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July 24, 2017

Rescued Letter to Donald Morgan of New York 1943

This is another rescued document from Davis Kennels in Joliet Illinois to Donald E. Morgan of Clay New York dated August 30, 1943.

Davis Kennels (Wm. A. Davis) is informing Mr. Morgan about their black, white, and tan Bassett pups.

Thanks to Annette P. for sending this document to Olive Tree Genealogy for publication

July 23, 2017

Nursing Sister Philips WW1 Photo Album 6R

This Photo Archive consists of a small autograph album (6.5" by 5.25") kept by Constance (Connie) Philips as a memento of her time serving as a nurse during World War One.

The majority of the photos and items are from 1915, when she served as a nurse in France and Britain.

The album and all photographs, postcards, and other ephemera contained in the album belong to Karin Armstrong and may not be copied or republished without her written permission. The images will be published on Olive Tree Genealogy with permission.

Each image has been designated an "R" for Recto or a "V" for Verso plus an album page number. Recto is the right-hand side page of a bound book while Verso is the left-hand side page.

I will be posting the entire album and my additional research on the individuals identified in Connie's album over the coming months so please check back frequently to view these historic photos. The easiest way to see what has been published is to click on the topic "Nursing Sister WW1 Photos"

Are You a Vrooman Descendant? My New Book is Out!

Just published! My latest book in my New Netherland setttlers series - on the Vrooman family of New York. 

New Netherland Settlers: The Vrooman Family: Ancestors & Descendants of the Brothers Hendrick Meesen Vrooman, Pieter Meesen Vrooman and Jacob Meesen Vrooman of New Netherland (New York) (Volume 8 of the New Netherland Settlers series) Available on

The three brothers Hendrick Meesen Vrooman, Pieter Meesen and Jacob Meesen came from the Netherlands who came to New Netherland in the early part of the 17th century. Pieter arrived circa 1655, and he and Jacob settled in Albany. Hendrick settled first at Kinderhook, then Steen Raby and finally Schenectady in 1677.

This book traces the Vrooman ancestry back to the brothers' great-great grandfather Gerrit Jans Kerstantsz born in Holland circa 1457, and follows the family down 5 generations.

8.5x11" 56 pages

July 21, 2017

George Wormald, Miner in the Aldwarke Main Colliery in Yorkshire

Sheffield Independent - Wednesday 12 June 1895
George Wormald had no idea when he went to work on June 10, 1895 that would be his last day on earth. George was 38 years old, a miner in the Aldwarke Main Colliery in Yorkshire, and the father of eight children ages 2 to 15.

Early that morning, George kissed his wife and children goodbye and headed off for what he thought would be just another day working with coal.

Having worked in the mines for 19 years, George was well aware of the dangers and knew how to keep himself safe. Early that morning George placed his lunch and his extra clothing in his usual spot, then realized he needed a piece of chalk to mark his tubs. It was 9 a.m. when George approached a workmate, William Banks to ask if he had any extra. 

Without warning a roof above them collapsed and almost 5 tons of coal fell on the men. George was able to crawl out far enough to get his head out from under the rocks and the other workers were able to dig both men out within a few minutes.

William suffered a broken leg but George died a few minutes after being rushed to the local doctor, crushed by the weight of the coal.

 George was my son's 2nd great-grandfather.

Kate Wormald, daughter of George and my son's great-grandmother. She was 11 years old when her father was killed. 

July 19, 2017

Mary Facey Elgie Photo Album p 2

This is a lovely casual outdoor photo probably taken in the early 1920s at William Facey's farm. William aka Will (1884-1958) was the brother of Mary Louise Facey Elgie. He was married to Edith Wiseman and we see the name Edith on the reverse of the photo.

On the reverse we find identifications but it is challenging to know what names go with what individual. 

July 18, 2017

Excerpt from Death Finds a Way: A Janie Riley Mystery

A few of the many reviews of Death Finds a Way: A Janie Riley Mystery:

"Reading this book was like curling up on the couch with a good friend." Shani M.

"...some surprising twists enhanced the story line and offered some surprises. It should be noted that even a non genealogist would enjoy this mystery. Lorine McGinnis Schulze has produced a great first time mystery book and I am looking forward to future Janie Riley stories." Dianne S.

"Being a genealogist and knowing many of the things talked about and places visited made reading this book a lot of fun. Can't wait for the next one to come out!! " Cathy N. 

 "I loved this book and couldn't put it down!"

"Death Finds a Way" kept me engaged with the story right to the end." Susan

Excerpt from Chapter One

The Steamer Baltic, April 5, 1878

Sixteen-year-old Katie shivered in the cool morning air and pulled her woolen cloak tighter as she nudged her brother. Tendrils of glossy blue-back hair escaped from her hood and she impatiently pushed them back. “Joey!” a soft cry escaped Katie’s lips. “Look! That must be New York!” Brother and sister were standing on the deck of the ship that had brought them from Queenstown Ireland. The bow plunged through the murky water and the shoreline loomed closer. “Finally,” muttered Joey, “I can hardly wait to get off this damn thing and on to solid ground again!”

The passage had not been an easy one. Joey had been ill for most of the voyage across the Atlantic. They were both happy to be on deck where the smell of salt air filled their nostrils. Being stuck below in steerage was miserable. Katie wasn’t sure she would ever get the smell of urine, vomit, and other body waste out of her nostrils. Babies with colic screamed long into the night, hungry children cried for hours, and passengers who were sick moaned and retched with horrible gagging noises. Women cried out in fear on hearing the ship groan and creak as its wooden hull protested with every wave that hit. Katie had taken to wrapping her cloak around her ears at night so that the dreadful sounds were muffled.
She shivered again, partially from the cold and partially from nerves. They were starting a new life in a foreign country. She remembered vividly the day Joey came in from the fields and she had to tell him that their beloved ma was gone. Pa had died of the fever just a few months before and their ma had followed not long after.

Now here they were here in a city where they knew no one. Joey had a few pounds to see them through until they could find work but Katie was terrified it would not be enough. She hoped that the emigration agent had been telling the truth when he said jobs were there for the taking in New York City. She prayed she could find a position as a maid or downstairs kitchen girl in a good home, while Joey figured that with his strong muscles and young back he’d work on the docks or help in a stable. He was good with horses and even though he was only 18, no one knew more about gentling or taming a horse than he did. 

The cool wind had reddened Katie’s cheeks and they felt numb. She was glad the bad weather had finally lifted and she had something to look at besides waves and gray water. The sun was just coming up and Katie imagined she could feel a slight warmth from it already. She could hear the cries of gulls overhead, this sign of land bringing comfort to her.

Joey nudged her. “Katie, look! I think we’re coming into the harbor.” He pointed to an island on one side, mainland on the other and the narrowing gap of water between them. Their excitement, coupled with apprehension, built. What would happen now? How long would it take to get off the ship, find their baggage, and get on their way? But on their way where? Katie reminded herself that they did not have a place to stay or employment waiting for them.  

She saw that they were heading to the island and soon they were anchored. Passengers were told to gather on the deck while officials undertook a quick inspection of their hair and mouths. Joey whispered that these were Health Inspectors checking for disease. Anyone who was found in an unhealthy state would be kept in quarantine. An hour later, the inspection was over and a few sobbing women and young children had been taken away. Katie silently said a grateful thank you for not being one of those rejected.

The ship was once again heading away from the island and Katie could see a large circular building up ahead. When the ship anchored, other officials came on board and began checking each passenger’s baggage. More hours passed and Katie felt faint from hunger. The bit of bread and meat she’d eaten at last night’s supper was gone from her stomach, and it was now long past their usual breakfast time.  Joey kept reassuring her that they were fine, it was almost over and soon they’d be on their way but she was beginning to doubt it.

Finally the exhausted passengers were herded into smaller boats. She clung tightly to Joey’s sleeve, terrified that in the crush of milling bodies they’d be separated. Joey thrust a small piece of bread and some money into her hand “Take this,” he whispered fiercely, “and if we get separated, find a spot where carriages come, and wait for me there. I’ll find you.”
With trembling hands, Katie stuffed the money into the pocket of her full skirt, where it nestled beside the embroidered hanky her ma had given her for her last birthday.
“Joey, I’m scared!” Katie’s voice shook slightly.

What happens to Katie and Joey? What adventures await them? Find out in the genealogical mystery novel "Death Finds a Way: A Janie Riley Mystery" available on and as a Paperback or E-Book

Visit my author website for details of my upcoming book in this series - "A Grave Secret"

July 17, 2017

Rescued Dairy Farmers' Union Card 1938

Feb. 5, 1938
No. of Milch Cows: 10
The Dairy Farmers Union of the State of New York
No. 34494

This card, together with a receipt covering current dues, certifies that


is a member in good standing in this Union and as such is entitled to all rights and courtesies of membership.

General Organization Committee
By Delegate No. 554

With thanks to Annette P. for saving these documents and sending them to Olive Tree Genealogy for publication