MyHeritage is Offering a Hot DNA Sale

If you are thinking of having your DNA or a relative’s DNA tested, now is a good time. In fact, it is also a good time to obtain a “second opinion” to compare against a previous DNA test you took and whose findings are questionable in your mind.

MyHeritage (the sponsor of this newsletter) has started a Hot DNA Sale in the US and worldwide which will run through August 20th. The price of a DNA kit sent to a US address is ONLY $69 and includes free standard shipping if you order two or more kits. Similar price reductions are available in many other countries around the world.

For more information or to order kits now, click on the above image.

The 1800s: When Americans Drank Whiskey Like it was Water

Our American ancestors seemed to like to drink… a lot. According to an article by Jim Vorel in PasteMagazine.com:

The Ale-House Door, a painting by Henry Singleton. c. 1790.

“By 1700, the colonists drank fermented peach juice, hard apple cider, and rum, which they imported from the West Indies or distilled from West Indian molasses. Drinking was an important part of the culture, and people passed around jugs or bowls of liquor at barbecues, on market days, and at elections. Candidates gave away free drinks. A stingy candidate had no chance of winning. Practically everyone drank. Even restrained New Englanders consumed great quantities of liquor. The Puritans called alcohol the ‘Good Creature of God,’ a holy substance to be taken proudly yet cautiously.”

He goes on to note: “By 1770, Americans consumed alcohol routinely with every meal. Many people began the day with an ‘eye opener’ and closed it with a nightcap. People of all ages drank, including toddlers, who finished off the heavily sugared portion at the bottom of a parent’s mug of rum toddy. Each person consumed about three and a half gallons of alcohol per year.”

Genealogy Center at the Allen County Public Library Hours Extended for Conference

The Genealogy Center at the Allen County Public Library will hold extended hours next week. The library’s schedule for Aug. 22-26 will assist family history researchers, presenters, and exhibitors attending the Federation of Genealogical Societies Conference at Grand Wayne Center.

“One of the event’s main draws will surely be its proximity to the Genealogy Center at the Allen County Public Library, which has been recognized as the nation’s second largest family history collection available for public use,” the library said in a release Tuesday.

Extended hours for the Genealogy Center:

Hotel Reservations Now Open for the National Genealogical Society’s 2019 Family History Conference

These rooms usually sell out quickly. If you are planning to attend the NGS conference next year in St. Charles, Missouri, you probably want to make your hotel reservations NOW. I made my reservation this morning.

The following announcement was written by the  National Genealogical Society:

FALLS CHURCH, VA, 15 AUGUST 2018—Effective 15 August 2018, you may reserve accommodations for the National Genealogical Society’s forty-first annual Family History Conference, Journey of Discovery, which will be held 8-11 May 2019 at the St Charles Convention Center (SCCC), One Convention Center Plaza, St. Charles, Missouri.

The conference will feature more than 150 unique lectures on topics such as census, court, immigration, land, migration, military, and vital records as well as DNA, ethnic resources, government documents, maps, regional topics, technology, and much more.

Have Your Family History Digitized at FGS 2018

Are you planning to attend the FGS conference in Fort Wayne, Indiana, next week? That’s August 22 through 25. If so, you may be interested in this announcement from the conference organizers:

Have a family history that needs scanned? Bring it with you to FGS 2018 and FamilySearch will scan it for free!

FamilySearch Book Scanning and the Allen County Public Library are offering a free service to digitally preserve your written family history at the upcoming FGS Conference in Fort Wayne. FamilySearch will scan and publish a searchable digital copy online! You keep the original.

Bring your books to the FamilySearch booth at the conference. (Books under copyright must have a signed permission form, which is available at the booth.)

The Unlock the Past in Conference in Seattle will be Livestreamed on the Internet

The following announcement was written by the organizers of the Unlock the Past genealogy conferences and cruises:

Announcing Unlock the Past in Seattle LIVESTREAM with Blaine Bettinger and Maurice Gleeson

Adelaide, South Australia, 14 August 2018 – Unlock the Past Cruises announces that the Unlock the Past in Seattle full-day two-stream conference (previously announced) will now also be available to watch live online – and for a limited time after as a series of 10 recorded webinars.

Date & time: Thursday 6 September 2018, 9am-5pm (Pacific Daylight Time)

Venue:

  • watch in your own home – from anywhere in the world
  • attend in person at Seattle Public Library, 1000 4th Ave, Seattle, WA

Expanded Ellis Island Immigrant Records 1820-1957 are now Online for Free

FamilySearch and The Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation, Inc. announced today the entire collection of Ellis Island New York Passenger Arrival Lists from 1820 to 1957 are now available online on both websites giving the opportunity to the descendants of over 100 million arrivals to discover their ancestors quicker and free of charge.

Originally preserved on microfilm, 9.3 million images of historical New York passenger records spanning 130 years were digitized and indexed in a massive effort by 165,590 online FamilySearch volunteers. The result is a free searchable online database containing 63.7 million names, including immigrants, crew, and other passengers traveling to and from the United States through the nation’s largest port of entry.

Details may be found in the FamilySearch Blog at: https://www.familysearch.org/blog/en/archive-ellis-island-records/.

ISFHWE Excellence-In-Writing Competition Winners Announced

The following announcement was written by the International Society of Family History Writers and Editors (ISFHWE):

The International Society of Family History Writers and Editors is proud to announce the winners of the Excellence-in-Writing Competition. All entries were exceptional this year. Submission details for 2019 will be announced soon. For any questions on the competition, email competition@isfhwe.org.

Please note there were not many submissions this year; some categories are not even represented. We hope next year you will consider submitting and showcasing your writing skills.

Category 2 – Articles

South Dakota Historical Society Receives Grant To Put More Historical Newspapers Online

The following press release was written by the South Dakota Historical Society:

PIERRE — The South Dakota State Historical Society-Archives in Pierre was awarded a third round of grant funding in the amount of $280,200 from the National Endowment for the Humanities to continue digitizing historical newspapers.

The project is part of Chronicling America, a Library of Congress initiative to develop an online database of select historical newspapers from around the United States. As part of the grant the State Historical Society-Archives will digitize approximately 100 rolls of microfilmed newspapers pre-dating 1922 over two years.

Plus Edition Newsletter Has Been Sent

To all Plus Edition subscribers:

A notice of the latest EOGN Plus Edition newsletter was sent to you a few minutes ago. Here are the articles in this week’s Plus Edition newsletter:

Free and Open-Source Software (FOSS) Explained

A Fort Wayne, Indiana, City Councilman Proposes Eliminating the Annual Budget for the Allen County Public Library

MyHeritage is Offering a Hot DNA Sale

Gramps 5.0.0 Released

Genealogists Help in the Hunt for ALS Genes along a large Family Tree in Kentucky and Virginia

U.S. Census Bureau Takes Hits from Lawsuits, GAO Review, and Cancelled Contract

A European Union Court Rules that Online Photos Can’t Simply be Republished without Permission

Free and Open-Source Software (FOSS) Explained

NOTE: This article may appear to be unrelated to either genealogy or history. However, some genealogy software is released as Free and Open-Source Software (FOSS) and a number of questions about such software have been posted to the discussion board on the newsletter’s web site in recent weeks. I thought a short article explaining the term might help others who have not yet asked “What is FOSS?”

Free and Open-Source Software (FOSS) is exactly that: FREE. However, not all free software qualifies as open source.

I will classify free software into four groups. The first three are considered to be proprietary software. That is, the producing organization does not allow else to see the source code of the software the programmers created. The source code is private, or proprietary, information that only the employees of the producing organization are allowed to see.

1. Ad-supported free software

Free software is proprietary software that might be something created by a corporation or a non-profit organization and may contain advertising that promotes the products or services of that organization or perhaps purchase something from one their advertisers that pay to have advertising inserted into the free software. The producing company does not make the source code of the program public, however. You have to hope and trust that the free software does not contain viruses, trojan horse software, or other malware (malevolent software) that might steal your credit card information or bank account credentials or something similar. Facebook is perhaps the best-known free software that contains advertising.

A Fort Wayne, Indiana, City Councilman Proposes Eliminating the Annual Budget for the Allen County Public Library

The Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne, Indiana, contains the largest genealogy collection of any publicly-owned genealogy in the U.S. It is also one of the largest research collections available anywhere, incorporating records from around the world. Thousands of genealogists travel to Fort Wayne every year to take advantage of the resources available in this unique collection. While in the city, these same genealogists obviously spend millions of dollars at local businesses, including hotels, restaurants, and more. The money spent by genealogists are an immense help for local business people.

Now Fort Wayne City Councilman Jason Arp has proposed cutting the budget of the Allen County Public Library to the point that it will no longer be able to sustain itself. Arp recently proposed to eliminate Allen County’s business personal property tax. Arp suggests that Amazon should and could replace libraries, thus saving taxpayers money.

Recent Updates to the Calendar of Genealogy Events

The following pages have recently been updated in the Calendar of Genealogy Events:

California, Connecticut, Georgia, Massachusetts, Missouri, North Carolina, Utah, and Virginia

Some of the above changes may have been deletions of past events.

All information in the Calendar of Events is contributed by YOU and by other genealogists. You can directly add information to the Calendar about your local genealogy event.

New Records Available To Search This Findmypast Friday

The following announcement was written by Findmypast:

There are over 222,000 new records and newspapers available to search this Findmypast Friday.

Irish Officers Died in the Great War, 1914-1919

Search over 1,000 records to learn more about the Irish officers who died in the First World War. Discover where and when an officer died, as well as the cause of death. You may also uncover details of an officer’s family and pre-war life.

Originally published in 1916 as Our Heroes, this book covered the period August 1914 to July 1916. It contained photographs, with biographical notes, of officers of Irish regiments and Irish officers of British regiments who had fallen in action, or who had been mentioned for Distinguished Conduct. Also included in this volume is a brief history of the chief events of the Great War (to July 1916) in which Irish regiments were engaged.

Honourable Women of the Great War, 1914-1918

New Jersey Digital Newspaper Project Receives Additional $219,609 Grant to Digitize Historical NJ Newspapers

The New Jersey Digital Newspaper Project (NJDNP) has received an additional round of funding in the amount of $219,609 to digitize historical New Jersey newspapers and make them available to the public via the Library of Congress’s Chronicling America website, the National Endowment for the Humanities has announced. The NJDNP—a collaboration between Rutgers University Libraries, the New Jersey State Archives, and the New Jersey State Library—is part of the National Digital Newspaper Program, a long-term effort to develop a searchable online database of U.S. newspapers from all 50 states.

Since the New Jersey Digital Newspaper Project began in 2016, over 100,000 pages of historical newspapers have been scanned and digitized from microfilm originally held by the New Jersey State Archives.

You can read more in an article in the Rutgers University web site at: http://bit.ly/2OVq3qG.

Washington State Library Awarded $280,000 to Digitize Historic Newspapers

With a new $280,000 National Endowment for the Humanities grant, the Office of Secretary of (Washington) State Kim Wyman will break fresh ground in its nationally-recognized project of digitizing historic newspapers. The grant, announced August 8, will enable the Washington State Library’s Washington Digital Newspaper Project to add 100,000 pages of culturally and historically significant newspapers from Asian-American, African-American, and World War II-era publications to its free public archives.

The Washington Digital Newspaper Project is one of only four Washington projects selected for the first awards of the new Infrastructure and Capacity-Building Challenge Grant program, which announced $43.1 million in awards for 218 projects nationwide.

You can read more in a news release from the Office of Secretary of (Washington) State Kim Wyman at https://www.sos.wa.gov/office/news-releases.aspx#/news/1306.

Genealogists Help in the Hunt for ALS Genes along a large Family Tree in Kentucky and Virginia

One family with origins in Ewing, Virginia, just east of the state’s mountainous meeting point with Kentucky and Tennessee seem to suffer from a medical condition they knew as cancer of the throat. They lost the ability to chew, swallow, and speak, they lost weight, and then they died. A doctor recognized it as something else: ALS. The medical condition also is often called “Lou Gehrig’s Disease.”

NOTE: ALS, or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. As this area degenerates, it leads to scarring or hardening (“sclerosis”) in the region.

Notable individuals who have been diagnosed with ALS include baseball great Lou Gehrig, theoretical physicist, cosmologist and author Stephen Hawking, Hall of Fame pitcher Jim “Catfish” Hunter, Senator Jacob Javits, actor David Niven, “Sesame Street” creator Jon Stone, musician Lead Belly (Huddie Ledbetter), entertainer Dennis Day, jazz musician Charles Mingus, former vice president of the United States Henry A. Wallace, and others.

ALS often is inherited, passed on from one generation to another within a family. However, not everyone within the family develops ALS. By the time the symptoms are apparent, it is normally too late to slow down the disease.

Database of 620,000 First World War Personnel Files Completed to Mark Anniversary of Canada’s 100 Days

The following announcement was written by Library and Archives Canada:

August 8, 1918, is commonly known as the beginning of “Canada’s 100 Days” — when the Canadian Corps spearheaded attacks that became known as the Battle of Amiens, a major turning point that led to victory in the Great War and the Armistice of November 11.

42nd Battalion resting in the Grand Place, Mons, on the morning of the 11th november, 1918

To mark the centennial of the end of the First World War and the heroic and tragic events that led up to it, we are pleased to announce the completion of the digitization of all Canadian military personnel records from the Great War.

Explore the First World War Database!

FamilySearch announces a New Collections Update: Week of August 6, 2018

The following announcement was written by FamilySearch:

FamilySearch has given a great gift this week for those with Italian ancestry from Palermo and Chieti, Italy–almost 8 million new images of birth, marriage, and death records from 1809-1947. This week’s records also include SwedenPeruHungary, and BillionGraves.

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

A European Union Court Rules that Online Photos Can’t Simply be Republished without Permission

A few weeks ago, I reported a Virginia federal court decision that finding a photo on the Internet and then using it without permission on a commercial website can be considered fair use. The decision is controversial, is not a landmark ruling that needs to be enforced by other courts, and may be overturned by a higher court before long. You can read more about that ruling in my earlier article at: http://bit.ly/2MxLsEU.

Now a European Court has ruled almost the opposite: internet users must ask for a photographer’s permission before posting their images online, even if the photos were already freely accessible on other websites. The court stated, “The posting on a website of a photograph that was freely accessible on another website with the consent of the author requires a new authorization by that author.”