25 November 2013

We Should All Have An "Attitude of Gratitude"



Dae Powell, a man I absolutely adore, has an excellent website called "Shoestring Genealogy."  He sends out a weekly newsletter to remind us of the 3 weekly GENTREK chats that he runs:  Mondays at (9:00 pm Eastern in the AOL Chat Room, Mondays at 10:00 pm in the GenealogyWise Chat Room and Thursday at 10:00 pm in the Looking4kin Chat Room.  The chats are open to the public and cover all topics of genealogy.

Happy Dae (as he is best known) shares his knowledge and has a multitude of useful items at his website.

22 Forms, Charts and Checklists - all free for you to download.

A page full of useful links and another with many search utilities.

In the recent newsletter delivered via email, Dae asks that we all have an "Attitude of Gratitude" as we get ready to celebrate Thanksgiving next Thursday.

I, for one, am very grateful for Dae Powell and his contributions to the genealogical community.

24 November 2013

This is Definitely One for the Family History Books!

So a couple of weeks ago, my niece turned 15 years old.  For her birthday she wanted to go flying.  Yep, that's right, flying - and not in an airplane.

On my bucket list, item #23 is skydiving.  It's not that I want to jump out of an airplane.  At the time, it was the only way I knew to fulfill the true dream - FLYING.  Jumping out of a plane is FALLING not FLYING.

I was educated by the younger generation in our family about a place where my dream could really come true, a place where I could really fly.


In the San Francisco Bay Area there is a place called iFLY.  They use a vertical wind tunnel to get your butt in the air and keep it there.







When I am old and gray and if my sons ever give me grandchildren, this will be the story that I will tell them about - over and over again.  The day I went flying!

18 November 2013

Northern California APG Chapter Field Trip

The California History Center
at De Anza College, Cupertino, California

NorCal APG Field Trip
29 October 2013


"Le Petit Trianon"

The California History Center at DeAnza College is housed in a mansion called "Le Petit Trianon" which was owned by one of Cupertino's first millionaires and avid polo player - Rear Admiral Charles S. Baldwin.  Charles married Ella Hobart, the daughter of W. S. Hobart who was a kajillionaire who profitted from the  riches of the Comstock Lode.  Charles Baldwin commissioned Willis Polk, a renowned San Francisco architect to design the mansion.

The next owner of the mansion was heiress Harriet Pullman.  Harriet was the daughter of George Pullman - inventor of the "Pullman Sleeping Car" for trains.


Left to right: Ellen Fernandez-Sacco, Sheri Fenley, Jeff Vaillant and Lisa Christiansen

Carolyn Ybarra was the organizer of this field trip and she deserves a huge "Atta Girl" for arranging the private tour for our group by archivist Lisa Christiansen.

Regarding the photo above:  I love, love, love Ellen Fernandez-Sacco's bright red clogs!


Left to right:  Janice Sellers, Phyllis Garratt, Kim Cotton and Sharon Hoyt

Located inside "La Petit Trianon" is the Louis E. Stocklmeir Regional History Library and Archives.  Although none of the photos here show it, the room has a beautiful domed oval skylight.

Much older photo of the library see above and below.  It still has the same built-in, floor-to-ceiling blookshelves!


Left to right:  Cath Trindle, Lisa Gorrell, Ellen Fernandez-Sacco and Jeff Vaillant

Lisa Christiansen, the archivist, knows the holdings of the library inside and out. She knows all the little intricate things about all the collections that are not written down on index cards or finding aids.


One of the many in-house finding aids


The back of my head and archivist Lisa Christiansen


There are so many different collections available to researchers but a few that stood out for me were these:

The Photograph Collection number approximately 10,000 photographs that focus mainly on local families, agriculture, public works, historic buildings and the history of Moffat Field Naval Air Base.

There are over 2000 student research papers which are a unique resource for genealogists because the reports are written using primary source records, oral interviews, etc.

The Palo Alto Times from 1908-1991 is available on microfilm.

Special Collections include the Castro Family collection, Fuller Albumn, Laura Thane Whipple collection and the Bol Family collection.

A few of the great county history books house in the library



Special "Thank You" to Corey Oiesen who served as the photographer for the day and has allowed the use of these photos.



California History Center
Open Tuesday thru Thursday  9:30 am to 4:00 pm
Open Friday by appointment only
(408) 864-8987
Library use fee:  $5 per day if you are not a student
Plenty of on campus parking, however it will run about $3 per day.