While I was laid off for some 6 months, I rekindled my long time interest in family genealogy, an interest that I got from my Mother who started this in the 1930’s when she was a teenager.My Mother had an interest in becoming a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution which requires that one be able to trace oneself back to a soldier who fought in the American Revolutionary War. As it turns out, she was able to document a lineage back to Generals William and George Rogers Clark as well as other less well known soldiers. That Clark is the Clark of the “Lewis & Clark Expedition” which traveled across the continent at the request of President Thomas Jefferson.
One of the neat facts of the LaDue family is that my daughter Melanie received her Masters degree from Lewis & Clark University. My own name is included in the official publications of the DAR and I have a copy of the books to prove it!
During the one summer of my life when I did not have to work, 1963 , I spent a great deal of time in the Miami Public Library where I expanded greatly on what my Mother had done and pushed the data back to the 1600’s. Over the years since I have had several spells of time where I did further work, wrote computer programs for the data I had and added more details. I decided that I needed to abandon the “home-grown” technology approach I had been using and graduate to a real system. I decided against using one of the public sites such as Ancestry.com as they require an annual subscription and I was already paying for my web site and saw no reason why family members should have to spend anything to look at the site.
After looking at what was available, I settled on a free bit of software known as HUMO-Gen, which is a take-off from the name of the principal developer. Some background on the program is available on the Wiki at this address and the developer’s home page is here. The main developer and his side-kick have been most helpful and made a number of improvements to the program based upon requests and comments I sent them. Really first-class service.
Some time ago I solicited information related to the Swann family and was provided a “starter kit” by Pat which formed the starting basis for the Swann Family Tree. I set aside the work I was doing on the family pictures and decided to concentrate on the genealogy task. Besides, I was getting a bit burned out on the scanning effort and needed a break from it.
I have gone as far as I think I can get with Dad’s family, at least I have reached the point where all the other researchers have gotten stuck…which is trying to find a connection to the Swann line in England, where it is certain that the Swann’s originate. The conflicting claims and counter-claims are included in the early part of the Swann line in the site if one is interested.The gist of it is that there are several lines that may or may not connect from the earliest Swann’s in Maryland and their origins in England but nothing can be proven for certain. This quandary has been the focus of a number of somewhat comical “flame wars” on various web sites.
At one point I thought I had hit a dead end with Mom’s family but Pat came to the rescue with additional details. After another month’s worth of work I found a connection that will probably take the tree back into the 1300’s and perhaps beyond. This will get complicated as everyone that far back seems to want to be connected to English Royalty, which may well be true but takes serious verification to believe. It’s kinds like this: if your family comes from Massachusetts, everyone claims to be a descendent of one of the folks who came over on the Mayflower….of which there were all of about 120 persons…good luck with that. Or, if the family came from Kentucky (as mine does) you must be related to Daniel Boone or Davie Crockett…fat chance of that as well. There is a lot of wishful thinking in this business.
While I work on that, which will take a lot of time, I think it best to give folks a look at what is already available. I want to be very careful with this part of the research. If it is if fact the case, then there is a connection between the Swann family and the LaDue family…maybe some 20+ generations back and we may all have a common Mom or Dad back then. Pretty kewl I think which is why I want to be careful. I know parts of this are accurate for sure, just not the connection between the families.
The content of the current site only goes so far as Mom & Dad’s children as I have almost no data on their children, marriages etc. I can gladly add that to the site if you can send it to me.
The Family Tree is a separate location on the Grandpakewl web site. I’ve written a somewhat detailed introduction and some instructions for using the site which I hope are helpful.
Let me know what you think…