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  • 21 Apr 2021 11:18 AM | Anonymous

    Anyone who knows Jill Ball will be interested to know she has been featured in an interview published on the FamilySearch web site.

    Anyone who doesn't know Jill Ball is missing out on a delightful experience. You can partially correct that now by obtaining a bit of information about her genealogy-dominated life from an article written by Debra Woods and published at https://www.familysearch.org/blog/en/jill-ball-genealogist-australia/.

    I have met Jill Ball several times and can verify that she is a delightful person to know. I am sure her many worldwide acquaintances will agree.

    This is "recommended reading." Again, you can find the article at https://www.familysearch.org/blog/en/jill-ball-genealogist-australia/.


  • 21 Apr 2021 10:59 AM | Anonymous

    This sounds ideal for a highly-skilled genealogist who wishes to find a work-from-home position. However, be aware that a very high level of genealogy expertise is required. The job opening specifies "Two or more years' professional experience in genealogical research."

    Quoting from a help wanted ad in the General Society of Mayflower Descendants (GSMD) web site:

    The General Society of Mayflower Descendants (GSMD) has openings in the Department of Genealogy and Research Services. These positions will work remotely as part of a team to process membership applications, by evaluating lineage information and documentation for completeness, validity, and correctness. Experience in professional genealogical research and methods is key to this role.

    Required Qualifications & Skills:

    Two or more years' professional experience in genealogical research.

    Demonstrates proven experience resolving conflicting evidence and same name problems.

    Experience working with original and compiled sources, both original hard copy and digital documents, as well as knowledge of advanced internet search techniques, including wildcard usage.

    Demonstrates strong writing skills; able to clearly explain complex research problems and provide recommendations for further research.

    Demonstrates advanced proficiency in word processing (Microsoft Word & Adobe PDF) software, and on and offline database and lineage software.

    Attention to detail; experience in proofing and editing, as well as excellent time management and organizational skills.

    Communicate and respond to supervision effectively using video conference applications (Zoom, GoToMeeting, etc).

    Preferred Qualifications:

    Candidates with experience in advanced genealogical methods.

    Experience with lineage society applications a plus.

    Proven track record of remote productivity a plus.

    Also:

    Finalists will be asked to provide a sample analysis of genealogy or family research submitted in narrative form.

    There is more background information about the General Society of Mayflower Descendants available at https://www.themayflowersociety.org/our-society/work-with-us.


  • 20 Apr 2021 8:20 PM | Anonymous

    A great online genealogy seminar is expected to be held on 6 different days in May and June. You can attend "in person" regardless of where you are located.

    The following is an announcement from the U.S. National Archives and Records administration, published at https://www.archives.gov/calendar/genealogy-fair

    In lieu of the autumn 2020 Virtual Genealogy Fair that could not be held due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are pleased to offer a new Genealogy Series! Instead of a single-day event, the program sessions will be broadcast individually during May and June. You are invited to watch and participate in real time with the presenters and family historians from around the world on YouTube

    Over the two months, the sessions will offer family history research tools on federal records for all skill levels. The May sessions are broad and will appeal to the beginner and beyond. The June sessions are focused on specific topics and may be better suited for the experienced researcher. All are welcome! Session descriptions, videos, handouts, and participation instructions are below.

      • Open with no reservations required 
      • Watch the broadcasts via YouTube 
      • Participate and ask questions via chat during the scheduled broadcasts 
      • After the scheduled broadcasts, video recordings and presentation materials will be available online

    2021 Genealogy Series Schedule

    In lieu of the autumn 2020 Virtual Genealogy Fair that could not be held due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are pleased to offer a new Genealogy Series! Instead of a single-day event, the program sessions will be broadcast individually during May and June. You are invited to watch and participate in real time with the presenters and family historians from around the world on YouTube

    Over the two months, the sessions will offer family history research tools on federal records for all skill levels. The May sessions are broad and will appeal to the beginner and beyond. The June sessions are focused on specific topics and may be better suited for the experienced researcher. All are welcome! Session descriptions, videos, handouts, and participation instructions are below.

      • Open with no reservations required 
      • Watch the broadcasts via YouTube 
      • Participate and ask questions via chat during the scheduled broadcasts 
      • After the scheduled broadcasts, video recordings and presentation materials will be available online

    2021 Genealogy Series Schedule

    Tuesday, May 4, at 1:00 p.m. ET

    Preserving and Digitizing Personal Photo Albums and Scrapbooks 

    Preserving photo albums and scrapbooks can be especially challenging, often because they are bound and contain a variety of problematic materials. This session addresses how to work with the poor quality materials commonly found in personal scrapbooks and albums, how to maintain the integrity of the arrangement, and how to store photo albums and scrapbooks appropriately. Pro tips for home users include ways to digitize albums, organize electronic files, and preserve them as electronic records. Examples come from both National Archives and personal collections.


    Wednesday, May 12, at 1:00 p.m. ET 

    Finding Genealogy Resources and Tools on Archives.gov 

      • Presenter: Sarah Swanson
      • Skill level: All
      • Handout: coming soon!
      • YouTube

    This presentation will provide an overview of what’s available for genealogists on the archives.gov website, and demonstrate how to navigate to its many resources and tools, including the National Archives Catalog, the Access to Archival Databases (AAD) system, the Microfilm Catalog, topic pages, articles, reports, and blogs. We’ll explore the Genealogy portal page, and also see how the website is organized, which will enable you to do even more expansive searches for information.


    Wednesday, May 19, at 1:00 p.m. ET

    Tips and Tools for Engaging Family with Your Research Finds 

      • Presenters: Missy McNatt & Dorothy Dougherty
      • Skill level: Beginner
      • Handout: coming soon!
      • YouTube

    As the family historian, you have amassed information and records that will one day pass to the next family historian. How do you share your findings with others? How to engage young family members involved with all your hard research may be another story. Education staff members Missy McNatt and Dorothy Dougherty will demonstrate fun and engaging ways to connect research to your family, including younger family members. This lecture will highlight activities related to our most popular genealogy records, such as Immigrant Ship Arrivals, U.S. Census Records, Naturalization records, and Military and Pension files. The presenters will also demonstrate new ways to share your research finds online, using social media tools.


    Tuesday, June 1, at 1:00 p.m. ET

    From Here to There: Researching Office of Indian Affairs Employees 

      • Presenters: Cara Lebonick & Cody White
      • Skill level: Experienced (all are welcome!)
      • Handout: coming soon!
      • YouTube

    Researching ancestors who worked for federal agencies is a popular topic at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). This presentation will tie together the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) Official Personnel Files (OPF) held in St. Louis with agency records located in various NARA field sites. The session will open with what can be found in the OPFs and how to request them. Cara Moore Lebonick will conduct a deep dive into several OPF's of Native women employed by the BIA. Cody White will then explore how further information can be found in the regional records of the BIA. Together Cara and Cody will show how the holdings across the National Archives can provide a more complete genealogical story.


    Tuesday, June 8, at 1:00 p.m. ET

    Civil War Union Noncombatant Personnel: Teamsters, Laundresses, Nurses, Sutlers, and More 

      • Presenter: Claire Kluskens
      • Skill level: Experienced (all are welcome!)
      • Handout: coming soon!
      • YouTube

    The National Archives Building in Washington, DC contains many records about noncombatant civilians connected with the Union Army during the American Civil War. However, the records are underutilized because there is no comprehensive index, no “one” place to look, and require time-consuming research into obscure records. Digitization is slowly changing that, however! This lecture will provide suggestions for research with emphasis on online materials that can help you get started.


    Tuesday, June 15, at 1:00 p.m. ET

    Merchant Marine Records at the National Archives at St. Louis 

      • Presenter: Theresa Fitzgerald
      • Skill level: All
      • Handout: coming soon!
      • YouTube

    The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) recently accessioned the core collection of Merchant Marine Licensing Files, which are now open to the public for the first time at the National Archives at St. Louis. Theresa Fitzgerald will discuss these holdings as well as our auxiliary collections of Merchant Marine records that are complex and closely connected.

    Captioning

    Live captioning will be available online with StreamText. If you require an alternative or additional accommodation for the event, please email KYR@nara.gov.

  • 20 Apr 2021 10:13 AM | Anonymous

    The following announcement was written by FamilySearch:

    Make exciting new family history discoveries on FamilySearch in 8.4M added names from US City and Business Directories ca. 1749 – ca.1950, plus 1.4M New York Land Records 1630–1975, 6.5M Catholic Church Records from Mexico for Guanajuato 1519–1984, Guerrero 1576–1979, México 1567–1970, Michoacán 1555–1996, Morelos 1598–1994, Nuevo León 1667–1981, Oaxaca 1559–1988, Querétaro 1590–1970, Sinaloa 1671–1968, Sonora 1657–1994, Tabasco 1803–1970, Tamaulipas 1703–1964, Tlaxcala 1576–1994 and additional records for England, France, and Papua New Guinea.  Also explore expanded collections for the US (Illinois, Massachusetts, Iowa, and Kentucky) 

    Search these new records and images by clicking on the collection links below, or go to FamilySearch to search over 8 billion free names and record images.

    The full list with all detaIls is too long to publish here but can be found in its entirety at: https://media.familysearch.org/new-free-historical-records-on-familysearch-week-of-19-april-2021/

    About FamilySearch

    FamilySearch International is the largest genealogy organization in the world. FamilySearch is a nonprofit, volunteer-driven organization sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Millions of people use FamilySearch records, resources, and services to learn more about their family history. To help in this great pursuit, FamilySearch and its predecessors have been actively gathering, preserving, and sharing genealogical records worldwide for over 100 years. Patrons may access FamilySearch services and resources free online at FamilySearch.org or through over 5,000 family history centers in 129 countries, including the main Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah


  • 19 Apr 2021 12:25 PM | Anonymous

    The world lost a magnificent gentleman and a patriot recently. Prince Philip, who went from his address at birth ‘of no fixed abode’ to the 'devoted consort' of Queen Elizabeth, died at 99. 

    Philip was born in Greece, but his family was exiled from the country when he was an infant because of anger towards the monarchy, and he spent most of his youth in the United Kingdom. As an infant, Prince Philip left Greece in an orange crate smuggled aboard a visiting British warship. But very few people know that the Duke had strong ties to the British monarchy before his marriage, through his ancestry.

    Also, he and Queen Elizabeth were related to each other via multiple relationships. They were both great-great-grandchildren of Queen Victoria, and were third cousins through different lines of their family trees. Yes, they were cousins many times over.

    In addition, he was related to most every royal family in Europe. The Duke made an overt reference to this history at the height of the Cold War. In 1967, he said: “I’d like to go to Russia very much – although the bastards murdered half my family.”

    You can read all about Prince Philip's extensive family relationships in an article by George Martin published in the inews.co.uk web site at: https://inews.co.uk/news/prince-philip-family-tree-mother-father-siblings-duke-of-edinburgh-relatives-death-878175.


  • 19 Apr 2021 11:51 AM | Anonymous

    The following is from an Associated Press story:

    DAVIDSONVILLE, Md. (AP) — An amateur genealogist has come forward to admit she scrubbed roughly 200 gravestones at a Maryland cemetery in a way that left them damaged.

    The Capital in Annapolis reports that the woman scrubbed the markings on headstones dating back to the 19th century to make them easier to photograph for the “Billion Graves” genealogy website.

    The scrubbing left nearly 200 stones at All Hallows Episcopal Church Cemetery in Davidsonville with awkward “zebra” stripes that may cost $10,000 to repair.

    The Rev. Jeff Hual, rector at All Hallows, said a woman came forward on Thursday to admit she was one of two people who scrubbed the graves. Hual said she was contrite and didn’t know she was harming the graves.

    Cathy Wallace, a project coordinator for Billion Graves, said the website does not condone volunteers cleaning gravestones without permission.


  • 19 Apr 2021 11:38 AM | Anonymous

    The following is an announcement from the (U.S.) National Genealogical Society:

    FALLS CHURCH, VA, 19 APRIL 2021—Genealogy societies provide an indispensable and invaluable service to aspiring and experienced genealogists alike. Continuous development of volunteer leaders is necessary for every society to not only survive, but also to thrive and grow membership.

    Focus on Societies, the National Genealogical Society (NGS) all-day virtual program on 21 May, offers an excellent opportunity for genealogy societies. Current society leaders will learn new management strategies, and attendance may encourage other society members to step up to serve on a committee or the board.

    Registration for individuals is $35 for the 11:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m. event, or take advantage of the NGS group rate of $100 to register up to five society members. Societies do not need to be a NGS Member to register and attend this event. Registration closes 12 May. Learn more at https://conference.ngsgenealogy.org/focus-on-societies/.

    Lecture topics include:

      • Lessons Learned from the Pandemic
      • Finding Good Material for Society Newsletters
      • Incorporating Special Interests and Study Groups in Your Society
      • Website, Content, and Social Media Strategies
      • Using Your Email List to Grow Society Membership
      • Getting and Keeping Your Volunteers
      • Preparing and Presenting a Cemetery Tour
      • Introduction to Event Management for Local Societies
      • Growing Your Society with Quality Events
      • Moving into the Virtual World of Meetings
      • Using an Open-Sourced System for Your Society's Digitization
      • Digital Marketing for Societies

    Register today at https://conference.ngsgenealogy.org/focus-on-societies/.


  • 19 Apr 2021 11:23 AM | Anonymous

    The following announcement was posted to the International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies’ (IAJGS) Public Records Access Monitoring Committee’s mailing list and is republished here with permission:

    University of Cape Town (UCT) Library ablaze with hundreds of years of history up in smoke. The Table Mountain fire hit across the City of Cape Town and the University having to evacuate their students on Sunday. The inferno made its way from Table Mountain, through Devil’s Peak, and into Newlands. To see a video go to: https://www.thesouthafrican.com/news/watch-cape-town-fire-latest-updates-sunday-uct-library-video/

    At this time it is thought to be a wildfire.

    Precious archives, historic texts, and collections of African Studies are all in jeopardy this afternoon. The UCT Library is home to some classic publications, and has a long-standing history as an extraordinary hub for higher education.

    More video on the blaze can be seen at: https://www.thesouthafrican.com/news/watch-table-mountain-fire-uct-students-evacuated-blaze-reaches-campus/

    The University of Cape Town's Jagger Library houses more than 1,300 collections of unique manuscripts and personal papers of prominent South Africans dating to the 18th century. The collection of books and pamphlets exceeds 85,000 on African studies alone.  Cape Town Executive Mayor Dan Plato said. "It is tragic that literary treasures have been lost at the UCT library, but I have been informed that some of the most valuable works were saved by the quick activation of roller doors."

    The Washington Post reported, The fire started Sunday morning near the memorial to colonial leader Cecil Rhodes and quickly spread uncontrolled beneath Devil’s Peak in Table Mountain National Park in an area popular with weekend hikers and cyclists. More than 200 firefighters and emergency personnel, supported by four helicopters and a spotter aircraft, battled the blaze, but the strong winds were hampering aerial support on Monday, the city’s disaster operations center said.  “Some of our valuable collections have been lost,” she said. “However a full assessment can only be done once the building has been declared safe and we can enter.”

    See: https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2021/04/18/south-africa-fire-university-cape-town/

    By Monday morning, strong southeasterly winds, which were expected to reach more than 30 miles per hour (50 km/h) later in the day, had pushed the fire toward densely populated areas above Cape Town city. Well-known tourist sites, such as the Table Mountain aerial cableway, were temporarily closed. 

    Thank you to Helen Dakers, United Kingdom for sharing the information with us.

    Jan Meisels Allen
    Chairperson, IAJGS Public Records Access Monitoring Committee

    Comment by Dick Eastman: Updates to this story are being posted often at: https://www.thesouthafrican.com/news/watch-table-mountain-fire-uct-students-evacuated-blaze-reaches-campus/.

  • 16 Apr 2021 12:55 PM | Anonymous

    The following announcement was written by TheGenealogist:

    TheGenealogist has released the records of 143,956 individuals to increase its Lloyd George Domesday Survey record set coverage. This unique online resource of nearly one million individuals records, can help researchers discover where an ancestor lived in the period 1910-1915. The new records this month are for properties situated in Balham, Battersea, Fulham, Hammersmith, Putney & Roehampton, Streatham, Tooting Graveney and Wandsworth.

    Area outlined in red is covered in this latest release

    This fascinating combination of maps and residential data from The National Archives is being digitised by TheGenealogist and enables researchers to precisely pinpoint an ancestor’s house on the large scale and exceptionally detailed hand annotated maps from the period. Fully searchable and linked to the versatile Map Explorer™, Diamond subscribers of TheGenealogist can see how an area has changed over time by switching between various georeferenced modern and historical map layers.

    A property recorded in the Lloyd George Domesday Survey Field Book and map on 21 July 1913

    Family historians often have problems finding where ancestors lived because road names can change over time. Researching the article discovered a shopkeeper living on the corner of Defoe Road and Tooting High Street. Daniel Defoe was a one time famous resident of Wandsworth. Using the Map Explorer now helps to identify that Defoe road has become Garrett Lane in modern times. The southernmost part of Garratt Lane is unusual in that two parallel streets exchanged names in the past. The original Garratt Lane was a narrower street while Garratt Terrace, on the other hand, was the main connection to Tooting Broadway. The south-east end of its length became Defoe Road before it reached the High Street, though many people were in the habit of mistakenly calling it Garratt Lane. For this reason it was agreed to exchange the names. Searching for where an ancestor lived using modern maps can be frustrating when they fail to pinpoint where the old properties had once stood.

    • This new release identifies individual properties on extremely detailed 1910-1915 maps

    • See images of original Field Books often with a detailed description of the property

    • Locate an address found in a census or street directory down to a specific house on the map

    • Fully searchable by name, parish and street

    • The georeferenced OS maps are a layer over a modern street map underlay

    • Changing the base map displayed allows researchers to understand what the area looks like today

    Complementing the maps on TheGenealogist are the accompanying Field Books that will also provide researchers with detailed information relative to the valuation of each property, including the valuation assessment number, map reference, owner, occupier, situation, description and extent.

    This mammoth project is ongoing with over 94,500 Field Books, each having hundreds of pages to conserve and digitise with associated large scale IR121 annotated OS maps.

    See TheGenealogist’s feature article on using these records in “Finding the Wandsworth homes attacked in the WW1 ‘Lusitania’ Riots”:

    https://www.thegenealogist.co.uk/featuredarticles/2021/finding-the-wandsworth-homes-attacked-in-the-ww1-lusitania-riots-1400/

    To find out more about these records, you can also visit TheGenealogist’s informative record collection page at: TheGenealogist.co.uk/1910Survey/

    Click this link to watch our video on these new records: https://youtu.be/ushl8j8ovzA


  • 16 Apr 2021 11:27 AM | Anonymous

    The following announcement was written by Ancestry.com:

    LEHI, Utah and SAN FRANCISCO -- Apr. 15, 2021-- Ancestry®, the global leader in family history and consumer genomics, today announced the appointment of Gene Alston as an independent member of its Board of Directors, effective immediately.

    Alston is currently the Vice President of Commerce Business and Operations at Facebook, where he is responsible for all strategy and teams for commerce products across Facebook’s family of apps, revenue and client satisfaction globally.

    “We are excited to welcome Gene to our board of directors. He brings a wealth of industry experience to the role with a focus on high growth, disruptive consumer internet companies,” said Mark Thompson, Ancestry board chair. “Gene’s counsel and expertise will bring energy to our board and strengthen Ancestry’s commitment to bringing diverse perspectives to the table.”

    Alston has more than 20 years of business leadership experience and prior to his current role, he led global marketing partnerships at Facebook. Before Facebook, Alston was at Pinterest, Groupon, and PayPal where he led teams and was responsible for business development, partnerships, acquisitions, and international expansion.

    Deb Liu, chief executive officer at Ancestry added, “I’ve had the pleasure of working with Gene first at PayPal and again at Facebook. Gene is a thought leader and innovator, and he will bring his breadth of experience in consumer technology to Ancestry as we continue to accelerate growth and empower journeys of personal discovery for millions more people around the world.”

    Alston holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Washington and a J.D. and MBA from University of California Los Angeles. Before returning to graduate school, Alston served as a Naval Officer stationed on the USS Worden.

    About Ancestry

    Ancestry®, the global leader in family history and consumer genomics, empowers journeys of personal discovery to enrich lives. With our unparalleled collection of more than 27 billion records and over 18 million people in our growing DNA network, customers can discover their family story and gain a new level of understanding about their lives. For over 30 years, we’ve built trusted relationships with millions of people who have chosen us as the platform for discovering, preserving and sharing the most important information about themselves and their families.


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