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Gathering Leaves – The Book

Gathering Leaves is more than just a history of my family. Its original working title was “How I Did It!” Besides all of the detail and footnotes, I hope to convey to the convey to the casual reader my tips and tricks for how anyone with access to the Internet can find their ancestors and connect with long-lost cousins. This began as a labor of … Continue reading Gathering Leaves – The Book

Memorial Day Remembrances

According to its Wikipedia article, the origins of Memorial Day are complex. There is debate as to whether Memorial Day (or Decoration Day as it has been called) begin in the Confederate South during the American Civil War or was started by the Federal veterans organization the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) in 1868. Knowing about this controversy, I am reminded each year at … Continue reading Memorial Day Remembrances

Spiegel Girls

This photograph is interesting because there are multiple inscriptions written on the back. In one hand that appears to be that of either my great grandmother or great grandfather, is written “August Spiegel children”. Then in another hand is written “Dorothy and Laverne Spiegel – taken September 1918”August Spiegel was the youngest brother of my great-grandmother. He was born in Dallas and according to my … Continue reading Spiegel Girls

The Lodge at Cloudcroft

The inscription on the back of this picture identifies the woman in the center as being my great grandmother Helen D Spiegel, that the woman seated on the right is Claudia Meador “(now Mrs. Eli Sanger),” and that the photograph was taken in Cloudcroft, New Mexico. Cloudcroft is a resort town north of El Paso. A famous resort known as The Lodge at Cloudcroft was … Continue reading The Lodge at Cloudcroft

Breaking Through the Brickwall

There were two very surprising finds in the package of photos.  1)  A photo of my great-great-grandmother, Sophia (?) Spiegel. Her maiden name is unknown (or is it?) Picture was taken in Savannah c. 1870 2) And what appears to be a photo of Sophia’s father! What I know about Sophia is that according to the US Census of 1870 Sophia’s birthplace was New York … Continue reading Breaking Through the Brickwall

Helen & Friend

This photo is marked: Helen Von Spiegel (left) and Annie Meker(?) (right) Mineral Wells (Texas) Aug 1908 The city is named for mineral springs in the area, which were highly popular in the early 1900s. Mineral Wells is most famous for its Baker Hotel. Mineral Wells also hosts a variety of paranormal hauntings and ghost tours including the Baker Hotel, the Crazy Water Hotel, close … Continue reading Helen & Friend