San Mateo County Genealogical Society's Blog featuring society events, projects, meeting notes and other items of relevance to genealogists.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

SMCGS contest!

Yes, we are having a contest!  And here's the question:
Who is your most irritating ancestor?

This is not necessarily the one who's hardest to find, although that might also be true.  Perhaps they deliberately mislead you by changing their name, having 3 wives but only one marriage, swimming across the Atlantic... you get the idea.  Perhaps they even wrote a family history - and got it ALL WRONG.  Please submit your candidates to us at by our next meeting - November 15th.  The winner will be announced at the meeting and receive a PRIZE.
All entries agree to be published on our website or newsletter as space permits.


Monday, November 3, 2014

San Mateo County Cemeteries


St. Anthony's Cemetery 

Located on the top of the hill above Pescadero on Stage Road just North of North Street, Saint Anthony's Cemetery dates back to 1883. Halloween weekend was a great time to visit, There were pumpkins, orange flower arrangements and even a few more creative decorations throughout the cemetery, brightening up what is generally a dry pioneer cemetery.

“In 1833, Don Juan Jose Gonzales received the Rancho Pescadero, or San Antonio, as it was officially known, from Governor Figueroa…On June 10th, 1868, James McCormick, Sr. furnished a sum of money to purchase a lot for the Catholic Church (William McCormick and Eli D. Moore procured the catholic cemetery there in 1876) (1). 

You will find some of the early settlers on the coast here. Among them the Brazils, the Moores, the McCormicks and the Smiths.  This is still an active cemetery so you will also find new burials. Look around for a few very creative tombstones (surely subject to copyright restrictions).  

St. Anthony's Church is located nearby on North Street.

Saint Anthony’s Cemetery  

Stage Road 
Pescadero, CA 94060

(650) 712-1679   - Office Hours by Appointment Only  -  Cemetery Hours 8 a.m. to Sunset
Mailing Address
P.O. Box 1577
Colma, CA 940l4-0577

Find-A-Grave - Mt. Hope  lists 318 burials with 96% photographed

(1) Taken from the 100 years commemorative booklet published in 1968 for Our Lady of the Pillar Parish and St. Anthony’s Mission Church

Monday, October 20, 2014

Digging for Roots Online: R. I. P. Google’s Tilde

By Dennis L. Maness, MLS
Some of you (most of you?) read that title and thought “Tilde?”.

In an earlier blog post in 2012 on the subject of genealogy books online I wrote:
 “Quick Search Tip—On Google the use of the tilde “~” (it’s on the top of the upper left key on my keyboard) means that the search will include synonyms of the word you’re searching for. For instance “~genealogy” will include the words “family history”, “family tree” “vital records” “genealogical” “surname” and probably many more in your search.”

The news that this is now no longer available as a search operator on Google is one of the reasons I read genealogy blogs. I recently read the October 9, 2014 Lisa Louise Cooke’s “Genealogy Gems” blog  that announced that the tilde had gone away.

Apparently this happened, with no notice, sometime before June 15, 2013 so all my searches using the tilde since then have been misleading.  Sighhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

Why did Google use the tilde? In math, the “~” symbol means “is similar to.” The tilde told Google to search for pages that are synonyms or similar to the term that follows. But I digress.

Now we will have to go back to using (genealogy OR geneology OR “family history” OR genealogical) ad infinitum.

There is a list of Google’s current Search Operators at Search Operators  and 

I missed the “+” sign when Google “deprecated” it (the term they use) and now this. Oh well, life goes on.


Remember, as Legacy Family Tree’s Geoff Rasmussen says,

“Life is short; do genealogy first!”