Saturday Night Genealogy Fun~(BSGO) Bright Shiny Genealogy Objects

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BSGO are items you happen upon in your research, somewhat serendipitously, and you must follow that lead, sometimes falling into a genealogy black hole!  Sometimes it pays off, sometimes it doesn’t.

1.  I do stumble upon BSGO every once in awhile.

2.  My most recent BSGO was while looking through unindexed record sets on FamilySearch dot org.  I was looking at land records for Genesee County, NY, for the early 1800s as John Ford said his father bought land in the Holland Purchase about the time he was 7 (1815).  Lo and behold, I found land sold to Nathaniel Ford by an Archibald Bennett in 1816. !!! Since I had yet to connect Prudence Bennett, Nathaniel’s wife, to anyone at all, seeing these two names together in a land transaction gave me hope!  I took Archibald Bennett’s name and ran with it.  I found out Archibald Bennett had applied for a Revolutionary War pension from Decatur County, IN, in 1837, one of the witnesses being John Ford (I’ve established that John Ford was in Indiana in the late 1830s).  Archibald Bennett’s Rev War pension application gave his date and place of birth as being Antietam, Maryland, in 1762, and that he was recruited as a Frontier Ranger while living in Washington County, PA, during the Rev War.  The year of birth, 1762, made him too young to be Prudence’s father, so I’m guessing a brother or uncle.  At any rate, just finding that land record opened a lot of doors for me!  I imagine I spent a good hour chasing leads.

3.  If I find something promising, I go after it then and there if at all possible.  If not possible, I make a note of it in Evernote or jot it down.  It depends on the situation how disciplined I am about being mesmerized by BSGO. 🙂

Passing Thoughts~Kinship Determination Project


For the BCG certification portfolio, the final component is #7, the Kinship Determination Project (KDP). It requires 3 generations researched and documented in a narrative lineage, narrative genealogy, or pedigree lineage. The generations used cannot be you or your siblings. So, that excludes your parent’s generation because even if they are the 3rd generation you document, you and/or your siblings, as their child/ren, will be listed. The most recent generation related to yourself that can be used would be your grandparent’s generation.

I’ve been mulling this over…which family and which generation to use, plus which style to use. At first, I thought I wanted to use my Ballard line (Amos>Aaron>Amos Benton). There are good Quaker records there, but Aaron was an only child so that generation is a little sparse. Now, I’m considering the Ford line (Nathaniel>John>Lyman)…definitely a bigger challenge. Both of these lines start with my 4th-great-GF (Amos Ballard and Nathaniel Ford), so if I’m the first generation I’d be using my 5th, 6th, and 7th generations, if that makes any sense.

I’m pretty sure I’ve touched on this before…from a webinar…found it! here

Styles (the bold is mine; everything in bold is per the BCG FAQ on their website

  • Narrative Genealogy (Descending)
    A narrative genealogy is an historical account of a family, in which each individual life is presented in historical context with biographical and genealogical details. Typically, a narrative genealogy presents the generations in a descending arrangement. Starting with a more-distant ancestor or ancestral couple, it comes forward through the generations, attempting to account for all known descendants, in all lines (female as well as male) for a certain number of generations.
  • Narrative Pedigree (Ascending)
    A narrative pedigree is essentially the reverse of the narrative genealogy. Instead of starting with an ancestral couple and tracking all descendants forward in time, it begins with a more-recent person and develops his or her ancestry in various branches. As with a narrative genealogy, a narrative pedigree should provide a discussion of the lives that have been assembled for each person, not just a recital of the vital statistics that would appear on a pedigree chart.
  • Narrative Lineage (Descending or Ascending)
    A narrative lineage is a genealogical and biographical account of a family in a direct line, through a certain number of generations. It might start with a more-distant couple and come forward through the generations, or start with a more-recent person and proceed backward in time. A narrative lineage would provide the same personal detail on each couple and their children as called for in a narrative genealogy or a narrative pedigree.

I think I’ll do a narrative lineage and use the Fords. I have other plans for the Ballards! I need to get on the ball and find marriage records for Genesee Co, NY!!!



John Ford

John Ford is one of my Civil War ancestors.  He is my 3rd-great-grandfather.  He was born in Verona, Oneida County, New York, on 9 June 1808.  He died in Hymera, Sullivan County, Indiana, on 23 September 1884.

From what I’ve been able to glean about his life, he visited at the very least 7 states during his lifetime, one being California.  I don’t know which states he passed through to make it out west so 7 is a conservative figure.

Thankfully, he wrote an autobiography for a county history book and included many details about his life. I found this in the History of Greene and Sullivan Counties, State of Indiana (it’s a .pdf file that I created):


He was a very active man during his lifetime, it seems. I’d like to learn more about his childhood and his parents and siblings and his first marriage (see forthcoming post regarding Genealogy Do-Over Week 1). I’ve been working on finding documentation to prove each of his statements in his autobiography; some I’ve found, others don’t exist, and I still have a lot of research to do with this family.

*Was going through some indices on FamilySearch dot org for New York Land Records and stumbled across a grantee/grantor of Nathaniel Ford (John’s father) from Archibald Bennett in 1816 in Genesee County!! Huge find! Later, while researching Archibald Bennett, I found his Revolutionary War pension application from when he was living in Decatur County, Indiana, in 1837; guess who one of his witnesses was? None other than John Ford!!! John Ford attested that Archibald’s date of birth was 12 January 1762 at the mouth of the Antietam Creek in Maryland.As it turns out, Bennett’s Rev War claim for pension was rejected. He was a member of the Frontier Rangers.