Ten Essential Tasks For U.S. Genealogists on Veterans Day

Berwin H. Webster with sister's Anna and Margaret. Posing against a fence in Merrimack NH circa 1918.

My father, Berwin H. Webster with sister’s Anna (holding American flag) and Margaret. Posing against a fence in Merrimack NH on the first Armistice Day, 1918.

Genealogists have a greater reason than most to pay attention to Veterans Day.  We are the keepers of history, the scavengers of memorabilia, and the scribes of  remembrance.  We, more than many understand that we are making history this very moment.

One hundred years from now someone will be wanting to know what we did today.  Will you be the one who wrote it down?  This year, and in all others that follow you can set the lead, know the history, and record what happened for the future. Continue reading

New Hampshire WWI Military: Private Clarence F. Kelley of Manchester NH (1895-1918)

kelley-clarence-photograph-2-watermarkedClarence Fletcher Kelley was born on 25 January 1895 in Manchester, New Hampshire, the son of Thomas F. & Eola L. (Fletcher) Kelley. By 1900 both he and his brother, Carroll, were living with their mother at a 255 Auburn Street tenement house.  By 1910 they were living at 396 Manchester Street. He would have attended schools in those neighborhoods.

On his war registration card of June 1917, Clarence indicated the following: 22 years of age, occupation a conductor on the Manchester Street Railroad (trolley).  He was single, and had been a member of the NH National Guard Battery for 3 months.  He was of medium height, slender with light brown eyes and brown hair.   Continue reading

New Hampshire WWI Military: 2nd Lieut. George D. Parnell of Manchester NH (1894-1918)

Photograph of Lieut George D. Parnell, from the Charlotte Thompson Collection, Manuscripts and Institution Archives, Milne Special Collections and Archives Department, UNH. Used with written permission of University of New Hampshire Library, Durham, NH.

Photograph of Lieut. George D. Parnell, from the Charlotte Thompson Collection, Manuscripts and Institution Archives, Milne Special Collections and Archives Department, UNH. Used with
written permission of University of New Hampshire Library, Durham, NH.

George Downes Parnell was born 15 March 1894 in Manchester NH, son of Fred Oakley & Georgia W. (Downes) Parnell. He would have attended local Manchester schools.

In the 1900 United States Census, the Parnell family was living on Linden St. George’s father Fred was a new widower, his wife, “Georgie” (George’s mother) having died on 17 April, leaving 5 young children. Fred was a well-known grocer in the city, with a provision store at 250 Bridge Street.

Fred’s sister Cora Parnell (who I had written about in 2013 when I bought her photograph) was living with him, and caring for the children. Son, George D., was only 6 years old at that time. George’s sibings were Carroll Abbott (1893-1959), Arabelle (1895-1975), Nelson W. (1897-1948), Frederick O. (1898-1899), and Thomas D. (1900-?)

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