Genealogy Gems: News from the Fort Wayne Library, No. 86, April 30, 2011
From: Genealogy Gems (
Date: Sat, 30 Apr 2011 16:38:23 -0700 (PDT)
Genealogy Gems: News from the Fort Wayne Library
No. 86, April 30, 2011

In this issue:
*Springing Into Spring
*Researching Our Routes (Route 66)
*The Cotton Bureau
*Technology Tip of the Month--Creating and Using Color Channels in
Adobe Elements
*Quick-Tip of the Month for Preservation--Disaster Preparedness
*Down to the Fine Print: Exploring The Genealogy Center
*German Genealogy: A Two Day Mini-Course
*One-On-One Consultations
*Fort Wayne Ancestry Day 2011
*Out and About
*Area Calendar of Events
*Driving Directions to the Library
*Parking at the Library
*Queries for The Genealogy Center

Springing Into Spring
by Curt B. Witcher
During the spring of '11, we are truly springing forward in the number
of new records and images available for free use on our website. If it has been a while since you
conducted a site search or browsed the site, you may want to take a
few minutes to explore it again. This month we eclipsed fifty thousand
records and images in the "Military Heritage" portion of The Genealogy
Center website. Our friend, Anne Budd, also has continued her work on
the “Evangelical Messenger,” most recently transcribing the earliest
obituaries--back to the first issue of the paper! Now there are nearly
ninety-eight thousand records in that data set.

On April 12th of this month, the commemorative activities for the War
Between the States started in earnest with the commemoration of the
firing on Fort Sumter, a federal fort in Charleston Harbor. Most
consider that event the official start of the American Civil War.
During the next four years, there will be many hundreds of programs,
publications, and web sites providing interested researchers with
access to amazing amounts of data on the lives of the men and women
who lived during that historic time period. Add to that the fact that
Memorial Day 2011 will take place in just a few weeks and one cannot
help but think of military ancestors and the role they played in
securing the freedoms we enjoy today.

I urge you to take time over the next several weeks to preserve and
share information about your ancestors' military service. Whether your
ancestors served in the 21st, 20th, 19th, or 18th century, The
Genealogy Center here in Fort Wayne would be honored to preserve
information about that service in the "Military Heritage" portion of
our website, where the data you share could benefit many generations
of researchers. Certainly we want you to protect the privacy of living
veterans in your family. Consider, though, for your living veterans
what a neat honor it might be for you to share a photograph of your
loved one in uniform with his or her name and unit identification, or
a picture of your veteran hanging-out with his buddies on base, in a
mess hall, or just before going out on patrol. Scan the documents and
photographs at 300 dpi, save them as "tif" images, and send them to us
on a disk. We would be grateful, and you would be honoring your
military ancestor.

There are a number of exciting learning opportunities in May as well
as in the coming summer months. In the very first week in May, the
series of programs called “Down to the Fine Print: Exploring The
Genealogy Center” is a great way to learn the details necessary to
successfully navigate The Genealogy Center for your maximum research
benefit. More details can be found further on in this ezine.

May 23 through May 28, 2011, we are hosting our friends from the New
England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS) as they conduct a
first-ever research tour to The Genealogy Center here in Fort Wayne.
NEHGS is the society that produces the wonderful “American Ancestors”
collection of databases that is available to users of The Genealogy
Center. A direct link to register for their tour can be found on their
website at:
They have invited all who are interested to attend their presentations
at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, May 25th (“Preserving Your Personal Family
Papers”) and Thursday, May 26th (“Going Digital: Organizing Your
Research Files Electronically”). If you have New England ancestors,
registering for this tour might be just the ticket to solving some of
your research road-blocks. Registered members of the tour are entitled
to extensive research consultation sessions.

And speaking of first ever, The Genealogy Center and are
hosting “Fort Wayne Ancestry Day 2011” on Saturday, July 23, 2011 at
the Grand Wayne Convention Center, which is right across the street
from the library. For twenty dollars, you will get a day packed with
genealogical information--five sessions in all--presented by
recognized experts, with one of the sessions being a panel discussion.
Session details and registration information are further on in this
ezine. It could be a great, summer genealogical outing!

Fill your summer with some family history fun--come “play” in The
Genealogy Center!

Researching Our Routes (Route 66)
by Delia Cothrun Bourne
Summer always takes me back to the 1960s, when my family moved twice
to California and back, and took vacations back east other years to
visit relatives. Usually at least part of each of these trips was
spent on Route 66, the “Mother Road.” The Lincoln Highway, from
Philadelphia across the Midwest (including right through downtown Fort
Wayne) is older and, with its own well-respected historical society,
gets lots of attention from scholarly sources. Route 66 is newer,
brash, born in the 1920s and came of age during the Dust Bowl years of
the 1930s. It thrived during the boom in family travel in the 1950s
and 1960s and seems like a road-side souvenir stand compared to the
museum-like quality of the Lincoln Highway’s image. Some historical
attention has been paid to Route 66, however, and The Genealogy Center
has several volumes that detail its history and scenery.

Michael Wallis’s “Route 66: The Mother Road” (973 W158RO) includes
information about the roads that existed before Route 66 was created,
then devotes a chapter to the route in each state with history and
pictures, interspersed with biographies and memories of those
associated with the highway. “Route 66 Remembered,” by Michael Karl
Witzel (973 AA1WI), has chapters on filling stations, motels,
restaurants and tourist traps. And “Route 66: America’s First Main
Street,” by Spencer Crump (973 C888RO), contains a directory of
American automobiles built during the route’s heyday, as well as
historical notes, photos and detailed maps.

Several other books in the collection deal with Route 66 by state,
county or city, and many are part of the Images of America series,
each volume including brief historical notes and wonderful black and
white photos with detailed captions. One is “Route 66 in Chicago,” by
David G. Clark (977.302 C43CKY), which includes a map showing the
route through city and suburbs. Some of these volumes provide
information on the surrounding area’s history and tourism, while
others concentrate on the road itself, and what could be seen along
the way, such as “Route 66 in New Mexico” by Joe Sonderman (978.9
SO572R), which includes many photos of motels and restaurants. Local
groups also have paid homage to Route 66, as with Terri
Ryburn-LaMonte’s “Route 66: Goin’ Somewhere: The Road in McLean
County,” published by the McLean County (Illinois) Historical Society
(977.301 M22RM), which contains historical material and the
turn-by-turn tour of Route 66 in the county.

The main library collection has additional copies of some of these
volumes that are available for checkout. There are no lists of
travelers, but these books are wonderful sources for learning about
what your family’s experiences may have been like as they got their
kicks on Route 66.

The Cotton Bureau
by Melissa Shimkus
Before the Civil War, cotton was in great demand by Northern U.S.
textile manufacturers and European firms. The Confederate government
tried to exploit this need during the early years of the war by
blocking the sale of cotton to the Northern states and limiting cotton
exportation to Europe in an attempt to convince foreign powers to
support the Confederacy.

The Trans-Mississippi Department, created in 1862, directed the
Southern war effort in Arkansas, Missouri, Texas, and the section of
Louisiana west of the Mississippi River, as well as in the Indian and
Arizona Territories. In March 1863, the Department began seizing
supplies, including slaves and crops, for the Southern campaign.
Lieutenant General E. Kirby Smith, head of the Trans-Mississippi
Department, recognized that the seized cotton could be a financial
bonus for the Confederacy and ordered agents to begin selling the
cotton to Northern traders.

Smith created the Cotton Bureau in August of 1863 to regulate the sale
of Southern cotton to Northern firms. “Records of the Cotton Bureau of
the Trans-Mississippi Department of the Confederate War Department,
1862-1865” is a fifty-reel microfilm set in The Genealogy Center that
includes documents and correspondence of the Cotton Bureau. The set
does not have a comprehensive index, but some individual sections of
the records include indexes on the films. For example, the general
correspondence of the Cotton Bureau’s headquarters office in
Shreveport, Louisiana is on Rolls 1 through 9 of the set, and the
index to those papers is on Roll 10.

Besides general records of cotton commerce during the Civil War, the
Cotton Bureau records include gems that illustrate the history of the
time and can provide important nuggets of genealogical data. For
example, an 1863 letter from W. H. Darnum describes John Harrison,
Sarah Chitton and Mary Lou Harrison fleeing to Selma, Alabama. There
is also documentation for the 1864 court martial of Andrew W. McKee,
convicted of selling Confederate cotton for his own use in Rapides
Parish, Louisiana, and sentenced to be “shot to death with musketry.”
Those researching African Americans can find listings of slaves, as
well as information on slave owners who conducted business with the
Cotton Bureau, such as William J. Tolbert who was due $30.60, in 1865,
for the hiring of his slave Henry under the Impressment Act.

The value of the Cotton Bureau records is threefold: They are a source
of data about the cotton industry during the Civil War, provide
general historical information on life in the western regions of the
South during this time period, and may include genealogical tidbits
for particular families who were directly involved with this

Technology Tip of the Month--Creating and Using Color Channels in Adobe Elements
by Kay Spears
In a previous article, I mentioned the ability to correct photographs
using the “layers channel,” a feature only available in Adobe
Photoshop. Well, I have found a way to duplicate this fix using Adobe
Elements. A few extra steps are required, but the results are almost
the same.

Open the image you would like to correct, then go to your Layers
palette, right click on Background and choose Layer From Background.
When the New Layer dialog box appears, name the layer blue. Then right
click on the blue thumbnail on your Layers palette and choose
Duplicate Layer. Name that layer green. Then right click on the green
thumbnail, choose Duplicate Layer and name it red. You should have
three layers in your Layers palette: Red, Green, and Blue.

Next, in your Layers palette, click on the red layer and go to
Menu>Enhance>Adjust Lighting>Levels, or press “Ctrl+L” on your
keyboard. Either of these methods will open your Levels dialog box.
You should see a Channel drop down box. The default setting will be
RGB. Click on the drop down arrow and choose red. While you are still
in the dialog box, locate the slider bar under the Input Levels Chart
and move the white slider on the far right all the way over to the
left. Your image should be red. Click ok.

Now go to the green layer, and repeat the same steps, but choose green
instead of red. Click ok. Then, repeat the process on the blue layer.
When you finish these steps, the large image in your workspace will be
red, but your Layers palette will have red, green and blue thumbnail
images. The thumbnail layer at the top of the list in your Layers
palette will be displayed in your workspace.

Check the quality of the red image, and then turn it off by clicking
on the “eye” to the left of the thumbnail image. The next layer on the
list will display. In a similar fashion, check and compare the quality
of the image for each layer. After you decide which layer looks best,
discard the other two by dragging them to the trash can located on the
Layers palette. (It may be in a different location depending on the
version of Elements you have.)

Lastly, to remove the color from your image go to
Image>Mode>Grayscale. When asked if you want to discard color
information, say ok. At this point, you will have a black and white
image which you can tweak a little more, as needed. If desired, you
can add the color back in by going to Image>Mode>RGB.

Quick-Tip of the Month for Preservation--Disaster Preparedness
by Curt B. Witcher
All the horrible weather that has plagued such a large part of the
country reminds us again of how important disaster preparedness is for
our genealogical materials and family heirlooms. Typically we don’t
think about what to do with these items until it’s too late. When
you’re in a tornado shelter or being evacuated because a critical dam
or levy just broke--that is not the time to begin your disaster

Many have heard the acronym LOCKSS, which stands for Lots Of Copies
Keeps Stuff Safe. And that is the best way to prepare for a disaster
when it comes to your genealogical documents. With the ease and low
cost of scanning and digital technology, and the high quality of the
scanned images, think very seriously about creating a digital archive
of your family photograph albums and other important family documents.
And then don’t store that digital archive right next to your computer,
or even in the same house! Send it to a relative in another town, or
create a space for your family history on and post your
digital documents there. You can also consider what many thousands of
people are doing--using cloud storage such as Mozy, Dropbox, and
Carbonite. Most offer significant storage space at a reasonable cost.
Prepare to preserve your family treasures before disaster strikes.

”Down to the Fine Print: Exploring The Genealogy Center”
Mark your schedule the first week of May to learn more about The
Genealogy Center and take advantage of virtual tours of our new
website and our new catalog, as well as a behind the scenes look at
some of our projects. Some events are repeated in hopes you’ll find
several that fit your schedule.

Sunday, May 1, Genealogy Center Tour, 1:00-2:00 p.m. -- Take a tour of
The Genealogy Center! Learn something new or be reminded of what
you've forgotten. Meet in The Genealogy Center Orientation area.

Monday, May 2, Website Tour, 2:00-3:00 p.m. -- Lost in the new
Genealogy Center website? Take a guided virtual tour through all of
the information awaiting your visit! Meeting Room C.

Tuesday, May 3, Catalog Tour, 2:00-3:45 p.m. -- How do I locate a
book? Where are the call numbers? How do I make a list? Find out all
this and more by taking a virtual tour of The Genealogy Center
catalog! Meeting Room C.

Wednesday, May 4, Genealogy Center Tour, 6:30-7:30 p.m. -- Take a tour
of The Genealogy Center! Learn something new or be reminded of what
you've forgotten. Meet in The Genealogy Center Orientation area.

Thursday, May 5, Processing, Scanning and Fine Materials Tour,
10:00-11:00 a.m. -- This behind-the-scenes tour will show where our
material is ordered, cataloged and processed for the collection, and
where material is scanned for easy access via the Internet, as well as
take a peek into the Fine Book Area. Meet in The Genealogy Center
Orientation area.

Friday, May 6, Catalog Tour, 10:00-11:45 a.m. -- How do I locate a
book? Where are the call numbers? How do I make a list? Find out all
this and more by taking a virtual tour of The Genealogy Center
catalog! Meeting Room A.

Saturday May 7, Genealogy Center Tour, 10:00-11:00 a.m. -- Take a tour
of The Genealogy Center! Learn something new or be reminded of what
you've forgotten. Meet in The Genealogy Center Orientation area.

Space is limited, so register early for these free tours by sending us
an email to Genealogy [at] ACPL.Info or by calling 260-421-1225.

German Genealogy: A Two Day Mini-Course
The Genealogy Center is pleased to offer a new two day mini-course,
German Genealogy, on June 9 & 10, 2011. Led by instructors John
Beatty, MA, MLS, and Steve Myers, MLS, this workshop is an excellent
introduction for researchers with little or no experience in German
records and covers basic sources and techniques that lead to success.
Classes will cover the following topics.

*”An Introduction to German Genealogical Research” - Identifying an
immigrant ancestor and their specific place of origin are the keys to
research in German records. Learn about North American sources for
finding these essential starting points.

*”Using German Church Records” - Learn how to locate, access, and
utilize German church records. Search strategies and examples will be

*”Advancing Your Research with the PERiodical Source Index (PERSI)” -
Learn how to plan a successful search, gather evidence, and record and
document what you find.

*”German Maps, Gazetteers & Other Important Printed Sources” - Learn
how to use maps and gazetteers to locate your ancestor's place of
origin and its associated record-keeping jurisdictions. Other
important German-language genealogical publications will also be

*”Swiss Genealogical Records” - Learn how to begin your Swiss
research, find American sources for Swiss immigrants, utilize Swiss
biographical and heraldic sources, and locate and interpret Swiss
church records.

*”Palatines Along the Hudson: Researching 18th Century Settlers on
Livingston Manor” - Learn about sources available to genealogists
tracing ancestors on this important New York manor, including
surviving manuscript collections such as the Robert R. Livingston

Additionally there will be a tour of The Genealogy Center and assisted
research/consultation times both days. For more information, see the
brochure at
 As with all of our mini-courses, space is limited. Registration is
$50 (Please make check payable to: "ACPL Foundation").  Cancellation
after May 26, 2011 will incur a $20 administrative fee. Attendance is
limited, so register early to avoid disappointment. For more
information, call 260-421-1225 or email Genealogy [at] ACPL.Info.

One-On-One Consultations
The Genealogy Center is offering a new monthly program: 30-minute
“One-on-One Consultations” with a staff member! Consultations are held
on the fourth Wednesday of each month, from 2 pm to 4 pm. Just contact
us by email at Genealogy [at] ACPL.Info and provide a detailed summation of
your research quandary, and indicate which fourth Wednesday works best
for you. Based on your research challenge, a staff member will be
selected, and a date and time established. Space is limited with this
popular program, so contact us in advance to insure you get the date
you need. If you have questions, contact us at Genealogy [at] ACPL.Info, or
call 260-421-1225.

Fort Wayne Ancestry Day 2011
The Genealogy Center is pleased to announce that the experts at are coming to Fort Wayne July 22 and 23, 2011 to share
their knowledge and expertise with you! The fun and learning will
start Friday night, July 22, 2011 from 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., when
you can pick up your name tag, handout materials, and chat with the
experts at the Fort Wayne Hilton Atrium. The actual classes will start
Saturday morning, July 23, 2011 at the Grand Wayne Center, which is
connected to the Fort Wayne Hilton. The schedule for that Saturday
includes the following classes.

9 a.m.--Insider Search Tips for
10:15 a.m.--How to Find Civil War Roots at
11:15 a.m.--Lunch break: Catch a bite at restaurants nearby and/or
talk with the experts
1 p.m.--Hidden Treasures of The Genealogy Center in Fort Wayne
2:15 p.m.--A Dozen Ways to Jumpstart Your Family History Project
3:30 p.m.--Ask The Experts Panel

The cost for the full day's classes, held at the Grand Wayne Center,
right across from the library, is just $20. For more information and
to register, click
Register for this event today! Don't miss this wonderful opportunity
to join us for Ancestry Day!

Out and About
Curt Witcher
May 11, 2011, National Genealogical Society Annual Conference, North
Charleston Convention Center, Charleston, SC, 4 p.m.: “Mining the
Motherlode: Using Periodical Literature for Genealogical Research.”
May 14, 2011, National Genealogical Society Annual Conference, North
Charleston Convention Center, Charleston, SC, 11 a.m.: “Roll Call: New
Sites and Sources for Military Records and Research.”
May 16, 2011, Kalamazoo Valley Genealogical Society, Portage District
Library, 300 Library Lane, Portage, MI, 7 p.m.: “Researching Your
Civil War Ancestors.”

Area Calendar of Events
Allen County Genealogical Society of Indiana (ACGSI)
May 11, 2011--Allen County Public Library, 900 Library Plaza, Fort
Wayne, Indiana. 6:30 p.m. refreshments, 7 p.m. program. John Beatty
and Curt Sylvester will present, “Colonial Era Research.”

Allen County-Fort Wayne Historical Society, 302 East Berry, Ft. Wayne, IN
May 1, 2011, 2 p.m.--Angie Quinn will present “’Fearless Champion of
the Oppressed, and the Advocate of the Slaves:’ The Story of Alexander
T. Rankin.”

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
E-zine, and fill out the form. You will be notified with a
confirmation email.

If you do not want to receive this e-zine, please follow the link at
the very bottom of the issue of Genealogy Gems you just received or
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the subject line.

Steve Myers & Curt Witcher, co-editors
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