Thursday, February 26, 2009

Can you hear me now?

Dave Davis was driving over Berthoud Pass in Colorado with his father-in-law, Robert Johns, who was in the passenger seat. They came up to a slow moving vehicle and "tooted" their horn to have him move over. The slow driver didn't move, so Robert told Dave to pull up behind the vehicle. He then got out through the passenger door, climbed onto the fender of the slow moving vehicle and moved along the running board to the driver's door. He asked the driver of the slow moving vehicle; "Didn't you hear us back there?"

I bet after that the driver moved out of the way whenever someone wanted to get by.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Who is that woman?

This photo is from a tintype found in Margretta (Blay) Johns' photo album. There was no identifying information. I believe this is Alexander Blay and his wife Cynthia Derrick. Below is an enlarged copy of the woman's face.

The following photo is an enlargement of the woman's face from a group shot I posted earlier. I believe this elderly woman is James Blay's mother, Cynthia (Derrick) Blay. I calculated (based on the apparent ages of the two young girls in the group) that the photo was taken about 1909 or 1910. Cynthia died in October of 1910. She's living with her son, James Blay, in Denver, Colorado and is listed as his mother in the 1910 census (taken 18 and 19 Apr 1910). It seems reasonable that this is Cynthia pictured at the family gathering.

Now compare the faces of the two women. Is it just me or do they look similar? The deep set eyes, general shape of the face, hair style, etc. I really think they are the same woman, just decades apart. If they are the same woman, then the man with her in the tintype is, most likely, Alexander. Plus it makes sense that Margretta would have a photo of her grandparents in her photo album. What do you think?

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Thank you for the honor...

Teri at The Ties That Bind nominated my humble little blog for the Kreativ Blogger Award. Thank you Teri, and thanks for your kind words. I hope everyone will take a moment to visit Teri's wonderful blog at

Now comes the job of nominating 7 blogs for the awards. I think all the ones I read have already received the award. I'm off to do some blog hunting.

I nominate the following blogs:

A light that shines again -

Apple's Tree -

Before My Time -

Colorado Reflections -

Desktop Genealogist Unplugged -

Texas? Why Texas????

My great-great grandfather, Horace Y. Fitch, was born in New York and died in Stillwater, Payne county, Oklahoma. Based on census records, he lived in New York, California, Kansas and Oklahoma. My mother found something surprising the other obituary for Horace in a Dallas, Texas newspaper. Why Texas? To our knowledge he never lived in Texas, and none of his children lived in Texas. I searched Ancestry's Dallas City Directories (1889 to 1894) Fitch. The obituary is printed beneath the title "Special to the news." It remains a mystery. Why would his death be newsworthy in Dallas? Any ideas?

Friday, February 20, 2009

Enjoying a sunny day...

We had a wonderful break from the snow and decided to go for a drive. We ended up at Mark Twain's cabin. It's a "replica" of his cabin, but has the original chimney and fireplace. Maybe the wild flowers growing near by mean that spring isn't far off.

From there we stopped for a wonderful lunch at Talulah's. After lunch we went to the Veteran's Military Museum and received a warm welcome and tour. Our excersion ended with a stop at Cover's Apple Ranch to pick up an apple pie (yum!). All-in-all...a wonderful time.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

What a find...

On a research trip to Machias, ME, we visited the Machias Historical Society. When we told the volunteer our ancestor's name, she said she had something we might be interested to see. She took us to a room upstairs and showed us a trunk. T here's a plate on top identifying it as belonging to William Albee (our ancestor). The docent said this trunk came on the ship with him.

Here's a close-up of the plate

I found his obituary recently in the Eastern Argus Newspaper (ME), 12 Jul 1836 issue - pg. 1, col. 6. The obit talks about him being a surgeon.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Flying high...

Talk about a wild ride! How would you like a ride on this swing?

Robert William Johns (on the right in the picture below) built this swing on his homestead in Routt county, Colorado. He named his homestead "Kozy Korner Ranch."

Thursday, February 12, 2009

He went that way...

In honor of Lincoln's birthday I share a story about my husband's 2nd great-granduncle, Col. Pren Metham. He was at Ford's Theater when President Lincoln was shot. Several newspaper articles tell the story of Col. Metham giving chase. Performers back stage indicated the direction Booth took, and Col. Metham might have caught him...except that the path that had been indicated took him into the ladies' lounge. Oops! I hate it when that happens.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

They didn't make it easy...

This is a good reminder that we need to be very creative when looking for our ancestors - the census takers didn't make it easy. I couldn't find my great-great grandfather, John Johns, in Dakota county, NE in the 1870 census. I tried his wife, Cynthia Johns and his children James and Josephine Johns - nothing. I tried a search for all the men with a first name of John living in Dakota county, NE - 142 possibles. I finally did a search for all the men with first name of John, who were born in Ohio in 1842 (plus or minus 2 years). Two possibles - John Martin and John Johnson. Immediately I clicked John Johnson and up pops him with a wife Synthia and children James and Josephine. Yeah! Be just might get lucky.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Snow Day...

We woke up this morning to snow. Unfortunately we can't enjoy it because we're still battling colds :-( This is taken looking out our front door.

Friday, February 06, 2009

"the kindest of women..."

Ella (Fitch) Myers was the mother of 3 small children when she passed away. While making their breakfast her dress caught fire, and she was badly burned. She never recovered. Her obituary testifies to the sweet, loving person she was and how much she would be missed. I love the quote from her obituary..."sympathy is no balm to their wounded hearts."

Will the real Cornelia please stand up...

We have received pictures from 2 different sources. Each sender contends the picture they sent was of Cornelia Reynolds (who married Horace Fitch). I don't think they look like the same person or even appear to be from the same era. I'm no expert, but the hair style and manner of dress in the second photo appear to be from an earlier time period. Also, I don't think women changed their hair style so drastically back then. What do you think?

Thursday, February 05, 2009's a wonderful thing!

I don't know if I've mentioned it...but I love technology. I love how I can use it for the benefit of my family history. Case in restoration. Repairing and restoring old photos has never been so easy or fun. This photo took me a couple of hours to fix. Doesn't Uncle Joe look better? Like I is a wonderful thing. Now all I need is more RAM, a bigger hard driver, a more powerful processor, two 24" monitors, Adobe CS4 and unlimited $$ for all this :-)

Monday, February 02, 2009

Don't go near the water...

Poor Minnie...she didn't have much luck with husbands. She divorced her first husband, her second died in the influenza epdemic of 1918 and her third husband had a fatal heart attack at 30.

She probably thought she was safe when she married a man 26 years younger...but was not to be.