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There Are So Many Family History Items On ebay!

Maybe it's the platform, maybe it's the users, maybe it's both. Whatever it is, I am madly in love with ebay (and to be clear, this is unsponsored, unsolicited kind of love).

To date, I have been able to locate 8 different bottles from the 1800's which bear my name and were directly from my great grand uncle's store. I have found hundreds of family letters pertaining to my line dating as far back as 1867. A few months back, I was even for[...]


The Survival of Thought - Letters from the Past

Recently I was fortunate to find a letter posted on ebay which was one correspondence from James E Price of Michigan to my great grand aunt, Lucy Ann Van Blarcom, the first daughter of William and Catherine A Sutton Van Blarcom and sister of my great grandfather, Joseph C Van Blarcom. I love finding these types of items and am grateful to those who have collected them and taken care of them these p[...]


Stories From Our Ancestors - The New Jersey Fighting Fifteenth

One of the most rewarding aspects of my family research has been finding stories, photos, and artifacts that help me recreate what life may have been like way back when. I have been lucky in some cases that some family members carried a bit of prominence—nothing like the celebrity of today—but enough so that some of their stories have lived on. One story in particular is a narrative by Lewis Van Blarcom, Captain of Company C, 15th New Jersey Volunteers. The New Jersey "Fighting Fifteenth" saw action in many major conflicts of the Civil War. Lewis's story of his last days in the [...]


5 Lessons Learned as a New Family Researcher

1. Do not trust unsourced family trees
This was a lesson learned the hardest way possible. I was at least 6 months in to my family history journey when I was thankfully called out by another, more experienced researcher. When I began my research on Ancestry I didn't take anything with a grain of salt. I was so excited by the hints that I took all of them as fact. Unfortunately for you and me, there are A LOT of errors in the personal trees on Ancestry and rootsweb alike. If the hints you are using do not have documented sources, take them as a starting point, not[...]