Notes from the past…

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Time to step back, reevaluate and get back on track

I have been working diligently on the biography story page of Dr. Nathan Blunt Kennedy at I have been uploading documents in support of the story, and in doing so have reexamined many of those documents. And, I have discovered a few new clues along the way. It certainly pays to check out your “old” data periodically! His story is not yet finished, so I will still continue with this project until its completion.
But, occasionally I have found that I need to stop my research, reevaluate where I am and what I want to accomplish, and get re-focused. It is very easy for me to get sidetracked. I need a “lesson plan” of sorts, a tool whereby I break down the overall goal of my research into smaller, more manageable sub-goals.
The Plan:

  1. Reexamine my Bluebonnet Country Genealogy FTM database. Start with my generation and work backwards, with each generation look at my direct line and see what data I have, what I need, what documentation that I already have that needs to be added to the database, and any other “spring cleaning” that needs to be done. For several of my ancestors I have a lot of data that needs to be documented and added to the database, the nitty-gritty stuff. With other ancestors, I have very little data. Those people need a lot more research to be done.
  2. Start with the first “non-living” generation, which basically will be my grandparents, and begin the mountainous task of uploading important documents and images to my gallery for safekeeping.
  3. Add more story pages to I have several other ancestors in mind for this project: Crist Hayes Carrico and Miles Francis Stanley to begin with. Both led quite interesting lives that ended at opposite ends of the “lived-happily-ever-after” tale.
  4. I have recently met many “cousins” online through this blog and my RootsWeb site. Their information needs to be added to the database, and I need to devise some type of system to keep up with my new “cousins”.
  5. I also have a lot of info to add to my “known” family, such as the obituary from my uncle Ladd Clark from September 2007.
  6. Last of all, but perhaps most important, I really need to learn to discipline myself concerning my research. It is so incredibly easy for me to get sidetracked and wander off, to lose the focus of my work. I can spend an entire morning (as I did yesterday!) on a side path, such as looking for a widget for this blog that displays birthday reminders for my ancestors. Ex: Feb 18th would have been my grandfather’s 98th birthday. I think it would be really neat to have a reminder of each person’s birthday, no matter how old they would be…as you can plainly see, I can wander off in a heartbeat!
  7. Maybe also, just a bit of spring cleaning of my desk and physical genealogy filing system. It’s in pretty good shape, as I did a major clean-up, clean-out and reorganization last year. But a bit of tidying up might get me more into the solid researching mode.
Ok, now I have a plan! Next step: get started. But first, some housework…

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Time to move on!

I have completed the Bennett family research (for now). I was able to document 9 generations, from my own granddaughter back to Joshua F Bennett, her 6th great-grandfather! I don’t have every document there is to have, and, in the interest of my sanity, I only researched 2 generations laterally. But certainly enough to establish my direct line:

Joshua F Bennett>James Bennett>Mary Lavina Bennett>Ruth Carroll>Mamie Inez Carr>My Dad>Me

I also sent emails containing a “Descendants of Joshua F Bennett” report to my 2 newly-found Bennett “cousins”.
I sent a request to DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution) for confirmation and any records they have on Jesse Carroll. One descendant, James Spurgeon Carroll married Mary Lavina Bennett, and another, Jerusha Jane Carroll, married Charles Andrew Bennett. I have an email from another Bennett “cousin” which indicates that descendants of Jesse Carroll belong to DAR.
An idea occured to me to help me keep my research and all the surnames involved from spiraling into total chaos. As I complete each surname, I am adding an image of that surname’s family crest to its’ computer folder:
This is the Bennett folder with its family crest.
I was planning to go through the surname folders alphabetically, but I see now that I need to go by generation instead. So I think my next step will be the Stanley family.

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Website update

Bluebonnet Country Genealogy has been updated! Everything is current as of yesterday. And I finished with Albert Bennett and his 2 wives this morning. That’s 5 of the 12 Bennett kids done. I have found a lot of new info on the boys. I think it has helped enormously to finally have my files coherent and organized!
I’ve been to several sites lately that have a lot of info, but are pay sites. Most reasonable, but still pay. When I get all my records current and into my FTM database and on my BGG website (probably New Years!), that will be the next step!