My flight was a bit delayed due to blizzard conditions in Boston and I missed my connection in Dallas, but someone was looking out for me as I was able to get the very last seat on the next flight to Salt Lake (17 minutes after I arrived at the gate). It did take me 45 minutes to find the gate because in travelling from Gate A to C (a two minute journey) I took the tram in the wrong direction and of course we ran into mechanical difficulty…. The red arrows below depict my very long tram ride!
The last time I visited Salt Lake, I arrived and departed in the dark. The drive in from the airport was breathtaking!
I checked in to Hotel Monaco, A Kimpton Hotel (as the conference hotel was booked). I LOVE Kimpton Hotels. The staff is friendly and accommodating, bed comfy and the room always spotless: http://www.monaco-saltlakecity.com – turns out I am diagonally across the street from the conference center and a few blocks from the Family History Library.
I missed the Wednesday sessions, since it was 4:00 by the time I was settled, so I registered and then headed over to the library.
I focused on probate and land deeds in Oneida County, hoping to get a break on my 3rd g-grandfather George Perry (abt 1828-28 Jan 1862). George was my paternal g-grandmother Georgianna (Hughes/Clough) Hall’s grandfather. He likely came from Wales, married Ann Jones daughter of Catherine Owen and Robert Jones with whom he had four children. His son William drafted his own obituary in which he writes:
“His grandfather and grandmother the late Mr. and Mrs. Robert Jones, emigrated to this country from North Wales in 1837. They settled and resided on Floyd Hill, or Camroden. Mr. Perry had two sisters, Delia Spoor of Galeton Pa., and Kate [Kitty] Shipman of Lynn Mass., and one brother, George Perry of Galeton. They are all dead.
Father Ran Milk Route – George Perry lived on the Lynch farm and conducted a milk route from 1855 to 1862, the time of his death Mrs. Perry then left the farm and purchased the house at 507 E. Dominick St., and with her four children lived there until 1886, when she moved to Frankfort, where she died. She was twice married, her second husband being James Evans, who died in Frankfort In 1902.”
I was able to find a land deed, about two years after George’s death in which a number of people sell a tract of land in Factory Village, on Dominick Street to Ann Parry for $1.00. In another deed, Ann is listed as Ann Evans, formerly Ann Parry. So while I haven’t broken through any brick walls, I have some more FAN names to look at and some evidence that George was perhaps born Parry vs. Perry.
FHL film 371857 book 334 pg 136 – 19 Nov 1863
Back at the hotel, I had a glass of wine and yummy potato chips smothered with blue cheese at the nightly complimentary “happy hour”, I ordered the ahi tuna appetizer and pear salad from room service (both fabulous) and called it a night!
Opening session was wonderful. I believe you will be able to watch the session (and others) soon at: https://rootstech.org/about/videos/
Dennis Brimhall, the CEO of FamilySearch.org spoke of their need for indexers. They intend digitize 70 million records, hopefully in the next 30 years, instead of the 300 hundred years it will take at the rate things are currently being done! Their latest indexing initiative is to make millions of obituary images searchable. On occasion I index, but not as often as I should, I vow to do better. Click here to learn how you can help: https://familysearch.org/indexing/
I especially enjoyed The Pioneer Woman (http://thepioneerwoman.com/), Ree Drummond, blogger and author; she too includes pets in her family tree!
She began blogging to capture and preserve her families story – something we should all be doing! You don’t have to blog online, but jot down some memories for your grandchildren and their grandchildren so they can know more of you than simply your birth and death date.
My first session was with Tom Jones. If you are at a conference and Tom is speaking, see him. He is a wonderful speaker and an amazing researcher. His session was entitled “Can a Research Problem be Solved Solely Online?”. He presented a complex research problem and step by step demonstrated how he solved the mystery. If you haven’t seen Tom present, view his free course “Inferential Genealogy”, on FamilySearch: http://https://familysearch.org/learningcenter/lesson/inferential-genealogy/251
One thing I did learn was to look for your ancestor’s family in the census prior to their birth. Say your ancestor was born in 1873 in Malden, Massachusetts. You find someone who might be the right person in North Andover, Massachusetts in the 1880 census. Go look for those parents in Malden in 1870, check dad’s occupation – does it match? How about the names of siblings, do they match? If yes, you have essentially “proven” that the North Andover family is yours.
Next I headed to two DNA sessions one with Tom Janzen and the other with Cece Moore. Both were amazing and made me realize that I have quite a bit to learn about DNA. I discovered a few things. My mom is 50% Acadian and we have an unusual number of close Acadian matches. Because there were so many intermarriages within that group, the results are likely off, a predicted 3rd cousin may be a 5th, 6th or 7th cousin.
I am more interested in using DNA on my dad’s side (since reconstructing my Acadian family was fairly easy) to break through a few brick walls. Since dad is deceased, they suggest that I have any/all relatives on his side tested, even my siblings, since each of us have inherited different DNA from the paternal line.
As far as I know, there are no adoptions in my family. But if you are adopted, there are “Adoption Angels” (http://http://dnaadoption.com/AboutUs.aspx) who will assist in your quest to locate your birth parents. They suggest that you test at all 3 companies – 23andme, Ancestry.com and FTDNA. If you get a true second cousin match, they will solve your case (Cece did mention times when they could solve your case without DNA; your non-identifying adoption information can point to a specific set of parents, and depending on your state of birth, you may be able to obtain a copy of your original birth certificate) .
I next headed to the Expo Hall to explore. First stop was Mocavo. I used their free computers and immediately found a document for my 5th g-grandparents Brian Hall and Abiah Crossman.
Mocavo (http://http://www.mocavo.com/) is free to search, but sorting through and narrowing the results requires a Gold subscription. It’s regularly $80 a year but they are offering a $40 conference special. They supposedly launch 1,000 new databases daily and if I upload my family tree, they will alert me of new matches. Sign me up!
Another exhibitor “Butterfly Kisses” had some really great genealogy canvases using your surnames, they are going to email order information, but I guess you just give them a GEDCOM – a perfect customized gift and only $42! http://www.butterfly-kisses-dpr.com/genealogy-canvas/
I skipped the opening “dessert” social, figuring I would eat 15 brownies. Instead I stopped at the Olive Bistro (across from the conference center) and had a fabulous veggie panini.
I had big plans to head back to the library from 6-10PM but I was mentally exhausted and headed for bed (after my free chair massage and playing on Mocavo.com a bit). A choice I will likely regret later, how many chances do you get to explore the Family History Library!