Links to Collaborative Genealogy Sites

In the interest of seeing that our family tree, the actual genealogical “who, what, when, and where” is preserved, I have placed some of the research that went into this blog on three websites, two of which actually aim to piece together, person by person, a single family tree for everyone. Taken literally, that is wildly ambitious, not to mention completely impractical, but the effort alone has already produced, flaws and shortcomings notwithstanding, a very special body of research.

These “collaborative” genealogy sites are WikiTree and WeRelate. Each is a little different.

(For example, WikiTree makes room for all relatives including living people and then adds privacy controls. WeRelate, meanwhile, has decided to forego information on living people and just focus on the near past. There are plenty of other differences, but…)

The main point is that putting the information here means it will survive even in generations when no one inherits an interest in family history– which I see as increasingly  likely.

Here are some jumping off points, categorized first by site, and then by a few key relatives:

 

WikiTree

 

 

WeRelate

 

 

Finally, I said there are three sites. The third is Ancestry.com, which somewhat sadly, has a paywall and curious people cannot simply click over to peruse the material at will. You can see it without paying, but to do so you’ll have to email me or Elisha Lee to be put on a list of invitees. Sorry, I didn’t make up those rules. If you are already on Ancestry, you can search for our tree which is called Kinsmen and Kinswomen (revised and sourced). [15,000 relatives and counting…] On the plus side, looking for a silver lining, the highly commercial aspect of Ancestry has paid huge dividends in making a vast trove of documents available online, including – in most cases – photocopies of originals. There really is nothing like it for primary research.

At some point, I will figure out how to put a version of our tree here, on this site, with measures in place to protect people’s privacy, but until then, the three organizations above will have to suffice.

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Photographs from Helen, Margaret, and Howard Swain’s Childhood, c.1905-1925

In an earlier post, we glimpsed the life of a boy, Rodgers Burgin, growing up in Quincy at the very start of the 20th century.

This is the life his future wife, Helen Swain, and her siblings were leading, more or less contemporaneously, in town at 226 Commonwealth Ave., at their grandfather’s house in Exeter, and on the beach in Cohasset.

 

HTS and children

 

In no particular order. Memory, I find, skips back and forth anyway…

 

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Exeter Cemetery, Exeter, NH

Boopie and Gagie are here.

Address: Linden St, Exeter, NH 03833
Website: http://www.exetercemetery.com
.

Dr Howard Townsend Swain, Sr
http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=145938412

Birth:  May 16, 1868 Bath, Steuben County, New York
Death:  Dec. 6, 1936 Boston, Massachusetts

Plot: Lot 224 B
Find A Grave Memorial# 145938412

Harriet French Swain
http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=145938467

Birth:  May 28, 1868 Exeter, New Hampshire
Death:  Jul. 16, 1958 Milton, Massachusetts

Plot: Lot 224 B
Find A Grave Memorial# 145938467

 

Exeter_Cemetery_Map.jpg

Map of Exeter Cemetery

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Sperry French

Ebenezer Sperry French, father of Harriet French, was the principal of the grammar school in Exeter, NH for fifty years.  Elisha Lee has it on good authority that he was the basis for the character of “Old Francis” in Henry A. Shute’s The Real Diary of a Real Boy. (Free text available online here; a PDF of an original edition is available here; a copy can be purchased here).

Named after his father’s sister’s husband, Rev. Ebenezer Peck Sperry, he was called “Sperry” by family.  (In midlife, he went to the effort of actually dropping “Ebenezer” from his name– legally. There is a listing in the Laws of the State of NH announcing that “Ebenezer Sperry French may take the name of Sperry French.”)

It’s amazing to see him in photos with Nana (Helen Swain Burgin) and Aunt Magna (Margaret Swain Beecher), and think that his father was born during the American Revolution.

Time.

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Left to right: Helen Swain, Margaret Swain, and Sperry French

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Two Discourses and a Sermon by Rev. Jonathan French, Jr.

 

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THE PUBLISHED WORKS OF  JONATHAN FRENCH, JR. (1778-1856, Son)

  1. A Discourse Delivered At Northampton, New Hampshire, November 18, 1821: Being Twenty Years From The Author’s Settlement
  2. A sermon preached at Concord before His Excellency Samuel Bell, governor, the Honourable Council, Senate, and House of Representatives, of the state … June 6, 1822, being the anniversary election.
  3. Reminiscences of a Fifty-Years Pastorate: A Half-Century Discourse, Delivered in North-Hampton, N. H. November 18, 1851

 

 

Rev. Jonathan French, D.D.

Jonathan French, the Revolutionary war surgeon and pastor, had a son of the same name. He spent his professional life as the minister to the congregation in North Hampton/  Northampton.

Here, in succession, are two period accounts of his life.

There is a third– It can be found in a modern book titled, The Way It Was in North Hampton: Some History, Sketches, and Reminiscences That Illuminate the Times of a New Hampshire Seacoast Townby Stillman Moulton Hobbspubl. 1994. It is available as a used book on Amazon, here.

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History of Rockingham and Strafford counties, New Hampshire : with biographical sketches of many of its pioneers and prominent men

by Hurd, D. Hamilton (Duane Hamilton), publ. 1882

https://archive.org/details/historyofrocking00hurd

pp. 415-417

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES.

rev-jonathan-french-1778-1856

REV. JONATHAN FRENCH, D.D.  (b.1778)

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