Genealogy Blog

31 July 2012

Are You Related to J. K. Rowling?

Rowling was born on July 31, 1965 to Peter James Rowling and Anne Rowling (née Volant), in Yate, Gloucestershire, England, 10 miles (16 km) northeast of Bristol.

Her mother Anne was half-French, half-Scottish. Her mother's maternal grandfather, Dr Dugald Campbell, was born in Lamlash on the Isle of Arran. Her mother's paternal grandfather, Louis Volant, was awarded the Croix de Guerre for exceptional bravery in defending the village of Courcelles-le-Comte during the First World War.

J. K. Rowling's Family Tree

30 July 2012

Syracuse, New York - Vandals Damage Historic Tombstones in Camillus Cemetery

Vandals toppled eight tombstones, including one marking the grave of one of the area’s earliest settlers, in Belle Isle Cemetery in Camillus.

A cemetery worker noticed the damage Thursday night, said Gary Cook, president of the association that oversees the cemetery at Armstrong and Van Buren roads. The vandalism occurred either Tuesday or Wednesday night, he said. The vandalism happened in the oldest part of the 9-acre, 201-year-old cemetery.

Source & Full Story

Human Remains Found at Site of WWII Spitfire Crash in Scotland

A search for human remains is being carried out on the site where a World War II Spitfire crashed almost 70 years ago. The RAF Spitfire crashed in the Borders shortly after taking off from Drem air base on a training flight on January 16, 1943.

The wreckage was discovered by residents near the site where it crashed at Westruther, near Greenlaw, 
Berwickshire. The pilot, 20-year-old Sergeant Malcolm Eric Edward Robertson of Royal New 
Zealand Air Force, was killed in the crash and his remains were later interred at Craigton Cemetery, in Glasgow.

Source & Full Story

Genealogy Society Singapore (GSS) Launched to Build Family History Database

The founder of Singapore is Sir Stamford Raffles but do people know who their own ancestors are? A project has been initiated to build a database of the history of Singapore families after the Genealogy Society Singapore (GSS) was launched on Saturday.

It also signed a memorandum of understanding with the National Library Board (NLB) to cement the effort to trace Singaporeans' ancestry.

Source & Full Story

Library and Archives Canada Preparing for Big Move

Library and Archives Canada has compiled the first-ever master list of how well its massive collection is holding up as it prepares for a major move next year of thousands of pieces of Canadian history.

"As stewards, we're just doing the work for Canadians, so they should know what we're doing and what it looks like," said Sylvain Belanger, director, holdings management, at Library and Archives Canada.

Source & Full Story

Obama Has Ties to Slavery Not by His Father but His Mother, Research Suggests

President Obama’s biography — son of a black father from Kenya and a white mother from Kansas — has long suggested that unlike most African-Americans, his roots did not include slavery.

Now a team of genealogists is upending that thinking, saying that Mr. Obama’s mother had, in addition to her European ancestors, at least one African forebear and that the president is most likely descended from one of the first documented African slaves in the United States.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Hilary Swank?

Swank was born on July 30, 1974 in Lincoln, Nebraska. Her mother, Judy Kay (née Clough), was a secretary and dancer, and her father, Stephen Michael Swank, was an officer in the Air National Guard and later a traveling salesman.

Her surname, originally Schwenk, is of German origin. Many of Swank's family members hail from Ringgold County, Iowa, and her maternal grandmother was of Spanish and Shoshone (Native American) ancestry. After having lived in Spokane,

Hilary Swank's Family Tree

GeneaNet: 'Connect with Facebook' Button

If you have a Facebook account, you can now easily and quickly sign in to GeneaNet with the 'Connect with Facebook' button.

The 'Connect with Facebook' API only reads the email address you have registered with Facebook to search for your existing GeneaNet account.

GeneaNet will never give your private information to Facebook.

Continue reading...

27 July 2012

National Archives at New York City Opens in New Location

The National Archives and Records Administration today announced a fall 2012 opening of the new location for the National Archives at New York City—the Alexander Hamilton U.S. Custom House at One Bowling Green in Lower Manhattan.

The National Archives’ New York research facility was on Varick Street in Greenwich Village for 20 years. The new location at the Alexander Hamilton U.S.Custom House will provide greater visibility and accessibility to the important Federal records originating in New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Jerry Van Dyke?

Van Dyke was born on July 27, 1931 in Danville, Illinois, to Loren (nickname “Cookie”) and Hazel (née McCord) Van Dyke.

He is of Dutch descent on his father's side and of English and Scottish descent on his mother's side. His mother is a Mayflower descendant.

Jerry Van Dyke's Family Tree

26 July 2012

RestingSpot 2.0 Update Released

Mobile - Freeware

RestingSpot 2.0 has been released.


• Now choose between the standard method and the new Camera Add. The standard method is perfect for adding a few RestingSpots, while the Camera Add option is ideal for adding multiple ones.

MacFamilyTree 6.2.15 Update Released

Full Featured - Mac - Purchase

MacFamilyTree 6.2.15 has been released.


• Critical bug fix for date parsing when using OS X Mountain Lion.
• My Tree pane improved.
• Many fixes publishing Web Sites.
• GEDCOM Export problems fixed concerning place coordinates.
• Several memory leaks fixed.
• Localizations improved.

Billion Graves 2.1.2 Update Released

Mobile - Freeware

Billion Graves 2.1.2 has been released.


• Minor bug fixes.

Genographic 2.0 Launched

Today, The Genographic Project officially announced the launch of their new Geno 2.0 project, a significant update to the type and quantity of genetic information that will be collected and analyzed by The Genographic Project.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Mick Jagger?

Jagger was born on July 26, 1943 into a middle class family at Livingstone Hospital, in Dartford, Kent, England. His father, Basil Fanshawe ("Joe") Jagger (13 April 1913 – 11 November 2006), and his grandfather David Ernest Jagger were both teachers.

His mother, Eva Ensley Mary (née Scutts; 6 April 1913 – 18 May 2000), born from New South Wales, Australia, was a hairdresser and an active member of the Conservative Party. Jagger is the elder of two sons.

Mick Jagger's Family Tree

25 July 2012

Historians Discover Medieval Banking Records Hidden Under Coats of Arms

A rare accounting document, half-concealed beneath a coat of arms design, has revealed the activities of Italian bankers working in early 15th century London, decades before the capital became a financial powerhouse. The discovery was made by economic historians at Queen Mary, University of London.

Among the pages of a bound collection of traditional English crests held at the London College of Arms -- the headquarters of British heraldry -- are several papers belonging to a book of debtors and creditors for Florentine merchant-banking company, Domenicio Villani & Partners.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Frank Wiziarde?

Frank Oliver Wiziarde was born on July 25, 1916 in Westmoreland, Kansas, USA.

He was an actor and television personality who was known primarily for his performances as Whizzo the Clown.

Frank Wiziarde"s Family Tree

24 July 2012

Scotland - Countdown Begins to 700th Anniversary of Bannockburn

Hollywood-style huge letters now mark the site of the new multi-­million-pound Battle of Bannockburn visitor centre. The four-foot-tall white letters were unveiled yesterday. The National Trust for Scotland said branding at the centre on the site of Robert the Bruce’s victory over the English indicated it would be a “world-class, Hollywood-calibre visitor attraction”.

The launch, along with that of a new website for the project, also marks the 700-day countdown towards the 700th anniversary of the battle, when the new attraction will open to the public.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Amelia Earhart?

Amelia Mary Earhart, daughter of Samuel "Edwin" Stanton Earhart (March 28, 1867) and Amelia "Amy" Otis Earhart (1869–1962), was born in Atchison, Kansas, in the home of her maternal grandfather, Alfred Gideon Otis (1827–1912), a former federal judge, president of the Atchison Savings Bank and a leading citizen in Atchison.

This was the second child in the marriage as an infant was stillborn in August 1896. Alfred Otis had not initially favored the marriage and was not satisfied with Edwin's progress as a lawyer.

Amelia Earhart's Family Tree

23 July 2012

Hopes of Finding Earhart's Plane Fade

As the expedition to Nikumaroro nears an end, hopes to identify pieces of Amelia Earhart's plane are waning.

A difficult environment and a number of technical issues have plagued the underwater search in the waters off the tiny uninhabited island between Hawaii and Australia where the legendary aviator may have landed and died as a castaway 75 years ago.

Source & Full Story

Nine More Australian Soldiers Identified in Fromelles Mass Grave

Generations have passed in the Wynn family without anyone knowing whatever happened to Uncle Jack. John 'Jack' Wynn was a labourer from West Maitland in NSW, a single man who went off to war in 1915 and like so many others, never returned.

Along with some 5500 of his countrymen, the 19-year-old died during the bloody 12-hour Battle of Fromelles in northern France over July 19 and 20, 1916.

Source & Full Story

Winston-Salem, North Carolina - Cemetery Volunteers Find Piece of Lost Building

Think of it as an episode of "History Detectives" playing out right here in Winston-Salem. Each Saturday morning for nearly three years, a small group of volunteers has met at the Happy Hill Cemetery to reclaim long-forgotten graves from decades of neglect.

A few Saturdays ago, architect David Gall and two other men were clearing a tangle of briars at a far edge of the cemetery when they uncovered their find: an ornately carved piece of terra cotta, about the size of a banker's box.

Source & Full Story

National Archives of Ghana in Danger of Losing Official Documents

National records at the Public Records and Archives Administration Department (PRAAD) continue to deteriorate because of poor facilities.

With the onset of the rains, signs of leakage are visible, making the keeping of the records under the required temperature difficult. Volumes of documents are, therefore, at the mercy of the weather. The archives serve as a research centre where scores of people go in search of information daily.

Source & Full Story

Couple Marries in Civil War-Style Wedding

At high noon on a recent summer day as a gentle breeze helped cool the sweltering temperatures beneath the massive Pringle Tree, a local couple exchanged vows in a unique ceremony.

For Sharon and Alan Talbott, the Civil War-theme wedding —complete with historical costumes, swords and even a cannon — was something that combined their interest in history with a little fun thrown in.

Source & Full Story

Abandoned Nebraska Cemetery To Be Cleaned Up

The Old Log Church Cemetery dates back to at least 1875, when land was deeded for the cemetery and the Methodist Episcopal Church, or Old Log Church, which stood on the site.

A second tract of land was deeded to the cemetery in 1884, when a diphtheria epidemic led to the death of several children and filled the original cemetery.

Source & Full Story

The New GeneaStar Website Has Launched

The new GeneaStar website has launched. This is a website provided and owned by GeneaNet, and it's free for everyone!

On GeneaStar, you can:

- View the family tree of nearly 2,000 famous people (about 800 of them are from American, English and Irish descent, and new famous people are added every day)
- Automatically compare your GeneaNet family tree with the GeneaStar database
- Add a family link between you and a famous people
- Add some famous genealogies.

Continue reading...

20 July 2012

Nazis Plotted to Assassinate Winston Churchill with Exploding Chocolate Bars

A deadly dessert lay at the center of a World War II plot to assassinate Britain's prime minister. Nazi agents hoped to kill Sir Winston Churchill with exploding chocolate bars, according to a secret wartime letter revealed recently, the Daily Mail reported.

Adolf Hitler's bomb makers conspired to conceal explosives in a layer of dark chocolate then enclose them in black and gold wrappers. The Third Reich hoped to smuggle the killer confections -- branded as "Peters Chocolate" -- into a private dining room used by Churchill and his wartime cabinet.

Source & Full Story

Stunning Panoramic Images from Turn-of-the-Century New York Show the Last Vestiges of Stone Buildings and Low-Slung Skyline

These stunning panoramas, taken between 1901 and 1913 and curated by the Library of Congress, show the city as dusk fell on the New York built before the Civil War.

Buildings were continually built up and torn down to make way for newer architecture, and more modern conveniences. Landmarks like Madison Square Park and Columbus Circle were both constructed, but each was surrounded by only several buildings and closely packed dirt roads.

Source & Full Story

Victoria Cross Fetches £276,000 at Auction

The first Victoria Cross awarded to a private in World War I has sold for £276,000 at auction. The medal, awarded to Pte Sidney Godley, of East Grinstead, West Sussex, was expected to fetch up to £180,000.

Pte Godley manned a machine-gun position defending Nimy Bridge in Mons while under fire from German soldiers in the first weeks of the war. A second VC, awarded posthumously to a Gloucestershire soldier, was sold for £240,000 at the same auction.

Source & Full Story

Endangered Archives Programme - Gypsy/Roma Archives in Bulgaria

Digital copies of photographs, theatre play scripts and posters, songs and newspapers are among the newly catalogued Collections relating to Gypsy/Roma archives in Bulgaria, now available on the EAP webpages.

These records were copied by EAP067 Preservation of Gypsy/Roma historical and cultural heritage in Bulgaria from private individual and family collections. Additional surrogate copies have been deposited with the Studii Romani Archive at the Ethnographic Institute and Museum of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences.

Source & Full Story

Miami, Florida - Families Sue Cemetery Company Over Corpse Confusion

A cemetery mix up has a local family filing suit! That’s after another woman was found buried in their mother’s pre-paid plot at the Star of David Memorial Gardens Cemetery in North Lauderdale.

“I went to look at my father’s gravesite, and I knew immediately something wasn’t right,” said Connie Minsky. With a closer look she discovered another woman was buried in her mother’s plot.

Source & Full Story

19 July 2012

Tombfinder App 1350 Update Released

Mobile - Freeware

Tombfinder App 1350 has been released.


• GPS enhancements.
• Bug fixes.

Shoebox 2.1.1 Update Released

Mobile - Freeware

Shoebox 2.1.1 has been released.


• Receive notifications when your friends add photos to your shoeboxes.
• Bug fixes.

RestingSpot 1.3 Update Released

Mobile - Freeware

RestingSpot 1.3 has been released.


• Now choose between the standard method and the new Camera Add. The standard method is perfect for adding a few RestingSpots, while the Camera Add option is ideal for adding multiple ones. Simply snap headstone photos using your GPS-enabled smartphone camera and fill in the person's details from a desktop computer later on.

FamilyTreeFactory Update Released

Charts and Diagrams - Windows - Purchase

FamilyTreeFactory has been released.


• In descendant trees, there are new functions in the context menu of person boxes of descendants: Now you can exclude several persons at once: All Partners and Children of this Person as well as All Children of this Person. This makes it easier to exclude whole branches.
• In the Personal Data menu, Search for Records with Certain Attributes sub-menu, there are two new functions: Search for Records without Father and Mother and Search for Records without Partners and Children.
• At the output of notes on file cards, blanks at the beginning of lines will not be removed furthermore. Formattings made by the user will be preserved this way.
• The program is now prepared for Windows 8.
• Some small improvements and corrections.

Branches Update Released

Full Featured - Windows - Purchase

Branches has been released.


• Maintenance update.

Is This the Mona Lisa's Skeleton? Discovery of Bones in Florence Convent Believed To Be Those of Silk Merchant's Wife Who Inspired Da Vinci

Archaeologists are convinced they've unearthed the secret behind the world's most famous painting, the Mona Lisa. Buried beneath the floor of a convent in Florence, Italy they've found a skeleton they believe belonged to Lisa Gherardini, the model who posed for Leonardo's da Vinci's mysterious masterpiece.

Lisa Gheradini, was the wife of a rich silk merchant named Francesco del Giocondo. In Italy the Mona Lisa is known as La Gioconda. Most modern historians agree that the lady depicted in the Mona Lisa was Lisa del Giocondo, who became a nun after her husband's death. She died in the convent on July 15, 1542, aged 63.

Source & Full Story

Ohio Mormon Cemetery Fascinates Researchers

A tiny northeastern Ohio cemetery containing the unearthed headstones of 19th century Mormon settlers may grow if officials find more of the grave markers on the site of a recently closed school.

The Akron Beacon Journal ( reports that New Portage Cemetery in Barberton was fenced in about 13 years ago by local Mormon researchers, who had placed headstones there that had been found near a local elementary school.

Source & Full Story

18 July 2012

Survey Locates 967 Unmarked Graves in Sudbury, Massachusetts, Cemetery

To the untrained eye, the screen looks like random static. But Bob Perry points to a white blip that could be a coffin. And a series of impressions at the top of the monitor may be headstones.

Using ground-penetrating radar, Perry has been able to identify burials in Sudbury’s oldest cemetery that have been forgotten for centuries. Over the past two weeks, he’s located 967 gravesites in all, including about 70 buried headstones.

Source & Full Story

Centralia, Missouri - Woman Cares for Far West Cemetery, Preserves 19th Century History

When Fonda and Paul Smith moved to a house near Centralia in the winter of 1988, they were looking forward to living in a place with more trees than people. That first spring in their new home, they walked along a small trail behind the house and discovered they had more company than they'd realized.

There, in a hilly woods, were more than 150 known graves, some dating as far back as the 1820s. Since then, Fonda Smith has been the “unofficial” caretaker of the Far West cemetery.

Source & Full Story

Chilling Archives of French Jews Deported To Auschwitz Shown For First Time To Public

Even in France, one of the most brazen collaborations between authorities and the Nazis during World War II is unknown to many in the younger generation.

Police are hoping to change that, opening up their archives on France’s biggest single deportation of French Jews for the first time to the public on Thursday. The often chilling records are being exhibited in the Paris Jewish district’s city hall to coincide with the 70th anniversary of the two-day “Vel d’Hiv” roundup, named for the Velodrome d’Hiver, or Winter Velodrome.

Source & Full Story

Discovered in a Castle Vault, The Scraps of Lace That Show Lingerie Was All The Rage 500 Years Ago

It is hardly racy by today’s standards but this skimpy lingerie has certainly shocked historians. The lace and linen undergarments date back to hundreds of years before women’s underwear was thought to exist.

They had lain hidden in a vault beneath the floorboards of an Austrian castle since the 15th century. Despite their state of decay, the knickers bear more than a passing resemblance to the string bikini briefs popular today, while the bra has the fitted cups and delicate straps of its modern-day counterparts.

Source & Full Story

17 July 2012

Ireland - Vandals Cause €50,000 Worth of Damage at Limerick Graveyard

Historic headstones in Limerick’s oldest graveyard have been damaged over the weekend, with the culprits causing up to €50,000 worth of damage.

Gardai are now examining CCTV footage taken from near Mount St Lawrence Cemetery, between Saturday night and Sunday morning when some 37 headstones were knocked over and smashed into pieces.

Source & Full Story

Nova Scotia - Archives Bring 19th Century History Into Digital Age

Decades of 19th century Nova Scotia history has been given the online treatment at the Nova Scotia Archives. History buffs can now access two early newspapers, the Acadian Recorder and the Liverpool Transcript, electronically by the click of a button.

More than 50 years of history, beginning in 1813 are available. The Acadian Recorder from 1813 to 1853 is online, as well as the Liverpool Transcript from 1854 to 1867.

Source & Full Story

Memory of the Netherlands - Poster Project

Seven institutions managing Dutch heritage have joined forces to provide a representative picture of the main political, cultural and historical posters in the Netherlands from 1870 to the present.

In two years’ time approximately 52,000 posters have been made available on the site of the Memory of the Netherlands. These posters are all public resources.

Memory of the Netherlands - Poster Project

Annie Lennox Could Be Set To Appear on TV’s Who Do You Think You Are?

Superstar Annie Lennox could be set to discover her family history on a popular TV show, the Evening Express can reveal today. It’s believed Aberdeen-born singer Annie Lennox is set to appear in a new episode of BBC One’s Who Do You Think You Are?

Former Eurythmics singer Annie was spotted filming in Aberdeen several weeks ago and a film crew secretly worked with the singer inside Aberdeen’s Central Library.

Source & Full Story

16 July 2012

Cathy Tyree, Virginia Woman, Discovers Lost Family Photos At Antique Shop

Cathy Tyree was on the hunt for an old couch when she stumbled across something incredible at an antique shop in Richmond, Va. Tyree had been in the store for only 15 minutes when she discovered a lost picture of her deceased father among the glassware, furniture and old books.

"I was almost speechless" Tyree told CBS 6. In a framed photo from the late 1950's was Tyree's father, Louis Tyree, a veteran of WWII, Korea and Vietnam.

Source & Full Story

Vivaldi's Lost Masterpiece Is Found in Library Archives

In a development described by music experts as "a bombshell in the world of Baroque opera", a new version of Vivaldi's opera Orlando Furioso has been discovered, 270 years after his death.

The manuscript has been dated to 1714, 13 years before Vivaldi composed his later masterpiece. It contains as many as 20 new arias, never heard before – all composed around the time that Vivaldi was also working on The Four Seasons, said to be the most-recorded piece of classical music in history.

Source & Full Story

Recalling the Famine’s Impact on Irish and American History

There is a profound moment in Tom Murphy’s play ‘Famine” where John Connor, the Irish tenant farmer, pulls up the potato stalk by the root to see if the blight is back.

It is 1846. After a bad blight the year before there is hope that the humble potato, the only staple food of his country, will be back to normal.

Source & Full Story

Tracing Your Family History Takes Time, Effort and Money

Tracing your family tree is easier than ever, thanks to personal computers and the Internet, but it’s still not as easy as TV shows and commercials for genealogical organizations lead you to believe.

“You see those TV commercials for ancestry and it’s click! click! click! and instant information. It’s not that easy,” Lyn Meehan, a professional genealogist, says.

Source & Full Story

Millions of Canadians, Inspired by TV Shows and Websites, Are Investigating their Family Trees

Rob Milson always knew his great-grandfather had abandoned his wife and young children. Turns out Lewis Davis was more of a scoundrel than that, spending four years in a Boston jail for counterfeiting — printing Canadian money in Boston and shipping it north to a gang circulating bogus bills in Nova Scotia in 1899.

Milson discovered that tidbit in one paragraph of his great-grandparents’ divorce papers. Finding someone notorious in his family tree has made his research more interesting, the retired elementary school teacher says.

Source & Full Story

Recreation of The Lost Mural of Ellis Island Goes On Display at the National Archives in Morrow

Covington muralist Andrew Sabori, the son of Sicilian and Spanish immigrants, went to Ellis Island one day in 2003 to find out more about his own heritage. Instead, he came away obsessed with a monumental mural that once greeted newcomers to these shores, but had been destroyed by storms.

After much gumshoe-detective work and many blind alleys, Sabori hunted down photos of the Ellis Island mural, painted in 1935 by Edward Laning. Then, with the help of high school students in Nevada and the encouragement of his wife, Roberta, he set about making a 90-foot-long recreation.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Robin Williams?

Williams was born July 21, 1951, in Chicago, Illinois. His mother, Laura (née Smith, 1922–2001), was a former model from New Orleans, Louisiana. His father, Robert Fitzgerald Williams (September 10, 1906 – October 18, 1987) was a senior executive at Lincoln-Mercury Motorship in charge of the Midwest area.

Williams was raised in the Episcopal Church, though his mother practiced Christian Science. He grew up in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, where he was a student at the Detroit Country Day School, and Marin County, California, where he attended the public Redwood High School.

Robin Williams' Family Tree

Download the Latest Original GEDCOM File You Have Imported into GeneaNet

You can now download the latest original GEDCOM file you have imported into GeneaNet.

This is your original GEDCOM file and not a new GEDCOM file exported from your actual GeneaNet Online Family Tree.

Continue reading...

13 July 2012

The Endangered Archives of the Haynes Publishing Company, Argentina

Today's post has been written by Celina Tuozzo, the project holder for EAP375 The transition from a traditional to a modern society: recovering Argentinean and Latin Americian history through an emblematic publishing company:

"The Endangered Archives Programme helped us save part of the pre-modern material of the Archive of the Haynes Publishing Company -- a model of its kind in Argentina and Latin America since 1904."

Source & Full Story

Descendants of Fugitive Slave Reunite in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

More than 200 descendants of a fugitive slave will be reuniting in Hamilton this weekend. They return to the city where their family first gained freedom.

It was 1860 when Thomas John Holland escaped slavery in Maryland. He fled through the Underground Railroad which led him to Hamilton. For the first time his ancestors will reunite in the city where he first lived as a free man.

Source & Full Story

12 July 2012

Build Your Family Tree 5.20 Update Released

Mobile - Purchase

Build Your Family Tree 5.20 has been released.


• Minor performance improvement.

RootsMagic Update Released

Full Featured - Windows - Purchase

RootsMagic has been released.


• New: Shared events are included in "Who Was There" report.
• Fixed: Narrative report sometimes printed incorrect role sentences.
• Fixed: Rearrange media was disabled for places, sources, and citations.
• Fixed: Window size is remembered for media gallery / album, source template list, and fact type list.

Personal Ancestry Writer II 101 Update Released

Full Featured - Mac - Freeware

Personal Ancestry Writer II 101 has been released.


• PAWriter has been code signed for OS 10.8 Mountain Lion.
• PAWriter was compiled using Real Studio 2011 Release 3 — a technical change only.

MyKinFolks 2.0 Update Released

Mobile - Purchase

MyKinFolks 2.0 has been released.


• Any one, or all, genealogies can be deleted, including the sample genealogies.
• Website addresses you visit, to download a GEDCOM file, are bookmarked to save subsequent typing and eliminate keying errors.
• A subject individual can be set for all reports, instead of having to be specified for each report.
• Most reports can be printed on any AirPrint-enabled printer.
• Embedded help information.

MobileFamilyTree Pro 1.1.8 Update Released

Mobile - Purchase

MobileFamilyTree Pro 1.1.8 has been released.


• Database saving and migration issues fixed.
• Performance enhanced.

MacFamilyTree 6.2.14 Update Released

Full Featured - Mac - Purchase

MacFamilyTree 6.2.14 has been released.


• Enhanced for Retina displays.
• Several bugfixes and minor user interface improvements.

Ancestral Quest 14.3 Update Released

Full Featured - Windows - Purchase

Ancestral Quest 14.3 has been released.


• Pedigree View/Color Coding: If you had assigned any color coding to anyone in your file, the colors for name boxes were to be set to black text on either a white background or the color coded background. Sometimes the text was not properly set to black for this situation. Fixed.
• Color Coding: If you used the option to 'Clear all colors', the colors were cleared, but the count was not reset to 0. As a result, if you had a color scheme for names as something other than black text on white background, your color scheme was not restored. Fixed.

Earliest Americans Arrived in Waves, DNA Study Finds

North and South America were first populated by three waves of migrants from Siberia rather than just a single migration, say researchers who have studied the whole genomes of Native Americans in South America and Canada.

Some scientists assert that the Americas were peopled in one large migration from Siberia that happened about 15,000 years ago, but the new genetic research shows that this central episode was followed by at least two smaller migrations from Siberia.

Source & Full Story

11 July 2012

Norway, Maine, Historical Society Receives Civil-War-Era Documents

The Norway Historical Society has received an original Civil War document that curator Charles Longley says demonstrates the charitable nature of the townspeople. “It's an example of how the town has always pulled together over the years,” said Longley.

The two-page, typewritten document shows the names of scores of townspeople including still familiar names like Noyes, Crockett, Watson, Frost, Tucker, Beal, Millett and others, who rallied around a young soldier named Wellington Hobbs to raise money in 1863 to help defray his expenses coming home and getting back to the army during the Civil War.

Source & Full Story

India Buys Gandhi Archive to Halt Auction

India has paid US$1.1mil to buy a collection of letters, papers and photographs relating to Indian independence icon Mahatma Gandhi, preventing their sale at a planned auction in London.

The archive, which belonged to Gandhi's close friend Hermann Kallenbach, a German Jewish bodybuilder and architect, was to have gone under the hammer at Sotheby's on Tuesday.

Source & Full Story

Volunteers Clean Up Arlington National Cemetery

The rain that fell on Arlington National Cemetery on Monday did not wash away the excitement and gratitude of hundreds of volunteers who worked to beautify the solemn resting place of fallen soldiers.

Nearly 400 adults, accompanied by 48 of their children, took the day off from landscaping companies in 29 states to help beautify the grounds at the famous cemetery. Adults pruned and braced trees, aerated soil and put down lime, while the children planted perennials.

Source & Full Story

Northern Ireland Conflict Archives Should Not Fall Into Police Hands

In 2001, three short years after the Good Friday agreement had seemingly drawn the curtain on the violent political conflict in the north of Ireland, the Belfast Project took its first breath.

It was devised in Boston College, Massachusetts, by specialists in the study of Irish affairs and the archiving of matters flowing from such study. Its specific purpose was to enhance knowledge about the Northern Ireland conflict through tapping into the minds of those who were involved.

Source & Full Story

10 July 2012

Clues to Early Irish Independence Bid Found

Archaeologists have made a landmark discovery that could help answer the question that has puzzled Irish historians for over 200 years. Could an invasion of Ireland by Napoleon's French forces have succeeded and triggered Irish independence more than century earlier than it was actually won?

A team of experts -- led by Rubicon Archaeology -- has discovered a near pristine gun emplacement on Bere Island in west Cork.

Source & Full Story

Colorado’s State Archivist Terry Ketelsen Retires After 45 Years

The man who has helped safeguard many of Colorado’s most historical documents for nearly a half century has retired from state government. State Archivist Terry Ketelsen, who had worked for the state for 45 years, retired last week at the age of 67.

Ketelsen’s retirement was abrupt, announcing it just days before he left, but he said his decision – which he’d been pondering for some time – was prompted by the recent deaths of nine friends in less than three months.

Source & Full Story

British Climbers Find Remains of Three Brothers Who Went Missing in 1926 as Melting Swiss Glaciers Give Up Secrets

The frozen remains of three brothers who went missing 86 years ago in the Swiss Alps have been discovered by two British climbers. The pair stumbled across the siblings' skulls, bones, boots, climbing equipment, binoculars and a leather purse containing nine Swiss Francs while in the Valais region of Switzerland.

Forensic investigators later revealed the skeletons were those of the three Ebener brothers and their guide who walked up into the mountains in 1926 and never came down.

Source & Full Story

Pictorial History-Map of Village in Mexico Rediscovered

A rare 17th-century Latin American document that was "lost" for nearly a century resurfaced earlier this year. The kicker: It was right where it should have been all along -- in the American Geographical Society (AGS) Library at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM).

But it's a wonder that the document -- a pictorial history-map of Santa Catarina Ixtepeji, a village in Mexico -- was rediscovered at all.

Source & Full Story

Digital Historians Capture War of 1812 Online

Peter Konieczny and Sandra Sadowski, future-minded historians whose websites have attracted audiences from 170 countries and a social media following of more than 50,000, have launched to spread the word about a conflict many Canadians know virtually nothing about.

“Dissatisfied with stagnant sites that sat untouched for months, we wanted something that was vibrant, changed every day and engaged people with the past. We decided to create websites and post articles, news and video from all over the world,” says Sadowski, who co-founded their most prominent site,

Source & Full Story

Volunteers Photograph Ohio Tombstones for Easy Online Research

He likes it out here because it’s quiet, serene, just him and 6,000 tombstones and a curious breeze that never sways the trees. He passes through the cemetery methodically, pausing at each stone. This one reads “ANDER-SON. Boyd and Ruth.”

Boyd died in 1974, Ruth might still be alive. The dash after her birth date hangs there like a paused thought. He brushes grass off the marker and pulls out his digital camera.

Source & Full Story

9 July 2012

War Memorial Urinating Man John Rocky Ayres Jailed

A man who urinated on a war memorial plaque and scratched obscene words on to a pavement in South Gloucestershire has been jailed. John Rocky Ayres, 34, was charged with desecrating the World War I monument in Mangotsfield on 26 April.

Ayres, of no fixed abode, denied urinating on the memorial, North Avon Magistrates' Court was told. Jailing him for 11 weeks, magistrates said his behaviour was "so serious" only custody was appropriate.

Source & Full Story

Adolf Hitler Personally Spared Jewish Man Who Served As His Commander During World War I, Uncovered Letter Reveals

Adolf Hitler personally spared a Jewish man who served as his commander during World War I from persecution or deportation, according to a letter recently uncovered by a German newspaper.

The letter, signed on August 27, 1940 by Hitler’s henchman Heinrich Himmler, ordered that Ernst Hess, a judge in the western city of Dusseldorf, was “not to be importuned in any way per the Fuehrer's wishes.”

Source & Full Story

36 World War II British Fighters Found in Myanmar

The remains of 36 British Spitfire aircraft, which were secretly buried during the World War II in what was then Burma to prevent them from being seized by the Japanese, have been discovered in the country.

The remains of the fighter aircraft were found through radar. They will be dug by experts from Leeds University in cooperation with their counterparts from Myanmar, Xinhua reported citing the Flower News journal.

Source & Full Story

German WWI Military Graves Desecrated in France

The gravestones of 40 German soldiers from World War I have been desecrated at a military cemetery in the Ardennes region of northern France, the interior ministry said Saturday.

The announcement came on the eve of the 50th anniversary of renewed Franco-German relations after World War II. German Chancellor Angela Merkel said in Berlin Saturday that the reconciliation was one of the world's most important.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Ernest Borgnine?

Borgnine has died Sunday at age 95.

He was born on January 24, 1917, in Hamden, Connecticut, the son of Anna (née Boselli), who immigrated to the United States from Carpi (Modena, Italy), and Camillo Borgnino, who immigrated to the U.S. from Ottiglio (Province of Alessandria, Italy).

Ernest Borgnine's Family Tree

Are You Related to Linda Ronstadt?

Linda Ronstadt was born on July 15, 1946, in Tucson, Arizona, to Gilbert Ronstadt (1911–1995), a prosperous machinery merchant who ran the F. Ronstadt Co., and Ruth Mary Copeman Ronstadt (1917–1982), a homemaker.

Ronstadt was raised, along with her brothers Peter (who served as Tucson's Chief of Police 1981–1992), Michael J., and sister Gretchen (Suzy), on the family's 10-acre (4.0 ha) ranch. The family was featured in Family Circle magazine in 1953.

Linda Ronstadt's Family Tree

GeneaNet 'Guest' and 'Admin' Access Rights

'Guest' and 'Admin' Access Rights are available in your GeneaNet Public Online Family Tree (GeneWeb).

- Private data in your family tree is available (read only) to members with 'Guest' Access Rights.

- Members with 'Admin' Access Rights can edit your genealogy data.

Continue reading...

6 July 2012

Scottish Post Office Directories 1773-1911

Over 700 digitised directories covering most of Scotland and dating from 1773 to 1911 are now available on the National Library of Scotland' website.

With their alphabetical list of a location's inhabitants and information on their profession and address, the directories enable you easily to find out where people lived at a certain time and how they earned their living.

Source & Full Story

George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum Launches Its New Website!

The George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum launches its new website! The website, designed by Viderity, Inc. and built by their sub-contractors at Ariesnet, utilizes the SiteCore Content Management System, which allows users to upload, edit, and publish content in an efficient manner.

The site will be hosted by Southern Methodist University (SMU). The new website features information about President and Mrs. Bush, the American Presidency, museum exhibits, archival holdings, educational resources for teachers and children, as well as updates on construction of the permanent facility on the SMU campus in Dallas, Texas.

Source & Full Story

Algeria, France Tussle Over Archives 50 Years After Split

When French soldiers and administrators left Algeria after more than a century of colonial rule, they did not go empty-handed. They took historical artefacts, books and maps, a national heritage that still sits in French libraries and archives today and which Algeria says its former colonial master should return.

France and Algeria this week mark the 50th anniversary of the July 5, 1962, independence declaration that ended French rule. Each side will reflect on the problems that entangle them.

Source & Full Story

Google to Put Italian History Online

As part of its attempt to digitalise world history and culture, Google has struck a deal with the Italian government to post 30,000 Italian newsreels and documentaries from the 20th century online, many of which glorify Benito Mussolini's fascist dictatorship.

Google has dedicated a YouTube channel to the crackly news reports, which represent about a third of the newsreel and documentary archive held by Italy's Istituto Luce-Cinecittà.

Source & Full Story

5 July 2012

New Mobile App: Family Seek

Mobile - Freeware

Family Seek allows you to find people you are related to. These relationships are found in the new FamilySearch pedigree tree.

You must have an account with new FamilySearch to use this service. An Internet connection is required for this application.

Tombfinder App 1300.0 Update Released

Mobile - Freeware

Tombfinder App 1300.0 has been released.


• Shows graves near you, when you are in a cemetery taking photos.
• A few bug fixes.

My People's Tree 1.2 Update Released

Mobile - Freeware

My People's Tree 1.2 has been released.


• Embed a 3Dviewer to visualize the customized.
• Fix bugs.

GedTreeFree 0.9.5 Update Released

Mobile - Freeware

GedTreeFree 0.9.5 has been released.


• Improved file browser.
• Support ged files with initial byte order mark.
• Better error messages when failing to open ged file.

Reunion 10.0.3 Update Released

Full Featured - Mac - Purchase

Reunion 10.0.3 has been released.


• Major expansion of Reunion 10's "Search the Web" feature: 47 sites are now included, Pop-up access to: favorites, groups, "all sites," and individual sites within each group.
• Scrolling is supported in the Add Source window when adding a new source and the number of existing source types is very large.
• Increased the maximum length of the Narrative Form "Verb" field for family events and marriage fields to 80 characters.
• Increased the number of columns in the List window to 12 (effectively, 11 plus the marking column).
• Improved compatibility with the Firefox browser when dragging/dropping images from Firefox web pages into person buttons, the Media window, and the Multimedia sidebar in Reunion.
and more...

LTools 1.3.30 Update Released

Other Tools - Windows - Freeware

LTools 1.3.30 has been released.


• Data Bridge – added – U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs BIRLS Death File, 1850-2010 (commissioned by Jay Wilpolt).
• Advanced SSDI Retrieval – this tool has been turned off because the LDS has redirected the old URL to a new online SSDI database which cannot be accessed programmatically.
• Add Events – added the {RIN} substitution for individual events and citations attached to individual events.

Bee Docs' Easy Timeline 1.3.5 Update Released

Timeline - Mac - Purchase

Bee Docs' Easy Timeline 1.3.5 has been released.


• Toolbar graphics updated for retina display.
• Event tags and color can be encoded in tab-delimited export / import.
• Spotlight data contains more information about file.
• Properly handle event links with encoded special characters in the URL.

Spanish Police Recover Priceless 12th-Century Religious Manuscript Codex Calixtinus, Arrest 4

Spanish police recovered on Wednesday a priceless 12th-century religious manuscript known as the Codex Calixtinus, which was stolen from a cathedral last year. The find came a day after four suspects were arrested in connection with the theft, the Interior Ministry said.

The richly-decorated Codex was found in a garage close to the cathedral from where it was taken in the northwestern city of Santiago de Compostela. The tome is considered the first guide for people making the ancient Christian pilgrimage known as the Camino de Santiago, the Spanish name for the Way of St. James.

Source & Full Story

4 July 2012

Rare Map Related to America‘s 'Birth Certificate' Discovered in Munich University Library

The American continent was "christened" by the cartographer Martin Waldseemüller. A previously unknown variant of the famous world map from the mapmaker's workshop has unexpectedly turned up in the collections in the University Library in Munich.

When Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel officially handed over the famous map of the world printed by Martin Waldseemüller (ca. 1470 -- 1522) to the Library of Congress In Washington in 2007, she referred to it as "a wonderful token of the particularly close ties of friendship between Germany and America."

Source & Full Story

Henry Dundas' Private Papers Bought for Scots Archive

The private papers of one of Scottish history's most controversial political figures have been saved for the nation. The Melville papers - which include the documents of Henry Dundas, 1st Viscount Melville - contain about 11,000 records which span 150 years.

The National Records of Scotland purchased the collection for £1.35m. For three decades Dundas was the Grand Manager of Scotland, or Great Tyrant to his enemies, and the trusted lieutenant of British prime minister William Pitt.

Source & Full Story

For Daughters of the American Revolution, a New Chapter

Olivia Cousins can trace her family in the United States to a soldier who joined the rebelling colonists when he was just 17. But when a friend suggested she join the Daughters of the American Revolution, an organization whose members can prove they are related to someone who aided the rebels in 1776, Dr. Cousins nearly laughed.

Dr. Cousins is black. And the D.A.R., as it is commonly called, is a historically white organization with a record of excluding blacks so ugly that Eleanor Roosevelt renounced her membership in protest.

Source & Full Story

3 July 2012

Victorian Domestic Treasure Trove Found at Greenwich Naval College

A priceless hoard of Victorian rubbish – including champagne bottles, tennis balls, sports shoes, bowler hats, medicine jars, clay pipes and tobacco tins – has been discovered bricked up under steps leading to the imposing courtyard at the Old Royal Naval College in Greenwich.

The haul is so precisely the kind of domestic junk that any untidy householder shoves into a cupboard before an unexpected visitor, that archaeologists wonder if it represents just that, a hasty cleanup before a grand event at a site where royalty were regular visitors.

Source & Full Story

Search for Amelia Earhart's Plane Begins

On the 75th anniversary of her disappearance, an expedition heads out to prove once and for all that Earhart landed and perished on a remote island.

Components of Amelia Earhart's plane might have floated for weeks in the waters of an uninhabited island in the southwestern Pacific republic of Kiribati, according to new analysis of a photograph taken three months after the disappearance of the glamorous aviator on July 2, 1937, during a record attempt to fly around the world at the equator.

Source & Full Story

2 July 2012

Hundreds of Historical Photos Put on Flickr to Mark Canada Day

Horse-drawn carriages parade down a quaint and unpaved Government Street in downtown Victoria. Fishing canoes rest undisturbed on the marshy banks of the Red River in Winnipeg. A sleepy, muddy King Street West sits empty in downtown Toronto.

These historical snapshots of colonial-era Canada are part of a collection of hundreds of photos released by Britain’s National Archives to mark this year’s Canada Day.

Source & Full Story

Archives of South Africa on Mission to Market its Role

The National Archives and Records Service of South Africa (Narssa) has launched a programme aimed at raising public awareness of its role.

The annual National Archives and Heraldry Awareness Week, which started on Monday and will run until Friday, is aimed at promoting the use of archives in instilling in the public an understanding of the function and services offered by the Narssa.

Source & Full Story

Anger Over Decision to Close the Scottish Catholic Archives

Academics last night accused the Catholic Church of "mis-management and indifference" after staff shortages forced the closure of the Scottish Catholic Archives, in the latest blow to one of the country's most prized historical resources.

Columba House in Edinburgh, which houses the archives, has closed its doors indefinitely because there is no-one left to look after the service.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Janet Leigh?

The only child of Helen Lita (née Westergaard) and Frederick Robert Morrison, Leigh was born as Jeanette Helen Morrison on July 6, 1927, in Merced, California, and grew up in Stockton, California.

In winter 1945, she was discovered by actress Norma Shearer, whose late husband Irving Thalberg had been a senior executive at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.

Janet Leigh's Family Tree

Print your GeneaNet Online Family Tree

GeneaNet offers family tree printing and exporting on a number of genealogy charts and lists.

- Ascending/Descending chart and list into PDF file
- Elegant family tree into PDF and PNG file

These options are reserved for Club Privilege members.

Continue reading...