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  • 16 Jun 2021 4:48 PM | Anonymous

    The following review was written by Book Review Editor Bobbi King:

    Blood-Tied: The First Esme Quentin Mystery

    By Wendy Percival. Ebook. 2021.

    We got lots of work done during those quarantine days, right? What luck! We were mandated to stay home. No need for making excuses for not joining friends and not going out for lunch. We stayed home without guilt and spent whole afternoons reaching out to new DNA matches. We got caught up reviewing those persistent fluttering hints, and we finally polished off that nagging stack of family group sheets brought home from the family reunion. Congratulations, work well done.

    Now it’s time to escape the summer heat and dip into some easier and more enjoyable reading.

    Blood-Tied is the first of four fiction novels with Esme Quentin as the central character. She bears an unknown past that gradually unravels, and she pursues genealogy. She lives in an English cottage in an English village in the Shropshire hills, widowed, when she receives a frantic phone call that summons her to the bedside of her comatose sister, brutalized by an unknown attacker. Esme and her niece Gemma set out to discover what happened, and along the way Esme must reckon with discomfiting family secrets.

    The book is a pleasurable read and an entertaining escape into someone else’s genealogy. It offers some leisure breaks from our own work, or time out from the heat, or some relaxation time sitting outside after a long day’s drive in the RV.

    The book is available at the author’s website, where you may add to your enjoyment by downloading a free prequel to the Esme Quentin series, Legacy of Guilt. The author has three other stories and two novellas available for download.

    Blood-Tied: The First Esme Quentin Mystery is available from the author at as well as from Amazon in paperback at and in a Kindle edition at:

  • 16 Jun 2021 4:30 PM | Anonymous

    The following announcement was written by the Southern California Genealogical Society:

    SCGS Library Re-Opens on
    Tuesday, July 6, 2021
    We are so excited to open our doors and 
    welcome back our members, non-members, 
    family historians, and all genealogists into our library!

    The days our library will be open  are as follows:
    Tuesdays, Wednesdays, & Thursdays 

    the first 2 Sundays of each month, 
    the 3rd and 4th Saturdays of each month. 
    The hours: 10:00 am to 3:00 pm. 
    We may expand these hours and days later on in the year, 
    depending on the needs of our members 
    and the availability of our beloved volunteers
     who staff the library. 
    Special thanks to all of our members, family historians, 
    and genealogists who waited so patiently 
    for the library to open again. 
    Some of our interest groups and other programs will return to in-person meetings at the library, while others will remain online. All groups and programs will return to the library when the  County of Los Angeles gives us the green light to do so. 

    Southern California Genealogy Society and Family History Society

    417 Irving Dr. 
    Burbank, CA 91304

  • 16 Jun 2021 5:53 AM | Anonymous

    It’s a myth in American culture that every family has a coat of arms or a “family crest” or at least one exists for every last name. However, coats of arms are granted to individuals, not surnames.

    In other words, if you don't have documentation that says thay you (and you alone) are authorized to display a “family crest,” you are not authorized to show it.

    Details can be found in a YouTube video produced by Genealogy Magazine, entitled "Episode 10: The Family Crest," available at:

  • 16 Jun 2021 5:40 AM | Anonymous

    Kenyatta Berry

    Host of PBS’ “Genealogy Roadshow” and genealogist Kenyatta Berry will appear as the keynote speaker of a conference hosted by the Historical Society of Washington County on Saturday on exploring the family history of African Americans, particularly before the Civil War.

    ABINGDON, Va. — A nationally recognized genealogist and host of the PBS program “Genealogy Roadshow” will be the keynote speaker for a virtual conference on African Americans in Washington County, Virginia.

    Hosted by the Historical Society of Washington County, Virginia, the virtual conference is scheduled from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, June 19. Participants are welcome to come and go during the online conference to suit their own schedules and interests.

    An attorney, published author and lecturer, Kenyatta Berry has worked for more than 20 years in genealogical research, focusing primarily on African American ancestry. She has been a contributor to The 1619 Project published by The New York Times and was the honorary chair for Preservation Week in 2019.

    During the conference, Dr. Jerry Jones will also discuss his book “Go and Come Again: The Story of Life as an African American in Southwest Virginia.” In addition, Dr. Jim Hagy will give a presentation on the history of Washington County.

    There will also be storytelling, links and resources provided during the conference.

    You can read more about this conference in an article by Carolyn R. Wilson published in the Washington County News web site at:

  • 15 Jun 2021 9:39 PM | Anonymous

    A federal judge dismissed with prejudice claims that used Californians’ yearbook pictures without permission.

    The dismissal comes after a class of Californians sued the genealogy website in November 2020 claiming the site used their old yearbook photos and other information in ads without their permission. The class claimed the company maintains a massive database of yearbook pictures spanning from 1900 through 1999, but that consumers never got a say if they wanted to be included in Ancestry’s databanks.

    “Ancestry did not ask the consent of the people whose personal information and photographs it profits from,” the plaintiffs said in their complaint. “Nor has it offered them any compensation for the ongoing use of their names, photographs, likenesses, and identities.”

    On top of amassing the yearbook collection without people’s permission, the class said, then used that database to solicit more users. The class said the company would use photos and other personal information in email and popup ads to potential customers to entice them to subscribe to its genealogy services, and even used photos of gravesites of deceased relatives to pull in more users.

    The plaintiffs said this conduct was illegal and violated their privacy rights. They asked U.S. Magistrate Judge Laurel Beeler to stop Ancestry from using the database without additional safeguards for users’ personal information.

    But after dismissing the suit this past March and sending the class back to the drawing board with their complaint, Beeler dismissed the suit against Ancestry once more Tuesday — and this time for good.

    Further details are available in an article by Carson Mccullough published in the Courthouse News web site at:

  • 15 Jun 2021 3:04 PM | Anonymous

    This article is off-topic. That is, it does not concern anything to do with genealogy, DNA, or related topics normally found in this newsletter. However, I suspect that thousands of newsletter readers will be interested in this article for many different purposes:

    If you have a Microsoft account (It’s easy and free to create one), you can access any of the popular Office programs for free. Your account grants you free access to Word, Calendar, PowerPoint, OneNote, Excel, and others. You can sign up here.


    You can read the full article at:
  • 15 Jun 2021 2:50 PM | Anonymous

    Want to host an online party, but not sure how to use Zoom? Check out this easy to follow guide to get you started.

    How to Host a Zoom Party and Connect With Your Loved Ones

    Here's how to throw a Zoom party and play the host for an online celebration.

    We are living in an era of online existence. In recent years, our use of digital technology has increased along with migrating our professional and personal lives online.

    Thanks to huge developments in technology and online services, it is easier than ever to connect with loved ones for big life events, such as weddings, birthdays, and other celebrations remotely. This is where you can use a video calling service such as Zoom to connect to loved ones by hosting a virtual party.

    What Is Zoom?

    Zoom party on a laptop

    Zoom is a video conferencing app that allows users to make phone calls, video calls and host work meetings on their laptops, desktop computers, and cellphones, using an internet connection.

    Why Is It Good for Hosting Online Parties?

    You can learn how to do it in an article by Charlotte Osborn and published in the Make Use web site at:

  • 15 Jun 2021 2:40 PM | Anonymous

    Ashlee Fujawa and Anna Eaglin hope people turn their interest in true crime stories into advocacy to help police and families find answers.

    Two Indianapolis women have joined a team to help push information about cold cases involving missing and murdered victims.

    Ashlee Fujawa and Anna Eaglin are co-founders of the interactive website "UNCOVERED." The pair is inviting the public to be part of an online version called

    "We have always been interested in the genre of unsolved crimes, true crimes," said Fujawa.

    The two friends, who met in college, have now made this their new mission in life. They are part of the team running a new website to help put some heat on cold cases.

    "The more we got to talking about it, bringing it all credible information, verified information but then also pursuing it in a way people can consume better," Fujawa said.

    Both women invite the public to join them at, where families can also submit cases they would like posted on the website.

    The full article by Steve Jefferson and published in the WTHR web site may be found at:

  • 15 Jun 2021 9:21 AM | Anonymous

    The following is a message posted to the IAJGS Public Records Access Monitoring mailing list and is republished here with permission:

    The IAJGS Records Access Alert previously wrote about the potential of the Seattle Archives being transferred to California and Kansas City, at least a thousand of miles away from the residents whose records are located there: Alaska, Idaho, Oregon and Washington. This closure/relocation was stopped by the Biden Administration—at least for now.

    David Ferriero, the US Archivist has written a blog post about the Seattle Archives on ancestral lands of the Coast Salish Stillaguamish, Duwamish and Suquamish natives.

    To read more about this land see:

    To read the previous postings about the potential closing of the Washington NARA Office, go to the archives of the IAJGS Records Access Alert at: You must be registered to access the archives. To register go to: and follow the instructions to enter your email address, full name and which genealogical organization with whom you are affiliated. You will receive an email response that you have to reply to or the subscription will not be finalized.

    Jan Meisels Allen Chairperson,
    IAJGS Public Records Access Monitoring Committee

  • 15 Jun 2021 9:09 AM | Anonymous

    I enjoyed this article and felt perhaps others might want to read the article by. Libby Copeland and published in the Literary Hub web site:

    America has become a nation obsessed with genealogy. The mere existence of so many genealogical materials digitized, indexed, and searchable online, and our communal drive to find them, comes from a suite of personal and cultural motivations, as well as a complex history around the search for lineage. In his 2013 history of American genealogy, Family Trees, historian François Weil traces how the American impulse toward genealogy has often been in tension with itself. In the early days of the new American republic, Weil writes, the idea of establishing one’s family line was associated with the British aristocracy’s obsession with social rank, and viewed with suspicion by a society that saw itself as more egalitarian and forward-looking. Why would one be driven to document one’s ancestors, if not to prove some connection to better birth and station?

    But over the course of the 19th century, that shifted, enough that by 1879 the New York Times could declare that “we are becoming the most genealogical nation on the face of the earth.” Weil writes that American genealogy transformed into a respectable middle-class endeavor as Americans began to justify and sanctify the activity within the context of family, which came to be viewed as an almost holy thing. The family “was viewed as a refuge from the outside world in an ever-changing environment,” Weil writes, and genealogy became a mechanism for remembering and solidifying that unit.

    Besides, some Americans came to see the process of learning one’s family history as a moral endeavor—a person could learn much from what her ancestors had done right or wrong. Reframed within the context of republicanism and democratic ideals, genealogical inquiry could become the means to celebrate not just the richest and most titled of forebears, but even the humbler sort. One 1850s Pennsylvanian went so far as to boast of his family’s “mediocrity.” The practice of keeping one’s family history in a household bible had long been popular; now, middle-class New England families augmented those bibles with wall hangings of family registers and embroidered family trees.

    You can read the full article at:

    My thanks to newsletter reader Pierre Clouthier for telling me about this online article.

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