Week 9: Sounds. Describe any sounds that take you back to your childhood. These could be familiar songs, jingles, children playing, or something entirely different.

This challenge runs from Saturday, February 26, 2011 through Friday, March 4, 2011.

The sounds of my childhood…..

  1. The “Sesame Street” theme song
  2. Frogs croaking in the nearby swamp in the evenings
  3. The wheels of my brothers’ Big Wheels turning on the dirt road
  4. Our many dogs barking when anyone passed by our home
  5. The tick-tock of my Papa’s clock collection.  His apartment was alive with music when the hour struck.
  6. My Grandpa Ed playing the harmonica for us kids
  7. The buzzing of my parents’ many saws and tools
  8. My Grandma Donna singing “The Three Little Fishies” by Kay Kyser to us kids.  “and he swam and he swam right over the dam!”
  9. The sound of the angry geese hissing at me in our backyard.  I was stuck on my swingset a number of times because I was so frightened of their hissing.
  10. 80’s music blasting from my stereo.
  11. My little brothers playing with GI Joes and matchbox cars and Legos – and all of the needed sound effects that went along with their play.
  12. Fire crackling in our wood stove.
  13. The drizzle of the Washington rain.
  14. “La, la, la, la, la, la”.  Yes, I watched “Smurfs”.  I may have even owned a Smurf lunchbox at one point in time.
  15. The woodpeckers making holes in the forest behind our home.
  16. The seagulls talking to one another down by the beach.

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2011) that invite genealogists and others to record memories and insights about their own lives for future descendants. You do not have to be a blogger to participate. If you do not have a genealogy blog, write down your memories on your computer, or simply record them on paper and keep them with your files.

My previous posts in this series:
New Year’s Memories
Winter Memories

  • Tim Jones - February 27, 2011 - 9:30 pm

    Many thanks for your kind comments on my blog. I don’t seem to be able to respond on my own blog at this time. I’ve read a couple of weeks of your posts and have added yours to the blogs I follow. Enjoy Savannah; it’s a beautiful city.

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Margaret Helen Kuttenkuler Becker was my 3rd great grandmother.  I posted her husband’s obituary last week and now here is hers. In the Tipton Times, dated 1 October 1915.

Passing of a Pioneer
Mrs. Margaret Becker Lived Longed and Useful Life
Resided in County 64 years
Belonged to Family of First Generation Settlers in Moniteau Co – Resided in Tipton 43 Years

Mrs. Margaret Becker, wife of Henry Becker, was born in Cologne, Germany, September 18, 1838;  died in Tipton, Mo., September 25, 1915, being 77 years and 7 days old at the time of her death.
Mrs. Becker’s maiden name was Kuttenkuler.  She came with her parents from Germany to Missouri about 64 years ago, locating in Moniteau county, near this city, her family being the first German settlers in this county.
On January 2, 1858 the subject of this notice became the wife of Henry Becker.  To this union eleven children were born, eight of whom with the husband, survives.  They are: Chas. Becker, of Kansas City;  H.J., Joe L. Becker of St. Louis; Mrs. Mary Robertson, of Sioux City, Iowa;  Mrs. Anna Mudd, of Arkansas;  Mrs. Ellen Koechner, Mrs. Louis G. Imhoff and Miss Lucy Becker, of this city.  Besides these are one brother, John Kuttenkuler, of this city, and two half-brothers, P.J. and Andy Bestgen, of near this city.
Mrs. Becker spent a long and useful life, true to husband, devoted to her children, loyal to friends and faithful to her church vows.
On January 2, 1908 Mrs. Becker and her husband celebrated their golden wedding anniversary, of which an extended notice appeared in the TIMES at that time.  She and her husband have resided in Tipton for 43 consecutive years.  Interment was made in the Catholic cemetery at 11 o’clock September 27, the following being pallbearers: P.C. Flood, P.J. Franken, Jacob Heinen, Wm. Kline, Peter Dick and Joseph Sommerhauser.

  • Amy - February 27, 2011 - 9:22 am

    Where do you find your obituaries? Ancestry isn’t very productive for me…ReplyCancel

  • Jen - February 27, 2011 - 6:59 pm

    I’ve gotten a number of them from GenealogyBank.com, but most of them I have either visited the local library or in the case of the above obituary, I wrote to the local historical/genealogical society and asked someone to do a lookup for me.ReplyCancel

  • Amy - March 1, 2011 - 5:31 am

    Thanks! I’ll check it out….thanks!ReplyCancel

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I always love getting real mail.:)

The other day, I received Patrick O’Connor’s death certificate.  I already had his death date, but I was hoping for a birth date and the names of his parents.  No such luck.  They actually wrote his name twice – once under name and another for his birth date.  Darn.

I did glean a few bits of new information from this document though:

  1. He was born in County Cork, Ireland.
  2. His mother’s maiden name was Suloven (or possibly Sullivan)
  3. He died of interstitial hepatitis.
  4. He was buried in January of 1906 ( I can’t decide if it says the 2nd or the twenty something)

I’ll take what I can get.:)

  • Lisa Wallen Logsdon - February 26, 2011 - 9:16 am

    Darn! It’s been too long since I have received any goodies in the mail. I love the anticipation…stalking the mail person each day, eagerly opening the mail box, the joy of holding that unopened envelope in my hand! It’s time I made a list of needed goodies and send off for them!ReplyCancel

  • Pat Kuhn - February 26, 2011 - 7:15 pm

    I am waiting for two death certificates. Hopefully in the next couple of weeks. I am hoping the one will give me where in Germany my great grandfather came from??????ReplyCancel

  • Amy - February 27, 2011 - 6:50 am

    I love mail! I can’t wait to see some of mine start trickling in… :) I am still so intrigued we both have “Thornton” lines & they haven’t crossed yet.

    Good news is that you have a semi-birth location in Cork, Ireland… maybe his name will pop up in some parish records over there…?ReplyCancel

  • Jenny Lanctot - February 27, 2011 - 10:54 am

    Incidentally, you can also glean the following info:
    1. He was 73 years old at the time of his death, making his likely birth date sometime in 1823.
    2. His wife predeceased him (which will make finding her death certificate a little easier).
    3. He had to have been buried on Jan 2 1906. The certificate was filed with the Registrar on Jan 2, so unless they could tell the future … :)

    Sadly, I’ve run into the same brick wall with my GGGrandfather’s birth. Perhaps church records will hold the answers to your birth question. That’s where all my hope lies at this point. I’m waiting for a response from the church as we speak. My fingers are crossed for you!ReplyCancel

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I’m still coughing, but I’ve weaned myself off of the Ny-Quil IV and am now able to make a coherent thought.

I got a lot more reading done this week and have more favorites to share.

  1. First of all, any post about my own ancestors will always get a mention.  Wendy at Shaking Leaves actually wrote two great posts about our shared ancestors, Milton Price and Nancy Brittain.  One of their gravestones (I love the inscription on Nancy’s), and  she also found them on an old plat map. Keep up the good work Wendy!!:)
  2. Lorine, from Olive Tree Genealogy,  had a great review on Springpad – a free app that helps you stay organized.  With 5 kids, homeschooling, and lots of genealogy to do, I need all of the organizing help I can get.  I signed myself up for an account and I’m going to sit down and try it out this weekend.  From what I’ve seen so far, I like it!
  3. Heather at Nutfield Genealogy posted some sad pictures.  Piles and piles of broken gravestones.  Brings a tear to my eye.
  4. Dee from Shakin’ the Family Tree reminds us all to go out of our way to thank those that help us out on our family history quest. Whether it be helpful cemetery staff, friendly volunteers at the local historical society, or someone that does look-ups in the courthouse, consider sending them a letter/email of thanks.  I’m sure that they would appreciate it.:)
  5. I felt better after reading Randy Seaver’s post about improving his database.  I’m glad to know that I’m not the only one struggling with this.  It’s a long and complicated process to make sure that your source citations are in correct order.  After  taking a class a number of years ago, I completely restarted my database in order to correctly cite each of my sources as I entered them in.  I still have a Rubbermaid box full of papers that needs to be entered.  It’s about # 56 on my list of things to do, so I will eventually get to it.  While I don’t have nearly the amount of people in my tree as he does, 12,000 is still a pretty big number to keep organized.  Someday, when my kids are grown, I will probably be caught up.  I guess I should be thankful that I started this hobby early in life.:)
  6. My friend Cherie, from Have you Seen My Roots?, posted another great trial story for Thriller Thursday.  She had some naughty ancestors.:)  It sure makes for some interesting stories!
  7. I encourage you to go and welcome my friend Amy at her new blog, Hunting Dead People.  She and I were in the same genealogy class at Monterey Peninsula College (along with Sheri from The Educated Genealogist).  I think we need to convince all of our classmates to geneablog.:)
  8. I finally got caught up on watching Who Do You Think You Are?  I was working at a Girl Scout cookie booth during the last show and the week before I was watching a movie with my husband.  I couldn’t bear to ruin his Friday night by stopping his guy movie to turn on a genealogy show.  As I was in bed with a cold while everyone else was at church this past Sunday, I caught myself up online.  If you’ve missed any of the episodes (and you’re Tivo-less like me), they’re available to watch when you have the time, online.
  • Heather Rojo - February 25, 2011 - 9:40 am

    Dear Jen, Thanks so much for mentioning my story about the broken and misplaced gravestones from Forest Hill Cemetery in Derry, NH. I was hoping to draw some attention to this problem!ReplyCancel

  • Wendy B. - February 25, 2011 - 3:47 pm

    Thanks for the mention, cousin!! And thanks for the heads-up on all the other great blog posts. I really need to catch up on my blog reading…ReplyCancel

  • Amy - February 27, 2011 - 6:54 am

    Thanks! I am having so much fun blogging & it is really keeping me focused! So focused that after 5 years, I am FINALLY breaking through half a brick wall! I might need to steal your Friday Favs idea here!

    I also just got caught on WDYTYA… I totally cried with Rosie & I don’t like Roise. Such a touching story. :)ReplyCancel

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This is hard for me to admit to the whole genealogy blogosphere, but I was a little Linus.  I carried around this security blanket until it turned to absolute shreds.

It started out as one of those waffle-type blankets with the silky trim on it. Your basic baby blanket.  It had writing on it: “Everybody needs a little security”.  Could the words have been any more appropriate?

And as if that weren’t bad enough, I named the thing.  Dee.  Not sure what that was I was trying to say, but maybe “Dee” meant security in my infant language.:)

I used to sit with that blanket and rub the silky trim between my fingers – all the way around the blanket.  And around.  And around.

The coolness of the silky fabric soothed me.  In all honesty, I could probably sit and do that now on a stressful day and it would help relax me.:)

But I don’t.  It’s now in the cedar chest at the foot of my bed.  I pulled it out a couple of weeks ago, in order to take a picture of it. (Ok, so maybe I felt the silky trim for a moment or two, I admit it.)

I’m so embarrassed to show it here.  It doesn’t even resemble a blanket anymore.  It looks like some ancient artifact from 200 years ago.  In reality, it’s 34 years old (and hasn’t been touched in about the past 30).  That’s a lot of loving in 4 short years.  A lot.

Here is is, a ball of rags.

I had my daughter hold it up for a picture.  You can see that the trim is barely connected to the middle of the blanket anymore.

None of my kids sucked their thumbs or had special blankets they had to have around to sleep.  I was their security blanket – and lost a lot of sleep because of it.:)

Please tell me I’m not alone.  Did you have a security blanket too?  Or maybe a very worn stuffed animal?

  • Dee Blakley - February 24, 2011 - 11:51 am

    I sucked my thumb. I don’t remember having a special “lovey,” blanket or stuffed animal or doll.

    But I think it is totally cool that you still have yours.ReplyCancel

  • cindy - February 25, 2011 - 10:39 am

    I didn’t have a “blankie”, but did have a very well worn stuffed doll and a few teddy bears. All of my 5 children used blankies, and all had a favorite one, used exclusively – the only one that would do when tired, cranky, sick etc. I have put all of them away for safe keeping (except for two that are still being used) – some are just in pieces at this point and one was lost at the age of 5 (i think it hurt me more than her). What a treasure that you’ve still got yours and I still have my doll and teddies as well. I hope my children find theirs to be just as much a treasure in later years.ReplyCancel

  • Jo Graham - March 4, 2011 - 2:48 am

    That’s a very well-loved blanket, Jen. I have a very faded teddy who is mostly bald as he has had his fur loved off. Mum used to make him new “jackets” to keep him together – he lost an eye at one point and we couldn’t get a matching one, so he has had odd eyes for 40+ years! Don’t tell anyone, but he lives in my underwear drawer :-) JoReplyCancel

  • Jamie Waters - November 3, 2011 - 10:22 am

    I had THIS same blankie and I loved it! I lost mine, leaving it in a hotel. I called later, but they said they didn’t find anything. So then my twin sent me hers, and I lost that one too on a business trip… leaving it in a hotel. :-( Thanks for posting the picture… it’s good to see “the old friend.” 😉ReplyCancel

    • Jen - November 4, 2011 - 8:56 pm

      Isn’t it the best blanket ever? I loved that thing to shreds. Sorry you lost yours. :(ReplyCancel

  • Bruce - November 17, 2012 - 3:06 pm

    I am 48 years old. I have my “Blankie” my Grandmother made for me for my fifth birthday. My birthday is in february, so it has a great big valentine heart on it. Also, on the heart is(I believe) the Kennel Ration pupy’s head drawn in black marker. At the time, I was intrigued with the dog. the rest of the blanket has (had) a light cotton, blue and grey square and medallion paisley pattern. This was sewn over a satin-edged fluffy blanket.
    This blanket was meant to replace my original “(yellow)blankie” which my Mother threw away in the garbage can (in front of me, with me wailing and crying)when I was four. I was kind of withdrawn after this, and I think that is why my Grandmother showed up on my fifth birthday with the new “Blankie”. Although shredded, and with the red heart being the major part remaining (the rest is a tangled “rope” I still sleep with it every night. I rup it up to my face, and I like the smell of it, especially when it is cold. It has always given me comfort, and soothed me in tough times. I has bullied a lot through my school years, and my “Blankie” was a soothing keepsake that when I needed it.
    I took the blanket with me when I traveled with my Aunt to San Diego when I was twelve and thirteen (she tried to get me to give it up too,(unsuccessfully). I took it with me on my parents’ boat when we went to the SanJuan Islands. I fear that it will be left behind or taken from me as some “filthy rag” when I die or have to go to a hospital or nursing home.
    I want to go to my grave with it.ReplyCancel

  • jayne - May 26, 2013 - 8:47 pm

    This was my blankie as well! Mine is literally in crumbs now. The pieces were put inside a pillow case and then it got tied shut. I used mine probably way longer than I should have but it was just a part of me. If I pulled mine out today I would still rub the binding just as you had. Mine is now almost 37 years old but still near to my heart! Thanks for sharing the pic and story!!!ReplyCancel

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