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  • 22 Jul 2022 10:45 AM | Anonymous

    The following announcement was published by the Louisiana Department of Health:

    Pre-Adoption Birth Certificates

    Parental Contact Preference Form - To Be Completed By Biological Parents Only

    Louisiana law now allows a birth parent to place a parent Contact Preference Form in the "sealed file" of the child who was adopted. The birth parent(s) may state his or her wishes regarding being contacted. The completed form will be placed in an envelope with the original birth certificate. The Contact Preference Form is considered a private communication from the birth parent to the child and no copies of the form will be given to anyone other than the child.

    If the adult adopted person requests a copy of their original birth certificate after the Contact Preference Form has been filed, that form will be given to the adult adopted person along the pre-adoption birth certificate. The information on the birth certificate in the file is shown as it was provided by the birth parent(s) at the time of birth. The law does not require the adult adopted person to follow the preference as stated by the parent on the form.

    Parental Contact Preference Form 

    Adoptee Information for Obtaining Pre-Adoption Birth Certificates 

    Louisiana law directs the State Registrar to establish a new birth certificate after an adoption takes place. The new birth certificate is substituted for the original birth certificate in the files, and the original birth certificate is placed in a "sealed file." (LA RS 40:73). In the 2022 Regular Legislative Session, the legislature amended the vital records adoption laws to allow an adopted person who is 24 years of age or older whose original birth certificate was placed in a "sealed file" to obtain a non-certified copy of the original birth certificate from the State Registrar.

    Who May Request a Copy

      • The person named on the birth certificate - no other family member.
      • The person must be 24 years of age or older.
      • The person must have been born in Louisiana.
      • The person must have had an original birth certificate removed from the files due to an adoption.

    What Will the Applicant Receive

      • The applicant will receive a copy of the original birth certificate clearly marked that it is not a certified copy and it may not be used for legal purposes. The information on the birth certificate in the file is shown as it was provided by the birth parent(s) at the time of birth. These documents do not contain medical or other information about the birth parents.
      • The revision of the law in 2022 allows birth parent(s) to submit a Contact Preference Form which will be placed in the sealed file upon receipt. If a Contact Preference Form is in the file at the time the original birth record is requested, it will be sent to the applicant.

    How Should These Records Be Ordered

      • Applicants must clearly state they are seeking their original birth record prior to adoption if you are not able to use the application form below. Without this information, we will send the current legal record.
      • Must submit proper fees and valid acceptable photo identification document.
      • Complete the Adoptee Application for Pre-Adoption Birth Certificate

    Identification Requirements

    Persons who apply for a copy of a Birth and/or a Pre-Adoption certificate must submit a copy of their identification in the form of one primary document or two secondary documents. Please refer to the Identification Requirements for more information.

    Adoptee Application for Pre-Adoption Birth Certificate

    These records cannot be ordered over the Internet since we must have the applicant's original signature on the request.

    If you are not able to use the application form, you may send a letter containing the following information to locate your current legal record:

      • Your full name as it appears on your current legal birth certificate
      • Date of birth
      • Parish of birth
      • Full maiden name of mother as it appears on your current legal birth certificate
      • Full name of father as it appears on your current legal birth certificate
      • Your mailing address and telephone number where we can reach you during the day
      • Your original signature and date of signature

    Documentation of a Change of Name 

    If the name on your ID is different from your name at the time of your adoption, you must provide documentation that will prove you are the person listed on the birth record. (For applications by mail, attach an original certified copy of the requested documentation. Your original documents will be returned to you with the completed order). For example:

      • If your ID shows a married name, provide a certified copy of your marriage certificate that shows your name as it appears on your current (adoptive) birth certificate and your name after marriage as it appears on your ID.
      • If your ID reflects a legal change of name, provide a certified copy of your legal change of name decree that shows your name as it appears on your current (adoptive) birth certificate and your legal name as decreed by a court and as appears on your ID.

    Sending the Request for Pre-Adoption Certificate

    Please be sure to sign and date the request. The request will not be processed unless it is signed by the applicant. Include the non-refundable fee of $15.50 for processing the request. Checks or money orders should be made payable to "Louisiana Vital Records."

    Mail the application or letter of request along with fees and ID to:

    Louisiana Vital Records

    Attn: Pre-Adoption Certificates
    P.O. Box 60630
    New Orleans, LA 70160

    For more information, call (504) 593-5100.

  • 22 Jul 2022 10:36 AM | Anonymous

    Rare documentation of the Portuguese Inquisition with detailed information about the sentencing trials which took place 500 years ago have been digitized for the first time in the Central Archives for the History of the Jewish People Jerusalem's National Library of Israel.

    The documents include printed versions of sermons preached by two priests at the end of the trials they presided over and a bound 60-page manuscript from the 18th-century that documents the first 130 years of the Portuguese Inquisition tribunal's activities.

    The trials mainly occurred in Lisbon, with a brief mention of trials in Tomar.

    Written in Portuguese, the manuscript holds information about trials conducted by inquisitors from 1540 to 1669 against Jews newly converted to Catholicism who were accused of continuing to secretly practice Judaism. Included are details of the trials including dates, names of priests who participated and numbers of victims sentenced in each one.

    The document is known in English as "An Accounting of All the Autos-da-Fé that Took Place in Lisbon."

    Autos-da-fé, or acts of faith, were public spectacles in which the sentences of Inquisition victims were read and executed by the authorities.

    The summaries were written at a time when the inquisitors, or someone who took part in the trials, felt the need to keep a record of the work of the Inquisition as a positive thing, noted archivist Pnina Younger. Based on the handwriting, all of the summaries were written by one person, she said.

    Those summaries were later bound into a volume in the 18th century as a memorial to the cruelty of those trials, she explained. The volume also includes a summary list of the trials written on separate paper which she believes was compiled in the late 19th or early 20th century based on the handwriting and the type of paper used.

    You can read more in an article by Judith Sudilovsky and published in the National Catholic Reporter web site at:

  • 22 Jul 2022 10:21 AM | Anonymous

    The following announcement was written by Findmypast:

    Brand new World War 2 records released this Findmypast Friday  

    Findmypast adds three new record collections this week, plus English burials and updates to several historical newspapers  

    Airmen Died in the Second World War, 1939-1946 

    Covering both airmen and airwomen, discover if your ancestor gave their life while serving under the Royal Air Force. Brand new to Findmypast, there are over 129,000 transcripts to explore.  

    Bomber Command Losses, 1939-1945 

    Also new this week, these records focus on your ancestors in Bomber Command. There are around 57,000 to delve into. Thanks to volunteers at the International Bomber Command Centre in Lincoln, you may find an ancestor’s next of kin, place of burial and even their trade.  

    Yorkshire, Sheffield, Air Raid Casualties, 1940-1941 

    The last of our new collections spans around 650 records, and can help you find if your ancestor suffered under an air raid. You could find some standard biographical detail and an address, making these great for house history too. 

    National Burial Index for England & Wales 

    Around 100,000 new records have been added into this existing collection, mainly for Yorkshire. A go-to if you have ancestors from this English county to get those all-important biographical details such as birth year and death year. 


    Updated titles this week cover the UK and Ireland, Canada and Barbados. 

    ·         Aldershot News, 1977, 1981 

    ·         Aris’s Birmingham Gazette, 1742-1745, 1747-1760, 1762-1771, 1773-1790, 1792-1797, 1799, 1802, 1805-1807, 1810-1812, 1815-1816, 1818-1823 

    ·         Barbados Agricultural Reporter, 1896, 1911-1922 

    ·         Birmingham Mail, 1878-1879 

    ·         Birmingham Weekly Mercury, 1967, 1995-1997 

    ·         Black & White, 1897 

    ·         Bootle Times, 1986 

    ·         Bucks Advertiser & Aylesbury News, 1864-1865, 1951 

    ·         Cambridge Daily News, 1897, 1986 

    ·         Chelsea News and General Advertiser, 1988 

    ·         Cheshunt and Waltham Mercury, 1996 

    ·         Derbyshire Times, 1925-1926, 1929 

    ·         East Galway Democrat, 1920 

    ·         Edinburgh Evening News, 1951, 1954, 1956 

    ·         Glamorgan Gazette, 1972 

    ·         Harrow Observer, 1996 

    ·         Herts and Essex Observer, 1987 

    ·         Kentish Express, 1855-1871, 1893-1895, 1898-1960, 1962-1972 

    ·         Lewisham Borough News, 1919, 1923, 1952 

    ·         Munster Tribune, 1958 

    ·         Nantwich Chronicle, 1977 

    ·         Newcastle Daily Chronicle, 1928 

    ·         North Star (Darlington), 1920 

    ·         North Wales Weekly News, 1986 

    ·         Nottingham Evening Post, 1983, 1997 

    ·         Ottawa Free Press, 1903, 1907-1908, 1912, 1914 

    ·         Runcorn Weekly News, 1986 

    ·         Salford Advertiser, 1990 

    ·         South Wales Daily Post, 1992 

    ·         South Wales Echo, 1950 

    ·         Southall Gazette, 1989 

    ·         Sunday Sun (Newcastle), 1939 

    ·         Surrey Herald, 1988 

  • 21 Jul 2022 7:48 PM | Anonymous

    In March of 2018, MyHeritage launched a pro bono initiative called DNA Quest to help reunite adoptees with their biological families. During the course of this initiative, we donated around 20,000 MyHeritage DNA kits to people seeking answers about where they came from. It’s impossible to know exactly how many of these donated kits facilitated reunions, but in the 4 years since the initiative began, the stories have been constantly rolling in. (Have a story yourself? Please share it with us!)

    We received the following email from Ashleigh Brown, a DNA Quest beneficiary from Canada who found her sister as a result of her MyHeritage DNA test.

    Ashleigh’s story

    Your kit helped me find my biological family… and a whole lot more!

    I always knew I was adopted… both my adopted brother and me. We grew up with Caucasian parents, so my mom just always told us. She had told me that she knew I had an older sister and that my biological mother had a few more children before me.  

    I have wanted to know my biological family my entire life, especially my sister. I tried asking on adoption sites and randomly looking for the name on my birth certificate… all in vain. 

    Then I saw the MyHeritage pro bono adoption program, DNA Quest, and wanted to give it a shot. So, I sat down and wrote my story to you. 

    You can read the full, story at:

  • 21 Jul 2022 7:36 PM | Anonymous

    You may enjoy seeing pictures of life in Scotland many years ago, especially if some of your ancestors came from Scotland.

    From snapshots of a gnarled fishing crew standing over a landed shark in Berwick upon Tweed in 1897, to a joyous portrait of fishwives living it up on holiday in post-war Paris, they form part of a vital archive charting changing social and political currents.

    Now, thousands of images of generations of Scottish workers who made their living from the sea have been gathered online by the Scottish Fisheries Museum.

    For the first time, the museum’s vast collection of photographs have been digitised and catalogued, allowing anyone to delve into its rich history.

    The collection, recognised as a resource of national significance, provides a unique insight into how technological advancements have left old working practices behind.

    In all, the new online resource is home to over 16,000 images, with photographs from the rest of the UK and the wider world, as well as Scotland.

    You can read more in an article by Martyn McLaughlin published in the MSN News web site at:

    You can view the photographs at:

  • 21 Jul 2022 7:18 PM | Anonymous

    This post was written by Nathan Yarasavage, a Digital Projects Specialist in the Library’s Serial and Government Publications Division and originally posted to the Headlines and Heroes blog, which highlights amazing stories in the Library’s collections of newspapers and comic books.

    Chronicling America* users can now browse the collection’s thousands of digitized historical newspapers using an interactive map and timeline recently launched by the Library of Congress. The new “Exploring Chronicling America Newspapers” application dynamically maps publication locations of over 3,000 digitized newspapers currently available in the Chronicling America online collection. Users can also interact with a timeline of publication dates for digitized newspapers available in Chronicling America, currently covering years between 1777-1963. Powered by the Esri ArcGIS Instant Apps platform, the map and timeline are updated weekly to include the latest additions to the collection. Users can also download the currently updated dataset underlying the new features to create their own custom data visualizations or analyses.


    Chronicling America provides access to millions of historic American newspaper pages digitized through the National Digital Newspaper Program (NDNP). Program partners select and contribute digitized newspapers published in their states or territories, creating the national collection. All of the newspapers are in the public domain and have no known copyright restrictions. To facilitate a wide range of potential uses of the newspaper data, in addition to providing the ability to search and browse historic newspaper pages on the web, Chronicling America offers a well-documented application programming interface (API). For over a decade, researchers and scholars have used the API to interface with Chronicling America data leading to a variety of projects based on digitized historical newspapers. In 2019, the NDNP team at the Library of Congress released their first set of interactive data visualizations, designed to better inform researchers of the scope and coverage of the newspapers available in Chronicling America. These included several different types of data visualizations describing the newspapers’ locations, dates, subjects, languages, and quantities. In addition, since 2018, under a program spearheaded by the Geography and Map Division, collection specialists from across the Library of Congress have produced Story Maps about the hidden and not-so-hidden collections of the Library. Also created within the Esri Geographic Information Systems (GIS)-based software platform, Story Maps combines text, images, multimedia, and interactive maps featuring Library collections to create immersive online experiences, placing the collections in context around a central theme. The Library is continuing to explore new ArcGIS tools, such as Instant Apps and Dashboards, to publish and visualize its massive collections.

    Using the Map and Timeline

    You can read the rest of the article at:

  • 20 Jul 2022 8:22 PM | Anonymous

    I suspect that many genealogists will be interested in interviewing older relatives and others. If so, you may be interested in this press release issued by StoryCorps:

    New App with Expanded & Enhanced Features Allows Users to Record StoryCorps Interviews & Seamlessly Explore, Curate & Share StoryCorps Content on Social Media

    Brooklyn, NY—Monday, July 18, 2022—StoryCorps, the nonprofit organization dedicated to recording, preserving, and sharing humanity’s stories, today launches a new free mobile app, available in the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store. From one device, the StoryCorps App allows anyone, anywhere, to conveniently prepare for and record a high-quality interview for preservation in the online StoryCorps archive and eventually at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress. The app also seamlessly enables users to explore StoryCorps’ rich content, curate personalized interview collections, and share StoryCorps stories to social media. 

    Founded in 2003, StoryCorps has given Americans across all 50 states the chance to record interviews about their lives and amplify the story of America through the voices of everyday people. The new StoryCorps App builds on the platform and reliability of the first app, which was launched in 2015 with the $1 million TED Prize awarded to Dave Isay. The App made it possible for the public to record, archive, and access StoryCorps interviews beyond the S​toryCorps MobileBooth that crisscrosses the country or in a permanent StoryBooth. T​he app has contributed to significant growth of the StoryCorps Archive, which currently comprises interviews featuring more than 600,000 participants. 

    The new app provides access to StoryCorps’ content, including its full online archive of interviews; all episodes of the StoryCorps podcast; the StoryCorps “Story of the Week” series; and the full collection of StoryCorps animations. The app also allows users to customize their profile, curate personalized interview collections, and easily share StoryCorps’ content and their own recordings via their social media channels. In addition, users now have access to StoryCorps Communities, enabling them to add their interview to a community they’ve joined, as well as see content from other community members. StoryCorps Communities is often used by teachers and students, as well as by individual community groups. 

    App users can select one of three privacy settings for the interviews they record:

      • -Public: which makes the recording available to anyone through the StoryCorps Archive and app, and searchable on the web.
      • -StoryCorps Community: which makes the recording available to anyone logged into the StoryCorps Archive or App, but not findable by search engines.
      • -Private: which makes the recording visible and shareable with friends and family, using a private link on the StoryCorps Archive website.

    To download the new app, visit the App Store and  Google Play. For more information about the app, visit

    Dave Isay, Founder and President of StoryCorps, said, “In its nearly 20 years of existence, StoryCorps has recorded people of all backgrounds and beliefs, giving them the opportunity to honor someone with the act of listening, share their stories, and preserve their voices for future generations. The recordings remind us of our common humanity, and of the beauty, grace, and poetry of the lives being lived all around us. The new StoryCorps app makes the recording, preserving, and sharing StoryCorps interviews much more accessible, moving us closer to StoryCorps’ goal to become an enduring institution that touches the life of every American.”

    Funding Credits

    Major support for the StoryCorps App is made possible by Jane Phillips Donaldson & William H. Donaldson.

    About StoryCorps

    Founded in 2003, StoryCorps has given 600,000 people, in all 50 states, the chance to record interviews about their lives. The award-winning organization preserves the recordings in its archive at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress, the largest single collection of human voices ever gathered, and shares select stories with the public through StoryCorps’ podcast, NPR broadcasts, animated shorts, digital platforms, and best-selling books. These powerful human stories reflect the vast range of American experiences, engender empathy and connection, and remind us how much more we have in common than what divides us. StoryCorps is especially committed to capturing and amplifying voices least heard in the media. The StoryCorps MobileBooth, an Airstream trailer that has been transformed into a traveling recording booth, crisscrosses the country year-round gathering the stories of people nationwide. Learn more at

  • 20 Jul 2022 10:36 AM | Anonymous

    "I read it on Facebook so it must be true."

    Not necessarily.

    An article by Marguerite Reardon states, “Democrats on Capitol Hill are crafting legislation that could restore net neutrality and the Federal Communications Commission’s authority to regulate broadband, according to a report published Monday by The Washington Post.”

    Read at and beware. Those are just some of the lies being spread on Facebook (recently renamed Meta).

  • 20 Jul 2022 10:22 AM | Anonymous

    Are you planning to make a presentation at a genealogy (or other) meeting? Or are you are planning to hold a webinar?

    An article by Syed Hammad Mahmood and published in the Make Use Of web site will tell you where to find tools to make the process easier:

    "Whether you’re speaking in a live session or recording a video, it makes little sense to memorize your script. Especially when several teleprompter tools are available online that work perfectly within your browser. Using these tools, you can keep eye contact with the camera without having to memorize your lines. So, here are the eight online teleprompter tools for seamless reading and recording.""

    You can find 8 Web-Based Teleprompter Tools for Seamless Reading at

    Suggestion: Perhaps the simplest and most hassle-free tool on the list is the Free Online Teleprompter by Gecko Tribe.

  • 20 Jul 2022 10:05 AM | Anonymous

    Sad news. One of the more valuable genealogy services is closing down. The following was written by senior managers at Avotaynu Inc.:

    After 37 years, Avotaynu Inc, publisher of works for Jewish genealogy, is closing its doors. The Winter issue of its journal, AVOTAYNU, which is currently being distributed, will be the last edition. The final edition of “Nu? What’s New” was published some weeks ago. Book selling will continue to exist. In anticipation of this day, Avotaynu, Inc sold its book selling business to a company in Massachusetts more than a year ago, and it is operating in a normal manner. Books ordered through the site are processed by this company.

    During its 37-year tenure, Avotaynu Inc produced 145 issues of its journal AVOTAYNU, more than 500 editions of its ezine, “Nu? What’s Nu?” and more than 80 books. Five of its books received awards and in 2004, the company received the “Body of Work” Award of the Association of Jewish Libraries.

    Avotaynu’s doors may reopen in the future. We are looking into various methods of advancing Jewish genealogy using the internet.

    You can learn more about Avotaynu Inc. at:

    (That web page might not remain online for much longer.)

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