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About Stan Follis

Stan's photo

If someone had written our family history, I would have bought the book. Since no one did, I'm researching and writing one. The poem We Are the Chosen explains it well. The difficult decision is whether to write a traditional book, or put it on a web site. Digital technology can change with the push of a button, offering methods of research and storage genealogists in the past never dreamed. I started my family research in 1993 when I bought Family Tree Maker to use on my first computer an IBM PS/1. Originally using pen and paper for library notes, occasionally photocopying books, manually entering data into Family Tree Maker. It was several years before digital images would come from scanners and digital cameras. I follow the LOCKSS Method of data security - Lots Of Copies Keep Stuff Safe in case of hard drive crashes, scratched DVD discs, corrupted digital files, fire or natural disaster, theft, or careless deletion losing digital files forever.

Family Tree Maker genealogy software

Since 1993, I try to discover, document, preserve, and write stories of my ancestor families in America. Learning, finding, and preserving everything. At least a ninth generation FOLLIS in America since 1731 in New Jersey, in three-fourth's of my ancestor families I range from eleventh to eighth generation from 1637 to 1750's in Colonial America. The last fourth is paternal grandmother SCHNEIDER's family arrival in 1881, over 130 years years ago, a more recent third generation born in America.

A follis coin

Internet searches for follis turn up follis coins, so I quickly found the coin denomination called a follis from the Roman era nearly 2,000 years ago, discussed on my FOLLIS Trivia page. My coin shown on the right cost $9.00 in the 1990's. I have heard of prices up to $100.

My large extended family originally included 18 aunts and uncles, not counting their spouses, or the 3 uncles who died in the 1930's. The families still talked about the 3 uncles 70 years after their deaths. We are not unique since I have tombstone photos of fresh flowers placed on graves 70 years after the person's death. My mom's family used to have 2 family reunions a year since the 1940's, sometimes over 100 in attendance, now once a year averaging 40-60, down to 7 aunts and uncles ranging from 75 to over 95 years of age.

Web Sites

In 1999 I started writing the code for this web site using Netscape Composer, then HTML-kit using CSS examples from Eric Meyer. I now use Adobe Creative Suite Design Premium tools like Dreamweaver, Flash, Fireworks, and Photoshop. I am also County Coordinator for the Allen County Indiana GenWeb site and administrator for their ACGSI Facebook page and recently became webmaster for the Noble County Historical Society.

MCAS CertifiedAfter taking a few classes computer then for a couple of years I taught computer classes and self-taught myself many other software programs such as: Windows 7, VISTA, XP Professional, Office 2007, Family Tree Maker, Photoshop Elements, Photoshop Organizer, Google maps, and Delorme Street Atlas GPS. I am certified as a Microsoft Office 2007 Master - MCAS - Microsoft Certified Application Specialist in Access 2007, Excel 2007, Outlook 2007, Power Point 2007, and Word 2007 . I am an MCP - Microsoft Certified Professional, with CompTIA certification in A+, and Network+.


2002 Monarach butterfly on prairie cup plant in gardenThe "blue man" in the book "The Five People You Meet In Heaven", states "there are no random acts...we are all can no more separate one life from another than you can separate a breeze from the wind." "Strangers, are just family you have yet to come to know" and "no life is a waste, the only time we waste is the time we spend thinking we are alone." So it is with our family history. The more I find, the more obvious it becomes how we are connected by blood and marriage, living in the same areas, attending the same schools, churches and organizations, spending our lives and passing through time together. DNA testing is beginning to show and confirm what most of us always suspected, but many refuse to believe for social, political and religious reasons.

March 1, 1983 Entrepeneurs Fish For Riches newspaper article

1996 April Showers Bring May Flowers newspaper article coverI have a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology with minors in Chemistry and Horticulture from Purdue University motivated by a lifetime gardening and growing plants. My plant collection was featured in the local conservatory garden walk in 1996 and 2006, including newspaper articles shown on my garden web site. I did summer horticulture internships at the Foellinger Freimann Botanical Conservatory in 1993 and 1995. In 1994 I did a 6 month internship at the Chicago Botanic Garden, and in 2009 they added a Facebook page. My gardens get smaller every few years with less time and desire to maintain them, but are still larger than any other in the neighborhood. The photo on the right was in front of wooden 60 gallon aquariums divided into 5 sections for breeding freshwater angelfish with 20 breeding pairs of varieties like the photos below. We had around 20,000 baby angelfish from eggs to adults when the photo was taken. Unfortunately, I didn't own a camera at the time so don't have any good photos so had to find these online.

Black Angelfish
Angels Plus Photo
Black Angelfish
Golden Marble Angelfish
Badman's Tropical Fish photo
Golden Marble Angelfish
Baby Silver Angelfish
jim1959 photo
Baby Angelfish
Black Lace Veiltail Angelfish
Sharon Hansen photo
Black Lace Angelfish
At one time I had 20,000 angelfish, of about 1 dozen different varieties, from just hatched eggs to mostly less than an inch long fry to breeding adults!


Clownfish Wikipedia photo
Anemonefish eggs Wikimedia photo
Anemonefish eggs
Anenomefish eggs Wikimedia photo
Anemone Fish Spawn
At one time I had 2,000 inch long "Nemo" type clownfish I reared from eggs feeding on my "home grown" phytoplankton and zooplankton!  


For nearly a decade during and after college while earning my biology degree I ran a tropical fish and bird breeding partnership continuing a childhood fascination with the natural world of all types of living creatures large and small. We made the front page of the local afternoon newspaper before ending a second business effort. I grew "green water" a mixture of phytoplankton and zooplankton, mostly rotifers, to rear marine clownfish and ornamental shrimp. Now algae is being used to produce synthetic fuels like in this Thomas Friedman NY Times article in December 2010. Guess I should have stuck with it.

One of the strangest things we grew were albino snails. An oriental restaurant wanted to buy them, but we were concerned if some type of board of health issue might arise, so we passed on the idea. I've wondered a few times if we might have missed a real money maker however.

In middle school I read many books on tropical fish. I had a pair of dwarf gourami, Colisa lalia, from the southeast jungles that build bubble nests to deposit their eggs. Like the Siamese fighting fish they are air breathers in the low oxygen stagnant tropical waters. They display definite color differences between males and females, unlike most gouramis. Their fry (baby fish) feed on infusoria a collective name for micro-organisms, mostly protozoans cultured in freshwater to feed the tiny baby fish. I was able to raise a large batch of babies, only to find if you didn't keep the cover on all the time to keep the humidity 100%, the dry air would kill them before they were able to breath drier low humidity air.


Fairy Shrimp - photo
Fairy Shrimp

As a kid, I collected tadpoles, crayfish, fairy shrimp, daphnia, plants, anything growing in the pond in the woods. Sometimes because they were neat or wierd to look at, sometimes as live food for my tropical fish.

"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." Soren Kierkegaard

Two quotes from Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882) about life sum it best.

"Whatever course you decide upon, there is always someone to tell you that you are wrong. There are always difficulties arising which tempt you to believe that your critics are right. To map out a course of action and follow it to an end requires courage. To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment. Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in, forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day, you shall begin it well and serenely ... Ralph Waldo Emerson
To laugh often and love much; to win the respect of intelligent persons and the affection of children; to earn the approbation of honest citizens and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty; to find the best in others; to give of one's self; to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition; to have played and laughed with enthusiasm and sung with exultation; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived - this is to have succeeded. -- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Have a Dream, Make a Plan, Take a Step, Keep on Climbing - Kate Wendleton

"The best way to predict the future is to create it." - Peter Drucker

"Two roads diverged in a wood, I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference." - Robert Frost


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