Genealogy Gems: News from the Fort Wayne Library, No. 81, November 30, 2010
From: Genealogy Gems (
Date: Tue, 30 Nov 2010 15:51:42 -0800 (PST)
Genealogy Gems: News from the Fort Wayne Library
No. 81, November 30, 2010

In this issue:
*Giving Thanks . . . Giving Thankfully
*Civil War Reports of the State Adjutant Generals
*New York State DAR Records
*Technology Tip of the Month--Inserting Images into Shapes Using Microsoft Word
*Preservation Tip of the Month--Saving Holiday Greetings
*WinterTech 2010-2011 Continues
*March Madness--Genealogy Style
*Irish & Scots-Irish Genealogy: Part One--A Two-Day Mini-Course
*Librarians on Parade
*Area Calendar of Events
*Driving Directions to the Library
*Parking at the Library
*Queries for The Genealogy Center

Giving Thanks . . . Giving Thankfully
by Curt B. Witcher
We barely finish our Thanksgiving Day gatherings before being
challenged to go from giving thanks to simply giving. I encourage you
to keep the spirit of the season by doing what I am going to call
giving thankfully. And there are many ways we can give thankfully.

First, in being thankful for the rich heritage and history each of us
has received from our ancestors, why not think of giving gifts that
have a personal, genealogical touch? Juliana Smith, who has been a
terrific writer and editor for for many years, penned a
great piece in the recent “ Weekly Discovery” entitled,
“Five Ways to Share Family History During the Holidays.” A couple of
her suggestions are particularly appealing to me.

One is to write mini-biographies to send with holiday greeting cards,
catching the family up on your latest genealogical discoveries
relative to common ancestors. Who knows--you might even enlist some
assistance with a particular road-block or challenge. It’s a unique
twist on the holiday letters that usually contain only current events
and news of the recent past. Family history data would be a neat
complement to a getting-caught-up-on-the-family-happenings letter.

Another of Juliana’s suggestions is to create heirloom ornaments.
There are all kinds of ornaments that allow for artistic
modifications. Why not use historic photographs of ancestors and
ancestral home-places to complete those ornaments? Giving those as
gifts can be doubly special. Relatives typically really appreciate
getting gifts that have a special, personal touch, and you’ll be
sharing a part of your common heritage with them besides. If ornaments
aren’t your forte, you can photoshop some of your more interesting
documents, print them on parchment-like paper, and make a family
heritage scrapbook as a gift. I am sure you can think of other
creative ways to share evidence of your heritage in the form of a
holiday gift.

For those December holiday gatherings, consider preparing an ethnic
dish. It is yet another unique way to be thankful for your heritage
and may just entice some of your family members to take an interest in
the family’s history. Ethnic holiday songs and blessings, and old
traditional family carols and hymns, also can be shared at these
festive gatherings. You can truly make this a time for bringing the
family’s history to life.

Yet another way to give thankfully is to give in thanks of the many
individuals and organizations that have helped us succeed in our
genealogical endeavors this year. Most institutions and organizations
that preserve and make historical records available for research are
really struggling in these very challenging economic times. Their
ability to provide services will increasingly depend on our gifts of
time, talent, and treasure. It is certainly true for The Genealogy
Center here in Fort Wayne. Remembering the Center in your
end-of-the-year giving plans means a tremendous amount. Indeed, the
ability of your Genealogy Center to continue its tradition of
excellence will increasingly depend on the generosity of those who
have benefited from our collections and services. Consider making a
tax deductible gift.

Best wishes for a safe, and thankful, holiday season.

Civil War Reports of the State Adjutant Generals
by Steven W. Myers
Many genealogists begin searching for a Civil War soldier armed with
the bare essentials of that person’s name, military unit and state of
service. These scant details often can be obtained easily from a
tombstone or one of the online indexes to those who served in the
conflict. Researchers can submit NATF Form 86 to the National Archives
for a complete copy of a soldier’s service record, but at $25 each,
the cost may be an obstacle for those who have many soldiers in the
family or who are unsure which soldier, of several with the same name,
is theirs. The printed report of the relevant state adjutant general
can help in both situations.

The eight volume “Report of the Adjutant General of the State of
Indiana” (973.74 In2ad), one of many available in The Genealogy
Center, will serve as an example. The first volume reproduces official
documents and statistics of general interest including lists of
officers who were killed, dismissed or resigned, and of Union soldiers
buried in Indiana. Volumes two and three provide, for each regiment, a
list of the commissioned officers and a short history of its actions
and engagements. Volume eight contains additions and corrections, as
well as extensive lists of deaths and deserters

The bulk of the report prints extensive rosters of enlisted men who
served from the state and provides information that constitutes a
brief service record. Details are listed in order by regiment and
company and include name, rank, residence, date of muster into
service, and remarks. Remarks may provide just a date the soldier
mustered out, but also can indicate whether the soldier was
transferred to another unit, discharged for disability, captured,
hospitalized, deserted, died of disease or wounds, or was killed in
action. Date and place of the event are often noted. Reports for some
other states provide the age of the soldier instead of his residence,
but either of these details, in the absence of useful information from
the remarks column, can help the researcher trying to identify the
correct soldier among many with the same name who served from the same

The record of Joseph McDonald, in volume four, indicates that he was a
private in Company K, 14th Regiment and a resident of Monroe County
when he mustered into service on June 7, 1861. Remarks note that he
was a veteran and was killed in an “affray” near Stevensburg,
Virginia. The “Roll of Honor,” in volume eight, adds the date of death
as December 20, 1863, and gives the cause of death as “accident.” For
those researching Civil War soldiers, these reports are certainly
worth a look. Many are available free online by using the “Internet
Archive” or “Google Book Search,” but be wary of databases at that are far from complete.

New York State DAR Records
by John D. Beatty
New York is a challenging state for genealogical research. Public
vital records were not kept regularly until the late nineteenth
century and the availability of other records online remains limited,
so most researchers need to consider alternatives. A useful source,
available in The Genealogy Center, is the “New York State D.A.R.
Records,” a set of microfilmed typescript volumes compiled over many
decades by chapters of the Daughters of the American Revolution.
Beginning early in the twentieth century, the D.A.R.’s Genealogical
Records Committee spearheaded the transcription of historical records
of significance across the United States. The reports of New York
State’s chapters were particularly fruitful, offering transcriptions
of Bible records, church registers, wills, muster rolls, and cemetery
inscriptions – all sources not otherwise readily accessible.

Bible records and cemetery inscriptions comprise the bulk of the
collection. Researchers can best access the microfilms by using two
printed guides. The “Master Index, New York State DAR Genealogical
Records,” compiled in 1972 (974.7 D26ge), is a subject and name index
providing references to a volume and page. Each volume citation is
preceded by either a “B,” indicating a Bible record, or a “V,”
designating some local record. This guide is a key access tool to the
D.A.R. film series filed under New York State, which carries these
letter designations. There is also a complementary “Master Index
Supplement 1972-1978” at 974.7 D26ge suppl.

A more recent guide, published in 1998 under the title “Revised Master
Index to the New York State Daughters of the American Revolution
Genealogical Records Volumes” (974.7 D26gea), provides a corrected and
more comprehensive index to the reports. The two-volume set contains
four separate indexes: Bible records; cemetery, church, and town
records; family histories; and Revolutionary War soldier graves. The B
and V notations were replaced with references to specific volumes and
page numbers corresponding to a second series of microfilm, which is
filed in Special Collections as part of a larger set of D.A.R.
Genealogical Records Committee Reports for other states. Users of this
guide can search by surname for Bibles, family histories, and soldier
graves, and also by county, and then under that heading, by town, for
references to specific local records. For example, a search under
“Chautauqua County” identifies dozens of transcribed cemeteries, as
well as indexes to newspapers, state census indexes, and the records
of several churches.

The national “Online GRC Index” available at is an
every-name index to the reports and contains 368,000 entries for New
York. Unfortunately, researchers will have difficulty using these
references with the microfilms because filming was completed before
final volume numbers were assigned.

This difficulty aside, the “New York State D.A.R. Records” are worth
exploring because some of the family Bibles are undoubtedly no longer
extant, and many of the transcribed gravestones have become
unreadable. Researchers should consider using the collection,
especially for upstate areas outside New York City.

Technology Tip of the Month--Inserting Images into Shapes Using Microsoft Word
by Kay Spears
Contrary to what some might think, working with Microsoft Word can be
fun. For example, I often want inserted images and graphics to be more
than just rectangles. While Microsoft Word is made primarily for text
and is rather limited in its graphics capabilities, there are some
simple things that can be done to tweak an image.

Graphics may be inserted into AutoShapes and WordArt. There are
several AutoShapes to choose from: oval, octagon, star, banner, etc.
These shapes can be found in the Drawing Toolbar, which I always have

To try out your first option, go to AutoShapes>Basic Shapes and choose
the oval. As soon as you click on the oval symbol, a box appears that
says “create your drawing here.” I never use that box because I
usually want my text to wrap around the shape. Tap the Escape key on
your keyboard and that box disappears. Your cursor will be in the
shape of a cross. Hold down the left click button on your mouse and
drag your cursor until you have an oval shape in your document. There
are several ways to insert an image into the oval: by right clicking
and choosing “format AutoShape,” by using “Format” on the main menu
bar, or by using the paint bucket tool. The paint bucket tool is
located on the Drawing Toolbar. Make sure the oval shape is selected.
There should be white dots around it and one green dot at the top of
the shape. Go to the paint bucket tool, click on the arrow, choose
fill effects>picture tab>select picture. This opens up a dialog box
that will allow you to select your image file. Find the folder with
your image in it, click on it, then click on “insert.” Your image will
appear in the dialog box. Before you click on “OK,” check the box that
says “lock picture aspect ratio.” This prevents the graphic from
distorting when it is inserted into your selected shape. You cannot
adjust the placement of the image in the shape, so you may have to do
some tweaking of the image outside of Word.

You can also have some fun inserting graphics inside of text by using
the WordArt tool located on the WordArt toolbar. The WordArt tool is
the large capital A on the far left of the tool bar – click on it. A
WordArt Gallery opens providing a number of selections, all of which
you may edit later. Choose any option and type a word, then click
“ok.” That word will now be in your Word document as an inline object.
Change it to a floating object by picking a text wrap option. Now, go
through the same steps that you did to insert a photograph into the
shape object.

Once the graphics are inserted into AutoShapes or WordArt, you can add
shadows and lines or twist/warp and rotate them. All of these options
are located on the Drawing and WordArt toolbars, which have dropdown
arrows that allow access to even more tools. The green dot I mentioned
earlier is your rotate tool. I suggest you experiment with these tools
until you get the result you want. Let your imagination run wild and
have some fun!

Next article:  Adding Footnotes in Microsoft Word

Preservation Tip of the Month--Saving Holiday Greetings
by Curt B. Witcher
Tis the season when many will be receiving Christmas cards and other
holiday greetings. If you’re like me, every year I receive a few cards
that are really special and other greetings that are wonderfully
personalized. I like to save these items. How to do that successfully
is a matter of personal taste, but there are some basics to keep in

Remember that the vast majority of holiday greetings are printed or
written on paper that contains acid; indeed, some are very acidic. So
saving them will mean segregating them from photographs and other
valuable keepsakes and heirlooms. If you like scrapbooking, you can
glue an acid-free envelope on a scrapbook page with acid-free
adhesive. Use that envelope as a pocket for your cards. If you’re more
of an “archiver” or filer, you can use the same acid-free envelope for
storing the cards and then place the envelope in an acid-free folder.

Of course, digitizing the cards and greetings is a great way to save
holiday mementos. Remember to scan at a dpi of at least 300 and save
as tiff images. Be sure to integrate these new 2010 holiday images
into your back-up and media refreshment schedule.

WinterTech 2010-2011 Continues
Heat up your genealogical technology skills at The Genealogy Center
during the cold winter months by attending our WinterTech lectures.
Schedule yourself for a full day of genealogy fun on the second
Wednesday in December, January, and February. Do some research in the
morning, attend the WinterTech class at 2:30 in the afternoon, and
stay for the Allen County Genealogy Society of Indiana's monthly
meeting at 7:00 in the evening. On December 8, Delia Bourne will
present "Net Treats," a program highlighting a number of Internet
websites which just may open new avenues for your research. Future
WinterTech classes will feature Melissa Shimkus on "Becoming Expert at
Using Ancestry" in January, and Dawne Slater-Putt "Exploring the Ever
Expanding FamilySearch" in February. Call 260-421-1225 to register, or
send us an email at Genealogy [at] ACPL.Info .

March Madness--Genealogy Style
Okay--we know it’s not even winter yet. We understand that Christmas
and other end-of-the-year holiday celebrations are still in front of
us. But let’s face it, we all need something to look forward to. Why
not make that something genealogical activities? Plan on celebrating
the end of winter by attending The Genealogy Center's version of March
Madness, Sunday March 13 through Saturday March 19, 2011. Plan to

* Why Do I Want to Look at a Revolutionary War Pension? Sunday, March
13, 1:00pm-2:00pm, Meeting Room A

* Searching the Internet for Your Genealogy (Using Google and Other
Search Engines). Monday, March 14, 2:00pm-3:00pm, Meeting Room A

* Writing Personal History: Doing for Our Descendants What We Wish
Great-Grandma Had Done for Us. Tuesday, March 15, 10:00am-11:00am ,
Meeting Room C

* ACGSI Computer Interest Group. Wednesday, March 16, 7:00pm-9:00pm,
Meeting Room B

* Beginning Virginia Genealogical Research. Thursday, March 17,
2:00pm-3:00 pm, Meeting Room A

* Irish & Scots-Irish Genealogy: Part 1 - A Two-Day Mini-Course.
Friday & Saturday, March 18-19, 9:00am-4:00pm, Meeting Rooms B&C.
NOTE: Registration and a $50 fee are required for this program.

Check our website for more
information. Call 260-421-1225 to register, or send us an email at
Genealogy [at] ACPL.Info .

Irish & Scots-Irish Genealogy: Part One--A Two-Day Mini-Course
After you've celebrated St. Patrick's Day, take time to expand your
research skills by attending Irish and Scots-Irish Genealogy, Part 1
on Friday & Saturday, March 18-19, 9:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m., in Meeting
Rooms B&C. This two-day mini-course, taught by Steve Myers, is an
excellent way for researchers with little or no experience in Irish
records to receive a thorough grounding in the sources and techniques
that lead to success. Classes include: “Doing Your Homework in North
American Sources;” “Getting the Lay of the Land: Irish Place-names,
Maps & Gazetteers;” “Griffith's Valuation and the Tithe Applotment
Books;” “Church Records and Heritage Centres;” “Civil Registration &
Other Vital Records Sources;” and “Censuses & Census Substitutes.” A
complementary Part 2 mini-course, tentatively scheduled for March,
2012, will cover additional topics such as using Irish manuscript
collections and local history publications. Cost for both days is $50.
Program details and registration information are included in the
brochure at
Attendance is limited, so register early to avoid disappointment. For
more information, call 260-421-1225 or email Genealogy [at] ACPL.Info.

Librarians on Parade in December 2010 & January 2011
Curt Witcher
December 8, 2010--Allen County Public Library, 900 Library Plaza, Fort
Wayne, Indiana. 6:30 p.m. refreshments, 7 p.m. program. Program:
“Revolutionary War and War of 1812 Research.”

January 7, 2011--RUSA/ALA pre-conference program, Valencia
Park/Malcolm X Branch of the San Diego Library, 5148 Market Street,
San Diego. Program: “Marching On: Online Sites for 19th Century U. S.
Military Veterans.”

Delia Bourne
December 8, 2010--Allen County Public Library, 900 Library Plaza, Fort
Wayne, Indiana, Meeting Room C, 2:30 p.m., “’Net Treats.”

Steve Myers
January 8, 2011--Detroit Society for Genealogical Research & Oakland
County Genealogy Society joint meeting, Christ Church Cranbrook, 470
Church Street, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. 1:30 p.m. refreshments, 2-3
p.m. program. Program: "An Introduction to Medieval English

Melissa Shimkus
January 12, 2011--Allen County Public Library, 900 Library Plaza, Fort
Wayne, Indiana, Meeting Room C, 2:30 p.m., “Becoming Expert at Using

Area Calendar of Events
Allen County Genealogical Society of Indiana (ACGSI)
December 8, 2010--Allen County Public Library, 900 Library Plaza, Fort
Wayne, Indiana. 6:30 p.m. refreshments, 7 p.m. program.  Curt Witcher
will present, “Revolutionary War and War of 1812 Research.”
January 12, 2011--Allen County Public Library, 900 Library Plaza, Fort
Wayne, Indiana. 6:30 p.m. refreshments, 7 p.m. program. Jon Leyse will
present, “Video Recording Your Family History.”

Allen County-Fort Wayne Historical Society, 302 East Berry, Ft. Wayne, IN
No December lecture.
January 2, 2011, 2 p.m.—Craig Berndt will present “Fort Wayne’s Interurbans.”

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: Scroll to the bottom, click on
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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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