Showing posts with label McKibbin. Show all posts
Showing posts with label McKibbin. Show all posts

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Family History Month: Top 10 Surnames on the Family Tree


Picking up a great idea from Colleen G. Brown Pasquale at her Leaves & Branches blog, I learned how to use the "surname statistics list" report function on my Roots Magic 7 software. No surprise that for my husband's family tree, Wood was the top surname by frequency, followed by Larimer.

But I also realized, with a pang, how many people appear without surnames in that tree. Uh oh. These are mainly missing maiden names, stretching back to the 1500s. This means I'll have to intensify my Genealogy Go-Over to see how many missing surnames I can identify. Perhaps new information has become available since I added some people to the tree? Turns out that these statistics can also reveal gaps in research...

The top 10 surnames that appear most frequently on the Wood tree are:
  1. Wood (earliest instance: 1551)
  2. Larimer (earliest instance: 1719)
  3. McClure (earliest instance: 1660)
  4. Steiner (earliest instance: 1802)
  5. Slatter (earliest instance: 1811)
  6. McKibbin (earliest instance: 1766)
  7. Hilborn (earliest instance: 1794)
  8. Denning (earliest instance: 1775)
  9. Smith (earliest instance: 1724)
  10. Cushman (earliest instance: 1578)
PS: Randy Seaver made this "top 10 surnames" theme the subject of his Oct. 21 Saturday Night Genea-Fun.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Family History Month: So Many Hints, So Little Time

After reading Amy Johnson Crow's thoughtful post, "Should You Take Ancestry's Suggestions?" I thought about my own approach to the hints on my trees. As of this morning, my husband's tree has an incredible 7,406 total hints! So many hints, so little time.

My triage plan goes like this:
  • Sort by people, not by when the hint was generated. That way, I can choose who I want to research, rather than reviewing hints based on when the system presents them to me ("within last 7 days" etc.).
  • Look at relationships to avoid wasting a lot of time on people who are really remote on the tree. Say, for instance, Jane McKibbin, whose hint is shown here--she's a sister-in-law of my husband's 1st cousin 4x. Not someone I need to research with any particular urgency, unless I have a specific goal in mind.
  • Review photos quickly, because often they are ship images or flags or something else rather than an ancestor's image. I usually click to ignore 95% of photos, reviewing only actual faces or family groups.
  • Review stories to see whether there's anything personal or historical. Sometimes these turn out to be interesting! A letter that my mother-in-law wrote to a genealogist in the 1970s turned up as a story hint on the Wood tree not long ago.
  • Review records for ancestors I'm actively researching. Depending on my focus, I might look at all record hints for one particular ancestor or a family or a surname, in search of new avenues to explore.
  • Review member trees as a low priority unless I'm trying to connect with a cousin or someone else who is researching an ancestor of particular interest. Why? Because way too many member trees have no sources attached or have inaccurate details. But if I'm looking for a cousin, I make it a point to look at these trees and contact individual members with a note explaining who I am and asking about any possible relationship--always offering to exchange genealogy info.
Very likely I'll never get around to reviewing every hint on this tree. At the same time, I regularly click on ancestors of interest, noting that new hints tend to show up after I explore these people individually. Then the triage continues.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Erin Go Bragh - Hubby's Irish Roots

Happy St. Patrick's Day! My hubby has Irish (and Scots-Irish) ancestry that we can trace to the 17th century as they prepared for their journeys to America.
  1. His 5th great-grandparents, Halbert McClure (1684-1754) and Agnes (1690-1750?) were born in County Donegal, but the McClure clan was originally from Scotland's Isle of Skye. These Scotch-Irish McClures were the journey-takers who sailed to Philadelphia and then walked, as a family, down to Virginia so they could buy fertile land and farm it. Above, a transcription of the land purchase by Halbert McClure in 1747. Later, the McClure clan fanned out to Ohio and Indiana and beyond.
  2. His 5th great-grandparents, Robert Larimer (1719-1803) and Mary O'Gallagher Larimer (1721-1803) were from the north of Ireland. Robert is the ancestor who was shipwrecked while enroute to the New World, and was brought to Pennsylvania to work off the cost of his rescue. Larimer worked hard and then walked away to start a new life in the interior of Pennsylvania. Larimer descendants intermarried with the Short, McKibbin*, and Work families who were cousins from Ireland.
  3. His 5th great-grandparents, William Smith (1724-1786) and Janet (1724?-1805), were from Limerick. Their first son born in America was Brice Smith (1756-1828), who later settled in Fairfield County, Ohio. The name Brice has come down through the family, but this is the earliest instance documented in the family tree in America.
  4. His 2nd great-grandparents, John Shehen (1801?-1875) and Mary (1801?-?) were born in "Ireland" (that's all the info they told UK Census officials in 1841). Their children were born in Marylebone, London during the 1830s. In 1859, their daughter Mary Shehen married John Slatter Sr. in Oxfordshire. Mary Shehen Slatter is the ancestor I have been tracing through two different insane asylums, eventually dying at Banstead from tuberculosis in 1889. More on her saga very soon.
*Just in time for St. Paddy's Day, I heard from a McKibbin cousin who has Ohio naturalization papers from the McKibbin family, confirming their origin as County Down! Thank you so much, Marilyn.

P.S.: My wonderful daughter-in-law is adding to the festivities by having the family piece together a puzzle of different Irish places and themes (above is a sneak peek of our progress). A great way to remind the next generation of their Irish roots!

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Surname Saturday: McKibbin/McKibben family of Indiana

I've returned to searching newspaper databases for colorful tidbits about ancestors, inspired by Janeen Bjork.

Fortunately for my research into hubby's McKibbin/McKibben family, there are lots of old Indiana newspapers available to search.

(NOTE: I just posted a new ancestor landing page for McKibbin/Larimer connections.)

At left, one of the more bizarre articles I found in Elkhart newspapers from 1903. Headline: Skeleton Puzzles Farmers Living East of Goshen.

The key man in the action is John Wright McKibben (McKibbin), hubby's 2d cousin 3x removed, son of "Squire" Alexander McKibbin and Harriet Larimer McKibbin.


It seems that farmer McKibben (1850-1911) unearthed a skeleton in a gravel pit.

The newspaper speculated on who the dead person might be. Possibly Bill Swazy who went missing after a night of heavy drinking?

I previously found an article about another of "Squire" McKibbin's children, Phoebe McKibbin Herrold. The headline: Dies in Chair as She Crochets. Can't make this stuff up!

The squire's wife, Harriet Larimer McKibbin, died of "lung fever" according to the sentence in the news I found. The squire himself "dropped dead" at his home, as the news item above shows. 

Any McKibbin-McKibben-Larimer cousins reading this, please feel free to comment!

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Fearless Females: Emma Jane McKibbin Shoup, Administratrix

Hubby's 3d cousin, 2x removed, was Emma Jane McKibbin Shoup, married to Russell B. Shoup. I'm researching the McKibbin line to trace the origins of Emma's grandfather, Alexander "Squire" McKibbin (1817-1888), who married Harriet Larimer (1819-1887), the first of several marriages I've seen between Larimer and McKibbin ancestors.

The wonderful folks at the Elkhart County Genealogical Society have been helping me, by sending me images of McKibbin documents from their records. Above, one page from the probate file for Emma's father, James Harvey McKibbin (1846-1914), hubby's 2d cousin, 3x removed (so says Ancestry). Below, James Harvey McKibbin's obituary. After reading it, I understood why James Harvey McKibbin and his son John McKibbin are living with James's daughter Emma and her husband Russell (and their baby), according to the 1900 Census.

Before Emma could serve as administratrix for her father's estate, she had to have her husband's permission, as shown above. [Reader, you can imagine how I felt seeing that!] She also had to post a $100 bond with the court, to be returned after probate was complete.

Emma and her brother, John Henry McKibbin, were the only heirs, and the father died without a will. Emma was supposed to liquidate her father's property and pay his debts before splitting the proceeds, 50-50, with her brother.

John, the father, owned lots #170 and 171 in "Wilden's Walnut Hill addition" in Goshen, Elkhart county, with an estimated value of $1,000. To liquidate the estate and share with her brother, Emma had to sell the lots.

Now here's something interesting: Emma filed paperwork with the probate court saying she tried to sell the property, but the only private buyer backed out, so she asked for a public auction. The court agreed and the result is that one bidder stepped forward and paid $1,040 for the real estate. The bidder? A gentleman named Russell B. Shoup, whose signature appears in the image above as his permission for his wife to be administratrix.

After paying court costs, funeral costs, legal costs, and so on, Emma and her brother split $826.95, mainly from the sale of the two lots to Emma's husband.


Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Tombstone Tuesday: Larimer & McKibbin Cousins in Elkhart, Indiana

More than once, hubby's Larimer cousins married their distant McKibbin (or McKibben) cousins in Indiana. Above, yet another Larimer/McKibbin headstone from Eldridge Cemetery, photographed for me by the very kind genealogy buffs at the Elkhart County Historical Society. (If you're looking for someone buried in Elkhart, click to the society's listing of cemeteries in the county.)

Hallie Richard Larimer (1899-1960) was my husband's 4th cousin, 1x removed, descended from my husband's 5th great-grandpa, Robert Larimer (who was shipwrecked on his way from Northern Ireland to the New World). His WWI draft registration listed him as stout, medium build, grey eyes, and light brown hair. 

Although Hallie grew up in Elkhart county, Indiana, living next door to McKibbin and Showalter relatives, he married Mary Magdalene McKibbin in Benton Harbor, Michigan in 1920. He was not quite 21 and she was a month shy of her 17th birthday. Hallie was a mason--the son of a mason--and he continued in that trade after he and his wife raised a family and moved from Elkhart county to South Bend, Indiana, where he died in 1960.

Mary Magdalen McKibbin (1903-1976) was the daughter of John Henry McKibbin and Susan Henrietta Phelps--and a descendant of Alexander McKibbin and Harriet Larimer. So the tradition of intermarriage between McKibbins and Larimers goes way back into the 1800s.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Memorial Day: A Purple Heart for Cousin Alexander Everett Herrold



For Memorial Day, I want to honor the WWI military service of hubby's 3d cousin, 2x removed: Alexander Everett Herrold (1881-1959), the grandson of Harriet Larimer (1819-1887) and "Squire" Alexander McKibbin (1817-1888).

Captain Herrold of Company L, 129th Infantry, American Expeditionary Forces, was wounded in France on October 9, 1918. His mother (Phoebe McKibbin Herrold) learned of the injury from a letter he wrote, which she then turned over to the local newspaper for publication on the front page. His letter closes with these sentences:
"I walked two and one-half miles on the wounded leg to get to an ambulance. Don't worry about me for I am not seriously hurt."
Herrold had enlisted in the Indiana National Guard in 1905, then was mustered out in 1916 to enlist in the U.S. Army for WWI. The Elkhart Review newspaper refers to him as Captain Herrold. Above, the application for headstone for a military veteran refers to him as a First Lieutenant and notes his Purple Heart. Now, nearly 97 years after he was wounded, I'm recognizing the service of this distant cousin on Memorial Day weekend.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Wordless Wednesday: What Happened to Cousin Phoebe


What a surprise to see the 1919 death of hubby's 2d cousin, 3x removed, announced in Indiana with this headline.

The obit continues below: "When her body was discovered yesterday, the crocheting thread was around her fingers and it was evident that she was just about to take another stitch when fatally stricken."

RIP, Phoebe Antoinette McKibbin Herrold, daughter of Harriet Larimer, hubby's 1st cousin 4x removed, part of the Larimer line we've been tracing.