Thursday, October 31, 2013

Top Ten Scary Halloween Stories for Genealogists

#10  You can’t join DAR because that ancestor Major Daniel Bollman was really a Hessian soldier.

#9    The family cemetery you've been looking for this past decade was just investigated by “Ghost Hunters” on TV.

#8   That Mayflower lineage document from 2nd Cousin Horace is really just a 1972 receipt from the moving company.

#7   Great Aunt Hilda, who you have avoided interviewing, just passed away and you never got the story of her passage through Ellis Island.

#6   That illustrious ancestor who, according to a 1912 compiled genealogy book, “occupied a chair of applied electronics at an important government institution” was really a convict sent to the electric chair.

#5  You finally get accepted to appear on “Genealogy Roadshow” and Josh Taylor kindly refutes your great grandparent’s lineage, leaving you back at square one on that branch of the family.

#4  You finally find that your 3rd great grandfather, David Burham who married Dorothy Burnham, had a mother named Judith Burnham and her mother was Martha Burnham. 

#3  A sudden natural disaster destroys your computer, floods your paper files, and burns your family photo albums.

#2  Your mother confesses about the “milkman”,  making 50% of your family tree moot.

#1  Your Irish grandfather’s y-DNA test comes back as Haplogroup H


Some of the situations above are avoidable.  Have a disaster plan for your files, interview those elderly relatives NOW, and double check your research. 

Go with the flow.  Sometimes you have to lop off a branch of your family tree and rebuild all over again.

Happy Halloween!


The URL for this post is

Copyright 2013, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Weathervane Wednesday ~ A Firehouse by the Sea

Every Wednesday for almost two years I have been posting photographs of weather vanes located in or near the Nutfield area (the former name for the land where Londonderry, Derry and Windham, New Hampshire are now located). Most are historically interesting or just whimsical and fun weather vanes. Sometimes I photograph other weather vanes as I travel around New England, especially if they are historic or near historic sites. Today's weather vane can be seen on the coast of Massachusetts. Have fun guessing where you may have seen this weather vane.

Do you know the location of weather vane #122? Scroll down to see the answer....

Today's weather vane can be seen in the little village of Manchester-by-the-Sea, Massachusetts.  Seaside No. 1 was a firestation built in 1885 to house the first horse drawn fire engine.  It later became the town police station until 1970.  Now the town Historical Society runs it as a museum.  Inside you can find two old fire engines, a hand pumper from 1835 and a horse drawn one from 1902.  The weather vane on top of the tower is very appropriate!   This three dimensional weather vane is very detailed, from the horse reins and delicate spokes on the wheels, to the smoke billowing out of the fire engine.

Manchester Historical Society web page for Seaside No. 1

Copyright 2013, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Tombstone Tuesday ~ Col. Joshua Burnham, Milford, New Hampshire

This tombstone was photographed at the North Yard Cemetery on River Road in Milford, New Hampshire

These tombstones are right in the middle of the cemetery,
and my 5th great grandfather's stone, Joshua Burnham, is right behind a granite post!

In memory of
Sally Burnham
Dautr of Capt. Joshua &
Mrs. Jemima Burnham
Who died Decr 27th
1789 in the 11th Year of her
Retire my friends, Dry up your tears
Here I must lie 'Til Christ appears

SAR flag holder

Jan. 7, 1835
AEt. 83

Soldier of the Revolution, 
zealous in his country's cause
Faithful to the constitution 
and obedient to it's laws

How did I read this epitaph with the poor lighting, and the granite post unmoveable?  I cheated, and found it on, quoted from the History of Milford, by George Allen Ramsdell, 1901.   I often wonder if the stone was easier to read in 1901, before acid rain, or perhaps the post wasn't there 100 years ago?

Colonel Joshua Burnham is my 5th great grandfather.  He served in the American Revolution, at Bunker Hill, New York, Philadelphia, Canada, and as a Colonel he was an eyewitness when George Washington took command of the Continental Army.  He was granted a pension in 1819.  Col. Burnham is most famous for his house, just about one mile from the cemetery.  It was quite fancy and large, and he ran a tavern there.  In 1824 he sold the house and land to Jesse Hutchinson, the father of the famous 19th century singing group "The Hutchinson Family" sometimes known as "The Tribe of Jesse".   Joshua Hutchinson, one of the sixteen Hutchinson children, composed the epitaph for Joshua Burnham's gravestone.

The Hutchinson family is buried nearby in the same cemetery.  The oldest generations are buried right next to Colonel Burnham, and the subsequent generations' graves are scattered on the other side of the dirt lane down the middle of the cemetery.

Some other blog posts I have written about Joshua Burnham:
The Illiterate Colonel
The Hutchinson Family Singers of Milford, New Hampshire

A family sketch:

Gen. 1:  Thomas Burnham and Mary Lawrence
Gen. 2:  John Burnham and Elizabeth Wells
Gen. 3:  Thomas Burnham and Susannah Boardman
Gen. 4:  Stephen Burnham and Mary Andrews

Gen. 5:  Colonel Joshua Burnham, born 26 January 1754 in Gloucester, Massachusetts, died 7 June 1835 in Milford, New Hampshire; married on 21 January 1779 to Jemima Wyman, daughter of Increase Wyman and Catherine Unknown.  They had eleven children born in Milford:
1. Sally Burnham, born 1779, died 27 Dec. 1789 in Milford
2. Joshua Burnham, died young
3. Jemima Burnham, born 9 May 1783 married Romanus Emerson (my 4th great grandparents)
4. Thomas Burnham, born 9 May 1783, twin, married Rachel Conant
5. Mary Burnham, born 1785, married Jacob Flynn
6. Azel Burnham, born 15 May 1787, married Lydia H. Peabody
7. Asa Burnham, married Elizabeth Giddings, he died at sea in 1828
8. Lydia Burnham
9. Sarah Burnham, married William Leavitt
10. Ann Burnham, born 7 August 1795, married Nathaniel Chittenden
11. Sabrina Burnham, died 1845, unmarried?

The URL for this post is

Copyright 2013, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Monday, October 28, 2013

November 2013 Genealogy and Local History Calendar

Local Genealogy Club Meetings

Amesbury, MA – A new genealogy club has started, every last Monday of the month.  No registration, come to as many meetings as you would like.  For info contact Margie Walker, Local History Librarian, Amesbury Public Library, Amesbury, MA  978-388-8148 or

Barrington, NH Genealogy Club, meets the first Wednesday of the month at 6pm at the Barrington Public Library, 105 Ramsdell Lane, Barrington, NH  or email Wendy at

Chelmsford Genealogy Club, at the Chelmsford, MA Public Library, first Tuesday night of the month at 7PM in the McCarthy Meeting Room, contact Judy Sylvia 978-256-5521

Genealogy Roundtable, at the Derry Public Library, 64 East Broadway, Derry, NH  every first Tuesday of the Month, at 7pm to 8:15pm in the downstairs meeting room.  Contact: Alan Howard at 603-432-6140 for more information.

Greater Lowell Genealogy Club,  meets at the Pollard Memorial Library, Lowell, MA 10AM to 1PM once a month. 

Hudson Genealogy Club, at the Rogers Memorial Library, 194 Derry Road, Hudson, NH  every 2nd Friday of the Month, at 1:30 PM contact 603-886-6030 for more information.  (on summer hiatus until September)

Meredith NH, Genealogy Club

Newton, NH Genealogy Club- Gale Library, Newton, NH, 603-382-4691, 3PM on the third Wednesday of the month. 

North Hampton, NH Genealogy Club, at the North Hampton Public Library, 237A Atlantic Avenue, North Hampton NH 603-964-6326
Rye Genealogy Club, at the Rye Public Library, first Tuesday of the month at 2PM.

RISE Genealogy Group at the Nashua Public Library, Hunt Room, on the first Friday of the month at 1pm  (Rivier College Institute for Senior Education, see )

Southborough, MA Genealogy Club, at the Southborough Library, 25 Main Street, Southborough, MA  508-485-5031 or   Third Thursday of the Month.  See the website for a schedule

South Shore Genealogical Society, at the John Curtis Free Library, Rt. 139, Hanover, Mass at 1:30pm ever second Saturday of the month from September to June.
Shrewsbury, Massachusetts Genealogy Club, meets third Monday of the month at the Shrewsbury Public Library, contact George C. Brown at 508-841-8531 or

Wednesday Night Jewish Genealogy, Every 3rd Monday and Wednesday at NEHGS, 99 – 101 Newbury Street, Boston, Mass.

October 30, Wednesday, 6pm The Last Muster: Photographs of the Revolutionary War Generation, by author Maureen Taylor, at the Commonwealth Salon of the Boston Public Library. Free to the public.  See for more information.

November 2, Saturday,  8:30 am – 4:30pm, Massachusetts Society of Genealogists Annual Meeting:  American Civil War theme,  at the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-Day Saints, 616 Great Road, Littleton, Mass.

November 3, Sunday, 2pm, Baked Beans and Fried Clams: How Food Defines a Region, at the Hampton Falls Town Hall, 1 Drinkwater Road, Hampton Falls, NH contact Elizabeth Volpone 603-926-9561. Speaker Edie Clark celebrates our regional favorite foods along with an examination of how contemporary life has distanced us from these classics. Free to the public

November 4, Monday, 7pm New Hampshire Cemeteries and Gravestones, at the Concord Public Library, 45 Green Street, Concord, NH, contact Robbin Bailey 603 – 225-8670 for more information.  Glenn Knoblock presents rubbings, photographs, and slides to illustrate the rich variety of gravestones to be found in our own neighborhoods.  Learn how to read the stone “pages” that give insight into the vast genealogical book of New Hampshire. Free to the public.

November 5, Tuesday, 4 – 5:30pm, Genealogy for Beginners, at the Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St., Boston, Mass, in the Tech Classroom, contact 617-859-2323 to pre-register and reserve a spot.  Free.

November 5, Tuesday, 7:30pm, A Conversation with John Marshall, at the Exeter Historical Society, 47 Front Street, Exeter, NH, contact 603-778-2335.  Richard Hesse portrays Chief Justice of the US Supreme Court John Marshall in the year 1835 in this living history program. Free to the public

November 6, Wednesday, 12:30pm, Susan B. Anthony, the Invincible! At the Windham Town Hall (upstairs), 3 Lowell Road, Windham, NH contact Polly Chervincky 603-883-2932.  Sally Matson portrays Anthony in this living history program.  Free to the public.

November 7, Thursday, Identification and Care of Photographs, a workshop at the New Hampshire Historical Society presented with the Northeast Document Conservation Center.  Choose from one of two sessions, 9am to 12:30pm, or from 1:30 to 5pm.  A hands-on workshop to recognize the various photographic formats and the preservation problems associated with each format.  The workshop also addresses storage, preservations, environmental guidelines, care and handling.  Bring your photos for discussion. $90 for Society members and $115 for non-members.  Register by phone with a credit card by calling Stephanie Fortin at 603-856-0604.  Or download this form and mail it with payment to History Workshop, New Hampshire Historical Society, 30 Park Avenue, Concord, NH 03301 at this link:

November 7, Thursday, Our National Thanksgiving: With Thanks to President Lincoln & Mrs. Hale, portrayed by Steve and Sharon Wood as Lincoln & Hale, at the Ridge at Riverwoods, 10 White Oak Drive, Exeter, New Hampshire, FREE and open to the public, contact 603-658-1510 for more information.

November 7, Thursday, noon – 1pm, Native Foods, a “Lunch & Learn” lecture at Plimoth Plantation, Plymouth, Massachusetts, Free for members, $8 non-members.  Carol Wynne, the Wampanoag Foodways Manager at Plimoth Plantation will discuss Wampanoag foods and how they were grown, used and stored in the 17th century.  Bring a lunch or buy one at the Patuxet Café.  Please pre-register here

November 9, Saturday, 2pm, Lizzie Borden Took an Axe, Or did She? At the Newmarket Public Library, 1 Elm Street, Newmarket, Free to the Public, Anette Holba reviews the facts of the case and explores the evidence that some experts suggest points to Lizzie’s guilt and others believe points to Lizzie’s innocence.  Lizzie’s connections to New Hampshire will also be explored.  Contact Carrie Gadbois for more info at 603-659-5311.

November 9, Saturday, 1:30pm Bring Your Ancestors to Life: Connect via Social History, at the South Shore Genealogical Society, John Curtis Free Library, Route 139 Hanover, Massachusetts.  Presented by Lori Lyn Price, Free to the public

November 10, Sunday, 2pm Our National Thanksgiving: With Thanks to President Lincoln & Mrs. Hale, portrayed by Steve and Sharon Wood as Lincoln & Hale, at the Deerfield Community Church, 15 Church Street, Deerfield, New Hampshire, FREE and open to the public, contact Jeanne Menard at 603-463-9869 for more information.

November 11, Monday, 7pm, Vanished Veteran’s – NH’s Civil War Monuments and Memorials, at the Stratham Fire House, 2 Winnicut Road, Stratham, New Hampshire.  George Morrison has located, inventoried and photographed the fascinating variety of NH’s Civil War monuments.  He shares his discoveries, from the earliest obelisks to statuary, and artillery, to murals, cast iron, stained glass and buildings from the 1860s to the 1920s. Contact Wiggin Memorial Library 603-772-4346 for more information. Free to the Public

November 12, Tuesday, 4 – 5:30pm, Genealogy for Beginners, at the Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St., Boston, Mass, in the Tech Classroom, contact 617-859-2323 to pre-register and reserve a spot.  Free.

November 12, Tuesday, 10am, Using at the New England Historic Genealogical Society, 99 – 101 Newbury Street, Boston, Mass. A FREE lecture to learn more about the NEHGS website with over 200 million searchable names covering New England, New York and other areas of family research back to 1620

November 12, Tuesday, 6:30pm Our National Thanksgiving: With Thanks to President Lincoln & Mrs. Hale, portrayed by Steve and Sharon Wood as Lincoln & Hale, at the Kimball Public Library, 5 Academy Avenue, Atkinson, New Hampshire, FREE and open to the public, contact 603-362-5234 for more information.

November 12, Tuesday, 6:30pm A Woman That Keeps Good Orders:  Tavern Keeping and Public Approval, at the Gilford Public Library, 31 Potter Hill Road, Gilford, New Hampshire, Free to the Public. Marcia Schmidt Blaine explores the world of female tavern keepers in the Colonial period.  Contact Betty Tidd at 603-524-6042 for more information.

November 12, Tuesday, 7pm New Hampshire Cemeteries and Gravestones, at the Madbury Town Hall, 13 Town Hall Road, Madbury, New Hampshire, Gelnn Knoblock explores these deeply personal works of art and the craftsmen who carved them.  Learn how to read the stone “pages” that give insight into the vast genealogical book of New Hampshire.  Contact Richard Erickson for more information at 603- 749-9011. Free to the Public.

November 12, Tuesday, 7pm Petticoat Patriot:  A Woman in the Continental Army, at the Candia Baptist Church, 188 Deerfield Road, Candia, New Hampshire, Joan Gatturna presents a living history program on Deborah Sampson, a patriot who disguised herself as a young man and enlisted in the Continental Army during the American Revolution and served undetected for 17 months.  Contact Linda Thomas at 603-483-8199 for more information.  Free to the Public.

November 13,  7pm, Wednesday, Harnessing History: On the Trail of New Hampshire’s State Dog, the Chinook, at the Litchfield Middle School, 19 McElwain Drive, Litchfield, NH, contact 6-3-434-4044.  Bob Cottrell presents the history of Arthur Walden and his Chinook sled dogs.  Free to the Public

November 14, Thursday, Crime and Punishment on the Isles of Shoals: The Ballad of Louis Wagner, at the Rye Congregational Church, 580 Washington Road, Rye, NH, contact 603- 964-6281.  John Perrault presents the story of Louis Wagner, who was accused of murdering Anethe and Karen Christenson on Smuttynose Island in 1873.  He weaves his “Ballad of Louis Wagner” through the program with guitar and vocals.  Free to the public.

November 15, Friday, 9am, The Other Side of the Midnight Ride: A Visit with Rachel Revere, at the Community Church of Durnham, 17 Main Street, Durham, New Hampshire, a living history program with Joan Gatturna who tells the story of tea, trouble, and revolution by the woman who rode through life with Paul Revere.  Contact Dianne Ramey for more information at 603-868-1219.

November 15, Friday, 9am- 12noon, Preserving and Identifying Family Photographs with Maureen Taylor, at the New England Historic Genealogical Society library at 99 – 101 Newbury Street, Boston, Mass.  This is a half day seminar to learn techniques for identifying important historical and genealogical information in family photos, and how to preserve photos from daguerreotypes to digital images.  Personal consultations available after the seminar for an additional fee.  $50 per person, space is limited, see the web site to register.

November 15, Friday, 7pm Our National Thanksgiving: With Thanks to President Lincoln and Mrs. Hale, at the Effingham Historical Society Bldg, 1014 Province Lake Road (Rte 153), Center Effingham, New Hampshire.  Sharon Wood portrays Sarah Josepha Hale, a Newport, New Hampshire native, who tells the story of her 30 year effort to have Thanksgiving declared a national holiday.  Contact Sheila Jones for more information at 603-539-4071. Free to the public

November 19, Tuesday, 6:30pm 7pm Our National Thanksgiving: With Thanks to President Lincoln and Mrs. Hale, repeat of the above program at the Richard Free Library, 58 N. Main Street, Newport, New Hampshire. Free to the Public.
November 19, Tuesday, 4 – 5:30pm, Genealogy for Beginners, at the Boston Public Library, 700 Boylston St., Boston, Mass, in the Tech Classroom, contact 617-859-2323 to pre-register and reserve a spot.  Free.

November 20, Wednesday, 6pm, Finding and Using Colonial Records in Genealgical Research, by genealogist Barbara Jean Matthews, at the Commonwealth Salon of the Boston Public Library. Free to the public, See for more information.

November 21, Thursday, 6:30pm, Mary Todd Lincoln: Wife and Widow, at the Brookline Public Library, 16 Main Street, Brookline, New Hampshire.  Living historian Sally Mummey portrays Mary Todd Lincoln as she muses on her life from her dreams as a girl to her years as First Lady during the Civil War. Contact Erin Kennedy at 603-673-3330.

December 4, 6pm, A Recipe for Wellbeing: Health and Illness in Colonial New England, by genealogical speaker Lori Lynn Price at the Commonwealth Salon of the Boston Public Library, Free to the public. Commonwealth Salon of the Boston Public Library. Free to the public.  See for more information.

December 4, 7pm, New Hampshire on Skis, at the Hampstead Public Library, 9 Mary E. Clark Drive, Hampstead, NH, contact 603-329-6411.  Free to the public.  Professor E. John B. Allen presents a unique New Hampshire history.

December 7, Pearl Harbor Day at Battleship Cove, Fall River, Massachusetts.  Commemorate the 72nd anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor with a brief ceremony at 12:55pm- the exact hour of the Japanese strike.  The service includes a wreath casting with remarks. Open to the public.

January 7, Tuesday, Starting your Family History, at the National Archives facility in Waltham, Massachusetts, 380 Trapelo Road, Free to the public.  This workshop will provide you the strategies for collecting and organizing what you have found, and the methodology for embarking on this meaningful and engaging pastime.

January 14, Tuesday, New Hampshire’s One Room Rural Schools: The Romance and the Reality, at the Hampstead Public Library, 9 Mary E. Clark Drive, Hampstead, New Hampshire, Steve Taylor explores the lasting legacies of the one-room school house and how they echo today.  Contact the library at 603-329-6411 for more information.

April 1, Thursday, Researcher Forum, at the National Archives facility in Waltham, Massachusetts, 380 Trapelo Road, Free to the public. Researching original records has changed in recent years, no longer are you winding the microfilm, and the resources and strategies have expanded.  Learn about the new and exciting initiatives for researchers, and use this open forum opportunity to tell the National Archives how researching can be made better for you.

July 8, Tuesday, Passenger Lists, Censuses and Naturalizations: The Big 3 Sources for Family History, at the National Archives facility in Waltham, Massachusetts, 380 Trapelo Road, Free to the public.  Learn how to locate and use these resources, and there will be assistance from archives staff and volunteers.

(never too early to plan ahead!)

Tickets are now on sale at Plimoth Plantation for the annual Harvest Dinner with the Pilgrims.  The 2013 dates are Saturdays October 13 – November 23rd, Sunday November 24, Wednesday November 27, Friday November 29 and Saturday November 30.  Tickets go fast!  For reservations and more information please see the webpage:

Also, there is a Thanksgiving Day Buffet on Thursday, November 28th, at four seatings, and a traditional American Thanksgiving Dinner on Thursday, November 28th and Friday, November 29th at several seatings.  See this webpage for reservations and more information:

Tickets are also on sale for Thanksgiving at Old Sturbridge Village.  The Thanksgiving Dinner Buffet and the more traditional Thanksgiving Dinner at the Bullard Tavern like at Plymouth, tickets sell out fast and there are limited seatings.


The URL for this post is

Copyright 2013, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Merrimack Valley Chapter MassSoG GeneaBlogger Panel

This morning at the Nevins Public Library in Methuen, Massachusetts there was a GeneaBlogger Panel discussion with some of your favorite New England genealogy bloggers.  Cynthia Shenette, Marian Pierre Louis, Bill West, Lucie Consentino and Heather Rojo all spoke about how they started blogging, how it has helped with genealogy research, "cousin connections" and other topics related to genealogy blogging. 

Blogger Erica Voolich was there in the audience, too. 

It was Bill West's first time speaking in public about genealogy and blogging, and he sure fooled us!  He was quite the professional speaker, and very entertaining, too.

Blogger Polly Kimmett was there for a reunion with her fellow Geneabloggers.

Marian Pierre Louis made an announcement that Elizabeth Shown Mills will be on one of her upcoming podcasts at her Fieldstone Common blog.  Don't miss this one!  It should be great!

Stay tuned!  If you are a member of the Massachusetts Society of Genealogists, the Merrimack Valley Chapter will be hosting an upcoming workshop on how to start your own genealogy blog.  I hope this blogger panel generated interest in the benefits and entertainment of genealogy blogging, and check your newsletter for an upcoming announcement of this workshop. 

Massachusetts Society of Genealogists website 

Lucie Consentino "Acadian and French Canadian Ancestral Home" 
also "Lucie's Legacy"

Marian Pierre Louis  "Marian's Roots and Rambles" 
"Fieldstone Common"

 Cynthia Shenette  "Heritage Zen"

Bill West   "West in New England"

The URL for this blog post is

Copyright (c) 2013, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Surname Saturday ~ HUBBARD of New London, Connecticut


There is not much known about Hugh Hubbard.  He does not have a sketch in the Great Migration series because he did not arrive in New England until much later.  There is no recent article or book about Hugh Hubbard listed in the compilation New Englanders in the 1600s. Several books state he was from Derbyshire, but there is no proof.

Hugh was born about 1640 in England and died in Connecticut in 1685.  He married Jane Latham in New London, Connecticut on 18 March 1673, and they had six children.  Only daughters survived childhood, so the Hubbard name daughtered out very early.  Jane was the daughter of Cary Latham and Elizabeth Masters.  After Hugh Hubbard’s death, she remarried to John William.  Jane died on 3 May 1739 at the great age of 91.  

"I was at home & Diging stones & old Ms. Williams the wife of John William of Groton was buried.  She Died Yesterday with Little Sickness worn out with Age being about 90.  She was one of the Daughters of Cary Latham the first of N. London who was Conteporary with my Grand father Robt Hempsted.  her first Husband was Hugh Hubbard who kept N. London ferry about Sixty years ago."  From The Diary of Joshua Hemptead of New London, Connecticut, Covering a Period of Forty-Seven Years from September 1711 to November 1758 by Joshua Hempstead, published by the New London County Historical Society, New London, Connecticut, 1901, pages 349- 350.  (Available to read at Google Books)

You can read very short sketches of Hugh Hubbard in the following books:

One Thousand Years of Hubbard History, 866 to 1895 compiled by Edward Warren, published by by Harlan Page Hubbard, 1895, page 46 (available at

Genealogical Dictionary of New England Settlers, page 487

History of New London, Connecticut, by Francis Manwaring Caulkins, originally published 1895, reprinted by Applewood Books, Carlisle, Mass., page 313

My lineage from Hugh Hubbard:

Generation 1.  Hugh Hubbard, born about 1640 in England, died 1685 in Connecticut; married on 18 March 1673 in New London, Connecticut to Jane Latham, daughter of Cary Latham and Elizabeth Masters.  She was born about 1648 in New London, and died 3 May 1739 in Groton, Connecticut.  Six children born in New London:
1.      Mary Hubbard, born 13 November 1674
2.      Lydia Hubbard, born 7 Feb 1675 (see below)
3.      Joseph Hubbard, born November 1678, died November 1678
4.      Margaret Hubbard, born 14 April 1680
5.      Jane Hubbard
6.      Ann Hubbard married Gershom Brown in 1714

Generation 2:  Lydia Hubbard, born 7 February 1675 in New London, died before 18 June 1752; married on 14 October 1700 in New London to John Burrows, son of John Burrows and Hannah Colver.  He was born 2 September 1671 in New London and died 26 May 1752 in Groton.  Nine children.

Generation 3:  Desire Burris m. Moses Gore
Generation 4: Desire Gore m. Thomas Ratchford
Generation 5: Elizabeth Ratchford m. David Lyons
Generation 6: Thomas Ratchford Lyons m. Ann Skinner
Generation 7: Isabella Lyons m. Rev. Ingraham Ebenezer Bill
Generation 8: Caleb Rand Bill m. Ann Margaret Bollman
Generation 9: Isabella Lyons Bill m. Albert Munroe Wilkinson
Generation 10: Donald Munroe Wilkinson m. Bertha Louise Roberts (my grandparents)

The URL for this post is:

Copyright © 2013, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Friday, October 25, 2013

Photo Friday ~ A Visit to Littleton, New Hampshire

Littleton, New Hampshire, north of Franconia Notch, is a great little village with a vibrant downtown.  It is home to Eleanor Hodgman Porter, the author of the children's book Pollyanna, written in 1913.  In keeping with the optimism of Pollyanna, there are pianos stationed all over the main street.  We saw several people playing the pianos, much to the enjoyment of everyone, tourists and townies alike.  You can see one here on the sidewalk in the photo above, covered up with a plastic tarp because it was raining the day we visited. The rain did not stop several people from serenading us on the sidewalk. 

Chutter's General Store holds the Guinness World record for the longest penny candy counter in the world. It runs the entire length of the wall, and is over 112 feet of self service penny candy.  Children and adults were enjoying the serious business of choosing bags of their favorites, and having them weighed on the scales for payment.  I indulged in a few pieces of "fruit slices" (my favorite) and sour patch kids and gummies for my daughter.  You'll find all your favorites, in all flavors imaginable, as well as many old fashioned candies not seen in years and some new ones I'd never heard of before. 

The Littleton Public Library has a statue of Pollyanna by the front door.  I noticed that every child coming and going from the library took time to visit with the statue for a few moments. How fun! 

Just off Main Street we found this covered bridge, and from the bridge we spied a grist mill.  We walked over to the grist mill and saw that it was still operational.  They had a large supply of stone ground flours for sale, and pancake mixes.  We bought several sacks of stone ground whole wheat and have been enjoying the pancake mixes for some delicious breakfasts.  What a great way to remember our trip to Littleton!

Littleton, New Hampshire Chamber of Commerce

Chutter's website   Yes, you can order online!

The Littleton Grist Mill   You can order flour online, too

Littleton Public Library 


The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) 2013, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Middlesex Canal

After posting several times about Colonel Loammi Baldwin and Count Rumford AKA Benjamin Thompson of Woburn, Massachusetts, I was incredibly curious to learn more about the Middlesex Canal.  If you remember the post with the photo of Loammi Baldwin, it is located right across the street from the remains of the canal in Woburn.  We went over to look at the canal and to read the signs, and it was not an impressive sight since it looked like a barely visible ditch.  However, the historical markers described a great canal system that ran from the current city of Lowell to downtown Boston.  I wanted to learn more!

After Googling the Middlesex Canal, and reading more about it in the History of Woburn, I learned that there was a Middlesex Canal Museum in North Billerica.  We spent a pleasant afternoon there, and picked the brain of the volunteer on staff.  He told me much information about how Loammi Baldwin was one of the original proprietors of the canal in 1793, and invested in the new transportation system which brought goods and people from the Merrimack River (Northern Middlesex County and New Hampshire) right to Dock Square in downtown Boston. 

The canal was laid out from the Merrimack River in Chelmsford in 1794 and arrived at the Charles River next to Boston in 1803.  It was dug by hand by local workers.  Eventually it went right through downtown Boston to Dock Square near today’s Quincy Market, where goods could be loaded onto seagoing ships, or sold and traded in the city.  Much of the canal is now invisible, especially in the urban areas closer to Boston.  But the canal can still be seen in northern Middlesex County, and is even still navigable in many places.  Stonework bridges, aqueducts and other features such as locks are visible, too.

Loammi Baldwin was also the treasurer of the state of Massachusetts after the
Revolutionary War.  You can see his signature on this $20 bill from 1786
at the Middlesex Canal Museum in North Billerica, Massachusetts
If your ancestors lived in New Hampshire, Middlesex County or Boston during the period between the Revolutionary War and the Civil War, their lives would have been greatly changed by the building of the canal.  It brought great prosperity to the region, and it changed the way people traded and moved goods in New England.  The success of the Middlesex canal influenced other canals in the new United States, including the Erie Canal and the Chesapeake and Ohio (C&O) canal near Washington, DC.

The rise of the age of rail and steam brought an end to the profitability of the Middlesex Canal, but in its short life it made many of the proprietors wealthy men.  Life along the canal was busy, with stations for travelers and goods, taverns, inns and other facilities that are mostly now gone.  The few that are left are often not recognized as part of a great transportation system that once existed in this area.  It takes a map, a keen eye and some research to follow the trail of the canal. 

This mural by Thomas Dahill at the Middlesex Canal Museum
is also an illustration in the book Life on the Middlesex Canal

There are bike tours, walking tours and historical tours offered year round of the old Middlesex Canal.  While we were visiting the Baldwin Apple monument, one of the bike trails tours appeared, and the participants were quite enthusiastic about finding the hidden history of a National Treasure right in their own backyards!

Some people bike the canal trail, we rode nearby with the little red convertible!
This photo is at the Baldwin Apple memorial in Wilmington, Massachusetts, not far from the canal

For more information:

Middlesex Canal Association website

Life on the Middlesex Canal by Alan Seaburg, Cambridge, MA: Miniver Press, 2009

The Old Middlesex Canal by Mary Stetson Clarke, Easton, PA:  Center for Canal History and Technology, 1974

The Incredible Ditch: A Bicentennial History of the Middlesex Canal, by Carl Seaburg, Alan Seaburg and Tom Dahill, Cambridge, MA: Miniver Press, 1997

The History of Woburn, Middlesex County, Mass., by Samuel Sewall, Boston, MA: Wiggin and Lunt Publishers, 1868.  (available to read or download online at Google Book Search)

My blog post from 14 October 2013 on "Colonel Loammi Baldwin"


To Cite/Link to this post:   Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "The Middlesex Canal", Nutfield Genealogy, posted October 24, 2013, ( accessed [access date]). 

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Weathervane Wednesday ~ A War Ship

Every Wednesday for more than two years  I've been posting photographs of weather vanes located in or near the Nutfield area (the former name for the land where Londonderry, Derry and Windham, New Hampshire are now located). Most are historically interesting or just whimsical and fun weather vanes. Today's weather vane can be found somewhere on New Hampshire's seacoast. Have fun guessing where you may have seen this weather vane.

Do you know the location of weather vane #121? Scroll down to see the answer....

Today's weather vane can be seen on a waterfront building next to the gundalow at Prescott Park in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.   It is a three dimensional war ship, and if you look closely you can even see the teeny tiny cannons pointed out of the portholes.  The ship is rigged, but has only one sail. This is an amazing weather vane for a historic location, which has a long maritime history.  A great choice!  It is hard to see this weather vane from Marcy Street, but is easy to spot if you are strolling through the park or along the waterfront. 

Click here to see the entire collection of Weathervane Wednesday posts!

Prescott Park, Portsmouth, New Hampshire


To Cite/Link to this blog post:  Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Weathervane Wednesday ~ A War Ship", Nutfield Genealogy, posted October 23, 2013, ( accessed [access date]).  

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Tombstone Tuesday ~ William Davidson, 1767, Windham, New Hampshire

This gravestone was photographed at the Cemetery on the Plain, Windham, New Hampshire


This very small gravestone (about one foot tall)  is in the primitive, geometric style often seen in early gravestones in the Nutfield, New Hampshire area.  I've seen them in Londonderry, Derry and Chester.  I don't know if this stone can be attributed to the Scots Irish gravestone carver John Wight (1702 - 1775).  The geometric figures and the mistakes are typical of his style. Some of his carvings even look like Celtic knots, typical of his homeland in Northern Ireland.


The URL for this post is

Copyright 2013, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Monday, October 21, 2013

Weird Search Terms 2013

Weird Search Terms 2013

Google                                                            My Comment

Israel ащдл painting                                         translation? (How did this land on my blog?)
Wilkinson Wilkerson Wilkison                         You forgot Wilkinsen, Wilkeson, Wilkieson, etc.
Jacob Perkins born 1604 Maine                      I don’t think so…
Balch Quakers 1500’s                                     The Society of Friends was founded in the 1640s
Alan B Sheards Dad                                        Alan B. Shepard the astronaut? Google figured it out!
Why is there a Puritan in my family tree?          Why not?
Are you my mother?                                        Probably not…

Images searched online that actually landed on my blog website ….

Lexington Battle photos                                 Really?
Photos of Puritan Ministers                            Where is that time machine?
Photo Mayflower leaving England                 Ok, who’s pulling my leg?

Questions on Google?

“who are my ansetors”                                    Unable to answer this one until it is spelled correctly
“Who is buried in Von Trapp family plot?”      Ulysses S. Grant?
“Who took the 1715 photo of Ben Franklin?” Must have been Doc Brown
Street map of Londonderry NH 1696              Check with AAA?


Hiawatha statue                                             Is the word “Hiawatha” even on my blog?
Obit judith c bosquet  Nashua                       Nope, no word “bosquet” on my blog either
billfamilyliverpooltocanada                            Google knew I have a Nova Scotia family surname BILL from this? I’m impressed!

Alan Shepard astronaut Holderness               Nope, he was from Derry.  But his grandfather was born in Holderness, NH…

This list of weird and unusual search terms is always a hit every few months, and it usually generates many
comments and emails.  Look down below for links to some of the other blog posts listing weird search terms
that have arrived on my blog statistics page. 

Most popular search terms this year:

1.  white horse                                                    Why is this my #1 search term?
2.  maris del rosario cayetana alfonsa                   Google this to see why it hits my blog so much
3.  nutfield genealogy
4.  duchess of alba                                               See #2 above
5.  how to get on genealogy roadshow
6.  thanksgiving proclamation
7. tombstone
8. villar de ciervo salmanca                                  The village where my husband's grandmother was born
9. maria von trapp
10.  1940 census

Weird Search Terms May 2012 

Weird Search Terms February 2013


The URL for this post is

Copyright 2013, Heather Wilkinson Rojo