Going back 102 years to 18 October 1915

Most days of most lives are “ordinary.” But, our ordinary is likely very different than the ordinary of our ancestors. Though, in some ways things are probably similar. So, this is the first of a series of what will become regular blog posts in which we will go back in time to explore what our ancestors may have been doing on a certain date. This idea was inspired by Roberta Estes’ blog post, On This Day – What Were Your Ancestors Doing? – 52 Ancestors #170. She picked a day and went back 100 years. I’m putting a slightly … Continue reading

Estes Model Rockets

We are related to the Estes of Estes Model Rockets

Nearly every week, a mystery is solved or some interesting twig (or nut) appears somewhere on the family tree. Here is a little news of recent findings.

Growing up, I was only vaguely aware of Estes Model Rockets. But, I married into a family of boys who had quite a collection. My only contribution to discussions of model rockets was something like, “My mom’s maiden name was Estes.” I’m sure no one was impressed.

Maybe they would have been more impressed if I was able to tell them how … Continue reading

A Quick Trip to Iowa

State Historical Society of Iowa

Nearly every week, a mystery is solved or some interesting twig (or nut) appears somewhere on the family tree. Here is a little news of recent findings.

Making the Trip

On Thursday, I got to spend the day in one of my favorite places – a genealogy research center! As I recommended awhile back when I visited the Minnesota History Center Gale Family Library, I did some preparation before I went. I don’t know that I ever really felt totally ready, but I was armed with a list of things that I wanted to … Continue reading

Boat Rides for Thomas Leland Estes

To the War and Back

Nearly every week, a mystery is solved or some interesting twig (or nut) appears somewhere on the family tree. Here is a little news of recent findings.

We knew that Thomas Leland Estes served in World War I and we knew that he arrived in France just in time for the end of the war. But that is about all we knew. On 12 Jul 1973, there was a fire at the National Personnel Records Center and about 16-18 million Official Military Personnel Files were lost. So, information on the service of an … Continue reading

Happy Birthday Thomas Leland Estes

Thomas Leland Estes (1896-1968)

Nearly every minute of my “family history” free time since August 2016 has been spent working on writing an Estes book. So, Thomas Leland Estes and his ancestors have been in my thoughts a lot. What an interesting family history to study!  Please join me in remembering my Grandpa Tom.

Thomas Leland Estes was born on 28 Mar 1896 in Castana, Monona, Iowa as the fifth child of John Thomas Estes and Zelpha Lou McCall. He had five siblings, namely: Gussie Ann, Robert C., Ida Mildred, Herman Patrick, and James Andrew. He was called Tom. When he … Continue reading

Happy Birthday Elizabeth Bowen

Elizabeth Bowen Morris (1661-1743)

Elizabeth Bowen was born on 26 Jan 1660/61 in Roxbury, Suffolk, Massachusetts as the second child of Henry Bowen and Elizabeth Johnson. She had nine siblings, namely: Henry, John, Margaret, Maria, Margaret, Abigail, Penuel, Esther, and Isaac. Elizabeth Bowen was baptized on 27 Jan 1660/1, a day after she was born, in Roxbury, Suffolk, Massachusetts.

[Before we really get started, here is a note about place names… the names listed are what the places are called now. When Elizabeth was alive we did not have states or even have thirteen colonies. The New World was just being settled … Continue reading

Happy Birthday Lona Iona Fawcett

Lona Iona Fawcett (1902-1973)

Lona Iona Fawcett was born on 28 Jun 1902 in Sac City, Sac, Iowa as the only child of Harry Allen Lawrence Fawcett and Barbara Mary Meyer. She was so tiny when she was born that she fit into a shoe box. She never did get very tall. As an adult she stood only 4’9″ tall. She grew up in Sac County, Iowa during her youth.

Lona Iona Fawcett. Continue reading

Happy Birthday Barbara Mary Meyer

Barbara Mary Meyer (1881-1972)

Barbara Mary Meyer was born on 09 Jun 1881 in Mendota, La Salle, Illinois as the child of  Jacob B. Meyer and Barbara Mary Stadler. She had nine siblings, namely: Jacob, Frank M, Mathias, Robert, Christena, Katharina, Jerome Adam, Hieronimus, and a sister who died as an infant. Barbara was the seventh of the living children. She had two younger brothers.

Her parents had both been born in Germany and immigrated to the United States. Her father fought for the Union in the Civil War. Afterwards, he met her mother and they started their family … Continue reading

Happy Birthday John Thomas Estes

John Thomas Estes (1856-1947)

Birth and Youth

John Thomas Estes was born on 07 May 1856 in Steedman, Callaway, Missouri as the first child of William Riley Estes and Margaret A. O’Donnell. He had four siblings, namely: James H.B., Anna Eliza, Moses Patton Barnett, and Laura Alice.

He was sometimes known as J.T.

His mother died in about 1865 when he was around nine years old. His dad remarried to Sally Hill and had two more daughters, Ida and Augusta.

John Thomas always claimed that he had run away from home when he was a teenager because he didn’t like … Continue reading

Down home with the Estes family…and bottles, bombers and growlers

I really don’t want to be older than I already am, but I sometimes wish that I’d been born a little sooner so that I could have enjoyed the company of my maternal Estes family a little more. Home movies filmed by my Grandpa Tom and Uncle Jim have given me a glimpse into just how much fun the family had. As I watched the following early 1960s clip thinking that there was a heck of a lot of smooching going on, I also started wondering how many ounces were in the bottles of beer they were drinking.

Maybe I’m … Continue reading