A Visit to Cincinnati 1851 – Part 2

Part 1 By Eilene Lyon The canal packet Indiana – designed specifically to fit in the locks at Louisville – arrived from New Orleans on Tuesday the 11th, pulling into the public landing, a sloping embankment on the Ohio River, alongside a dozen other steamboats. Though scheduled to depart the next day, obtaining a suitable... Continue Reading →

A Visit to Cincinnati 1851 – Part 1

Week 50: #52 Ancestors – Witness to History By Eilene Lyon  Introduction: This two-part feature is an excerpt from my book about the California gold rush. The Blackford Mining Co. left a farming community in eastern Indiana to seek their fortunes in 1851. The ten men ranged in age from Peter Liestenfeltz, the youngest at... Continue Reading →

A Letter from Henry

Week 40: #52 Ancestors - Oldest By Eilene Lyon I believe the oldest document in my possession is this letter written by Henry Z. and Abigail Jenkins, dated October 19, 1855. The entire letter runs to over 1500 words, so I won't give a full transcript here - your eyes would be glazing over long... Continue Reading →

The Rise and Fall of Trenton

Week 38: #52 Ancestors – On the Map By Eilene Lyon I confess to being a bit of a map geek. I even minored in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) when I attended Fort Lewis College in 2004-7. Maps are excellent for visualizing the context of events in our family history. They can help us understand... Continue Reading →

Saving Grace

Week 18: #52 Ancestors – Where There’s a Will By Eilene Lyon William Zane Jenkins barely knew what hit him. Suddenly blind, deaf and numb, in a dark hole deep in the bowels of Mother Earth, his life took on new meaning. He’d always been a taciturn, pessimistic, Eeyore of a man. For some reason,... Continue Reading →

Back to the FANs

Week 1: #52 Ancestors - Fresh Start By Eilene Lyon To genealogists, the FAN acronym stands for Friends, Associates, Neighbors - people we should be researching alongside our ancestors to provide context and clues to family connections. My knee surgery rehab time on the exercise bike prompted me to start watching some Legacy Family Tree... Continue Reading →

Good Intentions

Week 46: #52 Ancestors – Poor Man By Eilene Lyon He had to be desperate – it was such an insane thing to do at his age. Traveling to California and mining gold was for the young and strong, not for 49-year-old family men. But Henry Zane Jenkins made that difficult choice: to leave his... Continue Reading →

Wrong-Way Emily – Part 3

Week 43: #52 Ancestors – Transportation By Eilene Lyon Part 1 and Part 2 Stranded Robert and William Ransom had meager funds. There was no way for them to send a message to their family at home, or to Henry Jenkins in California, to let them know of their predicament. Families in Indiana and elsewhere... Continue Reading →

Wrong-Way Emily – Part 2

Week 42: #52 Ancestors – Adventure By Eilene Lyon Part 1 Emily Sets Sail The steerage passengers on the Emily "... were divided into messes of ten men each and had 6 pints of water including our tea and coffey … ½ pound of bread ½ pound of flour whitch we made into what we call... Continue Reading →

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