Friday, August 22, 2008

Final Tally for the Genea-Bloggers Group Games Competition August 22, 2008

Final Tally for the Genea-Bloggers Group Games Competition August 22, 2008

I continue to forge ahead on most all of the tasks for the Genea-Blogger Group Games Competition and am ready to report my final tallies in each category. I have worked diligently each day to make progress.

Go Back and Cite Your Sources!
I have added, checked and rechecked 20 more genealogy records for a total of 50 records in our family’s Robbins, Love, Gray, Willis, and Cogan surnames. I used the online How to Cite Sources by John Wiley.
*Completed 50 citations = Platinum Medal

Back Up Your Data!
I completed the backup plan in the earlier part of the competition and reported about that on the blog.
My latest completed task is that my hard copies and photos are in waterproof containers in our safe room.
All my data is backed up on a 2.5 GB external hard drive.
*Completed 3 tasks=Gold Medal

Organize Your Research!
I previously reported on and completed tasks A, B, C, D, and E.
*Completed 4 tasks = Diamond Medal

Write, Write, Write!
I previously reported on and completed tasks A, B, C, D, and E.
*Completed 4 tasks = Diamond Medal

Reach Out & Perform Genealogical Acts of Kindness!
I previously reported on and completed tasks A, B, C, D, and E.
*Completed 5 tasks – Platinum Medal

*Total Completed Tasks: 1 Gold, 2 Diamond, and 2 Platinum Medals

I will stop at this point because we begin our trip Saturday, August 23, 2008 to a family reunion with four sibling cousins’ families in AR, three whom we have not seen for 25 years. After that, we will attend a grandson’s basic training graduation in MO. I’ll have my laptop so I can “tune in” to the Austin Family Blog for the Medals/Closing Ceremony and not miss any action. As we wind our way home we’ll stop by most of our six children’s homes in KS and OK.

I have enjoyed meeting new genealogy friends on Facebook and will continue to blog and participate in Carnival events after my return. The tasks have forced me to “try” to use my time more wisely, but I still find that there are so many fantastic detours, twists, and turns as I research by myself and with others, that I have to work hard to stay on track and focus like the Olympians in Beijing.

Thank you Miriam, Thomas, and footnoteMaven for leading the way for the Genea-Bloggers.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Genea-Blogger Group Games Update August 19, 2008

Genea-Blogger Group Games Competition Category Update for Tuesday, August 19, 2008

I have been working on all tasks for the Genea-Blogger Group Games Competition but have not been reporting on a daily basis. I am glad that this opportunity came along to help me become more organized.

1. Go Back and Cite Your Sources!
I have added, checked and rechecked 20 more genealogy records for a total of 30 records in my husband's father's Robbins family history records and in my husband's mother's Love family history records for a Gold Medal.

2. Back Up Your Data!
I previously completed Task A for a Bronze Medal.
I previously completed Task C for a Silver Medal.

3. Organize Your Research!
I previously completed Tasks A, B, C, D, and E for a Diamond Medal.

4. Write, Write, Write!
I have written a summary of what my blog is about and it is posted on my blog for a Bronze Medal.
I have participated in two genealogy related blog carnivals for a Silver Medal.
I have prepared several posts in draft mode and have pre-published them for a Gold Medal.
I wrote a brief biographical sketch on one of my ancestors for a Diamond Medal.

5. Reach Out & Perform Genealogical Acts of Kindness!
I have commented on a new genea-blog. In fact, I began the Legacy 7.0 Family Tree and have had two comments posted to the new group for a Bronze Medal.
I have joined several other genea-blogger's blog network on Facebook Blog Networks for a Silver Medal.
I have invited other genealogists to join Facebook for a Gold Medal.
I have assisted another researcher with a research request and lookup for a Diamond Medal.
I am participating in the LDS online indexing project for a Platinum Medal.

The Man I Wish I Had Known

William Augustus Robbins was his name. He was the father of my husband, Kenneth Charles Robbins. His life ended too soon on May 6, 1948 with intestinal cancer at the age of 60 in Islip, New York when his only child, his son, was almost 16.

Robbie, as his family and friends knew William Augustus, was born to William Walter Robbins and Pauline Wheeler Robbins February 18, 1888 in Babylon, Suffolk County, Long Island, New York.

No one knows how William Walter and Pauline met, but I surmise that it was in New York. Pauline, his mother, had lived in Astoria (Newtown), Queens, New York with her family in 1870, but by 1880, her family had moved to San Francisco, California. Reverend A. L. Brewer married his parents in San Francisco on February 22, 1887.

Robbie probably lived at 528 Golden Gate Avenue in San Francisco when he was 2 years old in 1890 but by 1900 at the age of 12 he was an orphan at the Armitage Orphanage in the Second Township of San Mateo, California. He or someone knew he was born on Long Island and his parents were born in the United States. However, the orphanage did not know his age. It was at this time that his mother, Pauline Robbins, was committed to the Napa State Hospital in Napa, California as an inmate and spent the next forty years until her death at that insane asylum. No one knows why the father, William Walter Robbins, did not come for his son.

By 1910, Robbie was 22 and living at 2624 Bancroft as a student and registered Republican voter in Berkeley City, Oakland Township, Alameda County, California. By some miracle or fate, Robbie was a student at UCLA during this time and received his degree in Civil Engineering in 1914.

After his graduation, Robbie sailed to Honolulu, Territory of Hawaii, where he was employed by the Hawaiian Commercial and Sugar Company at Puneme, Maui, Territory of Hawaii as a clerk.

On July 31, 1917 Robbie registered for WWI. The 2nd Hawaiian Infantry was organized at Hilo, Territory of Hawaii on July 1, 1917. Robbie was stationed at Schofield Barracks, Territory of Hawaii. On September 16, 1918 he was commissioned as 2nd Lieutenant. On January 4, 1919, Robbie was a member of Rosko Company “B”.

In 1920 Robbie at age 31 moved to Wailuku, Maui, Territory of Maui to live with 3 other roommates. Also in that year Robbie was initiated into the Membership on April 10th as a Worthy Noble of the Imperial Council of the Ancient Arabia Order.

By 1924 Robbie departed Honolulu, Territory of Hawaii on November 5, 1924 on the S.S. Wilhelmina and arrived at San Francisco six days later on November 11, 1924.

Somehow and somewhere between 1924 and 1929, Robbie moved again to Long Island, New York to be near other Robbins family members where he was a licensed land surveyor in the Islip, New York area. During those years he met a young lady named Fannie Harriet Love who was a 1925 graduate of Syracuse, New York where her family lived. On June 29, 1929 they were married in Syracuse, New York and began their life together in Islip, New York for the next 19 years. Robbie was 42 and Fannie was 28.

The years between 1929 and 1948 were difficult due to the Great Depression and the coming of WWII, but with their love for each other and love for their families, they did their best. A college degree did not insure that work was always available because people did not have money to buy land and build homes. During the WWII years, Robbie supplemented the family income by working at the Grumman Airplane Factory at a nearby town on Long Island.

In 1932, their only surviving child, a son, was born into their home. He was their pride and joy. He was lucky to have two parents who loved him. In those years of growing up, the family owned only two homes and always lived in the same town. Kenneth always said of his father that he never lost his temper and always spoke with a soft voice.

It was Robbie who paid to have a headstone for his mother at the time of her death so far away in Vacaville, California. Even though his life began as an orphan, Robbie made the most his life with education, adventure, love, and caring for those in his family and his community through his church and his service organizations.

Robbie was buried in the same town where he was born: Babylon, New York. How do I know this much about the father-in-law I never met? It is through beautiful and wonderful conversations with his son, but more so, through the study of genealogy and the information that is available today on the Internet and the help of new friends throughout the country who are willing to help each other break through the “brick walls” of family history.

Monday, August 18, 2008

5th Edition Smile For The Camera - A Carnival Of Images

For the 5th Edition of Smile For The Camera-A Carnival of Images: Crowning Glory, the story that takes first place in my heart is the change of two brothers in my family.

The Robbins grandsons have sported long hair for many years, and they are only 22 and 18 years old. For their own reasons, each now has shorter hair. In this grandma's opinion, the shorter hair is much preferred and shows off their handsome good looks to much better advantage.

For comparison purposes, I will include before and after pictures of the two brothers. The third brother, as you can see, still loves his long locks at age 17.

The picture I have chosen for the Crowning Glory Carnival entry is the top one of Phillip Robbins with his very long, red Crowning Glory hair blowing in the wind at Silver Dollar City in Branson, Missouri June, 2008 before his Crowning Glory had to be "cut short" for basic training at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri in July, 2008.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Musings About Eibands Links
October 17, 2005Eibands Building Renovation
Bell County Museum, Belton, Texas

Musings About Eibands

When I was growing up in the 1950s, Eibands was a magnificent, impressive department store in Galveston, Texas. As a child of 8-12 everything looked larger and sounded more wonderful than it was to a grownup. I imagined that the store stretched from one end of the block to the other. That's the way Eibands was to me, especially the days before Christmas. I can still hear those sounds of Christmas music in my head from the speakers above the sidewalk.

My mom and dad took us three kids downtown each Christmas to watch and listen to the colorful animated store displays. The movements were intricate, and the sounds of the Christmas songs were piped out to the spectators on the sidewalk. There was an excitement in the air as I watched the figures rotate their eyes, heads, and arms slowly from left to right, and right to left again. My face pressed against the glass, as if to think I could get closer to the figures. The music was twinkly and bell-like, as though the sounds were coming down from heaven.

The individual displays were larger than life in my mind and filled most of the front glass windows of the store. There was a religious display with the Nativity scene of Joseph, Mary, the baby Jesus, and the animals in the stable; a display of Santa Claus, Mrs. Claus, and their elves making toys; and, a display of children dancing and opening their presents around a Christmas tree. It was a special event that I looked forward to visiting for several years, and the memories of wanting to repeat the experience were in my head long before the time came to visit Eibands again.

It is important now to travel forty years in the future to the Bell County Museum in Belton, Texas where my family visited the Christmas exhibits in the 1990s. Lo, and behold, there were the same displays that I enjoyed so much in my childhood as I stood in front of Eibands in Galveston. It was an out of body experience, a deja vu. My eyes blinked. My face did a double take, wondering, "Were those the ones? Could those be the same figures I enjoyed so many years ago?" As it turned out, they were the same, and I was so totally amazed and awed.

I can still dream and hear those magical sounds and see the seemingly real-life movements of the figures in the displays of the storefront windows from long ago. It is amazing how our memory can trigger such joyous and pleasurable occasions from the past. I never want to lose the ability to retrieve those precious moments in time.

Eibands is no longer a four-story department store in Galveston, but the building on Post Office Street in the Strand Historic District still stands. It has been resurrected to lead a new life as condominiums for people who wish to call Eibands their new home. Perhaps you can go there someday and relive the memories of the past.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Genea-Blogger Group Games August 10, 2008

My family's history and heritage is mixed. Both sides of my dad's family came from England and Ireland. In our country they migrated to north Texas by way of Kentucky and Tennessee. My mother's mother's side of my family came from Florida and were Seminole, but not on any rolls, that we know of. My mother's dad's family came from England and Alabama. Both sides of my mother's family settled in east Texas.
My three grown biological children and four biological grandchildren's heritage adds Cherokee through their dad's mother's side of their family. Their biological dad's dad's family came from England to Arkansas in the 1800s and settled in eastern Oklahoma.
My husband's mother's family came from England and Ireland and settled in Hingham, Massachusetts and Chautauqua County in New York in the late 1700s and early 1800s. My husband's father's family was unknown until recently when we discovered who his paternal grandparents were. My husband's three grown children, seven biological grandchildren, and one biological great-grandchild share his heritage.
I got a late start in the games, but have been working these 3 days on several tasks I have finished. This is what I have accomplished since August 8, 2008:

1. Go Back and City Your Sources!

I have checked and rechecked five generations of the Gray side of my family (my mother's father's family) in east Texas to make sure that each person in that line is as fully described as is possible using John Wiley's web site guidance with citations either from census records, birth records, death records, or primary source materials from the Gray family. That counts for 20 citations in the last 3 days for a Silver Medal so far.

2. Back Up Your Data!

A. My comprehensive backup plan for my digital research files is in place with the following:

1. I have Windows folders on my hard drive for each family in my history. I subdivide each family's surname by using more folders with the head of an individual's family name.

2. Sometimes there is enough information to subdivide the individual's full name into periods of time in their life, followed by separate folders that contain the adult children's information about them and/or their family. The wife in each family has a folder with her maiden name from her original family.
3. Examples: Family Folders/Robbins Family/William Augustus Robbins/Birth-High School/College-Young Adult/Marriage-Death. Wife:Fannie Harriet Love Robbins goes in the Love Family Folder with the following subdivision: Birth-High School/College-Young Adult/Marriage-Death. Because each person's life is unique, other subdivisions may be used such as: World War I Years in Hawaii, Teaching Years, Traveling Around the World, etc.

4. There are separate Windows folders according to surname and heads of family names for cemeteries and town histories or family histories.

C. I backed up my genealogy records and other information today including scanned photographs, documents, letters, and associated maps using an external 2.5GB hard drive. It took most of the day, particularly for the photograph backup. I used a flash drive before for backup, but discovered it does not have enough memory.

D. I am organizing each family by surname and then first names by generation or geographical location in eight plastic file drawer cabinet size boxes (15" x 27") with lids at this time. I have discovered that notebooks are best for what I am currently focusing on. I have scanned 10 photographs each day during the contest and will place all original documents in our safe room that is built out of red iron steel for the four walls and ceiling with concrete blocks, 8' x 8' x 8', with shelves built around three sides that keep everything off the floor, or in case of tornado, closed in with a steel door. There is also a fire and waterproof safe in the room. It can only hold about 20 folders with the most valuable file information.

Notes for B and E. What is cataloged is in waterproof letter size file boxes with lids, but not everything is cataloged. It will take me about another year to catalog everything I have been given from my husband's side of the family, so I do not believe that I can complete E. and lose only 1 month or less worth of research. So far I can say that have a Silver Medal and am working on a Gold Medal.

3. Organize Your Research!

A. I have organized 20 hard files into file folders in the file boxes in the last 3 days.

B. I have organized 20 digital files into Windows folders with added labels, metadata, descriptions. I do not have tags. I hope someone will explain what that is to me.

C. I have organized 20 photos into their sheet protective folders in the last 3 days.

D. I am working on organizing 20 digital photos into their sheet protective folders.

E. I have created 20 data entries into my database and have scanned 20 photos and/or documents.

F. I have not created a master list of my files and notified my family members of where it is stored. My middle daughter knows that I use an external hard drive and flash drives for backup and knows where things are kept in the safe room.

I have completed three tasks for a Gold Medal and am working on a fourth for a Diamond Medal.

4. Write, Write, Write!

I have not accomplised anything about Write, Write, Write, during the contest. I will start on that after Tuesday night when we have our neighbors (about 22-24) over for the neighborhood monthly dinner.

5. Reach Out & Perform Genealogical Acts of Kindness!

I still have to do the tasks in #5 during the contest time frame. I have done some of these tasks before, but not during the contest. That will begin after Tuesday also.

Linda Robbins

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Genea-Blogger Games

I am a latecomer to the Gena-Blogger Games and found out about it this morning on Dear Myrt's email.

I want to participate differently in each category:

1. Go Back and Cite Your Sources! 10 Citations - Bronze Medal
I will use How to Cite Sources by John Wiley.

2. Back Up Your Data! Complete Task A and C - Silver Medal
I believe I can accomplish:
A. Prepare a comprehensive backup plan, and
C. Backup all your data (on external drive)

3. Organize Your Research! Complete Any One Task - Diamond Medal
I am on the way in each of these categories, but this will spur me on to complete goals in five of them.
I believe I can do A, B, C, D, and E for a Diamond Medal

4. Write, Write, Write! Complete any one task - Gold Medal
I will try three of the tasks:
A. Summary of what my blog is about;
C. Prepare several posts in draft mode and pre-publish;
D. Write a brief biographical sketch on one of your ancestors.

5. Reach Out & Perform Genealogical Acts of Kindness! Complete any one task - Platinum Medal
I believe I can perform one task in each category for a Platinum.

I am new to the Games and am excited to be included in the challenges and the fun.

Thanks for the opportunity. Linda Robbins