Genealogy Blog

31 October 2008

New Confucius Genealogy Out Next Year

With a history of over 2,500 years covering more than 80 generations, and the longest family tree in the world according to the Guinness Book of Records, the fifth edition of the Confucius Genealogy will be printed in several volumes in 2009, according to an organizer of the Confucius Genealogy Compilation Committee (CGCC).

It has taken ten years to compile this latest list of descendants of revered Chinese thinker and educator Confucius (551-479 BC) but along the way there have been wrangles as to whether it is of national significance or purely a family affair, and whether the genealogy should be seen as a Chinese cultural heritage or a hangover of Feudalism.

The Confucius Genealogy, originally recorded by hand, was first printed in 1080 AD during the Northern Song Dynasty. Since then it has been revised only four times, during the reigns of Ming Emperor Tianqi, Qing Emperors Kangxi and Qianlong, and finally in 1937 during the Republican period.


UK: The National Videogame Archive

The UK's first official national video game archive has been launched in a bid to preserve the history of gaming.

The archive has been set up in partnership between Nottingham Trent University and the National Media Museum in Bradford in the north of England.

The archive will be housed at the National Media Museum in Bradford and will include consoles, cartridges and advertising campaigns.

"We are going to be archiving video games but it's not just about the games themselves, it's also about gaming culture," said James Newman, from Nottingham Trent University's Centre for Contemporary Play, a research group dedicated to video games.

The archive will chart videogames from Pong in 1972 to present-day blockbusters.


Phoenician Blood Endures 3,000 Years, DNA Study Shows

Ancient maritime traders of the Mediterranean may have left behind a large genetic footprint in the region, where 1 in 17 men still harbors Phoenician DNA, according to a new study.

The findings could fill a gap in the history of the Phoenician civilization, which originated two to three thousand years ago in the eastern Mediterranean—in what is now Lebanon and Syria—and included prominent traders.

The research team analyzed the Y chromosome of 1,330 men from historic Phoenician trading centers in the Mediterranean regions of Syria, Palestine, Tunisia, Morocco, Cyprus, and Malta.

Analyses of the Y chromosomal data revealed the presence of at least seven related genetic lineages from places around the Mediterranean Sea where Phoenicians had lived.

These lineages suggest that the Phoenicians contributed their genes to at least six percent of the modern populations of historic Phoenician trading outposts.

"Our findings suggest that the Phoenicians left behind a genetic legacy that persists till modern times," said Chris Tyler-Smith, lead author and associate researcher at National Geographic Society's Genographic Project.


30 October 2008

Ötzi The Iceman May Have No Living Relatives

The oldest intact human mummy, Ötzi the Iceman, comes from a genetic line that has either died off or become extremely rare, according to a new DNA study.

The 5,200-year-old Ötzi was discovered frozen in a glacier along the border between Austria and Italy in 1991.

New analysis of a mere 0.002 ounces (70 milligrams) of this intestinal material has allowed scientists for the first time to sequence Ötzi's complete mitochondrial DNA.

Mitochondrial DNA is passed from mothers to their offspring, and although it can accumulate mutations, part of it usually remains unchanged, making it useful for tracing lineage through mothers.

Mutations in Ötzi's mitochondrial DNA formed "a unique subcluster within a known European lineage," said lead author Franco Rollo of the University of Camerino in Italy.

However, the Iceman's line became, "if not extinguished, extremely rare" during the last 5,000 years, Rollo said.

The research was published online today in the journal Current Biology.


FamViewer, Genealogy Software for iPhone and iPod Touch

Famviewer is a new genealogy software for the iPhone and iPod Touch.

FamViewer allows you to view GEDCOM genealogy database files on your iPhone. GEDCOM files can be uploaded to FamViewer with a web browser on a desktop computer or downloaded to FamViewer from any web site or web server via WiFi. FamViewer will import the GEDCOM file and display its contents. Once a GEDCOM file is downloaded and imported you can view individuals, families, individual events and attributes, notes and sources.

CemEditor 2.1.0004

CemEditor 2.1.0004 has been released.


• Added: Enable / Disable Picture Preview.

FamilyInsight 2008.10.27.0 beta

FamilyInsight 2008.10.27.0 beta has been released.


• Greatly improved the speed of finding merge candidates in Merge mode.
• Fixed several issues with GEDCOM open and save.
• FamilyInsight now preserves the internal PAF UID (unique id) for marriages.
• Fixed crash when searching a person who has been previously searched and synced during this session.
• Fixed a crash when exiting FamilyInsight after canceling from the 'Finding merge candidates' dialog in Merge mode.
• Help now works on the Mac.

GeneaNet: Search By Alternate Spelling

GeneaNet Club Privilege Members can take advantage of a search by alternate spelling of names.

Go to "Search - Alternate Spellings" and enter a surname.

Some alternate spellings exist in the database

If some alternate spellings already exist in the database, you will be able to uncheck the ones you don't want to be processed in your search.

You can also add some new alternate spellings for the surname. These new alternate spellings will be saved in the database and processed in every coming searches.

There's no alternate spelling for the surname

If there's no alternate spelling for the surname in the database, you will be able to add some new ones. These new alternate spellings will be saved in the database and processed in every coming searches.

Delete an alternate spelling

You can delete any alternate spelling if it seems to be incorrect. Removals are moderated: they will be effective for your curent searches but the GeneaNet team can cancel incorrect removals at any time.

[ Search By Alternate Spelling ]

27 October 2008

TreeDraw 3.1.5

TreeDraw 3.1.5 has been released.


• Using "File | Open" and then Cancel reset the default charts folder.
• Moved the default folders for charts and the temporary database to "My Documents" to be more Vista-friendly.

The Complete Genealogy Reporter 2008.1 build 81025

The Complete Genealogy Reporter 2008.1 build 81025 has been released.


• Fixed: Possible overflow error when creating the Notes section.
• Fixed: Misaligned bullet characters of Source citations of Notes.

26 October 2008

A New Interface For Historical Content At WorldHistory

WorldHistory has just entered it’s private beta phase. The interesting interface allows users to pick a location on a map to see historical events that occurred there. You can even set a date range to see events that happened during those years. The program also allows you to enter your own ancestors and genealogy information to the site, say if you had an ancestor that fought in a historic battle.

The program, for the most part, accesses Wikipedia data in order to create the content. They also say they are hard at work on an iPhone version of the program that will show historical events that occurred near you at any given time.

Click here for a series of demo videos.

25 October 2008

Get Addresses From Google Maps With Reverse Geocoding

Google Maps has long been able to convert an address into a latitude/longitude pair. Now it can do the opposite: converting a latitude/longitude pair into an address.

Blogger Amit Agarawal has created a mashup to display the reverse-geocoded address when you click on a map, and MeetWays provides you with an address of location equidistant between you and someone you'd like to hang out with.

24 October 2008

Happy Birthday To Them: 4 Generations Share Date

Betty Baker Poynter's birthday is more than just her own special day.

That's because Poynter, who turns 85 today, shares birthdays with her 66-year-old daughter, 34-year-old grandson and 2-year-old great-granddaughter -- four generations in the same family, all born Oct. 23.

"It kind of made me feel important. If they want my birthday, that's fine," Poynter said of the others in her family tree.

Born in Sumter County in 1923 and a Eustis resident for 66 years, she is a retired Eustis police officer and state Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles examiner.

Poynter's daughter Sharon Baker Aderman, a retired nurse who lives in Greer, S.C., was born in Lake County in 1942, the day her mother turned 19.

Aderman's son, Nick, an airplane mechanic, was born in Vero Beach in 1974.

He lives in Palmer, Alaska, where his daughter, Myra Marie Aderman, was born two years ago today. "What are the odds of that?" asked Nick Aderman, who also has a 5-year-old son. "It's pretty funny. We're pretty entertained by that."

The odds of four people, at random, sharing the same birthday are approximately 1 in 49 million, said Mark E. Johnson, professor of statistics and actuarial sciences at the University of Central Florida. But in the case of Poynter's family with multiple members, the odds are better -- possibly 1 in 5 million, depending on the number of family members, he said.


Map My Ancestors 1.6.0

Map My Ancestors 1.6.0 has been released.


• Distribution map now shows another event date for an individual if birth information is unavailable.

FamilyInsight 2008.10.22.0 beta

FamilyInsight 2008.10.22.0 beta has been released.


• Fixed some crashes in Synchronize with FamilySearch mode.
• Corrected handling of PAF "Physical Description" and "Cause of Death" fields.
• Fixed handling of invalid characters in notes. These will no longer cause an error when synchronizing with FamilySearch.
• Fixed crash when opening some GEDCOM files.
• Fixed problem when continuing in FamilySearch Sync mode after login has expired.

Ezitree 10.72

Ezitree 10.72 has been released.

New Features:

• Added spouse names to marriage, etc, events in Change list.
• Under Page Setup added option to keep header and footer fonts in sync for charts and family tree book.
• Added option in charts option to select other than current person to output and save list of last 25 primary persons used in charts.
• Added option to select portion of compilers details for chart footer (not just all details).
• Improved record number format in family tree book charts.
• Added new option to change the record number of one person.
• Added option in narrative ancestors to include memos, notes and home addresses.
• Added 'Select All' and 'Unselect All' buttons to GEDCOM duplicates list.
• Many improvements to biography sentence structures.
• Added option to view Ezitree data records from GEDCOM analysis windows.
• Added option to selected 'unmatched' GEDCOM records.
• Added option to include spouse's parents in GEDCOM export file.
• New option to import the descendants of a person from a GEDCOM file and select the number of generations to import.
• Option to view the descendants of a person in a GEDCOM file.


Continue reading...

MacFamilyTree 5.3.1

MacFamilyTree 5.3.1 has been released.


• Support for Multitouch Gestures of the new trackpads build into the new MacBook, MacBook Pro or MacBook Air.
• Coordinates Lookup improved now displaying already entered coordinates first.
• Localization fixes in the kinship report and the french translation.
• Spanish localization added.
• Many other minor fixes.

The Complete Genealogy Reporter 2008.1 build 81023

The Complete Genealogy Reporter 2008.1 build 81023 has been released.


• Fixed errors in processing adoption records.

Genealogy Testing Company Looks to REMP and Tecan for Automated Sample Management

Scientists at Family Tree DNA, Texas, USA, haveautomated their DNA testing services using a REMP Small-Size Store and a Tecan Freedom EVO liquid handling workstation to reliablyprocess and store the hundreds of samples arriving daily.

Family Tree DNA provides genealogy services on request for customersworldwide, using PCR-based technologies in about 150 different genetictests to establish relatedness of DNA samples. "We investigated severalsample management systems," said Dr Thomas Krahn, Lab Manager of the FamilyTree DNA Genomics Research Center in Houston, "and chose the REMPtechnology because it was the most efficient. We are very happy with thesystem."

All DNA extraction and storage preparation steps are automated with theFreedom EVO workstation, and purified samples are stored in the SSS. Anysample can easily be accessed and grouped for testing as required. Dr.Krahn added: "Full automation of all steps, from sample registration tostoring purified DNA, means we simply register each tube's barcode onarrival and all information is stored automatically in the REMP database,and we can then handle each sample independently."


23 October 2008

GeneaNet Email Alert: Places

GeneaNet Alerts are emails automatically sent to you when there are new results for your family history research.

To receive a weekly email aggregate of the latest entries that contain the surnames and places of your choice, fill in the Advanced Search form and click on the "Search" button.

You can narrow your search by events period in the search results list.

At the bottom of the search results page, click on the "Subscribe to the Newsletter" button.

You can edit or remove your alerts, and view the new entries for each of them.

See also:

GeneaNet Email Alert
GeneaNet: Recording Place Names

[ GeneaNet Advanced Search ]

22 October 2008

GedWise 7.3

GedWise 7.3 has been released

There are no release notes.

Genome Fanatics To Post Own DNA Sequences On Web

A group of scientists and researchers fascinated with the human genome said Monday they will post online their most private personal information — their medical records and DNA sequence of some of their own genes — all for the sake of research.

Led by Harvard Medical School genetics professor George Church, nine people plan to post their records and the DNA sequence of about one-fifth of their genes on the Web.

The release is part of the Personal Genome Project, which is designed to serve as a resource for researchers investigating the genetic basis of diseases and other traits.

Participants said they decided to make their information public to help medical research.

"I believe that there's a great advantage to each of us knowing our sequences, but it is also to me inconceivable that absolute genetic privacy will be maintained," said Stanley Lapidus, chairman and CEO of Helicos BioSciences Corp.

Last year, DNA pioneers J. Craig Venter, president of a genetics research institute, and James Watson, co-discoverer of DNA's molecular structure, made their genomes public on scientific Web sites.


Cognatio 1.4

Cognatio 1.4 has been released.


• Three new report types: Circle chart, A4 fan chart, and A3 fan chart.
• New report type: Monthly Statistics - Shows the number of births and deaths per month.
• Support for timelines.
• Several minor improvements.
• Several fixes.

21 October 2008

The Next Generation of Genealogy Sitebuilding (TNG) 7.0.2

The Next Generation of Genealogy Sitebuilding (TNG) 7.0.2 has been released.

Changes :

• A security vulnerability existed with the $language variable (fixed).
• The Place page (placesearch.php) did not search for places attached only to family events (fixed).
• Parental events on the individual page were showing up on the map (fixed).
• The "Reset" function on the Dates & Anniversaries page was not working (fixed).
• The "no surname" option on the Surnames page was showing names from all trees, even if a particular tree had been selected (fixed).
• Searching for something with "quotes" on the Dates & Anniversaries page would always return no results (fixed).

Continue reading...

MobileFamilyTree 1.3

MobileFamilyTree 1.3 has been released.


• Synchronization for pictures stored as "Media" in MacFamilyTree.
• Many enhancemens to the user interface.

20 October 2008

Adoptees Use DNA To Find Surname

Male adoptees are using consumer DNA tests to predict the surnames carried by their biological fathers.

They are using the fact that men who share a surname sometimes have genetic likenesses too.

By searching DNA databases for other males with genetic markers matching their own, adoptees can check if these men also share a last name.

This can provide the likely surname of an adoptee's biological father.

The genetic similarities between men who share surnames occur on the Y chromosome, a package of genetic material passed on, more or less unchanged, from father to son - just like a last name.

Because of this pattern of inheritance, men with the same surname may also share a similar complement of genetic markers on the Y chromosome.

At least 30 men registered with US consumer genetic testing firm Family Tree DNA have found their "biological surname" in this way, the company's chief executive told BBC News. The company has an online database called Ysearch containing genetic information from 125,000 men, along with surnames and other genealogical data.


GRAMPS 3.0.3

GRAMPS 3.0.3 has been released.


• The primary reason for the 3.0.3 release is to fix the Graphviz report hang issue introduced in 3.0.2.
• Fix to prevent GRAMPS from hanging when running Graphviz reports.
• New translation: Catalan (ca).
• Translation updates for de, fr, it, nb, nl, no, ru * Clean up references to gconf.
• Fixes for linking to the wiki manual.
• Small fixes in grampsxml DTD.

UncleGED 9.04

UncleGED 9.04 has been released.


• Minor update to correct problem where version of UncleGED displayed on HTML pages was different from version displayed Uncle GED Help|About.
• Fixed problem with Reverse Locations that was introduced in 9.02. The first location part was getting dropped.

MacFamilyTree 5.3

MacFamilyTree 5.3 has been released.


• New WebKit-based Reports can be saved and are individually customizable for enhanced screen and print output.
• Rewritten Kinship Report for reliable representation of complex relationships.
• Improved Family Assistant: better visibility, partnerships with or without marriage, biological or adopted children, generation-dependent coloring of person icons.
• New Family and Person Bookmarks to keep track of current research; Bookmarks can also be used for enhanced navigation in the Virtual Tree.
• New interactive Events list for the Virtual Globe.
• Improved Desendant Chart for better visibility and printed output.
• Much improved Search for persons and places in your family tree.
• Improved quick navigation labels precisely define the context in which you are currently working or browsing.
• Better handling of date format inconsistencies and individual notations for incomplete date entries and/or modifiers.
• More reliable workflow for coordinates lookup.
• Improved GEDCOM import and export for better compatibility with other genealogy applications.
• Huge pictures can now optionally be downscaled on import.
• Improved print and screen representation at high zoom ratios; i.e. when zooming far out to view a big chart in its entirety, quality and visibility of small detail is now much better.
• Improved integration with Apple's MobileMe and our own internet services.
• Further improved user interface, performance and stability.
• New Picture Synchronization with MobileFamilyTree 1.3: MobileFamilyTree is a separate and optional companion product, available for iPhone and iPod touch from the Apple App Store.

iFamily for Leopard 2.500

iFamily for Leopard 2.500 has been released.


• Ancestors and Descendants Diagrams: Changed the display of marriage dates from year only to the full marriage date including the qualifier.
• Events On This Day: Added an option to display Hebrew dates.
• Merge Person from Another Database: Enhanced to update the (internal) index of place names after merging.
• Active Source: The Sources pane is now (once again) refreshed correctly after adding a Source Reference to a person by right click on the Context Diagram. This was previously OK in version 2.443 but got broken in V2.463.
• Source References for Pictures and other Media Objects: When a Picture/Media object is cloned from one person to another, the Source References for that picture are now also cloned to the new instance of the picture. The simplest way to clone an image is to drag it from the Pictures pane onto someone in the Context Diagram.
• Context Diagram: Added Consanguinity as a 12th option for displaying text in the Context Diagram. The consanguinity is calculated relative to the "Root Person of the current Ancestral View".
• Context Diagram: Added Ahnentafel Numbers (aka Sosa-Stradonitz or Kekule numbers) as a 13th option for displaying text in the Context Diagram. The Ahnentafel numbers are calculated relative to the "Root Person of the current Ancestral View".
• Context Diagram: Added an option to display Source Numbers Referenced as a 14th option for displaying text in the Context Diagram. This is intended to quickly highlight those people that may need additional research effort.
• Ancestors Report: Added an option to include Ahnentafel (aka Sosa-Stradonitz or Kekule) Numbers. These Ahnentafel numbers are calculated relative to the "Root Person of the Ancestors Report".
• Default Pane when Starting iFamily: iFamily now remembers which pane was open in the lower half of the main window. The next time you start iFamily it will activate the pane that was active when iFamily was last closed.
• Picture Add/Edit Dialog - Image Metadata: Added a button to display all of the metadata contained in the image file. This includes metadata such as Exif, IPTC, TIFF and Camera metadata. You can then copy and paste whatever is needed into the Notes box.

Brother’s Keeper 6.2.81

Brother’s Keeper 6.2.81 has been released.


• Changes made for the translators for non-English versions. (New translations for Norwegian, Danish, and German on 20-Oct-2008).
• Fix bug in gedcom import if citation text or comments had multiple lines (not wrapped lines) with accented characters, the characters were not being converted correctly for lines two and following.
• When printing a source footnote: if publisher is in parenthesis, then only follow it with a comma if the Page field is printed next. If actual text or comments are printed after publisher, then put . and not , before that field.
• If there is an error loading Edit screen, it will say what the error is.

17 October 2008

Long Term Communication Support

A nuclear waste vault in New Mexico will long outlive our society. Experts are working on elaborate ways to warn future civilizations.

"No culture has ever tried, self-consciously and scientifically, to design a symbol that would last 10,000 years and still be intelligible," said David B. Givens, an anthropologist who helped plan the nuclear-site warnings. "And even if we succeed, would the message be believed?"

Trying to communicate across 500 generations posed an unprecedented challenge of linguistics, semiotics and materials science, so the government first asked scientists, futurists and historians to envision what the far-distant future might be like.

Roger Nelson, chief scientist of the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, considers 30,000-year-old cave drawings: "I understand those cave drawings and I don't speak Neanderthal…. He's killing a bison, 'bison — food!' I can do pictographs just as well," he said. "I can convey an absolute sense of danger."

The site would be surrounded by 48 granite or concrete markers, 32 outside the berm and 16 inside, each 25 feet high and weighing 105 tons, engraved with warnings in English, Spanish, Russian, French, Chinese, Arabic and Navajo, with room for future discoverers to add warnings in contemporary languages. Pictures would denote buried hazards and human faces of horror and revulsion.

The same symbols would be printed on metal, plastic and ceramic disks with abrasion-resistant coatings, 9 inches in diameter, that would be buried just below the surface.

Read the full story

FamilyInsight 2008.10.14.0 beta

FamilyInsight 2008.10.14.0 beta has been released.


• Added the option to save GEDCOM files in an extended format that preserved more FamilySearch data than possible with a PAF 5 compliant GEDCOM.
• Added the option to store the FamilySearch Id in either the Custom Id field of PAF or as was done previously, in a custom attribute.
• Fixed problem with the Last Changed date being updated for all individuals in a PAF file, regardless of whether or not they were modified.
• In FamilySearch Sync mode after synchronizing a person, the details display was not updating even though the correct changes had happened.
• In IGI Search mode, the death date was also being used in searches by birth date.
• Help now has a working table of contents and index.
• Fixed crash when merging.
• Fixed crash on some computers when first selecting a person (all modes).
• Fixed problem with missing dlls when running on Windows 2000.
• Fixed problem adding notes to marriages.
• In FamilySearch Sync mode, when you marked a result as a match, you could not change it to not a match until the search completed. You can now change it during the search.

Ages! 1.51

Ages! 1.51 has been released.


• Ancestor, descendent, hourglass, and "all relatives" charts are available using the same easy-to-use customization interface.
• The export wizard lets your family take part in your research - simply send them a mail, a CD or an USB stick.
• You can add media files to your family tree - that includes images, videos, audio recordings and any other document on your file. Its media wizard will also import images directly from your scanner or digital photo camera. If - for whatever reason - the documents are moved on your hard drive, its integrated media check wizard helps you to repair broken media links.

15 October 2008

Who Would Be King Of America?

Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak did the research for who would have been king of America:

My head hurts, and it has every right to. I’ve just come up for air after trying to determine the king or queen of America. Yes, I know we have no monarchy. But for the purpose of my exercise, that’s really just a technicality.

Here’s why: George Washington, our first president, was once encouraged to become America’s first king instead. Responding to Colonel Lewis Nicola, a Frenchman who served on the American side during the Revolutionary War and suggested Washington assume the crown, Washington retorted:

Let me conjure for you, then, if you have any regard for your Country, concern for yourself or for posterity, or respect for me, to banish these thoughts from your mind and never communicate, as from yourself or any one else, a sentiment of the like nature.

In short, Washington wasn’t so keen on the idea. But for those among us who like to play historical what-ifs, this is a biggie. Who would be sitting on America’s throne today if Washington had been king?

Read Full Story

GeneaNet: Forums

GeneaNet Forums are free and you don't need a GeneaNet account to post questions and engage in discussions related to GeneaNet specifically and genealogy in general.

GeneaNet Team members frequent the forum and their contributions are represented by the following icon: .

Help and Support

GeneaNet Help & Support: Ask for help on any topic related to the GeneaNet website. Report a bug. Make a suggestion.

Family History Searches: If you need help with your family history research then post your question here.


Genealogy Software
: If you are having difficulty using your genealogy software then post your question here.

Heraldry & Armorial: Discussions regarding heraldry and armorial.

Old Pictures: If you look for old pictures or need help identifying old pictures then post your question here.


Regional Genealogy and Local History Research: Discussions regarding genealogy research from places all over the world.


Surname Forums: Research and connect with other users around specific surnames. Even if you don't want to contribute, you can search these forums for your family surname..

If you need a forum for your surname, just tell us and we can create one for you!

[ GeneaNet Forums ]

13 October 2008


FamilyInsight is a new utility from Ohana Software.


• Use the new mode to search for your family in the FamilySearch family tree (You must already have acess to
• Easily combine records in the FamilySearch family tree.
• Separate improperly combined records found in FamilySearch family tree.
• Synchronize your PAF records with matching records in the FamilySearch family tree.
• Dispute information found in the FamilySearch family tree.
• Use the IMPROVED Edit Places mode to check your place-names against the standardize place-names list in FamilySearch.
• Works on both Windows and Macintosh Computers.
• FamilyInsight is a free update if you have a current license or update license of PAF Insight.

Get My Ancestors

Get My Ancestors is a new free (but you do need a Ohana Software license) utility from Ohana Software that allows you to download your family tree from the FamilySearch family tree.


• Download your family tree from the FamilySearch family tree. You may download multiple generations of your your family tree. This file will include basic events such as birth, Christening, Death, Burial and Marriage.
• Find a specific person and download his or her family tree and sync with your current file.
• Save a file as a Personal Ancestral File (PAF) database.
• If you do not have a genealogy program on your computer you can download Personal Ancestral File free from
• Files created work with Personal Ancestral File 5 and FamilyInsight and PAF Insight.
• Works with both Mac and Windows machines.

Of course, you need to be able to register on FamilySearch family tree (new FamilySearch) in order to use Get My Ancestors.

Google Your Family Tree

Did you realize the most powerful tool for your genealogy research is completely free?

Google is available in more than 160 countries and is free to use — for genealogy or anything else you may be trying to find! Use Google to your full advantage.

• Find published works containing information on your ancestors
• Uncover intriguing family photographs and possibly video
• Search historic newspaper archives for long-forgotten details
• Visit your ancestral home towns as often as you like

Only a long-time genealogist and technology expert could have acomplished what author Dan Lynch did within this text. He disects more than one hundred powerful commands and features of Google, but maintains a focus on how they can be used specifically to conduct family history research. Special tips for finding people, places, and even filters for searching through different time periods.

The Google Your Family Tree book has it all.

Genealogy Today Launches Live Roots Meta Search Website

Genealogy Today announced the release of a new website designed to help researchers locate genealogical data -- both online and offline, and either digitized or in-print. Live Roots bridges the gaps between independent websites, large commercial repositories and printed materials yet to be digitized and published on the World Wide Web.

"I've always tried to stay informed about new resources; but with so many outlets, there hasn't been a single place to search across different catalogs," commented Illya D'Addezio, owner of Genealogy Today. "Through Live Roots I'm partnering with major genealogy companies and many medium and smaller publishers to combine their respective catalogs into one repository."

"The "live" part of the Live Roots concept lets your research continue even when the publication isn't available online," added Illya. "There's nothing more frustrating than finding a resource that could hold the missing link in your tree, and then discovering that there aren't any places online to access it."

For many of the resources in its catalog, Live Roots captures names from their listings and aggregates the data into a searchable index. This makes it possible to locate names within resources, rather than just searching for keywords in titles and descriptions. This includes many of the resources that have yet to be digitized and/or transcribed online.

For additional details, visit "Genealogy Today Launches Live Roots Meta Search Website"

9 October 2008

Long-Lost Brother And Sister Were Living Four Miles Apart

George Culwick, 87, became separated from sister Lucy Heenan, 88, when he began travelling all over the country with his engineering firm in his 20s.

But three months ago the pensioner attended a family ancestry meeting and discovered through another relative that Mrs Heenan had been living in Langley, Birmingham – a few minutes away from the home in Quinton in which he lived for decades.

"I thought Lucy was dead because I hadn't seen or heard of her for so long, so this has all come as a real shock," said George. "Meeting her again after all these years was very emotional, we didn't do much talking to start with. It is a bit sad that we've missed out on 60 years together, but we're having to make up for lost time now.

"I'd had no way of getting in touch with Lucy before this because I didn't know where she was. It is strange that we were living so close to each other and yet we had no idea. Since we were reunited, we have met each other's children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. My family like having a new auntie, especially as she makes such a fuss of them."


GeneaNet: Recording Place Names

The generally accepted method for recording place names is to begin with the smallest locality first and then up to the largest. You would therefore begin with the town or city name, then the county or district name, then the state or province name, and lastly the country name.

In the GeneaNet database, data is indexed in a semicolon-separated list as shown below:



- Surname
- Start Date
- End Date
- Number of entries for the surname
- Full Place Name
- County Code
- Province/State Code
- Country Code

GeneaNet - bien saisir ses lieux
If the place names are correctly recorded in your family tree, searchers will easily find your ancestors in the GeneaNet database!

8 October 2008

UK National Archives: Browse And Download Digital Microfilm For Free

The UK National Archives has launched its Digital Microfilm Project:

Digital Microfilm is a project piloting a new way to deliver records online. The National Archives has a large collection of microfilmed records, and by making these available online we hope to increase their accessibility. This will ultimately allow the microfilm readers used at The National Archives, Kew to be retired.

We have digitised four records series of military and naval records. If the project is successful, we intend to add a wide variety of record series covering many different areas of interest. Many of the records are indexes and we hope that these will be helpful in locating other relevant records.

The new way of delivery is by using very large pdfs, each of which contains a whole piece, which could be up to 800 pages long. This means that Digital Microfilm is only available to online users with a broadband connection, and to users in the Reading Rooms at The National Archives.

These records have not been indexed, and so you will need to scroll through the pdfs, much as you would when using a microfilm. However, we would be more than happy for users to transcribe any of the Digital Microfilm content, and post it on Your Archives, The National Archives' online community of records users.

These documents are free of charge to download. If you try out the Digital Microfilm pilot, we would be grateful for your comments.

PathWiz! 8

PathWiz! 8 has been released.

New Features:

• Automatic screen size adjustment to give a 'as big as possible' frame for the 'Filter' screens available under [View/Modify] plus a [Screen] button to allow a shorter screen for use on widescreen monitors or on a flat panel TV.
• An 'Advanced' mode with 3 options: - 1. The ability to output to disk files both Internal Exhibits, and External exhibits to reduced size 'skinny' files (a la Thumbnails) stored in the exhibits table. These are saved as files with the exhibit number in a single folder of your choice.
- 2. The ability to 'swap' between the normal exhibits and these 'skinny' files. This is of interest to VCF users who find the use of 'normal size' exhibits in a large project may cause VCF to stop printing. They would also be useful in other applications such as WebPages. Internal exhibits can also be written to the same folder.
- 3. An alternative indexing option using an internal routine ( cleaner solution to the need to reindex) but this may not work on all machines particularly Vista.
• Use of TMG V7 paths in place of those used in TMG V6.


• List images unused in the exhibit log from a folder or path and move the unused elsewhere • Windows Image details [EXIF] now able to be viewed and stored in the TMG exhibits file. Annotate your files with permanent Title etc and import into, say, Caption. Image details from a camera can be imported into the Description field for later viewing. See here.
• Each Internal exhibit or stored thumbnail can be written to a file.
• Exhibits can be searched for by a name string either on a whole drive or on a path from a selected folder. ( System folders are ignored) in [V/M] browses via Fname1 field click.
• Full Exif values from the camera can be viewed or stored.
• Images can be 'enhanced' without the need of an external editor.
• TMG Flags can be used when isolating types of exhibits via the Filter screen.
• Filters for a particular Tag Type can be selected (Remember Catalogues can be created for each filter used - No need for a complete catalogue if not required for particular editing requirements.).
• PathWiz! will go directly to an exhibit file once a Project folder is selected if only one project is available in that folder. (No need to click the [Go] button).
• A group of letters within an exhibit file path can be exchanged - i.e. C:\myexhibits\harry can be changed to C:\[mynewexhibits]\harry.
• Mailout - An email with a MSWord Report attached can be sent to any group of TMG persons using an appropriately modified Address Tag. Option available on report setup screen.
• Works with Windows XP and Vista . See here for 'footprint'.

Behold alpha

Behold alpha has been released.


• Change all menu items and web update scripts to point to the new website.


• Eliminate crash caused by a NOTE followed by a CONC tag with text formatted as like a link in a GEDCOM file.
• Allow Trailer 2 and Trailer 3 to be unselected and not printed if Trailer 1 is selected.
• Display some words from the Organize Reports page that were not displaying correctly.

3 October 2008

Heritage Microfilm Partners With Google to Provide Digital Newspapers

Heritage Microfilm and have formed a partnership with Google to bring more digitized newspaper pages to the Web.

Heritage Microfilm will serve as a Google digitization partner, working with newspaper publishers worldwide. Publishers can continue to take advantage of Heritage's current subscription model while at the same time working with Google to extend the reach of their brand online, as well as earn ad revenue. Publishers who wish to be excluded from this partnership will still receive the same high-quality service they are accustomed to.

Heritage Microfilm and will continue to branch out from a core newspaper microfilming organization and online database in refreshingly innovative directions. For example, Heritage Microfilm will soon announce a focused 5-year international initiative, enhancing existing partnerships and welcoming new ones. This enterprise is aimed at increasing the availability of foreign news and history to people everywhere.

Source: PRWeb

Immigration to the United States, 1789-1930 - Harvard University Open Collections Program

Immigration to the United States, 1789-1930, is a web-based collection of selected historical materials from Harvard's libraries, archives, and museums that documents voluntary immigration to the US from the signing of the Constitution to the onset of the Great Depression.

Concentrating heavily on the 19th century, Immigration to the United States, 1789-1930, includes approximately 1,800 books and pamphlets as well as 9,000 photographs, 200 maps, and 13,000 pages from manuscript and archival collections. By incorporating diaries, biographies, and other writings capturing diverse experiences, the collected material provides a window into the lives of ordinary immigrants.

2 October 2008

GeneaNet: Numbering Your Ancestors

An Ahnentafel is a genealogical numbering system that allows one to list a person's ancestors in a particular order. It is also known as the Sosa-Stradonitz Method, for Jérôme de Sosa, the Spanish genealogist who popularized the numbering system in 1676 and Stephan Kekulé von Stradonitz, the German genealogist who published his interpretation of Sosa's method in 1898.

In an Ahnentafel each person's father is numbered twice that of the person. Each person's mother is two times that person's number plus one.

Set Your Family Tree Root

Log on to your online family tree as "Wizard", then select an individual and click "Update - Individual/Family". This will open a window that shows you a list of available update options. Click "Set to home individual" to set the selected individual as your family tree root.

Sosa numbers will be automatically assigned to your family tree root ancestors.

Clicking the Sosa number of any person will open a window that shows you a descendancy list.

Remove Your Family Tree Root

If needed, you can deactivate the numbering system. Select the "Online Family Tree - Manage - Expert Options" menu item then click "Remove the family tree root". Note that this will not remove the individual in your family tree!

1 October 2008

Osk 4.51.1

Osk 4.51.1 has been released.


• Registration not approved error, is now fixed.
• Menu item to buy/license application pointed to preferences, fixed.

Genea 1.4.3

Genea 1.4.3 has been released.


• New: Browsing data.
• Fixed: Genea hangs when editing a person with birth date in a family tree.
• Fixed: Date values missing when editing events.