J. L. BELL is a Massachusetts writer who specializes in (among other things) the start of the American Revolution in and around Boston. He is particularly interested in the experiences of children in 1765-75. He has published scholarly papers and popular articles for both children and adults. He was consultant for an episode of History Detectives, and contributed to a display at Minute Man National Historic Park.

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Sunday, September 28, 2014

A Short Look at the Vita Brevis Blog

Recently I came across the Vita Brevis blog from the New England Historic Genealogical Society, “designed to offer the reader short essays by the Society’s expert staff on their own research as well as news of the greater genealogical community.”

Entries include Alice Kane on “Mapping Vermont”:
Regardless of the jurisdictional dispute between New York and New Hampshire, much of the vital and land records remained with the Vermont towns recording them, while probate records are held by the probate district within the county – Strafford [a town moved from one county to another, based on different colonial grants] is covered by the Bradford Probate District, for which digital images may be viewed at https://familysearch.org/search/collection/1807377.
David Allen Lambert on the families of color in eighteenth-century Stoughton:
By the early eighteenth century, the population of the Punkapoag Indians was diminishing. Marriages between Punkapoag Indians and former slaves were not uncommon. One particular Punkapoag Indian–Elizabeth Will (the daughter of Nuff Will and Sarah Moho)–married former slave Isaac Williams, a Revolutionary War soldier from Roxbury, Massachusetts. This African-American/Native American family would live in the northern part of Stoughton for over half a century. Williams collected a federal pension for his service during the war. His widow Elizabeth lived to be more than 100 years of age, dying in 1848.
And Lindsay Fulton took a look at family customs in the previous century when illegitimate births were rarer: What surname did such a child inherit?

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