Mar 14

Wordless Wednesday: Venice, Florida

Mar 12

Wildflowers at Amicalola Falls

My favorite time of year is spring. I never tire of weekly visits to a trail at the base of Amicalola Falls discovering what new wildflower is popping up from the ground or is in bloom.

Yesterday I was not disappointed when, with cameras in hand, I climbed the trail. It is times like these that I wish I knew something about photography and could do more than point and shoot! None-the-less, I get reasonable results from my Nikon Coolpix and my Panasonic Lumix.

sSince I choose a fairly early walk, some of the plants such as bloodroots and trout lilies were not in  full regalar. In addition to the bloodroot and trout lily, I saw rue anemones, chickweeds, purple toadshade trilliums, yellow trillium, purple and yellow violets, foamflowers and a single Virginia bluebell.


© Linda Woodward Geiger. All Rights Reserved.

Toadshade trillium

Rue anemone

Great chickweed

Mar 09

Gibbs Gardens

For over a year we’ve anticipated the grand opening of Gibbs Gardens here in the foothills of the North Georgia Mountains. It was well worth the wait! The gardens began over 30 year ago when Jim Gibbs dreamed of developing a “world-class public garden” on his 300-acre private estate off of Yellow Creek Road in northeastern Cherokee County, Georgia. Gibbs is responsible for the brilliant artistry that adorns over 220 acres of landscaped gardens, streams, ponds, and woodlands.

Today I walked the Valley Gardens consisting of a variety of areas including: Waterlilly Gardens; Monet Bridge; The Pleasance; Grandchildren’s Sculpture Garden; Japanese Garden; Torii Gage; Wedding Gazebo; Daffodils; and more!

Of course it is early for many of the plants that will be showing later, but for now we are satisfied with the glory of the 50 acres of daffodils that cover the hillsides and select areas of the gardens. The beauty is beyond imagination!

The Japanese Gardens will be truly magnificent — lovely even now without lots of blooming plants.

The Grandchildren’s Sculpture Garden is charming with delightful statuary including the two illustrated in the photos to the left.

I’m looking forward to another visit within a couple of days.

© Linda Woodward Geiger. All Rights Reserved.










Mar 07

Wordless Wednesday: Venice, Florida

Feb 29

Wordless Wednesday: Hong Kong Orchid

Feb 26

Ahnentafel Numbers

Ahnentafel numbers are a precise number system that we use to number our direct ancestors on our pedigree chart.[1] The word “ahnentafel” is a composite of the German words, ahnen meaning ancestor and tafel meaning table or list. The ahnentafel numbering system is also to compile ascendant genealogical research using the Sosa-Stradonitz System.[2]

The method of determining the ahnentafel number of a direct ancestor is based on multiples of two. To begin we start with the base (first) individual of our pedigree chart (generally oneself) and assign the number 1. The father of the first individual (number 1) will be assigned the number 2 (multiply 1 by 2). His father  (the paternal grandfather of number 1) will be 4 (multiply 2 by 2). The father of number 4 will be number 8 (multiply 4 by 2), etc. Therefore, the number of every father on your pedigree chart will be a multiple of 2 (an even number).

To determine the ahnentafel number of the man’s appropriate spouse (your direct ancestor), simply add 1 (one) to his ahnentafel number. The mother of the first individual on the pedigree chart will be 3 (the father’s number, 2, plus 1); her father will be number 6 (3 x 2),; and her mother will be number 7 (number of her father, 6, plus 1).

Let’s consider the pre-printed pedigree chart that may be downloaded as a PDF file (from Google Your Family Tree  Dan Lynch


What follows are images of two pages of a pedigree chart illustrating appropriate  ahnentafel numbers.

Chart 1: Numbers that have been added in “maroon” are the “chart” numbers. On this chart the ahnentafel numbers are already provided (individuals 1-15). I’ve added male and female silhouettes to reinforce the concept that the male ahnentafel numbers will be a multiple of two (even number) while the ahnentafel numbers of females will be odd numbers. The only exception is if the base (or first individual) is a male, in which case the ahnentafel number is 1 (one).

Chart no. 2 (two): Again the chart numbers are designated in maroon. Because the ahentafels are not the same as the printed numbers on the pre-printed chart, I’ve chosen to use green to show the appropriate ahentafel numbers.

© Linda Woodward Geiger. All Rights Reserved.


[1] A pedigree chart is a “schematic drawing of the bloodlines that connect you to each of your direct ancestors” [See Helen F.M. Leary, editor. North Carolina Research: Genealogy and Local History (Raleigh, North Carolina: North Carolina Genealogical Society, 1996), 604. Hereinafter cited as Leary, ed., North Carolina Research.]

[2] Leary, ed., North Carolina Research, 611–612.

Feb 24

College Room-Mates, Part II

The post card image shown herein is part of shared Flicker collection, Keene and Cheshire County (NH) Historical Photos, by the Keene Public Library and the Historical Society of Cheshire County.

Fiske Hall as depicted in the postcard at the right is from the era when the school was called Keene Normal School, by the time we entered her hallowed halls the building was adorned with ivy.

Jane Page Hawkins (now Jane Goland) and I resided on the second floor of Fiske Hall, second room from the left. Our neighbors, Joan Roberts and Phyllis Woodward (no relation) became good friends. Joan and Phyllis resided in the first room from the left.

The small room contained a bureau, 2 twin beds, two very small open faced closets, desk and 2 chairs. We adorned the beds with bright red-corded Bates bedspreads (similar in appearance to the plissé bedspread offered by the Vermont County Store today. We purchased some bright red tightly woven cotton fabric at the Mill End Store located in an old mill building off West Street not far from the Ashuelot River (probably currently part of the Cotton Mill Marketplace Shopping Center) for a curtain to cover the front or our closets.

We also had a portable record player. Yesterday we reminisced about some of the music we liked—the Kingston Trio, the Platters, and similar faire. How we laughed at Tom Lehr’s satire. You remember, don’t you? “Be Prepared [The Boy Scout Marching Song],” “I Hold Your Hand In Mine, Dear,” and “The Hunting Song.” I was a secondary science and math major so particularly enjoyed Lehr’s “Lobachevsky.”

Speaking of majors, Jane began her matriculation at Keene State as an elementary teacher. However after tackling Dr. Peter’s elementary math course and Etta Merrill’s art class (today Ms. Merrill would be so proud of Jane’s great drawings and paintings), she changed her major as a second semester freshman to English. She adored Professor Malcolm Keddy. Although I managed to stick with it, I nearly succumbed to Professor Kinney’s total mean and hateful bias towards women in his mathematics and/or science classes.

Keene State was a very small school. If memory serves us correctly there were only 777 students (including graduate students) when we were there. By second semester we lost several who were not able to adjust to being weaned from their families.

Keene State has come a long way, baby!

© Linda Woodward Geiger. All rights Reserved.

Feb 23

College Room-Mates, Part I

I’m writing this as I wait for my hostess to waken. I’m spending a couple of days in Venice, Florida, with my college room-mate and her hubby, Jane (Hawkins) & David Goland. As usual, I’m up early (4:30 am) and am trying to be a thoughtful guest. It may be hard to believe, but there are not many folks who enjoy the early morning hours as I do.

When my Mom left me off at Fisk Hall on the Keene State campus in early September 1959, I was petrified. You see, I’d stayed with the family of Eleanor and Elmer Lewis while working at the Knotty Pine Grill in the Weirs between my high school graduation from Walpole High School and entrance into Keene State as a freshman.

Eleanor and the Lewis children, Robert and Debbie, lived in their lovely cottage at the Weirs during the summer and Elmer would join them on the weekends. Elmer and his Dad owned a drug store in Westborough, Massachusetts. One weekend he arrived with exciting news. Jane Hawkins of Westborough would be attending Keene State as a freshman and had just learned that her roommate would be Linda Woodward – Hey, that would be me!  Can you imagine the excitement. Eleanor and Elmer related all kinds of details of the beautiful, gregarious, popular high school senior who would be my room-mate. I was pretty much, the opposite, shy, and sort of “book-wormish.” I settled in while dreading the moment Miss Home-Coming Queen would arrive.

She arrived in mid-afternoon, but was rather sedate. While the Lewis’ had been telling me all about Jane, they had also told Jane something of me—quite, studious, and industrious. Jane was quaking in her boots! We were very reserved for about the first 30 minutes or so. I don’t recall, but I expect it was Jane who broke the ice. It wasn’t long before we realized that we would not only get along, but that we would really like each other.

Ah, what memories… I’m sure that more memories will be forthcoming during the next couple of days.

Feb 15

Wordless Wednesday: Nubble Light

Cape Neddick ("Nubble") Light, York, Maine

Feb 04

Evidence: A Matter of Context for Genealogists & Historians

There is never a good excuse for not remembering to wish our friends a happy birthday or plesant salutations for various holidays. However, some of us get caught up with every day family affairs and work and are not always wonderful about remembering to send out a “snail mail” paper greeting.

With that in mind, a clever friend who did not send me greetings on my recent entry into the septuagenarian club gave me a late birthday card for my 70th as well as a second card for my 80th, stating that she did not wish to be late sending me a card for that special event. That tickled me and I couldn’t resist sending out the following tweet

That tweet was automatically shared with my Facebook account.

I’m sharing the comments made on Facebook – all from my family of genealogists and historians.

It just goes to show that top notch professionals do not always look at evidence in the same manner. It depends on the context. However, I’m thankful that most did not think I appeared to be 80 years old.

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