Adoption

Do you ever get confused by Ancestry hints that use a different surname for a woman? I have to confess that at times multiple marriages can cause me to wonder whether the hint is actually for the person I’m researching. That was my case recently when researching Louise Humeston, daughter of Julius Hermeston and Mary Jane Wells.

While I expected lots of hints for Louise Humeston, I did not expect hints for Louise Getty. Thus, I checked FamilySearch to see if there was another husband. Instead of finding a second husband, I found a second FATHER. (NOTE: FamilySearch gives her name as Louise while Find a Grave lists her as Louisa.)

And that totally confused me! Thankfully, I started searching for Louise Getty in the census records and found the ANSWER to the puzzle. The 1880 census record indicates that Louise was adopted by James Getty.

1880 U.S. Census, Orleans County, New York, population schedule, Albion, Orleans County, New York, ED 142, Page 35 Image 35 of 51, family 380, James H. Getty; digital images, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : viewed online 22 June 2022)

While this census record cleared up my confusion about Louise’s name, it created a new issue. I did not know how to enter the adoption in my RootsMagic file.

Since I didn’t know how to connect James Getty to Louise Humeston as an adoptive father, I elected to follow my usual procedure for adding family members: downloading from FamilySearch. That process brought James H Getty into my file as a second parent for Louise.

My next step was to create the ADOPTION fact. I used the 1880 census as the source for the adoption fact.

Having never used this fact before, I was not aware of the ability to add parents in the body of the fact. Thus, it took me a bit to realize that I could add James Getty to the Adoption fact.

The other aspect of RootsMagic that I was not aware of was the ability to click on the parents and change the relationship from BIRTH to ADOPTED by pulling down on the relationship field.

Now that I’ve figured out the name change from Louise Humeston to Louise Getty and how to document that change in RootsMagic, I can go back to researching Louise and other descendants of Ozias Wells.