July 23, 1998
Thank you very much for your card regarding information in Jean's web site taken from the Ellsworth newspapers. As you are no doubt aware, genealogy is absolutely fascinating to anyone interested -- and deadly dull to anyone who is not.
My daughter Jean and I were both interested, and she said in the course of researching many family lines she had used so many things that other people had sorted out and indexed, that she felt she should give something back. And that was one of her ways of "giving back. " She made many trips to the newspaper office and took the information from their micro-film records, put it on tapes, sent the tapes to me, I put them on computer, gave her a copy to proof, and then we corrected and put the whole schmear into alphabetical order, indexed it, and printed out copies for several libraries and historical societies.
Some time later our son, Jean's brother, decided to put the information on a web site for possible use by a much greater number of people. (At that time it became obvious that the indexing was not necessary for a web site because of the "search and find" feature; heaven bless computers, but we didn't know that when we were making paper copies for libraries to use.) In the meantime Jean had died after losing about an 8-year battle with cancer. So the whole thing is somewhat of a family project but Jean was the originator and simply nothing would have been done without her. Anything since then has been in loving memory of her, and it is very gratifying to us to know that other people are using the results of her labor.
Jean was born and raised in Maryland but after completing nurse's training she enlisted in the Navy and spent 5 years in service, part of it stationed at Boston Naval Hospital, and fell in love with New England. After release from the Navy, she shopped for work in New England, bought a house in Brewer, fell in love and married there, and lived there for the rest of her life. Hence, a great deal of her research was relatively local to the area. She also catalogued several fairly large local graveyards, Oak Hill Cemetery among them, so since your research obviously takes you into the Maine area, it may be worth your while to contact a graveyard society there for possible other leads.
Thank you again for taking the time to write. I wish you much success in your research.
Shirley E. Rhodes 300 International Circle, Cockeysville, MD 21030.