Monday, March 28, 2011

Newspaper Website New to Me - Amanuensis Monday

Governor John Owen Dominis (1832 - 1891)
As I stated last week, I’m ignorant on New York State genealogy research. But I found a good hit on the new Mocavo website and a posted a story on a gravestone I found there, which led Sara E. Campbell to leave me a wonderful comment. She mentioned the website for newspaper research in New York State, and it was full of references to the DOMINIS family I was researching.

I love how one new clue leads to another in genealogy! I found over 300 articles with the name DOMINIS on this website. Some were references to the photo-journalist John Dominis, who took many famous photos for LIFE magazine. Many were references to Mrs. Dominis AKA Queen Lili’uokalani, who was related to the family I was researching. Even so, I printed out many of these articles for future reference. Keep in mind that John Owen Dominis was born in Schenectady, and went to Hawaii and became the Queen’s husband. His mother, Mary Lambert (Jones), was from Boston and sister to my 4x Great Grandmother.

 I’ve seen many articles of contempt for the former Queen Lili’uokalani in the newspapers of time of her trial and forced abdication from the throne. Some were racist, some were condescending and misogynistic, and this one… well, you’ll just have to read it for yourself! My notes are in brackets.

From the website newspaper database, the Chittenango, New York, Madison County Times, Volume XVIII, No. 30, page 3, Friday March 16, 1888.

The Syracuse Journal of recent date contained an article on the “Incidents in the early life of the Consort of Queen Liliuokalani” of Honolulu, Sandwich Islands, daughter of the late King Kalakaua [she was his sister]. The consort or husband of Queen Liliuokalani referred to is Johnny Dominis. Johnny’ wife is Queen, while Johnny is really King [he never held that title], and has been for fifteen years. Mrs. Dominis, mother of the Queen’s husband Johnny, at one time lived in the old burned house at the foot of Brinckerhoff hill opposite the residence of W. E. Blair. Mrs. Dominis was an especial favorite of Rev. Dr. Andrew Yates, who at that time resided in the house now occupied by Walter H. Stewart, and he took an interest in the family and later gave Johnny and his two sisters a home with him when he moved from this place to Schenectady. Johnny was educated and when a man went to the Sandwich Islands with the above result.”

Is this a snide remark about an inter-racial marriage? What is meant by the comment “above result”?

Copyright 2011, Heather Wilkinson Rojo


  1. Great site Heather, I've been looking for New York resources and this one is wonderful! )I had to change the end to .com, but I think I found it!) Thanks for the lead!!

  2. Heather, the FultonHistory site is excellent and I've used it many times. It is where I found a good deal of information that enabled me to write my 3-part story on the Benham murder. Great free site.

  3. Yes, Southwest Arkie, the website is not .org which is another useful website but it doesn't have the newspaper archives. Thanks for pointing out the typo, I've edited the post.

  4. Interesting site, I've been having fun poking around. I already found an error. They said Queen Emma is descended from native chieftans on her mother's side and her father was a grandson of John Young of England, when it was her mother who was the daughter of John Young. Oh my.