Good Sunday morning, everyone! We are in the middle of history being made, like it or not. I want to remember all that is happening day by day. I, personally, want to be better prepared should anything like this happen again.

Not to be confused with Veterans Day, which will be celebrated on Nov 11, 2020, today has been designated as National Vietnam War Veterans Day according to a law recently signed by President Trump. More information on this event can be read at

Today, it is rare that one hears about a case of hydrophobia, also known as rabies. This was not always the case. In the past, the word struck terror in a neighborhood because the only hope of survival was by applying a mad stone, which consisted of compacted vegetable and mucous matter foun…

Ron Lee dropped the picture by. It was a view of Gordon Bridgman’s Standard Service Station in Oakwood taken by American Air Photography. The image was captured mid-way through the last century. Oakwood’s new fire station now occupies the space along U.S. Route 150 where Gordon operated the …

The Illinois State Genealogical Society (ISGS) has introduced a new advantage for being a member of that society: a series of video presentations to assist researchers who use libraries, archives and other research facilities in Illinois.

Good Sunday morning, everyone! We are living in difficult times now, but we will get through this too. Too, I said! That’s because pandemics aren’t new. They have happened before, and they will happen again.

Downtown Danville in the 1960s was chockful of little businesses owned by local people who worked hard and had fun doing it. One of them was Fritsch’s, run by Gene Fritsch.

Called the proverbial dean of American genealogical research by Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr., Johni Cerny died Feb. 22, 2020 in Lehi, Utah. She was born in Kansas City, Mo., received a bachelor’s degree in social work and genealogical research in 1969 at Brigham Young University, …

Good Sunday morning, everyone! I recently went to an event where in one of the programs they talked about was the need to have boundaries, whether personal or work. So, for this column I dug into this idea deeper.

FamilySearch has posted billions of images of historic records from around the world. However, about 80 percent of them are not indexed. Thus, many of our ancestors’ records are “hiding” in these unindexed digital record images.

I’ve been thinking about Bob Wright, the legendary Commercial-News reporter/editor/columnist, historian, civic leader and all-around great guy.

Matthew Connelly has posted a disturbing New York Times article at that reports that the National Archives “is letting millions of documents … be destroyed or deleted.” This is partially because “Congress has simply been unwilling to pay” for the preservation of s…

Good Sunday morning, everyone! The Groundhog did not see his shadow and Easter is six weeks away, so we just have to hang on a little longer to get through these dark, cold, dreary days.

Lucy Harmon celebrated her ninth birthday on February 18, 1864. She received a picture from her father, Colonel Oscar Harmon, for that special day.

The genealogical community does not need another “how to” book. There are many such texts that have passed the test of time and are consulted by beginners as well as advanced researchers.

Good Sunday morning, everyone! Last week we had the final drawing for our United Way Incentive Program Car Giveaway. It was an exciting event again this year, going all the way to the sixth candidate to get our winner.

At the January 1890 meeting of the Williamsport town council, the following petition was submitted. “Whereas, professional peddlers and hawkers have become numerous and are selling inferior articles of merchandise to the citizens of Williamsport and vicinity and charging exorbitant prices th…

The Illinois State Genealogical Society (ISGS—at Honors and Awards Committee is always seeking nominees who have made exceptional contributions to Illinois genealogy.

Danville’s courthouse square, Danville’s American Legion Post 210 and column number 189 of Memorial Stadium at the University of Illinois bear the name of a great man: Curtis G. Redden.

Good Sunday morning, everyone! I like David Ramsey. He is a financial advisor, author and radio personality. You can hear him every weekday afternoon on WITY.

Dig deep within yourself, for there is a fountain of goodness ever ready to flow if you will keep digging.” — Marcus Aurelius

Illinois will be one of a few states to recognize Wednesday, Feb. 12, as a state holiday — Abraham Lincoln’s birthday. The U.S. government has chosen to acknowledge this important event along with George Washington’s birthday later this month on Feb. 17, Presidents’ Day, the third Monday in …

Good Sunday morning, everyone! Talking money this morning, how to keep more of it kind of money talk! You liked the sound of that didn’t you? Most of these take very little work but a lot of self-discipline.

America struggled to gear up for war in the months following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. The nation was ushered into World War II by the Japanese surprise attack.

Genealogist Joe Beine’s website, Online Death Indexes, Records and Obituaries (at has been updated. This most recent update contains Indiana’s Tippecanoe Historical Association Genealogy Indexes including Early Tippecanoe County Obituaries & Death Notices, 18…

Good Sunday morning, everyone! Our goal at United Way is to help everyone in our community be healthier, better educated and more financially stable. So, my topics are usually relating to those three subjects.

Judy G. Russell’s (“The Legal Genealogist”) article, “Through The Golden Door: Immigration after the Civil War (1864-1924),” was a handout at a recent meeting of the German Genealogy Group ( and available to members of that society, includes a timeline of laws af…

This year marks the 100th anniversary of women obtaining the right to vote with Indiana ratifying the 19th Amendment. A special election in 1921 added a women’s suffrage amendment to the state constitution.

Good Sunday morning, everyone! At United Way we fight for the health, education and financial stability of every person in every community. I believe each goes hand in hand with the other. That is why I write about the different topics pertaining to diet, exercise, budgeting, etc.

“Alphonse was the farmers’ friend when they really needed one,” S.T. Monroe said when he reflected on the hard times of the Great Depression in the 1930s. He was referring to Alphonse Meis, owner of Meis Brothers department store on East Main Street in Danville.

Ten months to go before the presidential election. According to his devotees, only one candidate’s opinion is right; if any opponent can be abused, discounted, shamed, interrupted or ridiculed in some snarky made-for-TV way, victory!

Good Sunday morning, everyone! How do you feel about the new Illinois law legalizing marijuana? There are pros and cons to it, as there are to any topic, and everyone has his or her own opinion.

Anyone who has not started tracing a family’s history does not realize the fun, excitement and pure joy that can be enjoyed with this challenging project. As one who began searching because of the encouragement of a dear lady, Bertha Kamm, more than 40 years ago, I could never have imagined …

The ledger lodgers signed for J. C. Pierce at his Pierce Hotel in Ridge Farm was a mammoth book. A foot wide and 19 inches in length, it provided ample space for signatures of people paying the $2 per night fee. The first entry in the book was made by J. C. Curtis of Tuscola on July 1, 1898.

I have a confession to make. I’ve never liked asking for help. As a kid, I constantly heard the phrase, “If you want something done right, do it yourself.” So I often thought explaining a task to someone else would be a waste of time because I could get it done faster if I just did it myself.

Good Sunday morning, everyone! In the last six months, I have known three men who had a heart attack in a public place.

Genealogical researcher, Karen Zach, has been doing genealogy for more than 50 years and as administrator of the Indiana Genealogy Facebook Page she notes that Facebook is a fairly new tool but offers “a whole new aspect of the genealogical world.”

Spring Hill Cemetery always has been a special, sacred place to me. Its wooded hills and gently twisting lanes often lead me to the graves of four great-great-grandparents, three great-grandparents, three grandparents, several great-aunts and great-uncles, plus dear old Mom and Dad.

The Illinois State Genealogical Society (ISGS) Newsletter (Nov/Dec. 2019 issue) has listed the following meetings for 2020 — all open to the public:

Good Sunday morning, everyone! Every year in January we get a new year. Sometimes we are so glad to see the prior year go because it was just a difficult year and sometimes it will always be remembered for the great and lasting memories it brought.

The popular website has “launched a new function” allowing users to “build same-sex family trees on its free website.” The official announcement can be read at and Judy G. Russell’s (“The Legal Genealogist”) comments can be read at https://tinyurl.…

Good Sunday morning, everyone! As the new year approaches, I don’t want to ask you about your New year’s resolutions but how can we take this Christmas spirit of giving into the new year.

In April 1915, The Review Republican asked who had the longest continuous residence in Warren County. An absence of less than one year or military service would not be counted. The contest would end in June and the winner would receive a five-year subscription to the newspaper.

Early in 1945, Lt. Freda Haworth was in the bubble nose of a war plane being transported from Australia to her military medical hospital on New Guinea. She and Ruth Sheets Miller had graduated from Danville’s Lake View Hospital School of Nursing in 1941 and were serving in the army during Wo…

Anyone whose ancestors were early settlers (pioneers) in the location where they settled might be eligible to obtain a certificate recognizing that event. Many states, and several counties, offer certificates if those individuals lived there prior to a specific date.

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