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Added pedigrees for Henry David Thoreau, Susan B. Anthony. (With high-speed Internet now and a fast laptop, I can manage to update the website often, even when changes are slight.)
As I mention here, I'm a single person with other projects than genealogy. Don't be surprised if I'm unable to answer your e-mail, or incorporate your data.
Sometimes I work backward: I find a medieval lineage missing from my database and then look for descendants of the line; if one is famous it gives me an "excuse" to include the lineage. Recently I noticed that the Lechmere family has a medieval lineage which I wanted to show, but the Lechmere sites didn't seem to show a famous descendant. But Joseph Smith, Mormon founder eventually showed up! (Why don't the Lechmere sites show this connection? Is it fallacious?) Many sources show Edward Fuller, Signer of the Mayflower Compact, in Smith's pedigree -- I didn't yet have Fuller in my database. Is that connection correct? As usual I lack the time or expertise to be sure.
Other new pedigrees include Pres. Warren G. Harding, Clara Barton, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Henry W. Longfellow, and Governor Thomas Dewey.
Pedigrees I might add in the near future: Susan B. Anthony, Henry David Thoreau, John Foster Dulles, Bette Davis. (I'm missing six of the more recent Presidents, but am afraid that their on-line pedigrees are very speculative.) Please e-mail your requests from this list.
I'm not expert in website design, but hope users will report any major inconveniences. One trick to remember: If you want to click a link, but also keep the page with the link, i.e. have the clicked link open into a new tab, use the right mouse button, instead of the left button. In most browsers the right-click will give you a menu with "Open link in new tab" as one of the options.
In Version 44.0, there would now be 182,900 pedigree pages, however 20,190 pages are suppressed as trivial (see discussion in section below) so in fact there are only 162,710 individual pedigree pages. (There are also about 25,000 people mentioned in children or spouse lists, or as alternate parents, who do not have their own pedigree pages.)
While trying to add depth to my pedigree of the Belgian King, I stumbled upon the on-line genealogy of Richard Henri Remme, which has many many thousands of names I was missing. (Most, but not all, of these names won't affect others, as they are specific to the pedigree of the Belgian King.) Since Mr. Reeme is Dutch, the Dutch form of many of the names I've added is shown, even if the person was French or German. As I've written before, this seems good to avoid my introducing inadvertant errors.
(Naturally each country has its own genealogists who work in their own language, but genealogies do get conected. Nevertheless I've noticed that French genealogies are separate: in their own language on their own websites. Even Remme's work, which links to thousands of French nobles missing from my database, is Dutch, not French. Due to lack of time and energy, I've barely scratched the surface of these lineages, except for the pedigree of Charlotte d'Argenteau, wife of Thomas Bruce Earl Elgin and 5-gt grandmother of Albert I, King of the Belgians.)
I should reiterate that I know my website contains errors and confusions; I apologize. As one example, a kind correspondent recently pointed out that my data on the De La Bere family was mixed up. I've added corrected lineages; but some wrong De La Bere lineages still appear in the tree. (I've tried to cross-reference these to the corrected lineages, leaving the wrong lineages morked with "prob. not", since one of my goals is to document wrong lineages found in sources.)
One correspondent asked me for a detailed list of changes from one Version to the next! Sorry, that would be impossible. I'm constantly making additions, corrections, to many many parts of the database. Sometimes an unusual surname will pop during a search, and I'll be off chasing an unrelated hare for an hour, before getting on track. One area I looked at for this version is the St. John pedigrees -- I hope they're at least a little better now -- but that's just an example; the changes are far too numerous to mention. I add new pedigree roots, but don't mention most of them. Three new American pedigrees in this version I will mention are Clint Eastwood, T.S. Eliot, and Chas. W. Post.
I keep making additions and corrections! I added pedigrees for two of the "Most Influential" Persons I was missing: Karl Marx and the 1st Emperor of China. Kar Marx descends from the line that connects many famous Jews to the ancient Exilarchs of Babylon, so that was an important addition (suggested by one of my diligent correspondents!) Adding China's greatest Emperor was long overdue. I think I was waiting for it to come pre-packaged for me in a Gedcom, but I got tired of waiting and just prepared it myself!
I continue to add missing parts of the royal Danish pedigree; the large increase in person count is due to the many German and Scandinavian nobles that got added there. I added John Jacob Astor, or rather, one of his gt grandsons; Evan Ragland the Immigrant; and President Wilson's first wife. I Improved the King of Jordan's pedigree, along with an ancient Chinese descent from Lao-Tse. I added a weird lineage from a neo-Gnostic Christian Church, involving two children of Adam and Eve that set up their own Kingdom of Haner.
Added pedigrees for President van Buren, the Wright Brothers, Ernst August Heir of Hannover (married to Grace Kelly's daughter), the two great-grandparents of the Crown Prince of Netherlands that I was still missing, etc..
Added an index entry for Nobel Laureate, so added Bertrand Russell, nobleman, mathematician and Laureate. Added pedigrees for President Eisenhower and his wife, and for Brigham Young. I completed the line of the Princes de Ligne down to the present-day Prince and his wife. In completing this, several other lineages were extended, including Talleyrand, Noailles, Auersperg, d'Acigne, Veltheim, le Danois, Rauchhaupt, Stammer, Lenthe, Bennigsen, d'Estourmel, etc.
I've been too lazy to complete the pedigree of Claus van Amsberg, late husband of the present Queen of Holland: adding the lesser German nobles is a huge task. However, some of Amsberg's ancestors are also ancestral to the Princes de Ligne, so I did add a pedigree for Wilhelmine Dorothea von MELTZING, Amsberg's 3-gt grandmother.
Can't stop!! Pedigrees for Bill Gates, Samuel Colt, Robert Frost, Amelia Earhart, Norman Rockwell, Dick Cheney, James Graham (Viscount Dundee), and Charles Douglas (Earl of Morton).
Added an index entry for Knights of the Thistle, and added pedigrees for several such Knights. Also added pedigrees for Sam Houston, Lucille Ball and Emily Dickinson, among others.
Many famous Americans have alleged pedigrees that connect to royalty or other famous people; I've been gradually adding some of those pedigrees. Latest additions are Marilyn Monroe, Ernest Hemingway, and Vance `Bozo the Clown' Colvig. There are several other recent additions, including a List of Roman Emperors.
It was about ten years ago that I decided to include a pedigree for Diana Spencer; she has so many ancestors that that was a major turning-point in this project. Her pedigree here is still far from complete, but I recently expanded it by incorporating recent work by researcher Brad Verity. Thank you, Brad!
On a sad note, I chanced upon a genealogist, Tim Dowling, who violates the privacy conventions of genealogy. When I saw that his data invaded the privacy of my children, nephews, nieces, etc., at first I assumed it was an honest mistake. But when I e-mailed him all I got back was lies, hateful remarks, and a refusal to remove the data or even tell me where he got it.
Added pedigrees for some extremely wealthy people (Musa Mansa, Cornelius Vanderbilt, Stephen van Rensselaer, Jay Gould, Jacob Fugger, Mausolus of Caria), along with an index entry for Wealthiest people. I continue to make corrections and additions throughout the database; for example, I refined the "pedigree of birds" to show that Tyrannosaurus rex is more closely related to birds than it is to Brontosaurs.
And I added a new conjectural (but plausible) pedigree for my own "missing link" 6-Great Grandmother, Deborah Montgomery.
I'm updating more frequently now that I have high-speed laptop! I added missing lines for several families: Mortimers, Reppes, Ryvett, Heveningham, Wymonham, Gissing etc., I added pedigrees for J.D. Rockefeller and Edmund Brough. The vast majority of the additions for this Version, however, were lines and linkages I was missing in Welsh pedigrees.
And, as explained next, these pedigree pages will have a pinker background than those of Version 33.
Last update I noticed, for the first time, that caching might be a problem -- I was seeing Version 32.0 pages even after I installed Version 32.1. The proper solution may be to set server configuration to have a cache time-out but that's too scary for me! Instead, I've decided to alternate colors. The Version 33 pages will have a slightly orangish background; for Version 34 I will go back to the pinkish background of Version 32, and alternate thereafter. If you accidentally get a page out of the cache you will know it by the color (or by inspecting the version number at page bottom) and can click the refresh icon in your browser.
Puig and Bernadotte are two families that may descend from the House of David, but details seem very obscure. Due to similarity of the names I looked at De Puy. I couldn't relate De Puy to Puig or Bernadotte but did discover I was missing Raphael de Podio, an 11th-century Great Chamberlain of the Empire who has living descendants.
When I started the website I invented various color codes, but haven't tried anything new for a long while. There is one small change in the latest Version. In lists of spouses, children, and descendants, some ancestors of U.S. Presidents will be shown in a purplish color. (This is in response to many e-mail requests from users who want to find these Presidential connections more easily. I hope the color aid helps.) To reduce any distraction, the new color is only slightly different than the usual blue. (I've made the "usual blue" slightly greener, but am still afraid the color difference will barely be noticeable.)
My "main" computer failed and, until I get it fixed, I'm running in a slightly crippled mode. Nevertheless I prepared a major new version with new pedigrees for some U.S. Presidents, Popes, etc. I'm having too much trouble getting a new laptop configured the way I want it, and apparently Toshiba doesn't support Linux well anyway. So I'm running cygwin/twm/vim though I'm used to linux/gnome/nvi. Problem isn't the quality of the tools but my familiarity. I'm afraid I'm making mistakes. Nevertheless I did prepare Version 32.1 on this new computer; tell me if you notice problems.
One contributer, who prefers to remain anonymous, frequently asks me to mention famous descendants who I'm missing. He's also asked me to add pedigrees for the American Presidents I'm still missing. I accomodate him partially in this version, adding John Tyler, James Buchanan, Chester Alan Arthur and Grover Cleveland.
Making Flash-Drives (or CD-Roms) was never a profitable business for me. I'm going to stop distributing them, at least until my own computer system is recovered from recent problems. (I intend to keep my commitments regarding free updates; contact me if you have trouble.)
(Requests for the Fabulous Pedigree On Your Own Home Computer have plummetted since I switched from CD-Rom to Flash-Drive. I wonder: Why? All of today's computers can access the Flash-Drive. The offer includes a Flash-Drive (worth about $12), available to you once you copy the data to your hard drive. I'm curious about this, and hope anyone who might have ordered a CD-Rom but not a Flash-Drive will e-mail and tell me why. The CD-Roms, by the way, were much cheaper for me to produce; they just became inconvenient as the database grew.)
More corrections; more additions. Expanded and corrected Spanish pedigrees, especially for the great Conquistadors Cortes and Pizzaro; the Leyva family; also an alleged Spanish descent from a bastard of England's King Edward III.
Improved ancient Scandinavian pedigrees; added pedigree for George Augustus Rawdon-Hastings; added speculative Yorke lineage to my own pedigree; added Maxwell branch missing from pedigree of the great physicist; more additions and corrections! :-)
It is shameful how complicated the software is which generates these pedigree pages. I noticed, for the first time, that Charles Martel is shown as "Poss. U.S. President's 23-Great Grandfather" rather than "U.S. President's 29-Great Grandfather." I spent several minutes trying to locate the bug. It's not a bug -- it's a feature!! An obscure part of the software I'd forgotten about years ago thinks that "possible 23-Great Grandfather" is more interesting than "(certain) 29-Great Grandfather." Maybe I'll improve this in Version 33.
In addition to the usual many many corrections, I've added new pedigrees, including for the great physicist James Clerk Maxwell, for Delaval Astley (present-day Lord Hastings who may be, genealogically, the heir of Alfred the Great and Kenneth I of Scots), the Baronets Wrottesley, Edmund FitzGerald and Thomas Kennedy (JFK's ancestors), Ethan Allen (famous American patriot), Hannibal Vyvyan, etc. Added information from Dim I Nticoudis about Suthen, wife of Scotland's King Duncan I, and her legendary ancestor, a bear.
As I was finalizing Version 31.2, I noticed I was missing the ancestry of Nahapa, King of Sakyae. I did not want to restart the build for this, so Nahapa's ancestors are not shown in the index, but (perhaps unwisely) I did provide some new and revised pedigree pages to show this pedigree. (Thus there are actually 158666 individual pages though only 158647 are reflected in the index.) Combining the Version 31.2 pages with the Version 31.3 preview pages may lead to some inconsistencies, but the latter pages do have a distinctive color. Note that the usual tags like "HM George I's 55-Great Grandfather" at the top of the pages for the 19 new individuals were NOT generated. Perhaps this was masochistic -- or sadistic -- since it only takes several hours to generate the website afresh. I did it because I could!
As I continue to make corrections, some of the lineages get more messed up by "poss." and "OR:" markers. Sorry about that. It seems better to show where sources are contradictory (or where I'm simply confused) than to "clean" these up and pretend to a certainty I don't have. As I've written before, if one of the lines where my site shows uncertainty is important to you, please research it elsewhere.
I've been afraid to examine my Radcliffes -- there are too many, and too many errors -- but, at the urging of a correspondent, I finally got round to it. With lots of additions and corrections, this turned into a major little subproject.
As usual, the latest version has too many new additions to mention them all. One addition is a pedigree for Louisa May Alcott. Another is a version of prehistoric German Kings thoughtfully pointed out by Manuel Pacheco Jiménez.
With David Hughes' help I've extended the pedigrees of the Turkish dynasties and more. But the bigger news item is that I've scanned the index, eliminating several duplicates and doing other chores of corrections and additions.
Anyone who's built a very large genealogical database knows how easy it is to end up with the same individual duplicated, even when one tries to be careful with insertions. So, once or twice a year I scan through the entire surname index to see if any such duplicates catch my eye.
But I hadn't done this step for several years -- it's just too tedious and time-consuming. However I did finally do it before this latest release and have incremented the Version number from 30.0 all the way to 31.0 to celebrate this effort! In addition to looking for duplicate individuals, it's also a way to find surname misspellings but ... (as a feature!) ... I don't correct the misspelling, I leave it and show it as an alternate in the index.
I did find several duplicates. As just one example, I'd recently added a line for the maternal grandmother of Robert THORNTON -- she descends from John, who acquired wealth because he stocked King Stephen's larder in Yorkshire. I'd even invented my own surname for this family, calling him John the LARDERER.
But while scanning the surname index I finally noticed I had the family already, with surname LARDINER.
I'll also give one example of possibly misspelled surname: FALKEBERG as an "alternate spelling" of FAUCONBERGE. I have no idea whether this is a "valid" spelling or just a typographical error in one of my sources. I don't have the time or expertise to answer that question. I do, however, often add a link in the surname index in such a case: even if it is just a misspelling, the index entry may help someone else who encounters the same misspelling!
I try to be very conservative about merging individuals or surnames. Just as a few of many examples, my database shows two women named Preziosa d'Orrubu marrying men from the same family, each named Barisone. Conflation? Maybe; but I don't have the time or expertise to figure out which is correct. Anyway, since families intermarry and use the same names, it's not unlikely such coincidences of names are correct. Similarly, I show different women named Alice PEMBRUGGE with different husbands each named John BURLEY. I fix only the simplest such "problems," leaving harder problems for users to resolve!
And of course, I also added to the database, showing pedigrees for President James A. Garfield, Mark Twain and George Earl Melville, taking Learmonth and Melville lines back to their ancient legends, and much more.
I've added a pedigree for President Gerald Ford, along with corrections and additions to ancient Assyrian lineages, biblical lineages, etc. Since my software disallows circular lineages (someone being his own ancestor), with corrections to the most ancient lineages, I needed to change some badly-sourced "poss." connections to "poss. not."