Genealogy Gems: News from the Fort Wayne Library No. 69, November 30, 2009
From: Genealogy Gems (
Date: Mon, 30 Nov 2009 18:34:53 -0800 (PST)
Genealogy Gems: News from the Fort Wayne Library
No. 69, November 30, 2009

In this issue:
*Your Words, Your Stories, Your History
*New Jersey County Tax Ratables, 1773-1822
*Technology Tip of the Month--Photo Restoration with Adobe Photoshop,
Version 9.02: Nitty Gritty II, Cloning
*Preservation Tip of the Month--Laminating Documents
*Plugging into WinterTech
*Librarians on Parade
*Area Calendar of Events
*Driving Directions to the Library
*Parking at the Library
*Queries for the Department

Your Words, Your Stories, Your History
by Curt B. Witcher
So, how did you do with the “National Day of Listening” the Friday
after Thanksgiving?  Were you able to sit down with a family member
and listen to his or her story about growing up, about going to school
when reports had to be typed and when going to the library meant
checking out books, about serving in the military, or about the hard
yet rewarding work of farming?  Did someone ask you to tell them a
story about a chapter from your life?  I hope the answers to the above
are “yes!” and that the experience made you want to continue gathering

If the activities of Thanksgiving weekend were so busy that the
“National Day of Listening” had to take a back seat, don’t worry.  As
we are officially in the annual holiday season, there are plenty of
“listening” opportunities before the end of the year.  The secret to
success is to plan now.  Set a date, create an enjoyable event, and
then do it.  Having that kind of a straightforward plan works.

In preparation for a small family get-together just before
Thanksgiving (a gathering to celebrate all the November birthdays in
my immediate family), I digitized about one hundred black-and-white
photographs of my parents’ wedding and the early childhood days of my
closest siblings.  (A first cousin on my father’s side sent the
deteriorating album to my youngest sister a number of months ago.)  I
burned four CDs for the siblings attending.  After dinner, we loaded
one CD on the family room computer and started talking about the
“unknowns” in the photographs.  It was amazing--my two sisters told me
a few stories I hadn’t heard before, and identified people in some of
the photographs.  It demonstrated again how photographs and heirlooms
can be great conversation starters.  Make your plans now.

New Jersey County Tax Ratables, 1773-1822
by John D. Beatty
Researching ancestors in New Jersey in the early National period,
1783-1820, poses a variety of challenges for genealogists. The
earliest federal census dates only from 1830, and while the published
“New Jersey Archives” series contains abstracts of wills, marriages,
and newspapers, these volumes cannot replace the devastating loss of
the census schedules for this era. One important record substitute,
available in the Genealogy Center, is a series of microfilms titled
the “New Jersey County Tax Ratables, 1773-1822.” This 24 reel set
contains copies of original tax lists, with counties appearing in the
following order: Bergen, Burlington, Cape May, Cumberland, Essex,
Gloucester, Hunterdon, Middlesex, Monmouth, Salem, Somerset, Sussex,
one reel of re-takes, and Morris.

The scope, coverage, and arrangement differ widely by date and county.
For some years in some counties, the taxables were listed in
alphabetical order, but for other years and places they were not. Many
lists were divided by township for certain years, and lists are not
extant for every year in every county. In general, they provided
little information about household composition, such as one would find
on a federal census, but sometimes there were columns for the total
number of householders, single men, and slaves. More often the lists
showed the number of improved and unimproved acres held by the
taxpayer, and occasionally the number of horses and other livestock. A
list from Bergen County for the 1770s, for example, also contained
columns for the number of houses, lots, vessels and ferries.

These lists are not easy to use. The handwriting can be problematic
for those not accustomed to the penmanship of the time, and the
records are not fully indexed. It is also worth noting that the
appearance of an individual on a tax list does not prove residence.
Undoubtedly some real property was owned by persons living in other

The late Ronald Vern Jackson and Accelerated Indexing Systems compiled
a four-volume index, “New Jersey Tax Lists, 1772-1822” (974.9 N427),
which lists the taxpayer, county, page number, township and date of
the list. However, as with any work compiled by this company, readers
are urged to use caution and always examine the original record for
possible omissions and misspellings. In this case, Hunterdon County
and much of counties Burlington and Middlesex appear to have been
missed entirely in the index. Kenn Stryker-Rodda’s revised
“Revolutionary Census of New Jersey” (974.9 St89r), published in 1986,
is more accurate, but covers only the years 1773-74, 1778-80 and
1784-86. It does not link individuals to specific pages on the
microfilm, but instead refers to a volume and page of “The
Genealogical Magazine of New Jersey” in which some of the tax lists
were published. To date, the lists have not been digitized, but the
flawed index by Jackson is included in a database at
titled “New Jersey Census, 1643-1890.” Despite the difficulties in
using them, the “New Jersey County Tax Ratables” offer at least a
beginning point for research in this difficult 1773-1822 period and
are an essential New Jersey resource.

Technology Tip of the Month--Photo Restoration with Adobe Photoshop,
Version 9.02: Nitty Gritty II, Cloning
by Kay Spears
The clone tool is the most important tool in photograph restoration,
so make sure it is part of any photoshop program you purchase. The
clone tool takes a pixel or pixels from one place and puts them on top
of another place in a copy and paste action. It can be used to cover
almost all spots, cracks, signatures, crayon marks and other surface
problems. The clone tool is located in the toolbox in Adobe Photoshop
and looks like a rubber stamp. Besides the clone tool, Adobe Photoshop
also has a spot healing brush, healing brush and patch tool. I have
had occasion to use all of these tools, but you will find that the
basic clone tool will do everything you want once you become
comfortable using it.

You’ll notice that your cursor changes to a small rubber stamp after
you click on the clone tool. If you are not using Adobe Photoshop, you
will want a program that allows you to vary the brush size, and change
from an opaque to transparent mode that will let you see the area you
are pasting over. For complex restorations, you may find that you
change the size of the brush often, and need to zoom in and out of the
area you are correcting. There can be a lot of movement involved with
cloning. Eventually you will develop your own technique, but to begin
I recommend the following: choose a brush that is small in pixel size
and fades at the edges; set the transparency option to 75%; and make
sure the mode option is set to normal.

You want to transfer pixels that duplicate those in the damaged area
and these will usually be found close to the imperfection. Put the
cursor/clone stamp on pixels that are closest to the
crack/scratch/mark, hold down the ALT key and left click. This is the
area that is going to be picked-up. Watch your cursor when you do
this; it should change to a circle with a cross in it, similar to a
target. Next, move your cursor over the imperfection and left click.
Two things should happen – your cursor should change to a cross and
the imperfection should disappear in the small area on which you
cloned the chosen pixels. You have now started to restore your

Continue to clone small groups of selected pixels onto the damaged
area. Move slowly and pay attention to what you are clicking. Notice
how the shadows and lines on the image change as you work and change
the selection area accordingly. I recommend that you zoom in to the
image at 100% so that you can see the pixels up close. Especially when
working on difficult areas like the face, corrections will look more
natural if you zoom in closely and use a very small brush. The nose is
the most important reference point on the face, so work carefully
around it. Zoom out occasionally for perspective and to check your
work. Try to avoid dragging the cursor, because that will leave a
pattern. Depending on what I am trying to fix I sometimes work in a
circular motion and sometimes in a straight line.

When I begin a photo restoration project, I usually work with a round
brush. As my work becomes more complex and I start working in smaller
areas, I change my brush to a square one. Cloning isn’t easy – it
takes practice – so don’t give up if your first few tries aren’t
perfect. Adobe has provided a handy dandy step backward function in
case you do something you don’t like. As always, remember to “save as”
and never work on the original image file.

Next article: Layers and Feathering

Preservation Tip of the Month--Laminating Documents
by Becky Schipper
I have been asked several times lately about laminating documents.
This is a process that involves using two sheets of plastic and
sandwiching a document between them. The sheets are sealed by the use
of intense heat and adhesives that bond with chemicals in paper and
photographs, creating acidic compounds that cause the item to
deteriorate. This process is irreversible and should never be used to
preserve photos and documents.

Mylar sleeves and pockets are a safe and practical way to protect both
photos and documents. Mylar comes in different thicknesses and sizes.
Charcoal, graphite, and pastel drawings should NOT be stored in Mylar
as it can lift the drawing medium from the paper.

Several sources for Mylar are:

Plugging into WinterTech
There's nothing like doing a little reading on cold winter days.
Melissa Shimkus will tell us how to warm our fingers on our keyboards
and heat up our research skills by "Reading Genealogy Blogs!" Blogs
can help us learn new research methodologies and databases, plan
vacations around conferences, and keep up with distant relatives and
their research. Melissa will tell us how to find blogs to follow, and
our options in managing and organizing them. This second in our
WinterTech series is from 2:30 to 3:30 PM on Wednesday December 9th,
in Meeting Room B. Then stay for the Allen County Genealogy Society of
Indiana's monthly meeting at 7 PM. Call 260-421-1225 or email
Genealogy [at] to register for this free lecture. The WinterTech
series will continue in January with Cynthia Theusch discussing
"Genealogy Software To Record Your Family History," and in February
with Kay Spears presenting the "Basics of Scanning Photographs.” Stay
warm in the glow of your computer screen this December by "Reading
Genealogy Blogs!" For more information

Librarians on Parade
Curt B. Witcher
January 3, 2010--Allen County-Fort Wayne Historical Society, 302 East
Berry, Ft. Wayne, IN, 2:00 p.m.  Topic:  “A Commitment to Excellence
in Genealogy: How the Public Library Became a Major Tourist Attraction
in Fort Wayne, Indiana"
January 30, 2010--Genealogical Society of Kendall County, Boerne, TX,
9:00 a.m. to 4 p.m.  Topics: “Roll Call: New Sites and Sources for
Military Records and Research,” “Mining the Mother Lode: Using
Periodical Literature for Genealogical Research,” “Using Church
Records in Your Genealogical Research,” and “’Pain in the Access:’
Getting More from the Internet for Your Genealogy”

Area Calendar of Events
Allen County Genealogical Society of Indiana (ACGSI)
December 9, 2009, 6:30 p.m. social time; 7 p.m. program.  Allen County
Public Library, 900 Library Plaza, Fort Wayne, IN, Meeting Room A.
Society members will present “Black Sheep Stories.” An entertaining
and educational evening of sharing tales of scandals, secrets, and
skeletons in the closet.

Allen County-Fort Wayne Historical Society, 302 East Berry, Ft. Wayne, IN
January 3, 2010, 2:00 p.m. – Curt Witcher will present “A Commitment
to Excellence in Genealogy: How the Public Library Became a Major
Tourist Attraction in Fort Wayne, Indiana."

December 3, 2009, 11:00 a.m.  IPFW, Walb Student Union Building, 2101
Coliseum Blvd. East, Fort Wayne, IN, Room G21.  Louisa Danielson will
give an honors presentation on:  “Music of the Fort Wayne Area,

Driving Directions to the Library
Wondering how to get to the library?  Our location is 900 Library
Plaza, Fort Wayne, Indiana, in the block bordered on the south by
Washington Boulevard, the west by Ewing Street, the north by Wayne
Street, and the east by the Library Plaza, formerly Webster Street.
We would enjoy having you visit the Genealogy Center.

To get directions from your exact location to 900 Library Plaza, Fort
Wayne, Indiana, visit this link at MapQuest:

>From the South
Exit Interstate 69 at exit 102.  Drive east on Jefferson Boulevard
into downtown. Turn left on Ewing Street. The Library is one block
north, at Ewing Street and Washington Boulevard.

Using US 27:
US 27 turns into Lafayette Street. Drive north into downtown. Turn
left at Washington Boulevard and go five blocks. The Library will be
on the right.

>From the North
Exit Interstate 69 at exit 112.  Drive south on Coldwater Road, which
merges into Clinton Street.  Continue south on Clinton to Washington
Boulevard. Turn right on Washington and go three blocks. The Library
will be on the right.

>From the West
Using US 30:
Drive into town on US 30.  US 30 turns into Goshen Ave. which
dead-ends at West State Blvd.  Make an angled left turn onto West
State Blvd.  Turn right on Wells Street.  Go south on Wells to Wayne
Street.  Turn left on Wayne Street.  The Library will be in the second
block on the right.

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.  Library Plaza will be on the right.

Parking at the Library
At the Library, underground parking can be accessed from Wayne Street.
Other library parking lots are at Washington and Webster, and Wayne
and Webster. Hourly parking is $1 per hour with a $7 maximum. ACPL
library card holders may use their cards to validate the parking
ticket at the west end of the Great Hall of the Library. Out of county
residents may purchase a subscription card with proof of
identification and residence. The current fee for an Individual
Subscription Card is $70.

Public lots are located at the corner of Ewing and Wayne Streets ($1
each for the first two half-hours, $1 per hour after, with a $4 per
day maximum) and the corner of Jefferson Boulevard and Harrison Street
($3 per day).

Street (metered) parking on Ewing and Wayne Streets. 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 garage 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.

Genealogy Center Queries
The Genealogy Center 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

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 Genealogy Center, 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:  www.GenealogyCenter.Info. 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 box and
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If you do not want to receive this e-zine, please follow the link at
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Steve Myers & Curt Witcher, co-editors
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