About this site

Welcome to "The Big Tree" which shows the facts I've documented about the three branches of my family tree: my mother's, my father's and my step-father's.  My goal is to include only the information for which I've got reasonable documentation.  I manage this information offline using Gramps and periodically upload new versions to the web site.

Due to the time and hosting space required, I do not upload photos or scans of documents.  However, I do maintain copies offline whenever possible.

Interested researchers and family members may request an account in order to see details on living individuals and facts tagged private.  In addition, source citations are currently available only those with accounts, as some of the text associated with a few citations has information on living people.

Note for those of you coming to this web site through links on Find A Grave or other sites: this is not the best way to contact me for things not directly related to the trees presented here.

This family tree was last updated on August 1, 2020. There are 2,285 surnames in this family tree. If you have any comments or feedback please contact Philip Weiss.

Wednesday, August 22, 2018 6:16 PM
July 2020 Update: James Alexander Hathaway branch
Saturday, August 1, 2020 4:05 PM

All the descendants of James Alexander Hathaway that I could easily verify have been added.

July 2020 update
Sunday, June 28, 2020 11:41 PM

I've uploaded the July 2020 update a couple of days early.  The James Alexander Hathaway tree has more branches now.  And I spent a couple of weeks adding latitude and longitude to places.

June 2020 update
Sunday, May 31, 2020 11:04 PM

For the June 2020 update, the biggest change is that I've upgraded the site to Webtrees 2.0.  Most things should be the same, but the look and feel is slightly different and URLs as well.

The genealogy data includes new descendants of James Alex Hathaway.

May 2020 update: semi-complete Deborah Sheedy descendents
Sunday, May 3, 2020 7:49 PM

The latest update to the tree (uploaded 3 May 2020) includes a pretty complete tree of descendents of Deborah Sheedy.  The last month saw additions of her children with James Carey.  

More Sheedy descendants in latest update
Sunday, April 5, 2020 11:34 PM

The latest update includes significant descendant trees for John Ryan and Catherine Lewis, William Dennis Ryan and both his wives, and Mary Ann Ryan and Walter Hicklin.

William Lewis and Catherine Ryan descendants
Sunday, September 29, 2019 8:30 PM

The newest update (uploaded 29 Sep 2019) includes descendants of William Lewis and Catherine Ryan, 230 in total.

May update - Starting on Ryan descendents
Thursday, May 30, 2019 11:52 PM

May's update concludes the major work I plan to do on the descendants of Patrick Parker and Mary Murphy.  I will fill in here and there when I learn new facts, but I don't plan to spend much effort filling out the branch.  There's enough in there now that nearly all descendants should be able to recognize a parent or grandparent to see if they connect.

I have started on similar work for the descendants of Deborah Sheedy and her two husbands, John Ryan and James Carey.  I'm hoping that somewhere in this research as well I will find clues as to where in Ireland the Ryans came from.    I've seen locations attached to them on internet published trees, but no evidence to back those up.  I hope to find some.

March update
Monday, April 1, 2019 8:17 AM

Continuing to add more Parker descendants.  Frank Parker's branch is relatively complete, and the update includes more descendants of Julia Parker Kenefick.

New Iowa Parker updates
Tuesday, January 1, 2019 5:30 PM

The December 2018 update fills out a lot of details on descendants of Patrick Parker and Carrie Ulrich who lived in Iowa.


Wednesday, December 5, 2018 5:38 PM

The latest update includes more information on James Leland Parker's family and descendants, who moved to Saskatchewan about 1911.  Newspapers.com has a pretty good run of the the Leader-Post, which most of this latest information is pulled from.

James Parker
Sunday, September 30, 2018 11:03 PM

September I continued to work on the descendants of James Parker.  Those records are now updated.

More data from James Parker branch
Sunday, September 9, 2018 11:44 AM

James Parker is the son of Patrick Parker and Mary Murphy who went west to California.  I've added a fair number of people to his branch, now that I have documentation.

However, I still do not have information on what happened to his wife, Ellen Neagle Parker. If any researcher has information or documentation on her, please contact me.

New host
Saturday, August 25, 2018 7:51 PM

This past week I moved hosting for this site to a new provider.  There shouldn't be much difference, but the new host supports Let's Encrypt certificates.  That means logging in here is more secure, and it's a lot harder to snoop on web traffic.

Data refreshed
Monday, May 30, 2016 8:49 AM

New data covers a lot of difference parts of my tree, but the largest part of the update is in the descendants ot Frank Parker and Ellen Kenefick.


Data refreshed
Sunday, December 27, 2015 6:07 PM

I've refreshed the data again.  No specific focus this time.  Just adding more people and events that have solid sources.  I still have quite a few documents that need to be processed before I really start researching again.


Data refreshed
Monday, June 29, 2015 5:10 AM

I've refreshed the data again today.  It includes information gathered from a couple of free weekends using ArkivDigital's Swedish church records.

New data uploaded
Saturday, November 29, 2014 7:59 PM

I've uploaded new data.  Approximately 400 more people are added.  They aren't fully documented, but the citations that exist are pretty solid.

New data
Saturday, August 2, 2014 8:13 PM

I have begin the process of adding people and events from the old tree based on verified sources and have uploaded the first batch.  "New" data is primarily in the Parker and Ryan lines.

Birth: calculated 1806
Burial: after August 22, 1871Saint Johns Cemetery, Patch Grove Township, Grant, Wisconsin, United States
Birth: estimated 1802Ireland, United Kingdom
Death: April 28, 1874Iowa, United States
Birth: October 26, 1858 27 23Lakeville, Union, Saint Joseph, Indiana, United States
Death: May 1, 19338809 11th Ave SW, Highland Park, Seattle, King, Washington, United States
Who is online
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Top 10 given names


Given names
Given name Individuals
John 234
William 196
James 167
Robert 116
Michael 95
Thomas 89
Joseph 86
Charles 81
Johan 76
George 70


Given names
Given name Individuals
Mary 189
Ann 118
Marie 110
Anna 108
Elizabeth 100
Maria 73
Margaret 61
M. 61
A. 61
Jean 52