McCollierHeritage on tour day 2 & 3

Rootstech at Salt Lake City

It is beautiful and cold here, brilliant blue skies and ice underfoot.  Below is the view from my room yesterday morning.  Glorious.  Then below was the view from the other side of the hotel, it was quite the contrast.  The day was like the view from my room although it did snow lightly a few times.




I spent Tuesday in the family history library and had two good breakthroughs, one major.  For all those on the McKnight side I finally found where the Servant(e) family came from to London.  John was from Leeds in Yorkshire when he was apprenticed to Simon Tyreman in London in 1686.  The Servant(e) family was centred in two areas (aside from London) and they were Leeds and Barnstaple in Devon.  They are possibly all connected.

Then on the Collier side of the family, on the Johnstone line so Nellie’s line for all the Collier relatives I found one of our great great (……) grandfathers, John Grierson, he had had two wives and many children when he died in 1797 in his 86th year.  He was ‘esteemed by all who knew him as a kind husband and tender parent, a sincere friend and honest man’.  He was a dyer in Dumfries in Scotland.  We are descended from his first wife, Rebecca Ferguson, who was 42 when she died in 1755 and was described as ‘a humble Christian, a sincere friend, an affectionate wife, and a tender-hearted mother’.

I went to the Commonwealth dinner at the California Pizza Kitchen last night and sat mainly with the Canadians, a New Zealander living in America and his wife and an Australian living in Germany.  It was a nice evening organised by Jill Ball (GeniAus) and good to meet some fellow genealogists.  It turns out some of the Canadians live just up the road from where Angus McGillivray from Skye’s eldest sister Catherine migrated to with her family in the 1820s.  Another Australian living in London then I met Thomas MacEntee from Chicago who actually grew up near where the Gregg’s and McKnights went in the 1840s from Ireland.  There are connections everywhere!

I got up early today as I wanted to register for the conference before breakfast which I did.  I was able to walk straight up which was great.  Then back to the library to do some research.  Some more finds but not as good as yesterday.  The sessions began this afternoon for the family history stream.  I went to the Using the Genealogical Proof Standard for Success by James Ison which was interesting.  A lot I knew but I was interested in the American records as I’m investigating the Gregg’s and McKnight’s and related families in Wayne County, Pennsylvania and Sullivan County, New York and also the Dunlop / Delap and Graham connections in West Virginia.

Then I went to a lab session on autosomal DNA.  That was interesting.  It was mainly about comparing the results you receive from the tests.  The poor presenter struggled a bit with the variety of competency with excel!  Instead of going anywhere for dinner I went back to the library to do some research until it closed at 9pm, then I had some dinner in the hotel.  A good day.  I’m looking forward to tomorrow, the presentations and the exhibitor hall.  Below is a photo I took walking from the conference centre to the library.







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