Tack, min svenska kusin!

Thanks to a newly discovered Swedish 3rd cousin, a few more pieces of my family history puzzle are in place.

For the past few weeks, I’ve been hard at work researching my father’s Swedish roots, primarily through the website ArkivDigital.

I really cannot say enough good stuff about this website. Provided you have a location with which to begin your research, the records are amazing. I had heard that Swedish records were some of the best in the genealogy world – and believe me, they are. Earlier this year I also spent some time researching this database and since then, I have identified and downloaded 70 or so records, all relating to my Swedish great grandparents and their ancestors.

Armed with all the new information I’ve obtained, I was able to do additional searching in Ancestry. And a few weeks ago, I noticed there were some Ancestry users from Sweden who had some of the same people in their tree that I have in mine. I contacted several of them – and finally located a Swedish cousin (svenska kusin)!!

My “new” cousin and I have determined that our great great grandfathers Äkers Lars Andersson (1827-1913)1 and Erik Andersson (1837-1919) were brothers.2 They were the sons of Östbors Goth Lars Larsson (1764-1834) and Östbors Margreta Larsdotter (1767-1807). Lars and Margreta had nine children total.

I will share more detailed information later, along with source information. But for now, I wanted to share my excitement over discovering a “new” cousin!

And just one more fun fact before I close this post. Through her research, my cousin learned that Lars was a boat or ship maker in Hudiksvall. In fact, she told me, he was “some kind of boss”.

And she also said that the boats he made were “most certainly” wooden.

Hmmm, I thought. Wooden boat. Why does that sound so familiar?

And then I remembered this photo of my great grandfather, Lars’ son Anders (“Andrew”) Dalin.

And now we know where “Grampa Dalin” learned to make a wooden boat.

  1. My new cousin tells me that the word “Äkers” on the front of Lars‘ name indicates either where he lived or was born, and was a common practice in the county where he was born.
  2. At some point later in their lives, both brothers added new surnames to their original names. Lars added DAHLIN (sometimes spelled DALIN) and Erik added GLAD. I am a descendent of Lars on my father’s side and can confirm that DALIN is the surname that was handed down. I had recently wondered if the DALIN name was what they refer to in Sweden as a “soldier name”. But my cousin confirmed that Lars was not a soldier. However, Lars‘ brother Erik was a soldier and GLAD is a soldier name.

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On this day in 1890 . . .

. . . my great great grandmother Margaret R. “Rebecca” (Loury) Blacker died in Macomb, McDonough County, Illinois. She died of “old age” and was buried on September 16th in Oakwood Cemetery in Block 2, Lot 50.


I know this information based on the record above, which was obtained from Oakwood Cemetery.1

Here’s what else I learned:

  1. Rebecca had at least three siblings: “Chris, Kate (Smith), Lydia, and “others”.
  2. Her maiden name – which I always thought was LOURY – may have been LOWER.
  3. Her mother’s name was MARY ULLERY.
  4. And my great grandfather David Lyman Blacker (listed above as “David”) was one of 14 children. Wow! Prior to obtaining this record, I only knew about three of those siblings, namely Elizabeth, Sarah and Jacob.

Lots and lots of new information! Sounds great, right? Wrong!

Armed with all this new information, I have searched and searched the names of Rebecca‘s siblings and the children I had never heard of and have come up with – absolutely nothing!  And I really am surprised by that outcome. Especially since I have maiden names for several of the daughters (i.e., Goudy, Mental and Stone).

One thing I have learned over the years, however, is that I have to be patient. I know my efforts and this “great new information” will result in some good stuff one of these days.

In the meantime, since I’m unable to visit the cemetery where Rebecca was buried, I was able to capture some interesting images using Google Earth and Google Maps.

Image from Google Maps, showing grave stones in the distance.


Image using Google Earth showing an aerial view of the cemetery.

And I can also share this wonderful photo of her grave stone, provided by a descendant of Rebecca‘s daughter Elizabeth (Blacker) Pearce.2

Margaret Blacker_tombstone_photo by Wendy Edwards

So ever onward. And here’s hoping for some “good stuff” in the near future!

  1. I’ve written previously about this record here.
  2. This photo and additional information was previously shared here.

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A belated Happy Anniversary . . . and a family mystery

Two days ago – August 30th – was the 168th wedding anniversary of my great great grandparents Catherine Tyler and John Buchenau.

Unfortunately, I do not have a picture of John but I do have this picture of Catherine.

Catherine B. (Tyler) Buchenau
Catherine B. (Tyler) Buchenau

John and Catherine were married on August 30, 1848, in Ottawa, La Salle County, Illinois. I remember the day – way back in 1981 – when their marriage record came in the mail. I was beyond excited! (The family mystery is discussed below the images and transcriptions.)

Marriage Certificate/License: John Buchenau and Catherine Tyler
Certification page

Transcription of handwritten portion, right side of page:

John Buckman [sic]
Catherine Tyler
Filed Sept 20, 1848
Certif. – Aug. 30, 1848
License – Aug 29, 1848
Page 99
Marriage Certificate/License: John Buchenau and Catherine Tyler
Marriage License: John Buchenau and Catherine Tyler


State of Illinois
La Salle County
The People of the State of Illinois to any
person legally authorized to solemnize the
vows of Matrimony Greeting
You are hereby Licensed and authorized
to Solemnize the vows of Matrimony
between Mr. John Buckman [sic] and Miss Catherine
Tyler now both of La Salle County and State of Illinois
and hereof make return together with a [illegible]
of the Marriage within Thirty days from date
of the Marriage and this will be your sufficient
justification for so doing.
In testimony Whereof I hereunto
set my hand and have affixed the
Seal of this Court at Ottawa
Aug 29th 1848
M[illegible] Murphy Clerk
John Buckman [sic]
Catherine Tyler
Aug 30, 1848
Marriage Certificate/License: John Buchenau and Catherine Tyler
Marriage Certificate: John Buchenau and Catherine Tyler


State of Illinois
Lasalle [sic] County
Be it remembered that on this 30th day of
August A.D. 1848 by Virtue of my office
as a Justice of the Peace, in and for the
said County of Lasalle [sic], and in accordance with the
within License, I performed and joined together a man
and wife Mr. John Buckman [sic] & Miss Catherine Tyler
in the holy bond of Matrimony.
Witness my hand and seal the day and year
above named.
Warner Brown (Seal)
Justice of the Peace


John and Catherine went on to have six children, including my great grandmother Ada Cordelia (Buchenau) Blacker – born in 1853 in St. Joseph, Missouri.

By 1865, the family was living in Kansas.

In 1871, Ada married my great grandfather David Lyman Blacker and moved with him to the Montana Territory.

And here’s where the mystery comes in.

  • Some time between 1880 and and 1890, Catherine left her husband – and moved to the Montana Territory to live with her daughter Ada and son-in-law David Blacker in Helena.
  • Records for John seem to indicate he died between 1900 and 1910, probably in Kansas. I have been unable to locate where he is buried.
  • Catherine died in Helena, Montana on April 21, 1923. She is buried next to her daughter Ada and three of her granddaughters at Forestvale Cemetery in Helena.

Hmmm . . .

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“Butte, America” or “Until We Meet Again”

Two weeks ago today, we stopped in Butte, Montana to see my cousin, her husband – and their adorable granddaughter. We had a short but wonderful visit.

They live downtown so we were able to walk around and see some of the old buildings and even had time for a few meals – dinner on Friday evening at the Metals Sports Bar & Grill located in the historic Metals Bank Building, and breakfast on Saturday morning at Gamer’s Cafe, a Butte institution.

Butte holds quite a special place in my heart.

My great grandparents Joseph and Kate (Myers) Kieron immigrated there from Ireland in the late 19th century. Their daughter – my grandmother Nora Marie (Kieron) Blacker – was born there in 1900.

An Ri Ra flyer

And as luck would have it, we were there on the same weekend of the Irish Festival, which this year was commemorating the Easting Rising of 1916 – which I wrote about earlier this year.

We had some spare time on Friday evening so we headed up the hill to the Original mine – one of only a few remaining headframes left in Butte – where we listened to Irish fiddle tunes and saw a group of young Irish step dancers. As you can see in the picture below, the stage was set up at the bottom of the headframe, also sometimes referred to as a “gallows” frame.



Irish Dancers at the Original Mine, Butte Irish Festival 2016
Irish Dancers at the Original Mine, Butte Irish Festival 2016

Listen to a wonderful Irish fiddle tune while you finish reading this post.

And as it was a little chilly out, I had to buy a sweatshirt!








As I sat at the Irish Festival next to my cousin, listening to the tunes, I couldn’t help but wonder about our great grandparents and our grandmother.

  • I know my great grandfather worked in some of the mines . . . but which ones?
  • What neighborhoods did they live in?
  • What was life like for them in Butte?
  • And do you suppose my great grandparents Joseph and Kate ever danced together to fiddle tunes from their homeland?

(I’ve been doing lots of research since returning home, hoping to answer some of these questions in a forthcoming blog.)

The next morning before leaving town, we visited the graves of our great grandparents at St. Patrick’s Cemetery.

I was so happy to share this time and place with my cousin and her family. And I’m already looking forward to our next visit.

Beannachtaí libh go bhfeictear arís sibh.

Until we meet again.

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