Holding a genealogy conference in Richmond strikes me as a great idea. The National Genealogical Society held their annual conference in Richmond in 2007. I was there and, as I remember the event, it went well. The Greater Richmond Convention Center is a modern, state-of-the art facility that worked well for the size of the NGS crowd.
The following announcement was written by Ancestry.com LLC:
“We had a solid first quarter financially, highlighted by the momentum from our AncestryDNA product, which is starting to have a positive impact on our revenue,” said Tim Sullivan, Chief Executive Officer of Ancestry.com. “We are confident in our positioning for the long-term as we continue to invest in talent, technology and product enhancements that we believe will broaden the appeal of our service to new generations of users in existing and new markets.”
First Quarter 2014 Financial Highlights
Ireland’s Central Statistics Office (CSO) has made available the series of Annual Reports on Marriages, Births and Deaths in Ireland from 1864 to 1886 and from 1922 to 2000 inclusive. These reports from the CSO archives have been scanned and converted into PDF format. The Annual Reports for the years 1887 to 1921 were scanned by the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA). Annual reports for the years 2001 to 2011 are already available in the Births, Deaths and Marriages Archive on the CSO website.
The following is a Plus Edition article written by and copyright by Dick Eastman.
Donald Sterling, billionaire owner of the Los Angeles Clippers basketball team, has made headlines this week. I won’t describe his racist comments as many others have already done that. However, an item in one report caught my eye: Sterling has a personal archivist. I guess when you are a billionaire, you can hire someone to record every word you speak, everything you write, and everything you ever do, in order to preserve all words and actions for posterity. However, Sterling probably now regrets having someone record the words that created all the problems.
The following book review was written by Bobbi King:
The five authors call themselves The Memory Keepers. They have published their accounts to honor their ancestors’ lives in Edgefield County, situated in the Piedmont of South Carolina known in the old days as the Backcountry, or the Upcountry.
Their ancestors were the enslaved workers who helped create the fortunes of slave owners but who, as equally as the white occupants, contributed to the history of South Carolina. The Edgefield District heritage continues to be watched over by members of the Old Edgefield District Genealogical Society, the Old Edgefield District African American Genealogical Society, and the Afro-American Historical and Genealogical Society, Inc.
Medical professionals have long known that biogeographical data is useful in screening for disease risk and drug sensitivity associated with certain ethnic groups. Using a database of worldwide populations, investigators developed a dataset of reference populations that are genetically diverse and have been geographically localized for centuries. With the newly-developed tool, the investigators were able to take unknown samples, identify the proportions of admixture–meaning, genetic characteristics specific to certain ethnic groups that were combined because of events like migration or invasion–and then calculate the distance to the nearest known population that shares the same admixture signature, in order to identify place of origin.
FamilySearch Adds More Than 5.8 Million Images to Collections from Belgium, England, Philippines, Portugal, Spain, and the United States
The following announcement was written by FamilySearch:
FamilySearch has added more than 5.8 million images to collections from Belgium, England, Philippines, Portugal, Spain, and the United States. Notable collection updates include the 90,674 images from the new Belgium, West Flanders, Civil Registration, 1582-1910, collection; the 485,188 indexed records from the England, Essex Parish Registers, 1538-1900, collection ; and the 1,188,800 indexed records from United States Registers of Enlistments in the U.S. Army, 1798-1914, collection. See the table below for the full list of updates. Search these diverse collections and more than 3.5 billion other records for free at FamilySearch.org.
It is great to see an award-winning family history librarian be promoted. The following announcement was written by the office of the Michigan Director of Public and Governmental Affairs:
LANSING – Randy Riley has been selected as the next State Librarian, the Michigan Department of Education (MDE) announced. Riley, who has been the Michigan eLibrary (MeL) coordinator, will succeed Nancy Robertson, who is retiring April 30th after almost a decade in that role.
Riley is a librarian’s librarian, according to State Superintendent Mike Flanagan, with 24 years of varied experience at the Library of Michigan (LM), where he coordinated Michigan’s Notable Books program and Center for the Book, plus MeL.
Several government security response teams and almost everyone who writes online articles about computer topics are urging Windows users to consider Chrome or Firefox as their default browser until Microsoft delivers a security fix for a new flaw affecting all versions of Internet Explorer. Computer emergency response teams (CERTs) in the US, the UK, and Sweden have advised Windows users to consider avoiding Internet Explorer until Microsoft fixes the vulnerability.
Over the weekend, Microsoft confirmed the flaw was being exploited in “limited, targeted attacks”, which use a rigged Flash file hosted on attack websites to net victims. Attackers that successfully exploit the flaw affecting IE 6 to IE 11 could gain the same user rights as the original user, according to Microsoft.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security recommends that people ditch Internet Explorer until there’s a patch — or install special software in the meantime instead.
National Archives of Ireland, Findmypast and FamilySearch partnership places Irish Census Records Online Free of Charge
The following announcement was written by the folks at DC Thomson Family History:
- Irish census records made available online for the first time – and free of charge
- Records provide valuable insights into a ‘lost era’ (1821-1851) of Irish history
- Launched today at the National Archives of Ireland by Jimmy Deenihan, TD, Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht
Dublin, Ireland – The National Archives of Ireland and leading Irish family history website findmypast today announced the release of an extensive series of records that will prove an invaluable resource for anyone tracing Irish ancestry. The records, which include over 600,000 names from pre-1901 Irish census records, are now available to access for free on findmypast and the National Archives website (genealogy.nationalarchives.ie). The launch of the Irish Census records forms part of findmypast’s 100in100 promise to launch 100 record sets in 100 days.
Newsletter reader Joy Masepoli sent a link to a fascinating online article. 3D printing isn’t a method of printing on paper. Instead, it is a computer-controlled piece of machinery that can create three-dimensional solid objects of virtually any shape. 3D printing has been used to create machinery, replacement parts for antique automobiles, toys, doorknobs, bone implants for humans, dental implants, and even parts to rebuild the face of a motorcyclist who had been seriously injured in a road accident. (See http://goo.gl/5qNZBy for details about the facial implant.)
Now a “Jewelry Replicator” can duplicate a piece of heirloom jewelry, even though the original is not available. All that is needed is a photograph. In fact, the company is focusing on old family photos.
It happened again. A lesser-known company in the genealogy business sent a press release to me this morning, obviously hoping I would publish it in my newsletter. After reading the announcement, I wasn’t very impressed with this new product. However, what really turned me off was the frequent use of the word “amazing.”
“This amazing new product…”
“These amazing stories…”
“You will be amazed…”
It sounded like an infomercial on late-night television from Ronco-Popeil. “This amazing product slices and dices…”
The following announcement was written by the folks at British Origins:
A major census substitute resource for local and family historians
Hearth Tax returns of the second half of the 17th century are a major census substitute resource for local and family historians, providing lists of names midway between the period of surname formation in the Middle Ages and the present day.
This collection includes all legible details relating to over 22,500 individuals found in the original Hearth Tax lists 1673–1674 for the whole of Northamptonshire
Why use Hearth Tax records?
The following announcement was written by the Federation of Genealogical Societies:
April 28, 2014 – Austin, TX. Genealogy bloggers, societies, writers and editors are invited to participate in the Federation of Genealogical Societies 2014 Conference by becoming FGS 2014 Ambassadors. Ambassadors help to spread information about the FGS 2014 Conference in San Antonio, Texas, August 27-30, 2014, through social media to their friends, colleagues, and everyone interested in genealogy.
FGS 2014 Ambassadors will be:
MyHeritage today announced that its digital library of historical records has now passed the 5 billion milestone. In total, MyHeritage now features 5.18 billion records. The following was written by the folks at MyHeritage:
Today we are pleased to announce that MyHeritage has reached an exciting milestone: we’ve surpassed 5 billion historical records!
It has taken only two years for MyHeritage to build this treasure trove of historical information demonstrating that MyHeritage is one of the fastest-growing and most internationally diverse family history companies in the world.
U.S. Air Force Still Uses 8-inch Floppies in a Computer that Delivers Launch Commands to US Nuclear Missiles
And I thought genealogists were sometimes slow to modernize! Lesley Stahl from the “60 Minutes” news program discovered that the U.S. Air Force still uses 8-inch floppy disks to load data into the communication system that delivers launch commands to US missile forces. That includes missiles with nuclear warheads.
8-inch floppies? I thought they became obsolete in the 1980s.
Ancestry.com has just released 11.5 million new records documenting one of the most prominent groups in American history, the “Religious Society of Friends,” more commonly known as Quakers. Spanning over 300 years (late 1600s – late 1900s), the collection includes birth, marriage, death, disownment, and memorial records, sourced from the Quaker’s monthly meeting minutes.
You can read the details in an announcement in the Ancestry.com Blog at
Ireland’s Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht will be launching all of the Archives’ pre-1901 census holdings online. The announcement probably has been made by the time you read these words. However, there won’t be as many records available as you might first think.
As John Grenham explains in an article in the Irish Times web site, Ireland started recording census records of its population in 1821, long before any of the other British Isles did the same. However, several of the record sets were later destroyed for various reasons. The records launching online now are only those records that have SURVIVED.
The videos feature news videos from Britain and also from many other countries. The collection includes the World’s Fair Parade of 1939, clips from World War I, the Miss World Pageant of 1969, as well as a number of reports and stories from across the globe from 1896 to 1976. You probably won’t find any of your ancestors in these videos, unless you are very lucky, but you will learn a lot about the world in which they lived and the events that shaped their lives.
One of the more interesting (?) videos was that of Arnold Schwarzenegger winning the Mr Universe competition in 1969, available at http://youtu.be/c7Iaz_r2t-g.