Days of Thanksgiving Celebrated by Our Ancestors

Introduction: Mary Harrell-Sesniak is a genealogist, author and editor with a strong technology background. In this blog article, Mary searches old newspapers to learn more about Days of Thanksgiving that have been proclaimed throughout American history. While planning Thanksgiving celebrations, most of us dream of the bountiful feast set upon our tables: turkey, corn,... (Read More)

Veterans Day: Saluting Amos Barnes, Revolutionary War Vet

Our nation has long been grateful to our veterans, starting with the American Revolutionary War. When Amos Barnes died in 1840 newspapers remembered him – giving the details of his life, his family and his service to the nation in a detailed obituary. He died 6 December 1840 in Conway, New Hampshire He had... (Read More)

What’s a Third Cousin Anyway? Genealogy Tutorial Video

The Anaconda Standard reported this interesting case in 1901 of one of George Washington’s “third cousins” who had fallen on hard times. Per the news report, Miss Agnes Washington Fairchild, who was born in Fairfax, Virginia, had no means of support and had called on the “Supervisor of the Outdoor Poor” (now, that’s a... (Read More)

What Were the Famous Last Words of Our Early Presidents?

Introduction: Mary Harrell-Sesniak is a genealogist, author and editor with a strong technology background. In celebration of Presidents’ Day, Mary takes a look at the last words our first four presidents supposedly said on their deathbeds. In honor of Presidents’ Day, I decided to research the last words of our first four United States... (Read More)

John M’Donogh – Loyal American Patriot ’till Death

Deemed an upstanding citizen by the Salem Gazette, two-time American war veteran John M’Donogh passed away, losing a long fight with disease on 19 March 1809. M’Donogh is noted for serving directly under a young General George Washington during the French & Indian War. M’Donogh fought during British General Braddock’s failed expedition in 1755... (Read More)

Do You Celebrate Birthday Traditions Like Your Ancestors Did?

Introduction: Mary Harrell-Sesniak is a genealogist, author and editor with a strong technology background. In this blog post, Mary searches old newspapers to find stories about birthday traditions celebrated by our ancestors. Chances are you celebrate some of your birthday traditions the way your ancestors did—and not just extravagant gatherings with cakes, balloons and... (Read More)

Old Newspapers Tell the History of Two Manhattan Taverns

Introduction: Duncan Kuehn is a professional genealogist with over eight years of client experience. She has worked on several well-known projects, such as “Who Do You Think You Are?” and researching President Barack Obama’s ancestry. In this blog post, Duncan searches old newspapers to find the history of two taverns in Manhattan that archaeologists... (Read More)

Old Music in Historical Newspapers: Tips for Finding Songs

Introduction: Mary Harrell-Sesniak is a genealogist, author and editor with a strong technology background. In this blog post, Mary provides newspaper search tips to find articles and musical scores about the songs our ancestors enjoyed When doing your family history research, have you ever wondered about the old music your American ancestors enjoyed? What... (Read More)