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The Perils of Norway Research

I made an error in my last post.  It's the statement that Laura Olsdatter Bohn (1853-1923) immigrated to the United States in 1887, arriving in New York City on the S.S. Island on 8 July. After I posted, one of my SLIG instructors, Finn Karlsen,…
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Bønsmoen It Is!

One of the mysteries of my Norwegian ancestry has been the question of the Bonn surname: how did it originate and from where exactly?  In Norway, the family name and location often go together, based on the old tradition of giving every farm…
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Ancestry Discovery: Deconstructing the Tabele Family

This discovery is actually a couple years old, but I wanted to document it in my blog - and I have an important new lead to discuss.  It is a nice example of discovering new ancestors whom you never knew about before.  For our family, that's…
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Who Were the Parents of Stephen W. King (1824-1865)?

  In 2016, I wrote a series of three articles published in the Minnesota Genealogist regarding my 2GG Fred A. King (1857-1920).((Steven Nelson Jonnes, “Searching for the Parents of Fred A. King of Saginaw, Michigan,” Minnesota Genealogist,…
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It's Official - We're Going to Norway Next Year!

In 2019, my wife and I are planning to realize a long-held dream - to visit Norway, one of my ancestral homelands. The entire trip will span about three weeks, beginning with a week touring Britain with another couple who are good friends. …
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Are You Sure That's How You Spell Your Name?

The Minnesota Genealogist just published a short item in their Autumn 2018 issue about the spelling of my surname: Jonnes.  We were always one-N Joneses going back to the 17th century.  Indeed, our original patrilineal immigrant ancestor was…
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Redoubt #10 at Yorktown

Okay, so here's our first sojourn over to my father's side of the family tree.  Sit up, Jonnes cousins! One of my father's favorite ancestors was Sgt. William Brown (1761-1804), arguably the most illustrious soldier in our family history. …
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My Ethnicity Estimate Just Changed!

Talk about good timing. I just mentioned in a recent post that DNA ethnicity percentages are rough estimates and should be used with caution.((Steven Nelson Jonnes, "Understanding DNA Testing," Jonnes Genealogy Blog, 25 August 2018 (http://www.jonnesgenealogy.com/understanding-dna-testing/),…
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Climbing Houghton Hill

It's always cool when you discover a place named after one of your ancestors.  Manhattan has Vermilyea Ave. and Ross County, Ohio has Jones Road, for example. So, here's a new one: Houghton Hill in Homer, New York.  Homer is 30 miles due…
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Probate Discovery: Fred A. King (1857-1920)

On our recent trip to northern Minnesota, we stopped in the Cass County Courthouse in Walker, Minnesota and obtained a copy of Fred A. King’s probate file.  Fred is my 2nd great-grandfather (2GG).  This was an overdue discovery, given…