Now’s Your Chance! My New Blogging Resolution

I’ve made a new blogging resolution for myself. Actually, I’ve been working on this during the summer, but I’m not happy with my progress.

How many blog posts do you read each day? I mean really read, most of the way through? I probably read about ten on average. I decided I wanted to start leaving comments on the posts that I enjoy. Many of them get added to my Recommended Reads list and, although it feels wonderful to find my posts on others’ “best of the week” lists, I think we all like to have actual comments posted by our readers.  Are any of you thinking the same thing? I hope so.

I think, on average, I’ve left about five comments per week on blog posts that caught my attention. My new goal is three comments per day. That is easily attainable given the amount of reading I do.

So, readers, are you also up for the “Comments” challenge? If you are, here is your first opportunity.

Last week, I posted “Photo Dating Help Needed!” There were plenty of site visits to my blog that day, so I know readers at least looked at it and, thank you, Elizabeth Swanay-O’Neal for including it on your Best Bytes for the week, but I didn’t have even one comment left by anyone about my theory as to who this young man might be.

Here is your second chance – Photo Dating Help Needed!

Please take a minute to click the link and leave a comment. Am I on the right track identifying this probable Brasher family member? Thank you!

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun – The Wayback Machine

I always look forward to Randy Seaver’s Saturday Night Genealogy Fun. This week our mission is to visit the Wayback Machine, searching for screen shots of our own blogs. It’s never occurred to me to do this, I guess because Empty Branches is only 19 months old. However, I accepted the challenge and this is what I found.

Empty Branches was created in January 2014, but the Wayback Machine first found the site on 17 May 2014.

Because my blog is so new, I haven’t changed themes or background colors, but I have added to the toolbar to the right of the green title “Empty Branches on the Family Tree.” I had just begun to add in links to resources online.

The Wayback Machine didn’t return until five months later, on 29 September 2014.

The changes are subtle and can only be seen in the toolbar, as category names have been revised from favorite blogs, websites and educational links to “Blogs I Follow” and “Favorite Sites.”

The Wayback Machine looked like it was becoming a regular visitor for the rest of 2014, with monthly shots taken:

September – December 2014

It was a bit disappointing to move into 2015 and find that no visits were made again until 6 April 2015.

The toolbar has again been updated with the “Research Toolbox” now on the far right. One thing that annoyed me for months can be seen in the bottom right corner of this screen shot. It’s the “ghostly” image of the Feedly icon, not the real link. It took me a long time to figure out how to get rid of it, but the next time the Wayback Machine visits, it won’t be there.

I’m not sure why, but on 19 June, not one, but four, snapshots were taken. I learned something here. The circle on that date is larger than the others, reflecting the number of shots that were taken:

Four Visits in One Day!

I’m a little disappointed that the most recent Wayback Machine visit was on 19 August because it doesn’t reflect all the updates I’ve made to the toolbar.

However, it is evident that I’ve made updates in the interim since June. I am going to have to check the Wayback Machine for a while to see when it captures the latest additions to my blog.

Thanks, as always, Randy for an imaginative challenge.

Joel Hamilton Howard & Mary Ann Stewart, Aroostook Co., ME

This will be the last Stewart-themed post for a while. Mary Ann Stewart, daughter of John and Catherine Carlisle Stewart, was born on 20 July 1829 in Charlotte, Washington, Maine. A marriage record has not been found for her, but she likely married Joel Hamilton Howard about 1860 in Aroostook County, Maine. Online trees show his wife to be Mary Ann Corliss, which is probably true. However, they don’t reflect the fact that Joel married twice and both wives had the first name of Mary.

Joel Howard married Mary Ann Corliss on 31 March 1850 in Smyrna, Aroostook County, Maine. Joel was born on 30 September 1823 in Phillips, Franklin County, ME. He died on 7 May 1888 in Linneus, Aroostook, Maine. Mary Ann was born about 1832 and died before 1860. It is possible that she died giving birth to daughter Lydia, who also died before 1860.

Joel and Mary Ann Corliss had the following children:

1. Willard, born 25 April 1851, Linneus, Aroostook County, ME
2. Herbert Orville, born 14 April 1853, Linneus, Aroostook County, ME
3. Laura Edna, born 4 March 1855, Linneus, Aroostook County, ME
4. Lydia Adeline, born 8 March 1858, Linneus, Aroostook County, ME; died 8 August 1859, according to a record on FamilySearch, but she isn’t found in the 1860 mortality schedule or regular census. Family information is that she died young.

Sometime before the 1860 census, Joel married (2) Mary Ann Stewart. She is the lady of the house in the 1860 census, stepmother to Willard, Herbert and Laura, although Laura is enumerated as L.” and as a boy.

A number of years ago, a descendant of Joel and Mary Ann contacted me and shared her family information, which was entered into a family Bible. Sadly, I did not ask for and don’t have copies of the pages from that Bible.

Joel and Mary Ann Stewart had the following children:

1. Walter, born 6 January 1861, Linneus, Aroostook County, ME; not found after 1880.
2. Martha Ann, born 26 February 1862, Linneus, Aroostook County, ME; died 24 December 1934, in Oakfield, Aroostook County, ME; married Joseph Warren Huntley.3. David Danforth, born 14 August 1864, Linneus, Aroostook County, ME
4. Lydia Adeline, aka Lillie A., 27 May 1866, Linneus, Aroostook County, ME
5. Emma E., born 31 July 1868, Linneus, Aroostook County, ME; died 20 January 1911, New Limerick, Aroostook County, ME of Bright’s Disease; married Benjamin Britton. He was born 25 July 1835, Canada and died on 23 January 1919, New Limerick, Aroostook County, ME.
6. Rosa, born 10 July 1872, Linneus, Aroostook County, ME

With a lack of vital records for northern Maine, most of these children also fell off the genealogical radar screen. If you are related to any of these people, please leave a comment. Thanks!