Genealogy Year in Review 2011

This past year wasn't exciting as the year before, though I made a few minor breakthroughs, and there were a few more changes in my tree.

I've now been blogging here over two years, and it's definitely helped me get things in order in my family tree, and in my search for more.

My new filing system, started last year, has helped me greatly in my search, and in keeping track of what I have. I also got a new printer/scanner from my mother-in-law, which has meant being able to re-print my entire tree (though it will need updating again soon).

Changes in the family
We lost a few members of the extended family this year. One great-aunt that I knew fairly well growing up, and another who I might have met once or twice, but mostly know by name. This does mean that on both sides of the family, only one family member from that generation is still around any more on three sides of my family tree. On my dad's side, it's his maternal aunt, and on my mom's, it's my grandmother. The only one that still has a number of members is my paternal grandfather's. Three of his four sisters are still around.

We also gained a few new members this year, both in the close family as well as the extended family. One of my second cousins married this year (possibly more than one, I'm not entirely sure at the moment), and my sister and another second cousin had children. My nephew, who was born December the 11th, and our cousin's daughter, who was born December 29th. Again, there might be more there, but those are the two I'm certain of.

Brick Wall Progress
Hillingers: While I have not gotten any further back on this side of the family, I have confirmed that Mindel Seneft (nee Hilinger) died in London, or is at least buried there. I found a grave marker with the name "Minnie Seneft" with an inscription by one of her daughters on it, the same name as one of the two I have listed. So while I'm not 100% sure it's her, I am fairly certain it is.

I also had one picture confirmed (as the opposite of the great-great grandfathers I suspected), and another as a great-great aunt I'd guessed at.

Hansen (Sealand branch): I've confirmed Rasmus's parents' names, as I've found him in at least three Census lists, including one with both his parents and his first wife, so I know that I've got the right ones now.

On Oline's mother's side, I haven't gotten much more, but I'm working on what I do have so that I can write a book about her. I've been organizing the notes and letters I do have, and trying to learn what I do have so that I know what I still need.

Park/Curran: I've made no progress on this branch this year, but I think once I've finished Oline's story, this will be my next project, as May's (my great-grandmother) family has always held a fascination for me, ever since my grandfather died. They're the reason I started doing all this, and I hope, in time, to get much further back, and learn which of those lines, if any, hailed from Scotland.

The Welsh Lines: Still sorting through these. I've made no big progress aside from finding my Canadian relations in the early 1900s censuses. I'd love particularly to make progress on my Jones line, though at the moment, that's highly unlikely to happen any time soon.

Software Update:
After playing with The Master Genealogist, I'm going to shelve it for the moment. It seems too old-fashioned and clunky. I've stopped playing with Legacy, though I might go back to it as well. At the moment, Family Tree Maker has my most complete family tree, but I'm slowly working on creating a sourced tree in Roots Magic 5, their latest build which was released this year.

Roots Magic seems to work quite well as a replacement for Family Tree Maker, as does Legacy, but Roots Magic seems to appeal to me better. I've two branches mostly sourced in it at the moment (though I need to go back and find the Census information on the Welsh lines mentioned above), and I'm currently working on one half of a third—the Norwegian branch, which is one of the two biggest lines in my tree.

Family Tree Builder also released a new version this year—mostly website-based, but there are some interesting things in the new release that might make it worth putting my info online, if private.

Posts here at Oh, Spusch:
I finished doing my Surname Saturday posts this year, though I think at some point, I will revisit them.

I also did a series I called Where We're From, which focused on all the locations my direct ancestors lived, were born, or died over the centuries.

Both helped me understand a lot more what I knew and what I needed to know, and I'm hoping to find more of that sort of thing to post in the coming year.

The Examiner
This year, I also began posting as the Seattle Genealogy Examiner. This has meant (mostly irregular) posting of articles on Genealogy, both in Seattle and in general, and going to the Seattle Public Library and the Seattle Genealogical Society to learn more about both.

In the coming year, I hope to do much more, and I hope you will all check out my articles.

Resolutions for the coming year:
* To get in contact with one or more of my grandfather's sisters, and ask them what they remember about their parents, and anything they might remember about their great-grandparents (though that won't likely be much).

* Finish adding all my sources to the family tree in Roots Magic. And possibly make a file to store those things that have not yet been added.

* Find at least one more piece of information on each of my four branches.

* Do at least twice-monthly articles here at Oh, Spusch.

* Post at least two Examiner articles a week. Try to write at least three.

* Send out an Email at least once every three months to the family to get more information.

* Keep Facebook family groups updated—post at least once a week.

And to everyone reading, have a fabulous new year, and good luck in your own Genealogical pursuits.

About this blog

This blog is maintained by two sisters who have had a life long interest in geneology.
Mika writes here mostly about our family (Hansen, Hillinger, Bordewick, Park, etc), and her search for more information.
Shannon mostly uses this space as a place to make the many stories written about and by her husband's family (Holly, Walker, Walpole, etc) available to the rest of the family, present and future.

Our blog is named Oh Spusch! mostly because Shannon is bad at naming things. The first post I put up includes a story about the time Walker's great grandfather took his whole family out to see a play and the littlest kept saying "Oh! Spusch!" No one ever figured out what she meant by that.