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# Friday, August 30, 2013
Free US Census Records on MyHeritage Labor Day Weekend!
Posted by Diane

More Labor Day weekend genealogy goodies! MyHeritage has announced that its entire US Census collection, 1790 to 1940, will be free to access from Saturday, Aug. 31, through Monday, Sept. 2.

To view the census records, you'll need to sign up for a free MyHeritage account if you don't already have one. Start your census search here.

Visit the MyHeritage blog for more details on the MyHeritage US census collection and this offer.


census records | MyHeritage
Friday, August 30, 2013 11:41:23 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
Genealogy News Corral, Aug. 26-30
Posted by Diane

  • The California Genealogical Society (CGS) is presenting an interesting live program inspired by genealogy TV series such as "Who Do You Think You Are?" and the upcoming Genealogy Roadshow: CGS experts researched the genealogy of three local celebrities and will present their ancestral stories in an evening event called "Their Roots Are Showing," Oct. 26 at a local theater. Tickets cost $50, which also includes a silent auction. Learn more from the CGS press release and purchase tickets here.
If you've been looking for a good reason to polish up the family history stories you've begun working on, here you go: ISFHWE's 2014 writing competition opens Oct. 1. Details coming soon on ISFHWE's website.
Have a great Labor Day weekend, everyone!


Genealogy Events
Friday, August 30, 2013 11:24:44 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
# Thursday, August 29, 2013
Ancestry.com Offers Free Immigration Records Through Labor Day
Posted by Diane

I just got an email that Ancestry.com is offering free access to its collection of Immigration and Travel records through Labor Day. That includes
  • passenger lists
  • border-crossing records
  • passports
  • citizenship and naturalization records
and more. The records are free through midnight ET on Sept. 2, so right about now would be a good time to start searching and saving. You'll need to sign up for a free Ancestry.com account if you don't already have one.

Access Ancestry.com's free immigration records collection here.

Want to learn how you can become an Ancestry.com power user? ShopFamilyTree.com has our Ancestry.com Ultimate Collection at 63 percent off for a limited time.

Or try our downloadable Ancestry.com Cheat Sheet for a quick-reference guide to the best search strategies, finding the records you need, troubleshooting and more.


Ancestry.com | immigration records
Thursday, August 29, 2013 12:35:20 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
Editor's Pick: Find Your Ancestors' Immigration Records Online
Posted by Diane

I still remember the feeling when I finally found my great-grandparents' immigration recorded on a ship's passenger list—and I remember how long and difficult that genealogy search was. (I recapped it for blog readers here.)



If you're having trouble finding an ancestor's immigration record, or you want to start looking, check out our Sept. 26 Online Immigration Records webinar with genealogy expert Lisa A. Alzo. You'll learn:
  • How to find out when your ancestors immigrated.

    Finding my great-grandfather's 1942 naturalization record, which provided his birth name, port of entry, and immigration date, broke open my search. (It turned out his memory of when he and my great-grandmother arrived was off by about a month, but that's not bad for 40 years later.)

  • How to use websites and online tools, such as Ancestry.com, Morse's One-Step web pages and the Elis Island and Castle Garden databases, to aid your search.

    Using Stephen Morse's one-step search tool for Ellis Island immigration records to search records a month at a time helped me overcome indexing problems and my great-grandparents' fibs about their ages, which had made the record hard to find in previous online searches.

  • Where to find records from major US ports of immigration

  • Where to find sources for early immigration

Everyone who registers for the live Online Immigration Records webinar will receive a PDf of the presentation slides, plus access to view the recorded webinar as often as desired.

The Online Immigration Records webinar is Sept. 26 at 7 p.m. ET. Good news! You can save $10 on your webinar registration by signing up before Sept. 19.


Editor's Pick | immigration records | ShopFamilyTree.com Sales | Webinars
Thursday, August 29, 2013 9:49:52 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
# Wednesday, August 28, 2013
"Who Do You Think You Are?": Charlemagne Connections and English Roots
Posted by Diane

It's actually not unusual to descend from Charlemagne, whom Cindy Crawford learned is in her family tree on last night's "Who Do You Think You Are?" As noted in the show, the eighth-century Frankish king had 20 children with different women (with eight of 10 known wives or concubines).



Charlemagne, who lived from April 2, 742 to Jan. 28, 814, was Cindy Crawford's 41st-great-grandfather.

When you go back 40 generations, and you have roughly a trillion ancestors—more than the number of people who existed at the time Charlemagne lived. (Virtually all family trees have consanguineous marriages, so the same person will appear in multiple places in a tree.)

This NationalGeographic.com article explains how there comes a point in history when "all individuals who have any descendants among the present-day individuals" (that's us) "are actually ancestors of all present-day individuals."

and

"all Europeans alive today have among their ancestors the same man or woman who lived around 1400 ... About a thousand years ago, a peculiar situation prevailed: 20 percent of the adult Europeans alive in 1000 would turn out to be the ancestors of no one living today (that is, they had no children or all their descendants eventually died childless); each of the remaining 80 percent would turn out to be a direct ancestor of every European living today."
So anyone of European descent is probably related to Charlemagne, and to his royal relatives as well. Of course, documenting the generations back to royalty is another thing. You can get started discovering your royal roots with the six steps in our Spring 2011 Discover Your Roots bookazine.

If you have English ancestry of any variety, as Cindy Crawford did through her Trowbridge line, there's still time to sign up for our Aug. 29 webinar and learn how to research English genealogy online.

You also can get our e-book A Genealogist's Guide to Discovering Your English Ancestors.

If you missed last night's "Who Do You Think You Are?" you can watch it on the show's website.


"Who Do You Think You Are?" | Celebrity Roots | Genealogy TV | UK and Irish roots
Wednesday, August 28, 2013 10:25:34 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [5]
# Tuesday, August 27, 2013
FGS Report: News From Ancestry.com and FamilySearch
Posted by Diane

I wanted to share some of the Ancestry.com and FamilySearch updates I learned about while at the Federation of Genealogical Societies conference in Fort Wayne, Ind., last week.
  • This update is to family trees on Ancestry.com: The site is gradually rolling out a new "Story View" in individual profiles. It uses information from the person's timeline to create a basic narrative about his or her life events. The narrative is presented in timeline format along with images of records or photos you've attached to the person or event. You can edit the narrative and crop the images to focus on the part you want.
I don't have Story View yet or I'd show you what it looks like, but you can see more Story View details and screenshots on the Genea-Musings blog (Randy has had access to Story View for months now).
  • Ancestry.com also recently updated the new, interactive image viewer with a Related Content panel that shows Member Connect information (such as other Ancestry.com members who've viewed that record), Suggested Records (other records that might name your ancestor) and Related Trees (other family trees on the site that have people matching your relatives).
  • If you search from an Ancestry.com member tree, over the next two weeks you'll start seeing "smart filtering," which lets you hide results from collections in which you've already found a person's record. For example, say you've already found your third-great-grandfather in the 1880 census. When you next search the census collection, you can filter out all results from the 1880 census and  focus on other results.
Your search results also will start with a list of records you've already attached to the person you're researching, so you can see what you have and what you need.
We didn't arrive in Fort Wayne until Wednesday evening, so we missed the FamilySearch dinner on Tuesday (bummer—I heard the freebies included a solar phone charger), but I stopped by the FamilySearch booth in the exhibit hall for a quick update:
  • The organization's focus continues to be on sharing family history stories and photos as opposed to hard facts, with messages about "turning hearts" and "Not charts ... but hearts."
  • FamilySearch is working on plans to open Family History Discovery Centers in "high-traffic areas" (Philadelphia was mentioned to me as a location for a prototype) with oral history recording studios and other technology to help the "casually interested" start researching their family history.
  • FamilySearch will begin to equip its FamilySearch Centers with oral history recording equipment, similar to what you might find in a StoryCorps booth.


Ancestry.com | FamilySearch
Tuesday, August 27, 2013 4:47:29 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
PBS Series "Genealogy Roadshow" Explores Roots of Everyday Americans
Posted by Diane

I learned a little more about PBS' upcoming Genealogy Roadshow series while at the Federation of Genealogical Societies' Conference last week.

  The show, slated to air Mondays from 9 to 10 p.m. ET starting Sept. 23 (my husband'll have to find someplace else to watch Monday night football), will combine history and science to uncover the roots of everyday Americans. This season's participants come from four cities: Nashville, Tenn.; Austin, Texas; Detroit; and San Francisco.

Genealogy experts will explore unverified family history claims about connections to a famous event or historical figure (sounds to me like a genealogical version of "History Detectives") by using family heirlooms, records, DNA and local historians.

The experts will reveal many of the answers they discover in front of a live audience in a location relevant to the participant's family history.

Here's a teaser:




"Genealogy Roadshow" hosts are Kenyatta D. Berry, a professional genealogist and president of the Association of Professional Genealogists, and D. Joshua Taylor, whom you've seen on "Who Do You Think You Are?" and who serves as lead genealogist at findmypast.com.

(Both have also appeared in the pages of Family Tree Magazine and been interviewed in our "Five Questions" column. Coincidence?)

"Genealogy Roadshow" is based on an Irish series of the same name.


Genealogy TV | Videos
Tuesday, August 27, 2013 3:05:13 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [1]
# Friday, August 23, 2013
Free Swedish Genealogy Records, Aug. 24-25
Posted by Diane

Do you have ancestors in Sweden? While at the Federation of Genealogical Societies conference today, we got word that Swedish genealogy records site ArkivDigital is having a free weekend this weekend, Aug. 24-25 (Central European time).

ArkivDigital has Swedish church records, court records, estate inventories and more. To take advantage of the free offer, you’ll need to register with the site and download the ArkivDigital Online software. You’ll need to know where in Sweden your ancestor lived to find relevant records.

You'll find a guide to using ArkivDigital's free weekend here.


International Genealogy
Friday, August 23, 2013 8:42:24 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
Chris O'Donnell on "Who Do You Think You Are?": St. Louis and War of 1812 Roots
Posted by Diane

If you watched “Who Do You Think You Are?” with Chris O’Donnell this week, you learned about his ancestor Michael McEnnis’ reminiscences of the cholera epidemic at the Missouri Historical Society research library in St. Louis. Wouldn’t finding such a writing be a dream come true?

On a recent visit to our local Cincinnati History Library and Archives, we saw how much unpublished material local historical societies have. Much of it isn’t yet in online catalogs. The historical society for your ancestor’s hometown is definitely worth a visit.

If you have ancestors in St. Louis like Chris O’Donnell does, Archivist Dennis Northcott, who shared McEnnis’ writings with O’Donnell on the show, recommends searching the Missouri Historical Society’s Genealogy and Local History Index. The index lets you search names and other details from a variety of the library’s collections.

You also can email Northcott a request to receive the monthly Genealogy and House History News email newsletter (put “subscribe” in the subject line and your name in the body of the email message).

Northcott told me that only brief excerpts made it on air (it’s normal for TV shows to take a lot of footage and edit it down to the slivers that appear onscreen), but you can read the entire cholera reminiscence on the library’s website

Two additional reminiscences of Michael McEnnis include:

O’Donnell also explored his War of 1812 roots (I haven’t seen that part of the show yet), a war that marked its bicentennial last year. To mark the occasion, we published a genealogy guide to researching War of 1812 ancestors—it’s available as a download in ShopFamilyTree.com.


Military records | Research Tips
Friday, August 23, 2013 8:35:28 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
RootsTech and FGS to Join up in 2015
Posted by Diane

Two national genealogy events are joining forces in 2015.

Feb. 12-14, 2015, the Federation of Genealogical Societies’ annual conference will take place in conjunction with FamilySearch’s RootsTech conference in Salt Lake City. Attendees of one event will be able to participate in the other for an additional fee.

From the announcement: “Conducting both conferences at the same time in the same facility will give interested attendees the option to benefit from both conference programs for a nominal additional cost.”

You can see the full announcement on the FamilySearch blog.


FamilySearch | Genealogy Events
Friday, August 23, 2013 8:13:47 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
# Monday, August 19, 2013
Chris O'Donnell visits St. Louis on "Who Do You Think You Are?"
Posted by Diane

I'm looking forward to tomorrow's "Who Do You Think You Are?" because actor Chris O'Donnell stops in St. Louis, my stomping grounds during college and briefly thereafter.



Although I wasn't researching genealogy in earnest at that time, I did have an appreciation for St. Louis' rich history and I loved to visit the Missouri History Museum. I wonder what St. Louis sites will make an appearance in the show?

According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, O'Donnell met with Missouri History Museum Library and Research Center archivist Dennis Northcott, whom I've had fun chatting with at genealogy conferences. (Hey, I'm one degree from Chris O'Donnell!)

On Tuesday's episode, O'Donnell also visits Fort McHenry in Baltimore (I'm predicting a War of 1812 connection), the National Archives in Washington, DC, and the Smithsonian Institution.

"Who Do You Think You Are?" (the US version) airs at 9/8 Central on TLC. If you miss it, episodes are being posted to the show's website after they air. With getting ready for the FGS conference in Fort Wayne, Ind., this week, I might have to avail myself of that option.


"Who Do You Think You Are?" | Celebrity Roots | Libraries and Archives | Museums
Monday, August 19, 2013 11:28:10 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
# Friday, August 16, 2013
Genealogy News Corral, Aug. 12-16
Posted by Diane

  • Subscription and pay-per-view site Findmypast.com has added books from Archives CD Books Canada to its online collections. The 200 volumes date back to the 1600s and include military, religious, occupational and immigration records, business directories, published genealogies and vital records. The content is primarily Canadian, but also relates to Scottish, Irish, German and other roots. You can see all the books listed on Dick Eastman's blog.


Family Tree University | FamilySearch | findmypast | Genealogy Events | Genealogy societies
Friday, August 16, 2013 12:59:00 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [1]
Editor's Pick: Best English Genealogy Websites
Posted by Diane

Americans with ancestry in England form at least 9 percent of the US population and comprise the States' third largest heritage group (after those with German and Irish roots).  

If you have English roots, you might share them with early American colonists and/or Founding Fathers such as George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and John Adams.



One thing you need to know when researching English ancestors, says David A. Fryxell, presenter of our upcoming Best English Genealogy Websites webinar, is the Chapman code for the place they lived.

This three-letter code is a kind of genealogical shorthand to identify traditional administrative divisions in England and other parts of the United Kingdom (before reorganizations in 1965 and 1974).

The Best English Genealogy Websites webinar, happening Thursday, Aug. 29 at 7 p.m. ET, will arm you with tools for Chapman codes and the challenges of
  • determining your ancestor's parish in England
  • distinguishing your English ancestor from many same-named others
  • reading old handwriting styles (and the occasional document in Latin, if you go back far enough)
  • the Julian-to-Gregorian calendar change, which England implemented in 1752
  • figuring out how genealogical records are organized in England, and accessing those records from here
Be an early bird! Register for Best English Genealogy Websites by Aug. 24 to save $10. Everyone who registers for the live webinar will receive handouts and access to view the recorded webinar again whenever they want.

Research Tips | UK and Irish roots | Webinars
Friday, August 16, 2013 10:39:06 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
# Wednesday, August 14, 2013
Zooey Deschanel on "Who Do You Think You Are?": Quaker Genealogy Tips
Posted by Diane

On last night's "Who Do You Think You Are?" actress Zooey Deschanel traveled to Pennsylvania to learn more about her fourth-great-grandmother Sarah (Henderson) Pownall's abolitionist activities.



Toward the beginning of the episode, Deschanel was presented with a long family tree of names and dates, perhaps to help viewers transition from the present back to a fourth-great-grandparent. Then the show turned its focus to Sarah Pownall.

My favorite quote from this episode is after Deschanel read an antislavery statement Sarah Pownall signed. Deschanel said "Yesterday all I had was a family tree. Now I have an identity for this woman." Names and dates are nice, but the more you get to know about your ancestors' lives, the more those names mean to you.

You're lucky if you have Quaker roots—Quakers kept good records, and you'll find plentiful printed and online information.

Once you know your Quaker ancestor's name and location, a good resource to start is the Encyclopedia of American Quaker Genealogy by William Wade Hinshaw (Genealogical Publishing Co., available on CD and searchable on Ancestry.com), which abstracts monthly meeting records.

Also search the Quaker genealogy websites we list on FamilyTreeMagazine.com.

Our guide to researching Quaker ancestors, from our Religious Records series, is available in ShopFamilyTree.com.

If you missed Zooey Deschanel's episode of "Who Do You Think You Are?" it's available for viewing on the show's website.

"Who Do You Think You Are?" | Celebrity Roots | Church records | Research Tips
Wednesday, August 14, 2013 10:24:57 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [2]
# Tuesday, August 13, 2013
Tonight on "Who Do You Think You Are?": Zooey Deschanel's Quaker Roots
Posted by Diane

I've been looking forward to tonight's episode of "Who Do You Think You Are?" with Zooey Deschanel.



I never got into her show "New Girl," but she and her sister Emily (who's on the show "Bones," which I love) are two of my favorite actresses.

Deschanel will go to Pennsylvania for a journey into her Quaker roots.

Can't wait till tonight to know more? About.com Genealogy blogger Kimberly Powell blogged about those roots and other branches of the Deschanel family tree here.

Watch "Who Do You Think You Are?" tonight at 9/8 central on TLC. If you can't watch or don't have cable, the episode will be available for viewing on the show's website.

"Who Do You Think You Are?" | Celebrity Roots
Tuesday, August 13, 2013 1:10:55 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
Stop, Look and Analyze Your Genealogy Sources
Posted by Diane

My husband has been nagging gently encouraging me to do genealogy work on his family tree. So on a recent Sunday after the kids were in bed, I spent brief yet productive quality time with the laptop.

The genealogical gods smiled. The combination of a unique last name and a large family (my husband's grandmother was one of 13) in a relatively small town had census and immigration records practically throwing themselves at us.

You know that rush when you find record after record, and you just want to keep clicking and saving, clicking and saving (perhaps egged on by a spouse full of puppy-like enthusiasm)?



I had to force myself to stop and take notes on where all that information was coming from.

As many genealogists who've been there will tell you, and as participants in our upcoming Source Analysis One-Week Workshop will learn, it's much less painful to slow down and record source information when you first find it, than to re-find everything later.

Not sure what to write down about each source? We share three steps to citing family history sources in this Q&A on FamilyTreeMagazine.com.

The Source Analysis Workshop, an online event Aug. 25-31, covers not just how to cite genealogical sources, but also 
  • how to evaluate the reliability of the genealogy records you discover
  • how to draw sound conclusions about your family tree
Learn more about what's included in the Source Analysis One-Week Workshop here.

Register by Aug. 18 to save $34 on tuition with coupon code WORKSHOPEARLY.

Family Tree University | Genealogy Events | Research Tips
Tuesday, August 13, 2013 12:01:21 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
# Friday, August 09, 2013
Genealogy News Corral, Aug.5-9
Posted by Diane


Ancestry.com | FamilySearch | Genealogy Events | UK and Irish roots
Friday, August 09, 2013 2:50:55 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
1921 Canadian Census Record Images Free on Ancestry.ca
Posted by Diane

Ancestry.com's Canadian website Ancestry.ca is now offering free access to record images for the 1921 census of Canada.

Ancestry.com is still working on a searchable index, so you'll need to browse the records by place.  Use the Browse This Collection box on the right to choose the province, district and subdistrict where your relatives lived in 1921, then sign up for a free basic account (if you don't already have one) to view the census images.

This census was recently the subject of a petition seeking its release to researchers. The privacy period expired June 1, and the records reportedly had been transferred to the Library and Archives Canada and digitized. But until now, no plans had been announced for their release to the public.

You can read more about the backstory on the 1921 Canadian census release on the Olive Tree Genealogy Blog.

Browse the 1921 census on Ancestry.ca by clicking here.


Ancestry.com | Canadian roots
Friday, August 09, 2013 10:05:21 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
# Wednesday, August 07, 2013
Chelsea Handler on "Who Do You Think You Are?": Tracing German Roots
Posted by Diane

From the beginning of last night's "Who Do You Think You Are?," Chelsea Handler knew her mother's father had been a German soldier in WWII. She just wanted to know the extent of his involvement. Her Jewish heritage through her father's family heightened her curiosity.

If you missed the episode, you can watch it on the TLC website.

The Leistungsbuch ("performance book") mentioned in yesterday's post and seen here:



wasn't a military service record after all. Rather, it was a record of the grandfather's scores in the Nazi party's Sports Badge Program, part of the mandatory labor service program and a way to provide military-style training without violating the Treaty of Versailles.

A few things I liked about this episode:
  • It shows the importance of learning the historical context in which your ancestors lived. Knowing about post-WWI life in Germany helped Handler understand why many Germans supported Adolf Hitler when he first came to power. Finding out about her grandfather's experience in the Camp Algona (Iowa) POW camp revealed his likely motivation for later moving his family to America.

  • It showed a side of WWII history—the lives of ordinary Germans during that era—that I didn't know much about. 

  • The WWII historian who met Handler on the beach, and who was there serving in the Army the day her grandfather was captured. I bet he could tell some stories!
Foreign archives and languages makes the research in this episode more difficult for the average person than Kelly Clarkson's Civil War research or Christina Applegate's 20th-century research in New Jersey.

But if your German ancestors, like mine, immigrated to America in the 1800s, church records will be your main source of information in Germany. Chances are you can find German church records yourself. I know this because the October/November 2013 Family Tree Magazine will have Rick Crume's step-by-step guide to German church records. I'll let you know when it's available.

Because so many Americans have German ancestry, we have a number of German genealogy guides in ShopFamilyTree.com
"Who Do You Think You Are?" | Celebrity Roots | German roots | Research Tips
Wednesday, August 07, 2013 11:29:12 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [1]
New MyHeritage.com Website Helps You Treasure Old Family Photos
Posted by Diane

Family Tree Magazine's Photo Detective Maureen A. Taylor has partnered with MyHeritage on its Treasure Family Photos website.

The site emphasizes the importance of preserving and sharing photos, echoing the redesigned FamilySearch.org's focus on family photos.

From the MyHeritage Treasure Family Photos home page, you can:
  • Search a database of photos attached to MyHeritage.com members' family trees (you need a MyHeritage.com data subscription or credits to see full details from the tree)

  • Watch a video with tips from Maureen

  • Start an online family tree to help you organize your photos

  • Upload photos to MyHeritage.com

  • Find links to websites with photo craft projects you can do with your kids (one of these is our Family Tree Kids photo magnet project)

  • Get tips for preserving and scanning your photos (MyHeritage also has partnered with batch scanning service ScanCafe, which is offering 25 percent off to MyHeritage visitors)
You can see case studies of old photos Maureen has researched for Family Tree Magazine readers on our Photo Detective Blog.

And there's even more advice for identifying, dating and preserving old photos in her book Family Photo Detective: Learn How to Find Genealogy Clues in Old Photos and Solve Family Photo Mysteries.


Genealogy Web Sites | MyHeritage | Photos
Wednesday, August 07, 2013 9:08:04 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
# Tuesday, August 06, 2013
FTU Virtual Genealogy Conference Early Bird Deadline Is Friday!
Posted by Diane

I've enjoyed the classes and interaction during previous Family Tree University virtual genealogy conferences—not to mention that I can "attend" from my desk chair at work, or the sofa at home.

I can't wait for the next one, taking place Sept. 13-15 on a computer near you.



The Fall 2013 Family Tree University Virtual Genealogy Conference brings together video classes from some of the most recognizable names in genealogy—including Lisa Louise Cooke of Genealogy Gems, D. Joshua Taylor of "Who Do You Think You Are?" and TV's upcoming "Genealogy Roadshow," and Judy G. Russell of the Legal Genealogist blog—with lively participant interaction via chats and a message board.

The early-bird registration deadline sure snuck up: Enter code FALLVCEARLY to save $50 on your conference registration, but the code is good only through Friday, Aug. 9.

Here's the list of video classes offered in three tracks. For descriptions, chat schedule and more Virtual Genealogy Conference information, see FamilyTreeUniversity.com.

Genealogy Technology
  • Finding Photos of Your Family History by Nancy Hendrickson
  • Digital Filing for your Genealogy by Denise May Levenick
  • Essential Apps for Genealogists by Lisa Louise Cooke
  • Finding Passenger Lists Online by Lisa A. Alzo
  • Timesaving Tools to Automate Your Genealogy Research by Rick Crume
  • Cool Tools for Creating Timelines by Gena Philibert-Ortega

Research Strategies

  • Money-Saving Strategies for Frugal Family Historians by Gena Philibert-Ortega 
  • Same Name, Same Place: How to Tell It’s Your Ancestor by D. Joshua Taylor
  • Evaluating Your Sources by Sunny Jane Morton
  • Analyzing Ancestral Tombstones by Diana Smith
  • Hints for Solving Migration Mysteries by Sunny Jane Morton
  • Courthouse Research Tips and Tricks by Judy G. Russell

Ethnic Genealogy

  • Guide to German Church Records by Rick Crume
  • Strategies for Tracing Colonial Immigrants by D. Joshua Taylor 
  • Seeking Your Scots-Irish Roots by Donna Moughty
  • Find Your Irish Famine-Era Ancestors by Donna Moughty

Family Tree University | Genealogy Events | Videos
Tuesday, August 06, 2013 1:55:06 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]
Tonight on "Who Do You Think You Are?": Chelsea Handler's Roots in Nazi Germany
Posted by Diane

This evening's "Who Do You Think You Are?" promises to reveal more disturbing family news from the not-too-distant past (we blogged last week about the troubled life of Christina Applegate's grandmother).

This teaser for tonight's episode gives you a glimpse of actress and talk show host Chelsea Handler's quest for information about her German grandparents' involvement with the Nazi regime:



The booklet you see in the clip is titled Leistungsbuch, which translates to "performance book." Possibly a German military record? I guess we'll find out tonight.

Watch this season's "Who Do You Think You Are?" at 9/8 central on TLC. (And if you have other plans or don't have cable, TLC has been putting full episodes on the show's website the next day.)


"Who Do You Think You Are?" | Celebrity Roots | German roots
Tuesday, August 06, 2013 11:47:50 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [1]
# Friday, August 02, 2013
Genealogy News Corral, July 29-Aug. 2
Posted by Diane

  • WikiTree, a free family tree wiki, has added a new feature that helps you determine how genetic genealogy could aid your research. It can be difficult to figure out which test will best answer your genealogical question, and which relatives need to take the test. Now on WikiTree, you can choose a commercially available DNA test from a dropdown menu, and the wiki shows you which ancestors you can learn about from taking that test. The feature highlights when a genealogical puzzle could be solved by taking a test, which test would help, and who should take it. See the press release about WikiTree's new DNA feature here.
  • FamilySearch has added more than 1.1 million index records and record images to the free record search at FamilySearch.org. They come from Belgium, Nicaragua, Spain and the United States. Those with North Carolina ancestors will be particularly pleased to see searchable estate files and marriages from that state. I also thought the US National register of Scientific and Technical Personnel Files (1954-1970) looked interesting, though I didn't find any relatives in it.

    You can link to FamilySearch's new and updated databases from here.


Cemeteries | FamilySearch | Genealogy Web Sites | Genetic Genealogy | UK and Irish roots
Friday, August 02, 2013 2:21:17 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]