Wednesday, January 28, 2009
Monday, January 26, 2009
Friday, January 23, 2009
That being said, I am very happy to announce that I have once again adopted a child. Well, actually my son is a teenager and I couldn't be any happier! He is a great kid, wonderful athlete, and a terrific son. Each adoption brings many wonderful feelings, the most important-how blessed I am to have these children in my life! I can't image how boring and empty my life would be without my children in it.
The beginning of the year we were asked to state our resolutions for 2009. What were we going to try to accomplish that we have either been too busy to work on, or just putting off? Well, my resolution is to attempt to start a family tree on each of my children's birth parents and their birth families. Not an easy task I know. When I adopted most of my children I received very little information about their birth parents. I learned the birth parents names and ages and some medical history but not much more information. Illinois still recognizes "closed" adoptions. Illinois will not share any information on the adoption. Nothing. When my children turn eighteen years old they can register with one or more of the national adoption registries and perhaps find their birth parents that way.
Currently, three of my children still remain in contact with their birth families to some degree which benefits all of us. Unfortunately for three of my other children (all siblings) finding out any information about their birth families and locating them is proving very difficult indeed.
I continue to be amazed at how much you can love these children who come into your life at different times for many different reasons. All looking for someone to love them and take care of them. Believe me, I get so much more back in return. I truly am very blessed!
P.S. The answer is seven!
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Monday, January 19, 2009
For the past year I have been working exclusively on my Ball and Sommer relatives and have met with a little success. Thanks to a distant cousin who contacted me I also have the names of my gggreat grandparents. However, I ran into a lot of brick walls and then I got discouraged. This time I picked a different family to work on.
My father, Norbert Wozniak was Polish, so I have a lot of Polish relatives. Unfortunately, I have very little information on their history. I do know the names of my fathers parents -Steven and Cecilia (Sawicki) Wozniak, his father's parents -Joseph and Mary (Ziolkowski) Wozniak,and his mothers parents -Louis and Stella (Wieczorek) Sawicki. Thanks to the census records (and longevity) I also have the name of a paternal great great great grandmother - Regina Polus.
So, I decided to work on my Sawicki family history. It is my hope to some day connect with a cousin or two. After reviewing the information I already had, I began working with some free online databases; Cook County Genealogy, Illinois State Archives, Social Security Death Index, and the Polish Genealogical Society of America. I discovered the dates of quite a few marriages, births and deaths of my relatives. Using the Chicago Tribune Historical Archives database from the public library that I work at, I was able to access obituaries that confirmed the death information that I just discovered. Not only did I find out funeral home information but also church and cemetery information. In a number of cases the obituary also gave me the names of siblings and grandchildren! The obituary definitely confirmed the information I had gathered.
I wasn't done yet. It was almost midnight when I accessed Heritage Quest from home (using my local public library) and played around with the census records. Imagine my delight when I added a number of names and addresses to quite a few of my relatives to my family tree program.
Wow, I could hardly keep my eyes open any longer but I was in my glory! I actually met with some success in discovering and confirming some of my Polish relatives. I was definitely doing the genealogy dance!! Oh what a night I had....
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Mackinac Island, Summer 2008
Monday, January 12, 2009
Drive Route 49, about 25 - 30 miles south of Valparaiso, Indiana and you will find the Wheatfield cemetery. It really is a nice drive from Valparaiso to Wheatfield. On the way you pass through Kouts, Indiana where one of my favorite country stores is located. The Willow Tree Garden. Of course I make a point of stopping by and saying hello to one of the owners- Carrie who has become a wonderful friend. Drive a little further south and you will come to Wheatfield. The cemetery is along both sides of Rt. 49. The land where the cemetery is located now used to be farm land, which is evident by the surrounding corn fields on the east. The community of Wheatfield is small but quite a number of my living Hanaway relatives still reside there. I usually make the trip to the cemetery each season and decorate the tombstones of my grandparents and my mother too. I try to decorate the tombstones with plants and small decorations, and the best part is they are always there when I return. Nothing is ever stolen!
Saturday, January 10, 2009
Wednesday, January 7, 2009
Things you have already done or found: bold face type
Things you would like to do or find: italicize
Things you haven’t done or found and don’t care to: plain type
Belong to a genealogical society.
Researched records onsite at a court house.
Uploaded tombstone pictures to Find-A-Grave.
Documented ancestors for four generations (self, parents, grandparents, great-grandparents) .
Helped to clean up a run-down cemetery.
Joined the Genea-Bloggers Group on Facebook.
Attended a genealogy conference.
Lectured at a genealogy conference.
Spoke on a genealogy topic at a local genealogy society.
Been the editor of a genealogy society newsletter.
Contributed to a genealogy society publication.
Served on the board or as an officer of a genealogy society.
Got lost on the way to a cemetery.
Talked to dead ancestors.
Researched outside the state in which I live.
Knocked on the door of an ancestral home and visited with the current occupants.
Cold called a distant relative.
Posted messages on a surname message board.
Uploaded a gedcom file to the internet.
Googled my name. (aka The Ego Search)
Performed a random act of genealogical kindness.
Researched a non-related family, just for the fun of it.
Have been paid to do genealogical research.
Earn a living (majority of income) from genealogical research.
Wrote a letter (or email) to a previously unknown relative.
Contributed to one of the genealogy carnivals.
Responded to messages on a message board or forum.
Was injured while on a genealogy excursion.
Participated in a genealogy meme.
Created family history gift items (calendars, cookbooks, etc.).
Performed a record lookup for someone else.
Went on a genealogy seminar cruise.
Am convinced that a relative must have arrived here from outer space.
Found a disturbing family secret.
Told others about a disturbing family secret.
Combined genealogy with crafts (family picture quilt, scrapbooking).
Think genealogy is a passion not a hobby.
Assisted finding next of kin for a deceased person (Unclaimed Persons).
Taught someone else how to find their roots.
Lost valuable genealogy data due to a computer crash or hard drive failure.
Been overwhelmed by available genealogy technology.
Know a cousin of the 4th degree or higher.
Disproved a family myth through research.
Got a family member to let you copy photos.
Used a digital camera to “copy” photos or records.
Translated a record from a foreign language.
Found an immigrant ancestor’s passenger arrival record.
Looked at census records on microfilm, not on the computer.
Visited the Family History Library in Salt Lake City.
Visited more than one LDS Family History Center.
Visited a church or place of worship of one of your ancestors.
Taught a class in genealogy.
Traced ancestors back to the 18th Century.
Traced ancestors back to the 17th Century.
Traced ancestors back to the 16th Century.
Can name all of your great-great-grandparents.
Found an ancestor’s Social Security application.
Know how to determine a soundex code without the help of a computer.
Used Steve Morse’s One-Step searches.
Own a copy of Evidence Explained by Elizabeth Shown Mills.
Helped someone find an ancestor using records you had never used for your own research.
Visited the main National Archives building in Washington, DC.
Visited the Library of Congress.
Have an ancestor who came over on the Mayflower.
Have an ancestor who fought in the Civil War.
Taken a photograph of an ancestor’s tombstone.
Became a member of the Association of Graveyard Rabbits.
Can read a church record in Latin.
Have an ancestor who changed their name.
Joined a Rootsweb mailing list.
Created a family website.
Have more than one "genealogy" blog.
Was overwhelmed by the amount of family information received from someone.
Have broken through at least one brick wall.
Visited the DAR Library in Washington D.C.
Borrowed a microfilm from the Family History Library through a local Family History Center.
Have done indexing for Family Search Indexing or another genealogy project.
Visited the Allen County Public Library Genealogy Center in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
Had an amazing serendipitous find of the "Psychic Roots" variety.
Have an ancestor who was a Patriot in the American Revolutionary War.
Have an ancestor who was a Loyalist in the American Revolutionary War.
Have both Patriot & Loyalist ancestors.
Have used Border Crossing records to locate an ancestor.
Use maps in my genealogy research.
Have a convict ancestor who was transported from the UK.
Found a bigamist amongst the ancestors.
Visited the National Archives in Kew.
Visited St. Catherine's House in London to find family records.
Found a cousin in Australia (or other foreign country).
Consistently cite my sources. (As of 1-1-2008 my New Year's resolution that I KEPT!)
Visited a foreign country (i.e. one I don't live in) in search of ancestors.
Can locate any document in my research files within a few minutes.
Have an ancestor who was married four times (or more).
Made a rubbing of an ancestors gravestone.
Organized a family reunion.
Published a family history book.
Learned of the death of a fairly close relative through research.
Have done the genealogy happy dance.
Sustained an injury doing the genealogy happy dance.
Offended a family member with my research.
Reunited someone with precious family photos or artifacts.
Well, there you have it! I have quite a number of tasks ahead of me to attempt in 2009.
Monday, January 5, 2009
Genealogy Pox, author unknown
SYMPTOMS: Continual complaint as to need for names, dates and places. Patient has a blank expressions, sometimes deaf to spouse and children. Has no taste for work of any kind, except feverishly looking through records at libraries and courthouses.
Has a compulsion to write letters. Swears at mailman when he doesn't leave mail. Frequents strange places such as cemeteries, ruins, and remote desolate country areas. Makes secret night calls and hides phone bills from spouse. Mumbles to self. Has strange, faraway look in eyes.
NO KNOWN CURE!
TREATMENT: Medication is useless. This disease is not fatal, but gets progressively worse. Patient should attend genealogy workshops, subscribe to genealogical magazines and be given a quiet corner in the house where he/she can be alone.
REMARKS: The unusual nature of this disease is that the sicker the patient gets, the more he or she enjoys it!