Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Wordless Wednesday Cliff Geyser

One more picture from my great Aunt Latisha Vanderpool's trip through Yellowstone Park July 21-28, 1915

Cliff Geyser on Fire Hole River.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Saturday Night Fun Genealogy Gifts

1) What gift that you received for Christmas is your favorite for genealogy purposes? Book, magazine, hardware, software, website subscription, research time - what was it, and how will it affect your genealogy research?

I had already written the paragraph below when a last minute gift just arrived by E-Mail. A little over a week ago I found out the husband of my cousin Patricia Taylor Milligan, Donald Milligan had passed away in August. My sister and I had helped clean out my uncle Leigh Hansen's house after he died and in the basement was a footlocker with the name Duane Taylor (Patricia's brother) stenciled on the front. On the bottom stenciled was Personal Effects from APO address to Kansas City, MO. Duane had died in an auto wreck in Paris after WWII was over in 1945. Since Duane had no family we asked who to send the footlocker to, and while at the UPS store we needed an phone number to send the footlocker to Australia, so called Don Milligan, phone disconnected, so called his daughter Janet. She said JoAnn was in the USA now as they are arguing over the proceeds of the estate, so sent the footlocker to Janet and she is to forward it to JoAnn. Thanks Randy

I don't think I received any genealogical gifts, I did receive a few pictures and updates on the family. I did give my sister a new computer, her old one was having out of memory problems, and the battery that keeps the time when the computer is off died a couple of years ago. I did not get a new screamer for her but a nice desktop computer to replace the old one. I also copied picasa and all the pictures from her digital camera on it. I had been copying here on this computer, so now there is a backup about 3 miles apart for all her pictures.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Advent Calendar Christmas Eve

How did you, your family or your ancestors spend Christmas Eve?

My moms family always opened their presents on Christmas Eve, so since we lived close we went there to open the presents we received and gave to our grandmother and grandfather Kelly. Later on we were also able to bring one present from home also. Pops family always opened presents on Christmas morning, and since we did not live close to pops family we usually exchanged gifts early in December and then on Christmas morning we opened all the rest of the presents.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Wordless Wednesday Twin Cubs

Two more pictures from my great Aunt Latisha Vanderpool's trip through Yellowstone Park July 21-28, 1915

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Advent Calendar Christmas & Deceased Relatives

Did your family visit the cemetery at Christmas? How did your family honor deceased family members at Christmas?

My mom Margaret (Kelly) Hansen died rather suddenly November 30, 1994. Her diabetes had started to take is toll, and they were talking about amputating her feet because of poor circulation due to the diabetes. She was in the hospital and heading for an X-Ray when she died. That Christmas was a fog for me, and since then weather permitting we usually visit her grave between Thanksgiving and Christmas to put flowers in the little vase on the front of their niche.
Saturday the 19th we went to Priest River to deliver a Christmas present, and were going to stop by the grave of my uncle Leigh Hansen. He died December 2007 and is buried in the cemetery at Priest River, but they have several inches of snow there and his stone is a flat one so we did not stop, will go back on Memorial Day.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Advent Calendar Christmas Music

What songs did your family listen to during Christmas?
Well I like most all the Christmas songs, we have albums ranging from Alvin and The

Chipmunks Christmas Songs, to Perry Como Christmas, Andy Williams, Mitch Miller, Lawrence Welk, and the Mormon Tabernacle Chior.

Did you ever go caroling?

No, never, tooo cold around here at Christmas time, we did sing carols at church and at school, and I even got to lead the band in high school on the last day before Christmas vacation in a carol.

Did you have a favorite song?
No, like most all the Christmas songs.

Perhaps there is a particular Christmas song that drives you wild?

Yes, on the December 1 post on our Christmas Tree I told about the silver tree with a revolving stand. Well the stand had a music box that plays "Silent Night" over and over as the tree revolves, so after a few hours of Silent Night we would shut off the music box.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Advent Calendar Religious Services

Did your family attend religious services during the Christmas season?

While my grandmother Kelly was alive we went to Sunday School at the Hillyard Christian Church on Queen and Altamont. I remember being in a few of the Christmas pageants, and the minister or his son would dress up as Santa and pass out candy and cookies to all the children that the church ladies had made. If my sister or I was in the pageant my parents would come, but otherwise my parents seldom went to church. I learned after the Hillyard Christian Church closed that my grandfather Kelly had been one of the founders of that church. I was real young when he died so I don't ever remember grandpa Kelly going to church.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Saturday Night Fun A Genealogy-Oriented Gift

1) Pick out a genealogy-oriented gift for someone you know, admire, appreciate or love. It could be for a family member, someone in the genealogy community, or a friend or colleague. What would be your genealogy gift to them? [Note: you don't have to actually gift them, although it would be a nice thing to do!]

Well Friday my sister and I tried to send a genealogy-oriented gift to a first cousin once removed in Australia, but lets start at the beginning. I am the youngest of nine first cousins, and since my cousin Duane Taylor died in Paris after WWII, I am the last male cousin. Duane was killed in an auto accident in Paris late in 1945. Fast forward to December 2007, and my uncle died in Priest River, Idaho, and in his basement is an army footlocker that is stenciled on the front Lt. Duane Taylor. Inside is some of my uncles old uniforms from when he was in the Army Air Corps, so my sister got the footlocker and uniforms. Early this year she called Donald Milligan in Coronado, California, brother in law of Duane, to see if he or any of his four daughters would like the footlocker since Duane was the brother of their mother. Don said his daughter JoAnn who lives in Australia would love to get it. My sister was rather slow getting it sent, but Friday we took it to the UPS store and paid a small fortune to send the 19 pound foot locker to Australia, and they needed the phone number for JoAnn. We phoned Donald Milligan, and his phone was disconnected, he had passed away in August and we did not know. We found a phone number for one of the daughters, Janet, and called her to get JoAnn's phone number. JoAnn was in Coronado and will be leaving for Australia on Monday, but they want the footlocker sent to Coronado as they have some more stuff to go to Australia for JoAnn and will put it all together in one shipment. We went back to the UPS store since they were holding the box till they got JoAnn's phone number, to get the address changed and hopefully a big refund, but the girl there did not know how to do that so we need to come back Monday.

Advent Calendar Christmas Shopping

How did your family handle Christmas shopping? Did anyone finish early or did anyone start on Christmas Eve?

My mom started in February for the next Christmas, and was usually done before Thanksgiving. My dad started in November and was usually done a couple of days before Christmas. I usually shopped like my dad, but as I get older I am switching more to be like mom and start real early.
Mom always shopped the after Christmas sales for wrapping paper, bows, name tags, etc.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Festival of Postcards Mammoth Hot Springs

This is a postcard my dad received in 1921. It does not say who sent it. The White part of Mammoth Hot Springs is from the calcium carbonate in the hot water that flows over Mammoth Hot Springs daily.

Postcard was mailed at Yellowstone post office June 27, 1921. Too bad it was not signed. It may be from Duane & Carrie Taylor, my dad's older sister and brother in law. They got married a week before this and were honeymooning in Yellowstone after the marriage.
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The Festival of Postcards can be found here.

Advent Calendar Christmas Stockings

Did you have one? Where did you hang it? What did you get in it?

We did put up stockings a few times when I was young, but most years not. We did not have a fireplace so no mantle to hang the stockings from. When I was pretty young mom bought a cardboard fireplace, and when unfolded it was supposed to look like a fireplace. It had a light inside with a little fan above the light. When the light was on the heat from the light made the fan turn so it was suppose to be like a flickering fire. Since there was no chimney connected I asked how could Santa get in? And would the light burn him? I think we got some nuts and cookies in the stockings.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Advent Calendar Christmas Memories

Last night on TV I got to see White Christmas and Holiday Inn both with Bing Crosby and co stars Fred Astaire and Danny Kaye. I have always loved Bing Crosby and his singing of White Christmas.
Bing grew up here in Spokane and went to Gonzaga High School and started studying law at Gonzaga University, but dropped out to go to Hollywood and the rest of that is history.
Legend has it that the nickname Bing came from reading the Bingville Bugle an extra section to our Spokesman Review newspaper.
Spokane usually has a white Christmas, and as a boy we got to sled down the hill at the end of our block. If we took a good run we could go a block and a half before stopping. Back then that street was not paved and had very little traffic, today it is paved and even though a residential street the cars fly by that hill today.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Advent Calendar Christmas at School

What did your ancestors do to celebrate Christmas at school? Well my mom was in the school orchestra so I assume they had a Christmas concert. I was in the band in Junior High and High School and we had a Christmas concert each year.
Were you ever in a Christmas Pageant? About fourth or fifth grade I was in the Christmas Pageant at school. I was in a group of 5 boys and we sang a couple of Christmas songs. I had a good soprano voice till my voice changed and we sang kind of like the Vienna Boys Choir. After my voice changed I was glad I was in the band as I did not sing good anymore.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Advent Calendar Holiday Happenings

Well all my close relatives were born well away from Christmas, the closest being my sister, and she was born March 31, so a long way from the Christmas holidays.

This is a picture of my parents wedding in my grandmothers house January 14, 1942. My dad Claude Hansen was 35 then and obviously single, but since it was so soon after Pearl Harbor was bombed they were drafting single men to age 36. Pop had been to a CMTC (Civilian Military Training Camp)camp in the 1920s, and he said about all they did was march, and he had bad feet and did not fit well in the Army issued boots, so he went out to Geiger Air Force Base and enlisted hoping that in the Army Air Corps they might fly somewhere instead of marching everywhere. He received his orders to report to Geiger and wanted to get married before he shipped off to war. My mom Margaret Kelly and pop went down to the auditors office to get a license, and they waved the three day waiting period so they could get married before he left. They got married and after the marriage they had the marriage certificate recorded at the auditors office because that was the law. Pop went off to serve in the 354th Service Squadron, first to Ephrata, Washington, then England, Africa and eventually Italy. Because he was older than most of the men in the service by then he got rotated home, so he was at Ft. Dix, on VE day and back here in Spokane by VJ day. Most of the members of our local genealogical society (EWGS) know I do research for others that send queries to EWGS for local look ups. A few years ago I was in the courthouse looking up a marriage for a query and the index listed two marriage certificate numbers. I had done a lot of marriage certificate look ups by then so I was really surprised by two numbers. A little note here, the auditors office files all the marriage certificates by number, so did they get married twice? When I got to the actual record I found out the problem. Each file during this time had two documents, one was the application they filled out when they applied for the license and the second document was the marriage certificate signed by the bride, groom, witnesses and the minister and was recorded after the marriage and both usually had the same recording number. Well for the couple I was looking for they had a different number on the application and the certificate because another couple also had different numbers on their certificate and application. Both had just switched recording numbers. Turns out the second couple that had their numbers mixed up was my parents. I did not check the index for them to see if they were listed with two certificate numbers but I bet the index also shows two numbers for my parents also. Today all the certificates are online for Spokane county, but none of the applications have made it online yet.
Since their anniversary was after Christmas we always had a nice celebration for them and never mixed in with Christmas or Christmas gifts.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Advent Calendar Fruitcake Friend or Foe?

Did you like fruitcake?
Did your family receive fruitcakes?
Seldom, I do remember receiving one once where all the fruit had been soaked in brandy, that one I did not like, it burned all the way down at each bite.
Have you eve re-gifted fruitcake?
Never lasted long enough around here to be re-gifted.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Advent Calendar Holiday Travel

I don't ever remember traveling anywhere for Christmas. My grandfather had worked for the Great Northern Railroad so every year they would get a pass to travel somewhere. Grandma used those passes to go see her sister in Denver, but seldom stayed for Christmas, usually went earlier in the month. We did go to see pops parents at their farm about 35 miles north east of Spokane at Blanchard, Idaho and usually spent Christmas Eve at moms parents house, but more on that later.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Saturday Night Fun, Missing Databases

1) Define one or more genealogy or family history databases, that are not currently online, that would really help you in your research. Where does this database currently reside?
While it really would not help me much personally (see my December 15th Advent Post) it would help many genealogists searching for their parents or grandparents marriages. The database I am talking about is the marriage applications that the couples filled out to get a marriage license here in Spokane County sometime after 1930. Before 1930 those applications are online at the Washington State Digital Archives.

2) Tell us about it/them in a blog post on your own blog or GenealogyWise or Facebook, in a comment to this blog post, or in a comment to this post on Facebook.
Currently they have the Marriage Certificates after 1930 online, but the real genealogical information is on the applications, like place of birth of bride and groom, parents names (including maiden name of mother) and birthplaces of the parents, and occupations of bride and groom. The actual paper records are housed in the Eastern Washington State Archives in Cheney, Washington. The same records are also on microfilm at the county auditors office.

Advent Calendar Charitable/Volunteer Work

While I have been a volunteer at our local library since 1993, it really is not the type of Charitable-Volunteer work that should be with the advent calendar. Back in the Holiday Parties post on December 7th I told about the PTA providing cupcakes for the Christmas party at school, well my mom was the treasurer of the Whitman PTA and the neighbor across the street was the President, so guess who supplied cupcakes?
My grandma was the person that did most for others near Christmas. She was part of the church quilting circle they called it. My grandfather had made a quilt frame that they set on 4 chair backs and the ladies would hand stitch the squares together, put on a back and usually a wool blanket in the middle and then tie the two sides together with yarn about every foot. When done they donated the quilts to the church to sell to support the church. She actually bought several of the quilts back, so I have a whole chest of quilts she made.
Grandma was also part of the "Sunshine Circle" at the church. The minister would gather up a group of ladies from the "Sunshine Circle", and they visited the church members that for what ever reason could not get out, maybe in the hospital, a nursing home or just sick at home. They would take flowers and cards and just sit an visit.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Advent Calendar Other Traditions

Did your family or friends celebrate other traditions during the holidays like Hanukkah or Kwanzaa?
No. The neighborhood I grew up in here in Spokane was predominately white, and about 50% Catholic and 50% other like Baptist or Christian, or Congregational, or Lutheran or Mormon. Don't remember any Jewish kids in the neighborhood. I had never heard of Kwanzaa until a couple of years ago, so I know we never celebrated it.

Did your immigrant ancestors have holiday traditions from their native country which they retained or perhaps abandoned?
Most of my ancestors came very early to this country so long ago adopted American traditions. Only my grandfather Anton Hansen who came in 1887 was a fairly recent immigrant, and when he got here he did not want to speak Danish nor remember any Danish customs, he was an American now and wanted to celebrate like an American.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Advent Calendar Christmas Gifts

This is a real hard one for me, I don't think I have given any memorable gifts over the years and I don't remember receiving any memorable gifts. My mom was always in to crafts, so we have quilts with pictures we did with tri chem pens, macrame plant holders some made with yarn and some with beads, ceramics of all types to dust, and my moms collection of Jim Beam bottles. I remember making pin cushions out of pine cones, small amounts of cotton and a little squares of cloth. Got poked a lot by the pine cones as we stuffed cotton covered with cloth between the pine cone limbs.

I don't remember how old I was when I got a Lionel train, it was an old one when I got it but it worked well, and each year after that I got more cars, or track or engines or scenery. At one time I had two 4x8 sheets of plywood covered with track and trains. I learned later that pop had worked on weekends on a car for someone and he got the train in trade for his work. He was a mechanic then.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Advent Calendar Grab Bag

When I was young before Christmas we used to like to go window shopping. Many of the downtown stores like the Crescent, The Bon, Pennys, Newberries, Grants, Pay Less, Sears and Wards had big Christmas displays in their windows and it was fun to just go and look at what they had displayed.
The Crescent closed years ago, The Bon was bought out by Macys, Pennys moved to Northtown Mall and their building is now part businesses and part downtown apartments. Newberries and Grants have both closed. Pay Less is now Rite Aid. Wards closed and the City of Spokane bought the building for the City Hall. Sears moved out of downtown to Northtown Mall, and gave the city the old building which became the Spokane Public Library. After a few years the city tore down the old Sears building and built the present library building.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Advent Calendar Christmas Cookies

My maternal grandmother baked a lot of cookies starting in November and going through the new year. I liked the date roll up cookies she made and the raisin cookies were great also. She made sugar cookies, peanut butter cookies (I never liked those), chocolate chip cookies, raisin cookies, date roll ups, and thumbprint cookies with jelly in the middle. I helped by licking the bowl and sampling the cookies to make sure they were good enough to give away.

After she died and I inherited her house I learned why she started baking in November, that kitchen was cold most of the winter, so the oven baking cookies kept it nice and warm.

Today my sister starts baking about December 1st and bakes most of the month so she has a lot of cookies for gifts. I like to make fudge, and have tried several kinds, looking for a different kind of fudge almost every year.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Advent Calendar Holiday Parties

We never had a party at home, but each year in grade school we had a party, the PTA would provide cupcakes and punch and we nearly always had a tree with ornaments made of paper by the students.
At home each year a few weeks before Christmas my mom would make "Tom and Jerrys" they were actually home made eggnog and sherry, and it always amazed me as soon as mom made the eggnog neighbors and friends showed up to have a "Tom and Jerry". While I was too young for the sherry, she always let my sister and I have some eggnog with a little cinnamon on top. After she died I bought a quart of eggnog at the store and was soo disappointed in the taste. Mom used a lot of eggs in her eggnog, it was so thick it barely poured and I don't think the store eggnog had any eggs in it and it was so thin and runny.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Advent Calendar Santa Claus

I don't ever remember sending a letter to Santa Claus, by the time I could write I had figured out Santa Claus was my parents. I do remember going to the Crescent Department Store and sitting on Santa's lap to tell him what I wanted for Christmas. The fire department had an old truck they decorated and put a sled, reindeer and Santa on the back and went up and down each street in the city throwing candy at the kids. They still do that.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Carnival of Genealogy #86, Genea Santa

Your mission, should you decide to accept it (cue the Mission: Impossible music), is to write a nice letter to Genea-Santa

Here are the directions:

1) Write a letter to Genea-Santa and ask for only ONE thing. It could be hardware, software, a missing family Bible, a record that you desperately want, etc.

Genea Santa I wish to find the parents of John "Jackie" Vanderpool. He was born about 1805 in North Carolina. Some say he is the son of Anthony Vanderpool, but other than he fits in between other babies born to Anthony I have seen no proof. There are also 3 or 4 other Vanderpool families in the same area with similar blank spaces in their births, so he fits there also. While its been a while, I did index 30 or 31 volumes of the Vanderpool newsletters and still have that index.

2) Tell Genea-Santa what a good genea-girl or genea-boy you've been this past year and give examples.

I have been a good boy this year, got my 6th Certificate of Appreciation from Sam Reed, the Secretary of State for Washington and head of the State Library for helping index records for the Washington State Digital Archives. I also asked Maggie Rail "the Cemetery Lady" to submit her cemetery records to the state library. At last count she had recorded about 400 cemeteries in Washington plus some in Idaho, Montana, and California. She also was an editor for I continue to do research for Eastern Washington Genealogical Society queries and the income from research continues to be the second largest amount of money collected for EWGS. (Dues are still #1). In September the Washington State Genealogical Society held their annual meeting here in Spokane, and I was a volunteer in the planning and getting the packets ready. I also did the name tags for everyone that attended. Since next year is the 75 Anniversary for EWGS, I started a series of articles on the Presidents of EWGS on the EWGS blog. So I guess I have been a good boy this year.

Advent Calendar Outdoor Decorations

My mom said my grandfather used to string blue lights along the front of his house for Christmas. I never found the cords and sockets, but my grandmother had a box of 25 watt blue lights.
We strung lights across the front of our house and around the front porch. I made a star out of laths and strung lights on it and hung it in the peak of the house. We liked blinking lights so I put as many blinking lights as I could find and so the whole front of the house blinked. The neighbors across the street strung lights around their big picture window and along the peak of their house also. Very few other neighbors did much decorating, most just put their tree in a front window and left the curtains open. We used to have a lot of vandals that tore up the displays, stole the bulbs, so a lot of neighbors did not want to keep ahead of the vandals. This year a couple of houses down the block are decorated and even in their front yards.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Advent Calendar Christmas Cards

From as early as I can remember mom sent Christmas cards every year, and most had a Christmas letter on what we did during the year. We also got a lot of cards and mom would scotch tape them to the woodwork around the doors. You can see some cards in the pictures of the Christmas Tree from the December 1st post and the Ceramic Nativity Set from December 3. I found this card in my fathers postcard collection, most of the cards are from 1912-1914, but this one is not dated.

Back of the card; Aunt Fred was Fredeline Dillingham sister of pops mother. She never married.
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Thursday, December 3, 2009

Advent Calendar Christmas Ornaments

We do have a lot of very old ornaments for the Christmas Tree, and when my mom was into ceramics she made several ornaments, and displays for the TV top or sideboard. Probably the most interesting is the several ornaments we have made from Mt. St. Helens ash. Our area of Spokane got about a half an inch of ash when Mt. St. Helens blew in 1980, and I still have a 5 gallon can of the ash.

Ceramic Christmas Tree, Santa, sled and reinder and a snowman.

Ceramic Nativity Set
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Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Advent Calendar Holiday Foods

When I was young we always went to my maternal grandmothers for Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner. Both were always turkey and stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, vegetable of some kind, rolls fruit salad and cranberry sauce. For desert usually pumpkin pie, but I did not like pumpkin pie so my grandmother would ask me what kind of pie I wanted. Most times I said apple, but sometimes mince meat pie. Grandma made mince meat pie with ground deer meat as one ingredient, but one year she was in a hurry and did not get the deer meat ground so she cooked it a little and forked it up, but it was still long and stringy and very hard to cut and chew, so for years after that we always asked if she used forked up deer meat in the mince meat pies. I am not real sure when we started making TV dinners from the left overs, but we continue that to today. They are soo good a few months later when you are in a hurry. Just pop in the oven and heat one or more up for a quick meal.
After I started genealogy I found out the traditional Christmas dinner for Danish people was a goose, so I asked my mom why no goose, and she said she tried a goose one year and it was a disaster, horribly greasy and not good taste, so we never had goose again.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Wordless Wednesday Daisy Geyser

Two more pictures from my great Aunt Latisha Vanderpool's trip through Yellowstone Park July 21-28, 1915

Daisy Geyser

Fire Hole Spring
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Advent Calendar - The Christmas Tree

When I was real young my dad, my sister and I would go see my grandparents at Blanchard, Idaho before Christmas. They lived in a farm there and on the way back we would stop by the woods and go in and cut a Christmas Tree. Pop would tie it on the Model A and we headed home. At home pop would cut off the bottom and put it in the Christmas tree stand. Trees from the forest usually had weak limbs so they were barely able to hold up the lights and ornaments. Pop would get out the lights and test them to see if they would light up. (If one went out the whole string went out). Pop strung the lights on the tree and mom put the ornaments and tinsel on the tree. Mom got tired of the needles in the carpet and bought an aluminum tree. (Picture below) It came with a color wheel so the tree sparkled green, red, yellow and blue. It also had a revolving tree stand with a music box. I will comment on the music for the December 21st day.

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