2020 Historian’s Report

I have begun to edit and update the text of the first volume of the draft genealogy books created by Chris Bailey, who was my predecessor as the Duston-Dustin Family Association Historian/Genealogist. This first volume covers Generations 1 through 5. I think it does need some editing and updates before publication, and of course I’ll add any new sources that I’ve found during my review of the data.

As I mentioned in last year’s report, there were quite a few missing family members in the additional volumes that cover Generations 6 and 7. These people weren’t listed in Chris Bailey’s draft, or in the yellow generation booklets that were one of his primary sources of information, because there weren’t nearly as many sources available when the draft was created. The constant release of new online sources of genealogical data has me to add new people, and to fill in some blanks for individuals who were already in our records. 

It’s a very time-consuming process. Conducting a careful search for additional data about a single family often requires an entire evening. The DDFA books generally list individuals who were born with the Duston or Dustin surname, along with their spouses and children. The chlldren of female family members who were born with a different surname are included, along with their spouses.

That’s typically where the record ends, unless it happens to be a family that has been active in the DDFA. This is why I’ve decided that it’s important to take the time to find as much information as I can about the immediate family of every female family member, since their descendants wouldn’t be listed in subsequent Generation volumes. For example, I wouldn’t appear myself, because I’m the great-grandson of Emily Clementine Dustin.

Of course, it would be helpful if we could make additional data available for female lines of descent, and perhaps we could try to do more for the first few generations after Hannah. It would roughly double the number of descendants with each succeeding generation, though, so if you tried to continue this for many generations, the number of entries would increase exponentially.

I’m happy to report that I’ve completed my review of Generation 7, so I now have a fairly complete record of every Duston or Dustin descendant through that generation, along with the names of their spouses and the birth dates of their children. For the children who were born with another surname, I’ve also tried to include their spouse (or spouses), the places they lived, and their date of death. As of this morning, I had information on 12,555 individuals.

116th Family Reunion

The 116th annual family reunion of the Duston-Dustin Family Association will take place on Saturday, August 8, 2020.

For the safety of all, this year the COVID-19 threat forces a shift of our annual meeting into “virtual” mode! For the first time we will meet on Zoom, the free group meeting technology accessed via an Internet-connected home computer or smartphone. Members lacking such devices are urged to seek assistance from a computer-equipped friend and join us. Please contact us for the link.

Once in, set your Zoom connection to “gallery view” and you will see a checkerboard with video images of all attendees at the meeting and they can see you! Zoom allows you to comment, ask questions, and vote on motions.

Agenda
9:00 AM GATHERING TIME: Everyone get connected via Zoom
9:30 AM BUSINESS MEETING: President’s Welcome; Reports from Secretary, Treasurer, Genealogist; Duston-Dustin monuments and relics preservation; Officer and committee nominations and election
12:00 PM PROGRAM: Historian Jay Atkinson plus a virtual tour of Hannah’s Garrison House
1:45 PM ADJOURNMENT

By popular demand, Methuen (MA) native Jay Atkinson, author of the acclaimed Massacre On the Merrimack (2015), will return to offer further insight from his research into the captivity experience shared by Hannah Duston and others during the history of colonial America. Autographed copies of Atkinson’s award-winning book may be purchased via credit card (and shipped) before and during the Zoom meeting. We will have more information about how this can happen either before or at the meeting.

Then, guiding us through Thomas & Hannah Duston’s 1697 Garrison House by means of video technology will be Diane Dustin Itasaka, president of the Duston-Dustin Garrison House Association, and “Goodwife Dustin” (Garrison House Association Director Jennifer Emerson). If you have never before had the opportunity to visit this unique Haverhill historical treasure this is the time to do it, safely and economically, with commentary by two of our family’s experts!

2019 Genealogist’s Report

I have continued to update the draft genealogy books created by my predecessor Chris Bailey. The first volume, which covers Generations 1 through 5, is in fairly good shape, but it will need some editing before publishing it in book form.

In my review of Generations 6 and 7, I have uncovered quite a few missing family members. These people don’t appear in Chris Bailey’s draft, or in the old generation booklets that were one of his primary sources of information. The number of missing individuals seems to increase with each succeeding generation.

This is entirely understandable, because many of the sources that I’ve been using weren’t available at the time Chris was compiling his draft. The constant release of new online sources of genealogical data has me to add new people, and to fill in some of the blanks for individuals who were already in our records. 

I am now halfway through Generation 7, and I am finding about a third more individuals, particularly in Canada. The family tree that I’ve been using to store this information now includes about 8,100 individuals.

I have also continued to maintain the Duston-Dustin Family Association website that I created. It’s fairly rudimentary right now, and only shows meeting notices and minutes.

I think we should think how we want to publish our family data. We could continue to publish all of it in books sold by the DDFA, or we could post some of it online.

115th Family Reunion

The 115th annual family reunion of the Duston-Dustin Family Association will take place on Saturday, August 10, 2019 at the Haverhill Historical Society’s Buttonwoods Museum, 240 Water Street, Haverhill, Massachusetts.

Agenda
9:00 AM COFFEE HOUR
9:30 AM BUSINESS MEETING
12:00 PM PROGRAM: Professor Robert G. Goodby: “An Abbreviated History of the Abenaki People”
12:45 PM LUNCH

Robert G. Goodby, Ph.D., professor of Anthropology and Honors Program Director at Franklin Pierce University in Rindge, NH. Dr. Goodby, originally from Connecticut, has spent the last 35 years studying the long history of the Abenaki in Northern New England, and over his extensive academic career has investigated dozens of Abenaki sites across New Hampshire and Vermont. He is a past president of the New Hampshire Archeological Society and has served on the New Hampshire Native American Affairs Commission and as a trustee of the Mount Kearsarge Indian Museum in Warner, NH. He will review this important tribe’s origins in geographic New England with a focus on its later history with the arrival of European settlers in the 16th and 17th Centuries.

Directions: From Route 495 North or South, take Exit 49 and head east 3 miles, following the Visitor Center signs through downtown Haverhill to the Haverhill Historical Society. From Route 95 North or South, take Exit 54, and follow Route 133 to Route 97 to the Haverhill Historical Society.

Bring your lunch, and picnic at the museum. A trip to visit with Goodwife Duston at her 1697 Garrison House will leave after lunch.

(Click here for a PDF version of the meeting notice)

114th Family Reunion

The 114th annual family reunion of the Duston-Dustin Family Association will take place on Saturday, August 11, 2018 at the Haverhill Historical Society’s Buttonwoods Museum, 240 Water Street, Haverhill, Massachusetts.

Agenda
9:00 AM COFFEE HOUR
10:00 AM BUSINESS MEETING
11:00 AM PROGRAM: Skip Webb “The Life Of Benjamin James and the James House, Hampton, New Hampshire”
12:30 PM LUNCH

Our featured speaker this year will be Skip Webb, president of the James House Association, Inc. Appearing in 18th Century period dress, Skip will discuss the life of Benjamin James from his life as a weaver in Newbury, Massachusetts, his 1702 marriage to Suzannah Smith, and his purchase of the James House Property in Hampton, New Hampshire, in 1705. He will describe Benjamin James’s construction of the James House in 1723, its surrounding property, and detail what farm life in the homestead was like in the middle 1700s. He will discuss why the homestead is considered an architectural gem worth preservation, and why it has been designated a National Historic site.

He will also review some of the outstanding accomplishments of the James family during the seven generations it occupied the historic homestead.

Directions: From Route 495 North or South, take Exit 49 and head east 3 miles, following the Visitor Center signs through downtown Haverhill to the Haverhill Historical Society. From Route 95 North or South, take Exit 54, and follow Route 133 to Route 97 to the Haverhill Historical Society.

Bring your lunch, and picnic at the museum. There will be a trip to the Garrison House after lunch.

(Click here for a PDF version of the meeting notice)

113th Family Reunion

The 113th annual family reunion of the Duston-Dustin Family Association will take place on Saturday, August 12, 2017 at the Haverhill Historical Society’s Buttonwoods Museum, 240 Water Street, Haverhill, Massachusetts.

Directions: From Route 495 North or South, take Exit 49 and head east 3 miles, following the Visitor Center signs through downtown Haverhill to the Haverhill Historical Society. From Route 95 North or South, take Exit 54, and follow Route 133 to Route 97 to the Haverhill Historical Society.

Agenda
9:00 AM COFFEE HOUR
10:00 AM BUSINESS MEETING
11:00 AM PROGRAM: Thomas Spitilare “The Life and Times of Hannah Duston”
12:30 PM LUNCH

Bring your lunch, and picnic at the museum. There will be a trip to the Garrison House after lunch.

112th Family Reunion

The 112th annual family reunion of the Duston-Dustin Family Association will take place on Saturday, August 13, 2016 at the Haverhill Historical Society’s Buttonwoods Museum, 240 Water Street, Haverhill, Massachusetts.

Directions: From Route 495 North or South, take Exit 49 and head east 3 miles, following the Visitor Center signs through downtown Haverhill to the Haverhill Historical Society. From Route 95 North or South, take Exit 54, and follow Route 133 to Route 97 to the Haverhill Historical Society.

Agenda
9:00 AM COFFEE HOUR
10:00 AM BUSINESS MEETING
11:00 AM PROGRAM: Cedric H. Dustin Jr. “History Of The Duston-Dustin Family Association”
12:30 PM LUNCH

Bring your lunch, and picnic at the museum. There will be a trip to the Garrison House after lunch.

110th Family Reunion

The 110th annual family reunion of the Duston-Dustin Family Association will take place on Saturday, August 9, 2014 at the Haverhill Historical Society’s Buttonwoods Museum, 240 Water Street, Haverhill, Massachusetts.

Directions: From Route 495 North or South, take Exit 49 and head east 3 miles, following the Visitor Center signs through downtown Haverhill to the Haverhill Historical Society. From Route 95 North or South, take Exit 54, and follow Route 133 to Route 97 to the Haverhill Historical Society.

Agenda
9:00 AM COFFEE HOUR
10:00 AM BUSINESS MEETING
11:00 AM PROGRAM
12:30 PM LUNCH

Bring your lunch, and picnic at the museum. There will be a trip to the Garrison House after lunch.