Monday, June 3, 2019

Video - First part of my road trip to St. Charles, MO for NGS Conference

Sort of related to genealogy. I attended the National Genealogical Society conference in St. Charles, Missouri last month. Rather than fly I decided to drive from Houston, TX and stay off the major highways.

Here is the first part where I visited Bremond, Texas where my paternal great great grandparents
(John Mabe Autrey  1828-unknown, Dianacy "Dicy" Wallace 1829-1925) may have lived between 1880-1900.

Friday, January 25, 2019

Mystery Photo - Manny

Another mystery photo from my grandmother's (Ruth McFadden Webb 1905-1985) collection. Many of the photos in the box that eventually made its way to me were mixed together so I am unsure if this is someone from her side or my grandfather's (Clyde Lee Webb 1898-1987).

On the back at the top someone had written something. It could be Manny, Mommy, Murray or something similar. So far I have not come across anyone on either side named Manny, Murray or anything particularly close.

The name of the photographer is also on the back. C. C. Giers National Portrait Gallery at what looks like 45 Union Street in Nashville, Tennessee. Some of his photographs are held at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville McClung Museum of Natural History and Culture. Under his biographical information it states that his geographical location was 43 and 45 Union Street in Nashville about 1863-1877.

When Ruth's father (Dennis Cornelius McFadden1847-1924) arrived in America he and his family lived in Ohio, the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania area and Baltimore Maryland.

Clyde Webb's grandfather, Zephaniah T. Webb (1828-1906) was born and lived in Tennessee and at some point moved to Arkansas.

For now I am going on the assumption that this person was a Webb or related family member and was born and was born between 1863-1877. It's also difficult because of how babies and toddlers were dressed back then to determine if it's male or female so for now I will assume it could be either.

Monday, January 7, 2019

Mystery Monday - Mrs. McFadden

The 1918 diary of my great grandmother Elizabeth Neuland McFadden (1866-1949) is unusual because she was not a very consistent writer. It contains entries between 1918 to 1940. Also, at some point my grandmother Ruth McFadden Webb (1905-1984) made some entries in the diary as well.

 The diary includes many names, some I know and a lot I don't. I have tried to figure out who they are but many are still a mystery.

In the back of the diary in grandmother Ruth's handwriting are a few names with addresses. One is for Mrs. McFadden.

Mrs. McFadden 2354 Graham Terrace, Cleveland

 During the time they had this diary, they lived in the Pittsburgh, PA area and later on in Baltimore, MD. I haven't determined which Cleveland Mrs. McFadden lived in. It could have been Ohio or Pennsylvania, or another one. I have not found any listings for a Graham Terrace in any of the possible areas she may have lived. Also, I do not know when this entry was added. Again it could have been anytime between 1918-1940 so Mrs. McFadden could have lived almost anywhere or had been in Cleveland the whole time.

An entry for 23 August 1926:
Mrs. McFadden and I went to town. We went to Kaufman's and
goods for Ruth a dress, got matierial for Dan a Ribbi (?). These
went to Davis then got lunch then went to Grand (?) at Curley's so
it was late when we got home.

An entry for 27 June 1931:

Started for Pittsburg 20 minutes to 1. Got to Wilkensburg in 7 hrs. Went
to Curleys. Dan and Father Nevin and Mrs. McFadden and Al and
Catherine, Ed and a few others were there. Mrs. Curley Made everybody eat.

 An entry for June 30 and July 1, 1931:

Went to Annie's and also to Minnie's in evening.
The young met at Annie's to see Dan. As he was
leaving on Wed. We went several places as Dan
had a few calls to make. July 1st  Mrs. McFadden,
Mrs Hazel and I went to Monongahela. Joe took us up.
Went to see Mrs. Drinkwater. Went to see Bessi Adams
then went to see Valkers.

The other mentions of Mrs. McFadden are in a similar vein. None shed any light on who she is and how she might be related to Elizabeth and Ruth.

Because Elizabeth addresses her more formally, I assume Mrs. McFadden is an older woman. However, as far as I know the older McFadden women in the family had died before 1918. The only daughter who never married and became a nun was Margaret (Sister Donata) McFadden (1894-1953) and she was always referenced as Margaret in the diary.

She could be an unrelated friend or neighbor, but so far I have not found anything that will lead me to one  answer or another.

Friday, December 21, 2018

Edward Mcfadden & Alice Collum

Working on my maternal great great grandparents Edward McFadden (1805-1887) and Alice Collum (1805-1886)[1].  They first appear in the US on the 1860 census in Clinton, Vinton County, Ohio[2]. According to this they were both born about 1804 or 1805. In the household are their sons John, age 18 and Dennis, age 16. There are also two other men who are likely boarders, Peter McCandre, 30 and William Ocallaghan, 38.

They next appear in the 1870 US census[3]. They still reside in Clinton, Ohio and are both listed as being 65 and there is no one else in the household.

On November 25th 1863 John was killed in the Battle of Mission Ridge in Chattanooga, Tennessee. In 1875 Edward and Alice applied for John’s pension[4]. The pension file for John has a lot of good information about the McFadden family.

One bit of information it provided were death dates for Edward and Alice. 

According to information provided to the pension board, Alice died on 17 January 1886.

I hereby report that the name of Alice McFadden, who was a pensioner...was last
paid $8.00 to Dec. 4, 1885, has been dropped because of information that pensioner
died January 17, 1886.

 On December 4, 1887 Edward last received the pension. The notice that Edward was dropped from the role for failure to claim the pension was dated February 12, 1891. It is very likely that he died sometime between 1887 and 1891.
I hereby report that the name of Edward McFadden, who was a pensioner...
and who was last paid at $12.00 to Dec 4, 1887 has been dropped because of
failure to claim pension.

So far I have been unable to locate any additional information on where they are buried or if there was a will or probate file for them. 

I contacted the Catholic Diocese of Columbus and they searched the parish records in Vinton County-Wilkesville St. Mary, Minerton St. Mary, Zeleski St. Sylvester and Jackson Holy Trinity in Jackson County, Ohio since Vinton residents occassionally attended during that time period.
Next steps:
Check area newspapers between 1886 and 1891
Pay a visit or hire someone local to visit the courthouse
Manually search the Vinton County census for 1880
Check any tax records for that period

 [1] Allegheny Co., PA, death certificate no. 11973 (1924), Dennis C. McFadden.
[2] 1860 U.S. census, Vinton County, Ohio, population schedule, Clinton Township, p. 63 (penned), dwelling 453, family 441, Dennis McFadden; digital image, ( : accessed 5 February 2013); citing National Archives Microfilm publication M635 roll 1046.
[3] 1870 U.S. census, Vinton County, Ohio, population schedule, Clinton Township, p. 12 (penned), dwelling 89, family 89, Edward McFadden; digital image, ( : accessed 5 February 2013); citing National Archives Microfilm publication M593, roll 1276.
[4] Compiled service record, John McFadden, Pvt., Co. K, 36th Ohio Volunteer Infantry; Carded Records, Volunteer Organizations, Civil War; Records of the adjutant General’s Office, 1780s-1917, Record Group 94; National Archives, Washington, D.C.

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Five Unknown Sailors-Veterans Day

Late Veteran's Day Post:

I have very few photographs of my family in their military uniforms. My father served in the Air Force from 1956 to 1959. My maternal great grandfather and his brother served in the Army for the Union in the Civil War. There were various paternal ancestors who fought for the Confederacy. Several years ago I was given the chest that belonged to my maternal grandmother and it was full of pictures, letters and other various items.

I am currently in the process of scanning each all of the items and I came across these three photos. Everything was mixed together so it is hard to tell if they were from my grandmothers side or grandfathers. There was a photo album of my grandfather and his family as a young man. It was the type where the pictures were glued onto black paper and bound together in a ledger type album. It had fallen apart and many pictures had fallen out. These three pictures were mixed in with those.

Based on the clothing these all appear to be from the WWI era. After examining them they all appear to be different men. At first I thought the man on the right in the first picture and the man on the left of the second might be the same person since it looks like they wear the had the same way. But after blowing them up I do believe they are different people.

I have compared the people in the photographs to others in the album but so far have not found anyone who resembles them.  Also, I have not found any information on any family members who served in the Navy or the Red Cross at that time.

Monday, October 29, 2018

Louis Romeo Neuland (1834-1912)

Louis Romeo Neuland according to the 1870 US census for Allegany County, Maryland, was born in Prussia about 1834.[1]

In the 1880 US Census, he and his family is living in Connellsville, Fayette County, Pennsylvania.[2] He and both his parents are listed as being from Prussia and his birth year is about 1830.

Unfortunately, the 1890 Census was mostly destroyed by fire and I have not been able to find him or his family in the 1900 US census or any other records such as city directories between 1880 and 1910.  He then reappeared in the Washington County Old Men’s Home in Chartiers Township, Pennsylvania in the 1910 census.[3] This census has him listed as being from Germany and that he immigrated in 1851.

Washington County, Pennsylvania Old Men's Home

The final bit of information on him comes from his death certificate.[4] The date of death was 18 March 1912. It has him living in the Washington County Home for 7 years 6 months and 9 days and says he was born in Germany. It’s unclear who provided the information but he could have been someone from the Home. His death certificate also states that his body was shipped SAB (sent anatomical body) to Philadelphia, PA for medical research.

I have not yet located if any records from the Home still exist or where they may be stored. I have also not found where the body would have been shipped to in Philadelphia or what happened to the bodies after whoever received them was finished with them.  So far I have only searched online and posted a few queries on some message boards and Facebook. No replies yet. Another reason for me to pack up and take a road trip to Pennsylvania and do some research the old-fashioned way.

Louis is briefly mentioned in the book Generations: A History of the Biddinger, Bidinger, Bittinger, & Bittner families of Garrett County, Maryland. His granddaughter Edith Frye Rainey (1903-1986) said that Louis had a degree in philosophy from the University of Heidelberg, Germany but worked as a butcher in the US.  The 1870 and 1880 census do have his profession listed as butcher. Also according to the book Hannah died in 1890. There is a headstone for a Hannah Bittinger Neuland (1845-1890) at the Howe cemetery ( in Washington County, Pennsylvania.  Edith did remember one time when Louis visited her family’s home and “all I remembered about him was his white beard.”[5] 

[1] 1870 U.S. census, Allegany County, Maryland, population schedule, Westernport Post Office, p. 37 (written), dwelling 257, family 257, Newlon; NARA microfilm publication M593, roll 566.
[2] 1880 U.S. census, Fayette Co0unty, Pennsylvania, population schedule, enumeration district (ED) 35, p. 10 (written), dwelling 66, family 77, Louis Newland; NARA microfilm publication T9, roll 1129.
[3] 1910 U.S. census, Washington County, Pennsylvania, population schedule, p. 48 (stamped), enumeration district (ED) 21, sheet 22-A,  dwelling blank, family blank, Lewis Neuland; NARA microfilm publication T624, role 1426.
[4] Washington County, Pennsylvania, certificate of death, no. 23667 (1912), Newland; Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Department of Health, Bureau of Vital Statistics.
[5] Wayne Bittinger, Generations : a history of the Biddinger, Bidinger, Bittinger, & Bittner families of Garrett County, Maryland (Parsons, West Virginia: McClain Print Co. 1974), 238-239.

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Mary Keady (abt 1870-1937)

Mary Keady was born sometime between 1870-1873 in Ireland according to the US censuses for 1900-1930. 

Most of these records have her birth year as 1870 so I will use that one as the default until I find something with more direct evidence. 

As for most of the immigrant ancestors I have searched for, I have so far been unable to pin down when and where they left and when and where they arrived.

The 1900 census states that her year of immigration was 1888 and that she had been in the country for 12 years. 

1900 US Census, Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania pg. 210, Micheal Curley household.

The 1910 census, the columns for immigration/naturalization for her name were left blank.
1910 US Census, Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania pg. 9B, Kate Curley household, Merrimack Street.

The 1920 census has her immigration year as 1886 and date of naturalization as 1891.

1920 US Census, Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania sheet 5B, Catherine Curley household, Merrimack Street.

The 1930 census lists her immigration year as 1875 and only states that she is naturalized.

1930 US Census, Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania sheet 16A, Mary Keady household, Merrimack Street.

Finally, 1905 she shows up on a passenger list sailing aboard the S.S. Teutonic from Queenstown on 12 October 1905 and arrived at the Port of New York on 19 October 1905. One of the columns asked if they have ever been in the United States before and when and where. For Mary it has 18 years in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It also says that she will be joining her sister Kate Curley on Merrimack Street in Pittsburgh which matches other records for Mary Keady.

S.S. Teutonic date unknown

Passenger List, S.S. Teutonic, from Queenstown 12 October 1905 to Port of New York 19 October 1905.

Since most of the records indicate that she immigrated in the late 1880s that is where I have focused my search so far. Mary Keady is a fairly common name and I have found a number of possibilities, but so far nothing to indicate one of them is the one I am looking for. Unfortunately, as with the other immigrant ancestors I have researched, I can’t seem to find them arriving or leaving their country of origin. They all just seem to appear in the US as if by magic. Just another reason for me to take a road trip to Pennsylvania to search for some answers.