Monday, February 28, 2011

Last Veteran of WWI Dies in W. Va. at Age 110


Last veteran of WWI dies in W. Va. at age 110: "MORGANTOWN, W.Va. -- Frank Buckles was repeatedly rejected by military recruiters and got into uniform at 16 after lying about his age. He would later become the last surviving U.S. veteran of World War I."
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Joining the Canadian Royal Air Corps.


09-29-1940    Trenton Evening Times 

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Saturday, February 26, 2011

The Brick Wall Crumbles: Ancestors of Pierre Robillard

With the wonderful assistance of Muriel and the American-Canadian Genealogical Society, I was finally able to locate the marriage record of Pierre Robillard, identify his parents, and establish his ancestry.

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Friday, February 25, 2011

The American-Canadian Genealogical Society

The American-Canadian Genealogical Society  was founded in Manchester, New Hampshire in 1973.
 Specializing in French-Canadian, Franco-American, and Acadian genealogy, the society is there to serve your genealogical research needs.
Membership benefits:

•Free access to one of the largest French-Canadian Research Libraries in the United States
•Individual assistance and training in utilizing the facilities of their Research Library

•Discounted use Research Department facilities
•Free publication of three single event queries in the American-Canadian Genealogist
•Free participation in Spring Workshops
•Free subscription to the Society's journal, American-Canadian Genealogist
•Visit their message board to introduce yourself and post queries about those elusive ancestors.

For more information visit:
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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

1687 Marriage Record of Jan du Plouvy & Weyntie Van Sanen / Van Sandy

As transcribed in the Pennsylvania Genealogical Magazine (vol 37, pg  258):

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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Tombstone Tuesday: Mary Jane (Casteel) Tunningley (1834-1881)

Mary Jane (Casteel) Tunningley
born c. 1834 TN
daughter of James M. & Susan (Underwood) Casteel
married Robert Tunningley in Macoupin Co, IL

 Died 10 April 1881 
Buried in Charity Cemetery
Macoupin Co. IL
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Monday, February 21, 2011

The 22nd Annual Bataan Memorial Death March

Join thousands of others on March 27th  in participating in the 22nd Annual Bataan Memorial Death March at White Sands Missile Range.

The Memorial March commemorates the Bataan Death March that occurred in the Philippines on 12 April 1942 and pays tribute to veteran survivors of this ordeal. The Memorial March takes participants through 26.2 miles of rugged desert terrain where elevation varies from 4,100 to 5,300 feet. In 2010, about 5,400 marchers and runners from the United States and allied countries came to White Sands Missile Range to participate in the United States' largest memorial road march competition.

For more information visit:
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Saturday, February 19, 2011

The Naturalization of Marie (Kollain) Becker

Within just a few days of sending my request to the National Archives I recieved copies of Marie's naturalization documents  (click on images to enlarge) :

Declaration of Intention  
9 Feb 1924

Petition For Citizenship  
(27 Sept 1927)
Affidavits, Oath of Allegiance, &
Citizenship Granted
2 Oct 1929
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Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Locating the Naturalization Records for Frank & Marie (Kollain) Becker

First, I was able to locate this reference index card for both Frank Becker and his wife Marie (Kollain) Becker on

Index to Petitions for Naturalization filed in New York City

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Marie is the sister of our G-Grandfather, Ignatz Kollain, and is the focus at this point.
The next step:
Order a copy of her Naturalization records using NARA's
Online Ordering Service
Then, much to my amazement, I received the following email message in under 24hrs from when I submitted the request: 
Dear Researcher,
We were able to locate and reproduce the records that you requested.  Your order was shipped on 02/15/11 4:09:26 PM.
We appreciate your business and encourage you to use our online ordering service to submit any future reproduction requests.
National Archives and Records Administration,
NARA's Northeast Region (New York City) - Reg. Archives
201 Varick Street, 12th Floor
New York, NY  10014

It doesn't get any easier than that!
Now - fingers crossed that Maria was specific when citing her place of birth!
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Monday, February 14, 2011

Spread the Love with Vintage Valentines


 At West Virginia University Libraries
you can send a Vintage Valentine greeting via email.

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Wishing you a Happy St. Valentine's Day!
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Sunday, February 13, 2011

Capt Martin J. Wetzel of Jamesburg, NJ (1913-1941)

Martin Joseph Wetzel  
 Born: 1913  New York
Son of Martin Wetzel & Anna Kollain
Pilot, U.S. Army Air Forces
Royal Air Force Ferry Command

Died: 14-Aug-41

Trenton Evening Times
19 August 1941

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Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The 1693 Marriage Record of Edmund du Castel & Christian Boom (Bom)

The Pennsylvania Genealogical Magazine, Volumes 1-39, 1650-1900s
Volume XXXVII, The Marriage Register of Pennsylvania, 1683-1696, Page 268
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Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Remembering Charles Dickens

"that my name be inscribed in plain English letters on my tomb. I rest my claims to the remembrance of my country upon my published works..."

A small stone with a simple inscription, as dictated in his will, marks the grave of Charles Dickens, famous English novelist, in Poets' Corner in Westminster Abbey. 

  Born in Portsmouth, England, on February 7, 1812, Charles was the second of eight children of John Dickens and Elizabeth (Barrow). He spent most of his childhood in London. In 1824 his father was arrested for debt and young Charles had to work in a shoe-polish factory until he could resume his education. Later he became a legal clerk and then a reporter in the House of Commons. He married Catherine Hogarth in 1836, and they had ten children before separating in 1858. He started writing short stories at the age of 24 and continued to write until his death. His books brought attention to the poverty and social injustices of the working classes and poor people in hopes of bringing about social change.

Two prayers by Charles Dickens:
We humbly beseech thee O Father that we may be honest and true in all our dealings, and gentle and merciful to the faults of others, remembering of how much gentleness and mercy we stand in need ourselves; That we may earnestly try to live in thy true faith, honour and love, and in charity and goodwill with all our fellow creatures; That we may worship thee in every beautiful and wonderful thing thou hast made, and sympathize with the whole world of thy glorious creation. Amen.

Hear our supplications on behalf of the poor, the sick, the destitute, and guilty, and for thy blessing on the diffusion of increased happiness, knowledge, and comfort among the great mass of mankind; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
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Monday, February 7, 2011

Captain Edmund Du Castell is Commissioned Commander


Abstracts of New Jersey Commissions
 (click image to enlarge)

Volume VI, Abstracts of New Jersey Commissions, Page 287
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Saturday, February 5, 2011

Friday, February 4, 2011

The National Archives Know Your Records Program


The National Archives Building in Washington, DC (Archives I), houses textual and microfilm records relating to:
  • Genealogy
  • American Indians
  • The District of Columbia
  • Federal courts from the District of Columbia
  • Congress
  • Maritime matters
  • Pre-World War I Army
  • Pre-World War II Navy 

 With archivists ready to assist you, the following free events offered in February are geared for all levels of family historians as part of the

(click on schedule to enlarge)
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Thursday, February 3, 2011

'Teacher Drops Dead' - Miss Pearl Casteel of Ohio

Although not related to our Casteel line, this newspaper article definitely caught my eye:

The Van Wert Daily Bulletin (Ohio)
6 December 1912 

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Wednesday, February 2, 2011