Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Time to Say "Thank You!"

Several weeks ago I wrote a post about Thomas Smith, one of my great-grandfathers, and the difficulty of finding a man with such a common name in the 1800s. (Wouldn't it be worse today?!) I'd found him in the 1850 U.S. Census but not in the 1860 U.S. Census, which led me to believe he'd died between those years (which is still a posibility). At the end of the post, because I still feel like a novice at family history, I mentioned how grateful I'd be for suggestions of how to proceed with my search and where to search next.

Two fellow GeneaBloggers left comments for me: Claudia of Claudia's Genealogy Blog suggested I look at neighboring counties in Pennsylvania. Thank you, Claudia. I have not yet looked but I will. Apple of Apple's Tree wrote that she'd found Henry Smith, the same age as Thomas, also with children Nelson and Rosan, in the 1860 census in the same township and county in Pennsylvania and told me the census page number. Thank you, Apple.

I suspect she searched for the less common name, Nelson Smith, to locate this family. The lightbulb would probably have eventually turned on in my brain and I would have thought to do it, but the process was so much quicker with Apple's help.

Aren't GeneaBloggers wonderful?! Sometimes we're new, inexperienced, don't know where to look, or just have a temporarily dim bulb, and another geneablogger comes to the rescue with a census record, a newspaper article, a link to a new place to search, or just a different way of looking at the problem. Sometimes a brief comment causes us to turn our thoughts a different way which leads to a solution or breakthrough. Other times, someone might share how he/she solved a similar problem. All of this confirms to me the importance of comments when we visit others' blogs and the help, support, and encouragement we give to each other.

Thank you, Claudia and Apple, and everyone else who comes, reads, and comments here at My Ancestors and Me. I do truly appreciate it.


  1. Nice to have some help along the way. It always renews my faith in humankind when I hear about things like this.

  2. I had the same problem with Mary Smith. There were two Mary Smiths the same age in the same place. I ended up studying and researching both until I found the one that was mine.

    Blogs are a great resource for asking for help. I ask questions all the time on my blog.

    Hopefully you're able to bust through your Smith brick wall. If not, ask for more help. That's what we're here for!

  3. Those were good suggestions. I have used the "track the Smith with the least common first name" method to sort out Smith families and match them in the 1870 and 1880 censuses on my brick wall project. It doesn't always work, but often it does!

  4. I hope what I found helps. I spend a lot of time searching sideways.


I appreciate your comments and look forward to reading what you have to say. Thanks for stopping by.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...