Friday, March 12, 2010

Family and Friends Newsletter Friday 12 March 2010

I am writing this Friends and Family Newsletter late on Friday night! First, there was “Who Do You Think You Are" to watch, and it was an awesome episode. As a matter of fact, it came on right after I had finished and posted my article for the First Carnival of African American Genealogy: Restore My Name – Slave Records and Genealogy Research.

Then I was reading some blogs and saw that several had already changed to the new templates. I had seen the news the night before on GeneaBloggers and had given a trial run to some of the new templates, but wanted to make sure that my blog header banner would be compatible and that all of my pages would show up at the top (the template at the far right didn’t seem to include them all), so I hadn’t made the change, yet. But after seeing how other blogs looked I had to go to back to the Blogger Template Designer and play, and, well, you see the results. Things I love about the new templates:

- The flexibility. Now the blog really is like a doll. I can change its clothes. Today I have a subdued background, but be forewarned, on some days it may be much more colorful – despite the great craze for “simplicity” in blogs these days – and I especially like the patchwork-quilt background.

- The fact that I can keep my header banner (I am very attached to it). I had created an “extra, experimental” blog to try to work out a way to incorporate some of those neat free backgrounds that are available, but they only work on a template that doesn't seem to work well with my banner.

- The ability to have a nice, wide space for my posts as well as enough room so that some of my “gadgets” don’t get cut off.

Another change I have made is to add the "Woo-Hoo! Wall" to my Pages. This is modeled after Bart's "Fireplace Mantle" page at Stardust 'n' Roots. I moved most of the awards to this page, and I think that the front page of the blog loads more quickly now. Any new award would be featured on the front page for a while, and then eventually moved to the Woo-Hoo! Wall.

Now for the news.

Mystery of the week.

The oldest son of my gg-grandfather Elisha Berry Lewis, James West Lewis, was one of the Lewis kin who went to Texas from SC. He is shown on the censuses for Travis and Wilbarger Counties in 1880 and 1900. I had always thought he was buried there and that the J. W. Lewis shown in Midway Presbyterian Cemetery in Anderson, SC was not him, even though E.B. and some other Lewis family members are buried there. However, when I looked up his grave on Findagrave, the inscription indicates he served in Co. B, 4th SC Infantry. Sounds like him. He died in around 1904; was he taken to SC to be buried there or was he perhaps visiting family when he died there?


Jo Lee at Those Who Went Before in “Who Do You Think You Are? Premiere WOW” tells about watching the premier episode in amazement when one of her own lines – Hodge – was featured in the show.

Schelly at Tracing the Tribe: The Jewish Genealogy Blog writes about the NY Times columnist Neil Genzlinger’s clueless and condescending reaction to WDYTYA in “America’s WDYTYA – Tree or Shrub?”

Bill West at West in New England, in “What I Thought About ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’”, writes that one of the graves from which SJP was shown brushing snow off was that of his ancestor Mary Eastey!

Tipper at The Blind Pig and the Acorn has posted another Appalachian Vocabulary Test. (Come on, broaden your education!)

In the belief that any good idea is worth stealing – I shall adopt this practice started by Cindy at Everything’s Relative – Researching Your Family History in her “Visits and New Follows” by noting that this week I started following these blogs:

Genealogy Freelancers
Climbing Joshua’s Tree
Climbing My Family Tree
Help! The Faerie Folk Hid My Ancestors!
Journey to the Past
Know Your Story
Roots and Branches

Future Plans

Nothing firm yet, and everything depends on having enough money left over after paying tuition bills, but I am tentatively starting to begin to think – just think – about possibly attending the annual conference of the Federation of Genealogical Societies in Knoxville August 18-21. We could actually drive there and my husband said he could enjoy the historical sights while I attend the conference. Just thinking …


  1. Congrats on the new blog look. I have to go have a lookie see, but, I have been too tired, so saving it for one of those times when brain is functioning, eh? LOL

    I too have moved my awards to one of those nifty pages on blogger. Like the pages facility.

  2. bYour Blog looks very polished, I like it! I need to look into updating my blog now.

  3. Greta - Long time no visits! I love the new look of your blog and must say that I'm terrified to touch mine! Guess it'll have the old look for sometime :-)

    Thanks for the mention and for reading! -cindy

  4. Carol, Jenna, Cindy - Thanks for the encouraging words! It was hard to let the old look go, but it's fun to be able to play around.