I’m just shrubbing along….

So the past 2 days I have been answering some emails and working with DNA, if you know me I prefer digging through the records or traipsing through a cemetery than doing anything sciencey. Yes I made up a word. Anyway DNA requires sciencey work and while doing this I have uncovered a mess of what I call double cousins.

I am sure there is some correct term but my mind after very little sleep is not working at 100 percent capacity. Anyway my Daby and Coolidge lines are merging in more than one way. A DNA cousin messaged me and that lead me to Benjamin Coolidge and Olive Daby (Darby), who are my 3rd great-grandparents through my maternal grandfather. It also lead me to John Daby and Olive Bolton, who are the parents of Olive Daby making them my 4th great-grandparents.

This DNA cousin and I, along with the accounts I manage share several matches through these 2 couples. After getting some information I decided I should finish shrubbing out these 2 lines and maybe I would find what I was looking for.

Well I started with Miss Destina Coolidge who is the daughter of Benjamin and Olive. Destina married Thomas Bailey. Thomas Bailey had a wonderful obituary.

Part 1 of the Obituary that appeared in the Elizabethtown Post. Courtesy of New York Historical Newspapers.
Part 2 of Thomas Bailey Obituary – Courtesy of New York Historical Newspapers.
Part 3 of Thomas Bailey Obituary – Courtesy of New York Historical Newspapers

This obituary was too good to pass up and I put a link in my Ancestry Tree. You can view the Obituary Here: http://nyshistoricnewspapers.org/lccn/sn92061913/1902-05-22/ed-1/seq-4/

Sadly both Destina and Thomas died in 1902 only a few months apart. So in my shrubbing I learned that Lydia Bailey married a Hiram Daby. Hiram is somehow related to Olive Daby Coolidge Some ancestry trees have him as the son of John Lloyd Daby who is Olive Daby’s Brother but I haven’t verified it. I would venture a guess to say he is a cousin of some sort. Unfortunately his obituary gave very little family information.

Hiram Daby Obituary appeared in The Adirondack Record – January 25 1923 courtesy of New York Historical Newspapers.

Hiram and Lydia Daby had 2 children Maria who died in 1898 at the age of 21 and Warren. Warren’s Obituary was a beauty. It alludes to all kinds of family lore that I would love to prove. (Those documents are proving to be elusive. I have not shrubbed Warren’s children yet but at least I have the info to move forward.

Warren Daby obituary appeared in the Adirondack Record – Elizabethtown Post – March 29, 1956 courtesy of New York Historical Newspapers.

Shrubbing these lines is going to take a while, I need to bring them forward from the 1840s through the present day and you have heard me all talk about the black hole that is Jay, New York. This will be a fun journey and hopefully I will discover some useful bits as I try to figure these things out.

Thank you 30 x 30 challenge…

So far the 30 x 30 challenge has been great for my research. It is forcing me to be deliberate in my research and not fall down many rabbit holes.

Progress report – Day 2 I focused on Neil Osborne, Bergetti’s husband and made a similar timeline for him but it did not reveal any additional clues, so I began a timeline for their only living child John and it is in progress as I wanted to also use the records I have in my library (marriage certificate and death certificates). I am also trying to watch a webinar on Norwegian research, as I am not sure where to go next on this line.

Saturday( Day 3) I took a slightly different approach and decided to focus on one of my own lines by cleaning up some of those annoying green leaves on my ancestry tree. I clicked one that I don’t generally click “Story”.

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What an absolute treat I found…

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It was a full sheet (I have to print things out). I work much better with actual paper and it was a bit of genealogy gold. It actually referenced books I could find on Internet Archive “The History of Warner, NH” for one and read. Mr. Joseph Sawyer was a selectman in 1776 which I believe makes him eligible to be a patriot for the Daughters of the American Revolution. Hello, new patriot (he isn’t listed in the Ancestor Database).

It also referenced Judith’s parents, Richard and Hannah Bartlett Kelly. Which lead me to my Day 4’s research  another book on Internet Archive Screen Shot 2018-11-04 at 8.19.32 AM

Which lists, the genealogy in great detail and it also references Judith’s Fathers papers which I am now on the hunt for as I like to have the actual references. Also it provides the direct proof I need to link to a proven female patriot, Hannah Kelly.

So now I just need to figure out how to print the pages I need from Internet Archive for reference.

So I must say I am enjoying this 30 x 30 challenge and it seems to be exactly what I needed to focus and my Mom will be happy as these will be patriots through my grandmother’s line.


Happy Birthday Grandpa!


Today is your birthday and I miss you. I miss you a lot. Your smile, your stories, your love for neapolitan ice cream.

You were born July 10, 1910. The youngest child of Benjamin Franklin Witherwax and Minerva Ruth Beardsley in Peru, Clinton County, NY.  Your married Frances Mary Stewart in 1940 and raised 7 children.

I have wonderful memories of you and think of you often, seriously daily, you and Grandma had such a profound impact on the person I am. I also tell my own dad often that just because you bought me a horse doesn’t mean he should by my child a horse. I wish you could of known all your great grandchildren. You and grandma have left us a wonderful legacy of love and the importance of helping those in need. I always recall you taking in strays. I miss the days of the adults playing poker in the farm dining room or traipsing through a cemetery with you and grandma or the day we drove to Valley Falls looking for information about Sarah Beardsley and met that man who remembered her sister Lucy and was the paper boy.

Anyway. I hope you have a wonderful birthday and I am grateful for having you in my life for my first 29 years. I love you and Miss you. Give Grandma, Uncle Leslie & Uncle Marc a hug from me.





Never stop searching…

In 2017, I started listening to genealogy podcasts. Two of my favorites are Genealogy Guys and Extreme Genes, each one provides me with new things I may not of thought of or gives me an a-ha moment. This past week I listened to both and can’t remember which one said to look into the neighboring towns and counties to look for your ancestors in their newspapers.

My Beardsley line lived in an area of Clinton County, NY that borders Essex County. They are from the area of Clintonville. I had stumbled upon the obituary of Sarah A. Beardsley in the Plattsburgh Sentinel. She was a Larkin and they were in the Plattsburgh/Beekmantown area. She married Leslie W. Beardsley. Anyway back to the point of my post. Today I was researching on the NYS Historic Newspapers site. I came across this beauty of an obituary.


It really details her life. You can view it here. This obituary names her 15 year old daughter. It lists her sister Mrs. Thompson. It is genealogy gold to me. I knew a lot of these things from different pieces but it validates the research. I am in the process of transcribing the obituary for my tree and records. The obituary helps make Sarah a living breathing person.  The only thing that is missing from this obituary is the name of her Mother Ruth, oh and where Benjamin is but that is another story for another day.

Dr. Sarah larkin Beardsley

This is my 2nd great grandma Sarah A. Larkin Beardsley. She was a wonderful strong woman who went to medical school and blazed a trail for the women who came after her.

Never stop searching for stories of those who went before us because every now and then you will find answers to questions you never knew you might of had and you may find validation in research you have done before.



52 Ancestors – Strong Women

There are so many Strong Women in my family. They tended to not sit on the sidelines but to dive right into the fray. From my Dr. Sarah Larkin Beardsley who went to medical school in 1880 and became a practicing doctor in Jonesville, Michigan before her untimely death in 1886.

To Hannah Bartlett Kelly who gave money to help fund the American Revolution after her husband died to my immigrant ancestors who left Italy to come to New York and left there families behind. Strong Women run in my family.13179014_586372354857763_4566421874198837288_n

To me the strongest woman I know was my grandma Frances Mary Stewart Witherwax. She was born on Lyon Mountain in 1922. Married my Grandpa (Earl Elmer Witherwax) in 1940 at Schuyler Falls at the age of 18 and he was 30. Had my mom at almost 20 and then 6 more kiddos followed. She buried 2 children, raised her family and ran the farm while my Grandpa, who was an operating engineer helped build the Northway. She then also buried 2 sons and she kept moving forward. She never gave up and never quit. She had a stroke when I turned 14 and she still kept moving forward and overcame it. She was not a quitter and I will be honest it has been almost 14 years since she passed and I still miss her daily. I hate not seeing her and sharing the expanded knowledge of our family. She is the one who started me on this crazy journey. She would be so happy with all we have found and what we continue to find.

Love you Grandma and you are in my heart and big part of who I am.

52 Ancestors – Heirloom

Every Week Amy Johnson Crow provides a prompt for the 52 Ancestors challenge and I will be honest I get stuck on them and ponder them and then do not write anything here for weeks. My goal is to not ponder them so much anymore and get moving and stay caught up.

So this prompt is for Week 8 back in February and it is about Heirlooms. My family was not really the type to hand things down from generation to generation. Seriously, the only thing I ever really wanted was my Grandma’s Genealogy papers and obviously those made their way to me. Every time I open the box I get the warm fuzzies.

If you know me you will know I am a sucker for the handmade, so I do have something that while it isn’t of great value to the outside world it means the world to me.


My mom made the pie plate and the floral coffee set. When we were cleaning out my grandparents house in Florida I asked if I could have them. I also snagged the Grandma and Grandpa set my grandparents used on the farm. I have no idea where they came from but I wanted the connection to them.

There is only one other thing in my house I took for the purpose of passing on and it is from my husbands family. I have a set of 6 little cordial glasses. I believe they are Waterford but am not sure. I will pass them to one of the girls if they want them though at this point I am sure they would rather have the Disney Art my husband and I collect.


Above is a picture of one of the cordial glasses they are tiny. Maybe I will use them one day as dessert dishes so they get some use. Things should be used and loved in my opinion. These are just objects it is the memories they evoke that are truly priceless.

52 Ancestors Challenge


I have decided to take part in a Challenge highlighting  52 ancestors of mine or in my family tree so they might be Gerard’s side. I hope by sharing my journey I will ignite your passion for family stories.

Each and every one of our ancestors deserves to be remembered for the good or the bad. Some weeks it may be simple with names and dates and bits of information other weeks it will be a more in-depth story of this ancestor.

This is Week 1 and our prompt was start. I am dedicating this post to the two people who started me on this fabulous Journey. My Grandpa and Grandma. I have talked about them in a recent post but here is a bit more.

Earl Elmer Witherwax was born in July 1910 and died in February 2001. He married my Grandmother Frances Mary Stewart (July 1922-September 2004) in Schuyler Falls, NY in October of 1940. They had 7 children. My Grandpa had many trades from a Beer and Soda Salesman, operating engineer to a dairy farmer. My grandma helped run the farm, was an accomplished seamstress and wonderful mom.

I spent many summers with my grandparents in Clinton County, NY driving back roads and at the library researching ancestors. We also went on road trips to places where we found family and my grandpa had a way with people to get them to talk. Not a day goes by that I don’t think about my grandparents and hope they are happy with the progress I have made in the family tree.

I am happy and blessed that my grandparents shared their family history with me. 22219968_850890801739249_1224807655112702368_o