Genealogy: Census Strategies

I have been trying to nail down the exact birthdates and given names of a family on my father’s paternal side, that of John Gillis and Margaret MacFarlane. I have a well-researched genealogy prepared by my late cousin Robert J. Gillis, but the dates are often estimates from census records or from published genealogies. Because of the naming patterns in this line, children frequently went by their middle names and several children in one family might have the same first name. Nicknames, rather than full given names, were often what was recorded on the census. Continue reading

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Kingsport: Scavenger Hunt

It’s FunFest time in Kingsport. The Archives of the City of Kingsport has once again put together a wonderful activity to engage the public with the historic and picturesque setting of downtown Kingsport. Continue reading

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Kingsport: Play Ball!

Kingsport has had a long love affair with America’s favorite pass time. The keepsakes from this relationship are not movie stubs, pressed carnations, and love letters.

A 1989 FunFest Youth baseball Clinic

A 1989 FunFest Youth Baseball Clinic

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Kingsport: Painting the Town II

Once you start looking for painted brick, you just can’t stop finding it! That’s what happened to me after the City Archivist challenged me to find the examples of this early Kingsport form of marketing. Continue reading

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Archiventures: Blogiversary II

It’s been two years since I launched my blog to document my archives practicum. Several people encouraged me to keep blogging once I completed my course work. Never underestimate the power you have to motivate someone in their pursuits. Since my practicum, I have added the blog categories of genealogy and field trips and it has been fun to use my photographs and writing to encourage readers to take their own local history trips, to visit libraries and archives, and to share what they have learned with others. Continue reading

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Archives: Wessyngton Plantation

In the fall of 2011, as a graduate student in archives, I attended the annual conference of the Society of Tennessee Archivists in Nashville. One of the speakers was John F. Baker Jr., who was presenting his research on his Washington ancestors who had been enslaved on the Wessyngton Plantation in Robertson County, TN. Continue reading

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Archives: History Award

“It is my pleasure to inform you that you have been chosen to receive a History in the Media Award from the East Tennessee Historical Society for your outstanding blog Archiventures.” -Cherel Henderson, Director
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Genealogy: Find A Grave

Have you ever entered a surname into a search engine bar and noticed that one or more of your hits was for Have you ever gone to the site and used’s own search tools? Doing so can bring forth surprising results for the genealogist. Continue reading

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Field Trip: Tennessee State Library and Archives

April was a beautiful month for visiting Nashville and the Tennessee State Library and Archives (TSLA). It is always exciting for me to have the opportunity to tour an archives.

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Kingsport: The Mead Paper Co.

A new archives exhibit has been installed at the Kingsport Public Library and this one relates to the paper making industry that has been such a crucial part of the town’s economic development. Continue reading

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