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

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Barry's Bits and Upcoming Events

San Francisco Examiner

                       Upcoming Events                         

Barry Hinman and Mary Lou Grunigen volunteer at the San Mateo County Genealogical Society library located at Canada College in Redwood City. They welcome members of the Society and visitors who would like a tour of the library and an introduction to its holdings. They are also available, of course, to consult about genealogical problems or research strategies. They are there from 1:00-4:00 on the second Tuesday of every month if the Canada library is open to the public on that day.  



January 2019 Meeting
Blogging for Sharing Family History Stories
Speaker: Craig Siulinski
Saturday, January 26, 2019   10:30am - 12:00 pm
Cookies and Coffee 10-10:30 am



Grace Lutheran Church, 2825 Alameda de las Pulgas, San Mateo, entrance in back
Blogging, or writing a regular online letter/column, is an easy and fun way to share your compelling family history stories. Learn about genealogy blogs in general, the inner workings of blogs, and how to start your own genealogy blog. The effort will be well worth the legacy you leave behind as every life story is a treasure to preserve for generations to come.
Craig Siulinski teaches genealogy and life story writing classes, has a business called Sharing Legacies, and does presentations on blogging, location research, and other family history topics. Craig has been researching and writing his family history for over 10 years and is passionate about helping people research, write and share their life stories.

This event is free and all are welcome.

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February 2019 Workshop

Workshop --  Hispanic Genealogy: Spanish Records
Presenter: Lucy Jennings Sweeney
Thursday, February 14, 2018   2:30pm - 4:00 pm
Cañada College Library Computer Lab, 4200 Farm Hill Blvd, San Mateo
Discover how to search for your Hispanic ancestors, how to verify your family stories using records such as baptism and marriage, where to find records for your country and town, and learn about the Spanish naming system. Plus receive a resource list of online/print materials.

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Save the date for the SMCGS Spring Seminar
               with Michael John Neill
National Lecturer on Genealogical Research
Practical, Down to Earth, with Just the Right Amount of Humor


Saturday, May 4, 2019
9:00 am - 3:00 pm
Menlo Park LDS Hall, 1105 Valparaiso, Menlo Park
Ticket sales open on February 15, 2019

- PLEASE CHECK BACK FOR MORE INFORMATION SOON -

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

SMC Newspapers: Burlingame Advance

The Burlingame Advance was first published on April 7 1906 under the ownership of the Burlingame Publishing Company.  From at least 1925 the paper was published daily except Sunday. Starting with the Jan 27 issue in 1926 the paper  went through three quick name changes: The Burlingame Advance and the Morning Star, The Burlingame Advance and the Burlingame Star, and finally settling on the Burlingame Advance-Star.  


Life - 28 Dec 1953
The Story of San Mateo County (1928 Roy Cloud) notes: "The Burlingame Advance-Star has been for years the newspaper of the community. The publisher for years was Mr. Sam D. Merk. On August 1st, 1927, A. B. Cargill took over Mr. Merk's interests."

The paper continued to be published daily except Sunday, and during a few years Sunday issues were included.  In 1936 the publisher of the paper changed from The Burlingame Publishing Company to Peninsula Newspapers which was listed interchangeably with George McQueen for many years.

 In 1962 publication was cut to three days a week.  That was cut to semi-weekly in 1969.




_____________________________________________________
(w) weekly (d) daily (n) daily except Sunday and holidays
(p) partial run  (s) scattered missing issues
CA Lib - California State Library
UCR - University of California Riverside - Newspaper Master Files
RCL - Redwood City Public Library
SM Lib - San Mateo City Library
SMCHA - San Mateo County Historical Association 


Burlingame Rotary (Sam D Merk)

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Cemeteries: Alta Mesa



Although Alta Mesa Cemetery is located in Santa Clara County, it is the home of many deceased San Mateo County residents.  Among those buried there are the Clouds and the Hinmans, 









The Website Offers a Map of the Cemetery and a Virtual Tour
 "The Alta Mesa Improvement Company bought the land occupied by the Alta Mesa Cemetery in March 1904 and immediately commenced work improving the property. They have since erected a handsome gateway and convenient office, a beautiful chapel and receiving vault, a residence for the superintendent and a large pumping plant, laid out the grounds under the direction of a landscape gardener, and now have a cemetery complete in every aspect."  (1905 - promotional booklet) 

Today Alta Mesa has a crematory, three mausoleums, a columbarium, several memorial gardens for cremated remains, a scattering garden, as well as the original cemetery grounds.  in 2010 they added a funeral home. 

Alta Mesa does not allow photographs of tombstones without permission from the family. They will take a photo for you, but the charge is $30.  You can request that a volunteer be allowed to take the photo by emailing rmclaughlin@altamesacemetery.com.  Be sure to include your relationship to the deceased and ask for the exact location of the burial.

If you are visiting the cemetery to take your own photos, check in at the office for location and permission.  

The Palo Alto Historical Association has a number of pictures of the cemetery in their photo collections

695 Arastradro Road
Palo Alto CA 94306
650-493-1041
Alta Mesa Memorial Park
Alta Mesa Funeral Home
 

Tour of Grounds
Alta Mesa on Facebook
Find A Grave lists over 32,000 burials and says they are 81% photographed.
Steve Jobs TOMB at Alta Mesa Memorial 

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Barry's Bits and Upcoming Events


                       Upcoming Events                         

Barry Hinman and Mary Lou Grunigen volunteer at the San Mateo County Genealogical Society library located at Canada College in Redwood City. They welcome members of the Society and visitors who would like a tour of the library and an introduction to its holdings. They are also available, of course, to consult about genealogical problems or research strategies. They are there from 1:00-4:00 on the second Tuesday of every month if the Canada library is open to the public on that day.  



November Meeting: Prohibition
      

Speaker: Ray Cosyn



Date:  Saturday, November 17, 2018

               10:00 am Cookies & coffee
               10:30 am - 12 noon 
        
Location: Grace Lutheran Church, 2825 Alameda de las Pulgas, San Mateo
         Entrance in back.


From 1920-43, the United States prohibited the manufacturing and sale of alcohol. How and why did this happen and what was its impact? What impact did this period have on your family?


January 2019 Meeting
Blogging for Sharing Family History Stories
Speaker: Craig Siulinski
Saturday, January 26, 2019   10:30am - 12:00 pm 

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Hoover Institution Archives - Part 2 of a series on local archives

As the Menlo Park Monday class continues our investigation of archives in the area, we have come across a few which seem to be little known to genealogists, yet which store a fantastic collection of resources.  Well, it depends on what you are researching.

Hoover Institution

The Hoover Institution is right here in our backyard on the Stanford campus.  There are several repositories here: the main archives, which extends underground right under Hoover Tower (yes), the library with open shelves, which is normally in the tower but is undergoing renovation right now, the exhibit space in a separate building which has rotating exhibits of historical interest, and the institution itself, which provides space for researchers from around the world.

To quote from their website: "Today, the Library & Archives that bear Hoover’s name boast nearly one million volumes and more than six thousand archival collections—in sixty-nine languages from more than one hundred fifty countries—pertaining to war, revolution, and peace in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. The Institution's resources support a vibrant international community of scholars and a broad public interested in the meaning and role of history."

Our class went to visit a couple of weeks ago and were met by one of the research librarians who introduced us to some of the more interesting holdings in their collections.
Jean Cannon, Hoover archivist, gave us a most interesting tour of the archives and Vietnam photo exhibition.


We met at the steps to Hoover Tower.  Most of us took the Marguerite shuttle, which stops right in front.

Founded by Herbert Hoover in 1919, the Hoover Institution Library & Archives are dedicated to documenting war, revolution, and peace in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries






 Some of the items on display:  the orders to drop the bomb (lunch first), letters from Chiang Kai-shek, photos of Mao, KGB mug books, a piece of the Lusitania, a skull X-Ray (don't ask).




Joseph Warren Stilwell was a United States Army general who served in the China Burma India Theater during World War II. His caustic personality was reflected in the nickname "Vinegar Joe". Distrust of his Allies and a lack of resources meant Stilwell was continually forced to improvise. 




                      
John McCain, shot down in Hanoi.  American hero.   Mug Book kept by KGB agents.  


WE SHOT THE WAR: OVERSEAS WEEKLY IN VIETNAM   Rarely seen photographs take center stage for the Hoover Library & Archives’ new exhibition We Shot the War: Overseas Weekly in Vietnam




The archives are open to the public.  Registration and a photo ID are required.  Materials allowed are similar to other restricted archives.








Margaret Melaney and the
Trinity Monday Genealogy Club

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

SMC Newspapers: The Redwood City Daily Tribune

The Fourth Estate: 

A Weekly Newspaper for Advertisers and Newspaper Makers

3 Feb 1923 p26
The Daily Tribune, began publishing on 1 May 1923. Its publishers were George Morrell and Dallas E. Wood of Palo Alto and its first editor was John Robinson.

In 1931 the Tribune merged with the Redwood City Standard and for three years the joint name Redwood City Tribune and Redwood City Standard was used.

In 1934 the paper returned to the use of the name, Redwood City Tribune and continued until 1979.

In 1979 the Redwood City Tribune combined with the Palo Alto Times becoming the Peninsula Times-Tribune.  The combined paper struggled through the next fourteen years but eventually folded.  According to Jay Thorwaldson, who had worked for the Palo Alto Times before the merger, it "never succeeded in reflecting its communities and was killed in 1993."[1]  


Online
SMCGS Obituary Index - RWC Tribune 1969-1992


[1] A 1950's60s Golden Age for Newspapers  12 Sep 2011 SF Public Press

____________________________________________________
(w) weekly (d) daily (n) daily except Sunday and holidays
(p) partial run  (s) scattered missing issues
CA Lib - California State Library
UCR - University of California Riverside - Newspaper Master Files
RCL - Redwood City Public Library
SM Lib - San Mateo City Library

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Looking Across The County Line

Barry E. Hinman


As genealogists we know the importance of familiarizing ourselves with the geography of the area we are interested in. Where is that county in the state? What are the neighboring counties? Where exactly is our town of interest situated and is it near a county line?

We also know that we need to have at least a general knowledge of the history of the area, so that, for example, we know when records of various types begin.

All of this information we can gather from The Handy Book for Genealogists or usgenweb. But what we usually can’t find in such sources as those is the institutional history of the area, which can have a great impact on our ancestors’ daily lives and the decisions they made.

To apply this specifically to San Mateo County and Redwood City, here are two examples. Sequoia Hospital in Redwood City opened its doors for the first time on 25 Oct 1950. Prior to that time, there was in the county only Mills Hospital in Burlingame. Seven miles south, however, just across the creek dividing San Mateo County from Santa Clara County to the south, was Palo Alto General Hospital. Obviously it was much closer to Redwood City than Mills, and it was there that large numbers of Redwood City families went when they had occasion. For that reason, the births of many children who lived in Redwood City are not found in San Mateo County records but in Santa Clara County records.

The old Palo Alto General Hospital building still exists on the Stanford campus, easily visible from El Camino Real, lying just to the south of the front parking lot of the Stanford Shopping Center. Today it is called the Hoover Pavilion located at 211 Quarry Road.

Hoover Pavilion - Hoover Medical Campus
As with birth, so with death. Many Redwood City residents will have died not in San Mateo County but in Santa Clara County prior to 1950. To this day many will be buried in that county as well. Union Cemetery in Redwood City was closed to most burials except those of paupers in 1918, and Holy Cross Cemetery in Menlo Park was for Catholics only. Once again, for those living in southern San Mateo County, the nearest institution was south, across the county line, in Santa Clara County—Alta Mesa Memorial Park at 695 Arastradero Road, Palo Alto. It was much closer than the cemeteries of Colma, and, of course, the climate was much better.

So if you have not found births or deaths or burials of residents of Redwood City or southern San Mateo County look south across the county line.

Santa Clara County Birth Certificates
Santa Clara County Death Certificates

California State Birth Index 1905-1995
California State Death Index  1905-1939 1940-1997

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

SMCGS Databases Online: The Clipping File



The SMCGS Clipping file is a small, but growing, collection of articles about San Mateo County residents. 

Researchers are encouraged to submit articles about early San Mateo County ancestors to aid others researching the same families.  If desired contact information for the submitter will be supplied to anyone requesting copies.



Index to the SMCGS Clipping File




Copies of clippings from this collection can be obtained by contacting the Research team at SMCGS.


 

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Barry's Bits and Upcoming Events

San Francisco Examiner

                       Upcoming Events                         

Barry Hinman and Mary Lou Grunigen volunteer at the San Mateo County Genealogical Society library located at Canada College in Redwood City. They welcome members of the Society and visitors who would like a tour of the library and an introduction to its holdings. They are also available, of course, to consult about genealogical problems or research strategies. They are there from 1:00-4:00 on the second Tuesday of every month if the Canada library is open to the public on that day.  

Thu, Oct 11, 2018 – Workshop: Getting the Most Out of FamilySearch
Christine Bell Green PLCGS 

2:30 am–4:00 pm; Cañada College Library Computer Lab, 4200 Farm Hill Blvd, San Mateo

FamilySearch is a powerful (and free) genealogical program that is constantly growing and changing. This hands-on workshop allows users to experience the records, the catalog, the Wiki – and learn which records can be accessed at home and/or at a Family History Center.
Cost $5 SMCGS members, $10 non-members


Christine Bell Green is a professional genealogist and teacher at Palo Alto and Mountain View/Los Altos Adult Schools. She is a past-president of SMCGS.

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October Meeting:  


A Year in Salem: The Witchcraft Crisis of 1692
Gay Scott

 Join us for a Halloween meeting looking into what happened in the Salem witch trials. Gay will delve into witchcraft roots from Mesopotamia to Europe and England leading up to the witchcraft crisis of 1692 in Salem, Massachusetts. Gay's 7x great grandmother was accused of being a witch in Salem in 1692.

Gay Scott has a love of history and is a member of the Mt. Diablo Chapter DAR, the Anne Hutchinson Chapter Colonial Dames of the 17th Century, San Francisco Chapter Magna Charta Dames and Barons and now the Associated Daughters of Early American Witches. She is married with two children and three grandchildren. She told her two grandsons that now they could be members of the Sons of Witches but they didn't seem too interested.


Saturday, October 20 
10 am - cookies and coffee
10:30-12 noon  
Grace Lutheran Church, 2825 Alameda de las Pulgas, San Mateo Entrance in back.

__________________________________________________________________


November Meeting: Prohibition  -- Ray Cosyn




Wednesday, September 26, 2018

The Mystery Woman in my Great, Great Grandparents Grave

by Jean Ann Carroll



Several months ago, I paid a visit to Holy Cross Cemetery with the goal finding my maternal great grandparents grave, Mathew & Julia Maloney. 

I haven’t been to the cemetery for a long time; it’s too close and easy to do research. I had the location and set off looking.  No such luck. There are no markers, signs, area maps or other visuals to find a grave.  Then, I headed off to the office. I have found staff less than helpful on a variety of occasions so my expectations were low.   A nice woman looked up the location (even though I had it and gave it to her).  She looked up the name and printed out the information.

Here is the amazing part:    She gave the paper to a man standing at the counter and said he would escort me to the gravesite!  I was astounded.  He asked me to follow him in my car.  We parked; got out and he pointed to a gravestone and said, “There it is.”   I said, “No, it’s not; that says Mahoney; not Maloney.   Ohh..

He gets out a walkie talkie and asks the woman the location of where we were standing.  She gave him the location; we walked back a row and he pointed to a patch of unhealthy grass and weeds and said, “That’s it.”  There is no tombstone or grave marker.  The area is quite large.  I began to take photos of the surrounding tombstones for orientation.  The one very large raised concrete block with a center of unhealthy grass right next to the Maloney plot had one name on it:         CARROLL

I said, “Holy Sh@t!!”   He walked away from me and said something.  (Didn’t hear him.) I asked what.   He said something on the order of chastising me for language unsuitable for a cemetery.

I explained.  He said, go back to the office and ask for the names of the people who are buried in these two graves.  I did and received a copy of the two plots:  Maloney & Carroll.

The graphic showed the names and burial dates of those in each of the graves within the plot:

 GRAVE 1:  Mathew Maloney 1-5-1893; Margaret Glynn (sister to Julia)  7-12-1920
 GRAVE 2: James W. Maloney (son)  10-22-1894
 GRAVE 3:  Mary West 5-30-1906    Julia Maloney   8-9-1910    John Maloney 7-30-1927   

And, the question is:  Who is Mary West???
I made a “contribution” to Holy Cross to cover my good luck; then started researching the new mystery
person.

Turns out Mary West is Mary Maloney West, sister to Mathew, native of County Westmeath.  She was married to Charles West who has his own interesting story; or more precisely, demise.

San Francisco Call - October 25, 1897




Then, on to find what happened to Mary West.  I was able to track her with 1900 census and city directories.

She lived in various boarding houses in in San Francisco.  And, then there was the obituary of May 30, 1906 containing facts and an another emigma!


No mention of a funeral or mass or burial.  The plot information says she was buried on May 30th.  Died in April; buried late the next month?  What’s going on here?

My conclusion is she was badly injured in the San Francisco earthquake of April 18, found and taken to St. Joseph’s Hospital where she died on April 24th.  Then, possibly put in “cold storage” along with hundreds of other unidentified bodies until relatives could negotiate with city authorities in the awful confusion the resulted from the quake.  It’s the best I can do until I summon up the patience, courage, and energy to go to San Francisco and negotiate the dysfunctional office of public records to get a death certificate.

Jean Ann Carroll; September 7, 2018

P.S.   Not related to Carrolls in adjacent grave.















Wednesday, September 19, 2018

SMC Newspapers: Redwood City Democrat/Star/Standard

The Times-Gazette, a republican newspaper,  had little local opposition until October 18, 1886 when the Redwood City Democrat was started by Nathan C. Cornell.


1893 - Remington Brothers Newspaper Manual - Pittsburg PA

After several changes of ownership, W. L. Davis purchased the Democrat in 1898, in partnership with James Vincent Swift, who had learned the newspaper business from the ground up on the Times-Gazette. The 1903 N.W Ayers and Sons American Newspaper Directory reported that Davis was the publisher and he shared editorial duties with Swift.  Shortly thereafter, according to Swifts biography, the partnership dissolved and Swift became the sole proprietor.

One notable issue of the Democrat was that of  July 4, 1910 which was produced solely by women. Posts on the Redwood City Voice. in 2015 and again as part of the Historical Blog series 2017 tell more.

When Mr. Swift, became the local postmaster in 1915, his son, Arthur V. Swift moved from the mechanical department, joining  James D. Hedge as publisher. In 1916 Hedge and Ed McGettigan added a daily paper to the mix.  That paper, The Star,  lasted only a year. 

In 1919 the Democrat was renamed the Redwood City Standard and Redwood City Democrat and in 1921 the name was shortened to the Redwood City Standard.

Publication continued until 1931 when the Redwood City Standard merged with the Tribune.

While some libraries such as UC Berkeley have limited issues, you will find many if not all issues of the papers at the repositories below.  Sources,  say the paper was started in 1886, however, no known collection begins before 1889.



Rowells American Newspaper Directory 1887 New York



  • Redwood City Democrat (weekly) microfilm 1889:3:7-1919:1:30   RCL(s),  CA Lib(s), SMCHA (p) originals RCL (p)
  • The Star (Daily)  Vol. 1, no. 19 (July 7, 1916) SMCHA Original (p)
  • Redwood City standard and Redwood City Democrat (weekly) Vol. 44, no. 20 (Feb. 6, 1919)-v. 46, no. 3 (Oct. 6, 1921) Microfilm RCL, CA Lib (s), SMCHA (p) Originals RCL
  • Redwood City Standard (weekly) Vol. 46, no. 4 (Oct. 13, 1921)-v. 45, no. 43 (Oct. 27, 1931) Microfilm RCL, CA Lib, Originals RCL
  • See the Tribune

_____________________________________________________
(w) weekly (d) daily (n) daily except Sunday and holidays
(p) partial run  (s) scattered missing issues
CA Lib - California State Library
UCR - University of California Riverside - Newspaper Master Files
RCL - Redwood City Public Library
SM Lib - San Mateo City Library
SMCHA - San Mateo County Historical Association Archives 

Source
Newspapers of SMC Don Piercy June 1941 SM 329 (SMCHA)