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<2009 April>

More Links

# Monday, 20 April 2009
Can Genealogy Web Sites Make it Easier to Cite Sources?
Posted by Diane

Wouldn’t it be great if you could find information about your ancestor on a database site such as, FamilySearch or Footnote, and just click to add the ancestor information and a properly formatted source citation to your genealogy software?

Mark Tucker, the software architect who blogs at Think Genealogy, says the technology exists to make this happen. He created a video to prove it.

It sure looks simple: On a sample Web site he'd set up, Tucker clicks a "quick citation" link next to digitized pages from a family history book. Then, switching back to his RootsMagic 4 software, he shows how the source citation and information about his ancestor has been automatically exported to the software. (Tucker says this also could work in Family Tree Maker 2009 and Legacy Family Tree 7.)

At the end of the video, he encourages you to contact database companies you use to encourage them to adopt this easy method of source citation. You also can take a survey about your source citation needs.

Genealogy Industry | Genealogy Software | Videos
Monday, 20 April 2009 08:34:15 (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [6]
# Friday, 17 April 2009
If Books Could Talk...
Posted by Grace

Don't you wish sometimes that you could ask the books you read questions? Well, the Santa Monica Public Library has a special Living Library program going on tomorrow where you can check out a person.

The offerings include "a Mormon, an animal rights activist, a police detective, a fat activist, a feminist, a married Jewish lesbian mom, a little person and an ex-gang member," among others, according to the LA Now blog. You can borrow one for a half hour conversation, as long as you return the "book" in the same condition you received it in.

Libraries and Archives | Oral History
Friday, 17 April 2009 14:40:24 (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
Genealogy News Corral, April 13-17
Posted by Diane

  • The Washington Digital Archives—a Family Tree Magazine 101 Best Web Sites pick several times over—has added WWI service statement cards resulting from a 1919 Congressional act directing the US Department of War to provide states with summaries of each WWI veterans' wartime records.
Card images are online. Click here to search (scroll to the bottom of the page), then click a match to download (I was missing a necessary plugin, but another button let me open records in JPG format). There’s also a glossary to the military abbreviations in the records.
  • Add the Minnesota Historical Society (whose Web site also is a 101 best site) to the list of state archives facing slashed budgets. The governor’s proposed budget would close three sites and lay off or cut hours for nearly half the staff, according to this Star Tribune article. The society also is coping with charitable giving reductions.
  • Pat Richley, the long-time Dear Myrtle genealogy blogger, has partnered with Moorshead Publications to start the Internet-Genealogy blog. She’ll post her takes on the news and information from the company’s history and genealogy titles.
  • MyGenShare, a free Web site where you can get and share knowledge-based genealogy articles, podcasts and videos, is set to launch in May (the launch was originally slated for last fall). You can sign up to get an e-mail when the launch happens.

Genealogy Web Sites | Libraries and Archives
Friday, 17 April 2009 13:32:47 (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0] Web Sites Down (and Now Back Up)
Posted by Diane

Tweets are flying around Twitter that and its sister sites RootsWeb and are down, for the first time in anyone’s memory here. We've been trying for about a half hour.

Snowstorms took out some trees and power lines in Provo, Utah, last night—maybe that's the culprit. We'll update you when we find out what's going on.

Just spoke with spokesperson Anastasia Tyler. All properties have been experiencing an outage for a couple of hours now, and a team is working to fix the issues. Tyler believes no data loss would have occurred. Stay tuned for more details.

Update: Looks like the sites are working again. | Genealogy Web Sites
Friday, 17 April 2009 09:57:28 (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [2]
# Thursday, 16 April 2009
Interview With TV History Detective Tukufu Zuberi
Posted by Diane

Tukufu Zuberi, whom you might know as one of PBS television’s four History Detectives, is the guest on Lisa Louise Cooke’s current Genealogy Gems podcast episode.

Zuberi is the keynote speaker at the Southern California Genealogical Society’s annual Jamboree June 26-28 (where Cooke will be teaching and staffing the Family Tree Magazine booth—so stop by!).

He tells Cooke about tracing the genealogy of a dummy: Sam, that is, the first black ventriloquist's dummy to appear on Broadway.

And Zuberi talks about the show’s mission to discover the truth about historical (or turn-out-not-to-be-historical) objects, tell the personal stories behind those objects and show how “history is reflected in the living.”

“History is a result of everyday people living their lives,” he says in the interview—a sentiment I’d wear on a t-shirt any day. A must-listen.

Genealogy Events | Podcasts
Thursday, 16 April 2009 13:29:52 (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
Listen to our Free April 2009 Family Tree Magazine Podcast
Posted by Diane

Our Family Tree Magazine Podcast April 2009 episode is now online for your listening pleasure.

This month, host Lisa Louise Cooke interviews photo historian Maureen A. Taylor about historical hairstyles,’s Debra Chatfield about the newest records available for British ancestors, and genealogy author James M. Beidler about ancestors’ financial records.

And editor Allison Stacy offers a chance to win our new Passport to Europe CD—but you'll have to listen to the episode by April 30 to find out how. Listen now (it's free) on or in iTunes.

Click below for RSS subscriptions options:

Family Tree Magazine's Podcast

↑ Grab this Headline Animator

Thursday, 16 April 2009 12:48:02 (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
Find Genealogy Resources From Facebook
Posted by Diane

Genealogy Today’s Illya D'Addezio just released a full version of Live Roots for Facebook. It’s not in the Facebook application search yet, but you can download the Live Roots app to your Facebook profile now by clicking here.

In a nutshell, Live Roots is a searchable guide to online and offline genealogy resources that launched last fall.

The online catalogs it searches are listed here.

D'Addezio says he’ll add a few more enhancements to between now and Monday, and that any updates to Live Roots will automatically be live in the Facebook version.

Once you’ve added the app to your Facebook profile, you can search Live Roots from the comfort of Facebook by clicking the Applications link in the bottom left corner of your profile.

Genealogy Web Sites | Research Tips | Social Networking
Thursday, 16 April 2009 11:45:27 (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [1]
# Wednesday, 15 April 2009
Get Tricks for Googling Your Genealogy in Our Webinar
Posted by Diane

Google’s a great, no-cost tool to search for your ancestors online—when you can find the information you’re looking for without getting frustrated first.

Here's help: In Family Tree Magazine’s premier Webinar, April 28 at 7 p.m. EST, our publisher and editorial director Allison Stacy will show you how to:
• word your searches more effectively
• focus your searches on genealogy data and specific genealogy sites
• use Google’s special search tools to look up facts and data
• find old photos and newspapers related to your family history
The hour-long live event also includes a Q&A session.

If you’ve never taken a Webinar before, it’s an online, interactive, class you participate in using your Web browser. You’ll be able to ask questions and chat with the host. A broadband connection is recommended for best results.

Registration costs $49.99. There’s a special opportunity for the first 10 registrants: Each of those folks can submit a real-life “Google challenge” to get personalized search advice.

Click here to register. Once you do, you’ll receive an e-mail with a link and other information you need to take the Webinar.

Genealogy Events
Wednesday, 15 April 2009 16:36:58 (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
Recommended Reading: Family Falsehoods and FamilySearch Widget
Posted by Diane

Two blog posts we think you should put on your reading list this week:
  • Since FamilySearch doesn’t have a recent updates list on its record search pilot site, the Ancestry Insider made a widget that shows new and updated databases. Take a look at it here, and click a title to go to that database on FamilySearch.
  • Many people start their genealogy searches with certain dearly held beliefs about their families that don’t jibe with historical reality. ("We're related to royalty" and "Our ancestor’s name was changed at Ellis Island" are two that come to mind.) Settle in with a cup of coffee and read Dick Eastman’s explanation as to why such family stories are often fairy tales. (Except the Ellis Island one, which is certainly a fairy tale.)

FamilySearch | Research Tips
Wednesday, 15 April 2009 08:23:13 (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
# Tuesday, 14 April 2009
Ellis Island Honors Immigrants' Contributions
Posted by Diane

The Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation announced the recipients of this year’s Ellis Island Family Heritage Awards, to be celebrated at a luncheon May 19. You’ll probably recognize them:
  • Eric R. Kandel, MD, won a Nobel Prize in 2000 for his studies in the molecular basis of memory. He immigrated from Vienna as a child in 1939, after Germany annexed Austria.
  • Football legend and Hall of Fame member Joe Namath’s father and maternal grandparents immigrated from Hungary.
  • Jerry Seinfeld, of course, is a comedian, television star and producer. I also credit him with helping “Seinfeld” fans instantly bond over entire conversations consisting solely of quotes from the show. His maternal grandparents came from Syria.
  • Gloria and Emilio Estefan, formerly of the band Miami Sound Machine and now, respectively, a singer and music producer, will receive the BC Forbes Peopling of America Award. Both fled Cuba with their families after the rise of Fidel Castro.
The awards honor immigrants (through Ellis Island or another port) and their descendants who've made significant contributions to the American experience. Read more about the honorees at

Celebrating your heritage | immigration records
Tuesday, 14 April 2009 15:06:48 (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]