May I Introduce to You . . . Jenny Lanctot

Come meet genealogy blogger Jenny Lanctot, author of the Are My Roots Showing? blog, in this interview by Gini Webb at GeneaBloggers.

I have the great pleasure of introducing you to Jenny Lanctot and her blog, Are My Roots Showing?, described as, “. . . Basically, it’s a place where I can tell the stories of my ancestors and provide hints and tips about stuff I learn along the way.”

A Little About Jenny

“I was born in Portland, Oregon and spent my formative years (age 5 to adulthood) in Atlanta, Georgia.  I currently live and work as a paralegal in Chattanooga, Tennessee.  I’m slowly (emphasis on slow) working toward getting my genealogy certification.”

How Jenny Got Started in Genealogy

Jenny has been researching and doing genealogy on and off since about 1985-86, but researching in earnest for about the past five or six years.

“My grandfather (who was adopted at age 4) started working on his family history when he was trying to find out who his biological parents were.  I’m pretty sure I caught the bug from him.  He passed away in 1990 and I inherited all of his research.  And no, we still haven’t found his biological parents.”

Jenny’s Thoughts on Blogging

“I’ve been blogging for almost 4 years now.  I love to write, and the blog provided a vehicle for my writing and allowed me to tell the stories of my ancestors.  Plus, I’m a huge fan of instant gratification, so the idea of being able to publish my work ‘in the now’ is perfect for the impatient side of me.”

Jenny’s Tips for New Bloggers

“Don’t be afraid to change things up.  Your blog is your own and it doesn’t have to look like everyone else’s.  But the most important tip is to BE YOU.  If you aren’t authentic, how will anyone believe anything you have to say?”

Jenny’s Favorite Blog Post

“It’s probably surprising that it isn’t a post about an ancestor or any fancy research methodology.  Instead, it is a how-to post for a concept that was so simple I was almost embarrassed to write about it, but then I thought … I can’t be the only one who has this problem.  I was right.  People are still looking at it almost every day.  It reminds me that we’re all human and we’ve all ‘been there.’  This Might Be a New Record.”

Jenny’s Time with the Ancestors

“Not as much as I like (I’m pretty sure you’ve never heard THAT before!). It’s easier to find time now that I’ve completely given up personal hygiene and housekeeping on the weekends.  I try to do some bits here and there during the week too, but this pesky full-time job keeps tiring me out and I’m just not very motivated by the end of the day.  But one day, I’ll remember to buy that lottery ticket . . .”

Jenny’s Favorite Ancestor

“It would be easier to tell you which one annoys me the most.  But if I had to pick a favorite, it would have to be Eliza Bourke Lanctot.  She was a strong, independent woman during the early 1900’s when women just weren’t supposed to be.  After her husband died, she became the first female hotel proprietor in Armour, South Dakota.  She went against the grain; marched to her own drum.  I like to think I inherited a little of that tenacity.  (Now maybe she’ll reveal where the heck she was born).”

How Genealogy Has Improved Jenny’s Life

“I definitely feel more in touch with my family who came before me, and I want to know more.  I want to know everything!  Our family wasn’t very close when I was growing up, and the research leading to the stories (or scandals!) has really started to bring us together more.  It also keeps me busy, so I stay out of trouble most of the time.”

What Jenny Loves Most About Genealogy

“My favorite part of researching my family history is finding out who my ancestors were.  Not just when and where they lived, married, and died, but trying to figure out WHY they did certain things or made certain decisions; what sort of things they did when they weren’t busy with their occupation. I enjoy making them real, not just statistics on a piece of paper.”

Jenny’s Genealogy Bucket List

“To identify and visit all the places my ancestors lived, especially in Europe.  I would love to be able to walk in their footsteps just for a moment.”

Jenny’s Time Capsule Message

“Talk to your family before it’s too late, then write everything down (and cite your sources the first time)!  I’m sure I’m not the only genealogist who wishes she had a nickel for every missed opportunity to really talk to a relative who is no longer with us.  When I think of all the stories that I’ve missed because I waited too long, it just breaks my heart into a million pieces.”

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Please take a moment to head on over to Jenny’s blog. Leave her a comment letting her know you stopped by. Welcome Jenny, it’s great to have you here!

© 2014, copyright Gini Webb. All rights reserved.

Gini Webb lives in San Diego, California and manages her own blog, Ginisology, while also researching her own German heritage, retired, enjoying life with wonderful husband Steve and visiting with her grandchildren! Are you a genealogy blogger who would like to be interviewed for the “May I Introduce To You . . .” series? If so, contact Gini Webb via e-mail.

May I Introduce to You . . . Janice Trumbell

Janice Trumbell

I have the pleasure of introducing you to Janice (Guthrie) Trumbell and her blog, The Guthrie, McCoy, Misson & Showalter Families blog, described as, “. . .  The blog is my online home! It is my space where I share what I have learned about my family, not only the history but also the documents and photos. The blog also provides a way to connect with others researching the same family lines.”

A Little About Janice

“I was born in Toledo, Ohio. I am the mother of two children, three grandchildren and one great grandchild. I live in a small town in southern Iowa with my husband and our fur babies. When I’m not doing family research, I love to garden and read suspense novels.”

How Janice Got Started in Genealogy

“In my senior year of school, I was given the assignment to prepare a pedigree chart for one of my classes. During my research, I found I had very little information to work with. My parents divorced when I was very young so I had only my birth certificate for my father’s information. My grandmother had already passed so I didn’t have a lot on her side either, only what my grandfather could remember. So my chart was pretty incomplete. This was the spark that started the flame to find out all I could about my ancestors.”

How long has Janice been doing genealogy? “It seems forever! I have not had access to a large library so all my research is via snail mail. I received my first computer around 1995 and that is what opened the gates for me.  It provided the outlet to connect with others and find new cousins, in addition to the resources to all the distant locations and histories.”

Janice’s Thoughts on Blogging

“Originally, the blog was basically for me. I am not a writer and didn’t think others would be interested in my family. I had a large collection of very old photos, stories and documents and wanted a place to store my treasures. This was the beginning of the blog in September of 2010. However, over the years, I have added other items that were of interest to me too.”

Janice’s Tips for New Bloggers

“Don’t wait, just start! Look at other blogs for ideas.  Pay attention to their color schemes, layout, etc., make notes of what you like and don’t like.  Think about what you want to say and do with your blog. Pick a name and URL that will be easy for others to find you. Your blog will evolve as you become more comfortable using it.”

Janice’s Favorite Blog Posts

“I have several favorite posts but I love my grandfather’s journal!  I lived with my grandparents as a child, so every time I read his words I can almost hear his voice. His childhood was so sad and difficult but in spite of it, he was a loving husband, father and grandfather. The journal is actually a seven page hand written letter describing his life from childhood to adulthood written to his children.”

Janice’s Time with the Ancestors

“I’m retired so most every day is spent working on family history in one form or another. My days are not spent just on researching but also include updating my database and scanning documents and photos into my computer. Many times I spend all day on genealogy but there are periods where I may have only an hour an then there are times I just walk away from it all. Sometimes, I need to clear my head and get a new perspective.”

Janice’s Favorite Ancestors

“This is a tough question. At first, I had picked two women because I know very little about them and they have become a challenge. However, when I think about my family, I really can’t pick just one. I have a grandfather who was a religious artist from Belgium. I have a long line of ministers in my history. The women had large families and worked hard to take care of them and most had farms to work too. Their lives were not easy so each person is special to me! How do you pick just one?”

How Genealogy Has Improved Janice’s Life

“Ever since my high school years, I have had this burning desire to know more about my family.  Maybe it’s because I knew almost nothing about my father. I have learned so much about my family and ancestors. The genealogy has given me a glimpse into their lives and has eliminated the many blanks in my first pedigree!  I now have a better understanding of who I am because of the research and I am so thankful for it.”

What Janice Loves Most About Genealogy

“I love the challenge! Finding that one clue, that will solve a puzzle and bring everything together. There always seems to be one piece that is still missing. So the hunt continues!”

Janice’s Genealogy Bucket List

“Seeing my elderly parents’ health decline has made me realize that I need to preserve my years of work. As I complete one task, I find more to do, but this is a start: Finish my research, as least as much as I can.

  • Post all notes, documents, histories and photos to the blog.
  • Donate my genealogy reference books to Allen County Public Library. I have already sent two boxes.
  • To have all photos digitized. This is almost complete!
  • Send my completed info to genealogy societies where my ancestors lived.”

Janice’s Time Capsule Message

“I have regretted many times, not asking questions while my grandparents were still living. Once you lose the older generation, the stories and history are lost too! You can never get this back. Take time to know your family. Ask questions of your grandparents, aunts and uncles while they are alive. Record the stories, family recipes and histories.

I am in awe when I think how strong our ancestors were to survive the hardships, illness, and losses that many of them lived through for us to be here now. It saddens me that so many young people today have no idea who their great grandparents were and to be honest, it seems they don’t care.

We are all here because of the older generations. It is not just about us. It is about all those who came before us too! Without the ancestors we would not be here!”

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Please take a moment to head on over to Janice’s blog. Leave her a comment letting her know you stopped by. Welcome Janice, it’s great to have you here!

© 2014, copyright Gini Webb. All rights reserved.

Gini Webb lives in San Diego, California and manages her own blog, Ginisology, while also researching her own German heritage, retired, enjoying life with wonderful husband Steve and visiting with her grandchildren! Are you a genealogy blogger who would like to be interviewed for the “May I Introduce To You . . .” series? If so, contact Gini Webb via e-mail.

May I Introduce To You . . . Peter Loveday

peter loveday

I have the pleasure of introducing you to Peter Loveday and his blog, A Families Inheritance, described as, “. . . This where I talk about my family history, South Australia, with a bit my own history thrown in for good measure. I believe that a blog should shine a light onto my ancestors and through my efforts reveal their accomplishments, disasters, loves, sorrows, successes and how they lived.

It should also allow me to discuss the research and discovery that I am undertaking. Hopefully, it will also provide a medium for other family members to see what I have uncovered about our family.

I found myself immersed in the story of Richard John Loveday my Great, Great Grandfather and his two wives, Bridget O’Shea and Sarah Sadgrove, and 11 children, determined to discover more. What I found was fascinating and revealing. His story is appearing on my blog and will be a new episode each post.”

A Little About Peter

“I am a proud Australian and am a native of Adelaide, South Australia.  I enjoy telling the story of my family and at the same time show what it was to have lived in Australia in times past. It was a tough life in a harsh and uncompromising country. But tame it they did.

Books, reading and producing have been my life and worked in the Printing Industry most of my life.

In semi-retirement, I established a small Book Publishing business concentrating on Australian Authors, both printed and eBooks. This also included reviews and promotion of new Authors.

My wife and I spent 25 years in New South Wales, working at our own business and upon semi- retirement, travelled in and around Australia in a large caravan with our two dogs, MiMi and Lucy. My wife writing books and I ran the Book Publishing business. We have now fully retired back in our home town, Adelaide, having given up the Grey Nomad lifestyle and settled in with our family nearby.”

What Got Peter Started in Genealogy

“I am the fourth generation Loveday male of this line and was fortunate enough to have been left a wonderful Family History book that my father, George, had compiled on our first generation, prior to his death in 1977. Since then I have added to the wealth of knowledge about the Loveday family and continually keep looking for more.

Names I am researching are – Taylors, Browns, Fishers, O’Shea, Sadgrove, Kluge and Loveday.

The advice that I received from many quarters was to also develop both sides of my family and this has led me into many more fascinating discoveries. My Paternal Great Grandmother, Clara Kluge has a wonderful story that I am currently researching.

My purchase of the software, Family Tree Maker, made it possible to create a useable database and generate reports, build a .pdf Book and understand the relationship of the three generations of family on the page view, which is one of its best features.

Living as I was in NSW, it was not easy to obtain the necessary information that is not always available on the Internet.  The Volunteers staff at the South Australian State Library were wonderful and their assistance made it possible to follow my quest into the Loveday family. I would ask for a ‘lookup’ and the next day an email would come in with the information that I requested. It was fantastic!

Now living back in Adelaide, I am able to do my own research and am able to visit Mount Pleasant, the home of my Grt, Grandfather Alexander and my Grandfather Frederick. My Father, George, also spent much of his childhood in this Adelaide Hills township.

My full time retirement has now allowed me to devote most of my time to Family History.

Like all young people, my father’s interest in the family history did not seem all that riveting whilst I was growing up. However, once I read of my Grt. Grt Grandfather Richard Loveday’s life I was hooked. He was a man of his time and brought his wife and 3 children on a hazardous journey from 1840’s England to a new settlement called Adelaide, which was just 4 years old!

A Surveyor and Corporal with the Royal Sappers & Miners, he performed many difficult trips to discover and document the fascinating features of this new Colony. His strong relationship with the Indigenous Aboriginals was so important to the success of his missions. This was enough to fire my interest!

My late father, George William Loveday, wrote and published a Family History of our Loveday line. This book was the inspiration that I needed to expand and develop our history. The resources Dad had available to him at that time are small by comparison to today’s technology.

George with the assistance of my mother, Louisa, spent many days visiting the surviving relatives, visiting Government Archives departments, wandering through many cemeteries to copy details from grave stones and piercing together the facts and details of our family. Then Mum would type it all up, one-finger, on a small portable Remington typewriter.  When finished they would photocopy the pages until they had created a living, breathing book.

This then was my starting point. With the support of computers, the Internet and the wealth of information available now in Libraries and Government departments it was so much simpler to compile the expanded family’s stories.

Ours was not a family given to talking much about relatives and I had to tease out the stories that I had from my parents. Questions were asked, but few answers given. Even other family members were reluctant to talk much about the Loveday family.   Then, not long after my father’s funeral I had a talk with my Aunt, Dad’s youngest sister, and it was like a tap was turned on! I now had a fund of information to research and it has kept me busy for almost 30 years.”

Peter’s Thoughts on Blogging

“Not many members of my near and far family have an interest on Family History. Maybe as they grow older they may wish to discover more about our fascinating story. This then is the core motivating factor that drives me to establish as much as I can about our tribe.

Now in my twilight years and with no children to pass this information onto, I decided to start a blog and make my history information available to the world. I will continue searching and as it comes to light, the stories will be found on this blog.

I have found the blog helps to keep me focused and provides a discipline that I need to keep my mind active.

Thank you so much for the invitation to participate in the ‘May I Introduce You to . . .’ series.  I was pleasantly surprised and deem it an honour to be asked.  It is much appreciated.”

Peter’s Tips for New Bloggers

“I use WordPress for my blog and have used Blogger in the past. Both are great and their themes and layouts are astounding.

  • Decide what you want to say in your blog. Make it interesting and use a language that you would use in a face to face conversation.
  • Always proof your posts.  Nothing is more annoying to a reader than typos and sloppy grammar.
  • Be aware at all times that not all information that you uncover will be readily acceptable to all of your family. Be sensitive to others feelings.
  • Just do it! Be consistent and regular with your posts and give your reads a reason to come back and comment on your posts.

 Peter’s Favorite Blog Post

“My favourite post is possibly my most dramatic, How to Fix a Broken Heart.

I had just been diagnosed with a heart artery issue that required surgery and I was just a bit anxious of the outcome. Writing the post helped me enormously to put the experience into its correct perspective. The surgery was successful and after a triple artery bypass, I recovered to be fitter than I have been for some time.”

Peter’s Time with the Ancestors

“I am researching constantly for snippets and bits of information about my list of Surnames. I visit Trove weekly to look up some item on old newspapers and articles. I travel to our State Library every fortnight to look up information that is not yet on the Internet.  So, to answer the question I guess I am researching something daily.”

Peter’s Favorite Ancestors

“My favourite is my Grt Grt Grandfather, Richard John Loveday. I found myself immersed in the story of Richard John Loveday and his two wives, Bridget O’Shea and Sarah Sadgrove, and 11 children, determined to discover more. He was a man of his time and brought his wife and 3 children on a hazardous journey from 1840’s England to a new settlement called Adelaide, which was just 4 years old! He lost his young wife to Breast Cancer at age 33 and was left with 4 young children. He remarried 4 years later and he and his new wife raised 11 children.

A Surveyor and Corporal with the Royal Sappers & Miners, he performed many difficult trips to discover and document the fascinating features of this new Colony. His strong relationship with the Indigenous Aboriginals was so important to the success of his missions.”

How Genealogy Has Improved Peter’s Life

“I have always found the time that I spend on my family history, either writing up their stories or researching some obscure facts to be very rewarding in fact, it is not too strong to say it is therapeutic.

My life in retirement has a purpose and a focus and I am constantly reminding myself that these people have given me the life that I have lead. Their efforts in building this strong country has been my inheritance.”

What Peter Loves Most About Genealogy

“My greatest love is the uncovering of some new fact or date that adds to the jigsaws that our ancestors leave us. I often wonder if we will leave our descendants any jigsaws to solve!

Wandering through their lives is a constant thrill because at any moment a new story will emerge that adds to character of my ancestors.”

Peter’s Genealogy Bucket List

“Completing a book on both of my Grt Grt Grandparents on both, paternal and maternal sides. It will take me the rest of my days but I would love to leave such a gift for others in my family.

To be able to go back beyond 1790, the last record of the Loveday family in England would be a 5 star moment. Sadly no records seem to exist that will shed light upon these generations.”

Peter’s Time Capsule Message

“One simple message.  Start today writing a diary, a ledger, anything to record your life for your descendants. Don’t trust your memory in 40 years’ time – write it down now!  Your children and grandchildren will be forever grateful to you. Always caption your photos and record dates and events.”

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Please take a moment to head on over to Peter’s blog. Leave him a comment letting him know you stopped by. Welcome Peter, it’s great to have you here!

© 2014, copyright Gini Webb. All rights reserved.

Gini Webb lives in San Diego, California and manages her own blog, Ginisology, while also researching her own German heritage, retired, enjoying life with wonderful husband Steve and visiting with her grandchildren! Are you a genealogy blogger who would like to be interviewed for the “May I Introduce To You . . .” series? If so, contact Gini Webb via e-mail.