Tuesday, January 20, 2015

SNGF: Random Genealogy

Randy Seaver posted his weekly Saturday Night Genealogy Challenge and I'm a few days late, but decided to give it a try! His challenge? Do some random genealogy research and basically report what you started with and what you learned.

I like how Diane at Michigan Family Trails changed it up a bit and went with the first person in her tree and limited it to one hour. So, I've decided to go that route.

My person? Her name is Agnes and she married Cline Quigley.

What I know? She was born in about 1820 in Pennsylvania and had 3 (known) children. I only have the 1880 census which is in Beech Creek, Clinton County, Pennsylvania. It lists 5 members of the family: Agnes (age 60), her husband Cline (age 63) & the 3 children (ages 18 to 25). It also lists an 18 year old servant named Annie Quiggle. (Is she related?) Everyone, including the servant and all parents, were born in Pennsylvania.

And now, an hour of research...

1. "related content" on Ancestry's 1880 census

I found the 1860, 1870 & then 1850 census. I found 5 more children (for a total of 8) and Agnes' middle initial: T. [Note: I now believe this "T" is actually for her maiden name, not her middle name.]

2. Other people researching Agnes on Ancestry

I didn't find anything that related.

3. Mocavo

I found a great article in "History of Cumberland and Adams Counties, Pennsylvania" about one of the daughter's of Agnes & Cline. Their daughter, Mary C (one of the 'new' children I just learned about) was born May 21, 1848 in Beech Creek, Clinton County, Pennsylvania. It says she was the daughter of "Hon. Cline, ex-associate judge of Clinton County, Penn., and Agnes (Thompson) Quigley, old settlers of Clinton County, Penn."

So, I have at least a piece of evidence that Agnes' maiden name was Thompson and her husband was an associate judge! Two more pieces of information!

4. Find-A-Grave & BillionGraves

I didn't find anything even though a private tree on Ancestry says they have her burial place through Find-A-Grave.

Death Notice for Mrs. Agnes Quigley, Altoon Tribune, Altoona, Pennsylvania, 22 Apr 1896,
page 7, column 1, digital image newspapers.com(http://www.newspapers.com) accessed 19 Jan 2015

5. newspapers.com

Yes!! I found a death notice for her! She died in 1896. (I also found a few clippings about either her husband or son I need to explore.)

6. Google

I found a book called "History of the Beech Creek Area of Clinton County Pennsylvania" that also listed Agnes' maiden name as Thompson. This book has a LOT more I need to read!

7. FamilySearch

I didn't find anything.

8. fold3 (for husband, Cline)

I didn't find anything.


In less than an hour (about 45 minutes), I uncovered quite a bit of new information using some of my 'go to' searches.

Why should I research this random person from my tree? Agnes was the wife of a grandson of my patriot ancestor, Michael Quigley, who married Frances Catharine Kline/Cline. By researching this couple, I can uncover more information about my direct ancestors, too. Also, it's always a good idea to research 'down' the line! You never know who inherited family photos, a family Bible, or even who might have heard family stories!

Do you have other sites you regularly check that I didn't use?

Do we share common ancestors? I'd love to talk! Please write me at drleeds@sbcglobal.net


  1. Great Post Dana! I like how you organized how you research each website! :) Glad you were able to find some info on her! :)

  2. I have never used newspapers.com- how do you like it?? :) Do you use it often?

    1. I use it ALL the time! It has been an incredible resource for me. I have about 600 clipped articles! I've found amazing things there!

  3. Good work Dana! Great new info on Agnes. Like, Carrie, I haven't had any experience with Newspapers.com. I have used Genealogybank a lot. I also like your presentation of what you found.

    1. I haven't had any success with GenealogyBank. Maybe it depends on where you family lived so what papers each company has digitized? I would check out newspapers.com, though!

  4. This looks like a fun exercise. One other place I often look is the old forums that are now closed but still available to view - Rootsweb and Genforum.

  5. I love the Saturday Night Genealogy Fun prompts. I missed doing this one, but may backtrack because it does look fun. I love what you found out.


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