Friday, October 31, 2008

A good word for an "old" book

If you've hung around Midwestern history for very long, you've probably already read John Mack Faragher's 1986 masterpiece Sugar Creek: Life on the Illinois Prairie, which as far as I know is pretty much the gold standard in microhistory. (Message to those who haven't: please smack yourself upside the head, quit reading this drivel, and check for it on worldcat or abebooks depending on the state of your exchequer.)

That's not actually what I meant to post about -- I just recently discovered that his 1979 book Women and Men on the Overland Trail is to a considerable degree also about the Midwest and Midwesterners. I'm still reading it (because I'm cheap, it's the original edition, not the revised), but it includes a heavily documented 25-page chapter on "The Midwestern Farming Family, 1850," which is not to be missed -- especially if you have ancestors or relatives who fit that description and who neglected to leave detailed diaries and reminiscences.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Catching up with Indiana Genealogist

The June issue of Indiana Genealogist features:

* Editor Annette Harper on census mortality schedules 1850-1880, including a table of those on line for Indiana counties.

* Mary Kraeszig on the General Nathan Bedford Forrest Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy. This is the Indiana chapter of the UDC, named for a man who rose all the way through the ranks, and who before that became "one of the wealthiest men inthe South as a planter and slave trader." Although the state (obviously) did not secede, Indiana does have Confederate veterans and descendants thereof.

* "Indiana Civil War Surgeons"

* "Profiles of Indiana Congressmen 1897"

Indiana is especially diligent about publishing "regional items" from all corners of the state --20 of them this month. Many are biographies of Civil War soldiers (Daniel F. Hamman, Joseph Patterson, Isaac S. Collings, James M. Moore, Tavner Bowen, Americus Hedden, Isaac P. Hopewell, Jacob Grow, Ira Lynch, John A. McCoy, and William McCammon). Also a listing of South Bend Central High School students.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Lake County's workshop-not-to-be-missed

Lake County (the Illinois one, squeezed between Chicago and Wisconsin) is sponsoring what looks to be its 15th annual November workshop on Saturday the 8th. The speakers are Certified Genealogists Tom Jones and David McDonald. If you know them, you know this is a must-attend. If you don't, then I'm telling you. All the details including exact location, hours, and program topics, are in this PDF brochure and registration form.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Welcome new bloggers

Blogging -- easy to start, hard to keep going. Here are two new genealogy blogs (from friends) that look like keepers:

(1) Sheri Fenley's The Educated Genealogist (began in August). If you've been on the APG or Transitional Genealogists mailing list and read her thigh-slapping account of her first time at Samford, she needs no introduction. If you haven't, then just close this window right now and go to the archives. She's from California but has Kansas roots, and that's enough of an excuse for me to put her on here. In the department of learning stuff, she recently posted about a contradiction between a cemetery stone and a census -- either a certain ancestor returned from the dead, or one of these records is in error!

(2) Kathy Brady-Blake's Kathy's Genealogy Blog (began in October). Kathy's a Certified Genealogist, and for I don't know how long BCG had her portfolio up for us aspirants to read as an example. Does that take guts or what? She's from Illinois with an interest in Chicago -- as well she should, since one of her ancestors went back into the teeth of the Great Fire to make sure his soon-to-be-incinerated front door was locked!

Both Sheri and Kathy use a lot of photos, tell about their own research, and participate in tagging games and blogging carnivals -- so if you find it boring over here, they may be more your style. I'm adding them both to my Protopage home page so I can keep up. Go and do likewise.

Monday, October 27, 2008

It's not too late to be a charter member . . .

. . . of the Association of Graveyard Rabbits, a group of bloggers with a special interest in cemeteries. Already founder Terry Thornton of Mississippi has accumulated a number of associates, including Jessica Oswalt of rural Michigan, Amy Crow of central Ohio, Julie Cahill Tarr of Chicagoland and Bloomington-Normal, Illinois, Minda Powers-Douglas of the Quad Cities, Illinois and Iowa, and Chuck C. of Christian County, Illinois.

I look forward to learning from their hard-won experience (I'm thinking rain and snow and scorching sun and poison ivy) and hope that being association members will help the bloggers involved to persevere. I see that Julie has already created an interactive map of cemeteries in Bloomington-Normal.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Chicago Genealogist for Fall

The Chicago Genealogical Society's flagship publication continues a spree of featuring an under-utilized class of records, including high-school graduates of 60 years ago expressing ambitions they might not enjoy hearing about today...

"Austin High School, 'The Maroon & White' Yearbook, June Class of 1948," submitted by Jeanne Larzalere Bloom.

"John L. Marsh Grammar School, Graduation Class of February 1935," submitted by Richard L. Salik.

"Confirmation Class of March 25, 1934, Ev.Lutheran Church, Windsor Park, Chicago," submitted by Richard L. Salik.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

SCCGSQ, southwestern Illinois' voice

The third 2008 issue of the St. Clair County Genealogy Society Quarterly cements its standing as one of the meatiest local genealogy publication I've seen around the Midwest:

"Preston Women in Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Illinois," by Thomas W. Davis.

"Extracts from Death Register Book II, 12 November 1884-24 December 1885," by Melinda Cahill, Diane Walsh, and Linda Osterdock.

"Marriage Index 1910," Paul Mueller.

"Eisenhauer-Mauer [Maurer] Letters," by Robert Donnell and Recs Jenkins.

"Old Age Pension for 127 Local Residents approved for Payment," 1936, by Nancy Giles.

"Ray Family Bible"

"Belleville Saengerbund and Library Society," by Linda Osterdock.

"Shiloh Valley Township Cemeteries ALERT," which is a warning that the society's publication of that name doesn't seem to square with the relevant parish records now being transcribed from the Holy Childhood Catholic death register.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Ohio Civil War Genealogy Journal #4

The last OCWGJ of 2008 is, as usual, packed -- but to me the big news was underplayed. Two new indexes of northwest Ohio Civil War newspaper letters and articles are now available on line!

From Bowling Green University's Center for Archival Collections (which has other Civil War stuff too), there's a "Civil War Newspaper Correspondence Index," listing letters from soldiers published in newspapers in the counties of Allen, Crawford, Darke, Defiance, Hancock, Henry, Huron, Lorain, Lucas, Ottawa, Paulding, Putnam, Sandusky, Seneca, Williams, Wood, and Wyandot. The index includes names of the letter-writers, but it's organized by military unit. Not all newspapers indexed are available at BGSU.

From the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center (which also has more CW material), there's an "Index to Civil War Letters and Related Articles Published in Northwest Ohio Newspapers, 1861-1865." Three newspapers are indexed -- the Fremont Journal (Sandusky County), Norwalk Reflector (Huron County), and the Sandusky Register (Erie County). All are at RBHPC. I think there's some overlap, but in general it appears that the Hayes index goes deeper into a smaller number of newspapers.

And if you've had enough of indexes for a while, the articles this quarter include many actual letters:

"Letters from the Homefront to a Soldier: The Letters of George W. Tope," by Linda Lee Tope Trent. (There's material here even if you're no Civil War buff: when George says he bought his wife a dress, he means that he bought her the proper amount of cloth with which she made the dress.)

"Henry H. Melick, 32nd OVI: The Pensioner's Tale," by Mari M. McLean.

"Letters from Cap. A. N. Goldwood, 64th OVI & 31st USCI," by Gerald Boone.

"Ask the Experts" includes a lengthy and necessarily-but-unfortunately-inconclusive discussion of the fate of Thomas Hemings, 175th OVI.

"Amanda Township, Fairfield County OH: Volunteers of 1863," by Thomas Stephen Neel.

"1883 Census of Pensioners, Stark County, Ohio," by Michael Elliott.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Newberry trifecta

If I put the Newberry Library news in separate posts, there won't be room for anybody else. So here are three recent developments in one:

(1) Their "Chicago Biography and Industry File" (PDF) is now on line. It's a list of 48 biographical compendia published 1876-1937, followed by a name index of those profiled in each book. (NOT a complete name index of all the books, but wouldn't that be something?) Warning: if, like me, you were hoping for some nuts and bolts about the biographees' businesses, it is generally lacking.

(2) Matter-of-fact and helpful curator of genealogy and local history Jack Simpson has a new book out, entitled Basics of Genealogy Reference: A Librarian's Guide. I've only been able to glance at it, but what I saw confirmed my first thought: Even though it's not addressed directly to us, and of necessity deals with basics and not advanced research, this is a book every serious genealogist should take a good look at. Seeing oneself reflected in a top genealogy librarian's advice to his colleagues can be, um, instructive. (There's a wonderful brief chapter near the end on common researcher mistakes. I won't spoil the lead story.)

(3) An even newer book, compiled by members of the Chicago Map Society in collaboration with the Newberry, is Chicago to Lake Geneva: A 100-Year Road Trip. That's right: the University of Chicago Press republished a 1905 photographic guide to the unmarked route to a popular resort, and matched it with pictures of how that route looks now. I haven't seen this book but the idea is so cool I can only hope and expect that the execution measures up.

Monday, October 20, 2008

"Perhaps the most unlikely scenario"

The Midwest might have been very different. Francois Furstenburg considers what we might humorously call the "prehistory" of the Midwest in the June American Historical Review 113:647-677:

"Taking an Atlantic perspective on the continental interior, it appears that the Seven Years' War, which ostensibly ended in North America in 1760 and in Europe in 1763, in fact continued with only brief interruptions to 1815 -- in the form of the American Revolution of the 1770s, the Indian wars of the 1780s and 1790s, and the War of 1812. Call it a Long War for the West. During this Long War, as the action shifted among various 'hot spots' across the trans-Appalachian West, the great issue animating Native, imperial, and settler actors alike involved the fate of the region: would it become a permanent Native American country? Would it fall to some distant European power? Or, perhaps the most unlikely scenario of all, would it join with the United States? Only in the wake of the British defeat in the War of 1812 was the region's fate as part of the expanding United States settled once and for all."

If you were raised on the kind of predestinarian history of the US as I was, you may be surprised that anyone would think it unlikely for the Midwest to become American. But it was no gimme. Anthony Wayne got the second largest city in Indiana named after him because he succeeded against the natives where two previous generals had failed, and failed miserably. More strategically, as Fursternberg points out, the original colonies faced east, across the Atlantic. The Appalachians were a considerable barrier, and once across them settlers were naturally oriented toward the south and the Caribbean by the way the rivers flowed. "In seeking to control both sides of the Appalachians, U.S. policymakers were attempting something that no political entity, Native or European, had ever accomplished without rapidly disintegrating."

Friday, October 17, 2008

Montgomery County, Ohio

The October 8 issue of NEHGS eNews includes an appreciation of the online resources at the website of the Montgomery County Chapter, Ohio Genealogical Society. These include cemetery reading indexes; a selection of transcribed marriages, obituaries, and other articles from Dayton newspapers; and more.

Two reasons among many to hope your research targets dropped anchor here (alas, only two of my relatives did so):

A local gazetteer, the kind of thing you desperately need when a source casually mentions a place that appears in no one's map or memory. You may at any time need to know that "Pinch Gut" is a local name for Taylorsburg.

Dayton History Books Online, masterminded by Dayton writer Curt Dalton, with transcriptions of more than 100 books and articles about local history, ranging from the obvious standards to an 1881 telephone book, a mournful poem about the 1913 flood, and a manual for women employees of Rike's Department Store in 1968 ("The smart woman is always accessorized properly from head to toe").

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Midwesterners in the September NGSQ

The National Genealogical Society Quarterly is all about genealogical puzzles and unusual combinations of evidence, but even so the new September issue does well by the Midwest. The lead article, "Using Questionable Sources Productively," by George L. Findlen, CG, of Wisconsin, ferrets out the parents of three Maine-born Plummer brothers (!), two of whom spent most of their lives in Wisconsin. And the cover photo depicts Melinda Irene Hicklin Castleberry Cain Woods (1838-1908) of Illinois. Her rather harrowing life story is recounted in three paragraphs by her great-great grandson David McDonald, CG, also of Wisconsin.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Civil War cemetery extraordinaire

I've mentioned Jack Dempsey's Michigan Civil War blog before, but this would be a good time to revisit it if you don't regularly. He's paying an extended visit to one section of Detroit's Historic Elmwood Cemetery.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Place Names of Illinois!

Wet off the presses from the University of Illinois is a book for every microhistorian with an interest in Illinois -- or anyone who's ever enjoyed driving around the state: Place Names of Illinois, by Edward Callary, who teaches English at Northern Illinois University. (Anticipated in this post.)

It's not just a list, it's an alphabetical anthology of snippets of state history from Abingdon (Knox County) to Zuma (Rock Island County) -- because, as Callary puts it opposite the contents page, "PLACE NAMES ARE THE ARCHIVES IN WHICH THE HISTORY AND CULTURE OF A PEOPLE ARE STORED."

We learn where each name came from (if known), as well as where it didn't come from -- all backed up with source citations and a 32-page bibliography. (Aroma Park [Kankakee County] is not named after its smell. Almost all the names designate inhabited places -- communities, townships, or counties -- few natural features are included.

Callary does not neglect to mention when a place bears a name unique in the US, such as Zif (Wayne County) and Brereton (Fulton County). The third longest entry in the book, after "Chicago" and "Illinois," deals with the small town through which we got our mail for eleven years -- Ipava (Fulton County) -- and the conclusion is that nobody knows how it got that name.

Of course half the fun of such a book is picking it apart, because while few people (one, to be exact) had the grit, determination, time, and energy to accomplish this job, everyone has an opinion on how it should have been done. I have found only one outright error -- the tiny town of Trivoli (Peoria County) is pronounced with an "uh" at the end, not an "ih" sound. But there are two fuzzy boundary areas where rules are few, and seeming inconsistencies promise to breed endless time-sucking onomastic contention:

(1) Chicago places, once separate entities and now city neighborhoods. Rogers Park and Austin are in, but Jefferson [Township] and Andersonville are out. Of course, this is part of the vexing problem faced by anyone trying to write about Illinois as a whole -- how to encompass the vast space of downstate in the same universe of discourse as the vast population of Cook County.

(2) Small places, my favorites. Amazingly unmentioned are Middlegrove (Fulton/Knox County), Greenwood (McHenry County), and Salisbury (Sangamon County). Arguably less significant wide places in the road are included, such as Leesburg, Enion (both Fulton County), and Cramer (Peoria County).

If you aren't wondering about several places in Illinois right now, then eschew this book.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Hathi Trust: better than Google?

Aren't descendants great? My son reads blogs I don't know about and discovers an alternative to Google Book Search that offers more full-text digital book images than Google does: Hathi Trust, which resides in Mirlyn, the University of Michigan's online catalog. I found that Google offers only snippet views of The Older Middle West by Henry Clyde Hubbart, whereas at Hathi Trust I could (but didn't) read the whole thing.

Apparently you can also sign up and create public collections of Hathi Trust books. No one has done "genealogy" yet, but there are hundreds of old genealogies digitized here. Caveat lector -- check out those unsourced puppies, please.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Up to Date on Ohio Civil War Genealogy

And at last, the current, #3, 2008 issue of the Ohio Civil War Genealogy Journal:

"Eight Days in Camp Toledo, Or My First Experience as a 'Volunteer,'" submitted by Leslie Korenko. The kind of day-by-day journal fragment that you wish your ancestor had kept, complete with jokes and little episodes of daily life in camp -- a resource for what life was really like, whether your people ever saw the inside of Camp Toledo or not.

"Berne Township, Fairfield County, Ohio: Volunteers as of 1863," abstracted by Thomas Stephen Neel

"African-American Strange Family of Ohio: Reuben R. Strange & Sons William E. & George F. Strange, Army & Navy Veterans of the Civil War," by Harryette Mullen

"John Wallace Campbell, Civil War Veteran, Co. G. 71st O.V.I.," by Sheri Taylor Bockelman

"49th Ohio Volunteer Infantry, Company C: The Kellers and Other Veterans from Annapolis, Crawford County OH," by Ken Striker

"Ask the Experts" on saber sharpening, wheelwrights, and much more

"Newspaper Articles on Shooting of Three Soldiers in Bucyrus OH on 11 March 1864," submitted by Diane Gagel

"1883 Census of Pensioners, Mercer County, Ohio," by Michael Elliott

Thursday, October 9, 2008

City Directories

As a major fan of city directories, I was glad to see Randy Seaver's post at Genea-Musings on the Genealogy Research Associates' site "City Directories of the United States of America."

This is NOT a site for on-line access to city directories, like or (on a smaller scale but better crafted) the Newberry Library's Chicago Ancestors. It's intended to be locator site for where you can find hard copies or microfilms of city directories from all across the country. This is a wonderful service, because even libraries that have city directories don't always catalog them properly for those of us who really need to know whether they have 1871 or 1873!

GRA has covered two dozen repositories, only two within our coverage area (Flint and Grand Rapids, Michigan), and only three world-class (the Family History Library, BYU Library, and the Library of Congress). The glaring omission, of course, is the Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne, Indiana -- but the site is a work in progress and invites contributions. To find Allen County's microtext holdings, visit ACPL's Microtext Catalog and click on "City and County Directories." As for their hard-copy holdings (in a different part of the library), don't give up too soon in your search of their (separate) main catalog. What looks in the initial list like just one book unfolds into a glorious year-by-year listing when you click through.

And don't give up because you think your town is too small. Even little Sparta, Monroe County Wisconsin, has its directories -- if you go there!

Enjoy tracking your urban research targets from one year to the next, and -- if humanly possible -- remember to copy all instances of your target surnames. Trust me on this. The odds are very great that you'll discover an additional connection (or, more likely, a mysterious possible connection) for even the most banal ancestor, and then you'll Really Want To Know who else was on that page!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

More Ohio Civil War Genealogy

Action-packed issue #2 of this year's Ohio Civil War Genealogy Journal, with the motto, "Bringing back to life Ohio soldiers who served in the Civil War, through their stories and records. Bringing back to Ohio the soldiers who were lost or moved on after the war."

"The Brown Water Navy: The Ironclads of the Mississippi River Squadron and the Exploits of Acting Volunteer Lieutenant Commander William Rion Hoel," by Matthew Hoel. WRH played a key role in the Battle of Island No. 10, a key stage in the Union's regaining control of the Mississippi.

"Recollections of Columbus Huddle, 46th OVI," by Kittie Huddle Millikin, with added editorial notes.

"Book Review: Both Prayed to the Same God: Religion and Faith in the American Civil War, by Robert J. Miller"; reviewed by Dan Reigle

"John Wolf, Meigs County OH, 4th West Virginia Infantry," submitted by Darrell Helton

"Ask the Experts" including "Ohio Veterans in Yellow Medicine County MN," submitted by Michelle Gatz

"Death of Lorenzo Barnell, 9th Ohio Independent Battery Light Artillery," submitted by Tanis Diedrichs

"George Gilmer, 22nd Iowa Infantry, Mortally Wounded at Vicksburg," submitted by Mila Sloan

"William Clouse, 99th OVI, Ohio City OH," submitted by Rodger Norton

"1883 Census of Pensioners, Mahoning County, Ohio," by Michael Elliott -- plus a list of counties published in OCWGJ

"Members of Van West Post 627, Grand Army of the Republic," by Rodger Norton and Daniel H. Reigle

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Wisconsin's digital cornucopia

New on Cyndi's List is the web site "Kenosha County History: Images and Texts 1830s-1940s," which is awesome with eight full-text histories and more than 1300 images of people, buildings, businesses, churches, events, transportation, local government, and cityscapes in Wisconsin's southeasternmost county.

What may not be immediately obvious is that this is just one chapter out of more than three dozen in the State of Wisconsin Collection. Many are place-based, some are thematic (agriculture, maritime). If you have Wisconsin research targets, don't wait for me to highlight one chapter or the other.

May I mix you another metaphor to go with my headline? This is yet another multifaceted gem in Wisconsin's research crown.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Fall Genealogy News from Ohio

In a timely manner, the fall issue of Ohio Genealogy News features Ohio's unxpected riches in voting records.

"Ohio Voter Records," by Deb Cyprych, gives an overview of legal milestones, followed up with specific resource lists:
"Poll Books in Ohio Genealogy" in five different repositories.
"Quadrennial Enumerations of Eligible Vioters, 1800-1907"
"1907 Cleveland Voter Registration Index" on line at the Western Reserve Historical Society.

" Free Access for OGS Members," by Mark E. Schmidt

"Newspaper Collections at the Ohio Historical Society," by Elizabeth L. Plummer

"Cemetery Chronicles," by Lolita (Thayer) Guthrie

"Using Footnote -- A Powerful Internet Research Tool," by Brent Morgan

"Check the Original!" by Harold Henderson (yes, it's me), an example of the surprises that await when you go behind the transcribed 1880 census and look at the original record, along with a smidgen of Scofield genealogy.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Ripon research

The New England Historical and Genealogical Society's Enews reminds us of the resources available for east-central Wisconsin at the Ripon Historical Society and nearby places. (BTW, unlike many genealogy societies, NEHGS is flourishing and has more members than ever. Their move into New York is only the beginning. In the fall issue of New England Ancestors, its new board chair muses on how to position the society as "the national organiztion it really has become," with "extraordinary resources . . . for almost every state of the union and many European countries.")

Meanwhile, back in Ripon, use the explanatory links at the Ripon Historical Society to get started, branching out to local library resources including PDF cemetery files, the Samuel Pedrick Collection (housed at RHS although the guide is on the college website), the Ripon College Archives, and . . . speaking of outfits that loom large far beyond their state's borders . . . the bountiful resources of the Wisconsin State Historical Society.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Illuminating Lake County Illinois History

That's a new more-or-less-twice-a-week blog by Diana Dretske in her capacity as collections coordinator for the Lake County, Illinois, history archives outside Wauconda: Illuminating Lake County, Illinois History. Like its neighbor the colorful Lake County Discovery Museum and its virtual neighbor the Curt Teich Postcard Archives, the archives are under the umbrella of the Lake County Forest Preserves.

My research lately has kept me coming back to Lake County (which FYI is in the extreme upper-right-hand corner of Illinois, squeezed between Chicago and Wisconsin and fronting on Lake Michigan), so I may be biased or just zoned out from too many two-hour commutes across the Chicago metropolitan area, but I found the material quite interesting.

Recent history posts include looks back at JFK's 1960 campaign swing through the county; Swan School in Fremont Township, a sample of the archives' holdings of material on 52 local schools, most now gone; the North Shore Line; and one of Lake County's funnier products, Jack Benny of Waukegan.

Genealogists with young descendants to entertain can make strategic simultaneous use of the museum and archives (not to mention the beautiful forest preserve grounds). As with any archive, do your homework and call ahead to arrange a productive visit.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Illinois summer quarterly

The summer issue of the Illinois State Genealogical Society Quarterly would be thin indeed without three very different contributions from DuPage County genealogist Oriene Morrow Springstroh. (ISGSQ has a new editorial team that's looking for contributions and feedback.)

But before we get to that, I've been delinquent in mentioning ISGS's 40th anniversary conference 18 October 2008 in Elgin (PDF) which among other things will include Beau Sharbrough on, Loretto Szucs on the "surprising benefits" of urban research, Susan Anderson of FamilySearch on their multiple new projects, and D. Joshua Taylor of NEHGS on technology and colonial sources.

ISGSQ Summer Issue 2008:

"Isaac Morrow -- A Civil War Soldier from Henry County, Illinois," by Oriene Morrow Springstroh. A well-documented tale, warts and all.

"Faces from the Past: Identifying Photos with Marge Rice," reprinted from Dead Fred.

"1925-1925 City Directory of Westmont, DuPage County, Illinois," extracted by Oriene Morrow Springstroh. This is not the DuPage County we know today: "Andy did what many new arrivals to town did. He put up a tent for his family, then built a shack to shelter them over the winter until he could build a real home."

"'Mike's Index' Continues to Gain Respect from Researchers," reprinted from ISGS's online March-April newsletter (PDF). A supplement and companion to PERSI covering 243 periodicals. (The selection of periodicals indexed is impressive but unfortunately omits what may be the best local Illinois quarterly, from downstate St. Clair County.)

"Ask the Retoucher!" by Eric Curtis M. Basir -- regular column, expert counsel on photo preservation and restoration.

"Confessions of a Lazy Genealogist," by Oriene Morrow Springstroh, with an example of "mining for ancestors": "While you reacquaint yourself with your documents, notice whether other names are mentioned besides those of your people," and make them known. Her example is ideal: a Civil War pension file.