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The Livermore Roots Tracer

Volume 26 Number 4

November 2006

Editors:  Kay Speaks, Marie Ross, Lois Barber, Jane Southwick, rootstracer@l-ags.org

Web Editor: Vicki Renz, webmaster@l-ags.org

The Roots Tracer is the quarterly publication of the Livermore-Amador Genealogical Society. The mission statement of the Roots Tracer is: "Instruct. Inspire. Inform." We encourage members to submit articles for publication. Material can be e-mailed to: tracer@L-AGS.org or mailed to L-AGS, P.O. Box 901, Livermore, CA 94551-0901.

Queries are free. Please send your queries to querymaster@l-ags.org.

Table of Contents

Membership News President's Message Dues Reminder 2007
G.R.O.W. Want to Go Exploring in the Tri-Valley? Zhao Bing - The Last Emperor of the Southern Song Dynasty
Newsletters Are Valuable She Has a List for You History Council Impressed by Dublin's New Heritage Center
New L-AGS Book: 1887 Directory of Murray Township Here's a Fun Lookup from Ancestry.com Orrin Smith and the Ship Brooklyn
Working with Eneclann on Irish Research Mac Tip Sub-Groups Teach, Encourage, Support and Share
Members Helping Members: L-AGS to the Rescue Roots Tracer Staff


Member News

Membership Co-Chairs - Marilyn Cutting & Jean Lerche

Welcome to Our New Members

Joe Lindskog Jeanette Froeschner Julie Liu
Robert A. Ware John & Linda Krutsinger

We are grateful for the generosity of these members of L-AGS:

David Steffes

James Bahls, Sandra Caulder, Sandy & DeLynn Clark, Ted & Gail Fairfield, Richard & Wanda Finn, Richard & Jean Lerche

Total Membership as of November 1, 2006: 240 Individuals

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The Last Word
from President Jane Southwick

When I wrote my first President's message to Members in the February 2005 Tracer, I said I entered this job with trepidation. As I write my last President's message, I would like to say that, with the help and support of the members of L-AGS, my fears were groundless. I came in scared; I go out with a sense of accomplishment. I have discovered that a person can do more than he or she thought possible. I can say to the next president, "Try it, you'll like it. "

Our meetings have been well attended these past two years. We have tried to give you genealogy-based talks that hopefully have helped you with your genealogy projects.

In July, Larry Mauch spoke to us about Genealogy, History and Horse Medicine. Larry has been the president of the Livermore Heritage Guild, but has retired to Yankee Hill near Paradise, California, to devote more time to research, "sitting on his back deck looking at the tall trees. " His talk included his hobby of collecting old bottles, including horse medicine bottles, and he is featured in an article in the January 2005 Antiques and Collectors magazine. Larry also shared with us the genealogy of his family and told how he had worked with his father on this genealogy project when his father was very ill. This enabled him to spend quality time with him in his last years.

In August, Doug Mumma spoke to us about DNA. The title of his talk was What Can I Learn from DNA Testing? Doug is a longtime member of L-AGS. Since his retirement, he has continued his interest in science, and is a pioneer in the use of DNA testing for genealogical research. His talk helped many people decide whether testing was right for them and, if so, which Web sites offered the best options. The testing company he uses is Family Tree DNA.

Sue Johnston spoke to us in September about Immigration. Sue is also a member of L-AGS. She graduated from the National Institute on Genealogical Research, the "Advanced Methodology and Evidence Analysis " course at Samford University's Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research, and the "Going to the Source " course at the National Archives. Sue told us about many places to look for an ancestor and gave us hints on where to look before 1800.

The topic in October was Scotch and Irish Records presented by Cath Madden Trindle. Cath is a Certified Genealogist. Her client work focuses on the San Francisco Bay Region and helping researchers get started on their Irish research. Her handout gave many Web sites and locations of records. She was very encouraged about locating ancestors in Scotland, but said that Ireland was much more difficult.

Our docent program at the Pleasanton Library continues to expand. George Anderson spent about seven years helping patrons of the Library with genealogical research using our extensive library collection and computers with the many CDs and web sites available. Because of the help given by George, many of those patrons became members of L-AGS. The job became bigger than one person could accomplish, so other members began volunteering their time. More hours and days were added. The volunteers who work with patrons get a great deal of satisfaction and usually learn something themselves. Now that Patrick Lofft has become chairman of the group, he has encouraged other people to help. He instructs them until they feel comfortable about working with the patrons. If you can volunteer, please call Patrick.

Before I close this message I want to mention our member, Kay Speaks, who, with others, has led the Study Group and The Master Genealogist Group. She has put together Chinese Exhibits that are on display at the Museum on Main in Pleasanton and at the Carnegie Building in Livermore. She will be our November speaker. Her talk will be A Chinese Genealogy Adventure. Kay, as well as many other members, has contributed to the success of our Society.

So many of you have volunteered when asked, have taken care of little jobs as well as big jobs. Without all of you I would not have succeeded in my job. I want to thank each and every one of you, and tell you I enjoyed my term as your President.

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Dues Reminder 2007

Marilyn Cutting
Membership Chairman

Year 2006 is nearing the end. That means the membership dues are due by January 1, 2007. The membership will terminate on March 1st, if dues are not paid. Individual memberships are $18.00 and Family memberships are $25.00. We are happy to list you or your family in the Roots Tracer as a Benefactor ($40) or as a Patron ($100).

Starting this year, we are requesting that all new members and all renewing members fill out an information form to help us update our membership database. The form also gives members a chance to input their ideas to the board of directors — ideas that will help guide our society into the future. The form is included as an insert in the Roots Tracer.

Please make your check or money order payable to L-AGS, and send it with the membership form to L-AGS, P. O. Box 901, Livermore 94551-0901. You may also bring it to a L-AGS meeting.

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Genealogy Resources On the Web – The Page That Helps Genealogy Grow!

Compiled by Frank Geasa

If you are of Italian heritage you may want to visit this growing site that displays Italian town information combined with searchable immigrant lists provided by those towns. The site has an English option.
The Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War has a growing National Graves Registration Database of burial locations for both the armies of that war. Courtesy of Judy Person.
The site of the Regional Archives of Alkmaar in the Netherlands offers indexes of baptisms in various churches 1603-1816 as well as marriage indexes. The site has an English option.
The Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center has an index of almost 800,000 Ohio records, primarily of obituaries and death notices, 1830 to the present.
The Lighthouse Point DAR Chapter of Broward County, Florida has ongoing projects to create both an index of marriages 1915-1937 and a list of cemetery records in that county.
If you have ancestors from western Flanders, Belgium, you will want to visit this site offering transcriptions of church records of baptisms, marriages and burials from 1600 and civil records of births, marriages and deaths from 1795. Versions are available in 5 languages including English.
If your ancestry includes Massachusetts or Connecticut pre-1850, you will want to visit this site with indexes for town records from those states.
If you happen to be searching for ancestors from the Southern Waldviertel area of Austria, you may enjoy visiting this growing site of a family history project for that area.
You can search more than 1,000,000 births, 400,000 deaths and 1,000,000 marriages in the Wisconsin pre-1907 vital records index site of the Wisconsin Historical Society.
This Louisiana State Archives site has an alphabetical search list of Civil War pension applications.
The Public Records Office of Northern Ireland has an online search list of pre-1840 freeholder voters available at this site:
The Queensland State Archives (Australia) has online search indexes for immigration, divorces, wills and several other items of genealogical interest.
This ongoing project by the Western Michigan Genealogical Society currently has over 40,000 marriage records for Kent County indexed and available for searching.
This site contains an index of almost 102,000 burials at Woodland Cemetery, Dayton, Ohio.

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The Huntington Library's Early California Population Project transcribed baptism, marriage, and burial information from the registers of the state's historic missions.


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Want to Go Exploring in the Tri-Valley?

By Marie Ross

Don Meeker, curator of the Livermore Heritage Guild, has produced a very handy little brochure guide called History Trail of the Tri-Valley. You will find free copies of the brochure at The Livermore Valley History Center in the Carnegie Building on Third Street.

The brochure includes a route map of the area and site locations, plus other points of interest. There are Historic Home Sites and Parks; Museums, including a military museum, a Lincoln Highway museum, and a silent film museum; Heritage Centers, and an old Railway. Many of these sites hold books and records of local genealogical interest.

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Sites listed with exact addresses, open hours and contact information are:

Livermore: Ravenswood Historic Site on Arroyo Road, the Livermore History Center at 2155 Third Street, and the Duarte Garage Lincoln Highway Museum on Portola Avenue.

Sunol: Niles Canyon Railway in downtown Sunol.

Niles: Movies are shown at the Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum on Niles Boulevard.

Fremont: Visit the Old Mission San Jose on Mission Boulevard, and the Museum of Local History on Anza Street.

Union City: The Union City Historical Museum on Smith Street.

Hayward: The city has a museum on Main Street called the Downtown Museum.

Pleasanton: The Museum on Main Street is (where else?) on Main Street.

Dublin: The Dublin Heritage Center, which includes the Murray Schoolhouse, St. Raymond's Church and the old Dublin Cemetery. The Camp Parks Training Site has a military museum.

San Ramon: Forest Home Farms Historic Park is located on San Ramon Boulevard.

Danville: The Museum of the San Ramon Valley is on Railroad Avenue; the Blackhawk Museum is in Blackhawk Plaza, and the Eugene O'Neill Tao House can be visited by calling 925-838-0249.

Walnut Creek: Shadelands Ranch Historical Museum is on Ygnacio Valley Road.

Clayton: Clayton Museum is on Main Street.

Brentwood: East Contra Costa Historical Museum is on Sellers Avenue.

Tracy: Tracy Historical Museum is on Adam Street.

Points of Interest you might also want to visit (listed without detail) are:

Carnegie State Vehicular Recreation Area,
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory Discovery Center in Livermore,
Little Brown Church of Sunol,
Shinn House and Ardenwood in Fremont,
McConaghy House in Hayward,
Mitchell Canyon Interpretive Center and the Summit Museum on Mt. Diablo,
Lindsay Wildlife Museum in Walnut Creek, and the
Black Diamond Mine in Contra Costa County.

There certainly are many places to explore within easy distance. History buffs can be very pleased investigating our colorful past, and who knows what genealogical treasures you will find.

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The Boy King

Zhao Bing—The Last Emperor of the Southern Song Dynasty

By Kay Speaks

Copyright 2006

In October 2005, I made my first trip to the Family History Library in Salt Lake City with fellow Livermore-Amador Genealogical Society and TMG Users Group members Jane and Nancy Southwick, Eileen Redman, Joyce Siason, Sue Johnston, and Francine Montez. We were very excited, as it would be a first time visit for five of us. We're a close group of friends who often share a meal, a genealogical conference, or gather to enter data into our TMG (The Master Genealogist) software.

On the third afternoon of our trip, I decided to call Grace Lee Chan, whom I had met several years ago in San Francisco at a Chinese conference. At that time, the LDS Church was introducing its extensive Asian International Collection. I hoped to connect with her on Thursday. Sadly, I learned Grace Lee had retired several years earlier. However, I did talk to her via telephone. On Thursday morning, when I arrived at the International reference desk, I was asked to wait as Grace Chan, Grace Lee's replacement as the Chinese Family Research Specialist, was coming to meet with me. I found Grace Lee had made special arrangements for my visit! She had spread the word that I was a VIP visitor (I got a chuckle over that), and arranged for me to meet one-on-one with the director of the library and the gentleman responsible for obtaining their entire international collection. Grace Lee herself drove from the next town to say hello. I got to spend quality time with all of them. Grace Chan personally stayed with me for four hours talking about Chinese family research, the surname poems, the Pearl River Delta District in China, and the history of Chinese families. I was shown books to assist in my research. Extensive time such as this is extremely rare at the FHL. The staff and volunteers are supposed to guide researchers to where information and resources are available for you to complete your own research. When Grace stepped away for a moment, a European researcher looked at me and asked, "Who are you to be causing such a stir?" I laughed and told him I was just an ordinary researcher, but had brought them some extraordinary files they were excited to get.

I had copied all my scanned Angel Island immigration files from San Bruno NARA onto a CD to give to the FHL as a learning tool and research aid. I told those I met I thought it important they know and understand these very special Record Group 21 alien files. The director told me he agreed and that Grace Chan would use my records as a training tool. Grace would study my files and in return she would research my family's overseas Chinese records. It seems the FHL has been working with NARA trying to access and microfilm these Chinese alien files for 1 years. Of the four people I met, only the director has seen "a couple of pages but nothing extensive" of these types of files. The special collections director told me his favorite foreign language and favorite records to research are the Chinese. He had never seen the records and couldn't wait to review them.

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They were surprised to see the Chinese signatures in the files. These character signatures can be used, for instance, with my Leong Chinese generation surname poem, to help identify the generation and location of a person's different ancestors.

Leong Joy Sing, December 23, 1920
Angel Island Chinese Case File

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Great-Grandfather Leong Hurn Hoy (left) and Grandfather Leong Loy Sing (right) came to the U.S. through Angel Island during the Chinese Exclusion Era.

Some hours later, Grace Chan quietly told me the Chinese believe that every once in a while there is a "chosen one" who would further document a family's history. She felt perhaps that I might be that chosen one. She said some families would go for generations before the family history would come forward. Grace touched my heart when she looked me in the eyes and softly told me my Chinese great-grandfather and grandfather would be proud of me. I felt most honored to receive this accolade. Still looking at me, Grace Chan quietly said she wanted to tell me a story and show me something special.

Grace asked if I knew the significance of the Song Dynasty (960-1279) and how it affected my personal Chinese family research. I had to admit that I didn't. She said it was during the Song Dynasty that the Chinese started documenting accounts of their family histories. The prior week, a couple had come from China to the FHL especially to see a book. In the past, this book had been donated to the FHL by a man who was a direct descendent of the Song Dynasty, because he knew it would be saved for future generations. When the couple saw that the book was in the family histories open book stacks, they were absolutely shocked and begged that it be put in a vault to be preserved. They said it was a priceless and rare book. Grace had pulled it from the shelf and had it on her desk to be processed for microfilming before it would be placed in the vault for safe storage.

The original book of kings for the Southern Song Dynasty became part of my fairytale Salt Lake City adventure. The two Graces insisted they take a picture of me holding the book. When I questioned which emperor to choose for the photo, Grace Chan felt the last emperor of the Southern Song Dynasty, a child, would be best. As she interpreted the story of his life for me, soft tears touched her cheeks, as the story was so beautifully written. She had never read this version of the story, made even more touching by reading it from this book. It seems the Southern Song Dynasty "was being overthrown when the boy king was only eight years old. His prime minister, Lu Xiufu, knew the boy king would be horribly tortured before being brutally murdered. So his loyal prime minister picked up the child emperor and walked into the sea with him, thereby giving him a merciful death as they were both drowned." The reign of the Southern Song Dynasty ended with this child's death. The child Emperor's name was Zhao Bing, ???, (1271-1279). He was known as the Lord Perpetual-Nation (??? yongguo gong).

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That evening, because I wanted to spend more time looking at the Chinese genealogies and photos, we put the book carefully back into the stack on the main floor. I feared for its safety, but was told it had been on the shelf for many years unharmed. Indeed when returned to the shelf, it looked like all the other ordinary Chinese lineage books next to it. Next morning, after sharing the book with my friends, I carefully put it back on Grace's desk to await its fate in a lonely vault, never to rub shoulders with the ordinary family histories that had happily been its neighbor for so many years. In the future, only a black and white microfilmed copy would be available. Its beautiful hand-painted portraits of the emperors, their histories, village sketches, its family trees handwritten on old parchment by master Chinese scholars and scribes, its brilliant colors and gold-leafed beauty, would never again be seen or held by visiting researchers. With tears in my eyes, knowing its lonely fate, I found it hard to say goodbye, as it seemed so alive with history. I do believe the Emperors enjoyed rubbing shoulders with the commoners for a brief moment in time, and they too were having a hard time saying farewell.
Kay Speaks holding the original book of Song Dynasty Emperors donated to the Family History Library by a direct descendant of the Song Dynasty. Emperor Zhao Bing (right) was the last emperor of the Southern Song Dynasty.


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An emperor's family tree from the ancient original book.

Dun Shee Leong Sing (married name)
Dang Lee Choy
Chinese grandmother

Note: Several months ago, the LDS Church began scanning documents at the San Bruno NARA. I'm not certain which documents are being scanned, but I hope one day the very special case files from the Chinese Exclusion Era will be scanned and preserved for future generations.

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Newsletters Are Valuable

By Jane Southwick

I have been reading many of the newsletters from other genealogical societies that come to our L-AGS Post Office Box. L-AGS sends a copy of our Roots Tracer to many other societies, and in return we receive a copy of their newsletters. I have found some that contain a lot of information.

The newsletters from our exchanging societies may describe speakers that they had, sometimes with a description of the talk. Some of the other valuable articles often included are:

Book reviews that describe new books and CDs added to their libraries.

Lists of web sites — old and new.

Reviews of genealogical computer programs, and instructions about how to use them.

Lists of their publications, which could be in areas that interest you.

Announcements of seminars the society and other societies are planning.

Quoted articles from Eastman Online, or some of the good writers from Ancestry.com.

Many of these societies are listed on our L-AGS Web site.

The newsletters received are taken to the Pleasanton Library. The docent on duty or the reference librarian may be able to pinpoint the location for you. I have taken the time to copy some of the more interesting information to keep in my files. Hopefully, you will have a chance to take advantage of these newsletters.

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She Has a List for You

By Susan Silva

[E-mail has been essential to the success of L-AGS. It is hard to imagine running the society without it. Susan Silva has recently taken on the job of managing all of the e-mail lists that L-AGS has created. Here is what she has to offer to you. Editor]

We have the following e-mail lists available for L-AGS members to use:

Library Docents
Fair Committee
Family Tree Maker Group
History Council
New Members
Roots Tracer Editorial Staff
Study Group
The Master Genealogist Group

If you are interested in a particular L-AGS subgroup, you may want to be added to that group's list. You will then be eligible for e-mails from the group leaders, and from other members of the group, regarding meetings, meeting place, and information to share regarding that particular group.

For committee chairs or group leaders, you may want us to create a list of your committee members. This allows a simple way to contact the various members while keeping personal information, including actual e-mail addresses, private.

To add your name to or delete it from a particular list, please contact me at list.manager@L-AGS.org and state your intentions. If you find a need to create a list for a particular event, such as The Alameda County Fair - Booth Volunteers, also contact me at this address. Please rest assured any personal information, including your actual e-mail address, is never shown as part of the address string. You are identified only by your name.

For questions about the e-mail software or problems using it, write to Larry Renslow at postmaster@L-AGS.org

For questions about e-mail lists, to subscribe or unsubscribe to one, or to update your e-mail address, write to me at list.manager@L-AGS.org

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History Council Impressed by Dublin's New Heritage Center

By Dick Finn

The Tri-Valley History Council (a gathering of representatives from all libraries, museums, and genealogy societies in the Tri-Valley area) had its quarterly meeting on October 17th at the newly refurbished Dublin Heritage Center, 6600 Donlon Way. As always at our meetings, each member group gave a short overview of what their organization is doing: projects, membership, items to share, and how we might help each other. It turns out that a lot is going on: Livermore is planning to move the old Midway School building into town and relocate the former train depot; Camp Parks is redoing some of their displays; Pleasanton is planning lots of reconstruction in downtown; the Niles Canyon Railway has some very big (I mean big) projects coming up; the Pleasanton Library will be greatly expanded; and in Dublin, plans are underway for the new Heritage Center complex.

After our meeting we were able to tour the new displays in the Dublin Heritage Center's Murray School House. It is like taking a trip from the old country to America in the 1800s. If you have not been to see the new displays, please give them a visit. Hours are posted at:


The new Dublin display reminds me of the Ulster American Folk Park ( http://www.folkpark.com ) at Castletown, County Tyrone, Northern Ireland, west of Belfast. They have a full-sized mockup of a typical ship that would have been used to transport people from Ireland to America in the mid 1800s. Once in the "ship," you are treated like dirt, having to lie on the very, very small beds that travelers had to sleep on, told of the smell, illnesses, rotten food, etc. on the long trip to America. I have to say the Ulster American Folk Park museum was a very moving and even upsetting place to visit. I would strongly advise anyone going to Northern Ireland to visit it. But now we are lucky to have a small version of an early trip from Ireland to America in our own area. Good job, Dublin!

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New L-AGS Book: 1887 Directory of Murray Township

By George Anderson

Continuing our tradition of publishing local history books of genealogical value, L-AGS has released a reprint of Faulkner's Business and Residence Directory of Murray Township, Alameda County, California. William B. Faulkner compiled this 128-page book in 1887. At that time, he lived in the now-extinct town of Midway in Murray Township. William P. Bartlett, owner of the Livermore Herald and an exuberant booster of our area, published Faulkner's work with much added advertising.

Faulkner's book seems to be rare. The only copy listed in the OCLC World Cat is in the California Room of the Oakland Public Library. Three other copies have been located: two in the University of California Library System, and one in the Maurice Marks Center for Local and California History at the Fremont Main Branch of the Alameda County Library System. The Fremont copy was used to produce this photocopied reprint.

Since Faulkner did not provide a whole-book index to his work, one was created for this reprint. It is included near the end of the book, and has also been posted on the L-AGS Web site at:


Ordering information about this and other L-AGS books can be found under "Publications" on our Web site.

Here's a fun lookup from Ancestry.com:

The life expectancy of (plug in your surname) using the Social Security Death Index as a point of reference:


Connie Pitt

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Orrin Smith and the Ship Brooklyn

By Barbara Wills


By Jane Southwick

L-AGS Member Barbara Wills is a descendant of sturdy pioneers who, along with 240 other Mormons, settled in the San Francisco Bay Area in 1846, a year before Brigham Young led his wagon train into the Salt Lake Valley. Barbara has recently finished a carefully documented biography of these pioneer ancestors, her great great grandparents Orrin Smith and his wife, Amy Ann Dowd.

After reading her biography, interviewing her, and getting her agreement to publish the story in the Roots Tracer, I felt there were interesting additional facts that warranted an introduction.

Barbara's article explains how Orrin and Amy Ann joined a group of Mormons who, on February 4, 1846, sailed on the Ship Brooklyn from New York and arrived in Yerba Buena (San Francisco) July 29, 1846.

This was an historic voyage. It took 5 months and 27 days and extended over 24,000 miles. There have been many articles and a film made about the trip. Historians claim it was the first voyage with women and children to sail around Cape Horn. In 1996, Barbara, her mother and two sisters were able to attend an historical reenactment of the arrival of the ship. This was held near the Maritime Museum in San Francisco.

In Barbara's article she mentions that Orrin and his wife, Amy, left the Brooklyn when it stopped in the Sandwich Islands (Hawaii) to bury a small son who had died on the voyage. The family continued on to Yerba Buena (San Francisco) and arrived there two and a half months later. A few years ago, Barbara's cousin visited the cemetery in Honolulu. While she was waiting for the manager of the cemetery to return she sat down under a tree and made a small lei of flowers from the tree. When the lei was finished she threw it out into the general area where she thought the grave might be. When the manager returned and looked in the burial book and told her where the grave was, she realized she had thrown the lei in the exact place where the grave was located.

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In 1980, a Livermore newspaper had an article about the old Pioneer Cemetery in Irvington, California. Barbara and her mother knew that Orrin and Amy had been buried in that cemetery, but no one in the family had been able to find their graves. Because of that article, they drove to Irvington and found the gravesite on the map in the cemetery office. Thanks to the contributions of the many descendents of Orrin and Amy's son, Eugene William Smith, the family was able to erect an impressive gravestone on which they placed a memorial marker. The marker is a beautiful plaque with a picture of the Brooklyn. This event took place October 21, 2006.

Barbara notes that because L-AGS keeps a list of ancestors on its web site, and also because of an article about Eugene William Smith in the Marin Journal, other descendants have found her. This made it easier for her to contact them and invite them to the ceremony to place the gravestone and plaque on Orrin and Amy's graves.

Sketch of the placque placed on Orrin's memorial.

Orrin Smith

By Barbara Wills

Orrin Smith, a son of Lucy Sears and Joseph Smith, was born 20 February 1808 in Chatham, Connecticut. On 2 May 1824, Orrin was baptized as an adult and admitted to the First Church of Christ, Congregational, in East Haddam, Connecticut. On 14 November 1825, he was dismissed to the Methodist Church in New Haven.7

Orrin married 1st Wealthy Maria Merriman, daughter of Lois Wantwood and Moses Merriman, 26 July 1827 at the Baptist Church in New Haven, Connecticut. Orrin and Wealthy traveled to Painesville, Ohio, and were residing there during the time of the 1840 U.S. Census of Lake County, Ohio. They attended the Methodist church, the Presbyterian Church (where he served as a minister), and were Millerites before converting to the Mormon faith. He was baptized a member of the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints on 17 December 1866 in San Francisco, California.8 Their children were: Henry M., Erotus F., Edwin T., Amelia A. (Mea), Eliza G., and Frank E. When Wealthy died 9 June 1843, Orrin and his family returned to Connecticut where Wealthy was buried in Hamden Plains Cemetery, Hamden, Connecticut.

Orrin married 2nd Amy Ann Dowd Hopkins, the widow of Andrew Bennett Hopkins, 30 July 1843 in Bristol, Connecticut. Amy Ann was born 10 February 1815, the daughter of Israel Dowd and Anne Clark. She brought two daughters to the marriage: Ellen Mariah Hopkins and Emily Marilla Hopkins.

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Orrin's name is spelled in various ways such as Oran, Orren, and Orin. Amy is called Ann, Amy, Amy Ann, and even Mary Ann. After Orrin's marriage to Amy Ann, they and their joined families, along with their young son Orrin Hopkins, who was born 11 August 1845, proceeded to board the Brooklyn. The ship was docked in New York Harbor. Captain Richardson and his crew, with Samuel Brannan as leader of the Mormon Company, were heading to San Francisco. The ship, with the Mormon passengers, departed 4 February 1846 from New York on its journey around the Horn to the San Francisco Bay.9 10 On their travels, the ship stopped at Cape Verde Island, Juan Fernandez ("Robinson Crusoe") Island, and the Sandwich (Hawaiian) Islands as it proceeded to Yerba Buena (San Francisco).

When the Brooklyn departed from Oahu, Orrin and his family stayed behind. Orrin Hopkins died on 15 July 1846, age 11 months and 4 days.11 He was buried in the Strangers Cemetery (now Oahu Cemetery) Section 2, Strangers Plot 160, Grave U, in Honolulu, Hawaii. The burial book located in the cemetery safe identifies him as Orren H., infant son of Mr. Smith, a passenger aboard Brooklyn. The elder Orrin's obituary in the newspaper Zion's Ensign of 1896, states that Orrin and Amy had five children, but only two survived.

The Brooklyn arrived at Yerba Buena (San Francisco) on the 31st of July 1846. The ship found itself tied alongside the U.S.S. Portsmouth, whose commander, Capt. John B. Montgomery, had landed on the 9th of July, to raise the American flag over Yerba Buena.12 The Mexican War was over and now the American flag flew over California. The Smith family had just lost one or two small children, and arrived in San Francisco on the 16th of October 1846.13 They may have departed Honolulu the 21st of September 1846 on the U.S.S. Independence, as it seems to be the only ship to have left Hawaii and to have arrived in San Francisco Bay near the above date.14

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In 1847, Orrin signed the guest book at the Blue Wing Inn in Sonoma.15 He bought two Sonoma town lots, #22 and #160, and one ranch lot #573. The ranch lot consisted of about 38 acres and cost one hundred and eighty three dollars and sixty-two cents. Orrin bought these lots between 17 November 1847 and 1 February 1850.16 A daughter, Ann Elizabeth (Lizzie), was born in or about 1848. Their son, Eugene William, was born on 1 January 1850 at or near Sonoma. On the 1850 U.S. Census, taken 2 November 1850 in Sonoma, California, the Smith family members are living in Sonoma dwelling #129. They are listed as: Oran, age 45, carpenter, born in Ohio (this is wrong.); Amy A., age 30, born in Connecticut; H. M., age 19, born in Connecticut; Ellen M., age 14, born in Connecticut; M.E.A., age 13, born in Ohio; Emily M., age 12, born in Connecticut; E.G., age 9, born in Connecticut; A.E. (Ann Elizabeth), age 2 1/2, born in California; and Eugene age 1/2, born in California. Orrin Smith, of the city and county of San Francisco, sold for fifty dollars a piece of property located in the city of Sonoma on 21 March 1866.17

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The Orrin Smith family traveled to Salt Lake City in 1848, following the members of the Mormon Battalion. Orin Smith, Mary Ann Daud Hopkins Smith, Eugene Smith, Elizabeth Ann Smith, Eliza Smith, Henry M. Smith, Francis (Frank) Smith, Amelia Smith, Ellen Maria Hopkins, and Emily Marilu Hopkins traveled the route as members of the Ebenezer Brown Company.18 This company is recorded as following the Mormon Battalion, as it blazed a trail to Salt Lake City.

The Mormon Battalion of the U.S. Army of the West was to build a road for wagons from California to the Salt Lake Cutoff. They started from Sutter's Fort on July 3, 1848 traveling about 10 miles a day. They crossed the Sierras on a route south of the present-day Highway 50, reached the summit at Carson Pass on the present-day Highway 88, then proceeded toward the Carson River. They continued across what later became Nevada to the Humboldt River where they first camped on August 16. They followed the river for 20 days, then spent four days in an unsuccessful attempt to find the turnoff for Bear River. They returned to the Humboldt River and continued east, finally reaching Salt Lake Valley on October 6.

The Smith family and the other members of the Ebenezer Brown Company started the new wagon trail from Pleasant Valley on August 10, 1848. The last of this group of wagons with families arrived in Salt Lake on the October 10, 1848.19

The Smith family traveled many times from California to Salt Lake City. In April 1855, they traveled the southern route. This Mormon group gathered at Santa Clara to begin the journey. They went to San Bernardino and then possibly via the Old Spanish Trail to the Mormon Fort in Las Vegas and on to Salt Lake City.20 On July 9, 1859, Orrin was again in Salt Lake City and received a Patriarchal Blessing from the Church of Latter Day Saints. When the blessing was given, it was "upon the head of Orrin Smith, son of Joseph and Lucy, born 20 February 1808 in Chatham, Middlesex County, Connecticut."21 Therefore, Amy and Orrin were in Salt Lake City when Ellen Mariah Hopkins was married there on the July 19, 1859 to Lewis Leartus Newell. 22 Orrin's granddaughter, Eva Smith, once wrote, "Grandpa Smith was a Latter Day Saint; he also was a minister, he sure knew the Bible good."

In the 1870 U.S. Census for Napa County, California, Orrin, a shoemaker, and Amy are residing in Napa City. In 1871, Orrin is still residing in Napa, California and his occupation is shoemaker.23 His son, Eugene William, was also a shoemaker and a constable.24 Sometime before 1877, Orrin and Amy moved to West Oakland, California. Amy died there in April of 1877.25 She was buried in the Old Pioneer Cemetery at Washington Corners (Irvington District, later a part of Fremont), Alameda County, California.26 Orrin married for a third time, a widow named Mrs. Harriet Hodges of Watsonville, California. She had a son at the time of the marriage.27

Orrin Smith spent his last days at his son Eugene William Smith's home in San Rafael, California. Eugene's wife Emma took care of him. In a letter written by his granddaughter, Eva Smith, she wrote: "Grandpa was very weak. Mother took good care of him and he died at our house in San Rafael. His body was shipped to Irvington (now Fremont) for burial. Lizzie (Orrin's sister) and I tried to locate it (the grave site), but there was no record." However, there is a record showing he was buried in Irvington next to Amy Ann.28

Orrin Smith's death notice was recorded in the Zion's Ensign newspaper and the Saints' Herald newspaper. It was also noted in the Marin Journal of 5 March 1896. He had died at the age of 88 after a life that included many journeys. He traveled from Chatham, Connecticut to Painesville, Ohio, and back to Chatham, to New York, and then around the Horn to Hawaii and Yerba Buena (San Francisco). His travels continued to Sonoma, to Salt Lake City, to San Francisco, to Napa, to Oakland, to San Juan Bautista, to San Rafael, and then to his final resting place in Fremont, California.

1. LDS Patriarchal Blessing given Orrin Smith in Great Salt Lake City, 9 July 1859.
2. Vital Records of New Haven 1644-1850, Hartford, The Connecticut Society of the Order Of The Founders And Patriots of America, 1917, p. 507.
3. Donald Lines Jacobus, M.A., compiler, "The Merriman Family," Families of Ancient New Haven, Clarence D. Smith, Rome, NY, 1927, vol. IV, p. 1178.
4. Donald Lines Jacobus, M.A., compiler, "The Hamden Plains Cemetery," Families of Ancient New Haven, Donald L. Jacobus, New Haven CT, 1931, vol. VII, p. 1802.
5. Bristol Town Records Commencing January 1841, FHL film # 1316018, vol. 3 - 1843, p. 13.
6. Timothy Hopkins, compiler, John Hopkins of Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1636 and Some of His Descendants, 1932, pp. 237, 238.
7. Karl P. Stofko, DDS, Church and Society Treasurer, compiler, Vital Statistics Records from the Records of the First Church of Christ, Congregational in East Haddam, Connecticut 1704-1850, p. 91.
8. Obituary of Orren Smith, Zion's Ensign Newspaper, 14 March 1896, p. 8.
9. William Glover, Mormons in California, 1884.
10. Amelia D. Everett, "The Ship Brooklyn," California Historical Society Quarterly, September 1958.
11. The Polynesian, 18 July 1840, p. 35. (The name is spelled Orren Hopkins Smith in the obituary.)
12. Walton Bean, California: an Interpretive History, 2nd edition, McGraw Hill Book Company.
13. LDS Collectors Library: Early LDS Membership Data (information on Amy Ann Smith, wife of Orrin Smith).
14. Bernice Judd, Ship Voyages to Hawaii before 1860, University Press of Hawaii for Hawaiian Mission Children's Society of Honolulu, p. 37.
15. Oral conversations from Eugenia Pitcher Butts, who saw the documents, to Greta Smith Gregory, to Barbara Wills.
16. Sonoma County Deeds, Book A Deeds, p. 17, 159; Book A N2 Deeds, p. 66.
17. Sonoma County Deeds, Book 18, p. 694.
18. Norma Baldwin Ricketts, The Mormon Battalion, U.S. Army of the West 1846-1848, Utah State University Press, Logan, Utah, 1996, pp. 224-225. (Eugene Smith is listed on the journey along with the family. Was there another Eugene child, who was born and died, before Eugene William Smith born? If so, this would then confirm the note of 5 children born to Orrin and Amy Smith, and 2 children survived. This statement is noted in Orrin Smith's obituary in the Zions Ensign.)
19. Ibid., pp. 185-227.
20. Journal History of the Church, 30 April 1855.
21. LDS Patriarchal Blessing given Orrin Smith in Great Salt Lake City, 9 July 1859.
22. Timothy Hopkins, compiler, John Hopkins of Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1634, and some of His Descendants, 1932, p. 337.
23. Solano and Napa County Directories, 1871-72, p. 365.
24. Great Register of Marin County , 1890, p. 45.
25. LDS Collectors Library, Early LDS Membership Data: Amy Ann Smith.
26. Irvington Memorial Cemetery, Fremont, CA (formerly Old Pioneer Cemetery at Washington Corners).
27. U.S. Census 1880, San Juan, San Benito County, CA.
28. Irvington Memorial Cemetery, Fremont, CA (formerly Odd Fellows Cemetery at Irvington).

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Working with Eneclann on Irish Research

By Bill Silver

It was just under a year ago that I first learned that my great grandmother, Janet Hunter, had been born in Ireland and not Scotland, as related by my family. I discovered this while searching the 1871 English census for Chatham, Kent, which was the main location for most of my Blakes. The entry said she was married to Edward Blake and, along with her oldest son Samuel, was born in Dublin, Ireland. The other three children, including my grandfather, were born in various towns around Chatham.

With this information I started searching for Irish records. It didn't go well, but with a bit of luck and considerable help from a worker in the FHL in Salt Lake City, I found the marriage entry for Edward and Janet Hunter in Dublin, Ireland, Presbyterian Church records. But I wasn't able to find anything else.

While attending the Joint UGA/FGS conference last fall, I noticed that Eneclann, an Irish research organization, had a booth displaying their services. I asked about research capabilities and was referred to Nicola Morris, who headed up that part of their program. She was easy to talk to and her answers to a few chosen questions convinced me she knew her business very well. I asked about cost and choked a bit when she said 100 euros per hour for a minimum of three hours. So I put that option on the back burner, that is, until I gave up in frustration at the dearth of records available for Ireland.

So I contacted Eneclann via e-mail:  info@eneclann.ie.com

and communicated to Nicola my interest in starting a research project. They requested $40 for the initial assessment to be followed by an additional $310 when I agreed to let them do the work. I made the first installment in April by credit card. This was followed by the second installment in May after I had reviewed and approved their proposal. One characteristic of Eneclann that I found troublesome was that they are lax about providing updates.

By August I was a bit anxious, not having heard a thing from them, so I sent off an e-mail and received a very apologetic note saying that they had been waiting for the results of research requested from a member of the Abbey Presbyterian Church who was a volunteer. About two weeks later I received a second e-mail with an attachment that summarized their findings. They said I was being sent a hard-copy version with copies of all records having to do with Hunters in the time period of interest.

I was most impressed with their findings. I now know that Janet Hunter was born on 24 November 1841 to John Hunter and Robina Barron. They searched Scots Origins records and found that John Hunter and Robina Barron married on 11 July 1834 in Lanark, Scotland, partially confirming the story about the Hunters originating in Scotland.

Was it worth the cost? For me it definitely was. A trip to Ireland and unfamiliarity with the local records would have cost me a bunch more and probably yielded less information. These were very nice people to deal with. The actual field work was done by an associate named Helen Moss. I'm sure that more than three hours was dedicated to this research. I would definitely recommend Eneclann to anyone having trouble researching records in Ireland.

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Mac Tip

Question: I use a Macintosh computer, and since the [Mormon] church's PAF program for it is so old, are there any other programs written for the Mac?

Answer: I would suggest checking out the following:

Reunion: http://www.leisterpro.com/

MacPAF:   http://homepage.mac.com/logan/MacPAF/

GEDitCOM:  http://www.geditcom.com/

Gene:  http://www.ics.uci.edu/~eppstein/gene/

From the Logan [Utah] FHC Newsletter, 18 Oct 2006

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New Genealogy Books at the Pleasanton Library

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Genealogy / By Christine Rose And Kay Germain Ingalls. 929.1072 ROSE.

Becoming an Accredited Genealogist : Plus 100 Tips to Ensure Your Success! / By Karen Clifford. 929.1 CLIFFORD.

The Foxworthy-Fallon Saga / By Donald F. Foxworthy. 929.2 FOXWORTHY.

Records of the Callaghan Mortuary : Livermore, California / A Public Service Project of The  Livermore-Amador Genealogical Society. 929.379782 RECORDS.

Early Livermore, Califoria Obituary Information / A Public Service Project of The Livermore-Amador Genealogical Society ; Project Leader : David Abrahams. 929.3 EARLY.

Rolfsnes, Ase and Related Famlies / Complied by Henrik O. Lunde. 929.2 LUNDE.

George Fleming : A California Forty Niner and Families from Pennsylvania / Compiled by Forrest Griswell. 929.2 GRISWELL.

The Foxworthy-Fallon Siblings / By Donald F. Foxworthy. 929.2 FOXWORTHY.

Pre-1905 Death Index : Alameda County California / Livermore-Amador Genealogical Society. 929.3 PRE-1905.

Pioneers of Chickasaw Nation, Indian Territory / By Nova A. Lemons. 929.3766 LEMONS.

James Chadwell Of Virginia : Some of his Family / By Thomas E. Chadwell. 929.3755 CHADWELL.

Researching Northern California : A Genealogical Resource : County Government, Libraries, Historical Societies, Museums, Genealogical Societies and More / Compiled for the San Francisco Bay Region of the California State Genealogical Alliance by Esther Kooliman ... [et.al.]. 929.1 RESEARCHING.

Pedigree Resource File [CD-ROM]. 929.1 PEDIGREE.

British Isles Vital Records Index [CD-ROM] : England, Ireland, Scotland, And Wales. 929.1 BRITISH.

Heritage Quest [Electronic Resource]. September 1985 to December 1999 : The Genealogy Magazine. CD-ROM 929.3 HERITAGE.

Emigrants, Refugees, and Prisoners : An Aid to Mennonite Family Research / Richard Warren Davis. 929.3088287 DAVIS.

Faulkner's Business and Residence Directory of Murray Township, Alameda County, California 1887 : Photocopied, Indexed and Reprinted by the Livermore-Amador Genealogical Society 2006. 979.465 FAULKNER'S.

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Tree-Lovers — Take Action!

Scott Gagnon

The printed version of our quarterly newsletter, The Roots Tracer, is distributed to members every February, May, August and November. Shortly after its appearance in print, it is also posted on our Web site at http://www.L-AGS.org

I recently took over the duties of printing and distributing the Roots Tracer. Unfortunately, I have to pass on the responsibility soon, and Sandra Caulder has volunteered to step in. Last Spring, I decided to offer a new option for members: to receive the Tracer as an e-mail attachment. If you would like to save L-AGS some money, spare a few trees, and read the Tracer in full color, send an e-mail to me at: tracer@L-AGS.org

I will take you off of the print-edition list and send your copy by e-mail as an Adobe Acrobat (PDF) file. If you don't currently have PDF reader software, you can easily obtain it for free from Adobe. I will include directions for downloading this software in the cover letter for the PDF attachment.

Of course, you can reverse this decision at any time.

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Talk to a Live Human

Having trouble trying to find a LIVE person to talk to on the phone when trying to get help from Apple, HP, Dell and many others?

Go to: http://gethuman.com/us/ and click the DATABASE link.

Elliott Healy

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Get the Most from L-AGS

Subgroups Teach, Encourage, Support, and Share

By Kay Speaks and Dick Finn

The Study Group

Note! The Study Group will not meet in November or December because of conflicts with holidays.

The purpose of the L-AGS Study Group is to teach, encourage, support, and share genealogy-related techniques, problems, and successes. Do you have a brick wall that is driving you crazy? Have you tried e-mailing our Study Group List at: study.group@L-AGS.org for support? Found an elusive record that you've spent months or years trying to discover, and just have to tell someone? Members of the Study Group would love to hear from you. When you haven't had a breakthrough on your own genealogy research, hearing of someone's success helps—it cheers and motivates. Can't physically make the Study Group meetings but still have questions, need help, or want more information about a research technique? We're just an e-mail away!

We encourage you to send your ideas for meeting topics to the list. Perhaps there are others interested in the same subject. The Study Group is your resource for computer-related questions too. Need some help with formatting a Word document? Want to know when and how to compress and photograph? Try e-mailing the Study Group. If you wish to subscribe or unsubscribe to the Study Group, send an e-mail to Susan Silva, L-AGS List Manager at: list.manager@L-AGS.org.

The Family Tree Maker Focus Group

Most of our group are FTM users (from beginners to experts) who discuss problems and solutions, share successes, answer questions, and in general help each other with the Family Tree Maker genealogical software. All persons interested or potentially interested in Family Tree Maker are invited to attend. For information on our group please e-mail Dick Finn at ftm.chair@L-AGS.org . Contact Dick for information about topics to be discussed.

Visitors are welcome and there is no charge to attend. Bring your questions, comments, and if you have a laptop with FTM loaded (any version) and/or the FTM Handbook, you might bring them.

Please avail yourself of the L-AGS FTM e-mail forum at ftm.group@L-AGS.org  to post questions, answers and comments.

The Tri-Valley TMG Users Group

This is a very special users group. Besides learning how to use The Master Genealogist family tree software, we recommend methods of citing your sources and repositories. Receive help brainstorming different methods of entering data found, such as census records, so that you get the printed reports as you would like to see them. We help you tailor the software so that it is best suited to your personal needs. Members range in experience from beginner to expert. Our classes are free to members and guests.

We use advanced technology to provide a better learning environment. User-owned laptops are connected to a digital projector so the entire group can view specific user issues and problems. In this way, we all learn how to best correct problems, utilize the software, and get the best output of our data. Meetings are 3-hour mini-workshops. This provides the user the opportunity to receive hands-on experience of entering data into our user group's practice database.

We meet the 3rd Saturday of each month, from 9:00 a.m. to noon. Whenever possible, send an e-mail to mailto:tv-tmg@L-AGS.org to let us know you plan to attend meetings so we can arrange our meeting space accordingly. A free trial version of the software can be found on the Whollygenes Web site: http://www.whollygenes.com.

We recommend the Gold Edition of the software.

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Members Helping Members —

L-AGS to the Rescue

By Mary Ann Loss

Becoming a member of L-AGS has been one of the best things I've ever done. Of course, we have interesting programs and tasty snacks, but there's more. We have members who are willing to lend a hand with research.

Several weeks ago I asked via e-mail if anyone had any recommendations for locating obituaries in Riverside, California. Within hours the answers started coming in.

Initially, the advice was to determine the library closest to the event and contact them. And not only did I get the advice, I was also given the library's name, telephone number and address.

The second recommendation was to look at the Riverside county Genweb page for a volunteer. In this case the Internet address for Riverside County is at:


One of my favorite pages was the one that guided me to the many angels performing Random Acts of Genealogical Kindness. They can be found at:


Additionally, I was told about an obituary look-up page for California at:


In Sacramento there are volunteers who will perform a variety of look-ups at the State Library. To locate a volunteer go to:


So, as I was preparing my letter to the Riverside library, I received an e-mail from a fellow L-AGS member in southern California. She volunteered to visit the Riverside library, find the obituaries and mail copies to me.

And just last week the obituaries arrived. They are more than I could ask for as they've expanded one of my collateral lines by two generations.

Soon I'll gather my courage and call this newly fleshed-out branch of my family. And when I do, I'll be thinking about the L-AGS members who've helped with their advice and kindness. Thank you, Jim Scofield, Anna Riesing and Dick Finn.

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Staff meeting

Livermore Roots Tracer Staff

Reporters Marie Ross, Lois Barber, Jane Southwick, Kay Speaks
Compositor George Anderson
Web Editor Vicki Renz


Scott Gagnon, Sandra Caulder
Staff Contributors
G.R.O.W  Frank Geasa

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Last modified 14 november 2006 vlr