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Saturday, May 25, 2013

Super Moon -- Parade -- Fair & Bounty Lands

This week has been like the movie "Groundhog Day". Every day has been almost a copy of the day before as in the movie. In the movie Bill Murray relives one certain day over and over. We think of that movie every so often and certainly this week -- most of our activities seemed to be identical to the previous day. Except for driving home on Friday (last night). We found ourselves unexpectedly out during the evening and on the way home we were astonished to see the moon:


a full moon completely round and seemingly larger than normal. It turns out that it is what is called a "Super Moon" and it is closer to the earth than normal and so is larger when viewing it . . . had we not been out in the evening, we might have missed the beautiful display. It seems that there is supposed to be another Super Moon next month and it is to be even more spectacular than the moon this month -- I hope we can plan to be out again "in the evening".

Memorial Day Parade & Fair

This being Healdsburg the annual FFA parade -- the 64th annual -- took place on Thursday evening two nights ago. This is a big deal in town and allows for the display of most of the agricultural equipment and the emergency vehicles  in the county and features a lot of the local citizens riding in and on those vehicles. This year was not unlike last year (except for the Dry Creek Vineyard float not being there) and so sirens and bells and horns were featured and heard echoing throughout the area.


Since the weather has been so very nice the parade was well attended and went on for the traditional two hours or so -- pretty good for a small town. Last year Dino and I walked the entire parade route while Gail rode on the Dry Creek Vineyard Float . . . there was some "high-steppers" in the parade -- I bet they were tired at the end of the almost three miles of parade route . . .

The Fair portion of the event (still going on as I write this) was pretty much identical to last year as well. Dino was interested in several of the farm animals but was more interested in the "girls" that oohed and aahed and petted him -- can you blame him.


Some of the featured activities can be seen above -- even Josephina selling chances on shooting "hoops" for the benefit of the Healdsburg Junior High School. It is so much work setting up all the exhibits and attractions  but it is appreciated for the tradition of it all. The aromas from the food booths were almost enough to convince us to break from our diets -- especially the "funnel cakes" and the "teriyaki sticks".

But There Was Still Genealogy to be Done

Not all activities were outdoors some still showed up on the web (about 90% . . .). I am pretty much on the web or at the computer much of the day. This week I am still transferring things from the old computer to the new . . . it seems that even though I did bulk transfers many many files get over looked for whatever reason and so it is a time consuming task -- not to mention BORING. But I am getting there -- or I think so.

This week I feel lucky in that I had two webinars to attend. The webinars seem to add structure to an otherwise free-form day. So on Wednesday and Friday this week at 11 am I knew what the "plan" was:



Both of the above were excellent and well-worth my time and a bonus was that they were both free. Some sites charge "big-dollars" for webinars and I am very glad that Legacy Family Trees does not. The "live" webinars are free -- later one can purchase a CD of the event if one chooses.

The speakers were top notch and I took away a lot of good ideas and hints on how to enhance my search.
Just when you think you know a lot about a subject along come webinars like the above to prove that theory not to be the case . . .

Speaking of Webinars . . .

Last week, the one webinar I attended was on "discovering" the land that our ancestors owned. I vowed to renew my attempt to uncover "any" land that belonged to my (our) direct ancestors. Part of the issue is that not a lot of land records are "on the web" -- but some are and so this week I can share a couple of things that I found . . .

John Hiles, Jr (as I distinguish him from the other Johns) is my (our) 3rd GGGGrandfather and his brother, Christopher is my 3rd GGGGrand Uncle -- both of them served in the War of 1812 and in the same unit, Captain Sanderson's Ohio Volunteers.

As part of the reward for serving in the military during the War of 1812 (and other wars) land was offered to officers and to soldiers. This reward was called "Bounty Land" and both John & Christopher received "Bounty Land" for their service:


Clicking on the above you can see the documentation (part of) for the land that each received. The award to John Hiles came in February of 1854, and the award to Christopher came in December of 1855 both before the Civil War began.

John Hiles was awarded 167 acres of land in Ohio and Christopher was awarded (this was surprising) 160 acres in Illinois not far from Springfield. The award documents were written and (I at first thought) signed by President Franklin Pierce . . . but of course that was not the case as the two documents were  with different signatures . . .

The receivers of these bounty lands had the option of assigning the rights (I hope for a cost) to the land and that is what Christopher did and that explains maybe why Hiles was not a big named land owner in Southern Illinois. But I don't know yet what happened to the John Hiles bounty land. Hopefully I can uncover what the disposition was . . .

I know probably I will have to "go" to the locations, meaning the county courthouses of where our ancestors probably owned land to get more detail -- though I have some preliminary records showing Thomas Hiles as a land owner near Sparta, (Monroe County) Wisconsin -- apparently he Homesteaded at least 80 acres or so. I will be looking for the detail of that -- Thomas is my Great Grand Uncle -- the brother of my Great Grandfather John (& Emily Gillett).

Also, somewhere I have some land records showing Leroy Hiles -- the brother of the same John (above) as owning land in Viroqua, Wisconsin. So I have my work cut out for me -- an RV wouldn't be a bad investment . . .

So Lastly

It seems hot as I write this even though it is only in the high 70s or low 80s. And they are calling for possible rain on Memorial Day -- it can't rain on Healdsburg's parade though . . .

As usual we are planning on 'dem burgers and fries' tonight and that will be nice. In keeping with the holiday spirit we had hot dogs for lunch . . .  if we had known how warm it would be, the a/c would have been turned on -- maybe tomorrow.

That was a bit of our week, we hope that you enjoy this holiday weekend!



See you in a few . . .










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