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And how it began…

The bombardment of Fort Sumter There was no question but that war would come. The only question, really, was when. By the beginning of April of 1861, seven southern states had already passed ordinances of secession — South Carolina was first on 29 December 1860,...

Survey says…

… the focus isn’t genealogy … The winds of change are clearly blowing hard at Family Tree DNA after its acquisition earlier this year. The company announced, on January 7, that it had merged with an Australian company, myDNA, and would be led in the...

Celebrating siblings

Or maybe kittens… If The Legal Genealogist ran the circus, they wouldn’t exist. By the time I was four, I was done with siblings. I had an older sister. I had a younger brother. Enough already yet. So if I’d had my way, here on National Siblings...

We won one!

Researchers, rejoice! There isn’t anything The Legal Genealogist likes better than the chance to report good news. And boy is there ever good news to report today. The National Archives’ regional repository in Seattle, Washington, is staying put. No more...

Sourcing history

Like any other research… Like every good genealogist who ever lived, The Legal Genealogist is a history geek. We need to be able to properly understand our research subjects — and the records they left — in the context of their time and place where...

Executive Order 6101

Launching the CCC It was on the fifth of April 1933 that Franklin Delano Roosevelt signed it. It was intended to implement, in part, the provisions of “An Act for the relief of unemployment through the performance of useful public work, and for other purposes,” which...

The witness who wasn’t

Why the witness wasn’t Charlsie There was that one nagging issue in The Legal Genealogist’s thinking. The thinking that led to last Saturday’s family blog suggesting that the second youngest daughter of William and Ann (Jacobs) Battles posed as her...

The joys of ambiguity

Yes, there are quotes around that… The Legal Genealogist couldn’t believe it. Simply could not believe that any genealogist could have done such a thing. It just had to be an April Fool’s joke. I mean, I know that online family trees can be...

Documenting our own lives

Forty years ago today Genealogists are often living breathing advertisements for the truth of that old adage about the shoemaker’s children having no shoes. We document the histories of all the people in our families. Except for our own. The Legal Genealogist is...

Just one day…

… in 1870 There are days in history when nothing much happens. Nothing that The Legal Genealogist would say is something that was likely to change lives or — more importantly for us as family historians — to create records. Perfectly ordinary days...