Saturday, October 30, 2010

Sorting Saturday - My eReader Makes Everything Better

I received a Sony eReader as a present a couple months ago (thank you Tara!!!) and this week I finally put a bunch of items on it.  I downloaded all the back issues of National Genealogical Society Quarterly (available to members on the NGS site), bought a new genealogical guidebook and created a pdf of my family tree and to do list and put them all on my eReader.

This has saved a lot of trees, a lot of space in my apartment and a lot of money, since eBooks are less expensive than paper copies.  Additionally, since my eReader fits easily in my purse, whenever I have extra time, I can easily read these items, furthering my genealogical education.  There are also highlighting and bookmarking features so that I can easily mark items of interest.

I also think this will be quite useful when doing genealogical research.  I am a paper and pen researcher, and obviously cannot bring all of my information when I go to libraries or court houses.  In the past I have come across names I know are related to my family, but cannot recall how.  By having my family tree with me in this way, I will (hopefully) never have this problem again.

Weekly Sorting Goal: Continue with organizing my blue bin of genealogical chaos.  Put all legal size documents into my new legal size binders.

SNGF - Halloween Personality

This week's Saturday Night Genealogy Fun from Randy Seaver:
Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to:

1)  Go take the Hallowe'en Personality quiz at

2)  Post it on your own blog, as a comment on this blog, or on your Facebook page.

3)  Tell us if this is "right on" or note.  Have fun with it!

You See Halloween as Scary

You're a friendly person, but not the life of the party. You like making someone else's day - and you'll dress up if you think of a really fun costume.

You like to think of yourself as naughty. But compared to most people, you're actually quite mild.

Your inner child is open minded, playful, and adventurous.

You truly fear the dark side of humanity. You are a true misanthrope.

You're prone to be quite emotional and over dramatic. Deep down, you enjoy being scared out of your mind... even if you don't admit it.

You are a traditionalist with most aspects of your life. You like your Halloween costume to be basic, well made, and conventional enough to wear another year.

Parts are true, parts aren't.  I'm definitely not a misanthrope.  I am however quite dramatic when I want to be;-)  I can't say I consider Halloween scary, it was always my favorite holiday when I was younger.  Unfortunately I'm closing at work tomorrow, but at least we're allowed to wear costumes:-D

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

(Not So) Wordless Wednesday - Honeymoon Food Fun


[caption id="attachment_591" align="alignnone" width="300" caption="Restaurant Toqué!"]Restaurant Toqué![/caption]

I read that Wednesday's are also Wedding Wednesday, so I thought I would show and tell some of the food we had inMontréal for our honeymoon.  For dinner one night we went to Restaurant Toqué! which is amazing.  We had the tasting menu and the wine pairings.  That night the chef made such dishes as sea urchin soup, fried bone marrow and squab (pigeon).  Definitely items I would not order normally, but they were fantastic and served in very artful ways.  I highly recommend this restaurant if you are in town.





[caption id="attachment_590" align="alignnone" width="300" caption="Poutine!"]Poutine[/caption]

Poutine is a well known dish in Quebec.  It is french fries, gravy and cheese curds and DELICIOUS!

Although I did not get a picture, we also went to the Tibetan restaurant OM.  In addition to Tibetan food, they also have Indian.  I had never had Tibetan, but it is a lot of dumplings and beef dishes.  The owner was very nice and the food was great.


Monday, October 25, 2010

Amanuensis Monday - Carolina Casillo Will

Amanuensis Monday is a blog theme created by John Newmark at TransylvaniaDutch.  He defines amanuensis an 'a person employed to write what another dictates or to copy what has been written by another."

For my first Amanuensis Monday I have transcribed the will of my great-great grandmother, Carolina (Izzo) Casillo.

Will of Carolina Casillo

Erie County, New York

Will Book 123:559

Written 25 June 1934; proved 26 October 1934


“Last Will and Testament.


I, Carolina Casillo of the City of Buffalo, in the County of Erie and State of New York, being of sound mind and memory, do make, publish and declare this my last Will and Testament, in manner following, that is to say:

First.  I direct that all my just debts and funeral expenses be paid.

Second.  I give, devise and bequeath to my beloved children Amalia Berni and Alfred M. Casell the sum of One Hundred Dollars each.  To my children Angeline Frascelli, Lucy Murphy and Clara Catalano, I give devise and bequeath to each the sum of Fifty Dollars.

Third: I give, devise and bequeath all the remainder of my estate be the same personal or real to my beloved husband Marco A. Casillo.

Lastly, I hereby nominate, constitute and appoint my beloved husband, Marco A. Casillo, without bond, executor of this, my last Will and Testament: hereby revoking all former wills by me made.


In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto subscribed my name the 25 day of June in the year One thousand nine hundred and thirty-four


Carolina Casillo


We, whose names are hereto subscribed Do Certify that on the 25 day of June 1934 Carolina Casillo the testatrix, subscribed her name to this instrument in our presence of each of us, and at the same time, in our presence and hearing, declared the same to be her last Will and Testament, and requested us and each of us, to sign our names thereto as witnesses to the execution thereof, which we hereby do in the presence of the testatrix and of each other, on the said date, and write opposite our names out respective places of residence.


Ernest L. Colucci residing at 370 Eagle St. BuffaloN.Y.

Ralph Colucci residing at 370 Eagle St BuffaloN.Y.




Surrogate’s Court, Erie County, New York.


In the Matter of Proving the Last Will and Testament} Certificate of Probate.


Carolina Casillo}






I, GEORGE T. VANDERMEULEN, Clerk of the Surrogate’s Court, of said County of Erie, do hereby certify in pursuance of Section 151 of Surrogate’s Court Act, that on the day of the date hereof, the last Will and Testament of the above named deceased, being the annexed written instru-ment, was upon due proof daily admitted to probate by the Surrogate’s Court of the County of Erie and by the Surrogate of said County, as and for the last Will and Testament of said deceased, and as a Will valid to pass Real and Personal Property.


Said last Will and Testament is recorded in the office of said Surrogate, in Liber 123 of Wills, at page 559.


In Testimony Whereof, I have hereunto subscribed my name and affixed the Seal of Office of the Surrogate of said County, this 26 day of Oct. in the year of our Lord one thousand nine hundred thirty-4.


G.T. Vandermeulen

Clerk of the Surrogate’s Court


By John F. Uhler[?]

Assistant Probate Clerk”


MSLIS Monday - OCPL Archives Internship

I am currently at work on my newest internship, organizing the archive of the Onondaga County Public Library.  When I started, this was basically a hidden collection, the librarians knew it was there, but patrons did not and it was not organized or cataloged.  I have almost gone through the entire collection and there are fantastic items in there, like a letter from Laura Ingalls Wilder and the first public library of Syracuse.  Beginning this week, I will begin foldering and boxing the collection and then will create a finding aid.  My internship is scheduled through January.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

52 Weeks to Better Genealogy – Challenge 43 – Source Citations

This week,  Amy Coffin says: "Week 43: Brush up on your knowledge of citations. The most detailed element of genealogy is also the most important. Take some time to review articles, books and web sites on the subject. If you have a copy of Elizabeth Shown Mills’ Evidence Explained, you can read it as part of this challenge. If you do not, consider getting the book, then review some of these pages and the links they contain: Genealogy Source Citations Quick Reference by Thomas MacEntee at (this is a PDF file), Citing Sources at Cyndi’s List and Documenting Your Research / Citing Your Sources at Bloggers, do you have a favorite book, web site or tool for helping you craft quality citations?"

I haven't taken part in this challenge in a while, but am glad I got back into it for this week in particular.  I am going over my copy of Evidence Explained by Elizabeth Shown Mills.  I have one professor in school who has us use Chicago style for our papers, which is what genealogical source citation is based on, from what I have seen.  Therefore, I am also going through that manual to pick up any hints I can.

Currently, I use Legacy Family Tree to hold my research, which has SourceWriter, an easy way to input your sources and know that they are created correctly.  SourceWriter crafts citations based Evidence Explained.  The user enters information into a form, which makes it very simple for even the beginning genealogist to source their information.  There is the option to create your own or edit the citations created for you, if necessary.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Sorting Saturday - The Beginning

I just learned about Sorting Saturday, created by Michelle Goodrum of  The Turning of Generations.  Looking around my apartment, it is clear that this is an excellent thing for me to become involved in.  Yesterday I ordered 2 legal sized 3-ring binders to hold the wills and other legal sized documents I have.  Today I went through my family tree program and began creating a list of research to do when my classes begin.

Based on todays post by Michelle Goodman, I am going to try to organize all the documents I have , a few at a time.  This includes checking if they are in my family tree program and then putting them into their proper binder.

Goal for the week: Organize all the documents I have in my big blue bin of genealogy chaos by surname over the next week.

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Same birthday as yours?

This weeks SGNF from Randy Seaver at Genea-Musings:

1)  Is there a person in your genealogy database that has the same birth date that you do?  If so, tell us about him or her - what do you know, and how is s/he related to you?

2)  For bonus points, how did you determine this?  What feature or process did you use in your software to work this problem out?  I think the Calendar feature probably does it, but perhaps you have a trick to make this work outside of the calendar function.

According to Legacy's calender function, I am the only person born on 9 December.  I like being an individual;-)

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Wordless Wednesday: Gress Siblings

Here are the oldest 5 of 7 children of Jacob and Elizabeth (Fink) Gress: Chester, May, Walter, Elsie, Howard.  It was taken approximately in 18671868, prior to the birth of Beulah in 1898 and Vera (my great-grandmother) in 1900.  I darked the photo as the original is quite faded.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Things I Don't Have to Think About Today

Please go read this brilliant post by John Scalzi.  And please think about it and pass it on to others to think about as well.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Back to Basic: July

July went quick! GRIP  went virtual! I attended (most) of the sessions in Documentation and then continued my citation work with my ProGen a...