Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Where to Find Birth Information

Here’s another great article in GenealogyBlog from William Dollarhide. It deals with that most important of vital records: births.

Did you ever stall out trying to track down a birth record? Perhaps your ancestor was a US citizen born overseas, or born at a US Army facility. Or maybe he or she was an alien child adopted by US citizens.

Dollarhide reveals possible locations of the birth records for those cases an others in his article. You can read it at:

An Update to Birth Information from the Census Bureau

Monday, January 28, 2013

Wisconsin Historical Society: A Vital Record Source

This website is focused on Wisconsin research, but if you have “cheese heads” in you ancestry, you can’t afford to pass it up.

The link below takes you to the home page where you will find a search form which, once completed, will list for you vital records hits (birth, marriage, death) for pre-1907 Wisconsin.

In addition, a 150,000 name index of biographical sketches, obituaries, and newspaper articles published before 2000.

The hits you get from you search give bare bones information, but also give you the option of ordering a copy of the actual records. If ordering the records puts you off, the index information is often complete enough in itself to give fuel to your research.

Give it a try at:

Wisconsin Genealogy Index Home Page

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Silicon Valley Computer Genealogy Group

A great source of information and utilities for genealogists is the website of the Silicon Valley Computer Genealogy Group. It offers an impressive array of free downloads nearly everyone will find useful.

Use the link shown below to get to the home page and then click on “Free Downloads” found in the left panel of the window.

There you will find gems such as improving your Google searches, handouts on Civil War and immigration research, information for Macintosh users, and more.

If you are a PAF user, there is lots of information here for you.

Find it all at:


Thursday, January 24, 2013

Historical U.S. Land Records & Deeds Online

The website is a treasure of information, and genealogy information is no exception. One portion of that site in particular is the subject of this post: an article on US land records found online.

The link below will take you to a page that is a portal to information about land records in general as well as links to some key sites offering digitized land records. Examples of those are the General Land office with over 2 million records available from the thirty public land states, Spanish Land Grants in Florida going back as far as 1790, Georgia and Maryland land records, and more.

Check it out at:

Historical U.S. Land Records & Deeds Online

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Register for the 2013 PGS Seminar - Time is Short!

Time is running out. The 2013 PGS seminar is coming up on 9 February 2013 and early registration ends on 2 February.

Don't miss out on this yearly event that includes a full day of speakers (featured this year is Sharon DeBartolo Carmack as well as three different break-out speakers), book sale, breakfast, lunch, snacks, door prizes, and more.

Go to the PGS website for more information and registration form:

Sunday, January 20, 2013

A Critical Step: Writing an Introduction

This article from Technology Tamers is a “must” for all you aspiring writers out there. It takes you through the logic and an example of one of the most challenging aspects to writing: coming up with an introduction that will capture your readers and encourage them to continue reading.

Check it out at:

Technology Tamers: Writing an Engaging Intro

Friday, January 18, 2013

Source Checklist

William Dollarhide gives us an impressive list of genealogy sources to ensure that our research is “reasonably exhaustive” (a term from the Genealogical Proof Standard, if you recall earlier posts).

The list can also assist in getting past brick walls by revealing sources you may not have thought of.

Dollarhide’s article appears in Leland Meitzler’s  genealogy Blog, and you can catch it at:

A Checklist of 150 Genealogical Sources

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Video: Genealogy Boot Camp

Family Search recently produced an online lesson by Thomas Jay Kemp titled “Genealogy Boot Camp.” It explores some of the newer tools available to genealogists such as Google Books,,,, and others.

It last only 27 minutes or so, but gives enough information to get started, or at least explore the resource on your own. Some of the “tools” are well-known, such as Google Books, but even seasoned users may learn a thing or two.

Go to the following URL and click on the screen to start the show:

Genealogy Boot Camp |

Monday, January 14, 2013

Where is the 1880 Census?

William Dollarhide, writing in GenealogyBlog, answers this question. It appears that the 1880 census is unique in that the original documents were transferred from the National Archives to other repositories around the country after they were microfilmed.

The author gives a brief history of the fate of all of the census records up through the 1940 census, and then finishes by listing where the 1880 documents are located state by state.

This is a great read and can be found at:

Saturday, January 12, 2013

FamilySearch Data

Two billion records, seven hundred million images, three billion searchable names…those are the rounded figures of what Family Search offers us online at

If you want some more of the details and some interesting perspectives about the site offerings, check out the article by James Tanner is his blog, Genealogy’s Star.

Genealogy's Star: Some Interesting Numbers from FamilySearch

Friday, January 11, 2013

Friends of the Library Book Sale

Stop in for the Friends of the Largo Library Winter Book Sale. Join in for this large event that finds good homes for used books and is a fundraiser for the library.

Pre-sale for Friends Members is Thursday, January 24 from 3:30 until 5:30pm. The sale is open to the public Friday, January 25 from 9:30am until 5pm and Saturday, January 26 from 9:30am until 3pm.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Manatee Genealogical Society features Dick Eastman

Dick Eastman is the featured speaker at the Manatee Genealogical Society Winter Seminar on 16 February. The event will be held at the Bethel Baptist Church, in Bradenton, Florida, and runs from 9 am to 3 pm, with registration starting at 8 am.

You can find more information at

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Sign Up for the 2013 PGS Seminar

Time is running out. The 2013 PGS seminar is coming up on 9 February 2013 and early registration ends on 2 February.

Don't miss out on this yearly event that includes a full day of speakers (featured this year is Sharon DeBartolo Carmack as well as three different break-out speakers), book sale, breakfast, lunch, snacks, door prizes, and more.

Go to the PGS website for more information and registration form:

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

How to Make Find-A-Grave Better

I’m confident that many of you are frequently using the Find-A-Grave website ( ) in your research. It is a great user-supported site listing millions of deceased with birth, marriage, and death information…and even more in many cases. But like all user-supported sites, it potentially contains errors.

In Ancestoring’s Ask A Genealogist Blog, genealogist Michele Simmons Lewis gives us some tips about how to address errors we may find. Even if you are “looker” and not a “contributor,” you can take steps to make corrections.

This is a must-read for Find-A-Grave users. Check it out at:

Ancestoring's Ask A Genealogist: Making Find-A-Grave Better

Monday, January 7, 2013

George Morgan Featured at Pinellas Genealogy Society Meeting

George Morgan, one of the "Genealogy Guys," is the featured speaker at the Pinellas Genealogy Society meeting on 19 January at the Largo Public Library. The meeting starts at 11 am and is free and open to the public. Before the meeting, starting at 10 am, is our popular Q&A session on computers and genealogy.

Among other credits, George is a respected author, and of course, does the "Genealogy Guys" podcast along with genealogist Drew Smith. George's topic at the meeting will be "New Ways to Research Our Roots."

Lee County Gnealogical Society Features Local Author

The Lee County Genalogical Society will feature local Author Robert N. Macomber at their monthly meting on Thursday, January 17. He will tell the story of the fnal naval confrontation of the Civil War in the Straits of Florida--a month after Lee's surrender.

The program starts after the business meeting at 1 pm. The meeting is held at Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall at 4141 DeLeon Street, Fort Myers, Florida.

For more information refer to .

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Ellis Island Photos from 1950

Here is a website offering thirty photos from Ellis Island in the 1950’s. You may not recognize your ancestor in this display, but the pictures are compelling.

While you are at the site, look at the sidebar on the left of the screen to gain access to other Life photographs.

Ellis Island 1950 | Gateway to a New World: Rare Photos From Ellis Island |

Friday, January 4, 2013

South Bay Genealogical Society Seminar Features John Colletta

The South Bay Genealogical Society is sponsoring a seminar on February 19, 2013 at the Little Harbor Resort in Ruskin Florida. The featured speaker is Dr. John Philip Colletta.

Dr. Colletta's topics will include
     --Breaking Through Brick Walls: Use Your Head
     --The County Courthouse: "Your Trunk in the Attic"
     --Turning Biographical Facts into Real Life Events, How to Build Historical Context
     --Discovering the REAL Stories of Your Immigran Ancestors

The cost is $40 for SBGS members and $45 for non-members. Doors open at 8:30 AM and reservations close on February 8, 2013. For more information or to make a reservation send an email to

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

A Guide to Performing Online Genealogy Searches

I have directed readers to the Genealogy Search Engine and the Family Tree Search Engine, both products of the Genealogy In Time Magazine, in previous posts. They are both worth mentioning again.

This time I will do that by referring you to an article explaining how to construct searches for names, places, and dates. Some of the techniques will be familiar to some of you, but this article is so easy to follow I thought it would be a good review as well as a portal to the two search engines.

You can find the article and the search engine links using the following link:
A Guide to Performing Online Genealogy Searches