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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

His Gun Collection Rode Shotgun

Lonnie Holloway was buried recently in the front seat of his 1973 Pontiac Catalina.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Wearing a Wig at the Laundromat Is the First Sign of Trouble

Here's the new Ancestry.co.uk commercial that's airing in the UK. It features a series of delusional people (genealogists, I imagine) denied care at Britain's psychiatric hospitals because of socialized medicine.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Life Before Guitar Hero

Amy Crehore found photographs of her relatives camping in 1890.

See the girl playing her tennis racket like a guitar in the top photo? I found these two gems in a box of ancient family photos. I am related to these people.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Should've Hired a Fact Checker

L. L. Bean's autobiography begins:

Greenwood, Maine, a small upper-Oxford town that no longer exists, was the first place the name "L. L. Bean" ever appeared—the town clerk put it on my birth certificate on October 13, 1872.
This sentence is absolutely true—except that Greenwood still exists, L. L. Bean's birth was not recorded here (and certainly not on the day of his birth), and even if it were, his full name "Leon Leonwood" would probably have been used.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

The Motive Was Not Genealogical

Someone walked into a bar in Chicago and stole a Playboy magazine from 1970—part of a collection assembled by the owner's uncle.

"I don't know why anyone would do it," said bar co-owner Scott Weiner, 28. "That's the only thing I would think of. [She is] somebody's relative. They saw their mom up there and thought, 'I'm taking that down.' "

Not so, says Babila. Reached at her Los Angeles home, the former model, who once lived in Wicker Park, said she doesn't have any children or ex-husbands in Chicago. [Link]

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

My Blood Runs Red

I just discovered one of the most interesting facts I've ever learned about one of my ancestors. I'm not sure if it was a family secret, or just something that no one thought to mention.

Earlier this evening, my mother was thumbing through a stack of photographs my grandmother took in Finland back in 1992, and showed me one taken of my great-grandfather's mother's gravestone. I wondered why no picture was taken of her husband's stone.

Just now I was Googling my great-grandfather's surname (Tamlander) and the name of his parish (Lappi), and found this (partially translated here). It says that my great-great-grandfather, Fredrik Nestor Tamlander, was a Red Guard participating in the brief but deadly Finnish Civil War, and died in the Suomenlinna prison camp, 2 July 1918. The camps were not pleasant: Fredrik was one of 5,000 who died in the month of July alone. Presumably he lies in a mass grave somewhere off the coast of Helsinki.

In short, my ancestor was one of those socialists that Glenn Beck has been warning us about. I am so proud that he died fighting for the cause of universal health care.

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