Genealogy Gems: News from the Fort Wayne Library, No. 127, September 30, 2014
From: Genealogy Gems (
Date: Tue, 30 Sep 2014 21:25:12 -0400
Genealogy Gems: News from the Fort Wayne Library
No. 127, September 30, 2014

In this issue:
*Allen County Public Library Closed for Staff Day
*Notes from the Field
    ++Montana, Records, and the War of 1812
    ++Leaving No One Behind . . . Fifth Continuation
*Historical Sources of Fort Wayne, Indiana
*Index to California State Militia Muster Rolls, 1851-1866
*Technology Tip of the Month--More from the Big PowerPoint Book – Inserting Sound
*Quick-Tip of the Month for Preservation--Sharing as a Means of Keeping Our Records Safe
*October Is Family History Month!
*WinterTech 2014-2015 Begins!
*Out and About
*Area Calendar of Events
*Driving Directions to the Library
*Parking at the Library
*Queries for The Genealogy Center

Allen County Public Library Closed for Staff Day
As noted last month, The Genealogy Center and all Allen County Public Library locations will be closed Friday, October 3, 2014, for a day of staff development activities. We especially do not want our out-of-town patrons to make a trip to Fort Wayne to find the library closed. So mark your calendars – we don’t want to miss you!

Notes from the Field
by Curt B. Witcher
In so many rich and wonderful ways, genealogy is all about finding, documenting, and telling one’s family stories. Many of us long ago recognized that finding one’s family history is way more than just collecting vital records and census schedules. It’s about filling in the details of our ancestors’ lives--how much schooling they had, what concerned them most in the different stages of their lives, where they worshipped and what they believed, how they served their communities and their country, where their families gathered for special days and holidays, and how they celebrated those gatherings.

Tomorrow, October 1st, The Genealogy Center is hosting its second annual “Evening of Storytelling” in the Theater of the Main Library at 7 p.m. If you’re in the neighborhood, please join us. It will be an extremely enjoyable hour of listening and learning. We have three individuals who have agreed to share with us a story or two from their lives. There will be musical interludes between each storyteller and a couple of stories shared that were communicated through writing. This event should spark the storyteller in each of us. Telling the stories of our lives, in writing and spoken at family gatherings, is among the most important things we can do for our children’s children . . . and their children.

++Montana, Records, and the War of 1812
This past weekend was simply terrific! I had the great fortune of presenting at the Montana State Genealogical Society’s 25th Anniversary Conference in Helena with my good friend and colleague, David Rencher. Nearly 140 individuals gathered to learn and network. I was impressed by a number of things. First, their zeal and passion for preserving and making historical information accessible is impressive. This was in evidence through their members’ many indexing and publication projects--all worthy of note.

Equally worthy of note is their dedication and commitment to the Federation of Genealogical Societies’ “Preserve the Pensions” War of 1812 project. Recall, this project is devoted to crowd-funding the digitization of the War of 1812 pension records--7.2 million images at a cost of approximately $3.4 million. It was announced at the opening session of the conference that the Montana State Genealogical Society would match all funds raised during the conference, up to $500. Well, the attending individuals and member societies contributed $1,201 in those two days! When added to the genealogical society’s match, that meant $1,701 went from Montana to the Preserve the Pensions project. That $1,701 will be matched by the Federation to become $3,402, and finally, that $3,402 will be matched by Ancestry to make the total impact of the Helena, MT conference gift $6,804! What an awesome contribution that will pay dividends for generations to come--free access to an amazing set of records, forever! And what an excellent example of what can be done!

++Leaving No One Behind . . . Fifth Continuation
During the past four months, it has been inspiring to have a number of individuals provide copies of military records for The Genealogy Center to post. And we have a number of contributed items in our queue that we look forward to posting in the near future.

While in Montana this past weekend, and thanks to the kindness of a conference attendee, David Rencher and I were able to steal a few moments to see the magnificent St. Helena Cathedral. It is a spectacular church, rich with many stained glass windows and amazing architecture. To the right as one enters the church is a plaque honoring the men and women who served during the First World War. Though the lighting was such that I could not get a good image of the entire plaque in one shot, with David’s cell phone in “flashlight mode,” I was able to get good enough images to capture all the names. They will be transcribed and on Our Military Heritage website by this time next month.

There are nearly innumerable plaques, memorials and tributes like the one in the St. Helena Cathedral scattered across the entire country. What an impact it would make if each of us committed to transcribing just one. Just do it. And then post your transcription at your society’s website and/or send it to <Genealogy [at] ACPL.Info> to post. It is truly “history in our hands.”

Two military records that were posted on this month are a well-visited grave of a Vietnam veteran and the names from the “Memorial to the Lost U.S. Army and U.S. Army Air Force, Luxembourg, American Cemetery and Memorial.”


We continue to work toward leaving no one behind. Join us if you can.

Historical Sources of Fort Wayne, Indiana
by Cynthia Theusch
 “Historical Sources of Fort Wayne, Indiana” (977.202 F77BEAA), is an annotated bibliography with call numbers that was compiled by John D. Beatty, a reference librarian in The Genealogy Center. Mr. Beatty has compiled a widespread list of printed and microfilmed resources pertaining to Fort Wayne published up to the year 2000. Some general resources for Allen County are also included.

The extensive list of reference sources is divided into forty-five categories, such as African Americans, Business Histories and Records, Census Schedules, Clubs and Organizations, Church Histories and Records, Ethnic Group Histories and Records, and Pictorial Works, among others.

An example of the scope of one of the categories in Beatty’s book is the “Directories” section, which includes “Allen County Gazetteer: Containing a Directory of Fort Wayne City and Historical Descriptive Sketches of the Several Townships of the County, also a Directory of the Names, Occupations, and Post Office Addresses of the Merchants, Manufacturers and Farmers Throughout Allen County,” written by John C. Bailey; “A Tribute to the Allen County Working Woman” by Margery Graham; local telephone directories; and information about The Genealogy Center’s extensive collection of local city directories. 

The “Medical History and Records” section includes “Record of Contagious Diseases 1894-1907,” directories of dentists, physicians, and medical schools, and “Fort Wayne Medical Journal Magazine,” 1897-1907.

For historical highlights about Fort Wayne, the researcher is guided to “Five Forts” by John Ankenbruck, “Diary of Captain John Cooke, 1794” (a soldier in General Anthony Wayne’s army), “Biographies of People Who Lived in and Near Old Fort Wayne in 1916” by Brian Leigh Dunnigan and Chris Cramton, “Fort Wayne, Gateway of the West, 1802-1813: Garrison Orderly Books, Indian Agency Account Books” by Bert J. Griswold, and Robert S. Robertson’s “A Sketch of Early Fort Wayne.”

This is a helpful reference book to aid you in researching family who lived in Fort Wayne or Allen County, or to learn about the local history of Fort Wayne.

Index to California State Militia Muster Rolls, 1851-1866
by Dawne Slater-Putt, CG*
The Genealogy Center has the “Index to California State Militia Muster Rolls, 1851 to 1866” in two formats – books and microfiche.

California saw a surge in population with the discovery of gold in the late 1840s and became a state in 1850. The state began mustering militia units shortly after, in part to safeguard citizens against Indian attacks. Many of these early militia units then served for the Union during the Civil War. In 1866, their jurisdiction was transferred to the National Guard. This index covers the period from the beginning of militia units in the state to the National Guard era.

“Index to California State Militia Muster Rolls” was compiled by the Root Cellar of the Sacramento Genealogical Society in the late 1990s from the original muster rolls housed in the California State Archives, and was published in 1999. The society estimated that the index includes about 71,000 entries, representing about 35,000 different individuals, when it is taken into consideration that some percentage of the men’s names appeared on the rolls more than once. These double-entries may depict transfers to different units and changes in rank.

The index on microfiche includes the alphabetical name index on 21 fiche, plus unit summaries on two additional fiche. The print version is four volumes bound in two physical books with the call number 979.4 C12847.

The index is alphabetical by surname and includes the muster date, certification date, and a code for county and unit. If a name of interest is found, the researcher should then check the unit summary by the county/unit code. The unit summary includes the name of the unit, when formed, when disbanded, its geographic location of origin, and the location of the original muster rolls in the State Archives.

An example of an entry in the index is Henry Snow, a private, who mustered into militia unit SF-62 on 1 December 1861 and had a certification date of 14 December 1861. Information in the unit summary for SF-62 indicated that it was the Washington Continental Guard from San Francisco City and County, affiliated with the 2nd Brigade, 1st Infantry, Company D. It was organized 15 December 1855 and disbanded 26 February 1878.

There were nine entries in the index for J. E. Blethen, with muster dates of between 22 June 1852 and 20 September 1864, plus a John E. Blethen, certified 23 August 1866. All of these were in the unit SF-19 and likely were the same man. He had ranks of private, 1st Sergeant and Bvt. 2nd Lieutenant. SF-19 was the First Light Dragoons of San Francisco City and County, affiliated with the 2nd Brigade, 1st Cavalry Battalion, Company A. It was organized 26 June 1852 and claimed to be the first legally-organized militia company under the first militia law passed by the California Legislature in 1850, although this honor was in dispute as it also was claimed by another unit. SF-19 disbanded 26 March 1880.

Researchers with early California ties, or who had an ancestor go to California for the Gold Rush, might check this resource to see if their relative served in the California State Militia during these early days of statehood.

*“CG” & “Certified Genealogist” are service marks of the Board for Certification of Genealogists®, and are used by authorized associates following periodic, peer-reviewed competency evaluations. Certificate No. 386 awarded 4 July 1996; expires 4 July 2016.

Technology Tip of the Month--More from the Big PowerPoint Book – Inserting Sound
by Kay Spears
Now we are going to learn how to add sound to our presentation. There may be different reasons you want sound in your show. Maybe you want it to loop while people are eating, or maybe you want something playing while people take their seats. Maybe you want to wake them up just before you start your talk. The reasons for adding sound are varied. For one of my presentations, I use music that gives me time to shut the doors, turn down the lights and walk up to the front. I usually have a pretty alert audience by the time I get there. One word of caution about sound, though: Be aware of copyright issues before using recorded music.
To add sound, open your presentation and go to the slide to which you want to add the sound. On the ribbon, go to Insert>Audio. There are three choices: Audio From File, Clip Art Audio, and Record Audio. Choose Audio From File. Locate the folder that contains the music or sound you want to insert and click on Insert. When you do this, a sound icon appears. You can click on the Play (arrow) button in this icon to see if the sound is loaded. Next, it’s time to test the sound by playing your presentation. Press F5. What you will see when you do this is the Sound icon on your slide. If you hold your cursor over this icon, a Play/Pause control appears and you can click on that to hear your music or sound, or to pause it while it is playing. You can leave this as it is, or you can do some further formatting so that the sound will start automatically.
To start the sound automatically when the slide appears, you need to go to Audio Tools>Playback>Start and choose Automatically. While you are in the Playback tab, you can also adjust timing, looping, rewind and other options. There are also some Fade In/Fade Out and Clipping options available. I suggest you play with those to see how they work. 
If you are adding timing or animation to the slide with the sound attached you will need your Animation Pane open.
Next: More from the Big PowerPoint Book – Working with Timing

Quick-Tip of the Month for Preservation--Sharing as a Means of Keeping Our Records Safe
Who has heard the phrase “Lots of Copies Keep Stuff Safe” (LOCKSS)? We tend to use this generically to mean that the more copies we make of something, like an ancestral photograph or family Bible pages, the better the chance that the image or information will survive for future generations. But LOCKSS actually is the name of a project under the direction of Stanford University for libraries to allow their patrons access to online resources – some of which may be protected by copyright law – and to allow libraries to archive copies of the resources to ensure that even if the websites hosting those materials go dark, the materials will be available. See the article on this project at

But returning to the idea of lots of copies keeping genealogy materials safe for future generations – have you considered submitting material to your local or state genealogical society’s publication, or that of the county or state where your ancestors lived? You might write a biography of an ancestor, a short compiled genealogy of a family, or transcribe a document pertaining to the family. Maybe you could submit copies of photographs of ancestors, tell the stories of heirlooms pertaining to the family, or write about the family homestead and provide a photo.

Perhaps the society’s journal or newsletter isn’t the best fit for the material you have. Have you checked to see if there is a society website with digitized copies of obituaries to which you could contribute the ones in your files? Or have you scanned and uploaded all of the cemetery marker photos in your files to The wider we can spread the material that we have found on our families – especially one-of-a-kind or difficult to find material – the better the chances that those who come after us will be able to locate it.

October Is Family History Month!
The Genealogy Center has a great schedule for “our” month, with storytelling, research tips, history, consultations, and culminating with our evening of extended research hours on October 31. Events are:

October 1 – An Evening of Storytelling, 7 p.m., Theater.
October 1 – One-on-One Consultations, 10 a.m.-noon, The Genealogy Center.

October 2 – One-on-One Consultations, 2-4 p.m., The Genealogy Center. 

October 5 – “Four Continents to Freedom: A Biography of Millie Rytel,” 1-3 p.m.,
Meeting Room C, Polish National Alliance.

October 8 – “Funerals: History and Customs,” Presented by David W. McComb, 7 p.m., Meeting Room A,  Allen County Genealogical Society of Indiana Program.
October 9 – “Ancestors and Answers, 6 p.m., Meeting Room B, African American Genealogical Society of Fort Wayne Program.
Panel presentation by Judy Harris, Al Brothers, Roberta Ridley and Curt Witcher
October 9 – One-on-One Consultations, 2-4 p.m., The Genealogy Center
October 12 – “The Fourth Partition ‘Cwarta Dzielnica,’” 1 p.m., Theater.

October 14 – One-on-One Consultations, 2-4 p.m., The Genealogy Center.

October 15 – Allen County Genealogical Society Technology Group Meeting, 7 p.m., Meeting Room C, Open Forum.
October 16 – One-on-One Consultations, 10 a.m.-noon, The Genealogy Center.

October 18 – One-on-One Consultations, 10-11 a.m. & 3-4 p.m., The Genealogy Center.

October 19 – “Researching in the Great Lakes Area Series: Finding Records in the States You’re Researching,” Curt Witcher, 1-2 p.m., Meeting Room A.
October 20 – Researching in the Great Lakes Area Series: “Researching in Kentucky,” Delia Bourne, 7-8 p.m., Meeting Room A.
October 21 – Researching in the Great Lakes Area Series: “Tracking Your Illinois Ancestors,” Sara Allen, 7-8 p.m., Meeting Room A.
October 22 – Researching in the Great Lakes Area Series: “Hunting Ancestors in the Hoosier State,” Curt Witcher, 7-8 p.m., Meeting Room A.
October 23 – One-on-One Consultations, 2-4 p.m., The Genealogy Center.

October 23 – Researching in the Great Lakes Area Series: “Researching in Michigan,” Cynthia Theusch, 7-8 p.m., Meeting Room AB.

October 24 – Researching in the Great Lakes Area Series: “Researching in Ohio,” Dawne Slater-Putt, 10-11 a.m., Meeting Room A.
October 25 – One-on-One Consultations, 10-11 a.m. & 3-4 p.m., The Genealogy Center.
October 29 – One-on-One Consultations,  2-4 p.m., The Genealogy Center.

October 30 – One-on-One Consultations,  2-4 p.m., The Genealogy Center.

October 31 – Midnight Madness,  6 p.m.-Midnight, The Genealogy Center.
*Must be in The Genealogy Center by 6 p.m. No garage parking after 6 p.m.*
    6:30 p.m. – How to Use the FamilySearch Wiki
    7:30 p.m. – Using WeRelate to Post Your Family Tree to the Internet
    8:30 p.m. – A Brief Tour of the U.S. GenWeb

For event descriptions, see the Family History Month brochure at
Seating in some classes is limited, so don’t delay! Call 260-421-1225 or email Genealogy [at] ACPL.Info to register today!

WinterTech 2014-2015 Begins!
The Genealogy Center begins its WinterTech series with a pair of classes devoted to the “Basics of Adobe Elements,” on Monday, November 3, and Monday, November 10, both from 6:30-8:30 p.m. in the Computer Classroom. Kay Spears will conduct this two-part class devoted to learning the basics of Adobe Elements. Discover how to restore images of old photographs using techniques similar to those in Adobe Photoshop. Participants are encouraged to bring copies of their own family photographs on a flash drive for hands-on instruction in applying what they have learned. Space is limited. Email Genealogy [at] ACPL.Info or call 260-421-1225 to register for this free event. Copies of photos must be on a USB/flash drive.

December's WinterTech class will be “Google It! Using Google Maps, Google Earth
and More,” on December 10, 2014, from 3 to 4 p.m. in Meeting Room A.

Out and About
Curt Witcher
October 25, 2014
Ventura County (CA) Genealogical Society Annual Seminar, Camarillo Public Library, Community Room, 4101 E. Las Posas Road, Camarillo, California, 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Presentations: “Historical Research Methodology: Engaging the Process to Find All the Answers” “Roll Call: New Sites & Sources for Military Records & Research,” “Fingerprinting Our Families: Using Ancestors Origins as a Genealogical Research Key,” and “This I Believe – The Urgent Need to Record Living History”

Area Calendar of Events
Mary Penrose Wayne Chapter of the NSDAR
1 October 2014 – Allen County Public Library Genealogy Center, 900 Library Plaza, Fort Wayne, Indiana, 9 a.m.-noon. DAR Research Help is available to assist prospective DAR members research their lineage to prove ancestry to an American Revolutionary Patriot. The DAR has a table in the west reading room of The Genealogy Center.

History Center
4 October 2014 – Miami Indian Heritage Days, Chief Richardville House, 5705 Bluffton Road, Fort Wayne, Indiana, 1-4 p.m. Program: Wikiami Cattail Matting. Admission: $7 adults, $5 seniors & students. History Center members admitted free.

History Center
5 October 2014 – George Mather Lecture Series, 302 East Berry, Fort Wayne, Indiana, 2 p.m. Robert Matzen will present “Fireball: Carole Lombard and the Mystery of Flight 3.” Lecture & book signing.

Allen County Genealogical Society of Indiana Meeting
8 October 2014 – Allen County Public Library, 900 Library Plaza, Fort Wayne, Indiana, 7 p.m. David W. McComb will present “Funerals: History and Customs.”
Allen County Genealogical Society of Indiana Genealogy Technology Group
15 October 2014 – Allen County Public Library, 900 Library Plaza, Fort Wayne, Indiana, 7 p.m.

Historic Fort Wayne
18 October 2014 – Fright Night Lantern Tours, 1201 Spy Run Ave., Fort Wayne, Indiana, 6-10:30 p.m.

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 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 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 send an email to kspears [at] with "unsubscribe e-zine" in the subject line.

Dawne Slater-Putt, CG & Curt Witcher, co-editors

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