Genealogy Blog

31 January 2013

Genealogy Software Updates of the Week

GRAMPS 4.0.0-alpha4 (Full Featured - Linux - Freeware/Open Source)

• Impovements on installer.
• Better version handling with svn version support.
• Fix some OS and dependencies issues.
• Optional close button on gramplet bar tabs.
• Gramplets view becomes Dashboard.
• Add private column to views.

Reunion for iPhone & iPod Touch 2.0.1 (Mobile - Purchase)

• Optimized graphics for Retina displays.
• Optimized design takes advantage of the 4-inch screen on the iPhone 5 and the latest iPod Touch.
• Identify and list relatives/relationships for anyone in the family file.
• Search for places and display a list of people whose records include an event with a place.
• The new Recent button provides a handy shortcut to quickly return to the most recent list or view.
• Use your device's camera to take pictures and link them to people in your family file.

The Family Tree of Family for Android 1.6.6 (Mobile - Purchase)

• Update translator.

India Displays Rare Mahatma Gandhi’s Letters

A rare collection of letters between Indian independence icon Mahatma Gandhi and a South African bodybuilder with whom he shared a close relationship went on display in New Delhi on Wednesday.

The bond between Gandhi and Hermann Kallenbach has been a subject of speculation and gossip for years owing to their closeness, with previously published correspondence suggesting they may have had a physical relationship.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Justin Timberlake?

Timberlake was born on January 31, 1981 in Memphis, Tennessee, the son of Lynn Harless (née Bomar) and Randall Timberlake. Timberlake has English and distant American Indian ancestry.

Timberlake's parents divorced in 1985, and both have remarried. His mother, who now runs an entertainment company called Just-in Time Entertainment, remarried to Paul Harless, a banker, when her son was five. His father, a choir director at a Baptist church, has two children, Jonathan (born c. 1993) and Steven Robert (born August 14, 1998), from his second marriage to Lisa Perry.

Justin Timberlake's Family Tree

30 January 2013

World War I Officer's Letters Home Reveal Frustration

A writer believes he has uncovered how a middle-ranking Welsh army officer may have helped to alter the course of World War One. Llewelyn Alberic Emilius Price-Davies, VC, CB, CMG, DSO is best-remembered by followers of Welsh military history as a war hero from the Boer War, who won the Victoria Cross.

On 17 September 1901, as a 23-year-old lieutenant with less than two years' experience, he mounted an audacious horseback solo counterattack on around 400 Boer troops in south Africa; sowing enough confusion in their ranks to allow the British artillery at Blood River Poort to regroup.

Source & Full Story

JFK Items: Lost, Now Found

A large collection of John F. Kennedy’s memorabilia, including rare photos, letters, gifts and other unique items, have been discovered hidden away at the home of one of the president’s most trusted advisors.

Belonging to David Powers, JFK's White House special assistant, the items were found by chance as Powers' family prepared to sell their home in Massachusetts.


Are You Related to Franklin D. Roosevelt?

Roosevelt was born on January 30, 1882, in the Hudson Valley town of Hyde Park, New York. His father, James Roosevelt, and his mother, Sara Ann Delano, were sixth cousins and both were from wealthy old New York families.

They were of mostly English descent; Roosevelt's great-grandfather, James Roosevelt, was of Dutch ancestry, and his mother's maiden name, Delano, originated with a French Huguenot immigrant of the 17th century.

Franklin D. Roosevelt's Family Tree

29 January 2013

Are You Related to Tom Selleck?

Selleck was born on January 29, 1945 in Detroit, Michigan, where he was the son of Martha S. (née Jagger), a homemaker, and Robert D. Selleck, an executive and real estate investor. The family moved to Sherman Oaks, Los Angeles, California, when Selleck was growing up.

Selleck graduated from Grant High School in 1962. Along with modeling, Selleck attended the University of Southern California on a basketball scholarship where he played for the USC Trojans men's basketball team.

Tom Selleck's Family Tree

28 January 2013

National Archives of Armenia Turns Digital

New concept of reforms elaborated in National Archives of Armenia further on will enable a chance to obtain archival documents in electronic way. The mechanism will be operated started 2013.

Amatuni Virabyan, director of National Archives of Armenia informed Armenpress. ''The reforms seek to create an archive to meet the demands of today society. It should be available and affordable.

Source & Full Story

UK Archives Unlocks 150 Year-Old Images of Adelaide for Australia Day

A stunning collection of thousands of images of Australia cataloguing the growth of the colonies has been found after more than 150 years locked away in archives in London.

The collection was gathered by the then British Colonial Office on the orders of the second Earl of Granville, to report back to London on the progress of the colonies in Australia.

Source & Full Story

Merge Duplicate Individuals In Your GeneaNet Family Tree

When merging a GEDCOM file to your GeneaNet family tree, you may generate duplicate individuals.

You can easily merge these individuals without losing any events, family links, pictures and archival records.

As usual, we suggest that you make a backup (export a GEDCOM file) before merging individuals.

Continue reading...

25 January 2013

Veterans Families Launch Fundraising Bid To Restore Welsh WWI Memorial

A memorial to 4,000 Welsh soldiers who fell in a bloody WWI battle is in need of repair as the centenary of the start of the Great War approaches. The Mametz Wood Memorial to the 38th (Welsh) Division in northern France was unveiled in July 1987 and has since been visited by thousands of visitors.

The red dragon facing the wood was sculpted by David Petersen from Carmarthen. It was commissioned by the South Wales branch of the Western Front Association to commemorate the Welsh soldiers who fell in the five-day attack on the wood.

Source & Full Story

Rescue Project For Dutch Archives in Guyana

The Dutch records in Guyana, registered as UNESCO Memory of the World in 2011, are in a very poor condition. Ink corrosion, insects and the tropical climate have made the documents very fragile over time, UNESCO reported.

The Rescue Project of Dutch Records in Guyana is an example of how the UNESCO Memory of the World label can act as a catalyst for international cultural cooperation.

Source & Full Story

24 January 2013

Genetic Evidence For The Colonization of Australia

Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), Y-chromosome and, more recently, genome studies from living people have produced powerful evidence for the dispersal of modern human populations.

The prevailing model of global dispersion assumes an African origin in which Australia and the American continents represent some of the extreme regions of human migration, though the relative timing of dispersal events remains debatable.

Source & Full Story

The National Archives of the UK: Online Map Descriptions Unlock Local History

Detailed descriptions for nearly 12,000 tithe maps of England and Wales from the 1840s are now available online, offering a greater insight into local history.

Tithe maps can reveal a wealth of information about people, places and landmarks in Victorian times, including where famous individuals such as William Wordsworth lived. Village smithies, old turnpike roads, druidic altars and menageries are shown on the maps, as well as cotton mills and the first railways.

Source & Full Story

The Genomic History of Denmark

Researchers from GeoGenetics in close cooperation with collegues from the National Museum of Denmark and institutes at the University of Copenhagen will make Denmark the first country in the world to map its evolutionary, demographic and health history - from the earliest settlers through to modern times.

DNA and proteins extracted from a Danish collection of archaeological skeletons from the Older Stone Age (5000-3000 BC) will be analysed in order to learn more about the Danish cultural heritage and health history.

Source & Full Story

Deal Budget Gives Georgia Archives $4.3M

The Georgia Archives would get more than $4.3 million next year in the governor’s proposed budget. But questions remain about whether that would mean more access for the public.

The archives’ budget ended up at roughly $4.3 million this year after the secretary of state cut more than $600,000 this fall and laid off five employees, half the archives’ staff. The governor’s budget would restore the archives to a full staff of 10 employees.

Source & Full Story

Time Capsule Discovered in Historic Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn, New York

There are more than just dead bodies buried in Green-Wood cemetery. A construction worker last week discovered a time capsule filled with historic books hidden inside a wall of the landmark cemetery’s crematorium.

The weathered metal box entitled “Green-Wood 1838-1954” was likely squirreled away in the wall in 1954 and included six books detailing the history of the 478-acre cemetery.

Source & Full Story

23 January 2013

Genealogy Software Updates of the Week

Brother's Keeper 6.6.6 (Full Featured - Windows - Purchase)

• New field 49 on Custom Lists for 'Age when married'.
• Ancestor chart did not have color in generation 6 on the printed 6 generation chart. Fixed.
• Descendant chart when making RTF file after the words [children of X and Y] it did not have carriage return so child was not on next line. (RTF only). Fixed.

GedStar Pro for Android 2.4.2 (Mobile - Freeware)

• Show the Action Bar on all devices running Android 3.0 and later.
• Fix some bugs introduced in V2.4.1

MacFamilyTree 6.3.5 (Full Featured - Mac - Purchase)

• Performance enhanced.
• Localization updates.
• Fixed wrong saved charts/saved reports counter.
• Auto updater fixed.

Reunion 10.0.5 (Full Featured - Mac - Purchase)

• Contact information is now synced to the latest version of Reunion for iPhone (version 2.0).
• Reunion 10 will import/export all contact information from/to GEDCOM files.
• File -> Save a Backup Copy now saves the Find Presets.
• Reunion 10 will properly import contact information from GEDCOM files created by Reunion 9.
• Fixed a problem where the sorting options for people were appearing for couples.
And more

The Complete Genealogy Builder 2013 build 130121 (Full Featured - Windows - Shareware)

• Fixed: Detailed address data not saved when there is no street address (e.g., if only an email or telephone is specified).
• Fixed: Display of incorrect birth/death years when an invalid date format is used (in which cases the year is now displayed as blank).
• Improved: Validation process for "Event Date Formats". More recommendations are offered and the list is now multi-select for acceptance of groups of recommendations.

The Complete Genealogy Reporter 2013 build 130121 (Family Books - Windows - Shareware)

• Fixed: Overlapping texts in Front Page layout when Landscape report format is specified.
• Improved: Minimize button is now included in the top right of the main window.
• Improved: Date parser will now appropriately interpret dates expressed as, for example, "1877-4-17".

The Family Tree of Family for Android 1.6.5 (Mobile - Purchase)

• Update translator.

TreeDraw 4.0.5 (Charts and Diagrams - Windows - Shareware)

• Importing a chart with a blank import format resulted in a "List index out of bounds" error. Fixed.
• Import formats can no longer be blank. Fixed.
• Changing the Windows regional number format caused a floating-point error when starting TreeDraw. Fixed.

Are You Related to Richard Dean Anderson?

Anderson, who rose to prominence as the lead actor in the television series MacGyver, was born on January 23, 1950 in Minneapolis, Minnesota to Stuart Jay Anderson and Jocelyn Rhae Carter. He is of Scottish, Swedish and Norwegian descent.

He grew up in Roseville, Minnesota and attended Ramsey High School. As a child, Anderson's dream of becoming a professional hockey player ended when he broke both his arms.

Richard Dean Anderson's Family Tree

22 January 2013

Closure of Ancestry24

Announcement by Ancestry24: "We regret to advise that the Ancestry24 business will close on 28 February 2013. After this date, the web-site will cease to function.

With regard to any premium subscription, which was planned to continue past 28 February 2013, we will be refunding the entire subscription amount that you paid to us."

Source & Full Story

Rare Spider Species Found In Highgate Cemetery Vaults In North London

As if Highgate cemetery in north London with its gravestones and lonely walkways were not scary enough, now a rare species of giant spider has been discovered lurking in its lightless vaults.

Staff at London Wildlife Trust came across a population of the Meta bourneti, or orb weaver spiders, when working on a bat survey in December.

Source & Full Story

The Shifting Secrets Of Our Genealogies – In Pictures

Each family history is woven with hidden threads, unspoken secrets which run through genealogies from generation to generation. The historian Deborah Cohen has been delving into unseen archives to examine how attitudes to privacy have changed over the last 200 years, to explore what families have tried to hide and why.

Here she charts the shifting continents of shame with portraits of lives shaped by untold stories.

Source & Full Story

Volunteers Preserve Historic Slave Cemetery In Honor Of King

Dozens of volunteers spent MLK Day giving back to the community and preserving a piece of Austin's history. American YouthWorks led the volunteer effort at Burdett Prairie Cemetery in Southeast Austin near Montopolis.

American YouthWorks helps at-risk young people through education, service and jobs training. Volunteers mowed the lawns, cut tree branches, raked leaves and cleaned the neglected area.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Bill Bixby?

Bixby, a fourth-generation Californian of English descent, was born on January 22, 1934 in San Francisco, California. His father, Wilfred Bailey Everett Bixby Jr., was a store clerk and his mother, Jane (née McFarland) Bixby, was a senior manager at I. Magnin & Company.

When Bixby was eight, his father enlisted in the U.S. Navy during World War II and traveled to the South Pacific. He attended Lowell High School where he developed his oratory and dramatic skills as a member of the Lowell Forensic Society.

Bill Bixby's Family Tree

21 January 2013

The Ontario Name Index (TONI) Indexing Volunteers Needed

The Ontario Name Index (TONI) reached 1 Million entries last fall. This is a remarkable milestone but there are many more items that could be added with a larger team of indexers preparing the materials.

Everyone is welcome to be a TONI indexer and you can do it in the comfort of your own home. You will need your own computer, the software to read pdfs (downloaded for free), and you will need to be comfortable working with Excel.

Source & Full Story

Online "Irish History Day" Launched With 21 Million Birth, Marriage And Death Records Released

Family historians will be able to access 21 million birth, marriage, and death records free of charge, on Thursday 24th of January. based in Dublin, at the heart of Irish family history are hosting the inaugural “Irish History Family Day," to celebrate the launch of the records online.

The family history website will publish records covering the island of Ireland from the 1800’s right up to the 1950’s. carries the most detailed and throrough collection of records ever seen in one place.

Source & Full Story

New Jersey Student Replaces WWII Veteran's Stolen Medals

They were born seven decades apart, but fate brought them together. It's a love story, but not the kind you think. Workplace friendships are generally generational. The young blond at the front desk rarely has time for the old geezer who can't figure out the copier.

But, at an Avis in New Jersey, Jack Morris and Allison Eyres are inseparable. "Everybody says, 'Why is a 22-year-old girl sitting around with some 90-year-old at work?'" Eyres said. The answer is because she enjoys it, she explained. Basically she loves history -- and he is history.

Source & Full Story

Grave of 219-Year-Old Man Discovered In Limerick, Ireland

Japan’s Jiroemon Kimura may have became the world’s oldest man last week aged 115 years, but buried beneath County Limerick soil is a 219-year-old-John Murphy.

The tombstone of the mystery man - who is surely a candidate for the Guinness Book of Records - has been discovered in the cemetery at St John’s Church in Knockainey by a local historian. Michael Quinlan was researching his new book on the church when he came upon the unusual inscription.

Source & Full Story

Uruguay Opens Historic Diplomatic Archives To Malvinas War Veterans

Uruguay will open on Monday 21 January its diplomacy archives to that Malvinas war veterans can consult classified information referred to the South Atlantic conflict when Argentina invaded the Falkland Islands in April 1982.

The decision to declassify documents with access to the Malvinas veterans was agreed following a request from the Argentine embassy in Montevideo on petition from Cesar Gonzalez Trejo who was president of the Malvinas Veterans Federation.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Geena Davis?

Virginia Elizabeth "Geena" Davis was born on January 21, 1956 in Wareham, Massachusetts. Her mother, Lucille (née Cook), was a teacher's assistant, and her father, William F. Davis, was a civil engineer and church deacon; her parents had both been from small towns in Vermont.

Enrolling at New England College, she eventually graduated with a bachelor's degree in drama from Boston University in 1979. Davis is a member of Mensa, a social organization whose members are in the top 2% of intelligence as measured by an IQ test entrance exam.

Geena Davis' Family Tree

GeneaNet - New: Invite Family and Friends From Gmail

You can now invite family and friends from Gmail.

Invite persons, give them Access Rights to your GeneaNet family tree and they will automatically receive a message via email.

Email address and private information will not be shared with any third parties. Your contacts will only receive a message from GeneaNet.

And remember that you can still invite family and friends from Facebook.

Continue reading...

18 January 2013

Rare Color Photos of World War I

Photographer Anton Orlov recently discovered over 600 color images from World War I on "Magic Lantern" slides in a house in Northern California.

The images depict snow-covered villages, train tracks, bullet-riddled buildings, and soldiers in trenches, by houses and on trains. The slides were hand-colored and are still in good condition.

Source & Full Story

U.S. Military Launches Search for Missing WWII Soldiers in Myanmar

After eight years, a U.S. military team is preparing to head to Myanmar to resume the search for the remains of American soldiers lost there during World War II.

Though the Southeast Asian nation, formerly known as Burma, has been under some form of military rule since 1962, recent democratic reforms instituted by its government have allowed it to restore ties with the international community.

Source & Full Story

Library and Archives Canada Acquires the First Bible Printed in Canada

Library and Archives Canada (LAC) is now home to the first complete and authorized version of the Bible to be printed in Canada.

This Bible consists of two volumes and was published around 1832 or 1833 by John Henry White in Halifax, Nova Scotia and Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island. LAC held no copies of this item before, and only five copies are known to exist in library collections: three of these are in Canada, while the other two are in the United States.

Source & Full Story

17 January 2013

Archives Exhibits To Show Off 150 Years of Alumni Memories at Illinois State University

The Dr. Jo Ann Rayfield Archives will display 150 years of Redbird memories throughout 2013 to help mark Illinois State University’s Alumni Association sesquicentennial.

The exhibit, Celebrating 150 Years of Alumni Memories: The Illinois State University Alumni Association’s Sesquicentennial, will be displayed during Founders Day festivities on February 21 in Bone Student Center, between the Circus Room and the Ballroom, part of the STATE Showcase.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Jim Carrey?

James Eugene Carrey was born on January 17, 1962 in Newmarket, Ontario, Canada, the son of Kathleen (née Oram), a homemaker, and Percy Carrey (1927-1994), a musician and accountant.

His mother was of French, Irish, and Scottish descent and his father was of French Canadian ancestry (the family's original surname was Carré).

Jim Carrey's Family Tree

16 January 2013

Genealogy Software Updates of the Week

Families for Android 1.7.1 (Mobile - Purchase)

• Fix screen update issue after editing marriage data.
• Fix bug when searching for location.
• Changes to relationship calculation including "Max Cousin Distance" setting.

MacFamilyTree 6.3.4 (Full Featured - Mac - Purchase)

• Date Parser issues fixed.
• Issue scanning documents from within MacFamilyTree fixed.
• iPhoto / Aperture import improved.
• Several crash issues fixed.
• Localization updates.

The Complete Genealogy Reporter 2013 build 130113 (Family Books - Windows - Shareware)

• Fixed: Distorted thumbnail images in Microsoft Word reports (incorrect aspect ratio).

Transcript 2.4.1 build 94 beta (Transcriptions & Indexes - Windows - Freeware)

• Transcript now accepts and opens rtf, txt, pdf* and image files when dropped on top of Transcript's window. Note: pdf files are only accepted when GhostScript (32 bit version only) is installed as explained on the website.
• Swedish translation of interface added.
• Add page number to multipage images in about info.
• Check if locale folder containing translations is present and warn unless user's language is English.
• Updated a few JCL files for better Windows 8 detection.

Unmarked Cemetery Found On Old State Hospital Grounds in Evansville, Indiana

Remnants of an unmarked cemetery on the former State Hospital grounds have been found during a subsurface investigation for construction of a pedestrian bridge over the Lloyd Expressway near Vann Avenue.

City officials are currently working with archaeologists, environmental scientists, INDOT and the State Historic Preservation Officer to determine the appropriate steps to proceed with construction.

Source & Full Story

When a Genealogy Hobby Digs Up Unwanted Secrets

Last year, people curious about family trees spent $2.3 billion on genealogy products and services, according to a 2012 study by market-research firm Global Industry Analysts.

And while nearly everyone who researches ancestry is caught off guard by some finding, says genealogist Terry Koch-Bostic, a Mineola, N.Y.-based director of the National Genealogy Society, a nonprofit education, training and records-preservation group, roughly 1 in 5 of those surprises are negative, she estimates.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Ethel Merman?

Known primarily for her powerful voice and roles in musical theatre, she has been called "the undisputed First Lady of the musical comedy stage."

Merman was born Ethel Agnes Zimmermann on January 16, 1908 Astoria, Queens, New York City. Her father, Edward Zimmermann (1879–1977), was an accountant with James H. Dunham & Company, a Manhattan wholesale dry-goods company, and her mother, Agnes (née Gardner; 1883–1974), was a school teacher.

Ethel Merman's Family Tree

15 January 2013

The Angus Library and Archive in Oxford, England, Secures Heritage Lottery Funding

Oxford’s Regent’s Park College has received £488k from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and The Baptist Union Newington Court Fund (BUGB) to provide opportunities for people to learn about the important part Baptists played in the history of the United Kingdom and the world.

The project will also safeguard this unique and important part of nation’s heritage.

Source & Full Story

New 3D Map of Civil War Shipwreck Released

On January 11, 1863, a Union warship was sunk in a skirmish with a Confederate vessel in the Gulf of Mexico. Exactly 150 years later, a new 3D map of the USS Hatteras has been released that shows what the remains of the warship look like.

The Hatteras rests on the ocean floor about 20 miles (32 kilometers) off Galveston, Texas, according to a release from the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, which helped to sponsor the expedition to map the shipwreck.

Source & Full Story

Lee Harvey Oswald Apartment Complex in Dallas Bulldozed

A handful of history buffs and curious onlookers watched Monday as a bulldozer tore through the walls of a dilapidated apartment building where Lee Harvey Oswald lived a few months before the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

The bulldozer ramming through the walls started with the side where Oswald lived. Police blocked off Elsbeth Street and the sidewalk in front, but let onlookers grab bricks from the side of the building.

Source & Full Story

Library and Archives Canada: Release of a New Version of the Census of the Northwest Provinces, 1906 Database

Library and Archives Canada (LAC) is pleased to announce the release of a new version of the Census of the Northwest Provinces, 1906 database. In 1906, the Canadian government called for a special census of the Prairie Provinces (Manitoba, and the two newly created provinces of Saskatchewan and Alberta).

Previously, users could search only by geographical information such as province, district and sub-district. It is now possible to also search by nominal information such as name, given name (s) and age for an individual.

Source & Full Story

Digitalisation of Books in Manipur State Archives, India

The digitization of books and other historical records of the Manipur State Archives has begun and the same will be made available to the public on the website of the archives.

Centre for Development of Advance Computing, Kolkata (CDAC) started digitization of books and other records at the Manipur State Archives on September 28, 2011 and around 300 books will be covered by the digitization process, an official of Manipur State Archives said on Monday.

Source & Full Story

Minnesota To Digitize Old Adoption Records

Minnesota plans to make it easier for people researching their family histories to access old adoption information by digitizing roughly 5 million pages worth of records, including some that date to the late 19th century.

The records are stored on about 2,000 rolls of microfilm at the Department of Human Services. The agency put the job of digitizing the records out for bid last month, saying it shouldn’t cost more than $67,500.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Cole Younger?

Thomas Coleman "Cole" Younger, born on January 15, 1844 in Jackson County, Missouri, was a son of Henry Washington Younger, a prosperous farmer from Greenwood, Missouri and Bersheba Leighton Fristoe, daughter of a prominent Jackson County farmer.

Cole was an American Confederate guerrilla during the American Civil War and later an outlaw with the James-Younger gang.

Cole Younger's Family Tree

14 January 2013

The Greatest Nurses Of The First World War

They overcame insurmountable odds, endured gender-based prejudice, and helped a constant barrage of wounded soldiers under enemy fire. Each of these courageous women, though patriots of different countries, were ultimately devoted to the true calling of nursing- saving human life.

Some stood firmly at their posts while bombs exploded around them, while other did it through administration and coordination. One of them was even executed by a German firing squad after being caught helping allied troops.

Source & Full Story

Infant Bones Found Under Historic Home In Mississippi

A man doing some renovations on a historic home found human bones in the cellar. The bones are believed to be more than 150 years old. The Maxwell family likes historic homes. When they stumbled upon Thistledome, one of the oldest homes in Marshall County, Mississippi, it was a no-brainer.

Maxwell is renovating the property, which is on the National Register of Historic Places because of who used to live there. "It was originally built in 1840 and it was the home of General James Ronald Chalmers, who led the Battle of Collierville three different times," said Maxwell.

Source & Full Story

President Obama Signs Bill To Restore A Veterans Cemetery In The Philippines

President Barack Obama has signed into law a bill introduced by New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte to restore a veterans cemetery in the Philippines that is the final resting place for more than 8,300 American service members and their family.

The Clark Veterans Cemetery was neglected following a volcanic eruption in 1991 and abandonment of a U.S. Air Force base. The cemetery was left covered in ash and overgrown by weeds.

Source & Full Story

Afghan Treasures Receive Virtual Repatriation

Librarian of Congress James H. Billington joins Carnegie Corporation of New York President Vartan Gregorian, Afghan President Hamid Karzai, and US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton at the January 10 presentation to President Karzai of a framed copy of a rare Afghan manuscript from LC’s collection.

The ceremony also marked the announcement that LC was providing the Afghan people, through the World Digital Library, with a digital copy of the entire body of Afghanistan-related works held by the library.

Source & Full Story

Washington State archives Building Doubles As Bomb Shelter

In the early 1960s, Washington opened an archives building to safely store the state's most important documents. The building, constructed as a largely underground bunker and opened just a year after the Cuban missile crisis, served another purpose not widely publicized at the time: nuclear fallout shelter in case of attack.

Today, a series of tunnels built to evacuate state officials and staff to the safety of the bunker go largely unused or serve as utility tunnels for steam and electrical lines. But in that era of heightened fear, "the mood was hysteria," said Jerry Handfield, state archivist since 2001.

Source & Full Story

Israel's State Archives Close Again, This Time Due To Collapsed Staircase

The State Archives have closed for the third time in recent months. This time, the closure is due to the collapse of a staircase in the entrance of the archives building. Haaretz has learned that a booked guided tour due to take place later this week has been canceled as a result.

On Sunday morning the archives said: "The staircase in the entrance of the building collapsed, probably due to construction work in an area adjacent to the archives."

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Faye Dunaway?

Dunaway was born in Bascom, Florida, the daughter of Grace April (née Smith), a housewife, and John MacDowell Dunaway, Jr., a career non-commissioned officer in the United States Army. She is of Scots-Irish, English, and German descent.

She attended the University of Florida, Florida State University, and Boston University, but graduated from the University of Florida in theater. In 1962, Dunaway joined the American National Theater and Academy.

Faye Dunaway's Family Tree

GeneaNet - Are You Sure That You Don't Have Any Errors In Your Family Tree?

Are you sure that you don't have any errors in your family tree?

No individual whose date of marriage is later than date of death? No woman whose date of death is before the date of birth of their child?

GeneaNet offers Club Privilege members to automatically and instantly check their family tree for errors.

And you may be surprised!

Continue reading...

11 January 2013

World War II Soldier's Duffel Bag Returned 7 Decades Later

A World War II veteran who served in France during the war has been reunited with his Army-issued duffel bag nearly seven decades after it went missing.

William Kadar, 92, opened a carefully wrapped package Tuesday at his Merrillville, Ind., home and found his drab green duffel bag inside, still stenciled in black with his name and serial number. Kadar last saw the bag used by soldiers to tote their gear in November 1944, a month before he was captured by the Germans.

Source & Full Story

An Elderly Couple Are Reunited With Their Stolen World War II Love Letters 45 Years After They Vanished

Lloyd and Marian Michael’s love letters were stolen from them in 1968. But a few months before the Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. couple’s 70th wedding anniversary, the letters were returned to their rightful owners.

Right before their 70th wedding anniversary, a California couple received a telephone call that pulled them back in time. Someone had found the love letters they’d written to each other during World War II, letters they thought were gone forever.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Jean Chrétien?

Jean Chrétien was the 20th Prime Minister of Canada. He was born on January 11, 1934, in Shawinigan, Quebec, as the 18th of 19 children (10 of whom did not survive infancy) to Wellie Chrétien and Marie (née Boisvert). Chrétien attended Séminaire Saint-Joseph de Trois-Rivières and studied law at Université Laval. On September 10, 1957, he married Aline Chainé.

Jean Chrétien's Family Tree

10 January 2013

Dracula Church Where It's Raining Bones! Debris From Cliff-Top Graves Falls On Town After Landslide

It is the eerie old church that featured in Bram Stoker’s gothic novel Dracula. Now St Mary’s in Whitby has become the scene of real horror after human bones began to emerge from their centuries-old graves.

The grisly discovery was made when the church cemetery, which dates to 1110AD, began to subside and fall down the cliff last month following heavy rain. Many of the ancient graves were exposed – and among the debris tumbling on to the buildings below were a number of human bones, thought to be at least a century old.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Frank James?

The older brother of outlaw Jesse James, James was born Alexander Franklin James on January 10, 1843 in Kearney, Missouri to Baptist minister Reverend Robert Sallee James and his wife Zerelda (Cole) James, who had moved from Kentucky.

Census records show that James attended school regularly, and he reportedly wanted to become a teacher. During his years as a bandit, James was involved in at least four robberies between 1868 and 1876 that resulted in the deaths of bank employees or citizens.

Frank James's Family Tree

9 January 2013

Genealogy Software Updates of the Week

CENtaR: The GEDCOM Census Table Report 1.0 (GEDCOM Tools - Windows - Freeware)

• CENtaR: The GEDCOM Census Table Report is a new utility that will build a concise listing of all GEDCOM CENSus records found in your database and display them in tabular format.

GedStar Pro for Android 2.4.1 (Mobile - Freeware)

• Screen layouts specific to 7-inch-class tablets.
• Thumbnail photos in tree views on 7-inch and larger tablets.
• Fix for crashes on large tablets with V2.4.0
• Other bug fixes.

GRAMPS 4.0.0-alpha3 (Full Featured - Linux - Freeware/Open Source)

• Ability to add a tag when importing. Adds preference, and tag on import for CSV, XML, and GEDCOM file formats.
• Improvements on
• New URL for gramps-addons.
• Better LANG variable management.
• Better support for python 2 and python 3.
• Bug fixes.

Personal Ancestry Writer II 102 (Full Featured - Mac - Freeware)

• PAWriter was compiled only for Intel Macs using Real Studio 2012 Release 1.
• PAWriter has been code signed for OS 10.8 Mountain Lion with a new certificate.
• Animation has been restored to the watch curser.
• Operations which display the progress window (e.g., loading and tagging data files, listing possible problems, analyzing linkages, etc.) have been significantly speeded up.
• The previously "secret" feature that took a GEDCOM file and produced a "reformatted" version of that GEDCOM file is now made explicate as the Format GEDCOM menu item in the File menu.

The Complete Genealogy Reporter 2013 build 130107 (Family Books - Windows - Shareware)

• Fixed: Spurious "?" characters in ANSI-encoded HTML reports.
• Improved: Alignment of sequence numbers and texts in narrative sections of HTML reports when viewed with the Mozilla Firefox browser.
• Improved: Formatting of Notes section (removal of unnecessary newline when note ends with period; addition of final period when missing from note text.

Vivify: The GEDCOM Birth Date Estimator 1.0 (GEDCOM Tools - Windows - Freeware)

• Vivify: The GEDCOM Birth Date Estimator will estimate birth dates for every person found missing them in your database. Vivify works by running your GEDCOM file through a battery of recursive, multipass, deep scanning algorithms designed to make the most accurate estimate possible.

Letters From Scotland's Victorian Asylums Go On Display

Documents which give a fascinating insight into life inside Scotland's Victorian lunatic asylums will be revealed to the public. Archives from Craig Dunain Hospital, in Inverness, will be available to the public in the Highland Archive Centre.

Hundreds of letters from patients at the Royal Edinburgh Hospital have been analysed as part of its bicentenary celebrations. BBC Scotland's health correspondent Eleanor Bradford reports.

Source & Full Story

Photographer Discovers WWI Negatives in Antique Store Camera

On the surprising end you have things like the memory card with wedding photos still intact found a year and a half after an earthquake. On the amazing side you have the Kansas teen who bought a Polaroid camera at a garage sale and found a photo of his long-passed uncle inside.

This story falls somewhere in between. On the glass plates inside of a Jumelle Belllieni stereoscopic camera that photographer Anton Orlov bought at an antique store, he found some old negatives. And we mean old… like WWI France old.

Source & Full Story

Swiss Court Relieves Farmer of 655-Year-Old Debt

A Swiss court has wiped the slate clean for a farmer and his family, relieving them of an annual debt to a Catholic church dating back to 1357.

The court in the northeastern canton of Glarus ruled that the farmer and his family no longer needed to pay some 70 Swiss francs (£47) a year to keep the sanctuary lamp of the Naefels Catholic church burning. The debt dated back to 1357, when a certain Konrad Mueller killed a man named Heinrich Stucki.

Source & Full Story

Top 100 Genealogy Websites of 2013: Kimberly Powell Talks About GeneaNet

We thank Kimberly Powell very much for her appreciation of GeneaNet:

"[This annual review] is also notable for including genealogy sites based around the world, including of my personal favorites--which is the second highest ranked free website after FamilySearch. GeneaNet does offer a great deal for free, including its forums which is how it was listed, but in the interest of fairness it does require a fee-based premium membership (which I personally consider very worthwhile as a frequent user), for extra search features and access to some of the historical content."

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Kate Middleton?

Catherine Elizabeth Middleton was born on January 9, 1982 at Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading. She is the eldest of three children born to Carole (née Goldsmith) and Michael Middleton.

Middleton's paternal ancestors were from Leeds, West Yorkshire. Middleton's maternal ancestors, the Harrisons, were working-class labourers and miners from Sunderland and County Durham.

Kate Middleton's Family Tree

8 January 2013

Military Hospital Refuse Shows Life in WWI Thessaloniki, Greece

Wonderful treasures attesting to the modern history of Thessaloniki were found among the refuse of an old World War I military hospital used by the Army of the Orient, which served on the Balkan front, items that had remained buried for almost 100 years on the outskirts of Thermi.

The hospital's garbage dump, which had become overgrown with weeds, was rediscovered in 2007 and excavations have since yielded a wealth of material that offers a new reading of the history of that period in the northern port city.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Elvis Presley?

Elvis Presley was born on January 8, 1935 in Tupelo, Mississippi, to 18-year-old Vernon Elvis and 22-year-old Gladys Love Presley, in the two-room shotgun house built by his father in readiness for the birth.

Presley's ancestry was primarily a Western European mix: On his mother's side, he was Scots-Irish, with some French Norman. His father's forebears were of Scottish or German origin.

Elvis Presley's Family Tree

7 January 2013

In Memoriam: Joan Miller

The genealogy blogging community has lost not just a dedicated blogger, but a colleague and friend who was just as committed to encouraging and mentoring others as she was to her genealogy research. GeneaBloggers notes the passing of Joan Miller of the Luxegen blog this past Friday, January 4, 2013, in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

Source & Full Story: GeneaBloggers

Secret Message Engraved By Irishman in Abraham Lincoln’s Watch

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History opened Abraham Lincoln’s pocket watch this past March, and discovered a secretly engraved message that turned an unsubstantiated family story into a confirmed historical event.

Jonathan Dillon, a watchmaker who immigrated to Washington, D.C. from Waterford, Ireland, repaired Lincoln’s gold watch in 1861 and engraved the following words on the underside of the watch movement: “Jonathan Dillon April 13- 1861 Fort Sumpter was attacked by the rebels on the above date. J Dillon. April 13-1861 Washington thank God we have a government. Jonth Dillon.”

Source & Full Story

Heiress Leaves $20Million Fortune To New York Public Library and Central Park

A quiet Manhattan widow shocked friends by giving a pair of $10 million checks to the New York Public Library and the Central Park Conservancy before she died.

Mary McConnell Bailey, who preferred track suits over designer frocks and didn't care much for expensive jewels, left the checks for her two favorite institutions before her death in February of 2011, the New York Post reported. She was 88 years old.

Source & Full Story

Georgia Archives’ Supporters Remain ‘Nervous’

With its near collapse averted in October, the Georgia Archives still faces a perilous transition next year with likely new bosses but the same old budget crunch.

That outlook comes as the state Legislature must still approve a proposal by Gov. Nathan Deal to cut the archives’ ties to the Secretary of State’s Office and allow the University System of Georgia to take over its management.

Source & Full Story

World War II Era Love Letters Resurface

A couple who thought love letters they wrote during World War II were lost forever is reliving their past thanks to a stamp collector. Their messages were kept in a trunk, put away, they said, to keep the kids away.

But in the 1970's, a thief broke into the home of Marian and Lloyd Michael and the trunk was stolen. Decades later the letters wound up in the hands of a stamp collector.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Nicolas Cage?

Cage was born Nicolas Kim Coppola on January 7, 1964 in Long Beach, California. His father, August Floyd Coppola, a professor of literature, and his mother, Joy Vogelsang, a dancer and choreographer, divorced in 1976.

He was raised in a Catholic family. His father was of Italian descent and his mother is of German and Polish descent.

Nicolas Cage's Family Tree

GeneaNet Ancestry Charts: Fan Chart and Charts Gallery Added

A beautiful 4-9 generation fan chart has been added to the GeneaNet Ancestry Charts.

And a new option has been added so you can now view your Ancestry Charts gallery, and download, print, share, edit and delete the Ancestry Charts you have created.

Continue reading...

5 January 2013

GeneaNet Ranks #8 on Top 100 Genealogy Websites for 2013

GenealogyInTime magazine used, the leading internet traffic provider, to determine the rankings for the Top 100 Genealogy Websites for 2013.

GeneaNet ranks #8 (GeneaNet was ranked #9 last year).

We thank all of our members for their support and we will continue to develop tools and services to improve your genealogy research.

4 January 2013

Remains of Nazi Goering's Wife Identied

Swedish scientists have solved the mystery over a a zinc coffin found 21 years ago at the German estate of Hitler's right-hand man, Hermann Göring, by identifying the skeletal remains as those of Göring's first wife Carin.

Born in Stockholm, Sweden, Carin Fock married the decorated pilot Hermann Göring in 1923. The couple settled in Germany, where Carin enjoyed a high social status as the wife of a central leader in the growing National Socialist German Workers' Party (NSDAP).

Source & Full Story

Louisiana Cemeteries Sinking, Washing Away

As a young adult, Kathleen Cheramie visited her grandmother's grave in a tree-lined cemetery where white crosses dotted a plot of lush green grass just off Louisiana Highway 1.

Now, the cemetery in Leeville is a skeleton of its former self. The few trees still standing have been killed by saltwater intruding from the Gulf of Mexico. Their leafless branches are suspended above marsh grass left brown and soggy from saltwater creeping up from beneath the graves.

Source & Full Story

New England Historic Genealogical Society Pays $3M for Back Bay Property

An 1870s brownstone in Boston’s Back Bay built by Jordan Marsh co-founder Eben Jordan has been sold to the New England Historic Genealogical Society for $3 million.

The five-story property at 97 Newbury St. allows the nonprofit to expand its location from their headquarters next door at 99-101 Newbury. For now, jeweler John Lewis, the seller, is leasing the property from the nonprofit and plans to continue his retail operation.

Source & Full Story

Haunting Pictures of the Belgian 'Car Graveyard' Where U.S. Soldiers Hid Beautiful Vintage Motors After WWII

This is the haunting sight of a 'car graveyard' nestled in a Belgian forest, where vintage motors sit rusting among the fronds. The old-fashioned vehicles are thought to have been left in the wood near the village of Chatillon by U.S. soldiers who were stationed in southern Belgium during World War II.

When the war ended, military troops were sent home, but could not afford to ship the cars they had bought and hid them in the forest. Since then, other cars have been added to the cemetery, many by soldiers stationed in the area after the war.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to General Tom Thumb?

Charles Sherwood Stratton was a little person who achieved great fame under circus pioneer P.T. Barnum. He was born on January 4, 1838 in Bridgeport, Connecticut, a son of a Bridgeport, Connecticut, carpenter named Sherwood Edward Stratton. Sherwood was the son of Seth Sherwood Stratton and Amy Sharpe.

Sherwood married his first cousin Cynthia Thompson, daughter of Joseph Thompson and Mary Ann Sharpe. Charles Stratton's maternal and paternal grandmothers, Amy and Mary Ann Sharpe, were allegedly small twin girls born on 11 July 1781/83 in Oxford, New Haven, Connecticut.

General Tom Thumb's Family Tree

3 January 2013

Are You Related to Mel Gibson?

Gibson was born on January 3, 1956 in Peekskill, New York, the sixth of eleven children, and the second son of Hutton Gibson and Irish-born Anne Patricia (née Reilly, died 1990). His paternal grandmother was opera contralto Eva Mylott (1875–1920), who was born in Australia to Irish parents.

One of Gibson's younger brothers, Donal, is also an actor. Gibson's first name comes from Saint Mel, fifth-century Irish saint, and founder of Gibson's mother's native diocese, Ardagh, while his second name, Colm-Cille, is also shared by an Irish saint and is the name of the parish in County Longford where Gibson's mother was born and raised.

Mel Gibson's Family Tree

2 January 2013

Genealogy Software Updates of the Week

Branches (Full Featured - Windows - Purchase)

• Improved the selection process used by the Export and Prune.
• Functions, to make selection simpler and easier to use.

Family Get-To-Gether (Mobile - Purchase)

• Faster GEDCOM file import.

GDS (General Family Documentation System) 7.0.04 (Full Featured - Windows - Freeware)

• Small corrections.

GED4WEB 4.13 (Web Publishing - Windows - Shareware)

• CSS File Support.
• More Responsive Program.
• More Stable Program.
• Added a 12th Language (Afrikaans).
• Formal Install Program.

GEDCOM Validator (GEDCOM Tools - Windows - Freeware)

• UI enhancements.

My Family Tree (Full Featured - Windows - Freeware)

• Added zoomable user interface.
• Added export data grid to to CSV.
• Added improved note editor.
• Improved icons on some controls.
• Improvements to Relationship editor.
• Many small UI improvements.

The Family Tree of Family for Android 1.6.2 (Mobile - Purchase)

• Upgrade to Android 4.2.

The Next Generation of Genealogy Sitebuilding 9.1.0 (Web Publishing - Windows, Mac, Linux - Purchase)

• Conversion from the Prototype/Scriptaculous JavaScript library to jQuery.
• Albums: Album sort order was not reflected on the individual page (fixed).
• Albums: Searching on the Admin/Albums page only found terms matching the beginning of the album name or description (fixed).
• Albums: When adding a link from an album to a person/family/etc., the dynamically generated action buttons were incomplete (fixed).
• Calendar: Individuals marked as "private" were never being displayed on this page, even if the user had adequate permissions (fixed).
• And much more fixes.

Blood of Louis XVI 'Found in Gourd Container'

A team of scientists have said they believe an old gourd contains the blood of French King Louis XVI. The monarch was killed by guillotine by French revolutionaries more than 200 years ago, on 21 January 1793.

The scientists said the DNA is very similar to genetic material from what is believed to be the mummified head of an earlier French king, AFP reports. After Louis XVI's beheading many spectators were reported to have dipped their handkerchiefs in his blood.

Source & Full Story

WWI Photos of Soldiers At Shepreth, England, Hospital Published

When an elderly woman said an uneven village hall floor was ruining her carpet bowls meetings, she had no idea her complaint would reveal the fascinating wartime history of the building.

Carpenters called in to rectify the problem discovered a dusty postcard addressed to a World War I soldier, hidden behind a panel in Shepreth village hall in Cambridgeshire.

Source & Full Story

Group Using 3-D Scans To Digitally Preserve California's Missions

Using cutting-edge 3D scanning technology, crews from a nonprofit called CyArk have wedged themselves into seldom-seen spaces in four of the state's 21 missions, bouncing 50,000 laser beams a second off centuries-old timbers.

The idea is to map the fragile structures more precisely than they've ever been, creating virtual 3D models accurate down to millimeters. Even if earthquakes or fires were to devastate them, detailed plans for rebuilding would be just a mouse click away, said CyArk's founder, a retired civil engineer named Ben Kacyra.

Source & Full Story

WWII Soldier's Photos, Love Letters Found In Home

A trove of letters and other memorabilia shows that a 19-year-old U.S. Army ambulance driver had quite an adventure and an active love life while serving in Europe during World War II.

He apparently stashed a bag of love letters, photos and other items in the wall of his northwest Detroit home, where they went undiscovered until last summer, when the owners found them during renovations and decided to track down the previous owners.

Source & Full Story

Canadian War Graves at St Margaret's Church, Bodelwyddan, Wales, Given QR Code

Mobile phone technology is being used to explain to visitors why more than 80 Canadian war graves are located outside a Denbighshire church. Thousands visit St Margaret's Church in Bodelwyddan where the rows of soldiers are buried.

Most died during a flu epidemic at the end of the World War I. Now QR (quick response) codes which can be scanned using smartphones have been placed there. The codes were created by community-based information project

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Barry Goldwater?

Five-term United States Senator from Arizona and the Republican Party's nominee for President in the 1964 election, Goldwater was born on January 2, 1909 in Phoenix, in what was then the Arizona Territory, the son of Baron M. Goldwater and his wife, Hattie Josephine ("JoJo") Williams.

His father's Jewish family had founded Goldwater's, the largest department store in Phoenix. The family name had been changed from Goldwasser to Goldwater at least as early as the 1860 census in Los Angeles, California.

Barry Goldwater's Family Tree

1 January 2013

GeneaNet Wish You a Happy New Year!

We wish you a Happy New Year!

Many thanks to all of you for supporting GeneaNet!

Now, it's time to set some genealogy goals for the upcoming year and we hope that 2013 will bring you many new ancestors and lost relatives!