announces Find-A-Grave Community Day

On Saturday 17th October, Ancestry is hosting our global ‘Find A Grave Community Day’. Essentially, this is an annual day taking place across the world whereby encourages people to visit their local cemeteries to take photos and videos of headstones, explore the grounds and share stories – to preserve the history of all our ancestors buried in cemeteries across the world. (Find A Grave is a division of

You can find out more about this annual community day at Promises to Preserve Photos, Files 100 Years Beyond Your Death

Are you concerned about preserving your genealogy database and digitized family photographs for future generations? One company says it has the solution, using technology that will last much longer than paper, magnetic tapes, flash drives, or CD-ROM disks.

Forever_box_webGlen Meakem has launched, which Meakem says is the world’s first permanent online media storage and sharing service.

Forever claims to offer you one home for all your stories and special moments. The web site makes it easy to store, organize, share and print your family photos for generations. The web site also offers a “Forever Guarantee.”

Your Guaranteed Storage is backed up in multiple places across multiple regions, ensuring you will never lose any of your photos. Over time, will even migrate your files to newer formats as old formats become obsolete.

Update: Pamela Weisberger, R.I.P.

This is an update to the sad news about Pamela Weisberger published earlier at

For more information on the celebration of life and how you can leave a message of remembrance, please visit

An Interview with Blaine Bettinger, The Genetic Genealogist

Blaine Bettinger has a Ph.D. in biochemistry with a concentration in genetics and is extremely interested in the recent developments in genetic genealogy. He has been using traditional genealogical research to learn more about his ancestry for almost 20 years. In 2003 he used an autosomal DNA test from one of the first companies offering this type of testing. Since then he has been writing and lecturing extensively about how to apply DNA to your genealogy research.

I had a chance to talk with Blaine at the recent New York State Family History Conference in Syracuse, New York. Blaine talked about his involvement in DNA and he gave great advice for newcomers on how to get started.

Pamela Weisberger, R.I.P.

pamela_weisbergerAcquaintances of Pamela Weisberger will be saddened to hear that she passed away this morning after a very brief illness.

Pam was a professional genealogist with a long list of accomplishments. She was the president of Gesher Galicia Inc. as well as 1st Vice-President & Program Chair of the Jewish Genealogical Society of Los Angeles, and was on the the Advisory Board of the Global Family Reunion.

She leaves her husband Ken, and her three children.

New Records Available To Search This Findmypast Friday

The following announcement was written by the folks at Findmypast:

Findmypast logoThis week’s Findmypast Friday marks the release of over 100,000 pages of Directories & Almanac records covering 300 years of history in the UK, Ireland, Australasia and the British Colonies as well as six brand new Irish Newspaper titles and over 724,000 new articles.

Britain, Directories & Almanacs

Britain, Directories & Almanacs allows you to explore 112 volumes of fascinating documents spanning three centuries. They include a wide variety of records ranging from trade directories and county guides to almanacs and general directories. Almanacs and directories are an excellent resource for anyone researching their family history and can provide unique insights into how your ancestors lived.

Genealogy Jamboree 2016 Conference Call for Presentations has been Extended

The following announcement was written by the Southern California Genealogical Society:

The Southern California Genealogical Society announces its EXTENSION of the Call for Presentations for the 47th Annual Southern California Genealogy Jamboree, to be held Friday through Sunday, June 3 – 5, 2016 with a pre-conference day on Thursday, June 2, 2016, to include a full day of DNA presentations and in-depth workshops, at the Los Angeles Marriott Burbank Airport Hotel, Burbank, California. This call also includes the 2016 Jamboree Extension Series webinar program. Presentations will only be accepted through the online portal until October 7, 2015.

2016_Annual Southern California Genealogy Jamboree_Banner

The Massachusetts State Archives is Running out of Room

The Massachusetts State Archives’ modern building, erected in 1986 with the expectation that it would exhaust its space within 25 years, is bursting at the seams. Officials say the two-story facility at Boston’s Columbia Point has simply run out of room to store the state’s most valuable and timeless records. Even worse, Massachusetts has received failing grades from government watchdogs who complain that public records requests are often must met with lengthy waits and exorbitant costs for the material.

My Interview on Radio Sputnik

RadioSputnikLogoI recently had the honor of being interviewed on the Russian radio network called Radio Sputnik. Co-hosts Svetlana Ekimenko and Victor Erofeyev and I discussed how easy it is to research your family tree on the Internet, the accuracy of the information found online, and we also speculated a bit about why people are motivated to find information about their ancestors. You can listen to the 14+ minute interview (in English) at

(+) Hands On with QromaScan: A New, Smarter Way to Scan Photos

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

In the May 12, 2015, newsletter (at, I described a newly-announced device that will convert an iPhone into a scanner. I wrote, “One caveat: it only works with an iPhone. Oh, and another caveat: it isn’t available yet.”

The new device, called a QromaScan, had been invented, but the producer did not have the funds to go into production. To raise the funds, the company started a Kickstarter campaign. (You can read about Kickstarter fund raising at and at The Kickstarter/QromaScan goal was to raise $20,000 to fund production.

I also wrote, “QromaScan is currently seeking funding on Kickstarter. If successful, the developers plan to start shipping in July.” Then I mentioned, “I ordered one today…”

New FamilySearch Collections Update: Week of September 21, 2015

The following announcement was written by the folks at FamilySearch:

FamilySearch_LogoCheck out the Pennsylvania Civil Marriages 1677-1950, Ohio County Marriages 1789-2013, and Virginia Richmond City Birth Index 1870-1912 additions this week.  Millions more records were also added for Italy (Potenza, Rieti, and Trapani) and Colombia. Search for these new records and more by selecting the links below.

New Brunswick’s Oland Murder Trial Focuses on the Family’s Genealogy

This sounds like a murder-mystery novel except that it is a true story. A murder trial in Saint John, New Brunswick is describing a twisted tale of relationships and rivalries, with the family’s genealogy possibly playing a significant role in the events leading up to the murder.

Richard OlandAt the time of his death, the jurors have heard, Richard Oland (shown to the right) had $37 million in investments, the lion’s share of which came from the 2006 sale of his shares in Moosehead Breweries Limited to his brother Derek. Dennis Oland is accused of murdering his own father with an axe.

The father and son reportedly shared a love of the Oland family history. In fact, Richard Oland’s body was found next to some documents son Dennis Oland may have delivered on the day of the murder, documents Dennis found during his recent genealogical research or on his recent trip to England.

Workshop for Descendants of Authors of Slave Narratives

The following announcement was written by the University at Buffalo:

Giving their ancestors a voice: UB workshop to provide descendants of slaves with tools to research family history

Descendants of Dred Scott, Solomon Northup, Jeffrey Brace, Lewis G. Clarke, Moses Grandy, William Grimes and Venture Smith to take part in historic event

BUFFALO, N.Y. – The descendants of former slaves will gather at the University at Buffalo for a groundbreaking workshop to reconnect participants with their ancestors, further reveal their family histories and bring new voice to rich historical stories often silenced by the difficulties of tracing obscure and hard-to-follow genealogical paths.

The unprecedented three-day Workshop for Descendants of Authors of Slave Narratives, which will explore participants’ ancestral roots through discussions, reflections and writing exercises, will be led by Kari Winter, professor of transnational studies and director of UB’s Institute for Research and Education on Women and Gender.

Diane Clemmons honored as the Outstanding Volunteer Genealogist

Diane Clemmons, registrar of John Bartram Chapter-DAR, has been honored as the Outstanding Volunteer Genealogist by the Florida State Society of Daughters of the American Revolution at its fall convention in Orlando this past weekend. Clemmons qualified for the award by helping so many prospective members that John Bartram Chapter became DAR’s fastest growing chapter in the nation in 2014.

Details may be found at

Book Review: Hinrich, Annals of an Immigrant Family, 1866-1913

The following book review was written by Bobbi King:

Hinrich_bookHinrich, Annals of an Immigrant Family, 1866-1913
by David Schlichting. Memoir Books. 2015. 292 pages.

Mr. Schlichting consulted a wide variety of German migration references, and it shows in the background information he provides as he relates his family history within the larger context of the social times of their residencies in Europe and America. He notably brings to life the course of events his research uncovered.

The Hinrich Schlichtings immigrated in 1869 from northern Germany, passing through the American cities of Cincinnati and Milwaukee, finally making their homes in the farming areas of Wabasha County, Minnesota. Some families traveled farther west into Oregon.

Mr. Schlichting nicely transforms fact into story, such as when he describes an early Minnesota settlement:

Have Your Entire Genome Sequenced for $250

This offer is only available in the U.K. and in South Africa. However, the fact that anyone can provide your entire genome sequence for only $250 is news. I suspect similar prices will soon be available elsewhere although the laws in some countries could be an issue.

Customers of South African health insurance provider Discovery Health will soon be able to have their entire genome sequenced by Human Longevity Inc., which genomics pioneer Craig Venter cofounded last year. The deal between Discovery and Human Longevity marks the first agreement struck between an insurer and a personal genomics company aimed at offering wide access to genetic information. Discovery insures approximately 4 million people in South Africa and the U.K.

She Went to College to Study Anthropology and Found Her Slave Ancestors Nearby

This story seems ironic although I doubt if it is the first time something like this happened. Michelle Taylor recently graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University. Like millions of other people, Taylor started researching her own ancestry. She was surprised to not only find dusty old records, but to even visit the cabin where her ancestor, freed slave George Gilmore, lived. He was a man who had been enslaved by James Madison at Montpelier, about 30 miles northwest of her school.

You can read the full story in an article by Moriah Balingit in the Washington Post at

(+) The Genealogy Library Inside Your Computer: How to Increase Your Personal Genealogy Library without Additional Bookshelves

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

Do you have ten or more printed genealogy books at home? Where do you store them? How much space does that require? Do you perhaps own a hundred books? Did you ever buy a book at a genealogy conference, take it home, and then find you already had the book? (I plead “guilty” to that problem.)

ebooksThis article will describe one method of increasing your genealogy library at little or no cost. The goals are to:


  • Save space
  • Find information faster and easier
  • Increase your knowledge
  • Save money

How do we do this? The answer is simple: ebooks. The process is simple, and many books are available free of charge. Best of all, you don’t have to purchase bookcases or build an addition onto your house just for books.

Some of us face a difficult task:

Poughkeepsie Journal Newspapers are now Online

PoughkeepsieJournalWould you like to find an article, obituary or photo published in the Poughkeepsie Journal or its predecessors? and Gannett Co. Inc., the Journal’s parent company, have digitized the Journal’s centuries of archives. The Journal is the second-oldest paper in the nation, and the oldest in New York state. More than 1.2 million published newspaper pages are available on, which is owned by Visit to begin your search.

RootsPoint Announces the Fondo Colonial Archive Image Collection for Hispanic Heritage Month

The following announcement was written by the folks at

One-of-a-kind collection of 17th-19th century archival records available for free

HENDERSON, NV—(September 22, 2015)– Genealogy website, in collaboration with the Hispanic Heritage Project, announced today free access to the Fondo Colonial collection from the Archivo Históricos Municipal de Hidalgo del Parral (Parral Archive). The browsable collection of more than 77,500 digitized images available on the RootsPoint website spans the period between 1611 and 1821 and contains civil colonial records of the Province of Nueva Viscaya. Today, this area consists of the states of Chihuahua, Durango, Sonora, Sinaloa and part of Coahuila, Mexico. Images include records of the government, finance and treasury, church, militia, notaries and protocols.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 10,136 other followers