About Me

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Lake Mathews (Perris), CA, United States
I am a native of Illinois and grew up in Wilmette, a northern suburb of Chicago. I have one sibling, an older brother. After dropping out of college, I moved to California in 1973 with my first husband. I married my present husband, Butch, in 1977 and got 4 children in the deal. They have gone on to make me a grandmother 25 times over and a great-grandmother of 19. Three years after I married Butch I returned to school. I got my bachelors and masters degrees in speech communication and was a professor in that field for 13 years. I retired in 2001 to return to school and get my doctorate in folklore. Now I meld my two interests - folklore and genealogy - and add my teaching background, resulting in my current profession: speaker/entertainer of genealogically-related topics. I play a number of folk instruments, but my preference is guitar, which I have been playing since 1963. I work in partnership with Gena Philibert-Ortega with Genealogy Journeys where we focus on educating folks about Social History. More about that can be found at http://genaandjean.blogspot.com and more about my own business projects is on my Circlemending website.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Treasure Chest Thursday - 11 February 2010

The widow's application my g-g-grandmother, Irene Freeman Wilcox, made, listing her 13 Feb 1848 (appears to be 1828) marriage in Depotsville (should be Depauville), New York, to Nathan W. Wilcox, future Captain of Company K, Engineering Regiment of the West. This document got me their marriage record, identification of her maiden name, and additional information about where they lived. A treasure, to say the least.


  1. It is a treasure. I see your gg grandparents lived in Nashville. I missed out giving the town a good visit years back....very disappointing to say the least. I hope to get back there again.

  2. I love Widow Pension records. So much can be found there.