AWOL from my Blog Site, but Still Busy with Genealogy

I’ve been gone from here too long, but I’ve been busy.

In May 2014, I joined an on-line ProGen study group. Each month we cover one or two chapters of the book Professional Genealogy.[1] Homework takes from 10-100 hours each month, learning to write research plans, citations, etc. Most people probably don’t spend 100 hours on their homework, but some assignments took that much time with my extensive genealogy library to inventory and to write a research plan summarizing two years of research on the father of Dovie Alpine Piearcy, my father’s grandmother. ProGen 23 is finished in Dec 2015.

In January 2015, I attended two workshops in Salt Lake City-one week with a National Genealogical Society research group at the FamilyHistory Library, then another week at a workshop held by the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy on Researching U. S. Records with more time at the library. On the last day there, I was able to complete my research list for my own records as well as records for several Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) prospective members. While the DAR records for others are complete, I still have all my records in a stack.

In 2013, I joined the DAR with Jacob Eoff as my patriot and in 2014 added Peter Eoff, Isaac Eoff, James Knox, and Samuel Musgrove as patriots. We have a very small DAR chapter. I started helping the registrar with prospective members, with the plan for me to become registrar in maybe 2017. When our registrar resigned early, I was appointed registrar in October 2014, with 31 prospective members pending. I’ve worked with seven new members to complete their applications; two more applications are pending review, and I’m continuing work on the applications for twenty-four prospective members.

In early 2015, Richard McMurtry retired from genealogy leaving me as a co-administrator of the Frazier Todd research group, using autosomal and Y-DNA to identify the father of Walker Todd, born 1822. Reviewing Richard’s years of research has been a humbling experience, as we develop a project plan for the next phase of research. In other DNA research, several family members agreed to give DNA samples to help in the search for the father of Dovie Alpine Piearcy.

In March 2015, I attended a DNA workshop in Dallas presented by the Forensic Genealogy Institute on Advanced Genetic Genealogy “Using Autosomal DNA for Unknown Parentage Cases.” The Todd and the Piearcy research projects will benefit from the knowledge gained during that workshop.

In the meantime, I still have records from the research in Salt Lake City, plus six weeks of research trips to Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri and Texas from as far back as 2013, to be entered into RootsMagic genealogy software, after I get that software installed. Those records need to be scanned and organized before more research trips.

Three more genealogy trips are planned this year-the Todd reunion in June; a week-long workshop in Pittsburgh on Advanced Research Methodology, taught by Thomas Jones, PhD; and in November, a 3 day workshop by FTDNA.

Hopefully 2016 will be a less hectic year, with ProGen finished, the backlog of DAR prospective members worked down, and enough workshops to give me a good foundation in genealogy research. Then I can really get started on my genealogy research. In the meantime, I’ll post a few blogs on my progress.

[1] Elizabeth Shown Mills, editor, Professional Genealogy: A Manual for Researchers, Writers, Editors, Lecturers and Librarians (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 2001).

 

Genealogy Education Plan

With traveling and focusing on training to improve my genealogy research and writing skills, I haven’t posted on the blog for awhile.

In April, I finished the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) Genealogy Education Programs (GEP I, II and III). The on-line courses covered DAR applications, plus information useful for other genealogical research. Topics in the twenty-seven lessons included vital records, evaluation of evidence, federal, state, and local records, finding alternative sources, using indirect evidence, creating an analysis, and resolving complex service problems. The last two lessons required submitting an written analysis. I’m now a DAR Genealogy Consultant and feel better prepared to research Revolutionary War patriots for myself and others in our local chapter.

The National Genealogical Society Family History Conference was held in Richmond, Virginia, 7-10 May 2014. I flew in for pre-conference workshops on the probate process and on writing. From Wednesday through Saturday, attendees could choose from dozens of lectures from 8:30 AM to 8:30 PM. When not attending lectures, I was in the Library of Virginia pulling records on Holders and Piggs from Pittsylvania County, perhaps the native home of my Virginia-borne Holder ancestors.

After a week back home, my husband and I flew to Scotland for a tour with a group from our Presbyterian church. Visits to Iona, Stirling Castle of Braveheart fame, Edinburgh, Holy Island-site of the first Viking landing, Rosslyn Chapel-featured in the Da Vinci Code, Cambridge, and several places in and around London were included. During twelve days in Scotland and England, I saw many family surnames-the tomb of Archbishop Musgrave at York Minister, very near where our possible Musgrave ancestors lived; Medcalf in northern England; Knox, Craig, McIntyre and other familiar surnames in Scotland; Archbishop Davidson in southern England and many more. I wish I had ancestors traced back across the pond-maybe a later trip. A wonderful experience, with great scenery and traveling companions.  In the meantime, 500 pictures are awaiting processing.

A week after the overseas trip, I headed to Birmingham, Alabama, for the week-long Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research at Samford University. I was one of twenty five people taking the Writing and Publishing Course taught by Thomas Jones, PhD, one of the most highly regarded genealogy authors and editors in the field and editor of the National Genealogical Society Quarterly (NGSQ). In addition to pre-work, homework was assigned most nights. On Monday night, after attending an optional evening lecture, I finished my homework at midnight. No more evening lectures for me. During our lunch breaks and long afternoon break, I was in the library researching Alabama ancestors, including Isaac Oaks, a Revolutionary War soldier who fought in Virginia, moved to Georgia, then onto Alabama where he is buried. If I can document this lineage, Isaac Oaks will be my first DAR patriot in our Holder line. A highlight of this trip was meeting a Vickers cousin; we connected through my blog post on Daisy McIntire Vickers.

A genealogy education goal is to participate in a study group based on Professional Genealogy: A Manual for Researchers, Writers, Editors, Lecturers and Librarians, edited by Elizabeth Shown Mills, the previous editor of NGSQ. The twenty nine chapters of ProGen, as it is called, cover Ethical Standards, Problem Analysis and Research Plans, Evidence Analysis and more. ProGen study groups work together on-line over about eighteen months covering the 600+ page book. Successful completion of ProGen is sometimes a precursor of genealogy certification. After Richmond, I applied for an upcoming ProGen class. I hoped for a fall class, but knew some people where waitlisted up to a year. While in Scotland, the ProGen coordinator sent me an email about an open spot for a study group starting June 1st. So in the week between the Scotland/England trip and IGHR, I finished my IGHR pre-work and did the reading for my first ProGen study group session held that same week.

Over the next eighteen months, my time will be balanced between genealogy research and training, focusing on the ProGen study group while still allowing time for an on-line NGSQ study group, which reviews one article from that periodical each month. For more details on NGSQ study groups, see Michele Simmons Lewis’s excellent description on her Ancestoring blog.  I’ve followed Michele’s blog and was especially pleased to meet her in the IGHR writing class.

With any luck, I’ll get back on track with weekly blogs, probably not posting 52 ancestors this year, but posting a few more as my research allows.

 Copyright © 2014 Andrea Musgrove Perisho