Idle Reading

I was idly reading the Seattle Times at breakfast this morning when I came across an article by a Peace Corps volunteer in Cameroon. The Peace Corps – I immediately think of my mother who at the age of 50+ served in Nepal in the 1960’s. She was in one of the first groups of volunteers to serve in that country. At the close of the Seattle Times article I discover that the author is a Seattle native AND he is a graduate of Middlebury College – my alma mater. Bing! I must follow up on this.

The author of the Seattle Times article, Grant Friedman, was serving in Cameroon when he, along with all the other Peace Corps Volunteers around the world, was recalled to the U.S. because of the spread of the COVID virus. This was the first time in the 60 year history of the Peace Corps that such a recall had taken place.

Ancestors on my Family Tree

I’m posting this again as a reminder to myself and my readers alike.

Janet's Thread 2

I have been adding ancestors to my family tree – Janet’s Family Tree – on These ancestors range from 8th Great Grandfather (or 8th Great Grandmother) to as far back as 13th Great Grandfather (or 13th Great Grandmother).

One set of Grandparents has 2 people. A grandfather and a grandmother

Two sets of Grandparents consists of 4 people. 2 Great Grandfathers and 2 Great Grandmothers

Four sets of Grandparents consists of 8 people 4 Great Grandfathers and 4 Great Grandmothers

and so the numbers keep doubling

1 Grandfather

2 Great Grandfathers

4 Great Great Grandfathers

8 Great Great Great Grandfathers

16 Great Great Great Great Grandfathers

32 Great Great Great Great Great Grandfathers

64 6th GGF’s

128 7th GGF’s

256 8th GGF’s

512. 9th GGF’s

!024. 10th GGF’s

2048 11h GGF’s

4096 12th GGF’s

4192. 13th GGF’s

8384. 14th GGF’s

16,768. 15th GGF’s

33,536. 16th GGF’s


So when…

View original post 123 more words

World War II Army Adventure (106) – Island Officially Declared Secure – June 21, 1945

A bird’s eye view of Okinawa 1945. Of interest to us over 80’s.

"Greatest Generation" Life Lessons

As I pulled out the letters for this weekend’s post from my 1945-1946 binder, I discovered that there were several letters out of chronological order.  These letters shed some more light on the situation during the last days of the war on Okinawa, so I have decided to post them out of order.

There is no salutation or date on this letter.

On Thursday afternoon, June 21st at 1500 Okinawa time, the Island was officially declared as being secure.  All organized Jap resistance had ceased, and only the mopping-up of the island was left to be done – at the South end of the Island but there were still snipers – hiding in the caves – harassing the victorious American forces.

At 1000 Friday morning, in the Tenth Army HQ.  Area, Old Glory was raised on a beautiful tall, white flagpole.  A Marine division band played a few selections before…

View original post 523 more words

Another Immigrant Story

This is my second blog post in my proposed series of my immigrant ancestors’ stories.

I have randomly chosen Andrew Warner and Mary Maria Humphrey, my tenth Great Grandparents. They came from Essex in the eastern part of England. They were married in 1624 in Thaxted in Essex. Andrew was about 30 years old and Mary a bit younger about 23. They had 4 children when they departed from Bristol in late August 1631 on the ship Lyon. Their voyage to North America took a little over 60 days. They landed at Nantasket Beach Plymouth Colony Massachusetts. There is no mention of the 4 children but let us assume the children accompanied them..

Andrew was a farmer and they settled in the Connecticut River Valley in western Massachusetts…They had several more children. Mary died in 1672 at the age of 71. Andrew lived to about age 88, dying in 1684 The inventory of his estate totaled over 356 pounds, of which 253 pounds was real estate.: “4 acres land in Hoccanum,” 20 pounds; 2 acres and a rood at the burying yard,” 5 pounds; “house and homestead, 65 pounds; “6 acres in the great meadow on the south side of the middle way,” 30 pounds; “4 acres in the swamp,” 32 pounds; 4 acres in said meadow,” 24 pounds; “4 acres in said meadow, 24 pounds; “4 1/2 acres inHoccanum.” 20 pounds; “one piece of skirts there,” 2 pounds; and “12 acres of land over the river,” 55 pounds

At Last – The Start of My Immigration Blog Posts

I’ve been doing so much work on my genealogy – it’s time to share a bit more of that information. I plan to do a series of blog posts about my ancestors who immigrated to North America. These people are specifically and mostly my 7th, 8th, and 9th great grandparents and they haled from England and came to New England. The list totals over 300 men and women. .I really should start with those who came on the Mayflower but just to be perverse I’m starting more randomly and I’ve chosen Thomas Dexter, my 9th Great Grandfather.

There are 4 Thomas Dexters in my genealogy and it has taken a while to sort them out.

Thomas Dexter 1 1520-1574 my 12th GGF (Great Grandfather)

Thomas Dexter 2 1548-1606 my 11th GGF

Thomas Dexter 3 1575-1676 my 10th GGF

Thomas Dexter 4 1594-1676 my 9th GGF

It is Thomas Dexter 4 above who is the immigrant ancestor I am going to profile here. He was a man of staunch character. He came to America either with Mr. Endicott in 1629 or in the fleet with Governor Winthrop in 1630 Accompanying him were at least 3 of his children and several servants. It is presumed that his wife died before they sailed from England.It is assumed that he formerly lived in Bristol England, as he had a number of dealings with people who lived in that part of England.

In 1630 he settled on a 800 acre farm in Lynn Massachusetts. The farmhouse was located on the west side of the Saugus River, about where the iron works were later erected.

In 1633 he built a bridge over the Saugus River and stretched a weir across. A little later he built a mill nearby.

He had a good education and had a lot of energy but rather a bellicose nature.

He was very interested in starting an iron works which were the first to be built in North America. The iron ore was to be brought from Cape Cod. He got capital from England to invest in the project. He became the General Manager of the project but some years later he withdrew feeling that the project could not succeed.

In 1631 he became a Freeman but was disenfranchised in 1933. He was a man who had many quarrels and vexatious lawsuits.

In 1637 Thomas Dexter and nine others obtained from the Plymouth Colony Court a grant of the township of Sandwich It was there that he built the first Grist Mill. However, he remained in Lynn until 1646.

In 1657 Thomas Dexter took the oath of fidelity. He was admitted Freeman of Plymouth Colony in 1658. He retired to live a quiet life looking after his farms and his mill. He spent his final years in Boston with his daughter. He is buried in King’s Chapel burying-ground.

Spring Magic by D.E. Stevenson – a Furrowed Middlebrow reprint of a cheerful book from wartime

Are you searching for a book to read?

Northern Reader

Image result for spring magic stevenson

Dorothy Stevenson wrote many good books in the middle of the twentieth century, and this is one of the most approachable and delightful. While on the surface it is about a young woman who travels to a small Scottish village to escape the drudgery of working for impossible relatives and the bombing of London in the Second World War, it is actually a sincere look at relationships. Stevenson wrote many books in the mid twentieth century, some featuring a number of characters on a series basis. This book is a one off, but still achieves a certain lightness and insight. It combines excellent characterisations of individuals with an accurate portrayal of complex relationships in both the civilian village and the army base.  The book’s heroine, Frances Field, is a well written character as her innocent view of a new environment and the complications of new people allow the reader to…

View original post 517 more words

Ship of Ghosts Book Review

Inch High Guy


Ship of Ghosts: The Story of the USS Houston, FDR’s Legendary Lost Cruiser, and the Epic Saga of Her Survivors

By James D. Hornfischer

Hardcover in dustjacket, 530 pages, bibliography, notes, crew list, and index

Published by Bantam Books, 2006

Language: English

ISBN-10: 0-553-80390-5

ISBN-13: 978-0-553-80390-7

Dimensions: 6.1 x 2.0 x 9.4 inches

The USS Houston (CA-30) was a Northampton-class heavy cruiser commissioned in 1930. She had a reputation as a spit and polish ship, and became a favorite of President Franklin Roosevelt, who was embarked several times in the pre-war years. At the beginning of the Pacific War she was the flagship of the U.S. Asiatic Fleet, stationed in the Philippines. She joined the American-British-Dutch-Australian (ABDA) naval force at Java under the overall command of Admiral Karel Doorman of the Royal Netherlands Navy. She was bombed by Japanese aircraft during the Battle of Makassar Strait on 04FEB42, destroying her…

View original post 398 more words

Spam Tomorrow by Verily Anderson – one woman’s wartime experiences in an eccentric, often funny, realistic account from Furrowed Middlebrow

Northern Reader

Spam Tomorrow: Anderson, Verily: 9781913054212: Books

Spam Tomorrow by Verily Anderson

Spam, that wartime standby, might not be the first choice to name a novel, but this is an eccentric novel of life for one woman and eventually her family in the Second World War. Full of eccentric humour, this book first appeared in 1956, but has more recently been republished by the excellent Dean Street Press in their Furrowed Middlebrow series. Verily Anderson was a prolific writer who kept a diary from childhood, and this book has therefore got all the immediacy of recording events as they happened. Far from a romantic stiff upper lip atmosphere, this book is full of incidents of muddle and confusion, ranging from trying to arrange an instant wedding, through being over treated by enthusiastic volunteers, to the difficulty of getting three tiny children downstairs during a suspected air raid. Full of memorable characters ranging from dodgy lodgers to offhand…

View original post 452 more words

I Went Looking For The Sunrise

I went looking for the sunrise and all I found was the Full Moon. Gorgeous sight for the end of February 2021. I took several pictures but when I searched my photos on the computer………. tp my surprise I found this photo taken in 1989 when we lived in Ghana. This is one of my sons with a Norwegian friend. The memory of my computer is VERY Strange..

Beach Scene in Accra Ghana