Free Updates

Let us tell you when new posts are added!

Email:

Navigation

Categories
April, 2014 (12)
March, 2014 (17)
February, 2014 (16)
January, 2014 (16)
December, 2013 (11)
November, 2013 (15)
October, 2013 (19)
September, 2013 (20)
August, 2013 (23)
July, 2013 (24)
June, 2013 (14)
May, 2013 (25)
April, 2013 (20)
March, 2013 (24)
February, 2013 (25)
January, 2013 (20)
December, 2012 (19)
November, 2012 (25)
October, 2012 (22)
September, 2012 (24)
August, 2012 (24)
July, 2012 (21)
June, 2012 (22)
May, 2012 (28)
April, 2012 (44)
March, 2012 (36)
February, 2012 (36)
January, 2012 (27)
December, 2011 (22)
November, 2011 (29)
October, 2011 (52)
September, 2011 (26)
August, 2011 (26)
July, 2011 (17)
June, 2011 (31)
May, 2011 (32)
April, 2011 (31)
March, 2011 (31)
February, 2011 (28)
January, 2011 (27)
December, 2010 (34)
November, 2010 (26)
October, 2010 (27)
September, 2010 (27)
August, 2010 (31)
July, 2010 (23)
June, 2010 (30)
May, 2010 (23)
April, 2010 (30)
March, 2010 (30)
February, 2010 (30)
January, 2010 (23)
December, 2009 (19)
November, 2009 (27)
October, 2009 (30)
September, 2009 (25)
August, 2009 (26)
July, 2009 (33)
June, 2009 (32)
May, 2009 (30)
April, 2009 (39)
March, 2009 (35)
February, 2009 (21)
January, 2009 (29)
December, 2008 (15)
November, 2008 (15)
October, 2008 (25)
September, 2008 (30)
August, 2008 (26)
July, 2008 (26)
June, 2008 (22)
May, 2008 (27)
April, 2008 (20)
March, 2008 (20)
February, 2008 (19)
January, 2008 (22)
December, 2007 (21)
November, 2007 (26)
October, 2007 (20)
September, 2007 (17)
August, 2007 (23)
July, 2007 (17)
June, 2007 (13)
May, 2007 (7)

Search

Archives

<September 2008>
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
31123456
78910111213
14151617181920
21222324252627
2829301234
567891011

More Links








# Friday, September 12, 2008
101 Best Web Sites: Norwegian Roots and Maps Galore
Posted by Diane

Here's our weekly (roughly; I got thrown off schedule last week) look at two of Family Tree Magazine's 101 Best Web Sites for 2008.
  • Digitalarkivet was originally home to 1801, 1865, 1875 and 1900 Norwegian censuses, this national archives site is expanding to also encompass parish records—the most important family research tool in Norway.
Click Database Selector to find databases by county or year, or choose the Search in All the Database link (note this page doesn’t seem to have an English translation, but you can get a serviceable one by pasting the text into Google’s translator and selecting Norwegian as the language to translate from).
  • The Perry-Castaneda Library Map Collection brings digitized historical maps from around the world straight to your computer screen. They’re sorted by category, so first scroll down and click Historical Maps, then a continent or country. From there, you can choose maps of cities, military maps and maps showing historical eras, territorial growth, populations and more.


Genealogy Web Sites | International Genealogy
Friday, September 12, 2008 3:28:11 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
# Thursday, September 11, 2008
Familybuilder Announces Low-Cost DNA Tests; Global Network
Posted by Diane

Two big announcements from Familybuilder, the company that created the Family Tree genealogy application for social networking sites such as Facebook and MySpace.
  • First, Familybuilder’s new Global Network brings the Family Tree application outside of social networking sites.
Anyone can create a Family Tree profile on Familybuilder and link it to Family Tree profiles on social networking sites. (More than 20 million Family Tree profiles exist on such sites.) You’ll need a free registration to build a tree or access existing ones. 
  • Second, starting Oct. 15, Familybuilder will offer low-cost DNA tests, focusing on the social networking market. According to a written announcement, “No genealogy service caters to the 300 to 400 million people who use social networks to research their family trees.”
The offerings include a 17-marker Y-DNA test and a mitochondrial (mt) DNA test; both cost $59.95.

FamilyBuilder does have others beat: Compare its 17-marker test with FamilyTreeDNA’s 12-marker test ($149); DNA Testing Systems’ 13-marker test ($200); Chromosomal Labs’ 19-marker test is $260.

A 17-marker test is usually enough to tell you if you’re related to someone, but higher-resolution tests (those that test more markers) are more accurate. For example, it’s possible a 17-marker test may match on 15 of the 17 markers, where a 45-marker test of the same two people might match on 30 out of the 45 markers.

Note that a Y-DNA test doesn’t tell you how you’re related to someone; but it estimates how long ago a common ancestor may have lived.

Many genealogists go straight for the higher-marker tests (my guess is that's the market most traditional genetic genealogy companies concentrate on). Familybuilder says it plans to expand its DNA lineup and is “committed to continuously driving the costs of these tests down over time.”

Genealogy Web Sites | Genetic Genealogy
Thursday, September 11, 2008 5:27:33 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [3]
# Wednesday, September 10, 2008
Footnote Launches "Facebook for the Deceased"
Posted by Diane

Russ Wilding, CEO of subscription historical records service Footnote appeared at TechCrunch50 (an annual technology conference) to launch Footnote Pages, what CEO Russ Wilder described as "Facebook for the deceased."

 

The product would contain profiles of deceased individuals, populated with the 80 million names from the SSDI. Survivors and friends can find their loved one or start a new page. Then they add information and stories about the person; upload photos; and link profiles of people who went to the same school, worked together, were related or were otherwise associated during life.

 

Here’s where Footnote’s existing historical records collections come into play: You can search Footnote for records related to the deceased person and attach them to his profile.

 

Using the example of a friend who’d died in a motorcycle accident, Wilding added to his profile a map with the accident location, uploaded a high school photo, and linked him to another student at the school.

 

You’ll need a free Footnote membership to create a Footnote Page. To access Footnote’s historical records, you’d need a Footnote subscription ($11.95 per month and $69.95 per year).

 

Marketing director Justin Schroepfer says Footnote was one of 52 applicants selected  from more than 1,000 to present at the TechCrunch50 conference. He and his colleagues had to keep a lid on the news due to an agreement with TechCrunch. 

 

After Wilding’s presentation, TechCrunch50 judges critiqued the idea. One suggested the idea of building an online profile for a deceased person might be disturbing.


Similar memorials are already on other Web sites such as Legacy.com; but Footnote takes it a step further by starting with the SSDI and incorporating historical records.

 

Here’s what Footnote had to say about Footnote Pages in an announcement:

• Even for an audience that might not be as familiar with social networking, these pages allow multiple users to easily contribute content and insights helping to create a more complete picture of the people we care about.

• Maps, timelines, and photo galleries bring these pages to life and add context.

• Footnote Pages helps associate and link pages to others besides the immediate family; such as friends, prominent figures, etc.

• Footnote pages can be used to create tribute pages for family & friends, memorial pages for ancestors or research pages to gather information.

• Pages can also be created to document and discuss historical events, places and organizations (for example, the Vietnam War, the Assassination of John F. Kennedy or the Lincoln-Douglas Debates.


Footnote | Genealogy Web Sites
Wednesday, September 10, 2008 6:13:51 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [2]
SSDI Now Free on GenealogyBank, Too
Posted by Diane

You have another place to search the Social Security Death Index (SSDI) for free.

The subscription historical newspaper service GenealogyBank has made its version of the SSDI—a database of people whose deaths have been reported to the Social Security Administration (SSA)—free. Most deaths listed in the SSDI happened after 1962, but look anyway—my great-grandfather, who died in 1949, is in there.

The SSDI can tell you when and where your ancestor died, and his Social Security number (SSN). You can use the SSN and death information to request his SS-5, the record of his application for a Social Security card. (Learn how in our associate editor's Family Tree Firsts post.)

Other places with the SSDI free include FamilySearch, FamilyTreeLegends, World Vital Records, NewEnglandAncestors.org and RootsWeb. Each site adds new death information from the SSA on a different schedule; GenealogyBank updates its SSDI weekly.

You can search several sites' SSDI databases simultaneously through Stephen P. Morse's One-Step search.


Genealogy Web Sites | Public Records
Wednesday, September 10, 2008 10:27:42 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [2]
# Tuesday, September 09, 2008
23andMe Demystifies DNA for Ancestry.com Cheek-Swabbers
Posted by Diane

23andMe, the Google-funded company that profiles customers’ genomes, is teaming up with Ancestry.com to beef up the genetic information for Ancestry.com's DNA customers.

Users of Ancestry.com’s DNA testing services will now get access to the same ancestral content available through the 23andMe Web site.

Ancestry DNA offers Y-DNA and mitochondrial (mt) DNA tests for $149 to $179. Y-DNA follows male lines and can help you search for potential cousins in DNA databases; mtDNA informs you about maternal lines and is best for exploring your ancient ancestry.

See an example of the educational materials Ancestry DNA test-takers will get with their test results.

Meanwhile, 23andMe now “democratizes personal genetics” with its $399 genome profiling service (previously, the only available test cost a pricey $999). This test gives you both health- and ancestry-related information about your genes.

Though its service would still empty out most people's piggy banks, the 23andMe Web site does a good job of explaining genetic testing to laypeople. Ancestry.com's DNA customers should benefit.


Ancestry.com | Genetic Genealogy
Tuesday, September 09, 2008 8:38:22 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
# Sunday, September 07, 2008
A Peek Inside the FGS Exhibit Hall
Posted by Diane

Family Tree Magazine’s home last week was in the Federation of Genealogical Societies conference exhibit hall at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia.

If you've never been to a genealogy conference, we wanted to invite you in for a look!

 

In here, you’ll find displays and representatives from genealogy publishers, genetic genealogy companies, software manufacturers, libraries and archives, genealogical societies and more.

Visitors also can try out online database services such as Ancestry.com, FamilySearch, Footnote, ProQuest, Genealogy Today, GenealogyBank and others, and pick up tips from the people who help create those services.

Of course, genealogy conferences also offer a great chance to meet other researchers, seek advice from the experts, sit in on great classes and join field trips to local repositories.

Find more genealogy conferences and classes listed in our online events calendar.


Genealogy Events
Sunday, September 07, 2008 9:23:15 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [2]
# Friday, September 05, 2008
News From the FGS Conference
Posted by Diane

News-wise, it's been kind of a quiet Federation of Genealogical Societies conference so far, but here are a few of the tidbits we picked up yesterday:

  • The Bureau of Land Management has been quietly adding military warrants to its General Land Office records database.

  • The Irish Family History Foundation has launched an online research service called RootsIreland. Sign up for a free registration with the site, then use it to search nearly 40 million church records at genealogical research centers in Ireland and Northern Ireland. Results show you basic information from the record; viewing a record transcription costs 5 Euros (about $7). You’ll also get information on other records and research services available in your ancestors’ county.

  • ProQuest (the company behind the HeritageQuest database you can access in many libraries) has introduced Historic MapWorks, a service that lets you browse historical maps or search them by keyword, address or latitude and longitude.

Some of the maps have landowners’ names, and you can move around to look at the neighbors and compare the old map to a modern one. It's not in many libraries yet, but ask at your library's reference desk if it's available there.


Genealogy Events | International Genealogy | UK and Irish roots
Friday, September 05, 2008 8:10:32 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
# Thursday, September 04, 2008
Ancestry.com, FGS Partner on Indexing Projects
Posted by Diane

At today’s opening session of the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS) conference in Philadelphia, Ancestry.com and FGS announced the federation is partnering on Ancestry.com’s World Archives Project (now in public beta testing). The project enlists volunteers to index genealogical records.

FGS member societies will sponsor some of those indexing projects by recruiting volunteers and helping with access to records. Volunteers will transcribe information from historical record images, helping to create indexes that’ll remain accessible free on Ancestry.com.

Active indexers also will be able to access record images that are part of the World Archives Project. (Read more about the project in our blog post.)

Similar to FamilySearch Indexing, Ancestry.com will donate a digital copy of the sponsored index and images to the partner organization for a particular record set.

"We’ve been searching for years for the right way to partner with genealogy societies, and we think this project will allow us to help them attract new members by leveraging the popularity of Ancestry.com," says Tim Sullivan, president of Ancestry.com's parent company, The Generations Network.

"We appreciate the encouragement and support FGS provides and look forward to continuing our relationship as this project marches forward."



Thursday, September 04, 2008 8:57:12 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
Genealogy Conference Underway in Philadelphia
Posted by Diane

The Federation of Genealogical Societies conference in Philadelphia got started last night with exhibit hall preview hours. The hall was busy with genealogists; a live events area features product demos and presentations. This morning is the opening session, followed by three days of conferencing—genealogy classes, meetings and exhibit hall shopping.

We'll keep you updated on conference news. Meanwhile, some show-and-tell. I got into Philadelphia early and tooled around to some of the historic sites, including:


Christ Church Burial Ground, whose walls guard Benjamin Franklin’s gravesite (not in this photo) and those of other founding fathers and Christ Church congregation members. Few of the headstones are still readable, but a church record book has told caretakers the inscriptions many stones used to bear.

 
Independence Hall, where the Constitutional Congress debated the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. (The chair at the head of the room is the one from which John Hancock presided over Congress; other chairs aren't original.)


… The Liberty Bell (this is the side opposite the famous crack), which used to be in the Pennsylvania State House. I learned it didn’t crack when the Declaration of Independence was signed—no one knows exactly when the large gap formed, but it was some time between 1817 and 1846.


Genealogy Events | Genealogy fun | Oral History
Thursday, September 04, 2008 7:58:58 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
# Wednesday, September 03, 2008
We'd Like Your Feedback!
Posted by Grace

As you poke around our new site, please let us know what you think of it by taking our survey! All your feedback helps us make FamilyTreeMagazine.com even better.


Genealogy Web Sites
Wednesday, September 03, 2008 3:49:36 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]