Showing posts from March, 2016

Learning Patience as I complete by KDP

Spring Break has come and gone and I didn’t make my goal of having the rough draft of my Kinship Determination Project (KDP) completed.  I’m not complaining, though, as three events occurred that threw me into a tizzy! First, less than a month ago, I received 30+ years of a diary written by the sister-in-law of one of the individuals I’m writing about.  It is a genealogical gold mine!  After reading and rereading I took notes based on individuals and then by types of events.  Spent the last three weeks incorporating the information into the KDP as it was quite useful and enhanced the paper.  Long term plan is to create an index of the diary for future use. Second, our desktop system bit the dust.  I had my work saved in numerous places so that wasn’t awful but instead of a double screen I was back using (and sharing) an old laptop.  Really slowed the process down.  Last, I had changed my mind about taking a trip during my week’s vacation and instead, I had decided to spend that week…


Had an interesting genealogical experience last week that I want to caution you about!  I’m all over the web – you can find my blog, website, email, public tree on Ancestry, FamilySearch, Find-A-Grave, etc. and I’m visible for several reasons:
·I strongly believe my ancestors’ information and stories should be shared with anyone who cares to learn about them. ·I LOVE genealogy, history and family stories so I joyfully research and investigate the past. ·I’m more interested in preserving what I discover than gaining monetary compensation for my efforts. ·Collaboration works for me!  I like connecting with others who are interested in the same lines that I am; if I’m not visible how are they going to find me? ·I understand if you don’t share these views; I’m not going to try to convince you to change your mind so don’t try to do that to me.
With that said, here’s what happened -  I received an email message that someone was trying to contact me via a public posting forum.  I went to the sit…

Goodbye Picassa

Previously I've blogged about one of my favorite Google products, Picassa, to which I uploaded all of my photos, movies and images of records.  I'm sad to say that it'll be going away soon. Google stopped supporting it on March 15th.  It's being replaced by a product called Google Photo so if you were using Picassa you'll need to log into Google Photos to save your albums.  Supposedly, it'll be an easy transition.  Problem is there won't be editing software included and it won't scale uploaded photos. I'm planning on following their directions so I don't lose what I've saved this weekend.  I did click on the Photos link provided on the Google blog but the photos displayed weren't everything I had in my Picassa albums.  Possibly it's because I was signed in with a different email address.  I'm not panicking yet because I have hard copies and cds of everything but I certainly don't want to spend the time reuploading!  That'…

Google Library for the Genealogist

I'm taking a course through the National Institute of Genealogical Studies called "Google for the Genealogist."  Half way into it and I'm finding it's very useful.  There are 8 modules in total and the one I just completed on Google Books was the most relevant to me so far.
I use Google to search for old books that may contain a mention of my ancestors. Sometimes I just look for the location and then when I open the book, search for the surname.  I have found some incredible stories - such as Mathew Baines or Beans who was dying at sea and wrote a letter to a James Harrison, a fellow Quaker, requesting he look after Mathew's children.  Problem was that Mr. Harrison had died so the children appeared in Orphan Court.  Two Google Books mention these events. Looking at someone else's tree on FamilySearch or Ancestry might give you Mathew's year and place of death but the books bring the experiences he had to life!
With old Ancestry, as in before December…

Who Knew? Two Genealogy Tips I Just Learned

Tip 1:  Did you know that Fold3 has lots more than just military records?  If you have the premium or you get a free trial offer you need to explore the site by doing the following-
Click BROWSE at the top of the pageClick CATEGORY on the right sideClick ALL TITLESTake a look at what they have! I have found the Pennsylvania Archives most helpful.  Scroll down to the bottom of the selected volume to check out the index.  
I never knew Fold3 had FBI Case Files, slave auctions from the West Indies, orphan records and more.  Why in the world don't they advertise this?!  I would have probably bought the premium membership years ago had I known.  
Tip 2:  Just learned this from the Pinellas County Genealogical Society and I quote, "Family Tree Maker users can now do a direct import including all media files (without GEDCOM) to RootsMagic. This works with FTM versions 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2014 and classic (version 16 with file extension.ftw) for Windows. Also works for F…

Empty Envelopes Provide a Wealth of Genealogical Data

A colleague of mine brought in a pile of old envelopes recently and asked me if they were important genealogically.  The reason for the question is that the addressed envelopes contained no content.  She assumed family had saved them because they were stamp collectors who hadn't gotten around to removing the stamps.
My answer to her was a resounding YES!  Those envelopes tell a story even though they are empty.  I suggested she first put them in chronological order based on the postmark date, if any.  Next she should try to match the envelopes to letters that she had found and store them together.  Any remaining envelopes should be examined closely for information regarding:

Addressee SenderPostmarkPossible notationsEnvelope conditionHandwritingType of writing utensil usedCost of postage Examining the addressee and sender aids in identifying relationships, although the type of relationship is still unknown.  Definitely don't assume the relationship was family!  I have some old…

Wagon Insights

I've been reading through the diaries that were sent to me from Indiana and I've found a few surprises about life in the late 1800's.  Here are 10 wagon facts I never thought about:

You had to wash your wagonWhen you purchased a new wagon you traded in your old wagon, like we do today with our carsWagons broke down ALOT!  Poor road conditions, skittish horses and driver error contributed to the break downs.You were responsible for the cost of damages caused by your runaway horse and wagonThere were ALOT of serious accidents around wagons - falling out of, getting run over by, getting injured by overhanging tree limbs, etc.When your wagon needed repairs someone would come to you but it was much more expensive than if you somehow got the wagon to the wagon shop to be repaired.Depending on the repair needed, it could take a few hours or several days to get the partWheels fell off wagons frequentlyIf you were going to take a train you hired a livery person to pick you up and ta…