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June 24, 2017

June 23, 2017

Finding Irish Immigrant Girls

Thanks to Sassy Jane Genealogy, I found out about a very nice database. The Watson House Digital Archives has information on Irish immigrant girls who arrived in New York.

The collection includes fully searchable records of the Irish Mission at Watson House 1883-1954. 

Another way to find out more about Irish immigrant girls in New York is to consult Olive Tree Genealogy's New York Almshouse records. In particular the following databases may be of interest:

New York Almshouse Records 1782-1813. Records contain name of ancestor, date admitted, age, where from or born, complaint [illness], discharged, died, remarks. Start with New York Almshouse 1782-1813 Surnames "A" | Surnames B | Surnames C. Other surnames to follow



Almshouse Records New York 1819-1840

Almshouse Records New York City 1855-1858

June 21, 2017

47 Year Old Mystery Solves Murder Victim's Identity

No. 537 grave marker in a potter’s field in Middletown, New York have held unidentified remains for 47 years. An article by Michael Wilson, states "A murdered drug dealer dressed as a man, had lovers of different genders and used several aliases, successfully concealing her identity even well past her death."

Who was the victim and how was her identity revealed? Her burial took place November 7, 1970, her body having been found two weeks earlier. She had no ID and was buried as an unknown person. Many years later, her fingerprints were run through a new database and were matched to a woman arrested several times in the 1960s in Harlem.

I won' t spoil the fascinating tale of how the New York Times solved the mystery using census records, police records and more.  Read the full story in Solved: The 47-Year Mystery of a Murder Victim’s Many Identities

June 19, 2017

Rescued Funeral Card Louis Burmister age 22

Original Funeral Card owned by Lorine McGinnis Schulze
This is another rescued Funeral Card. Louis Burmister was a young man with his whole life ahead of him when he died in 1886.

His Funeral Card reads:

Died at Collingwood on Monday June 21st, 1886, Louis Burmister, aged 22 years and 9 months.

Funeral will leave the family residence, Cedar Street on Thursday June 24th at 1:30 p.m for the Dunkerd Cemetery.

After rescuing this card from a flea market I wanted to give Louis a voice. I began my search at Ancestry. 9 year old Lewis (sic) is found in the 1871 census for Puslinch Township Wellington County Ontario with his rather large family of parents Ludwig (54) and Fredericka (33) and his 5 siblings ages 2 to 13.

Anyone interested in having this Funeral Card can contact me by leaving a comment on this blog post. Be sure to provide your email address.

June 18, 2017

Nursing Sister Philips WW1 Photo Album 38V British Cemetery Le Trepont

This Photo Archive consists of a small autograph album (6.5" by 5.25") kept by Constance (Connie) Philips as a memento of her time serving as a nurse during World War One.

The majority of the photos and items are from 1915, when she served as a nurse in France and Britain.

British Cemetery Le Trepont
The album and all photographs, postcards, and other ephemera contained in the album belong to Karin Armstrong and may not be copied or republished without her written permission. The images will be published on Olive Tree Genealogy with permission.

Each image has been designated an "R" for Recto or a "V" for Verso plus an album page number. Recto is the right-hand side page of a bound book while Verso is the left-hand side page.

I will be posting the entire album and my additional research on the individuals identified in Connie's album over the coming months so please check back frequently to view these historic photos. The easiest way to see what has been published is to click on the topic "Nursing Sister WW1 Photos"

June 16, 2017

A medieval cave has recently been discovered beneath a farmer's field in Shropshire. Apparently the cave was used by a religious order that fought in the Crusades. The Knights Templar would have used this cave and walked its labrynthe of corridors in the 13th Century.


Continue reading this fascinating story Stunning 700-year-old giant cave used by Knights Templar found behind a rabbit hole in the British countryside

One of my ancestors, the Dutchman Jan Damen,  was part of the Crusades and he is in a painting by Jan van Scorel circa 1541.







Jan Damen, far right, one of five members of the Utrecht Brotherhood of Jerusalem Pilgrims