Hello everyone. Thank you for your support over the past year(s). If you sent in a new fact for us, or a photo, or a certificate, or made a donation, or did some work for us during the year, many thanks indeed.
We finished the year with 116,282 people in our database, an increase of 900 in the past month and 11,000 in the past year. I don't want to overwhelm with numbers but it is still worth noting that the average number of facts per person is going up too, in other words, we are adding a lot more information to the people we already have as well as adding new ones. No surprise really, but I've noticed recently that as we become more confident about 19th century records, we've been able to join together more strands of families together and make bigger ones. So we are making progress on our longer-term goal of reconstructing full descents for every Howes/House/etc alive today.
This month I went on a cross-country road trip from Florida to visit friends in Dallas. It's 1,200 miles each way. So we decided to drive 600m, stop for a day and then drive the rest. For our rest day after looking at the map I hit upon Jackson, Mississippi. Jackson is the State capital and has a large archive facility . . . . ! I'd only intended to spend half a day there but a sudden fault in our car gave me longer. I managed to transcrbe the information from almost 50 death certificates from the early 20th century for people with our names.
All was going quite well until I came across one man whose caause of death was stated to be “legal hanging”. Trying to find out more about him I discovered a website devoted to recording executions in the US and claiming to be complete. The man was not listed. Given the man's race (“Black”) and the time (1920) and place (Pearl River county, Mississippi), I have my suspicions that it might have been a lynching. Sounds horrible and I hope I'm not being melodramatic. More research needed.
BTW, we do not record race or religion for anyone in our database, even though either may be noted in census records and other source documents. We regard all name-holders as equal and make no judgment about skin color or beliefs.
Spot Howes of Lowestoft
Just after we wrote our month end note last month, a man wrote to us to ask whether we knew of "Spot Howes", the skipper of a boat named Summer Rose which sank after hitting a mine in the North Sea in 1942. A few minutes research on the internet pulled up details of the incident and the man's name: Walter George Robert Howes.
Our correspondent mentioned that his father was aboard the Summer Rose and survived, though two fellow crewmen lost their lives in the wreck. Some years later, our correspondent travelled to Lowestoft with his father to meet Spot Howes and his family. He asks whether anyone knows whether there are any descendants of Spot still around. Does anyone know this family?
Reverend Bruce Howes
Continuing our nautical theme, can anyone give us a clue about who Rev Howes was, please? As a retired clergyman he made the model tug featured in the picture above, taken about 1972 in Canada and sent to me by a fellow member of the Guild of One-Name Studies. The people in the picture are from his study. Surprisingly, perhaps, he knows a lot about the tug! "It had a compound engine he machined out of scaled steel billets and a keel condenser. The funnel looks like T & J Harrison, two of fat & one of lean, black with two white stripes around one red." Anyway, who was Bruce?
Best flat white coffee in UK
Some may think that offering a prize for “best coffee in the UK” is almost a futile gesture! British cuisine is indeed on the rise, these days, however. There really is such an award and the proud winner is one Gareth Howes of Barton Marina, near Manchester in England. If you live nearby, do stop in and buy one, and then let us know what it's like! Oh, and tell Gareth that he is now famous among his namesakes worldwide! Check out his success story here: http://www.burtonmail.co.uk/watch-barto ... story.html
Think Lego bricks are for kids?
Not so! Two Aussie Howeses recently completed a scale model of the Titanic using only Lego bricks! And now both of them want to leverage it into a new job at Legoland Australia! Check out their story here!
http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/victor ... f5ef44deff
Thanks again, folks. And a special thanks to Ian, Mike, Mike, Chris, Judith, John and Brian for your work on our project. All the best for 2017.