Bill's Genealogy Blog

Bill Buchanan is a long-time genealogy enthusiast, living in Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada. This blog will describe my experiences as I research my family history and help others.

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Location: Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada

I am a retired online school teacher. I love family history. Since 2007, I have spent much of my time providing part-time support for the world's largest free family history site This is very rewarding. I have helped others with the Family Tree and related FamilySearch products.
In 2010-2018 Iserved in the Edmonton Riverbend Family History Centre. I have a FHC blog at Bill's Family History Center Blog For information the Latter-day Saints and family history click

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

I Am Applying Again to Serve for Free in FamilySearch Support from my Home
Don't I already have enough to do? Actually, like most people I have lots to do!

I felt so useful when I served in FamilySearch Support ...  I really did enjoy it. My background and training was a nearly perfect match for what they needed. I will need to go through two interviews before I can have my application faxed-in. But that is my plan. The people I served with at FamilySearch are wonderful!

The person who is handling my application wrote to me.
"Because your internet service is so slow, we asked Emma whether she wanted to attempt to work with you, and she said definitely YES! Furthermore, both Mindy and Luisa overheard the conversation and chimed in with “Hallelujah!” So they will work around the slow internet somehow."

So my internet access is not up to par, but they still remember me after nearly two year's absence and they want to work with me. That feels wonderful!

LIDGETT RESEARCHOver the past few weeks I have been researching various people, including the family of James Lidgett and Christiana Jacklin of Ludford, Lincolnshire, England. In his marriage certificate he gives his father's name as William. There are only two William Lidgetts in the Caistor District in the 1841 and 1851 censuses. One of them appears to be be running a boarding house, from the names and ages of the other occupants. The other is an Agricultural Labourer, as is our James. Since occupations tended to be passed from father to son in rural areas, this William is probably the father of James.

1851 census - household transcription
Person: LIDGETT, William
Address: Holton Le Moor
Name Relation Condition Sex Age Birth Year Occupation Where Born
LIDGETT, William Head Married M 70 1781 Ag Lab North Kelsey Lincolnshire
LIDGETT, Mary Wife Married F 71 1780 Misterton Lincolnshire
LIDGETT, John Son Married M 27 1824 Ag Lab Normanby Wold Lincolnshire
LIDGETT, Mary Wife Married F 21 1830 Market Rasen Lincolnshire
RG number:HO107 Piece:2114 Folio:334 Page:12
Registration District:Caistor Sub District:Caistor Enumeration District:25 & 12
Ecclesiastical Parish:Civil Parish:Holton Le Moor Municipal Borough:Address:Holton Le Moor
[In the 1841 census he says he was born in Bishop Norton. North Kelsey is 5 miles from Bishop Norton, he was likely born on a farm somewhere between them.]

This record identifies his parents:
William Ledgett
birth 4 February 1781
Bishop Norton, Lincoln, England
Parents: Richard Ledgett, Mary

This marriage date is consistent with William's birth, and gives his mother's maiden name.
Richard Lidget
England Marriages, 1538–1973
marriage: 14 May 1779 —Hackthorn, Lincoln, England
spouse: Mary Gilbard
record title: England Marriages, 1538–1973
groom's name: Richard Lidget
bride's name: Mary Gilbard
marriage date: 14 May 1779
marriage place: Hackthorn, Lincoln, England
indexing project (batch) number: M02883-3
system origin: England-EASy
source film number: 1450401

Probably Richard's christening:
England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975
Name: Richard Lidgett Gender: Male
Baptism/Christening Date: 15 Aug 1756
Father's Name: John Lidgett
Mother's Name: Mary
Indexing Project (Batch) Number: C03419-2 System Origin: England-ODM
Source Film Number: 508083
[about 6 miles from Hackthorn]
So I feel that progress is being made.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Karen Ing
1960 - 2011
[in photo with husband Darcy Doble and father Charles Ing]

I just received word that my first cousin, Karen Susan Ing Doble has passed away. She is the wife of Darcy Doble, and last year they celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary by renewing their wedding vows. Not too long ago, Karen and Uncle Evans were the winners of the horseshoe competition at the Ing family reunion. This year Darcy brought Uncle Charlie to the reunion, but Karen was too sick to come. Karen has courageously battled cancer for the last few years, and we knew that her health was failing. Her death was expected, but we will all miss her warm and jolly personality. We extend our sympathy to Darcy and to her father Charles Ing, and friends and family. Funeral arrangements have not yet been announced.

Celebration of Life - Harold StangelandWednesday, August 24 at 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Location: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,
14325 - 53rd Ave, Edmonton, AB

To celebrate the life of Harold Stangeland we invite you to join us at the Riverbend Stake Centre on Wednesday August 24th at 1:00 p.m. Grave dedication to follow at the Glenwood Memorial Gardens. Remembered in our hearts forever; always with a smile. We will miss him.

[information from]

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Harold Stangeland (in photo with wife and daughter)

I have known Harold Stangeland for several years, but he became a member of my family when my son married his daughter. Yesterday he died at the young age of 60 as the result of a head injury from a fall. An avid golfer, Harold was in excellent health. His quiet but warm and friendly personality lighted-up any space he was in. He spent much of his time serving others in the belief that when you are in the service of others you are also serving God. I am sure he will still find opportunities to serve.

Farewell my friend, enjoy a happy eternity!

Monday, August 08, 2011

On the Green Chain

Saturday night I received a phone call. "Our Sunday School lesson tomorrow is about the value of work. I wonder if you would be willing to share an early experience that taught you to work hard." I agreed, and this is the experience I shared with the class.

As a teenager, I grew up in the little sawmill town of Edgewater, BC. When I graduated from high school I found work at the local sawmill. The mill had three different saws producing lumber. One was a "gang-saw" that produced several boards simultaneously. As boards were sawn from the logs, they were put on a conveyor called the “green chain” for sorting and piling. My job was to pull boards off the conveyor onto the appropriate pile before the next board came along. Some of the boards were 20' - 2 x12s that probably weighed as much as I did. If I missed a board, it might drop off the end of the conveyor and that was definitely a “no-no”.

I learned two important things from this job.
Firstly, I learned to work hard.
Secondly, I learned that I didn't want to do that job for the rest of my life!

Within a few weeks, a friend invited me to join him in Calgary to pursue a higher education. I accepted his invitation and left the sawmill. When the sawmill closed a few years later, I was living half a world away in France. It is interesting to reflect back on life and the course of events.

Sunday, August 07, 2011

Ing Family Reunion
I really enjoyed the family reunion. As usual, I brought a descendancy chart so that everyone could find their family. I was happy to receive updates.

Conversation was a big part of things, sometimes accompanied by cribbage or other games. Outside we had a horse-shoes competition and I let myself get talked into competing. To my total dismay, Darlene and I made it into the final round, where we were defeated 21-15 by Dave and Diane. (If I had thought there was any chance of making it to the final round I would have borrowed some sunscreen! Oh well, hindsight is 20/20, as they say.)

They also had a beanbag toss, where Judy and Laurel took part. Andrew's family also came. We had at least 40 people there, about an average turn-out for the Ing family reunion. I found a new genealogy buddy among the younger generation. That is always a plus! I had invited cousins from North Carolina and Australia, but they couldn't come. Maybe next time ...

Friday, August 05, 2011

Ing Family Reunion
The Ing family reunion is at Breton, Alberta tomorrow. I have been looking forward to it, especially since I missed it last year because I was helping with Evelyn & Ed's move to Wabasca. This time we also have a scheduling conflict. We have been invited to the wedding and reception of the daughter of our good friends the Bennetts. This is a girl we have known since she was born. We will miss the wedding but I think that by leaving the reunion at 5 PM we will be able to attend the reception.

I will bring along a chart of the descendants of Thomas and Martha Ing. I would like to video some interviews with family members. I plan to bring the night stand built by my uncle Jack Buchanan so that I can give it to his daughter Velda if she comes to the reunion.

Border Crossing Record
Last night at the Family History Center I was looking for information on my 2g-grandfather, James Watson in and I found that several people agree with my analysis that he is the son of James Watson (a sergeant in a regiment) and Isobel Gillis. That is somewhat reassuring. But even more exciting was an unexpected border crossing record for my g-grandfather George Watson on July 31, 1913. My first thought was "In 1913 he had been living at Millet, Alberta for 9 years, so why would he be crossing the border from the USA into Ontario? This must be a case of mistaken identity." But when I looked at at it I noticed the names of the two names on the lines below George and his wife: Mary Steel and Elizabeth Steel.  I thought, "Whoa! I wonder ...!" As I scrolled to the right on the page, a powerful story unfolded. George and Jane Watson were traveling from Raber, Michigan to Millet, Alberta to join their son Richard. They were bringing with them two 4-month old grandchildren "wards of grandparents Mr. & Mrs. Geo. Watson". A quick check of my database showed that their daughter Mary Elizabeth Watson Steele had died on 22 Jun 1913, just a few weeks before. Her husband Frank was left with several small children to care for. Apparently a set of newborn twins was more than he could take care of, so Mary's parents agreed to take care of the twins.

Many years ago, my father told me that his aunt Minnie (Mary) had died giving birth to twins. I had never found any corroborating evidence. When I finally saw her death certificate, the official cause of death was "chronic valvular disease of the heart", but I believe that the strain of giving birth to twins was a contributing factor, as she died 3 months later. So is Nellie really "Mary" or is she "Elizabeth"? Not even her death certificate gives any clue! When Allan and Carrie Watson adopted the girls they changed their names from Steele to Watson and apparently they changed the given names as well!

So this record answers some puzzling old questions, but adds some new questions of its own.

Much of the joy is in the journey, not just the arrival.