Digging History Magazine – April . . . Civil War . . . Don’t Miss it!

The April issue of Digging History Magazine is coming together and will be released on April 1 (no fooling!).  The Civil War will be featured with articles like these: National Traitor or American Martyr:  John Brown’s Enigmatic Position in History The Civil War Before THE Civil War Hell No, We Won’t Go! – The New York City Draft Riots When Johnny Came Marching Home (Without an Arm or Leg) Yankee Doodle Dandies:  Civil War Silk Stocking Regiments Winning the War by the “Hundreds” :  The Hundred Days Men North and South:  Profiles in Courage AND MORE! If you’re not yet a subscriber, it’s easy (and safe) to purchase here (3-month, 6-month and one-year subscriptions) — or pick up single issues here. Keywords: Digging History, Digging History Magazine, Civil War, John Brown, George Bernhard Zimpelman, James Paterson Bryce, New York City Draft Riots, Manifest Destiny, Bloody Kansas, Civil War Silk Stocking Regiments, Hundred Days...

Adventures in Research: Solving Family History Mysteries (Digging and DNA)

I love what I do — helping clients discover who they are, where they came from, did their ancestors make history (good or bad) and more.  I take a slightly different approach perhaps than many genealogists who are looking for land and census records and clipping obituaries.  I look for those too, but what I really enjoy finding are the stories.  I never know what I’ll uncover.  When I come across something that is either challenging or unexpected (a real “family history mystery”) you can expect to see it written about in Digging History Magazine.  I want to share what I’ve learned in hopes of helping other researchers who are challenged by their own “family history mysteries”. One such memorable mystery actually began right around the time I began writing articles for the Digging History blog.  One of the first articles I wrote was to commemorate the 100th anniversary of a tragic coal mine explosion in Dawson, New Mexico.   Approximately one month later I wrote a “Feudin’ and Fightin’ Friday” article about a seemingly obscure Texas feud.  Turns out the two articles were amazingly linked, something I wouldn’t discover until contacted by someone in 2015 requesting a change in the Dawson article. As an editor, the request, ironically, involved a misspelled name.  It had been misspelled in the newspaper article used as a source and Doug Simpleman, great grandson of the man with the misspelled name, wanted to set the record straight.  In fact Doug had been working for awhile to set the record straight about Roy Simpleman — and to find out who he really was.  You see,...

Galveston: Ellis Island of Texas and the Storm That Changed Everything

Here are some excerpts from the March issue of Digging History Magazine.  It’s packed with stories, beginning with a series of articles on Galveston, Texas: Galveston: The Ellis Island of Texas The Storm That Changed Everything Isaac Cline’s Fish Story So much emphasis has been placed on Ellis Island, and certainly thousands of immigrants passed through there (as well as other ports like Baltimore and Philadelphia).  However, many immigrants actually came through Gulf of Mexico ports like New Orleans and Galveston.  If immigrants were headed for the American Midwest states and territories of Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska, Galveston landed them hundreds of miles closer to their destination than arriving at an Atlantic port. The first residents of the island weren’t the most welcoming. One historian called the Karankawas, whose presence on the island dates back to the 1400s, a “remarkably antisocial tribe”.  Although thought to have been cannibalistic, evidence seems to indicate that is probably not true. Between 1817 and 1821 it was home to Jean Lafitte and his band of pirates. Following their departure the Port of Galveston was established as a small trading post in 1825. By 1835 it was the home port of the Texas Navy. Norwegian and Swedish immigrants began arriving in Texas in the 1830s and 1840s, some over land and some making entry at Galveston. Most notably during this same time period, large groups of German immigrants also arrived in the port. By the late nineteenth century and early twentieth Galveston had become a cosmopolitan gateway city.  What happened to the city in early September 1900 would change everything, however.  A storm which...

Digging History Magazine: Introducing Appalachian Histories & Mysteries

Even though I’ve never experienced the trauma of dealing with a family member’s tragic death by murder, I can still imagine how those left behind would wish their loved one could somehow appear in court, exacting revenge by testifying against the monster who took their life.  Unfortunately, ghosts can’t testify — right? No, of course not — except it did happen one time, the event commemorated with a historical marker no less.  The story begins like this: Death, that indomitable specter lingering above all humanity, forgets no one. For millennia, humans have routinely encountered, feared, personified, glorified, deified, and battled death – for it is a thing that exists with absolute certainty yet lives without face or home. In our modern world, we push the immediacy of death to the outskirts of our lives. Modern medicine and technological advancement means that we now live longer and safer than ever before and that our sense of life is no longer fleeting and fragile. Modernity and industry failed to sever our deep-rooted ties to the ethereal; we continue to believe in the things that go bump in the night and what might reside in the old, derelict house down the road for reasons lost to time. I am thrilled to introduce a new contributor (the first!) to Digging History Magazine.  Kalen Martin-Gross describes herself as a “passionate historian” with Appalachian roots running at least eight generations deep.  She grew up “mean as a snake” (her words) in southwest Virginia listening to stories her great-grandmother told of days long gone by.  She and her great-grandmother, a major figure in her life, had...

Digging History Magazine: Subscription by Check?

Potential Digging History Magazine customers have been asking. “Can I pay by check?”  The answer is “Yes” but for subscriptions only.  Monthly and Special Edition issues are by Credit Card or PayPal only.  Why is that?  It would simply be too cumbersome to keep up with monthly individual issue purchases.  However, since subscriptions are for a term of your choosing (3-month,  6-month or one-year) it’s a bit easier to accept checks and keep track of customers. If you’d like to buy a subscription, but prefer to pay by check, simply send a message on the Contact Page.  I’ll contact you and make arrangements for payment by check.  Note:  Payment via Credit Card or PayPal is preferred because it’s easier to keep track of subscribers, but realize some customers aren’t comfortable making purchases online. Payment by Credit Card or PayPal (safe and convenient payment gateways) assures you will receive your first issue immediately.  Paying by check will delay delivery of your first issue because the check must be mailed and processed before you receive your first issue. I appreciate your interest in Digging History Magazine and I’m proud to offer it to like-minded lovers of history!  Subscriptions are now available.  Purchase any subscription level this month (February) and you’ll also receive a free copy of the inaugural January issue. Sharon Hall, Publisher and Editor, Digging History...