Friday, November 4, 2016

The Bliss Family - Colonial Americans

Mary Bliss was the wife of Nathaniel Holcombe. She was born is Springfield, Massachusetts in 1651. Mary was the third of four children of Nathaniel Bliss (b.1622, d.1654) and Catharine Chapin (b.1630, d.1711).

Old First Church of Springfield - 1645

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Six Years of Blogging about Genealogy

My Other Blog - Family History and Genealogy" celebrated its 6th anniversary yesterday, September 30, 2016. On that same day in 2010, the very first post, just under 400 words and titled “Yet Another Blog” was published.

Farms at Hafslo, Sogn og Fjorde, Norway.
Home of my ancestors - connection
found, thanks in part to this blog.
Well, six years is technically correct but it is also true that I did not publish a post for almost three years between November 2013 and September 2016. After working diligently for the first three years I began to slow down in 2013 and only delivered five posts that year. Then I stopped. Was I burned out or maybe just needed a break? Not sure but I was running out of big ideas for new posts. This site has strived to write solid history "stories" about my family lines and individual family members, most of whom are not well know in the genealogy world on the web. In addition, I would also write a short, non-specific and non-family, post every once-and-a-while. These posts let me talk about the process or something of interest that happened during the search (or something wonderful that just fell in lap). Toward the end, I was publishing the five part Holcombe story, and with that, was already deviating from writing about ancestors unknown to the word - as that family (especially the colonial generations) are very well know to the internet and genealogists. My needed break turned into a long slumber but I did get an occasional comment to answer and sometimes another family connection was made and new information gathered. So it was not totally dormant!

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Colonial Families - An Overview

Since first discovering that my grandmother, Grace Holcomb could be traced back to Thomas Holcombe, an early settler to New England, I have spent considerable energy researching the Holcomb(e) name with, perhaps, some neglect of the many other colonial families that I am also connected to. It took some time to make the Holcombe connection complete and it was only after the fact that I started to look at the spouses and their ancestry. I also found myself getting more interested in the stories of the more recent "immigrants" from the 19th Century and so, once again as the focus shifted, the allied colonial families remained on the back burner. Still, I do have a some good information on those colonial families, some of which is already on this website. My goal with this post, is to try and regroup and put forward even more information about those other families.

Map of New England by John Sellers from about 1670.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Holcombe Family (5) - Colonial Generations

Part 5 - Joseph, Micah and the Movement West

Three generations named Nathaniel Holcombe carved out lives for themselves and their families in a rugged wilderness called Salmon Brook. On the colonial frontier, far removed from the more established society along the Connecticut River, these families played and important role in the settlement of America. They were a vanguard, a buffer against the unknown and a fragile line of defense for the British Empire. At the same time, they went about their business of staking a claim for themselves, conducting public and private business and building a town. They cleared land, planted orchards, establishing farms, and raised families in the meadows, forests and rocky foothills of the Berkshire Mountains. By the time Nathaniel III turned 80 years old, the revolution was in full swing and America was entering a new chapter. These would be the times of the next generations in this family line: Joseph and his son Micah.

If you missed Part 4 of the story, go here . . .
If you missed Part 3 of the story, go here . . .
If you missed Part 2 of the story, go here . . .
If you missed Part 1 of the story, go here . . .


North Hartford County in the 1760's. At the time of this map, Salmon Brook
is still a small settlement in the northern part of the Town of Simsbury.
Eventually, it would break away and become the Town of Granby.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Spike Peterson - Short Biography

Curtis "Spike" Peterson, the "Rassler"

One of the most colorful characters in my family history was “Spike” Peterson. He was a locally famous wrestler, who traveled the wrestling circuit, primarily in southern Wisconsin from the 1930’s until his tragic death in 1951.


Curtis "Spike" Peterson, circa 1940s.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Holcombe Family (4) - Colonial Generations

Part 4 - Nathaniel Holcombe III

Nathaniel Holcombe I, the first of three Nathaniel's and son of Thomas Holcombe settled in the Town of Simsbury, Connecticut in the late 1670's in the remote wilderness at Salmon Brook. He was one of the first of the next generation of colonial pioneers to venture farther west and away from the settled areas along the Connecticut River. His son, Nathaniel II, would also raise his family in Salmon Brook. By that time, the small settlement had become more established but still lay at the edge of the British Empire in America. The next generation, the third Nathaniel would grow up in this wilderness but as he came of age, he would raise a family in an increasingly more settled 18th Century Colonial America.

If you missed Part 3 of the story, go here . . .
If you missed Part 2 of the story, go here . . .
If you missed Part 1 of the story, go here . . .
From "The Brittle Thread of Live," The Town of Simsbury in the 1730's. Salmon Brook
 (the future Town of Granby) is toward the top. Hop Meadow (the main Simsbury settlement)
is toward the bottom. West of the Connecticut River and approaching the foothills of the
Berkshires, a number of settlements have been established along the colony's western frontier.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Holcombe Family (3) - Colonial Generations

Part 3 - Nathaniel Holcombe II

Thomas Holcombe, an early Puritan settler would arrive in New England sometime between 1630 and 1633. A few years later, he would be part of the party that founded the first colonial town in Connecticut. He would prosper and raise a large family on this early American frontier. His youngest son, Nathaniel would move further west as the towns along the Connecticut River filled-up and good farmland became harder to come by. Nathaniel would be a prominent figure in the area of Simsbury known as Salmon Brook. There he would establish himself and live to see his children and grandchildren spread out in the rugged foothills of an area that would eventually become the Town of Granby, Connecticut.

If you missed Part 2 of the story, go here . . .
If you missed Part 1 of the story, go here . . .

An excerpt from John Seller's map of New England. The Connecticut
River Valley in 1675. The river towns are visible but that is about all.
Everything west is still the wilderness but that is soon to change.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Louis Goldner - Short Biography

Louis Goldner - Chicago, Illinois

Louis Goldner, probably
in Oak Park, Illinois
Louis Goldner was born on October 28, 1861 in Chicago. He was the middle child of  three sons of Frederick Goldner and Louise Ebersold. His father Frederick had come to America from Wirtemburg (or possibly Bavaria). He came over sometime in the 1850's and may have been in eastern Michigan prior to coming to Chicago. Louise Ebersold came to America from Bavaria and is believed to be the sister of Frederick Ebersold and Peter Ebersold. Frederick and Peter where both civil war veterans and Chicago police officers. Frederick rose to the rank of Superintendent of the Chicago Police Department in 1885. Louise's arrival date is also uncertain but probably was in the middle of the 1850's.