Genealogy Gems: News from the Fort Wayne Library, No. 147, May 31, 2016
From: Genealogy Gems (
Date: Tue, 31 May 2016 20:32:10 -0400
Genealogy Gems: News from the Fort Wayne Library
No. 147, May 31, 2016

In this issue:
*Making it Real—Commit to Remembering Our Veterans All Year
*Keith Meinjes Collection of South African Genealogy
*Genealogical and Historical Educational Opportunities
*W. A. Craker Diary: A Digitized Diary in the Genealogy Center Collection
*Technology Tip of the Month--Microsoft Data Entry Form
*Quick-Tip of the Month for Preservation--To Use the Cloud or Not to Use the Cloud
*History Tidbits: Archaic Words for Medical Terms
*Summer School for Family Historians
*Staying Informed about Genealogy Center Programming
*Out and About
*Area Calendar of Events
*Driving Directions to the Library
*Parking at the Library
*Queries for The Genealogy Center

Making it Real—Commit to Remembering Our Veterans All Year
by Curt B. Witcher
Though we have just remembered and celebrated the lives of those who made the ultimate sacrifice in serving our country, our communities, and ourselves, it is right that we continue to pay honor to their service. Memorializing and remembering should be more than a once a year activity. The fact that we also have the Fourth of July and Veterans’ Day as celebrations should entice us to ponder how to make remembering our veterans a continual, year-round activity, worthy of our time and attention. I have always believed that doing something once or twice a year may make it special, but that specialness typically does not translate into something nearly as meaningful as those things that are truly a part of our lives. 

We can more actively memorialize our military ancestors in a couple of ways. First, we can honor our military family members, living and deceased, by preserving their memory through preserving and making available for future generations the records and stories of their lives. And second, we can appreciate again how important military records are in our family history research. Through this appreciation, we can become even more committed to discovering military records and service information in all our research endeavors and in every location where we conduct research, not just when we're searching on the mega online sites.

My colleagues and I are fond of the _expression_, “Every generation the possibility!” when talking about using military records. From before the founding of our country until these present times, not a single generation has gone by without some significant number of individuals committing to the defense of our country and our freedoms. Clearly that has implications for our family history research. As our research identifies a new generation, looking for records and documents that evidence military service should be somewhere on our research priority lists.

One might ask why military records are so consequential for genealogical research. First, at a very basic level, like nearly all historical records that are person-based, military records put a person in a particular geographic area during a specific time period engaged in an activity. The records provide evidence of a life lived. Second, some military records provide additional information about a particular person’s family. This is especially true of pre-twentieth century pension records where an individual’s proof that he served and that he qualified for a pension were often evidenced by testimony from comrades, neighbors, and family members.

In easy, straightforward ways we can look for these documents and this evidence as we engage in our family history research. Whenever we find such evidence, I believe it is appropriate to save and share such information as widely as possible for interested others. As an example, if you find a muster list showing an ancestor’s service, why not copy the entire list and post it where others might find it and benefit from its use. Posting opportunities may exist in a number of virtual places: in the USGenWeb network, through your local genealogical society, linked on your local historical society’s website, and/or posted as a resource on the local public library’s website. If the record or evidence appears in a copyrighted work, widely share a complete citation so others can easily get to the source.

In addition to the possible posting sites listed above, please remember that The Genealogy Center of the Allen County Public Library hosts many military records on the site, “Our Military Heritage.” <> From various pension files to a variety of service records, and from letters and diaries to rosters and histories, The Genealogy Center has much to offer those in search of military documents. Just before this past Memorial Day weekend, we quietly posted the four new resources listed below. These and similar resources (hundreds of them!) are great complements to the considerable image databases we can find on the large genealogy websites. I fear that some people believe that if a record or document cannot be found on a large website, it must not exist. That belief does not represent reality in the least.

The Civil War Cavalry from St. Joseph County: 12th Indiana - 127th Regiment

Roster of the Department of Pennsylvania, Grand Army of the Republic, 1894
"Overseas Sketches,” a WWI book
Hospice Memorial Service, Dayton, Ohio VA Medical Center:
Even if you’ve posted your family’s historical military information at your favorite local site or USGenWeb page, I would still urge you to send a copy of The Genealogy Center for us to post at our site. If a significant data loss can happen to as it did a few months ago with USGenWeb data, it can happen to anyone. And that makes it all the more consequential to remember LOCKSS--lots of copies keeps stuff safe.

If we truly appreciate how important military records are in our genealogical research, we will intensify our efforts to find all possible data and documents related to our ancestors’ military service. Note that I said “all possible data and documents,” not all possible data and documents on large commercial sites. While our favorite large commercial sites have so much to offer, I believe the savvy researcher will see those sites as a great beginning to finding “all.”

For years, public libraries appropriately have been preserving and presenting the histories of their communities and the residents, both contemporary and legacy, of those communities. In recent years, a significant part of presenting information for researchers has included making it available online. When one is researching a particular ancestor, the geographic locations where the individual was born, where he mustered in, and where he died and was buried are all great places to look for documents evidencing military service. Most locales are rightfully very proud of their veterans. The scrapbooks, vertical files, local publications, and newspaper accounts at the local level all have the potential of offering a wealth of information. And public libraries are among the first places one should check for this kind of information. Many public libraries will have unique, data-rich sources that aren’t readily found at commercial sites.

Nearly as vital as public libraries in the communities from which one’s ancestors hailed are local historical societies. One should explore both the virtual and physical holdings of these organizations. Though historical societies tend to focus more on institutions, business, movements, and events than specifically on individuals, it is nearly impossible to remove people from the former list. Their holdings are most worthwhile especially for the researchers who want to place their ancestors in the most robust context possible--and we should all be that kind of researcher.

Once one has explored local public libraries and local historical societies for sources of military data and documents, one should next endeavor to explore state libraries, state historical societies, and state archives for military records, publications, and manuscripts. State library collections tend to be particularly rich in published town, county, and religious histories, newspaper collections, and city and county directories. While it certainly is dependent on the particular state, state historical societies often contain both published and unpublished manuscript materials in their collections. They also may have a number of special collections in which significant amounts of military data and records may be found. State archives tend to collect more of the original records of states’ governments, and also may be repositories for many county record ledgers within their respective states.

As alluded to previously, many of these repositories hold data of great consequence for our research but not large enough to be included in the data files of large commercial websites. These repositories at the local and state level also likely will contain significant information that is not easily discoverable by a simple Google search.

If you would like more information, want assistance in doing military research, or need further encouragement to regularly memorialize your military ancestors, there are so many well-done blogs, webinars, and electronically available articles to assist you. I will conclude with two examples.

**On May 27th, Amy Johnson Crow posted a very useful, succinct blog on “3 Clues for Discovering Military Service."

**On May 24th, on the “Genealogy Insider” blog, Diane Haddad posted, "12 Free Websites to Search for and Honor Fallen Military Ancestors on Memorial Day." Of course, you can use the sites any day.
Going to the actual blog will provide one with links to the twelve sites.

•Nationwide Gravesite Locator database from the US Department of Veterans Affairs, which catalogs burial locations of veterans and their family members in VA national cemeteries, state veterans cemeteries, other military and Department of the Interior cemeteries, and private cemeteries (after 1997) when the grave is marked with a government marker

•Arlington National Cemetery ANC Explorer, a web-based or mobile app you can use to locate gravesites, view gravestone images and more.

•American Battle Monuments Commission database, which includes names of more than 218,000 service members buried or memorialized overseas

•Virtual Vietnam Wall and USS Arizona Memorial on Fold3

•Casualties databases on the National Archives website, covering the Korean and Vietnam wars (you also can use easier-to-search versions on FamilySearch for Korea or Vietnam)

•FamilySearch has helpful databases for tracing those who died in service, including Records of Headstones of Deceased Union Veterans and Navy Widows' Certificates 1861-1910 (these collections also will include veterans who died after their service)

•World War II Casualties and World War II Casualties—Navy, Marines, Coast Guard on Access Genealogy

•Cemetery sites such as Find A Grave, and Billion Graves, where volunteers may have recorded inscriptions and/or uploaded photos.

•National Society Sons of the American Revolution Patriot & Grave Index, an ongoing project to index graves of those who served in the Revolutionary War (includes veterans and deaths in service)

•Pennsylvania Civil War Soldier Deaths database (also lists injuries) on the Pennsylvania Volunteers of the Civil War website

•Virginia Military Dead Database on the Library of Virginia website, an ongoing project indexing more than 1,000 sources and listing more than 54,000 Virginians who've died in service

•Honor the Fallen, from the MilitaryTimes news site, lets you search for names of those who've died more recently, in Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation New Dawn.

Make memorializing your military ancestors a real part of your family history research by doing something way more than once a year.

Keith Meintjes Collection of South African Genealogy
by John D. Beatty, CG (sm)
In 2015, Keith Meintjes, a South African-born genealogist, presented the Genealogy Center with his personal library of local history and genealogy. The collection contains more than 200 printed volumes pertaining to South Africa, many of them rare, as well as a number of digital volumes not yet publicly accessible. The inclusion of the Meintjes Collection brings the total number of South African books in the Center to nearly 700 – making us a major destination for the study of genealogy of this area in North America. Indeed, some of the volumes cannot be found in any known library, even in South Africa. Why South Africa and why Fort Wayne? Mr. Meintjes wanted a permanent place to house the collection that he had assembled over many years, and he appreciated both our accessibility and the fact that we already owned a significant number of related titles.

South Africa was first settled by Europeans when the Dutch East India Company, seeking a trading route for spices, established a permanent colony at the Cape in 1652. The first settlers comprised mostly a mix of farmers, sailors, and ex-soldiers from Holland, but also included some from Germany, France, and Scandinavia. Few women emigrated to join the men, so the Company imported black slaves from its colonies further to the East, creating a colony that was biracial almost from its inception. Most of these slaves, after becoming Christian, were freed and adopted Christian names.

In the early nineteenth century, Dutch trading power began to fade. Great Britain seized the Cape Colony during the Napoleonic War and in 1820 began encouraging the settlement of British colonists to solidify its military presence.  More settlers arrived in the Natal between 1824 and 1857, and the discovery of diamonds made the colony particularly valuable for Britain. Many of the Dutch-descended colonists, called Boers, desiring independence from British law, moved out of the Cape and settled inland, establishing their own republics. The British followed, and clashes eventually erupted between them in a series of so-called Boer Wars fought between 1877 and 1899. Today, many South Africans have a multi-ethnic cultural heritage that includes British, Dutch, and Black ancestry.

How might the study of South African genealogy interest the American researcher? While no meaningful migration has ever occurred between the U.S. and South Africa, some Americans of Dutch and British ancestry may have distant cousins among its settlers. Indeed, South Africa boasts a surprisingly extensive number of genealogical records, and many families can trace their ancestry to the original immigrants with identified European places of origin.

Several volumes in the Meintjes Collection stand out for such research. J. A. Heese’s 17-volume “Suid-Afrikaane Geslagregisters/South African Genealogies (Stellenbosch: Genealogical Institute of South Africa, 1986-2008), (GC 968 H36so) serves as a population study for the descendants of many early Cape families, both of Dutch and other ethnicities, and traces many to Europe. For example, Johannes Oosthuizen arrived from Weert in the Netherlands about 1685 and married at the Cape Colony in 1691 to Johanna Maartens of Grypskerk. Stafford Parker of Malden, Essex, England, born in 1833, served as a sailor in the Crimean War and later fled to America in 1855. He returned to South Africa as a diamond dealer in 1868, living on the Vaal River. Heese writes primarily in Afrikaans (a Dutch dialect), but he provides an English glossary in front, making the books easy to navigate. 

Another useful set is Shelagh O’Byrne Spencer’s “British Settlers in Natal, 1824-1857: A Biographical Register” (Piermartisburg: University of Natal Press, 1981), published in 7 volumes through letter G (GC 968.4 Sp33br). Written in English, Spencer gives short biographies of the settlers, including their place of origin in England, if known, and adds relevant documentation. For example, Robert Acutt, an auctioneer, born in 1814 at Torquay, Devon, arrived at Natal before 1858. He married Mary Louisa East at Lambeth, Surrey, in 1842, and the couple had nine children who lived in Natal.

American genealogists, seeking a complete record of extended relatives in England and the Netherlands, may have “lost” some cousins along the way when they disappear from records in their home country. The surprising truth is that some of these kinsmen may have immigrated to South Africa. The Genealogy Center is pleased to have the Keith Meintjes South Africa Collection, and we encourage our visitors to explore its rich diversity.

* “CG” and “Certified Genealogist” are service marks for the Board for Certification of Genealogists® and are used by authorized associates following periodic, peer-reviewed competency evaluations. Certificate no. 1050, awarded 8 August 2014; expires 8 August 2019.

Genealogical and Historical Educational Opportunities
by Sara Allen
The Genealogy Center offers many free classes and programs for continuing education, but the staff realizes that some readers live too far away to attend them.  However, unless you live in a remote area, you may find genealogical and historical programs offered in your community or in a nearby vicinity.  Regional and national events also provide educational opportunities both directly from sessions as well as through online webinars.

Why should you attend genealogical classes and programs? They offer a great opportunity for learning about unfamiliar topics, meeting and collaborating with other genealogists, and volunteering your expertise to help preserve family and local history.  As researchers, we can always benefit from improving our research skills. 

Nationally, both the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS) ( and National Genealogical Society (NGS) ( host conferences at different locations each year.  FGS will hold its convention in Springfield, Illinois, from August 31 to September 3, 2016, while next year’s NGS conference will be held in May 2017 in Raleigh, North Carolina. These conferences provide opportunities to expand your genealogical knowledge, network with others, learn about trends and projects, and purchase genealogical products from the many on-site vendors. A number of groups also offer excellent week-long intensive seminars on a variety of topics, including the Utah Genealogical Association’s Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy ( and the Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh ( In case you missed the recent NGS convention held last month in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, many sessions are available online for a fee through its website via digital streaming. 
State and regional organizations also offer diverse educational opportunities. Many state libraries, archives, statewide historical and genealogical societies conduct programs about genealogy and local history at various locations around their states. Check their website or social media pages, call or visit to find out more about their offerings. For instance, if you live in Alabama, you can attend a lecture about the “Negro Southern League: A Baseball History” on July 21 by William Plott at the Alabama Dept. of Archives & History ( in Montgomery. You can visit the Alabama Historical Association’s ( Fall Pilgrimage Oct. 7 and 8 in Decatur, or take the Birmingham Public Library’s ( class, “Let's Talk About It: Oral History,” on July 16.
Local organizations in many towns and counties also offer genealogical classes and programs.  Try checking out their websites and social media or going in person to your local public library, historical society, genealogical society, or Family History Center and find out about their offerings.  For instance, in Jefferson County Kansas, the Jefferson County Genealogical Society ( holds meetings on the fourth Monday of the month, while the public libraries in Valley Falls and Oskaloosa offer historical programming.  Nearby, the Topeka Public Library ( offers computerized genealogy classes on a regular basis, while the Topeka Genealogical Society ( offers monthly brick wall help sessions, computer classes, and a monthly program. This month’s program, on June 23, is titled, “Freedom's Struggle: Order 11.”
Genealogical and historical organizations can enrich us as genealogists. Supporting local, regional and national genealogical and historical organizations with our time, donations and attendance helps to preserve the history of our country and our families. If this sounds like fun to you, step up, attend a meeting, grow as a genealogist, and inquire about how you can help.

W. A. Craker Diary: A Digitized Diary in the Genealogy Center Collection
by Emily Heath
The Genealogy Center has several diaries – either original or transcribed – digitized on its website. One of these is the diary of William Adelbert (W.A.) Craker. He wrote consistently for almost thirty-two and a half years about his work, church involvement, and other daily activities. In addition to what W. A. Craker wrote himself, the collection includes eight months of diary entries by his wife, Carrie Labare Craker. She, too wrote about her daily activities, and, conveniently, kept a list of individuals to whom she had given Christmas presents and their relationship to her.

Here is where Andrea and I came in to this story. As an intern at the Genealogy Center, one of my projects has been to write brief descriptions of the individuals whose diaries or letters are part of the Genealogy Center’s online collection. The first day, I hadn’t the slightest inkling to start this project with the diary of W. A. Craker.

While researching Craker, I ran across Andrea’s contact information on FamilySearch. Andrea is a relative of Craker and had posted information and stories about him on FamilySearch Family Tree. The source of the posted stories was a rare book called Zechariah Craker and all his Children. Andrea explained that this book had been written by a grandson of W. A. Craker named Arvid Craker. She met Arvid for the first time at her father’s memorial service, and at that time he gave her the book. She has considered it a treasure.

That book wasn’t the end of Andrea’s good fortune. Andrea said that she had never heard of the existence of W. A. Craker’s diary. Andrea was so excited to hear about the collection and looked forward to reading it. The diary may do more than provide interesting details about Craker’s life. It may help in future research out about Craker’s daughter, Theta, about whom the current family seems to know little.

Sharing genealogical information is exciting. You may imagine that Andrea was overjoyed to learn about this diary, but it was almost as exciting for us to unexpectedly, and easily, supply a genealogist with a new source of information

Technology Tip of the Month--Microsoft Data Entry Form
by Kay Spears
In the last article we established a Table in Microsoft Access. Now we are ready to create a data entry form. I bet everyone is excited. I also bet everyone is wondering why we need a data entry form when we can enter all of our information directly into the table. Well, that is true. If it is a simple database and it is only you who will be using it, go ahead. However, a database is easier to manage if there are data entry forms. You may even want to have more than one form.

Let’s start by creating a simple form by using the handy-dandy Form Wizard. The Form Wizard is located in the Create tab. When you click on the Create tab, you will see the following groups: Templates, Tables, Queries, Forms, Reports and Macros/Code. The Form Wizard is in the Forms group; click on it. A Form Wizard dialog box will appear. Direct your attention to the area which says Table/Queries. This area has a dropdown tab that lists the tables and queries you have that are associated with this database. Further down is the Available Fields list. In that list are all the fields from the table, Kays Address, which we created last month. You might have named your table something different, but whatever you called it, that will be the table we are working with. To the right of this list are some arrows. If you want to select one field at a time, choose the single arrow. If you want to select all of the fields, pick the two arrow icon and click. Now all of your fields have moved from the Available Fields list to the Selected Fields list. Click on the Next button at the bottom of the dialog box.

You should be looking at some suggested layouts for your form. Warning: these are very vague suggested looks. Anyway, there are four choices: Columnar, Tabular, Datasheet, and Justified. Click through the list to get an idea of what the form will look like. I’m going to pick Columnar. Now click on the Next button.

Time to name our form. Try to make it a unique but descriptive name. I’m going to name my form “Record Address.” There is also the option of: “Open the form to view or enter information” or “Modify the form’s design.” In this case we are just going to open the form to view. Click Finish.

What you should see is a very simple form into which you can enter information. You will not enter anything into the ID field because that will be done automatically. (Remember the ID field is your Primary Key field.) When you tab out of the ID field, your cursor should land in the next field, which is LName – start typing. Notice that as soon as you start to type, a number is assigned to your data. For our purposes, go ahead and fill in all the information except for the Merge field. Use your tab key to go from one box to another. After you have entered a couple of records, return to your Table. The way you maneuver from table to form and back again is by using what is called a “Navigation Pane.” This is located to the left and has two arrows; click on those arrows. When the pane opens, you will be able to see everything you have created to this point. Click on your Table; you should see all of the information you just entered into your Data Entry Form. If you do not see anything, you may need to refresh your computer. You do this by closing your database or refreshing your database by using the F5 key. Your information should be showing now. There are also tabs at the top of your form/table that allow you to go back and forth between the two. Don’t get too excited about that feature, because at a later time we will disable those tabs.

Now we have a simple form for a simple table, but it’s really boring. Maybe if I changed the color or the font or made the boxes different, that would help.

Next Article: Changing the look of our Access Form.

Quick-Tip of the Month for Preservation--To Use the Cloud or Not to Use the Cloud
To use the Cloud or not to use the Cloud for storing your digital photographs? Believe it or not, there is a divide among professionals about whether Cloud storage services are the best place to keep back-ups of your photograph collection. All professionals are united by the view that we need to make digital scans of all of our family photographs and store them digitally. We all know that disaster can strike. Fires, floods, and tornados can wipe out all of our genealogical records and precious family photographs. Cloud storage has the advantage that we can store and organize the scans remotely, download them when we need them, and feel confident the images will be there if the originals get destroyed in a disaster. But…are Cloud storage services permanent?  What happens to the files if the Cloud storage company goes out of business? What happens if you die and your heirs don’t know the passwords to your Cloud website and your subscription lapses?

Many professions still swear by the Cloud and have made provisions in the estate planning for their digital files and passwords. However, some photograph professionals do not like Cloud storage at all and prefer to keep all of their photographs on multiple portable hard drives, which they keep in a safety deposit box in the bank. Since these drives can also erode and become inaccessible, they recommend continually upgrading to new hard drive media.

Whatever path you choose, make sure your photographic images are backed up.  It may not be a bad idea to use both the Cloud and portable hard drives.

by Adam Barrone and Mike Hudson
Memorial Day marks the beginning of the summer vacation season and, in northern Indiana, that often means that a trip to the lake is in store.  No matter how you decide to enjoy nature this summer, you will no doubt encounter some wildlife.  Park rangers at Yellowstone National Park are reminding visitors to keep a safe distance from bears and bison after risky interactions between humans and animals were observed.  Consider the role of wildlife in your own past and in the lives of your ancestors.  The unpredictable (and sometimes predictable) behavior of wild animals can lead to some great stories which beg to be retold and written.

Searches of the Periodical Source Index (PERSI) turn up 128 mentions of frogs, 91 of bison, 66 of catfish, 193 of squirrels, 57 of insects, and 951 picnics.  Try your own PERSI search here:

Here are some of the wildlife gems we found:

Dale Bumpus fined $100 for capturing frogs, his friends protest, 1951
Kinsman Courier (Coshocton Co. Chapter, Ohio Gen. Soc.), v.33n.1, Spr. 2010

Hank Hamilton caught an armadillo, it died from eating Zach Davis sausage, Dr. Hirsh comments, 1922
Pike Speaks (Pike Co. Gen. Soc., OH), Apr. 2012

James Morrison, Theodore and Luther Squires watch a hawk eat 12 rats, 1896, KY
Green County (KY) Review, Win. 2010

James Riblett found robin with two heads, three beaks, four nostrils, news note, 1887
Pastfinder (Ashland Co. Chapter, Ohio Gen. Soc.), v.29n.2, May 2010

John Culpepper recalls fishing with uncle W. J., eating the bait after failing to catch fish, 1930s
Grassroots (Grant Co. Museum, AR), Aug. 2010

Mosquitoes die from biting drunks in Chicago, news note, 1868
Kinsman Courier (Coshocton Co. Chapter, Ohio Gen. Soc.). v.33n.4, Win. 2010

Oscar, a dead catfish, held as witness in State vs. Harry Willetts trial, 1928
Wayne County (IA) Genie News, v.32n.3, Jul. 2010

History Tidbits: Archaic Words for Medical Terms
by Allison DePrey Singleton
While doing genealogical research, one is apt to run across archaic terms for illnesses and question what they reference.  For example, while Lice are not an illness but small bugs, they can still require a brief stay at home until they are exterminated.  Lice were once referred to as Cooties, Gray-Backs, Seam-Squirrels, and Boches.  Even today, children discuss the horrors of getting cooties from a child of the opposite sex without knowing that they are actually discussing lice.  They seem to believe that cooties are a mythical illness you get from another child.  While this understanding does contain a hint of truth about the contagiousness of lice, it is fascinating how real things such as lice have become a mythical illness that you get from simply being around a boy or a girl of the opposite sex. 

It is equally fascinating to learn about illnesses that were not understood or known during certain time periods.  Nervous prostration was a diagnosis given to many individuals, especially women, who were mentally and physically exhausted.  Emily Dickinson was diagnosed with it in 1884 and Albion Fellows Bacon was diagnosed with it in the 1890s after the birth of her second child.  Mental illness and mental health were not treated the same way as they are today.  These two women probably suffered from other illnesses; Emily Dickinson most likely suffered from agoraphobia brought on by severe anxiety, while Albion Fellows Bacon likely suffered from postpartum depression.  Prior to the advancements in mental health fields, it was common for such people to be lumped together as having the same illness. 

Other interesting terms are Blue Cough (whooping cough caused by the bacteria Boordetella pertussis, Wasting Disease (tuberculosis), Butcher’s Wart (lupus on those who handle raw meat), Grippe (influenza), and Painter’s Colic (lead poisoning).  The Genealogy Center has several interesting books that might prove useful to any researchers looking into these archaic terms.  One book, “Death Certificates and Archaic Medical Terms” by Helen V. Smith, is based on medical terms found in Australia’s death certificates and information, but the terms translate to the United States quite well.  Next, the book, “A Dictionary of Medical & Related Terms for the Family Historian” by Joan E. Brundy, does an excellent job of describing terms in great detail while including images and further background.  One last book would be “Genealogical and Historical Terms and Phrases used in Deeds, Occupations, Medical Conditions, and Diseases,” compiled by Lawrence H. Dunbar.  This book does not separate between topics, but lists them all in alphabetical order. 

The next time you are doing genealogical research and come across a death record or newspaper article on your ancestor that lists an unfamiliar disease or cause of death, look it up.  The above list of books may prove helpful in the future.  I will leave you with the most unusual archaic term I have come across: “Flooded to Death,” that is, she bled to death during childbirth. 

Summer School for Family Historians
Have you gotten out of doing genealogical research and wonder how much may have changed in the past few years? Do you know someone who would like to start working on their family history, but don’t know what steps to take first? You’re both in luck! Our summer series for 2016 is “Beginning… or Beginning Again,” designed to assist those getting into genealogy as well as those who need a bit of refresher. We are offering four opportunities to learn about important research sources on the last Saturday of each month, June through September, in The Genealogy Center’s Discovery Center.

The first is “Discover the Treasure Trove of Records Found at the County Courthouse,” presented by Sara Allen, on Saturday, June 25, 2016, at 10:00 a.m. in the Discovery Center. Learn about the types of records typically found in a county courthouse and how those records can further your genealogical research. The class includes discussions of vital records, probate records, civil and criminal court case records, and more. To register for this free event, call 260-421-1225 or email Genealogy [at] ACPL.Info.

Other classes in the series are: “Land Records: An Integral Tool in Your Family History,” presented by Cynthia Theusch, July 30, 2016, 10:00 a.m.; “Finding & Using Newspapers,” presented by Delia Bourne, August 27, 2016, 10:00 a.m.; and “Genealogical Data Management Program Exposé,” presented by the Technology Interest Group of the Allen County Genealogical Society of Indiana on September 24, 2016, 10:00 a.m.

Staying Informed about Genealogy Center Programming
Do you want to know what we’ve got planned? Are you interested in one of our events, but forget? We are now offering email updates for The Genealogy Center’s programming schedule.  Don’t miss out!  Sign up at

Out and About
Curt Witcher
June 25
American Library Association Annual Meeting, Orange County Convention Center, Room W109A, Orlando, FL, 1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. Panel participant: “Partnering for the Common Good: Libraries and Genealogical Societies.”

Sara Allen
June 20, 2016
Wabash Co. Genealogical Society Meeting, Winchester Senior Center, 239 Bond St. Wabash, IN, 6 p.m. Presentation: “Finding Family for James Beaver.”

Melissa Tennant
June 25, 2016
Palatines to America 2016 National Conference, Grand Wayne Conference Center, Fort Wayne, IN, 10:30 a.m. Presentation: “Where Art Thou, PERSI?”

Area Calendar of Events
ACGSI Annual Banquet & Special Event
June 8, 2016 – Allen County Public Library, 900 Library Plaza, Fort Wayne, IN.
“A Day with John Colletta.”
10:00 a.m.--“Breaking Through Brick Walls: Use Your HEAD”
1:00 p.m.—“Passenger Arrival Records: Colonial Times to Mid-20th Century”
2:30 p.m.—“U.S. Naturalization Records, 1790-1930: Sources and Strategies”
Evening Banquet
6:00 p.m.—“The Keepers of the Records and I: Tales of Accessing Historical Sources”

ACGSI Genealogy Technology Group
June 15, 2016 – Allen County Public Library, 900 Library Plaza, Fort Wayne, Indiana, 7 p.m.

George R. Mather Lecture
June 5, 2016 – History Center, 302 East Berry St., Fort Wayne, IN, 2 p.m. Keith Layman will present, “The Forts of Fort Wayne.”

1816: Frontier Fort to Statehood: A State Bicentennial celebration
June 11-12, 2016 – Historic Old Fort, 1201 Spy Run Ave Fort Wayne, IN, Saturday, June 11, 10:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m. & Sunday, June 12, 10:00 a.m.-4:00 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.

Curt B. Witcher and John D. Beatty, CG, co-editors

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