Archive for the ‘Family Tree’ Category

The Best Fishing Trip – Ever…

by Sherry Stocking Kline
October 19, 2009

It may sound crazy, but the best fishing trip I ever went on was nowhere near the water and we didn’t catch any fish.

It All Started With a Garage Sale…

It all started with a garage sale. (I do love garage sales.)

Driving by a garage sale late one Saturday afternoon I begged my son to stop so I could feed my garage sale fix.  (no, I have no pride and  he was driving so I begged, maybe even offered a bribe.)

I knew we were too late in the day to get first choice on the good stuff, but we were prime time for getting bargains on the I-don’t-want-to-box-it-up-and-keep-it  leftovers.

Sitting there amidst a lot of stuff we didn’t want was what looked like a really nice fishing reel.  I picked it up, checked it out, and laid it back down.

Which immediately prompted an offer from the owner of the garage.

So I snapped up the fishing reel. When we got back home, my son and I immediately went to my mom’s home to show off our ‘treasures.’

“Looks like a nice reel,” she said, “but it needs new line.” And she, being the veteran of years of pond, river, lake, and ocean fishing, knew what she was talking about.

Take it To Your Uncle Daryl…

“Take it to your Uncle Daryl,” she said, “he can put new line on it and get it ready to go for you.”

Daryl Jones, Sr., fishing at Aransas Pass, Texas

Daryl Jones, Sr., fishing at Aransas Pass, Texas 1908 - 1999

So I did.  My Uncle Daryl Jones, Sr. was pretty much a ‘pro’ at fishing.  Whether it was pond, river, creek, lake, or ocean, he’d fished them all, and he usually brought home the fish that the rest of us call “the one that got away.”

He looked the reel over, allowed that it was an “o.k.” reel, and that I had gotten a pretty “o.k.” deal, kept it, and promised to put new line on it and get it back to me soon.

A couple of weeks later he called me up and asked me if I  had a little time.   He had an hour to kill while my Aunt Elsie, got her hair done.

“Sure,” I said, and when he knocked on my door an hour later my fishing reel was now attached to a pole.

And Not Just Any Pole…

Not just any pole, but the one that his first wife, my Aunt May, who had passed away, had used to catch a shark in the Ocean near Aransas Pass, Texas, where they and my mom and her husband used to spend their winters fishing and being winter Texans.

Awesome!   I was thrilled, and moved to tears, and I tried to talk him into keeping it. But he wouldn’t have it.

“At my age, it won’t be too long before someone will have to put my things in an auction,” he said, “I’d like for you to have it.” (Fortunately, it was some time yet before he passed on.)

Nothing would have it but that he  give me an on-the-spot fishing lesson. So out the door we went to his little Toyota pickup, put down the tail gate, sat down, and he began to show me the right way to cast and reel in, cast and reel in.

That day is a Golden Moment in my memories…

It was fall, and the air was fresh and clean and  just crisp and cool enough to need a light jacket.  The trees were turning gold and red and even the dust motes in the breeze were golden with reflected sunlight.

We sat there, uncle and niece, on a pick-up tail gate in my driveway, dangling our feet, talking about fishing and memories, and casting out up and down the street as if we were actually on a lake, and bonding.

Casting out and reeling in, and hurrying like mad when a car turned down my dead-end street and threatened to run over our ‘catch.’

And enjoying being family on a beautiful fall day.

My Neighbors Thought We Were a Brick Shy of a Full Load…

There’s not a lot of traffic on my street, but I’m sure the neighbors and the occasional ‘foreigner’  (car that didn’t live there) that drove by that day had to be certain we were ‘a brick shy of a full load’, but I didn’t care.

I learned a lot that day, not all of it about how to fish, and the most important thing I learned was to tuck golden memories like this one into my heart to keep forever.


And This Brother Came to Kansas – Tombstone Tuesday – James and Elizabeth (Conver) Kline

by Sherry Stocking Kline
Written for FamilyTreeWriter.com  -  October 5th, 2009

Though family and family history has always been important to me, I have my father-in-law to thank, at least in part, for my interest in researching genealogy.

My Father-in-Law Got Me Started…

It was my father-in-law who put the bug in my ear that “he sure would like to know more about his family” though he also let me know at the same time that he was afraid to find out.

Like many families, there was a ‘story’ involved. Three brothers, or some such number, and one went this way, one went another, they had an argument, and they never spoke again.

The Brothers Argued and Never Spoke Again?

The story that Pop, my father-in-law had heard was that the brothers came west, and then they argued on the way, and one came to Kansas and they never spoke again. And Pop was afraid that I might find something about his grandfather that would be, well, really embarrassing, so though he really wanted to know, he was more than a little hesitant.

He probably knew that the mystery would be a challenge that I couldn’t resist, and he was right.

I Was Clueless When I Began to Research…

I began to research. And it’s funny now how clueless I was when I started. My first trip to the library I was simply opening up Pennsylvania genealogy books looking for the Kline name, hoping to get lucky!

Kline isn’t all that common here, so I had no idea that Kline (meaning ‘little man’)  is pretty much the German version of Smith in Pennsylvania.

Bless her heart, Marsha Stenholm (now retired) of the Wichita Public Library took me under her wing, and we actually found a little info that first trip, and oh, my gosh, I was hooked!

James Ran in the Cherokee Strip Land Rush Race…

Here is the tombstone for Pop’s grandfather and grandmother.  They came from the Venango County area in Pennsylvania, and made a stop in Illinois and also in Iowa, leaving farms there to come to Caldwell, Sumner County, Kansas to make a run in the Cherokee Strip Land Rush Run into Oklahoma.  When they did not win any land in that race, they settled near Milan, Sumner County, Kansas.

James and Elizabeth Conver Kline are buried in the Ryan Township/Milan Cemetery in Sumner County, Township Cemetery, Milan, Sumner County, Kansas.

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James & Elizabeth (Conver) Kline - buried Ryan Township, Milan, Sumner County, Kansas

And though I did find that the siblings may have had some disagreements, it seems as though several kept in touch with one another, even after they all re-located to their new homes in the west.

Still a Work in Progress…

Even though Pop is gone now, this is still a ‘work in progress’ and I’ve connected with other distant branches of the family, and they’ve added much to the family tree information.

What I’d Like to Have in My Christmas Stocking!

by Sherry Stocking Kline written for Wichita Eagle’s Active Life Magazine – December 2008 (and just in case Santa is reading this, I’d still like to have this in my Christmas Stocking!) If you’ve ever been at a cemetery, library, or family gathering and wished you had your whole family tree in your shirt pocket or purse, you may want to ask your favorite Santa to leave the Pocket Genealogist Software in your Christmas stocking this year. Laura Phillips and her husband Kevin are the developers, owners, and tech support people for the Pocket Genealogist, a nifty little software package that will let you carry around up to a quarter million family members (plus photographs) on your PDA or smartphone, support GPS latitudes and longitudes, calculate dates, Soundex, add data, and search for individuals or places.

Carry Your Family Tree with You…

Carry Your Ancestors With You on your Windows PDA or Smartphone.

Carry Your Ancestors With You on your Windows PDA or Smartphone.

Phillips said that her husband, Kevin, got frustrated while trying to organize his family tree information to go on an out-of-state trip to visit family. He wanted to carry his whole family tree on his PDA (personal digital assistant) and leave his laptop at home. “He couldn’t find a program that would do what he wanted it to do,” said Laura Phillips, business manager and self-proclaimed “dummy tester” of Northern Hills Software’s Pocket Genealogist, “his standards are pretty high. So he put together a program to do what he wanted it to do.”

Software works on Windows Mobile Smart Phones & PDA’s

According to Phillips and the www.pocketgenealogist.com website, the software will run on any Windows Mobile Software, and depending on your PDA’s memory, the program can hold up to a quarter million individuals, allow you to view photographs, calculate those tricky ‘how-are-we-related anyway’ questions, and enter data for transfer back to your desktop computer. “You won’t get a free cell phone that is capable of running this software,” Phillips said.

Decide What Uses Before You Buy!

So before you buy a phone or PDA, you need to decide how you want to use it and what software you want to run and then purchase the smart phone or PDA that will do what you need it to do. Phillips said the Pocket Genealogist won’t work on IPhones, Blackberry’s or PDA’s that use the Palm Operating System. (Phillips said that the Gedstar Pro software program will work with Palm Operating systems.) Besides English, Pocket Genealogist supports nine languages and will import directly from Legacy Family Tree without conversion to a GEDCOM. Phillips said that it also “works with anything that adheres to the GEDCOM standard, including Family Treemaker, The Master Genealogist, and Roots Magic

.”

Desktop In Your Pocket?

“We try to mirror the experience that you have with your desktop,” Phillips said, and added a reminder to software users to “back up”  their information. “Your system is getting hauled around everywhere,” Phillips said, “so it’s important to back up your PDA’s information, just as you would a desktop computer.” Phillips said that Pocket Genealogist is very easy to navigate and has a very low learning curve, making it easy for new users. “I’m considered the dummy tester,” Phillips said, “if I can read the manual and make it work, we figure anybody can.”

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