October 2018

Ask a basic question: "Where did this source come from?"
   It's been less than a year since I discovered the identity of my long sought-for 2nd great-grandfather, "Prosser" who died in the Civil War. I discovered who he was by the use of DNA matches to his great-grandson, my cousin Marvin Prosser.  

     I would have discovered this information years ago had I asked myself one question:
    Where does this source come from?
   Long ago I read on a website a listing of volunteer soldiers from Hillsdale County, Michigan, which included one Lewis Prosser.  The only problem was that his age was listed as 17; way too young to be the husband of a 35-year old woman and the father of two children born in 1860 and 1864.
   Last month when I was visiting the Michigan State Archives, I had a chance to look at the original multi-volume set of Michigan Volunteers in the Civil War, published in 1915. It also stated Lewis Prosser's age as 17. I was being assisted by Kris Rzepczynski, the State Archivist, who directed me to the microfilm of the original hand-written registers that went into the creation of these volumes. Sure enough, there in black and white, was listed Lewis Prosser, age 44. I would have known that was my 2nd great-grandfather, even before DNA testing provided strong links to his first wife and children in Indiana.
What I've been doing:
*   Preparing and preaching my sermon, which I gave on October 7 (see link below).
*   Attending Summer's first birthday party, and enjoying playing with her twice a week while her parents work.
*   Working on another couple of unknown parentage cases
*   Proofreading my next book
What I'm Reading
Last month, in my preparation for my (first-ever) trip to Indiana to research my 2nd great-grandfather Louis Prosser, I got this book on Kindle.Full of photographs from the 19th & early 20th century, it really gave me a sense of the community in which he and his first wife lived.
   If you have never heard of Arcadia Publishing, you're in for a treat. Get a cup of coffee, and settle down to browse hundreds of books on local history!
In the News:
Here's an updated list of Genealogical Mysteries and Historical Fiction

See a map of Native American lands in North America

Church of Ireland parish registers to be digitized
Summer Catherine Sage is now officially a toddler. We had fun at her well-attended birthday party last week, and I think she did, too!
Last Presentation of the Year
This Saturday, October 20, I will be giving a presentation at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in Tacoma, on Finding Your Celtic Roots. It starts at 10am, and you can find more details here.

Last Sunday, October 7, I had the privilege of preaching the sermon at my church, St. John's Episcopal Church in Gig Harbor. You can read my sermon on my blog, here
DNA News

From the New York Times: "How Genetic Sleuthing Helped a Kidnapped Girl Recover Her Identity"

Elizabeth Warren releases DNA test with strong evidence of Native American ancestry

Two new-found sisters keep their DNA match a secret

Abandoned in South Korea, she finds a brother in Salem, Oregon

Genetic Genealogy solves another 20-year old cold case

From CeCe Moore: Hundreds of crimes can now be solved using Genetic Genealogy
What's Your Brick Wall?
Have I got a deal for you!
Email me with a description of your biggest brick wall, including names, dates and places, and I will give you a brief list of research suggestions, plus my newly updated handout for my presentation "DNA and Genealogy"
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