Latest News Articles

Everyone can read the (free) Standard Edition articles. However,  the Plus Edition articles are accessible only to (paid) Plus Edition subscribers. 

Read the (+) Plus Edition articles (a Plus Edition username and password is required).

Please limit your comments about the information in the article. If you would like to start a new message, perhaps about a different topic, you are invited to use the Discussion Forum for that purpose.

 Do you have comments, questions, or corrections to any of these articles? 

If you do not see a Plus Sign that is labeled "Add comment," you will need to upgrade to either a (free) Standard Edition or (paid) Plus Edition subscription. 

Click here to upgrade.

Click here to find the Latest Plus Edition articles.

Complete Newsletters (including all Plus Edition and Free Edition articles published within a week) may be found if you click here. (A Plus Edition user name and password is required to view these complete newsletters.)

Do you have an RSS newsreader? You may prefer to use this newsletter's RSS feed at: and then you will need to copy-and-paste that address into your favorite RSS newsreader.

Latest Standard Edition Articles

<< First  < Prev   1   2   3   4   5   ...   Next >  Last >> 
  • 23 Sep 2022 5:49 PM | Anonymous

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

    A newsletter reader asked, “Can you think about addressing technology-related hardware such as hand scanners to use with maps, etc., that are too large to put on a flatbed scanner? Anything tool-wise that would be good to take on a library expedition may be of interest to readers, at least this one!”

    In fact, the entire world has not always used 8½-inch by 11-inch pages, and not even the A4 size that is commonly used outside of North America. (A4 is 8.27 by 11.69 inches.) Genealogists frequently deal with larger maps, drawings, pedigree charts, and other oversized documents. What’s more, in years past, paper sizes were not standardized. In fact, paper documents from the seventeenth century are often written on parchment that does not have square corners or straight edges!

    Indeed, how can we scan these documents for electronic preservation? As with many questions, the only correct answer is, “It all depends.” However, two or three answers pop to mind.

    First, just because your local computer store only sells scanners that handle 8½ by 11-inch documents, do not believe that is the largest size available. You can find scanners that will handle much larger documents. A quick search on Google or any other search engine will quickly produce a listing of wide-format scanners that can handle pages up to 54 inches wide and almost infinite length. Most of these were designed to scan blueprints, color posters, architectural sketches, detailed maps, drawings, and fine art. In reality, they will work well on any individual large piece of paper that is not bound into a book or otherwise glued or attached to anything else.

    You can see a few examples of these scanners at the following URL:

    Be prepared for sticker shock, however. Some of these devices sell for $2,000 to as much as $30,000. The ones used to scan very large documents, such as newspapers, often weigh 200 pounds or more. I doubt if you will find many of them in genealogists’ homes! You are even less likely to be carrying one to your local genealogy library or archive. However, you may find these scanners available at FedEx Kinko’s or other office printing service stores. In such cases, you need to take the document to the store and hand it to an attendant, who will scan it for you and then store the image on a flash drive or CD-ROM. Of course, the store will charge a few dollars for the service, but that is much more cost-effective than purchasing your own wide-format scanner.

    Another issue is paper handling. Many large-format scanners have rollers and other mechanical devices to feed the sheet of paper under the scanning mechanism. This may not be a good idea for fragile documents that are 200 or more years old. Finally, your local archive may not be receptive to your taking a 300-year-old piece of parchment outside in hostile weather to run down to Kinko’s!

    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/12930523.

    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

  • 23 Sep 2022 11:26 AM | Anonymous

    Here's my hint of the day (or week or month or whatever... there's really no timeframe for this): Put tape or something else over the webcam on your computer. Or Amazon Show. Or any other device capable of sending video.

    It doesn't really have to be tape. It could be a sticky note, or a business card, a sticker of some sort, or a dab of peanut butter. Your choice.

    If you have children or grandchildren in your house frequently, this article is doubly important to you. The methodology may vary but the underlying principal remains the same: stop your webcam from being on all the time (or ever).

    Hackers, government agents, and teenagers can, and do, use easily accessible tools and phishing techniques to hijack webcams of unsuspecting people, often who they know, and watch them through their camera. They can store images and videos of people in compromising situations in their bedrooms, and many of these images and videos are uploaded to shady websites. A slew of news stories in the past few years have revealed that what was once considered paranoia is now an uncomfortable frequent reality.

    If you really want to get fancy, you can purchase the CloudValley Webcam Cover Slide.

    It is designed primarily for laptops but, with a bit of imagination, I suspect it can be applied to other computers. (A bit of tape should do it.) These cost $6.99 for package of 2 on Amazon (go to Amazon and search for "CloudValley Webcam Cover Slide.") You can then block or unblock your webcam within a second or two by simply sliding it with your finger.

    If you don't have a laptop, you can choose from dozens of other webcam blockers both on Amazon and probably any other computer retailer.

    I was especially pleased to notice that most all Amazon Show devices ("Hey! Alexa") have built-in covers that slide over the webcam in a second or two. I have one of these in every room of my house (OK, so I admit I am a nerd) and the Amazon Show devices in my bathrooms and bedrooms all have the cover in place all the time. If I am chatting with someone and want to enable video, it only takes a second or so to slide the cover off. I use this to talk with my grandchildren who live about 1,000 miles from me.

    This prevents me from displaying "more of me than I really wanted to show."

    Regardless of which devices you have in your home, your rule of thumb should be "If it is capable of sending video, that video should also be blocked when not being used."

  • 23 Sep 2022 10:46 AM | Anonymous

    The following announcement was written by Findmypast:

    Findmypast adds more records for Hampshire this Findmypast Friday 

    Hampshire Baptisms 

    Parish records are often considered a backbone of family history research. If you have Hampshire ancestors, you’ll want to check out the new 2,500 baptism transcripts for the parish of Selborne. The new additions span from 1813-1940. Learn when and where your ancestor was baptised, plus their parents’ names.  

    Hampshire Marriages 

    A further 1,243 marriages have been added into this existing collection for Selborne. With these, you can continue a Hampshire ancestor’s story by discovering who they married, when and where. You may also find the names of witnesses, residences and occupations.  

    Hampshire Burials 

    Staying in Selborne, we’ve added 1,507 new burial transcriptions into this collection. Uncover ancestors’ burial dates and the parish in which they were buried.  


    A staggering 633,000 pages have been added by our newspaper team this week, including three new titles and updates to a further 23.  

    New titles: 

    ·         Christian World, 1857-1890 

    ·         Church & State Gazette (London), 1842-1856 

    ·         Potteries Advertiser, 1994 

    Updated titles: 

    ·         Accrington Observer and Times 1994 

    ·         Ayrshire Post 1994 

    ·         Chester Chronicle 1999 

    ·         Clevedon Mercury 1986 

    ·         Dorking and Leatherhead Advertiser 1995 

    ·         Ealing & Southall Informer 1995 

    ·         Leicester Daily Mercury 1880, 1891, 1902, 1920, 1924, 1938, 1940, 1943, 1949, 1959, 1963-1966, 1973, 1975-1979, 1990-1992, 1994-1995 

    ·         Long Eaton Advertiser 1949, 1953-1954 

    ·         Midweek Visitor (Southport) 1994  

    ·         Nottingham Evening Post 1996  

    ·         Peterborough Standard 1989 

    ·         Pontypridd Observer 1980  

    ·         Ripley Express 1994  

    ·         Scottish Leader 1887 

    ·         Scunthorpe Evening Telegraph 1991, 1995, 1998 

    ·         Sevenoaks Chronicle and Kentish Advertiser 1979-1985 

    ·         Staffordshire Sentinel 1865-1866, 1871-1872, 1882, 1893-1896, 1902, 1966-1971, 1974, 1976-1977 

    ·         Staines Leader 1995  

    ·         Surrey Mirror 1986  

    ·         Sutton Coldfield News 1995 

    ·         Taunton Courier, and Western Advertiser 1885 

    ·         Torbay Express and South Devon Echo 1995 

    ·         Uttoxeter Newsletter 1995 

  • 23 Sep 2022 10:19 AM | Anonymous

    Do you think you have learned everything about your ancestors' hometown? Think again. There may be some new (and very old) information available today.

    Across Europe, once-submerged villages, ships and bridges some dating back thousands of years have re-emerged this year as rivers and reservoirs have dried up. The steady stream of gripping photos have circulated while much of the continent faced a string of extreme heat waves and a devastating drought, two phenomena that scientists say are made more likely and more severe by human-caused climate change.

    The remains of Aceredo in northwestern Spain, including homes and trucks that usually sit at the bottom of a reservoir, have been visible since late last year. The compounding impacts of drought and extreme heat have been clear.

    In Spain, the Dolmen of Guadalperal, a four- to five-millennium-old megalithic monument often called the Spanish Stonehenge, rose from a drought-hit dam west of Madrid. In Italy, where residents are facing its worst drought in 70 years, ruins of an ancient Roman Neronian bridge are visible in the Tiber River. One of Germanys largest reservoirs, the Edersee, has shrunken so much that the foundation of Berich, a village that was flooded in 1914, can be seen. In Prahovo, Serbia, water levels in the Danube River have fallen so low that more than a dozen sunken Nazi Germany World War II boats are now exposed. And in Northern England, falling water levels at Baitings Reservoir have revealed an ancient packhorse bridge.

    You can read more on the

  • 22 Sep 2022 10:36 AM | Anonymous

    The world’s largest family history conference is back—virtual and in person for 2023!

    Save the Date! 2–4 March 2023

    Should genealogy conferences be held in person or virtually? That is the question being asked nowadays by many conference organizers The organizers of the RootsTech conferences made a decision: let's do both!

    For 2023, you may enjoy your choice: a full virtual conference experience, or join the crowds in Salt Lake City for an enhanced in-person event!

    Quoting from the FamilySearch web site:

    With hands-on classes, engaging workshops, exclusive live entertainment, and the innovative Expo Hall, there is nothing quite like being in-person for RootsTech. Plus, get access to all of the virtual classes and events, even after the conference is over, all for one low price.

    What to Expect from RootsTech?

    A family history conference. An on-demand learning library. A way to grow closer to the people, places, and stories that matter most. RootsTech is all that and so much more. Join us as we celebrate the joy of connection together.

    There is a lot more information available at:

  • 22 Sep 2022 10:25 AM | Anonymous

    From the 23andMe Blog:

    This week, we released a new 23andMe+ Wellness report on seasonal allergies that is powered by 23andMe Research. 

    While the sniffling, sneezing and itchy eyes that come with seasonal allergies are often triggered by pollen from blooming trees and flowers in spring and summer, many of those with seasonal allergies also have symptoms in the fall when levels of allergens from weeds and mold are at their highest.

    A Common Condition

    Seasonal allergies, also known as hay fever or allergic rhinitis, are relatively common. It is estimated that around 27 percent of people in the U.S. are allergic to grasses, trees, and weeds. Still, the actual percentage of people who develop symptoms of seasonal allergies is less clear. Many who might experience seasonal allergies are not exposed to pollens or allergens that would trigger a reaction, so remain unaware. The condition tends to hit women harder than men. A little over ten percent of males have seasonal allergies. More than 17 percent of women report having the condition, according to 23andMe internal data from customers who consented to participate in research. 

    The US states with the least prevalence of seasonal allergies among 23andMe customers who consented to participate in research are Hawaii, New York, California, and Florida. Customers in Oklahoma, New Mexico, and Kentucky, were the most likely to report seasonal allergies.

    A recent study indicated that climate change might worsen the situation for some due to the lengthening of the pollen season in North America. 

    Beyond the common symptoms of stuffy noses and itchy eyes, seasonal allergies and their associated symptoms can also lead to other issues such as difficulty sleeping or difficulty concentrating during the day. In addition, individuals with seasonal allergies are more likely to develop asthma or experience difficulty breathing or wheezing.

    A New Report

    Our new report is powered by data from people who have consented to participate in 23andMe research and uses machine learning techniques to estimate an individual’s likelihood of having seasonal allergies to trees, grasses, weeds, and or molds.

    This estimate is made using a statistical model that includes more than 6,500 genetic markers and information on an individual’s ethnicity and birth sex. You can learn more about the science and methodology behind our new report in this white paper. 

    You can read more at:

  • 22 Sep 2022 9:59 AM | Anonymous

    A collection of Gaelic recordings made in Nova Scotia is launched online today by the University of Glasgow.

    The recordings by Professor Calum Iain N. MacLeod (Calum Iain M. MacLeòid, 1913–1977) will be held in British Academy recognised project, Digital Archive of Scottish Gaelic (DASG), led by the University of Glasgow.

    The collection includes interviews, conversations, music, hymns and psalms, and songs largely from people in Nova Scotia. Most of the material is in Scottish Gaelic but some recordings also feature English and French.

    Eilidh Cormack, a renowned Gaelic singer, who worked on many of MacLeod’s recordings for DASG said: “We are so fortunate that he chose to gift the University of Glasgow, where he was once himself a student, his collection and his fieldwork, and that it is still with us today.”

    The collector, Calum Iain N. MacLeod, was an important figure in the history of the Gaelic community in Nova Scotia. The son of the Gaelic writer John N. MacLeod, he was brought up in Dornie and Kirkhill, Inverness-shire. He attended both Edinburgh and Glasgow universities and won recognition as a brilliant student in Celtic studies. In 1937, he won An Comunn Gàidhealach’s Bardic Crown.

    During WWII, he was a major in the British Intelligence Corps serving in North Africa and across Europe. He emigrated to Canada in 1949 to work as Gaelic Advisor to the Education Department of the Nova Scotia government. And he was appointed as Professor of Celtic Studies at St. Francis Xavier University.

    The new online collection of recordings will be a useful resource to all those interested in Gaelic folklore, language and song, especially in the context of Nova Scotia’s Gaelic communities.

    You can

    You can learn more about the Digital Archive of Scottish Gaelic (DASG) at:

  • 22 Sep 2022 9:49 AM | Anonymous

    JewishGen, a nonprofit organization and website for Jewish genealogy, announced on Tuesday a partnership with the Central State Historical Archives of Ukraine in Lviv to help the latter preserve historical records that are at risk of being lost or destroyed amid the country’s ongoing war with Russia.

    JewishGen is an affiliate of New York’s Museum of Jewish Heritage – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust, which has donated to the Archives a planetary scanner—a device used for scanning rare books and other easily damaged documents—so archivists in Ukraine can digitize more of their records.

    The Central State Historical Archives of Ukraine in Lviv is one of the largest and oldest archives in the country and holds more than 1.1 million files, dating back to the 12th century. It is located inside the 17th-century former Bernardine Monastery and Royal Arsenal in the city’s Old Town, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site.

    You can read more in an article in the Cleveland Jewish News web site at:

  • 21 Sep 2022 3:44 PM | Anonymous

    The following is from an article written by Scott Holland and published in the Cook County Record web site:

    A federal judge has rebuffed a class action accusing of violating a state privacy law by publishing yearbook photos online.

    Sergio Bonilla sued in December 2020,alleging the website unjustly enriched itself by using his photo from the 1995 Omaha Central High School yearbook. He alleged this violated his rights under the Illinois Right of Publicity Act. He also brought counts of violating the Illinois Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act and intrusion upon seclusion.

    Ancestry initially moved for dismissal for lack of jurisdiction and failure to state a claim, which U.S. District Judge Virginia Kendall granted with respect to the consumer fraud and intrusion allegations. But she denied the dismissal request for the remaining counts. She rejected Ancestry’s arguments it was immune from liability under the Communications Decency Act and that the Copyright Act pre-empted Bonilla’s lawsuit. She also said Bonilla’s claims didn’t fall under any IRPA exemptions.

    After that ruling, Ancestry moved for summary judgment. Bonilla both opposed that motion and asked Kendall to order Ancestry to respond to his request for documents and other questions. Ancestry sought a protective order for discovery requests.

    In an opinion filed Sept. 16, Kendall granted Ancestry's request for summary judgment to end the case.

    In seeking summary judgment, Ancestry argued Bonilla’s IRPA claim was time barred. Kendall said that law doesn’t expressly place any time limits on lawsuits, but said several courts have determined a one-year limit applies because the Right of Publicity Act supplanted a common-law tort for likeness appropriation. She further explained that clock begins with the initial publication, rejecting Bonilla’s contention a different rule be applied allowing a new claim for every time a mass publication reaches a third party.

    “Putting the pieces together, Bonilla had to bring his lawsuit within one year of his yearbook’s first publication,” Kendall wrote. “He did not. On June 27, 2019, Ancestry began hosting the 1995 Central High School Yearbook with Bonilla’s image. Bonilla waited until Dec. 14, 2020, to file his complaint, over a year later and outside the statute of limitations.”

    In order to establish a continuing violation, Kendall continued, Bonilla would have to show continued illegal conduct, not continuing legal injury from one alleged violation. Although his photo might’ve been used in “various mediums over an extended period,” she wrote, Ancestry had a single purpose, and it “never changed, altered, reused or expanded upon the original image.” That website users might see the photo, whether on a free trial or paid membership, doesn’t affect the underlying facts.

    You can read more in the original article at:

  • 21 Sep 2022 3:00 PM | Anonymous

    The following announcement was written by the Heredis worker co-op:

    MONTPELLIER, FRANCE -, TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 20, 2022 The Heredis worker co-op is glad to introduce Heredis 2023, which will be available for download starting September 20, 2022 on

    This latest version of the software was conceived and designed so as to provide genealogists with an even more complete tool, meeting the needs of ALL genealogists. A genealogist who acquires Heredis should now be able to do it all from the software!


    With this thought in mind, the Research Journal was integrated in the new version. Some Heredis beta-testers were indeed using another software to keep track of their research progress.

    This new tool – so useful – will allow genealogists to easily keep an eye on their research progress. No more wasting a half-hour figuring out what needs to be researched next. From now on, everything can be done in Heredis: this tool allows you to manage your genealogical activities on a daily basis but also to have a real- time vision of your research status. So much better than a pen and paper research journal: genealogists can sort their findings by project, document, place, reference or URL, by time period or direct lineage or marked persons, and then print out whichever part they want to focus on. Let us give you one example: a genealogist working on the Tommies will be able to get a clear view on his research work and see right away what part calls for additional research. He can thus generate a custom report, print it, and take it with him to the war memorial!


    Genealogists will definitely enjoy the location wheels! The wheels highlight ancestors’ and descendants’ origins thanks to the coloring by places: city, county, state/province, or even birth country.

    To help genealogists find out more about their roots, this new variant of the Ancestors and Descendants wheels can be quite an eye-opener: genealogists will realize where their original roots are but also what gaps they may have in certain areas (see the gray areas below!). The wheel can include up to 12 generations and can be exported in PDF format and be printed.


    The Heredis duplicates management tool has been completely rethought in the 2023 version. It has been improved and carefully redesigned while keeping the best assets of this feature already offered in the former Mac and Windows versions.

    Genealogists will benefit from a tool with finer filters, thus offering more optimal search capabilities. As an example, the search on given names can be done requesting that at least two given names are identical.

    The search can also be done based on events, excluding (or not) minor events. It can also be limited to a surname and its variants so you can start performing a gradual cleanup. Search results are thus more accurate and are displayed in a much neater way: the presentation, showing pairs of duplicates or persons next to each other, allows you to spot duplicate ancestors at a glance. You may also declare that two persons are not duplicates so they do not come up as such every time you run a search for duplicates. They can be hidden very easily thanks to the Potential Duplicates Only filter. Lastly, you can mark persons and edit a duplicates report. A great easy way to make sure you keep your files accurate and reliable!


    Heredis 2023 now offers the possibility to read files in the GEDCOM 7 format, a new international standard recently launched by FamilySearch. This standard is no longer limited to text data and makes it possible to include images and other types of files (Word, PDF, and more). Heredis users will be able to import genealogical data, media included, from genealogists who use a software or website other than Heredis! A valuable timesaver so you can be fully dedicated to your genealogical work!


    The Heredis Team is constantly improving software features and user-friendliness. Here are some examples:

    Highlighting complete persons: if a person is marked as complete, the corresponding icon will show in the Persons panel, as well as in the Branches and Summary panels.

    Merging even more detailed data: the Personal Data box now displays its full content so you get a better idea of what is about to be merged. Shared events can also be managed in greater detail to allow for a higher-quality merger.

    Summaries have been significantly improved: thanks to the integrated zoom, get easy access from the summary to a person’s media and sources, in HD, with the carousel and navigation bar to scroll through all the media. The summary content is locked while you navigate in your family tree so you can keep useful information visible. The results of your searches are also displayed in the summary.

    Emphasizing sources! The source media is displayed under the tab for the event. Users can freeze this picture in the summary panel and type data in the Details tab! Thanks to the integrated zoom, you no longer need to open the picture using another software!

    Additional info: the age of the primary person and of their parents – providing they are alive – is automatically displayed under Immediate Family!

    Support tools: "Check a genealogy..." is a feature that can repair a genealogy file considered as damaged. A technical FAQ is available directly from the software.

    Zoom in on the World: the icons for direct- line ancestors are now displayed in the list of persons.


    Starting with Heredis 2023, a new generation of mobile applications for iOS and Android are being released. Whether it is used independently or along with the software, the new Heredis 2023 application for tablets and smartphones is now available for a fee (please see the Heredis Newsletter sent last June). We used this opportunity to add a few new features: a new design with a Day/Night mode, the import of GEDCOM 7 files, the option to enter additional search details on Events, to enter Facts, and even the addition of + buttons for spouses and children in Immediate Family for the Android version... From now on, users of these mobile versions will have access to tech support during the whole time the application is available.

<< First  < Prev   1   2   3   4   5   ...   Next >  Last >> 

Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software