Friday, May 6, 2011

Weekly Roundup 6 May 2011

Completed monthly backup of all important data.

I ordered the pension file for James Babcock. He is Phebe Rosella Munson Babcock's husband. Phebe had applied for a widow's pension. I'm hoping I will obtain the date of their marriage and the names of their children.

I also ordered the compiled service record for an Alfred Porter, who is a person of interest. This file should confirm whether this is my Alfred Porter, a son of William Porter.

I received a photo of the Joseph R. Porter family from another researcher of this family. It was taken at a family reunion during the early 1920s. Identification was included so this was a very nice gift. Also received a gedcom for the Nancy Porter Pratt family from blogger Tom Pratt. Haven't had a chance to really look at the information, but is on my To-Do list for the upcoming week.

Transcribed William Porter's 1850 deed, and entered it as an event in my database for William.

I started adding source citation to the metadata of each saved census file image. (I'll be doing this for all images I collect). I also started a new naming convention for census records. In the past I had stored all census images in one large folder, sorted by a File ID. I now will be storing them within the 'Surname' folders. The File ID will no longer be a part of the filename, and will be entered now only in the Tag metadata. The filename will still reflect the year and place of the census, but will now also include the name of the primary person included. Primary person is identified as one that is blood-related to me. In the future I will be moving all census images to the appropriate 'Surname' folders.

I read an article by Steve Morse on DNA which appeared in the Association of Professional Genealogists Quarterly, March 2009. From this article I was able to determine that if my Great Grandmother, Mary Hontoon, was Native American, an autosomal DNA test should return 12.5% Native American for me.

I had a dream last night where I had my research plan mapped out for finding William Porter's place of birth and parents. The dream was very detailed and upon analyzing it I think it is a valid plan. Weird but I like it!


  1. You had a busy week! Do you send for the pension files from NARA directly or do you use a document retriever service?

  2. I have always ordered pension files directly from NARA. I have to admit I have never heard of a document retriever service. Are they cheaper to obtain pension files, etc. from NARA?

  3. It's been a couple a couple of years, but I used to pay between $20 to $50 dollars per file and I would receive them within one to three weeks of my request. The last researcher I used even accepted paypal!