A younger RobinWe love that genealogy celebrates people as whole individuals - not just people in their vocations or locations but as people who had parents and ancestors, people who were born, grew up, married, and experienced life. We love that concept so much that our new site (making its debut later this month) will include our staff members' childhood photos to reinforce the celebration of individuals and their whole lives on this planet.Robin Williams made a significant contribution to our culture and to the world, and beyond that he was a person like every person - one with ancestors who came before him, one with hopes, with struggles, and with successes.Anselm J. McLaurinRobin Williams was born in Chicago on July 21, 1951. His middle name of McLaurin comes from the maiden name of his mother's grandmother - Stella May McLaurin. She was the daughter of senator and Mississippi governor Anselm J. McLaurin. The McLaurin name was passed on in the middle name of Stella's daughter, …Read more
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Back in 1855 when the state of Utah was getting organized, the Salt Lake Meridian was established and it was from this very point that the entire state of Utah was surveyed. The stone post in this photo is essentially the center of Utah, and the baseline (or latitude) and meridian (longitude) is still surveyed from here. This was an accurate way to survey land, as opposed to the system used by the original thirteen colonies, that of metes and bounds. With metes and bounds, the description of your property would read, “…goes until this big rock, then west to the large maple tree, then north to the bend in the creek.” This system of property description met challenges when someone removed the rock or the tree died, or the creek changed its course.Today’s modern way of surveying began in Ohio just after the Revolutionary War, with the establishment of the Public Land Survey System, where set points were established, or rather, one major north-south line, the meridian, and one major …Read more
Genealogy is hot.In 2012, ABC News ran a headline that said, “Genealogy Becomes $1.6B Hobby.” One reason for this trend is that we seem to have an innate need to know what extraordinary things our ancestors accomplished - even those who may be considered ordinary on a large scale - and we learn that through genealogical research.Look at this 1841 U.K. Census, where Alfred and Anne Barker, both in their forties, lived together on Brick Kiln Lane in Coventry, Warwickshire, England. You can learn a lot from one census record. Alfred and Anne both worked as ribbon weavers and were raising five children:The word “do” means ditto. Ages above 15 were rounded down to the nearest 5.This family lived through and felt the massive impact of the dawn of the industrial revolution in England. In 1841, ribbon weaving was the main industry of Coventry, employing the majority of the city, including the Barker family. Silk ribbons were in high demand, used by the wealthy …Read more
From Terra Costin, Legacy Tree Project Manager:Last week in Utah we celebrated our annual State Holiday – Pioneer Day. Though the celebration began in honor of the first Mormon pioneers who arrived in the Salt Lake Valley on 24 July 1847, it is now in honor of everyone (regardless of faith or nationality) who came to the Salt Lake Valley between 1847 and about 1869, when the transcontinental railroad arrived.Every year on Pioneer Day as I attend my local parade, visit the quilt fair, or walk through the Daughters of Utah Pioneers museum in my small town and look at the old black and white photographs, I'm reminded that most families have pioneers in their ancestry, regardless of whether they are from Utah or not.The word “pioneer” means: a person who is among the first to explore or settle a new country or area. This applies to every city, town, and community in the world. Ancestors who immigrated to a new country, or who moved west as the U.S. expanded, or who left homes and families …Read more