33444095_1437682818Thomas  Poland was the father of  Simon Poland, who was the father of  Cora Idella Poland,  who was  the mother of Marion Idella Lucas, who married Ora Otis Snyder, Sr. He was born on December 16, 1816 and died on February 17, 1896 in Indiana. He  has been described at different times as a carpenter, farmer and/or fruit farmer.  Here is a biographical  sketch about him that appeared in the Morrow County History of 1880.

“THOMAS POLAND, farmer, P.O., Lexington, was born Dec. 16, 1816 in Franklin Co., Penn.; his parents were natives of that state–his father , John Poland of Franklin Co. and his mother, Rachel (Cookston) Poland of Adams Co. His father was a farmer by occupation, and in 1832 he moved to Richland Co., where he lived four years. He then bought eighty acres of “school land” in this  county, on which he lived for more  than thirty years, when he sold it and moved to  Indiana. At the  age of  17, Thomas commenced working  at the carpenter trade which he followed for thirty years. When 19 he walked  to the city of  Baltimore and  returned as far as Pennsylvania, where he worked during the summer, and then came home.

He was the first man in this part of the  county to pack and ship apples; he was  engaged  in the produce business several years, and  in the lumber  trade some five years, during which he owned a portable sawmill a short  time. In all these ventures, he has been eminently successful, being now worth near twenty-four  thousand dollars.

He is a member of the I.O.O.F., and has been a charter member of the Patrons of Husbandry, of  which he is a lecturer; he also helped organize  a Mutual Fire Insurance Company, and is one of  the Directors. He was  married in July, 1838 to Mary, daughter of Lewis and Catherine Grimes. She was born Jan. 18, 1815, in Lancaster Co., Pa. To  them eight children were born; six are living–Simon, Mary A.,  Alexander, Hannah J,  Thomas J. and W. Scott. All are  married and the oldest three sons served in the late  war. ”

Around 1880, Thomas and his wife moved to Indiana  with their son Alexander.
They first located in Kosciusko County near where Thomas’  father John Poland and his youngest brother Jesse lived, also near where his daughter Mary, wife of George Tuckey, lived. In 1890 Thomas moved to South Whitley, Whitley County, Indiana. One of Thomas and Mary’s sons was Thomas Jefferson Poland, named after our country’s third president. Their son, Winfield Scott Poland, was named after Winfield Scott, a famous United States Army General and unsuccessful presidential candidate in 1852 for the Whig party.  Thomas is buried in South Whitley Cemetery, South Whitley, Indiana.

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The following article, entitled Bellville Blackout Was Considered Successful Last Wednesday Night,  appeared in the Bellville Star on May 27, 1943 during World War II. I found this article interesting and thought I would share it with you. Looking back, it seems kind of silly that anyone thought that Bellville or Richland County would be a strategic  target for Japanese or German bombers. It seems even more silly looking back that anyone thought that Japanese or German bombers could reach targets in Ohio but I guess that this was a sign of the times. As you will note the article indicates that Snyder Funeral Home was the conduit for “local blackout calls” during the test blackouts to prepare for air raids. According to my father, the funeral home would receive an order that the blackout test was over and someone would be sent to the cemetery to advise the “lookout.” Here is the article:

“Bellville can justly claim credit for its fine cooperation in the blackout test held throughout Richland County on Wednesday evening of last week. While it was announced that a test blackout would be held that evening, the time of the actual test was withheld to come as a surprise.

Snyder Funeral Home, where local blackout calls are received, heard the warning call at 9:40 am which was followed by the blackout orders about ten minutes later. The messages were transmitted to Mayor Thomas R. Zewigler, Fire Chief Worner and local Civilian Defense Officials.

The steady two minute blast of the siren, heard for miles out into the county, came at 9:50, and with very few exceptions, almost immediately all lights in Bellville were completely blacked out.

Among the notable exceptions to the total black out, according to Mayor Ziegler, was a light  left for chickens in a home in the south end of  town, a local business place that took  two minutes to get lights out, a lodge room in which a light had been left burning  (a warden possessing a key quickly extinguished that), and a very few people turned on their lights before the all clear signal, the street lights came on.

Actual air raids in this country this summer are expected by Civilian Defense officials, and everyone is warned to acquaint himself fully with blackout signals in order to give the utmost possible cooperation in case of an air raid.

Practically all Bellville air raid wardens and their messengers were on the job patrolling and reporting on every home in Bellville. The local Volunteer Fire Department members reported at the fire station for any duty that might arise.

Congratulations  generally are due local citizens for their fine cooperation. The folks in the township too did a splendid job of  notifying residents of the blackout.

Once again, elsewhere in this issue, the Star-Press publishes the air raid instruction information, which should be learned thoroughly.”


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128791382_1398820962 Jason Jerome Cover was one of our more industrious ancestors. He was a very successful merchant. He was one of the brothers of Tom Cover, one of the favorite subjects of this blog. My research has revealed that Jason even traveled to Montana at one point to visit Tom Cover. Below you will find the biographical profile of Jason that can be found in the 1880 History of Morrow County. He was born in 1823 and died at age 70 in 1893. He is buried in Shauck Cemetery.

JASON J. COVER, Shauck; was the oldest of ten children born to Daniel and Lydia (Stevenson) Cover; he was born in Frederick Co., Md., Feb. 5, 1823. Until 13 years old he attended such school as could then he afforded, when coming to Seneca Co., and there to East Perry, in Richland Co., Ohio, with his father, his assistance became necessary in the clearing and farming  of their land.

He stayed upon the farm some four years, when an opportunity of changing his business offering , he entered the employ of Creigh & Shauck Lek in his seventeenth year. He continued with this firm, serving behind the counter, in the post office, at the warehouse, packing pork and caring for horses; he served in various capacities, often working until ten or twelve o’clock at night, for eight dollars per month, turning over to his father every dollar of his earnings until he reached his majority. He then hired out to J. T. Creigh for $130 per annum and his board, refusing an offer of $144 per year from another merchant; he took his pay in clothing, notes and accounts against customers. Here he remained for nine years, his ability commanding repeated addition to his yearly salary, until it reached $175 per year. During the five years that he worked as clerk for himself he laid by $650, and in May, 1849, was taken into the firm of D. M. & J. T. Creigh & Co., as partner; he received six per cent. upon his capital and one-fourth of the profits on the entire business, which then included a general store, business, shipping of produce, buying notes, packing pork and dealing in flax seed. For five years the firm did a prosperous business, and at the expiration of the term of partnership he found himself in possession of a capital of $4,000, and the Creighs retiring at the head of a fine business. He associated his brother with him in business, under the name of J. J. Cover & Co., with a combined capital of $5,500; this left the firm in debt, with payments of $1,000 and $2,000, to he met in annual installments, which was successfully accomplished.

Mr. Cover has been in active business ever since; save during the last year or two he has not paid so much attention to his store trade. During his active business career it was his custom to visit New York every six months to purchase goods, making some thirty-nine trips in all. In the fall of 1861, his business shrewdness led him to buy an enormous stock of dry goods, groceries and hardware, so that it taxed the capacity of his buildings to their utmost to bold them. His supply lasted three years, and was closed out at enormous profits,. reaching 300 or 400 per cent. He has maintained the business of the early day in all its branches, save, perhaps, that of pork-packing, doing a trade of from $25,000 to $75,000 per year, and that without the usual amount of friction. Business misunderstandings have been rare, and though obliged on two or three occasions to have recourse to the services of a Justice of the Peace, he has never had a case in court. In the course of his business life., Mr. Cover has had the forming of the business character of eleven young men, who are now promising business men on their own account, or in positions of wider usefulness. He always took a lively personal interest in the young men in his employ, and now follows their career with all the interest of a near friend. Among these are Christian Gauwiler, since deceased, John Schantz and Jerome King, doing a prosperous business at Mansfield, Tolman House in the produce business at Cameron, Mo.; George R. Hosler, at Johnsville; Samuel Wagner, at Shauck’s Mills ; Robert Leedy, farming in the west ; John W. Thenna, druggist and postmaster at Johnsville; John Held, of Newhouse & Held, and his two sons, Upton I. and Jacob K. These young men stayed with Mr. Cover not less than three years, nor any more than four, two of them being employed sometimes together. He remembers them as industrious honest ]ads of fair ability; his business abilities have been felt elsewhere, and in the settlement of the large bankrupt estate of J. S. Trimble, when the liabilities reached a sum exceeding $100,000, his management was especially creditable ; he assisted also in organizing the First National Bank of Mt. Gilead, of which he has been a stockholder and director from the first.

During the war he was prominent in securing volunteers to free his township from draft, and was employed by other communities to act in this capacity for them, paying from $120 to $650 for substitutes. On Sept. 2,1852, he married Catherine, daughter of Jacob King (see biography) ; she was born Sept. 20, 1833, in Troy, Richland Co., O. This union has been blessed with six children, five of whom are still living: Upton J., born Oct. 10, 1853 ; Alverda J., Oct. 20,1855, died Aug. 28, 1869, aged 13 years, 10 months and 8 days; Jacob K., born Nov. 25,1857; Laura B., Feb. 5,1863; Minnie R., Nov. 25, 1867; Katie D., Oct. 20, 1874. Of his brothers and sisters, Thomas W. married Mary I-less, of Columbus, and is at San Bernardino, Cal., engaged in raising tropical fruits; Josiah S. married Ann Wertz, and lives at the same place, and is engaged in the same business as his brother Thomas; Mary M., now Mrs. George Biddle, resides on the Cover homestead in Perry Tp.. Richland Co., 0.; Martha E., deceased, was the wife of William Lewis, of Congress Tp.; Eliza J., deceased, was the wife of Isaac Markwood, also deceased, leaving a daughter, Alverda E., now residing with U. A. Cover; William H. H. married Mary, only daughter of William Corson, near Belleville, Richland Co., O.; he is a farmer and stock-dealer near Waterford, 0.; Daniel P. married Mary A. Fowler, of Fort Scott, Kan., and is now engaged in raising tropical fruits at Riversides, San Bernardino Co., Cal.; John W. married Mary Sourbrum, of Troy, Morrow Co., where he is farming; and Upton A. married Susan Lamb, retired merchant, of Johnsville.

His brother Thomas  was one of the discoverers of the celebrated Alder Gulch diggings, of Virginia City, Montana. Jason has survived all the male citizens of Johnsville that were here when he first came to the place, some forty years, ago. He was first a Whig, and voting for John C. Fremont, he has followed the fortunes of the Republicans ever since. He joined the United Brethren in Christ at the age of thirty-three, and has been an Active member ever since, acting as trustee, leader, Sabbath-school superintendent, and never without some official duty to discharge, ever since.

His father, Rev. Daniel Cover, came from Frederick Co., Md., and after sojourning in Seneca Co., 0., one year, he made a permanent settlement in Perry Tp., Richland Co., O., in 1836, on eighty acres of land, which he owned until his death. He was a minister of the United Brethren in Christ-among the first of that faith in this locality. He preached quite extensively in what are now Morrow and Richland counties, almost every Saturday and Sunday, without remuneration. The records show that during his ministerial labors of about twenty years in this country, he helped to organize and build five churches. He died in 1855, mourned by a family of ten children.




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6d72c9e0Some time ago, I sat down with my father, J. Paul Snyder, and talked  to him  about  the vehicles that his father, Ora Otis Snyder (“Poppo”) utilized  in the funeral business. It proved to be a very interesting conversation and I thought I would share it with you. Until about 1965, Snyder Funeral Homes provided ambulance services in each of their locations. Over all the years, all of Poppo’s ten (10) sons helped him on ambulance runs from time to time.

Poppo’s first car was likely the 1926 Ford Model T that he drove to and from embalming school in Columbus. He was initially a “Studebaker man.” He owned Studebaker hearses and sedans. Poppo had the first car in Johnsville with hydraulic brakes. After the Studebakers, he had a black  1928  Cadillac Sedan Ambulance that loaded from the side. Dave and Don Snyder drove this ambulance and Poppo also  used it as a family  funeral car.

Poppo  then had a black  1936 Flexible Buick combination vehicle that was manufactured in Loudonville. A “combination car” was built on a “professional car” chassis and  could be used as either a hearse or ambulance.  He then used that vehicle until he bought a black  1940 Flexible Buick combination car. Poppo had a black 1937 Ford service car. That car had a siren on it. My Dad recalls that one day he and his brother Phil were moving chairs back to Bellville after a church funeral. Phil was driving and had the siren on.  He went too fast around a curve and put the car into a ditch. The first person to stop and offer them assistance was a state trooper!  They declined assistance and were able to get the car out of the ditch. Fortunately, the car was not damaged. Dad does not think Poppo ever found out about that incident. The 1937 Ford Service car was traded in on a white  1948 Mercury  woody wagon that was used as a flower car.

Other flower cars included a medium brown 1951 Chrysler Windsor station wagon and a white 1957 Chevrolet Corvar Greenbriar station wagon that had a 4 cylinder engine and so little power that it “could barely pull itself out of a mud puddle.” Poppo had a gray 1939 LaSalle straight ambulance that was kept at Bellville. He also had a 1937 LaSalle combination, gray with black fenders, that was kept at Lexington.

My  dad recalls that one Sunday he, his brother, Phil, Poppo and Gong-Gong drove to a funeral home in  southern Ohio where Poppo purchased a used black 1940 Buick seven passenger limo to match the 1940 combination car. However, he found he could not use it on funerals because the rear brakes would lock up. Dad remembers his brother Pete crawling under the limo and beating the transmission with a hammer to try and get it to loosen up. Poppo had that car until 1948. His next vehicle was a blue 1948 Meteor Cadillac combination. He traded that in on a 1954 Meteor Cadillac combination. The Meteor vehicles were manufactured in Piqua, Ohio. Poppo also had a gray 1949 Meteor Cadillac combination that was used and/or kept at the Butler funeral home. At that point, the family funeral business had funeral homes in Bellville, Lexington and Butler.

Sometime before 1954, Poppo purchased a yellow 1950 straight Cadillac ambulance. My Dad recalls that one day he had just finished  washing  that ambulance at the Bellville funeral home and it started to rain. Cars were washed on one side of the garage and the ambulance was kept on the other side of the garage that was heated. As  he went to move the ambulance from one side of the garage to the other, he  backed the ambulance out into the alley and backed it into a 1937 Chevrolet being driven by his buddy, Zeke Ziegler. The impact was enough that Zeke was knocked unconscious. My dad pulled Zeke out of the car and laid him on the alley. Zeke recovered but it cost $400 to repair the ambulance.

Poppo had a black 1948 Buick combination that he kept at the Lexington funeral home. He traded the 1954 Superior in on a 1956 Superior Cadillac combination, white with a gray top, that was kept at Bellville. He later had a black 1959 Superior Cadillac combination with big tail fins and a matching black 1959 Cadillac Sedan DeVille. The funeral home also had a white 1966 Superior Pontiac combination that was kept at Fredericktown. During the 1960’s, the funeral home also had a 1965 Superior Cadillac combination, white with a black top. At about that same time, a white 1964 Cadillac combination was kept at the Mt. Gilead funeral home.

In 1951, my Dad and Phil were on an ambulance run on Route 13 north of Bellville. They were driving a blue 1948 Meteor combination with the lights and siren on. . Another car suddenly pulled out in front of them and they were unable to avoid striking that car in the rear, knocking it off the road.  They kept going on and reported the accident when they got back to the funeral home.  . Fortunately, the Meteor combination only sustained minor damage.

Another accident occurred when Poppo and Uncle Bob were at an accident scene south of Lexington on  Route 42 on an ambulance run. They were loading a lady into the ambulance when a tract0r-trailer came over the hill and struck the ambulance.

Another time, Poppo and Uncle Bob were in an ambulance taking a lady from Lexington to the Cleveland Clinic in the winter time. They were in a 1941 yellow Packard ambulance and were traveling north on Route 42 on Ashland Hill, just north of Mansfield. They had just crested a hill on a snowy day  and there sat a salt truck sideways in the road. They could not get stopped in time and could not avoid striking the salt truck, totaling the ambulance. Poppo had purchased the Packard ambulance in Bowling Green–Uncle Dave had found it there when he was attending college at Bowling Green State University.

The personal cars that Poppo had included a black 1941 Buick Super, a black 1946 Buick Roadmaster, a 1948 navy blue Buick Roadmaster, a 1951 dark green Chrysler Saratoga with a hemi engine, a gun metal gray 1952 Chrysler New Yorker, a blue 1953 Lincoln Capri, a charcoal gray 1957 Chrysler Imperial, a black 1959 Buick Electra, a white 1964 Cadillac Sedan DeVille, and a white 1970 Oldsmobile 98 with a black padded top.

During World War II , Poppo had to take the ambulance  west of  Lexington during a snowstorm to take someone from their residence  to the hospital. Poppo got the ambulance stuck in a snow drift in the driveway and it  took several hours to get the ambulance out of the snow drift  with the  assistance of a man from the residence. After they worked several hours to free the ambulance from the snow drift, Poppo asked “where is the man I need to take to the hospital?” The man who had been helping Poppo said, “well, that would be me!”

When Dick Snyder ran the Butler funeral home, he had a number of occasions where he made emergency runs to transport a pregnant mother and her doctor in the ambulance to the hospital. My Dad says that Dick “lost several races with the Stork,” with babies being born in the back of the ambulance before they arrived at the hospital. On one occasion, the happy mother named her newborn son after Dick!











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photo31012-235x300One of my favorite ancestors is Simon Poland, who served in the Civil War. Simon served as a corporal in the 10th Ohio Cavalry. Simon was my great great grandfather. He was the father of Cora Poland, who married Tommy Lucas. Tommy Lucas was the father of Marion Idella Lucas, who married Ora Otis Snyder, Sr.

As you may recall from my previous posts, Simon was captured at the Battle of Aiken in Aiken, South Carolina on February 11, 1865 and was held as a prisoner at the infamous Andersonville prison camp for the balance of the war. Fortunately for Simon, given the inhuman conditions at Andersonville, the Civil War only lasted for a few more months.

In the way of some background, the 10th Ohio Cavalry was attached to the army of General William Tecumseh Sherman on Sherman’s famous “March to the Sea” after Sherman captured Atlanta. During Sherman’s March to the Sea, his army “lived off the land” and destroyed many military targets as well as industry, infrastructure and civilian property.  Sherman’s  March to the Sea ended on December 21, 1864 with the capture of the port city of Savannah, Georgia. Before embarking on his March to the Sea, General Sherman had informed General U.S. Grant that one of his stated goals was to “Make Georgia Howl” and he did just that, inflicting devastating damage on Georgia and the Confederacy.

Following the March to the Sea, Sherman’s Army continued north through Georgia and into the Carolinas. Prior to invading the Carolinas, General Sherman stated: “When I go through South Carolina, it will be one of the most horrible things in the history of the world. The devil himself couldn’t restrain my men in that state.”  His statement was an obvious reference to the fact that it was South Carolina that began the Civil War by firing on Fort Sumter and seceding from the Union.

By February 1, 1865, the invasion of the Carolinas had begun. Simon’s regiment, the 10th Ohio Cavalry, remained attached to Sherman’s army. Sherman’s cavalry commander was Brigadier General Hugh Judson Kilpatrick. Interestingly, Kilpatrick is an ancestor of CNN commentator, Anderson Cooper.   Gen.  Kilpatrick reportedly spent $5,000 in Savannah for matches for his troopers. Kilpatrick, better known as “Kill Cav” for his rashness in battle that got his own men killed, was obnoxious, boastful, and a notorious womanizer. At Savannah, he told his corps, “In after years when travelers passing through South Carolina shall see chimney stacks without houses, and the country desolate, and shall ask who did this? Some Yankee will answer: Kilpatrick’s Cavalry!” His men would soon leave a scorched swath across South Carolina.

The 10th Ohio Cavalry was with the wing of Sherman’s Army that was apparently moving towards Augusta, Georgia. Sherman’s goal was to confuse the Confederates by making them think that his army was moving towards either Augusta, where the Confederacy’s gunpowder mills were located,  or Charleston, South Carolina, when his real objective was Columbia, South Carolina. Kilpatrick’s Cavalry, including the 10th Ohio Cavalry, approached Aiken, South Carolina. Kilpatrick’s objective was to destroy the railroad and government property in Aiken and any unheeded foray into Aiken almost certainly would have also involved destruction of civilian property as well.  Aiken is located in the southwestern part of South Carolina, about 20 miles from Augusta, Georgia. While Aiken now has a population of about 30,000, its population at the time of the Civil War was well less than 2,000. Notable residents of Aiken over the years have included South Carolina Senator Strom Thurmond and the Perry brothers, William “Refrigerator” and Micahel Dean, both of whom played in the NFL.

As Kilpatrick’s Cavalry approached Aiken on February 11,  the residents of Aiken realized that their worst fears were coming true and began to flee the  town.  Confederate General Joseph Wheeler had approximately 4,500 cavalry in the vicinity of Aiken. Wheeler proceeded to set a trap for Kilpatrick in the town of Aiken.

Wheeler formed his Confederate cavalry in the shape of a ‘V’, with the bottom of the ‘V’ pointed west towards Augusta. The railroad and Park Avenue ran down the center of the ‘V’. A thin line of skirmishers was deployed between the top tips of the  ‘V.’ On the approach of Kilpatrick’s troops,  the line was to fall back. . It was hoped that Kilpatrick would be rash and would charge after the retreating Confederates into the ‘V’. Wheeler would then collapse the tops of the ‘V’ around Kilpatrick’s troops  and thus surround them.

Although Kilpatrick had been warned that Wheeler’s Confederate cavalry troops were occupying Aiken, the reckless Kilpatrick blindly ignored those warnings and  marched into the town.  Kilpatrick’s troops entered Aiken and proceeded into the awaiting ambush. The Confederate soldiers were hiding in ambush, waiting for the signal to attack.  As the 92d Illinois Mounted Infantry entered Aiken, the ladies of the town waved their handkerchiefs and smilingly invited the Union officers and troops into their homes. While that was not the customary welcome received by Union troops when they triumphantly entered a southern town, they  ignored this telltale warning, further facilitating the Confederate plan.   However, the Confederate plan plan fell apart when an Alabama trooper fired his gun prematurely, thus springing the trap too soon. The Confederate general, realizing that he must act quickly or lose the initiative, ordered all units to attack. The key engagement occurred  in front of the First  Baptist Church. The Union troops were soon surrounded and outnumbered but bravely fought their way out of the ambush and retreated in wild confusion  to the outskirts of town in the midst of wild, hand-to-hand fighting. Gen. Kilpatrick was almost captured himself in the confusion of this battle.

Just outside of town, Kilpatrick’s troops had established a line manned by the 1oth Ohio Cavalry, 9th Ohio Cavalry and the 9th Michigan Cavalry. Accounts of the battle indicate that when the Union troops were pushed out of town and into the second line of cavalry, including the  10th Ohio Cavalry, that the retreating  Union and pursuing  Confederate troops were so close that the second line Union troops dared not fire, noting that the Union and Confederate soldiers were pulling each other off their horses trying to claim prisoners. It was in this phase of the battle that Simon Poland was likely taken prisoner. Notably, Simon’s brother, Alexander Poland, a member of the 9th Ohio Cavalry also participated in this battle.

The Union and Confederate troops skirmished for the rest of the day and into the next morning. Ultimately, Kilpatrick sent out a flag of truce so that he could recover his dead and wounded. Kilpatrick ultimately withdrew and rejoined Sherman on his march to Columbia.

Commanders in their reports often overestimated their opponent’s casualties and downsized their own. Kilpatrick states that Wheeler lost 31 killed, 160 wounded and 60 taken prisoners, for a total of 251 Confederate casualties. Wheeler admitted losing only 50 killed and wounded. Wheeler also claimed that the Confederates attack resulted in 53 killed, 270 wounded and 172 captured, or 495 Union casualties in all. Kilpatrick admitted to losing 25 killed and wounded and less than 20 captured.

Therefore, total Federal casualties were between 45 and 495, while the Confederates lost between 50 and 251. What we do know is that our ancestor, Simon Poland, was captured and taken prisoner during the Battle of Aiken.

By almost any yardstick, the Battle of Aiken was a defeat for the Union troops and Gen. Judson Kilpatrick, their no-good scoundrel commander, whose rash and reckless conduct almost got a whole brigade of his 3rd Cavalry Division captured and destroyed.  Nevertheless, the Battle of Aiken, in the bigger view, was strategically important as it served to distract and divert key parts of the Confederate army and keep them out of the way of the main advance of Sherman’s army. The outcome of the Battle of Aiken was also vital for the citizens of Aiken as it prevented the ransacking and destruction of their town. Each year, the residents of Aiken reenact the Battle of Aiken and have a weekend of festivities to commemorate the battle. I am putting a visit to Aiken on my “bucket list.”


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I have had a subscription to for some time. It is a very helpful research tool for facilitating your family history research and organizing your results. My daughters and sons-in-law got me a neat birthday present this year. Specifically, they purchased a DNA test kit for me from As you may have seen on TV, offers DNA testing and genetic analysis to help users discover, preserve and share their family history, including their ethnicity. creates estimates for your genetic ethnicity by comparing your DNA to the DNA of other people who are native to a region. The Ancestry DNA reference panel contains 3,000 DNA samples from people in 26 global regions. Each panel member’s genealogy is documented so that can be confident that such panel member is representative of people who have lived in that region for hundreds of years. compares your DNA to the DNA of the people in the reference panel to determine which regions your DNA is most like. As a result of this comparison, they come up with an ethnicity estimate. In calculating your estimate for each ethnicity region, they run 40 separate analyses. Each of the 40 analyses gives an independent estimate of your ethnicity, and each one is done with randomly selected portions of your DNA. These 40 tests produce genetic ethnicity estimates and likely ranges for the same.

Each person’s DNA is unique to them. If my brothers were tested, their results would probably  look somewhat different. How is that possible? It comes down to the random nature of genetic test results. We each received a random 50% of each of our parents’ DNA. Because inheritance is random, a sibling typically will not inherit the same DNA as you unless he or she is an identical twin.

I received the DNA test kit in the mail. The instructions were very easy to follow. You spit in a little tube several times and  then screw another tube into that tube to release some liquid that will stabilize your sample. You then mail the sample to and await the results.

For the most part, the results of my DNA testing were not surprising. My research had revealed that most of my ancestors on both my fathers’ side (Snyder) and my mother’s side (Wolford) had come from Germany. The DNA testing confirmed that. My previous research had also revealed that one of my mother’s ancestors was a Queen in one of the Scandinavia countries. Yes, I am related to royalty.  The DNA testing was consistent with that research, showing that some of my DNA is most like that of people from Scandinavian countries.  My DNA testing showed that I have 0% DNA like that of Native American Indians, European Jewish people  or people from the Middle East,  Africa, East Europe, Northwest Russia,  or the Pacific Islands.

My results were as follows:

Europe West                    69%

Great Britain                      9%

Iberian Peninsula             8%

Italy/Greece                        7%

Scandinavia                        3%

Ireland                                  2%

Trace Regions                    2%

The Iberian Peninsula is interpreted as being essentially Spain and Portugal. Europe West is interpreted as being Germany, France, Netherlands,  Switzerland, Austria, Luxembourg and Belgium. Notably, I have much more “Europe West DNA” than the typical person living in Europe West.

I found the results of my DNA testing very interesting and thought I would share them with you. I guess I can officially celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.  If anyone else in our family has had this DNA genetic testing, I would love to compare our results.















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Janet (Snyder) Hope on left and Pat (Snyder) Hoffman on right

Janet (Snyder) Hope on left and Pat (Snyder) Hoffman on right

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