February 13, 2013
Well, my 2012 New Year’s resolution about this blog didn’t last very long. I do have plenty of potential topics and I really do want to give it another try.
I am finally able to dial back a bit on my volunteer work at the Southern California Genealogical Society because I now have some very talented volunteers sharing the load on the IT work.
Recently I have received useful information and some interesting queries from several Holladay cousins. I also received a plaintive question from one of my “DNA cousins” asking whether this blog was still active. All this has prompted me to make a new attempt at blogging about my genealogical activities.
I’m also inspired by Geoff Rasmussen’s signoff line when he ends one of his excellent webinars: “Life is short – do genealogy first!”
January 1, 2012
Today I decided to keep one of my New Year’s resolutions and start posting to my genealogy blog again. If I expand the scope a bit, I certainly have plenty of topics to discuss. Let’s see how it goes in the next few days.
Unfortunately, I’ve done very little in the way of research in the past several months. My main activities in the genealogy world have centered on support for the IT department at the Southern California Genealogical Society (SCGS) in Burbank.
One labor of love for me at the SCGS is organizing the RootsMagic software user group. We meet on the third Sunday of most months. The focus of the next meeting will be the newly-released RootsMagic 5 and early user experiences with it. My first order of business is to migrate to the new version from RootsMagic 4 and get some experience with it myself.
July 9, 2010
Although I have not posted any items during the past year, I have managed to find some time to pursue my genealogical interests. A visit to the National Archives branch in Philadelphia last fall led to the discovery that my Irish immigrant ancestor, John Conroy, was born in County Lough, north of Dublin. A recent trip to the Mississippi Valley gave me a chance to learn more about Zacharias Holladay’s brother John Holladay and his descendants and to visit some of the areas where they lived in Mississippi.
I also enjoyed meeting many Newcomb cousins at a birthday party and family celebration in January, and I met many of my Holladay cousins from Boone County, Kentucky, at an impromptu reunion in April.
At the beginning of this year I became co-administrator for the US part of the Halliday/Holladay Y-DNA Surname Project at FTDNA. This project includes all variants of the Halliday surname, including Holladay, Holliday, and many others. Through this effort I hope to learn more about the ancestors of Zacharias Holladay and their relationship to other early Holladay immigrants to Virginia. More about this work in future posts.
For the moment my genealogy efforts compete for time with volunteer support at the Southern California Genealogical Society. With the successful conclusion of our recent Genealogy Jamboree I’m hoping to find more time for serious genealogy work and for posting to this blog.
June 15, 2009
Today I posted a page summarizing what I currently know about my great-great-grandfather Zacharias Holladay’s elder brother, John Holladay. Born in Virginia in about 1755, he was one of very early settlers in Kentucky and was at Harrodsburg in March, 1777. After the Revolutionary war, Zacharias joined him in Kentucky. John Holladay apparently died in Adams County, Mississippi, in about 1800, but I am still looking for more solid proof of this.
Since returning from my trip to Ft. Wayne, Indiana, I have been fortunate to locate some living descendants of John and his wife Margaret, or Margery Gustavus. Their descendants use the surname Holliday, and my post also comments on the issue of how our surname is spelled. I am hoping we can verify the genealogical evidence of these relationships by DNA testing.
In the past year I have found some more distant Holliday/Holliday cousins, had a 67-marker Y-DNA test, and verified that indeed I share a common ancestor with them. These findings verify the results many years of genealogical research done by Dr. Alvis M. Holladay, Sr., and his family that were published in his book, The Holladay Family, in 1983.
More about Margaret Gustavus Holladay in a future post.
June 1, 2009
Can it really be the first of June? My blogging activities have become sporadic again, it seems. Shortly after my last posting I left on a week-long research trip to Ft. Wayne, Indiana, home of The Allen County Public Library (ACPL). This facility is one of the premier genealogical research libraries in the country and claims to be the largest such library that is publicly-funded.
The ACPL certainly lived up to my expectations. My initial goal was to search for clues to the ancestry of Henry Reynolds, one of my “brick wall” great-great grandparents. This effort was moderately successful – some good information was found in Kentucky and Virginia land records about possible members of his family.
A second goal was to look for new information about the Holladay family in the ACPL holdings for Adair County, Kentucky. These holdings are quite impressive, but I found little for Adair that is not available in Salt Lake City and no Holladay information that was new to me.
While there I also looked for new information about Zachariah Holladay’s somewhat mysterious older brother John. Here I was spectacularly successful in learning about his descendants and about the woman he married, Margaret or Margery Gustavus. John is mentioned briefly in my biographical sketch of Zacharias, especially in footnote 3, but much of his life has been a mystery to me, especially what happened after he disappears from Washington County, Kentucky, records in about 1798.
Both during this trip and since my return, this effort to find more information about Zacharias’ brother John Holladay has occupied much of my genealogy time. The trouble is, other priorities and commitments keep me from spending more than one or at most two hours per day on genealogy. I now have two more genealogical projects to pursue in addition to various tasks under what I call the Holladay Family project. These new projects are the search for Henry Reynolds (1778-1849) parents, and developing a biographical sketch of John Holladay (1755-1800). I’ll be commenting on each of these and summarizing results in future posts.
April 23, 2009
My genealogical efforts have been greatly aided by the fact that all of my father’s ancestors migrated to the area of Adair and Green County, Kentucky, shortly after the Revolutionary War. They remained in the Adair County area until my father left in the 1920′s for Colorado and the West.
The surnames are: Anderson, Brawner, Holladay, Montgomery, Reynolds, Sallee, Smith, and Waggener. The Creel family is also closely associated with several of these families. I will be making a number of posts about these families and sources of additional information about them. Your comments and inquiries are invited.
April 8, 2009
This past Monday evening I had one of those delightful genealogical experiences that occur from time to time. Out of the blue I received an email message from a distant cousin who is descended from a sister of my great grandmother Mary Anna Reynolds Holladay. The Reynolds-Holladay family connections go back to the very early days of the settlements south of Green River which are now a part of Green and Adair Counties in South-Central Kentucky. The gentleman who sent the message found me through the surnames of my Adair County ancestors that I posted a couple of years ago on the Adair County page of Kentucky Genweb (http://www.kykinfolk.com/adair/surnames.htm) These postings sometimes take years to produce results, and it is very important that you keep a current email address posted – you never know when a distant relative with valuable information will find your listing. My newly-found Reynolds cousin and I have been exchanging emails at a great rate and I am now drafting a short writeup on the Reynolds-Holladay connections for posting to this site. I would be delighted to hear from other descendants of Henry Reynolds (1778-1849) and Nancy Ann Sallee (1783-1859) of Adair County, Kentucky.
April 4, 2009
Today I posted a biographical sketch of Joseph Holladay, Zacharias and Kitty’s third and youngest son. Joseph married Sarah J. (Sally) Reynolds and they had at least eleven children. More information about their children will published as time permits.
April 3, 2009
Although I haven’t posted to this blog for a couple of months I have had some very interesting email correspondence with several other Holladay family members, both my Adair County, Kentucky, cousins and my “DNA cousins”. The latter are more distant cousins with whom I have made contact as a result of having my DNA tested a year ago for the purpose of proving or disproving that I share a common ancestor with others having the Holladay/Holliday family surname.
I also spent time helping to set up a new user group for the RootsMagic genealogy database program as part of my activities in support of the library of the Southern California Genealogical Society (SCGS). I have been using RootsMagic and its predecessor, Family Origins, to record and report on my work almost since I began to do serious genealogy in the mid 1990s. I have been putting off entering additional data into my database during the past few months until the new RootsMagic version 4 was released, since it contains a lot of cool new features, especially the way it facilitates entry of the source information required to conform to good genealogical practice.
RootsMagic 4 has now been released to the public and it’s time for me begin entering a large amount of data collected over the past several years. I plan to report on this work periodically in this blog, along with some information about the Holladay family DNA studies, the RootsMagic 4 program, and some of my volunteer work for the SCGS.
For the time being, the main focus will continue to be on Zacharias and Kitty Anderson Holladay, their four children, and later descendants. Stay tuned…
January 27, 2009
Today I posted a biographical sketch of Zacharias and Kitty’s son William Holladay, my great grandfather. William married Mary Anna (Polly) Reynolds and they had nine children. Brief biographical highlights of each of them will be added as time permits.