Greetings to attendees of the Southern California Genealogy Jamboree! California is one of my home states (born in Pennsylvania and lived in Texas during my high school years, but the rest of my childhood was spent in Southern California, mostly San Bernardino and Highland). My mother and many of her siblings moved out to Southern California in the 1940s and a great uncle’s family on my father’s side also moved out there around the same time, so I have a lot of family history there.
This blog started out mostly as a forum to share some of my research and a way to get in contact with “genealogy cousins,” but it has since evolved to include much more, and much of this has been through the influence and encouragement of fellow genea-bloggers (a number of whom are attending the Jamboree – I really wish I could be there with you all!). The genealogy carnival on New Year’s Resolutions got me started on a series called Memory Monday which appears in this blog most Mondays; it features stories from my life that I hope will be passed down in my family (Getting Married at Dr. Maiden’s House, Junk in Our Yard, Our Edsel). There are also a number of articles that fit the HOGS template as described in Terry Thornton’s Hill Country of Monroe County, Mississippi blog (History, Observations, Genealogy, and Stories). One of my favorite articles along these lines was The Language of Cats: An Illustrated Glossary. Some articles have dealt with exhilarating experiences I have had in research, such as Uncle, Uncle – William Henry Lewis: A Little Man Who Stood Tall and Getting Hooked on Genealogy.
The benefits I have derived from this blog have far surpassed what I originally aimed for or expected. The genea-blogging community is absolutely amazing; I am continually inspired by them and learn so much from them. Some of these benefits are outlined in my article Top Ten Reasons Why I Blog. One of my original aims that I mentioned, to get in touch with distant relatives also involved in family research, has met with great success – I have been contacted by about eight to ten cousins with whom I had not corresponded before and was even found by my younger half-brother, whom I had not seen since he was a baby.
As for the areas of research I focus on, the big geographic areas are South Carolina (Anderson and Greenville counties), Texas (Baylor, Dallas, Collin, Fannin, Hunt, and Grayson counties), Kentucky (Warren County and some others), Alabama (Talladega County), and Illinois (Greene and Jersey counties) (actually, most of the states of the South are included, with the exception of Mississippi, Florida, and Lousiana). Family names I am researching include Moore, Lewis, Brinlee, Norman, Sisson, Tarrant, McKinney, Smith (my brick wall, of course), Floyd, Matlock, and Finley on my side, and Koehl, Greenberg, D’Arco, Terrana, Fichtelmann, Davi, Terzo, and Lochner on my husband’s side. If any of these names rings a bell or you do research in any of these areas, I’d love to hear from you.