Erb, Musselman Genealogy Trip Report – Allegany County, Maryland – May 2012

One of my many hobbies is genealogy. I love being a detective and in many ways genealogy is doing family history detective work. At one point I considered creating a separate Genealogy blog but decided instead to just tag my genealogy posts as such. This is a genealogy post. If you are not interested in genealogy and the Erb and Musselman families you should stop reading now.

On our  road trip in the Spring of 2012 Duke and I did family history research in a few places including Allegany County, Maryland. I have been mulling over in my head how to summarize and save the details of the research we did on the trip. I decided to create a trip research report. First I did a Microsoft Word document. But I think I also want it on the blog. I can send a link to the others who I think will be interested and I will have the results in the future if I want to recall what I did and what I learned.

Background

My third Great Grandparents, Joseph Erb (b1789) and his wife Elizabeth
Musselman Erb (b1798) lived in Allegany County with their family in the early
1800's. One of their sons, my Great Great Grandfather also named Joseph Erb was born in 1822 probably in Allegany County.

The Musselman Farm

We arrive in Cumberland Maryland on Sunday, May 13. Based on several sources 123 
I believed that the Musselman farm was located on land that is now the
Arboretum of the Frostburg State University.

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Duke and I drove out to the Arboretum and hiked around it. It is a beautiful
location but we found no signs of the old Musselman farm. You can see my other
pictures of the Frostburg State University Arboretum on Flickr here. This set
also contains other pictures referenced in this trip report.


[1] (Moore, 2004)

[2] (Frostburg State University)

 [3] (Brusca, 2010)

 

Frostburg State University
Library

The library has both a local history section on the open
shelves and a rare book room that can be accessed by appointment. I have the
name and phone number of the person to contact for an appointment. Let me know
if you need it. The library also has an
interlibrary loan service. The brochure I received says for more information
contact the ILL office ill@frostburg.edu
301-687-4886.

From the catalog the following books sounded interesting:

  • The Braddock Road by John Kennedy Lacock –
    published 1994 reprint of an edition thought to have been published in 1914.
    Includes maps and bibliographical references. The John Brusca Route 40 website4 quotes this book extensively. – the book is in the special collection room so I
    couldn’t review it.
  • Historical Biographical Sketch of Frostburg
    Maryland and its Citizens old and new – published 1912 16p call number F 189.F7
    M5  - The book contains pictures of
    the Musselman Farm and cornerstone.

7427302374_725610d4d3_c

7427304932_cc275814ec_c

  • Allegany County Maryland Rural Cemeteries – I
    reviewed it and found no Erb, Musselman, Arter or  Strotzer
  • History of Cumberland Maryland by Will H.
    Lowdermilk – Baltimore Regional Publishing Company 1971 – photos are also in the set on Flickr. In the forward the book
    includes background on Cumberland Maryland newspapers.  On pages 277-278 there is a statement that
    the Erb family and several other listed families came to Allegany County
    between 1790 and 1800. On pages 296-297 there is a description of the Militia
    formed in 1814 and Joseph Erb is listed as a member.

The Genealogical Society of
Allegany County Library

The Genealogy Society of Allegany County Library is located in the
library of the Allegany college of Maryland, 12401 Willowbrook Rd, Cumberland,
MD. The library is in a room separate from the rest of the library. A librarian
had to let me in to the locked room. After I had browsed the regular shelves
for a while the president of the society and her husband arrived. The president of the society is Harriett
Moore. She is the author of the
Musselman article in the society newsletter2. She has Musselman ancestors. We discussed the
cornerstone and the location of the ruins of the Musselman farm and she said
she thought it might be some place else than the Arboretum.

Her husband gave me a copy of
the Musselman article3 from the Pennsylvania Mennonite Heritage Newsletter.
The article is well sourced and documents the Musselman ancestry.

I also referenced the
following books and other materials: 

  • ·Genealogical Resources in
    Allegany County – a seven page handout compiled by the Genealogical Society of
    Allegany County 
  • The Marriage Diary of William
    Shaw 1792 – 1813. Several pages from this manuscript are also on
    Flickr
    at On page 8 the document lists
    the marriages of

    • ERB,
      Catherine to Jacob Woodring July 30 1805
    • Erb,
      Polly to Jacob Speelman Feb 9 1808

It is possible that Polly and Catherine were sisters of  third great grandfather Joseph Erb(b1789).

There was also a
card catalog of surnames. A transcription of the  Erb and Musselman cards follows this article.

If anyone reading htis has more informatin about the Erbs and Musselmans or if you have any questions please let me know.

Works Cited

Brusca, F. (2010, 11 3). John Kennedy Lacock's
"Braddock Road" (1909) Part 3
. Retrieved 6 23, 2012, from Frank
Brusca's Route40.net: http://www.route40.net/page.asp?n=10595

Frostburg State
University. (n.d.). Arboretum History. (W. P. hli@frostburg.edu,
Editor) Retrieved June 23, 2012, from Frostburg State University:
http://www.frostburg.edu/dept/biol/arboretum/history.htm

Moore, H. (2004). The
Musselman Family – An Early, But Brief, Sojourn in Allegany County. The Old
Pike Post
, 21 (4), 1,2,4.

Phelan, E. D. (1989,
January). Descendants of Christian Musselman (d. 1734) of Lancaster Township,
Lancaster County, Penn. Pennsylvania Mennonite Heritage , 146-23.

 

Transcription of card catalog Cards

I need to get an
explanation of the following references on the cards. If anyone would like
copies of the original cards I have copies.

Alle

Alle Adm.

Alle Will

G1

Index Card 1

Erb, Polly                                                                             Alle

m. 2-5-1808

                Jacob Speelman

                Joseph                                                                  Alle
Adm.

                m. Elizabeth Musselman

                     dau of
Christian adm. 1828

 

Index Card 2

Erb, Margaret                                                                    G1  * 12-48

                m. Samuel Thayer

son/ Murray                                                       Keziah
Barrows

Index Card 3

Musselman, 
Christian                                                   Alle
Adm.

                6-14-1825                                                                 a –

  
Valentine Hoffman

  
Jacob Snyder   Adm.

 

Accts Paid

Nancy

Susanna

Christian Jr.

Etc.

                11-15-1826

                #2   Adm. “                                          a –
335

 

                8/15/1827

                #3  Adm.  “                                          a -353

Index Card 3 side 2

                8/13/1828                                                            A  378

                Div
of Estate

                Val
Hoffman & Jacob Snyder  Adm.

                Mrs
Susanna     third

Christian Jr.

Jacob

Elizabeth (Joseph Erb)

Nancy (John Blocker)

Susanna (Henry Arthur)

Frances  (George Hartzell) Hansel

8/10/1831  #7 adm “                                        B33

div.  John  
Heirs (Christian)                          AlleAdm

        Christian                                                      3-11-1834  B82                  

        Jacob                                                             Mussellman   Mrs. Susa

       Elizabeth (Joseph Erb)                            John Blocker Adm.

       Nancy (John Blocker)                              (Same as Christian

        Susanna 
(Henry Arthur)                       except
Christian

        Frances 
(George Hansell)                    Jr.
dec’d  (heir)

 

Index Card 4

Musselman                        G1  * 1-3

                Jacob

Teacher School House Run          Shoemaker

When school not in session.

 

 

Index Card 5

5-10-1843                                            Alle
Adm. C66

Musselman 
John

   
#1    John Blocker  Admx.

 Mrs.  
Christianna     wid third

                Sarah

John

Elizabeth

Daniel

Andrew

                Equal
shares

 

Index Card 6

                                                                                                Alle

Musselman  
Nancy  <Christian  Susanna

                m.
8-9-1814

                  John Plucker  
(Blocker)

 

                John  <Christian 
Susanna

                m.
1-21-1815

                Christina
Blocker < Andrew Barbara

 

                Christian
< Christian Susanna

                m. 5-17-1817

                Nancy
Arthur

 

                Fanny
< Christian Susanna

                m.
9-6-1824

                George
Hansel

 

                Elizabeth
< Christian Susanna

                m.
Joseph Erb

 

                Susanna
< Christian Susanna

                m.
Henry Arthur

 

Index Card 7

Musselman        John                                                      Alle
Will

                                Hazzy
(his wife)

A  519   2-8-1840

Of Dark Co Ohio   Appointed Daniel
Musselman

Of Somerset Co. Pa. to recover their 1/5

Int. in late grandfather’s  (John
Musselman

 Sr)  estate in Alle Co.

 

And debts owed by Abraham’Miller’s
estate                     

(also their
grfather) in Somerset Co Pa.

Musselman Elizabeth

A 520 2-18-1842                ditto above

Money was owed her by John Blocker of Alle
Co.

(See Stephen Shipley)

 

 

 

 

Our Way Home – Road Trip 2012

We arrived home Thursday from our 2012 summer road trip. We left Reno May 2 and drove across the US and into Canada. Our farthest point was Prince Edward Island. From there we returned through Canada and back into the U.S. at Sault Ste Marie. In total we traveled 9,294 miles and visited 29 U.S. states and 5 Canadian provinces.

We spent our last night in Canada at Sault Ste Marie. We hiked around the island overlooking the Marie River and looked at the Canadian lock that is still used for pleasure craft. The picture below is of the bridge at Sault St Marie that took us back into the U.S Monday morning June 8.

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 This is the Canadian Lock.

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After crossing the border we stopped to see the Soo Locks. They are part of the St Lawrence Seaway. The size of the ships that go through the locks is impressive. This is a picture of Duke on the viewing platform overlooking the Soo Locks.

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 From Sault Ste. Marie we drove south to look a the Mackinac Bridge which goes over the water between Lake Michigan and Lake Huron. It is the third longest suspension bridge in the world and has a total length of  26,372 feet.

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We spent Monday night in Marinette on Lake Michigan on the Wisconsin border. On Tuesday we drove across Wisconsin to Eau Claire to visit Aunt Dorothy, my Dad's sister. Tuesday was the day of the recall election in Wisconsin and it was very interesting to see all the lawn signs and to listen to the commentary on the radio. We saw lots of dairy farms and of course had to stop to buy some cheese curds.

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 On Wednesday we went with Aunt Dorothy to Chippewa Falls which is next door to Eau Claire. We had a picnic lunch in the park and then toured the Leinenkugel Brewery. Leinenkugel is a small brewery that has been in operation since 1867. After the tour we got to taste their beer.

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The Leinengugel gift shop and tasting room is a gorgeous big building called the Leinie Lodge. I enjoyed tasting the beer. This is a picture of Duke, Aunt Dorothy and me in the lodge.

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After two nights in Eau Claire we headed for Duke's home town, Manchester, Iowa to visit the family that are still there. We made several stops along the Mississippi to walk and to look a the Mississippi shipping locks. It never ceases to amaze me how much water is in the Mississippi and how big it is. I always visualize Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn on the river.

Just north of Manchester we stopped at one of the Laura Ingalls Wilder Museums. It in Burr Oak, Iowa where she lived for part of her childhood.

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After three nights in Manchester we moved on to western Iowa to visit Duke's sister and her family who live on a farm near Moville, Iowa. The town was celebrating its 125th anniversary. Duke's sister and her husband were in a town production of the musical Oklahoma on Sunday afternoon and we got to see it.  They were great!

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From Moville we drove across Nebraska to Chadron. On the way we stopped at the Ashfall Fossil Beds State Historic Park. It was like nothing I have ever seen, Let me quote from the brochure.

"Nearly 12 million years ago, hundreds of rhinos, three-toed horses, camels, and other animals died and were buried by volcanic ash around the edges of a watering hole in what is now northeast Nebraska. Still locked in their death poses, the amazingly well preserved skeletons of these prehistoric beasts lay undisturbed, wrapped in a blanket of jagged glassy particles, until the 1970s when a scientific study of the fossilized remains began.''

This is a picture of the 18,000 square foot Rhino Barn that has been built over the site.

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In these next two pictures you can see some of the skeletons and the workers working on the site.

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On Tuesday we drove from Chadron to Rock Springs, Wyoming.

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In the middle of Wyoming we stopped at Independence Rock. It was a major landmark on the pioneer trails going west. I had forgotten how many people went west during the mid 1800's. Between 1843 and 1869 almost half a million emigrants passed Independence Rock. Many of them carved their names on the rock and you can still see some of the carvings.

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Of course Duke had to climb the rock. The dot on top is him.

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I thought this guy's story was pretty inspiring. You can click on the picture if you would like a bigger version to read.

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 Ón Wednesday we drove from Rock Springs, Wyoming to Elko, Nevada.

Along the way we detoured to see Flaming Gorge Dam and Reservoir on the Green River.

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Finally yesterday we drove from Elko home. It was a wonderful adventure.

If you would like to see all of our pictures from the trip they are on Flickr here. I should have them all labeled in a week or so.

On Lake Nipissing – Road Trip 2012

As we continue our Summer 2012 rod trip Duke and I have stayed in one place for four nights! After moving to a new place almost every night for four weeks staying in one place would have been a nice change but staying at our cabin on Lake Nipissing has been idyllic. I say our cabin which is not strictly true.

Last Wednesday we left Ottawa knowing that we wanted to find a place to fish. We didn't have a destination but decided to explore a left turn off the trans canada highway. It was raining pretty hard. We checked out a couple of places but didn't find anything we liked. As we continued down the road I saw a place with freshly painted cabins. Duke did a u-turn and we checked them out. The place in called Lakair Lodge. The lady at the counter was very friendly and showed us a spotlessly clean two bedroom cabin right on the lake. We took it.

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Above is our cabin and below is the view out our front door.

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We woke up the next day. and went fishing. Lakair rented us a wooden boat and a motor and loaned us a map, net, and life jackets. We caught a few fish but only kept this one for dinner.

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This is Duke's biggest fish that first day.

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We packed a picnic lunch and found a sunny point to enjoy our lunch and relax.

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Day two was overcast with a prediction of rain. The morning turned out to be great fishing weather. We caught and kept four fish. Duke caught a monster northern pike. It turned out to be by far the biggest fish of the trip.

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I caught a clam!

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In the afternoon it started to rain and we headed back to the cabin to nap, read and play cribbage.

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The wind was really blowing and a large branch came down from a tree in front of our cabin.

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On day three it was still raining but the wind had gone down. Instead of going out in the motor boat we rented a canoe and explored some inlets. We caught a few small fish but we already had enough big fish to eat for dinner so we didn't keep any of them.

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 We left lake Nipissing this morning. I loved Lakair Lodge. Check out their website here..

Montreal and Ottawa

Today Duke and I started week four of our six week 2012 road trip.

Sunday we drove along the St Lawrence River from Quebec to Montreal.

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Monday we walked all over Montreal.

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We bought a one day Metro pass and went out to the Olympic Park. the Olympics were in Montreal in 1976. That was the year of Nadia Comaneci. Remember her? I had forgotten, but building the Olympic stadium cost over twice what it was originally projected to cost. Montreal just finished paying it all off in 2006.

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 The swimming pavilion was pretty amazing. It has 6 pools. In this picture you can see the olympic swimming pool, the diving pool and the raised part is the synchronized swimming pool where we saw the Canadian Olympic team practising. The coaches can watch the swimmers under water through the glass sides.

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This is the olympic stadium. it didn't have a roof when the olypics were here but now the roof is held up by an enormous tower.

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A funicular goes up the right hand side in this picture and we rode it to the top for  a view of all of Montreal.

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We left Montreal on Tuesday morning and drove to Ottawa. We toured te parliament building and even got too watch a speech in the House of Commons

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This morning we left Ottawa and drove west. Tonight we are in a fishing cabin on Lake Nipissing. We are going to go fishing for three days. There is no cell phone coverage here but we do have wireless internet in our cabin. Isn't technology amazing! Our view out our front window is very peaceful and beautiful.

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Quebec

We spent Friday and Saturday nights in Quebec City. Friday we drove from Grand Falls (Grand-Sault) into Quebec and then southwest along the St Lawrence Sea Way. There were lots of dairy farms and houses that all looked freshly painted. They were white with colorful red or green or blue trim and then an occasional blue one with yellow trim or some other happy combination. Lots of bright red tin roofs too.

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Along the water there were great picnic spots every few miles but when we found this one we had to stop and use it!

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French is very definitely the language of Quebec. The only people we heard speaking English were tourists. and unlike in the rest of Canada where the signs are in French and English, in Quebec they are only in French. I used Bonjour and Merci a lot but beyond that I had to switch to English. People are very friendly and helpful.

We stayed in a wonderful hotel ( Hotel Pur) that Duke got on Priceline for around $100 a night. The halls are all black and the room numbers are painted on the doors in foot tall orange numbers. When we walked into our room I had to take a picture.

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We walked and walked and walked all  over the city exploring the fortress, the old city, the narrow streets and the parks. A while ago I read David Hackett Fisher's book Champlain's Dream and it was fun to see the city Champlain founded in 1608.

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We talked to the organist in this Presbyterian Church which is the oldest in Quebec. He explained that the Church was founded by the Scottish Regiment who defended Quebec from the Colonists.

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Quebec City has been wonderful now we are on to Montreal.

PEI Ancestors and heading west – Road Trip 2012

 We spent three nights on Prince Edward Island. The first two were in the Capital, Charlottetown and the last was in a B&B in Kensington.

While we were browsing in Charlottetown we talked to a shop owner who told us a cruise ship was coming in the next day. Apparently they get about 35 cruise ships a year. Before we left Charlottetown on Wednesday morning we drove by the wharf where we had dinner our first night. As you can see the cruise ship dwarfs the restaurant.

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We drove west on the Island to the towns of Hunter River and Hazel Grove. The plots marked "Heirs of E.C, Bagnall" in Hazel Grove on the map below would have been where my Great Grandfather and Great Grandmother lived before they moved west with their family.
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 My Great Great grand parents are buried in this cemetery.

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 Prince Edward Island is verdant green with startlingly red soil.

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And of course it is the setting for the book Anne of Green Gables.

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A lot of the restaurants and sites weren't open yet. They only open during the tourist season of July and August. We had a hard time finding a resaurant that was open for us to have dinner Wednesday night but finally found one and had a great dinner. We saw a couple of foxes as we were searching.

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On Thursday morning we left Prince Edward island and headed west. We spent Thursday night in Grand Falls (Grand-Sault). The falls in the middle of town were Niagra like. During the summer you can zip line right over the gorge!

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We spent the night in a lodge a few miles outside of town. We were able to take a hike around the lake. Unfortunately their German restaurant wasn't open yet.

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Friday morning we left the Province of New Brunswick and headed into Quebec.

Road Trip 2012 – From Maine to Prince Edward Island

As I write this on Wednesday morning, May 23 we are starting week three of our road trip. We spent last Saturday night in Bucksport, Maine, just south of Bangor. Bucksport is at the mouth of the Penobscot River.

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We had our best restaurant meal of the trip so far right across the street from our hotel. Duke had steak and lobster and I had giant scallops. Mmmmmmmm.

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Before this trip I had never heard of Fiddleheads. They are a local delicacy, the curled tops of ferns, and are only available in the spring. I really want to taste them  I thought I was going to in Bucksport. They were the vegetable of the day and the waitress said they only had one order left. But by the time she put my order in they were sold out for the night.

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We crossed the border into Canada at Vanceboro, Maine. We must look harmless because the Canadian border patrol guy let us through after just a couple of questions. He didn't even ask us our names or look at our passports.

We spent Sunday night in Fredericton,  the capital of New Brunswick. The weather the last few days has been fantastic. As we wandered around Fredericton on Sunday the temperature was 85 degrees Fahrenheit.

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From Fredericton we drove down along the Bay of Fundy. We were in St John as the tide was turning. We saw the eddies in the water as the water was changing its direction of flow.

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The last few days we have seen millions of dandelions. The fields are yellow with them.

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The Confederation Bridge from New Brunswick to Prince Edward Island opened in 1996. It is 13 kilometers long. The toll of $44.25 is only collected as you leave the island.

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My Grandmother Marion Bagnall Gibson was born on Prince Edward Island and I have always wanted to visit here. We spent our first two nights here in Charlottetown, the capital. We are staying in a B&B and have been able to walk everywhere. The first night we had lobster and PEI mussels on the wharf. They were great!

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Tuesday morning we did some research in the provincial archives which are on the top floor of this building. We located exactly where my Grandmothers family lived and where some of the family is buried. We also found out more about the original Samuel Bagnall who came to Philadelphia from England. He was a loyalist and ended up here in Prince Edward Island after the revolution.

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 Today we are headed out to explore the countryside.