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Volume 16, Issue 5 (May 2005)

Gregory Stanton Claypool, Editor

Louisville Genealogical Society
PO Box 5164
Louisville, KY 40255-0164


Meetings & Workshops:

May 10th - "Publishing Your Family History", Kitty and Tom House will be presenting ideas and methods for publishing your family history. What to do with all the stories, family history, and facts that you have collected or been told over the years. Included will be ideas on how to get started, how to proceed, and how to get your manuscript in print. Kitty is a retired librarian who has published three books on her family. She is currently employed as a librarian for the American Printing House for the Blind and librarian for Beargrass Christian Church. Tom is a retired engineer and is still working on his first book, as he tells us.

May 24th - "As I Cross the Big Pond to German Research" by Marguerite Miller who is a member of LGS. She will tell us what she has done to locate the villages in Germany where her ancestors lived and how to find living relatives after 165 years. She will discuss how to make these connections and later learn more about the history of these villages as well as the genealogy research done in Germany. Since many of us have German ancestors, this workshop should be helpful to us.

As a Reminder to the Membership
Regular LGS meetings are held at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints at the corner of Linn Station Road and Hurstbourne Lane from 1:00-3:00 p.m. Caffeine, tobacco and alcohol are not permitted on the premises.

Bullitt County Genealogical Society:
Meets Thursday, May 19, at 7:45 p.m., Super 8 Motel, Shepherdsville, in the Kentucky Room. The speaker will be Margaret Hardesty Day, retired teacher and globe-trotting author of "Paths, Pebbles and People" -- her topic: Let's Spin a Yarn.

Donations, Giveaways, Auction Items Needed
Before we know it, the Annual Family History Seminar will be taking place, so now is the time to gather together those genealogy magazines and materials that you are finished with and submit them to LGS. Also, if you have something to donate for the silent auction, please drop it by during a regular meeting. Thanks for your help.

The Louisville Free Public Library will conduct a Genealogy Resources Online class on Monday, May 23, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the Main Library, 301 York Street. The class will be conducted in the Computer Learning Center located on the 2nd floor. Topics include how to access free of charge the library's electronic databases (including HeritageQuest) from the convenience of your own home (or portable laptop). Parking is free after 6:00, and all are welcome.

20th Anniversary Luncheon

Louisville Genealogical Society invites you to the 20th Anniversary Luncheon at Big Spring Country Club on July 12th. A Soup and Salad Bar Buffet will begin at Noon. In addition to the soups, numerous delicious salads, including fruits, vegetables, meats and seafood will be served. We will also celebrate with a 20th Anniversary cake for dessert.

Larry Selby has been hard at work to make this a special anniversary celebration. Tom Owen has graciously consented to enlighten and entertain us with the topic "How Soon We Forget Changes in Traditional Neighborhoods Since World War II". Dr. Owen is a Professor of Libraries and Community Relations Associate at University of Louisville, Associate Archivist for Local History at the University Archives and Records Center, Community Relations Associate, served on the City of Louisville Board of Aldermen and now on the Louisville-Jefferson County Metro Council. Dr. Owen is a native Louisvillian and graduated from Kentucky Wesleyan College, the Methodist Theological School in Ohio and holds a M.A. degree in history from the University of Louisville. He was awarded the Ph.D. in American History in 1982 by the University of Kentucky.

Click here for a printable Reservation Form for the Anniversary Luncheon.

Editor's Desk: Boston "Pilot" and "London Gazette" on-line

"Missing Friends" - an Irish database - is now available on-line.
Boston College has posted a database of newspaper advertisements for Irish immigrants that were published in the Boston "Pilot" from October 1831 through October 1921. The advertisements were paid for by persons looking for family and friends who had lost contact. Many of them contain important genealogical details. The website, Information Wanted: A Database of Advertisements for Irish Immigrants Published in the Boston Pilot, can be found at
RootsWeb Review: 30 March 2005, Vol. 8, No. 13.

LGS Crystal Ball
Just to give you guys a heads-up on future events that are in the planning stages for now. Needless to say, detailed information will be announced as event plans are finalized.
Fort Wayne Research Trip - May 15-22
LGS 20th Anniversary Luncheon - July 12
LGS Family History Seminar - August 27

C-J, April 2, 2005:
Claude Henry Forroux, 62, of Shepherdsville, passed away Friday at Hospice & Palliative Care of Louisville's in-patient unit at Norton Healthcare Pavilion.
Claude taught our Saturday Computer Classes during most of 2003. He was a long-time member of the Louisville Genealogical Society.

There is an ongoing problem with people not notifying the LGS about mailing address changes. The copies of the LGS Quarterlies we send to the old addresses are discarded by the post office if not deliverable. It is costly to replace these, not counting their cost, but the additional cost of mailing individual issues and the time spent by LGS volunteers. So, please help in reducing the Society's overhead costs by keeping the Society apprised of any address changes. This also goes for any e-mail information you would like to continue getting; i.e., the Newsletter. E-mail addresses that are not valid or refused acceptance of e-mails due to the excessively high security setting on your computer are automatically deleted since they interfere with the automated delivery to valid internet e-mail addresses. Please keep Amelia Orr Debusman up to date.

New Members:
CARMAN, Thomas Kevin DeLeuil

From: Jeni N. Chism, 250 Oxford Drive #87, Winchester, Kentucky 40391 (859-684-0402)

Hello and Greetings,

Please allow me to introduce myself to you. My name is Jeni Nichols Chism and I am the Kentucky State Coordinator for the US GenExchange, an ongoing on-line database project to keep genealogical information on the internet free. My commitment is that this GenExchange Project be one of the top projects on the web. It is entirely dedicated to free raw data and is here for you to use and explore.

If you live in any Kentucky county and know how to type and e-mail, we could desperately use your help. Living in a Kentucky county and having access to a local phone book, even for just one city, can make the difference in someone's research somewhere in the world. Please know that you can never be sure what you might contribute that might make a brick wall crumble for someone. It's amazing what a little generosity can do for others.

We need volunteers on all levels to help us in our search for information to add to the GenExchange site. If you have a few hours a week that you can devote to a county and are semi-familiar with computers, we could use your talents as a county coordinator. Our county coordinators do not have to know how to create websites or programming of any kind. As long as you can type and e-mail and are familiar enough with the internet to use links and web addresses, you can become the CC for a Kentucky County. Please feel free to visit the KY GenExchange at and take a look around. If you would like to adopt a county for which you have access to records and raw data, please contact me at the e-mail address listed above, and I will be happy to send you the County Coordinators' guidelines. Know that you can also become an invaluable assistant to the project by entering information from your local phonebook or records you may have. If you don't have records to enter but would like to help transcribe some, contact me; and I can provide you with the data. We need the addresses of local museums, funeral homes, libraries and archives (including university archives), cemeteries, genealogical associations, historical associations and societies, churches in your communities, historians, courthouses, monuments and other historical sites, newspapers, schools, etc.

Please help me help you in your research endeavors and let's join together to create an outstanding project for others to do their research and please feel free to pass this on to anyone you think might be interested in contributing. Any comments and contributions will be graviously accepted.

Sincerely, Jeni N. Chism
State Coordinator, Kentucky GenExchange

Following is information from Audrey Smothers, a member of LGS, whose son, Rod Smothers, is involved with RW re-enacting and is working on a program with the Louisville Mayor and others.

The Falls Landing Foundation is a group of amateur historians and re-enactors who promote the early history of Louisville, KY and the Ohio River Valley. We focus on the actual lifestyles of 18th century settlers and maintain the highest standards of authenticity in our clothing, equipment, weapons, and tools. We offer demonstrations of leather work, wood crafting, flax processing, iron forging, cooking, militia drilling, etc. Our immediate goals are to place a monument at Louisville's Waterfront Park commemorating the founders of Louisville and to host a yearly re-enactment event to recognize the sacrifices and contributions of the first settlers at the Falls of the Ohio.

The Falls Landing Foundation is working with Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson's office, the Kentucky Commerce Cabinet, and Locust Grove to promote a greater knowledge of the history of the Falls area. We have also contacted many local history groups and hope to work cooperatively with such groups as: The Filson Club, The Frazier Arms Museum, The Falls of the Ohio Museum, Sons of the American Revolution, the Kentucky Humanities Council, The Brigade of the American Revolution, Greater Louisville, Inc., and others.

You can be a part of this effort by helping to locate and identify descendants of the approximately 20 families who landed at Corn Island on May 27, 1778. These families formed the nucleus of the founders of Louisville. We also invite participation from anyone with ties to Louisville between 1778 and statehood in 1792. For more information regarding early families of Louisville, please visit

You can contact us via e-mail at, visit or call Rod Smothers 502-243-0301 or Lance Missis 502-947-8898.

"The London Gazette", first published in 1665, is the oldest, continuously published newspaper in the United Kingdom and probably the world. Its 20th-century archive can be searched and viewed on-line.

Treasurer's Report
Bank Balance: $4,047.33
CD Investment: $6,021.36
Membership: 254

Tips for Taking Great Cemetery Pictures
Pictures are a wonderful way to document cemetery inscriptions on tombstones. It isn't always as easy as it seems, however, to achieve sharp, clear photographs of stones that may be centuries old. That old stone may be easy enough to read when you're standing just a few feet away, but capturing its three dimensional carving and inscriptions on a flat picture sometimes takes a bit of work.

What to Photograph?
Take at least two shots of each headstone, one close up so that you can read the inscription, and one from a distance which identifies the marker's location in the cemetery. If the gravestone is one of several in a family grouping, then you may also want to take a wide angel shot of the entire family plot (a tombstone's position in relation to other family members may provide a clue to relationships). Take several pictures (from different angles) showing the entire cemetery, or at least as large a portion of it as you can fit in a single picture. Unless it is a small family plot hidden in the middle of a cornfield, the front gates or entrance of the cemetery makes another good view to record on film.

What Time of Day is Best?
Proper lighting is the most critical factor in achieving a good, high-definition photo. According to tradition, many older cemeteries have individuals buried facing East, which generally means that the inscriptions on the headstones also face East. For this reason, morning light is often the best option in which to obtain the best lighting for photographing tombstones. There are, obviously, many exceptions to this very general rule, however. Tombstones may be situated so that they face the road, a beautiful view, etc. Overhead trees and cloudy days can also make photographing tombstones a difficult task. For this reason, you might want to scout out the cemetery in advance to determine the best time of day for taking pictures.

Lighting the Tombstone
When optimal lighting is not possible, several tools can be used to reflect light onto shadowy tombstones. Directing sunlight or other light diagonally across the face of a gravestone casts shadows in indentations which makes inscriptions more visible and easy to read:
Mirror - A mirror is a common tool for reflecting sunlight onto shadowy tombstones. Mylar (plastic) mirrors are available at most home stores (no reason to risk travelling around with a glass mirror in your car) and can be easily equipped with a set of legs (like an easel) to aid in propping the mirror to effectively reflect sunlight where you need it. Larger mirrors can even be used to reflect sunlight from a distance to light up tombstones resting under shady trees.
Aluminum Foil - A low budget alternative, and handy for travel, aluminum foil makes a decent light reflector in a pinch. You'll either need a piece of cardboard to support the foil or a partner to hold it.

Enhancing the Inscription
When good lighting isn't enough to bring out a badly eroded inscription, there are a few other methods employed by many genealogists:
Water - Wetting down a tombstone with a spray bottle of fresh water can sometimes make carvings stand out much more than when dry. After wetting the stone, allow the surface to dry for a few minutes, leaving the indented lettering damp, which makes it darker and easier to read.
Shaving Cream - A method used by many genealogists, shaving cream can do wonders at bringing out hard-to-read inscriptions. This practice is discouraged by most professional conservators, however, as shaving cream contains acidic chemicals and greasy emollients which make it hard to remove from the stone and damaging if left there over time.
Black Light - Suggested by some, a black light bulb (75 watt or higher) can be used to make a worn inscription pop out. While an extension cord may be a problem in many cemeteries, you can find portable, battery-operated black light units in many party or novelty stores (they are especially popular around Halloween). Cast the light directly on the tombstone, and the words just seem to pop right out at you. Black light works especially well when it is dark; but, since cemeteries are not always the safest place to visit at night, try draping a large dark blanket over both you and the tombstone while using the black light. This should create enough darkness for a very "illuminating inscription".

Save Your Photos - Copy your results to a CD for a more permanent record after making printed copies for your physical records and those you share with other family members.

Finally, get permission from the cemetery owners and/or management before proceeding to photograph tombstones you have found, remembering that some old graveyards may be on private property or there may be very strict rules sent out by the operators. I have found that most cemeteries are more than willing to help. In fact, at one cemetery I visited in Northeast, Maryland, the supervisor turned out to be a cousin and added a whole lot more information about who was buried where and their individual relationships. Couldn't ask for more. I sent back research data so he could pass it on as well.

Tag Line of the Month
Friends come and go, but relatives tend to Accumulate.

Genealogists Examine Needed Evidence At Lots Of Grave Yards = GENEALOGY

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To view past Louisville Genealogical Society Newsletters,
For July, click here
For August, click here
For September, click here.
For October, click here.
For November, click here.
For December, click here.
For January, click here.
For February, click here.
For March, click here.
For April, click here.