Tuesday, March 7, 2023

Winnie Doyle and James Farley

My father's side, the Nunns and Doyles, have been difficult to research, and my grandmother's sister, Winifred Doyle has been lost to me. My recent 23 and Me DNA test put me in touch with one of Winifred's descendants. Yay!!! Winnie Doyle married James Farley, and with this information I still had trouble placing them until their descendant told me they went back to Ireland for a time. I've sent my second cousin photos of Patrick and Maggie Doyle and a photo I hope has her great-grandparents, Winnie and James. It is a great photo (showned above) as it also shows my grandparents, Mary Agnes (Doyle) Nunn, Harry Nunn and Maggie Doyle. I'm waiting for confirmation that the couple on the right is Winnie and James. I have messages out to some other "cousins," though none are a very close match. And I also have more names to work on. Genealogy is never-ending, and that's what we love about it.

Joseph Agard b: 1746

I am back working on my Agard family line. I started this research in the early 2000s and recently organized the write-ups on each generation into a 3-ring binder.
I chose to work on the third generation, the family of John and Mary (Mason) Horsford Agard. I started with their first son, Joseph, born 17 Aug 1746 who married Tabitha Leach bef 1775. Delving into this line, I learned that Joseph and Tabitha moved west to New York. I learned this line of the Agards moved to Smithville Flats, New York. With help from the local historical society I was able to put together information on the family and surprised to see how many Agards are buried in the local cemetery there. Here is the write-up so far on the Joseph and Tabitha Agard: Joseph married Tabitha Leach (b: 20 Nov 1750- d: 8 September 1818 age 67) bef 1775. Tabitha was the daughter of Richard and Amity Rebecca (Bugbee) Leach. In 1776, Joseph was a new-comer into the Winchester Society. “The town of Winchester lies in the northeast corner of the county. It is situated in the ‘Evergreen district of the state,’ and is hilly and mountainous. The soil a coarse gravelly loam and well adapted to graving. Winchester was granted by the Colonial Legislature in January 1686, to the towns of Hartford and Windsor. By dissolution of the partnership between the two towns, Winchester came under the sole proprietorship of Hartford.” Joseph and Tabitha moved to Pawlings, New York in 1803, where he claimed he owned a house and lot with real estate of 334 acres. The couple had six children. In 1798 the first settler of Smithville, New York, Robert Lytle, sold land to Joseph Agard and Epaphas Sheldon, and families. Smithville was founded in 1808 from part of the Town of Greene. I surmise Joseph moved his family to Smithville because of the land that became available following the Revolutionary War and subsequent treaties with the Indians. The quantity of land purchase is not known. “Joseph Agard built first frame house “which stood in front of Robert Hetrick residence” in hamlet of Smithville. (Smith’s History) “In front of” is not clearly defined but believed to be across street from current location, next to Seebers. Later deeded (1811) to his son Erastus. Joseph and Tabitha are buried in Smithville Flats Cemetery, Chenango County, New York, Plot 169. The epitaph on the grave of Tabitha: "She was the wife of Joseph, Esq., one of the 1st settlers in this town (1798), who after many years of the greatest toil in this howling wild, in which she with her family suffered much by hunger and nakedness, was taken with a lingering illness which lasted several years. She suffered great pain of body and depression of spirit. She knew in whom she believed, and waited with patience the coming of the Lord. She was an obedient wife, a loving mother, and keeper at home. She was a succorer of many in the settling of this country, both Indians and white men, who often received food from her hand. She instructed her children to be always obedient to their father and to fear God. Every day she was attentive to prayer, bowing the knee to the Lord, Jesus, thus leaving a glorious example to all her sex to be obedient to their own husband and teachers of good things and chaste keepers at home. She had 4 sons who cleared this ground where she and all this great family lie." There Agards buried in the Smithville Flats Cemetery: Clarissa Agard (1788-21 Feb 1869) Lot 4; Erastus Agard (11 Feb 1787-1 Oct 1863) Lot 169; Erastus Jordan Agard (1828-17 May 1860 Lot 169; John Agard (1838-Unknown) Lot 169; Latiums Agard (1830-1 Apr 1848) Lot 169; Sally Carpenter Agard (1797-5 Jun 1863) Lot 169; Tabitha Leach Agard (20 Nov 1750-8 Sept 1818) Lot 169; Joseph Agard (17 Aug 1746-25 Aug 1836) Lot 169; Ulisia Agard (1825-18 Sept 1836) Lot 169; Tabitha “Roxy” Agard (17 May 1779-4 Oct 1814) Lot 165; Marianne Agard Grant (1820-1905) Pharsalia Agard Scott (1823-3 Jan 1866) Lot 169. This research opened up a whole new avenue of research and making sure I have the right Joseph.

Friday, August 19, 2022

Oral Histories

Years ago when I recorded and transcribed my mother's (Carol Agard Nunn) oral history, I also asked her to do an oral history of our family restaurant, Taughannock Farms Inn. That history was recently shared with the new owners of the Inn and I am now seeing bits of Mom's history on their menus. That pleases me a lot! At the time I transcribed Taughannock Farms Inn, the Early Years, I contacted Carol Kammen who did the history articles for the Ithaca Journal and suggested that other local businesses record their history before it's lost. Carol ran with the idea and published an article about the importance of documenting the mom and pop businesses in Ithaca. I don't know if anyone followed up on that suggestion. In that vein, over the last two years I've worked with Monica Wilkinson Kelly of the Edith B. Ford Library in Ovid, New York, transcribing 39 oral histories of the craft beverage businesses between Cayuga and Seneca Lakes. Monica has posted these interviews on the New York Heritage website: https://nyheritage.contentdm.oclc.org/digital/search/collection/nyheritage!p16694coll112/searchterm/Viticulturists/field/subjec/mode/all/conn/and In that site, click on Collections, Oral Histories, and then Memory Project, Viticulturists. There will be a list of about 27 interviews with the transcript and video taken at the time of the interview. Each one is so different and so interesting. On the left of the screen you will see other sections. Click on those to get more of the wineries and breweries that were interviewed. And then, get to the Finger Lakes and visit these amazing, award-winning wineries.

Monday, August 8, 2022

Casper Joseph Nunn and Catherine Kurtz

I've been away from genealogy research for a while - writing mysteries does that. So, I was delighted to see all the new information on Family Search relating to my German great-grandparents, Casper Joseph Nunn and Catherine (Kurtz) Nunn. New information that I didn't have is that Casper Joseph (he went by Joseph) was listed as a farmer on the ship manifest. When he arrived in New York City on 7 August 1882 he found work as a harnessmaker. Other new information was more exact information as to where he originated in Germany - Heidenfeld, Rothlein, Schweinfurt, Bavaria, which is in Lower Franconia. I also learned that he is buried in St. Michael's Cemetery, plus his death cert number. My great-grandmother, Catherine Kurtz, born in Lauf, Baden, Germany, arrived in New York City 12 May 1881. With her was Dorthea Kurtz. I don't know if this is her sister or cousin. Further research has to be done to learn more about Catherine and Dorthea. I will attend the Manatee Genealogical Society's German SIG this Wednesday to get more hints on how to trace back these family members.

Saturday, August 6, 2022

Deadly Secrets - My newest mystery

I’m excited and relieved that my fourth Caitlyn Jamison mystery is published. I began writing this book in March 2020 when the Novel Coronavirus copied/stole the plot for a suspense I’d been working on since December 2019. When I realized that no one would read what I’d developed, or would think I just copied the headlines, I put that book aside and started Caitlyn’s next adventure. It is this venture that has kept me from doing any in-depth genealogy research. I enjoy researching these books. I get to know a new geographic area, its trials and tribulations, and learn about new cultural norms. I wanted to do something different in this book. To that end I decided to have Caitlyn arriving in the Adirondacks. She is visiting the idyllic town of Pont-Aven, an artists’ enclave that welcomes all creative arts. A conference center is built to accommodate groups of all artistic endeavors. Caitlyn immediately falls in love with the town. But, on the day of her arrival, a young male librarian is attacked. And, against the warning of local law enforcement, Caitlyn decides to do her own investigation to find out who attacked the librarian. That young man is also an environmentalist and leading the protests against a commercial development planned for the town green that would ruin the town. Ethan is in Virginia working at his new position as the Law Enforcement Liaison Officer for the State of Virginia. That position is under the umbrella of the FBI. He learns about an item missing from the Library of Congress’s Packard Campus, and then has cases of cybercrime of valuable art and antiquities. Caitlyn’s investigation takes a turn when a murder is committed in the small town. She is challenged, but determined to solve these cases without Ethan’s help. This book has a lot going on between the plot lines and the characters—a great book discussion option.

Friday, May 20, 2022

St. Joseph's Home - Searching Miguel Rivera, Moses and Harry Burnett

I was asked to post this by researcher: Mbock7445@yahoo.com “I am trying to find a Miguel Rivera, Moses and Harry Burnett that were child residents from about 1955 to 1960 at St. Joseph's. They were about 8 to 13 years old at the time. I am trying to connect them with another resident that is looking for them. Any help would be greatly appreciated.” I advised Mbock to contact the Field Library in Peekskill, NY as the reference librarian there would have the latest information on access to the St. Joseph Home’s records.

Monday, May 31, 2021

Abraham Brown of Westchester County, NY, Scranton, PA, and Newfield, NY

My hubby finished a 94 page monograph on his Abraham Brown line early morning on January 24, 2021. A couple of hours later, while working out on his Nordic Track, hubby collapsed and was gone. My life changing event. We'd been married 52 years. One of the things I knew I had to do was to finish the monograph that he'd worked so hard on for years. The 94 pages is only the body of the document. There is also an appendix of all the obituaries and society notes. It has taken me a few months to be able to concentrate enough to tackle this project. I'm doing that now. When I finish indexing, the documents will be printed, bound, and sent to the usual respositoties. In the meantime, I thought I would share some of Ray's writing on this family through this blog. Abraham Brown was born in Westchester County, NY in 1772 before moving to the Scranton, PA area. From there his family moved north and settled in Newfield, New York. Here is an excerpt from that chapter. According to his sons, Abraham came north by horse and stone boat in 1809. He surely followed the Susquehanna River and perhaps took the Chemung River to what is now Waverly or perhaps Elmira, NY, before following the valley trails north towards Cayuga Lake. Land records indicate he first settled in the Town of Lansing but soon moved to what is now the Town of Newfield and was one of the first families to settle there. Their last two children, Adonirum and Holden Tripp, were born in New York and Abraham and Susannah remained in Newfield the rest of their lives. Running southwest from today’s village of Newfield, NYS Route 13 goes to Elmira through a valley locally known as Poney Hollow. The valley was originally called Saponey Hollow in reference to the Saponey Indians, members of the Iroquois confederation. By the mid-1800’s the valley was heavily inhabited with descendants of Abraham and Susannah Brown. Abraham’s homestead was located on what is now known as Sebring Road, just south of the intersection with Test Road . The barn still stands on the eastern side of the road and, according to Marc Whitney, who grew up in the Cape Cod style house across from the barn, the foundation stones from the original house are incorporated in the basement . According to the Agricultural Census of 1850, Abraham Brown’s farm consisted of 160 A., of which 70 A. were considered improved. His farm was typical of family farms of that time. He raised a variety of animals including milk cows and sheep and grew wheat, rye, oats, buckwheat and Indian corn. The Cash Value of the farm in 1850 was $7,000. Although an active farmer, Abraham Brown also established and managed a hotel located along the highway running between Ithaca and Elmira. Pictured below, the hotel was apparently quite successful. As noted in The Landmarks of Tompkins County, his youngest son Holden Tripp Brown said his father kept a hotel for thirty years. “His first hotel was a log house, but soon he built a frame house, and had a large patronage, often having twenty teams and their occupants to provide for at once.” The building is now a private residence located at the intersection of Sebring Road and NYS Route 13. Ray left organized files on this family, so if there are anyone researching this line and needs help, between Ray's paper files, and digital files, I should be able to answer.