Genealogy Gems: News from the Fort Wayne Library, No. 17, July 31, 2005
From: genealogygems (
Date: Sun, 31 Jul 2005 21:14:25 -0700 (PDT)
Genealogy Gems:  News from the Fort Wayne Library
No. 17, July 31, 2005

In this issue:
*Allen County, Indiana Databases on the Web Continue to Grow
*This Land Is My Land: the Indian Claims Commission
*Kevan Hansen's Map Guide to German Parish Registers 
*Hotel of the Month
*Preservation Tip of the Month
*1911 Census of Canada
*Area Calendar of Events
*ACPL Librarians on Tour
*Driving directions to the Library
*Parking at the Library
*Queries for the Department

Allen County, Indiana Databases on the Web Continue to Grow
by Curt Witcher
In the early years of the Historical Genealogy Department, staff and
volunteers committed to creating access tools for local records and
local publications that were un-indexed.  Some attention was also
given to indexing regional histories published for some states around
the country.  Many of these took the form of printed indices and
abstracts as well as card indices.

One such department-created card index was microfilmed a number of
years ago by the Genealogical Society of Utah for use at the Family
History Library in Salt Lake City as well as to be loaned to
interested individuals through local Family History Centers.  The
extremely long-titled, thirty-three roll set, "Historical and
Biographical Index of the North East, Mid East, Mid South, and Mid
West, U. S. A." is also available in our department.  This resource
provides one with a quick way to survey a couple of hundred county
histories for surnames of interest.

Today, the department is committed to converting many of the print
indices created decades ago to searchable databases.  The first such
conversion debuted on the FriendOfAllenCounty website this
month--"Genealogical Records of German families in Allen County,
Indiana, 1918" by Virginia Bloomfield.  The information she
transcribed came from the "Enemy Alien Registration Files" created by
the Fort Wayne Police Department in 1918.   A four page form was
filled out which included a photo, fingerprints, and signatures among
the information recorded.  It is interesting to note that these forms
(approximately 1500) still exist and are part of collections of the
History Center (Fort Wayne-Allen County Historical Society).  The
actual forms are titled, "United States of America, Department of
Justice, Registration Affidavit of Alien Enemy."  Fort Wayne residents
who were German or Austrian, and not American citizens were required
to file.

And speaking of the FriendsOfAllenCounty website, by this time next
month, the Fort Wayne and Allen County Obituary Index will have grown
by another twenty-two thousand names--putting the total number of
Allen County, Indiana names in all files waiting to be discovered at
more than 600,000!  Be sure you visit the site regularly for new
databases and additions to existing databases.

This Land Is My Land: the Indian Claims Commission
by Roberta Ridley
The Indian Claims Commission was established in 1946 to serve as a
tribunal for the hearing and determination of claims against the
United States arising prior to August 13, 1946 by any Indian tribe,
band or other identifiable group of Indians living in the United
It was determined that the compensation, originally paid by the
Government for Indian lands ceded by treaty or other agreements after
1871, was shockingly low when compared to market value at the time of
the first payments. Tribes were entitled to recovery minus any
gratuitous offsets, including previously received compensation. The
Commission also received claims for uncompensated taking of land.

This collection covers claims reviewed by the commission from April
10, 1947 through May 2, 1969, and is the primary source of the 370
original petitions filed with the Commission prior to the cut off date
of August 13, 1951. The Commission covered a broad area and became
more aware of the problems arising between the United States and the
Indians who occupied the lands sought by an expanding nation. The
petitions, representing hundreds of native tribes, are separated into
611 different claims, each of which was given its own docket number.

The information contains the Claims & Decisions along with:

Tribal Index – a comprehensive guide to the dockets of the Commission
Docket Index – an inclusive listing of all dockets
Table of Cases – providing a chronology of each claim as it was heard
by the Commission.

Extracted example:
Miami Tribe vs. 
United States, Dockets 256, 124D, E, and F Consolidated
"Offsets – Payment on the Claim – Equity requires charging the full
consideration, cash plus value of land, of 1840 Treaty to both
Oklahoma and Indiana Miamis because (1) the 1840 land cession, the
removal west and the lands granted the Miamis in Kansas were all part
of the same transaction, (2) many of the Indiana Miamis received
grants of land in the east, and (3) the Indiana Miamis in not going to
Kansas failed to abide by the terms of the treaty. 'The failure to
remove itself was a direct benefit to these Indians because they did
not have to suffer the burdens of moving or staying on Kansas land.'
The Oklahoma Miamis are entitled to some benefits over the Indiana
Miamis by reason of their having fulfilled their treaty obligations
and undergone the burdens and suffering of living on the Kansas
reservation. Pp 434,  et seq."

Kevan Hansen's Map Guide to German Parish Registers 
by John D. Beatty
One of the vexing challenges for every genealogist doing research in
Germany is dealing with geography. One may have the name of a village
or town from a family Bible, passport, or other record, and may even
be well-practiced using the Meyers Orts und Verkehrs-Lexikon des
Deutchen Reichs to identify whether a town has a church. The town can
then be searched in the Family History Library catalog for the
availability of church and civil records.

Invariably, however, a good genealogist will want to know more. What
are the other parishes located near the primary ancestral parish? What
are their boundaries? What villages were located within them? Did my
ancestor have family connections in those parishes?

These are important questions, and when using microfilmed parish
records, a thorough researcher will want to have a good handle on the
geography of an ancestral area in order to look for clues in the
records of other nearby churches. It is not at all uncommon to find
German families spread out over more than one parish, particularly if
they were agricultural laborers. Couples often found their future
spouses in neighboring towns.
A useful new research tool to address these questions is Kevan
Hansen's Map Guide to German Parish Registers series, published by
Heritage Creations of North Salt Lake, Utah. Each of these volumes are
devoted to particular German states and offer outline maps of parishes
located within a particular Kreis or county. Thus, they are useful for
determining the proximity of towns to other parishes in the area. In
addition to offering clues about other possible records, they can
"empower the researcher when confronted with the necessity of a radius

Regrettably, they are not useful for identifying tiny villages located
within the boundaries of a particular parish, because the maps are
simply not sufficiently detailed. A more careful search of Meyers and
the Karte des Deutches Reiches map series (available on film from the
Family History Library) may still be worthwhile.

At this writing, 10 volumes of the Map Guide are now in print,
covering the Grand Duchies of Hessen, Baden, Mecklenburg-Schwerin,
Oldenburg and Schleswig-Holstein, the province of Hessen-Nassau and
the Kingdom of Wuerttemberg. Additional volumes are planned for the
rest of the German Empire, with the Rhineland expected soon.

Few German families lived in the isolation of a single village.
Knowing what towns were located nearby will almost certainly help a
researcher locate additional family connections in nearby churches

Preservation Tip of the Month
ACPL's Preservation Technician Becky Schipper offers advice on
conserving your documents:

A very good site for anyone interested in conservation is the website
for the American Institute for Conservation Of Historic & Artistic

1911 Census of Canada
The longstanding difficulty regarding public access to the Canadian
census after 1906 has been resolved, and the 1911 census has been
released. Digitized images can be consulted at the Library and
Archives of Canada site,
The census is not indexed, but the full entries (in digitized form)
are given and there is a table of census districts and sub-districts
to assist you in choosing the one you need. Once you have a census
page in front of you, manipulating it to see the data, store or print
it is similar to the censuses on Although LAC states
that some pages are faded and hard to read, I have not encountered any
that were indecipherable.

Each issue we will feature a local hotel, for visitors from out-of-town.

Best Western Luxbury Inn
5501 Coventry Lane
Fort Wayne, IN 46804-7144
phone 260 436 0242
fax 260 436 2256
toll-free reservations 800 223 5615

The Best Western Luxbury Inn is at Exit 102 of I-69, convenient for
those approaching Fort Wayne from the south. It is located within
walking distance of nine restaurants, a movie theater, grocery,
pharmacy and three banks.
Amenities include continental breakfast and newspapers in the lobby,
outdoor pool and exercise room, guest laundry, fax and photocopying
service, dataports, in-room coffeemaker and iron. Oversize rooms,
suites, recliner chairs and whirlpools are available.
It is about six miles (twenty minutes) to the library downtown, an
easy drive along Jefferson Boulevard.

Allen County Public Library
3rd floor atrium display area
Passages: Immigration

Allen County Genealogical Society of Indiana (ACGSI)  Gather at 6:30 for coffee and 
socializing; the meeting begins at 7 pm.  Meetings will resume in
September. The September 14 meeting will be at Aboite branch ACPL.
Curt Witcher will speak on "Timeline and Treasures:  Future Plans and
Current Collections in the Genealogy Department."

Computer Users Group
The computer users group will meet again on September 21.

Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR)
First Wednesday of each month in the Genealogy Department 9am – 7pm.
Expert help from members of the DAR in becoming a member of that organization

Curt Witcher
18 August: Midwestern Roots Pre-Conference, Panel Discussion on
"History and Genealogy: Why Not Both?", Indiana History Center
(Indiana Historical Society Headquarters), Indianapolis, IN, 6:00pm

27 August: "Your Society Wants YOU! Effective Recruiting Strategies
for Genealogical Societies." Ohio Genealogical Society Chapter
Management Seminar, Batavia, OH, 1:15pm

7-10 September: Federation of Genealogical Societies Conference, Salt
Lake City, UT
9 September: Doing the History Eliminates the Mystery
10 September: Using the Forgotten and Maligned: Key Government
Documents for Genealogical Research

Ryan Taylor
19 September:  Steuben County Genealogical Society, Angola, IN

8 October:  Westfield Genealogical Group, Westfield, IN

Wondering how to get to the library?  Our exciting transition location
is 200 E. Berry, Fort Wayne, Indiana.  We will be at this location
until late 2006.  We would enjoy having you visit the Genealogy

To get directions from your exact location to 200 E. Berry, Fort
Wayne, Indiana, visit this link at MapQuest:

From the South
Exit Interstate 69 at exit 102.  Drive east on Jefferson Blvd. into
downtown. Turn left on Barr Street to Berry Street.  The library is
located on the corner of Berry and Barr Streets.

From the North
Exit Interstate 69 at exit 112.  Drive south on Coldwater Road, which
merges into Clinton Street.  Continue south on Clinton, the library
will be on your left when you cross Berry Street.

From the West
Using US 30: 
Drive into town on US 30.  US 30 turns into Goshen Road.  Coming up to
an angled street (State Street.) make an angled left turn.  Turn right
on Wells Street.  Go south on Wells to Wayne Street.  Left on Wayne
Street.  When you cross Clinton, the library will be on your left on
Wayne Street.

Using US 24: 
After crossing under Interstate 69, follow the same directions as from
the South.

From the East
Follow US 30/then 930 into and through New Haven, under an overpass
into downtown Fort Wayne.  You will be on Washington Blvd. when you
get into downtown.  Turn right on Barr Street.   Turn left on Berry
Street.  The library is on your left on Berry Street.

Lot in front of the library, east side
Available for short-term library parking.  Limited to one hour.

Tippman Parking Garage
Clinton and Wayne Streets.  Across from the library, however the
skybridge is NOT accessible.  Hourly parking, $1.25 per hour up to a
maximum of $5.00 per day.

Park Place Lot
Covered parking on Barr Street at Main Street.  This lot is one block
away from the library.  Hourly parking Monday through Friday, 9am to

Street (metered) parking on Wayne Street and Berry Street.
On the street you plug the meters 8am – 5pm, weekdays only.  It is
free to park on the street after 5pm and on the weekends.

Visitor center/Grand Wayne center
Covered parking at Washington and Clinton Streets. This is the Hilton
Hotel parking lot that also serves as a day parking garage.  For
hourly parking, 7am – 11 pm, charges are .50 for the first 45 minutes,
then $1.00 per hour.  There is a flat $2.00 fee between 5pm and 11pm.

The Historical Genealogy Department hopes you find this newsletter
interesting.  Thank you for subscribing.  We cannot, however, answer
personal research emails written to the e-zine address.  The
department houses a Research Center that makes photocopies and
conducts research for a fee.

If you have a general question about our collection, or are interested
in the Research Center, please telephone the library and speak to a
librarian who will be glad to answer your general questions or send
you a research center form.  Our telephone number is 260-421-1225.  If
you'd like to email a general information question about the
department, please email: Genealogy [at] ACPL.Info.

Publishing Note:  
This electronic newsletter is published by the Allen County Public
Library's Historical Genealogy Department, and is intended to
enlighten readers about genealogical research methods as well as
inform them about the vast resources of the Allen County Public
Library.  We welcome the wide distribution of this newsletter and
encourage readers to forward it to their friends and societies.  All
precautions have been made to avoid errors.  However, the publisher
does not assume any liability to any party for any loss or damage
caused by errors or omissions, no matter the cause.

To subscribe to Genealogy Gems, simply use your browser to go to the
website: Scroll down toward the bottom
of the first screen where it says, "Enter Your Email Address to
Subscribe to "Genealogy Gems."  Enter your email address in the yellow
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If you do not want to receive this e-zine, please follow the link at
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Ryan Taylor, editor
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