I don’t normally make New Year’s resolutions. But, Randy Seaver posted a challenge for Saturday Night Genealogy Fun and I thought I’d play along. I have been thinking about some of my genealogy goals for 2018. This is a good time to get them down in writing.
Figure Out My DNA Connections to Mary Jane (Hayward) Jones
This summer I was contacted by one of my DNA connections. She is related to me on my Jones line.
We haven’t figured out our common ancestor, but we’ve figured out how one of our common matches is related to her. This bit of information seems to suggest that the connection is through my ancestor, Mary Jane (Hayward) Jones.
I believe our connection is a generation beyond what is known of the family. I am hoping that this year records will become available to solve the mystery of Mary Jane’s parentage.
Add My Notable Relatives to WikiTree
The Maiato (the people of Maia, Ribeira Grande, Sao Miguel Island, Azores) were a migrating kind of people. In the 1800s, they left for Hawaii, California, Brasil, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island. In the 1900s, they left again for Massachusetts, Brasil, and Canada. Wave after wave of migration.
These migrating folks have produced at least three famous folks (I am sure there are more!). One is Nobel Prize winning American scientist, one is a well know Canadian tenor and musician, and the other is a Portuguese American chef and food writer who recently published his memoir.
I am tired of only having “see how you are related to so and so” connections on WikiTree that are by marriage. I want to be related by blood, darn it! So, my goal is to add the lineages of these three notables to WikiTree this year. I added one last week. Two to go!
My hope is it will draw more Azoreans genealogists to WikiTree who will be related to me and who will add their lines to the tree.
Research Collateral Lines to Help Decipher My DNA Matches
It’s become increasingly clear to me that the only way to figure out DNA matches is to follow all the descendant lines from an ancestor.
I’ll give you an example of how knowing my ancestor’s siblings helped me identify two matches this summer. Because I had recorded the marriages of Manoel de Mello and Barbara da Silva’s children, I was able to find the common ancestors between me and a man in the Azores.
I had to go back quite a bit to find our link. We are 5th cousins. Knowing that this man had the surname Duarte Rebelo in his tree helped me figure out another DNA match. This one lives in Spain and is also my 5th cousin.
There was only one Duarte Rebelo line in Achada, Nordeste, and it smacks right into my Mello Silva line. I now have two people to compare to when I get new matches.
On this note, I’ve started looking for more obituaries for American cousins and filling in the blanks for my ancestors children. I have a DNA sequence on one chromosome where I match 42 people! The secret to resolving it is filling in the collateral lines.
Create a Facebook Group for People Researching the Village of Maia
There are several researchers working on their family trees in the village of Maia. Because of the intermarriage between families, we often find ourselves related more than once. I have been mulling over the idea of starting a Facebook group specifically for these researchers so we could collaborate.
I am happy to say that this goal is on the road to accomplishment. I created the group this weekend. Now it just needs members.
Right now it is a secret group meaning people must be added by a member. I already moderate the Portuguese Hawaiian Genealogy Group on Facebook. I’m not keen on moderating another group alone. A secret group will keep out the troublemakers and foster sharing. Depending on how the group grows, I may open up the privacy.
I hope that we’ll all be able to help each other and fill in the blanks in our collective family tree.
Finish Rebuilding YourIslandRoutes.com
This isn’t necessarily a genealogy goal unless you are one of the visitors to my website. I’ve made quite a bit of progress moving and updating pages on YourIslandRoutes.com in 2017.
The mountain is becoming a molehill ever so slowly. There are over 700 pages on YourIslandRoutes, not all of them will be moved. I started the year with 219 articles in the main articles folder. Today it sits at 86.
Oh, I’d be farther along if I didn’t end up rewriting everything. Things have changed since I posted these articles between 2001-2006. I’ve learned a lot about Hawaiian and Portuguese genealogy. The web has changed. Almost everyone has a mobile device to web surf. There is a lot of reworking to be done on each page. But, I’m getting there one article at a time.
Those are my genealogy goals for 2018. I’ll be happy for progress on all of them. I can tell you I will be happy and relieved when the website move is over and done.
Wishing you all the best on your genealogy goals in the new year!
Genealogist and writer. Creator of the Portuguese Hawaiian Genealogy and Heritage website, yourislandroutes.com