Wednesday, January 28, 2015


Several of my blog friends are using the winter months to work on their history.  When I first got to be a stay home Mom, I ventured into this as well.  Too bad it is in Portland on my old computer.

When a couple of cousins and my sister urged me to organize a family reunion, I didn't think about getting all interested again.  But here I am.  Maybe I should have been a detective in my former life ...

I don't even remember what software I used!  There are probably better sources that are easier to use.  Any suggestions?  I will contact my cousin's daughter who seems to really be getting into genealogy ... including DNA testing.

It is a time consuming hobby.  Mr. Ralph's Mom was orphaned at age 12 when her mother died and her father went to an "institution" although we don't know if it was physical or mental.  My paternal grandmother died in childbirth and baby was adopted.  I finally got to meet him ten years ago.  He's the spitting image of my grandfather!

My grandmother's grandparents came from Germany ... complete with last minute surname changes or written illegibly.  With 11 children and a husband who was an alcoholic (yes, death certificate said cirrhosis of the liver).

So while I have no historic heroes (not even old favorites who've been knocked off their pedestals), and so far no rapscallions or ax murderers, it's still very interesting to me.  Now that I'm old and most of the older relatives are gone.


  1. Genealogy really is a fun hobby. Unfortunately for me, I've gone back as far into Europe as I can go with all four of my lines (grandparents) that I can't go back any more without hiring professionals overseas and at my age I'm not interested in doing that. I've got my last family history book ready to print so genealogy as a hobby will be a dead---no pun intended---for me soon.

    You don't really need software to build a family tree. You can go to to build one for free or go to and pay $99 for six months of researching their resources and build your tree there. Family Search is the Latter-Day Saints site and it's part of their religion to keep track of families. I prefer having a tree at one of these places rather than on software that can get lost or thrown out when you die because they will never perch it from their systems.

  2. I use Family Tree Maker and when I had searched as far back as I could, I uploaded to I too am working on writing down the history and the stories in book form. Hoping to get it printed out for my kids next Christmas. I did an earlier one in the 70's, but have found a lot more "stuff" since then. My Dad's family name was Waltz, but got changed when they arrived in New York to Walts--sounds more American I guess. We come from the Hannover area in Germany.

  3. Oh, by the way, DO NOT put any of your information on the LDS site. Every day, a team of people in Salt Lake City, go into the site and choose names of people that have died. If they aren't Mormans, they take those names into the Temple and "baptize them into the Morman faith. I KID YOU NOT!!! Got it straight from my Morman aunt-in-law. So, your great grand daddy might have died a Methodist, but if they have his name, he is now a Morman, LOL. Google it and check it out.

    1. Judy, I knew that ab out the Mormon church but I had forgotten and I just heard it in the genealogy class. They still have great search tools. It all seems so silly to me to baptize a dead person who never set foot in an LDS church. For me I don't care. They could baptize my ancestors into the Church of the Devil but that doesn't make it true.

  4. I have some information that I got from my aunt. Then my DIL did some research. Most of my ancestors originated in England and Germany. I keep saying that I will do some research on my own, but I've never gotten around to it. It's all very interesting, though.