Adds Over a Million Images This Month

Footnote has added over a million new images the last month. As my readers know, Footnote is extremely user interactive, and even allow us to add notes to the 1930 census. Pretty cool site. Following are links to just a few of the collections that have been significantly updated in April:

1930 US Federal Census (2,548,803 images – 93% complete)

New York Eastern – Naturalizations (496,146 images – 49% complete)

Indian Census (365,264 images – 84% complete)

Civil War Union Soldier Service Records – Missouri (460,223 images)

Texas Death Records (2,467,769 images – 50% complete)

DNA Confirms That Native Americans Are Descended From One Ancestral Group

April 29, 2009, (Sawf News) – DNA evidence shows that Native Americans and Greenlanders are more closely related to each other than to any other existing Asian populations, except those that live at the very edge of the Bering Strait.

For two decades, researchers have been using a growing volume of genetic data to debate whether ancestors of Native Americans emigrated to the New World in one wave or successive waves, or from one ancestral Asian population or a number of different populations.

Now, after painstakingly comparing DNA samples from people in dozens of modern-day Native American and Eurasian groups, an international team of scientists thinks it can put the matter to rest: Virtually without exception the new evidence supports the single ancestral population theory.

Read the full article about the ancestry of Native Americans at the SAWF website.

Tribute Album Produced Honoring Johnny Cash’s “Bitter Tears”

I happen to be a Johnny Cash fan. In fact, you could say I am a fan of the entire Cash family. As a boy I started collecting Johnny’s albums. I would get one of my friends to drive me up to Enumclaw and for $2.95 purchase “mono” (as opposed to Stereo) albums of artists whose music I enjoyed. When I was about 14, Johnny came out with a controversial album entitled “Bitter Tears – Ballads of the American Indian.” To this day it’s one of my favorites.

Bitter Tears - Recorded by Johnny Cash I didn’t know until years later that Johnny Cash was a genealogist. He enjoyed studying his family history, and for years you could see his hand-filled-in pedigree charts in “The House of Cash,” the Cash museum in Nashville. While researching his genealogy, Johnny became convinced of his Cherokee ancestry, and like many other genealogists, came to identify with his ancestors. In 1964 he had a #3 hit called “The Ballad of Ira Hayes,” written by folk-singer Peter La Forge, the story of one of the men who helped raise the flag on Iwo Jima. It was a heart-wrenching song, as were a number of the songs on the album. In fact, as I set here writing this blog, the tears are running down my face. Click here or on the title above to see & hear video/audio versions of the song. The first video is a compilation of video with the studio produced audio of the song, while the second isn’t as polished, being a film recorded live before an American Indian audience. Following is a title list from Johnny’s “Bitter Tears” album:

  • As Long As The Grass Shall Grow (Peter La Forge)
  • Apache Tears (Johnny Cash)
  • Custer (Peter La Forge)
  • The Talking Leaves (Johnny Cash)
  • The Ballad of Ira Hayes (Peter La Forge)
  • Drums (Peter La Forge)
  • White Girl (Peter La Forge)
  • The Vanishing Race (Johnny Horton)

I see that Michael Bucher and Joanne Shenandoah, in conjunction with Hondo Mesa Records have recently released “Bitter Tears – Bitter Tears - Sacred Ground Sacred Ground,” a tribute to the Johnny’s 1964 album. I mentioned above that Johnny’s album was controversial. Released at the height of the folk music revival in the U.S., it was blacklisted by commercial broadcasting outlets and faded from the stores. Yet it has endured among indigenous people and remains popular across Indian country – and with fans like myself.

Get more information on “Bitter Tears – Sacred Ground” at the April 24, 2009 edition of Indian Country Today.

Early American Family History Explores How DNA Testing Can Reveal a Hidden Ancestry

In Revisiting Anne Marie: How an Amerindian Woman of Seventeenth-Century Nova Scotia and a DNA Match Redefine American Heritage, Marie Rundquist shows how a single, Native American DNA test proved her documented French-European lineage invalid, calling an American heritage into question.

revisitingannemarieGAITHERSBURG, Md. (MMD Newswire) March 19, 2009 – In Revisiting Anne Marie: How an Amerindian Woman of Seventeenth-Century Nova Scotia and a DNA Match Redefine American Heritage, Marie Rundquist details how she traced her family genealogy through 12 generations back to an ancient Amerindian woman of 17th century Nova Scotia and re-discovered her family’s hidden Acadian-Mi’kmaq beginnings in the New World.

According to the author, many people turn to DNA testing to discover their roots – and the results are sometimes shocking. Now, in Revisiting Anne Marie, Rundquist shows how a DNA test overturned everything she thought she knew about her own carefully mapped ancestry. After tracing her maternal ancestry to Anne Marie of 17th-century Port Royal Nova Scotia, Rundquist resolved to come to know her forgotten ancestor and her extended family once again. In Revisiting Anne Marie, Rundquist brings her ancestors’ untold stories to light, visits archives, travels to Nova Scotia, follows her ancestors’ ancient routes and discovers the key to her family’s survival in an old Mi’kmaq legend.

DNA testing, Rundquist believes, provides a method of reconnecting to ancestors and present-day cousins, as well as illuminating a heritage that otherwise might remain unknown. She writes how DNA testing works and offers practical advice on how readers can use the results to trace and explore their own unique lineage.

For more information or to request a free review copy, members of the press can contact the author at Anne Marie: How an Amerindian Woman of Seventeenth-Century Nova Scotia and a DNA Match Redefine “American” Heritage
is available for sale online at

About the Author
Marie Rundquist is a software consultant and project administrator of the Amerindian Ancestry Out of Acadia Family Tree DNA Project. In 2007, she founded the Family Heritage Research Community to celebrate her family’s restoration of heritage through research and publication of histories and to support others in similar efforts. Her articles have been featured in several historical publications including Le Chainon, The Searcher of the Southern California Genealogical Society and Michigan’s Habitant Heritage.

New at – Indian Census Rolls – City Directories – Civil War Widows’ Pensions – Arkansas Civil War Service Records sent out an update today stating the new records that can be found at their site. The following items are new or updated for January. I added a listing of cities for which Footnote earlier posted city directories.

Indian Census Rolls, 1885 – 1940 57,865 images.

This title, NARA publication M595, consists of census rolls submitted annually by agents or superintendents of Indian reservations as required by an 1884 Act of Congress. Most rolls include the English and/or Indian name of the person, roll number, age or date of birth, sex, and relationship to head of family. Beginning in 1930 the rolls also show the degree of Indian blood, marital status, ward status, place of residence, and sometimes other information. Only persons who maintained a formal affiliation with a tribe under Federal supervision are listed on these census rolls. There is not a census for every reservation or group of Indians for every year. Some tribes, particularly those in the East, were never under Federal jurisdiction and therefore not included in this publication.

Civil War Widows Pensions These images are being obtained by scanning the original paper documents held at the National Archives. There are currently 129,934 indexed images posted online.

The files are grouped under the soldier’s name, but the widow’s name and names of minor children are listed on the first page within the pension file. A pensioner’s name (typically the widow’s) is searchable, often giving her maiden name as well. Case files include where and when a man served, details of his service, his life before the war, and his family, including information about his widow, children, and sometimes his parents. These files are unfilmed textual records.

City Directories

  • San Francisco, California
  • Newark, New Jersey
  • Baltimore, Maryland
  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

These directories now join others from:

  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • Chicago, Illinois
  • Cincinnati, Ohio
  • Cleveland, Ohio
  • Detroit, Michigan
  • Ft. Wayne, Indiana
  • New York, New York
  • Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • St. Louis, Missouri
  • Washington, D.C.
  • Misc…

Civil War Union Soldier Service Records – Arkansas – 30,560 images

Compiled service records typically contain card abstracts of a soldier’s original muster and hospital rolls, descriptive books, lists of deserters, returns, notational cards, and possibly enlistment papers, casualty sheets, death reports, prisoner of war papers, and correspondence.

Civil War Confederate Soldier Service Records – Arkansas – 19,522 images.

These records contain card abstracts of entries relating to each soldier as found in original muster rolls, returns, rosters, payrolls, appointment books, hospital registers, Union prison registers and rolls, parole rolls, and inspection reports. They may also contain the originals of any papers relating solely to a particular soldier. Browse by military unit, then name of soldier, or use the search box related to this title.

Now get on over to and find your ancestors!

Pottawatomi Nation of Canada to Get Reparations?

Senator Daniel Inouye, of Hawaii, has reintroduced a bill to grant the Pottawatomi Nation of Canada 1.8 million dollars in recognition of the “forced removal” of their ancestors in the early 1800s from tribal lands in the United States. Following is an excerpt from an article in the January 18, 2009 edition of the Vancouver Sun. The article contains some very interesting history.

In February 2007, when Inouye last urged the U.S. Senate to back his bill, Pottawatomi Chief Ed Williams described the senator as a “fantastic guy” and a “real champion for aboriginal people.”

Williams and others from the Moose Deer Point First Nation near Parry Sound, Ont., trace their ancestry to the U.S. But their forebears were among those who refused to migrate to reserves in the U.S. southwest when they were forced from their traditional tribal lands in Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois and Indiana.

The Pottawatomi were pressured in the 1830s to relocate at gunpoint by the U.S. army under the infamous “Indian Removal” policies of then-president Andrew Jackson.

Many resettled west of the Mississippi River. But some bands escaped eastward, settling in remote woodlands closer to the Canadian border or crossing into what was then Upper Canada.

Some of the Pottawatomi refugees ended up blending with other related First Nations such as the Ojibway and Ottawa, but one group in Canada received land on the eastern shore of Georgian Bay and formed the Moose Deer Point community.

Read the full article by Randy Boswell in the January 18, 2009 Vancouver Sun.

DNA Tracks Descendants of Tlingit, Haida and Tsimshian in Southeast Alaska

George Bryson wrote an interesting DNA-related article for the AP out of Anchorage, Alaska. I find it amazing as to how much we’re learning from all these DNA studies be undertaken. Following is a teaser from Bryson’s article:

An ancient mariner [On Your Knees Cave man, the 10,300-year-old Alaskan whose remains were discovered 12 years ago in a shallow cavern on Prince of Wales Island] who lived and died 10,000 years ago on an island west of Ketchikan probably doesn’t have any close relatives left in Alaska.

But some of them migrated south and their descendants can be found today in coastal Native American populations in California, Mexico, Ecuador, Chile and Argentina.

That’s some of what scientists learned this summer by examining the DNA of Tlingit, Haida and Tsimshian Indians in Southeast Alaska.

Working with elders at a cultural festival in Juneau, they interviewed more than 200 Native Alaskans who allowed them to swab tiny amounts of saliva from their cheeks to capture their mitochondrial DNA, the genetic material that’s passed from mothers to children.

Read Brysons’ full article in the January 10, 2009 edition of News From Indian Country.