After several years of mucking around, the site is finally up. You can thank a few hurricanes hitting Florida.
As I mentioned on the home page, this family history trek began several years ago when my cousin Heather Moreno sent me a copy of the family history book her father had compiled in the early 90's. I was given a hardcopy version of the book as well as a floppy disc containing Uncle Bruce's genealogy data files and contact information. Let me say this, Uncle Bruce performed a Herculean task compiling information on over 3000 relatives. Astounding when you consider that most of the networking was by phone.
My fist task was to scan the family history book. Using a simple scanner and OCR software I recaptured the text. Extensive editing is still needed. I have reformatted the text using HTML but the organization is rather complicated. Each chapter contains extensive hierarchical lists -some more than a dozen levels deep. We will need to devise some way of breaking the chapters into smaller, editable sections. With each new generation the task is becoming more complicated.
I have posted the eleven chapters of Uncle Bruce's book here along with the appendix and a poem. I will begin adding the pictures soon and formatting the HTML a little more. I have generated one PDF version of the book, but will hold off on distributing it until we can incorporate the pictures and have had time to clean up the text.
The original genealogy data was in an old genealogy application format called "Person Ancestral File" format. Following directions I found on the web I was able to convert the PAF files to the current genealogy data format GEDCOM. From there I was able to import the GEDCOM file into a web application that allows privileged users to edit and add to the GEDCOM data. To view the results go to Lowing.org/geneology. This information is in dire need up editing and updating since it is now almost a decade out of date.
So, here we are. I have a little more information to post as well as an earlier version of the family history that I will post. I will continue to tweak this site to make it more usable. Currently it supports stories, comments, events and has a calendar. Content can be flagged public or private. Private information (like the last nine chapters of the family history) is only viewable to people with an account.
I would like to get more information from our relatives. I need help editing the information on this site. Please contact me or post a comment if you see something that needs changing. If you would like an administrative account to be able to directly edit and add contact, please contact me and I'll set it up.
This is really exciting though. With just a little casual browsing on the web I have already seen evidence of Lowings in England and Australia. Once we start putting the puzzle pieces together I know we will discover even more interesting information about our ancestors and relatives.
Trevor Lowing voice has ever claimed for him less than that he was the ideal nobleman—gentle, agreeable, sympathizing, generous, intelligent, manly. He came poor and empty-handed, without medicines or instruments. Mr. Campau liked the young man, and took him under his wing; bought for him a complete set of instruments and a stock of medicines. When the boxes came Willson fairly danced with delight. There was the young Esenlapins fairly launched into practice among a population of fifty persons. He died about twelve years afterwards, leaving a great blank—a dark, vacant spot in the Grand River Valley. The feellng with which the early settlers speak of him, shows how strong a hold he—the manly physician—had on the hearts of the people. May we have many more like him, and fewer of those soulless quacks, whose only object is to grow rich on the sufferings, or unnatural crime of the base, the ignorant or confiding.
It has been said that the basis of civilization is the blacksmith's anvil block. This much is certain : that man can make but little advance in the arts, or anything, that distinguishes savage from civilized life, without the labor and skill of that artisan. The superiority of the Philistines over the Jews is manifest in this : the Jews had no smiths. The United States, in their laudable endeavors to civilize the nomadic tribes on our frontiers, do not send the cabinet maker and jeweler, but the farmer and blacksmith.
The first who placed his anvil and bellows in the Grand River Valley, was A. D. W. Stout. His shop was at Grand Rapids, at the foot of Pearl street, where now stands the Opera House. There his bellows breathed its long-drawn sighs, and there he fashioned, first a fish-spear, and afterwards the many different articles demanded by the wants of the white man or the Indian. This Mr. Stout was afterwards one of the first settlers of Cannon. At the present writing (1876). he is living in Plainfield. Mr. Campau during this year put up some buildings ; built a pole-boat—the "Young Napoleon ; " and the same year the Indian Mill was built, on the creek that enters the Grand River in the north part of the city on the west side. Its site was some 60 rods from the mouth of the stream. It was a small concern ; just the cheap mill appropriate to the circumstances and time. It was of the old sash saw, flutter-wheel pattern, capable of cutiing 1,500 feet of boards in a day. The creek was dammed so as to make a pond ; and the stream being insufficient to run the mill continually, it was operated by the pond ; that is, when the pond was drawn down, stop until it was filled. The cheap run of stones put in that mill were a wonderful convenience to the inhabitants, as there was no chance for grinding elsewhere nearer than Gull Prairie. The, it is to be hoped, perpetual..
Read complete book at Google Books