52 Ancestors – Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner?

Yes I am still 2 weeks behind but that is okay. I gave this one a lot of thought and there were so many people I wanted to eat with.

  • Sarah Larkin Beardsley – I would love to know her thoughts on Medical School in the 1880s.
  • My Grandpa Tony – What was like like coming to America in 1920?
  • Bezaleel Wood – What was it like to fight in the American Revolution?
  • Rebecca Towne Nurse – What was it like to be tried for Witchcraft in Salem?
  • Obadiah Coolidge – why oh why can’t find any record of you except in your Daughter Hannah’s will.

Then there are my husband’s relatives I would love to eat dinner with:

  • Henry Bass – why can’t I find you between 1942 and the mention of you in Robert Bass’ obituary in 1979. Why did you leave North Carolina and apparently never return? What drove you away?
  • Robert Bass – why did you never have any contact with your daughter again after your annulment in 1946?
  • To all those Irish ancestors why did you name your children all the same names?
  • To Neils and Bergetti Osborne why can’t I find you on a passenger list coming to NY?

But the person I would love to have dinner with the most is my Grandpa. Earl Elmer Witherwax. I would ask for him to tell me all the stories and family history, he had shared with me and I would take notes. He was a master story teller and not a day goes by that I don’t miss you and Grandma. So that is who I would like to eat dinner with.


52 Ancestors – Favorite Photo

Week 2 of 52 Ancestors is Favorite Photo. This was a tough one for me because I don’t have a lot of old family photos. Also photos take such a huge part in my life as a former scrapbooker. I would still scrapbook if I had more time. Priorities.

As I thought of a photo to share I pondered on the direction I wanted to go and finally decided I would share this photo of Henry M. Bass.


Meet Henry Morrissey Bass. He was born in 24 June 1886 in Warsaw, Duplin County, North Caroline. He was the son of John William Rufus Bass and Emma Faison Best Bass. He is my husband’s great-grandfather. He is somewhat of a mystery to me. I do not know much about him only what scant facts I have been able to find online. He is one of my Brickwall ancestors as I lose track of him in 1942 NYC and the next thing I find is his son’s obituary in 1979 where he is listed as the late Henry Bass. I have never found him on a census and his marriage record to Marguerite Brucks is proving to be elusive.

I love this picture of Henry Bass because it is one of the few photos I have of my husband’s family besides his parents. It was shared on Ancestry by one of my husband’s Bass cousins. This photo reminds me of my husband as Henry’s coloring is very similar to my husband. Reach out to those DNA cousins as they may share their photos with you.

I want to share another photo with you all. This one is more of a just because it makes me insanely happy. This is my son,26239503_10154903153950946_6122306407249987351_n Jimmy and Mickey Mouse.

Jimmy is 10 years old and has autism. He is non-verbal and very non-communicative. This is not the nice form of autism you see on television.

This photo warms my heart to the depths of my soul because Jimmy is interacting with Mickey Mouse. This Mickey was so patient and kind to this child while he was jumping and making noise. This is why Disney holds such a special place in my heart. They treat my son as a person.

Do you have a favorite photo? I would love to hear your story. Our ancestors are screaming for us to tell their stories.

Until next time.


2018 is almost here


The new year is a new beginning, a fresh start if you will. 2017 was probably one of my most trying years as a human. I am ready to begin a new year with a fresh outlook. I am beginning the new year with a no-kids trip to Florida with my husband, courtesy of a wonderful sister and brother-in-law who will be tending to my house and children.

Gerard and I are taking this opportunity to recharge our minds and souls. For me, I have so many hopes and dreams for 2018 for the purpose here I promise not to bother you with non-genealogical goals.  So here we go with a few of the things I would love to accomplish this year.

  1. Present a Genealogy Workshop or two – presenting best practices and how to get started. This requires finding a place to have such a workshop.
  2. File a DAR supplemental application on David Weatherwax, who will be a new patriot for the DAR, I have a couple of loose ends to complete. Things that I don’t believe are quite right.
  3. Put together a research plan for finding what happened to my husband’s great-grandfather, Henry Morrissey Bass after 1942 and before 1979.
  4. Work on learning Roots Magic and  Evidentia softwares.
  5. Utilize Timelines when researching for a cohesive flow.
  6. Begin taking on research projects.
  7. Continue acquiring knowledge through reading, classes, institutes and webinars.

So there are a few of my goals for 2018, I know I can do a few of these things rather easily. I found taking the Boston University Certificate in Genealogy was a great motivator for education and I enjoyed it immensely. I am excited to receive my final grade and continue what I learned in the class.

I wish you all a very happy New Year. If you have a topic you would like to address leave a comment and I will see what I can do.


Making people real…

It is more about names and dates. It is about putting the meat on the bones. To make our ancestors real. It is about researching their daily lives and proving or disproving family lore. Unfortunately, we are not all descendants of Pochahontas, some of us are just regular folks.

Newspapers are a fabulous way to make our ancestors real. My family settled in upstate New York after the American Revolution, mostly in Clinton County. For me I have found a wealth of information in the Plattsburgh Sentinel. New York has a fabulous resource of New York Historical Newspapers. BEWARE, it is a fun rabbit hole to go down. I spend countless hours there.

I know very little about my husband’s family and my mother-in-law passed in 2013. I remember many moons ago her telling me that her grandmother lived in a hotel. Well I am not sure if they really lived in a hotel but her mother went on vacation with them to Canada. I also found some of the only evidence of her grandparents together though I can not confirm it except in these two news clippings. Patricia Moran and Robert Bass are my husband’s grandparents.  We are slowly building  pictures of his Bass line and it is interesting and makes me feel like a detective as every piece I prove was done with no help. I do talk to my mother-in-law about what I find and I know if she was here she would get a kick out of it all.

Obituaries are fabulous sources for information also, you can sometimes find next of kin and children and grandchildren.

If you have research that leads you to Brooklyn, make sure to check out the Brooklyn Eagle. It is where I found the 2 articles about Patricia Moran and Robert Bass.

I am in the process of drawing up some research goals and a plan for 2018, I am going to want to practice some of what I learned in the Boston University Genealogy Certificate Program so stay tuned for an exciting announcement.