Historical Association of Tobyhanna Township

HATT | PO Box 2084 | Pocono Pines, PA 18350-2084

July 11, 2019



July 11, 2019 • 5:30 p.m.
Clymer Library, 115 Firehouse Road, Pocono Pines, Pa.

Attendance: 39 members and guests

Speaker: Pat Quigley and Ike Olson — “Wanderings in Genealogy”

The meeting was opened promptly at 5:30 p.m. by board director Ruth Burke. She welcomed all and asked us to all rise for the Pledge of Allegiance.

Burke welcomed all members and guests and invited guests to become members. She then asked for volunteers to post fliers for our August 15 meeting with the topic of "Trivia Game Night on Tobyhanna Township History," led by Rick Bodenschatz.

Our Annual Meeting will be a dinner at Lake Naomi Club on September 11. Dinner fliers were available and the topic will be "The Poconos: Vacation Land through History."

The Archival sessions will be announced via email as will reminders of upcoming meetings and events.

Burke then introduced our guest speakers for this evening: Pat Quigley and Ike Olson who will be presenting on Wanderings in Genealogy.

Pat started off by with information on how to do a genealogy for your family. He explained where history is recorded, stating that before the Civil War, documentation is sketchy. Records before this date (around 1850) get harder and harder to trace.

An interesting development is the new DNA research. Ancestry.com does a good job with this aspect. If you want to trace health history of family members, 23 & Me is a better option, he said.

Pat suggested that you start with what you know when searching family history and connecting to past relatives. He said that you need to talk to the oldest living relative to get as much information as possible. Interview all known survivors and branch out to siblings, cousins and others. Ask for any photos. Look up old records, deeds, wills, church recordings of weddings, baptisms and deaths. Check naturalization records and the census records.

You can start with the U.S. Census, but be careful because there were times in years past where census takers would interview neighbors to get information on people, and many times that information would be inaccurate.

Be careful of the name spelling, also, because there were no standardized ways of writing down spellings of names so they can have many different spellings depending on who interpreted the oral rendition of a name. The more information you have, the more you can be sure you have the correct person.

Churches tend to have more accurate. It should be noted that a new law was passed to require that births be recorded to within six to eight weeks of birth. It is therefore possible that people were not truthful of when the birth happened if they reported beyond the 8th week so they wouldn’t have to pay a fine. Baptismal records were more accurate.

Pat distributed a handout that had all of this information plus charts to follow to help with your own genealogy.

Ike Olson began with interesting information about his father’s side and the family history in Sweden. His lineage could be traced back to the Mayflower. Additionally, his grandfather of many generations ago was a member of the Royal Court. His mother’s side was at one time wealthy Virginia farmers. The family migrated to Texas after the Civil War.

Ike took questions and a discussion followed.

Burke thanked the presenters and gave them certificates of appreciation for their interesting presentations. Everyone was reminded of our upcoming programs especially the annual dinner for which you need to register. The meeting ended at 6:26 pm.

Respectfully submitted,
Peggy Rapp, Secretary