Posts By Dick Eastman

NYPL’s Early American Manuscripts Project

EarlyAmericanManuscriptsProjectHere is a valuable online resource for genealogists, historians, students, and probably many others as well. The New York Public Library is currently digitizing upwards of 50,000 pages of historic early American manuscript material.

Quoting from the Project’s web site: “…to revisit major political events of the era from new perspectives and to explore currents of everyday social, cultural, and economic life in the colonial, revolutionary, and early national periods. The project will present on-line for the first time high quality facsimiles of key documents from America’s Founding, including the papers of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton and James Madison. Drawing on the full breadth of the Library’s manuscript collections, it will also make widely available less well-known manuscript sources, including business papers of Atlantic merchants, diaries of people ranging from elite New York women to Christian Indian preachers, and organizational records of voluntary associations and philanthropic organizations. Over the next two years, this trove of manuscript sources, previously available only at The Library, will be made freely available through”

Book Review: First Métis Families of Quebec

First_Métis_Families_of_QuebecFirst Métis Families of Quebec
by Gail Morin. Genealogical Publishing Company. 2012-2015. Five volumes.

The Métis are generally considered the people descended from the aboriginal North American Indians and the later European trader-settlers. The term historically has referred to people also called half-breed, mongrel, Country-born, Mountain Men, or Sauvages (savages). (This information on Métis background material read at

The format of all five volumes is similar. There are a few individual detail reports on the primary progenitors of each book, followed by the genealogies of their descendants. Lots and lots of genealogies. With lots of information from facts that are well-documented using Canadian and United States sources. Each volume has an index of thousands of names. Five volumes have been published, and I believe there are to be six volumes in total.

First Métis Families of Quebec, Volume 1, Fifty-Six Families covers three generations of the descendants of the original fifty-six families.

14,000 Images of the French Revolution Released Online

Exécution capitale à l'aide d'une guillotineThe French Revolution Digital Archive, a partnership between Stanford University and the Bibliothèque nationale de France, was announced last week with some 14,000 high-resolution images.

The site contains both resources for the dedicated scholar and fascinating material for the everyday history buff, from prints depicting the events of 1789 to records of parliamentary deliberations and private letters. FRDA is the result of a multi-year collaboration of the Stanford University Libraries and the Bibliothèque nationale de France (BnF) to produce a digital version of the key research sources on the French Revolution and make them available to the international scholarly community. The archive is based around two main resources, the Archives parlementaires, and a vast corpus of images first brought together in 1989 and known as the Images de la Revolution française. As an online database the archive is now searchable in a multitude of ways providing scholars new ways to conduct research and making it easier for any user to explore this pivotal moment in the history of France, and, indeed, the world.

You can access the French Revolution Digital Archive at

Historians Searching for Information About Victorian Criminals

Historians have been handed hundreds of mugshots of Victorian criminals. Now, armed only with the pictures and names, they are searching for the stories behind the stares, putting a crime to the face. Each image shows the arrested individual with their name written in chalk either on a board held in front of them or, in later years, on a slate above their heads. The later pictures also feature the arrested with hands raised to the chest to capture any identifying marks, tattoos or missing digits, and a mirror to reflect their profile. However, none of the entries give any identifying information about the people in the photographs nor is there any information about their crimes.

Wait a minute, is that great-great-uncle Harry on the left in that picture?

(+) Hands-on with the ScanSnap Evernote Edition Scanner

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

NOTE: Click on any of the images below to view larger versions.

I have written often about Evernote, one of my favorite software tools. I use Evernote several times most every day, both for genealogy and for all sorts of non-genealogy tasks. After using the program for a couple of years, I added the ScanSnap Evernote Edition, a desktop scanner designed especially for use with Evernote. Insert a stack of documents into the scanner, press a button, and all the documents are digitized, OCR’ed (converted to computer text), and inserted into Evernote automatically. It scans, senses, and autofiles your photos, receipts, business cards, and documents into your designated Evernote notebooks (which work like folders). It works with either Windows or Macintosh systems. The ScanSnap Evernote Edition does this via either wired or wireless wi-fi connections.

The Genealogy Roadshow is Coming to Houston and You Are Invited to Attend

On Sunday, Nov. 22nd, PBS’ Genealogy Roadshow will be taping an episode at the Ideson Library Building, 550 McKinney & Smith Street in downtown Houston. The location is across the street from City Hall. The public is invited to attend as audience members from 9 am to 6 pm. It probably will be crowded so you might want to show up a bit early to get a good viewing location.

Click on the image below to see a larger version of the event brochure:

New Records Available To Search This Findmypast Friday

The following announcement was written by Findmypast:

Find my past logos.inddThis week’s Findmypast Friday also marks the release of new additions to our collection of Yorkshire burials, marriage licences from the ancient Anglican Diocese of Ely in Cambridgeshire and a fascinating index of merchant ships from a time when Britain was the world’s most powerful trading nation.

The Lloyd’s Register of Merchant Ships Index 1843

The Lloyd’s Register of Merchant Ships Index 1843 was created using the 1843 publication of Lloyd’s Register of British and Foreign Shipping, provided by John Dagger. Lloyd’s register was completed annually and this register covers 1 July 1843 to 30 June 1844. During this time, Britain was a powerful trading nation and a leader of industry in the world. The names found within this index refer to the master of the ship. The master was responsible for the vessel’s daily operation including navigation, ensuring that the ship was fitted out correctly, repairs and overseeing all the cargo. The master also kept the daily logs for the ship and managed the ship’s budget.

National Genealogical Society Seeks Nominations for the 2016 National Genealogy Hall of Fame

The following announcement was written by the National Genealogical Society:

NationalGenealogyHallofFameWould your society like to honor a genealogist whose unique, pioneering, or exemplary work lives on today? Perhaps there was a notable genealogist in your state or county whose name should be memorialized in the National Genealogy Hall of Fame.

If so, the National Genealogical Society would like to hear from you. NGS and the National Genealogy Hall of Fame are seeking nominations from the entire genealogical community for persons whose achievements or contributions have made an impact on the field. This educational program increases appreciation of the dedication and useful advancements achieved by committed genealogists whose work paved the way for researchers today. This is an opportunity for your nominee to receive national exposure for their contributions to genealogy.

APG Elects Billie Stone Fogarty President

The following announcement was written by the Association of Professional Genealogists:

Executive Committee, Board Members, and Nominating Committee Elected for the Next Term

WHEAT RIDGE, Colo., 5 November 2015−Today the Association of Professional Genealogists (APG®) announced election results for its 2016–17 executive committee, as well as for nine board members, and two nominating committee members. Billie Fogarty, M.Ed., of Oklahoma City was elected president. An APG Life Member, Fogarty has served in many different capacities within the organization. She recently completed her fourth year as president of the Genealogical Speakers Guild. A frequent speaker at national conferences, she is also active on the regional, state, and local levels in advancing genealogical research and open records access as a state liaison for the Records Preservation and Access Committee. She has worked diligently for the Oklahoma Genealogical Society, with seven terms as president.

“What an exciting time to be a professional genealogist!” said Billie Fogarty, APG President Elect. “Our chosen field continues to make significant strides with APG standing strong beside us. The talent of the elected board members plus the dedication of members working at all levels in the chapters and committees will ensure that we make positive contributions to the goal of promoting the highest ethical standards for genealogy.”

Canada’s New Government Restores the Mandatory Long Census Forms

Canada’s new Liberal government is reinstating the mandatory long-form census that was scrapped by the Conservatives five years ago. “We need good, reliable data,” said Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development Navdeep Bains, who made the announcement on Parliament Hill.

A promise to “immediately” restore the long-form census was one of the planks in the Liberal Party’s platform during the recent federal election. The announcement came one day after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his new cabinet was sworn in.

In Memory: Ancestry Launches Historic WWII Canadian Records Collection and Offers FREE Access November 6 to November 11

The following announcement was written by the folks at

Digitized records detail the brave service of more than 29,000 Canadian soldiers killed in action in WWII

Detailed new collection includes attestation forms, medical history forms and correspondence to family members back in Canada

Records of Canadian Military heroes John Robert Osborn, Samuel Moses Hurwitz and David Hornell help shed light on these brave soldiers during WWII

Ancestry is offering free online access to its entire collection of global military records from November 6 to November 11


TORONTO, Nov. 5, 2015 – As Canada prepares to pay tribute to the men and women who have fought and died for our country this Remembrance weekend, Ancestry, the world’s largest online family history resource, has launched a key collection of detailed records pertaining to fallen soldiers from the Second World War.

Steve Morse adds 1921 Canadian Census to the One-Step Web Pages

Dr. Stephen Morse is the originator of the very popular One-Step Search Tools, a collection of search tools that simplify searching of information on the major genealogy databases on a variety of other web sites. He allows anyone to use these “One Step Webpages” at his website,, without charge as a public service.


Steve has now added a search method for the 1921 Canadian Census that simplifies finding the data you seek. The data being indexed is from Steve simply created alternative methods of searching the information on While you enter the search parameters at, clicking on SUBMIT then redirects you to the web site to see the results.

Stolen Ontario Parish Safe is Returned

Good news! While thieves broken into St-Joachim Catholic Church in Chute-à-Blondeau, Ontario, in late September and carried away the safe, that safe has now been recovered. Bad news: the church’s parish registers kept in the safe have been damaged.

The safe contained a small amount of money and all the church’s hand-written parish registers, including christening and marriage records. In some cases the missing papers traced the same families for 130 years as generations lived, married and died there. See my earlier article about the theft at

On Friday, police in Grenville, Quebec, found the safe lying in a ditch. It wasn’t in good shape after being forced open, and was also lying in water. The hand-written record books were soaked.

(+) How to Use a Cell Phone at Home When You Don’t Have Cell Phone Coverage at Home

(+) Subtitle: How to Also Save Money on Your Present Cell Phone Bill

(+) Sub-subtitle: How to Save Money on Cell Phone Calls When Traveling Overseas

This article has nothing to do with genealogy. If you are looking for genealogy articles, you might want to skip this one. However, I decided to write it after reading a comment by a newsletter reader.

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

no-cell-serviceI have read comments from several people saying they wished they could use a cell phone but they cannot because there is little or no cell phone coverage at their home. With today’s technology, that should not stop them from having a cell phone for use at home and elsewhere. In most cases, using the new technology will provide cheaper and better service than traditional telephone and cellular companies. In fact, cell phone calls placed from within your home usually are free of charge because those calls do not count as “cell phone minutes” being used. However this solution will only work for anyone who has a broadband Internet connection in the home. As long as they have updated their internet access from dial-up modem to broadband, almost everyone can take advantage of this solution.

MyHeritage Announces Search Connect™, a Powerful New Way for Many Genealogists to Collaborate While Looking for Shared Ancestors

MyHeritage_logoMyHeritage has just announced what I think is a major breakthrough in genealogy research, called Search Connect™. This new technology helps distant relatives – even distant relatives who have never met or even heard of each other – work together to find the origins of a shared ancestor.

I first heard about this new technology in July while attending the International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies annual conference, held this year in Jerusalem. MyHeritage CEO Gilad Japhet gave a keynote presentation that covered a number of topics, including products and services MyHeritage planned to announce in coming months. (You can watch Gilad Japhet’s keynote speech in a YouTube video at or in the video player below.)

While he didn’t give it a name, one service he described promised to bring together distant relatives who are researching a common ancestor. He simply called it, “New technology #1.” At the time, his description sounded intriguing, although perhaps a bit futuristic: using MyHeritage’s computer databases to identify probable distant cousins who could help each other in research efforts? This collaboration could reduce the workload of each genealogist working individually by allowing people to share workload and goals, thereby making everyone more efficient.

Today I recognized what Gilad Japhet described last July. It is now an available product, called Search Connect™, and it is available today.

CAFG Announces Scholarship for 2016 Institute

The following announcement was written by the Council for the Advancement of Forensic Genealogy:

AFG Announces Scholarship Covering 50% of Tuition to the 2016 Forensic Genealogy Institute

Hand-on Forensic Genealogy Event More than 65% Filled; Seats at FGI Expected to Sell Out Soon

Dallas, Texas – November 4, 2015 – The Council for the Advancement of Forensic Genealogy (CAFG) is now accepting applications for a $225 scholarship to the 5th Annual Forensic Genealogy Institute (FGI), to be held March 10-12, 2016, at The Menger Hotel at the Riverwalk in San Antonio, Texas. Registration is now open at Tuition for each course is $445, and the scholarship covers more than 50% of that fee.

DNA Study Helps Solve Abraham Lincoln Lineage Debate

The ancestry of Abraham Lincoln’s mother, Nancy Hanks Lincoln, has been debated for a long time. While several theories have been published, none of them included convincing proof. Now a new DNA study by group of five researchers working with Family Tree DNA has solved a 150-year-old mystery surrounding the true identity of Nancy Hanks Lincoln’s mother.

Call for Papers Now Open for 36th IAJGS International Conference on Jewish Genealogy

The following announcement was written by the International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies:

Seattle, Washington – The International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies has announced a call for papers for its 36th Annual Conference to be held from August 7 to 12, 2016 in Seattle, Washington.

“The Wandering Jew” is the theme of the 2016 conference.


Topic tracks include:

Microsoft Reneges on ‘Unlimited’ OneDrive Storage Promise for Office 365 Subscribers

microsoft-onedrive-logoNearly a year ago, I wrote (at, “… late in the year Microsoft removed all storage limits from OneDrive and OneDrive for Business accounts for anyone with an Office 365 subscription. That’s right, unlimited online storage space.” That statement was accurate when written but Microsoft has now dropped the free offer. The company now says it has no intention of keeping those promises.

If you have been keeping a lot of files in Microsoft OneDrive, you will want to read the article by Ed Bott at

How To Share, Send or Loan Your Kindle Books

HowToShareSendorLoanYourKindleBooksI have read a few comments online stating that one drawback of ebooks is that they cannot be shared or lent to others. That may be true for some ebooks but not for Kindle ebooks purchased from Amazon. Step-by-step instructions for doing all that are provided in a Kindle ebook (naturally!) entitled How To Share, Send or Loan Your Kindle Books. Written by Ivan Peretti, the table of contents includes:

Method 1: Share Kindle books by using the same Amazon Account.
Share Using “Send to Kindle” Program
Send to Kindle through Windows Explorer
Send to Kindle through a print dialog

Method 2. Download and Transfer via USB

Method 3. Kindle Book Lending
How to Find Loanable Kindle Books
Lending via Manage Your Kindle page
Getting Kindle Book Loans
Downloading a Kindle book Loan
More Info on Kindle Book Lending
Loaning Frequently Asked Questions & Answers


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