One of the most difficult things to keep track of in your genealogical search is where have I been? what did I find? and how often do I need to go back?
I was talking to a cousin this weekend about her “brick wall”. We were batting around ideas about how to locate a rather scandalous and infamous ancestor who was lynched in 1860 for a murder. We were talking about newspaper records. One thing I suggested to her was the old standby… Find a Grave. Sometimes cemeteries feature their famous burials. Most of us have used it at one point or another. I suggested that she look at that site, but keep going back. There are new things added all the time.
As I wrapped up the discussion with my newly found cousin, I decided that I needed to follow my own advice. I needed to retread some ground that I had already covered. I had been searching for my third great grandfather, John W Reed and a wife that I thought was nicknamed Fannie. I had seen his birth year in the family Bible. And the Bible said he had been born in Baltimore. I went to Find a Grave. I searched for John Reed in Ohio, as I had done many times before. Of course, there are thousands. But I focused in on a county by county search. And I found him!
And, I found his wife, and 18 other people buried there. Just retreading through sites that I have been through before, broke down that brick wall. And after a trip to the cemetery, and the library to search city directories, I found the house where my great great great grandfather used to live. And I found the location where the family grocery store used to be.
Don’t forget to go back and retread… I am working on developing an electronic tracking method just for this purpose. I will share soon (when I finish it).