#TBT Proceedings: Board of County Commissioners, Yankton – Part 3

!Banner 10.18.41

Yankton Press & Dakotan
18 Oct 1941 (Evening): p. 3, col. 4

10-18

PROCEEDINGS
BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS, YANKTON, S. D.

Board of County Commissioners Sept meeting p3 c4 part 3It was moved by Walloch, seconded by Feyerharm that the Board adjourn to meet on October 1, 1941.

Roll Call: All Commissioners voting ‘aye,’ motion carried.

9:30 A. M., October 1, 1941.

The Board of County Commissioners met pursuant to adjournament [sic] taken with all members present.

The regular monthly bills were checked.

On motion the Board recessed for the Noon hour.

1:00 P. M., October 1, 1941.

The Board met pursuant to recess taken with all members present.

It was moved by Smith, seconded by Walloch that the Auditor’s report of the sale at Public Auction the following described real estate to Ingward Hoxeng and Arnold Slettin for the amounts of Forty-two Hundred Dollars ($4200.00) and Twelve Hundred Dollars ($1200.00) respective be approved:

The South Half of the Southwest Quarter (S 1/2 Sw 1/4) of Section 4, Township 94, Range 54.

The Northwest Quarter of the Southwest Quarter (NW 1/4 SW 1/4) of Section 5, Township 96, Range 54.

Roll Call: All Commissioners voting ‘aye,’ motion carried.

I purchased roughly 25 original issues of the Yankton (South Dakota) Press & Dakotan, dating from 1938 to 1946. I am systematically going through every issue and will be posting the articles that include the names of individuals. I am happy to email full-size scans of any article. Feel free to ask.

 

Do we share any ancestors?
Please email me at lostancestors [at] gmail [dot] com

Copyright 2014 - Are My Roots Showing? All rights reserved

Genealogy Do-Over: Week 4 Progress

red-do-over-buttonIn addition to working on the Genealogy Do-Over, I’ve also been working on a new chapter of my life that involves systematically eliminating toxic things from my life and focusing on those things that propel me toward my goals.

Because of this new “project,” I have even less time to work on my research … for now.  But that’s okay.  There’s no time limit for me to complete this Do-Over, and it’s not something I want to rush anyway.  Fortunately, this week’s topics were pretty easy to tackle because I created a solid plan before we started.

Objective: Manage Projects and Tasks

I’m a list-maker.  Boy, do I love lists.  I love crossing stuff off of lists even more!  I’m one of those people who will do some random task and when I realize it’s not on the list … I put it on the list, just so I can cross it off!  For me, crossing things off a list is more motivational than pretty much anything else.

So managing my projects essentially consists of a series of lists.  I have a master list that has my goal items on it.  Then on separate lists, I have broken those goals down into smaller pieces with even smaller checklist tasks.  For example, one of my goals is to re-do my website with WordPress and get away from the BaseKit site I have now.  That is on my master list.  On a separate list, I have tasks like (  ) research and choose a theme; (  ) research cost for web designer; (  ) create logo; (  ) consider and research affiliate links … you get the idea.

As for managing my tasks within my research, I handle it pretty much the same way – with one exception.  My research to-do lists are kept in Evernote so I can access them no matter where I happen to be.  (Technically, right now they are on post-it notes in the front of the files I’ve been working on, but as soon as I finish Week 2, watch out Evernote!)

Objective: Track Searches

search dogNow this is a whole new ball of wax.  I have never tracked my searches.  Heck, who am I kidding?  I barely ever tracked my research.  So yes, I was one of those folks who performed the same searches for the same information over and over and over … only realizing it upon saving that I now had (at least) two of that digital image.  As a matter of fact, in this blog post I confessed that I forgot I had in my files a death certificate naming an ancestor’s mother (up to that point she had been considered a ‘brick wall’ for me).  There’s no telling how long that death certificate had been there.  Years, probably.

If that doesn’t make it clear that I need a do-over, I’m not sure what will.

So what am I doing to remedy this problem in the future?  I’m going to start tracking my searches either in or on the back of my research log.  It is important that I keep these two documents together – whether I do it by hand or on a spreadsheet (we all know I’m leaning toward that spreadsheet though, right?) so I don’t end up in the weeds.  This is something I will have to play with a little bit before I settle on a format.  Since I’m not doing any research yet, that may be a while.  (Or I may end up with an impromptu search tracking sheet during my trip to Salt Lake City for FGS/RootsTech – because oh, there will be research).

What else am I doing?

I am still entering all of the materials I have for my maternal grandparents.  I am adding at least 20 locality links to my OneNote notebooks each week.  And I’ve decided that I’m going to try to do some sort of mind meld with an archivist or two while I’m in Salt Lake City.  Then I’ll come home and make a list the stuff I need to buy.  I’m also still managing to keep up with my ProGen 24 assignments, so that’s a plus!

 

Do we share any ancestors?
Please email me at lostancestors [at] gmail [dot] com

Copyright 2014 - Are My Roots Showing? All rights reserved

Tuesday’s Tip: Family Interviews

interviewI recently received various messages with questions about recording interviews (which I mentioned in my blog post here).  I thought others might have similar questions, so I figured I’d put the answers all in one place.

Audio Recordings

A couple of the questions were related to the type of recorder to use.  There are some “note recorders” out there that only record for a couple of minutes (basically, the length of time to dictate something like “remember to pick up milk on the way home”).  I discourage the use of these for any type of family interviews.  You will be constantly restarting the recording and drawing attention to the recorder.  Instead, look for one that allows you to record for extended periods of time.  It should allow you to store the recordings in separate folders on the recorder.  If you can find one that has an SD card expansion slot, that’s even better.   The more your subject can “forget” that they are being recorded, the more candid their responses will be, and the more likely you are to get “unfiltered” family stories.

I have the (now discontinued) sibling of this one (affiliate link!), and have been using it for various tasks for the past 6 years, and it’s still going strong. You can plan on each hour of recording taking about 1 GB of space, depending on the quality.

Video Recordings

I personally don’t do video recordings because I don’t like to be on camera.  Ever.  So I can’t make any recommendations for video equipment.  I can tell you this.  If you decide to record your subject on camera, GET A TRIPOD, preferably one that stands on the floor (or other firm surface that you or your interviewee are not leaning or working on).  I have this one (another affiliate link!), which I like because the legs are adjustable and it accommodates all of my cameras.  Start the camera before you begin the interview so you can get all the weirdness out of the way.  Don’t worry, you can edit it later.

telephoneTelephone Interviews

Sometimes your subject lives far away or for some other reason can only be interviewed by telephone.  In these cases, you can either take copious notes, or you can record the phone call (if your subject consents – check your local laws regarding recording telephone calls).  There are several ways that you can record these conversations.  If you have a smart phone, you might consider getting a Google Voice account, which allows you to record straight from the app.  Unfortunately, it only allows you to record incoming calls.  On the plus side, the recordings are saved on Google’s servers, so you can just download the audio file to your computer.  There are other free and paid apps you can get for your smartphone, but you’ll want to review them and try them out before you use them.  Some of them require the ability to record from your speaker to your microphone, which iPhone won’t do.

If you choose one of the above formats, always make sure you record the date, time, location, and the full name of the interviewee at the beginning.

Interviews by Correspondence

If your subject refuses to be recorded, doesn’t own a phone, or is a vampire, your only option may be to interview them via written correspondence.  If you select this route, you want to avoid overwhelming them with a packet of interview questions that resembles War and Peace.  Send a few questions at a time (10 is a nice round number).  I also like to print mini photos on a few sheets of paper with space for your subject to identify the individuals in the photos.  This may also trigger other memories, so leave plenty of room in case they want to tell that story.  Make sure they know they can write on the back of the paper if necessary.  I sent some of these photo pages to my grandmother before she passed away, and she was able to identify people in several photos that I would still never know who they were.

More Tips for Successful Interviews

DO

– If you can, schedule your interview far enough in advance that you and your subject have time to prepare.

– Make sure you have water (or other appropriate beverage) readily available for you and/or your subject.  The last thing you need is a 5-minute coughing fit in the middle of your interview.

– Prepare your questions in advance.  You might even want to share them with your subject so they can begin thinking about them ahead of time.  I recommend saving photos until your interview.  This allows you to capture organic responses when your subject sees the photos for the first time.

– Try to record your interview in a quiet location with very little background noise.  (Trust me, I put my recorder on the table when 5 of us went for pizza in New Jersey and I could barely hear any of the 3 hours of recorded conversations).

– Ask your subject before the interview if there are any topics that are “off limits.”  This will prevent any hard feelings later, and makes it less likely that your subject will call an end to your interview prematurely.

– Make sure you have pertinent photographs to trigger memories for your subject.  You will want to hold these up in front of your camera before you begin discussing them if you are recording with video.  If you are recording with audio, you might want to assign a number to each photo beforehand and refer to that number during your interview.

– I cannot stress this enough: TRANSCRIBE your recorded interviews!

DON’T

– Don’t use the recorder in “voice activated” mode.  This will cut off the first word(s) spoken after a significant pause. You might miss something important, or the meaning of what your subject says could be altered by that missing word.

– Don’t place the recorder so far away from your subject that it’s hard to hear them later.  Place it on the table or other sturdy surface between you and your subject.  If anyone feels self-conscious or uncomfortable, you might place a folded piece of paper like a tent over the recorder to hide it from view so they will eventually forget it’s even there.

– Don’t be a bully!  If your subject doesn’t remember or doesn’t want to discuss a certain topic, don’t force them.  That’s the fastest way to end your interview.

bullying

There are also many apps (far too many to list here) designed to preserve family stories, which I will discuss in a separate blog post.

How do YOU preserve your family stories?

 

Do we share any ancestors?
Please email me at lostancestors [at] gmail [dot] com

Copyright 2014 - Are My Roots Showing? All rights reserved

#TBT Proceedings: Board of County Commissioners, Yankton – Part 2

!Banner 10.18.41Yankton Press & Dakotan
18 Oct 1941 (Evening): p. 3, col. 4

10-18

PROCEEDINGS
BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS, YANKTON, S. D.

Board of County Commissioners Sept meeting p3 c4 part 2It was moved by Feyerharm, that, that certain parcel of real estate now the property of Yankton County, South Dakota, and described, as:

West one-sixth (W 1-6) of lots Eight and Nine (8 and 9) Block Twenty-six (26) in that part of the City of Yankton known as “Yankton” and the West thirteen and one-half inches (W. 13 1/2 in.) of a certain piece or parcel of land in the City of Yankton, Yankton County, South Dakota described as follows:  Beginning at a point in the South line of Lot Nine (9), Block Twenty-six (26), Yankton, Twenty-five feet East of the Southwest corner thereof, running thence East along the South line of said Lot Nine (9) twenty-five (25) feet; thence North parallel with the East line of Walnut Street across lots Eight (8) and Nine (9) in said Block eight-eight (88) feet, more or less, to the North line of said Lot Eight (8), thence West along the North line of said Lot Eight (8) Twenty-five feet, thence South on a line parallel with the East line of Walnut Street across said Lots Eight (8) and Nine (9) to place of beginning.

The last above described parcel of land being subject, however, to the right to use the wall upon and along said thirteen and one-inch [sic] inches (13 1/2 in.), for the support of the said building adjoining it on the East, reserved in that certain deed recorded in the Office of the Register of Deeds of Yankton County, South Dakota, in Book 134, Page 18, together with all and singular the tenements, hereditaments and appurtenances thereunto belonging or in anywise appertaining.  Above described property more commonly known as “The Farmers and Merchants Bank Building.”

be offered for sale in the manner provided by law for the sale of county owned real estate and that the County Auditor of said County offer said property for sale in accordance with statutes of this state relative to the sale of county owned real estate.

Motion seconded by Anderson.

Roll Call: Commissioners Anderson, Smith, Walloch and Feyerharm voting ‘aye,’ motion carried.  Commissioner Olson not voting.

APPRAISAL COUNTY OWNED PROPERTY

We, the Undersigned, duly elected, qualified and acting County County [sic] Commissioners of the County of Yankton, State of South Dakota, having directed that real property, now owned by said Yankton County, be offered for sale in accordance with the provisions of the laws of the State of South Dakota relative to sale of county owned property, do hereby appraise said property as follows, to-wit:

DESCRIPTION OF PROPERTY

West one-sixth (W 1-6) of lots Eight and Nine (8 and 9) Block Twenty-six (26) in that part of the City of Yankton known as “Yankton” and also as “Todd’s Yankton”; and the West thirteen and one-half inches (W. 13 1/2 in) of a certain piece or parcel of land in the City of Yankton, Yankton County, South Dakota described as follows:  Beginning at a point in the South line of Lot Nine (9), Block Twenty-six (26), Yankton, Twenty-five feet East of the Southwest corner thereof, running thence East along the South line of said Lot Nine (9) twenty-five (25) feet; thence North parallel with the East line of Walnut Street across lots Eight (8) and Nine (9) in said Block eight-eight (88) feet, more or less, to the North line of said Lot Eight (8), thence West along the North line of said Lot Eight (8) Twenty-five feet, thence South on a line parallel with the East line of Walnut Street across said Lots Eight (8) and Nine (9) to place of beginning.

Board of County Commissioners Sept meeting p3 c4 part 2 (cont)The last above described parcel of land being subject, however, to the right to use the wall upon and along said thirteen and one-inch [sic] inches (13 1/2 in.), for the support of the said building adjoining it on the East, reserved in that certain deed recorded in the Office of the Register of Deeds of Yankton County, South Dakota, in Book 134, Page 18, together with all and singular the tenements, hereditaments and appurtenances thereunto belonging or in anywise appertaining.  Above described property more commonly known as “The Farmers and Merchants Bank Building.”

Appraised Value – Fifteen Thousand Dollars ($15,000.00).

Done at Yankton in Yankton County, Stae [sic] of South Dakota, this 22nd day of September, 1941.

OLE G. OLSON
JESSE M. SMITH
PAUL FEYERHARM
A. J. WALLOCH
CARL M. ANDERSON

It was moved by Anderson, seconded by Feyerharm that the County Auditor be instructed to advertise above described property for sale at Public Auction on November 4th, 1941 at 2 p. m.

Roll Call: All Commissioners voting ‘aye,’ motion carried.

 

I purchased roughly 25 original issues of the Yankton (South Dakota) Press & Dakotan, dating from 1938 to 1946. I am systematically going through every issue and will be posting the articles that include the names of individuals. I am happy to email full-size scans of any article. Feel free to ask.

Do we share any ancestors?
Please email me at lostancestors [at] gmail [dot] com

Copyright 2014 - Are My Roots Showing? All rights reserved

Genealogy Do-Over: Week 3 Progress

red-do-over-button

During Week 2 of the Do-Over, one of our objectives was to set research goals using the to-do lists created after our self-interview and family interviews.  Because I’m an “all-in” participant, I’m essentially starting with nothing – which means (for now) my goals only include items for me and my parents.  I have already processed several documents that I already had (according to my previously-defined document process), and I’m fairly certain that my parents are who they say they are and that I am definitely my daughter’s mother.  I also have original documents showing when I was baptized, when I received my first communion, etc.

What I can’t seem to find are my divorce papers.  I also need to dig deep into the recesses of my brain and try to remember all the places I’ve lived and worked.  I better get a bigger bottle of aspirin.

At this point, my research goals include:

  • Prove I was divorced (I don’t know about anyone else, but to me this is very important)
  • Prove that I attended high school
  • Prove that my father was born
  • Prove that my father has parents
  • Prove that my parents were married
  • Prove that my parents were divorced
  • Prove that I have siblings (both full and half)

Most of the items on this list will be fairly easy, since everyone is still alive.  I’m just now beginning to go through the documentation I have for my maternal grandparents, so that list will become exponentially more difficult in the very near future.

Objective: Track Research

During my Do-Over prep, I created a process by which I have sworn to conduct my research.  This process involves to-do lists (which will be transferred to Evernote from their current place on giant post-it notes inside each individual’s file folder), which will become research plans, which will then be broken down into research logs, where I can track my research progress for each item.

Objective: Conduct Research

Because I’m focusing on entering the information for which I already have documentation, I haven’t begun doing any actual research.  I am being mindful to create source citations as I go, ensuring that the citation is located on the front of the document image as well as in RootsMagic and Evidentia.  I am also adding any additional information regarding each document’s legibility, quality, etc. to aid in future analysis.

What else am I doing?

I have successfully added all the reference books in my personal library to an inventory document in Word.  From here, I will copy and paste the book information into the appropriate locality notebooks in OneNote as they are created.  I’ll probably do a separate blog post about that.  I’m also continuing to add the scanned genealogy magazine articles to the notebooks.

straitjacketI am also looking at archival materials for my maternal grandmother’s collection of artifacts, but I’m really confused about what to get, so I’ll probably seek professional help.  I might also contact an archivist. [insert rimshot]  I’m here all week, folks!

I’m also supposed to be preparing for a trip to Salt Lake City while all this is going on …

 

Do we share any ancestors?
Please email me at lostancestors [at] gmail [dot] com

Copyright 2014 - Are My Roots Showing? All rights reserved