Sunday, January 29, 2017

Sunday's Obituary: Philip Lewis Burwell

Evening Times (Cumberland, MD)
30 May 1909

PROMINENT RESIDENT THIS COUNTY DEAD.

Mr. P. Lewis Burwell Died Suddenly Yesterday, Aged 75 Years

Mr. Philip Lewis Burwell, formerly of Mt. Savage, and identified for many years with the business interests of this county, died suddenly yesterday at his country place, near Hay Market, Prince William county, Va., aged 75 years.

Mr. Burwell is survived by his wife and three children: Mrs. Reginald L. McAll, of New York city; Miss Louisa Burwell, and Mr. Lewis Carter Burwell, of the home place, near Haymarket, Va. He was a brother-in-law of Dr. B. M. Cromwell, of Eckhart, this county, who married Mr. Burwell's sister, the latter having died some years since.

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Newspaper Tidbit: Jail Escape: James Cornwell

Alexandria Gazette
10 October 1810

PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY, to wit.

ALEXANDER HENDERSON, one of the Commonwealth's Justices of the Peace of the said County, to all Sheriffs, Mayors, Bailiffs, Constables and Headboroughs, within the Commonwealth of Virginia.

WHEREAS complaint is made to me this day, upon the oath of Samuel Davis, that James Cornwell, laborer, who was lately committed to the jail of the said county of Prince William, by warrant from Henry Washington, a Justice of the Peace for the said county, on suspicion of felony, did on the night of the twenty-sixth instant did forcibly escape from the said jail, and is now going at large. These are therefore, in the name of the Commonwealth, to require you, and every of you, in your respective counties, cities, towns and precincts, to make diligent search, by way of hue and cry for the said James Cornwell, and, having found, to sieze [sic] and retake, and safely convey, or cause him to be safely conveyed, to the jail of the said county of Prince William, there to be kept until he shall be thence discharged by due course of the law.

Given under my hand and seal this twenty eighth day of September, 1810.

A. Henderson (Seal)

Dumfries, Sept. 30-Oct. 3. d2w


Sunday, January 22, 2017

Sunday's Obituary: Chap Steel / Jason Ketcham

Alexandria Gazette
17 February 1875

FROZEN TO DEATH. -- An old man living in Prince William county, near Burke's Station, named Chap Steel, is reported to have been found dead and frozen stiff in his house a day or two ago.  He lived alone.




Alexandria Gazette
16 November 1874

On Friday morning, November 13th, 1874, at his residence, in Manassas, of bilious intermittent fever, Mr. Jason Ketcham, aged 51 years.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Friend of Friends Friday: Ranaway (Wallace)

Alexandria Gazette
1 January 1850

$100 REWARD -- Ranaway from the subscriber, on Thursday 27th ult., negro man WALLACE, who is about 21 years old, stout and well built, dark color, bushy head of hair, 5 feet 6 or 8 inches high; he had a scar on one of his legs; had on when he left a dark mixed full Cloth Short Coat, light Cassinet Pants, and black Cloth Cap; he had two or three suits of Clothing with him, among them a pair of black Cassinet Pants, and a pair of full Cloth ones; also a blue Cassinet Sack Coat.

I will give the above reward of $100 if taken out of the State of Virginia, and $50 in said State; in either case he must be secured in jail, so that I get him again. All reasonable expenses paid if delivered to me in Dumfries, Va.

Robert Alexander

Dumfries, Va., jan 1-eo2w
[Leesburt Washingtonian]

Monday, January 16, 2017

Mystery Monday: John Henderson

United States Telegraph (Washington, DC)
1 January 1829

INFORMATION WANTED

Of a Mr. JOHN HENDERSON, about 45 or 50 years of age, a native of Scotland, who lived near Dumfries, Prince William County, Virginia, and moved from there about 20 years ago and more. Settled afterwards, not far from Bath, then of Berkely County, Virginia, and who, about six years ago, left there for North Carolina. Should this reach the eye of any one who knows where he resides, the information will be thankfully received by one interested in his fortunes.  Address to M. H. Georgetown, D.C.

Dec 29-3t

[I wonder if the seeker ever caught up with Mr. Henderson.  --cgl]


Sunday, January 15, 2017

Sunday's Obituary: James Nokes

Critic-Record (Washington, DC)
4 Septmeber 1875

Died.  NOKES. -- At his residence, Nokesville, Prince William county, Virginia, on Thursday, September the 2d, James Nokes, in the sixty-eighth year of his age, a native of Winchester, Virginia, but for forty-five years a resident of this city.

His funeral will take place on Sunday afternoon, September 5th, at 3 o'clock, from the residence of his son, No. 509 Second street north west.  The friends and acquaintances of the family are respectfully invited to attend.

[In 1865, James Nokes was a witness for David Herold in the conspiracy trial before the military court with regard to President Lincoln's assassination.  He is buried in Congressional Cemetery in Washington, DC.  --cgl]


Saturday, January 14, 2017

Family Tree Maker: To update or not to update?

In this age of computers and digital information, software to keep track of ancestors and their history has become a must-have for the armchair genealogist and professionals alike.  Each software program has its advantages and disadvantages as well as strengths and weaknesses.  Essentially, the software you choose is what works for you -- from complicated charts and electronic filing to simple, easy to use trees.

I have been using Family Tree Maker ("FTM") since the 1990s.  It has always been simple to use and flexible; so much so that I never felt the urge or the need to change.  The software developer also made annual updates and upgrades to the program that helped it keep up with the times as genealogy research began to migrate from paper to online resources.  

The rights and developers for FTM changed hands a number of times, until they were eventually purchased by Ancestry.com, the online giant that has a reputation for snapping up smaller genealogy sites and programs and turning them into vehicles for the company's profit.  While Ancestry maintained the software for a number of years, in December 2016 it announced that it would no longer support Family Tree Maker, leaving long-time users to fret (again) over what would happen to their years of research and data.  

Ancestry has since announced that the rights to Family Tree Maker have been acquired by MacKiev Software.   Last week, MacKiev began selling an updated version of Family Tree Maker on their website for both MAC and Windows platforms.  According to both Ancestry and MacKiev, the software will continue to be able to access Ancestry's 'leaf hints' in addition to incorporating new features.  

MacKiev has provided an FAQ for long-time users of FTM.  For those with significantly older versions of the program (mine is the 2009 edition), MacKiev is offering an upgrade for purchase.

Having invested more than 15 years in FTM, I am personally torn between upgrading this popular software with yet another "owner/developer" or whether it's time to explore other genealogy software avenues.  Especially since either option requires my spending hard-earned $$.

Decisions, decisions ...