Return to Al & Jim Home
We present some of the family history here.
Events and people chronicled here include surviving a wild fire, homebrewing,
a girl spy in the Civil War, a Revolutionary soldier's troubles arising from his moving,
tavernkeeping ancestors in 1600s in Germany, and side lights on some early
Dutch settlers in New Netherland (one of whom may really have been a Mohawk).
For more details (though not necessarily the latest results) consult the links page
to find the complete family history on the internet.
For easier searching we have arranged this introduction page chronologically
from the latest to the earliest topic covered.
Current (1935 - present)
Civil War (1861 - 1865)
Colonial and Revolutionary (1600 - 1783)
- Jim is a semi-retired rocket scientist and is seeking part-time
employment in applied mathematics, technical writing, web site maintenance
or related fields.
Read about our experiences and future plans in the great Fallbrook fire
of February 2002.
Reminiscences of an old Home Brew Master
The author reflects on his hobby over the years of making beer and wine.
He discusses several notable batches. And he tells how they dealt with
the consequences of the Fallbrook fire of February 2002.
Biography of Jim Churchyard Himself!
The author summarizes his own life story in a very few words. Someday he
will expand this to book length but, fortunately for you, he has not done
Surnames being Researched
You can explore the surnames which the author has researched. The
details on these lines can be found by following the links to the
Links to Other Sites of Interest
Here are some links to the web sites of organizations that we participate
in, ancestral and current home towns, family history and some miscellaneous
sites. For example, you can visit the Honorable Order of Kentucky Colonels.
Molly Pitt, a Union Spy in Richmond
Molly Pitt was called "a dangerous & traitorous character." Here you can read
about Al's great-grandmother and the poor innocent woman who was jailed in her place.
The Rose, The Swan and Gertraud Steinkopf
Several of Jim's ancestors lived in the German town of Oppenheim.
Some were tavern-keepers, some were butchers. In 1600 Oppenheim was
a flourishing city. In 1689 it was a devastated ruin. Here you can
explore the history of the family, the taverns and the city.
Dozens of Cousins in New Netherland
Here we present some of the relationships among the descendants of
the first settlers of Manhattan. Although many nationalities appear
as immigrants, the intermarriages of later generations produced many
instances of cousin marriages.
Biography of Jan Juriaensen Becker, d. 1698
He had a checkered career as tapster, school teacher and finally
respected citizen of Albany.
Biography of Surgeon Cornelis van Dyck, 1642-1686
The first Cornelis van Dyck was a surgeon at Albany.
Those Four Early Children of Matthias St. John, III, 1662-1748
Four children are attributed to him before his marriage. Here
we analyze the evidence anew. We correct his vital dates and conclude
that two of the four are not his. We challenge others to verify the
remaining eight children.
Land Records of Jan Pieterse Mebie, 1693-1726
The interest in these land records lies in their evidence that
Grietje, the wife of Pieter Jacobse Borsboom and mother of Anna Borsboom,
the wife of Jan Mebie, was a Mohawk Indian.
Biography of Lt.-Col. Cornelius van Dyck, 1740-1792
He served in the First New York Regiment of the Continental Line
during the American Revolution from 1775 through the end of the war.
Lt. Jacob Best's Quandary, 1742-1797
- We picture the stalwart heroes of the Revolution much as Emerson portrayed
the Concord militia: "embattled farmers" who "fired the shot heard round
the world." But part of the battle, even in that day, was with the patriot's
own bureaucracy. This is the story of one soldier's attempts to do his
duty and the troubles he encountered.
Updated 2 December 2006.[top]