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  • 21 Sep 2021 11:45 AM | Anonymous

    The following was written by FamilySearch

    Huge news: after 83 years of filming the world’s historical genealogical records, FamilySearch has completed digitizing its 2.4 million rolls of microfilm. The best part? The archive, which contains information on more than 11.5 billion individuals, is now available for free on

    Over 200 countries and principalities and more than 100 languages are included in the digitized documents. All types of genealogically significant records are included—censuses, births, marriages, deaths, probate, Church, immigration, and more. Now that the project is completed, it’s much easier for users to find members of their family tree and make personal discoveries within these records.

    Want to check out these digitized microfilms for yourself? Explore FamilySearch’s free collections of indexed records and images by going to, then search both “Records” and “Images.” The Images feature will let you browse digitized images from the microfilm collection and more. You will need a FamilySearch account to access digitized records—but don’t worry, signing up is completely free!

    Create a FamilySearch Account

    You can read more at:

  • 20 Sep 2021 11:50 PM | Anonymous

    Here is a list of all of this week's articles, all of them available here at

    (+) Digital Preservation for Genealogists

    Important New Record Collections on MyHeritage:the Newspaper Name Index, USA and Canada, and Scotland Census, 1841–1901

    Fire Causes P800,000 Damage at the National Archives of the Philippines

    Secrets of Civil War Pensions

    Genealogists Find Evidence of Biden’s Ancestors Owning Slaves

    Imaging Unit Digitizes Land Grant Microfilm for North Carolina Historical Records Online

    University of Wyoming Receives Second NEH Grant for Wyoming Digital Newspaper Project

    Ancestry® Appoints Former Amazon and Facebook Executives to Propel Family History and AncestryDNA® Growth Globally

    FHF Really Useful Family History Show

    AGRA’s Experts Return to the Family History Show

    Call for Speakers: The Ontario Ancestors’ 2022 Webinar Series

    The 52nd Southern California Genealogy Jamboree 2022 Call for Presentations

    Discover Caribbean Connections This Findmypast Friday

    New Free Historical Records on FamilySearch: Week of 13 September 2021

    Announcing A Free Free BCG-Sponsored Webinar

    Google’s New 5TB Cloud Storage Plan

    The article with a plus sign (+) in the title is only visible to Plus Edition subscribers.  

  • 20 Sep 2021 7:45 AM | Anonymous

    The following was written by Ontario Ancestors:

    Ontario Ancestors is currently accepting proposals for our monthly 2022 Webinar Series. Our live webinars take place the first Thursday of the month at 7pm ET using the Zoom platform.

    In addition, Ontario Ancestors is also looking for guest speakers who are interested in presenting for our new online quarterly mini-conference learning opportunities in 2022.

    All submissions will be considered for both, unless otherwise indicated on the submission. Topics of Interest

    We invite proposals on a wide range of topics, but for your information, the top subjects from our recent 2022 Webinar Topic Survey are:

    • Ontario Land Records
    • Immigration
    • Genetic Genealogy
    • Research in Ancestors' County of Origin
    • Technology &Tools
    • Comparison of Genealogy Websites
    • Organization/Storage of Records

    Selected speakers need to be prepared to provide Ontario and/or Canadian specific examples in their presentations as applicable. Speakers may submit up to 3 proposals for consideration. All submissions will be reviewed but only those who are chosen will be contacted. All submissions will be reviewed and only those who are selected will be contacted by October 11, 2021.

    If you have any questions please contact: Speakers may submit up to 3 proposals for consideration. All submissions will be reviewed but only those who are chosen will be contacted.


    To submit your proposal please follow this link:

    DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSIONS: September 30, 2021, at 11:59pm ET


    Those chosen speakers will receive an honorarium for their webinar presentation.

    About the Ontario Genealogical Society

    The Ontario Genealogical Society, founded in 1961, is the leading society in all aspects of Ontario related family history research, preservation and communication. Our mission is to encourage, bring together and assist those interested in the pursuit of family history and to preserve our Ontario genealogical heritage. The Ontario Genealogical Society is the largest genealogical society in Canada. Visit us at

  • 17 Sep 2021 3:07 PM | Anonymous

    The following is a Plus Edition article written by and copyright by Dick Eastman. 

    One of the more common arguments against saving things digitally is, “The required equipment to read it probably won't be available in 25 years. I am going to save everything on paper because I know that paper will still be readable forever.” Perhaps the time is 50 years or 100 years, but I hear similar comments frequently. Indeed, there is some truth to that argument but it is somewhat misleading. Still, there is a simple solution.

    Experience over the years has proven that paper is not a good preservation mechanism, and microfilm isn't much better. The news reports frequently mention earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, building collapses, fires, and other disasters that have destroyed thousands of paper and microfilm documents within seconds. While not mentioned as often in the national news, burst water pipes will do the same.

    For the past sixty years or so, microfilm was the storage mechanism of choice because it took up so little space, compared to paper. However, microfilm is almost as fragile as paper. Microfilm is only slightly more impervious to earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, fires, and burst water pipes. To be sure, water-soaked microfilm probably can be washed and then dried for preservation purposes, but the other disasters will destroy microfilm as quickly as paper or anything else.

    Digital archiving has its own set of problems and solutions. Disk drives crash, home computers occasionally erase data, huge data centers are occasionally destroyed in major disasters, and sometimes files simply grow obsolete by a change in technical standards. The biggest cause of computer data loss is the "oops factor:" the accidental loss of files. Any single copy of any digital file is almost guaranteed to be unavailable within a few years.

    For confirmation of the problem with digital preservation, look at a report by Bill LeFurgy that was published in The Signal, a newsletter about digit preservation published by the Library of Congress at LeFurgy describes a survey of citizen reactions to the Kennedy assassination that was conducted from November 26 through December 3, 1963, by the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) at the University of Chicago. The survey results were recorded on paper punch cards, which were used to input data into the mainframe computer used to tabulate study data. Summary results were then published.

    When another national catastrophe struck on September 11, 2001, NORC researchers wanted to replicate the 1963 study by asking the same kinds of questions to assess public reaction. The aim was to compare how the nation responded to two very different tragedies. There was but one problem: how to read the punched cards from the 1963 study? The 38-year-old stacks of 80-column punch cards were still available, but finding card readers to read that information was a problem. Eventually, a vendor was found who could read them and convert them to more modern media. The vendor reported that they “had to refurb our punched card equipment; it had been sitting around so long it got a little rusty.” In the end, all worked well and the data set was successfully migrated to a modern data format. The story has a happy ending.

    If the need to read the 80-column punch cards had not occurred for another ten years or so, the ending might have been less happy.

    This raises a question or two about your genealogy data. How are you saving it for future generations? Did you save your information 50+ years ago on punch cards? Will today's storage media become as obsolete as punch cards? Should you save the information to a different form of media? If so, which kind of media?

    Many people claim they will “save everything on paper to make sure it is still readable.” Actually, that statement ignores several factors. Today's information published on paper will deteriorate rapidly due to several factors.

    Most of the paper used today is acid-based and will deteriorate within a few years, unlike the paper of 75 or 100 years ago. Yes, you can buy acid-free paper; but have you ever purchased any? Not many people do.

    Even worse is the ink and toner that is used to create most of today's documents. The output from your inkjet or laser printer may look great when first printed; but will it last for a several decades? Most of today's toner and inks will begin to fade within a few years. I have a filing cabinet full of photocopies made from genealogy books. Some of those copies are now 35 years old and have faded so much they are almost unreadable. (Most photocopiers use the same printing technology as laser printers: the “ink” is actually toner particles.)

    Paper is also delicate. It must be kept under tight temperature and humidity controls if it is to last for a century or two. It can easily be destroyed by fire, flood, earthquakes, and burst water pipes. Paper is also susceptible to damage by moisture, rodents and insects. Just ask any archivist in a tropical country. Paper also consumes a lot of space. That's expensive space if it is temperature and humidity controlled.

    Microfilm isn't much better. New microfilm cameras are now almost impossible to find, and the manufacturers of microfilm already have warned their customers that new, unexposed microfilm will probably become unavailable within the next few years. Once that happens, nobody will be making new microfilms or even copies of existing microfilms. Similarly, microfilm readers are sure to follow the same path to obsolescence.

    Various digital media are available, each with its own strengths and shortcomings. Even the so-called M-DISCs (see Wikipedi at are DVD disks that should last one thousand years, but nobody is predicting that equipment to read them will be available even twenty or thirty years from now. Even worse, the equipment to create M-DISCs is still available today but is difficult to find and is expensive. Do you know anyone who owns the required equipment to create an M-DISC today?

    So, what is the answer? I think there is a simple, but effective answer. However, it does have one major drawback: it requires people.

    The remainder of this article is reserved for Plus Edition subscribers only. If you have a Plus Edition subscription, you may read the full article at:*)-Plus-Edition-News-Articles/11097494.

    If you are not yet a Plus Edition subscriber, you can learn more about such subscriptions and even upgrade to a Plus Edition subscription immediately at

  • 17 Sep 2021 2:34 PM | Anonymous

    The following was written by the Southern California Genealogy Jamboree:


    The 52nd Southern California Genealogy Jamboree

    Preserving Your Family Tales

    Friday and Saturday, August 26 & 27, 2022

    The 9th SCGS Genetic Genealogy Conference

    Solving Your DNA Puzzles

    Friday and Saturday, August 19 & 20, 2022

    2022 Jamboree Extension Series (JES) Webinars

    The Southern California Genealogical Society (SCGS) announces its Call for Presentations for its 2022 VIRTUAL conferences and events. This Call pertains to the Genetic Genealogy and Genealogy Jamboree conferences, and the Webinar Series Programs. Presentations will only be accepted through the online portal September 17, 2021 - October 9, 2021.

    Submissions of Presentations: Speakers interested in presenting lectures or webinars for 2022 must submit their proposals through the Jamboree Speaker Portal at The submission process ensures that correct speaker information is used in communication, advertising, and conference materials.

    SCGS Jamboree draws attendees of all experience levels from first timers to conference veterans. The Jamboree Extension Series attracts an international audience comprised of all skill levels. We encourage the submissions of all levels of lectures; all topics will be considered.

    Number of Presentations: Speakers may submit up to 6 presentations. The SCGS Jamboree Committee, at its sole discretion, may select none, some, or all of the presentations submitted by any speaker.

    Session Length: Jamboree and Genetic Genealogy pre-recorded presentations are 50 minutes long. Jamboree Extension Series Webinars are to be 60 minutes with an additional 30 minutes for questions.

    Statement of Nondiscrimination: The Southern California Genealogical Society is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. SCGS is committed to providing an environment that is free from discrimination in employment and opportunity because of race, color, religion, creed, national origin, ancestry, disability, gender, sexual orientation, or age. Genealogy Jamboree conference, Genetic Genealogy conference and the Webinar Speakers are selected based on experience, technical knowledge, speaking ability, diversity of topics and relevance.

    Questions: Any inquiries may be emailed to with the subject line: Call for Presentations [your last name].

    We look forward to the possibility of including you in the 2021 Southern California Genealogical Society event schedules, and thank you for your continued support of SCGS and these great learning opportunities.

    Alice Fairhurst, Diane Adamson,

    SCGS Jamboree Co-Chair,               SCGS Jamboree Co-Chair

  • 17 Sep 2021 2:17 PM | Anonymous

    The following announcement was written by the Association of Genealogists and Researchers in Archives (AGRA):

    AGRA has again been asked to provide specialist help for The Family History Show’s Ask the Experts panel. The show takes place ONLINE on Saturday, 25 September, 2021.

    Following on from the successes of previous events, our AGRA team of experts will be on hand to offer help and advice with those family history conundrums. They can also offer information for anyone interested in becoming a professional genealogist and joining AGRA.

    Visitors will be able to submit questions to the Ask the Experts panel before the show. They will have a choice to either book a free one-to-one session, or watch the live stream question panel at 15:30.

    Gill Thomas, AGRA Vice-Chair, said: “We are delighted to have been invited back by The Family History Show as part of the Ask the Experts feature.

    “This is a fantastic opportunity for visitors to have their own one-to-one advice session included in the price of their show ticket.

    “From our field of many researchers, AGRA Experts will be on hand to help with breaking down brick walls, and can also offer wide-ranging advice, such as area-specific help including Wales, London, the North East, and the Midlands, as well as subjects from Military and Non-conformist ancestors to House Histories and DNA testing.

    “Book now, as the sessions have proved very popular and tend to fill up quickly.”

    For more information about The Family History Show, including how to book your session with AGRA experts, see

  • 17 Sep 2021 1:44 PM | Anonymous

    The following announcement was written by Findmypast:

    This week’s Findmypast Friday update sees the release of valuable Caribbean records that have been preserved thanks to a special British Library project along with millions of historical British newspaper pages.

    Turks & Caicos Life Events

    Exclusive to Findmypast, discover thousands of family records from The Turks & Caicos islands spanning 1792 to 1947. This includes

    These new indexes have been created in partnership with the British Library’s Endangered Archives Project which imaged the archipelago’s surviving registers held at the Turks & Caicos National Museum. Many of these precious documents, as the name of the project indicates, were in poor condition and at risk of being lost having been damaged by damp and flooding.

    Now indexed and available to search online for the first time, each of the three collections forms a valuable resource for anyone exploring the history of the islands and their people. As well as essential names, dates and locations, each transcript also links through to the original source image on the Endangered Archives Project website.

    Turks and Caicos Islands, 1763.

    A British Overseas Territory in the West Indies, the first British settlers on the Turks & Caicos were thought to have been Bermudian salt collectors who arrived in the second half of the 17th century. Following the American War of Independence, many loyalists fled to the Caribbean and from the 1780s, brought large numbers of African Slaves to Turks & Caicos to work as forced labour in newly established cotton plantations as well as the islands salt industry. The surnames of some of those Loyalists, such as James Misick, John McIntosh and Wade Stubbs, are now frequent among descendants of their slaves.

    These new records also shed light on the history and legacy of slavery on the islands. Many records, such as the 1826 baptism of two-year-old Kate Wynns, include stark notes such as “slave belonging to Mr Thos Wynns”.


    A variety of new additions from London are hot of the press this week. The latest new titles added to Findmypast’s growing newspaper archive include:

    While additional pages have been added to the following ten publications:

  • 16 Sep 2021 7:05 PM | Anonymous

    The following announcement was written by Ancestry:

    • LEHI, Utah & SAN FRANCISCO--Ancestry®, the global leader in family history and consumer genomics, today announced it has named former Amazon and Facebook executives to its leadership team. Brian Donnelly, formerly head of Diagnostics and Genomics at Amazon, has been named Senior Vice President and General Manager of AncestryDNA, and Ashish Nayyar, Facebook’s Senior Director of Data Science, has been appointed Chief Data Officer. Heather Friedland, who joined Ancestry in 2019 and most recently served as Senior Vice President, New Products & Growth, has been promoted to Chief Product Officer.
    • “We are thrilled to welcome these three outstanding thought leaders to our executive bench, each of whom bring a wealth of experience from both within Ancestry, and other leading technology companies”
    • Following the company’s acquisition by Blackstone and GIC in December 2020, Ancestry has augmented its board of directors and management team with leaders recognized for pioneering in the technology industry. Building on Ancestry’s strong foundation, the company is focused on innovating for its current subscribers while delivering new experiences for the millions of people worldwide who are interested in learning more about their family regardless of their background or the content available.
    • “We are thrilled to welcome these three outstanding thought leaders to our executive bench, each of whom bring a wealth of experience from both within Ancestry, and other leading technology companies,” said Deborah Liu, Ancestry President and CEO. “I am confident that together we will continue to drive innovation and growth so that we can empower even more journeys of personal discovery globally.”
    • Brian Donnelly has joined Ancestry as Senior Vice President and General Manager of AncestryDNA from Amazon, where he served as the worldwide leader of Diagnostics and Genomics. Prior to Amazon, Donnelly held a variety of global leadership roles at market leading genomics companies, such as Sequenom, Illumina, and Codex DNA where he was the Chief Commercial Officer. In his role leading the AncestryDNA business, Donnelly will work to advance scientific innovation and develop Ancestry's long-term vision and global strategy for AncestryDNA to drive growth, improve the customer experience, and maximize its impact on the overall business.
    • Ashish Nayyar joins as Chief Data Officer and will lead analytics, data science and data engineering at Ancestry. Nayyar brings more than 20 years of experience in the field and joins Ancestry from Facebook where he led the Entertainment and Commerce Data Science teams for the Facebook app. Nayyar will be responsible for defining strategies to govern and manage data across the enterprise to directly support Ancestry’s product innovation, business growth and future value creation.
    • Heather Friedland was promoted to Chief Product Officer at Ancestry to accelerate the company’s product innovation. Friedland joined Ancestry in June 2019 and served as Vice President of Product for AncestryHealth and Senior Vice President, New Products & Growth. Friedland brings more than two decades of product management experience, previously serving as Chief Product Officer at Glassdoor where she led the product organization during a period of rapid growth.
    • About Ancestry
    • Ancestry®, the global leader in family history and consumer genomics, empowers journeys of personal discovery to enrich lives. With our unparalleled collection of more than 30 billion records and over 20 million people in our growing consumer DNA network, customers can discover their family story and gain a new level of understanding about their lives. For over 30 years, we’ve built trusted relationships with millions of people who have chosen us as the platform for discovering, preserving and sharing the most important information about themselves and their families.

  • 16 Sep 2021 2:07 PM | Anonymous

    Fire broke out at the National Archives of the Philippines (NAP) office in Binondo, Manila before dawn Sunday, September 5, 2021, damaging around 800,000 pesos ($16,000 US Dollars) worth of property.

    No one was hurt during the incident. No important documents were damaged, officials said.

    "The archival collections are safe as they are stored elsewhere," the NAP said in a statement.

    The Bureau of Fire Protection (BF) said the fire started at around 1:04 a.m. at the administrative offices on the sixth floor of the building.

    You can learn more at

  • 15 Sep 2021 2:50 PM | Anonymous

    The following announcement was written by FamilySearch:

    SALT LAKE CITY, UT--FamilySearch added 2.6M parish and civil registrations from France Charente 1550–1936, 1.6M Poor Law records from England Middlesex Westminster 1561–1883, added parish records from England Middlesex 1539–1988, cemetery records from Argentina 1882–2019, and more Catholic Church records from Bolivia 1566–1996, El Salvador 1655–1977, Guatemala 1581–1977, Mexico(México 1567–1970, Michoacán 1555–1996, and Oaxaca 1559–1988) plus Paraguay 1754–2015, Peru 1603–1992 and Venezuela 1577–1995.

    Search these new records and images by clicking on the collection links below, or go to FamilySearch to search over 14 billion free names and record images.

    (The full list is very long, too long to publish here./ However, you can find the full list at:

    About FamilySearch

    FamilySearch International is the largest genealogy organization in the world. FamilySearch is a nonprofit, volunteer-driven organization sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Millions of people use FamilySearch records, resources, and services to learn more about their family history. To help in this great pursuit, FamilySearch and its predecessors have been actively gathering, preserving, and sharing genealogical records worldwide for over 100 years. Patrons may access FamilySearch services and resources free online at or through over 5,000 family history centers in 129 countries, including the main Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah.

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