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  • 18 Feb 2022 5:01 PM | Anonymous

    The following announcement was written by FamilySearch:

    Thaís Pacholek has a degree in performing arts and journalism. Born in Curitiba, Brazil, she first went on stage when she was 9 years old. When she turned 18, she moved to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil's film capital. Thaís's acting talent was widely recognized a few years later, when she accepted her first of many telenovela (soap opera) roles at age 23. In a country generally recognized as a pioneer in the genre, participating in telenovelas in Brazil was a rare achievement. Now the Brazilian public can see her in Record TV's new super production, Reis.

    We are pleased to welcome Thaís Pacholek as a guest speaker from Brazil among the keynote speakers at RootsTech 2022! Join us on 3–5 March where Thaís will share her story of family connection.

    The Role of Family in Thaís Pacholek's Success

    Thaís Pacholek and her son

    Thaís Pacholek is not a one-dimensional talent. She was elected Miss Curitiba in 2005 and has starred in 15 live theater productions, 3 films, and 5 television shows in addition to the 8 telenovelas in which she played a prominent role. She recognizes that much of the reason for her professional success is due to her family. "My family made me feel secure that this was the path I should take," she said. "Without them, I wouldn't have had the confidence to venture to Rio de Janeiro. My family—my family is my foundation; they were there for me. They guided me emotionally, as they still do to this day."

    In contrast to her acting roles, Thaís says her family is a "very true family" and that all her relationships are "always very true." Although her family did not have many resources, she describes her childhood as a beautiful journey where the things she most appreciated were the moments they had together. "These are very good memories that I carry in my heart—the struggle of a family to succeed in life and never give up. And when the whole family is together, the result is always prosperity," she said.

    She found similar traits in her husband, country music star Bruno Belucci Pereira, who performs as part of the famous duo under the stage name Belutti. Together, Bruno and Thaís have a son, Luis Miguel, who Thaís describes as her "soulmate." Her son is also the inspiration for her passion as an advocate for respectful childhood education. She said, "I think change in the world comes through children because they are what all of us adults should be."

    Thaís also values her family history, saying: "I really believe that we are what we are today because of all those stories that exist in our family tree, which we all belong to. So, I believe that the strong woman that I am, the positive woman that I am, the optimistic woman that I am, the hardworking woman that I am—it's all because of all these [family] stories."

    Thaís Pacholek at RootsTech 2022

    Learn more about Thaís Pacholek's story of family connection at RootsTech 2022 on 3–5 March. RootsTech is the world's largest genealogy and family history conference, which will be held online this year for free. You can participate by registering today at

  • 16 Feb 2022 6:32 PM | Anonymous

    NOTE: 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 many newsletter readers will be interested in this article for many different purposes:

    I have written often about the numerous advantages of Chromebooks. I own two Chromebooks and love 'em both. One Chromebook has become my primary traveling computer, even though I already own an expensive and much more powerful Macintosh laptop. In short, I prefer to risk the low-cost laptop when exposing it to travel damage and theft. Besides, the Chromebook does everything I need to accomplish when traveling.

    Now Google has announced a future product that will convert older, lower-powered Windows and Macintosh computers into Chromebooks. If you have an older computer in the closet that you are not using any more, this might be a great zero-cost project for you to use, either for yourself or for a family member (either an adolescent or adult) who does not yet have their own computer.

    Google today announced early access to Chrome OS Flex, which makes the Chrome OS operating system found on Chromebooks downloadable onto a Mac or Windows PC.

    Chrome OS Flex allows individuals, schools, or businesses to download Chrome OS onto a USB drive for free and install it onto their Mac or Windows PC. The OS could also be booted from a USB drive instead of installed or launched via network deployment by an IT department.

    Google is positioning Chrome OS Flex as an answer to old Mac and Windows PCs that might not be able to handle the latest version of their native OS and/or that might not be owned by folks with budgets to replace the devices. Rather than buying new hardware, consumers or IT departments could install the latest version of Chrome OS Flex.

    Google's Chrome OS Flex is currently available as early access in the dev channel with bugs expected. You can read more at:

  • 16 Feb 2022 12:19 PM | Anonymous

    If you are researching Black ancestry in Nashville, you will be interested in a new spreadsheet listing more than 14,000 rows of data, which might bore you – until the names stop you cold: Eliza, age 3; Peter, 11; Martha Foster, 1. After each, it reads “child of Albert and Betsy.”

    On Nov. 1, 1852, it says, John Nichol sold Albert and Betsy, along with Eliza, Peter, Martha Foster and their other five children to Bradford Franklin. Davidson County legally recorded this enslaved family as property, bought and sold.

    Metro Archivist Ken Fieth has spent some 25 years compiling a searchable spreadshee. Transaction by transaction, it lists buyer, seller, enslaved person’s name, gender, age and relatives (if known).

    These transactions are part of what made us who we are, what made Nashville the place that it is. It is the big “how” and the big “why” of the racism that still plagues us.

    You can read more in an article by Karen Johnson and Learotha Williams, published by the Tennessean, at

    The spreadsheet may be found at:

  • 15 Feb 2022 8:27 AM | Anonymous

    Jackson State is one of the inaugural recipients of Getty Images grants to help historically Black colleges and universities digitize their photo archives to preserve the photos and help document Black history at the universities. "The goal is that everybody knows what we have," Locord Wilson, Jackson State University interim dean of libraries, said Thursday, Feb. 3, 2022. "It's a hidden treasure."

    You can read more and view a number of pictures at:

  • 15 Feb 2022 8:18 AM | Anonymous

    The Dodge/Jefferson Counties Genealogical Society’s library at 504 S. Fourth St., Watertown, Wisconsin, is temporarily closed as the society installs improved shelving and rearranges its materials.

    The society hopes to reopen the library two or three weeks from now. Status updates on the library’s reopening will be posted on the society’s Facebook page,

    During this transitional time, there may also be a delay in online orders for obituaries and in answers to lookup requests. As always, questions about the library or about genealogical concerns can be directed to

  • 14 Feb 2022 2:04 PM | Anonymous

    The following announcement was written by MyHeritage:

    Love is in the air! Celebrate Valentine’s Day by diving into the love stories in your family history with this special offer: all marriage records will be free to access from February 13–20, 2022.

    Search free marriage records on MyHeritage 

    Marriage records provide a fascinating glimpse into the moments when new families are born. They usually contain the names, birth dates, birthplaces, and places of residence of the bride and groom, and sometimes contain information on the parents of the bride and groom or witnesses, who may have been family friends or other relatives. MyHeritage is home to 164 marriage record collections containing almost 600 million records from all over the world, some of which include beautifully scanned images, and some of which are exclusive to MyHeritage.

    Since last Valentine’s Day, we’ve added some essential and intriguing collections — for example, France, Church Marriages and Civil Marriages and Brazil, Pernambuco Marriages, 1800–1960.

    Normally, a Complete or Data plan is required to view these records, but for 8 days only, you’ll be able to search and view them for free.

    What are you waiting for? Go ahead and get searching! We can’t wait to hear what you find.

    Search free marriage records on MyHeritage

  • 14 Feb 2022 8:52 AM | Anonymous

    I have no idea if this is a valuable product or if it is based on a fallacy. However, the announcement is interesting, to say the least. The following is an excerpt from a (sponsored article) at:

    "Rootine understands the multi-nutrient is only effective when it’s addressing what that specific user needs. That’s why the company devised a process to create bespoke nutrient supplements engineered for each individual user, augmenting natural vitamins and minerals their unique body needs to best optimize their health.

    "Unlike other services offering customized supplements, Rootine goes even deeper, using lifestyle factors in conjunction with DNA, blood levels, and even artificial intelligence to create a personalized daily multi-nutrient formula that best addresses each person’s distinctive biology.

    "After taking Rootine’s short lifestyle assessment covering your health goals, current lifestyle choices, and more, its process devised by expert geneticists and supplement technicians gets even more granular. Users submit a DNA sample for testing or even their own blood to help get the most precisely accurate picture of their particular metabolism.

    "For users who recently did bloodwork through their doctor or received DNA results from a service like, those results can be submitted straight to Rootine, saving customers the cost of those added tests."

    You can read the article at:

  • 11 Feb 2022 5:18 PM | Anonymous

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

    Warning: This article contains personal opinions.

    As you might expect with any conference of 150 or more presentations, there are many stories to be told at most any major genealogy conference. One that I hear often concerns the high failure rate of hardware and software among the presenters. At some national conferences, I have heard stories of no less five or six different presenters who experienced major problems with their laptop computers, operating system, projectors, PowerPoint slides, or other critical computer tools.

    Some of the problems happen at the very last moment as the presenters are setting up at the podium to begin their talks.

    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/12593392.

    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

  • 11 Feb 2022 4:59 PM | Anonymous

    What do the following headlines from past issues of this newsletter have in common?

    Hancock County, Georgia, Courthouse Burned (August 12, 2014)

    Van Buren County, Tennessee Offices Destroyed by Fire, Birth, Marriage, Death, and Many Other Records Lost (January 9, 2015)

    Fire in Major Russian Library Destroys One Million Historic Documents (February 1, 2015)

    Home of the Marissa (Illinois) Historical and Genealogical Society Destroyed by Fire (January 31, 2015)

    Roof Collapses at Iowa Genealogical Society Library (December 31, 2009)

    Fire Destroys Much of Indiana Historical Collection (December 30, 2009)

    Cologne [Germany] Archives Building Collapses; 3 Missing, Many Escape (March 03, 2009)

    Archives Damaged in Italian Earthquake (April 07, 2009)

    Louisville Library Regains Use of Genealogy Room After Flash Floods (September 11, 2009)

    Help Save the Archives of Ontario [from mold that is destroying records] (February 18, 2005)

    Genealogy Lost in Twister (November 18, 2002)

    North Dakota Records Lost [in the great flood of 1997] (April 28, 1997)

    New Jersey Historical Documents and Artifacts Damaged in Flood (April 24, 2007)

    Jefferson Davis' Biloxi Home Beauvoir [and Records] Reported "Demolished" by Hurricane Katrina (August 31, 2005)

    Library Rescues Genealogy Books [after a tornado] (June 2, 2003)

    Resident Rescues Genealogy Papers from Wildfire (June 06, 2006)

    Do you see a pattern here? We cannot plan on having access to original documents forever. In fact, many valuable documents will disappear in the future due to disasters over which we have no control.

    Many people believe that scanning old documents and making digital images is not good for archival purposes. They argue that digital images don't last long and that "the required equipment to view the images won't be available in twenty-five years."

    However, most archivists will say that the truth is exactly the opposite: by use of some very simple data maintenance methods (already used by governments, corporations, and non-profits all over the world), digital images can often last for centuries, much longer than the physical paper documents.

    I will suggest that the discussion of records preservation needs to consider ALL possibilities. In this case, we have seen many instances where records were destroyed by Mother Nature, despite the best efforts of archivists and preservationists.

    I will also suggest that there is no perfect method of guaranteeing that records will be available to future genealogists and historians. However, we certainly can improve the odds by performing all of the following:

    1. Do whatever it takes to preserve original (physical) records. This means not only keeping the documents themselves safe from mold, mildew, insects, and other problems, but also housing the records in buildings that are as fireproof and flood-proof and earthquake-proof as possible.

    2. Recognize the fact that preservation of documents by traditional means is never perfect. Some number of paper documents will be destroyed, whether by simply degradation of the paper or by natural disasters, such as fire, floods, and earthquakes. In short, we cannot depend on having a single copy of anything. We must have duplicate copies, which these days means digital images.

    3. Having one duplicate is not enough. We need to make multiple duplicates and store them in different locations so that no one hurricane or flood or fire or other disaster will destroy all the copies. Luckily, with digital images, it is easy to store duplicate copies in several different locations.

    4. We cannot allow the digital images to become obsolete. As technology changes, the digital backups need to be copied often to new storage media. Just because a floppy disk or a CD-ROM disk suffices today does not mean that it will be a viable storage media in a few years. If the document is important to someone, it needs to be copied to new storage media every few years.

    Planning and preservation efforts apply equally to both large government archives and your personal genealogy records stored at home. With a bit of advance planning, we can ensure that valuable records are available to everyone in the future.

  • 11 Feb 2022 1:31 PM | Anonymous

    From the Massachusetts Registry of Vital Records and Statistics' web site:

    Due to severe flooding at the offices of the Registry of Vital Records and Statistics (RVRS), all public counter service is expected to be closed at least through 2/21/2022. RVRS is working diligently to restore access to records and equipment as quickly as possible.

    Birth, marriage, and death records can be obtained at local City and Town Clerk offices. For births and deaths, you may obtain records at the city/town of event or the residence town at the time of event. For marriages, you may obtain records at the city/town where intentions (application) were filed. A link to city and town offices can be found here:

    A subset of birth and death records are still accessible for issuance from RVRS. No marriage records are currently accessible for issuance. Customers can order certified copies of accessible birth and death records from RVRS online or by mail, but there will likely be delays in fulfillment. No overnight orders can be accommodated at this time.  Please expect a 3-week turnaround for online orders and a 5-week turnaround for mail orders. Records currently available for issuance are:

    • Birth records for years 1953 – present.
    • Death records for years 1977 – present.

    Updates will be posted as more information becomes available. Please email if you have any questions.

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