Sunday, April 27, 2014

How did I overlook that?

I've recently started going through my file folders with the many pages of genealogy that I'd printed/collected over the past decade or so.  I want to decide what's really necessary to have in hard copy, what can be scanned and what can be pitched altogether (what is really accessible via the internet now that I don't need to keep a copy of).  There is a scanner feature on the copier at work so on my breaks I can quickly run through a folder, scan it to .pdf and email it to myself.  This project is going to take awhile but it's got me revisiting many items.

Today's item of note - I've written about my 3rd great grandfather David Barkley Comstock and the Comstock genealogy book I'd gotten from my grandmother's cedar chest.  When I got that book I had quickly slammed as much information into my FTM as I could and left it at that.  I'd always known that David's parents were Amos and Hannah (Upton) Comstock and from that book I had Amos' family "traced" back to the 1600s.  Later on in my searching (as I grew into the hobby and understood the importance of documenting) I looked for Hannah's parents and other than some shoddy looking family trees online I couldn't find anything.  Fast forward to yesterday..........I'm digging through my "Comstock" folder and I have this packet that a gentleman in NY sent me in 2006.........I open it up and vaguely remember looking at it.  I'm not sure why nothing registered with me back then but I'd venture to guess that I saw a little of it, figured it verified what I already had and filed it away.  Upon closer inspection I saw:
Hannah's parents are not only listed but it appears a sibling of hers married a brother of Amos'.  I had the brother in my tree as "William P Comstock" with a matching date of birth for Parris (that'll be shown later) with nothing else, no spouses or children.  This overlooked record held the parents and a sibling of Hannah and also filled in another sibling for Amos (who I'm researching now and has led to finding living descendants in that family).  I also stumbled on an Upton genealogy book on Google books that I haven't even had a chance to peruse yet but I did find and confirm Hannah's parents and their family:  Another item of interest in this record was one of the witnesses "Joseph Shove" - one of Amos and Hannah's daughters Julietta Comstock Harris had a son she named Joseph Shove Harris.  I've always been curious about this name and now I may be able to find something about about that. 

 This information matched what I had from my Comstock book for Amos' father and his wife (which was his 2nd wife/family), with the exception of listing Petersburgh NY instead of Berlin NY (both in Rensselaer County) as the birth location for the children.  I had no further information on any of these family members of Amos until I took a look at these pages and discovered the marriage record for Parris and further into the packet the marriage records for 2 of the sisters of Amos and Parris.

I also stumbled on David's marriage to Hannah which confirmed the parentage I had listed from the Comstock genealogy book

 After I'm done researching Parris' family I'll have to work on these 2 sisters and see what I can find there. 
 So I'm looking at all of this information and wondering if I can trust it - is this any better than the Comstock genealogy book?  Where did this information come from?  I'm unsure what the name of the book that these came from is but again, it's an undocumented book.  Who provided the information?  I then read through the 1st three pages I'd been sent, which appeared to be from an old newspaper article covering history of the area and I found all the proof I need that this information is accurate:

 I'm not sure how this Daniel Upton is connected to Hannah's father Isaac but I suspect he's a nephew.  These books he turned over (and what got transcribed into the above clippings) are priceless records of the Quaker church Amos and Hannah belonged to.
Another interesting tidbit that I found is in this historical wrap-up of the Quaker church at Adams, MA was a writeup about Susan B. Anthony and how she was born at Adams to strict Quaker parents.  I saw a Susan Anthony as a witness in a couple of the marriage records and jumped to the conclusion that she was a witness at the marriages of my 4th great grandfather's siblings but as she was born in 1820 that's impossible.  Her wiki page  lists her father as being Daniel Anthony and I'm confident he was a witness at them as he's listed as a witness in most of them.  I'm also confident that at some point as a child she went to church with my ancestors. 
Apparently my 5th great grandfather did something to upset the church:
For close to 8 years I had information at my fingertips to fill in so many gaps in my tree...........I wonder how many other nuggets of information I'll find as I reorganize my papers?

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