Orange County California Genealogical Society
17 No. 12
Box 4513, Mission Viejo, CA. 92690
Mary Jo McQueen
meetings are held on the third Saturday of each month from 10:00
a.m. to Noon at the Mission Viejo Family History Center Institute
Building, 27978 Marguerite Parkway, Mission Viejo, between Medical
Center Drive and Hillcrest Drive. Membership is open to anyone interested
in genealogy. Individual membership fees are $20 per calendar year,
$25 for joint membership.
SOCCGS is not affiliated with the LDS Family History Center.
It’s Time for
the Annual Holiday Party!
December 18, 2010
10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Lunch will be served.
(Regular meeting location.)
|SOCCGS will celebrate
“Christmases Past” at our last meeting of 2010. This will be the
perfect occasion to share a favorite Christmas memory, picture or
ornament, etc. Take time from your busy holiday schedule to relax
and enjoy great food, holiday cheer and “talk” genealogy. The sharing
time will be limited to two minutes ech. Contact Bill Bluett (949-492-9408)
if you wish to be called upon to share.
The luncheon will be catered, except for dessert. So, if you would
like to share a small amount of a favorite holiday dessert, it will
be most welcome.
|At the November meeting the following
members were elected to serve for the coming year: President-Bill
Bluett, Vice President-David Flint, Recording Secretary-Sandy Crowley,
Corresponding Secretary-Patricia Weeks, Treasurer-Mary Jo McQueen.
They will be installed on December 18.
|There are no safaris scheduled
during November and December. On January 26 the safari destination
will be the Los Angeles Public Library.
|Francie Kennedy is scheduled to
conduct Google Workshops at 10 a.m. on October 22 and November 19.
Signups were taken at the September meeting and may be full. However,
you may contact Francie to add your name to the waiting list. 949-487-4304
or Francie@fea.net. The workshops
will be held in the SOCCGS Research Center in the Mission Viejo
Have you had a kindness shown? Pass it on;
'Twas not given for thee alone, Pass it on;
Let it travel down the years, Let it wipe another's tears,
'Till in Heaven the deed appears-- Pass it on.
~Rev. Henry Burton
Please check your newsletter
“1/1/11” means dues are payable in January.
|Have you thought about the release
of the 1940 Census data yet? It seems like it’s a long way off,
but speaker Joel Weintraub has been working on implementing the
presentation of this census for some time now. He is very knowledgeable
about what’s included in this census. He and two other computer
and database pros have come up with a one step site that will provide
you quick and dependable access to the 1940 census when it’s released.
Steve Morse, Dave Kehs and Joel Weintraub got together and have
provided the site, stevemorse.org. Their work should provide for
smooth access to the 1940 Census, unlike the Ellis Island site,
which crashed in 2001.
Thanks to our hospitality chairmen Eunice Murai and Barbara Heebner
who smoothly transitioned our break-time snacks indoors when we
were met with rain and windy weather. Our appreciation to those
providing our treats today: Jessie Ellison, Pat Yockey, Pat Christiansen,
Mary Lou Brasia and Eunice Murai.
Karyn Schumaker connected with the 1/11 Marines out of Camp Pendleton
about providing Christmas gifts for their children. Thanks to all
who donated toys today. Karyn is delivering them.
The December meeting will be our traditional Christmas party/luncheon,
beginning at 10:30 a.m. See this newsletter for details. See you
Brick Walls and
|Eunice Murai mentioned that her
great grandfather Able Reeves’ tombstone in Minnesota had a small
footstone on the bottom right of the big tombstone with the initials
AR. His wife’s initials were also AR. She asked if this small stone
was for Able Reeves or someone else?
Kathy Mauzey told us that footstones can be at either end of the
gravesite, and were most likely for the person noted on the main
Annabelle Farago suggested calling the cemetery to ask about the
footstone. We had much discussion today about ashes strewn at sea
and what the protocol is in doing this.
Ron Dempsey was above Bishop, in the Sierras, where she saw a small
plaque with a person’s death information and noting that the person’s
ashes had been distributed at sea.
Myrna Hamid mentioned a soldier who died on the USS Grant. The death
data for him gave the longitude and latitude where he died.
Donna Hobbs told us that there a quite a variety of rules for the
dissemination of ashes. Also, Donna recommends a visit to the Newbury
Research Library in Chicago as a source of many old, one-of-a-kind
books. The Evangelical Lutheran Library outside Chicago is another
good research site.
Pat Christiansen told us that she inherited her mother’s ashes and
has gotten permission to have her mother’s ashes buried with her
(Pat.) She has ordered a niche plaque about 8” x 4” with her mother’s
data on it.
Myrna Hamid suggests putting an amendment to the death certificate
in the county of death stating that the body was cremated and ashes
were distributed at sea.
Bob Reinhold’s father died in Ventura and was cremated. His father
had wanted his ashes distributed at sea off the shore of another
city. He got a permission letter.
Victoria Crane suggested that we post a new message on Ancestry
to bring our old message up to date so it can be seen. That old
query you posted a few years ago won’t be seen. She got an instant
response after doing this. When Kathy Mauzey was in Portland recently,
she took a picture for Victoria Crane of Victoria’s grandfather’s
grave and tombstone. Thanks, Kathy!
It was also suggested that any of us with contact, or other information,
on Rootsweb should re-up that information. Particularly, if it has
been several years since you added info or queries.
|Member, Barbara Gantor, was the
lucky winner of the quilt. Thanks to all who participated by buying
tickets for this SOCCGS ways and means project.
tears shed over graves are
For words left unsaid and deeds left undone”
Flints of Berkhamstead,
|Recently, my microfilm for the
Parish of Great Berkhampstead, Hertforsdshire, England arrived from
the Family History Library. Prior research on my father’s line took
me to this ancient parish located about 28 miles northwest of London.
Berkhamstead (variously spelled Berkhamsted, Berkhamstead, and Berkhampstead)
is the place where the Saxons ceded victory to the Normans following
the invasion of England by William of Normandy in 1066.
My 2nd great grandfather James Flint (1826-1874), his wife Zilpah
Bedford (1824-1900), and James’ mother Sarah Flint (born about 1811)
were all born in Berkhamstead. Sarah was baptized in Berkhamstead,
and her father, Thomas Flint, was married there. The prior research
on my father’s line showed a strong indication that his family had
been in the area for some time. Civil registration in the British
Isles began in 1837; therefore research before that year inevitably
leads you to the parish registers. On a recent research trip to
Salt Lake City I found the microfilm for this parish listing lots
of Flints. I came home with a commitment to get the film and see
if I could piece these Flints together and figure out how they all
The Berkhamstead parish records on this film span the years 1538
to 1824. After several trips to the Orange Family History Center
(OFHC) to review the film, it seemed from the records of baptisms,
marriages and burials that Flints were in Berkhamstead from around
mid-1700. A detailed search of the microfilm was hampered by the
difficult handwriting styles of the 1500's and 1600's. However,
I stumbled on a search methodology that helped me to get through
this early period.
Several years ago I purchased a set of the British Isles Vital Records
Index (a 16-disc set of CD’s by Family Search). It contains 6.7
million births and christenings and 1.7 million marriages (no burials)
in England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. I had forgotten about this
CD collection, and, as luck would have it, one of the three sources
used for the Berkhamstead parish records is the same film I have
reserved at the OFHC. The full date range for Berkhamstead records
in the CD’s is 1538-1899. After learning the search capabilities
of this rich CD collection, I was able to do a systematic chronological
search of all births, christenings and marriages in the parish for
the Flint name starting with the earliest record in the 1500's.
Even though I had not yet searched the entire microfilm, the extracted
records in the CD’s showed that the earliest Flint in the parish
records was in 1726.
When I found a Flint birth or christening, the CD collection search
features allowed me to find other children for the same parents.
For example, one search returned a three-page list of 17 children
with parents named John Flint and wife Jane. These births and christenings
range from 1757 to 1790, a period of 33 years. Since it is unlikely
that all of these children had the same mother, it suggests that
there were at least two sets of parents with the same name. Here
is an example where the search technique assisted in identifying
the possibility of more Flint parents than may have been apparent
otherwise. The lists of children I printed from the CD for each
set of parents can be used to review the microfilm at the OFHC and
find and copy the actual parish register entries for those records.
This CD collection is available in the SOCCGS collection at the
Mission Viejo library.
A similar parent-child search can also be done with the IGI database
on FamilySearch.org. After a successful IGI search, the website
will return the source information – typically a FHL microfilm or
fiche number. The source information also includes a Batch Number.
You can search the IGI database using the Batch Number to find other
children for the same parents after locating one child, without
necessarily having to search the entire microfilm. This technique
works for both U.S and British FHL microfilms. Go to
www.lostcousins.com/pdf/USING_BATCH_NUMBERS.pdf for information
on IGI batches and how to use this search technique.
then scroll down to “Take me to the numbers!!” and click on the
geographic area you are searching. You can also Google
for other information sources on batch-searching Family Search’s
Using a combination of the search techniques outlined above I have
been able to add many new unlinked Flint families to my Legacy database,
although I am not ready yet to declare them part of my Flint family
line. This is still a work in progress, and it will take some time
to complete my full review of the Berkhamstead parish film and work
out the relationships. However, this parish register search has
confirmed that there were Flints in Berkhamstead for a period of
150 years. I am very grateful to them for staying in one place until
I could find them!
ASHES TO ASHES
~Patricia Ann Dean
|Recent discussions regarding how
to deal with the remains of a loved one encourages us to look ahead
and contemplate how to “store” or archive their ashes, or, for that
matter, our own; should we decide to go that route. Unless
you are a notable (Greta Garbo) or infamous (Adolph Hitler) or of
ill repute (John Dillinger), a vested interest in your remains is
not likely to carry on to others.
Often, the “star” of the cremation event has designated just how
he or she would like their ashes re-located. In case they
have, all the better, in case they have not it is now the prerogative
of the custodian as to what must be done.
Scattering of ashes is popular and practical. However, local
governments often regulate where and when. In other municipalities
there are no regulations whatsoever. This is where common
sense must prevail. Example: Scattering ashes in a park where
a family is picnicking downwind might not be the right place or
What were the deceased’s hobbies or special activities? Perhaps
knowing that boating, surfing, golf, flying, skiing, hiking or TV
viewing was a favorite might help. All but the last proclivity
would bring a specific area to mind for disposal or scattering.
Ashes and their container could be buried with another individual.
Preparations for this repose would need to be made in advance.
Mortuaries do require a fee to record that the remains are being
buried with another person; and the grave would ideally need to
be marked some way to give the living a record of what has transpired.
There are plaques (or niches) that can be affixed to the headstone;
or, a separate much smaller plaque placed adjacent to the burial
Next, notify all living relatives in writing what the plan is.
Depending upon who your relatives are, you might want to wait until
the deed is done and then notify; keeping in mind that everyone
has an opinion. Remember, you are the custodian and are doing
or have done what you felt was best.
Further, notify the county recorder of the county where the deceased
died, as to where the remains have been buried; again, there may
be a fee for this, to amend the death record.
Everyone, no matter how modest his or her budget or how they want
to make their final exit (whether cremation or burial) should make
plans in advance. Emotions and finances of the living, after
the passing of a loved one, are often tenuous. There are many
decisions to be made in a short amount of time and, often, finances
are not readily available.
Some things to be considered and decisions put in writing:
Who will dispose of or will be the custodian of the ashes; or, the
location of burial (some ashes are interred in cemeteries in wall
- Casket, plot, vault and headstone preferences decided;
- Your casket does not need to be purchased from the mortuary
handling your arrangements; by law they have to accept a casket
that you purchase elsewhere. (However, some mortuaries
require that a family member be present at the time of delivery
to check for possible damage to the casket)
- Funeral or no funeral; perhaps a viewing instead;
- Obituary (how do you want to be remembered);
- For accuracy, write your own obituary (let’s be forthright
now about our accomplishments, this is not a job résumé);
- A selection of photographs to enhance the funeral program
or newspaper death notification;
- Pall bearers and honorary pallbearers;
- Speakers or special music you like (if that special hymn
or song is obscure, obtain a copy of it in advance and place
it with your final instruction papers);
- Does your religion require specific treatment of your remains
and burial constraints; if so, stipulate what those instructions
- If your death is caused by suspicious circumstances, or
that you died unattended, know that an autopsy will be performed;
- Are you to be embalmed;
- Are you to be buried with your wedding ring or other jewelry;
(it is recommended that all jewelry be willed to someone rather
- If the remains are to be transported out of your county/state,
the mortuary needs to know; a permit is required as well as
embalming will be done;
- Who ever contacts the mortuary after your passing should
plan to take at least one other person along for not only comfort
but for added counsel; mortuaries are a business;
- Who will dress your body for burial? The mortuary
does that, or, you can have family members accept the responsibility;
- Hopefully, you have set up a family trust so that the living
don’t get the “big hit” after you have gone onto that better
place where there is no inheritance tax or probate; only honest
|While these suggestions are by no means all encompassing, passing
should be a timely consideration; it is wonderful if we can live
well; we must plan now that we die well.
|I’ve always believed when there’s
a will, there’s a way. And when it comes to genealogy, that way
is often controlled by people we have never met and may never see
again. At the time I ran into the gardener, I did not fully understand
the significance of his presence that day in the cemetery. Now,
more than twenty-two years later, I marvel at the simple gift he
One summer, I was visiting my parents in Pennsylvania. One morning
at the breakfast table, my father began talking about the relatives
he still knew in the area. Having developed a new interest in genealogy,
I was curious and followed up each statement he made with a question.
After a few minutes, we jumped into his old Buick and drove up the
road toward the mountain village of Benton, where his people were
from. It bothered Dad that he didn’t know anything about his grandmother–he
didn’t even know her real name. He thought it was Rosie Yaple, but
no one had ever confirmed or denied even that much information.
When we arrived in Benton, we knocked on the door of an old, wood,
turn-of-the-century home. Women in her eighties came to the door
and let us in. This was my first introduction to Dad’s aunt Zell.
Over the next hour she showed us pictures of her descendants and
even brought out a family Bible, but she would not talk of a women
named Rosie or my father’s father. The more persistent we were,
the stronger she resisted our questions. We left the house, thankful
for the information we had copied from the family Bible, but frustrated
that she was so resistant in helping us.
We drove farther into town and decided to try our luck at the local
town cemetery. Maybe we would find a Yaple family stone or even
a specific stone for Rosie. We searched up and down the rows looking
for any reference to the Yaple family, but after going over the
rows twice, I began to lose hope. Out of the corner of my eye I
saw the gardener, dressed in overalls, coming in our direction.
I turned from Dad and walked toward the older gentleman.
"Do you know about this cemetery?" I asked. "Who are you looking
for?" he replied. "Rosie Yaple," I said. "Oh, Rosie," he said with
a smile. "She’s not in this cemetery. She’s in the small church
cemetery over on Mountain Drive. But you won’t find her listed under
that name. Rosie was her nickname. Her given name was Ellen, and
she eventually married. Her stone says Ellen Miller."
"Ellen Miller," my Dad said with surprise. "I’ve never heard that
"It’s called the South Dale Cemetery," the gardener continued. "Take
a left at the old county store and turn right at the dirt road with
the large oak tree, then follow the road to the top of the hill."
The gardener’s directions where very precise, and I remember thinking
that his detail was excellent for his age. He continued to describe
the location of the church, where the graveyard was located in relation
to it, and how to find the specific stone we were looking for. In
my enthusiasm I turned to Dad and started talking about how exciting
it was to have a real name to research. Suddenly I realized I was
being very rude, and I turned to properly thank the gardener for
But he wasn’t there. He wasn’t anywhere. There were no large trees,
the church was some distance away, and even the stones nearby were
small. I scanned the scene a second time and was amazed, baffled.
The gardener had just been talking to us, and now he was gone.
I don’t remember the details of his face, and since we have never
found photographs of that generation or further back, I have no
idea who the gardener really was. But I believe he came to help
us when no one living seemed to care if the information we were
seeking was lost forever. When we followed the gardener’s directions,
we found the small, flat plaque carved with two simple words, Ellen
Miller. No dates, no epigraph, just Ellen Miller–a completely different
name then we had been searching for.
Later, we found more information on Ellen through partial church
records and community archives, and the answers to our questions
began to fall into place. Ellen had been the town judge’s daughter.
At a young age and unwed, she became pregnant with Otis Long’s child
and, believing they would marry, she named the child Cleon Long
(who grew up to become my father’s father). But Otis Long ultimately
married someone else and had a family of his own–four children.
Zell was one of those children. The scandal haunted the small town
for years and Ellen must have felt shunned by the community all
I understand now why Zell didn’t want to talk about her illegitimate
stepbrother, or to pass the family secret along. But the gardener,
whoever he was, didn’t care about the scandal; he was willing to
pass the truth along to the family members who needed to know.
(Ancestry Archives, September 1999,
Copy write, myfamily.com)
New On Ancestry:
Black Sheep Ancestry
|Are you ready to search for details
that didn’t make it into the family album? Mug shots and records
from McNeil Island Penitentiary in Washington, records from Alcatraz
and the U.S. Penitentiary at Leavenworth, Kansas have been added
to the existing records from the U.S. penitentiary in Atlanta. Might
you have a repeat offender in the family? Search the entire U.S.
Federal Penitentiary collection—plenty of inmates visited more than
one pen in a lifetime!
Library Web Site
|The Allen County Public Library
in Fort Wayne, Indiana has launched a new genealogy web site. The
aim is to make it easier for people to find out about their family
ancestry without actually visiting the library’s Genealogy Center.
The new web site, located at
includes several free databases and portals, including the African
American Gateway, Family Bible Records, and Our Military Heritage
that have been developed by the Genealogy Center.
The Genealogy Center’s website includes other resources, including
full-text books that have been digitized by Internet Archives, the
Center’s Pathfinders to various areas of research, and the Community
Album, a collection of historical photographs for the surrounding
~David Flint - Ways
& Means Chairman
|Don’t forget to sign up.
Everyone who participates must renew his or her membership after
September 1 each year. See David Flint at the December
meeting if you need a copy of the scanbar letter, which is the
easiest way to sign up.
~David Flint, Chairman
|Please visit our website at
http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~casoccgs/ (or type SOCCGS
into Google) to learn about our society’s co-sponsorship and participation
in the World Archives Project with Ancestry.com. There are links
on our website to connect you with information about the program
and how to get started. Please consider helping with this service
I read of a man who stood to speak at the funeral of a friend
He referred to the dates on her tombstone from the beginning to
He noted that first came the date of her birth and spoke the following
date with tears,
But he said what mattered most of all was the dash between those
For that dash represents all the time that she spent alive on earth.
And now only those who loved her know what that little line is worth.
For it matters not how much we own; the cars, the house, the cash,
What matters is how we live and love and how we spend our dash.
So think about this long and hard. Are there things you’d like to
For you never know how much time is left, that can still be rearranged.
If we could just slow down enough to consider what’s true and real
And always try to understand the way other people feel.
And be less quick to anger, and show appreciation more
And love the people in our lives like we’ve never loved before.
If we treat each other with respect, and more often wear a smile
Remembering that this special dash might only last a little while.
So, when your eulogy is being read with your life’s actions to rehash
Would you be proud of the things they say about how you spent your
|January 8 – San Diego
Genealogical Society’s annual seminar featuring Marcia Iannizzi
Melnyk. Topics: “Don’t Reinvent the Wheel,” “Investigating the Dash
(1942-1929),” “Illustrating Your Family Heritage,” “Immigrant Research
Strategies.” Registration forms are at SOCCGS Research Center or
January 29 – The Whittier Area Genealogical Society
presents Lisa Louise Cooke at the 28th Annual Seminar. Ms.
Cooke will present four topics: “Google Search Strategies,” “Google
Earth & Maps for Genealogy,” “Genealogy Gems: Google Books & Google
Toolbar,” and “Google Tools: iGoogle, Gmail, Google Alerts. For
further information and registration contact Roger Mount (562) 693-2674,
or visit the WAGS web site at
February 26 – Hemet-San Jacinto Genealogy Society
will present Curt B. Witcher at a seminar to be held at the Hemet
Public Library. Topics: ”Using Church Records,” Mining The Mother
Lode,” Roll Call: Military Records & Research,” “Historical Research
March 12 – North Orange County Genealogical Society
presents a family history seminar featuring David E. Rencher, Familysearch.org.
Topics: “Find out What’s New & What’s Coming Soon,” “Uncover Hidden
Secrets to More Effective Searching,” “Learn New Skills for Using
Name Lists,” “Acquire Highly Effective Principles for Focusing on
your Research Objectives” 714-777-2379 or www.gsnocc.org
Do you need a
|Wearing a name badge at the monthly
meetings is an excellent way to meet new friends and/or possibly
a “cousin.” These are provided to all members at no cost. Please
contact Herb Abrams at (949) 581-6292 or
email@example.com. He will
have one ready at the next meeting.
Seminar & Safari
Bill Bluett ________________________
||Cindie Reily _______________________
||Pat Weeks _______________________
|Treasurer & Newsletter
||Mary Jo McQueen
||Jack Naylor ______________________
||Herb Abrams _____________________
||Bunny Smith _____________________
||Charles & Patricia
Eunice Muari ______________________
|Ways & Means
||David Flint ________________________
South Orange County
California Genealogical Society Membership/Renewal Application
( ) New
( ) Renewal
( ) Individual, $20/yr.
( ) Joint Members, same address $25/yr.
State_____ Zip ____________ Phone _________________________
Make check payable
to: SOCCGS (South Orange County CA Genealogical Society)
Mail with application
to: SOCCGS, P.O. Box 4513, Mission Viejo, CA 92690-4513
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