Henry Louis “Skip” Gates Jr. is an American literary critic, teacher, historian, filmmaker and public intellectual who currently serves as the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor and Director of the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research at Harvard University. Of interest to genealogists, Professor Gates also is the host of the popular television program, Finding Your Roots, now in its fourth season as a genealogy program on PBS. The RootsTech organizers have now announced that Henry Louis Gates, Jr. will be sharing his experiences as the RootsTech keynote speaker on March 3.
Garrison Keillor was scheduled to be part of the season finale of PBS’s Finding Your Roots With Henry Louis Gates, Jr. But in light of allegations of inappropriate behavior towards a co-worker at Prairie Home Companion, Keillor’s segment is being removed.
The “Funny Business” episode, scheduled to air at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 19, was to spotlight Amy Schumer, Aziz Ansari and Keillor. Now the segment with the legendary broadcaster will be replaced by a repeat featuring Maya Rudolph.
A statement released by Minnesota Public Radio says it learned of the allegations in October and has retained an outside law firm to investigate them. That investigation is ongoing.
Markle is a cousin of her future husband, Prince Harry, more than 240 times over. She is related to Prince Harry through lines shared with both HM The Queen and the late Diana, Princess of Wales. She is related to 8 American presidents, 3 first ladies, and a cast of other notable Americans, including actors James Dean and Roy Rogers.
World renowned genealogist Gary Boyd Roberts, Senior Research Scholar Emeritus at the New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS) has, together with collaborators, revealed that England’s future American Royal Bride is descended from royalty herself. She is a 24th generation descendant of King Edward III, a medieval monarch of England who died in 1377. This newly discovered lineage for Ms. Markle comes through an early immigrant to Boston, Massachusetts, the royally-descended Rev. William Skipper, who arrived in New England in 1639, an ancestor of the future royal’s father, Thomas Wayne Markle.
You can read all the details in the New England Historic Genealogical Society’s web site at: https://www.americanancestors.org/meghan-markle.
The name of Meghan Markle is all over the newspapers this week. The American actress, model, and humanitarian became engaged to England’s Prince Harry. Of course, the newspapers are having a field day about the American who will soon marry a member of the British Royal Family.
Prince Harry’s ancestry is well documented with some branches going back more than 1,000 years. However, the genealogy of Meghan Markle is not as well known, at least not until this week. An article by Tom Sykes in The Daily Beast web site describes what is known of Markle’s genealogy, including ancestors who were slaves in the United States.
The Fascinating Family History of the American Set to Revolutionize the Royals may be found at: http://thebea.st/2j0SjtD.
There won’t be many stories like this one in the future. A Holocaust survivor who fled Poland at the beginning of World War II and thought his entire family had perished learned that a younger brother had also survived, and his brother’s son, 66-year-old Alexandre, was flying in from a remote part of Russia to see him.
The emotional meeting was made possible by Israel’s Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial’s comprehensive online database of Holocaust victims, a powerful genealogy tool that has reunited hundreds of long-lost relatives.
Cult leader Charles Manson doesn’t appear to have any relatives on file with prison officials, meaning his body is likely to be left in state custody following his death on Sunday night. This sounds like a challenge for genealogists: find his nearest living relative.
Admittedly, not many would want to admit being related to the 83-year-old murderer serving nine life sentences at California’s Corcoran State Prison.
Charles Milles Manson was born with the name Charles Milles Maddox on November 12, 1934. According to Wikipedia, his mother was an unmarried 16-year-old with various names. She is listed as Kathleen Manson-Bower-Cavender, née Maddox (1918–1973). Manson was born in the General Hospital, in Cincinnati, Ohio. His birth name was first listed as “no name Maddox”. Within weeks, he was called Charles Milles Maddox.
The following announcement was written by the folks at the New England Historic Genealogical Society:
A Genealogy by NEHGS of Groom—Author of Forrest Gump — Tells of Southern Ancestry and of Notable Kin Including Harper Lee and Truman Capote
October 26, 2017—Boston, Massachusetts—Best-selling author Winston Groom was honored by New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS) with its Lifetime Achievement Award in History and Literature at its Fall Family History Benefit Dinner in Boston on Thursday evening.
At the event Brenton Simons, NEHGS President and CEO, presented Groom with an expertly prepared genealogy of his family—a tradition of NEHGS for many years. Simons revealed in detail Groom’s deep southern roots and ethnic variety including Croatian, Irish, Spanish, and French ancestry. Highlighted were the author’s ancestors noted for their patriotic service including the Civil War, the War of 1812, and the Revolutionary War.
The following announcement appeared first on the web site of the American Society of Genealogists:
The Fellows of the American Society of Genealogists (ASG) held their annual meeting on Saturday, October 7, 2017, in Salt Lake City, Utah. Rachal Mills Lennon of Hendersonville, Tennessee, was elected to the Society as its 167th Fellow.
Rachal Mills Lennon has been a Certified Genealogist since 1987. Her research focuses on challenging problems in the American South, especially those involving African Americans, Native Americans, and white yeoman farmers. Along with numerous scholarly genealogical articles in The National Genealogical Society Quarterly and The American Genealogist, her published work includes a compiled genealogy, Some Southern Balls: From Valentine to Ferdinand and Beyond (Tuscaloosa, Ala., 1993), and a methodological guide, Tracing Ancestors among the Five Civilized Tribes: Southeastern Indians Prior to Removal (Baltimore, 2002), which is one of the cornerstone references for Native American genealogy.
The following announcement was written by the folks at Ancestry.com:
LEHI, Utah and SAN FRANCISCO, July 31, 2017 — Ancestry, the global leader in family history and consumer genomics, today announced that Evan Wittenberg, most recently the Senior Vice President of People at Box, Inc., has joined the company in the new position of Chief People Officer. Wittenberg brings an extensive track record of helping world-class organizations grow and foster their talent while evolving their cultures to support continued expansion.
“There is no higher priority at Ancestry today than our ability to attract and grow the world’s best talent. Very few people can match Evan’s history of leading so many great organizations through change and growth, and fewer still can come close to his track record of success,” said Tim Sullivan, chief executive officer of Ancestry. “I am incredibly proud of the team we have built and of their ability to create a company, brand and products that resonate with millions around the world. Evan will play a critical role in helping us continue to grow and develop the great people we have while attracting the high-caliber talent we need to lead us into tomorrow.”
Allan J. Pinkerton (25 August 1819 – 1 July 1884) was a Scottish American detective and spy, best known for creating the Pinkerton National Detective Agency. Born in Glasgow, Scotland, Pinkerton emigrated as a young man to seek his fortune in the United States of America. A self-educated man, he had little formal training in any of the professions usually available to immigrants. However, that never slowed the ambitious young man.
He settled in Dundee Township, Illinois, fifty miles northwest of Chicago. He built a cabin and started a cooperage (making barrels). His home soon became a stop on the Underground Railroad, smuggling escaping slaves northward to Canada.
Pinkerton worked with the local sheriff to identify some counterfeiters who were working nearby. Soon he was appointed as the first police detective in Chicago, Cook County, Illinois. In 1850 he partnered with Chicago attorney Edward Rucker in forming the North-Western Police Agency, one of the nation’s first private detective services. The company later became Pinkerton & Co and finally Pinkerton National Detective Agency, still in existence today as Pinkerton Consulting and Investigations, a subsidiary of Securitas AB.
The following announcement was written by Accredited Genealogists Ireland:
Four members of Accredited Genealogists Ireland have recently been appointed to positions of influence. One has been appointed a member of the National Archives Advisory Council; another elected a vice-president of the Irish Genealogical Research Society; and two appointed members of the Irish Manuscripts Commission.
John Grenham is one of the 12 members of the National Archives Advisory Council (NAAC), recently appointed by Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Heather Humphreys TD. The NAAC is a statutory body with remit to advise the Director of the National Archives of Ireland on policy and practical matters. John is a longstanding member of AGI and is known internationally as the author of Tracing Your Irish Ancestors, now in its fourth edition.
Paul Gorry has been elected a vice-president of the Irish Genealogical Research Society (IGRS). Founded in 1936, the IGRS is a learned society and the world’s oldest organisation dedicated to the study and pursuit of Irish genealogy. Paul is a past president of AGI and with his AGI colleague Máire Mac Conghail is co-author of Tracing Irish Ancestors, published in 1997.
NYG&B Announces the Retirement of Karen Mauer Jones and the Selection of Laura Murphy DeGrazia as Editor of The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record
The following announcement was written by the New York Genealogical and Biographical Society:
Today the New York Genealogical and Biographical Society (NYG&B) announced the retirement of editor Karen Mauer Jones and the selection of Laura Murphy DeGrazia as editor of The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record (The Record).
Earlier this year the NYG&B announced that Karen Mauer Jones wished to retire as editor of The Record. Since 2011 she has brought her expertise and vision to one of America’s oldest—and most respected—scholarly genealogical journals. An editor, author, speaker, and professional genealogist, she has a long and distinguished career. The author of numerous books and articles, including those published in the National Genealogical Society Quarterly and The Record, she is widely respected in the genealogical field and has been a Board-certified genealogist since 2011 from the Board for Certification of Genealogists (BCG). A noted New York scholar, she was elected as a Fellow of the NYG&B in 2013 and served on the editorial team for the NYG&B’s award-winning New York Family History Research Guide and Gazetteer. She is also a member of the NYG&B’s Family History Advisory Committee. A past board member and regional vice president for the Association of Professional Genealogist (APG), she also served as a board member and vice president of administration for the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS). Under her careful stewardship The Record has published hundreds of pages reflecting the diverse stories from families across the state of New York.
The following announcement was written by the Ontario Genealogical Society:
Louise St Denis of The National Institute for Genealogical Studies is Presented with the Award of Merit at the Ontario Genealogical Society Conference.
Award honors leadership and contributions.
L to R: Heather Oakley, Louise St Denis, Patti Mordasewicz
The Ontario Genealogical Society, Canada’s largest genealogical society, held its Friday opening ceremonies for their annual conference in Ottawa, Ontario on June 16, 2017 and honored individuals with their Award of Merit. The OGS award recognizes those:
16-year-old James “Jimmy” O’Neill, vanished as if into thin air on December 15, 1947. No family members have heard from him since. His family has been looking for him for years without success. If still alive, Jimmy would be 86 years old and would still have three surviving siblings: Nancy, Jack and Frank. A younger brother, Noel, died six months ago.
Genealogists often are good at finding missing relatives. Can a genealogist help?
The woman most cited as the founder of Father’s Day is Sonora Smart Dodd. Inspired by the earlier campaign to create Mother’s Day, and a desire to honor men like her father, William Jackson Smart, a Civil War veteran and a widower who raised Sonora Smart Dodd and her brothers solo, Dodd organized the first Father’s Day in 1910 in her hometown of Spokane, Washington.
Father’s Day did not become a national holiday until 1972, thanks to the continued efforts of Sonora Smart Dodd. Dodd spent 62 years lobbying everyone from presidents to retailers for support. She even lived to see the national holiday created. She died at age 96 in 1978.
Dodd’s 55-year-old great-granddaughter, Betsy Roddy, recalled this year that her ancestor was a Renaissance woman, the Mother of Father’s Day was a painter, poet and businesswoman, running a funeral home with her husband while raising the couple’s only son, a future father named Jack.
The following announcement was written by the (U.S.) National Genealogical Society:
ARLINGTON, VA, 9 MAY 2017— Larry W. Cates is the 2017 recipient of the Filby Award for Genealogical Librarianship. Cates, who is librarian at the Heritage Research Center of the High Point Public Library, High Point, North Carolina, received his award and its $1,000 prize, which is underwritten by ProQuest, at the Librarians’ Day event of National Genealogical Society (NGS) 2017 Family History Conference in Raleigh, North Carolina., also underwritten by ProQuest. The Filby Award is named for the late P. William Filby, former director of the Maryland Historical Society and author of many core genealogical reference tools that genealogists have relied on for decades. Created in 1999 by NGS, the award has been sponsored by ProQuest and Mr. William Forsyth since 2006.
Cates has been Librarian at the Heritage Research Center of the High Point Public Library since October 2007. During the course of his career, he has created innovative programs for family historians. In 2010, Cates co-founded the Heritage Book Club to introduce genealogists to the historical context in which their ancestors lived. He initiated a “Field Trip to Archives” program with the Guilford County Genealogical Society to mentor inexperienced researchers. He also has provided programs to local genealogical societies; served as journal editor for the Randolph County Genealogical Society and Guilford County Genealogical Society; and helped to promote their activities through his library’s mailing list and at genealogy fairs at his library.
If you are descended from one of the early settlers who arrived in Australia prior to 1841, you might be able to find his or her portrait in one of over 1,000 ‘Old Colonists’ were on display in the State Library. In 2017 they have returned as facsimiles (along with new indexes and online catalogue records) – funded by the Friends of the State Library. They are now available online.
William Rollings arrived in South Australia in March 1845 on board the ship the “Scotia”. Poundkeeper, Springfield.
The obituary for Christine Kockinis displays a great sense of humor. Here is one excerpt: “Christine requested that six players from the Sacramento Kings be her pallbearers so that they could let her down one last time.”
You can read the entire obituary in The Sacramento Bee at: http://bit.ly/2p7kKrV.
Andrew Lumish spends his free time in an unlikely place: cemeteries. On his weekly day off, he spends about ten hours using his cleaning skills to restore veterans’ tombstones around Tampa, Florida. To honor veterans for serving their country, Lumish taught himself how to properly clean graves. He found out the system the government uses for national cemeteries—including Arlington—and got to work.
Lumish tries to post four new pictures a week on his Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/TheGoodCemeterian/.
The following announcement was written by the New York Genealogical and Biographical Society:
The New York Genealogical and Biographical Society (NYG&B) is seeking an editor to produce The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record. The current editor, Karen Mauer Jones, CG, FGBS has announced her plans to retire by the end of 2017.
Continuously published since 1870, The Record is the second oldest genealogical journal in the country and one of the most distinguished. Published quarterly, it concentrates on people and places connected to New York City, State, and region and features compiled genealogies, solutions to problems, and unique source material.
The editor is responsible for: