Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Miscellaneous status

Last year, about this time, we had a diversion to Charles Olson. He was the Gloucester poet. Also, in that same post, we mentioned paleoichnology. These themes concern relating to prior times.

Of late, I ran across Alberto Rios. One (The Who That I Am) of his poems struck several chords. I have attached an image, from Mesa Arts Center.


For a couple of months, I have used Quora. It has a question/answer format (see examples). I need to collect those answers related to New England history and other TGS interests. Several times, I have seen answers that were lifted from elsewhere on the web, with no attribution. That type of copying seems to be taken as okay, as if plagiarism is the norm and acceptable.

Yet, one has to think that some type of structure could be built there. Wikipedia has a policy of no original research. Quora does not have that NOR restriction. They do have the neutral tone policy which is not hard to adopt.

Remarks:  Modified: 09/23/2015

09/22/2015 --

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Unique ancestors

As we dig for ancestors, we can think about lots of things, of which numbers (example) is one. How many ancestors do we have and how many can we identify?

We know that intermarriage between families reduces the number since an ancestor will appear in more than one part of the tree. So, how common is that situation? Using Dr. Frank, in one of his ahnentafels, there is no duplication until the immigration time.

These types  of question has been posed many times. And, they have been looked at in various ways. Of interest is a 1978 paper by Kenneth Wachter, titled "Ancestors at the Norman Conquest." This paper has been referenced in a lot of subsequent work. Too, we find statisticians and others weighing in.

I ran across this question on Quora: For most of us, how far back in time do we have to go before we no longer have unique ancestors in every generation? There are several answers. One was given by David Joyce who does genealogy well. I have run across his work several times and considers those who have colonial ancestors.

There was a book in 2002 by Steve Olson, titled "Mapping Human History" (USA Today story) in which he discusses a common ancestor for all of us. We have all heard of Lucy. But, is there one closer in time? Olson claims that around 1,200 years back we could find an ancestor who appears multiple times (as in, 1000s of times) in our tree.

Using the generational count, we could figure that there are a trillion people on the tree. At at time, there were 200 million on Earth. So, we know that each person, if they had children, would appear multiple times. But, many did not have children. Too, many had lines that died out long before we got to the present.

There are many more studies that we could discuss. But, in terms of Thomas, we do not know his ancestors, yet. Our goal is to find out who they are.


We are looking to build some knowledge about Thomas using Quora. But, more, we hope to fill in information through this type of crowd sourcing.

Remarks:  Modified: 09/22/2015

Monday, August 17, 2015

Where isThomas? III

Context is:
Where was he and is he?
    -- Where is Thomas?: Initial question with material from Dr. Frank and from Harmony Grove Cemetery. The brochure of the HGC mentions the land modifications caused by the road work and gives some indication of who was moved (put image from their brochure).
    -- Where is Thomas? II: Follow-on post with a Bing map of the area. In there, where?
    -- Where was he and is he?: Finally, I used a Perley (did good work, knew Dr. Frank) map along side Google (properly aligned). Partly, it was to show that these sketches were done well given that people were not yet able to have a neighborhood view. Aside: John Gardner's work with the Merrimack mapping crew still stands.      
Saturday, last, someone, on Wikipedia (see Status of page), changed the Burial section on the Thomas Gardner page as follows ("Before edit" was the original status; "Change" was the modification that had no source added; "Correction" is the current state until edited):
    Before edit: Thomas was buried on Gardner Hill near present-day Boston Street and Grove in Salem. His daughter Seeth and his grandson Abel are also buried there.[16] Abel's wife, Sarah Porter Gardner, whose mother was the sister of John Hathorne, was buried with her husband. The remains of Thomas and many others were moved from the old burial ground to Harmony Grove Cemetery in the 1840s. 

    Change (in italics): Thomas was buried on Gardner Hill aka Gardner Burying Ground near present-day Boston Street and Grove in Salem. His daughter Seeth and his grandson Abel are also buried there.[16] Abel's wife, Sarah Porter Gardner, whose mother was the sister of John Hathorne, was buried with her husband. A 1692 map of the area shows that the Gardner Burying Ground was in the same location as present day Harmony Grove Cemetery, which was incorporated in the 1840s.

    Correction: Thomas was buried on Gardner Hill aka Gardner Burying Ground near present-day Boston Street and Grove in Salem. His daughter Seeth and his grandson Abel are also buried there.[16] Abel's wife, Sarah Porter Gardner, whose mother was the sister of John Hathorne, was buried with her husband. The remains of Thomas and many others were moved from the old burial ground to Harmony Grove Cemetery in the 1840s.[55] A 1692 map of the area shows that the Gardner Burying Ground was in close proximity to Harmony Grove which was incorporated in the 1840s.   
One of my remarks to the "Change" was that "same" is not congruent. Of course, we are talking the same area. The bodies were not moved very far (we can have a contest to determine the actual distance).

Let's get serious. As well, this change had no supporting material. That is a no-no on Wiki. See status of the Thomas Gardner page. Someone put tags (ignore unless you want to help). After that, I did some changes (such as not reference pages done by families, etc.). Also, some "politically incorrect" sections (I know, I was spouting off as a newbie) were removed. The page now is good. I'm waiting for someone else to remove the tags.

To us, this burial issue is open and needs to be resolved before the 400th, if not sooner.

Remarks:  Modified: 08/17/2015

08/17/2015 -- We will put an image of the HGC brochure on the blog.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Cape Ann settlers

We know that Thomas came over with a group that was trying to establish commercial activities in New England, at Cape Ann, in the sense of being able to send product back across the waters. The Zouch Phoenix list suggests who was there. However, there were other participants. Crews had been visiting the area for a while; among these would have been fishing interests from the other Cape.

One person was Woodbury (namely, John). See Nutfield's post about meetings of John's descendants. John had a brother, William, who came over, too.

Anyone with an extended tree with Essex County, MA ancestors may find some one who was at Cape Ann. Some of these are listed as Old Planters (Conant, Balch, Woodbury, Palfrey and, sometimes, Trask). Others stayed around, too, such as Allen, Norman, and Gardner. Too, we cannot forget Tylly.

400th, again
Aside: Dr. Frank tried to expand upon the "Old Planters" with an illustrious group of collaborators, but he didn't get far. We need to recognize the Balchs and Woodburys and others for meeting together all of these years on a regular basis.

Now, our intent is to gather information about the Cape Ann families and present this in a coherent manner. The interest in these things will grow as we go toward the 400ths (BTW, early 400th, 1941, Quivira, in Kansas).


So, we will find descendants, hopefully, of all of the Cape Ann group. As an example, in one tree, I found these Woodbury lineages which shows how families can relate and interrelate.
    John --> Lydia (Woodbury) Herrick
    John --> Peter --> Priscilla (Woodbury) Ober
    John --> Humphrey --> Isaac --> Robert --> Thomas --> Ruth (Woodbury) Ober
    William --> Hannah (Woodbury) Haskell
    William --> Nicholas --> Abigail (Woodbury) Ober
    William --> Nicholas --> Joseph --> Hannah (Woodbury) Masters
Those strings terminate at a daughter (I'll do another view later to show the wives at each generation) and can be brought forward.

Remarks:  Modified: 08/15/2015

08/15/2015 --

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Gardner, KS

Earlier, we looked at places with the Gard[i]ner name. Then, we took Gardiner, OR and wrote about the person for whom the town was named, Henry Dearborn Gardiner (pg 31, v 35, no 1, TEG; pg 6, v II,n I, The Gardner Annals). That same family was the inspiration for Gardniner, ME.

So, talking of Oregon, there is a town on the trails (see next) in Kansas, named Gardner. It may have been named for Henry Joseph Gardner, Governor of Massachusetts (1855-1858) as there were many pioneers from Massachusetts in the area.

First, about the town. It was where three trails split into two: Santa Fe Trail, Oregon/California Trails. The Santa Fe Trail ended up in a city in one of the oldest areas of the U.S. The other two trails were coincident until much further west where the California Trail headed south; after going west out of Gardner for awhile, they headed up to Nebraska then west to what is now called Wyoming.

Now the Gardner was Henry Joseph Gardner who was a descendant of Richard Gardner of Woburn who is on the list provided by Dr. Frank (the Gardners and Gardners post is the most popular all time).


The mid-west and central parts of the country are full of displaced New Englanders. A little up the road from Gardner is Lawrence whose main drag is named Massachusetts.

Remarks:  Modified: 08/11/2015

08/11/2015 --

Sunday, July 12, 2015


Or, we could have WWTT? And, then, closer to the modern theme, WWJD?

Say what? In other words, What did (would) Thomas think? What would John (or Joseph) do? As in, Gardners coming forward to fill in a meme.

Who are the Gardners? They have many threads, a lot of which have been touched upon, briefly, in this blog. In particular, we are talking two generations. That is, there is the gentleman who was the patriarch of the family and his wife, Margaret. Then, there are the kids who numbered nine in total.

Of those, we pick two in the order of birth. John is the first (Quaker and more); his brother, Joseph, was military and was a casualty of an early conflict with the natives. Which, by the way, no Gardner was responsible for seeing it come about.


So, let's get anecdotal a minute, using Thomas as an example, first. See Written out of history. Thomas was here in the 1623/24 time frame. Then, there were all of these machinations, here and abroad. For the Gardners, they ought to be happy that Thomas and Margaret and their kids made it through all of that. We have to realize that Thomas was effective (physically, he would have been large, strong and very much capable; mentally, he was no slouch, as we have seen people argue when talking about his home-schooled sons, John and Richard).

So, we used "deign" to characterize Thomas taking the oath in 1637. That is thirteen years later. Of course, he did this for his kids. That same year, the ruling folks in Salem voted that he would go with Hathorne (ggp) to see the mucky-itty-mucks in Boston (or, wherever they were meeting at the time). Well, doing this gig got Thomas the temporary label of Deputy to the General Court. But, what happened next?

Was one time enough? Thomas saw that such was not for him (great decision). After that, he was very much involved in affairs in Salem and elsewhere. BTW, he was there when Endicott pulled his power trip on Mary Dyer and others. What Did Thomas Think?

Too, Thomas had no shadow over him; rather, he and Margaret enjoyed, until JE came along, a blissful life on Cape Ann.


Now, we'll look at John and Joseph. John was another big guy who was involved in a lot of activities that supported the new society. He may have been young, and providing the muscle, but he was with the crew that mapped the Merrimack. No doubt, he learned a lot. ... Later, we see he and his brother going to see Gov. Lovelace in New York. The name of Sherborne on Nantucket came about from this visit. Lots to look at there.

And, Joseph? He married Ann Downing and has the house, that came to have Bradstreet's name, associated with him and his bride. Ann got Simon to sign a pre-nup after she lost her husband. Joseph was killed during the King Philip war. He, again, is an example of being taught well by his father and his mother.


Again, we are looking at only two generations, here. The American experience, though, is the sum total across all of the years and the accumulation of experiences by the generations, thereof. In a spiritual sense, genealogy is missing several boats. And, the problem is worse than just running after DNA and encouraging some bad practices (as money, not truth and knowledge, is the focus).

Remarks:  Modified: 07/12/2015

07/12/2015 --

Sherborne, Dorset

Last year, Chimper Jones gave us the record of a Thomas Gardiner and Margaret Frier being married in Sherborne. There is a baptism record for Thomas Gardiner in 1591, same parish, and one for Margaret Frier, in 1598. Then, there are records for Gardner boys: Thomas, George, Richard, John.

Dr. Frank did mention
Thanks, Chimper. Too, though, we can mark this up to the marvels of technology. However, a lot of work still needs to be done.

We are going to research this subject so that we can present the best view that can be founded with current information. See Sherborne, Dorset project page for information.

At the moment, there is a table with some of the images that are available. But, we will be adding to this and related pages.

Please, note, too, the introductory comments. This information has been known for a long while. One open area of research will be trying to find out what has been done, to date. Of course, we are talking 300+ years, yet an overview would/could be very instructive from several viewpoints.

Remarks:  Modified: 07/15/2015

Memoir of Benjamin Peirce
07/12/2015 -- We mention abductive approaches (my career was spent in advanced computing - software and modelling, essentially). Please refer, at least, to C.S. Peirce's (we mentioned him in an earlier post - Benjamin Peirce) work in the area. [Love it: From Ugly Duckling to Swan]

07/12/2015 -- When finished with the data collection and analysis, we will present the strongest story (the prerogative of the family) that the facts, and abductive reasoning, will support. As such, we hope to demonstrate some very much needed research viewpoints. 

07/15/2015 -- Benjamin Peirce relates to this theme for several reasons. For one, he is a descendant of son, Thomas, who was first born. A daughter, Bethia, of Thomas married Samuel Gaskill who was of a Quaker line (see image from Table I, pg 172, "Memoir of Benjamin Peirce" Essex Institute Historical Collections, 1881). Benjamin is also a descendant of Seeth who married John Grafton (Table IV, pg 175). But, this gets interesting. This look back has son Thomas marrying Margaret Fryer. ... Note, an analog of the appropriate method might be paleoichnology (results expressed in whatever medium might get the message across).