Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Wordless Wednesday: The Kiss



Source: Photo taken c. 1966. Original photo in possession of Elizabeth O'Neal.

About Wordless Wednesday.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Hmmm... I Wonder How He'd Look in a Swimsuit?



On Sunday, I (virtually) attended another fun and productive Scanfest, hosted by Miriam at AnceStories: The Stories of My Ancestors.

There were about nine of us chatting and scanning (mostly chatting, I think), and the conversations ranged from dysfunctional scanners and scanner software, to joining the DAR/SAR, to lingerie, swimsuits, and pin-up gals.

Oh, and I confessed my long-standing crush on Microsoft-mogul Bill Gates.

Come on now, people... smart is sexy. That's why I married a rocket scientist.

[Moment of silent daydreaming here...]

Seriously, though, if you're tired of looking at those boxes and piles of photos-to-be-scanned, please consider joining the next Scanfest. Tune in to AnceStories for the date and time.

You never know what we'll talk about next!

____________________

For the record, I did not scan that super-cute photo of Bill, above.

But here's one that I DID scan (and no, I didn't crop it that way; it was already like that):



This one came from my cousin's photo album... the one I was working on for LAST month's Scanfest. My progress is slow, as you might have deduced.

What are they doing in that picture? Yeah, I wondered that myself. It looked like they were all sitting on a stage, so I figured that it must have been some kind of play or performance. And I thought I recognized my grandmother, Reba Dunn, way in the back, center.

I gently peeled the photo out of the album, and here's what I found on the back:



(I enlarged this shot, and adjusted the levels until it was more readable.)

So... yep, that was my grandmother, all right. She does indeed look pretty in that picture, being all of about 27 years old.

I can't help but wonder what sort of PTA performance it was. Were all the people on the stage students? Were some of them teachers? PTA members? There seems to be quite a difference in ages. And where are the men?

A quick Google of "Art's Photo Service" brought up nothing useful. But even if it had, I doubt if anyone would still be alive who might know what this photo was all about.

Are any of you familiar with PTA performances like this one? I'd love to hear about it, if you are!

Sunday, February 24, 2008

My Ankleversary

Today marks a dubious sort of anniversary for me: it was one year ago today, February 24th, that I became a Woman of Steel by having a steel plate and eight screws surgically implanted in my left ankle.

The night before, after putting my daughter to bed, and while jauntily walking down the stairs without my shoes, I slipped and slammed my foot into the surprisingly sturdy baby gate at the bottom.

My ankle was dislocated and broken in four places.

There simply aren't enough bad words to describe how painful that incident was, so let me just say... it hurt. A LOT.

In fact, the ER nurse said that if she gave me any more morphine it would probably stop my heart... which didn't seem like such a bad idea at the time.

I vaguely remember firemen and paramedics arriving and carrying me out of the house on a gurney while my neighbors watched. I think I waved, but I'm not sure.

The next afternoon, I was treated to surgery by an entirely-too-attractive orthopedic surgeon. Which is just what every woman wants: to have a hottie doctor cut into your foot while you... well... look like you just fell down the stairs.

And I'm pretty sure I had forgotten to get a pedicure. I don't remember it being high on my to-do list with an 8-month old baby in the house.

I spent two days in the hospital, after which I was released on my own recognizance once I could prove myself with crutches. I was later to learn - after several nasty falls - that crutches and percocet don't mix.

My daughter, who didn't seem to notice my absence at all, will hopefully not be emotionally scarred for life by this incident.

In addition to Hottie Surgeon and the many friends and family who helped us during this time, I want to thank my anesthesiologist, who was by far the best I've ever had. And being a veteran of way too many surgeries, that's saying a lot. You rocked, Anesthesia Doctor!

(Forgive me, but I can't for the life of me remember his name. I was a little out-of-it at the time.

I do, however, remember telling him that he was so wonderful that I allllllllllways want him to be my anesthesiologist. I think I was drooling.)

After 2 weeks in a plaster cast (elevated, with ice), 4 weeks in an orthopedic boot, and 4 months in physical therapy, I was finally able to walk almost normally. One year later, I still have a bizarre, tingling numbness over the incision, probably because the hardware is still in there. And some days it just hurts like crazy.

On the bright side, however, I can now predict rain with almost 87% accuracy.

Another First for Me: 43rd Carnival of Genealogy – Technology

It's true: I'm a Carnival of Genealogy newbie.

I didn't participate in the last two Carnivals, mainly because a) I am still a fledgling blogger and didn't have enough posts under my belt to deserve any iGenes, and b) it took me a while to figure out exactly what a blog carnival is.

I mean, who knew? As of today, there are 3,617 different blog carnivals in progress, ranging from the sublime to the downright unique. Interested in pets? Check out the "All About Dog Training" carnival. Need to cleanse your body and soul? Check out the "Detox With Apples" carnival. Ever read something and think, "Whoa!" Then the "Carnival of Crazy" is for you!

But if blogging about genealogy and history is more your thing, you might want to check out these carnivals:

Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture
Carnival of Central/Eastern European Genealogy
Cabinet of Curiousities

I was seriously thinking of entering the "Carnival of Cheese" until I found out it had been discontinued. Rats. And I really like feta, too.

____________________

What technology do you most rely on for your genealogy and family history research? Select one piece of hardware (besides your computer), one piece of software (besides your internet browser), and one web site/blog (besides your own) that are indispensable to you. Resist the urge to dilute the impact of your 3 choices by mentioning several others you use and appreciate as well. This is an exercise in appraising the technology you use/recommend the most.

Hardware

Other than my computer, the piece of hardware I rely on most would have to be my digital camera.

My camera goes everywhere with me. Voted one of Popular Photography & Imaging Magazine’s Top 25 Products of 2007, (see "Stuff I Like," to the left) my beautiful Canon EOS 40D is almost like my second child.

Almost. In a quieter, less demanding sort of way.

Not only do I use my camera to photograph cemeteries, historic places, and cute things my daughter does, I’ve also used it numerous times to photograph family photos, letters, and documents in a pinch when no scanner or copier was available.

For places that don’t allow photography, I keep my much smaller and easier-to-hide Sony Cybershot in my purse. I’ve been known to hide in the back of libraries, photographing pages of books rather than pay to use the copier. Shhh!

Plus, it’s no secret that I have a terrible memory. My friends call it “Swiss Cheese Brain,” and I'm almost positive that they mean it in good fun. But my digital camera has saved me on numerous occasions. That book I saw in the cemetery superintendent’s office? I’ll never remember what it was called… so I take a picture of the cover! That web site I saw advertised at the SCGS Jamboree that I wanted to investigate? I’ll never remember the URL.

But a picture is worth a thousand little scraps of paper!

My camera is also very useful for helping my husband get the correct items at the supermarket, but that’s for another post.

I keep a couple of 4 GB CompactFlash media cards in the bag, along with an extra battery. I love the way this camera’s battery is charged; rather than a long, annoying cord that attaches to the camera, the battery itself goes into a little unit that plugs directly into the wall. Genius!

Software

Like many genealogists, I use Family Tree Maker for my genealogy database. I’ve used FTM since back in the days of Broderbund ownership, so I suppose that, to some degree, I still use it out of habit.

I don’t have time for much of a learning curve these days.

But I do like the way FTM integrates with Ancestry.com: one click of a button, and it searches Ancestry’s collections for a particular ancestor. I’ve found lots of useful items this way that I did not find using Ancestry’s regular search page.

I’m still using version 16, mainly because I’m a) too cheap, and b) too scared to upgrade to the new version. I've been burned too many times by upgrades.

However, my father recently purchased the new version and seems to like it just fine. He’s never used anything else though, so he doesn’t really have anything with which to compare it. I tried it out on his computer, and the interface was so different from version 16 that it was very confusing for me.

But I suppose I will eventually comply and buy the new version. I always do.

Web Site/Blog

I really wanted to come up with something unique and creative for this one, but after spending the better part of an afternoon helping a friend with her research, I realized that there really is one particular web site that I rely on most.

Don’t hate on me for saying this, but that one web site is Ancestry.com.

I know, I know… there’s all sorts of reasons why Ancestry is BAD.

But just like the with the bad boys in college… I can’t help myself.

Yes, Ancestry costs a boatload of money. And yes, they probably do steal your stuff (or at least, Ancestry users steal your stuff).

But they do have a LOT of stuff. I can sit at my computer in my bath robe sipping coffee while my toddler watches cartoons and surf the 1920 Census. I can’t do that at the National Archives.

There are many, many other genealogy and history sites on which I rely, but I always seem to go to Ancestry first. Once I’ve exhausted them as a resource, I’ll look elsewhere.

But I’ll always go back again later. Maybe I had the wrong search criteria the first time, or maybe a new database was added. Who knows!

If I’m really lucky, I’ll meet a new cousin through their "contact other users interested in this ancestor" feature. That has happened on more than one occasion.

It's nice to know that I'm not always the only one out there searching for a particular ancestor, even if it seems that way.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Week Thirty-Two (But Week One for Me): Honoring Our Leaders



At AnceStories2: Stories of Me for My Descendants, Miriam provides weekly journaling prompts to help fellow bloggers record their memories for future generations. This week's prompt is "Honoring Our Leaders."

Getting started has been quite difficult for me, which is why I haven’t participated in previous prompts. I mean, I can barely remember what I ate for breakfast, much less what I did when I was a child.

I’ve heard that a woman’s brain shrinks in physical size while she’s pregnant, but it’s supposed to go back to normal afterwards, right?

Still waiting...

I only have one descendant who barely speaks English at this point, but I suppose it’s never too early to start putting one’s thoughts down on (virtual) paper.

So, here we go, Peanut. Please bear with Mommy as she tries to remember when she was a little girl.

____________________

As a child, do you remember celebrating either Lincoln or Washington's birthdays? How did you celebrate them? What do you remember learning about either of these men?

No, I sure don’t. I’m sure we did study Lincoln and Washington, but I don’t remember anything about it.

Oh wait… flashback of tricorn hats. Making them? Wearing them? I think both. And made of old newspapers.

And silhouettes. Making those black construction paper silhouettes of both presidents.

It’s all very fuzzy (my memories, not the silhouettes).

Did you get a day off of school, have an assembly, or was there a play performed?

Probably, but I have absolutely no recollection.

(This will come in handy if I ever have to testify in court.)

Do you ever remember reading any books or watching any movies about these two leaders?

I don’t remember doing these activities as a child, but I do remember doing them as a teacher (along with the obligatory silhouettes).

The kids and I loved Abe Lincoln's Hat (Step into Reading, Step 3), about how Honest Abe used to put his important papers into his stovepipe hat so he wouldn't lose them. It showed him as a regular guy who was subject to periods of forgetfulness just like the rest of us.

In your opinion, who was the greatest leader of our country, and why?

Although I did not vote for him (and yes, I was old enough by his second term), my favorite leader of our country is Ronald Reagan, 40th President of the United States.

A California country boy by choice, not by birth, he served two terms as Governor of our Great Golden State.

He somehow managed to stimulate the economy, cut taxes, and restore prosperity, peace, and pride to a nation that had experienced such tumult in the previous decade.

I was in college during the 1980’s, and I have oddly vivid memories of this decade. I remember it as a time of growth, prosperity, and unification. The 1984 Summer Olympics - held in Los Angeles and opened by President Reagan - brought a sense of national pride that had been missing for a number of years. Several Olympic events were held close to where I lived, and I drove by the special street signs on my way to school everyday.

We were proud, not only to be Californians, but Americans.

I also remember the 1980’s as a time of fear, with the Cold War and the nuclear arms race still in full swing. The Soviet Union was thought of as the “Evil Empire,” and students wore t-shirts and buttons proclaiming “No Nukes” and “Solidarity.” A fellow student’s family had recently escaped from Romania, and she feared for her family’s safety.

It was a strange time.

An amazingly eloquent speaker, Reagan had a way of bringing people to their feet when he spoke in front of a crowd. His speech at the foot of the Brandenburg Gate, West Berlin, on June 12, 1987, still gives me chills:

"General Secretary Gorbachev, if you seek peace, if you seek prosperity for the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, if you seek liberalization: Come here to this gate! Mr. Gorbachev, open this gate! Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!"

Had he not been a talented actor, would he have been such a powerful speaker? Perhaps, but I believe he truly did feel passionately about the subjects of which he spoke.

I have only recently come to appreciate Ronald Reagan. My family took a trip to the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley last August, and I was amazed at what an interesting and varied life he had led.

There were artifacts from his radio and acting careers, as well as his time in public office. Seeing the archaic computers on Air Force One made me wonder how that thing ever got off the ground. And President Reagan's final resting place is on the Library grounds.

But I think the most significant artifact – at least to me – was the sections of the Berlin Wall. It was very moving to see the graffiti and know that it was drawn by real people during a time of so much strife. It's almost unthinkable that such a monstrosity ever existed.

Although he was no longer President when the Berlin Wall fell (on my birthday in 1989), this has to have been one of the proudest moments of Reagan's career. Khrushchev did not bury us, after all, and there might finally be peace in the East.

Love him or hate him, President Ronald Reagan definitely made his mark on history.

I'm proud to have been alive during his time as President.

In your current career, do you get Presidents Day off? Why or why not?

Good heavens, no. I’m a mom, 24/7. I don’t get ANY days off.

However, in my previous career as an elementary school teacher, I did get Presidents’ Day, as well as Lincoln’s Birthday, off from work. February was our favorite month; not only did we get two holidays, but it was the shortest month with the fewest work days!

In many communities, Presidents Day weekend is well-known for sales and special deals. How do you feel about this? Do you like to go shopping on this weekend? Or do you feel this emphasis on commercialism is disrespectful?

Personally, I would like to see the whole idea of “Presidents’ Day” go away and have us return to celebrating Abraham Lincoln’s and George Washington’s birthdays separately. Lumping them together into one holiday detracts from the importance of each day.

Having said that, I do appreciate a good sale, whatever the reason.

Presidents Day is also a day when veterans and Purple Heart recipients are honored. Are or were there any Purple Heart recipients in your family or ancestry? Have you written about what they did to earn this great award?

To my knowledge, there are no Purple Heart recipients in my family or ancestry.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Starting Early

I took my daughter to her very first State Conference of the Children of the American Revolution (C.A.R.) this past weekend.

Sure, she's a little young for these types of events, but she got to hang out with some kids, run around a hotel, ride a bus, see interesting sea creatures, and have a tantrum in a formal gown.

It was a full weekend.


Casting her vote for new state officers: doing her civic duty for the first time.
I held the pen, but it still counts.


You're never too young to learn proper receiving line etiquette.


The State President's project was to raise money for the sea otters at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, so we all took a little field trip to the Aquarium to present the "big check" and visit the sea life.


My daughter loved the jellyfish. I had no idea that there are SO MANY TYPES of jellyfish. Kind of scary, when you think about it. I know I won't be swimming in the ocean again any time soon.


By far, the best time had by my daughter was on the slide. She completely missed the point of the entire trip, but hey, she's not even two yet, so she's entitled.


Modeling her pretty formal gown (and purse), pre-tantrum. Mommy was so proud.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

My Great-Grandparents: John and Sarah Jane (Swatzel) Dunn

4 February 2008 would have been the 131st wedding anniversary of my great-grandparents, John Dunn and Sarah Jane Swatzel Dunn.


John, Reba, and Sarah Dunn

John was born on 14 March 1843 in Shelby, Cleveland County, North Carolina. He was the fourth child of eleven of Samuel Marion Dunn and Julia Ann Blanton Dunn.

Sarah was born on 16 December 1855 in Greeneville, Greene County, Tennessee. She was the sixth child of eleven of William H. Swatzel and Eliza Jane Thompson Swatzel.

John and Sarah were married on 4 February 1877, in Albany, Greene County, Tennessee. Sarah was John’s second wife; his first marriage was to Anna Babb on 15 January 1866. Anna died on 4 November 1876.

John and Sarah raised twelve children of their own, as well as three children from his marriage to Anna.

Children of John and Sarah Dunn:

  • Samuel Marion Dunn, born 21 November 1877, in Greene County, Tennessee; died 5 June 1955, Urbana, Illinois.
  • Julia Ann Dunn, born 11 August 1878, in Newmansville, Greene County, Tennessee; died 8 May 1957, Colton, San Bernardino, California
  • Georgie Florence Dunn, born 9 November 1880, in Greene County, Tennessee; died 1881, in Tennessee.
  • John Walter Dunn, born 3 May 1882, in Greene County, Tennessee; died 13 February 1952, Bristol, Virginia.
  • Charles Edy Dunn, born 9 October 1885, in Greene County, Tennessee; died 14 October 1887, in Greene County, Tennessee.
  • Nina Josephine Dunn, born 6 January 1888, in Tennessee; died 9 February 1936, in Riverside, California.
  • Bertie Charlotte Dunn, born 9 November 1891, in Greene County, Tennessee; died 27 March 1917, in Greene County, Tennessee.
  • Mary Barton Dunn, born 30 November 1889, in Tennessee; died 3 March 1891, in Tennessee.
  • Dolly Myrtle Dunn, born15 January 1894, in Greenville, Greene County, Tennessee; died 11 February 1979, in Loma Linda, California.
  • Jodie Lee Dunn, born 5 May 1896, in Newmansville, Greene County, Tennessee; died 13 May 1925, in Greene County, Tennessee.
  • Bonnie Lucille Dunn, born 30 April 1898, in Greene County, Tennessee; died 30 March 1979, in Tennessee.
  • Reba Clyde Dunn, born 17 May 1901, in Greene County, Tennessee; died 4 August 1987, in Pasco, Franklin County, Washington.

John fought for the Union in the Civil War. Enlisting at the age of 19, he served as a Private in Co. K, 1st Tennessee Cavalry, from July 12, 1862, until June 5, 1865. He was captured in Newnan, Georgia, on July 31, 1864, and held at Andersonville Prison. He was one of the lucky survivors who made it out alive.

John died on 15 September 1915 in Afton, Greene County, Tennessee, and is buried in Union Temple Cemetery in Greene County, Tennessee. Sarah died on 18 July 1921 in Newmansville, Tennessee, and is buried next to her husband.

____________________

Source: Dunn, John, Reba Clyde, and Sarah Jane. Photograph. c. 1906. Original photograph in possession of Elizabeth O'Neal, California, 2008.

Original cemetery headstone photographs of John, Sarah Jane, and Reba © 1994-2008 by Elizabeth O'Neal, California.

Other Sources include: Census records, marriage license, death certificates, military records including pension and Declaration of Widow.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Happy Birthday Abraham Lincoln


Photo from the Library of Congress
Alexander Gardner, 1821-1882, Photographer

I couldn't let today go by without remembering our sixteenth President, Abraham Lincoln.

In his own words:

I was born Feb. 12, 1809, in Hardin County, Kentucky. My parents were both born in Virginia, of undistinguished families--second families, perhaps I should say. My mother, who died in my tenth year, was of a family of the name of Hanks.... My father ... removed from Kentucky to ... Indiana, in my eighth year.... It was a wild region, with many bears and other wild animals still in the woods. There I grew up.... Of course when I came of age I did not know much. Still somehow, I could read, write, and cipher ... but that was all.

More about Abraham Lincoln:

Don't Poke Me When You Read This



I typically prefer to write bad haiku.

However, Terry of Hill Country of Monroe County, Mississippi, said that if we want to play, we must write a limerick.

Seemed appropriate, given my Irish ancestry.

Unfortunately, the limerick eluded me, just as they do.

When you read it, you'll wish it had eluded YOU too.

____________________

There once was a gal from the 'poke,
Who married a bicycling bloke.
They had a cute girl,
Made their life all a-whirl,
Now the gal tries to track down kinfolk.

____________________

Note: "The 'poke" is a nickname for Lompoc (pronounced Lom' poke, NOT Lom' pock).

Sunday, February 10, 2008

A Walk in the Park... Not Exactly



It's Sunday afternoon, and what is our family doing?

Why, walking the local cemetery, of course!

My husband and I are avid "gravers," meaning people who tromp through cemeteries taking photographs of headstones.



Why do we do this seemingly strange activity? Well, a variety of reasons, I suppose:

  • We enjoy the history. Reading the various headstones really makes one wonder about the lives they represent.

  • As cemetery look-up volunteers for Find A Grave, we frequently dash out to our local cemetery to fulfill photo requests, and try to snap a few extra shots along the way. In doing this, we hope to reunite family members who are unable to travel to California with their long-lost ancestors.

  • We believe in "paying it forward." Actually, this has really paid off for me. Some very kind volunteers have posted photos of my grandfather's headstone in Washington, my great-grandmother's headstone in Iowa, as well as some others I've wanted to see in response to my requests.

  • It's quiet, and a pretty place to walk. I broke my ankle about a year ago, requiring surgery to insert a steel plate and eight screws. Even after four months of physical therapy, I still have pain and difficulty walking sometimes. The uneven terrain is good practice, not only for me, but for my daughter's wobbly toddler legs.
Headstone of the Day:



This one is actually quite famous here locally. The inscription reads:

Mary L. Sargent
Aged
21 Y's & 8 D's

Murdered by Indians
Apr. 2, 1881


Says the Lompoc Historical Society:
[Mary] had left on horseback to go to a neighbor for eggs in the Santa Rita District. Her horse returned without her that evening. A search party was formed and her body discovered in a shallow grave. An Indian sheep herder was held as suspect, since the footprints at the scene matched his. His clothes were also bloody, and there was blood on his lariat. He denied doing the deed and blamed it on another man, whom he could not identify. He was found guilty on the spot and hanged. The Chumash, who inhabited this area before European arrival were a peaceful people. The only instance of violence was an Indian revolt at La Purisima Mission. The sheep herder was of Chumash descent and had come from the Santa Cota Reservation in Santa Ynez.
Can you imagine anyone being found "guilty on the spot" today?

More about Mary Sargent's tragic demise here.



Don't sit on the headstones, sweetheart.

____________________

Want to "pay it forward" by committing a Random Act of Genealogical Kindness?

Visit AnceStories: The Stories of My Ancestors for some great suggestions of what you can do.

Young Love

Last weekend, my daughter and I visited with friends for a few days. Just for fun, their 2-year old grandson came over for a play "date."

My daugher and Grandson are both "only" children, so we were understandably concerned about their abilities to "play well with others." Typically, this is not something that toddlers do well anyway.

We were pleasantly surprised that the two of them not only played well together, but really seemed to enjoy each other. I mean really enjoy each other. A lot.

So now my daughter now has a new love.

If she were any older, I'm sure I would have to put a stop to it. But for now, it's just so darn cute.



Playing with pillows. Big fun that adults simply cannot understand.



Falling down, screaming, and laughing = pure toddler joy.



Ah, look at them. No concept that the rest of the world is watching.



The next day. Practically finishing each other's sentences by this time. Too bad the rest of us can't understand anything they're saying.

Should I be worried? Or should I be picking out wedding gowns?

Thursday, February 7, 2008

76 Flutophones Led the Big Parade



It's been a long, long, loooong time since I was in a parade.

(We won't get into that now, but suffice it to say there was a crown, a lot of sequins, and plenty of prissy waving involved. Ah, good times...)

Anyway, my latest trip down a parade route was in Bill West's Genealogist's Parade, over at "West in New England." My entry, The Mother Ship, hovered down the street amongst a marching band, classic cars, a tractor, and quite a few interesting (and unique!) floats.

Be sure to beam yourself over to Bill's place to enjoy his outstanding coverage of this parade. You'll want to explore the other fascinating entries, particularly the amazing uses of the simple flutophone. Who knew?

Many thanks, Bill, for organizing this fun event!

Rumor has it that a number of innocent bystanders went missing along the parade route and claim to have been beamed aboard The Mother Ship where DNA tests and other genealogical experiments were performed to see if they were alien Delaneys disguised as humans.

This can neither be confirmed nor denied.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Great Minds? I Wish!

My goodness! I must have been channeling Blaine Bettinger, The Genetic Genealogist, when I wrote my last post.

He blogged yesterday about "Genetic Genealogy is SO Mainstream - More Black History Month Events," and discussed Anheuser-Busch's foray into DNA and genealogy.

While I'd love to say that "great minds think alike," I would never presume to put myself in that category with Blaine!

I am relieved, however, that he experienced the same frustration in finding the contest rules. It's good to know that it wasn't just the fact that my toddler was screaming in my ear while I was writing the article.

A mom can only block out so much, you know.

I'll Take Mine in a Keg, Please

Budweiser Traces Your Family Tree To Roots In Africa

Hold onto your spuds, folks! There’s a new name in genetic genealogy: BUDWEISER!

That’s right! This February – to celebrate Black History Month – Anheuser-Busch will be giving one lucky person a genealogy dream-come-true: the chance to discover his/her family’s origins and to travel to that destination to climb the family tree.

The sweepstakes, “Discover Your History,” provides a grand prize that includes a trip for the winner and three guests to explore their ancestral background as determined via genetic testing. The journey includes round-trip air transportation and two double-occupancy hotel rooms for up to nine nights and a completed family tree. Nine First Prizes also will be awarded and consist of genetic genealogy testing and ancestral family tree research. Official sweepstakes rules, instructions and an online registration form can be obtained at http://www.budweiser.com/.
Also during February, the suds company is partnering with radio host Michael Baisden to offer an additional 20 DNA tests provided by AfricanDNA.com. Listeners can call in to the show to answer questions about black history, and winners will be selected from those providing correct answers.

The contest will run from February 1 – 29, 2008, and winners will be selected in a random drawing in March. As you might guess, you must be at least 21 years of age to enter.

For more information, visit Anheuser-Busch.com.

For the record, I searched both the Budweiser and Michael Baisden web sites and could find nothing about this contest. In fact, I started to think it was a hoax until I found the press release on the Anheuser-Busch site. If you have better luck, please let me know, and I’ll post the link.

***

Here's a little trip down memory lane to get you in the mood:

Monday, February 4, 2008

The First Step is Admitting That You Have a Problem

It's late, and I'm completely exhausted from a long day of travel and other oddities that I'm sure I'll tell you about later... but I just so hate to be left out:

78%How Addicted to Blogging Are You?
My husband will be enrolling me in a 12-step program as soon as he gets home.

Really, honey, I can quit any time I want.

(Many thanks to Tim at Genealogy Reviews Online for helping me to face my problem.)