Tag Archives: genealogy

so, here’s a question

i wonder to whom i am related. i’ve done a fair amount of genealogical research, and i have a database with a few thousand people to whom i am related in some way or another… and there’s this piece of information, which i figured out when i was just starting out, about 15 years ago:

1             – self
2             – parents – 1 generation ≅ 25 years
4             – grandparents – 2 generations ≅ 50 years
8             – great grandparents           – 3 generations ≅ 75 years
16          – 2x great grandparents    – 4 generations ≅ 100 years
32          – 3x great grandparents    – 5 generations ≅ 125 years
64          – 4x great grandparents    – 6 generations ≅ 150 years
128       – 5x great grandparents    – 7 generations ≅ 175 years
256       – 6x great grandparents    – 8 generations ≅ 200 years
512       – 7x great grandparents    – 9 generations ≅ 225 years
1024    – 8x great grandparents    – 10 generations ≅ 250 years
2048    – 9x great grandparents    – 11 generations ≅ 275 years
4096    – 10x great grandparents – 12 generations ≅ 300 years
8192    – 11x great grandparents – 13 generations ≅ 325 years
16384 – 12x great grandparents – 14 generations ≅ 350 years
32768 – 13x great grandparents – 15 generations ≅ 375 years
65536 – 14x great grandparents – 16 generations ≅ 400 years

according to the research i have done, i’ve traced one thread of my family fabric back to the 1620s, but i’ve only tracked 11 generations, which indicates to me that there was a shorter time between generations, the further back you go, but it’s an accurate number of relatives, even if the number of years isn’t exactly accurate…

but, i think about 65,536 people who had an active part in my creation, despite the fact that they never knew who i am, and probably never knew anybody other than the people two or three generations to either side of them… and i also think about the approximately 7,000,000,000 individuals that currently inhabit the planet, all of whom have the same 65,536 relatives, some of whom are the same people… and 65,536 only goes into 7,000,000,000 approximately 106,812 times…

so the probability is pretty high that you, and i, and everyone else, are related to pretty much everybody, if you go back far enough…

genealogy

President Benjamin Harrison and his wife had a son, Benjamin Harrison II.

Benjamin II and his wife had a son, Benjamin Harrison III.

Benjamin III and his wife had a son, Benjamin Harrison IV.

Benjamin IV and his wife had a son, Benjamin Harrison V.

Benjamin V and his wife had a son, President William Henry Harrison. Benjamin V also had another son, William Henry’s brother, Carter Bassett Harrison.

Carter Bassett Harrison and his wife, Jane Byrd, had a daughter, Caroline Harrison.

Caroline Harrison married William Henry Lawrence, and they had a son, Henry Harrison Lawrence.

Henry Harrison Lawrence married Mary Elen (Molly) Ross, who was the daughter of Samuel Lafayette Ross and Cassandra Kinkaid Slaughter

Samual Lafayette Ross was the son of James Thomas Ross and Sarah (Sally) Cook. James Thomas Ross had another son, Samuel Lafayette’s brother, Alfred Cowan Ross.

Alfred Cowan Ross married Nancy Margaret (Madge) Johnson and had a daughter, Una Perry Ross.

Una Perry Ross married Matthew Shields DeWoody, and they had a daughter, Herma Vera DeWoody.

Herma Vera DeWoody married Albert Augustine Hammond and had a son, who is my father.

so, President Benjamin Harrison is my first-cousin-in-law, 10 times removed…

or something like that…

whew!!!

i got my genealogical research back! 😀

i was looking at the .gramps file… i should have been looking at the .gramps subdirectory of my (backed-up) home directory.

instead of starting up gramps and making a “new” database, what i should have done is moved the old .gramps folder into my new home directory. because of the fact that i started gramps before i knew that, i already had a .gramps directory, so i found the old one and over-wrote the new directory.

of course, once i had the up-to-date version of the database open, i went in and told it where the new location of all my media sources were, and it said “oh, look… correct information… munch munch munch…” and it was back up and running in no time…

AND the new version of gramps has a “Create Backup” option, which saves ALL of the information, so i don’t have to freak out again… 😉

the sound still doesn’t work, but i’m on the trail of tracking down a solution, and i’m already futzing around with possibilities for retrieving my email, address book, and rss feeds… things are looking up.

holy crap!

😡

somehow i managed to lose about ¾ of the genealogical research i have done over the past four years or so…

and, yes, i thought that the files that i needed were a part of the backup that i had been making every two weeks for the past four years… apparently they were not… 😐

and i still haven’t got my sound working, in spite of the fact that i reinstalled from scratch…

😡

interesting…

my father has A TON of cousins. my grandfather had six full sisters and brothers, and one half-sister, and they ALL had children, and their children had children…

the problem is that, because of the fact that my father never took any interest, and my grandfather wasn’t very informative about his family, I know absolutely nothing about any of these people. i’ve managed to trace the family back to warrensburg, missouri, where i figure about one in every three people is related to me in some way or another, but what information i have has been acquired through cunning and skill, and not because somebody told me, or because i grew up with these people.

but the fact is, that my grandfather had a whole bunch of brothers and sisters, and i’ve been cunning and skillful enough (and enough of a computer geek) to make contact with the daughter of one of my great-uncles, which makes her my “first cousin once removed” — i’ll get the hang of figuring out what “removed” means eventually.

because of the fact that my grandfather was closed-mouthed about his family, my father doesn’t even know who she is… people who one used to “grow up with”, back when families were extended and all lived in more-or-less the same community, are now spread out all over the planet, and you can very easily lose track of people, especially when you aren’t paying attention.

wump

Thomas and Minnie Hammondi’m feeling marginally better than i was yesterday, and yesterday i was feeling marginally better than i was the day before that, and so forth, for about a week… which, i suppose, means that i’m getting better, slowly… it’s gotten so i don’t actively feel sick, most of the time, but i still have bouts of coughing that are really annoying because of their unpredictability, and i still get exhausted really easily, which sometimes is accompanied by a bout of coughing, which exhausts me even more.

the dignified-looking people to the right are my great grandparents, Thomas W. and Minnie L. Hammond. i don’t know when the picture was taken exactly, but my guess is that it was some time between minnie’s marriage, in 1906 (she was 16 when she got married) and her death in 1946… and judging by how old she looks, i would guess about 1915 to 1925-ish. but, because of the fact that they were relatives of mine, i can pretty much assure anyone who doesn’t know, that they were very likely not anywhere near as dignified as they look. my general impression is that most of my relatives from that era are all but hillbillies from central missouri (pronounced “missourah”). after minnie died, tom hammond got married to another teenager (when he was almost 70), named Melmalee Clapper, and had another child before he died… so i guess i’m carrying on a family tradition by being married to a woman who is 17 years younger than me, as well as carrying on the family tradition of being the oldest child of a family who wants to have nothing to do with me. 😛 fortunately i’ve got a perfectly wonderful surrogate-family, which has taken over the family duties in a way that my family-of-origin never could.

i won’t have to go in for jury duty on monday, because, according to the jury-duty-check-in-phone-line that i was supposed to call friday evening, “there are no trials scheduled for the month of april”… which, considering that i received the message around april 10th or so, i would have thought that they knew that already, but apparently they don’t. oh well, i guess i don’t get to go in and inform all of the other potential jurors about the right of jury nullification, and disqualify us all from the jury pool… 😉

i’ve got a really weird anomaly with my blog: i use a plugin called “Jetpack” that connects my blog to wordpress.org, and gives me stuff like stats for the site, and the ability to short-link to my blog, and stuff like that. there is a number "➊" in a black circle, next to the jetpack link, which, under normal circumstances, means that there is an update to be applied, but i can’t find it anywhere, and there are no other indications that updates are even required, which there usually are if there’s an update that is really supposed to be applied. i can put up with a random "➊" character, but anything outside of what’s normally supposed to happen makes me extremely suspicious.

the week in review

i completed the replacement of the lead pipe on the ugly sousaphone. i have yet to replace the water key, and patch the split third-valve upper tubing, but those things shouldn’t take long at all, and then i will be able to deliver the ugly sousaphone to its rightful owner (thaddeus), who will, then, hand over to me the double B-flat tuba seen here… and i will play the HELL out of it! 8)

i was contacted by a person who claims to be my grandfather’s half-sister… but she’s around the same age as me… and for someone who might not be who she says she is, she certainly has an over abundance of trivial information and unimportant, but entirely, independently verified facts about people who would otherwise be completely unknown, so at this point i tend to agree that she’s probably my grandfather’s half-sister… but, because of the fact that my family is all that’s left of a bunch of massively inbred yokels and hillbillies, she hasn’t cleared up any of the “family mysteries”, and, in fact, has come up with several new ones that will, likely, never be completely understood, because they have to do with my family, who, traditionally, ignores, berates, or tries to shout down anybody (like me) who says that the way they live is not the best. rosemary, my great aunt, is also a child of the ’60s, and has a hippy heart, which is probably why she survived this long without doing the traditional family thing and going crazy.

seriously… there’s a family history going back almost 200 years, of family members getting killed or maimed by insane people, some of whom have also been family members… weird… 😐

the moisture festival has been going well, but i haven’t started playing shows "for real" yet, despite the fact that i have already played 6 shows with two different bands… starting on saturday, i have 12 shows over the course of 8 days, with two different bands, so i’m going to be more than ordinarily busy. until then, i’ve got a rehearsal this evening, and a rehearsal tomorrow evening, and probably a rehearsal either wednesday or thursday.

i got the business cards i made for chris, which look astoundingly good, given the fact that the phone number is deliberately off center… supposedly he’s going to get back to me on a postcard, for which i sent out a preliminary draft on tuesday, and talked with him on wendesday, but haven’t heard anything since. i don’t want to hassle him too much, though, because apart from having a more-or-less full time job, he’s also got a new clinic that he’s in the process of opening up… at the same time, this postcard is “time sensitive” at this point, and i don’t want to wait too long, or i won’t be able to get them printed in time.

weird…

i got a letter in the mail — yes, a physical, hand-written letter — from warrensburg, missouri… which is one of the places i’ve got tons of undiscovered relatives… another place is arbroath, scotland, but that’s another story…

the letter is from a lady who claims that my grandfather is her half-brother…

except, according to the charts i have (which, admittedly, don’t have all the information, because nobody on my side of the family knows any of it), my grandfather didn’t have a half-sister… but she was born after my great-grandmother died… and she’s got several of the right names…

and the part that makes it even more bizarre is that her father is my great-grandfather, but we are only seven years apart in age… her father was 69 when she was born, and lived another 14 years after that.

i can hardly wait to learn more, but i have to curb my enthusiasm… i talked extensively to a person a couple of years ago, who convinced me that she was related to my great-great-grandfather rufus, and then, just as she was about to fill in a whole bunch of missing information in my past, she dropped off the face of the planet, and i have never heard from her again. 😐

ketchup

If you go to the Third World and find 100 people who have never tasted ketchup before, you find out two things: one is that people don’t actually like tomato ketchup, the other is that they dislike all ketchups equally.
     –Rob Young

i downloaded a whole bunch of music from Sharps a burning-man related dub DJ with whom i am related – he’s either my fourth or fifth cousin, either twice or thrice removed… i’m not sure about the particular details, but our shared ancestor is my great-grandfather… or great-great-grandfather, or something like that… i find it somewhat incredible that i am related to so many people, most of whom i don’t know, and that there are other people, some of whom i am related to, who know a lot more about my family, even though they are completely unknown to me, than i do. it’s also good to see that i’ve got relatives who are not my immediate family (who all seem to despise me for not entirely unknown, but entirely unrealistic reasons) who, never the less, have the same predilictions for artistic expression as i do. it is definitely very grounding for me. i keep having to remind myself that i – and everyone else alive – has 1024 great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great grandparents, and the further you go back in time, the fewer people there are… eventually – and it’s a lot sooner than most people think – you’re bound to run into similar family relationships.

along similar lines, through another guy i met who is from whitecourt, alberta, i got a new pile of information about my mother’s family, and i now have more-or-less confirmed lineage back to the early 1600s, and a “home turf” in st. vigeans and arbroath, scotland. i’m still hoping that someone will come along and give me similar information about my father’s side of the family: i’ve only been able to trace them back to the mid-1800s, and, although possibly the father (or, possibly, grandfather) of the last guy in my current list was originally from “the old country” (whichever one that is), i don’t know anything about him… of course i am one of a long tradition from that part of my family, of oldest-children who have been estranged from their families for one reason or another, on top of the fact that the civil war put extreme pressures on family loyalties, and that part of my family was in the thick of the action on both sides of the conflict – which would mean that there are more-than-likely parts of my family history that were deliberately forgotten over the years.

i’ve been doing a lot of performances with snake suspenderz over the past couple of weeks. we’ve been busking at the ballard sunday market for a while now, and the past couple of weeks we haven’t been busking there, but we’ve made up for it by busking at the wallingford market on wednesday, and the interbay market on thursday… and hobbit and i went and busked at the phinney ridge market on friday last week. the fremont phil did a gig at the fremont outdoor cinema on saturday last week, and we’ve got another gig scheduled for the mobile food rodeo, coming up on the 17th… and the day after that, snake suspenderz is doing two gigs in the same day, at the pike place market and beneroya hall… and i’ve discovered that puyallup has a sunday market, which opens up the possibility of going to ballard in the morning and puyallup in the afternoon… 8)

i’ve also had a surprising amount of hybrid elephant business. i’ve got a button order in the process that’s 500 buttons, plus at least two international orders and at least two more domestic orders over the past few weeks, and another one just came in… but the reciept from paypal hasn’t come in yet, so it may not be a real order… ah, there it is… it’s a real order now… 8)

i knew it!

i’ve got a whole pile of new genealogical information from my fourth cousin, twice removed (a guy named evan, who lives somewhere in canada) to rustle through, the upshot of which is that i now have traced my ancestors back to 1620 or thereabouts, and i have, actually, found the source of the name Dorward who were the “wardens of the door” (i.e. security guards) at Arbroath Abbey, in Arbroath, Fofarshire (Angus) county, Scotland…

as moe said… “woot!” 8)

this is why i don’t subscribe to things like this…

despite my interest in geneaology, i usually don’t just arbitrarily subscribe to things like ancestry dot com and genealogy dot com. however, i have recently subscribed to both of them, because i finally got around to uploading a GEDCOM file of my research (8 generations). almost immediately they send me this message that says i have “hints” about some of the people in my family tree…

my sister, my father, and my grandfather.

i know about these people… i know more than i would like to know, and probably more than they would be comfortable knowing that i know… i know what the “hints” are, and i don’t care

what they didn’t tell me in the “potted meat product that isn’t quite SPAM” was that they also have “hints” for 65 other relatives who are far more removed than my grandfather… such as Otto Tobe Biver, my first cousin twice removed, and Sarah Davisson, my grand aunt of wife of great-great-great grand uncle, and Charles W. Hammond, my great-great-great-great-grandfather…

genealogy

Half of European men share King Tut’s DNA – half of all european men, presumably, includes men of european descent, which includes me. the article says that tutankhamun belonged to paternal haplogroup R1b1a2, which, according to my (admittely very limited) research, doesn’t existhowever, paternal haplogroup R1b1b2a does exist, and i can see some anonymous reporter (it was actually alice baghdjian at reuters) making the switch without realising it…

AND since my paternal haplogroup is R1b1b2a1a2c, i am part of R1b1b2a that split off approximately 17,000 years ago.

tutankhamun lived between 1341 – 1323 BCE, or approximately 3300 years ago… what they’re trying to say is not that half of european men are related to tutankhamun, but that they share DNA with tutankhamun – a distinction that is actually in the title of the article.

in order to be related to tutankamun, he would have to be a common ancestor (i.e. the progenitor) of half of all european men… which, i get the very strong impression, is what most people reading the article will probably think, but is actually not the case… if it was, not-so-old king tut (he died when he was 18) must have been a randy and prolific little bugger.

the fact is that tutankhamun and half of all european men – and myself – have a common ancestor 17,000 years ago – approximately 13,500 years before tutankhamun’s birth.

it’s not the same thing as when they announced the discovery that all non-african people are part neanderthal. for that matter, i, half of all european men, and tutankamun, also share DNA with president john adams (paternal haplogroup R1b), approximately 30,000 years ago. at some point in the distant, prehistoric past, i share a common ancestor with john adams…

knowledge – it makes life boring.

more goodies from the past…

Ezra Kirby, 1872 - 1939this is ezra kirby, my great granduncle, age approximately 25 at the time of the portrait. he lived from 1872 to 1939 and he spent his entire life as a farmer in champaign county, illinois.

is it just my imagination, or does that photo look an awful lot like my own son? … who i named ezra, not even knowing that i had a great granduncle with the same name…

okay, i think i’m going to put this project away for a while. it’s getting scary.

ologies

i got my first ever backup of my entire home directory and my music collection finished a few minutes ago… 107gb… which is nowhere near all of the space i have available… 8) i still have to find out how to make the disk mount at startup, which i suspect will involve finding out how to add it to /etc/fstab or /etc/mtab. i’ve also got to figure out how to actually move my home directory, rather than just using a new one – basically what i want is, when i type cd .. into the terminal, instead of going to the main hard disk, i want to go to my newly populated external disk. i’ve got a list of instructions which don’t seem to do much more than moving stuff from one place to another, and neglects to tell the system of the change, and i already know how to move stuff…

i just got a HUGE packet of information about my heritage and genealogy… it’s enough that i’m going to be able to add another of the missing branches of my family tree, and it will definitely push my family research back to “the old country” – in this case, ireland – and the 17th century CE. it is something that i got in email from someone with whom i am apparently fourth cousins, either once or twice removed (depending on how old he is) – the last ancestor that we have in common was my great-great-great grandfather. i’m still sort of stuck finding any information at all about my mother’s side of the family, but i think i may have a lead on my maternal grandmother’s social security application, which should give me a birthdate and (hopefully) a maiden name around which i can start investigating.

forwards into the past!

another highlight from the genealogical information that i got yesterday is my great great grandmother Martha Ann (Mattie) Solomon‘s death certificate. according to what i can gather, contrary to “family rumours” that have been creeping around since i was a kid, she was not a native member of the Creek tribe. however she was murdered by an “insane woman” in 1938, shortly after my father was born…

weird! 😮

bunch of new information about my great great great grandparents 8)

someone found my years-old request for information about my great grandmother, and now i have a whole bunch of new stuff to sift through and i have been able to add substantial information about my great grandmother on my grandfather’s side of the family, and her siblings, parents and grandparents.

one of the highlights was the death certificate for my great great grandfather, Rufus Penn Anthony, who died at the age of 77 in warrensburg, missouri, in 1930. the cause of death is listed as “tree fell on him while chopping & killed him instantly” while contributing factors in his death were “old age & nearly blind”…

sounds like one of my ancestors, going out and trying to chop down a tree when you can’t see so well…

i still need information on my great great great grandparents on my great great grandmother’s side, on both my great grandmother’s side and my great grandfather’s side of the family, but i don’t have any information at all about my mother’s side of the family apart from my grandmother’s name and her husband’s surname…