Thank you for visiting my blog!

Thank you for visiting my blog!

This blog is used to share information that I find about the families that I am researching. To see these family names click on the tab above. Please feel free to contribute your stories or research and make comments, corrections, and ask questions.

If we have a common ancestor, or if you have questions or comments that you don’t want to post, please go to the "About Me" tab to send me an e-mail.

Reading this Blog

My posts can be accessed by the date posted from the column on the right. Blog posts containing specific surnames can be found by clicking on the names in the left column.


Monday, July 29, 2013

My Not Quite Precisely Organized Binder System.

My father  had  all of his genealogy finds and correspondence in a one inch binder.  So, thanks to Dad, when I began my research, I chose binders over files. But, I had the Internet so my binders grew quickly. It was 1998 and I was printing every email and all possible clues.

I now have two long shelves filled with binders in my office closet. My system is very simple, but not very precise. 

Some of my families fit into one binder. Other families have binders for each generation. My great-great-grandfather, Reddick Bryan, lived in NC, GA, and LA. He has a binder for each state, a binder for copied Louisiana deed records, a binder for information about his daughters and another binder for his sons. 

If there is more than one generation or family name in a binder, I use page separators to divide the information, but that is the extent of my organization. There are no numbers or color coding and there is no specific order.

This works for me as it's an easy and quick way to sort and store. And, I spend more time researching and less time filing. 

The big disadvantage of using this "not quite precisely organized binder system" is that you might have to search the entire binder to find one item. For me, this is usually a benefit rather than a disadvantage. It gives me the opportunity to look at forgotten items and to consider new possibilities for research. 

One last note - Thanks to the influence of Susan Peterson, at The Organized Genealogist, I am trying reduce my paper and, in turn, reduce the number and size of my binders. As I use a binder, I am now purging unnecessary items, duplicates, and anything that has been saved to my computer. Someday, I will have one binder per family; each containing only original and very important documents and photographs. All other items will be organized digitally in my "not quite precisely organized folder system."

© 2013

Peterson, S. (2013). The Organized Genealogist. Retrieved July 20, 2013, from

Friday, July 26, 2013

Friday's Photo: Out for a Ride

Whit Criswell Bryan 1920 - 2001

This is my father, Whit Criswell Bryan, in the early 1920s. I am certain that this picture was taken in Texas. Dad lived in Seymour, Texas at the time. What is he riding?

© 2013

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Why I Share - Five Good Reasons

Last week, just after finishing the rough draft of this post, Randy Seaver posted Have You PostedYour Genealogy Research on the Internet? I Practice PMGDOE! He said it first - "Post My Genealogy Data Online Everywhere"

Well, my genealogy research is just about everywhere - on my website and blogs, on message boards, at, on Find a Grave, and on Facebook. Many other genealogists have posted my genealogical research on their sites and trees; some with credit and some not. 

I have been posting my information online since 1998 and don't plan to stop. Here are my top five reasons for sharing on the Internet. 

Finding Family -  I have a small family and grew up living away from any extended family. Many distant relatives found me through my websites. Using my blogs and social media for genealogy helps us to continue a dialogue. 

Collaboration - Family members, who find me on the web, share photos, family letters, history and more. Some will even correct my mistakes.

Organization - Writing blog posts and adding to a public family tree keeps my research organized. 

Helping Others - Newbies won't have to look hard to find information about my families. Future generations will have a lot to begin with. Even if my blogs and website disappear from the web, my information has been copied by so many that it is sure to survive for many future generations. 
My Estate - I am no longer worried about what will happen to all of my research. It will be online. My children will inherit many old photographs, some original documents, and my digital files. They will not have to deal with piles and boxes of papers.

So thank you to Randy for suggesting that we PMGDOE and spread the genealogy wealth.  

© 2013

Seaver, Randy. (2013). Genea-Musings: Have You Posted Your Genealogy Research on the Internet? I Practice PMGDOE!. Genea-Musings. Retrieved July 24, 2013, from

Friday, July 19, 2013

Friday's Photo: Caroline Glynn

Caroline Glynn  1875 - 1937
Photograph published with permission - Courtesy of  Mary Roberts. 

Caroline "Carrie" Glynn was the sister of my great-grandmother, Mary Lucy Glynn Giddens. Carrie was born in New York to Julia Harvey and Joseph AlbertGlynn.  In 1880, Carrie was living with her mother on Staten Island and her age was given as 5 years old. Her 14 year old sister, Lucy, was also living on Staten Island, but was living in a different household and working as a servant. In 1900, Carrie was a boarder in a home on Staten Island and her occupation was that of a wire worker.

Lucy Glynn Giddens and Caroline Glynn Alter
Carrie married William Alter on August 18, 1904 on Staten Island. They had two children, William Gerard, who died young, and Anna Rita.

Carrie's husband died in 1918 and she worked to support her family. Carrie died in 1937. She is buried in St. Raymond's Cemetery in the Bronx.

© 2013

Year: 1880; Census Place: Staten Island, Richmond, New York; Roll: 923; Family History Film: 1254923; Page: 215B; Enumeration District: 303; Image: 0437.

Year: 1900; Census Place: Richmond Ward 2, Richmond, New York; Roll: 1154; Page: 9B; Enumeration District: 0598; FHL microfilm: 1241154.

Marriage and Death dates found at the Vital Records Data Bases - Italian Genealogical Group. Retrieved July 1, 2013, from

Friday, July 12, 2013

Friday's Photo: Louise Uhde

Louise Uhde  1895 - 1975

Charles William Giddens 

Louise Uhde was born March 18, 1895 in New Jersy. Her parents were Soven and Louise Uhde. Louise married my great uncle, Charles William Giddens, on November 27, 1924. This photograph was taken at J. Rennie Smith in Newark, New Jersey. 

© 2013

Friday, July 5, 2013

Friday's Photo: Charles Giddens - Four Years Old

Charles William Giddens at age four.

Charles William Giddens, my grandmother's brother, was my Great Uncle Charlie. He was born on December 2, 1892 in Crewe, Virginia, but by 1896 was living with his family in Phillipsburg, New Jersey. At the time of this photo, his father, Charles A. Giddens, was working as a laborer and the family lived at 182 West Mercer Street. 

This photo was taken at Greisamer Studios in Phillipsburg. Charles had siblings Elizabeth, Florence, Edith, Warren, Georgie, and John; however, this is the only childhood photograph that I have seen from this family. 

I wrote about Uncle Charlie last year, at this time, as he made national news when loading dynamite into a cannon. Read Monday's News: Dynamite to find out more about this story. 

Uncle Charlie served in both WWI (in the Army) and WWII (in the Navy). Read 
Friday's Photo: Honoring Those Who Served, to find out more about his military career. 


© 2013

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Celebrate the 4th and Honor Those Who Served

Souvenier of 4th of July
Sent to Mrs. Soto at 1271 Mastic Street, San Jose, California - June 22, 1909

Known as the Fourth of July or Independence Day, this day has been celebrated as the birth of American independence since 1776 when, during the American Revolution, the delegates of the Continental Congress adopted the Declaration of Independence. I have two known ancestors who served as patriots in the American Revolution.

  • Ralph Regan, my 4th great-grandfather, was in the N. C. Militia and was known to have fought as a lieutenant in the Battle at Moores Creek Bridge.

  • John Giddens, another 4th great-grandfather, served in the N.C. Minutemen.

So today, think for a moment about those ancestors who fought so hard for independence and what we are celebrating.

Happy Fourth!


© 2013



July 4th — Articles, Video, Pictures and Facts. (n.d.). — History Made Every Day — American & World History. Retrieved July 4, 2013, from

Moss, B. G. (1992). Roster of the patriots in the battle of Moores Creek Bridge. Blacksburg, S.C.: Scotia-Hibernia Press.

Office of the State Comptroller, Military Papers - Revolutionary War Army Accounts, State Archives of North Carolina, Volume V, Page 40, Folio 3.

Souvenier of 4th of July. 1909. Postcard. John to Mrs. Soto, 1271 Mastic Street, San Jose, California, privately held by Diana Quinn, Virginia.