Friday, June 19, 2015

Salt Lake Institute:: The Lean Years - 2002-04

Looking back, I'm amazed that I stayed with the SLIG after my 2nd, 3rd and 4th years. Breakthroughs were few and far between, but I was honing my research skills and having fun in the process.

2002: The goal was to piece together John Faucett's life between his birth in 1751 or 1752 and his Revolutionary War service and then between his war service and arrival in Ohio in 1797. [consultants: David Dilts & Larry Piatt] Turning up Faucett records in western Virginia and western Pennsylvania was akin to pulling teeth with chopsticks. I wasn't going to happen. The consultants hoped that the Draper Manuscripts would offer some clues. Lyman Draper chronicled the American frontier and his journals are an essential tool in learning about the years 1755-1815. Draper covered the history of  the western Carolinas and Virginia, parts of Georgia and Alabama, the Ohio Valley and part of the Mississippi Valley.

I spent a good part of the week reading Draper. There was nary a reference to John Faucett who lived in western Virginia and Pennsylvania and Ohio during those years. John's Revolutionary War pension file detailed his service, but gave no indication of his family members.

Note: All was not lost. During the next few years, I would locate bios on a couple of John's grandkids that told essentially the same story. John was taken captive by Indians as a boy, later released, married and ended up in central Indiana, where he died in 1838 at the age of 86.

2003: My goal was overly ambitious. I tried to focus on the records of three families [McHugh, Crail & O'Neil] instead of one. [consultants: Alan Mann & Judy Wight] The consultants steered my focus toward the Crails since I had done some fairly extensive research on the McHughs in Wisconsin back in 2001. The O'Neil research was designated for another time. The Crails were then and are now a difficult family to research. Very little was uncovered.

Note: I would address the McHughs again later. I think I've located Catherine O'Neil's arrival. The Crails? SIGH!

2004: The goal this time was two-fold, to identify my immigrant Crousore ancestor and to trace the families of John T. Simmons and his wife, Hester Jane Moore. [consultants: Stan Lindaas & Gordon Remington]  The Crousore research was side-lined and the Simmons-Moore families took the forefront. Bits and pieces of info surfaced, but nothing that shed light on either family. The number of Moore families in the Carolinas was mindnumbing. Few of the Moores in Ohio fit the profile for having a daughter born about 1800. A rough week!

Note: I would bring the Crousore and Simmons families back to Salt Lake later on with resounding success. The Moores not so much.

Maybe it was the Wyndham Hotel [our SLIG base-of-operations] becoming the Prime Hotel in 2005. Maybe I was due for a change of fortune. Whatever the case, the next four years were incredible!

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