After I transcribed the obituary of Ada S. Keene (and I'll be doing a similar one for her husband next Monday), I looked at my notes in my database for her. She is the sister of my great-great-grandmother and the woman to the far right in this picture. She had two children, one of whom is mentioned in her obituary. The other was Annie Bradley Keene, and under her I just had "Aunt Ada's mother."
Those are cryptic notes for anyone else, but I knew what they meant. Back in the 1920s, for reasons I won't go into because it is not my story to tell, Ada came to live with my great-grandparents Archie and Lila. Lila and Annie Bradley Keene were first cousins. So my grandmother and Ada lived together for quite a few years growing up. They were only a year apart, and naturally became like sisters. Their friendship lasted their whole lives and my mother grew up calling her Aunt Ada (and then I did). However, her real relationship with my mother was 2nd cousin, once removed. Because I knew her and because she was well off to the side collaterally in my family, I had never bothered to do much "real research" on her.
A few years back when the NEHGS launched the Mass. Vital Records Database 1841-1910, I waited and then found Ada Smith's marriage record to Charles Arthur Keene in 1892. However, after rediscovering the Keenes this time, it only took me only an hour to find everything else. The NEHGS database now goes to 1915. That found me the marriage record of Annie Bradley Keene and Amos Dolliver, as well as the birth records of their first two daughters including Aunt Ada. The 1920 and 1930 censuses gave the names of the rest of the children. The Social Security Death Index gave me the deaths of the two sons. I already had Aunt Ada's death record and her obituary. A simple Google search on the male names revealed the online obituary for one sister (with married name) and that mentioned the other sister with married name. Both were found in the Social Security Death Index, and Aunt Ada's youngest sister just died in July 2010 here in Massachusetts at age 90. I got her obituary online too. [Boo Hiss on Genealogybank.com which never seems to have any modern obituaries for me.]
So, I now have a fairly complete family picture of my second cousins, twice removed. Interestingly, I could do this all from home with two paid databases: NEHGS's Americanancestors.org and Ancestry.com. The two obituaries however were just on the Internet for free. The five siblings died in California, Colorado, Pennsylvania and two in Massachusetts. So, there's no denying the convenience of this type of online research. I do it so rarely, that I forget that it can be done this way.