Sunday, February 28, 2010

Sentimental Sunday - The Old High Chair

I never really thought I'd be writing about a high chair.  However, we have a very special one in my family.


This is the high chair that my paternal grandparents gave to my parents when they had their first child, my brother Randy in 1957.  My two brothers, my sister and I all used the high chair.  In fact, I found a picture of my brother on his first birthday and one of me, asleep as I wait for my supper.



My parents hung on to the high chair and as soon as their grand children began arriving, they pulled it out again.  I couldn't find a picture of my daughter in the chair but here is my son along with dad and sister.

Eleven grandchildren and one great-grandchildren have used this high chair so far.  Here's to the old high chair and many more cute little family members to come!  Thanks Gram and Gramps.


Saturday, February 27, 2010

Surname Saturday - Dow

On my maternal grandmother's side, we find the Dow surname.

Her mother, my great-grandmother was Leilia Elva Dow. Leilia was born January 11, 1881 in Danforth, Washington, Maine.  In the 1900 census her occupation was listed as music teacher.  I guess that helps explain her daughter Beatrice's  (my grandmother) amazing musical talent.  She could play any song she had heard.  My mom has found memories of her playing songs they had heard on the radio.  But back to Leilia.  She was the second wife of Allen Hall who she married on November 30, 1904 in Bradford, Penobscot, Maine.  Tragically, she died shortly after giving birth to a second daughter Ruby Virgie. Leilia died April 24, 1912.  The baby died May 18, 1912.  They are buried next to each other in Peter's Cove Cemetery, Orient, Maine

Leilia Dow Hall

Leila's father was Isaiah Lincoln Dow who was born June 3, 1839 in Danforth, Washington, Maine. He was a carpenter, building more than half the houses in Danforth during his 40 years residence there.  He married first Sarah Maxwell about 1865.  They had a son Willard Jefferson Dow.  Sarah died and Isaiah married her sister Emily Judson Maxwell.  They were married on December 22, 1871.  Isaiah died on April 7, 1918 in Danforth.  He is buried in Maple Cemetery, Danforth, Maine. 

Oliver Buffum Dow was born December 27, 1802 in Vassalborough, Maine  He was a millwright, constructing and maintaining mills and their equipment.  He and his family moved about the mill towns along the Maine and Canadian border. Oliver married Elizabeth Milburn on October 6, 1831 in Hopewell, New Brunswick, Canada.  He died June 13, 1974 in Milltown, Washington, Maine and is buried in Calais Cemetery, Calais, Maine.

Oliver's father was John Dow who was born June 4, 1771 in Berwick, York, Maine.   He married Zilpha Lincoln on February 22, 1797 in Vassalborough, Maine.  John and Zilpha were members of the Quaker monthly meetings in Vassalborough.  In March 1803 they requested a removal certificate as they moved on.  The 1820 census shows them in Harlem, Kennebec, Maine.  The 1830 census puts them in Sidney, Kennebec, Maine.  The family finally settled at Branch Mills, pioneers of the town, a hamlet made by clearing the forest.  There was a 30 mile horseback trail to Augusta, marked by blazing the trees, and for some years it was the only way to civilization.  John and Zilpha had ten children.

Moses Dow was born January 7, 1733/34.  He married Hannah Gove on December 8, 1756 in Amesbury, Essex, Massachusetts.  He was admitted to the Quaker Meeting of Dover on December 2, 1759.  He later moved to Berwick, Maine.  Moses died October 31, 1816 in Berwick, Maine. 

Moses was the son of John Dow born about 1698.  He married Patience Swett on April 20, 1731 in Amesbury, Essex, Massachusetts.  He died about 1767.

John Dow was born December 12 1665 in Hampton, Rockingham, New Hampshire.  He married Hannah Page on November 27, 1696 in Hampton.  John died November 28, 1744 in Kingston, Massachusetts.

Joseph Dow was born1638 in Watertown, Middlesex, Massachusetts.  He was the first Dow born in America.  He was a quaker, a farmer, a trapper and a surveyor.  He married Mary Sanborn on December 17, 1662 in Hampton, Rockingham, New Hampshire.  He was appointed to survey the Exeter-Hampton (NH) line in February 1669.  He also led the rebuilding of the municipal sawmill in Hampton Falls, New Hampshire in 1680.  Joseph died April 4, 1703 in Hampton, Rockingham, New Hampshire.

Henry Dow, the immigrant ancestor, was born October 6, 1605 in Ormsby, Norfolk, England.  He married Joan Nudd on February 11, 1630 in Ormsby.  In 1637, Henry and Joan came from England to American. Henry died April 21, 1659 in Hampton, Rockingham, New Hampshire.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Treasure Chest Thursday - Photo Tag Collection

I have been trying to find new and different ways to showcase my ancestors for quite some time.  A few years ago I found these Genealogy Photo Tags.


They came in a bundle of 31, with labels to indicate my mother, father and up through all my great-grandparents.  They are made of cardstock and include labeled space on the back of each to list the vital statistics for that ancestor.  

They came with an included metal ring to hold the set together.  They are a great way to take my basic genealogy along with me, and are interesting enough to get even some of my "not so much"  family members to take a look and even ask a question or two about our common ancestors.  
I consider them one of my better purchases and a treasure that I helped create.  Hopefully, some future genealogist in my family will think so too!

I wish I could tell you where I purchased them.  They are labeled on the back "Tag"alongs by Wildrose.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday - Peleg Johnson

Old Fernwood Cemetery
Kingston, Rhode Island


Dr. Peleg Johnson
Died June 8, 1859

Doctor in the village of Kingston, Town of South Kingstown, Washington, Rhode Island
Dr. Peleg Johnson of South Kingstown, R. I., was born in 1791 and began his practice in 1816.
He died after being thrown from his horse, receiving a compound fracture of  his thigh, while on his way to see a patient.

Further reading tells me that Dr. Johnson was known to charge his patients very little for his doctoring services.  This goes along with the inscription on his tombstone which reads "In my hand no price I bring."

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Family History Day - February 20, 2010 in Boston, Massachusetts

Yesterday I had the pleasure of attending the Family History Day 2010 in Boston.  It was co-sponsored by NEHGS (New England Historic Genealogical Society) and  The day was laid out in four sessions with two choices in each time slot.  There were also 15 minute private consultation slots with genealogists from NEHGS, along with the opportunity to have documents scanned with professional scanning equipment.

The session choices were:
        Getting the Most out of Your Subcription
        Finding Immigration Records
        Best Strategies for Searching
        Organize, Organize, Organize
        Discover NEHGS: Your Family History Resource
        Getting the Most out of Family Tree Maker

The day began early!  Check-in began was from 8-9:30 am  at the Westin Copley in Boston.  I rode the train from my home in southern Rhode Island.  I had a 6:22 am reservation. It was still mostly dark! The train was 20 minutes late but the sun came up.

Kingston Station

When I arrived at the event registration was in full swing. There were 700 registrations (with over 200 turned away I heard).  The organizers were well prepared but it still took about 1/2 hour to get checked in.  However, I never mind standing and talking with fellow genealogists!

NEHGS also had a book sale.  They were selling a variety of used books along with some of their newer publications.  They were also signing up new members at a great pace with a small conference discount.  I spent a few minutes at the table during the day,  checking out all the books.

I first attended the Finding Immigration Records session given by Rhonda McClure of NEHGS.  She is a great speaker and an avid genealogist herself.  She had some wonderful examples from her own research that she shared.  The room was packed.  I picked up some tips here for looking for all the many immigrant ancestors which we all have.
Next on tap for me was Organize, Organize, Organize also by Rhonda.  Here she conjoled and teased us into admitting many of our unorganized ways.  I took home some impetus to clean up my biggest mess - my digital images.  Ah, good intentions, where will they lead?

Lunch was on your own with lots of choices inside the interconnected mall area or out into a beautiful day in downtown Boston.  

Back from lunch I attended Discover NEHGS: Your Family History Resource led by Josh Taylor.  He admitted that we will see him on the upcoming "Who Do You Think You  Are"  where he helped Sarah Jessica Parker!  Josh took us through the NEHGS resources of which I have used so very little even though I have been a member for 4 or 5 years!  Again, more good intentions to be had!

I finished the day at Getting the Most out of Family Tree Maker led by Tana Pederson who has written "The Official Guide to Family Tree Maker".  It was a pretty good introduction to the latest version.

I will admit here that I use FTM but although I have purchased the latest version, 2010,  I have stuck with FTM 2006.  There were so many disappointed users of the intervening versions.  The new version looked good.  You can keep all your media files within your database, including your photos, census images etc. They can be attached to individuals and events (and would  help with the disorganized stuff I spoke about above).   If you are an subscription it interconnects very nicely.  I am still a bit skeptical here - how will it perform with a 10,000 plus member tree and lots of images?   How large and unwieldy will my database file become?  Anyone using it please let me know your thoughts!!

After the last session I had a pleasant train ride back to Kingston and was home by a bit after 6 pm.  A long but pleasurable day.  I am sure they could take this show on the road and do quite well!  Did I see you there?

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Surname Saturday - Robinson

My paternal grandmother was a Robinson.  This is what I know about her ancestry.

Patrick Robinson was most likely born abt 1750 in Londonderry, Northern Ireland.  It is likely he served with the British during the American Revolution.  He was granted 200 acres in Grand Lake, Queens, New Brunswick, Canada in 1786.  He married Sally Hatton and they had nine children.

His son Charles Robinson was born November 13, 1780 in New York. He married Mary Sutter on June 5, 1802 in Wickham, Queens, New Brunswick, Canada.  They moved that year to property along the Washademoak.  They had 6 children.  Charles died November 17, 1864 in Cambridge Narrows, Queens, New Brunswick.

John Robinson was born July 27, 1819 in Cambridge, Queens, New Brunswick, Canada.  He married Martha Elizabeth Springer on September 16, 1847 in Waterborough Parish, Queens.  John, with help from his son George, built wooden boats, among them the Daisy Queen which is in the collection donated to the King's Landing Historical group.  John and Martha had seven children.  John died January 7, 1900 in Queens.

George Robinson was born February 29, 1864 in Cambridge Narrows.  He inherited the family farm from his father John and lived in the home with his two sisters Rachel and Rebecca.  When he married his sisters moved out.  He married Annie Scott Babington on March 19, 1895 in Queens County.  They had four children.  George died January 8, 1954 in Cambridge.

George Robinson

My grandmother, Elsie Marie Robinson, was born April 4, 1900 in Cambridge Narrows.  She attended the Fredricton, New Brunswick Normal School and was a teacher for a short time. She married Harry McKiel on October 29, 1924 in St. John's, New Brunswick.  She and Harry moved to Albion, Maine where they ran a farm and raised five children.  Elsie died October 11, 1993.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Wordless Wednesday - Allen Seldon Hall


Allen Seldon Hall 
Son of Henry & Esther Hall
Father of  Guy, Norma, Carl, Mildred, Beatrice and Ruby Hall

Love always,
your great-granddaughter Kathy 

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday - Allen & Emily (Morris) Hall

Williams Cemetery
Bradford, Maine

Allen Seldon Hall
born: 19 November 1875 Bradford, Maine
died: 26 June 1933 Milo, Maine
his wife
Emily Morris Hall
born: 2 February 1876  Canada
died: 24 February 1949  Bradford, Maine

This is my great-grandfather and his third wife.  His 2nd wife, and my great-grandmother is buried elsewhere.

Rest in peace.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Surname Saturday - Hall

Continuing on with my surnames, it is time for my maternal grandmother's Hall line.

John Hall was born about 1685 in Dover, New Hampshire.  He married Esther Chesley on 9 August 1705 in Dover.  He died some time after 1737.

James Hall was born 1708.  He received land from his father in Rollinsford, New Hampshire in 1732.  He married Susannah Blackstone in 1743.  He and his brother, Samuel, left New Hampshire about 1750 and settled on the west side of  the Damariscotta Pond, in Lincoln County, Maine. 

Levi Hall was born 1758 in Jefferson, Lincoln, Maine.  He married Jane Jones 1 June 1781 in Nobleboro, Maine.  He served  as a private in the Massachusetts Line during the Revolutionary War.  At the time Maine was not a separate state but was instead part of Massachusetts.  He died 27 June 1847 in Washington, Knox, Maine.

Joseph Hall was born 1781 in Nobleboro, Lincoln, Maine.  Joseph married Betsey Whitehouse on 6 May 1802 in Nobleboro.  Levi was a shipwright, merchant and carpenter.  He died Aug 1869 in Jefferson, Maine.

Joseph W. Hall was born 30 August 1806 in Nobleboro,  Lincoln, Maine.  He married Eliza Jane Waltz on 15 September 1823 in Nobleboro.  Joseph died 1 December 1876 in Orneville, Piscataquis, Maine.

Joseph Hall was born 18 November 1824 in Damariscotta, Lincoln, Maine.  He married Submit Ross on 12 October 1845 in Bradford, Penobscot, Maine.  He was a lifelong farmer.  He died 8 October 1892 in Orneville, Piscataquis, Maine.

This 1870 census records shows Joseph living in North Bradford, Maine.  Also is shown his brother John and his family, as well as the household of his brother Charles and his family.
Henry Hall was born 2 February 1850 in Orneville.   He married Esther Patricia Gowen on 27 September 1874 in Bradford,  Maine.  He died June 1926 in Bradford.

Allen Hall was born 19 November 1875 in Bradford, Penobscot, Maine.   He married first Flora Hall.  He married second, my ancestor, Leilia Dow on 20 November 1904 in Bradford, Maine.  He married third Emily Morris.  He died 26 June 1933 in Milo, Piscataquis, Maine.

My grandmother, Beatrice Natalie Hall was born 17 June 1906 in Danforth, Washington, Maine.  She married Ross Hannon on 2 January 1927 in Searsmont, Washington, Maine.  She was a teacher in the grammar schools of Appleton, Liberty and Palermo for over 20 years. She died on 9 June 1976 in Palermo, Waldo, Maine.

She and my grandfather had three beautiful daughters!

Love to all my Hall ancestors!

Note: Edited 03/06/10 

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday - George Byron & Sarah (Craft) McKiel

Belyea's Cove Cemetery
New Brunswick, Canada

G. Byron McKiel
born 31 March 1868 New Brunswick, Canada
died 23 November 1925 New Brunswick, Canada
and his wife
Sarah Jemima Craft McKiel
born 4 November 1868 New Brunswick, Canada
died 24 October 1946 New Brunswick, Canada

Rest in Peace my great-grandparents,
You are not forgotten.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Sentimental Sunday - Cousins, Cousins, Cousins!

Growing up I enjoyed many wonderful times with my cousins.  There were 9 of us when we gathered with my mother's side of the family.  My mom's two sisters lived in Maine and were only a few miles apart.  We lived in Rhode Island but we went "home" to Maine for a weekend almost every month for many years.  I'm not sure what the grownups did but us kids always had a great time!

 Back: MaryLou, Jackie, Janice, Sally, Kathy
Front: David, Ross, Harry, Randy
About 1966

As you can see from the picture, we girls were all about the same age.  We played house, we played school, we played hair dresser.  We sledded, we drew, we swam, we danced. We ran, we jumped, we... well you get the idea!

There is something about cousins that let you be just who you are and I was blessed to be able to spend a lot of quality time with my cousins.  We are all older now, with families of our own.  We don't see each other much, but this picture can bring it all back for me.

I hope you have a picture or two like this in your memory bank to help you remember who you are and where you came from just like it does for me.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Surname Saturday - McKiel

My maiden name is McKiel.  It's history is a little more complicated than most of the surnames in my family.

The line can be traced back to Sebastian Van Kortrijk whose family was from the Flemish town of Kortrijk on the Lys.  He and his family were refuges of the religious upheavals in Europe and in the early 1600s, he left that area and moved to Holland.  He took up residence in Leerdam.

There were seventeen provinces in the Netherlands and these contained the present countries of Holland and Belgium.  That whole country had been made part of France during the rule of Charlemagne (767-814), but in the fifteenth century it came under Spanish  rule.  Charles V. became king of Spain in 1516, and finding many adherents to Martin Luther's reformed faith, he became determined to crush out Protestantism.  Thus became a time of great religious persecution in the Netherlands.  Under Philip, who succeeded his father, Charles in 1555,  things became even worse.  By the early 1600s,  Holland had became an asylum for the persecuted of many lands.

Two sons were born to Sebastian during his time in Leerdam, Jan and Michiel. Family names were the exception among the early Dutch ancestors.  Most often the father's first was affixed with sen  (meaning son) and used as a surname.  So the two became known as Jan and Michiel Bastiensen Van Kortryk.

Michiel, my ancester married and settled at Schoonrewoed, a village about two miles north of Leerdam, in South Holland.  There he had four children, Reyer, born in 1653, Metje in 1655, Annetje in 1658 and Bastien in 1662.  Another daughter, Alfjie, was born shortly after the family arrived in the New Amsterdam.  Meanwhile, Jan had also married had had four children.

With the development of the West India Company, whose main purpose was the expand trade and colonization of America, the Dutch people began to emigrate. The new world promised so much in material gain and religious freedom.

On 16 April 16 1663, Michiel and his brother Jan departed for New Amsterdam, in present day New York, on the "Spotted Cow".  Each brought their wife and four children.  The Bastiensens came as free men not indebted to the Dutch West India Company for their passage.

Reyer Michielsen/Michelsen was born in 1653 in Leerdam, Holland.  He married Jacomia Tiebout on 15 April 1686 in the Dutch Reformed Church of New York. Reyer and Jacomia had eight children, Michiel, Hendrick, Sarah, Tunis, Ryer, Hannah, Mary and Jane.  Some of these children followed the Dutch custom and took their father's name with sen attached and became known as Reyersen or Ryerson.  Two continued their father's surname and became Michielsen or Michiels. Reyer died in 1733 in Fordham, in what is now New York.

Hendrick Michelsen, my ancestor, was born about 1705 at Fordham Manor in New York.  He married Jane and had three sons, John, Hendrick  and Michael. He probably lived his entire life there.

John MeKeel was born about 1730.  He married Martha Haight about 1749.  He was a member of the Westchester County Militia. Joseph and Martha had four children -  Joseph, Mary, Nathaniel and John McKeel.

Joseph MeKeel/McKeel was born about 1750.  He was a Loyalist during the Revolutionary War, fighting on the side of the English.  When the war was over he and his family fled to New Brunswick, Canada.  On November 1, 1785 he was granted 200 acres at Long Reach, King's County, New Brunswick, for service to England during the war.  He married Anna Burtis and had 6 children, Joseph, John, Isaac, Sarah, James and Mary McKeel.

Joseph McKeel was born about 1800 in New Brunswick, Canada.  He married Ann Margaret Lounder on 15 October 1823 in Greenwich, New Brunswick, Canada.  They had 7 children, James, Eleanor, Mary, John, Joseph, Sarah and Eliza McKeel.

Eliza Eva McKeel was born on 3 October 1839 and, according to the records of the Greenwich and Westfield Anglican Church, was baptized on 16 March 1840.  Eliza had two children born out of wedlock, Melvin  and George Byron McKiel, before marrying Jacob VanWart and having  5 more children.  Eliza and Jacob's children were Miles, Mahala, Rosie May, Joseph and Frederick VanWart. Eliza died on 6 August 1916 in New Brunswick, Canada.

George Bryon and his brother Melvin

George Byron McKiel was born 31 March 1868 in New Brunswick, Canada.   He went by the name of Byron.  He married Sarah Jemima Craft on 3 November 1892 in Belyea's Cove, Queens, New Brunswick, Canada.  The wedding was noted in the St. John's "Messenger and Visitor".  Sarah was known as Sadie.  They had 6 children, Alice Maude, Robert Craft, Olive May, Gracie Irene, Harry Redvers and Charles Loran McKiel. Bryon died on 23 November 1925.

Harry Redvers McKiel was born 30 July 1900 in New Brunswick, Canada.  He married Elise Marie Robinson on 29 October 1924 in St. John's Parish, St. John's, New Brunswick, Canada.

Harry and Elsie moved from Canada to Albion, Maine.  They bought a farm there from Fred Hussey who had married Harry's sister Olive May.  There they had a dairy and potato farm.  They had five children, four girls and my father.
My dad and his father Harry McKiel

Love forever to all my McKiel ancestors!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Wordless Wednesday - Four Generations


Four Generations of Hannans
My great-grandmother Flavilla Hannan, my grandfather Ross Hannon,
holding my cousin Ross Wood and my Aunt Gloria Wood.

Palermo, Maine 1956

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday - Max and Flossie Hannan

From the Hannan Cemetery, Palermo, Maine

Maxwell Hannan son of  Ernest & Ida Hannan
he was born 31 March 1912 in Washington, Maine
and died  8 September 1992 in Waterville, Maine

he married

Flossie M. Harmon 
who was born 25 February 1909 in Standish, Maine
and died 4 May 1991 in Belfast, Maine

Max was my mother's cousin and he and Flossie were well loved members of the family.

  Flossie carried the following poem with her always:
Thank you, God, for little things
that often come our way.
The things we take for granted 
but don't mention when we pray.
The unexpected courtesy,
the thoughtful, kindly deed.
A hand reached out to help us in
the time of sudden need.
Oh make us most aware, dear God,
of little daily graces,
That come to us with "sweet surprise"
from never dreamed-of places.

 Max and Flossie, Rest in Peace.