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The flight of time

Don’t delay in that research “Tempus fugit,” the Latin saying goes, whether we want it to or not. Time flies. And when it has flown its full course, all of us — The Legal Genealogist included — will suffer losses from which there may be no real...

Chasing George

Kentucky to Tennessee to Texas? Genealogists, truth be told, have favorite ancestors. We don’t always admit it — we feel somehow we should love and honor them all equally, the way a parent is supposed to love the children all equally. But we all really do...

A Civil War loss

In the fall of 1862… It was the first day of June 1874, and Anna (Jacobs) Battles was trying to push forward with her late husband’s claim for property she said had been taken by the Union Army when it came through their land in Cherokee County, Alabama,...

Living and losing

Living and losing Bidding farewell She was born just about noon that Friday, the 27th of October, 162 years ago yesterday. The year was 1855, the place most likely the little village of Bad Köstritz in what is now the German State of Thüringen. Her father was Johann...

Reprise: Elizabeth’s courage

A tale of courage and fidelity The Legal Genealogist is in Iowa today, for the second day of the Annual Fall Conference of the Iowa Genealogical Society. And it’s impossible to be here in Iowa without being struck, once again, by the courage and fortitude of one...

Missing the missing

The loss five years ago Five years. Five long years. That’s how long it’s been since The Legal Genealogist heard that word, said that way, in that voice. We all have those special names, things someone called us that no-one else did, that we have treasured...

To readers, with thanks…

And one in particular today… The best part of writing a blog is the readers. Those who share their ideas, their enthusiasm, their information so freely. And boy does The Legal Genealogist have great readers. Readers who forgive me when I’m so jammed with...

Reprise: something about California

Not even for a cable car ride This story has been told before. In February of 2014, to be exact, when The Legal Genealogist was in California for a different speaking engagement.1 But it’s a story that deserves to be told again, and it surely came to my mind...

Becoming unAmerican

When the law said “no you don’t” One hundred and five (corrected) years ago tomorrow, a young couple married in Tarrant County, Texas. The bride: Maud Lillian Cottrell. Born 26 January 1890 to Martin Gilbert and Martha (Johnson) Cottrell and, thus, older sister...