Monthly Archives: October 2005

DearMYRTLE’s Family History Hour

If you are looking for something genealogy-related to listen to on your iPod or other MP3 playing device (or even something to burn to an audio CD for your car), you might give the DearMYRTLE’S Family History Hour a look (or rather a listen).

There’s a lot of genealogy information, hints, tips, etc., as well as discussions of subjects that are “supplemental” to genealogy, so to speak (photography, online research, etc.).

Unfortunately her daughter was recently involved in an accident, and she is not currently recording her Family History Hour (it might resume in December), but she does have several hours worth going back to August, available online. She’s done a lot for the genealogy community, and we hope everything turns out okay for her daughter.

There is also the Genealogy Guys Podcast which recently started up, and it’s a couple of guys talking about, what else, genealogy, on a weekly basis.

Both DearMYRTLE’s and the Genealogy Guys have full listings of what each show is about on their respective websites.

Mainers bow heads in honor of Revolutionary War solider.

Yet another cemetery-related story (wonder if the newspapers have been sitting on these, waiting for Halloween): In the Bangor Daily News (Bangor, Maine), Roxanne Moore Saucier has written an article, Mainers bow heads in honor of Revolutionary War soldier, about a group of people paying tribute to a veteran of the American Revolution. Among the group, were descendants of the soldier, as well as members of the Daughters of the American Revolution.

Benjamin Walton would probably be very surprised that anyone cares where he’s buried or what he did while he was alive. But people came to Milo’s Evergreen Cemetery from miles around on Oct. 13 to “mark” the grave of the Revolutionary War veteran.

History lies six feet under

Another cemetery-related article covering genealogists, this time from Heather Quinn, writing in The Daily Aztec, San Diego State University. Her article, History lies six feet under, covers cemeteries in the San Diego area:

But apart from their more morbid aspects, cemeteries have another story to tell. They are the repositories of the rich history of San Diego, the only places where the dead can still speak to the living – not as ghosts, but as legacies carved in tombstones. Cemeteries are a good starting point to learn about the pioneers and leaders who built this city, and to hear those stories not as often told that give us a truer sense of what it means to be San Diegans. Seeing the graves of the deceased lends a deeper sense of reality to their stories that merely hearing them cannot produce.

It’s a good article – she covers several cemeteries in the area, and mentions particularly interesting people/events that are related to them. I think as more and more people get into genealogy, and realize just how important cemeteries are to a genealogist, you’re going to find more and more people visiting cemeteries, recording the information for other (or future) genealogists, as well as working to preserve them.

Graveyards help group dig up past

Terri Jo Ryan has an article in the Waco Tribune-Herald, Graveyards help group dig up past (gotta have puns, especially considering the today’s date), about another group working to record cemetery data, as well as preserve the cemeteries themselves:

For a dedicated few, like the McLennan County Cemetery Interest Group, graveyards are the venues for the living to touch history and to help preserve it for future generations.

Led by reference librarian Bill Buckner of the genealogy division of the Waco-McLennan County Public Library, the group, which is open to the public, seeks to provide a forum for data collection and record preservation for all McLennan County cemeteries.

Since its founding in April 2002, more than four dozen volunteers have worked to identify more than 300 burial grounds in McLennan County, from small family plots to obscure fields forgotten by all but a few, as well as from abandoned sites that are remnants of lost communities to “active” but rarely used tracts.

By taking inventory of these poorly marked or unrecorded cemeteries, Buckner said, the hope is to make a comprehensive database before they vanish forever.

I said a few months ago that it seems like these kinds of genealogy-oriented events are happening more and more – it could just be the media is covering it more, but it seems like more and more groups are doing this, and making the information available for other genealogists. It could also be that as more people are drawn to genealogy, you’re going to get people who will volunteer for these kinds of groups, to work on these projects.

It could also be that as the media covers these types of groups and events, that others are inspired by it.

Lute Olson’s Hidden Identity

University of Arizona men’s basketball coach Lute Olson had his father’s family history revealed to him this week. Stephanie Innes (Arizona Daily Star – posted on, writes about Olson’s background, and the genealogy work that was done on his behalf (as a total surprise to him). It was particularly hard, since he’s from North Dakota, and Olsons and Olsens in North Dakota are almost like Smiths and Williams in any other state. It was also difficult because his father had suddenly passed away when he was five, and his grandparents were already deceased.

Excerpt from the article:

During a genealogy presentation by local members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on Thursday, University of Arizona basketball coach Lute Olson learned that Olson wasn’t always his family name. For generations, his family used the surname of Pukerud, which was spelled Pugerud when his ancestors lived in Norway.

Another good article about genealogy and the interest that has been steadily growing.