Tag Archives: Saturday Night Genealogy Fun

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun: What Was Your Best Genealogy Research Achievement This Past Month?

It’s time once again for Saturday Night Genealogy Fun. 🙂 Randy Seaver has a new challenge for us all:

1)  What was your best genealogy research achievement this past month?  Tell us about it – what you achieved, and how does it affect your 2024 goals?

My best genealogy research achievement this past month was due to FamilySearch’s full-text search!

It doesn’t tie in to any of my 2024 genealogy goals since it involves my husband’s family tree and not mine. I’ve also written a series of posts about the unfolding discoveries based on my first discovery in Baltimore County, Maryland in 1762.

Caspar Starr is my husband’s 5X great grandfather. Casper, also recorded as Gaspar, Gasper, Casper and even Jasper Starr/Star, was born c1735 and settled in Rowan County, North Carolina.

“Everyone” (and we know how that goes) claims (with no proof) that all of Caspar’s children, born c1764-c1782, were born in Rowan County, North Carolina, but I really doubted that because I can’t find any evidence of him being there until he bought land in 1785.

I tried out variations of his name in FamilySearch’s full-text search and this popped up:

While the Star/Starr surname isn’t particularly rare in the mid-1700s, CASPAR Starr is unique and I only know of my husband’s ancestor.

In North Carolina and, later as descendants continued their westward migration, the Starr family had a definite FAN club, including the Douthits who came from Maryland and also the Jarvis family who also reportedly originated in Frederick County.

The image above shows Casper Starr as the creditor owed the most money from the estate of Martin Treish, deceased in Baltimore County, Maryland c1762, found in estate papers. I’d never come across the Treish surname at all.

That led to an extended visit to my local FamilySearch center because Maryland’s land records are all locked.

From this one clue, I was able to pick up Caspar Starr’s trail from Frederick County into Baltimore County, down to Virginia at the start of the Revolutionary War and then his continued migration into North Carolina at the war’s end!

This was accomplished by following the Treisch FAN club, which proved the Starr family followed the migratory path of Martin Treish’s son, Jacob.

I also believe I might be the very first person who has cracked the brick wall as to the maiden name of Caspar’s wife, Catherine. Circumstantial evidence led to my theory and two DNA matches to my husband seems to have proved it as I know of no other possible connections with any of my husband’s other ancestors!

You’ll have to wait (a while!) to learn more about my discoveries pertaining to the Starr family.

Randy – this was an excellent challenge! Thank you.

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun: Are You Experimenting with Artificial Intelligence for Genealogy?

It’s mid-April and spring has truly sprung here in Tucson. The cold, wet weather that California sent us has been replaced with sunny, warm days and the arrival of our afternoon windy season. It was a perfect day for sprucing up the back patio and setting up the outdoor furniture for the season.

It’s also the weekend so it’s time for Saturday Night Genealogy Fun with Randy Seaver on Genea-Musings.

This week’s theme is all about the hot topic of the moment:

1)  Are you experimenting with Artificial Intelligence (AI) for genealogy and family history?  What have you learned so far?  What have you done to date?  What GPTs have you used?  What results have you had – good or bad?

This is going to be a very short post for me! I’ve listened to 3 or 4 webinars on AI and Genealogy and read quite a few blog posts about it, but haven’t been interested enough to try it out for myself.

I guess I’m really dating myself here, but I prefer to think and do all the writing using my own brain, not AI.

I’m also not particularly interested in creating images with AI either.

Unfortunately, I see AI as being the direct cause of the dumbing down of the human race as people forego developing their own critical thinking skills.

I’ll continue to watch webinars and read about AI, but doubt I’ll implement it for much of my own use.

Randy, thank for you an interesting challenge this week!

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun: When Has Someone Helped You Find a Record or Solve a Mystery?

I’m not sure how the weekend keeps arriving so quickly, but here it is time once again for Saturday Night Genealogy Fun with Randy Seaver.

Here is this week’s challenge:

1)  We all need, and usually enjoy, a little help from our genealogy friends.  This week’s challenge is to share a time when a genea-friend helped you find a record, or even solve a mystery.  It could be a recent help, or something from long ago.

I didn’t have to think very long about this challenge. Yes, like Randy, I’ve had a number of genea-friends and even some distant cousins who have helped me find a record, or two, or three. . .

However, I think of one friend often, who died almost seven years ago. I can’t believe it’s been that long. Ruth Maness worked at the (then) Family History Library for many years in the Scandinavian department.

She “adopted” me about 2010, guided and taught me, step by step, how to navigate the Danish and Swedish records that enabled me to break through my brick wall – 3X great grandfather Johannes Jensen – given up for adoption right after his birth in the King’s Hospital for Unwed Mothers in Copenhagen, Denmark.

We became friends and I looked forward to seeing her every time I got to the Family History Library.

My earliest blog posts in 2014 were all about how that 30+ year brick wall was cracked open. The story of the Danish military records was possible only with Ruth’s help as I sat in the Family History Library. Step by step, she sent me off to collect various microfilms of Danish military records, told me what I was looking for and helped me read some of the more illegible pages.

Without those military records, I would never have learned the names of Johannes Jensen’s parents, as the “father not known” notation in his military file was the clue that led us to the Unwed Mother’s Hospital.

I was looking forward to visiting with Ruth in July 2017 as we were vacationing in Utah that summer and I planned to spend a couple of days in the library. Our visit never happened as Ruth passed away in June, about three weeks before we were to have our visit.

Ruth was truly one of a kind in the genealogy world and she is missed by many.

Thanks, Randy, for this week’s challenge.