Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The Genealogical Proof Standard

I have been trying to write a research report explaining what I have learned about the Dooley Family. Each time I begin, I see holes in my research and am not satisfied.

This caused me to pause and review the Genealogical Proof Standard. When your work meets the GPS, your evidence will meet the following criteria.

·      “The research was systematic and exhaustive.”
·      “The evidence is reliable and correctly interpreted.”
·      “Any contradictory evidence is soundly rebutted.”
·      “Each statement of fact is scrupulously documented.”
·      “Every deduction is clearly reasoned and persuasively explained.”[1]

Not only do I need to convince myself of my findings, but also need to convince my reader meaning Uncle Dave Dooley. I appreciate thoroughness and I know that he would too.

Research questions are key to solving my problems and help me conduct systematic and exhaustive research that will hold up to critique.

·      When and where did William Dooley and Ellen Hart enter the country?
·      Is Ellen’s maiden name really Hart?
·      Where were William and Ellen Dooley married?
·      What Catholic parish were William and Ellen Dooley buried through?
·      Are there any guardianship records for the orphans of William and Mary Dooley?

I am always open to advice!


[1] Mills, Elizabeth Shown, “Evidence Analysis,” Professional Genealogy, Elizabeth Shown Mills (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 2001), 329-330.

Monday, September 24, 2012

A New Resource: Sexton Records

An Irish accent is a beautiful thing. Seeing the beautiful landscapes in Ireland’s 2013 Gathering commercials makes me realize that Ireland is a grand place and their tourism campaign makes me yearn to see the Emerald Isle.

Before any such trip, I need to complete my Dooley research. My newest discovery is a resource unknown to me previously. This new resource is Sexton Records.

A sexton is a person/persons in charge of a cemetery. This caretaker keeps records of those buried in the cemetery.  Among other duties, the sexton mows, weeds and trims shrubs. The sexton digs the graves, opens and closes the cemetery gates. The sexton’s “To Do” list is a long one.

Keeping records is what catches my eye.  The Sexton Records of Calvary Cemetery might yield some unknown Dooley information. I have requested such information through the Chicago Archdiocese Archives. It should take about four to six weeks for the results. Now I play the waiting game.

While I am waiting, I just may request Sexton Records for other ancestors on other trees in other cemeteries. I am curious to see what the records may hold.

Monday, September 17, 2012

The Search Continues

Brick by brick, piece by piece I continue to build my Dooley evidence always on the hunt for William and Ellen Dooley’s origin. Their son, David F. Dooley’s death certificate reports William Dooley and Ellen Hart’s origin as Cork, Ireland. This death certificate is my one and only lead to Ireland and the search continues.

I have searched immigration records for William Dooley. There are several possibilities for William, but the immigration records provide little evidence to distinguish one William from another. Records offer an age, year of immigration, country of origin and destination. Arrivals reported “Ireland” as their country of origin and “United States” as their destination. I fear looking for William Dooley’s immigration records is like looking for that proverbial needle in a haystack.

Ellen Hart is equally puzzling. One immigration record matches her age and reported date of immigration. Unfortunately, the Ellen Hart of that record arrived in Tasmania not the U.S.A. She’s not my Ellen!

The Good News is that kink from my last post is not a kink at all. The Dooleys located in Lot S26, Block 45, Section S of Calvary Cemetery are my Dooleys; every single one of them!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Something Is Amiss

Oh, No! I just discovered a kink in my Dooley research. Wouldn’t you know it, just when I went out on the limb and declared William and Ellen Dooley to be The Irish Immigrants?

Examine the census records and you will see a 3-4 year age difference between William and Ellen. After reviewing the death records, I find a 14-year age difference. Something is definitely amiss. Could it be possible that there are two William and Ellen Dooleys with sons of the same name buried in the same cemetery? I need to think.

Bye the way, did I mention this blog is a work in progress?

Lot S26, Block 45, Section S

The above location marks the final resting place of William and Ellen Dooley. This couple is the patriarch and matriarch of the large Dooley Clan of Chicago, Illinois and beyond.

Having studied this couple’s three census records (1870, 1880 and 1900) and their death certificates for months, I wondered could William and Ellen be “THE IRISH IMMIGRANTS?” Dare I go out on the limb and declare them so?

Today’s research took me to Calvary Cemetery situated along the shore of Lake Michigan. Established in 1859, Calvary Cemetery is the final resting place for many Dooley ancestors. You may visit William Dooley, Ellen Dooley, Elizabeth Dooley, David Dooley and Stephen C. Dooley at Lot S26, Block 45, Section S.The gravestone reports the death dates of William, Ellen, Elizabeth and David that match their respective death certificates. Stephen C. Dooley was interred in the same location but without a headstone. I neglected to look for Stephen’s wife, Anna; which means another trip on another day.

While I have yet to locate the immigration records for William and Ellen, I believe I can say with a degree of certainty that William and Ellen Dooley were this family’s “Irish Immigrants.” William and Ellen do indeed belong to this Dooley Clan of Chicago and beyond. They rest in eternity along side two of their sons, David and Stephen, whose lives are chronicled even today by living descendants.

Please review the census. I cannot post death records as Family Search licenses them, but census and death records combined with the family plot in Calvary Cemetery make the familial connection.

William’s death certificate reports his birthplace as Ireland. He passed away 12 May 1900 at the age of 71. The certificate also reports the number of years lived in Illinois to be 30, however, that number is difficult to read and is my best guess.

Ellen Dooley’s death certificate reports her birthplace as Ireland as well. She passed away 29 Oct 1905 at the age of 62, Her death certificate clearly states that she lived in Illinois 54 years; which means she immigrated at the young age of eight years.

Now to find the immigration records. I am getting close to “jumping the pond” and searching for William and Ellen’s Irish origins.

As you will see in 1870, William and Ellen had a son, Mike. Sadly, little Mike did not make it to the 1880 census. In reviewing Dooley interments of Calvary Cemetery, I was not able to locate a Michael Dooley whose dates fit for this little boy.

You may click on the images for a large view.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

To Labor

By definition: labor is the human activity that provides the goods for wages.  This Labor Day I have compiled a list of “jobs” that our Adams, Cox, Dollen, Dooley and Meyer ancestors performed for wages.

Rag Sorter
Koethner “Cottager” or small farmer
Telephone Operator
Manufacturing: Research and Development
Painter/Auto Shop
Telephone Company Lineman

Elizabeth “Betsey” Strong, my third great grandmother, labored as a rag sorter in St. Decuman Parish, Somerset, England. Betsey, age 34, was a widow and supported three daughters: Sarah Caroline (age 11), Emma (age 9) and Fanny (age 7). Her husband, Henry Strong, passed away in 1840. She most likely labored as a rag sorter for eight more years until their 1849 passage to America aboard the ship, Shannon.

Rag Sorting reminds me that nothing stays the same. I doubt that there are rag sorters in today’s work force but wonder what jobs of today will stay and which will disappear as rag sorting did.

Happy Labor Day to those who labor. I extend my sincerest prayers for those who wish to labor but cannot find a job. Here’s to a better, brighter future.