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  • 21 Aug 2023 2:00 PM | Anonymous

    I haven't figured out WHY this exists but it does. There's a full-scale styrofoam replica of Stonehenge located in Virginia called, appropriately enough, Foamhenge. You can find a Foamhenge web site at although a more detailed description can be found on Wikipedia at:

  • 21 Aug 2023 11:49 AM | Anonymous

    The new National Archives leader whose nomination was swept into the partisan furor over the criminal documents-hoarding case against ex-President Donald Trump says she is now preparing the agency that’s responsible for preserving historical records for an expected flood of digital documents.

    Colleen Shogan, a political scientist with deep Washington ties, says the spotlight on the Archives during the past year shows that Americans are invested in preserving historical materials. After events in Kansas on Wednesday, she reiterated that she had no role in decisions made when the Trump investigation began and said the Archives depends upon the White House to deliver documents when a president leaves office.

    “It provides an opportunity for us to discuss, quite frankly, why records are important,” Shogan said. “What we’re seeing is that Americans care about records. They want to have access to the records.”

    You can read more in an article by John Hanna published in the Associated Press web site at: 

  • 21 Aug 2023 11:36 AM | Anonymous

    Here is a list of all of this week's articles, all of them available here at                             

    (+) Turn Your Phone or Tablet into a Scanner for Many Purposes

    How to Become a Family History Detective

    Announcing a Better Way to Find Your Civil War Ancestor!

    Introducing PhotoDater™ from MyHeritage, an Exclusive, Free New Feature to Estimate When Old Photos Were Taken

    Thanks to Reclaim the Records: Introducing! It's a FREE searchable database of 576,638 births, 2,180,700 marriages, 2,086 civil unions, and 2,772,116 deaths from the state of Connecticut

    17th-Century Records of Those Who Settled in Ulster Now Available Online

    Enterprise Genealogy: Using Google Books

    Yad Vashem Using AI to Restore Memory of Holocaust

    Police are Getting DNA Data from People Who Think They Opted Out

    Webtember 2023: Free Online Genealogy Conference All September Long

    The Census Tree

    30 Million People Today Are Descendants of Passengers on the Mayflower

    World War Two Aerial Photos of England Opened to Public for First Time

    New Local History and Genealogy Research Center Planned for Brown County, Wisconsin Central Library

    Findmypast Adds 500 Years of Herefordshire History

    Adopted Siblings Find Out They Are Related

    Eight Things To Consider When It Comes To The Privacy Of Messenging Applications

  • 18 Aug 2023 3:29 PM | Anonymous

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

    If you have a "smartphone" or a tablet computer with a camera, you already have a book and document scanner that is more than "good enough" for many purposes. All you need to do is to add some free software. The result is a device that can "scan" documents at the library or archives, can digitally save business cards, save receipts for income tax time, digitize all sorts of documents, and is useful for any other time you need to scan and save a copy for later without any fuss. In essence, your smartphone or tablet becomes a scanner that you can have with you all the time.

    One app that may best be defined as a document management solution for mobile devices, starting from capturing information precisely to storing, sharing, annotating and managing documents for different purposes.  It not only creates images of the item you scan, but it also lets you enhance the scan result and auto-crop scanned photos. Unlike taking a simple picture of a document, one app will eliminate the unwanted "border" around a picture or document that typically shows in any image taken with a camera. You end up with just the desired document or picture, nothing more. 

    The same app lets you save document scans in PDF or JPG formats. You can edit and manage documents anywhere an Internet connection is available, using a handheld device or a Windows, Macintosh, or Linux computer. Notes can be added to a document, and OCR scanning is also available free of charge. Documents saved in the cloud can be quickly searched, even if thousands of items are stored there.

    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/13242830.

    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

  • 18 Aug 2023 2:41 PM | Anonymous

    Forensic genetic genealogists skirted GEDmatch privacy rules by searching users who explicitly opted out of sharing DNA with law enforcement.

    Form an article by Jordan Smith published in

    Cece Moore, an actress and director-turned-genetic genealogist, stood behind a lectern at New Jersey’s Ramapo College in late July. Propelled onto the national stage by the popular PBS show “Finding Your Roots,” Moore was delivering the keynote address for the inaugural conference of forensic genetic genealogists at Ramapo, one of only two institutions of higher education in the U.S. that offer instruction in the field. It was a new era, Moore told the audience, a turning point for solving crime, and they were in on the ground floor. “We’ve created this tool that can accomplish so much,” she said.

    Genealogists like Moore hunt for relatives and build family trees just as traditional genealogists do, but with a twist: They work with law enforcement agencies and use commercial DNA databases to search for people who can help them identify unknown human remains or perpetrators who left DNA at a crime scene.

    The field exploded in 2018 after the arrest of Joseph James DeAngelo as the notorious Golden State Killer, responsible for more than a dozen murders across California. DNA evidence collected from a 1980 double murder was analyzed and uploaded to a commercial database; a hit to a distant relative helped a genetic genealogist build an elaborate family tree that ultimately coalesced on DeAngelo. Since then, hundreds of cold cases have been solved using the technique. Moore, among the field’s biggest evangelists, boasts of having personally helped close more than 200 cases.

    The practice is not without controversy. It involves combing through the genetic information of hundreds of thousands of innocent people in search of a perpetrator. And its practitioners operate without meaningful guardrails, save for “interim” guidance published by the Department of Justice in 2019.

    The last five years have been like the “Wild West,” Moore acknowledged, but she was proud to be among the founding members of the Investigative Genetic Genealogy Accreditation Board, which is developing professional standards for practitioners. “With this incredibly powerful tool comes immense responsibility,” she solemnly told the audience. The practice relies on public trust to convince people not only to upload their private genetic information to commercial databases, but also to allow police to rifle through that information. If you’re doing something you wouldn’t want blasted on the front page of the New York Times, Moore said, you should probably rethink what you’re doing. “If we lose public trust, we will lose this tool.” 

    You can read the full story at: 

  • 18 Aug 2023 7:26 AM | Anonymous

    If you are new to genealogy, you should read this article published in the web site:

    Have you ever wondered where you came from? Who were your ancestors and what brought them to America?

    If you’ve ever thought about your origins, then you’re going to want to enroll in a series of new beginner genealogy classes starting-up in South Lake this Fall (but available online to students anywhere  in the world).

    The classes will be held virtually on three Wednesdays in the months of September and October by Pastfinders of South Lake County Genealogical Society.

    There are different sessions you can enroll in and each one requires a separate registration. You are welcome to take as many of the courses as you want, free of charge. The sessions are:

    Session 1: Introducing Immigration Facts, Review the Genealogy Research Plan, Exploring Features of Genealogy Search Engines. This presentation introduces immigration facts and how they in turn can spur research efforts.  A basic step-by-step genealogy research plan is shown. The features of several genealogy research engines are pointed out and one software genealogy program is presented. Participants see the purpose and benefits of various types of Family Group pedigree charts. September 6th from 1 pm to 3 pm.

    You can read more at:
  • 18 Aug 2023 7:18 AM | Anonymous

    The following announcement was written by the folks at Findmypast:

    • Over 650,000 new parish records for the county of Herefordshire released 
    • Findmypast’s newspaper archive hits 70 million pages 
    • Three new Welsh language titles now available to explore  

    Herefordshire Baptisms  

    With 231,270 new baptism transcripts added to this existing collection, it’s never been easier to research Herefordshire roots. Spanning from 1433 to 1950, the new additions may reveal an ancestor’s name, date and place of baptism, and names of parents.  

    Herefordshire Marriages 

    86,782 new marriages have been added to this collection, covering 1433 to 1949. The details can vary, but you’ll typically find the names of both parties alongside the place and date of the marriage. In some cases, you may spot ages and names of their fathers.  

    Herefordshire Burials 

    Wrapping up the new Herefordshire records are an impressive 300,517 new burial records, spanning 1459 to 1959. You can normally glean facts such a name, date and place of burial. Some will also include your ancestor’s age too.   


    Three new Welsh language papers, updates to a further six, and over 75,244 new pages make up this week’s newspaper release. This also takes the newspaper archive’s total pages to over 70 million. 

    New titles: 

    • ·         Llais Y Wlad, 1874, 1876, 1878-1884 
    • ·         Y Dydd, 1877-1883, 1886-1891 
    • ·         Y Gwladgarwr, 1858-1860, 1866, 1875, 1877-1878, 1880-1882 

    Updated titles: 

    • ·         Holborn and Finsbury Guardian, 1875 
    • ·         Islington News and Hornsey Gazette, 1898, 1909 
    • ·         Nelson Leader, 1918 
    • ·         North Middlesex Chronicle, 1898 
    • ·         St. Pancras Guardian and Camden and Kentish Towns Reporter, 1875, 1888 
    • ·         Thomson’s Weekly News, 1925, 1931 
  • 17 Aug 2023 4:59 PM | Anonymous

    The following announcement was written by  Gopher Records:

    A new free web site,, provides a dramatic improvement over the popular “Soldiers and Sailors” site offered by the National Park Service (NPS).  The old NPS system has a weak search engine and it fails to address many limitations of the data itself.  The resulting failed searches and unorganized search results lead researchers to many false conclusions.

    The new site uses the same databases as the NPS system (soldiers, sailors, regiments, and prisoners) but overcomes those limitations, searches additional databases at the same time, and actually helps you to get copies of the soldiers’ military records.

    The Problem:

    The limitations of the NPS system are numerous but largely stem from the fact that you have to match the spelling of the name precisely.  Any discrepancy in the spelling, punctuation, or spacing within the name will cause the search to fail.  So, for instance…

    • A search for “Denison Butler Baldwin” won’t find that soldier because his first and middle names happen to be abbreviated to just one letter in the database. Nearly HALF of the soldiers have their given or middle name abbreviated in this way. (In fact, in this case, a search for “D. B. Baldwin” or “Baldwin, D. B.” won’t find him either because his name happens to be saved in the database as “D.B. Baldwin” with no space after the first period!)
    • Conversely, a search for “Jose A. Sanches” won’t find the soldier by that name because his middle name of Antonio is spelled out in the database;
    • A search for “George Washington” won’t find a soldier whose name happens to be recorded as “Geo. Washington” ” like the one who served in the 64th NY Infantry. There are nearly 100,000 records with abbreviated names like Geo., Wm., Robt., Jno., Benj., Sam’l, etc.
    • A search for “John Smith” won’t find “John Smyth” or “John Smythe” unless those spelling variations have been explicitly saved as alternate names in the record;
    • A search for “McDonald” won’t find “MacDonald”; “Van Able” won’t find “Vanable”, “de la Croix” won’t find “Delacroix”, and “Saint John” won’t find “St. John”, among many other examples.
    • And perhaps worst of all … a search for a name like “Robert J. York” won’t find him unless you think to scroll past dozens of soldiers like Robert J. Shamburg who happened to serve in a New YORK regiment.

    As you can imagine, the requirement that you guess the exact way that a soldier’s name is spelled and/or abbreviated in the database may produce thousands of false negatives. You’ll never know what you didn’t find. At the same time, the peculiarities of the NPS search engine could cause your soldier to be lost in a sea of false positives.

    The Solution: resolves those problems and adds many additional features that greatly improve and prioritize your search results, including:

    • Phonetic Searches so “Canon” finds Caenan, Keynon, Canon, Cannon, etc.;
    • Wildcard Searches so “M?N*HAN” finds Mennehan, Managhan, Monaghan, Mynihan, etc.;
    • Automatic matches on abbreviations – when the first and/or middle name is recorded by only the first letter;
    • Automatic recognition of common abbreviations like Geo., Wm., Robt., Jno., Benj., Sam’l, etc.;
    • Search results are sorted according to how closely they match the search terms.

    And while the new search site includes the same databases of Soldiers, African-American Sailors, Prisoners, and Regimental Histories, you can also search some databases that are not included in the NPS system:

    • more than 200,000 Court Martial records;
    • more than 700,000 burial records in more than 16,000 cemeteries around the country;
    • more than 1,000 ships of the Union Navy with their histories.

    Other handy features allow you to:

    • Simultaneous searches of the databases instead of requiring separate searches of soldiers, sailors, prisoners, etc.
    • Export up to 300 search results to a database or spreadsheet for further analysis;
    • Get a list of all known soldiers in a specific regiment sorted by name or by company;
    • Filter regiments for those that participated in a specific engagement (e.g., Gettysburg);
    • Get advice on where to find a specific soldier’s records online, when appropriate, including links to the National Archives website (free), (free), ($), and ($);
    • Optionally link directly to to order copies of a soldier’s records that will arrive much faster and at a much lower price than when ordering directly from the National Archives. will revolutionize the way that you search for Civil War soldiers.

    You can read still more at:

  • 17 Aug 2023 8:16 AM | Anonymous

    It’s that time of year again! Legacy Family Tree Webinars is thrilled to host our fourth annual Webtember, a FREE, month-long online genealogy conference. Webtember is a fantastic chance to take your genealogy skills and know-how up a level from the comfort of your home!

    Every Friday in September, Legacy Family Tree Webinars will host multiple webinars with expert speakers on a wide variety of family history topics. A total of 25 webinars will take place. You can join live for all five Fridays or just one webinar that strikes your interest. If you can’t join live, no worries: all the recordings will be available and free to view at your convenience through the end of the month.

    Register now for any or all of the sessions!

    This year’s program boasts a wonderful lineup of speakers and fascinating topics. Don’t miss our Director of Content, Mike Mansfield, speaking about the newly released 1931 Canadian census! The full schedule is below:

    Date Time (EST) Speaker Topic
    Sep. 1 10:15 A.M. Teri E. Flack Connecting Generations through Probate and Property
    Sep. 1 11:30 A.M. Colleen Robledo Greene, MLIS Capturing their Stories: Best Practices for Recording Family History Interviews
    Sep. 1 12:45 P.M. Mary Eberle, JD Case Study: Finding My 3rd Great Grandfather: How X-DNA Led the Way
    Sep. 1 2:00 P.M. Dr. Shelley Viola Murphy Following Oral History in search of William Davis but finding Mildred Brand: A Case Study
    Sep. 1 3:30 P.M. Shannon Combs-Bennett DNA Matchmaking Made Easy on MyHeritage
    Sep. 8 10:15 P.M. Thomas MacEntee 3-2-1 data backup is great, but first you need to find all of you data
    Sep. 8 11:30 A.M. Suzanne Russo Adams, AG Italian Local and Parish Censuses
    Sep. 8 12:45 P.M. Elizabeth Swanay O'Neal 10 Places to Search for An Ancestor's Death Date... Without a Death Certificate
    Sep. 8 2:00 P.M. Cyndi Ingle Life Cycle of a Record: From Clerks and Clerics to You, The Digital User
    Sep. 8 3:30 P.M. James M. Beidler Explore Your Ancestors’ Names in the ‘Newspaper Name Index’
    Sep. 15 10:15 A.M. Richard Hill Hidden Roots in Your DNA: Adoptee Success & Surprise Discoveries
    Sep. 15 11:30 A.M. Paula Stuart-Warren, CG, FMGS So, You Think You Know All About City Directories?
    Sep. 15 12:45 P.M. Dave Obee Driven by Faith: The German Protestants in Ukraine
    Sep. 15 2:00 P.M. Lisa Medina Mexican Land Reform and the Ejido: History and Records
    Sep. 15 3:30 P.M. Mike Mansfield Diving into the Newly Released 1931 Canada Census
    Sep. 22 10:15 A.M. Melissa Barker 10 More Things To Do Before Leaving a Library or Archives
    Sep. 22 11:30 A.M. Ann G. Lawthers, SC.D. Hidden Treasure in New England Town Records
    Sep. 22 12:45 P.M. Peggy Clemens Lauritzen, AG Lighthouses and Their Keepers; For Those in Peril on the Sea
    Sep. 22 2:00 P.M. Nicka Smith Finding John Lee
    Sep. 22 3:30 P.M. Elizabeth Shown Mills, CG, CGL Using Negative Evidence: The Power of Silence in the Records
    Sep. 29 10:15 A.M. Lisa A. Alzo, M.F.A. 50 Family History Writing Tips in 50 Minutes
    Sep. 29 11:30 A.M. Craig R. Scott, MA, CG, FUGA Another Revolutionary War Case Study
    Sep. 29 12:45 P.M. Teresa Steinkamp McMillin, CG Mini Case Studies Demonstrate Finding a Town of Origin
    Sep. 29 2:00 P.M. Paul Milner, FUGA, MDiv Welsh Emigration to North America
    Sep. 29 3:30 P.M. Sharon Monson MyHeritage’s US Naturalization Records, Northern California, 1852-1989 Collection


  • 17 Aug 2023 7:56 AM | Anonymous

    Are you a Mayflower descendant? I don't think I am but it is estimated that 30 Million People Today Are descendants of the 102 passengers on board that tiny ship.  There is a good chance that you are one of them.

    Even if you aren't, you've probably met someone who has proudly told you that their ancestors hopped the pond in 1620. Despite being a long-time point of pride—and even class distinction for some New Englanders—the significance is still present in modern-day America. Estimates range as high as 35 million living Mayflower descendants, although the true number may be lower due to intermarriage. What is certain is that pure math is responsible for many humans around the world having famous ancestors, including Mayflower passengers and Genghis Khan.

    Now, 21st-century DNA technology has given a scientific gloss to traditional genealogy, allowing scientists and average Americans to trace their lineage. Simple math means each one of us has 64 fourth great-grandparents, and 4,096 10th great-grandparents (barring intermarriage between ancestors). The further back one goes, the direct ancestors increase exponentially. Given 132 were aboard the Mayflower, and only 53 survived the first winter in their “new world,” the starting pool of Mayflower ancestors is rather small. However, over 400 years later and with ever-dropping infant mortality rates, the descendants definitely number in the millions now.

    British mathematician Rob Eastaway explained to BBC why the 35 million estimates might be a bit too high. In short, Mayflower descendants likely married other descendants most of the time. This is called pedigree collapse. It tends to happen in all family trees, especially since in the past, marriages were often among smaller, even isolated populations. “My father-in-law discovered that their family is descended from Richard Warren,” Eastaway explains. “But not only that, they think that probably my wife and children are also descended from John Howland. So there's even an example of potential pedigree collapse in my own family.”

    You can read a lot more about this in an article by Madeleine Muzdakis  published in the web site at:

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