Category Archives: Genealogy

1910 Census & the “Bridgets of Malheur County”

This came in an Ancestry Weekly Discovery newsletter – too funny! (from “Overcoming Census Challenges” by Julianna Smith.  Read the whole article here for some good tips.) “When Marilyn Barnett Daniels posted a recent discovery in the 1910 U.S. Census on the Facebook page, I was intrigued. In browsing that census of Oregon, Malheur County, ED 91 (Owyhee, Township 20, and Township 21) she noticed that every “wife” in that district was listed with the given name Bridget. I had to see for myself and sure enough, there it was. The districts had been enumerated by Harry F. Lackey who also lived in the county. Harry, Harry, Harry, what were you thinking? (As I looked through the district, I could swear I heard him laughing.) Was he smitten with someone named Bridget? Or perhaps he wanted to ensure that he would never again be hired as census taker? (Hopefully … Continue reading

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Alexander Chalmers, Merchant Seaman

My heart ached for my great-great-great-grandfather last night.  I never met him – he died a hundred years ago, and these events happened nearly 150 years ago, but it was so sad. I had stayed up way too late to try to make sense of what I found on my England genealogy trip, combined with a week’s subscription to an online historical newspaper site.  A little more digging at and Scotland’s People, and I had the story. This is what we already knew about Alexander Chalmers before he married Henrietta Aylesford Murray: Alexander Chalmers was born in Aberdeen, Scotland about 1835-36.  (For all my Nutting/Chalmers relatives, this was Bertie’s grandfather. And for those of my generation who grew up with stories about Dodo, Bertie was her husband.) Anyway, Alexander’s parents, George Chalmers & Isabella Cheyne, were deceased and he was a widower when he married Henrietta Aylesford Murray in … Continue reading

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Genealogy trip to England

Wow.  Utterly exhausted after 4-1/2 days in England, but oh, was it worth it! I visited the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich (visited the Royal Observatory and stood on the Prime Meridian, too), spent a full day at the National Archives in Kew, a day and a half in the London Society of Genealogist’s library, plus a quick trip to the Guildhall museum a few blocks away, all to search for my two Scots merchant captains.  Found what I was looking for on Alexander Chalmers – his mate’s certificate number (now I can send for the actual certificate and hope his application is attached), and the ships he’d been on, including one that was wrecked off the northeast coast of England. Gave up on his father-in-law, James Murray, who was early enough (1840s & 1850s) to likely never have gotten a certificate.  And I have no ship’s name to go … Continue reading

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I’m Ba-ack!

Well, it’s almost Christmas, and I think I promised a catch-up back in September.  That just means I haven’t changed, right? Bryan arrived today, having finished his finals and a long work week.  We have two weeks until he goes back.  Fun time!  Christmas will be at the Peters’, some Irish friends here, and then we’re going to have a jolly time with Bryan’s big present.  Don’t know if he gets on here or not, so I’ll tell that secret after Christmas! It’s been a crazy fall here, lots of writing.  I’m the Genealogy Feature Writer for Suite101 now, so I have a weekly genealogy article to write.  Takes a lot more time than the Writing Fiction articles!  I got my kid’s time-travel novel completely re-done and sent off to a contest, but didn’t place.  Drat.  I’ll start sending it out after the new year.  And I did NaNo again, … Continue reading

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Welcome to Jennifer Jensen’s blog!

This is a big experiment for me, but one I’ve been thinking about for quite a while.  I’m not sure where to start.  I want to record some of what we’re experiencing right now, preparing to move from the United States to Ireland, plus some of my writing projects.  Undoubtedly some family stuff will show up, too, but I don’t want to get too personal. It snowed again last night, but I hoping spring will show herself sometime soon, even if it’s just for a peek.  I’m desperate to walk outside again, in between sorting out what we’re taking, what we’re storing, and what needs to go to Goodwill. Today includes wrapping up my look-ups for the Random Acts of Genealogical Kindness requests, and writing two articles for Suite101, getting boxes to put books in, and possibly sorting through old videotapes.  Wish me luck!

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