The goal of this project is to connect profiles of people who were alive in or about year 1900, à la Belle Époque .
Preliminary discussion on G2G : Connectors, let's focus on 1900!
Let's start by this obvious fact, all of us have ancestors who lived through the year 1900, aware or not that it was la Belle Époque. The name and concept are very European, not to say très Français or even très Parisien. Its time span is usually set between two tragic episodes, la Commune de Paris in 1871, and outbreak of WW1 in 1914, with the year 1900 being considered as the apex. It was a time of awesome achievements in arts, science and technology.
This epoch was of course lived in various ways in various places all over the world, and most people did not see its bright side, far from it. In Europe misery was still widespread in both towns and countryside. Huge colonial empires were depriving a great part of mankind of basic human rights.
Many of us WikiTreers are old and lucky enough to have known their grandparents born in the 1880s, and even maybe some of the previous generation. 1900 is at the fringe of our living family memories and History. The diversity of origins among us should allow to shed light on all facets of this epoch, from the brightest to the darkest ones, from its most famous dwellers to the most obscure.
People with dates 18** - 19** already represent a fairly high proportion of all WikiTree profiles, and around 30% of connected ones. That comes as no surprise, since they are easier than more ancient profiles to identify, source, document, either by family or public sources. All of them are now dead, and most of them from long enough to be beyond privacy concerns.
The following plot shows the breakdown of connected profiles by ten-year period, from 1850s to 1950s, based on WikiTree+ data retrieved in Januray 2023. The figure for each period is the number of people found alive in the period, based on their birth and death dates. The same profile is therefore be counted in all periods she was alive, and people with only a birth or death date are not counted. Nevertheless, it shows that the most connected epoch in Wikitree is currently centered around 1900-1910.
Connecting more 1900 profiles is augmenting the odds for WikiTree newcomers to quickly stumble on one of them, and have their family branch connected right away, without having to track back centuries ago more and more dubious ascendants.
There is room for work! Connected WikiTree 1900 profiles are currently less than 10 million, and the world population in 1900 was over one billion ...
How to participate
All formal Connectors are of course de facto involved, even if they ignore this specific project! In the course of their work, they have certainly connected a lot of 1900 profiles without according a particular attention to it. For them as for anyone else, there are many ways to get involved. The following list is indicative and of course non exhaustive.
Check and expand the first circles
This is something anyone can easily do. Take one of your ancestors who was alive in 1900, and use the "My Connections" application to list her first circles. See for example the circles of Catherine Penanguer (1854-1944). On the 24 profiles at Degree 1, 14 were alive by 1900 : her husband, six children, seven siblings.
Check that no one is missing, and if the first circle is complete, move to circle 2, checking all four directions of connection : parents, children, siblings, spouse(s), and from there in-laws, aunts and uncles, nieces and nephews, first cousins etc. A lot of them will be living by 1900 and offer new starting points.
Note : "circles" is used here instead of "degrees", as in 100 Circles: A Geometry of the Tree.
Focus on a place or category
If you participate in a One Name or One Place study, you could check particularly the 1900 profiles, and expand from them, checking their first circles, as above.
1900 census and other archives
Check census, births, marriages, deaths records and try to connect whoever is listed there
Notables living in 1900
Many notables are to-be-connected, here is a list of some of them found in the results of a WikiTree+ query for Notables+Paris+France+unconnected.
- Marie-Clémentine (Suzanne) Valadon (1865-1938), painter, mother of Maurice Utrillo (1883-1955), also painter.
- François-Auguste-René Rodin (1840-1917), sculptor.
- Joseph Maurice Ravel (1875-1937), composer, pianist and conductor.
- René François Armand Prudhomme (1839-1907), writer, poet, first winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1901.
- Éric Alfred Leslie Satie (1866-1925), pianist, composer.
- Désiré Eugène Édouard Branly (1844-1940), inventor, physicist, pionneer of wireless telecommunications.
The following have been connected since the launch of the project :
- Bertrand (Odilon) Redon (1840-1916), symbolist artist.
- Marie Thérèse Juliette (Cochet) Peltier (1873-1926), sculptor, famous as the first woman to ever fly and pilot an airplane. (connected Nov 5, 2021)
- Marie-Georges-Jean Méliès (1861-1938), cinema pionneer. (connected Nov 15, 2021)
Greg Slade on the Unconnected Canadian Politicians page, has added a column labelled "1900", and put an asterisk in that column for each person who was alive in the year 1900. This initiative can be extended to other countries/places/categories.
2023 : "Synchronic circles" of Catherine Penanguer
Catherine Penanguer (1854-1944) was living troughout Year 1900, along with 14 people among the 24 of her first circle : 7 siblings, her husband, and 6 surviving children (out of the 13 she bore). Linked to those, 26 other profiles were found living throughout 1900 in Catherine's second circle, out of a total of 72 in this same circle.
How far can we extend the circles if we keep limiting the profiles in the paths to those who have lived throughout Year 1900?
Follow-up on the dedicated page : Synchronic Circles of Catherine Penanguer
This challenge can be taken with any initial profile living in 1900. Can you beat Catherine's figures?
2023 : The Champsaur Connection
Le Champsaur is a small valley in France, Hauts-Alpes. See https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Champsaur
In the late 1800s, thousands of people (estimation about 5,000) left their villages in Champsaur to seek fortune in various parts of America, most of them in the USA, California, Washington, some in Argentina. This emigration was massive, about one third of the whole population left. Given the previous strong endogamy, most of those emigrants were parents or closely connected.
There are several branches of Champsaur descendants in WikiTree, but they were mostly created independently, and not directly connected to each other. They are in various quality shapes. Some profiles need to be sourced and expanded, etc. Work is in progress to connect all those branches together through their Champsaur families, with the help of excellent local access to data and sources.
- Families of Champsaur are well documented in several Geneanet trees such as those of Maurice André and Michel Decock.
- The Hautes-Alpes records are publicly available through the Archives départementales.
- The local genealogy society, Association de Généalogie des Hautes-Alpes (AGHA), has an excellent public data base
The following is a non-exhaustive list of "bridges", emigrants born in Champsaur between 1850 and 1900 and settled with posterity on the other side of the ocean.
- Marius Octave Raphaël (Ralph) Ribail (1888-1969)
- Auguste Léon Saulque (1852-1912)
- Germain Pellissier (1849-1908) and François Pellissier (1870-1941)
- Adrien Fidèle Rambaud (1850-1923)
- Frédéric François Chabot (1858-1932)
- Marie Magdeleine (Grimaud) Giraud (1837-abt.1910)
More profiles can be found under Category: Hautes-Alpes, Emigrants
- (20 Feb 2022) : Joseph Louis Yves Lehardy (1885-1945), born in Bégard, Bretagne, France, married Edna Josephine Arnold (1893-1927) in 1912, Baltimore, USA. The parents of Edna were born in Germany. The unconnected branch has 200+ profiles. Challenge was to connect the branch on either, and if possible both, side(s) of the Atlantic. (G2G discussion)
- Challenge #1 (28 Oct 2021) : Connect Alphons Maria Mucha (1860-1939). G2G discussion. Connected (30 Oct 2021) thanks to Thomas Koehnline. Ongoing work on his relatives.
- Challenge #2 (31 Oct 2021) : Connect Marie Thérèse Juliette (Cochet) Peltier (1873-1926). G2G discussion. Connected Nov 5, 2021.
- Challenge #3 (15 Nov 2021) : The largest France unconnected branch, including Georges Arthur Seine (1900-1977). G2G discussion. Connected Nov 19, 2021.
- Challenge #4 (26 Nov 2021) : Elijah J. McCoy (1843-1929), American engineer and inventor. G2G discussion.
- Challenge #5 (30 Nov 2021) : Wassily Wassilyevich Kandinsky (1866-1944), by Kelsey Jackson Williams. G2G discussion
- Proposals for next challenges : Post them to the G2G discussion!
The following list is based on the preliminary discussion on G2G. Feel free to add or strike yourself, and/or specify places or categories you are likely to work on.
- Bernard Vatant : Bretagne, France, in circles around great-grandmother Catherine Penanguer (1854-1944) ... et la Belle Époque à Paris, bien sûr.
- Patty (Luker) LaPlante : would enjoy a challenge :-)
- Elaine Weatherall : American South, especially Mississippi
- Jayme (Mullins) Arrington : Netherlands
- Karen (Rollet) Lorenz
- Jan Terink : Amsterdam, Netherlands
- N Gauthier : Canada
- Leandra Ford : Australia
- Julie Kelts: Ohio, USA, in circles around my second great grandmother Adaline Carlton Van Wye
- John Graham : Virginia, Augusta and Nelson Counties
- Katherine Maddox : Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island
- Cherry (Cushing) Duve : Alabama, Georgia.
- Kandita (Hyderman) Post
- Dierk Lüthi : contributing with a nice image, work of his grandfather Johann Albert Lüthi (1858-1903)
- Léa Haupaix : France
- Carol Keeling : England
- Kelsey Jackson Williams : Germany, Russia, and beyond!
- Nele De Moor: Flandres, Belgium