George H. W. Bush Drops in on Dean Spratlin

Thanks to the sharp eye of Cynthia H., we have added a couple more Spratlins to the family tree—cousins Herbert Dean Spratlin and his father Frank Martin Spratlin.

Dean Spratlin (1919-2001) was spotted in the 1984 New York Times article Bush War Record Noted on ‘A Day of Nostalgia’ recalling the 2 Sep 1944 bombing mission of 20-year-old Navy Lieutenant Junior Grade George H. W. Bush, the future 41st President of the United States.

During that mission, the Grumman Avenger piloted by Bush was hit by Japanese anti-aircraft fire while approaching Chichi Jima in the Bonin Islands, Pacific Ocean, for a bombing run on an enemy radio facility. Bush completed the run, but the aircraft was too badly damaged to make it back to the USS San Jacinto aircraft carrier. Bush was able to safely parachute out, but two other aircrewmen, Radioman Second Class John Delaney, and gunner Lieutenant Junior Grade William White were killed.

Bush parachuted into the ocean off Chichi Jima where he was picked up four hours later by the submarine USS Finback. There, Bush met the Executive Officer of the USS Finback, Dean Spratlin. The USS Finback was on its tenth patrol of World War II, assigned to lifeguard duty in the Bonin Islands. During that patrol, she rescued five downed Naval aviators.

Bush being rescued by the submarine USS Finback, U.S. National Archives and Records Administration.

Bush spent thirty days aboard the USS Finback as it completed its patrol, and then returned to his unit on the USS San Jacinto. Bush’s 1999 book All the Best, George Bush: My Life in Letters and Other Writings contains this letter Bush wrote to Dean on 17 Nov 1944:

Bush’s mission and rescue are described in more detail in this Naval History and Heritage Command article Vice President Bush Calls World War II Experience “Sobering”.

Dean’s service on submarines during World War II included:

  • duty on the submarine USS S-28 (SS-133) in 1943. The USS S-28 was later lost at sea with all hands on 4 Jul 1944 during anti-submarine warfare training exercises off the coast of Oahu, Hawaii;
  • Executive Officer of the submarine USS Finback (SS-230) from 6 Mar 1944 to Sep 1944;
  • Captain of the submarine USS Plunger (SS-179) from 31 Oct 1944 to 1 Sep 1945.

Before the war, Dean attended the Georgia School of Technology, now the Georgia Institute of Technology, and received the M.E. degree in 1939. THWG!

After the war, Dean became a real estate developer in Atlanta, Georgia.

A little research found Dean’s father, Frank Martin Spratlin (1885-1961), and both were then tied to Frank’s father Dr. William Martin Spratlin (1854-1928), already in our family tree.

The Most Recent Common Ancestors are Pvt. James Spratling (1750-1812) and Winnefred Munday (1752-1834), 6th great-grandparents of MKS. That means …


LCDR Herbert Dean Spratlin (1919-2001) is 4th cousin 3x removed of MKS in the Spratlin branch.

And in the SKWW Family Tree and History newsletter, volume 7, we learned that …

President George H. W. Bush is 6th cousin 4x removed of MKS in the Knight branch.

“Removed” Cousins

Spend even a little time in the world of genealogy and you will encounter removed used to describe the relationship between two cousins; for example:

  • First Cousin Once Removed
  • Fourth Cousin 4 Times (4x) Removed

The degree of the cousin relationship (e.g. First Cousin, Fourth Cousin in the examples above) is determined by the cousin that is closest in relationship to (fewest generations below) the Most Recent Common Ancestor (MRCA) of the two cousins.

The removal of the cousin relationship (e.g. Once Removed, 4 Times Removed in the examples above) is the number of generations the two cousins are apart. So, for example, if the closest cousin is 3 generations below the MRCA, and the other cousin is 4 generations below the MRCA, then they are Second Cousins Once Removed:

Closest cousin is 3 generations below the MCRA → Second Cousins

4 generations – 3 generations = 1 generation apart → Once Removed

Below is a handy and well-formatted table of consanguinity from Graham Chamberlain:

Look up the relationship of the first person to the MCRA in row 0. Look up the relationship of the second person to the MCRA in column 0. The relationship of these two cousins is then found at the intersection of the column for the first person and the row for the second person. For example:

Great-grandson to MCRA → Row 0, Column 3

2nd great-granddaughter to MCRA → Column 0, Row 4

Intersection at Column 3, Row 4 → Second Cousin Once Removed

You can learn even more about cousins from Wikipedia.

Finding Mary Ann Crow

The parents of Mary Ann Crow (1855-1893), wife of John Henry Spratlin and 3rd great-grandmother of MKS, have been found after an almost 5 year search.

If only there was a way to automatically apply Tree Rules (e.g. Rule 1: Look Up, Look Down) to our entire family tree once the lesson is learned.

John, age 14, is listed in the 1860 US Census living in Wilkes County, Georgia, with his parents and siblings.

John, age 24, is then listed in the 1870 US Census (see below, row 26) living in Tompkins, Putnam County, Georgia, working as a farm laborer for Robert R. Waller and family (rows 21-25).

Just apply Rule 1 to the 1870 Census, and voila!

There is Mary A. Crow, age 15, living “next door” (on row 30) with her parents, William Crow and Louisa E. Crow, and 5 siblings. We will assume this is where John and Mary Ann met.

We have been unable to locate a marriage record for John and Mary Ann so far. But we can assume they married 2 or 3 years later, as their son William Henry Spratlin Sr was born on 23 Nov 1873.

From this discovery, we have now been able to confirm many additions and identify many potential additions to the family tree including:

  • the new surnames Bailey, Barnard, Brent, Buller, Coane, Connelly, Davidson, Denson, Dobyns, Durham, Early, Ellys, Griffin, Haynes, Hunter, Jenkins, Johnson, Lovell, McLeroy, Night, Nutt, Oldham, Parker, Sheffield, Small, Staley, Stone, Stroud / Strode, Unick, Upton, and Wilkins
  • immigrants for 5 of these lines
    • Bailey, from England to Virginia, 1600’s
    • Durham, from Scotland to Virginia, 1700’s
    • Lovell, from England to New Jersey, 1600’s
    • Parker, from England to Virginia, 1600’s
    • Stroud / Strode, from England to New Jersey, 1700’s
  • more than 150 additional family members

Mary Ann Crow (1855-1893) is 3rd great-grandmother of MKS in the Spratlin branch.

PVT William Crow (18345-1882) and Louisa Evaline Griffith (1831-1900) are 4th great-grandparents of MKS in the Spratlin branch.

Tree Rules #1

With online document repositories, record indexing, and the oh-so-simple-looking Search box, we grow accustomed to being taken magically to just the record we are looking for. Another birth date, another ancestor for the family tree. It is oh so simple.

Go ahead, you know you’re feeling lucky.

But in this simplicity, we run the risk of developing tunnel vision and missing related records, missing much needed historical context, and well, missing the journey itself.

When the Search takes you to the record you asked for, take the time to look up and look down in the document to get a lay of the land. In a census, read the prior 5 pages, and the following 5 pages. You may be pleasantly surprised with what you find. We’ve lost count of how many times we have been. What leads us to …


Rule 1: Look Up, Look Down


Our Genealogy FAQ

  1. Why can’t I see the information for some of the individuals in the family tree?
  2. But I’m family. Can I please see the hidden individuals?
  3. How do I create a user account?
  4. If I see a mistake in the family tree information, can I correct it?
  5. Where can I find issues of the ten Krazy Ken’s Kin Newsletter published in 2017?
  6. What doesn’t work yet?

Q. Why can’t I see the information for some of the individuals in the family tree?

A. There are two categories of individuals hidden from view in the family tree—those Living and those Private.

Individuals are marked Living by the software based on their death date. However, there are many individuals in the tree missing their birth or death dates, or both. In that case, these rules are applied:

(a) if their record does not contain both birth and death dates, they are assumed to be Living,

(b) if their record contains a birth date, but not a death date, they are assumed Deceased if older than 110 years of age based on their birth date.

For individuals clearly Deceased (they appear in the tree more than several generations ago) but for which no birth and death dates have been determined, we have begun arbitrarily entering a death date of Bef. 2010 in order to make them appear as deceased. We are slowly working our way through the tree updating the death dates for this case.

Individuals are marked Private if they are Deceased and have not been deceased for at least 7 years. This is an arbitrary decision to temporarily protect their identity.

Note: This concept of Living and Deceased, which is obvious to most of us, will be the topic of a future genealogy post. We were surprised to learn that the standard file format for family trees—GEDCOM—does not contain the fact of whether an individual is Living or Deceased. So genealogy software applications each have to implement rules like those described above. So if we mark an individual as Deceased on Ancestry.com but do not enter a death date for them, and we then export the family tree to another application, the Deceased fact is lost and that other application determines whether the individual is Living or Deceased based on its own rules.


Q. But I’m family. Can I please see the hidden individuals?

A. To see the Living individuals, you must register for a user account. Read here about user accounts.

The Private individuals will remain hidden. Contact us for more information.


Q. How Do I Create a User Account?

A. This website requires registration for user accounts associated with two different areas of content:

Two separate accounts are necessary because these areas of the website use two different software applications (WordPress for the blog, and The Next Generation of Genealogy Sitebuilding for the family tree), and these applications unfortunately do not currently share login credentials. You are encouraged to register for these two accounts with the same user name and password to simplify things.

Important notes:

  • You can register for one, both, or neither of these accounts—it is up to you.
  • If you change the password of one user account, it will not change the password of the other account.

Q. If I see a mistake in the family tree information, can I correct it?

A. Mistakes?! Well, we have too many of those to count. Yes, please help correct our mistake.

The information page for each individual has a Suggest tab that allows you to send corrections or comments to us. We’ll review your information and update the Ancestry.com tree as appropriate. That information, if incorporated, will appear in the family tree on this website in a future download from Ancestry.com.


Q. Where can I find issues of the ten Krazy Ken’s Kin Knewsletter published in 2017?

A. After you register for a Family & Friends Membership and are accepted, you can access them in this post.


Q. What does not work yet?

A. Well, we’re not totally sure! Here is what we know about:

  1. Find > Search Site will not work until Google has indexed the new genealogy portion of the website. This is now working.
  2. Find > Cemeteries and Media > Headstones have not yet been populated with headstones (see #3 below).
  3. Media > Photos and all other similar places that would display photos or other documents have not yet been populated with photos and documents. These must be downloaded from Ancestry.com and uploaded to this website. That’s for another day.
  4. Mobile Mode, which is the layout used for smaller devices like iPhones, has not yet been customized for this website. Pages may therefore not look good or even be usable. This is now working.

(10 May 2018)

Abbreviations, Acronyms & Definitions

Abbreviations & Acronyms

abt. — about (meaning “within a few years of”)

aft. — after (meaning “on or after this date”)

atDNA — autosomal DNA is DNA from one of our chromosomes located in the cell nucleus. It generally excludes the sex chromosomes. Humans have 22 pairs of autosomal chromosomes and a pair of sex chromosomes.

bef. — before (meaning “on or before this date”)

bet. — between (meaning “on or between these dates”)

GGF, GGM, GGP — great-grandfather, great-grandmother, great-grandparent

MDKA — Most Distant Known Ancestor, the earliest known, documented ancestor on a specific genealogical line

MRCA — Most Recent Common Ancestor between two people in the genealogical time frame (e.g. NOT Adam and Eve!).

mtDNA — The genetic material found in mitochondria. It is passed down from females to both sons and daughters, but sons do not pass down their mother’s mtDNA to their children.

NN — Latin, nomen nescio (“I do not know the name ”) is used for unknown given names and surnames (e.g. John NN or NN Doe).

unk. — unknown

Y-DNA — A Y-DNA test looks at male inherited Y-chromosome DNA.

Definitions

Remove — change one’s home or place of residence by moving to (another place); “He removed to Wales and began afresh”.

Our Family Tree Standard Practices

Master Tree

The Spratlin-Knight-Wetherbee-Watne family tree is maintained by Ken Spratlin on Ancestry.com. The tree is periodically exported from Ancestry.com as a GEDCOM file and uploaded to this website. The description field for the tree on this website contains the date and time of export from Ancestry.com. More up-to-date information may therefore be found in the tree on Ancestry.com.

Naming Conventions

Birth name (including maiden last name) entered as preferred name fact. Unknown maiden last name usually entered as NN (MarriedLastName), if married last name known.

Subsequent name change (e.g. last name Smyth changed to Smith) or alternative name spelling entered as alternate name fact. Note that Ancestry.com’s search function appears to ignore text in parentheses (e.g. Smyth (Smith)).

Adopted this convention as we are generally researching back in time, up the tree, so birth name is usually of more interest than a name an individual may have used later in life.

Title (e.g. Doctor, Reverend, Private) entered as title fact.

Nickname entered as also known as fact. Nickname alternatively (legacy) entered as alternate name fact in parentheses instead of quotation marks (e.g. John (Johnny), instead of John “Johnny”).

Preferred and Alternate Facts

Alternate facts entered for name facts, birth facts, and death facts instead of adding the information to the name fields of a preferred name fact or to the description field of a preferred birth fact or preferred death fact (e.g. alternate name spelling entered as alternate name fact).

Note that Ancestry.com does not provide the preferred and alternate feature for marriage facts, so multiple marriage facts may appear with no indication of which is preferred. If multiple marriage facts are added, and one is preferred, the words Preferred and Alternate are entered in the description fields of the marriage facts.

Last Name Symbols

Despite numerous recommendations against doing so, we use a few symbols in the last name field of the name fact to make up for deficiencies in our research tools or our own memory.

People with these symbols in their name may be found using Ancestry.com’s people search functions on their website . The search behavior seems to vary. The Find person in tree search at the top of the profile or tree windows is not order sensitive as long as the name text is first (e.g. NameText + | or NameText | + gives the same result). The List of all people search is order-sensitive. The search function on Ancestry.com’s iOS app is different, and this appears to not work at all

NN   Latin nomen nescio (“I do not know the name”) used for unknown first and last names (e.g. John NN or NN Doe); started using this instead of tbd after seeing NN as a standard for at least one world tree project

+   Direct ancestor of MKS

++   Direct ancestor of MKS with multiple descending lines

?   Confirmed by weak facts; something fishy needs to be resolved

??   A clue, not yet confirmed by facts (e.g. usually only saw name in someone else’s tree without supporting facts)

p??   Same as ?? but the parent (father and mother) relationships not yet confirmed
f??   Same as ?? but the father relationship not yet confirmed
m??   Same as ?? but the mother relationship not yet confirmed
s??   Same as ?? but the spouse relationship not yet confirmed

up??   Same as ?? but the ascendant relationship not yet confirmed (discontinued use)
dn??   Same as ?? but the descendant relationship not yet confirmed (discontinued use)
sp??   Same as ?? but the spouse relationship not yet confirmed (discontinued use)

???   Probably incorrect based on available facts; something VERY fishy needs to be resolved

#   Married a close cousin

|   Immigrant (usually to North America)

_   Not a member of the family, but included in the tree for reference (e.g. friends, neighbors, purchasers of family property)

Special Symbols

{{   Private note (e.g. phone numbers, email addresses)—The Next Generation of Genealogy Sitebuilding (TNG) application on kenspratlin.com is configured to treat the description field of facts beginning with {{ as private, and the information is not displayed.

^   Military service is indicated with this symbol at the beginning of the description field of a title fact. If the military rank is also known, the title follows the symbol (e.g. ^ Private).

/ We attempted to use the / (division) symbol in name facts at one time. We then learned that GEDCOM files use / to separate the prefix, first name, last name, and last name suffix fields of the name fact (e.g. John/Doe/). Using this symbol in the fields of a name fact caused serious problems when importing and exporting trees between various genealogy applications. So we do not do that any more!

Custom Events

We use several custom event types. These are all indicated by custom event fact labels ending in ““. This makes them easier to find within the Family Tree Maker application. Most are self-explanatory; perhaps these are not:

Interesting …famous, distinguished, notorious, interesting, etc.
ISSUE …identifies an issue in a profile needing resolution
Relationship …provides additional relationship information
RESEARCH …identifies a (non-issue) topic for future research
WARNING … often identifies a non-person in the tree

(23 Jan 2019)

Danger! Construction Area

func integrateWordPressAndTNG() {

if me.amNotGenealogyNerd { return }

if me.amNotWebsiteDeveloper  { return }

continueReading()

}


func continueReading() {

/*

This website was previously hosted on WordPress.com and used the Twenty Ten theme.

Then in Feb 2018, we wanted to add new functionality to the website to support sharing our family history and family tree—functionality that was unfortunately not supported by WordPress.com. This led us to move to a web hosting solution that would still support WordPress well.

The website is now hosted on SiteGround and built using the following:

The TNG content was wrapped inside the WordPress theme using these instructions which document the Cees Kloosterman method.

It took us about 5 full days to learn enough TNG, PHP, and CSS during two unsuccessful attempts at configuring the website on a local host to then incorporate TNG into the website for real.

The successful integration took about 8 hours, resulting in a TNG template 12 mytngstyle.css that was good enough at matching the look-and-feel of TNG template 12 to the WordPress Twenty Seventeen theme.

Extensive customization of the CSS was required to reconcile conflicts between the WordPress Twenty Seventeen theme style.css, the TNG genstyle.css, and the TNG template 12 templatestyle.css, and was accomplished all in the TNG template 12 mytngstyle.css.

T.N.G Colouring Book was used to generate a first cut at the color palette changes to match TNG template 12 to the WordPress Twenty Seventeen theme. But we then just used its generated CSS file as a guide for the next step below.

Lots of manual tweaks were then made using Apple’s Safari Web Inspector to figure out what needed to be changed. Just check the checkbox for Show Develop menu in menu bar under Safari ‘s preferences advanced panel, and then enter option-command-I to enter the Web Inspector. This is a great way to learn CSS also.

Then a couple hours to fiddle with the .htaccess file, fix a few things with the URL structure, and finally flip the switch on the DNS from WordPress.com to SiteGround.com.

TNG is currently used on the pages reached at :

Menu > Our Genealogy > Our Family Tree

Menu > Our Genealogy > Tree Starting @ MKS

We’ll try to publish this CSS customization to GitHub at some point in the future when the site reaches steady state. Until then, feel free to contact us via the contact page for more info.

Update – 20 Apr 2018: The Ancestor Map mod has now been installed on the website. This mod displays a map with all the places associated with an individual’s ancestors.

Update – 9 May 2018: TNG Version 12.0 has now been installed on the website.

WARNING: This website has only been tuned for desktop use, and admittedly only for Safari at this point. It needs some work for mobile device use, but does work pretty well already on an iPhone and iPad.

*/

return

}

Mattie Mountain – June 2

Here is progress at the end of June 2:

Mattie Mountain - June 2 - #1

Well, did not progress as planned enclosing the tunnel on the left. Mattie wants one or two cameras in the tunnel to watch the trains pass through. Need to do some googling and find a small camera preferably with wifi interface.

Spent some time in AnyRail to resolve how the 3 tracks will cross on the right table. Eventually had to trace the as-built of that area on to a large piece of paper and lay it out by hand. Of course the final layout requires buying a different crossing.

Spent the past two days reading up on DCC, DCC wiring, blocks, block occupancy detectors, and auto reversing section controllers.  Realized while doing this reading there was one reverse loop in the layout – which is what you get when you have your head buried in a track layout program that does not understand electrical wiring; there is a 2nd reverse loop in the layout posted on May 23, but this one has been eliminated). Wow what a learning curve!

Have a plan for the wiring buses, feeders, and blocks. Will update the layout to reflect and post that soon.

Today, finished installing the risers and inclines in the area where the 3 tracks cross on the right table. All the foam is installed now.

Next up: installing plaster cloth on all the track portions, and installing track.

P.S. Added 2 great websites on model railroad wiring to the resources page.