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, August 29, 2010

Google and the Movies

We all Google different names; our name, our friends, our enemies and our ancestors.  Along with Google, I am an avid movie fan, and try to imagine my surprise when I Googled two of my distant relatives and saw that movies had recently been made, both shown last year, one on television and one in the theater.

The first was about Georgia O'Keeffe. The movie was made about her life, and it was appropriately titled, "Georgia O'Keeffe" and aired on the Lifetime channel.  I never knew that, until the Google search.  Fortunately for me, I was able to rent the movie from Redbox for $1 and watch the wonderful cast of Joan Allen, Ed Begley Jr., Jeremy Irons and Tyne Daly. The story covered her life, centering on her relationship with her husband. The only genealogy information I gleaned from the movie was how her mother died.  What a thrill to see a movie about my 4th cousin once removed.  A short movie trailer on the movie is on YouTube. I wrote about Georgia in January 2010.

The second name I discovered a movie connection to was, John Anderson Adams, my great-granduncle.  John was originally from Michigan and moved to Beeville, Bee Co., Texas.  In this case, I just googled his name, and up popped a movie called, "Extract" which was released the first week of September 2009,  and it is based a little on his life.  In order to view the movie, I had to obtain it from my local library for free.  I was impressed with the cast of Jason Bateman, Ben Affleck, J.K. Simmons, Gene Simmons and several others.  It was a comedy, and I'll leave the reviews to the professional critics, and public.  The Adams Extract Company issued a press release at the time the movie opened. Below is part of that release.

"Adams Extract traces it beginnings back to 1888 when John Anderson Adams sold extracts in the harsh Michigan climate. In 1905 he moved his family to Texas. At the time, most vanilla was sold to pharmacies and was often labeled “Do not bake or freeze.” John A. Adams, a pharmacist whose imagination was stirred by his wife’s yearning for a flavoring that wouldn’t bake or freeze out, announced that he could produce a better vanilla than the one his wife was currently using. Working with just $6.71 worth of materials on top of an old icebox, Adams discovered the formula he wanted. To test this product, his wife whipped up a cake for the family to try. “John, this is the BEST flavoring I have ever used,” she announced. “Well, that’s old man Adams BEST,” he responded. The name stuck. The double-strength extract was sold door-to-door by sons Fred and Don."

Several years ago, I learned of the Adams vanilla history and a lot about John, but this year, something new was added to Google, that being the movie.  It pays to keep checking or, doing a Google Alert.  Speaking of the Alerts, when that option first became available, I did about ten Alerts.  I've cut three, so still use the same seven for several years now.

John Anderson Adams was the brother of Yates Adams, my great-grandfather.  I've written about Yates and his either Suicide or Murder in 1917.  I've often wondered why Yates didn't move to Texas and work with his brother in his successful business of manufacturing Vanilla Extract.