The Sometimes Insane Life of Hannah Hopkins

Hannah Hopkins fully acknowledged she had bouts of insanity. The implications to her parents Robert and Susannah Hopkins were all too real. Nonetheless, exactly how her insanity manifested itself is hard to discern. What is more apparent is how her parents supported their daughter through her trials. Taking a step back, in Victorian times mental patients were typically labelled with mania, dementia, melancholy or moral … Continue reading The Sometimes Insane Life of Hannah Hopkins

The Fiery Spotsylvania Court House Battle and John Hopkins

On May 12, 1864 at 4:30 a.m. the Union Second Corps attacked Muleshoe salient at Spotsylvania Court House, Virginia under the command of Major General Winfield S. Hancock leading to some of the most violent fighting in the Civil War. As part of the Second Corps, the Michigan 26th Regiment joined the charge and was one of the first regiments to plant its colors on … Continue reading The Fiery Spotsylvania Court House Battle and John Hopkins

William Hopkins and the Pennsylvania Oil Boom

In 1859 Edwin Drake struck oil at 69 feet below ground along the banks of Oil Creek in Venango County, Pennsylvania. Drake’s well was one of the first commercial oil wells in the United States. Within a few years the Pennsylvania oil boom was in full swing. Thousands came to the Oil Creek area to strike it rich or just find good work. William Hopkins, … Continue reading William Hopkins and the Pennsylvania Oil Boom

Our DNA Cousins, the Jackson Whites

The DNA trail doesn’t always fit neatly into paper proofs of lineage or family stories. In fact, at times DNA tells a very different story. My DNA cousins, the Jackson Whites, who call themselves the Ramapo Mountain Indians, are part of our family DNA from approximately 5-6 generations ago on both the Jones-Sweet and Smith-Edwards lines. This is likely at least a generation or two … Continue reading Our DNA Cousins, the Jackson Whites

Uncovering Lee Scott’s Lineage

Lee Scott’s obituary states he was born 2 August 1822 in St. John, St. John County, New Brunswick, Canada.  There are multiple family trees connecting Lee Scott with parents Walter C. Robert Scott Esq and Elizabeth Lee and grandparents Robert Scott Esq and Mary Merrill.  Nice, but where is the source material that establishes or refutes this lineage? The confirming evidence is hardly a … Continue reading Uncovering Lee Scott’s Lineage

The Big Picture, a Family Tree View

The Boating Genealogists dig into genealogy, family history and history so much that one can forget that others don’t have the background to connect who we are writing about and where they fit in the family tree and history.   However, replicating an ever developing family tree on this blog would be silly, if not just plain time-consuming without obvious gain.   And human history is an … Continue reading The Big Picture, a Family Tree View

Unlocking Charlotte Hick’s Parentage

Genealogical unlocks are pretty special, at least for family historians.  Not because lineage is an end in and of itself.  But because it is one’s original life setting that can connect many life dots.   Therefore, a family historian sometimes spends a fair amount of time trying to correctly establish this foundation, this lineage.  And some ancestors’ lineages are much tougher detective work than others, even … Continue reading Unlocking Charlotte Hick’s Parentage

Local Deed and Clerk Offices

Shifting from an almost exclusive Internet and family memorabilia research approach to visiting city and county government offices provided some insights and take-aways this past summer.   Both the government office process and policies along with located hidden gems were valuable learnings. First, government deed and clerk office insights.  As it turns out they all had one policy in common, however, enforced with different degrees of … Continue reading Local Deed and Clerk Offices

A New Chapter – Bringing Family History to Life

What we are trying to accomplish. Bruce and I have been family genealogists for over 10 years.  However, we are now bringing new tools and methods to our approach.   These new tools and methods will be additive, as Internet searches, lineage sites and DNA cousins are all powerful tools we will continue using.  But the new stuff shows great promise too. First, we now are … Continue reading A New Chapter – Bringing Family History to Life