Note: The Web version of this issue of The Roots Tracer contains all of the words and all of the non-decorative graphics of the original paper version, but does not preserve the original typographical formatting.
ISSN0736-802X THE LIVERMORE ROOTS TRACER VOLUME XIV AUTUMN 1995 NUMBER 4 Livermore-Amador Genealogical Society PO Box 901, Livermore, California 94551
TABLE OF CONTENTS VOLUME XIV NUMBER 4 Calendar of Selected Events 572 Library News 573 Queries 574 Computer News 575 L-AGS Computer Interest Group Resources 577 L-AGS Study Group 579 Obituary 579 Holiday Letters for Special Occasions 580 L-AGS Members who are Members of Other Genealogical Organizations 581 Meet the Members 584
LIFE MEMBERS OF L-AGS: Beverly Schell Ales Anastasia Alexander Carrie Alexander G. E. "Robbie" Robinson Harriett & George Anderson Judy Person Harry and Kip West BENEFACTORS: Addie Martz Doug Mumma WELCOME TO NEW MEMBERS: Joan Miles Vicki Renz Patricia Futch Linda Trudeau Ken and Denise Varallo
LIVERMORE-AMADOR GENEALOGICAL SOCIETY P. 0. Box 901, Livermore, CA 94551 President Fran SAMANS 510-447-0761 1st VP and Membership Chair Erma McCUE 510-443-1512 2nd VP and Program Chair Katherine BRIDGMAN 510-846-4898 Recording Secretary Harold NORRIS 510-447-6067 Corresponding Secretary David CURRY 510-447-7589 Business Manager Chuck ROCKHOLD 510-455-5911 Roots Tracer Editors Jolene & David ABRAHAMS 510-447-9386 Library Chair Judy PERSON 510-846-6972 Publicity Chair Felicia ZIOMEK 510-847-9260 Livermore Cultural Arts Council Rep Don JOHNSON 510-447-4746 Computer Interest Chair Doug MUMMA 510-447-5164 Historian David LINDSEY 510-447-6351 Publications Chair Leo VONGOTTFRIED 510-447-3597 The Livermore-Amador Genealogical Society is exempt from Federal Income Tax under Section 501(c)(3) (literary and educational) of the Internal Revenue Code and California Taxation Code 237020.
The Roots Tracer is a quarterly publication with articles of interest to the genealogist. Members are encouraged to submit their "Profiles" as well as articles of general interest. Queries are free to members, $ 1. 00 to nonmembers. The deadline for each quarterly is the 15th of June, September, December, and March. Send to: Roots Tracer, P. 0. Box 901 Livermore, CA 94S51 Any book presented to the Society will be reviewed in the quarterly along with the purchase price and address of the publisher. Our Library is located in the Pleasanton Public Library building, 400 Old Bernal Ave., Pleasanton, CA. Meetings are held on the 2nd Tuesday, monthly, 7:30 PM, at Congregation Beth Emek, 1866 College Ave., Livermore, CA. Membership in LAGS is open to any individual, library, or society. Our fiscal year is January 1 through December 31. Membership includes a subscription to the quarterly Roots Tracer. Publications Members Non-Members Postage Surname Index (1994) $9.00 $14.00 $2.00 Livermore Cemeteries (1988) $12.00 $17.00 $2.00 Pleasanton, Dublin Cemeteries (1990) $8.00 $12.00 $2.00 Roots Tracer Index $3.00 $4.50 $1.50 The above publications are available on diskette (IBM or Mac) for the same price as the paper copies. When purchased with a book, they are half price. Members Handbook $4.00 $6.00 $2.00 (Prices subject to change) Send check or money order to: Livermore-Amador Genealogical Society P. 0. Box 901, Livermore, CA 94551 DUES Individual $12.00 Family $18.00 Life $125.00 Benefactor $30.00 Patron $60.00 Life (Couples) $185.00
CALENDAR OF SELECTED GENEALOGICAL EVENTS (From various sources) 12 OCT 1995 CONTRA COSTA Co. Gen. Soc.: Mr. Bernard Freedmand speaking on Ellis Island. Concord Chapel of the LDS Church, 3700 Concord Blvd., Concord 7:30 pm. 14 OCT 1995 CENTRAL CA GEN. CONFERENCE: John Philip Colleta speaking on They Came in Ships, Italian Research, Immigration and Passenger Lists, and various topics of immigration. Four classes/hour on many topics including Bulletin Boards, Computer Databases, Scots-Irish Research, Canadian Sources, Portuguese Research and Common Surnames. Monterey Beach Hotel, off Hwy. 1 at Canyon Del Rey Exit. Contact Stan or Ellen Koskinen at 408-758-5488. 14 OCT 1995 EAST BAY Gen. Soc.: "Digging for Your Roots" Seminar at LDS Church, 3700 Concord Blvd., Concord. Keynote speaker is Margery Bell. Registration at 8:30 AM. 21 OCT 1995 LIVERMORE-AMADOR GENEALOGICAL SOCIETY: A one-day seminar/workshop in conjunction with the Livermore & Pleasanton Mormon Churches. Bette Kot is the keynote speaker. The program includes several ethnic presentations, computer program demonstrations, 19 classes and much more. At the LDS on Valley Avenue and Paseo Santa Cruz, Pleasanton. Registration at 8:00 AM. Call Jolene or David Abrahams, 510-447-9386, Dean at 510-447-3497 or Garth at 510-828-9308 for details. 28 OCT 1995 SANTA CLARA FHC Seminar "Finding Your Family History". Keynote speaker Jimmy Parker, Director Family History Library. Program includes 60 different classes. Family History Library, 875 Quince Ave., Santa Clara. Call 408-241-1449. 2 NOV 1995 MONTEREY Co. Gen. Soc.: "How Lineage Societies Can Help with Genealogical Research". A panel discussion at the Family History Center, corner of Noche Buena & Plumas, Seaside, 6:00 PM. Call 408-484-9695 for information. 11 NOV 1995 SAN MATEO Gen. Soc.: Class, "Census Records" 12:30 - 2:30 PM, SMCGS Library. $7.00 per class or $21.00 for 4-class series. 25 NOV 1995 SONOMA Co. Gen Soc.: "Major Resources for Southern Genealogy" by John Palmer. Lark Hall, Santa Rosa Jr. College, Room 2009 Santa Rosa, 1:00 PM.
LIBRARY NEWS Judy Person The following books have recently been added to the L-AGS book collection, which is housed in the Pleasanton Public Library.
U.S. Military Records, by James Neagles. Ancestry Publications, 1994. Purchased by LAGS. Types of records, National Archives resources, other centers in Washington, D.C. and the states, and a list of other published sources. Also includes a list with one or two paragraphs about each of the 48 American conflicts.
Settlers of the Beekman Patent; Dutchess County, New York. Volume 1: Historical Records, by Frank J. Doherty. Published by author. 1990. Gift from author. An historical and genealogical study of all the 18th Century settlers in the patent area by the author, who became interested when he bought an old property in La Grange, New York, where Pearl Buck had lived briefly. A really thorough work; includes the present towns of Beekman, Dover, Pawling, Union Vale, and about half of La Grange.
Virginia Genealogist, Volume 23, 1979. John Frederick Dorman, Editor. Heritage Books, 1994. Gift from publisher. This is a "Heritage Classic", reprinting contents from the magazine for 1979. It includes tax records, marriage bonds, family records, church records, and military and court records for various localities, mostly from the late 18th and early 19th centuries. A taste of this should send a searcher to PERSI, the Periodical Source Index, at the Mocho LDS library, to search for more articles on their areas of interest.
Ohio Genealogical Research, by George Schweitzer. Published by author, 1994. Bought by LAGS. Another very complete and highly recommended work by the genial scholar, Dr. Schweitzer. Discusses Ohio history and types of records, then goes through, county by county, to show how to go on. Definitely the one to use for Ohio research.
Recollections: Early Life in the San Ramon Valley as related by Professor James Dale Smith, Headmaster, Livermore College. Edited by G. B. Drummond. Great Book Printing, 1995. Gift from George and Harriet Anderson. Memoirs, history and biography from Martinez to Nortonville, Walnut Creek, Danville and Livermore. A very interesting, pleasing book for local history and color.
"Of good and perfect remembrance:" Bolton Wills and Inventories, 1571 to 1600; Surnames N to Z. Published by Bolton and District Family History Society, Bolton, England, 1994. Gift from Jolene and David Abrahams. The second volume for this area, just north of Manchester in the Midlands, with about fifty records of wills.
Genealogical Register of the First Settlers of New England, by John Farmer. Genealogical Publishing Company, 1989, reprint of 1829 work. Gift from Fran Samans. An alphabetical list of "known and distinguished" individuals from the 1600s to the early 1800s: magistrates, ministers, court officials, Harvard graduates, freemen, and those who came to the Massachusetts colony before 1643.
International Vital Records Handbook, third edition, by Thomas Kemp. Genealogical Publishing Company, 1994. Gift from Judy Person. One of the most useful books for genealogists, this has all the forms and information for sending for all vital records from all places. MANY more countries are included, from 355 to 417 in the new edition, and the U.S. states are all updated. This new edition includes forms for passport and Social Security Number Record searches. A most excellent resource, now better than ever.
Finding Italian Roots, by John Philip Colletta, Ph.D. Genealogical Publishing Company, 1993. Bought by LAGS. Both practical teaching and lists of resources, with plenty of hints on just how to do it. A glossary is included. For example, find out 3 big facts: Exact name at birth, date of birth, and commune, or town the ancestor came from. Not lengthy, no wasted words and a very pleasant writing style.
Davidson County, Tennessee, Deed Books "T" and "W", 1829-1835, by Mary Sue Smith. Heritage Books, 1994. This is a wonderful piece of work, being a listing of the deeds of two of the books for this county in middle Tennessee. Its chief benefit is an every-name index, so that all the people mentioned in these personal property deeds and their relationships are identified. This is also a look into the property owned by the families of this period.
Welsh Family History: a guide to research. Edited by John Rowland and others. Genealogical Publishing Company, 1994. Bought by LAGS. A very thorough treatment, covering record repositories, census, the role of the non-Church-of-England churches in Wales and their records, Welsh surnaming, the International Genealogical Index for Wales, and much, much more.
QUERIES Barbara GRIMSHAW, P. O. Box 517, Benton City, WA 99320 Born and raised in Livermore; would like to correspond with L-AGS members. Livermore ancestors: SIERCK, McPHERSON
Dr. & Mrs. George C. DUNNE, 10901 Key West Ave., Northridge, CA 91326 Researching MORRILL and SEEBAND families who lived in Livermore last part of 1890's and early 1900's. Dr. Dunne writes: "My father's natural parents, Harry MORRILL and Tilly SEEBAND Morrill, evidently died in separate events between 1914 and 1919, at which time my father, George Morrill Dunne and his older sister, Alta (both now deceased) were orphaned. Both children were later adopted, but stayed in touch with some of their original family, including his favorite aunt, Mabel Morrell, a spinster lady, and Aunt Emma (Seeband) Budworth, who lived in his grandparents' former home at 3rd and McCloud in Livermore." NOTE: The Dunne's also provided some background history and family group records, which are currently in the possession of your editors. The Dunne's would appreciate any help we can give them.
Computer News Doug Mumma Computer Interest Group August Meeting Thirty-two L-AGS members attended the Computer Interest Group's first meeting after a nine month hiatus. During the meeting, the various computer resources available to all members were explained and discussed. This information is printed in another section of this newsletter. Garth Ludwig has volunteered to conduct a PAF class that will consist of about nine, two hour modules beginning with how to load PAF for new users and will continue through more advanced sorting and reporting topics. These classes will start in November and be held on the 2nd and 4th Mondays of each month at 7 p.m at the Mormon Church on Mocho Street in Livermore. While the class will predominately discuss the DOS version of PAF, program differences for Mac users will be addressed. A class syllabus will be distributed at the next meeting. A drawing for was held at the conclusion of the meeting for a DOS software package, "Family Origins," which was generously donated by David Abrahams. Isabel Nolte was the lucky winner. The genealogy resources that our members have found useful on the Internet was the topic of the September meeting.
Future Meetings October 26 CD-ROMs. L-AGS member, Robbie Robinson, is a distributor for the Broderbund/Banner Blue/Automated Research CD-ROMs. He will give us a glimpse into the future of CD-ROMs. A CD-ROM door prize will be given out. At the end of the meeting, Robbie will do specific searches for people. November 23 Thanksgiving No meeting. Have a joyous time with your family. Give your grandchildren (or children or significant other) a hug! December 28 General sharing and help session. How do I install the new CD-ROM or other item that I just acquired for Christmas? Come and share your latest program or problems you have. 1996 The topics have not been established. We need your input and ideas and/or willingness to lead a session. Please give Doug Mumma a call if you can help or have some input!
Computer Usage Survey Results We conducted a computer usage telephone survey of our membership in August. One hundred people were contacted out of a total membership of one hundred and ten. Of the ten people not contacted, nine live outside the local area. The results are quite interesting. We found that 87% of our members use computers, 30% use Macs and 56% use DOS based computers. The overwhelming choice for a genealogy program is PAF with a 52% usage. Family Tree Maker came in second with 23% usage. The remaining members used a variety of other programs or no genealogy program at all. The favored word processing program was Microsoft's Word with 48% usage. Word Perfect is used by 28% of the members with nine other programs sharing the balance. The results also show that the membership is becoming more sophisticated in their computer hardware with 39 (45%) have CD-ROM players. Modems are installed in 55 (62%) of the computers, but many of them are not being used.
L-AGS Computer Interest Group Resources Doug Mumma The following resources and recommendations are available to all L-AGS members for the asking. If you have something you can contribute to the list, please contact me at 447-5164. 1) Computer Interest Group Meetings - The computer interest group holds meetings on the 4th Thursday at 7:00 p.m. at the Mormon Church, 950 Mocho Street, Livermore. Each month has an announced theme or topic for discussion. Time is reserved at the end of each meeting for hands-on problem solving and individual interaction with other members. 2) Computer Classes - Computer classes are available through the local schools and by the Computer Interest Group. The Livermore and Pleasanton Adult Education have excellent programs to teach "beginning computer" and various application programs, such as word processing and spreadsheets. The club's teaching efforts are focused on software programs and issues related to genealogy. Periodically, a class is offered on using the genealogy program, PAF. Other classes will offered where there is interest. 3) Mentoring Program - To assist our members use their computers and software more efficiently and provide help when they are having problems, we have established a Mentor program. The dictionary defines a Mentor as a "wise and trusted counselor." The Mentors are member volunteers who are willing to assist you in an area of their specialty when you call them on the telephone. In many cases, they are willing to have you come to their house or go to your house to provide "hands-on" support if needed. We hope you find the program useful and profitable. A special list of mentors and their areas of specialty is available from the Computer Interest Group chairman. 4) L-AGS Computer Disks - Special L-AGS computer diskettes are available which contain a variety of information including genealogy programs, utilities, tutorials, as well as computer versions of L-AGS published information. Publications are available in diskette form for the same price as the hardcopy version. If you want both the hardcopy and diskette, the price is only 50% more than the cost of the hardcopy version. The Pleasanton Library Catalog files are formatted as Word files as well as plain ASCII text files. Diskettes are available in both DOS and Mac formats. DOS-LAGS #1 This diskette is for IBM compatible computers and contains over 1.4 megabytes of information. There are two tutorials about genealogy, two tutorials about using PAF and recommended guidelines for documentation, a nice tutorial about using the INTERNET, a demonstration program about using CompuServe's genealogy forum, a relationship chart, a listing of all genealogy bulletin boards in the U.S., a listing of all U.S. genealogical societies, and finally, a listing/review of 144 PAF/GEDCOM shareware programs that are available. The diskette size is 3 1/2", high density. Note, some programs require a color monitor. - IBM only [Donation of $5.00 members, $7.50 non-members.] MacLAGS #1 This diskette is for Macintosh computers and contains four programs that George Anderson wrote as useful utilities for himself. Ahnentafel Q makes an ahnentafel chart from a PAF file with the option of including all, some, or no notes. Narrative v2 puts all of the data in a PAF file into compact narrative form. Chart Q produces a compact descendants chart of fine typographic quality on a PostScript printer. Soundex Q instantly converts any name to Soundex code. These programs come with a 10 page manual. - Mac only [Donation of $5.00 members, $7.50 non-members.] Catalog of the L-AGS Genealogical Holdings at the Pleasanton Library - This diskette contains the "Catalog of the Pleasanton Genealogy Library," and the "Database for the Pleasanton Genealogy Library," covering 605 books with complete bibliographic information. The diskette also contains a "Catalog of the Vertical File of the Gayle Pipes Memorial Library of the Livermore-Amador Genealogical Society." - Mac & DOS versions [Donation of $3.50 members, $5.00 non-members.] Surname Index - This diskette contains an index to the 5861 surname being researched by members of the Livermore-Amador Genealogical Society (June 1995). - Mac & DOS versions. [Donation of $9.00 members, $14.00 non- members.] Roots Tracer Index - A ten year (1978 to 1988) cumulative every-name index and index to major subjects published in the Roots Tracer. - Mac & DOS versions. [Donation of $3.00 members, $4.50 non-members.] Livermore Cemeteries - A listing of over 5800 names of persons buried in the four Livermore, cemeteries are contained on this diskette. The four cemeteries are Oak Knoll (A pioneer cemetery now abandoned), Roselawn, Memorial Gardens, and St. Michael's. - Mac & DOS versions. [Donation of $12.00 members, $17.00 non-members.] Pleasanton/Dublin Cemeteries - This diskette contains 4668 names of persons buried in the cemeteries of Pleasanton and Dublin, California. The cemeteries are Pleasanton Memorial Gardens, St. Augustine's Catholic Cemetery, and the Dublin Cemetery. Published in 1990. - Mac & DOS versions. [Donation of $8.00 members, $12.00 non-members.) These diskettes are available from the Publications Chairperson at the regular L-AGS meetings and at the Computer Interest Group meetings. 5) CD-ROM Sharing - Many of our members now have CD-ROMs and various genealogy related CDs. In the interest of sharing resources, a list is maintained by the Computer Interest Group Chairperson of the CDs that people are willing to share or do data look-ups. If you acquire a CD that you would be willing to share, please call Doug Mumma and register your CD. Note: most of the genealogy CDs will only work on DOS machines. 6) Sample Genealogy Program Reports - If you are considering purchasing a new genealogy program, but would like to first see sample reports that it creates, then this notebook is for you. It contains representative reports from eleven different genealogy programs, including Family Roots 4, Roots IV, Family Tree Maker for DOS and Windows, Family Origins for DOS and Windows, PAF, Brother's Keeper for Windows (new) and DOS, Ancestral Quest, and Family Scrapbook. This notebook is available from Doug Mumma. 7) Shareware Programs for PAF. Over 144 shareware programs are available for use with PAF and for general genealogy use. This collection was assembled by Mike St. Clair of Salt Lake City and he updates it from time to time. This collection is contained on 10 3 1/2" IBM, high density disks. A notebook contains descriptions of the programs. Most of the programs were written by people who have been frustrated by the lack specific utilities within PAF and have written them themselves. You can try any of the programs yourself to see if it has value to you. If you like it and continue to use it, you are expected to pay the author a nominal fee. The shareware concept is "try it, if you like it, buy it!" DOS versions only. The notebook is available from Doug Mumma. 8) DOS 286 Computer. A DOS, 286 IBM clone computer with color monitor is available for checkout to use if your computer is having problems or you would like to evaluate some particular genealogy software. The computer has the following DOS software titles available for use and evaluation: PAF 2.3 1, Family Roots 4.313, Family Origins 3.2, Family Tree Maker 3.0, Brother's Keeper 5.2, and Family Scrapbook 2.02. Sorry, this machine will not support windows programs so none are included. Contact Doug Mumma, 447-5164. If you are interested in windows programs, please contact me for a demonstration at my house. The windows programs I have available are Family Tree Maker, Brother's Keeper (beta version), Family Origins, and Ancestral Quest which uses the PAF data files directly. 9) Silicon Valley PAF Users Group. This is an outstanding organization that is worth joining, even if you don't use PAF! Their monthly newsletter is full of interesting articles that cover a wide range of information. You also get a copy of their documentation guide that has now been adopted by the Mormon Church as its official documentation guideline. The membership cost is only $15.00 per year. The membership entitles you to attend their monthly meetings which include teaching classes, full access to their outstanding Genealogy BBS (bulletin board system), a copy of their documentation guide, and their world-class newsletter. It is a great bargain and I recommend it to everyone. Their address is: SV-PAF-UG; 4417 Pitch Pine Court; San Jose, CA 95136. Sample copies of the newsletter are available at the CIG meetings.
L-AGS STUDY GROUP Jolene Abrahams and Jeanne Tanghe Due to a rapid growth in attendance at L-AGS regular meetings, many members expressed the idea of meeting in a smaller group so that their burning questions could be answered. People stated they would get "pumped up" at the regular meetings because of the speakers' subjects. However, once they were home the enthusiasm went away. Thus, the L-AGS Study Group was formed. The purpose of the Study Group is not to compete with the regular L-AGS meetings and programs but to enhance the benefits of belonging to L-AGS. The Study Group meets the 3rd Thursday of each month, 7:30 PM, at the Mormon Church, 950 Mocho Street, Livermore, California. We meet from September through June. A group leader has a subject for each meeting, with a research assignment (homework). Not everyone has to do this part. Handouts are available for each class. Besides a group leader teaching, there is always an active question and answer session which is very helpful. We will assist members with specific problem-solving needs. By combining the talents of our many members we hope to help each other with our family research problems. The following is a tentative agenda for the next ten months: * Beginning Genealogy (pedigree charts, family group sheets, organizing, historical societies, genealogical societies, libraries and archives). * Social Security Records and using the Social Security Death Index, how to use the Soundex Coding System and how to access census records. * Documentation and Vital Statistics (writing letters for these documents). * Court Sources, Probate, Land Records, Insurance Records. * Church Records, Cemeteries/Mortuaries, Newspapers and the value of City Directories. * Ship/Passenger lists, Immigration/Naturalization records, Passports. * Syllabus Value, Writing Queries, using Maps and Gazetteers. * WPA Records, Draft Registration Records, Military Records. * First European Contact, Letters to foreign countries. * Family History Centers and their value to you. The subject for each month will be announced via the L-AGS telephone tree. If there are any changes you will be notified through this source. In addition we have several docents, through the guidance of Judy Person, at the Pleasanton Library to teach you how to use our holdings. Plus we have the experience of George Anderson to help you maneuver through the computer system of various libraries available at the Pleasanton Library.
OBITUARY Ruth Leila Beach Dierks passed away on 1 August 1995. Born on 7 July 1918, in Salem, Oregon, Ruth was a charter member of L-AGS and an active "Sweetheart" in the Pearl Harbor Survivors Association. She is survived by a daughter, Linda L. McGarry of Livermore; a son, John E. Dierks of Colorado and four grandchildren. Ruth was preceded in death by her husband, John F. Dierks, on 19 June 1995. Graveside funeral services were held at Belcrest Memorial Park, Salem, Oregon.
HOLIDAY LETTERS FOR SPECIAL OCCASIONS The following article, Family History Found in Christmas Letters, was written by Shirley Siems Terry, a member of L-AGS now living in Houma, LA, and published in the NGS/CIG DIGEST, Nov. - Dec. 1994. Advice columnists may hate receiving photocopied letters from their friends at Christmas, but these same letters are a wonderful resource for the family historian. Whether they are our own or those received from relatives, photocopied letters provide details and reminders of family stories we might otherwise forget when writing our family histories or working on other family history projects. Even if you have been writing and saving annual letters, are they all in one place and easily accessible? I once had a big box for all Christmas cards and letters received, including my own. When the box got full, I discarded the cards and kept only the letters and the custom photograph cards, organizing them into a notebook by family. It was at this point that I realized these letters were really little family histories. I recently took thirty years of my own letters to my local photocopier and had three copies made of each. In addition to the annual holiday letters, I included copies of the letters I had sent after each of our many moves, most vacations, and other special events. I also added an introduction covering the five years of our marriage prior to the letters, a family time-line including our 25 moves and addresses, the names of schools and grades attended by our three children, plus their birth, graduation and marriage dates, a few other pertinent dates, and an attractive cover on card stock. I then had the three copies bound for my children, who are all away from home now and starting to write their own annual letters. I chose spiral binding because the books are I 1/2' thick and I wanted them to lie flat for readability. I later wished I had one more copy when I found my husband's step-mother trying to read it cover to cover to catch up on all the years she missed in our lives. Our oldest daughter and her husband were especially appreciative of this book. I expect the younger ones to enjoy it more as they get older. Fifteen years separate our two daughters with the younger still in college. Her book will remain on my shelf until she is married and has a family of her own.
Jolene Abrahams has responded to Shirley's article regarding what became of her family's holiday letters. I remember 31 years ago when, as a new bride, I would be expected as my mother did, to write a letter for each holiday card. After three or four years of keeping up with tradition I read a newspaper column stating "Forget those holiday letters, no one cares." However, by the time we adopted our son it was time to write "that" letter again. We wanted to tell family and friends about our bundle of joy. So we continued with the letters, for 26 years. In August 1994 our son, Joel, received a telephone call from a woman. She asked him a few questions. But before she could identify herself he asked her if she was Janet, his birth mother. "Yes I am," was her reply. A few months later David and I traveled to meet her. I carried a briefcase full of photos and documents concerning the important events in Joel's life. How were we going to tell her so many other little details of his life? No problem, we had holiday letters, 26 years worth! Because we didn't listen to the columnist we were able to provide a lifetime to a woman who chose a better life for her child, but always had him in a corner of her heart. Along the same line, when I searched for my birth family seven years ago, I went with photos, documents and holiday letters. I was 47 years old at the time - so my birth mother received the letters representing the 25 years that David and I had been married. Both women, having been birth mothers, said they have read the letters over and over. Through these letters neither I nor my son are strangers to the women who gave us life.
L-AGS MEMBERS WHO ARE MEMBERS OF OTHER GENEALOGICAL ORGANIZATIONS ABRAHAMS, David British Isles Family Hist. Soc. of LA, CA CA State Gen. Alliance Jewish Gen. Soc. of Great Britain Silicon Valley PAF UG SF Bay Area Jewish Gen. Soc. ABRAHAMS, Jolene (Knoles) CA State Gen. Alliance Contra Costa Co. Gen. Soc., CA Gibson County Hist. Soc., IN Knowles/Knoles Family Assn. San Ramon Valley Gen. Soc., CA ALLEN, Bernice Dubuque Gen. Soc., IA ANDERSON, George & Harriet Blue Earth Co., MN, Hist. Soc. National Gen. Soc. News of Norway (free) North of Ireland Family Hist. Soc. Silicon Valley PAF UG Vesterheim (Norwegian) Gen. Center BARR, Vernon & Bonnie South Umpqua Gen. Soc., Canyonville, OR CODEY, Lori KY Gen. Soc. Monroe Co. Chapter of the OH Gen. Soc. Northeastern NE Gen. Soc. Northern CA Chapter of the OH Gen. Soc. Stark Co. Chapter of the OH Gen. Soc. Tuscarawas Co. Chapter of the OH Gen. Soc. CURRY, Dave & Linda Markham Blair Co. Gen. Soc., Altoona, PA CA Gen. Soc. Clackamus Co. Gen. Soc., Oregon City, OR Mazomanie Hist. Soc., Mazomanie, WI Milwaukee Co. Gen. Soc., Milwaukee, WI New England Hist. & Gen. Soc. Santa Clara Co. Gen. Soc., Santa Clara, CA Shasta Hist. Soc., Redding, CA WI State Gen. Soc., Milwaukee, WI Willamette Valley Gen. Soc., Salem, OR DOUCETTE, Mildred Kirkwood Hewitt-Matheney-Cooper Family, OR Marion County Hist. Soc., OR Modoc County Hist. Soc., CA Owen County Hist. & Gen. Soc., IN Sons & Daughters of Oregon Pioneers, OR Willamette Valley Gen. Soc., OR Yamhill Country Hist. Soc., OR FOXWORTHY, Donald F. CA Gen. Soc. Devon Family Hist. Soc. East Bay Gen. Soc., CA Fountain County Hist. Soc. Irish Ancestral Research Ass'n. KY Gen. Soc. FOXWORTHY, Donald F. Mason County Gen. Soc. Prince William Co. Gen. Soc., VA VA Gen. Soc. FREITAS, Mildred E. Contra Costa Co. Gen. Soc., CA Contra Costa Co. Hist. Soc., CA East Bay Gen. Soc., CA Portuguese American Gen. & Hist. Soc. Portuguese Ancestry San Ramon Valley Gen. Soc., CA San Ramon Valley Hist. Soc., CA Solano Co. Gen. Soc., CA GRAHAM, Nancy L. Gen. Soc. of Linn Co., IA HAGA Enoch John Friendship Soc., Norwegian Emigration Center, Stavanger Norwegian-American Hist. Assoc. Rogaland Historie- og AEttsogelag, Stavanger Sons of Norway Vesterheim Gen. Center & Naeseth Library, WI (Museum IA) Vestlandslaget, MN HELMS, Dorothy American Gen. Lending Library Genealogical Center Library Howard Co. Gen. Soc., IN Kaufman Co. Gen. Soc., TX Marshal Co. Hist. Soc., TN Miami Co. Gen. Soc., KS Nevada Co. Gen. Soc., CA Newton Co. Hist. Soc., MO Placer Co. Gen. Soc., CA Rowan Co. Gen. Soc., NC Van Zandt Co. Gen. Soc., TX HILL, Barbara Fellowship of Brethren Genealogists Lancaster Mennonite Hist. Soc. HOLBROOK, Elmond D Hogg Family Gen. Soc. NASH Notations The Castor Assoc. of America HOMAN, Anne Contra Costa Co. Hist. Soc., CA LANDSITTEL, Jode Western NY Gen. Soc. MCCUE, Erma Burlington Co. Hist. Soc., NJ Cornerstone Gen. Soc., Greene County, PA Cumberland Co. Hist. Soc., NJ Fayette Co. Gen. Soc., PA Krans-Buckland Family Assoc. Monongahela River Buffs Assoc. Washington Co., PA National Gen. Soc. San Ramon Valley Gen. Soc., CA The Gen. Soc. of Southwestern PA Welsh-American Gen. Assoc. Western PA Gen. Soc. MICHELS, Charles Cuyahoga West Chapter of OH Gen. Soc. MUMMA, Doug Beyond Germanna Clan Gunn Soc. of North America Fellowship of Brethren Genealogists MUMMA, Doug Lancaster Mennonite Soc. Memorial Foundation of Germanna Colonies Montgomery Co. Chapter OGS OH Gen. Soc. (OGS) Silicon Valley PAF UG PERSON, Judy Cook(e) Family Assn. Cooper Family Assn. De Kalb Co. Gen. Soc., IL McLean Co. Gen. Soc, IL New Hampshire Gen. Soc. Rowley Family Assn. Sharp Family Assn. RENSLOW, Larry Nodaway County Gen. Soc., MO Northwest Missouri Gen. Soc., MO San Luis Obispo County Gen. Soc., CA Weld County Gen.l Soc., IL Whiteside County Gen. Soc., IL RENZ, Vicki Mayflower Society SAMANS, Frances Fowles DAR (Lineal Line Only) National Gen. Soc. NY Biog. & Gen. Soc. PA Hist. Soc. SCHAEFER, Regina Central NY Gen. Soc. Polish Gen. Soc. of America Polish Gen. Soc. of Poland SCOFIELD, James Ancestry Soc. of Stamford, CT Leeds & Grenville branch Ontario Gen. Soc., Canada Silicon Valley PAF UG STOWERS, Irving F. New England Hist. & Gen. Soc. STROUD, John CA Gen. Soc. TANGHE, Jeanne V. American Portugese Gen. & Hist. Soc. Ancestry Federation of E. European Family Hist. Soc. National Gen. Soc. Polish Gen. Soc. of America Polish Gen. Soc. of MI Polish Gen. Soc. of WI Polish Heritage Awareness Soc., Stevens Point, WI Portage Co. WI Hist. Soc. Rudolph Co. Gen. Soc., IL Sacramento German Gen. Soc., CA Stevens Point Gen. Soc., WI Stevens Point, WI-Gulcz, Poland Sister City Comm. Towarzystwo Genealogiczno Herldyczne-Posnan, Poland WI Old Cemetery Soc. WALDEN, John C. Brake Family Assoc. Hacker's Creek Pioneer Descendants Rose Family Assoc. WEST, Harry & Kip New England Hist. & Gen. Soc. Peabody & Essex Museum, Salem, MA
Return to the L-AGS Home Page
Last modified: 16jan03.0805