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Family researchers seeking your help

November 15, 1998

Times Leader Genealogy Writer

Much more geneology information and advice.

Several readers from other states are researching family in our area. Can anybody around here help them?

  • New York resident Mary Ellen Coon is the granddaughter of Edward J. BOLEN, who was born in Plymouth in 1895. His parents were James A. BOLEN and Ruth MORGAN. Coon says she has been able to trace back the Bolen side quite well, but she needs information on the Morgan side.

    Great-grandmother Ruth Morgan was born in Pittston Feb. 24, 1864 to Welsh immigrants Lemuel MORGAN b. 1836, d. 1891 and Elizabeth Hughes REIMILLER b. 1838, d. 1926.

    The key pieces of information Coon is seeking are the day and month and county of Elizabeth's death in 1926 (Luzerne County or Carbon County) so that she can obtain a death certificate from the state.

    Children born to the couple were Coon's grandfather Edward as well as Naomi, Thomas, James and Janet. The family lived for a while in Scranton and then in Plymouth. Lemuel, who was a miner, and Elizabeth are buried in Shawnee Cemetery, Plymouth.

    From her first marriage, to a Mr. Reimiller, Elizabeth brought children Mary and George to her marriage with Lemuel. George died in 1913. His obituary lists sister Mary Finkler of Weatherly, half-sister Ruth (Mrs. James Bolen) of Plymouth, who is Coon's great-grandmother, half-sister Naomi (Mrs. Morgan Stevens) of Plymouth and mother Elizabeth Morgan of Weatherly.

    Coon says that inquiries to Shawnee Cemetery have proved fruitless.

    Contact Mary Ellen Coon at 2586 Falls Road, Marcellus, N.Y. 13108-9722. (315) 673-2219.

  • Indiana resident Martha F. Mead is researching some Hazleton-area ancestors. She is looking for information on Michael BEISHLEIN (1764-1852), d. Butler Township; m. Magdalena FEHR/FAIR, d. 1798. Were these people brother and sister to Jacob FEHR/FAIR (1743-1813) and first wife Elizabeth BEISHLEIN of Lower Saucon Township, Northampton County, Pa.? Who were their parents? Elizabeth's family moved to summit Hill, Hazleton area, Luzerne County.

    Contact Martha F. Mead at 5884 Carvel Ave., Indianapolis, Ind. 46220-2651.

  • Carrie Butler of New York is researching ancestors from Ireland and Wales who emigrated to Wilkes-Barre in the 19th century.

    She needs birthplace and parents for Thomas and Ann BUTLER. He was b. 1835-6 at Waterford Parish, Ireland; d. after 1920, probably in Wilkes-Barre. She was b. 1837-40 at Waterford Parish; d. 1905 Wilkes-Barre. They lived in Aberdare, Wales, then came to America in 1884-5 and had a grocery store in Wilkes-Barre. Their children were James, Edward, Henry m. Ellen Merrick, Thomas m. Martha, George, John, Francis and William who m. Louise and was a high school teacher in Wilkes-Barre.

    She also needs birthplace and parents for Harriet REES b. 1860 in Wales, d. 1924 Wilkes-Barre, m. 1880 in Tredegar, Wales, Benjamin BEMKINS/BAMKIN. She is also trying to develop Welsh and English ancestry of the Bemkins/Bamkin family of Tredegar and Angle, Wales. Are they descended from the Bamkins of Leicester, England? She welcomes any information on the Bamkin surname.

    Contact Carrie Butler at 847 Forest Ave., Fulton, N.Y. 13069. (315) 592-5130.

  • Betty Hodges of Indiana has some ancestors in the Philadelphia area and wants to know if anyone here can help her.

    William HODGES b. 1834 in Philadelphia County, m. Mary HOWELL. Children were Edward FOWLER b. 1857 and William Smith HODGES b. 1859. With second marriage to Mary WATSON children were Ella W. and Julia PORTER. With third marriage to Rose Jones children were Walter b. 1894 and William b. 1890.

    Contact Betty Hodges at 707 Alexandria Pike, Anderson, Ind. 46012. 765-642-4531.

    . . .

    Books: If you have Civil War ancestors, and you are sometimes puzzled by the terminology or place names in the paperwork you've compiled, a worthwhile investment would be the "Historical Times Illustrated Encyclopedia of the Civil War."

    Does your ancestor's military record or regimental history say that he served at the battle of Darbytown Road? The encyclopedia gives you nearly half a page on this long-forgotten Virginia engagement. Confused by references to your ancestor's regiment having been attached to IV Corps or XXIII Corps at different times? A long section gives a complete history of every corps in the Army from 1861 to 1865 and helps you to track his movements.

    This 850-page book, in fact, covers just about every topic you can think of from "abatis" to "zouave." Look for it at your bookstore.

    Ordering information: "Historical Times Illustrated Encyclopedia of the Civil War," edited by Patricia Faust, Harper, paperpack edition published 1991, $25, IBSN 0-06-273116-5.

    News Notes: The next meeting of the Northeast Pennsylvania Genealogical Society will be a workshop. Bring in your questions and problems, and somebody will be able to help you.

    Meetings are at 7 p.m. at the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center (Veterans Hospital), Plains Township, near the Wyoming Valley Mall.

    You don't have to be a member to attend. But if you would like to join and start receiving the quarterly newsletter and gaining access to the society's library and trips to research facilities, send $15 to Northeast Pennsylvania Genealogical Society, P.O. Box 1776, Shavertown, Pa. 18708-0776.

  • Ellis Island, that marvelous museum of the American immigrant experience, is about to become an important genealogical resource. Beginning in 2000, visitors will be able to access a computerized database containing records of about 17 million immigrants who passed through the facility during its heyday of 1892 to 1924.

    Said the Associated Press recently, "Searches will be done by name, and the names do not need to be spelled correctly. The database has been set up to search for close matches and phonetic spellings."

    Searches are expected to take no more than a few minutes each, with the user paying a nominal fee.

    Ellis Island offers artifacts, taped recollections and half-hour films and dramas. Located in New York Harbor, easily accessible by ferry from Battery Park, it is more than worth the trip.

  • Have you solved some tough genealogical problems in your research? Do you have some tips you'd like to share with others? Would you like to report a success story? Drop me a line here at the paper. I'll get in touch with you and help you bring the benefits of your experience to others.

    © 1998 The Times Leader

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