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  • 2 Oct 2023 9:16 AM | Anonymous

    Ahead of Banned Books Week (Oct. 1-7), the Boston Public Library is joining the Book Unbanned initiative.

    It was started by the Brooklyn Public Library in an attempt to fight censorship and book banning by expanding access to books for teens and young adults nationwide.

    Anyone ages 13-26 who lives in the U.S. can sign up for a free e-card to access the library's entire collection of e-books and e-audiobooks.

    BPL is the third library to join the network.

  • 2 Oct 2023 9:09 AM | Anonymous

    I wrote earlier (at ) about my satisfaction with the Raven scanner. I use it to digitize almost all my printed documents and photocopies that I wish to save. Insert up to 50 pages at a time, press one button, and the scanner digitizes BOTH SIDES of every page inserted.

    If you purchase a Raven scanner, you will want to pay attention to this notice just released by Raven:

    Effective December 31, 2023, Raven Cloud will be deactivated, and users will no longer have access to Raven Cloud content.

    Raven has made the difficult decision to discontinue Raven Cloud. To ensure that all customers have plenty of time to access their files and download them locally, or to another provider, Raven Cloud will be supported through December 31, 2023.

    To Access and Download Your Data:

    Using a web browser:

     • Navigate to

     • If prompted, login using your Raven account.

     • Review and select the folders and/or files to save. Following your selection, click the download icon from the top navigation. Repeat this process for all files and folders you would like to save.

    After December 31, 2023, files stored on Raven Cloud will no longer be available to customers. We understand that content saved on Raven Cloud is very important to our customers. Customers are encouraged to sign in to using their Raven account to download and store all other files locally (or with another service) before December 31, 2023.

  • 2 Oct 2023 9:08 AM | Anonymous

    The UMass Amherst Libraries announce the acquisition of the Terri Cappucci Glass Plate Negative collection. The archive, from local photographer Terri Cappucci ’00BA,’03MFA, of 2,500-3,000 glass plate negatives that date back to the 1860s, was gifted to Cappucci in July of 2019. Cappucci donated them to the Robert S. Cox Special Collections and University Archives Research Center (SCUA) in July 2023. Cappucci, who received her MFA at UMass Amherst, is a documentary photographer, alternative process printer, and educator who has been producing her own nineteenth century-style photographs using the wet plate collodion process for many years.  

    Most of the negatives in the collection are undated and have little to no information about where they were taken or who the photographer was. To address this, Cappucci created the “Somebody Photographed This” website and Facebook group. She also utilized her expertise to determine that the photographs in the overall collection were taken by several different photographers. While most of the collection is from Western Massachusetts, specifically Franklin County, there are also images from the coastal towns of Massachusetts. She then cleaned and digitized some of the most compelling images from the collection and posted them to the “Somebody Photographed This” Facebook page during the pandemic. Followers left comments to share locations, dates, and additional information about the photos. This led to Cappucci receiving additional glass plate negative collections from people from around the world, as well as articles about the project in the Boston Globe, Greenfield Recorder, Montague Reporter, and UMass Magazine, along with a televised segment on NEPM. Cappucci started a GoFundMe campaign and raised funds for the preservation supplies. 

    In 2023, Cappucci approached SCUA to permanently house the collection amongst their vast holdings of photograph and manuscript collections that document life in New England from the seventeenth to the twentieth century. SCUA will make Cappucci’s scans available via Credo, their repository of digitized archival materials as well as continue Cappucci’s meticulous work of cataloging, preserving, and storing the photos, which will be available to the citizens of Massachusetts, and beyond, for decades to come.  

  • 2 Oct 2023 9:04 AM | Anonymous

    If you use LibreOffice (as I do... almost all articles in this newsletter are composed in LibreOffice), you need to update your copy NOW.

    Earlier this month, a security vulnerability in the popular libwebp software library was discovered, affecting everything from web browsers to email clients. The Document Foundation, the developers behind the free and open-source LibreOffice suite, has now released an emergency update for LibreOffice that includes the fix. You should update as soon as possible if you have LibreOffice installed.

    The blog post explains, "The Document Foundation is releasing LibreOffice 7.6.2 Community and LibreOffice 7.5.7 Community ahead of schedule to address a security issue known as CVE 2023-4863, which originates in a widely used code library known as libwebp, created by Google more than a decade ago to render the then-new WebP graphics format. [...] All users of LibreOffice are encouraged to update their current version as soon as possible."  

    Details, and the update, may be found at:

    NOTE: I updated my copy and found it was a simple process. I suggest you update NOW.

  • 2 Oct 2023 8:56 AM | Anonymous

    BackUpYourGenealogyFilesYesterday was the first day of the month. That is a good time to back up your genealogy files. Then test your backups!

    I normally post a message about all this on the first day of every month. However, yesterday was the first and also was a Sunday. I normally don’t post new articles on weekends so this month's message is being posted one day late.

    Your backups aren't worth much unless you make a quick test by restoring a small file or two after the backup is completed.

    Actually, you can make backups at any time. However, it is easier and safer if you have a specific schedule. The first day of the month is easy to remember, so I would suggest you back up your genealogy files at least on the first day of every month, if not more often. (My computers automatically make off-site backups of all new files every few minutes.)

    Given the events of the past few months with genealogy websites laying off employees and cutting back on services, you now need backup copies of everything more than ever. What happens if the company that holds your online data either goes off line or simply deletes the service where your data is held? If you have copies of everything stored either in your own computer, what happens if you have a hard drive crash or other disaster? If you have one or more recent backup copies, such a loss would be inconvenient but not a disaster.

    Of course, you might want to back up more than your genealogy files. Family photographs, your checkbook register, all sorts of word processing documents, email messages, and much more need to be backed up regularly. Why not do that on the first day of each month? or even more often?

  • 29 Sep 2023 5:37 PM | Anonymous

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

    This is Part #2 of a 2-part series. Part #1 is still available at*)-Plus-Edition-News-Articles/13258099

    Part #1 of this article described two reasons why we might want to archive all our email messages, both sent and received. One reason is genealogy-related, the other is not. The second part of this article describes some of the methods that can be used to save your email messages for years, possibly for decades.

    Of course, if you use Gmail, as described in Part #1 of this article, you already have the capability to save messages for several years. Gmail offers 1a large amount of free storage across Gmail, Google Drive and Google Photos for new users and even that limit can easily be increased with various offers that Google offers from time to time.

    However, saving old email messages on Gmail is dependent upon Google's policies to keep preserving those messages. While Google has proven to be very reliable in the past, there is nothing to guarantee that messages will be preserved forever. Other email services typically store much less than Google, and they also offer no guarantees how long the messages will be available to you.

    Most computer professionals will tell you that any important information you wish to preserve needs to have at least two copies (and even more than two is better), and the copies need to be saved in at least two different locations. Saving the messages at or another email service counts as one copy, and that copy is saved in the cloud. However, you should also store a second copy of every message, either stored in your local computer's hard drive or perhaps at a different location in the cloud. Either you can adapt several email programs to accomplish that, or you can use a product designed especially for archiving email messages.

    Google provides great cloud-based services, but it is important to keep a local copy of your data. This ensures that you have your data even if your account is compromised, if Google has an outage, or if data goes missing from your account. The same is true for Yahoo Mail, Hotmail, and most all other email services. You have a number of email archiving products to choose from, all of which will preserve thousands of messages on your local hard drive or to any other location you specify. 

    I find it easier and more efficient to use a program that is designed strictly for archival purposes, not a program that originally was designed as a general-purpose email program and then “force fit” for use as an archival program. I will first describe using standard email programs since they are more popular and many email users are already familiar with them. However, I will follow that with my preferred method: using a product that is designed primarily as an archival program.

    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/13261172

    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

  • 29 Sep 2023 10:43 AM | Anonymous

    When:  October 28, 2023

    Time:  11:00 am - 12:00 pm  EST

    Where: Online

    Price:  FREE  to AGS members and $10.00 for nonmembers 

    Click here to register:

    The registration deadline is October 26, 2023

    Limited seating to view the virtual presentation will be offered at the Adamson Library. To reserve a seat, please call (706) 722-4073.


    Click here to view the program brochure.

  • 29 Sep 2023 10:28 AM | Anonymous

    Queen Mary University of London academics launch new web resource, revealing historical records of two fifteenth-century ledgers of the Bruges and London branches of the Milanese bank Filippo Borromei and partners.

    The Borromei Bank Research project is the culmination of two decades of Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) funded collaboration between Professor Jim Bolton and Professor Francesco Guidi-Bruscoli , and will be a major resource for economic and social historians of late medieval Europe.

    The new website offers a treasure trove of historical data that promises to captivate researchers, historians, and enthusiasts alike. It offers a window into the financial and trade activities of the fifteenth century and celebrates the enduring legacy of the Borromeo-Arese family. The website can be accessed free of charge by researchers, historians, genealogists, and the public.

    The invaluable ledgers, previously thought to be destroyed during World War II, were preserved in the private family archive of the Borromeo-Arese family in their palazzo on Isola Bella, Lake Maggiore, Italy.

    The Borromeo-Arese family, dating back to 1300, played a pivotal role in Italian banking history. Count Vitaliano I Borromeo established banks in Bruges, Barcelona, and London during the 1430s, significantly impacting European trade.

    The project has digitised 396 folios from the Bruges ledger of 1438 and 440 folios from the London ledger of 1436-38. It encompasses the accounts of 753 individuals and identifies an additional 1259 individuals connected to the transactions. The database, now available on the website, offers various search options, including account holder names, keywords, and filters for specific criteria.

    You can read more at:

    The Borromei  Bank Research project website: is available at:

  • 29 Sep 2023 9:57 AM | Anonymous

    The following announcement was written by Findmypast:

    With electoral registers, burials and so much more, there are over two million new additions to discover. 

    If you've traced your family's roots back to LondonKent or Ireland, you may just find an ancestor's name in this week's hefty record release. We've updated our Kent Burials, and added two brand-new sets from London and Ulster.

    Read on for a full rundown of all that's been added this Findmypast Friday. 

    London, Lambeth Electoral Registers 1832-1886

    First up, we have a brand new set of Lambeth electoral records. Londoners will be delighted to learn that we've added 1,398,843 new register records for the district, with both transcriptions and images available to search.

    Lambeth is a historical borough on the south bank of the River Thames. Its population trebled in the first three decades of the 19th century - with over 100,000 inhabitants by c.1830, it housed many of London's poor.

    These records, unique to Findmypast, span from 1832 to 1886 and provide valuable insight into a rapidly growing district within the capital city. 

    Map of Lambeth in 1897.

    Lambeth in 1897.

    From these records, you can expect to learn a name, an address, the district or ward in which the person was registered to vote, and their qualification to vote (that is, the reason that they are able to vote. e.g. land ownership). 

    Many of these rolls are arranged by address. This means that you can see the entries of neighbouring properties, and piece together a more detailed picture of the area.

    Ireland, Ulster Covenant 1912 

    Next up, we've got an exciting Irish addition. We've added a brand new set from Ulster.

    This province in the north of Ireland has seen considerable strife throughout its history. Bolstering our existing collection of Irish records, this new set sheds light on the lives of those involved in the bitter conflict over Irish independence.

    On 28 September 1912, hundreds of thousands of people gathered to voice their opposition to Irish Home Rule. 

    The Ulster Covenant, 1912.

    The Ulster Covenant, 1912.

    Many of these self-declared unionists hailed from what we now refer to as Northern Ireland, while some were from the South of the country, and others travelled from Britain and further afield. Men signed what was known as a 'Solemn Covenant', while women signed a 'Declaration'. 

    Within this brand-new set, you'll find the names of 223,543 men and 221,058 women who signed the Ulster Covenant. Although the records are index-only, you can view an image of each signature by following the link attached to each transcript.

    ulster covenant signatures from 1912

    Some of the women's signatures within this set, including that of Mary Ann Abraham from Ballinteggart.

    You can expect to find handy information such as a name, an address, a division and a county. You'll also see the archive reference, and a link to both the signature image and the folder image, which contains all of the signature pages from a particular district.

    With 444,601 records now available for you to search, find out whether your Irish ancestor played a role in this key historical event.

    Kent Burials

    Last up, we've also updated our collection of Kent burial records. There are 8,635 new additions to explore, spanning almost 500 years, between 1542 and 1992. 

    These records are from parishes across the county. To learn more about which parishes are included, be sure to consult the full parish list

    From these transcriptions, you can expect to learn a full name, an age, a birthdate, a burial date and place, a residence, an occupation, and the county. In some instances, the grave dedication is also recorded. This emotive detail offers a deeply personal insight into your ancestor's life (and indeed, their death).

    Some records contain additional information under the 'Notes' heading - you may learn a marital status, parents' names, and whether the deceased was a foundling. 

    There are a few interesting figures to be discovered within this collection. We found the burial record of William Sutton, who was awarded both the Victoria Cross and the Indian Mutiny Medal 1857-59 for his military service in Delhi. 

    Burial record of WIlliam Sutton

    William Sutton's burial record. View for yourself. 

    Despite his long record of military service, it doesn't seem that William was fairly compensated. He sadly died in the Malling Union workhouse in 1888, aged just 58. As his record indicates, he was buried at St Peter's Anglican Church in Ightham. 

    Over 71 million pages now available to explore

    With the addition of a brand new title and updates to a further four, our newspaper collection hit an exciting landmark this week. There are now more than 71 million digitised pages within our ever-expanding archive.

    This Findmypast Friday, we added a total of 224,018 new pages.

    Our brand new title is the Walthamstow Express. First published in 1857, this newspaper was politically aligned with the Liberal Party. It was a weekly publication, which was circulated each Friday for one penny. 

    Walthamstow Express

    Walthamstow Express, 6 January 1894.

    In the mid-19th century, Walthamstow was quickly transforming from a rural to an urban area, thanks largely to its new railway connections. Although historically part of Essex, Walthamstow was fast becoming the bustling centre that we know it as today. 

    Within the pages of the Walthamstow Express, you'll find detailed local news covering Wanstead, Leyton, Stratford and beyond. Sports fans will be pleased to hear that there's also a particular emphasis on football, golf and athletics within this title, meaning you can delve into the sporting history of North-East London like never before. 

    In addition to this new London title, we've made extensive updates to four newspapers from Liverpool, Belfast and Devon. Wherever your family tree is rooted, our newspaper collection can shed light on the lives of your forebears.

    Here's a full rundown of all that's been added this week. 

    New titles:

    Updated titles:

    • Belfast News-Letter, 1971-1976, 1979-1981, 1984, 1986
    • Liverpool Daily Post, 1956-1957, 1959, 1969-1971, 1974, 1978, 1980-1981, 1983, 1985-1986, 1991-1992
    • Liverpool Daily Post (Welsh Edition), 1957-1959
    • Torbay Express and South Devon Echo, 1987-1989, 1992, 1995

    Have you made a surprising family history discovery? Whatever you've uncovered about your past, we'd love to hear about it. You can now get in touch and tell us directly, using this handy form.

  • 29 Sep 2023 9:44 AM | Anonymous

    The following is a press release written by Vivid-Pix:

    National Genealogical Society & Vivid-Pix Welcome Family Storytellers Across the Country to Learn about Capturing & Sharing Memories with Family Matters U.S. Tour 

    September 28, 2023, Falls Church, VA -- In celebration of Family History Month in October, the National Genealogical Society (NGS), Vivid-Pix, prominent Societies, Libraries, Archives, Museums (SLAMs), and senior adult organizations throughout the U.S. are welcoming family storytellers and historians of all levels to in-person and online events to celebrate their families and share memories and stories about their own lives and ancestors through the new NGS/Vivid-Pix Family Matters Program. The Family Matters Tour starts in South Carolina with events in Texas, Arizona, Utah, Missouri, Wisconsin, Indiana, and Kentucky throughout October. 
    See the tour schedule at:**

    Vivid-Pix Fall Tour Map and Locations - 9-27-23

    NGS/Vivid-Pix Family Matters Tour Map & Locations through the U.S. in October 2023

    Family Matters Program

    NGS and Vivid-Pix recently announced the Family Matters Program at the NGS National Conference in June. The program is geared towards SLAM organizations to help their communities discover their family history with access to the Vivid-Pix Memory Station™ multiple-image scanner hardware and software solution, Vivid-Pix educational courses in genealogy, family history, photography, image organization, storytelling, and photo reminiscence, as well as the Family Matters Outreach Toolkit, which provides these organizations with turnkey materials to attract new audiences to their genealogy programs, showcasing their special genealogy research techniques, and introducing new members and volunteers to the excellent work that these organizations do to help people discover their past. For more information on the Family Matters Program, see

    Vivid-Pix Memory Station

    A key part of the Family Matters program is the Vivid-Pix Memory Station™ flexible hardware and software multiple-image scanner solution, created for archiving memories at home, home care, libraries, community locations, and more. Available in October, Memory Station software provides a simple interface to quickly and easily scan, restore, and record voice memories, as well as archive and share photos, documents, and memorabilia objects, making it simple for everyone to archive up to 10 photos and documents at once and record treasured memories. For more information on how to use Memory Station, see the video at:, and for more info on Vivid-Pix, see the website at:

    About the National Genealogical Society (NGS)

    Founded in 1903, the National Genealogical Society (NGS) inspires, connects, and leads the family history community by fostering collaboration and best practices in advocacy, education, preservation, and res**earch. NGS enables people, cultures, and organizations to discover the past and create a lasting legacy for the future. The Falls Church, Virginia-based nonprofit is the premier national society for everyone, from the beginner to the most advanced family historian. For more information, see:

    About Vivid-Pix

    Vivid-Pix helps individuals, families, friends, and organizations with their most treasured memories by inventing and harnessing technologies. Vivid-Pix Solutions ( helps family historians, as well as caregivers, assist with cognitive decline and dementia through Photo Reminiscence Therapy. Vivid-Pix patented software has been sold in over 120 countries, improving old, faded photos and documents. For more info, see

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