Saturday, September 5, 2015

Drilling Down to Uz

Copyright 2015, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

I have not always been a supporter of the way does things.  I have complained, whined and even blogged about them now and then.  I finally gave up complaining, used the service the best I could, and used other genie web sites as much as I could so as to try and control my blood from boiling.

Recently they added some Virginia vital records data bases and I have been back playing and grabbing information as many hours a week as I can manage.

And, recently, they brought forward a new search, a site overhaul, as it may be.

And, recently, as in this weekend, they also brought out a nice huge pile of Wills and probate stuff.

And, recently, I found myself actually liking some of the changes they made to the site.  Not necessarily the search, but, the "drill down" capabilities now found on the left side of the page, after you do a primary search.  I am sure that is not what they have named all this, it's what I call it.

I have my own method to researching at Ancestry.  I search of the minimums.  I put in as few "qualifiers" as I can.

And, this weekend doing just that, minimal searching in the new Wills and Probates data bases, I found Uz.  Yes, really Uz.

He is a Jaquis clan member from the early to mid 1800's.  My interest in the Jaquis  clan is involved with the Lashbrook clan, of course.  Uz is a brother of Benjamin H. who married Fannie Lashbrook.

I had Uz in some census enumerations, and one Civil War hint, as follows:

Uz Jaquis is found enumerated on the 1860 U.S. Census of Parishville, St. Lawrence County, New York:  Uz Jaquish, age 34, farmer, born New York.  In the same household are:  Lucy Jaquish, age 51, born Maine and Lucy Jaquish, age 73, born Connecticut.  Just a few lines up the page we find the following family:  James Jaquish, age 51, blacksmith, value of real estate $1000, value of personal property is $200., born Maine; Ann C., age 54, birth place cannot read; Cynthia, age 18, born New York; James M., age 7.  Further research may tell us who all these Jaquis ancestors are. 

Uz Jaquis, indexed Uz Jacqins at, appears on the 1870 U.S. Census of Parishville, St. Lawrence County, New York:  Uz Jaquis, age 46, constable,value of real estate $2000., value of personal property $1100., born New York; Lucy, age 54, keeps house, born Maine.  Further research is required. 

U.S., Civil War Draft Registrations Records, 1863-1865 about Uy Jaquis
Name: Uy Jaquis
[Uz Jaquis]
Residence: New York
Class: 2
Congressional District: 17th
Age on 1 July 1863: 42
Race: White
Place of Birth: New York

I had never found anything about Uz's demise or final resting place.  Till the other evening.  Then, I found something.  I downloaded 9 "files".  Many of those are cover sheets and the like, but, I grabbed everything I could find.  One of my 9 downloads is his Last Will.  Guess that means I now have information on his demise, eh??  Ya!

I need to transcribe several of the documents to get a full understanding, because frankly, the handwriting is giving me a headache.

In the meantime, I thought I would show you a few screen shots on how I managed to find Uz.

NOTE:  All screen shots from  See my disclaimer page here on Reflections.  Nope, they don't ask for reviews and I surely pay my subscription fees every year.

Also note, this is not necessarily the most direct or most efficient method to search.  As with most things computer and internet, there are several ways to get to the end result.  This method could be considered a bit of a fishing expedition.

First thing you will see on the Ancestry home page right now, is this list of New records.  Of course, as they add new records you will see new data sets listed.  Right now, there are 3 at the top, and then, a lot of Wills and Probate record sets listed, Tennessee, Hawaii, Idaho, etc.  This screen shot is only part of the page, as are most of the others that follow.

Click See All New Records.  You will be taken to this screen/page:

Click on one of the new Wills and Probate Records, say, ohhhh, Iowa, the next screen will appear like this. While here I  clicked on the blue colored words at the very top: Search > Wills, Probates, Land, Tax & Criminal, it is a live link.  It is a bit difficult to see in my screen shot, it was blue when I was at Ancestry working. 

When the next screen came up, I typed the surname, Jaquis:

This search took me here.  You will note I have the search going for "Exact" matches.  With this surname at some point I will need to redo and use a less restrictive spelling choice, who knows what that will turn up.

From the left column I next clicked on the link, Wills & Probates, Estates & Guardian Records, 100 records available. That link further boiled/drilled down my choices, and this is what I found:

I chose New York, where there are 34 sets of records.  I knew there were Jaquis clan members living there, I wanted to see what this data set offered.  Scrolling down the names I find Wz, Lucy and Uz Jaquis.  

The beauty of this search of clicking to drill down to the data base I am interested in is that I find Wz and Uz. First I had no idea there was a probate file.  Second, who would search for Wz??  Not I.  Now I might after seeing the odd indexing, but, I would not have thought of THAT spelling before.

I use this drill down method at FamilySearch as well.  It serves me well.  No, I don't find everything with this drill down process, but, what I do find is frequently a nice surprise.  I love surprises.  If, I find the drill down method gives me 2500 hits, of course, I must add more "qualifiers" and re-do the search.  But, the New York Wills and Probates of Jaquis gave me only 34 hits.  Easy peasy to review 34.  

Start with less, add more if you must.  Drill down.

Good luck!  Go forth and find your "Uz".

* Remember, check out my disclaimer page.

** Yes, there are other methods to get to the New York Wills and Probates data set that probably are faster and much more efficient.  Personally I find it laborious searching through Ancestry's list of data sets, aka the card catalog.  I'll frequently take a back door approach first.  And, I wanted to show you this method.  You could just as easily type in "Jaquis" in the search engine and deal with drilling down from there.  Always more than one way to skin a cat, err, find your man, or woman, err, ancestor.


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