Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Writing Your Story: Maps and House plans

Genealogy tip for the day: Writing Your Story: Maps and House plans

Simple Map
When writing your story or that of a recent relative knowing the layout of the house and property can help you in telling a story. Do you go out the back door and turn left to hang up clothes? Or do you turn right? Where is the car parked? Where is the garden? Did you have one?

Buildings in 3D, & color
If you want to talk about your grandparent’s house or someone else’s, you may need to talk to your older living relatives. It might be a good idea to talk to more than one in case of someone’s faulty memory, (whether they admit it or not).

This would be a good idea for any location or building: your school, your church, main street down town or any other place. Even if you don’t include them in your book, it will help with your accuracy.

If you do want to include it in your books, don’t worry about exact scale or architecturally accurate drawings. It adds a more personal touch to see hand drawn pictures for the grandchildren to see.

Pence, Kansas, 1957
Here is a small community in western Kansas, named Pence where we lived for almost 1 year (a school year). My Dad was pastor of the church and the one room school house was behind the church which I attended. Across the street (to the right) was a Catholic family with a girl who was in the 5th grade. (I was in the 3rd). She could already use the sewing machine and made her own doll clothes. Wow! Behind us (top of the page) was a Mennonite family and they were not allowed to have pianos in their home. We didn't know them very well and the girls did not come to our school. I remember knocking on the door once. I was scared to death. Mom sent me over there but I don’t remember why. (You can click on any of these pictures to see them in a larger format.)

Floor plans
I could also tell you of the warm January, of ‘58 – in the 80’s – and the snow that came in March. The drifts were so high that they covered the fences and you could walk over the top of them. When spring came, the dirt roads turned to mud. Mom said they were like Crisco because you could not get any traction in the bottomless mud, and so on…

It’s amazing, actually, what memories a map drawing will bring back to you. Plus they help your readers to visualize more accurately what you are telling them.  We've given you several examples (illustrations) that suggest many ways you can do this, whether it's simple or detailed, color or black & white. What ever you choose. Does this get you itching to do one for yourself? Don't worry about perfections; just do what is yours! Give it a try and see what it does for you.

Exterior, pen and ink
Interior, color

"History is who we are; Genealogy is who I am” sg

Like what you read? Let us know. 


Are you a Lord of the Rings lover? We are having a LOTR marathon through out this week!! Don't miss it!

Summer Reading Program will be starting soon. Watch for announcements on that and registration information. This is for ages Adults through young children! Come Join Us - and explore new worlds. There will be programming for Adults as well as the Children.

You can find our website at rogerspubliclibrary.org 

And our other blog at RPL's Movies and Music

frigate USS Essex

March 25

Constantine begins his reign as Catholic Pope.

Lord Baltimore founds the Catholic colony of Maryland.

Puritans jail Governor Stone after a military victory over Catholic forces in the colony of Maryland.

The first horse race in America takes place.

The Continental Congress authorizes a medal for General George Washington.

British Parliament abolishes the slave trade.

The frigate USS Essex flies the first U.S. flag in battle in the Pacific.

Confederate forces capture Fort Stedman, during the siege of Petersburg, Va.

Japan invades the kingdom of Liuqiu (Ryukyu) Islands, formerly a vassal of China.

Rebel battle flags that were captured during the American Civil War are returned to the South.

A fire at the Triangle Shirtwaist Company, a sweatshop in New York City, claims the lives of 146 workers.

The first submarine disaster occurs when a U.S. F-4 sinks off the Hawaiian coast.

The Paris Peace Commission adopts a plan to protect nations from the influx of foreign labor.

Fifty people are killed in riots that break out in India. Mahatma Gandhi was one of many people assaulted.

The United States agrees to give Britain and France access to all American warplanes.

Yugoslavia joins the Axis powers.

The USS Missouri fires on targets at Kojo, North Korea, the last time her guns fire until the Persian Gulf War of 1992.

RCA manufactures its first color TV set and begins mass production.

The European Common Market Treaty is signed in Rome. The goal is to create a common market for all products–especially coal and steel.

Martin Luther King Jr. leads a group of 25,000 to the state capital in Montgomery, Ala.

John Lennon and Yoko Ono stage a bed-in for peace in Amsterdam.

The Concorde makes its first supersonic flight.

Hue is lost and Da Nang is endangered by North Vietnamese forces. The United States orders a refugee airlift to remove those in danger.

The U.S. Embassy in San Salvador is damaged when gunmen attack, firing rocket propelled grenades and machine guns.

President Ronald Reagan orders emergency aid for the Honduran army. U.S. helicopters take Honduran troops to the Nicaraguan border.
Born on March 25

Henry II, King of England (1154-1189).

Joachim Murat, Napoleon's brother in law who became king of Naples in 1808.

John Winebrenner, U.S. clergyman who founded the Church of God.

William Bell Wait, educator of the blind.

Gutzon Borglum, sculptor of Mount Rushmore.

Arturo Toscanini, Italian conductor.

Alan John Percivale Taylor, English historian.

David Lean, British film director (Bridge on the River Kwai, Lawrence of Arabia).

(Mary) Flannery O'Connor, novelist and short story writer.

Gloria Steinem, political activist, editor.

Aretha Franklin, American singer, the "Queen of Soul."

Mary Flannery O'Connor



1. Any of various rodents of the genus Microtus and related genera.

2. The winning of all the tricks in some card games.
verb intr.:
3. To risk everything in the hope of great rewards. Typically used in the phrase "go the vole".

4. To try every possibility.

For 1: Short for volemouse, from Norwegian vollmus, from voll (field) + mus (mouse). Earliest documented use: 1805.
For 2-4: From French voler (to fly), from Latin volare (to fly), which also gave us volatile and volley. Earliest documented use: 1680.

"So, as I was determined to go the vole, I have taken care you shall dip as deep as I."
Sir Walter Scott; Tales of My Land; 1819.

Ultimately, literature is nothing but carpentry. ... With both you are working with reality, a material just as hard as wood. -Gabriel García Márquez, novelist, journalist, Nobel laureate (b. 1927)

Today’s Recipe
March - Breakfast Foods

Spanish Tortilla

Don’t confuse this with the flour or corn tortillas you use to make wraps. A Spanish tortilla is a potato-and-egg omelet found on numerous menus throughout Spain. Traditionally these are cooked in heaps of olive oil. Our version uses less oil, so it’s lower in calories, and if you use precooked diced potatoes, it’s faster too.

Serves: 6
Preparation time: 40 minutes

3 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 small onion, thinly sliced
1 cup precooked diced red potatoes
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
6 large eggs
4 large egg whites
1/2 cup shredded Manchego or Jack cheese
3 cups baby spinach, roughly chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a medium nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring, until translucent, 3-4 minutes. Add potatoes, thyme and paprika and cook for 2 minutes more.

2. Lightly whisk eggs and egg whites in a large bowl. Gently stir the potato mixture into the eggs along with cheese, spinach, salt and pepper until combined. Wipe the pan clean; add the remaining 1 teaspoon oil and heat over medium heat. Pour in the egg mixture, cover and cook until the edges are set and the bottom is browned, 4-5 minutes (it will still be moist in the center).

3. To flip the tortilla, run a spatula gently around the edges to loosen them. Invert a large plate over the pan and turn out the tortilla onto it. Slide the tortilla back into the pan and continue cooking until completely set in the middle, 3-6 minutes. Serve warm or cold.


Nutrition Facts
Per serving:
178 calories
9 g fat (3 g sat, 0 g mono)
217 mg cholesterol
10 g carbohydrate
12 g protein
2 g fiber
433 mg sodium
210 mg potassium

Nutrition Bonus: vitamin A (35% Daily Value), selenium (29% DV), vitamin C (15% DV)

Mar 12th Mini Quiche
Mar 13th Red Velvet Waffles, with cream cheese gravy – (I didn’t say they would be healthy!)
Mar 14th Triple Berry Smoothie – not just for breakfast any more.
Healthy recipes:
Mar 22nd Eggs Italiano
Mar 24th Golden Polenta and Egg, w/ mustard sauce (looks like it would be good for supper, too.)


Now You Know!