My blog has been changed to make it more appealing for those who have New England ancestors and want to see the area through photos. Things I’ll include are typical white New England churches, libraries showing their genealogical collection, historical societies, cemeteries, war memorials, in general, anything to do with history.

For four years I’ve blogged mostly about my personal genealogy in New England (Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, and New Hampshire), New York, New Jersey, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, and the Eastern Townships of Quebec, Canada. I still will, can’t forget my own roots.

Please check out the labels on the right side for articles. The header tabs at the top are a work in progress.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

"I live in Kalamazoo, Michigan"

Last month, I received a wonderful email from Terry Kott, part of which stated, "I live in Kalamazoo, Michigan. In the course of my own family research I was searching through old books at my grandfather's farm outside of Fulton, Michigan and came across an old ledger that I believe belonged to Stephen Eldred of Climax, Michigan. It covers the years 1837 to 1850+.  In it are entries for a couple of families in your genealogy, KELSEY and SCRAMBLING.

1) George Scrambling for the years-1837, 1838, 1840, 1841
2) Silas Kelsey-1838, 1839
3) Timothy Kelsey-1838, 1839
4) George Schrambling-1840, 1842
5) David Scrambling-1841, 1842, 1843, 1844
6) George Schramling-1844, 1845, 1846

The entries are very interesting to look at and see what transactions, what life was like back then. I thought that you would like copies of each page for each one of your family members. It has a page for Debt (What the person owed), and a page for Credit (What the person was owed).
p.s. -- I found you on Rootsweb, and then found your blog."  In a subsequent email, he mentioned there were also pages for DANIEL LAY and ALEXANDER two direct lines! Alexander Farmer is a "brick wall" of mine, so I did a lot of cheering.  Alexander's roots are my 15 year old "brick wall" and here was something concrete, other than a few censuses. These are the first ledger pages for anybody in my family, and now I have two, so they are indeed very meaningful. I am not a mother, but if I were, this would be a wonderful gift.

Terry did all that for me and we aren't even related!  I can see that the blog is helping me with connections and I'm glad Terry had the initiative to write me and the time to send the 18 scanned images from the ledger that Sunday afternoon.

Alexander purchased the following items during those years: wheat, wool, port, use of a horse for 1 day, corn and one fat sheep.  His work included: husking corn, shearing sheep, threshing and hewing.  The first entries were for January 1843 and the last was March 1846. A nice snapshot into their lives for a few years.  Fortunately, I was able to place all the above individuals too.

Note: Terry mentioned that he let Western Michigan University Archives copy the Ledger.


Amanda Acquard said...

I love random acts of kindness stories! That was so nice of Terry and what a great find for you.

Apple said...

How wonderful! I still have some things to look at at WMU. I'm glad he gave them a copy so others might find it there.

Brenda said...

Yes, there really is a Kalamazoo. That slogan is used a lot around this part of Michigan. How great for you to have this. WMU is on my to do list for this summer. I graduated from there and have yet to go visit the archives. It's not like I don't know where it is:)

Barbara said...

Thank you Amanda, Apple and Brenda for your comments. Apple and Brenda, you might want to see if you are going to WMU at the same time.

Becky Higgins said...

Aren't people in the genealogy community wonderful!! I always try to remember to take these kindnesses and "pay them forward" whenever I can.

Heather Rojo said...

Wow, compare researching genealogy today with how it was years ago. We were limited to the few archives we could drive to, and maybe a few we could write to. Now with the internet the information residing out there in cyberspace can be seen by anyone anywhere, and they can reply and send you more details. I wonder what the future holds?

Lori said...

Fantastic! What a wonderful gift you were given.

Tina said...

What a wonderful find. I love how it adds to the story of our ancestors' lives.

Barbara said...

Becky, Heather, Lori and Tina thank you for your comments (sorry, I almost forgot to reply). I am hoping Terry reads this, he gave me permission to use his name, and I think he will be surprised at the comments.

T.K. said...

How awesome! What a terrific gift!

Terry Kott said...

You girls are awesome. Yes genealogy research can be loads of fun. I like old books. My grandmother died and now the Ledger is mine.
An interesting name in the Ledger is Hiram More. He invented the threshing machine. It has been said that Cyrus McCormick stole his design when he came through Climax and looked at Hiram More's machine.