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Thursday, October 04, 2012
Finding Family History Books About Your Ancestors
Posted by Tyler
Most genealogists rely primarily on records to root out their relatives. However, the Internet has opened the doorway to other digitized documents. In particular, I'm referring to an oft-underutilized family research resource: Published Genealogies.
The new First Steps course from Family Tree University, Finding Family History Books About Your Ancestors, will show you where to find these manuscripts and what they might contain.
Genealogy is not a new pastime. During the colonial period, genealogy was seen as an attempt by early settlers to secure a measure of social standing within the British Empire. The truth is, people have been conducting family research for centuries, and many of these individuals might have published family trees--a resource that you now have the opportunity to plunder. From articles in genealogical society journals to entire books outlining specific lineages to searchable online databases of user-contributed family trees, this new course shows you how and where to look for the work others have already done, allowing you to save time and add branches to your family tree.
You'll learn to search for manuscripts on databases such as:
Wednesday, October 03, 2012
Ancestry.com Acquires 1000memories
Posted by Diane
Subscription genealogy website Ancestry.com just announced it has acquired San Francisco-based 1000memories.
1000memories, founded in 2010, has a website where people can store and share digitized photos. Shoebox, the site’s accompanying mobile app for iPhone and Android, lets you use a cell phone camera to “scan” and upload documents to the site.
The app has been downloaded more than 500,000 times since its launch.
Ancestry.com has already begun incorporating the app into its services. To mark this announcement, 1000memories has launched a new version of ShoeBox for iOS (iPhones), enabling Ancestry.com members to post photos directly to ancestors profiles in their Ancestry.com member trees.
“This is the first step in a broader plan that will see tighter integration of the two services in the coming months,” according to Ancestry.com’s official press release.
Genealogy Industry | Genealogy Web Sites | Photos
Wednesday, October 03, 2012 11:55:31 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)
Research Logs Tips from the Virtual Genealogy Conference
Posted by Tyler
Detailed logs are an important tool in organizing your genealogy research.
These Fall 2012 Virtual Genealogy Conference tips come from the video session "Research Logs for the Rest of Us," hosted by Thomas MacEntee.
- It's important to understand the "why" of using a research log. If you're using a log only because you know other people who are doing so, then you're wasting your time. Understand the benefits of tracking your research journey.
- Select a format that you will continue to use. For instance, it is a poor idea to start your research log in Excel if you don't like using spreadsheets. Use a format you are comfortable with. Otherwise you'll only frustrate yourself and abandon the log.
- Spend time setting up headings or categories. When you use a spreadsheet or table, take time to consider which headings to use. Don't be afraid to add or remove headings over time. It's only through constant use of the research log that you'll figure out the best headings for your research.
- Shoot for a "one pass" goal. When you find a record or piece of information, note all of the information as if you might never find it again. This means noting the date you found it, the type of record, and even whether you are transcribing or abstracting it. You're only kidding yourself if you say that you'll come back to it later.
- Maintaining a research log is a discipline. A discipline created through handwork, dedication and repetition until it becomes habit. Realize that you will make mistakes the first few entries, then you'll become better at entering information accurately and quickly.
- Source citations matter, but take a shortcut! Create a cheat sheet--a document or spreadsheet tab where you can keep the most commonly used source citation formats. Then you can copy and paste them over to your research log to fill in the blanks.
Ready to start your own research log? Click here to buy this video session and get started documenting your research today.
Video classes from our Virtual Genealogy Conferences are available in ShopFamilyTree.com. And mark your calendar now for our Winter 2013 Virtual Genealogy Conference, Feb. 22-24.
Research Tips | Tech Advice
Wednesday, October 03, 2012 10:27:22 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)
Monday, October 01, 2012
This week: ShopFamilyTree.com Purchases Help Fight Breast Cancer!
Posted by Diane
purchases will support a great cause this week!
October is National Breast Cancer
Awareness Month and ShopFamilyTree.com wants to help. From
today, Oct.1, through Friday, Oct. 5, we'll donate 30 percent of all
ShopFamilyTree.com proceeds to the National Breast Cancer
Foundation, which provides free mammograms, education, support
to those with breast cancer, and early detection services.
Your registration for the upcoming
Online Military Records webinar, for example, or your purchase
2013 Best of the Photo Detective genealogy desk calendar or
Family History Essentials Collection could go to help women in
need of breast cancer prevention and treatment services.
here to check out the genealogy how-to books, CDs, video classes,
Family Tree Magazine back issues and more in
Monday, October 01, 2012 9:12:00 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)
Friday, September 28, 2012
Genealogy News Corral, Sept. 24-28
Posted by Diane
- Got family who landed in Australia? This weekend,
Ancestry.com.au (Ancestry.com's Australia site) is giving free access to its
Australian Birth, Marriage and Death and Cemetery indexes,
containing more than 17 million records of those who were born,
married or died in Australia from 1788 until the early 20th
century. The free period runs through Monday, Oct. 1, 11:59 p.m.
Australian Eastern Standard Time on Monday 1 October, 2012
(that's 9:59 a.m. Monday EST in the United States). You'll need
to set up a free registration with the site to search the records.
- Registration is open for FamilySearch's 2013 Rootstech genealogy
conference, taking place March 21-23 in Salt Lake City.
Organizers are planning for the 2013 conference to have a 40
percent larger exhibit hall and more classes, including a new
track for those beginning their family history research.
Registration fees range from $19 for a one-day pass to the
Getting Started track ($39 for all three days) to a $149 early
bird special (regularly $219) for a full three-day pass. Click
here to register for the conference.
FamilySearch | Genealogy Events | International Genealogy | Vital Records
Friday, September 28, 2012 1:14:50 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)
Celebrating Family History Month 2012
Posted by Diane
Monday, Oct. 1, starts Family History Month!
In the past October has been officially proclaimed a month for
celebrating family history; recently, it's become an unofficial
celebration among genealogy researchers and organizations.
So let the celebration begin! Family Tree Magazine has ideas for you
to mark Family History month on our
Family History Month resources page (it includes our free
Discover Your Roots webinar).
It's a great time to find classes and presentations at genealogy
libraries and societies near you—many free or for a small fee. Check
the website of your local library or society or call to
ask about special events. Be sure to register for the event if it's
Here's a sampling of Family History Month events across the country. Feel free to click Comments below and tell us about events you know of:
- Cincinnati: The public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton
County will hold a Day with the Experts on Saturday, Oct. 6, with
genealogy tours, a Researching Your Civil War Online class,
consultations with experts and a presentation on Cincinnati's
legendary military officer Gen. William Haines Lytle. For more
details, call (513) 369-6905 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Conroe, Texas: The Montgomery County Library will have a
Genealogy Basics Boot Camp Oct. 10, a Get Your research into Shape
session on Oct. 20, and more. Here's
the library's October events calendar; hover over a listing to
learn more about it.
- Fort Myers, Fla.: The Fort Myers-Lee County Public Library is
holding a Family History Month Series on Saturdays in October
covering topics such as tracking your research, using courthouse
records, finding censuses and substitutes and using immigration
here to find out more.
- Fort Wayne, Ind.: Of course the biggest public genealogy
library in the country, the Allen County Library, is celebrating
with classes on
cemetery research, state and regional research, census research,
photograph analysis, brick wall research and more. The library's
Genealogy Center also will have extended research hours on Oct. 26.
more and download a class schedule here.
Oakland, Calif.: The African-American Genealogical Society of
Northern California and the Oakland FamilySearch Center are holding
a Black Family History Day Oct. 13 from 1 to 5 p.m. at the
FamilySearch Center. Click
here to learn more about the event (including how to register
for a free family history consultation).
- Santa Barbara, Calif.: The Santa Barbara County Genealogical
Society has classes all month long, including a Genealogy and DNA
workshop (Oct. 5 at 10 a.m.) and Beginning Genealogy (Oct. 8 at 10
a.m.). Registration is required, with a fee for nonmembers. You also
can go to free open houses on Sept. 30 and Oct. 13, 14, 20 and 27.
To learn more, go to the
society's website and click READ HERE to download a PDF
listing the events.
- Tucson, Ariz.: The Pima County Genealogy Society and the Pima
County Public Library are teaming up to offer family tree
workshops at the library throughout October. See the
dates and times here.
- Vermilion, Ohio: Ritter Public Library is holding genealogy
classes on researching a house history (Oct. 2 at 7 p.m.), creating
a computerized family photo project (Oct. 27 at 10 a.m.) and getting
started (Oct. 30 at 6:30 p.m.). Learn more on
the library's blog.
Family History Month | Genealogy Events | Genealogy fun | Genealogy societies
Friday, September 28, 2012 12:02:45 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)
Thursday, September 27, 2012
Find Your Ancestors' Military Records Online
Posted by Diane
Just about everyone has an ancestor (or more) who served in the
military, and the records of their service can be rich
with genealogy answers: compiled military service records (aka CMSRs), pension
applications, bounty land warrants, draft registrations, discharge
papers, citations, regimental histories, burial records, veterans
questionnaires—the list goes on.
Our upcoming webinar Online
Military Records: Document Your Family's Service will help you
use online resources to find your family's US military records.
Plus you'll be able to submit your own military research questions
to presenter David A. Fryxell both when you register and during the
- what types of military records might exist for your ancestors and where to find them
- how to track down draft registrations (even if your ancestor
- how to trace ancestors' service in the American Revolution,
Civil War, World Wars and other US wars
- the best websites for finding military records, including Fold3, the Daughters
of the American Revolution genealogy database and more
The hourlong Online
Military Records webinar is Thursday, Oct. 18 at 7
p.m. ET (that's 6 p.m. CT, 5 p.m. MT and 4 p.m. PT).
registration includes access to the webinar recording to watch again
as often as you want, a 25-page handout of the presentation
slides, and a six-page handout of additional information on finding
online military records.
here to lean more about our Online Military Records webinar
$10 on your registration with our early bird discount).
Fold3 | Genealogy Web Sites | Military records | ShopFamilyTree.com Sales | Webinars
Thursday, September 27, 2012 9:59:22 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)
Wednesday, September 26, 2012
Courthouse Research Tips from the Virtual Genealogy Conference
Posted by Diane
Courthouse records can be some of the most revealing sources about
These Fall 2012 Virtual Genealogy Conference tips
come from our live chat on Researching Courthouse Records, hosted by
the Legal Genealogist
Judy G. Russell.
- Types of records you might find at a
courthouse include civil and criminal court records,
naturally, but also deeds and mortgages, tax lists,
county commissioner meeting
minutes, vital records,
business licenses, voter registrations, cattle brand
registrations and more.
- But depending on the place your family
lived, older records may have been turned over to a local or
state archives, historical society or library. Check in
advance before you plan a courthouse trip.
- "Keep in mind is that most of these
facilities aren't really archives," Russell advised. "They're
working offices trying to keep up with the day-to- day
business of government. For the most part, they're not set up
to do a lot of hand-holding." Find out as much as you can
about the records you need—the date, a microfilm number or
volume and page number, where they're located, etc.—before you
- More things to know before you go:
Check online for courthouse hours, holiday schedules and access information.
The court may have limited hours when staff will pull files.
Some won't allow personal scanners or cameras. Different types
of records might be in different buildings or rooms. The local genealogy librarian and
genealogical society are good sources to ask ahead of time
about courthouse quirks.
- See if the office holding the records
you need has a busy season. Russell gave this example: "If the
records you really want are the tax records, and the tax
office's busy season is October, then going there in October
just about guarantees that nobody is going to be available to
help you—and they may not even allow record lookups at that
- One chat participant advises you to dress
nicely—"so you look like you might be a lawyer or paralegal."
And if you have allergies to dust or mold, bring medication.
- Look for an online or microfilmed
index so you have all the volumes and page numbers you need in
advance. Also see whether the Family History Library
has microfilm of the records you
need or even posted them online at FamilySearch.org.
'burned counties' have some records," Russell said. "And don't
forget many people re-recorded deeds, etc., after a courthouse
Ready to head to the courthouse now? Click
here to find out about our downloadable guide to researching in courthouse
records, available in ShopFamilyTree.com.
from our Virtual Genealogy Conferences are available in
ShopFamilyTree.com. And mark your calendar now for our Winter
2013 Virtual Genealogy Conference, Feb. 22-24.
court records | Genealogy Events | Research Tips
Wednesday, September 26, 2012 10:21:02 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)
Monday, September 24, 2012
Get Free Admission to 100s of Museums Across the Country on Sept. 29!
Posted by Diane
This Saturday, Sept. 29, is Museum Day—when hundreds of museums
across the country open their doors and let you visit for free.
You do need to sign up for
your free tickets on the Museum Day website (each ticket is
good for admission for two people). Tickets will be emailed to you;
print them and take with you to the place you visit on Museum Day.
to find a participating museum near you.
A few I like for the history-minded:
- Out West in Nevada, you can step into your Silver State
ancestors' shoes at the Nevada State Museum
in Carson City, which features American Indian artifacts,
fossils, a recreated ghost town and underground mine, and more.
- At the Western
Heritage Center in Billings, Mont., you can see special
exhibits on Montana Women at Work and how the railroad shaped
Billings. One of the museum's galleries replicates a 1930s dude
Museums | Social History
Monday, September 24, 2012 2:02:13 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)
Friday, September 21, 2012
Genealogy News Corral, Sept. 17-21
Posted by Diane
- This week MyHeritage.com
announced the launch of its automatic Record Matching premium
service. The service automatically searches the 4 billion
records on MyHeritage.com websites (which now include World Vital Records
and FamilyLink) for matches
to people in your MyHeritage family tree. MyHeritage users will
receive weekly email updates of new Record Matches and can visit
MyHeritage.com to review, filter, sort, confirm and reject
his Genea-Musings blog, Randy Seaver has some detailed posts
about using Record Matching to find information.
- Genealogy search engine Mocavo
has acquired ReadyMicro,
a company that develops document digitization technology. On
its blog, Mocavo says it's planning
several exciting announcements in the coming weeks about
offering searchable records and forming partnerships to digitize
organizations' records "at a very low cost and even, in many
cases, at no cost." Stay tuned ...
- British burial records site DeceasedOnline has
added records from London's Charlton Cemetery, opened in 1855.
Records include scans of burial registers and some photographs.
You can see
a list of all the cemeteries included on the site here.
You can search the site and get basic search results free;
purchase credits to view additional details and records.
- Don't forget to enter our giveaway for a year's subscription
to our Family
Tree eBooks website—it's a digital library of dozens of
ebooks on genealogy, history, heirloom identification, sharing
and preserving your family history, and more, plus many issues
of Family Tree Magazine. Click
here to enter by September 30!
Cemeteries | Genealogy Industry | Genealogy Web Sites | MyHeritage | UK and Irish roots
Friday, September 21, 2012 2:27:33 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)