• Posted in: Family Tree Family Tree: Thespian Roots

    This weekend I will be performing in a production of Little Shop of Horrors at The Belfry Theater in Noblesville, and it has led me to consider Indianapolis’ theatrical past. Theater has a long history...

    Read More 5 Comments
  • Posted in: Family Tree Family Tree: Searching the Web

    Most genealogy education is focused on using specific databases or collections, and there is often an implied warning against random online searches. After all it can be overwhelming and confusing to type a name into...

    Read More
  • Posted in: Family Tree Family Tree: Get It Published!

    This is just a portion of the tree I created years ago on Ancestry.com Right now in Salt Lake City, Utah, thousands of genealogists have gathered for RootsTech, one of the biggest genealogy conferences this...

    Read More 1 Comments
  • Posted in: Family Tree Family Tree: The Irish Beyond Indy

    We talked about the Irish in Indianapolis in a previous post, where we learned that any of you with deep roots in the city are also fairly likely to have roots in Ireland. But discovering that...

    Read More
  • Posted in: Family Tree Family Tree: Maiden Names

    Women at an Indianpolis Cotton Mill, August 1908. Image via Library of Congress, LOT 7479, v. 1, no. 0009 As you may know, March is Women’s History Month. Therefore I thought it would be appropriate to...

    Read More
  • Posted in: Family Tree Family Tree: No Love Sincerer

    Cover of a cookbook compiled by Marie Wanee Schuster“There is no love sincerer than the love of food.” ~ George Bernard Shaw As I recreate the stories of my ancestors I often wonder how they...

    Read More 1 Comments
  • Posted in: Family Tree Family Tree: DNA (Part 1)

    I recently purchased two DNA kits. One was from Ancestry DNA, a part of the larger Ancestry.com. The other was from a much lesser known company with a very similar name, Ancestry by DNA. My...

    Read More 7 Comments
  • Posted in: Family Tree Family Tree: Scrapbooks

    If you know me, then you know that I’m a scrapbooker. That’s right, I scrapbook, and I’m not ashamed to admit it. There are many reasons why I choose to scrapbook my daily life and...

    Read More 2 Comments
  • Posted in: Family Tree Family Tree: The Indiana Girl’s School

    In 1869, Indiana established the first detention facility in the country that was exclusively for females. Originally named the Indiana Reformatory Institution for Women and Girls, it was located just east of downtown (on Randolph...

    Read More 16 Comments
  • Posted in: Family Tree Family Tree: Our Female Ancestors

    My great-granmother, Anna Buttchen, and her sister, Lizzie. As family historians, we often focus on our male relatives. After all, they are the ones who give us our surnames, and they are often much easier to...

    Read More 8 Comments
  • Posted in: Family Tree Family Tree: A City of Immigrants

    Whether they came from Germany, Ireland, Asia, or South America, odds are that at least some of your ancestors were immigrants. People came from all over the world to settle in Indiana, and they did...

    Read More 5 Comments
  • Posted in: Family Tree Family Tree: Sprechen Sie Deutsch?

    Much has been written on this site and elsewhere about Indianapolis’s German influences. German immigrants played a big part in shaping the city from very early on. From its architecture to its laws and customs,...

    Read More 8 Comments
  • Posted in: Family Tree Kickstart Your Family Tree: Putting It Together

    So far we’ve dug through census records, searched cemeteries, and combed through military records. You’ve found your great-aunt Martha’s birth record and your dear uncle Edgar’s obituary. But what do you do with all the...

    Read More
  • Posted in: Family Tree Kickstart Your Family Tree: Wills & Probate Records

    This application for administration from Clinton County shows that the deceased died without a will. It is full of genealogical information, and it’s just one page from the probate file for this individual. About Wills...

    Read More
  • Posted in: Family Tree Kickstart Your Family Tree: Church Records

    Photo of First Presbyterian Church in Indianapolis by the Detroit Publishing Co., via the Library of Congress (LC-D4-17326) When people settled in a new area, one of the first things they usually established was a...

    Read More 1 Comments
  • Posted in: Family Tree Kickstart Your Family Tree: City Directories

    The tile page from the 1858-1859 Indianapolis City Directory, via IUPUI City directories may be one of the most overlooked sources of genealogical information available. At the same time, they are some of the most...

    Read More 2 Comments
  • Posted in: Family Tree Kickstart Your Family Tree: Discovering Your Family’s Heroes

    My grandfather, Merle Longwell (2nd from the left), with his WWII service buddies. Earlier this week I stopped in at a local antique shop, and I was struck by the number of photographs, photo albums,...

    Read More 3 Comments
  • Posted in: Family Tree Kickstart Your Family Tree: Newspapers

    Up to this point, we’ve been focusing on the basic facts (the names, dates, and places) of our ancestors’ lives. But our relatives were more than just names and dates. They were real people with...

    Read More 1 Comments
  • Posted in: Family Tree Kickstart Your Family Tree: Obituaries

    Over the last couple of weeks we’ve discussed several sources of information pertaining to an individual’s death. If you’ve been unsuccessful in your attempts to find either a death record or a burial record, then...

    Read More 1 Comments
  • Posted in: Family Tree Kickstart Your Family Tree: Cemetery Records

    Last week I mentioned that one way of discovering specific information regarding the place and date of your ancestor’s death is through cemeteries. If you know the area where your ancestor lived at the time...

    Read More 1 Comments