Monday, January 16, 2017

The Inventor: The Early Years

Compass belonging to WH. Frazel, 2017, privately held
The Inventor: The Early Years

1935 Rhode Island Census Card, Ancestry.com

When Bill Frazel took his first job at Builders Iron Foundry in Providence, RI, he is listed as a "clerk" in this census record. They didn't want to pay him as an engineer. Bill and his wife Ruth, didn't marry until 1937, so he was living with his parents in Bristol, RI and commuting to Providence. Just as today, people had to take a lower paying job to get their foot in the door. The Great Depression was no exception.

My husband and I have finally been through the box of his possessions and found this compass that he may have used quite a lot. 

What we didn't find was his American Red Cross blood card. Bill was blood type AB negative which is unusual. Bill's wife was tested and had to take the shots when she was pregnant because she was O positive. It is not know what type his parents were but that may have contributed to the stillborn death of his older sister. In the cemetery, there is her headstone and a blank space which was probably reserved for Bill or a future child which they did not have.

Bill was the classic only child. His mother doted on him and was known to brag about her smart son. Bill's father had been married previously and they had a child who only lived with them for a while since he was older than Bill. This first wife is buried in the family plot.

It was wonderful to talk with Cousin Eleanor as she knew this family and even attended the wedding of Bill and Ruth. Eleanor's family lived next door to the family and her mother was Bill's mother's sister. I gained information that no record will ever reveal.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

The Inventor: Brown Senior Candidates

Thursday, November 8, 1934 The Evening Bulletin (Providence, RI),
Privately held by Midge Frazel, 2016 (Photo Link)
Front Row, third men from the left (Wilbur H. Frazel)


Newspaper Clipping of Brown University Engineering Students
As a senior at Brown University, my late father-in-law, was enrolled in an engineering program. Newspaper clippings are a great source of family history but will deteriorate over time. I have scanned this and put it in an archival envelope. 

We know that my late father-in-law was accepted to both MIT and Brown and chose to go to Brown because his parents were Rhode Island residents at that time. He went to high school in Dedham, MA and apparently either his father retired or took a job in Rhode Island.

Even though it was during the Great Depression, both of my in-laws went to higher education.


Wednesday, January 11, 2017

The Inventor

Photo by Midge Frazel, 2016, privately held
Bill Frazel, the Inventor

My late father-in-law, was an engineer and inventor. When colleague, Lisa Alzo, asked about his inventions, she and I collaborated for her article in the current issue (Jan/Feb) of Family Tree Magazine for an article about invention, titled "Reinventing the Past" (pages 48-54). It is always a pleasure to work with another genealogist as you always learn new things and have fun.

The photo above is a gold service pin with a diamond chip that was presented to Wilbur Hyde Frazel, (1913-2011) my husband's father, for his work service. It was still sealed in the tiny box. He obviously didn't open it or wear it as I guess it was intended. 

When he died, my husband packed up his Brown University (an Ivy League school) yearbooks, programs and mementos and we put them aside so I could do further research. He was a very unsentimental person, so I was surprised to find that he had saved anything. Bill was a only child so it may have been his mother, Linda Hyde Frazel, who kept the photographs and newspaper clippings and Bill added it to the box of "stuff" when she and her husband died in 1949, only a few days apart. My in-laws were married by then and settled in Rhode Island. Linda did keep genealogy records for her family, so she was the family historian for her family.

I thought you might like to see a clip of his college yearbook. Full image . Yearbooks can be a great source of information to add to your genealogy writings. This small clip confirms that he "was prepared" at Dedham High School. His parents moved to Dedham when he was of middle school age so his father (a self-taught mechanical engineer) could get a new job. Prior to that they lived nearby to where we live now in Hudson, Massachusetts.


We see that while Bill was at Brown, he lived at 1615 Hope St. in Bristol, RI where his parents lived during those years. He took a bus to Brown and that is how my in-laws met. She was on the bus going to Rhode Island College, a normal school.

 My husband didn't know that his father's degree was in Electrical Engineering. Sc. B is a Bachelor of Science. The year was 1935. 

I was amused that they called him Frizz because they tried to call my daughter that when she was in High School. The Frizz part refers to his name and the fact that his hair was extra curly. 

This is blog post 1 of a series.

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Pens for Bullet Journaling

Pens and Pen Roll Up, 2016

Bleeding Pens!
I own a lot of pens but a lot of them are not suitable for bullet journaling #bujo because they bleed through the paper onto the back or even worse, onto the next page. After reading reviews and searching blog posts, I have come upon only two types of pens (with colored ink) that are suitable. I was hoping for pens that I could use for bullet journaling and coloring. 

With a 50% coupon, I went to my local Michael's and looked at the Staedtler Triplus Fineliner pens. Known as the pens recommended by the famous artist, Johanna Basford, these pens are  "porous point", water based, metal tipped pens. They have a 0.3 mm tip (that's really small). I decided that this box of 36 was what I wanted. The smaller number of pens come in a very nice case but this one with the 36 pens was a better buy for me.

At Amazon, I found the pen/pencil roll-up case with 36 slots. Most of the roll-up cases have a tie system of closure and are only for twenty four pens. This one is the one shown in my photo and is currently "out of stock".

To my dismay, pens and pencils do not always have an identifiable color name or number printed on them, so I went in search of a blog post that I might be able to use to make my own color chart. Colour with Claire did an excellent job of the color names, so I made my own chart for my bullet journal.

At my husband's suggestion, I went to Michael's and looked at Johanna Basford's coloring books. I love her designs but I do not like that the pages are not perforated and the paper color is not always white. 

I will report on how I am going to use the color coding in a future blog post.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Words to Live By

Happy New Year 2017 (Erin Condren Web Site)

Words to Live By

There are motivational stickers and cards in each order that I place with my planner or journals (notebooks) that I have bought from Erin Condren. There are also similar motivation messages sprinkled throughout the pages. I have no problem with motivation but I do think that the ones that are telling me to "be fun" and to "enjoy" might be some ideas I need to pay attention to. 

I practice Project Based Genealogy and much of the time, my projects are thematic. That fits with my learning as an educator and it should work with my retired life too. In case you don't follow my gravestone blog, here are the two links to past blog posts about that.

I started bullet journaling this year as a way to have better control over my research plan. I also see a need to try and find a way to organize and record research that doesn't fit neatly into genealogy software.  I wrote a blog post last October that many people have read. In case you didn't see it, here's the link:

It does take a LOT of time to set up your planner, notebooks and bullet journals and I have taken my time doing that and it will pay off. Yes, I need time to enjoy my life so that needs to be considered.

Have a great holiday season and see you next year!

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Sentimental Sunday: Christmas 1963

Photo Collection of Midge Frazel, December 1963
Sentimental Sunday: Christmas 1963

Lest you think that planners, calendars and journals are something new to me, I will share with you this crop of a photo from my parents collection (original here). Taken on Christmas Day in 1963 and developed later that month is a photo of teenage me, at my Grandmother's apartment at the Rosedale Apartments in Cranston, RI. 

I can tell you that I am demonstrating my new scarab bracelet (which I still have) and in front of me is my calendar for the year 1964. It really would have been a good idea to put a calendar in all my personal photos to date them when it was forgotten to put the year on the back. Notice the very hip lettering on the front of the calendar. 

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Bullet Journaling Video List

Video Presentations of Interest to Genealogists
Planners and Bullet Journaling

Photo by Midge Frazel, 2016