Although I know that these should be taken with a grain of salt, and are only as good as the database they are comparing me to, I find it interested to compare the differences from my results at 23andMe and FamilyTreeDNA.

AncestryDNA picked up traces of Native American and West Asian, for example, that 23andMe didn't show.   I've had my results run at GEDMATCH in the various ethnicity calculators and have found similar results.  So way back in time there is a bit of a mystery to solve.

These regions are hard to pinpoint and are very vague such as Europe West or Scandinavia - but again based on the paper trail I'm not too surprised by the results.  

The trace regions in West Asia - the Caucasus region of Turkey, Iran, Iraq, etc. is interesting.  But then again, I have quite a bit of ancestry that remains unknown due to my mystery maternal 2nd great-grandfather.

I've posted on these various topics before under my DNA Genealogy tab.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

In Memoriam : Edmund G. Pierce, Anderson Democrat, January 29, 1875

Located this remembrance of my maternal 3rd-great grandfather, Edmund G. Pierce in the Anderson, Indiana Democrat of January 29, 1875.  Edmund had died on January 8, 1875.


WILSON GRANGE, No. __ , Jan. 19, 1875.

WHEREAS, We, with deep regret, must announce the death of our beloved brother and worthy lecturer, Edmund G. Pierce, and,

WHEREAS, We regard his death as a great loss to  the community, and to his bereaved family and friends, in as much as he was a good citizen, kind brother, true christian, and as affectionate husband and parent.

RESOLVED, We tender our sincere and heartfelt sympathies to the bereaved family and friends.

RESOLVED, That, as a tribute of respect to our deceased brother, we drape our hall in mourning for thirty days.

RESOLVED, That these preambles and resolutions be entered upon the minutes of this grange, and that a copy be presented to each of our county papers with a request to publish.

LEVI BREWER , Committee

Sunday, February 21, 2016

DNA Files & Horizontal Pedigrees

Found a great idea for helping to connect with my DNA matches and figure out where we connect - horizontal pedigrees.  Thanks to a post at Analytic Genealogy, I've been creating horizontal pedigree charts for myself, my parents, and other relatives that I've convinced to do DNA testing.  My hope is that I can use them to share with my genetic cousins in an easier way to find the common ancestors.  The blog post describing how these horizontal pedigree charts can be used is linked here.

So often my matches either don't have a family tree online or if they do, it can become unwieldy to read and figure out where the matches lie.  I find that the horizontal pedigree chart not only makes it pretty easy to see your family lines extended out, but also can show you where there are gaps in your tree without having to look at your software.

I've created a Dropbox folder for my DNA Files and am including these horizontal charts.  I might eventually include other information, but for now I will be sharing the link to the Dropbox folder with my DNA matches so they can easily see where we connect.  Since most matches are below 5th-6th cousins, they should be able to see a common surname on the chart.  

If you are interested, the link to my Dropbox folder and the charts is included here.

Tuesday, February 09, 2016

Catherine & William Pierce lot, Maplewood Cemetery, Madison County, Indiana

Maplewood Cemetery Records, Anderson, Madison County, Indiana

This is a copy of the cemetery records at the office of Maplewood Cemetery in Anderson, Madison County, Indiana for my maternal 3-great grandparents, William and Catherine (Groenendyke) Pierce.  The cemetery is split into two sections, and the section the Pierces are buried in is considered West Maplewood.

According to the cemetery office, many of the records were destroyed in a fire.  Isn't that always the case with my Madison County ancestors?  But in this case, at least they had this log.

The owner of the lot # 694 is Catherine & William Pierce.  In the list of persons buried there were some interesting finds :

infant Pierce - stamped "See File".  Need to find out who this might be.  I believe I saw another record that stated this was the child of Lyman Pierce, but I'm not sure now.

Edmund  - this is Edmund Pierce, whose tombstone is marked. He died January 8, 1875.

1 adult - I believe that this record refers to William F. Pierce's first wife, Clara, who died in 1906.  Her obituary stated she was buried in the Anderson Cemetery, which was the old name for Maplewood.

Catherine Pearce - note the spelling.  Notes that she was buried December 13, 1913.  Catherine was the wife of Edmund.

Lillian Pearce - note the spelling.  Only 18 years old, she was buried August 14, 1921.  Lillian was the daughter of William and Clara Pierce.

John Granville (Groendyke) - aged 79.  Burial date was February 4, 1929. This must be John Thomas Groenendyke, the brother of Catherine, son of Elias & Nancy (Jenkins) Groenendyke.  Will need to do more research on him.

William F. Pierce - aged 85, buried September 25, 1950.  This was my maternal 2nd-great grandfather.  He has a marker at the cemetery with his second wife, Vida.

Vida Pierce - age not given, buried November 22, 1968. This was Vida (Maddox) Pierce, second wife of William.

Chad Pierce - aged 21 hours.  Infant, buried June 3, 1972.  Chad was the son of George & Annette Pierce.

James Louis Pierce - age 70, buried Feb. 1, 2002 (cremation) at the foot of Lillian Pierce.

These records are interesting for what they show and don't show.  There is a large monument that says "PIERCE" on it, with "E.G. Pierce" on one side and "W.F. Pierce" on the other.  Edmund and Catherine Pierce have a footstone, and there is a military marker for James Louise Pierce.  The infant Chad Pierce has a marker, as does William and Vida have a joint marker.

There is no marker for Lillian Pierce or Clara Pierce or John Groenendyke at the plot.

Friday, February 05, 2016

Death Notice : Edmund Pierce, 1875, Anderson, Indiana Democrat

Anderson Democat January 15, 1875 page 4
While at the the Anderson, Indiana Public Library, I found the mention of Edmund G. Pierce's death in the January 15, 1875 edition of the Anderson Democrat.  This weekly paper didn't have much in the way of an obituary, but it did place his death in Madison County.  Edmund's tombstone is at the West Maplewood Cemetery in Anderson and states that he died January 8, 1875.

Last Friday, Mr. Ed. Pierce, a highly respected citizen, was summoned from the embrace of his kind family and friends to appear on "the sweet Eden shore" there to enjoy the society of the good and blest throughout the annals of eternity.

Edmund was my maternal 3rd-great grandfather, the son of Francis S. and Rebecca (Page) Pierce and the husband of Catherine Groenendyke.

Monday, February 01, 2016

Searching for the Smoking Gun In Madison County, Indiana

Mom searching Miscellaneous Records books, Madison County, Indiana
Spent today researching family history in Madison County, Indiana with mom today, working on trying to find clues on her Pierce line so we can button up the application for the DAR.  While we did make some interesting finds, there was no smoking gun today linking Edmund G. Pierce to his parents, Francis & Rebecca (Page) Pierce to be found.

In the 1850 census, when Edmund should be living with his parents in Wayne County, Indiana - he was enumerated in another household.  He wasn't the only one, as brothers Henry and Francis N. were not in the household either.  I'm sure that a search in Wayne County, Indiana records will need to be done to solve the whys and wherefores.  In the meantime, I was hopeful that something could be found in Madison County.

I knew that Edmund and his brother Henry were found in Madison County, Indiana circa 1863 based on a Civil War draft record, and that the family farm was purchased circa 1870 from the county history biography.  Edmund and wife Catherine were listed in the 1870 census in Lafayette Township as was Francis and Rebecca in the same township.  Edmund died January 8, 1875 in Madison County. My hope was that sometime between the period of 1863-1875 we would find a deed or record that would tie the families together.

We started out our day at the Recorder's office, searching through the Grantor and Grantee Index books (the big ones) writing down the page and book numbers so that we could later get copies.  We ended up finding several records to have copies made, but none of them contained anything about Francis.  Apparently, his time in Madison County was spent without buying or selling land.  There were, however, many records between Edmund and his brothers, Albert O. and Henry E. to be found in Madison County.

A stop at Central Records for a copy of the marriage license for the second marriage of William F. Pierce to Vida Maddox revealed that his birth date on that record was July 10, 1866, not 1865 as is found on his tombstone.  While we were there, I had asked about another marriage record on James F. Wright who I was trying to verify was a relative, and asked about the divorce records for Chester Wright and his father John Wright.  Since I don't have too many opportunities to have the day off to research, I took my chances, but unfortunately, the Central Records couldn't find the divorce cases.  I will continue to search other sources and come up with an exact date before trying again, as I'm not sure they searched that hard for them.

On our way out of the courthouse, we stopped by the Auditor's office, which had the records of the County Commissioners during the time period when William F. Pierce served as County Commissioners.  We found the original minutes where he signed his name, records show he served from January 1, 1918 through December 31, 1923.

Signature of my maternal 2nd-great grandfather, William F. Pierce

Had to stop and get something to eat before heading out to the West Maplewood Cemetery to find the Pierce plot.  It had been awhile since I had been there, but we were able to find it.  I was hoping to get a picture of Clara Pierce's marker, as I realized that I didn't have it.  When we found the plot we realized that Clara didn't have a marker.  There is the big family marker that has "E.G. Pierce" on one side and "W.F. Pierce" on the other; markers for Edmund and Catherine Pierce; one for James L. Pierce and one for infant Chad Pierce, and then a marker for William F. and Vida Pierce.

We next headed over to the Anderson Public Library to see if by chance there were any contemporary newspapers that they had on file that might have a mention of the death of Edmund on January 8, 1875.  Fortunately, they did have the Anderson Democrat on microfilm, and I was able to find mention of his death.  Unfortunately, it wasn't much of an obituary, and made no mention of who his parents were.

The library was able to give us the contact information for the cemetery and we called and made arrangements with the office to come over and view their records.  Of course, a fire had destroyed many of the older records.  They didn't have a card on file for Clara's burial, but in the record of the family plot, there is mention of "1 adult", which we are pretty sure is Clara.  I know in the past I had seen a map of the family plot, but right now cannot locate in my files.  Rather than make copies of the records, I took pictures with my cell phone, and will be able to examine later and will make another post on them.

There were many records to digest which will provide me with some blog fodder for future posts.

Overall, the day had some positives, but at the end of the day we still have no concrete proof to supply on the DAR application that Edmund G. Pierce was the son of Francis & Rebecca (Page) Pierce.  The hunt continues!