19 September 2013

Ooh Look - More Shiny Things

It is National "Talk Like A Pirate" Day.  While looking for the perfect outfit, which I did manage to find,

 Google took me on a trip around the world.

Here I am at Mount Rushmore.

Egypt is hotter than home at Camp Fenley.

The Queen didn't invite me to tea while I was in England.
Not very friendly of her.

Visiting New York City

These spacesuits are not very flattering.

Going to the Moon wasn't far out enough for me so it was on to Planet Vulcan for a visit with Spock's family.

No, this isn't a country but don't I look good on this guy's arm?

And here I am back home at Camp Fenley
 where everyday is groovy!

Want to take a trip around the world or just have some fun?  Then click on over to these timesuckers:



Fun Photo Box


06 September 2013

California Mining Claims

Judy Russell, the Legal Genealogist, wrote a post in June about all the federal records one might find when researching mining claims and the land they are on.  It's a great article and I urge you to read it.

I am going to tell you about records at the county level and in special collections at libraries  here in California.  These kind of records most likely will not be found online.  You will have to get up off the couch and get yourself to the county recorder's office.

To help you understand the who, what, where and why of mining records here is some background information you will need.

On January 24, 1848, gold was discovered at Sutter's sawmill in California's Sacramento Valley. Tens of thousands of "forty-niners" flocked to California in the Gold Rush. In 1849, the surface mines in California yielded $10 million, reaching a peak of $81 million in 1852. 

At first, when a new mining area was discovered, a group of miners would hold a meeting to form a mining district. The boundaries, rules and presiding officers were decided upon, including who would be the Mining District Recorder. It would be that man's responsibility to keep a record book of all the claims made within that district.

Miners marked the boundaries of their claim with rock piles or wooden stakes. This is called "locating a claim" or a "location." Next they would go to the mining district recorder, give a description of the claim and location and pay the required fee.  The last step was to register their claim with the County Recorder's Office. They did not always do this, but those who wanted to be certain of the legality of their claim would do so. 

There are different types of mining claims.  Here are a few of the more common claims you might run into in California:

A "lode" claim is mining what is in the rock, in the mine.  This type of claim is limited to 1500 feet in length along the vein of the lode and a maximum of 600 feet wide.  Think tunneling and pick axes when you think lode claim.

A "placer" claim only gives you the right to what is already on the ground or removed from the lode.  There is no rock mining allowed with this type of claim.  Gypsum and limestone are also types of "placer" claims.  The maximum size of a placer claim is 20 acres.  Think gold panning or sluicing when you think placer claim.

Your mileage may differ, depending on what state you are in.  For instance - in Alaska they do not differentiate between a placer claim or a lode claim and one can have up to 160 acres.

Now just because you have a claim does not mean that you have ownership.    One can own the minerals without owning the land or own the land and not the minerals rights or you can have it all.  You would need a patented mining claim for that.  With this type of ownership the Federal government has passed the title to you making it private land - you own the land and the minerals.

I have compiled a fairly extensive list  (although certainly not complete)  of where you can find the records both online and off.

The Online Archive of California provides free public access to detailed descriptions of primary resource collections housed at over 200 institutions including libraries, special collections, museums, archives, historical societies and collection maintained by ten University of California campuses.

A search with just the word "mine" from the main page resulted in over 1200 collections listed HERE.  In these collections are photographs, maps, stock certificates, correspondence, legal documents, employee records, oral history transcripts, deeds, bylaws of  mining companies, financial records, genealogical records, family histories - the list is huge!

Here are a few more places to look for mining records in Northern California.

Doris Foley Library for Historical Research
211 North Pine Street
Nevada City, CA  95959
(530) 265-4606
Some their holdings:  Empire Mine State Historic Park; Historical Information Gold Mineralization at the Oriental Mine, Idaho-Maryland Mines Corporation Personnel Files

The Kennedy Mine Foundation Mining Archive
PO Box 684
Jackson, CA 95642
(209) 223-7968
Holdings include many of the records from 1886 through 1942.

Mariposa County Recorder
4582 10th Street
Mariposa, California
(209) 966-5719
Microfiche located at the Recorders Office:
Deeds 1- 32  A-Z, Mining Deeds, Mine Names  Index, Mine Records, Proof of Labor, Index to Locator of Mines, Notice of Location.
Quartz Record, No. 2, 1850-1852, 1 volume
This book contains a miscellaneous collection of records: mining location notices, mortgages and other instruments related to mining.
Claim Locations, 1852-1865, 3 volumes (a-C), indexed
Location Fee Books, 1911-date, 1 volume
Preliminary Locations of Placer Claims, 1851, 1 volume, 1897-1906 - 1 volume
Certificate of Location of Placer Claims, 1897-1899 1 vol.
Quartz Claims, 1897-1911
Index of Locators of Quartz Claims
Index of Quartz Mines
Proofs of Labor, 1892-1909

University of the Pacific, Special Collections, Holt-Atherton University Library
Phone: (209) 946-2404
The Sheep Ranch Mine, The Haskin/Tonopah Gold Mine,

Amador County Library
530 Sutter Street
Jackson, CA  95642
(209) 223-6400
The library has a special mining collection

Yolo County Archives
226 Buckeye Street
Woodland, California 95695
Phone: (530) 666-8010
Fax: (530) 666-8006
Email: archives@yolocounty.org

Calaveras County  Clerk - Recorder
Calaveras County Archives
891 Mountain Ranch Road
San Andreas, CA 95249
(209) 754-6371

Tuolumne County Archives
2 South Green Street
Sonora, CA  95370
(209) 536-1163

Yuba County Library Local History Archives
303 Second Street
Marysville, CA  95901
(530) 749-7386

Yuba County Recorder
915 8th Street
Marysville, CA  95901
(530) 749-7850

Placer County Recorder
2954 Richardson Drive
Auburn, CA  95603
(530) 886-5610

California State Archives
1020  O Street
Sacramento, CA  95614
(916) 653-2246

Butte County Recorder
25 County Center Drive
Oroville, CA  95965
(530) 538-7691
Nevada County Recorder

California State Library
900 N Street
Sacramento, CA  95814
(916) 654-0176
Houses a huge collection of mining records including:
Guide to the New Almaden Mines Collection, 1845-1944
Guide to the Empire Mill and Mining Company Collection, 1861-1881
Guide to the Carson Hill Gold Mining Corporation, 1917-1942

1851 Poll Tax List of Miners Along the Yuba River

Miners and Business Men's Directory 1856
Tuolumne, Calaveras, Stanislaus and San Joaquin counties

Genealogy Roadshow - Mark Your Calendar!

There's a new program on PBS called "Genealogy Roadshow" that will premiere on Monday September 23rd at 6:00 pm Pacific / 9:00 pm Eastern.  The hosts of the new show are a broadcaster from Los Angeles - Emmett Miller and two well known genealogists - Kenyatta Berry and D. Joshua Taylor.  Kenyatta is the current president of the Association of Professional Genealogists.  Josh Taylor is the current president of the Federation of Genealogical Societies and the lead genealogist at FindMyPast.

Kenyatta Berry, Emmett Miller and D. Joshua Taylor

The show was filmed in San Francisco, Austin, Nashville and Detroit and selected participants in advance.  The lucky ones who were selected are just your everyday ordinary people who wanted the genealogists to prove or disprove a family story that linked them to an important event in history or to a famous person.

For more information on the show click over to PBS HERE.

05 September 2013

Final Session of "Mastering Genealogical Proof"

This summer I was not able to travel and attend the many conferences and institutions that were going on.  However, my "staycation" was not spent lazing away the hot summer days by the pool.  I found a way to continue my genealogical education from the comfort (although sweltering hot) of Camp Fenley.

I was one of 12 people who sat on a Google Hangout panel that worked through the new book by Dr. Thomas Jones chapter by chapter.  Our moderator was Dear Myrtle who was assisted by her trusty sidekick and real life cousin Russ Worthington.  The other wonderful people who sat on the panel were Cary Bright, Carol Petranek, Michael Hait, Darlene Steffens,  Kathryn Lake Hogan, Jennifer Dondero, Peggy Lauritzen, Lori Meyer, Pat Kuhn, Pam Drake and Barry Kline.

The book - "Mastering Genealogical Proof"  by Thomas Jones is available from the National Genealogical Society.

Below is the archived version from our last session.

02 September 2013

Mapping My Ancestors

Very cool mapping site I came across today.  It's called Map A List.  How it works - create a spreadsheet in Google Docs and the program uses that spreadsheet to create the map.  The green bubbles on the map below are a label or sorts.  You indicate what that particular place on the map represents.  On my map below, each bubble represents a location that my ancestors lived.

This type of mapping program can be used for all kinds of things - Road Trips, Locations of genealogy bloggers in the United States or Cemetery Locations just to name a few.

You can even use geocoding and there are tutorials and help forums right on the website.

So what would you use this type of mapping program for?