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.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Brick Walls of My Readers on Surname Saturday

Permission given to use clip art by Bio Organics

Over the years, I have received hundreds of requests for help, I would say half of them I am able to help, which brings quite a bit of satisfaction. However, the others, if after my suggestions don't pan out, the person is usually left with a brick wall. This past week, I received two such requests and suddenly thought, why not post their letters. I have my own Brick Walls on a blog post, why not post theirs. I'll either use their entire letter or parts of it with pertinent information. If anybody has information on these unknown people, please write me and I will put you in touch with the appropriate person.

In addition, if anybody wants to write a piece on their brickwall, please do. Just send them to me, and I'll post here. This will be like a query board. Let's see what happens.

#1 "Hello Barbara,
It is me again. I had contacted you concerning the Lowrey / Grinnell Families and your help was so wonderful. I have followed your blogs ever since and find them so interesting. Again, thank you for all of your work!

Well, in reading the last few weeks, I noticed your connection to Momence, Illinois and the Hess family of the region. I've hit a stone wall with my great-great-great grandfather Andrew G. Hess who lived in  Iroquois County Illinois (near Momence). He was supposedly born in 1830 in Pennsylvania although I found in the 1860 Census his birthplace was listed "unknown". He was a drayman and married Sarah Sapp (born 1836 in Illinois, the daughter of Asa and Allie (Thomas) Sapp. Her nickname was Sallie.) The couple had children Ally (1854), Phebe (1856), LAVINA SEREPTA -my line (1859), twins Calvin and Benjamin (1866), Samuel (1868) and Andrew E. (1871). Andrew was buried in Oak Hill Cemetery when he died in Watseka, Illinois July 13, 1884( Find-a-Grave) but no mention of Sallie's burial there. 

I was just wondering if in your years vast research, if you ever came across mention of him, his parents or his family? Hess is a very popular name since a whole German part of the  country seems to have used this but the geographical location of the family and the early date of living in the same area may be coincidental  or they may actually tie in somewhere to the Scramlin - Hess Family that you have researched.

Thanks again for all your efforts!



#2 "Hi Barbara,
I have started researching my Westover genealogy. My father was Orville Francis Westover (1915-1992). My grandfather was Thomas Francis Westover (born in NY in April 1885 or 1887). My great-grandfather was Stephen Westover. According to the 1900 Census, he was living in Oneonta, Ostego, NY. He was born in Canada in October 1857. He had been married to Josephine Shortsleeve Westover (nickname "Rina"?) for 22 years. Josephine was born in May 1861 in New York. Their children are Thomas, May, Della, Harry, Arthur, Roy, and Reva.There is one other child that I don't know the name of. Both Thomas and Stephen were boilermakers for the railroad and the family moved frequently.

I am wondering if this Stephen Westover might be the Stephen that is on your family tree (born 1859 in Canada, son of Orange Westover). Do you have any suggestions on how to figure out if these are the same people?

Thanks for your help!
Nancy Westover S."