Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Time Capsule Tuesday


Since my great-niece (grand-niece??) Brittany celebrated her 26th birthday yesterday, let's see what was going on in the United States on Wednesday, October 26, 1994.  

Brittany celebrated her birthday in Greece!  
(stolen from her Facebook page)

In the U.S, the most popular baby names are Ashley and Michael.  30,279 baby girls were named Ashley and 44,467 boys were named Michael in the year 1994.

The President of the United States was Bill Clinton.  The Vice President was Al Gore.  

1994 Prices

Bread:  $.76/loaf

Milk: $2.29/gal

Eggs:  $1.17/dozen

Car: $18,657

Gas: $1.17/gal

House: $154,500

Stamp: $.29/each

Average Income: $49,340/year

Minimum Wage:  $4.25/hour

Top Songs for the week of October 26, 1994:

I'll Make Love to You by Boyz II Men 

All I Wanna Do by Sheryl Crow

Always by Bon Jovi

Endless Love by Luther Vandross

Secret by Madonna

When Can I See You by Babyface

Top Books in 1994:

Politically Correct Bedtime Stories by James Finn Garner

Operating Instructions by Anne Lamott

The Giver by Lois Lowry

Academy Award Winners of 1994:

Best Picture:  Forrest Gump, Directed by Robert Zemeckis

Best Actor:  Tom Hanks in Forrest Gump

Best Actress: Jessica Lange in Blue Sky

On TV in 1994:

The X-Files                        Frasier                           Friends

Party of Five                     Babylon 5                       N.Y.P.D. Blue            

ER                        Homocide: Life on the Street        Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman

                                Star Trek:  Deep Space Nine

Hot New Toys in 1994:

Sega 32X                                                    Pogs

People born on October 26:

1946 - Pat Sajak, Chicago, TV Host (Wheel of Fortune, Pat Sajak Show)

1947 - Jaclyn Smith, Houston, Texas, Actress (Charlie's Angels, Nightkill)

1938 - Ralph Bakshi, animator (Lord of Rings, Fritz the Cat, Mighty Mouse)

Happenings on October 26, 1994:

Jordan and Israel sign peace accord.

* Walt Disney Home Video releases the animated film Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs on videotape.

I remember that my husband, Tracy, and I had just returned home from our epic two week adventure in Europe.  We were still trying to get over the jet lag.  My phone rang, and it was my niece, Missi, with the wonderful news that she was a mom to a beautiful baby girl, Brittany Michelle.  She stole my heart before I ever met her.  

Saturday, October 24, 2020

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Where were your Ancestors 80 years ago?

 From Randy over at Genea-Musings:

it's Saturday Night 
time for more Genealogy Fun!!!

Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to:

(1)  Determine where your ancestral families were on April 1, 1940 - 80 years ago when the U.S. Census was taken.

(2)  List them, their family members, their birth years, and their residence location (as close as possible).  Do you have a photograph of their residence from about that time, and does the residence still exist?

(2)  Tell us all about it in your own blog post, in a comment to this post, or in a post on Facebook.  

Here's mine:

I have a total of 6 direct ancestors who were living 80 years ago in 1940  One parent, three grandparents, and two great-grandparents.  

*  My father, Gilbert Earl Tapley (1928-2008), along with his mother, Nealie V. Drake (1895-1970), was living on East Church Street in Sandersville, Washington County, Georgia.  He was 11 years old.  Also in the household were a few of my father's siblings:  Lamar, age 24, Russell, age 21, and Irene, age 14.  The odd thing is they have Aunt Irene listed as "Dempsey Irene" when Uncle Dempsey was another brother.  It is obvious they are describing Irene, though, as they list her as a daughter, age 14, and she was 3 years older than my father.  The enumerator also had written "Dorsey" on a line (another of my father's brothers), but crossed through that and put "Gilbert" instead.  I don't know if it was enumerator or my grandmother who was confused.  

My father's family moved around a lot after his father passed away in 1935.  He mentioned living in Sandersville at some point, but he never showed me the house or location.  So I have no pictures and have no idea if the house is still there.  Also, I was unable to discern the house number on the census.

* For some unknown reason, I have been unable to locate my maternal grandparents, Charles Morgan Tapley (1907-1973) and Ethel Ranney Tapley (1913-1973) on the 1940 census.  However, from their California Voter Registration, I know they were living at 15749 Vintage Street, Los Angeles, California in 1940.  When my mother and I visited Los Angeles in 2010, we visited this house, and I took pictures of it then.  However, I do not have any pictures from the time they lived there, so I don't know if it has changed any.  

* My great-grandparents, Luther Boardman Ranney (1870-1943) and Bessie Alice Carter Ranney (1883-1960) were living at 313 S. Sierra Way in San Bernardino, California in 1940.  Included in their household was their middle child, Alice Ranney Williams, who was age 28.  We also visited this location when we were in California, and I took pictures.  This house has been torn down and it was just a lot when we visited.  Unfortunately, I have no idea what the house looked like 80 years ago.

Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Time Capsule Tuesday


My beloved nephew, Harry Jr, was born on Sunday, November 17, 1968.  Let's see what was going on in the United States on this date.

1968 was a Leap Year.

The estimated number of babies born in the world on November 17, 1968 is 328,338.  That's equivalent to 228 babies every minute!

In the U.S, the most popular baby names are Lisa and Michael.  42,532 baby girls were named Lisa and 82,006 boys were named Michael in the year 1968.

The President of the United States was Lyndon B. Johnson.  The Vice President was Hubert Humphrey.  This year was a presidential election year with Hubert Humphrey running against Richard Nixon.  Nixon won with 301 of the electoral vote.

1968 Prices

Bread:  $.22/loaf

Milk: $1.21/gal

Eggs:  $1.12/dozen

Car: $2,450

Gas: $.34/gal

House: $26,600

Stamp: $.06/each

Average Income: $9,670/year

Minimum Wage:  $1.60/hour

Top Songs for 1968:

Hey Jude by the Beatles (top of the charts on November 17)

Mrs. Robinson by Simon & Garfunkel

The Dock of the Bay by Otis Redding

Love Child by Diana Ross & the Supremes

I Heard it Through the Grapevine by Marvin Gaye

People Got to be Free by Rascals

Top Books in 1968:

The Double Helix by James D. Watson

From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E Frankweiler by E L. Konigsburg

Academy Award Winners of 1968:

Best Picture:  Oliver!, Directed by John Wolf 

Best Actor:  Cliff Robertson in Charly 

Best Actress: Katherine Hepburn in Lion in Winter and Barbara Streisand in Funny Girl

On TV in 1968:

The Man From U.N.C.L.E.                        Lost in Space                            Batman

The Monkees               The Andy Griffith Show                  Adam-12            Star Trek

Hot New Toys in 1968:

Spirograph                                                    Star Trek Astro-Walkie Talkies

Zillion Bubble Blower                                    The Outer Space Men Colorforms

People born on November 17:

1925 - Rock Hudson, Winnetka, Illinois, Actor (Pillow Talk, A Farewell to Arms)

1944 - Danny De Vito, Neptune, New Jersey, Actor (Taxi, Ruthless People, Twins)

1960 - RuPaul, Drag Queen/Model/Actor (RuPaul Show)

Happenings on November 17, 1968:

The musical "Zorba" opens at Imperial Theater, New York City, for 305 performances.

* What would become known as "The Heidi Game" in professional football history took place when the NBC television network abruptly halted its broadcast of an American Football League game between the Oakland Raiders and the New York Jets in order to telecast its scheduled Sunday night movie, Heidi.  With 65 seconds left, Oakland had the ball and was trailing, 32 to 29, and television viewers nationwide were unable to see what happened next  (Oakland scored two touchdowns to win the game 43-32).  The NBC network telephone switchboards were tied up with calls from angry viewers, followed by universal criticism of the network in the press the next day.  Since then, American TV networks have delayed scheduling programming in order to show sporting events in their entirety.  

Saturday, October 10, 2020

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks (Week 34): Chosen Family

 Amy Johnson Crow from Generations Cafe is hosting a blog writing prompt this year called 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks.  Since I need a swift kick in the you-know-what to get me blogging more regularly again, I thought I'd jump in.  I like that she gives us "permission" to interpret the prompt however we wish and share it however we wish.  It doesn't have to be a blog post; it could be a family video, a letter to a child or grandchild, an e-mail, etc.  I'm probably going to be always behind on this exercise so don't go by the date and week I'm writing about and take it as accurate.  Like I am jumping back MONTHS for this post.  I knew I would never keep up.  LOL.

When I saw this particular theme, I immediately thought of our closest family friends, Colene and Robert and their kids.  I have known them since I was a baby.  Literally.  We have eaten with them too many meals to count.  We have vacationed with them.  I have slept in their house.  Exchanged countless letters with Colene after I grew up and moved out.  Still go to visit them when I'm in town.  We never run out of memories to talk about.  My picture is on display in their house.  Our lives have been entwined for as long as I can remember.  

The story is that my father was sitting in the Krystal, a fast food restaurant in Augusta, and drinking coffee, as was his custom.  (He sat at the Krispy Kreme and drank coffee while I was being born.  It was the 1960's.  Fathers weren't in the delivery room back then.)  It turns out that back in the day, Krystal had a counter where you could eat or drink coffee, as my dad was doing.  Colene was a waitress there.  She fainted or passed out, and my father caught her before she hit the floor and hurt herself.  The families were friends from that moment on.  

Colene has always been a character.  She's probably not even 5' tall, but her spunk more than made up for her size.  She was the only person I ever knew that stood up to my father.  I can remember her making sandwiches at a picnic and her telling my father that he could "eat it or do without."  I was in awe of her.  She's been known to do wild things to prove a point to her teenage children.  I don't think I should describe them here, but trust me, they were wild.  Robert was the rock.  Easy going and kind.  The typical good father staying in the background.  

Robert and Colene lived over just over the state line in South Carolina, in an area called "The Valley." It's an area between Augusta and Aiken full of small towns such as Clearwater, Bath,  Burnettown, Gloverville, and Warrenville.  We lived in Augusta, about 20 miles away.  They have four children, one boy and three girls, and all of them older than me.  Becky, the youngest, is nine years older than me.  They spoiled me.  

One of my earliest memories of them was when they picked me up to take me to Six Flags with them.  I was probably about 3, and I remember screaming and crying about going with them and leaving my parents.  That's all I remember of that trip.  Colene said that I didn't say a word for a long time, and then they passed a burned out car along the highway, and I piped up and said, "That car boke."  I was fine after that and had a great time apparently.  That was 50 years ago.

The next memory I have is visiting their house and standing on the front porch eating a cookie.  Again, I must have been about 3 years old.  My father was just on the other side of the screen door, talking to Robert.  They had a pony named Blackie.  Blackie was a mess.  He would eat clothes off the clothesline, follow them around like a dog, and while they had him tied to a salt block so he wouldn't wander off, he would just drag that block around the yard like it was nothing.  So this particular day, Blackie wandered over to see what I was doing, and my cookie looked appetizing.  He just came on up the steps onto the porch to try to get my cookie.  I freaked out and was screaming my head off.  I have never seen my father move so fast.  When he saw what had happened, everyone got a good laugh out of it, and we still talk about it today.  

The next memory I have is when their house burned to the ground.  I remember going through the ashes with the girls looking for items to salvage.  There wasn't much.  Then I remember visiting their new house, and it's the house they still live in today.

We moved to Jacksonville, Florida.  I don't remember how much we saw them during those four years, but I'm sure we did.  

When I was 8, we moved to Swainsboro, an hour and a half away from them.  Some Sundays, we would drive up to Colene and Robert's house and have lunch with them.  If Daddy was in the right mood, we would also get to stop at Sears in Augusta and go shopping.  Lots of times, Mom, Colene and I would go shopping at the pharmacies on Sunday afternoon.  South Carolina had blue laws for many years, so the only things open on Sundays were pharmacies such as Eckerd's.  Those were good days.

We've been to Florida with them.  I don't remember that trip, but there are pictures. We've been camping with them.  I don't remember that trip either, but there are home movies of it.  We have been to North Carolina with them.  Colene's dad used to live in Lenoir, and we visited him.  We also went to Grandfather Mountain, Chimney Rock, and Lake Lure.  We spent birthdays with them.  Thanksgivings.  Christmases.  No matter where we moved, we still visited them.  Colene's niece, Angela, would stay with us.  My niece and nephew, Missi and Harry, would go along with us on trips with Colene and Robert.  

I cannot imagine my lifetime without Colene and Robert being in it.  She never missed my birthday or a holiday until she has gone into her 80's.  My father, being who he was, would have falling outs with them, but we always made our way back together.  I visit them when I can, but it's usually only once a year now.  I should call and visit more.  Colene has a lot of health problems and doesn't leave the house much anymore.  Robert is still the rock, keeping things going.  

I don't know that we chose them as family.  The choice, I think, was made by a higher power that knew these two families should be together.  However, they are family.  Always will be.

Colene in the 1960's with her catch

Colene in the 1980's at her kitchen table.  Many, many meals and 
desserts eaten there over the years.

Robert and Colene's girls on our Florida trip.
Faye, Becky, and Vickie

The girls and ME (the little one on the right) in Florida.

Me on the left (about age 13), Robert and Colene's
granddaughter, Dana, and Colene's niece, 
Angela on the right at Lake Lure, North Carolina, 1980

Front Row:
My niece, Missi, and Robert & Colene's grandson, Kenny
Back Row:
Anglea, Mom, me, and my nephew, Harry Jr
Grandfather Mountain, NC, early 1980's

Celebrating my 10th birthday at 
Robert & Colene's house, 1977

Colene & Robert
mid 2000's

Tuesday, October 6, 2020

Time Capsule Tuesday


On December 3, 1939, my maternal grandparents, Charles Morgan Tapley (1907-1973) and Ethel Irene Ranney (1913-1973) were married in Redlands, California.  


Let's see what was going on in the world at that time:

Franklin D. Roosevelt (FDR) was president and John N. Garner was vice president.  

The world was on the brink of war, but did not know it yet.

1939 Prices

Bread:  $.08/loaf

Milk: $.49/gal

Eggs:  $.58/dozen

Car: $750

Gas: $.19/gal

 House: $6,416

Stamp: $.03/each

Average Income: $1,837/year

Minimum Wage:  $.30/hour

Top Songs for 1939:

And the Angels Sing by Benny Goodman

Beer Barrel Polka by Will Glahe

Moon Love by Glenn Miller

Over the Rainbow by Glenn Miller with Judy Garland

Stairway to the Stars by Glenn Miller

Jeepers Creepers by Al Donohue

Wishing (Will Make It So) by Glenn Miller

Top Books in 1939:

The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

Finnegans Wake by James Joyce

The Day of the Locust by Nathanael West

Thimble Summer by Elizabeth Enright

Studies in Iconology by Erwin Panofsky

Academy Award Winners of 1939:

Best Picture:  Gone With the Wind, Directed by Victor Fleming 

Best Actor:  Robert Donat in Goodbye Mr. Chips 

Best Actress: Vivien Leigh in Gone With the Wind 

Hot New Toy in 1939:


People born on December 3:

1895 - Anna Freud, Austrian/English psychoanalyst, daughter of Sigmund Freud

1930 - Andy Williams, Wall Lake, Iowa, Singer (Moon River, Andy Williams Show)

1937 - Bobby Allison, Auto Racer (3 time winner of the Daytona 500) 

Happenings on December 3, 1939:

* Finland appealed to the League of Nations for intervention during the The Russo-Finish Winter War of 1939-1940.

* 24 British bombers raided German Warships off the coast of Germany at Heligoland.  A German anti-aircraft battery was hit, probably the first British bomb of the war to land on German soil.

* Died:  Princess Louise, Duchess of Argyll, 91, sixth child of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert.

Saturday, October 3, 2020

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Create a Fact List in Your Genealogy Software

 From Randy over at Genea-Musings:

it's Saturday Night 
time for more Genealogy Fun!!!

Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to:

(1)  Does your genealogy management software (e.g., Family Tree Maker, RootsMagic, Legacy Family Tree, Reunion, Heredis, Family Historian, etc.) create a "Fact List" report (or something similar) - a list of the profiles in your family tree that have (or don't have) a specific fact (e.g., birth, death, burial, immigration, etc.)?

(2)  If so, run a Fact List report to determine which people have a specific fact (or don't have a specific fact) and share it with us.

(2)  Share your results with us in your own blog post, in a comment to this post, or in a post on Facebook.  

Here's mine:

I use Family Tree Maker 2019 as my genealogy software program of choice.  After all these years, I still struggle with printing reports with the exact information I need.  I just ordered a FTM19 user manual so that maybe I can utilize reports more often and efficiently.  

So in FTM19, I could not find just a "Fact List."  What I did find under "Sources" is Documented Facts and Undocumented Facts report choices.  I was excited about the Undocumented Facts report as in the beginning of my genealogy research journey, I tended to enter items into my family tree with no source documentation.  (I hold my head down in shame.  However, I think a lot of us started out this way.)  I have been slowly remedying that, but this Undocumented Facts report could show me the ones I've missed so I can fix them all.  

This screenshot shows when I go to "Publish" and choose "Source Reports," I find four reports to choose from.  Undocumented Facts is the highlighted choice.

I chose "All Individuals" under "Individuals to Choose."  I also checked "Show divider between individuals." This just makes reports more readable to me.  I ended up with a 837 page report.

The fact in my tree that is almost never sourced is the Sex (or gender) of the individual.  Unfortunately, the report settings did not allow me to exclude a fact.  So a lot of my 837 pages are unnecessary.  However, if I scroll down, I can find some other undocumented facts in my tree, such as names, birth or death dates, etc.  Here is a good example:

As you can see (if you enlarge the image), Joel Anderson in my tree does not have any source documentation for his name, marriage date, death date, or burial information.  Now I know to go look for some sources and get those documented!

(When I looked at the "Documented Facts" report, it would not allow me to choose the facts I want to include either.  I have said it before - Family Tree Maker needs to make their reports more robust and user friendly.)

Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Time Capsule Tuesday

 Mary Margaret Hesser Ranney, my 2nd great-grandmother, passed away on Wednesday, October 6, 1920, at the age of 78.  She passed less than a month after her husband of nearly 52 years, Comfort Ranney.

So let's take a look at what was happening in the United States in October of 1920 and during that entire year.

In 1920, Woodrow Wilson was President, and the Vice President was Thomas R. Marshall.  It was the 66th Congress that year.  

1920 was a Census year.  This census was the first to record a population exceeding 100 million.  Because there are so many mixed-race persons and because so many Americans with some black ancestry appear white, the Census Bureau stops counting mixed-race people and the one-drop rule becomes the national legal standard.  (The one-drop rule asserted that any person with even one ancestor of black ancestry - "one drop" of black blood - is considered black.)

In 1920, Prohibition in the United States begins with the Eighteenth Amendment to the Constitution coming into effect. 

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is founded.

The U.S. Post Office rules that children may not be sent via parcel post.  Was this even a thing?!  

The first commercial radio station in the U.S., 8MK (WWJ), owned by the Detroit News, begins operations in Detroit, Michigan.

The National Football League is founded.

The Nineteenth Amended to the United States Constitution is passed, guaranteeing women's suffrage.

The first domestic radio sets come to the stores - Westinghouse costs $10.

In the November presidential election, Warren G. Harding defeats James M Cox.  This is the first national election in which women have the right to vote.

 1920 Prices

Bread:  $.11/loaf

Milk: $.58/gal

Eggs:  $.39/dozen

Car: $345

Gas: $.30/gal

 House: $6,296

Stamp: $.02/each

Average Income: $1,130/year

Top Songs for 1920:

The Love Boat by Gene Buck

Margie by Benny Davis

Whose Baby Are You? by Anne Caldwell

Avalon by Al Jolson

Japanese Sandman by Raymond Egan

Mah Lindy Lou by Lily Strikland

Top Books in 1920:

The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton

The Frontier in American History by Frederick Jackson Turner

Main Street by Sinclair Lewis

Top Films of 1920:

Way Down East starring Lillian Gish and Richard Barthelmess

Over the Hill to the Poorhouse (a silent film) starring Mary Carr

Passion (A German film released in the U.S.) starring Pola Negri and Emil Jannings 

The Mark of Zorro starring Douglas Fairbanks

Hot New Toys in 1920:

Raggedy Ann

Crayola Crayons

Tiddledy Winks


Snakes and Ladders

Lionel Trains

Lincoln Logs

Ouija Boards

Pogo Stick

Teddy Bear

Also... 1920 was the beginning of the Roaring Twenties!

People born on October 6, 1920:

1846 - George Westinghouse, responsible for alternating current in the U.S.

1909 - Carol Lombard, actress (My Man Godfrey, In Name Only)

1925 - Shana Alexander, NYC journalist (60 Minutes)

Happenings on October 6, 1920:

* Since the invention of the airplane in 1903, flying after dusk had been too dangerous to attempt.  On this date, a demonstration was held at midnight on Long Island, New York, of an airplane equipped with powerful arc lamps bright enough for the pilot to illuminate a landing site while making an approach to an airport.  Because arc lighting was a fire hazard, the test also demonstrated that an aircraft could make a safe approach even while the metal was ablaze.  

* The U.S. Navy made its first public demonstration of the new magnetized Ambrose Channel pilot cable navigational aid.  This introduced the first technology that would allow ships to sail into New York using only instruments during heavy fog, rather than having to wait outside for the fog to clear.  

* For the first time in eight years, a passenger train from Mexico was allowed to cross into the United States, as President-Elect Alvaro Obregon traveled rom Ciudad Juarez to El Paso, Texas for a visit.