Homestead Act – May 20, 1862 – Daniel Freeman 1st Homesteader

Abraham Lincoln signed the Homestead Act on May 20, 1862. It would take effect on January 1, 1863. The first homesteader to take “the required oath and [be] given the documents which made him possessor of 160 acres of land” was Daniel Freeman (1826-1908).

Daniel Freeman was born April 26, 1826 in Lewisburg, Preble County, Ohio. The son of Samuel and Phebe (Willis) Freeman.

This image of Daniel Freeman is from the Omaha (NE) Sunday World Herald 26 June 1899.

According to that newspaper he and his family moved from Ohio to Illinois when he was 9 years old. In time he enlisted in “Company H of the Seventeenth Illinois Volunteers” and was stationed in Nebraska.

Freeman “had been ordered to return to St. Louis” and would not be in town when the land record office would open on January 2nd but the Recorder of Deeds James Bedford agreed to accommodate Freeman’s situation and made an exception and administered the oath at midnight the morning of January 1st so that he could leave to report in St. Louis.

Freeman wouldn’t return to build on his land until 1865. He literally married the “girl next door” – Agnes Suiter (1843-1931) – and they built their lives together there in Brownsville, Nebraska.

The Kansas City (MO) Times 26 May 1920 carried an image of the old homestead.

What a great day for genealogists. GenealogyBank is packed with newspaper articles and historical documents – over 227 Million of them that document and give the details of our ancestor’s lives.

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¡Hola! – Hispanic Newspapers added to GenealogyBank

GenealogyBank has launched the Next Big Thing in genealogy – online resources:
Hispanic Newspapers.

This is the single largest compilation of Hispanic newspapers in the country.

Cronista del Valle. Brownsville, TX – 20 April 1925

GenealogyBank has added the first 20 titles from 4 States – (IN, MO, NM, TX) -1855 to 1956.
The entire collection of Hispanic newspapers will span 1808-1980.
This is unique data not available online anywhere else.
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Bejareno. San Antonio, TX 17 May 1856

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Amigo del Hogar. Indiana Harbour, IN 23 June 1929

This week we added:
Amigo del Hogar. Indiana Harbour, IN. 11/22/1925 to 4/13/1930
Cosmopolita. Kansas City, MO. 8/22/1914 to 11/8/1919
New Mexico
Democrata. Las Cruces, NM. 6/14/1894 to 11/24/1894
Eco del Rio Grande. Las Cruces, NM. 2/12/1876 to 3/2/1882
Eco del Valle. Las Cruces, NM. 11/18/1905 to 5/6/1916
Empresa. Las Cruces, NM. 9/26/1896 to 6/12/1897
Estrella. Las Cruces, NM. 2/1/1911 to 5/18/1935
Fronterizo. Las Cruces, NM. 4/29/1875 to 4/29/1875
Gaceta Popular. Las Cruces, NM. 10/24/1919 to 10/24/1919
Labrador. Las Cruces, NM. 9/8/1896 to 6/14/1912
Las Cruces Democrat. Las Cruces, NM. 6/21/1899 to 10/11/1899
Observador Fronterizo. Las Cruces, NM. 9/11/1888 to 10/30/1888
Promotor Escolar. Las Cruces, NM. 9/12/1891 to 2/16/1892
Defensor del Pueblo. Socorro, NM. 12/26/1913 to 4/9/1943
Cronista del Valle. Brownsville, TX. 10/8/1924 to 2/28/1930
Defensor. Edinburg, TX. 2/7/1930 to 12/25/1931
Azote. El Paso, TX. 9/17/1922 to 4/15/1923
Ciudanano. El Paso, TX. 3/12/1892 to 4/23/1892
Continental. El Paso, TX. 9/20/1936 to 8/28/1938
Bejareno. San Antonio, TX. 2/7/1855 to 7/28/1956

Halvor Moorshead Retires

For more than two decades Halvor Moorshead has been in the forefront of genealogy.

Consistently on target his four publications Family Chronicle, Internet Genealogy, History Magazine and his newest title Discovering Family History are the best in the field. Readable and useful, you save each issue, mark them up and act on the suggestions, tips and ideas. I wish we could say that about every genealogy magazine.

Halvor has the pulse of genealogy. He knows where we need to be researching, the tools of the trade and the “next big thing” – and he knows how to present it. As publisher we all could see his hand in framing each issue so that it would be up to date and on target.

I personally have been grateful to know him and benefited from his candor, knowledge of the field and smiling good humor.
And hey, he’s a heck of a nice guy too.

Halvor is not leaving the stage just yet – he will be a consultant for the new publishers and he will be at the National Genealogical Society Conference in Kansas City in May. I am organizing an event there in Halvor’s honor and will post the details to this blog. Be sure to be there to wish him well.

Here is the official announcement from Halvor Moorshead:

I am retiring on Friday, 29 February 2008I wish I had the capacity to e-mail everyone with whom I do business – and my friends –individually about the following but this is not practical so I am sending out this general announcement about important changes affecting our publishing company.

I have sold Moorshead Magazines – which includes Family Chronicle, Internet Genealogy, History Magazine and the new Discovering Family History and will be retiring. The sale finalizes on Friday 29 February 2008.

This is not quite as radical as it first sounds. I am selling the company to two of the staff – Ed Zapletal and Rick Cree. They have made it clear that their main reason for buying the company is that they do NOT want any changes. There will obviously be some differences as I will be out of the picture, but there will be no staff changes. Victoria, Marc and Jeannette will be continuing in the same roles.I turned 65 in November and want time to travel and do other things with Marian (my wife) while we are still capable (I also plan on spending a lot of time researching my own genealogy!). I also want to do more lecturing.

I am intensely proud of what we have done with Moorshead Magazines – we have dedicated loyal and highly experienced staff. Ed and Rick have both been with me for 24 years – way, way before we published Family Chronicle. We work very well together and we have been pretty successful. Things are going well – Discovering Family History looks as though it will become another success story and this is important to me; I very much want to retire on a high note. Part of the sale agreement is that I will act as a consultant related to the magazines for three years so I am not entirely cut off. In addition, I plan to be at the NGS Annual Convention in Kansas City in May, largely to say good bye personally to the many friends I have made in the genealogy field over the years.


GenealogyBank – Added Over 42.5 Million Records Last Year!

GenealogyBank reported explosive growth in 2007 increasing its digital archive with over 40 million historical newspaper articles and modern obituaries.

GenealogyBank is quickly becoming the fastest growing newspaper archive for family history research with over 3,300 U.S. newspapers in all 50 states. The exclusive collection features newspapers from the 1600’s to the present day with over 106 million historical newspaper articles and more than 26 million obituaries now available for family history research. Each article is a single digital image that can be printed and preserved for family scrapbooks.

To celebrate, GenealogyBank is currently offering a 30-Day trial for only $9.95.

“We are excited about the rapid growth of our newspaper collection and the vast breadth of family history information we now have available” says Genealogy Director for NewsBank, inc., Tom Kemp. “GenealogyBank provides exclusive access to more than four centuries of important genealogical information such as obituaries, marriage and birth announcements as well as interesting and often surprising facts about our ancestors.”

Latest additions to the GenealogyBank historical newspaper collection features big city dailies and regional weeklies including: San Jose (CA) Mercury 1886-1922, Baltimore (MD) Sun – 1837-1901, Kansas City Star (MO) 1815-1922, NY Herald 1844-1863, Philadelphia Evening Post – 1804-1912, Philadelphia Inquirer 1860-1922 And many more. View entire list.

Kemp added, “Toward our stated goal of creating the single most comprehensive resource of newspapers for family history research, GenealogyBank will continue to digitize millions of family history records in the upcoming months that will greatly expand and increase the depth of our collections. We will begin releasing Hispanic American Newspapers, 1808-1980 in February along with hundreds of additional historical newspaper titles.”

About GenealogyBank: GenealogyBank, a division of NewsBank, inc., supplies individuals interested in family history research with over 300 years of U.S. newspapers, government documents and other historical records in all 50 states. GenealogyBank contains over 214 million family history records including obituaries, birth, marriage, death notices and much more.

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