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29 December 2011

Motivation Monday... Patience Pays Off

A while back, I shared how I was sending information packets to family members regarding their family history (see Treasure Chest Thursday: Sharing My Research). The patience is paying off. This week I received more pictures of my father, who passed away several years ago, when he was a child. I had no idea these pictures existed and I love how dang cute daddy was. He reminds me much of my children at this young age. I suspect he was around 18 months old. What do you think?

Young Robert Geiszler
Daddy is super cute!

 Here's my cute daddy. I LOVE all the things you can see in this picture taken by C & D Photo Studio of Columbus, Ohio. I love the innocence as he's looking at his small hands (what is on it or does he not like his adorable winter set?). I love the comparison of him to the car, you can see how little he was. The spread out fingers remind me of my children when they were 18 months old. However, I have so many, many questions. Where was this taken? Whose car is that? Why were these pictures taken, besides daddy being adorable?

Here's my daddy Robert Geiszler with his mother Helen Zumstein.

The picture adds my grandmother to the mix. She looks so youthful, happy, and energetic. I barely knew my grandmother as we moved far away when I was 2. However, I like to think that she adored her only child and enjoyed being a mother from the relationship you can see in this picture.

Mystery Zumstein
Who is this lady?
 But when I received this picture, I have more questions. Since this is a side profile, it's really hard to tell if this is my grandmother or not. She's not wearing earrings and is wearing a jacket. The bodice underneath is different. Her hair style is also not exactly the same. However the picture appear to have been taken on the same day. I think these pictures are of Bob and his Aunt. But which one? It could be his father's sister, but the profile doesn't seem to fit the ones I have of Aunt Margie Geiszler Wasson. However, it could be one of Helen's sisters... Dorothy Zumstein Merrit or Faye Zumstein Gaa. I'm thinking she looks more like Faye. If it is Faye or Dorothy, why were these pictures in the possession of my father's cousin?

Though the questions are numerous and I don't have anyone alive to share the stories I have no further way learn about the photos. However, I adore seeing these photos and I am so glad that I have been so patient in my research efforts.

09 December 2011

Surname Saturday... Charles Allen Smith

With a name like Charles Allen Smith, is there any wonder how easy it might be to mix him up? Never! Okay, that's wrong. Charles is the grandson of my 'newest' great+ grandfather David Smith.

In family research, I had a Charles Allen Smith married to a Rhoda J Prickett. Charles was from Ohio but died in Michigan. The dates were pretty fuzzy, things like abt 1859.

Using the GenSmarts program with RootsMagic, I came across a suggestion to look into the Michigan State Census of 1900. I don't know why hints like these come up and then I'm taken to US Federal Census 1900, but I digress. In any case, a large list resulted from the name Charles Smith. That's to be expected. Since I don't like the filtering format on, I decided to go over to I really like their filtering system. I can fine tune a search quickly, casting narrow and broad scopes easily.

In any case, I came across an entry for Charles A Smith and Rebecca E Prickett. The dates lined up with my Charles and Rhoda; however, Rebecca and Rhoda seem a bit of a stretch. I never found a Rhoda married to Charles. I revisited my family records and noticed the source a family story presented by a distant cousin to Charles. So, the validity is suspect until proven true. With the last name Prickett lining up with a marriage to Charles A Smith, I decided to do further investigation.

I went over the New FamilySearch website which is the family tree database. In it, I found Charles married to either: Rhoda J Prickett, Rebecca Elizabeth Pricket, and/or Ida Alice Prickett. Further investigation into the tree resulted in seeing Rhoda, Rebecca, and Ida having three husbands and multiple children all married and born in such a chronological order that there had to be a merging error.

I won't go into all the fine details, but suffice it to say, I confirmed my suspicion that Charles indeed married Rebecca and that Rhoda was her sister. As I separated out Rhoda and Rebecca, it became clear that Ida was a separate sister as well. As I separated these sisters apart, I wanted some proof to my suspicions. I was able to following Charles & Rebecca Elizabeth (who usually went by Elizabeth) through the census records and marriage record. I have not yet found a death record or an obituary for them, but that's next. I'm certain that if I followed Ida and Rhoda through the genealogical records I'd further confirm my suspsicion of the three sister merger.

It was really fun to untangle the tree, correct my perpetuated inaccuracy, and then remember to source my information should a question arise in the future.