Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Do you know these people?

The following people my be living descendants of Ray Nichols b abt 1925 son of Elva Russell and Ray Nichols (trying to locate):

Victoria, Zachary, Jessica, Crystal, Ashley, Garry, Larry (recently deceased), Mary (approx age 56-70), Annette and Kathy (recently deceased) Nichols all of Burton, MI

Henry and Anna Nichols of Orlando, FL

April Badour of Bay City

CJ Henning of Bay City

Anna, Isabella, Aubrey and James Kenney of Flushing

David, Little Rich, Samantha and Nicole Hackett of Lennon

Chelsea Holt of Bay City

Dorcas and Pat Boegner of Millington

Earlene Brown of Flint (approx age 74 - 95)

Garth and Sheri Brown of Millington

Joseph and Kathy Brown of Yelm, WA

These people may be descendants and Jenny or I would love to get in touch with them.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Delay in Death, Delay in Life

I apologize for the lack of posts on the Milo front. I relocated to Michigan from Portland, OR in September and am horrified to report that I have done not one ounce of research since then. Unless you count being on Main Street, and you could.

Off the top of my head we still have the following cases open:

Proof (other than DNA) that Frank RUSSELL is Milo FREEMAN

Thomas COOPER's death certificate and correct regiment information (both of these things are unavailable under mysterious conditions)

Bridget Rachel nee GILLESPIE, maybe nee BISHOP, ROGERS's place of origin

Whereabouts of Robert ROGERS b 1809, b 1840 and Rachel Bridget in 1860 (Roberts obit states he left New Brunswick at the age of 19 and even I can tell you that was 1859 and the first child of Rachel and Robert Jr was b in 1862)

Location of living BARGER (COOPER) descendants

and finally the ongoing saga of our David POSS almost for sure the son of NICHOLAS POSS for sure for sure the son of David POSS of Lewis and Jefferson, NY, Lapeer and Huron, MI, where they came from and who the heck is Betsy WALBOUGHT

That is all.

Frank Russell’s Playlist 1864 - 1869

The Russell Family History Blog Presents
Frank Russell’s Playlist 1864 - 1869

10. 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover
9. Run Baby Run
8. I Fought the Law
7. Never Going Back Again
6. You Know I’m No Good
5. We Never Change
4. It’s My Life
3. Take The Long Way Home
2. Interstate Love Song
1. You Only Live Once

Tuesday, October 6, 2009


These obituaries are Russell Genealogy Team discoveries from my April 2009 visit. Some were found at the Rochester Hills Library and some at the Library in Lansing. Mt. Avon Cemetery is referred to as the Rochester Cemetery.

John Warren Powell died at the Pontiac Asylum last Saturday night, aged 73 years. He was a native of Rochester and lived here all his life up to 16 years ago when he removed to Pontiac. He was an old soldier and pensioner and for more than 50 years was a familiar figure in and about Rochester. He had been deranged for some time and arrangements had been made for his admission to the Pontiac asylum, when death intervened. The remains were brought up to Rochester Tuesday for interment. Besides his wife he leaves a daughter by a former marriage, one brother, William of Rochester, and two sisters, Mrs. Lewis, of Pontiac, and Mrs. Tom Cooper, of Rochester. So passes another of Rochester’s early pioneers and old soldiers. He had been married five times.

Personal Notes: John W POWELL is the brother of Lydia (POWELL) WILSON which makes him the brother in law of Frank RUSSELL AKA Milo Verta RUSSELL.
John is buried at Mt. Avon and his death certificate lists his cause of death as Organic Heart Disease, Arteriosclerosis and something called Urania Nepteritis. As far as I know we only have three wives on file for him.
Wife: Almira HALL of Ontario b 1844 with which Laura and May were born with only May surviving.
Wife: Hattie b 1860-something in MI
Wife: Sarah A VAN BRACKLEY b 1840 in MI

Jerry R. Wilson, 84, of 2804 Oldsmobile Avenue. LaSalle park died at St. Joseph Mercy hospital Wednesday after a three years illness and five days in the hospital. He was born at Rochester, Feb 27, 1860, the son of Reuben and Lydia Wilson. Mr. Wilson married Minnie A. Hier Dec 24, 1886 at Ovid and came here from Carson City. He was employed as a maintenance superintendent at the Hudson Covert school and prior to that at the Pontiac Motor division. He was a resident of the city for 21 years.

Survivors include his widow: his daughters, Mrs. Asceneth Stevens of Drayton Plains, Mrs. Cleo Brownell of Detroit and Mrs. Leila Weisenberger of Pontiac; his sons, Guy of Flint, Lloyd C. of Auburn Heights, Norman D., of Pontiac, and Paul E. of Benton Harbor; his brothers, Frank Russell, of Royal Oak and Cordie Russell of Rochester, 23 grandchildren and 18 great grandchildren. Services will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday from the Sparks-Griffin chapel, and burial will take place in the Rochester cemetery.

Personal Notes: Jerry is the son of Reuben WILSON (of the WILSON/FOX family native to the area as far back as the 18-teens) and Lydia POWELL. Lydia's marriage to Frank RUSSELL AKA Milo Verta FREEMAN made Jerry WILSON (and sibling Robert) step-sons to Frank/Milo and half siblings to Cordie, Frank, Lewis and Cora May. We have been in contact with living descendants of the Wilson's, namely one very helpful Cheryl Burtch. She has provided picture of Jerry WILSON. The home Jerry lived in at his time of death (2804 Oldsmobile Ave Waterford) still stands and is/was inhabited by a WILSON as recently as 2002. There is no proof of relationship as the WILSON residents have not been approached. (Pardon me, can you tell me who your father is? And his father's father? What's your mother's maiden name? Where is your family from? Can I see some identification?) Jerry died of a heart attack at the age of 84. He outlived two brothers Lewis RUSSELL and Robert WILSON and two sisters Minerva (WILSON) and Cora May (RUSSELL) HILTON.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

If a Berber Falls in the Forest...

I know I have not updated you much on the DNA front, but there hasn’t been much to share. I belong to a group at haplozone.net that has been gathering data on us (the artist formerly known as E3b) and doing some sub-clade predictions. All you really need to know is the prediction, which is E1b1b1b2 or M183 and you should also know that the work they are doing is completely voluntary and very super expensive and full of very amazing technology related items. This new name and predicted sub-clade doesn’t change our Berber-ness, it makes us more common Berbers, if there is such a thing among a group of people born in Michigan*. Wikipedia is saying that 80% of the Maghreb** can claim this sub-clade as well, which is substantial in a culture that is pretty much gone. I wonder what Juba would think of that? Well Juba II probably wouldn’t give a shit since he could not find anything wrong with being all kissy-kissy with the Romans. Juba Sr. was pretty serious about his loyalty so he would be really mad.

I just recently finished re-reading chapters one through four of The Berbers. The very first thing they do is beat to death the topic of what it means to be a Berber (or what it means to categorize someone as a Berber or what it means to speak a Berber dialect or what it means when you identify yourself as ohmygodshutup). So the decision seems to be made that there will be no decision or that the definition of a Berber could be one who speaks a Berber language (which as they point out actually defines them as possible variations of the words Tamazight or Imazighen but whatever, they’re the experts). They only touch on the dispute that the Romans (who would have liked to oppress Berbers but were only materially successful because the Berbers suffer some kind of weird self-oppression Xtreme complacency) called us Mazices, which could possibly have at some point translated into the words Free Man. This is only the most exciting discovery (for me anyway) since the results themselves came in. Anyway as much as I would like to get into how popular a past time it was to invade the North African coast I clearly don’t have the time or resources. I’m not sure how to research someone that nobody cares about. There are a few books available aside from my favorite so I’ll let you know what I find as I find it.

Actual DNA non-discovery:

Originally I was going to tell you about the Gonzales’ from El Bierzo, Spain but
towards the end of this entry I began to check and double check my info and I realized that I missed one very important detail about them. I had to take my best paragraph out because of this oversight. I was going to tell you about these Gonzales’ and their kit number 30660/XJYA7 and how close of a match they were and how interesting that is and what it means for blah blah blah. To give you a better idea of distance and DNA within our haplogroup our Freeman matches hover around a distance of 3 at about 22 markers. Back to the important detail that I missed, the Gonzales’ have only tested 12 markers, which is no better than knowing your blood type, no better for DNA anyway. At 12 markers we now have 9 exact matches**** which sounds pretty neat but more common haplogroups (ah-hem R1b or whatever you are calling yourselves now) can have upwards of 100 of those exact matches. So at this point my opinions and the opinions of the psudo-science-mostly-genealogy community part ways. They think these 9 matches we have are totally insignificant. Well, easy for them to say when they have hundreds.

* That is going to be the name of my new quilting group, the Berbers of Michigan.

** I can’t find any other info on this statement aside from The Berbers since no one cares about Berbers except people who study DNA for family history purposes. There is pretty much no data for me to find…online.

***YSearch is a website database sponsored by (I believe) FamilyTreeDNA at which any person with their YDNA results can enter them for all the world to see (and compare).

**** Four Freemans, one Aviles, one Gonzales, one Lujan, one Lovato, one North African Test Group including 112 people from Algeria and one Magann.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Excellent resource from the Rootsweb Review

You have received your great-grandfather John MAIR's death certificate. The certificate tells you he died of "phlegmonous erysipelas." In reading your Grand-aunt Martha's diary you learn that her sister was afflicted with "ablepsy" and that your Uncle Alfred suffered from "dropsy." In the diary you also read that John MAIR worked as a "dyker" in his native Scotland. Martha's husband was a "cordwainer" and Uncle Alfred was working as a "huckster."
Genealogists frequently encounter archaic, foreign, regional, or merely unfamiliar terminology for causes of death and illnesses, as well as for our ancestors' occupations.

The following websites are among many I've used over the years to learn the meanings of terms no longer in common use or with which I wasn't familiar:
http://rmhh.co.uk/illness.html (Illnesses.)
http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~billingh/disease.htm (Diseases.)
http://www.neonatology.org/classics/old.terms.html (Terms concerning neonatology.)
http://www.antiquusmorbus.com/Index.htm (Archaic medical terms.)

Sometimes the factors involved in ancestral deaths could indicate that family members died as the result of a disaster. Disasters should be considered when multiple family members died at exactly the same time. A disaster could be an earthquake, flood, fire, shipwreck, mining accident, train wreck, etc.
http://www.cyndislist.com/disasters.htm (Disasters.)

Deaths of more than one person over a short time period (but not necessarily on the same day), especially when children are involved, might indicate an epidemic caused by the flu, typhoid, yellow fever, or any other contagious disease.
http://www.cyndislist.com/disasters.htm#Epidemics (Epidemics.)

Unfamiliar occupational terms and obsolete occupational terminology often varies from country to country or even from region to region within a country.
http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~wiashlan/occupations.html (American.)
http://www.olivetreegenealogy.com/misc/occupations.shtml (Medieval English and early New World.)
http://rmhh.co.uk/occup/index.html (United Kingdom.)
http://www.worldroots.com/~brigitte/occupat.htm (German occupations and illnesses.)

A quick review of the websites referenced here reveals that your great-grandfather died of a severe inflammation and fever, Martha's sister was blind, and Uncle Alfred had swelling or fluid retention (edema). Your great-grandfather worked as a stonemason in Scotland. Martha's husband was a shoemaker and Uncle Alfred sold small wares.