Eliza’s Letter

Eliza’s Letter

In catching up on all the family history news I missed over a very busy holiday season I was pleased to see that the Church History Library has at last digitized the letter Eliza Haven Westover wrote to her son Lewis in 1916. This was the letter where Eliza detailed living in Nauvoo as a teenager and witnessing the transfiguration of Brigham Young. We have shared that story before here. I am not sure how many others asked for that to be done. I have been requesting it to be done for more than five years. Eliza Haven Westover wasClick to continue…

The 19th Century Christmas

The 19th Century Christmas

Historians tell us that Christmas in the United States and even the world was not celebrated much prior to Charles Dickens. They claim that the Puritans of Boston banned it and that it was “quite dead” in England of the 18th century. That is all false. While some evidence suggests Christmas was quite different it was not the fragmentary thing they made it out to be in America. In fact, if anything was out of the usual when it came to Christmas it was the Puritan attitude about it. But the Puritans honestly never had a chance with their banClick to continue…

The Life of Ane Marie Jensen Barnhurst

The Life of Ane Marie Jensen Barnhurst

Of the many reasons to be on Family Search few are as important to me than a fairly new feature known as the Family Calendar. It is just a simple timeline tied to your family tree that shows important dates – birthdays, days of passing, marriage, etc. It’s kind of cool because if you set it up right it will send you reminders of these dates via Facebook. Tomorrow’s date marks the passing of Ane Marie Jensen – a pioneer of great significance in the Riggs line. Just who is Ane Marie to me? My grandmother, Maurine Westover, is theClick to continue…

None Knew Them But to Praise

None Knew Them But to Praise

The generation of my grandparents is rightfully known as The Greatest Generation. They have been so identified because of their sacrifices and contributions during the years of the Great Depression and World War II. We likewise are free with our praise of the Pioneer Generation, those pre-and-post Civil War era ancestors who conquered the West We marvel as well over the Generation of Emigrants who crossed oceans and continents around the turn of the 20th century. In greater measure, we identify our Pilgrim and Puritan ancestors of the Great Migration generations of the 1600s. But as I continue to workClick to continue…

Great Beards in Family History

Great Beards in Family History

Facial hair is not prolific in our family lines. It may be all the missionaries and school teachers we have had over the years or perhaps it just that the manly art of beards and mustaches just isn’t in our gene pool. But on a recent perusal of the gallery feature at FamilySearch.org I began to notice not only that we DO have some beards we actually have some EPIC beards — you know, hall of fame stuff — when it comes to facial hair. Take, for example, this very modern-looking beard from William Rowe: William is the father ofClick to continue…