At the end of 2018 I decided to pay for a yearly subscription to newspapers online (https://www.newspapers.com/). Of all of my genealogy research tools, this website happens to be at the top of my list. Through my subscription (first the free version offered with Ancestry and then the full subscription which opens up my available range) I have found family articles and obits that have advanced my family research.
One article I found at the end of 2017 overwhelmed me. It included an interview with my Pawpaw (Alex Taraczkozy) while he was a shoemaker during the war. It covered the topic of shoe rations. (I wrote a blog about it here: https://seletyn.com/2017/09/12/10975/) I was blown away. Here was an interview with my Pawpaw that I had no idea even existed. His written words. And it wasn’t one of those two or three line small things you find in a box in the opinions pages. It was a full-on article. I marveled at that find. Mind you, it helps his name is Taraczkozy. It makes the search for articles MUCH easier. As does the various other branches I research: Seletyn, Moneyhun, McCombie and Contorchick.
Below is the article in question:
More recently I took it upon myself to find every article in print with the (correctly spelled) name: Taraczkozy. I found hundreds. I did not clip all of them but the vast majority I saved and put in the Ancestry tree under the person detailed in print. I wrapped that project up this week with a string of finds (once again) on Pawpaw. It appears that he took a local doctor to court and prior to trial worked out a deal with him to dismiss the case:
I reached out to Aunt Debo to see if she could offer details. She said that Pawpaw had hurt his back on the job. This doctor was a chiropractor who Pawpaw visited as part of his recovery. During the adjustment something went wrong and Pawpaw’s legs went numb. That night he had to have surgery to repair two discs.
Pawpaw always had a hard time walking, I remember that. He used a cane to get around. He would hold onto the railing wherever we were and he would have a sort of bounce/sway that he did as he stood there. This injury/surgery played into that, I am sure. I also remember that Ma felt that chiropractors were not “real doctors” and oftentimes did more harm than good. Now there is clarity for why she felt that way. I never listened to her concerns and have used a chiropractor throughout my adult life. This is a kind of “aha” moment that adds clarity to certain things.
This is the year I want to concentrate on genealogical research. A few of my plans for the year:
- Complete the entries from “The Moneyhuns of Copper Ridge” and find supporting documentation for those entries (if possible).
- Write a blog to be published in November on Robert Spritzer from that line. He was a war hero and all around badass.
- Travel to Cambria County Library to research the McCombie/Gray/Lantzy lines on site.
- Travel to the Pennsylvania archives to see if I can tie up loose ends on the McCombie/Gray/Lantzy lines with factual documents.
- Travel to Hancock TN in late fall to research the Moneyhuns on site.
- After Tennessee trip I will have a lengthy blog regarding the discovery of the Moneyhun book and all information I can find (that is true and accurate) on Sarah Herron (with ZERO input on distant relatives who do not know her truth).
- We sent off Husband’s DNA kit. So it will be fun to bloom his tree out a bit with the discoveries we unearth there. That will require some visits to the WV Archives in Charleston.
- I have DNA kits for both of the kids so I will do prep work on their lines to support anything we can find through their results.
There is a new thing I want to do – a genealogical kindness for 2019. I am hoping to reach out to the caretakers of the Saint Sebastian’s Cemetery in Beckley, WV. I would love to be able to record the graves there to the Find-A-Grave website (it is not a HUGE cemetery but I will have to enlist the help of my friend Nau on this adventure). I have a few relatives buried there so it is not a random act, but one that others could benefit from all-the-same.
A couple of side notes: if you are researching your line and you have living parents and grandparents, talk to them and get their stories firsthand. There is no need to stop at grand(parents). Also talk to aunts, uncles, cousins. If possible, record their stories as they tell them to you. Details can be lost if you do not. You do not have to be a skilled wordsmith, you can keep a journal/notebook. Just get their stories now, from them directly. You will not be sorry. I would also suggest setting up a personal blog to record your findings. You might find that others who research the same lines will find your blog and maybe offer further insight to connect your genealogy dots.
Do you have a favorite research site? What is it? I would love to hear about it!