The Value of Stateline Genealogy Club @ Beloit Public Library & Interlibrary Loan & Library Staff

The Value of Stateline Genealogy Club

@ Beloit Public Library & Interlibrary Loan

February 16, 2017

Vicki’s note – a recognition from Cheryl’s, and my supervisor, Michael DeVries and from author Jim Lateer.  We will have the book in the Beloit Public Library.  Thank you Jim.  It is nice for librarians to be appreciated by an author for our work, which we love doing anyway.  The same type of help is available at public libraries for anyone looking to gain genealogical resources.


Beloit author Jim Lateer recognized and praised Cheryl Blake, Vicki Hahn, and the staff, in the introduction of his newly published 2018 book on the history of the John F. Kennedy Assassination – “The Three Barons”. Jim is a regular member of Vicki’s Stateline Genealogy Club @ Beloit Public Library and a major Interlibrary Loan Services user.
From the acknowledgments:

“The Three Baron’s Introduction:

“Next, I would like to thank the staff of the Beloit (Wisconsin) Public Library. Cheryl Blake is an expert in inter-library loans and a veteran of 30 plus years in that specialty. Vicki Hahn, also of the Beloit Public Library has arranged training for me and others on the best use of the incredible resources of the Wisconsin Historical Society and its unparalleled collection of history books, one of the best such collections anywhere.”

Michael DeVries


And from Barnes and Nobel:

And from  Google Books:

The Three Barons: The Organizational Chart of the JFK Assassination

Front Cover
Trine Day, Dec 29, 2017History384 pages

The Three Barons proves that it is possible (with enough research), to reconstruct the organizational chart of the JFK plot. This book provides the first useful, in-depth analysis of the 120 phone calls by LBJ in the week following the assassination regarding such items as the Civil Rights Act, demands made by the military and similar political power plays. The Three Barons presents the first use of statistical factor analysis to identify the plotters, using a database of 30 books and 1500 names and examines the military officers allegedly close to the plot, such as NATO Commander Gen. Lyman Lemnitzer, General Lauris Norstad, and JFK’s advisor, Gen. Maxwell Taylor. For the first time, the National Security Council, its structure and its members, are scrutinized for their obvious role in the JFK plot. More specifically, The Three Barons explains the role of Treasury Secretary C. Douglas Dillon and his father, investment banker Clarence Dillon, who likely had fascist sympathies. This book identifies, for the first time, why there were three actual barons involved in the plot and why at least three members of the Warren Commission had powerful Nazi connections, beginning in WWII and continuing through November 22, 1963.


American Community Survey (ACS)

American Community Survey (ACS)

See the source image

February 13, 2018

Vicki’s note – so my Mom got the American Community Survey (ACS) to fill out.  Very interesting process.  We really had to dig to get all of the financial, and housing information needed.  See my emphasis below.  By the way – there are huge fines if someone does not fill the survey out.  And there is a life-time vow of silence for staff with even huger fines if they divulge information. The actual answer numbers are abstracted to statistics.

In this era of identity theft, you may want to contact the sources at to verify the legitimacy of the survey phone, email, in person, or U.S. mail contacts.

See the source image

I had done the follow-up enumeration for the 1990 U.S. Federal Census.  I remember that some folks got pretty hostile, especially if they had been asked to do the long form.  It really can feel like an invasion of privacy, but no more so than applying for a bank loan to buy a house or car.

These statistics are useful to the government planners, and  us genealogists, to understand the historical and current economic/living conditions in the area of a city, a locality, or a state.  We know that the United States Federal Census is every 10 years, but I did forgot that the American Community Survey (ACS) is being done every year.

(From the United States Census Bureau):



Top Questions About the Survey

Every year, the U.S. Census Bureau contacts over 3.5 million households across the country to participate in the American Community Survey. When you respond to the survey, you are doing your part to ensure decisions about your community can be made using the best data available.

If your household was contacted by the Census Bureau and you would like to learn more about the American Community Survey, click on an item of interest below and view our short video.


We collect responses to the American Community Survey in four different ways: internet, mail, telephone, and in-person interviews. Learn more about the different response options available to you and how you can respond to the survey today.

The American Community Survey is a legitimate survey conducted by the Census Bureau.

Unlike the every-10-year census, this survey continues all year, every year. We randomly sample addresses in every state, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.

Answers are collected to create up-to-date statistics used by many federal, state, tribal, and local leaders. Some American Community Survey questions have been asked in the decennial census since it first began in 1790.


 Is my response to the American Community Survey required?

If your address was selected for the American Community Survey, you are legally obligated to answer all the questions, as accurately as you can. The relevant laws are Title 18 U.S.C Section 3571 and Section 3559, which amends Title 13 U.S.C. Section 221.

Your answers are important. The American Community Survey is sent to a small percentage of our population on a rotating basis. As part of a sample, you represent many other people. Learn how you can respond to the survey today.

Why is the ACS required by law?

Response to the survey is required by law because the American Community Survey is part of the decennial census, replacing the “long form” that previously was sent to a percentage of households once every 10 years. Learn more about what would happen to the American Community Survey if it was not required.

Your address was randomly selected through a process of scientific sampling and represents thousands of other households like yours. We randomly select about 3.5 million addresses each year to respond to the survey.

Read more at:

“Cenotaph” – Genealogy Word for The Day.

“Cenotaph” – Genealogy Word for The Day.

Vicki Ruthe Hahn

February 9, 2018

Your ancestor may have more than one FAG memorial ID #.  You would add an (Alternate) Alt. Burial event to record the second memorial ID numbers/location.  It may be that FAG needs to merge 2 records, or (a common situation) is that a person will be buried in one place and have a Cenotaph in another location.  I had not really heard of that term before.

 Here is the Wikipedia definition for all of us –



” Cenotaph – A cenotaph is an empty tomb or a monument erected in honour of a person or group of people whose remains are elsewhere. It can also be the initial tomb for a person who has since been reinterred elsewhere. Although the vast majority of cenotaphs honour individuals, many noted cenotaphs are instead dedicated to the memories of groups of individuals, such as the lost soldiers of a country or of an empire.”



Here is further information from FAG about how they use cenotaphs-


“A cenotaph is a marker within a cemetery placed in honor of a person whose remains are buried elsewhere. It may also be the original marker for someone who has since been reinterred elsewhere. To add a cenotaph, create a memorial. Then email with a link to the memorial and request to have the memorial designated a cenotaph. Only add relationship links to the actual burial memorial when both a cenotaph and actual burial exist.”

So to find the family relationship links in FAG, we would look at the actual burial memorial ID# , not the cenotaph memorial ID# .


Here is another variation of a cenotaph, and a personal example – my Great-grandmother:

Minerva Christiana “Crissie” Shultz


Birth 3 APRIL 1867 Mayberry, Montour, Pennsylvania, United States

Death AFT JULY 1950 Elyria, Lorain, Ohio, USA


abt 1950Unknown

The headstone (in Sharp Ridge Cemetery, Montour County, Pennsylvania,USA) with her husband (Henry A. Bennett) has her birth date, but not her death date. She may not be buried there, but near where she died in Elyria, Ohio while living with her sister.

I have not been able to pinpoint Crissie’s exact date of death, nor where she is buried. My Mom just knows it was in late 1950 after July. My parents had just moved to a new place in Illinois with a very little baby, and did not go to her Grandmother’s Pennsylvania? Ohio? funeral.

This headstone would probably be a cenotaph, but we don’t know for sure.  My Mom might have remembered better before memory loss set in.  She is the last one of her family generation.  None of the genealogy-searching cousins have any idea either.  A cautionary tale – ask your relatives while they can still tell you.

Crissie headstone

Stateline Genealogy Club@ BPL canceled due to blizzard Friday Feb. 9, 2018, rescheduled for Friday Feb. 16

February 8, 2018

Vicki Hahn

Stateline Genealogy Club@ BPL canceled due to blizzard Friday Feb. 9, 2018,

rescheduled for Friday Feb. 16 Still at 10 a.m. at Beloit Public Library.

“How to Use Family” by Nancy Ritter, Beloit Family History Center.

Our speaker would like to reschedule,

And several Club members have contacted me with concerns.

I will try to contact as many of you by phone or email as I can.

I will not be attempting the long drive, and will take off Friday Feb. 9 (tomorrow).

See you in a week and a day.

There is plenty to keep you busy here on the BLOG until then.

Keep safe in the snow whether shoveling or driving!


CAGGNI Program -Tracing Your WWI Immigrant Ancestors in “Alien Papers”- Feb. 17, 2018

Vicki’s note – the latest CAGGNI Computer Assisted Genealogy Group in Northern Illinois program.


Upcoming event information:
Tracing Your WWI Immigrant Ancestors in “Alien Papers” Schaumburg Township District Library,
Date: 17 Feb 2018 10:30 AM CST

Tracing Your WWI Immigrant Ancestors in “Alien Papers”

by Debra Dudek

Learn what primary and secondary sources have become available and how to access them. Keep up to date on the constantly changing face of British Isles research by learning about recently released original records, new indexes, books and web sites.

Debra Dudek is head of Adult and Teen Services at the Fountaindale Public Library District in Bolingbrook, IL.  Ms. Dudek specializes in British genealogy and technology topics.  She is currently pursuing a second masters degree in Genealogical, Palaeographic & Heraldic Studies from the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, Scotland.

For more information: Tracing Your WWI Immigrant Ancestors in “Alien Papers”

Best regards,

Interpreting what it says on a death certificate

Interpreting what it says on a death certificate

February 3, 2018

Vicki’s note – some helpful genealogical links that can help you interpret what it says on a death certificate. The death code numbers make the cause of death clear if you can’t read  the Doctor’s handwriting.  I got the link to Will Moneymaker’s article from Facebook postings that I get. You can sign up for a  free on-line newsletter:


International List of Causes of Death, Revision 3 (1920):

195 Lightning


International Classification of Diseases

(Tells what the 3 digit code of disease means, if you cannot read what disease/cause of death is written on the ancestor’s death certificate.)

Rootsweb Genealogists, who seem to be willing to answer any question.



Death Records Research

Death Certificates: Your Doorway to Your Ancestor’s Life

“It might seem strange that a death certificate, which is a document of an ending, could be the beginning of your journey into your ancestor’s life. However, a death certificate can hold a wealth of information that either directly tells you things about your ancestor that you didn’t know, or points you to where you can find more substantial and important information. You’ve got to study the death certificate closely, though. Don’t skim over or ignore any line. Each line on the certificate has the potential to tell you something useful about your ancestor. Here are the top things you should be examining (but again, remember not to ignore any line)…”

Marital Status, Full Name, Names and Birthplaces of Parents, Informant, Cause of Death, Name of the Attending Physician, Method of Disposal, Place of Burial, and Name of the Undertaker.

Will Moneymaker founded Ancestral Findings back in 1995. He has been involved in genealogy research for over 20 years. The thrill of the hunt, the adventure, and the excitement begin when he started investigating the meaning of his surname. Why I Love Genealogy (And You Should, Too!)

Irish Lives Remembered

February 5, 2018

Vicki’s note – it is close enough to St. Patrick’s Day and March to get you this Irish Ancestors genealogy source.


Irish Lives Remembered


If you have Irish roots or occasionally do Irish research, there is a relatively new and FREE online publication that’s worth checking out.  You can sign up to be automatically notified by email when a new issue is available.

“We are an award winning history and heritage company based in Dublin, Ireland

The Irish Family History Centre’s research service is aimed at people who would like to get one of our experts to research their Irish ancestry for them. You can also ask our experts questions that may help you get past any brick walls with your own research.”

Previous issues are also available for free online.   Irish Lives Remembered Genealogy eMagazine is now live and free to read/download via:


Irish Lives Remembered

for free access to:

Free Digital Genealogy Magazine

Irish Lives Remembered – latest Issue 38 November 2017

They also have free genealogy podcasts that you can listen to (example)

 PODCAST: Tracing Ancestry Through Census Substitutes 

And a free newsletter. “Homework” for Stateline Genealogy Club Program February 9, 2018


Finding Elusive Records on FamilySearch

Relatives Around Me

Citing Derivative Genealogy Sources

Citing Derivative Genealogy Sources

Vicki’s note – excerpts from an article by Michele Simmons Lewis below.  Read her entire article by clinking on the title link. The book that she mentions is one of several genealogy abstracts/index books from southern states. Southern Historical Press, Inc. Genealogical Book Publisher:


The Abstract Trap

Michele Simmons Lewis, CG® is part of the Legacy Family Tree team at MyHeritage.

A derivative source is defined as:

“materials that offer alternate versions of the original—typically transcripts, translations, abstracts, extracts, nutshells, indexes, and database entries. The best derivatives will preserve all the essential details of the original. Still, errors are frequent.(emphasis mine) [1]

Some of the common derivative works are cemetery surveys, marriage abstracts, deed abstracts and will abstracts. These can be in book form, published in a periodical, or in some sort of online database. I want to alert you to a specific trap that I don’t want to you fall into when working with these types of sources. …

One of the books I have in my private library is Marion County, Mississippi Miscellaneous Records. I like this book because it has all kinds of court abstracts…

So what is my source for the evidence contained in this will? Some researchers will cite Marion County, Mississippi Will Book A, page 70-71 and that is the trap. Your source is not the original will book but rather it is the book of abstracts, Marion County, Mississippi Miscellaneous Records. You can’t cite the Will Book unless you actually viewed it yourself. The best-case scenario is to obtain a copy of the will from the will book so that you can analyze it yourself. If you do, you can then cite the will. If not, you need to cite the abstract book…

MyHeritage DNA Testing Updates

MyHeritage DNA Testing Updates


Vicki’s note – excerpts from a 1-17-18 article from Family Tree Magazine.  Read the entire article by clinking this link.


MyHeritage Releases Major Updates and Improvements

Last week MyHeritage rolled out major updates and improvements to DNA Matching rolled out today for all users…

On January 11, 2018, MyHeritage rolled out major updates and improvements to their DNA Matching, which they announced with a statement on their blog. Here’s what you need to know:

MyHeritage DNA Matching

If you’re not familiar with MyHeritage’s DNA Matching program, it’s a system that compares DNA results in the MyHeritage database to each other, whether the DNA is from a MyHeritage kit or is uploaded to their site from your previous test. This comparison allow users to find other individuals they share DNA segments with, and helps explain how these individuals are related. To date, MyHeritage’s database contains DNA results for 1.o75 million people, and their system updates your matches daily, looking for new matches in the system. Users are notified by a weekly email about the best new matches found in the system that week…

They’re also the only one of the 3 largest DNA test services that supports DNA result upload – and it’s free. If you’ve not taken advantage of this, we recommend you head over to their website and upload your previous results from other companies.


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