Monday, May 31, 2004

US State Libraries & Archives

US State & County Quick Facts:

National Archives:
Library of Congress:; Ask A Librarian:
Smithsonian Institution (National Museums):
National Genealogy Society:
Federation of US Genealogical Societies:

New England Historic Genealogical Society:
Midwest Historical and Genealogical Society:

Georgia State Archives

Michigan: History, Arts and Libraries:
Naturalization Records Indexes,1607,7-160-17449_18635_20684---,00.html

Oregon State Archives.

Minnesota: (Minnesota historical society)

Mississippi Archives & History:
Historical Society:

Missouri: (Missouri archives) (Missouri historical society)



Nevada State Library & Archives:
Historical Society:

New Hampshire Archives:
Historical Society:

New Jersey: (New Jersey library)
New Jersey State Archives Imaged Collections:
New Jersey State Archives Genealogical Holdings:

New Mexico State Records Center and Archives:
State Library:
Museum of New Mexico:
NM Genealogical Society:
Historical Society:

New York State Library:
New York State Archives:
New York State Museum:
New York State Vital Records:

North Carolina: (North Carolina archives)>HTM#information (NC library)

North Dakota:

Ohio Historical Society: or
Ohio Online Death Certificate Search:

Oklahoma: (Oklahoma museum of history)


Pennsylvania State Archives:
Philadelphia City Archives, Pennsylvania:
Historical Society of Pennsylvania:
The Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania:
Commonwealth Libraries: - Email your Reference Question (if this link does not work, click the link on the main page)
State Museum of Pennsylvania (Harrisburg):

Rhode Island:

South Carolina: (South Carolina archives) (old SC papers) (South Carolina historical society) (USC's South Carolina library)

South Dakota:

Tennessee State Library & Archives:






West Virginia: (West Virginia online)

Wisconsin: (Wisconsin historical society) (online Wisconsin libraries)

Wyoming State Archives:
Wyoming State Library:

Julie Hesson provided some of these links; thanks, darlin'!

Every state's US GenWeb Project can be reached by using, where XX is the two-letter US Postal Service abbreviation for that state:
Alabama = AL, Alaska = AK, Arizona = AZ, Arkansas = AR, California = CA, Colorado = CO, Connecticut = CT, Delaware = DE, Dist. of Columbia = DC, Florida = FL, Georgia = GA, Guam = GU, Hawaii = HI, Idaho = ID, Illinois = IL, Indiana = IN, Iowa = IA, Oklahoma/Indian Territory = IT, Kansas = KS, Kentucky = KY, Louisiana = LA, Maine = ME, Maryland = MD, Massachusetts = MA, Michigan = MI, Minnesota = MN, Mississippi = MS, Missouri = MO, Montana = MT, Nebraska = NE, Nevada = NV, New Hampshire = NH, New Jersey = NJ, New Mexico = NM, New York = NY, North Carolina = NC, North Dakota = ND, Ohio = OH, Oklahoma = OK, Oregon = OR, Pennsylvania = PA, Rhode Island = RI, South Carolina = SC, South Dakota = SD, Tennessee = TN, Texas = TX, Utah = UT, Vermont = VT, Virginia = VA, Washington = WA, West Virginia = WV, Wisconsin = WI, Wyoming = WY
Similarly, the state resources at Rootsweb can be reached by this formula:
Linkpendium, too:
Cyndi's List uses: (not caps)

It was we, the people; not we, the white male citizens; nor yet we, the male citizens; but we, the whole people, who formed the Union... Men, their rights and nothing more; women, their rights and nothing less. - Susan B. Anthony

Sunday, May 30, 2004

Minnie Catherine DISNEY 1877-1959 and Children

The up-to-date version of this post will be maintained at John BAYSINGER, Viola, Minnie, and Children:

Minnie Catherine DISNEY, daughter of William Briggs Disney & Mary C. WALTERS, was born c1877 in Jasper township (or Van Buren), Crawford Co. AR. She married 24 Apr 1894 in Indianola, Warren Co. IA, John Alfred BAYSINGER (b. Dec 1872 Indianola, Warren Co. IA - died 4 May 1942 Des Moines, Polk Co. IA; both bur. Laurel Cem., Des Moines, Polk Co IA) (I have a copy of this marriage record somewhere). Minnie died Apr 1959 Des Moines, Polk Co. IA.

John had previously married and divorced Viola Belle STEPHENS. He had a son Arthur with Viola Belle. She was b. 20 Aug 1874 Indianola, Warren Co. IA, d. 26 Oct 1958 Snohomish, Snohomish Co. WA. Their son Arthur Baysinger b. 27 May 1894 Otter Township, Warren Co. IA, d. 12 Aug 1990 Everett, Snohomish Co. WA. Arthur m. 1) Ruth White b. c1894, m. 2) Sylvia HANOUSEK b. c1894. John & Viola's dau. Florence Baysinger b. 27 May 1896 Indianola, Warren Co. IA. Her birth is recorded as 'Evada' in the Warren Co. Birth Records. She was adopted by Viola Stephen's second husband John HANOUSEK.

Before Minnie married John Baysinger, she had a child Carl born in 1893 according to the 1900 census. It seems Carl was the son of John Baysinger. Carl Baysinger b. Sep 1893 Warren Co. IA, d. 1947 Josephine Co. OR. He m. Nellie Myrtle GREGG b. 29 Nov 1886 Palmyra Warren Co. IA, d. 13 Apr 1977 Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz Co. CA.

Here is Carl Baysinger in 1930:
Age: 35 years
Estimated birth year: 1894
Birthplace: Iowa
Relation to Head-of-house: Head
Race: White
Home in 1930: Johnson, Polk, Missouri

Image Source: Year: 1930; Census Place: Johnson, Polk, Missouri; Roll: T626_1219; Page: 5A; Enumeration District: 10; Image: 0041. He has a wife Nellie, and children Harold, 15, Hellen, 14, Sarah, 12, and Ella May, 6, with him and Nellie. The children are all born in Iowa. This is Minnie's Carl, according to Carl's grandson.

With John Baysinger, after their marriage, she had

1. Anna b. 22 Sep 1895 Otter twp d. 1956 Calgary, Alberta Canada (my grandmother Anna Virgil Baysinger, who m. Harvey McBEE, had 11 children)

2. son b. 25 April 1897 Otter twp - died in infancy? - dead before 1900 census

3. William L. b. 20 Nov 1898 Otter twp d. bef. 1900 census

*1900 Census reports Minnie had 4 children, 2 living (Carl & Anna)

4. Iva b. 30 Dec 1900 (SSDI), Otter twp has dob 20 Jan 1900 AND 1901! d. Oct 1979 (SSDI) Runnells, Polk Co. IA m. Fred NORTHWAY, 5 children

5. Ernest Paul b. 3 Sep 1902 Otter twp d. 1936 Des Moines, Polk Co. IA

In the 1930 Census, here's Paul: Paul Baysinger
Age: 27 years
Estimated birth year: 1902
Birthplace: Iowa
Relation to Head-of-house: Head
Race: White
Home in 1930: Des Moines, Polk, Iowa

Image Source: Year: 1930; Census Place: Des Moines, Polk, Iowa; Roll: T626_675; Page: 23A; Enumeration District: 44; Image: 0620 (Ancestry).

He is enumerated with his wife Loretta, and son Clarence, 3, and daughter Lois, 1. Here is Clarence in the SSDI: CLARENCE R BAYSINGER, 12 Oct 1926-2 May 1995. Last residence Des Moines, Polk Co. IA 50317, Last benefit: Des Moines, Polk Co. IA 50317. SSN: 484-18-7054, issued: Iowa. Clarence's obituary:

6. Ralph b. 1909 d. 1958 Des Moines, Polk Co. IA

Ralph in the 1930 Census: Ralph Baysinger
Age: 24 years
Estimated birth year: 1905
Birthplace: Iowa
Relation to Head-of-house: Head
Race: White
Home in 1930: Des Moines, Polk, Iowa

Image Source: Year: 1930; Census Place: Des Moines, Polk, Iowa; Roll: T626_677; Page: 7A; Enumeration District: 70; Image: 0613 (Ancestry).

He is enumerated with his wife Lovey?, and sons Kenneth & Roland, ages maybe 2 &
9mos and 1 & 9 mos? Lovey? b. Missouri, sons b. Iowa

7. Charles b. 1910 (SSDI: CHARLES W BAYSINGER, 24 Nov 1909-15 Apr 1995. Last residence Des Moines, Polk Co. IA 50317. SSN: 719-18-3343, Long-time or retired railroad workers). My aunt Jo tells of visiting 'Uncle Chick' in Des Moines in a retirement home. He never married and had no children, according to Jo.

I don't see Charles in 1930. Perhaps he was already employed by the railroad companies.

8. Ray b. 1911 died in infancy

9. Robert b. 12 Jul 1912 Pleasantville (Marion Co. IA?) - was not enumerated with the family in 1920.

10. George b. 1 Nov. 1914 Allen twp d. 27 Jan 1916 Milo, Warren Co. IA

11. Katherine b. 8 Aug 1917 Hammondsburg, Warren Co. IA d. 1936. The Ancestry index finds no Katherine or Catherine Baysinger in 1930. She did not marry and had no children.

Here is the family in 1920: John Baysinger
Age: 47 years
Estimated birth year: 1872
Birthplace: Iowa
Race: White
Home in 1920: Allen, Warren, Iowa (Carlisle town)

Roll: T625_517, Page: 2A, ED: 210, Image: 0207 (Ancestry)

With John is Minnie, 43, Iva, 19, Paul 17, Ralph, 13, Charles, 10, Catherine, 2.
Living with them are my grandparents Harvey McBee & Anna, with Kenneth, 2, Kathleen,
2, and John, newly born. I cannot find John and Minnie in 1930, although they were
living in Des Moines by that time. With the addition of Carl, John and Minnie had 12 children.

I would love to correct any incorrect information that I have here.

Friday, May 28, 2004

Lydia BOYD DISNEY 1870 Newton Co. AR Census

Lydia with John SUTTON, her first husband

1870 Census White Township Newton County Ark.
Sutton, John 23 Ar
Lydia A. (Boyde) 21
Samuel E. 3 Ar
David A. 2 Ar
Malissa E. 2 months Ar

John was son of Ephram and Barbara Galbreath Sutton
John was in Co. G. 1 Ark Cav USA in the Civil War and died in 1874
There was another son Simon J. born Oct 1872
Lydia later married a Thomas and a Disney.

The 1870 Newton County Census Transcribed by MARCENE EDGAR OXFORD Thank you Marcene.
Date: 30 Apr 2001

The Newton County Arkansas 1870 census with historical background added.
If the author has made any mistakes please feel free to notify me or the
Newton Co. web page coordinator so we can make corrections.


Tuesday, May 25, 2004

WWII Enlistment File

The up-to-date version of this post will be maintained at:

New at NARA - World War II Electronic Army Serial Number Merged File - 9 million records

The NARA website says:
This series has records on about nine million men and women who enlisted during World War II in the United States Army, including Army Reserves and the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps. NARA scanned War Department microfilmed punch cards on enlistments to support the reconstruction of the military personnel records at its National Personnel Record Center. Because of the microfilm's poor condition, approximately 1.5 million records could not be scanned. Also, the file has no records for Army officers, members of other services or enlistments for other time periods. In general, each record has the serial number of a soldier, person's name, state and county of residence, place of enlistment, date of enlistment, grade, branch, term of enlistment, place of birth, year of birth, race, education, civilian occupation, marital status, and component. These records present unique searching challenges.
WWII Army Serial Number Records can be found at the Access to Archival Databases (AAD)

Click on the Genealogy/ Personal History > Military Personnel, and then World War II Army Enlistment Records, created, 6/1/2002 - 9/30/2002, documenting the period ca. 1938 - 1946 - Record Group 64, the top search button.

Thanks to Joe Beine for sending notice of this database to the APG list.

Here is a sample record, for my father, Ted Cowan (Theodore E.):

Column Title Value Meaning Notes
GRADE: CODE 8 Private
BRANCH: ALPHA DESIGNATION NO# No branch assignment
BRANCH: CODE 02 No branch assignment
TERM OF ENLISTMENT 5 Enlistment for the duration of the War or other
emergency, plus six months, subject to the discretion of the President or otherwise according to law
EDUCATION 4 4 years of high school
MARITAL STATUS 6 Single, without dependents
COMPONENT OF THE ARMY 7 Selectees (Enlisted Men)

Military Record Requests (SF-180) from NARA (National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis, MO):

Australian WWII Nominal Roll:
WWII Service Records:

Canadian Military Records and Service Files (all wars):

Commonwealth War Graves Commission (both World Wars, all of the Commonwealth):

So never lose an opportunity of urging a practical beginning, however small, for it is wonderful how often in such matters the mustard-seed germinates and roots itself. - Florence Nightingale

James Cowan, Wellington 1901 Census

The up-to-date version of this post will be maintained at

James & family, Wellington County 1901 Census - Guelph

Guelph Township Census Index 1901

1901 Census Province/Territory: Ontario district name: WELLINGTON (South/Sud) District Number; 1S -Sub-district name: Guelph Sub-district Number: d -1chedule: 1 Reference: RG31 Statistics Canada Microfilm Reel Number: T-6505 Finding aid Number: 31-40 -13 Pages

Entry may include:

* The Name (and initials in many cases)
* The Sex
* The position in the household
* Whether married, single, widowed, lodger, niece, etc
* The complete date of birth
* Age at last birthday
* Place born
The ‘u’ or ‘r’ that follows the Place born is important. Eg. Ont ‘r’ stands for rural or a ‘u’ stands for urban (although they are often difficult to distinguish). They can help you locate birth information.
* Year of Immigration if born outside of Canada
* Religion
* Ethnic Origin
* Occupation
* The number of months worked
* Wages, etc.

Guelph Twp. Part 2 - Pg 4

Cowan, James ……………………..M Head W 9 Apr 1825 -75 Scotland 1829 Scot Presb Farmer [entry 16 33-33]
Cowan, William M Son M 3 July 1854 -46 Ont r Scot Presb Farmer Farmer’s Son
Cowan, Mary F Dau in Law M 26 Nov 1864 -36 Ont r English Presb
Cowan, James M Gr Son S 17 Mar 1890 -11 Ont r Scot Presb Student
Cowan, George M Gr Son S 10 Apr 1894 -6 Ont r Scot Presb Student
Cowan, Ella F Gr Dau S 10 Mar 1899 -2 Ont r Scot Presb Student

Fourth group down, page 4. If the above link doesn't work, try:

1901 Wellington County Census Transcriptions:

The only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve. - Albert Schweitzer


The up-to-date copy of this post will be maintained at

from a copy of a typescript with notes, sent to me by Dr. Mathison. -v

(Note across the top in JFCs writing: To keep up interest in the Cowans)


By Jennie F. Cowan [written after 1985, JFmathison]

In the early 1800's there lived in Selkirkshire, Scotland, four Cowan brothers, sons of a James Cowan, according to the family of [ii] Andrew, who was born in 1767. The other brothers were; [I] William, born in 1752, [iii] Thomas in 1771 and [iv] Walter in 1778. A couple of these dates have been calculated from newspaper articles at the time of their deaths. [i, ii remained in USA; iii died in Scotland, iv came to Canada)

The people in Scotland had been hearing more and more about America, a land on the other side of the Atlantic needing settlers. There the common man could own land, cut down the trees on it, construct buildings, till the soil, sow seed and reap fruits of his handiwork. In
Scotland most of the land was still in the hands of the Lords.

[ii] Andrew and his family of Whitefield were the first of these Cowans to settle in Delaware County, N.Y. State. They settled near Fall Clove.

No descendants of [ii] Andrew have ever moved to Ontario. Mrs Adam Scott, one of Walter's grandchildren could remember when cousins, with the surname "Biggar", were over visiting. Andrew's second daughter, Janet, married Walter Biggar of Bovina, N.Y.

James Cowan of Clochmhor corresponded with another daughter, Mrs Margaret Neish of Erin, N.Y. When his youngest son, A. B. Cowan was spending a holiday in California, he saw a great deal of Adam Cowan and his daughter, Dr. Isabel Cowan of Rodney, Iowa. They were descendants of

[Wm, like Andrew never moved to ONTARIO, but his son, James of the Plains, came to Dumfries near Galt in 1829]
i) William was the next one to settle in Deleware County. A very high hill separated the two Cowan farms. A grandson of William could remember his grandfather walking over the mountain once a year to visit his brother. After his death, there was no contact with that family until Mrs Murray Mayes (Bertha Cowan), a descendant of William, made it.

William had come over to Deleware county in 1821. He was a widower, coming over with a daughter and her family. His oldest son had already gone to Australia. In 1829 his second son, James [later ? Cowan Lake], and his family settled in Dumfries, Upper Canada. They took up land on the Plains at the western edge of the village of Galt. Later his farm was usually described as being on the Cedar Creek Rd. Mr. R.K. Cowan, one of his grandsons told he had heard of American relatives, who had visited that farm. One had taken the children to see the circus which had just come to Galt. None of them were allowed to enter for their cousin had only American currency. Later they realized how fortunate they were for many of the attenders contracted the fatal Asiatic cholera. W. D. Cowan, off the West River Road told me in the early 1920's, after my sister married Thomas D. Cowan, that these Cowan families were related but they didn't know how.

Some of the descendants of William, through his son, James are Charlton Cowan, Southwood Dr., Mrs. A. E. Dedman, New Dundee, Jessie, Ethel and Stewart Cowan, Drumbo, Wm. NcCulloch, Toronto. Some in this family went to the prairies. One descendant is Mrs Jean Taylor, Wawota, Saskatchewan. Mrs Murray Mayes (Bertha Cowan)[Fleischmanns,] N.Y. 1230 knows more of William's descendants in Deleware County N.Y.

iii) Walter came over to Dumfries in 1829 on the same boat as his nephew, James [James of the Plains]. He settled on land at the southern edge of the village on the West River Road. His oldest son, James Scott Cowan [later of Altrieve Lake] had come to Galt before his father, and had arranged for his father to purchase this land if he wished it. James Scott Cowan was the first Cowan into this part of Upper Canada, working for the Hon. Wm. Dickson. He later bought land for himself on what became known as the Roseville Rd. He had found a small lake on this land which reminded him of the Altrieve Lake on the farm of James Hogg, the Ettrich (sic) Shepherd writer and poet. James Hogg helped to advertise the Hon. Wm. Dickson's land in Scotland.

Walter became a strong member of the orginal St. Andrew's Church in connection with the Church of Scotland. At one time, he had been in the Manor Church, near Cademuir, Presbytery of Peebles, Scotland. When Bertha Mayes visited that old church she was given circulars telling its age, etc. It was founded in 1186 and its bell had been "summoning the folk of the lovely valley to worship God" from 1478 on. It was the church in which Walter's son, William had been baptized.

In 1889, one night when the wreckers would soon be demolishing the Old St. Andrew's Church, Galt, William Cowan [half brother of James Scott Cowan], son of Walter, along with some friends removed the bell from the belfry and hid it. It can still summon folk to worship God, for it was bought by Knox's Presbyterian Church in 1893 and hangs in its belfry.

Some of Walter's descendants are Dr. J.W.G. Grant McEwen [commonly known as Grant McEwan b. Aug 12, 1902], Calgary, former Lt. Governor of Alberta, Mrs Milton Mann (Jennie Cowan) London, Mrs Norman Wainman, (Margaret Blake) Avenue Rd. Ian Landreth, Thomas Cowan (Landreth), Helen Scott Arthur, John McIntyre all of Cambridge.

Thomas the other brother never left Scotland. His arthritic legs forced him to even give up his work as a shepherd at Cramilt. He and his wife [Elizabeth Hastie, sister of James Hastie] retired in Moffat, where she gained experience in midwifery. Thomas was anxious his family would be prepared to leave for Dumfries after his death, so he corresponded with the relatives who had already settled there. Mrs Thomas Cowan, her sons, James and William and daughter Margaret as well as James' bride, Helen Laing, her mother and two sisters settled north of Galt, in 1834; Thomas had died in 1833. This farm was in Waterloo Township but touched the town line between Dumfries and Waterloo Townships. They named this farm, Clochmhor, after the high hill on Cramilt.

William [brother of James of Clochmhor] died in 1839 and Margaret married James Shaw, who lived nearer Hespeler. James Cowan was soon into municipal politics: he was a member of Parliament in the early 1860's. He lost his seat in 1866 for he had lost faith in Geo. Brown [Liberal], and was supporting John A. Macdonald [Tory]. In a couple of years, he was appointed a Dominion Arbitrator serving until 1892. He was born in 1803 and died 1900. Soon after he came to Galt, he supported Dr. John Bayne in founding the Free Presbyterian Church of Canada and Knox's Church, Galt. He gave many years of service as Clerk of the Kirk Session
of Knox's Church.

Some of Thomas' descendants are, James [F.] Cowan, West River Rd., Mrs Douglas Chalk,(Janet Cowan) Cambridge, James E. Cowan Cambridge (H), Marion Cowan, Toronto, Mrs Don Virgo, (Helen Cowan), Montreal, Mrs Wm. Little (Joan Cowan) Stratford, Dr. Laing Gray Cowan of near Washington D.C., R. D. Ferguson, Walkerton, and Mrs Ken Campbell, (Helen Ferguson), grandchildren of Helen Shaw Ferguson, Marion Shaw, John Shaw, Kitchener, James Shaw, Guelph, Mrs Gordon Klager (Margaret Shaw), William Shaw, Mississauga, Mrs Archie Lawrence, (Isabel Shaw) Burlington, and Marjorie Shaw, Ottawa. [James F. + Janet(?) of James Hastie Cowan. James E + Marim + Helen ch. of Thomas Deans Cowan]

James Cowan of Clochmhor corresponded with his American cousins and kept some of the letters. These helped in finding the descendants of [i] William and [ii] Andrew in Delaware, County N.Y. The husband of a school friend of my mother's contacted Andrew Cowan of New Kingston for me. Andrew wrote saying he knew he had relatives in this part of Canada but they had lost track of them.

I copied out the letter we had from New Kingston N.Y. Andrew and his daughter Bertha went through his grandfather's correspondence. They found a page with a blot on it, with the first part of the letter to his cousin, James Cowan of Galt.

Andrew Cowan, his wife and daughter came to Galt to meet their Canadian long lost relatives.

(I am indebted to Dr. James Matheson for xeroxing some of the articles in the early Galt papers, written at the time of the deaths of the Cowan men).

Jennie Cowan

(Note in handwriting: When Dr. C. Cowan of Hamilton was Moderator of the Presbyterian Church, on meeting him I said something about marrying a Cowan. He said "You are a Cowan." JFC)


Please see Cowans in the Wellington County Historical Atlas: for comparison.


1869-1917 Ontario Archives, microfilm MS 932
#011719-78 Walter Scott COWAN, 35, Canada, Puslinch, b, farmer, s/o Walter COWAN & Margaret McPHAIL, married Annie McPHERSON, 20, Canada, Puslinch, s, d/o Alex McPHERSON & Jane McPHERSON, witn; Donald STEWART, Daniel McNAUGHTON, both Puslinch, married 16 October 1878, Gore of Puslinch
1878 marriages from MS 932, Wellington:


Digging in my garden it's come to me that living relatives can be like dandelions... popping up all over and everywhere. And most times you want to yank them around! Now dead relatives, that's another thing. They're like tulips and daffodils. These beauties come up from deep below bringing messages of love to all who see them. I like to think that they carry messages from my departed grandparents straight to me. - Donna Phillips, May 13, 2004,

Sunday, May 23, 2004

Cowans in the Wellington County Historical Atlas

The up-to-date version of this post will be maintained at

James Cowan Sr. in Biographical Sketches of Early Settlers of Wellington County, Ontario, Canada (Historical Atlas of the County of Wellington, Ontario. Toronto: Historical Atlas Publishing Co., 1906):
   James was born in Selkirk, Scotland in 1790. He married Margaret NICHOL (d. 1883 age 92), and came to Galt in 1829, and died there in 1867. James' son Thomas lived on the Galt homestead of 235 acres. The oldest son James Jr. was b. Selkirk SCT in 1825, and lived in Guelph on the West End Road. He m. Jane BEATTY (d. 1888 age 59).

William Cowan (my gggrandfather):
   William b. "Yarrow Fews, (sic)" Selkirkshire, Scotland, came to Canada in 1831. He was a weaver in Scotland. He took up a farm about one mile outside of Galt which he cleared and where he died. He was a Presbyterian and a Conservative. He m. (1) Jennie SCOTT, of the Scotts of Harden, and after Jennie's death, Agnes WILLISON (in Selkirk). With Jennie SCOTT: James (1809 Yarrow Feus - 1893, m. Ann MATHESON, of North Dumfries), *Walter (d.), Puslinch Tp. With Agnes WILLISON: William (d, 1905), on the homestead, and Jane (d. unmarried).

James was b. at "Yarrow Fews,"[sic] Selkirkshire, Scot., 1809; d. 1893. He was a weaver by trade, and was friend and crony of Hogg, the "Ettrick Shepherd." He was 21 years old when he came to Canada by way of Quebec and worked with his father in the bush until he m., when he started to work for Hon. Wm. Dickson in Galt, who owned all of the townships of North and South Dumfries (12 miles square). After working for Mr. Dickson about five years he purchased a farm about 2 1/2 miles from Galt, on Roseville road, con. 12, N.D., where he lived until his death. He was a Presbyterian and a Reformer. He m. Ann Matheson, of North Dumfries. Issue: Walter Scott; Alexander (d. 11); James (d. Minto Tp); Dr. William (d.), who was a physician for 30 years in Guelph; Alexander, on the homestead in North Dumfries; Isabella, m. William Marshall, set. Clifford; Jean (d.), m. R. R. Dalgleish, dentist in Winnipeg; Agnes, m. Geo. McEwen, engineer, Raymond factory, Guelph, and Annie, unm. on the homestead.

Walter Scott, b. 1834, in Galt, learned the carpenters' trade there. In 1858 he came to the Paisley Block in Guelph, where he had a carpenter's shop on lot 8, con. 11, Div. B., and worked there until 1875, when he moved to Guelph to give his family a better chance. He is a Congregationalist and a Reformer, and was License Inspector in the South Riding of Wellington 18 years, until 1904. He m. Margaret, (d.), May, 1906, dau. of the late James Watson, of Guelph. Issue: James, dentist, in Genneseo, N.Y.; Walter, dentist; Davey, in Regina, Sask.; William A., at home; Margaret, m. John McDonald, Chicago; Janie, m. C. A. Richardson, Toledo, and Annabel, at home. Of these William A. carries on the carpenter's business which his father established on the London road, when he came to Guelph in 1875.

The information about Walter Scott Cowan seems completely wrong. I think I have it -- this is Walter Scott Cowan the son of James, eldest son of the immigrant William. Too bad they just ignored MY Walter Scott Cowan.

Also - Donald "Dhu" McPHERSON (b. 1784 Badenoch, Inverness-shire, Scotland, d. 1881) and family. Donald was grandfather to Annie McPherson, wife to Walter Scott COWAN II. Annie's father was Alexander, 1822 - 1890, came to Canada in 1838 at the age of 16, with his father. Alexander McPherson m. Jane, dau. of "White" Duncan McPherson, drover, Kingussie, Scotland, according to this account. I have Annie's mother as Margaret McPHAIL:

There is also an entry for William Cowan of Roxburgh (b. 1819), but I don't know the relationship:

Another William Cowan, b. Co. Armagh, Ireland, 1825:
Relationship distant if there is one.

Thanks to Our Pioneering Families: Biographical Sketches of Early Settlers of Wellington County:
The maps are here:

Please see FOUR COWAN FAMILIES by Jennie F. Cowan: for comparison.

Human felicity is produced not so much by great pieces of good fortune that seldom happen, as by little advantages that occur every day. - Benjamin Franklin, 1706-1790

Saturday, May 22, 2004

A Series of Unfortunate Events

Such fun! Children's series by Lemony Snicket (Daniel Handler). Great page with many of the literary and historical allusions contained in these amusing books:

Lemony's Official Site:

My goodness! I just finished Daniel Handler's book The Basic Eight, and am still stunned by how good, how funny, how CLEVER it was. Don't read it expecting more of A Series of Unfortunate Events! This one is definately not for children. Black comedy, black as obsidian. And funny.

Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And when you look long into an abyss, the abyss also looks into you. - Friedrich Nietzsche

Thursday, May 20, 2004

Finding the Image in the 1910 Census

Ancestry has recently released their head-of-household index for 1910, but the index entries are not yet linked to images. Here are some strategies mentioned on the Census Message board:

Steve Morse's site, How to Access Census Images on website (May 2004):

Shareware programs by Edward Rosenbaum:

And for those of you who are using the Heritage Quest 1910 index:

This last one is interesting, because the Ancestry URL is directly edited in your browser address line.

Success is never final, and failure is never fatal; it's courage that counts. - anonymous


Yikes, the religious right strikes again! The HPV virus vaccine is nearing completion, which will save hundreds and potentially MILLIONS of cases of deadly cervical cancer. However, the right is lining up to oppose vaccinating young women! The New Scientist - Will cancer vaccine get to all women?:
Ellen Goodman's Op-Ed - Sabotaging Abstinence November 10, 2005:

Wonderful, funny, informative post about semen in the Scientific American blogs: For a change, the comments are excellent as well.

Wow! I just finished reading the excellent page What "Sex Ed" Didn't Tell You -- But You Still Need to Know:
   In fact, this entire site is excellent! No ads, and *great* writing.

Also just found an excellent page about anal sex: Ten Rules of Anal Sex. Clear, readable, informative.

I found the anal page via the excellent GUYZ - Gay Urban Youth Zone, which is aimed towards Canadian teens.

Another SUPER site, written very clearly and explicitly:
If only US universities were so considerate of their students!

Online Sex Ed Library from the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States (SIECUS):

Sex education for pre-schoolers in Germany; a picture book:, and translation in English:

BBC news on Rethinking the Clitoris:
   I'm sure the US news outlets will be covering this story extensively. Not.....

Don't know how to tell your partner(s) you are infected with an STD? We used to call 'em venereal diseases, which sounds dirtier -- but anyway, send an anonymous email from inSPOT:

His Brain, Her Brain (Scientific American, excellent):

Fun! SIRC Guide to Flirting:

Abstinence message less than penetrating, say AIDS campaigners:
   "Crewe poured scorn on the starchy, thou-must-not tone that invariably accompanied abstinence campaigns. It had little resonance for young people who were burning with sexual energy and eager to experiment. 'We have to make abstinence sexy, not holy,' said Crewe. Altman suggested that governments, religious leaders and families get home the message that 'there are other forms of sexual pleasure than intercourse,' including oral sex and masturbation. 'If the alternative is a massive infection, then people should have to face the fact that prudery should be pushed out of the window.'"

Guide to Safer Sex: has many, many pages worth reading. GREAT site.

Masturbation: and Look at
For guys, JackinWorld:, and The Penis:, which is very complete, let us say. Googling for "female masturbation" finds a few sites, but we women don't seem to be as proud of our pleasures as men are of theirs. I hope that will change in time.

Clean Sheets magazine: - yum! Erotica, politics, and other fun stuff

Great site for the gay boys:

Super site! Scarleteen - sex education for the real world: This site makes porn look BORING!

Cliterati is also fun:


More fun for the girls:

The Brits do it:

Fascinating! Gay Chronicles:

Thanks for the link, Mil!

Hilarious, and just wrong, an so, so fun - Fanfic 'porn,' Harry Potter: Pornish Pixies, The Potter Slash Archive (Welcome to the Real World), and The Mirror of Maybe (unfinished). Other fanfic -

I've been enjoying reading back issues of Savage Love lately. You can get it at The Stranger or The Village Voice, among others. New! Savage Love Podcast
   Super advice from a recent column from a mom to her daughter:
1) Sex is just like eating, breathing, peeing, or anything else your body does, except more fun.
2) If you're not having fun, stop.
3) Porn isn't reality; it's show business.
4) It's okay to enjoy sex with someone you're not in love with, but don't count on sex to make someone like you more.
5) Love isn't what you think.
6) Nobody's perfect.
7) Relax.
8) Drunk/stoned/impaired/coerced/unprotected sex is stupid.
9) If you do it in my bed I will kill you.
10) If you do it without rubbers I might not have to kill you.
Radical Faeries:
   or just Google for it - lots of Radical Faery pages out there

Nice collection of Seattle links:
Lambert House
PFLAG: Renton Meeting, 1st Wednesdays, 7 pm
St. Luke's Episcopal Church, 99 Wells Ave. S., Renton

South King County Meeting, 4th Mondays, 7 pm
First Unitarian Universalist Church, 25701 14th Pl. South, Des Moines

Of all mankind's ideas, the equating of sex with sin has left the greatest train of trouble. - Barbara Tuckman

Wednesday, May 19, 2004

Care for your CDs and DVDs

Will your CDs and DVDs 'rot'? Only if they are treated poorly, says this article:

Saturday, May 15, 2004

Acronyms and Abbreviations

Abbreviations & Acronyms:

Acronym Finder:

Internet Abbreviations:

Society has never barred women from bread-winning roles, but only from economic roles that are profitable and respectable. - Jeane Kirkpatrick (1926- ) US diplomat, US representative to the United Nations, 1981-1985

Thursday, May 13, 2004

Celtic Music On & Off the Web

Sunday nights 6-8pm Central - WEFT 90.1 FM on the web:


Celtic MP3 Music Downloads:

Noncredit Online Course in Celtic Music

My dreams were all my own; I accounted for them to nobody; they were my refuge when annoyed -- my dearest pleasure when free. - Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, 1797-1851

Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Emmitt Till Murder Investigation Reopened

50's Murder Case Re-opened:

Till Kin Pleased About Reopening of Case:,0,542031.story?coll=sns-ap-politics-headlines



Learn to get in touch with the silence within yourself and know that everything in this life has a purpose. - Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

Abu-Ghraib and other Abuses during War

Americans denied real coverage of war

On Wednesday 16 February 2006, Australian public broadcaster SBS current affairs program DATELINE telecast a segment featuring 60 new photos of the torture inflicted on prisoners in the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. These photos were secured by court order - the ACLU figures prominently in the report - but these photos haven't yet been shown in the media anywhere in the United States. Because of the broadcast on SBS, you now have access to both Web-downloadable versions and BitTorrent file-sharing network versions of the broadcast on this site. THESE PHOTOS ARE VERY DISTURBING. Please do not view this video if you are easily disturbed by graphic imagery of torture and death.

It's quite frightening to think of our soldiers sinking to the level of the gangs of Saddam Hussein. This is important enough for its own section, separate from Politics. Each of us thinks that WE would be the one not to follow orders, not to hurt prisoners, not to break the law. But would we? Studies in obedience suggest not.

Obedience to Authority - The experiment by Stanley Milgram

The Perils of Obedience by Stanley Milgram:

More frightening than the actions of the soldiers, is that this was part of the chain of command. And scariest of all is that all of this has been covered up at the highest levels, including illegally classifying at least one report on the torture. The report on torture at Abu Ghraib prison is apparently still classified. But it is now widely available on the internet, including here:

See the Secrecy News for more on this:

Red Cross (ICRC) official statement: (Report delivered to the coalition leadership in February 2004)

Colin Powell: Prisoner Abuse Scandal 'Could Get Worse' (NPR)

NPR coverage of Iraq:

U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Antonio Taguba investigated the abuses at Abu-Ghraib, and his 53-page classified report chronicled the abuses at the prison (report completed in March). 11 May 2004 Taguba testified before the Senate Armed Services committee, saying that the mistreatment at the prison resulted from poor leadership, a "lack of discipline, no training whatsoever and no supervision." No wonder this report was ignored and covered up.

The question is wider. We tolerate such acts in US prisons, with little public outcry. Rape is an expected part of imprisonment in US prisons! See Human Rights Watch:, Amnesty International:

The Utah Department of Corrections connection:

Rape is and has been a serious problem in the US military:

Prison Rape Elimination Act of 2003 - H. R. 1707:

Never apologize for showing feeling. When you do so, you apologize for truth. - Benjamin Disraeli

Saturday, May 08, 2004

Ride your Motorcycle Safely!

The Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) - rider education courses, operator licensing tests, and public information programs. MSF works with the federal government, state agencies, the military, and others to offer training for all skill levels so riders can enjoy a lifetime of safe, responsible motorcycling. MSF is a not-for-profit organization sponsored by BMW, Ducati, Harley-Davidson, Honda, Kawasaki, KTM, Piaggio/Vespa, Suzuki, Vengeance, Victory, and Yamaha.

For RiderCourseSM locations, call (800) 446-9227 or visit

Link provided by readers and contributors to the wonderful Heroic Stories: - part of the conspiracy to make the world a better place.

We must not, in trying to think about how we can make a big difference, ignore the small daily differences we can make which, over time, add up to big differences that we often cannot foresee. - Marian Wright Edelman

How To Do Holocaust Research

The up-to-date copy of this post will be maintained at

Tracing the Tribe - The Jewish Genealogy Blog:

Excerpts from Gary Mokotoff's essential book, How to Document Victims and Locate Survivors of the Holocaust:

JewishGen FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions about Jewish Genealogy - How to do Jewish genealogical research, and InfoFiles:

Jewish Mail Lists:

Holocaust and War Victims Tracing Center (American Red Cross):

Towns with Published Yizkor Books:

Tracing Your Roots - Holocaust Research:

Yad Vashem Search for Names:

Global Holocaust Registry:

Registry of Jewish Holocaust Survivors:

Holocaust (Shoah) Research Resources:

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum:

You are only what you are when no one is looking. - Robert C. Edwards

Tuesday, May 04, 2004

Census Takers May Be Coming To Your Neighborhood

Census Takers May Be Coming To Your Neighborhood - Now! has this story:

In this trial run, at least, there is NO PAPER INVOLVED. The census info will be stored and entered in handheld computer, and will be encrypted, according to the article.

How common is your name? The US Census site ranks surnames, male first names and female first names:

An interesting look at the 2000 census, from a genealogical standpoint - The Other Millenium Bug: Changes in Census Procedures and Its Impact on Genealogists, by Chad Milliner:

Searching Census:

I cannot believe that war is the best solution. No one won the last war and no one will win the next. - Eleanor Roosevelt

David Rumsey Map Collection

Christian Science Monitor story about the David Rumsey Map Collection:, which displays digitized images of maps from around the world. There are two Cassini maps of northern Alsace and Lorraine with phenomenal clarity and detail. For the best viewing, a special free viewer is available, which the article explains. This site is worth a visit with or without the special viewer.

Thanks to Robert Behra for this link.

No one ever goes into battle thinking God is on the other side. - Terry Goodkind

Genealogical Ethics and Standards

NGS Standards For Sharing Information With Others Recommended by the National Genealogical Society &

Conscious of the fact that sharing information or data with others, whether through speech, documents or electronic media, is essential to family history research and that it needs continuing support and encouragement, responsible family historians consistently-

* respect the restrictions on sharing information that arise from the rights of another as an author, originator or compiler; as a living private person; or as a party to a mutual agreement.

* observe meticulously the legal rights of copyright owners, copying or distributing any part of their works only with their permission, or to the limited extent specifically allowed under the law's "fair use" exceptions.

* identify the sources for all ideas, information and data from others, and the form in which they were received, recognizing that the unattributed use of another's intellectual work is plagiarism.

* respect the authorship rights of senders of letters, electronic mail and data files, forwarding or disseminating them further only with the sender's permission.

* inform people who provide information about their families as to the ways it may be used, observing any conditions they impose and respecting any reservations they may express regarding the use of particular items.

* require some evidence of consent before assuming that living people are agreeable to further sharing of information about themselves.

* convey personal identifying information about living people-like age, home address, occupation or activities-only in ways that those concerned have expressly agreed to.

* recognize that legal rights of privacy may limit the extent to which information from publicly available sources may be further used, disseminated or published.

* communicate no information to others that is known to be false, or without making reasonable efforts to determine its truth, particularly information that may be derogatory.

* are sensitive to the hurt that revelations of criminal, immoral, bizarre or irresponsible behavior may bring to family members.

©2000 by National Genealogical Society. Permission is granted to copy or publish this material provided it is reproduced in its entirety, including this notice.

Note: NGS recommends these Standards and Guidelines for the benefit of those who wish to improve their skills and performance in genealogy. NGS is neither an accrediting nor an enforcement agency, and does not determine whether its recommendations are being followed in any particular case. These recommendations have served their purpose when an individual decides that the Standards and Guidelines have or have not been applied in a matter of personal interest.
[Ed note: formatting and emphasis added]

NGS Genealogical Standards (PDF downloads):

BCG Code of Ethics and Conduct:

MINDING YOUR MANNERS IN FAMILY HISTORY - Rules of the Road for All Genealogists:

Mistake or Misdemeanor - Staying Legal with Internet Copyrights by Rhonda R. McClure:

Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blind-folded fear. - Thomas Jefferson