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# Wednesday, April 01, 2009
Obama Cousin Prank Pays Off for FamilyLink
Posted by Diane

FamilyLink pulled a fast one on the 19 million users of its We’re Related Facebook application today.

We’re Related users received notifications that Barack Obama had confirmed them as a fourth cousin once removed. Genea-Musings' Randy Seaver posted his notification and the linked pages explaining the “relationship.”

A Learn More link at the bottom of the explanatory page fessed up about the April Fool's Day prank.

Some think the joke is funny, some don’t (and some who didn't click through probably believe it). Either way, FamilyLink is getting a lot of buzz. According to the AllFacebook blog, We’re Related is experiencing five times its usual traffic today.

FamilyLink CEO Paul Allen linked to We’re Related users’ Tweets on Twitter.


Genealogy Web Sites | Social Networking
Wednesday, April 01, 2009 3:19:54 PM (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #  Comments [1]
Quiz: Are You an April Fool?
Posted by Diane

Can you pick out the historical hoax? Take our April Fool's Day quiz and find out.

The quiz is on Survey Monkey. Once you've submitted your responses, you'll be redirected to the answers on FamilyTreeMagazine.com.


Genealogy fun
Wednesday, April 01, 2009 8:14:27 AM (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #  Comments [0]
Genealogist Discovers Royal Roots*
Posted by Diane

Our warmest congratulations to this lady:


*April Fool's! Think of all the fun** you can have today with the Newspaper Clipping Generator.

**Please play responsibly. Not for purposes of "discovering" Great-grandpa's long-missing obituary or giving "evidence" of Aunt Helen's secret career in international espionage.

Genealogy fun
Wednesday, April 01, 2009 7:10:15 AM (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #  Comments [0]
# Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Irish Times Newspaper Archive Free Through April 4
Posted by Diane

The Dublin-based Irish Times newspaper is celebrating its 150th birthday, and you can access the digital archives—covering 1859 to 2009—free through April 4.

Keyword search or browse by date using the gray search box on the right side of the home page. You can download articles—such as this list of birth announcements—as PDF files.



Don't stop there—continue your genealogy search with the resources and guidance in FamilyTreeMagazine.com's Irish roots toolkit.

Free Databases | UK and Irish roots
Tuesday, March 31, 2009 7:58:57 AM (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #  Comments [0]
The First 30 Days of Your Genealogy Search
Posted by Diane

Genealogy Gems Podcast host Lisa Louise Cooke (who also hosts our Family Tree Magazine Podcast) is the expert guest on ChangeNation’s First 30 Days Podcast.

Take a listen to pick up Cooke's insights on starting a family history search, interviewing relatives and how doing genealogy changes your life a little.

And Genealogy Gems was named by the Salt Lake City Genealogy Examiner site as a great resource for starting genealogy. Congrats!


Genealogy Web Sites | Podcasts
Tuesday, March 31, 2009 7:37:45 AM (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #  Comments [0]
# Monday, March 30, 2009
New Genomics Company Offers Ancestry Testing
Posted by Diane

Blaine Bettinger at the Genetic Genealogist posted about a new, California-based personal genomics company called Pathway Genomics.

Similar to 23andme, Pathway uses SNP (single nucleotide polymorphism) testing to extract information about your health conditions, ancestry and personal traits.

You can get just the ancestry test for $199 (23andme charges $399 for ancestry, health and traits results).

The test will tell women their maternal haplogroup; and men, their maternal and paternal haplogroups. (That’s because both male and female children inherit the mother’s mitochondrial DNA, but only males inherit the father’s Y-DNA.)

A haplogroup is akin to a branch of the world family tree. In some cases, knowing your haplogroup can help you determine if someone's not a relative. (A female cousin through your mother’s sister, for example, should be from the same maternal haplogroup as you.) But in general, your haplogroup tells you about your ancient roots, not ancestors who lived recently enough to be covered in genealogical records.

See Pathway's answers to frequently asked questions about its ancestry test. The company offers customers the option to discuss test results with an on-staff genetic counselor.

Bettinger, who’s a consultant to Pathway, describes the ancestry test in detail.

See Pathway’s blog, DNAction, too.


Genetic Genealogy
Monday, March 30, 2009 10:05:40 AM (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #  Comments [0]
# Friday, March 27, 2009
Genealogy News Corral, March 22-27
Posted by Diane

Here's our roundup of the week's genealogy news:
  • It moved around a bit, but NBC’s "Who Do You Think You Are?" premiere looks to be set for April 20.
  • With help from actor Richard Dreyfuss, the Civil War Preservation Trust (CWPT) announced this year’s list of the 10 Most Endangered Civil War Battlefields—Gettysburg, Pa., Cedar Creek, Va., and Spring Hill, Tenn., all made the unfortunate cut.
Want to help? You can start by helping spruce up battlefields on CWPT’s Park Day April 4.

Genealogy Events | Historic preservation | Social Networking
Friday, March 27, 2009 3:35:41 PM (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #  Comments [2]
Facebook Targets Families With New Groups Page
Posted by Diane

The AllFacebook blogger pointed out Facebook's new landing page for members to set up private groups for extended family. 

You already could set up private groups; this is just a way to get families to do it. Facebook may be trying to capitalize on the success of genealogy applications such as FamilyLink’s We’re Related and FamilyBuilder’s FamilyTree.

The landing page is here (you’ll have to log in to Facebook if you’re not already). It lets you name your family group and invite relatives already on Facebook and those not yet on Facebook. Then you can share photos and information just with this group.

More details and commentary on AllFacebook.


Family Reunions | Social Networking
Friday, March 27, 2009 8:54:43 AM (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #  Comments [0]
New Ancestry.co.uk Collection Details London History
Posted by Diane

British subscription site Ancestry.co.uk—sister site to US-based Ancestry.com—has launched a records collection spanning 400 years of London history.

Titled London Historical Records, 1500s-1900s, the collection will include more than 77 million records from parishes and workhouses, plus electoral rolls, wills, land tax records and school reports. It'll predate civil registration—England's equivalent to US vital records—by 300 years.

Right now, just the workhouse records are online. The Board of Guardians oversaw these institutions where impoverished men, women and children worked long hours for meager food and shelter. Records name those born or baptized in workhouses from 1834 to 1934, and those who died in a workhouse from 1834 to 1906.

The other records will be added regularly over the next year. Learn more at Ancestry.co.uk.

London was the center of Britain’s global empire for centuries. Ancestry.co.uk estimates 165 million people around the world, including more than half of British citizens, have an ancestor in the new collection.

Ancestry.co.uk costs 83.40 pounds (about $120) per year. You also can pay as you go by purchasing a voucher good for a limited time. (See subscription and pay-per-view options here.)


Ancestry.com | Genealogy Web Sites | UK and Irish roots
Friday, March 27, 2009 7:59:30 AM (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #  Comments [0]
# Thursday, March 26, 2009
America's Next Top Immigrants
Posted by Grace

What do modeling and genealogy have in common?

Absolutely nothing—until last night, when the girls of "America's Next Top Model" did a photo shoot at Ellis Island as very fashionable immigrants.

Watch this season's girls impersonating new arrivals in the video below:


Genealogy fun | Videos
Thursday, March 26, 2009 9:00:00 AM (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #  Comments [1]