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Sunday, August 29, 2010

Genealogy Terms

As I work on my family tree, I find that I tend to make up my own terminology for genealogy.  I use derivatives of the word "tree".  Some of them include "treeing", "tree'd", "tree'r", and to use it in a sentence, "Why did this person tree this way?".   I come across various treeing methods on Ancestry.com and find so many inconsistencies.  I may need to write about family tree etiquette in a post too.  Maybe I'll learn something from it also.  I sometimes get so enthusiastic that I lose sight of my genealogy manners.

Back to the terminology that I'd like to post about......It really cracks me up that several websites want to sell you books about genealogy terms.  I guess that makes sense.  Every subject has specific terms associated with them.  Take insurance for example, it can be its own language if you don't understand the terms.  I have set out to find terminology online, for free.  It's like anything online.  The more you search, the more you find.  I plan to cover some basics in this initial post but may start some "language lesson" posts down the line as I try to advance from being an amateur to an intermediate genealogist.  I think that I'm getting there.

A "First Cousin, Once Removed" is the relationship that my Mom's first cousin has to me.  So those are my simple terms of explaining this terminology.  The technical definition reads something like this:  Individuals who share a common ancestor but not in your immediate family; the child of your first cousin is your first cousin, once removed.  Hey wait a minute; the definition uses the same words as the term to describe it.  I think we all get the picture though.  This is a pretty rudimentary term.

There are other "official" genealogy terms out there like "common ancestor", "direct line", "collateral line" and "relationship chart".  An example of a common ancestor might be my cousins and I share a common ancestor in our grandparents.  A direct line would be someone from whom you descend in a family tree.  Collateral line could be cousins off branches of your family tree.  A relationship chart indicates how relatives are interrelated to one another on the family tree.  I have a copy of one that I will try and post soon.

I also find the word lineage used.  That means line of descent.  There are many other terms out there like pedigree, heritage, DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution), and brick wall.  I find it quite humorous that genealogy sites feel the need to define this term.  "Brick wall suggests a coming to a dead end in one's research".  I find it is more of an immediate screeching halt!

I like terminology because it does give you a footprint or even a path to follow in any subject.  It builds consistency with a common language so that we can communicate clearly with each other.  Maybe those language lesson posts would be a good idea.

Monday, August 23, 2010

News Flash - Was Bridget McLaughlin, actually a McLaughlin?

One of my favorite researchers contacted me the other day.  He's sending me information about our Maxwell family.  The fact that he is also a McLaughlin makes it even more interesting.  I definitely need to write a post about the Maxwell-McLaughlin marriages since there were at least two.

At any rate, he advised that the Mahardy's may not be relatives of the McLaughlin's after all.  Another one of my favorite researchers has indicated that they may in fact be related.  There is no doubt that the Mahardy's and McLaughlin's knew each other and were close friends who probably did treat each other like family.  I have information indicating that the Mahardy's (or Mahady in Ireland) were probably neighbors in County Longford.  I have McLaughlin's living in and around Ringowney, Parish of Edgeworthstown, Longford, Ireland.  I have found the Mahardy's there too.

I have, in fact, a researcher in Ireland who went to try and find my McLaughlin's in Ringowney.  She found the marriage of Michael Mahardy to Bridget McLaughlin.  The snag on the tree is that Bridget may have been married before.  She may have been married to Patrick and Michael McLaughlin's brother, making her a McLaughlin by her first marriage.  Since we don't know who all of the family member's were for the first generation of the descendants of Thomas McLaughlin, it is hard to know for sure.

My Irish researcher has found that the historical society for Edgeworthstown has disbanded and is no longer.  How sad is that?  I know that maintaining a historical society takes time, volunteers, sometimes a little bit of money, and a desire to forge ahead.  I suppose that not everyone is a historian, genealogist, researcher, librarian or even a record keeper.

Again the more I research, the more questions I come across.  Hat's off to my McLaughlin researchers, one of which is a Maxwell too.  They have spent hours researching history, our family tree, records, and maintain the best records they can with their knowledge.  Questioning things is a good thing.  It gets us all to look a little harder at what we've found.  I am prepared to look a little harder if the information can present itself.  Someone must know something about the McLaughlin's of Ringowney, Parish of Edgeworthstown, County Longford, Ireland, circa 1780-1820.  They did not all get up and leave Ireland, I'm sure.

Actually, I am sure.  The McLaughlin name is still prevalent in the Edgeworthstown area.  My Irish researcher, who is a Flanagan and a Duffy, told me so.  Hat's off to her, too!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Duffy Maxwell McLaughlin Connection

As I dig through information that my grandparents saved about our family history, I continue to thumb past information about the Duffy's in Napa, CA.  While they are not my direct line, they are cousins and link back to Newport, New York.  The Malloy's of Napa, CA are direct descendants of the Duffy's.  I also know that Philip Duffy and my great-great grandfather, Thomas M. McLaughlin, knew each other.  In fact, they more than knew each other, they were close friends and brother-in-laws.

I know that my grandparents knew the Malloy's.  I think that my mom went to school with a Malloy.  It is amazing the information that was passed to us by them.  In my folder of McLaughlin/Maxwell information, I have a copy of Philip Duffy's death certificate, a biography page about Philip out of a history book, a few letters, Austin, Nevada church records of births and marriages, and a poor quality photocopy of Ellen McLaughlin and her sister, Catherine Duffy.  They are both Maxwell's.

In addition, I also have the address of the Duffy house on Big Ranch Road in Napa, CA.  It is apparently still occupied by the descendants of the Duffy's.  It was refurbished on an episode of  "This Old House".  I would really like to go and knock on their door sometime.  I suppose I shouldn't come unannounced.  I also suppose that I do want to complete more research so that I know the scoop on the Duffy's.  I think I have made their connection to Newport, New York and onto Montello, WI where the line interesects with McLaughlin's.  That can get confusing to explain and follow -- A McLaughlin married a Maxwell who's sister married a Duffy who's sibling(s) and/or cousin(s) married into the McLaughlin line.  I've seen the multiple marriages between some of my other lines originating in Newport, New York, and it would not surprise me here if these Duffy's are all related.

I kind of hope that a Duffy researcher finds me and can explain all of this.  I think a Malloy may have already figured it all out.  I continue to hold onto what I've got and work on my direct lines.  I do find the Duffy connection rather intriguing though.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

My Sister's Family Tree Assignment Circa 1980s - Part 2

I may need to frame my sister's family tree artwork.  It would require a rather large frame.  I have this page because she did not want it.  Some people just are not interested in their family tree.  My sister is one of those people.  Maybe someday she'll want to see or read about our family history.

For now, I plug away listing my Dad's side of things from this project......


John   Margaret   Mary Ann   James   Edward   Mike
  Stephen   Patrick   Daniel   Thomas   Lena    Kathleen
        Anna   Timothy   Bridget -- all siblings of  Johanna Coughlin
                                                       who married Patrick Hickey
                                                                                          /
_________________________________________________
/                /               /            /            /             /          /           /
Margaret  Kathleen  Martin   William  Anna   Eleanor  Living   Josephine Hickey
                                                                                                & Francis McGuire
                                                                                                 /
                      ______________________________________
                      /                   /                           /                           /
                  Living            Living                 Living                   Brian McGuire &
                                                                                              Living Flanagan
                                                                                                    /
                                                                                              Living McGuires

.........................................................................................................

Francis McGuire and Mary Rohmann
                            /
___________________________________
/              /                /                  /                 /
Charles   Marion     Cecelia        John          Francis McGuire & Josephine Hickey
                                                                    (see above)

.......................................................................................................

My Dad's side of my family is all from New York City and Long Island.  I refer to them as my "New York Family".

I have found that even handwritten family tree information comes in very handy!

Friday, August 20, 2010

My Sister's Family Tree Assignment Circa 1980s - Part 1

One of the odd, unsourced, unscientific, unstrucutured, and maybe even other "un's" is this family tree that my sister drew on paper by hand circa 1980s.  She took a ruler and drew horizontal, vertical, and diagonal lines to connect names and people of our family lines.  It is rather crude for an official family tree but is a wonderful peice of art.  I need to scan this rather large page before it is destroyed by time.

I also use this page regularly as my quick reference to my family tree.  There are no dates or locations on it but there are names.  In my recent research, I have found that some names are missing or mispelled.  This document is an excellent high level review of my (and my sister's) family tree.  I am compelled to at least write down what is on this tree with spelling and all.  I am omitting living relatives, however.  I will work from past to present which is from top down when you look at the tree.

Edmond O'Brien and Anne Gleason                John Flanagan and Anne Maguire
                                      /                                        /
                               Catherine O'Brien and Patrick Flanagan
                                                           /
___________________________________________________
/                 /               /          /            /               /              /
Ignatius      Mary       Leo     Louis     Edward    Richard     John Flanagan &
                                                                                           Mary McLaughlin
                                                                                           /
                        __________________________________
                       /             /       /            /                       /
                  John      Kay      Ellen      Robert    Richard Flanagan &
                                                                         Dorothy Borchers
                                                                                 /                
                                                                     Living Flanagan/McGuires

...............................................................................................

Joseph Maxwell and Judith Shaffrey        James McLaughlin
                                /                                          /
                         Ellen Maxwell and Thomas McLaughlin
                                                     /
 ___________________________ ________
/          /              /            /             /                 / 
Ellen   Dolly       Patrick  Robert    Joseph     Mary McLaughlin &
                                                                      John Flanagan (see above)

................................................................................................

Henry Borchers & Anna                                                                                    
                     /
_____________________________________________                      
/                 /          /          /             /              /        /         /
Henry   Martha   Albert   Clara   Elizabeth  Tillie  William  Herb Borchers &
                                                                                         Mary Vienop


Anna Koch and John Vienop

                  /
_____________________
/               /            /          /
Ernest   Minnie  Henry    Mary Vienop & Herb Borchers  
                                                               /
                        ____________________________
                       /              /                  /                    /
                Living          Living         Living          Dorothy Borchers &
                                                                         Richard Flanagan (see above)

..............................................................................................

All of the above part of my tree is for my mother's side of the family.  They are from Napa, CA.  I call them my "Napa Family".

To be continued...................
            

Thursday, August 19, 2010

A Living Document In Cyberspace

I worked for years for a company who documented everything.  We even placed notes in a system that an attorney once referred to as a "living document".  The living document could be added to but not edited once filed. 

In the case of my blog, I'd like to refer to this as a "living document".  It can live in cyberspace for as long as Google wants to support it.  Since there are no legal restrictions, I do have the ability to edit previously posted documents.  This is handy since sometimes I do make mistakes and typos.

For the sake of history, even if it is just my own family history, my blog will live on for quite some time.  I do not have plans to take it down at any point.  Also, I wouldn't be opposed to it changing with the times.  Change is a good thing and ideas are always welcome here.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

O'McFitz - What does that all mean? Irish Surnames

Have you ever wondered what the "O'" in O'Brien means?  How about the "Mc" in McGuire?  Those Fitzpatrick's make me wonder what "Fitz" is all about.  Irish surnames derive from Gaelic and Norman roots primarily.  The further north in Ireland you go, the more the names derive from Gaelic.  During the 1600s and 1700s, the English definitely discouraged the continued use of Irish surnames in favor of English surnames.  Maybe that's why there are Smith's in Ireland.

When the surname begins with "Mc" (or even "Mac" which is typically Scottish), the surname suffix means "son of".  When the surname begins with "O'", the surname suffix means grandson of.  When the surname suffix begins with "Fitz", it means that these Irish are French.  Just kidding!  Well, maybe. It does have something to do with the French.  "Fitz" has a Norman origin, from the Latin flius, meaning son.  The Normans were from Normandy, France.  They conquered the Irish in 1169.  So...The Normans were French and brought that Fitz name with them when they conquered Ireland. Then the Normans were converted to being Irish.  That is really making a long story and hundreds of years seem like a short story.

Are the Irish, French?  The Irish were conquered by many including the Vikings, Normans, and English.  Take your pick on the ancient national origin of Ireland.  Was Ireland the original melting pot?  One could certainly find an argument for that.  I suppose I get my love of meat and potatoes from the English.  The Irish improved upon it though. 

When I toured Ireland in 2004, our tour guide was full of fascinating trivia.  As we entered the City of Galway, he indicated that at one point in its history, the residents tried to keep out anyone whose surname began with an "O'" or a "Mc".  I can't recall the whole story but I would imagine that applied to many Irish.  Of course, that did not last long for Galway.  This McGuire's thought of Galway was, "What a beautiful city it is!"  No hard feelings from a "Mc" here.

"O'", "Mc" and "Fitz" live on for Irish surnames although some have dropped the leading suffix for a more English or even Americanized style of surname.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Genealogy Research - Accurancy and Sourcing

I find that the more research I do on my family tree, the more questions I have. Who were all of these people on my tree? How did they live? How did they interact with each other? What did they do for a living? Were they content with life or was it difficult? The list goes on. I hope to find some answers along the way. Of course, as more people show up on my family tree, there are more questions.

My brother-in-law asked me recently about the accuracy of my tree. I did admit to him that the further away on the tree I get from myself, the more I have to question the accuracy. When it comes to cousins down other lines, I have to question how far I should take my tree. I’ve been warned by other family “treers” to be careful of the information that you bring into your tree from Ancestry.com. I know that I found a mistake on my tree just last week.

The time will come when I need to, again, carefully review each and every person on my tree. I need to make sure that I have source information to cite for everyone. I need to scan some information and make it source information in the future. I never thought there’d be so much to do and so little time. Again, I need to remind myself that it’s "not a sprint, it’s a marathon". I’ve got to pace myself.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

McLaughlin's Go West - Part 5

Thomas Michael McLaughlin and Ellen (Maxwell) McLaughlin moved to Napa, California in 1886, after living for 16 years in Lander County, Nevada.  I'm still not sure why they left Nevada.  I can imagine that the high desert can be a tough life with dry wind, drought, and few resources.  Afterall, Austin or Grass Valley, Nevada is out in the middle of nowhere.

As a farmer, rather than a miner, I'm sure Thomas was looking for greener pastures.  Napa definitely had the farmland that he'd be looking for.  I need to ask my mom if she knows exactly where his land was located in Napa.  In the 1910 and 1920 U.S. Census, I place Thomas, Ellen and their daughter, Catherine, living at 118 Jackson Street, Napa, CA.  Unfortunately this section of Jackson Street no longer exists in Napa.  I found the family living in the "Salvador" area of Napa in 1900. 

I wish that I had more information about how my great-great grandparents lived their lives in Napa.  I have a copy of Thomas' death certificate.  He died on February 5, 1926, in Napa.  He apparently had skin cancer.  He was 85 years old.  I see an address of 934 Jackson Street, Napa, CA, indicated on the certificate.  I mapped this location and it is a residential area.  I do not know if this truly indicates where they were living.  I am assuming that is the case.  I can honestly say that the person who filled out the death certificate could have done a better job.  It leaves something to be desired.  I really question why he felt the need to abbreviate Thomas' first name as "Thos.". 

From what I know, Ellen Maxwell McLaughlin may not have really cared for Kate Flanagan too much.  I know that they must have known each other.  They went to the same church, both lived in Napa, and their children married each other.  Jack (John Francis) Flanagan and Minnie McLaughlin married in 1904.  So why do I bring up Kate Flanagan at this point?  Well, she wrote a letter to Ireland about Minnie marrying Jack (Kate called him Frank).  She comments some about Minnie's life which includes her father, Thomas.

Kate Flanagan to Michael Flanagan - Nov. 8, 1904

"You will think it is about time you heard from us again. Well, there is very little in the way of news that you dont know of already. That wedding went off very pleasantly and the bride and groom are settled in their own home as happy a couple as you could imagine. Frank has steady work in Napa running a steam engine, he keeps up his studies in Machanical engineering still and expects to pass an examination later on. His wifets family kept a Dairy ranch near union Station had a milk route in town some years ago but her father met with an accident which left him unfit for any thing like ranch work so they moved into town. Father Slattery was a great friend to them in their trouble. So that is why they had him to come up from the city to tie the knott.

Minnie (Mary Elizabeth McLaughlin), (Franks wife) has been the main stay of her family for some years through her teaching and would not marry till the rest of the family were educated and able to do for themselves, so we can feel sure that so good a daughter will be a good wife....."

I love Kate's letters.  They are not only interesting to read but handy to have.  I wonder what happened to Thomas McLaughlin.  He must have been injured and could no longer work as a farmer.  I guess I have more to find out if it is still out there.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

McLaughlin's Go West - Part 4

In addition to Thomas and James McLaughlin heading west to Nevada, their brothers Hugh and Frank also joined them in the Austin area.  James, Hugh, and Frank had made the trek from Newport, New York, to Austin, Nevada, around 1877-78.  Thomas had moved west in 1870.  Hugh stuck close to Thomas working on his land in Nevada and joining him in Napa to again work with Thomas.  Hugh died in Napa, California on July 12, 1888, of diphtheria.  He never did marry or have any children.

What happened to Frank?  Francis "Frank" McLaughlin never married or had children.  In Austin, Nevada he apparently owned a saloon.  The following is his obituary:

Frank’s obituary appears in the ‘Reese River Reveille’ dated 06 Feb 1880: “UNINTENTIONAL SUICIDE. - Frank McLaughlin, a saloon keeper of Upper Austin, shuffled off this mortal coil last night by taking laudanum, (an opium derivative). For some time past, so we are informed, he has been unable to sleep
and last evening he took a dose of the fatal drug to bring on tired nature’s sweet restorer. He took a little too much and fell into his last long sleep which knows no waking. Deceased has a brother (James) residing in this city and another (Thomas) at Grass Valley, in this county. He was about 45 years of age.”

To be continued............

Monday, August 9, 2010

McLaughlin's Go West - Part 3

James McLaughlin did write to his sister-in-law, Katherine (Mahoney) Biche.  I have an excerpt from a letter.  I wonder if other letters are in existence.  Family letters can be so telling about the individuals struggles, happiness, and personalities.

James McLaughlin (Nevada) to Katherine Biche (New York) - 10 August 1891:

“I do not think now I shall return this fall as I expected. Frank writes me that I could not make a living there and he is ‘dissadisfide’ with the country, and says that Mike don’t seem to want him to have him stay there. He wants to come back here. I wrote him, Frank, I would send him $100. the first of Sep. and to come here. The boy wants to be doing something for himself. I shall try my best to send him to school here. If he had 2 years more he would be a good ‘schollar’. He learns easy and fast."

Just an aside here.....It is apparent to me that this generation of McLaughlin's could read and write.  Again, this is an important key to understanding more about my family and their lives.  I have had one researcher tell me that the earlier generation of either McLaughlin's or Maxwell's could not read or write.  They simply signed their name with an "X".  Hopefully, I have the opportunity to find out more about these past generations.  Since James and his older brother, my great-great grandfather, Thomas, were born and raised in Newport, New York, there would have been education available to them in that location.

Back to Austin, Nevada........Francis "Frank" Raymond McLaughlin was the oldest son of James McLaughlin and Julia Mahoney.  He was born in Newport, New York, had lived his young life in Austin, Nevada, moved back to Newport, New York, and returned to Austin when he was 16 years old or there abouts.  He worked on his uncle's (Michael) farm in Newport until he left for the west.

Frank had a tough life from what it sounds.  He lived in both Austin, Nevada and Boise, Idaho as an adult.  He apparently had a drinking problem.  He was tall and thin with the nicknames of "Slim" and "Highpockets".  He was a lead and silver miner.

The following is an excerpt from Mr. Capes research:

"The next news of Frank appears in the ‘Reese River Reveille”, the local newspaper in Austin, NV, dated 10
Feb 1917: “AUSTINITES TAKE LEASE ON CAMP’S OLDEST PROPERTY.” “ Frank McLaughlin and George Gordon have taken a lease on a vein system on the Austin Extension claim, known as the old Highland Mary property, owned by the Nevada Equity Mines Company.”   Shortly thereafter, on 17 Mar 1917, Frank continues in the news: “709 OUNCE ORE IN HIGHLAND MARY.” – “Gordon and McLaughlin, leasers on the Highland Mary lode property of the Nevada Equity Mines Co., have struck some high grade silver ore which closely resembles the surface high grade found on Lander Hill. An assay taken from across the vein where first struck yielded 709 ounces in silver.”  Again, on 07 Apr 1917, the newspaper reads: “GORDON & McLAUGHLIN TO MAKE SHIPMENT.” – “A shipment of fifteen tons of ore will go forward early this week to the smeltery from the Gordon and McLaughlin lease on the Highland Mary lode. The ore body carries a high percentage of lead and silver. The silver is being mined separately.”

Frank's Obiturary:

Saturday, 16 May 1931; “Car Over The Bank Results in Death of F. R. McLaughlin.” (He was thrown from the car and the body was discovered near the wreckage). “ It was discovered that the body was that of Frank R. McLaughlin, who was raised in Austin and for years has been a well-known miner and prospector in this vicinity. The body of McLaughlin was terribly mangled and there were a number of injuries, any of which might apparently have been the cause of death. “ An excerpt from his obituary on Saturday, 23 May 1931 reads as follows: “ The funeral of Frank R. McLaughlin, who lost his life in the terrible plunge of an auto into the gorge of Pony Canyon on Tuesday night last, took place on the following Friday from the mortuary establishment of H. A. Kearns. Frank McLaughlin had many friends and a large number of them were present at the interment. The deceased was aged 54 years. He was the son of James McLaughlin, who came here with his wife and children nearly fifty years ago. Young Frank for some years lived with Father Phelan, who was in charge of the Catholic Church in Austin at that time. His mother died here and is buried in the Austin cemetery. When he was about 14 years old his father took him, with his brothers George and Fred and a sister, all of whom are said to be surviving, back to New York and he did not come back to Austin until about 1918. Since that time he was engaged in mining and prospecting in this vicinity and made Austin his home. He at one time lived in Boise, Idaho, where he married and where a son and his mother still live.”

Frank did have a wife and a son.  He apparently was not the best family man as it would appear that he left them in Idaho and returned to Nevada.  I wonder if his family line is interested in knowing the extensive history about the McLaughlin's.  I wonder if they know what Frank lived through as a youngster and if they are even interested.

To be continued................

Sunday, August 8, 2010

McLaughlin's Go West - Part 2

When I review information that I have about my McLaughlin's, I find lots of names, dates, and locations.  I also find some obituaries and a few newspaper articles.  While there has been a lot of research completed on my McLaughlin's, I wonder if anyone has letters.  I have a brief reference to a letter or two in that 34 page document.  Maybe the McLaughlin's weren't big on corresponding.  I hope to find some information that tells me what my relatives were like.

Back in Austin, Nevada, in the 1890s, things kind of fell apart for Thomas' brother James.

‘People’s Advocate’, Austin, NV.; Wednesday, January 7, 1891. - “ DIED. – McLAUGHLIN – In Austin, January 5, 1891, Mrs. Julia McLaughlin, aged 36 years, a native of New York. Mrs. McLaughlin, who died at her home in Austin on the 5th. inst., leaves a husband and five children to mourn her death; also a host of relatives and friends. We extend the sympathy of the entire community.”

“Not withstanding the very cold day, a large number of people attended Mrs. McLaughlin’s funeral yesterday.”

“Patrick Martin and family, and Patrick Walsh and family attended Mrs. McLaughlin’s funeral yesterday.”

I can't imagine how James McLaughlin felt when his wife died leaving five young children behind.  Thomas and Ellen McLaughlin had moved to Napa in 1886 which was far from a decent road to traverse through the Sierra Nevada.  I'm thinking they did not come back to or ever visit Austin, Nevada again once they moved away.

James had a tough decision on his hands.  He owned land in Nevada that he needed to manage but had children to raise.  James returned to Newport, New York with his five children in tow.  James settled his children among family households in the Newport Area.  Apparently, son James (who was a toddler) went to live with his father's sister-in-law, Katherine (Mahoney) Biche, in Bigelow, Jefferson County, New York.  He was known as Jay Biche until he married.  The Biche's never did formally adopt Jay.  Frank, George, Mary Etta, and Frederick were left with his brother Michael and wife Mary (Murphy) McLaughlin who did not have children of their own.   They lived on the old family farm in Newport.

The following reference found by researcher Mr. Capes, appeared in the 'Boonville, NY, Herald':

"Thursday, 29 Jan 1891, pg.8, col.1: “ News from Newport – James McLaughlin returned to his old home on the hills a few miles from here recently with five small children. McLaughlin, with his wife, left here 14 years ago.  Her death about two weeks ago left him with this large family of young children to care for and in his distress his thoughts naturally turned to his old home, where his motherless ones could be better cared for than in the far west, away from relatives or friends.”

James returned to Austin, Nevada, to manage his land and property.  He died sometime after 1910.  That, however, does not end the story of the McLaughlin's in the Austin, Nevada.

To be continued.........

Saturday, August 7, 2010

More Pages To My Blog

I've been trying to orgainze my blog into a better format.  So far, I've come up with adding index pages.  Maybe that will help in knowing what I've already written and posted.  I've also dedicated one page to my family surnames so I won't have to continue to make posts with that list ongoing.  I've still got some additional pages at my disposal so I will get more creative in the near future.

McLaughlin's Go West - Part 1

I have written a lot about my connection to Newport, Herkimer County, New York.  My McLaughlin's and Maxwell's are from there.  I've also posted about Thomas Michael McLaughlin, my great-great grandfather who was married to Ellen Maxwell.  They ended up in Napa, California.  Napa makes an appearance yet again in my genealogy blog.  I literally have dozens of relatives who lived their lives in Napa.  I am still working on tracking down information about how my McLaughlin's and Maxwell's lived in Napa Valley.  I know the journey that they took and some of the people who followed.

Thomas McLaughlin and Ellen Maxwell were married in Newport, New York, on January 5, 1869.  They migrated to Lander County, Nevada in 1870.  The McLaughlin's made their home in Austin, Nevada.  It is now a bit of a ghost town in Northern Nevada off Highway 50.  By 1877, he had purchased three lots on ranchlands located in Grass Valley, about 20 miles northeast of Austin.  My grandfather kept a page with the specific map coordinates of the land.  That page is just another "little treasure" that I found in "the box".

To quote another McLaughlin researcher, Mr. Capes:

"On 18 May 1880 Thomas filed a Pre-Emption Application as noted in the local newspaper, the ‘Reese River Reville’, as follows: “ Notice Is Hereby Given, That the following named settler has filed notice of his intention to make final proof in support of his claim and secure final entry thereof, and that said proof will be made before the Clerk of the District Court in and for the Fifth Judicial District of the State of Nevada, at Austin, on the 16th Day of June, A.D. 1880, Viz: Thomas McLaughlin, Declaratory Statement No. 801, for the N ½ of NW ¼ and NW ¼ of NE ¼ of Section 20, SW ¼ of SE ¼ of Section 17, T. 21, N.R. 46 East, containing 160 acres, and he names the following witnesses to prove his claim; George Lammerhart, James McLaughlin, Hugh McLaughlin and Thomas J. O’Leary, all of Austin, Lander County, Nevada.”  By 1883, Thomas filed land claims for mining rights on these and other lots for a total of approximately 1,077 ac. In Nov 1884 he purchased a residence in the village of Austin, and then sold all the Grass Valley lands in Jul 1885, when he purchased a second city lot in Austin."

Thomas was joined in Nevada by four of his brothers - Frank, James, and Hugh.  Hugh lived with Thomas in Austin and Grass Valley.  The various census show him living with the rest of Thomas' immediate family.  Thomas sold one of his lots in Austin to Julia Mahoney McLaughlin, his sister-in-law, in December 1885.  He sold his own residence in Austin on December 21, 1885.  He packed up the family and moved to Napa, California. This article appeared in the ‘Reese River Reveille’ on 04 Jan 1886: “ Personal Note – Mr. McLaughlin and family expect to leave in the morning for Napa, Cal., in which place they expect to make their future home. Sorry to part with Mac.”  Thomas' brother Hugh joined them in Napa in 1886.

What I am not clear on is why Thomas decided to leave Grass Valley, Nevada, and move to Napa, California.

To be continued.....................................

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The Future Home of a St. Regis Hotel - Stanly Ranch

As of April 2010, a St. Regis Hotel is slated to be built on the Stanly Ranch in Napa, CA.  I can see in many articles for the Napa Register that this is being met with some resistence.  Affordable housing is hard to come by in Napa so there is group representing that cause.  Then there are the environmentalists.  The Stanly Ranch is on and/or adjacent to protected wetlands.  Also, the agricultural preservationists are there protecting the farmland and jobs.  Let's not forget the historical landmark people either.  They want to save the history of the Stanly Ranch.

In my own opinion if they can't get the Ritz Carlton built in Napa, how are they going to get a St. Regis built?  There are quite a number of high end places to stay up valley including bed and breakfasts.  It's not exactly affordable to stay the night in the Napa Valley as it is.  St. Regis would probably trump any price already charged.  Maybe it will happen and maybe it will be put on hold indefinitely.  It will be interesting to see how this plays out.