Sunday, January 15, 2017

German Address Books

In the late 1800s, Nemaha County, Kansas saw a large influx of Germans. Many of these families became farmers and dairymen, gathered together for worship and built some beautiful churches. With reunions for the descendants of these early settlers still occurring, the family history has been preserved. Some of these families have even maintained contact with relatives in Germany.

Ancestry has released a new database that will make connecting with those German relatives even easier: Germany and Surrounding Areas Address Books: 1829-1974. This resource was searched for several of the local surnames with varying results


Since this database is in German, Ancestry encourages users to use German words and spelling when searching the database. Thus, those surnames reporting zero results might have results if a different spelling of the name is used.

Like city directories in the U.S., these address books contain an alphabetical list of heads of household. Also included will likely be the address and occupation information for the head of the household.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Thank You Cletus!

Since 1971, Cletus Suther has been providing GREAT assistance to Nemaha County, Kansas genealogists from his home in Ohio. With the help of his sons, Cletus has been compiling cemetery information for most of the cemeteries in the county.

Each grave is cited in detail on these typed pages. Details include some if not all of the following information:
  • Section
  • Lot
  • Space
  • Name
  • Parents (often including mother's maiden name)
  • Birth Date
  • Birth Place
  • Death Date
  • Marriage Date
  • Marriage Place
  • Spouse (including some 2nd spouses)
  • Obituary Date 
For example, if one was researching Harry Brown who died in 1906, one would learn that he married Emma Latter in Croyden, England from the information Cletus included in the Seneca City Cemetery book (page 31).

Granted, one would want to dig further and locate the marriage record. However, this record would help a genealogist look beyond Nemaha County for that marriage record.

If you are researching family in Nemaha County, Kansas, be sure to check out this valuable resource. Copies of these cemetery books are in the Seneca Free Library and the Nemaha County Historical Society Museum.
for your time and dedication to compiling and making available this valuable information for Nemaha County!

Friday, January 6, 2017

Museum Online

Did you know that you could see what is in the 
Nemaha County Historical Society 
while sitting at home in your pj's?

That is made possible thru the online tool associated with the PastPerfect Museum Software used by the Nemaha County Historical Society. This unique museum software is similar to a library catalog. The software stores information about every item in the museum. With this software, the historical society staff (all volunteers) can track who donated the item and where it is either on display or archived.

Each item is also photographed or scanned. Those digital images are linked to the item in the Past Perfect Museum Software.

With the online tool, all of this information -- including the photographs -- are added to the museum's online archive. Thus, anyone can go to the online archive and browse thru the historical society's collection and see pictures of the items. These pictures have been modified for the web by
  • reducing the size of the picture
  • adding a watermark (ownership mark) across the picture
All images in the historical society's database are currently being uploaded to the online archive -- including pictures of individual pages of some books and records. Since the inside of the baby delivery journal has been photographed and added to the database, those images are available for viewing online. 

So, how would one find a particular item (such as the baby journal)?

The trick to locating a specific item is using the right word. Finding that word is actually a matter of trial and error. The first step is to think about all of the words that might describe the desired item. In terms of Dr. Fangman's journal listing birth information, some of those words might be
  • Fangman -- doesn't work because Fangman doesn't exactly match Fangman's
  • birth -- doesn't work because that word isn't associated with the record
  • baby -- does work since that word is part of the title.
Try it for yourself. Go to the online archive and see if you can locate the baby journal!

Once found, you may look at the pictures and say, 'but it's too small' OR 'it's got words right across the middle where my info might be'. That's when the link to 'Request Image' should be used. By clicking that link your request will be sent to the historical society via email. (Note: for the purpose, one could put family history or genealogy.) The historical society staff (all volunteers) will work with you to provide a copy of the larger original photo. Since it costs to keep the doors open and the lights on, there is a fee associated with these photos.
Research Requests
  • email:
  • $10 per hour research fee
  • $.25 per copy for photocopies
  • $.10 per copy for digital images
Personal On-Site Research
  • Tuesdays 10 am to 4 pm — FREE to members
  • Tuesdays 10 am to 4 pm — $10 research fee for non-members
  • Other days — by appointment only / Research fee applies to all
If you want these resources to be preserved for the future, please consider joining the Nemaha County Historical Society. Your membership will help keep the lights on and will help towards the cost of the quarterly newsletter and the online archive.
So what else might be buried in these online archives?
Like was true with the baby journal, many resources only have a picture of the item associated with them when originally added to the database. Only after volunteers have the chance to photograph or scan the resource and add them to the database does that valuable information become available online. However, there are some genealogical gems such as marriage affidavits available in the online archive.

Check out the NCHS Online Archive Today

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Seneca Newspapers Online

The Seneca Free Library recently completed a project to digitize the local newspapers. This new digital collection of newspapers is currently linked on the right hand side of their website just above their event calendar.

OR use the link below

Digital Archives of the Seneca Free Library

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Puzzle in the Archives -- HELP NEEDED!

Last week while trying to find information on the 'Memory Lane' donors and the hospital ward they funded, I was digging around in the Nemaha County Historical Society Archives.

Within the box of 'Doctor' items, I found a genealogical gold mine -- a journal listing births from 1932 to 1955.

According to the donation letter that came with the journal, this journal identified the children delivered by Dr. Fangman.

Unfortunately, we haven't been able to identify 'Dr. Fangman'! Thus, the puzzle. Was there a Dr. Fangman practicing in the Axtell or Seneca area? If not, who was the doctor that delivered all of these children?

We are looking for individuals born between 1935 and 1955 in the Seneca area who are willing to share their birthdate and the name of the doctor who delivered them. (The doctor's name should be on a birth certificate.) 

If you are willing to provide this information, please email

Due Bills

We've all likely heard the term, 'bills due' but have you heard of 'due bills'. As we were going thru boxes to verify wh...