Tag: ancestry

History on the Screen 2: Thanks Be to GOT!

GAMEOTVMONEY

Thank heavens for the success of Game of Thrones!

BernardCornwell_TheLastKingdom

The-last-kingdom-poster

Its huge wave of popularity emboldended moneymen, er, TV producers to greenlight similar shows set grimly & grimily in that distant past of dark armor, shields & swords that gives Game of Thrones its look and feel.

Bernard_Cornwell copy.jpg

Surging forth first (or at least most notably) on this cashflow has been the epic & popular “Vikings”, and now “The Last Kingdom”, a BBC adaptation from a book in a series by British historical novelist and former news correspondent Bernard Cornwell that chronicles goings-on in England in the centuries before the year 1000.

And it’s awesome.

Statue_d'Alfred_le_Grand_à_WinchesterIt’s set during the reign of King Alfred the Great of England, so in the late decades of the 800s AD/Common Era (CE). Like stories &960 copy cinematic adaptations before such as Little Big Man, it inserts a fictional character into totally historically accurate situations to tell the past context in human detail.

For now, and for any fan of the show, here’s a chart I’ve done showing Alfred’s descendants for a few generations. Click on it and in the new tab click it again so you can check it out in detail if you like. More on this show later.

FROM ALFRED SM2

More on the show next time.

 

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Historical Imaging

VAUX GRDNS 1870s

Portfolio

Showcasing images I’ve created, composited and/or altered in order to make historical situations, places or circumstances more readily accessible to as many people as possible.

This grew out of my effort–shared with anyone who gets intricately lost in making family trees–of trying to find relevant imagery to use for people of whom no pictures exist (e.g., anyone who lived before the 1840s). But not just relevant, you really want to push it further and find images that are interesting, too. Or at least I do. And accurate, for instance, to the time when a particular ancestor or historical personage might have actually lived or been at a given location. So from these endeavors, the following sampling of images.

First Example

This is Château de Jumilhac, a castle south of Limoges in southwestern France. In the course of working on a friend’s family tree, I learned some of his ancestors had been ChteaudeJumilhacleGrand copyinvolved in actually building it back in the 1200s. (!!) They’d been among its lords, too, for 150 years or so. After first thinking, aha! whatta sweet image to use for that string of ancestors, I learned as I read more about them and it, that the conical rooftops (that will surely strike Americans as quintessentially “fairy-tale”) were added hundreds of years after his family had been on the scene in the depths of the actual Middle Ages. Well I couldn’t use a historically inaccurate image, so I did something about it.

ChteaudeJumilhacleGrandOLD copy

 

 

This is much closer to what it would have looked like to the de Bruchard family as they knew it.

 

 

 

An older photograph also lent itself to easy changing:

chat_jum6

 

 

 

Before

 

 

 

Chateau-JUMILHAC-LE-GRAND-OLD2 copy

 

 

 

After

 

 

 

 

So the examples here are each within a category:

  • People & Location
  • Now to Then
  • Obsolete Professions
  • SketchUp 4 Teaching History
  • Now to Then 2 (showing elements)

People & Location

  1. Swedish origin spot of my great-grandmother and 3 generations of her people

BIG AERIAL

South-central Sweden, Vastragotaland.

 

2. Recent Dukes of Argyll at their seat, Inverary Castle, Scotland

DUKE 11 1

 

Now to Then

  1. View from the Mayflower

2. Castle Hornby

On the left, as seen around 1900 (& today); on the right, as it was when my ancestor lived there (incidentally, just about the last–my most recent–ancestor to reside in a castle…500 years ago!)

 

Obsolete professions

Two variations

 

SketchUp 4 Teaching History

  1. Construction of the White House (the Executive’s Mansion) in the 1790s in Washington, D.C.

These are views of a multi-layered SketchUp model I’ve built of various stages of the White House’s construction. Here we see the foundation as it was originally laid down in 1791-2. The layers reflect the actual materials, orientation and configuration learned from researching primary source material (such as reports of the crew who laid the new foundations in the 1950s as to what they found as well as reports of Thomas jeffereson, architect Benjamin Latrobe and others involved in the early days of the building). The close-up is the northwest corner, seen from just a few feet south and west of it.

WH OLD 3

Here’s the southern facade, seen from the southeast, depicted as the Limestone facing began to be mounted on the brick walls.

And the same face seen from the southwest, a little further along in the process:

WH OLD 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WH OLD 1

 

And here’s the north (properly, the front) as it neared completion. (The portico that we know today  was not added until the 1820s).

 

Now to Then 2 (showing elements)

Here you can see various elements that went in to the image at the very top of the page (the black & white 1800s looking street).

That’s Liverpool, England. Specifically, Vauxhall Road, looking across it from near where my gr-gr-grandad, a guy named Edward Dunn, had a business in the 1870s, to the intersection with Blacklock Street, toward the site of Vauxhall Gardens, a housing project that was destroyed in WWII during the Blitz just before Xmas 1940.

VAUX GRDNS 1940

 

 

Composite of contemporary shot (made B&W) with old shot.

 

 

 

VAUX TEST OLD COMP

 

Composite of two images; the corner building has been added to the street shot. I then added this with the B&W version of the current corner seen in the shot above this to get the image seen at the very top of the page.

This is the current shot, unaltered.

VAUX GRDNS 2000s

 

 

And the combo with the building destroyed by Nazi bombs in WWII is below again for easy comparison.

 

 

 

VAUX GRDNS 1940

Brothers Pt. 3 – Y-DNA Haplogroup Trees

AFRICA L2R copy 2

Welcome to the third part of this little spree of posts on Y-DNA and the worldwide lines of descent, wherein you’ll find haplogroup trees of the world’s men. Those men have been the agents and embodiments of its (Y-DNA’s) dispersal. Here are links to Part 1 & Part 2.

In this post I’m sharing more detailed charts I’ve made showing these descents, first of which is a slight revision of the first one I posted showing the African “trunk” of what I’m calling the world’s brothers. The main difference is simply that it’s oriented left to right instead of top down; I’ve also added some brief explanatory notes on it. Again, all the charts I post should be clicked on and then opened again at their max size.

YDNA African haplogroup tree, haplogroup A, haplogroup B, haplogroup A00

And next is the branch that came from “CT Little Brother” in the chart above. CT is the working designation of the Y-DNA haplogroup of the men who first left the garden-like cradle of Africa about 72,000 years ago, and from whom 90% of the world’s men descend.

YDNA tree haplogroup CT, haplogroup DE, halpogroup E, haplogroup F

Next we have “The Rest” of us, the Brothers. It’s worth noting that almost all of the migrations demonstrated in these charts were back in the Old Stone Age (Paleolithic period).

YDNA haplogroup tree, haplogroup IJ, haplogroup R, haplogroup O

And last for today is this amazingly elegant & simplified version of the big picture from a great site called The Genetic Atlas:

Y-DNA-tree

Thanks for visiting! And as always, if you share any of these Y-DNA haplogroup trees, just link back here or attribute them otherwise.

Brothers Pt.2

ydna basx.png

I made this chart to just show the basics of what’s up with Y-DNA to give context for anyone who wants or needs it to yesterday’s post.

And the map below puts it in a geographic context. Always click on images like this map or charts so you can see them larger, more easily and in detail. Cuz it turns out that the degree to which we humans are just such a mix is truly astounding. This migration route maps only begins to hint at that.

More later today! Watch this National Geographic documentary if you haven’t seen it.

Migration2.jpg

Of Richard III and the Once and Future Plantagenet Y-DNA

                            dna-strand-1

If you’ve clicked here from my Richard III Y-DNA article on Global Family Reunion’s blog, you’re welcome to skip ahead, just a little further down the page to where you see a picture of an artistic model of DNA on the left and a photo of an actual chromosome on the right.

If you’ve arriving from anywhere else: hey there! Thanks for clicking in. The following briefly explains what you’ll find.

This post is serving as a means to share additional details about the amazing discovery of the remains of England’s King Richard III (1452-1485) and the scientific study from the University of Leicester in the UK that announced this item of historical as well as genealogical interest to many around the world. I wrote an article about it which is living happily ever after on the blog of the Global Family Reunion, linked through the previous words.

The Global Family Reunion, if you haven’t yet heard about it, and didn’t just click on the link in the previous paragraph, is an event scheduled in Queens, New York City the 1st week of June this year (2015), aimed at drawing the attention of as many people as possible to the incontrovertible fact that all 7 billion of us human beings are literally related to each other. As such, it’s really the 1st GFRpop-media event intentionally aimed at trying to impart to people exactly what the value-adds of genealogy ted1and family history are. It’s the effort, not of some nutty genealogy freak who’s been in the archives so long and just wants to waggle a finger at people showing off his own status, or pedigree, or anything like that. Nor is it some stuffy historian who wants to “teach the world” something. And that’s probably what makes it potentially actually appealing to lots and lots of people. GFR is the effort of humorous intellectual pop-writer A.J. Jacobs. Click here to read my rundown on how he got this idea. And do click on their site, too, to find out what’s going down at the event (Henry Louis Gates, Jr., host of the PBS family tree show “Finding Your Roots” will be a speaker; so will former US President Geo H.W. Bush; and the founder of FamilyTreeDNA…games for the kids…etc.) In addition, if this is your 1st time at this site, Roots2Now, you can browse or search around as there are lots of posts on my own family tree (Ireland, Italy, Campbells, Bilderbacks, new Swedes & older Swedes) as it merges with other people’s and historical convergences etc. Well-tracked & thus widely shared ancestors get more attention than others since they literally do represent the places where our paths connect with those of strangers…and sometimes people much closer!

             ~~~~~~~~~

The Skipping-to PlaceMEEKSLUCKY2

Actual-X-and-Y-chromosomes-side-by-sideSo since the basic rundown is living happily at the GFR blog, I figured I’d use my page to share some of the more detailed aspects and charts that I hope help maintain clarity or bring some where it seems to get muddy.

For all this potential interest to historians and dynastic genealogists the findings on the Y-DNA might be engendering, that part of the skeleton’s genetics was not going to be able to help determine if the skeleton was Richard III or not. Another equally unique and highly y-and-mitospecific bit of the skeleton’s genome got the spotlight in contributing some very solid data by which it can be reasonably concluded thaty-and-mit2 indeed skeleton=Richard III. And that bit–publicized a year ago–was the mT-DNA, or mitochondrial DNA, which, opposite from the Y-DNA, we all get from our mothers, and only mothers pass it to their  kids. Thus, it enables a view to people’s’ female-line ancestry. Like Y-DNA there are around 20-something kinds that anyone’s will fall into.

The goal, as with the Y-DNA, was to find relevant living relatives.

Anne_of_York_and_Sir_Thomas_St._LegerNeville,CecilyIn this case, since Richard III had the mT-DNA of his mother, Cecily Neville (1415-1495), the idea was to follow the line of her daughter’s descendants, ie, of Richard’s big sister, Anne, Duchess of York (1439-1476), though, to be more specific, it would have to be only a line of continuous female to female descent to the present day, and if no such line existed, then they would have to investigate if Cecily had sisters who had daughters, or if her mother had sisters who had daughters, etc. I take the time to mention this because Anne (pictured to the left) in fact died giving birth to her only child who would live, which happened to be a girl. But that girl, Anne St. Leger (1476-1526, & pictured lower left) had lots of kids, including daughters-plural. One of them, Katherine Manners (1511-1550) also had a ton of babies, and yes, more than one girl who grew up to in turn then do more or less or the same.

Manners,George(12BRos)tomb

M IBSENAnd sure enough they traced down the lines and managed to track down two living people descended in the female line from Richard’s big sis Anne. It’s extremely worth pointing out, btw, that these two people–see to the right–are regular people, ie, not royalty, recently-aristrocratically-inclined or even at the “old money” part of the cycle by which most of royalty’s descendants end up not the least “royal”. I’m also descended from Anne of York through her daughter Anne and granddaughter Katherine Manners, but my DNA is totally irrelevant, since I’m descended from one of W DULDIGher sons, not to mention multiple generations of male to female and back descents. But I digress!

Richard III’s mT-DNA and that of the living relatives DID match. The “uber”-grandma was a woman named Katherine de Roet Swynford (1350-1403). The details are culled from the study.

ANNE 1

150th Part 2

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We all celebrate birthday weeks these days, yeah? So let’s say I’m extending the same courtesy to my dear old namesake great-grandmother, Selma Kylen.

Gothia2

 

 

First, a little reality check: in Osterbitterna, where she was born, it’s 17 degrees Farenheit today! (-2 Celsius)! Yowzah!

 

 

 

So as part 2 of the info celebrating her, this post is the beginning of the “big reveal” as to what it turns out her last name and my first name mean. (Reminder, or background for any 1st time readers: She was born Jan 10, uni_i_m_m1845c1864 in southwestern Sweden & came to the US in 1880, married an American named Frank Campbell in Minnesota, etc etc. Her birth last name can also be considered to have been Selma Svensdotter; her dad was named Sven Andersson, but while in the Swedish army he received, as was the practice, the soldier name–soldaten namen–of “Kylen”, and the name was passed on to/used by himself and some of his 9 kids, including Selma. These days it means “the fridge” in Swedish, but other leads point to another meaning.)AXE 1

 

This is the place that was (almost certainly) the location where Sven was trained 2093_1910Aand served in the army back in the 1840s. Thus it’s the place where he received the moniker that would Picture 8eventually find its way to being my name. These uniforms from the period are approximately what he would’ve been wearing in those days.

More to come!

1864 – 2014

Picture 6S KYLEN WDGSK CARDSelma Kylén

January 10

1864 – 2014

Today marks the 150th anniversary of the birth in Sweden of a very particular great-grandmother of mine. VARA ETC SWE copyAlthough, sadly, not even my mom or her siblings got to meet her since she died several years before they were born, she holds a very special place in my heart since her last name came to be me…or rather, mine…Er, the name…I call myself…

Kylen!

It seems altogether fitting and just that I share a pile of stuff about her, and revolving around her on this day.
SELMA KYLEN 2
Some has to do with the origin of the name (again, a topic dear to my heart; especially since as a little kid I wanted to change my name to Charlie, or Tommy, or Jimmy; and yeah, you could say I’m more than glad I steered clear of doing that).

Another bit will be to share what I’ve fused together thanks to the kind donation of some DNA code of a fellow great-grandson of Selma’s with some extremely productive on-site famtracking done in Sweden a few years back by my aunt. (And while we’re all usually used to thinking of “be fruitful…” to mean on the downward flow of generations–and Selma and her husband Frank Campbell were indeed that–my aunt’s investigations on the ground in Sweden proved just as fruitful in the backward flow, giving us a dozen or more ancestors we had no idea about beforehand!)

First, though, the basics.

Selma was born 150 January 10ths ago (in 1864) in a place called Österbitterna in Sweden, which is about 25 miles or 40 kilometers south of that huge lake, Lake Vänern, in the southwest part of the country, the 7th child images%2f191-2images%2f10-2and 5th daughter born to her mother Marja and father Sven. Thus going by the patronymic naming tradition she would be called Selma Svensdotter. Judging by the blondish looking hair she has in all the pictures we have of her and the blonde hair all of her kids sported as kids, it’s most likely as a little girl, she too was a blondie. Her older brothers came to the USA first and sent money back–very common, of course, in those days when much of Europe was emigrating across the Atlantic. Selma was only 16 when she and her one of her sisters sailed to America in the fall of 1880. Their parents and a younger brother joined them within a couple years.

F&SCampbells2 copy
Lee is the little guy, 2nd from the left, holding his daddy’s hand.

Like so many other Scandanavians, they went to Minnesota. My aunt did most of the digging and finding on Selma’s ancestors and family, so I’ll quote her succinct summary: “Upon arrival she was hired as a maid in the FnS WEDDINGhome of John Murphy’s family. (The Murphy family later moved to Foley, Minnesota and had a life long friendship with Selma and Frank.)” Frank is Frank L. Campbell (1861 – 1952), the American man she married  who, the story goes, was also employed in the Murphy household as a gardener. If my memory serves, that was all in Minneapolis. My aunt continues: “Following her marriage to Frank she became a farmer’s wife in Blue Earth County until 1898 when they moved to St. George twp., Benton County, Minnesota.” Blue Earth County is out by Mankato, Minnesota, about 60 miles south-southwest of Minneapolis. And it was there that Selma became a mother, herself, in 1890, to a girl they named Myrtle. Another girl two years later was named Abigail (probably after relatives of Frank’s), and a third two years after that they named Gladys. In the winter of 1896 Selma gave birth to a boy. They gave him his dad’s middle name (Lee). That little guy would go on to be my grampa.
As my aunt noted, they moved a few years later to Benton County, which is due north of Blue Earth, about 60 miles north-northwest of the twin cities. Two more kids followed, Vern in 1900 and Vida in 1903. Selma’s dad, Sven, died in 1901, and her mom (name anglisized to Maria) went to live with Selma and Frank. She and they would remain right there for the rest of their lives, growing their family and then later being there and getting to see the familes that their kids in turn grew.

Next part: Why I’m Not Named “Svensdotter”  (Wha??)