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, corrections or additional information to any of these articles? Before posting your words, you must first sign up for a (FREE) Standard Edition subscription or a (paid) Plus Edition subscription at:

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 a (paid) Plus Edition subscription at:

Click here to upgrade to a Plus Edition subscription.

Click here to find the Latest Plus Edition articles(A Plus Edition user name and password is required to view these 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

  • 8 Dec 2021 8:46 AM | Anonymous


    To help you prepare for your visit to Sacramento in May 2022, the California Genealogical Society (CGS) is offering a series of six free classes on the top genealogical research destinations and collections in Sacramento.  The speakers are librarians and archivists at the facilities.  The titles and dates of the talks are:

    * Jan 11th  Center for Sacramento History  with Senior Archivist Kim Hayden

    * Jan 18th  Government Publications at California’s State Library  with California State Documents Librarian Emily Blodget

    * Jan 25th  Historical Resources at California’ State Library  with Reference Librarian Elena Smith

    * Feb 1st      Sutro Library –Genealogical Treasures  with Genealogy & Local History Librarian Dvorah Lewis

    * Mar 15th   The California Archives  with Reference Services Manager Chris Garmire

    * Mar 22nd  Special Collections at the Sacramento Public Library  with Librarian David Munger and Archivist James Scott

    All talks will be online and are from 4 PM to 5:30 PM Pacific time.  Please note that Sutro library, although part of the Sacramento based California State Library is physically located in San Francisco.

    To sign up for these free classes please go to CGS’s NGS 2022 Family History Conference page and scroll down to ‘California Research – Series of Classes’.  There you will find more details on each talk and links to sign up for each of the Zoom sessions.

  • 8 Dec 2021 8:35 AM | Anonymous

    A lawsuit has been filed in a Southern Illinois federal court against for allegedly disclosing genetic information to an unauthorized third party.

    According to the Madison-St. Clair Record, a class action complaint was filed on October 29th in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois against DNA, LLC, alleging violation of the Illinois Genetic Information Privacy Act. It was filed by a minor, identified as A.K., through his guardian, Kelsi Kingsley.

    The plaintiffs are attempting to file the case as a class-action lawsuit for all Illinois residents whose genetic information was disclosed or released by to Blackstone, Inc., a multinational private equity company that bought Ancestry last year in a $4.7 billion deal.

    According to Illinois’ Genetic Information Privacy Act (GIPA), genetic testing and information derived from genetic testing are confidential and may only be released to those specifically authorized. The plaintiff claims that when Blackstone acquired in late 2020, also disclosed on its website that users’ genetic information would be released and/or disclosed to Blackstone for its use. In the complaint, the plaintiff claims failed to let them or any of its users know how they could prevent such information from being shared. Additionally, the plaintiff says did not get their written consent to share such information, which they say violates GIPA.

    The suit further alleges that Blackstone acquired all of the accompanying information gathered by, including personal information that could be used to identify individual plaintiffs, including first and last names, email addresses, and/or home addresses, including age and gender in some instances.

    The plaintiffs seek an order declaring the defendant’s actions as violating GIPA, an injunction requiring the defendant to comply with GIPA, statutory damages of $15,000 for each willful or reckless violation of GIPA, statutory damages of $2,500 for each negligent violation of GIPA, or actual damages — whichever is greater — attorney’s fees, court costs, interest and all other relief the court deems just.

    Details may be found at:

  • 8 Dec 2021 8:12 AM | Anonymous

    The Logan County Genealogical and Historical Society will be closed for at least eight weeks while they have work done to clear the smoke smell and have restoration work done to correct the damage from a fire in an adjacent building. The work will start soon.

    The closure is due to a fire that was reported in the area of the 100 block of Chicago Street in late October.

    According to LCGHS president Bill Donath, “We hope to have the Society open again by the end of February. We will update that information if we can open sooner or need to stay closed longer,” said Donath in a statement.

    Details may be found on the society's web site at

  • 7 Dec 2021 1:47 PM | Anonymous

    I have been using a new (to me) program that has me quite enthused. CloudMounter connects to any of several file storage services in the cloud and makes each one look like a local hard drive in your local computer. This is obviously useful if your computer's internal hard drive is becoming full but the program also offers a number of other useful services.

    CloudMounter allows the user to connect and upload files to Dropbox, Google Drive, Amazon S3, BackBlaze B2, and Microsoft OneDrive in Windows Explorer or Macintosh Finder, as if just copying and moving files locally on your computer. Moreover, many users of corporate cloud systems will have a huge advantage without cluttering their drive with a huge amount of network storage.

    I am using CloudMounter with Macintosh computers to save files on BackBlaze B2, which advertises itself as being by far the cheapest file storage service of today ($0.005 per gigabyte per month). Using CloudMounter with BackBlaze B2 is actually cheaper than purchasing a new external hard drive.

    Unlike Dropbox, Microsoft OneDrive, and a number of other online cloud-based file storage services, CloudMounter does not COPY files to remote services. In other words, you do not have to duplicate files with one copy in your local computer and a second copy in the remote file storage service. That wastes disk space by keeping duplicates in two (or more) different places. Instead, CloudMounter places one copy of a file in the cloud and does not store a duplicate on your computer's local hard drive.

    My desktop Mac has a two-terabyte internal hard drive as it is becoming full. There is not a lot of disk space left. With CloudMounter, I now have more-or-less infinite storage space in the cloud and I no longer worry about running out of disk space in the local computer. With CloudMounter, I can connect to 2, 3, or even more cloud-based file storage services simultaneously. With CloudMounter, your Mac or Windows computer has infinite file space!

    CloudMounter is of great help to the owners of laptops with low-capacity disk drives. You can outsource your files and documents to the most popular cloud services and mount cloud drive accounts to your PC without having to save cloud files on your computer. Instead, you can copy, move, open, download, and upload files to cloud servers by simply doing so within Windows Explorer or Macintosh Finder. The "learning curve" for using CloudMounter is really simple!

    In addition, with CloudMounter your online documents are totally protected. Cloud encryption has never been easier before. Benefit from DropBox, Google Drive, Amazon S3, FTP with encryption as well as other major cloud computing services and remote servers. You can automatically encrypt data before saving it to the cloud to add extra protection for better control of your online files.

    In addition, CloudMounter is a pretty handy FTP client Macintosh solution that allows viewing the full structure of the website or a file server. Having seamless Finder integration, the app allows you to handle your online files as local ones: create, view, modify, delete, upload to and download files from a remote server. Have enhanced file management via FTP, SFTP and FTPS protocols with the help of CloudMounter (not yet available in the Windows version, however).

    CloudMounter isn't cheap. however. The Macintosh version works with Dropbox, Google Drive, and OneDrive free of charge. The latest Version 3.0 of CloudMounter adds Box, pCloud, BackBlaze B2, and Amazon S3 file storage services for payment of money: a Personal License (1 Mac) costs $9.99 for 3 months while a Lifetime Team License (for up to 5 Macs) costs $129.99. Windows is cheaper: a Personal License for one Windows computer costs $29.99 while a Team License (for up to 5 PCs) costs $99.99.

    If you think you might be interested in CloudMounter, take a look at or look in the Apple App Store.

  • 7 Dec 2021 12:28 PM | Anonymous

    Just in time for end-of-the-year health savings account spending, 23andMe is offering a new standalone “Health Service” option for people looking to apply their HSA & FSA funds toward purchasing an at-home DNA test.

    This offers another option to customers who only want to delve into reports about their health predispositions,* carrier status,* or wellness. The new standalone service also makes it easier for U.S. residents to use money set aside in their Flexible Spending Account (FSA) or Health Savings Account (HSA) for their 23andMe Health Service purchase.

    An Internal Revenue Service ruling in 2019 first allowed customers to use FSA & HSA funds for a portion of the cost for their Health + Ancestry Service. The new Health Service makes that much simpler because the full cost may be eligible.

    In the United States, FSAs and HSAs both allow you to set aside a certain amount of your pre-tax income each year for qualified medical care expenses. Qualified medical care expenses may include such things as co-pays for doctor’s visits, prescription medications, glasses, and sunscreen.

    The rule also means the full cost of the 23andMe Health Service should be an eligible medical expense. You can check with your FSA/HSA administrator for eligibility.

    The standalone 23andMe Health Service includes more than 10 health predisposition reports for conditions* such as Type 2 Diabetes (powered by 23andMe research), Celiac Disease, Age-Related Macular Degeneration, and Parkinson’s Disease; as well as more than 40 carrier status reports* for conditions like Cystic Fibrosis and Sickle Cell Anemia. Customers also receive wellness reports on sleep movement, muscle composition, and genetic weight.

    In addition, the Health Service includes health action recommendations, as well as a lifestyle dashboard that compares your diet and activity to other 23andMe users. The service also includes a place to track lab results and an area where you can see insights from 23andMe research. You can also connect, message, and share with friends and family if you wish.

    You can learn about 23andMe’s other product offerings here.

  • 7 Dec 2021 12:21 PM | Anonymous

    Imagine if you could pinpoint the exact placement of your surname line on a massive family tree that covers all of humanity by submitting a cheek-swab sample for DNA testing.

    The global, genetic family tree would expand to accommodate the insights from your test results, and your part of the tree would be further refined as more distant relatives test. Additionally, archaeologists and geneticists would be working together to uncover ancient history from all over the world, and as those results are published, they would be added to this family tree so that you could see how you are all related.

    This concept is now becoming a reality through high-resolution single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) testing of the Y chromosome using its unique properties of direct patrilineal inheritance and a large database supporting the largest genetic family tree of its kind—the Y-DNA Haplotree.

    FamilyTreeDNA has a long history with Y-DNA testing, being the oldest direct-to-consumer DNA testing company in the industry. FamilyTreeDNA has provided Y-STR (short tandem repeat) testing for patrilineal genealogy for over 20 years as well as many other DNA testing products.

    FamilyTreeDNA’s phylogenetic specialist Michael Sager has analyzed over 67,000 high-resolution Big Y results, 7,000 results from academic studies of present-day individuals, and 4,000 ancient DNA results from archaeological remains; and he has manually reconstructed and curated the world’s most elaborate global Family Tree of Mankind by far—the Y-DNA Haplotree.

    Details may be found in the FamilyTreeDNA Blog at

  • 7 Dec 2021 12:07 PM | Anonymous

    Police departments around the world have used DNA to help solve crimes. In most cases, the police compare DNA information with similar information stored in huge databases of other people's DNA info. However, a new method is gaining in popularity: It doesn’t have any matching profiles in police databases but, using analysis of the genetic material, the police departments still find suspects in an investigation.

    It sounds like something you might see in a science fiction movie, but the technology is now available to law enforcement agencies like the Australian Federal Police – a powerful new tool for investigators.

    Police say the technology, called “massively parallel sequencing”, is more powerful than current DNA profiling methods available to police and can provide more exact detail.

    It examines what is known as the nucleotide base sequence in the DNA – the base code for all living things. By using analysis of genetic material, the policed now can deduce the gender, ancestry, eye color and hair color of the potential suspect in the investigation.

    While this method does not identify individual suspects, it greatly narrows the list of possible suspects.

    You can learn more about what police in Australia are doing with DNA in an article by Fergus Hunter published in The Sydney Morning Herald at

  • 6 Dec 2021 7:55 AM | Anonymous

    Steve Morse operates a valuable web site for genealogists at at Unfortunately, (previously known as Facebook) has crippled Steve's web site. Here is a note from Steve that I received:

    "It turns out that facebook is now flagging all facebook postings that mention my website as being spam. I won't even try to convince you of the absurdity of that because I'm sure you are aware that it is false. I've received email from users informing me of this, and one person told me that it is happening at all genealogy facebook groups that she is a member of. There's not much that I can do to fight facebook, but perhaps you might want to get the word out to your readers about this.

    "To verify that it is happening, go to the facebook debug tool at


    and enter They respond with

    "> We can't review this website because the content doesn't meet our Community Standards.

    "-- Steve"

  • 6 Dec 2021 7:45 AM | Anonymous

    The following was written by the Applied Genealogy Institute (AppGen):

    Seattle, Washington: Today Applied Genealogy Institute (AppGen) announced their classes for spring 2022. AppGen will offer the following courses taught by these nationally known instructors during March and April of 2022.:

    • “Researching Catholic Records,” Margaret Fortier, CG

    • “Genealogy Foundations I: Focus on Using Records,” Lisa Gorrell, CG

    • “Applied Genetic Genealogy,” Leah Larkin

    • “Getting Lost in Ledgers,” Diane Richard

    • “Advanced Swedish Research,” Jill Morelli, CG

    Mary Roddy, CG, founder of Applied Genealogy Institute stated, “We received many fine proposals and it was difficult to make a decision. We picked the ones that met the criteria of unique topics, taught by proven instructors and which lent themselves to the practicum approach. We look forward to launching our second series in the Spring of 2022.”

    AppGen is a virtual practicum-based educational opportunity for intermediate and advanced genealogists. Courses are characterized by small classes with a high degree of interaction; knowledgeable instructors who offer unique content; and personal instructor feedback to homework---a unique combination.

    The latest offerings are presented by instructors who are experts in their field with proven teaching experience. Lisa Gorrell, CG taught “Land Records” in AppGen’s inaugural semester to rave reviews from the students. Margaret Fortier is a known expert in French Canadian and Italian records and has had deep experience working for and with Catholic dioceses and their records. Leah Larkin is the author of the outstanding blog, “The DNA Geek,” and lectures nationally. Diane Richard has been “mining” ledgers for familial relationships whenever she finds herself in a burned county. Jill Morelli, CG is a national expert on Swedish research with numerous publications and a deep knowledge of the mantals tax records

    Registration will be open after the first of the year. Specific dates and times for the March and April courses will be announced as they are made available. Sign upon the AppGen Mailing List to receive notifications first at

  • 6 Dec 2021 7:38 AM | Anonymous

    The following is an announcement written by


      • announces that researchers on its website will now be able to go directly to Pages of Testimony search results within Yad Vashem’s Central Database of Shoah Victims’ Names

      • This Partnership will streamline users’ experience and provide the ability to add to the Yad Vashem Names Database new Pages of Testimony substantiated with biographical documentation.

      • Family Historians researching the current or former territories of Poland can now more easily determine whether their relatives have been memorialized or whether they can elaborate on the known life events for a Shoah victim using the JRI-Poland database.

    Jerusalem — December 6, 2021 —, an independent non-profit organization, announces a new partnership initiative with Yad Vashem, the World Holocaust Remembrance Center, to display a direct link to matching Yad Vashem Pages of Testimony search as part of a genealogical search on the Jewish Records Indexing – Poland website. Recognizing the importance of the family historian for advancing Yad Vashem's mission to memorialize each one of the 6 million Shoah (Holocaust) victims, Yad Vashem will now allow a surname search on to simultaneously search the Yad Vashem repository of documents and display a link to those search results through an API (Application Programming Interface) on the JRI-Poland users' search results screen.

    The choice of for this promotional feature stems from JRI-Poland's 26-year success in utilizing its long-standing agreement with the Polish State Archives to document the largest pre-war European Jewish community, the Jews of the current or former territories of Poland. Alexander Avram, Director of Yad Vashem's Hall of Names in Jerusalem observed that "while many shelves remain empty, bearing witness to more than one million individuals who have yet to be memorialized, we hope that partnerships like this with JRI-Poland can and will play an important role in helping us fill those vacant shelves and add a large number of Pages of Testimony in the years to come."

    JRI-Poland Executive Director, Stanley Diamond of Montreal, Canada, remarked, "JRI-Poland is honored to assist Yad Vashem with its sacred duty by facilitating the preservation of a Shoah victim's memory and improving the retelling of major events in a Shoah victim's life. We do this by presenting the documentation of the vital events and at the same time indicating either the existence of - or the lack of - a tribute for these individuals in the Yad Vashem Hall of Names."

    JRI-Poland Assistant Director, Robinn Magid of Berkeley, California, added, "Correlating vital records with a mention in the Hall of Names is the first step in presenting a more complete biography of people like my great-grandmother who were lost in the Shoah”. She added, “Yad Vashem and JRI-Poland are collaborating to increase the likelihood that our audiences will find something new, perhaps overlooked, and maybe even life-changing."

    JRI-Poland Co-founder, Michael Tobias of Glasgow, Scotland commented, "Providing this new service to Yad Vashem is a natural extension of our core objective of providing our fellow researchers with the ability to recover details of their families' lives in Poland."

    About Yad Vashem

    Yad Vashem, the World Holocaust Remembrance Center, is the ultimate source for Holocaust education, documentation and research. From the Mount of Remembrance in Jerusalem, Yad Vashem's integrated approach incorporates meaningful educational initiatives, groundbreaking research and inspirational exhibits. Visit us at:

    About is a collective of global volunteers preserving the details of our ancestors’ lives in a form that will remain accessible forever to the greatest number of researchers. We have built the largest database representing the lives of the Jews who lived in the current or former territories of Poland, their families and their communities. Visit us at:

Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software