Thursday, June 16, 2011

Tika and her "cousin" the basenji.

This is Jake (or what Jake looks like); he is a Basenji and the "love" of Handy Man's Sister Sharon and her hubby, Ron. Tika has never met "Jakey" but I'm quite sure the two dogs would get along famously. What do they have in common? They are both "red dogs" and they are special to us. They both love cheese. They both wag their tails. They are both dogs; they are canines; they are related; they are cousins in the natural world. So what is my genealogy point here?

In our genealogy pursuits, we will find cousins........distant or near cousins......... who are people like us but are vastly different in looks, size and personality from us. So are we all really cousins? I read once where a senior medieval research specialist in the Family History Library said that any one of us is really no further removed than 50th cousins from any other person on the planet. Think about that! 50th cousins to anybody. And you know how different all the peoples of the world seem to be. 

Am I related to you? Probably. Can we prove it? Maybe.  Is Tika related to Jake? Probably. Can we prove it? Nope. As all dogs pretty much accept each other, shouldn't we pretty much accept each other, seeing as how we are cousins???

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Tika's Ancestry?

Reading in the Southwest Airlines magazine (from the seat pocket) I saw an ad for a Dog DNA kit. For a not-cheap fee I can send in a mouth swab from my Tika and find out if she is a "read" dachshund. Will I? Nope. Wonder how many folks do this?

I have done a DNA study with "Handy Man," my Phillips husband. Did it give me answers? Nope. Did it give me clues? Yep. I'll explain.  The Phillips DNA Project showed two (and now three) nearly perfect matches between John and others. But each of us only know and can document so far back and none of us can go back far enough to connect! Maybe in time. I believe in these DNA tests but I realize and recognize that there often are no "red hot" answers.

To learn more about this fascinating topic, do a Google search for "genealogy + DNA + research."

Monday, June 6, 2011

Tika & "County" Trivia

"Tika," I said, "this sort of thing is really interesting to genealogists." You see her response. But I was reading some notes I took from the book The American Counties by J.N. Kane, 1972.  I learned stuff like:

Of the 3067 counties in the U.S. only 2136 have been named for individuals. This figure includes the 203 counties named for 25 presidents. The president for whom the greatest number of counties was named  is (would you guess?) George Washington who leads the list with 31, followed by Thomas Jefferson at 26. Jackson has 21 counties named for him, excluding Hickory County, Missouri, for his nickname.

There are 20 counties named for Madison, 17 for Monroe, 17 for Lincoln, 12 for Grant and 11 for Polk. There is a long list of presidents for whom 1 to 8  counties were named. Only one president had both his first and last name used as the name of a county. Millard Fillmore had Millard County named for him in Utah as well as Fillmore County in both Minnesota and Nebraska.  And there are 11 presidents who do not have a county named for them.

So if there were 3067 counties and only 2136 have been named for people, that leaves 931 counties named for other than individuals. What about your county of birth?  (Mine: Kalamazoo, MI)  Or your county of residence?  (Spokane, WA) Have you ever thought about the origin of "your" county's name?

Tika has not. She was born somewhere in Idaho, remember.