Genealogy Blog

31 July 2013

Historians Working With Irish Police Trace Relatives of WWI Internees

Historians and an Garda Siochana (the National Police Service) in Ireland are teaming up in hopes of tracking down relatives of the some 2,600 prisoners of war who were interned in Ireland during World War I.

The Irish Independent reports that the search comes as part of a major campaign to mark the centenary of Ireland's connections to the 1914-18 war.

Source & Full Story

Remains of An Estimated 3,000 African-Americans Buried Beneath Philadelphia Playground

This week, a team of archaeologists broke the asphalt in four places at Weccecoe Park, digging to a depth of 3 feet to uncover evidence of the 19th century burial site. On Thursday morning, the fourth and final trench revealed a single gravestone.

"Amelia Brown, 1819, Aged 26 years" is clearly carved into the white stone, with this epitaph: "Whosoever live and believeth in me, though we be dead, yet shall we live."

Source & Full Story

The National Archives of the UK: Sixth Tranche of Colonial Administration Records Released

The sixth tranche of colonial administration records is now available to view in the reading rooms at The National Archives. This release contains records from Cyprus.

We are working with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) to transfer and release colonial administration records, referred to as the 'migrated archives', between April 2012 and November 2013.

Source & Full Story

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. The family moved to the nearby village Winterbourne when Rowling was four. She attended St Michael's Primary School, a school founded by abolitionist William Wilberforce and education reformer Hannah More.

J. K. Rowling's Family Tree

30 July 2013

Signs of Stranded Amelia Earhart in Old Photos?

This aerial view of a remote island could be one of the last sights Amelia Earhart saw as a pilot when she flew over the Pacific Ocean on July 2, 1937 in a record attempt to fly around the world at the equator.

Taken 18 months after the legendary aviator's disappearance, the photo shows a patch of the coast of Nikumaroro, an uninhabited tropical atoll in the southwestern Pacific republic of Kiribati, which is believed to be Earhart's final resting place by researchers of The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR).

Source & Full Story

Coffin at King Richard III Site Holds...Another Coffin

King Richard III's rediscovered resting place is turning out more mysteries this summer. Excavators finally lifted the heavy lid of a medieval stone coffin found at the site in Leicester, England, only to reveal another lead coffin inside.

The "coffin-within-a-coffin" is thought to have been sealed in the 13th or 14th century — more than 100 years before Richard, an infamous English king slain in battle, received his hasty burial in 1485.

Source & Full Story

29 July 2013

Secret Code wWthin WWII POW's Letters Cracked 70 Years Later

Thousands of British servicemen were captured during World War II. They endured life in German prison camps, but a few managed to send coded letters with vital military intelligence back home.

The secret messages of one such prisoner are being revealed 70 years later. The evacuation of British and Allied troops from Dunkirk early in World War II was either a military disaster or a strategic withdrawal. Winston Churchill called the rescue of more than 300,000 troops hemmed in by the Nazi advance a miracle.

Source & Full Story

200-Year-Old Railway Discovered Along Banks of River Tyne in England

The discovery of a wooden railway more than 200 years old on the banks of the Tyne has been hailed as a find of international importance. The 25-metre stretch of waggonway from the end of the 18th Century is the earliest surviving example of the standard gauge railway.

Now used for over half of the world’s railway systems, it originated in the network of waggonways which served the collieries of south east Northumberland and Tyneside.

Source & Full Story

Try The New GeneaNet App For Android

This app is designed to view your GeneaNet family tree.

Download the new GeneaNet app for Android for free at

Launch the app, then enter your GeneaNet username and password. Your family tree will be automatically imported and you can view it even if you're off line.

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26 July 2013

Grave Finally Identified of First World War Soldier From Earlsfield, England

A soldier’s war grave has been identified 95 years after he went missing in action. Company Sergeant Major Andrew Gale, 41, of Quinton Street, Earlsfield, is believed to have died at a casualty clearing station near Ypres, Belgium, on September 28, 1918, just weeks before armistice was signed ending the bloody conflict. He left behind his wife Olivia and five children.

Source & Full Story

Remains of WWII Airman From NY Identified in South Pacific

The remains of a World War II airman have been identified and will be flown back to his hometown in New York nearly 70 years after his plane and two others failed to return to their base in the South Pacific.

Sgt. Dominick Licari was 31 when his A-20 Havoc bomber crashed into a mountain in Papua-New Guinea on March 13, 1944. After two years of searches, the military presumed Licari to be dead, the Utica Observer Dispatch reported.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Sandra Bullock?

Bullock was born on July 26, 1964 in Arlington, Virginia, a suburb of Washington, D.C. Her father, John W. Bullock (born 1925), was a United States Army employee and part-time voice coach; and her mother, Helga Mathilde Meyer (1942–2000), was a German-born opera singer and voice teacher.

Bullock's father was from Birmingham, Alabama, and had English, Irish, and French ancestry. Bullock's maternal grandfather was a rocket scientist from Nuremberg, Germany.

Sandra Bullock's Family Tree

25 July 2013

Genealogy Software Updates of the Week

Branches (Full Featured - Windows - Purchase)

• Corrected a problem on Family Group Sheet printed reports where page headers were sometimes printed twice.

GedStar Pro for Android (Version varies with device) (Mobile - Freeware)

• Can display icon to indicate direct ancestors of a specified person.

LiveHistory 1.1.1 (Mobile - Purchase)

• Bugfixes.

LTools 1.3.37 (Other Tools - Windows - Freeware)

• Add the ability to 'Fetch' individuals by surname in the 'Data Bridge'.
• Add 'Christening Date' and 'Christening Place' to 'Data Bridge'.
• Add ' - Ohio, Births and Christenings, 1821-1962' to 'Data Bridge'.
• Add ' - Ohio, Deaths and Burials, 1854-1997' to 'Data Bridge'.

RootsMagic (Full Featured - Windows - Purchase)

• Fixed: Random crashes (access violations) which could occur when problem alerts were enabled.

The Complete Genealogy Builder 2013 build 130719 (Full Featured - Windows - Shareware)

• Fixed: Unexpected program error when editing dates which contain a qualifier (e.g. Estimated).
• Fixed: German translation of Marriage Bann in Events selection.

Guernsey's German WWII Markings Uncovered

Prisoners working on a restoration project in Guernsey have discovered German road markings from the Second World War. The prisoners are currently giving an old tram stop along the island's east coast a face-lift.

They uncovered the signs as they began stripping off layers of paint. Ian Brehaut from local historical group Festung Guernsey said it was an exciting find.

Source & Full Story

Historic Slave Cemetery, Long Neglected, Renewed In Irving, Texas

History was buried by brush, weeds and trash at an Irving cemetery... until Wednesday. It's cleanup time at Shelton's Bear Creek Cemetery, the final resting place for hundreds of slaves.

Community members are donating their time to honor those who came before them. Underneath the rubble are names, dates, and — for Tim Green — relatives he wants to honor. "A lot of them are in the back corner over here," he said.

Source & Full Story

Finally Laid To Rest 95 Years On, 21 German Soldiers Found Perfectly Preserved in Trench Where They Were Buried Alive By Allied Shell

A troop of 21 German soldiers found entombed in an perfectly preserved First World War shelter have been given a full military burial nearly a century after their deaths. Not a single member of the men's families attended the moving service at a war cemetery in northern France.

The soldiers were buried alive in 1918 when a huge Allied shell exploded above the shelter causing it to cave in. Last year, French archaeologists stumbled upon the mass grave at Carspach in Alsace, on the former Western Front, during excavation work for a road building project.

Source & Full Story

24 July 2013

History Museum of Mobile, Alabama, Investigates Gravestone Found in Woman's Yard

Local history experts are hoping they can shed new light on where a gravestone came from that was found in a Mobile woman's backyard. Annette Davis dug up a headstone while doing some work in her new backyard.

The name on the headstone: Frank V. Sheuermann, a World War One veteran. Annette Davis dug up a headstone while doing some work in her new backyard. The name on the headstone: Frank V. Sheuermann, a World War One veteran.

Source & Full Story

Oldest Inland European Fort Found in Appalachians

The remains of the earliest European fort in the interior of what is now the continental United States have been discovered by a team of archaeologists, providing new insight into the start of the U.S. colonial era and the all-too-human reasons spoiling Spanish dreams of gold and glory.

Spanish Captain Juan Pardo and his men built Fort San Juan in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains in 1567, nearly 20 years before Sir Walter Raleigh’s "lost colony" at Roanoke.

Source & Full Story

23 July 2013

Rare Bible Rescued From Trash Provides Missing Family History

An old Bible rescued from the garbage more than 40 years ago recently emerged as a priceless family history treasure for one California couple.

Elder Ed Jones and his wife, Sister Dawna Jones, serve as family history missionaries and directors of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints FamilySearch Library in San Diego. While going about his regular duties one hectic Monday morning, Ed Jones received a phone call that has greatly blessed his life.

Source & Full Story

World War Two Code Breaker Alan Turing Set To Be Pardoned For His Gay Conviction

The Government said it would not stand in the way of legislation to offer a full Parliamentary pardon for Turing, who helped Britain to win the Second World War as a skilled code-breaker.

Until now, the Government has resisted using the Royal Prerogative to pardon Turing for his conviction for gross indecency in 1952 because he was a homosexual.

Source & Full Story

22 July 2013

Schindler's Actual List To Be Auctioned On eBay For $3 Million

An original copy of Schindler’s list -- not the movie, but the actual list of Jewish refugees that German businessman Oskar Schindler is credited with saving from the Nazis -- will be available on eBay Friday evening, the New York Post reports.

The document, which is 14 pages long and contains the names of the 801 “highly specialized munitions Jews laborers" Schindler saved, was typed out on April 18, 1945, right before the end of World War II, according to CNN. Schindler bribed officials to let him keep more than 1,000 workers and set up a factory in Czechoslovakia, according to

Source & Full Story

England: Barnardo's Archive 'Up For Grabs' or Destruction

One of the oldest, extant, dedicated photographic archives in the world, the Barnardo's photographic archive, currently housed in Barkingside, East London is under significant threat of destruction following its digitisation.

Over the next few months, Barnardo's will be having its entire photographic archive digitised in Manchester. Due to space issues at Barnardo's, the organisation will then destroy the original images unless an archive or museum can be persuaded to save these important historic documents. The material consists of about of shelving around fifteen feet in length holding archival boxes about 8 inches deep and about 20 inches high.

Source & Full Story

Irish Historians Team Up With Gardai To Trace Relatives of World War I Internees

Historians and the Garda Siochana are attempting to trace relatives of more than 2,600 German and Austro-Hungarian citizens who were interned in Ireland during World War I. The move is part of a major campaign to mark the centenary of Ireland's connections to the 1914-18 war.

The internment of German and Austro-Hungarian citizens on the outbreak of the war is one of the long forgotten aspects of Ireland's involvement in the Great War. But while 300 people were effectively imprisoned for no other reason than their nationality, Ireland's major involvement came when 2,300 captured German and Austro-Hungarian prisoners of war (POW) were shipped to Tipperary and Meath.

Source & Full Story

The GeneaNet 'Email Alert by Individual'

GeneaNet has a powerful feature called 'Email Alert by Individual'.

Club Privilege members can receive accurate emails with the latest entries by name (with name variants), by first name (with name variants), by place, by year, by occupation and by spouse.

These Email Alerts can be automatically generated from your GeneaNet family tree!

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21 July 2013

Are You Related to Ernest Hemingway?

Hemingway was born on July 21, 1899 in Oak Park, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. His father Clarence Edmonds Hemingway was a physician, and his mother, Grace Hall-Hemingway, was a musician.

When Clarence and Grace Hemingway married in 1896, they moved in with Grace's father, Ernest Hall, after whom they named their first son. Hemingway claimed to dislike his name, which he "associated with the naive, even foolish hero of Oscar Wilde's play The Importance of Being Earnest".

Ernest Hemingway's Family Tree

19 July 2013

Digitising the Fairfax Glass Plate Negative Collection at the National Library of Australia

The Fairfax Glass Plate Negative collection of over 17,000 glass plate negatives was donated to the National Library last year. After sorting and then cleaning, accessioning and rehousing the collection the next step has been to digitise each negative. This began in mid March 2013, after an initial testing period in February.

The collection is comprised of three sizes of glass plate negatives: small 4 x 5″, medium 5 x 7″, and large 7 x 9″. The majority of the collection is the smallest size of which there are approximately 13,000.

Source & Full Story

Censuses of Canada West and Canada East, 1842 Now Available Online

Library and Archives Canada is pleased to announce that Canadians can now access the Census of Canada West, 1842 as well as the Census of Canada East, 1842 online. In 1841, Upper Canada was renamed Canada West, whereas Lower Canada became Canada East. These two jurisdictions are now known as the provinces of Ontario and Quebec.

Each census is partly nominal and contains the names of heads of family, their occupation and the number of residents for each family.

Source & Full Story

Navigating 18th-Century Science: Board of Longitude Archive Digitised

Today Lord Rees will be launching the digitised archive of the Board of Longitude at Cambridge University Library. Stuffed full of the correspondence and work of those who preceded him as Astronomer Royal, it also contains letters and papers of artisans, inventors, expeditionary astronomers and maritime explorers.

For those not familiar with the story of the 18th-century search for a means to determine longitude at sea, this video, gives an introduction to the project and the story.

Source & Full Story

18 July 2013

Genealogy Software Updates of the Week

Ancestral Quest 14.13 (Full Featured - Windows - Purchase)

• Occasionally, one of the screens would come up out of view, making it appear that AQ had locked up. Fixed.
• Prior to checking to see if FamilySearch considered the merge of two Family Tree records to be viable, AQ would take the time to load all the information needed to complete the merge. Fixed.
• If FamilySearch had changed the PID of a record to which you had linked one of your records, when AQ next attempted to work with that record, it would display a message to let you know the new PID. Fixed.

Arlington National Cemetery Explorer (Mobile - Freeware)

• Bug Fixes.

Brother's Keeper 6.6.9 (Full Featured - Windows - Purchase)

• If you are on the Edit screen and you click a picture, and that picture has a heading in the grid, then the heading will show when the picture is displayed full screen.
• GEDCOM import will accept the tags 'PEDI ADOPTED' and 'PEDI FOSTER'
• GEDCOM import will created events for Divorce or Annulled even if those events have no date in the gedcom file.
• Fixed a problem where 'count of descendants' sometimes gave error 75 if there were over 60,000 people.
• On the Book reports, when using custom wording for marriage events, two problems were fixed. One involved the Engaged event, and one involved Not Married.

MacFamilyTree 7.0.5 (Full Featured - Mac - Purchase)

• Fixed the To Do wizard to not create duplicate To Do's.
• Many bug fixes for the Timeline chart.
• Person Report improved to include persons age.
• Portuguese User Guide added.
• Several localization improvements.

MobileFamilyTree 7.0.5 (Mobile - Purchase)

• Fixed playing Audio files.
• Localizations improved.
• Downloading large person records from FamilySearch improved.

Obituary for iPhone and iPad 2.7 (Mobile - Freeware)

• Fixed a bug that was causing the app to crash.

RootsMagic (Full Featured - Windows - Purchase)

• New: Added Problem Alerts.
• Enhanced: Added code to Database Tools > Clean phantom records to clean up issues with FamilySearch Family Tree links.
• Fixed: A number of small bugs.

Hack Genealogy: A New Genealogy and Technology Resource

Genealogy educator and author Thomas MacEntee announces the debut of Hack Genealogy, a new resource for the genealogy industry and the growing community of genealogy and family history enthusiasts.

Hack Genealogy is about “repurposing today's technology for tomorrow's genealogy” and a little bit more. Hack Genealogy is more than just a list of resources: It provides information on emerging technology inside and outside the genealogy industry.

Source & Full Story

Jews Should Get WWII Property Taxes Back, Says Amsterdam Mayor

Jewish Amsterdammers who were charged ground rent for their properties over the years they spent in concentration camps or in hiding during World War II should get that money back, according to the city’s mayor.

In April, students discovered that hundreds of Jews were sent the bills when they returned to their homes after the war. They should now get that money back plus interest, Eberhard van der Laan told KRO television programme Oog in Oog.

Source & Full Story

Johnny Depp’s Black Roots

For many years, actor Johnny Depp has brought to life the stories of real-life and fictional villains and heroes on television and the big screen across the world. But details about Depp’s own heritage make his personal story worthy of a Hollywood film.

New research revealed the actor is a direct descendant of Elizabeth Key, an African-American former slave who worked within the law to win her freedom on July 21, 1656, the heritage website said. Depp had earlier laid claim to some Native American ancestry, though that assertion was not verified.

Source & Full Story

17 July 2013

Irish Roots: Six Tactics of The Successful Researcher

Lose the blinkers. You need to keep trimming away your own presumptions, because otherwise they’ll just grow back. No, not all Cholmondeleys were Protestant. Yes, some nineteenth-century families moved back to Ireland from the US. No, we’re not all descended from Milesius.

Burrow. If you can’t find what should be there, don’t give up. Look at records for adjoining areas, look at earlier and later records, try different spellings, different forenames, different families in the same area. . . You are a dog and this is your bone.

Source & Full Story

National Archives July 15 Posted Watergate Trial Records, Sealed For 40 Years

The National Archives yesterday posted additional Watergate break-in trial records, released by court order after having been sealed for four decades.

Most records of the case U.S. v. Liddy, et al. were ordered released by U.S. District Chief Judge Royce Lamberth last November, and the Archives posted some 950 pages of them in late November.

Source & Full Story

Crew Restoring Nation’s Second-Oldest Military Cemetery At Baxter Springs, Kansas

When he arrived in his pickup Tuesday morning, Jimmy Morton was happy to see someone digging up headstones at the Baxter Springs National Cemetery No. 2 Soldiers’ Lot.

As he walked between the rows, Morton, public works director for Baxter Springs, said, “It’s time for this to get done.” Morton was referring not to vandalism, but to a federally approved project that, when complete, will give those buried at the second-oldest military cemetery in the nation the respect they deserve, he said.

Source & Full Story

16 July 2013

Digital Archive of Pittsburgh Jewish Community Is Completed

A digital archive of the Pittsburgh Jewish community from 1895 to the present was completed after six years. Carnegie Mellon University Libraries completed the Pittsburgh Jewish Newspaper Project last week, the university announced. Three weekly Jewish newspapers and a weekly newsletter are available.

The archived publications are Jewish Criterion (1895-1962); The American Jewish Outlook (1934-1962); The Jewish Chronicle (1962-present), and the Y-JCC newsletter series published by the Young Men and Women’s Hebrew Association, the Y-IKC and the Jewish Community Center (1926-1976).

Source & Full Story

15 July 2013

Swede Immigration Program Focus of Vermont Prof's Book

Until recently, Earl Cavanagh didn't know that many of his ancestors came to Vermont from Sweden as part of a short-lived state-run program to help repopulate the abandoned hill farms with people accustomed to the rigors of living and working in a challenging rural environment.

Cavanagh learned how his Swedish ancestors came to Vermont from Lyndon State College history professor Paul Searls, who is researching a book on the topic.

Source & Full Story

Total of 4.6 Million Soviet Soldiers, Killed In World War II, Still Not Identified

The Russian Defense Ministry has not yet identified 4.6 million Soviet soldiers, whose remains are buried in Russia and abroad, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said.

“A total of over 32,000 burial sites of over 7 million people are registered by the ministry. A total of 2.6 million are known by surname. Unfortunately, the names of another 4.6 million have not yet been determined,” Shoigu said when speaking at a meeting of the Russian organizing committee Pobeda (Victory).

Source & Full Story

Holland, Ohio, Cemetery Vandalized, Stones Dating Back To 1700's

The Springfield Township Cemetery is filled with graves dating back from before the Civil War, but due to an act of vandalism, many of them are now laying on the ground.

The cemetery is the final resting place of many who were here before the city was founded. But whoever is responsible for desecrating these grave stones in the overnight hours Wednesday[July 10], didn't respect their history.

Source & Full Story

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 (1914–1982), a homemaker.

Linda's father Gilbert came from a pioneering Arizona ranching family and was of German and English American descent, with some Mexican ancestry. Her mother Ruth Mary, of German, English, and Dutch descent, was raised in the Flint, Michigan, area.

Linda Ronstadt's Family Tree

GeneaNet: Invite Family and Friends From Facebook and Gmail

You can invite family and friends from Facebook and Gmail.

Invite persons, give them Access Rights to view and update your GeneaNet family tree.

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

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12 July 2013

Poland Unveils Volyn WWII Massacre Memorial

Poland has unveiled a new monument on the 70th anniversary of the Volyn massacre, in which nationalist Ukrainian partisans killed about 40,000 Polish civilians during World War II.

At the time Volyn - also called Volhynia - was an area of south-eastern Poland occupied by Nazi German troops. The 1943 atrocity was aimed at driving out the Polish minority. On 11 July alone 10,000 people were murdered. Poles later retaliated and the conflict killed up to 100,000 people in total.

Source & Full Story

Rare Film Clip Shows FDR Being Pushed In His Wheelchair

A professor discovered the raw footage of Franklin D. Roosevelt while researching a different subject at the National Archives. The 32nd president, who contracted polio in 1921, lost the use of his legs and was confined to a wheelchair -- which was visible in family pictures.

But in public, the White House made it clear that any images of FDR should not include the wheelchair. NBC’s Andrea Mitchell reports.

Source & Full Story (+Video)

11 July 2013

Genealogy Software Updates of the Week

GedStar Pro 4.4.8 (Other Tools - Windows - Purchase)

• Additional updates for Legacy Family Tree V8.

LTools 1.3.35 (Other Tools - Windows - Freeware)

• Add 'Find A Grave' to the 'Data Bridge'.
• Add warning when Legacy V8 database is opened.
• Allow sourcing of fields which haven't been updated in 'Data Bridge'.

MacFamilyTree 7.0.4 (Full Featured - Mac - Purchase)

• Merging places improved.
• New name formatting options added.
• Fixed entering LDS temple events for families.
• Importing pictures from iPhoto and Aperture fixed.
• Localizations improved.
• Stability improvements.

MobileFamilyTree 7.0.4 (Mobile - Purchase)

• New name formatting options added.
• Improved stability.
• Bugs using FamilySearch fixed.

My Family Tree (Full Featured - Windows - Freeware)

• Added support for OpenDyslexic font from
• Added High Contrast themes.
• Added full date display option to charts.
• Improved timeline performance and layout.
• Multipage tree printing.
• Scan to add photos/attachments.

Splatter: The GEDCOM Population Distribution Heatm (Mapmaking - Windows, Mac, Linux - Freeware) NEW!

• It will Splatter all the locations in your database across the face of a fully featured Google Map. In Splatter, location markers are grouped into clusters and the total number of persons found within that cluster displayed inside the cluster icon. These clusters are also represented on the surface of the world as a heat map.

Paris Mansion Hotel Lambert Seriously Damaged By Fire

A fire has damaged the landmark 17th-Century Hotel Lambert in Paris. Dozens of firefighters tackled the blaze, which broke out overnight on the roof of the riverside mansion in the centre of the French capital.

The building was being renovated after its purchase by a Qatari prince in 2007. Located on the World Heritage-listed Seine embankment, the mansion was once home to the 18th Century philosopher Voltaire.

Source & Full Story

Historic WWII Murals Arrive in Honolulu from Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge

Six wall-sized original paintings that formerly hung in a World War II-era theater on Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge arrived by ship in Honolulu on Wednesday.

The murals will be on loan for at least four years to the Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor, preserving and making them available for the general public to enjoy for the first time in their history.

Source & Full Story

Ancient Jewish Tombstones Hidden From Nazis During WWII Rediscovered In Vienna

It was 1943 when Vienna’s Nazi overlords gave the order to destroy the city’s oldest Jewish cemetery, demanding it be leveled and the tombstones attesting to centuries of Jewish existence there be destroyed.

Desperate to save their heritage, the city’s shrinking Jewish community decided to act. Defying the possibility of prison, deportation or execution, they buried the gravestones and kept them from Nazi hands.

Source & Full Story

10 July 2013

Secret Medieval Chamber Found in Scottish Castle

Dr Jonathan Clark from FAS Heritage explained that they could see two windows on the outside of the keep, but they did not could be found from the interior of the castle. Although they believed the windows went into passageways that had been filled up with rubble, the archaeologists decided to explore them.

Dr Clark says, "We were surprised that when we carefully unblocked the windows and peered in, and through the dim light of a torch and the mists of dust and trapped for centuries, to find a perfectly preserved medieval chamber, complete with the remains of the guarderobe (toilet) including the remains of the original toilet seat and the original entrance doorway for the medieval hall."

Source & Full Story

Deadwood, South Dakota, Adds To City’s Historic Archives, Artifacts

Deadwood City Commissioners recently approved the purchase of four historic artifacts from Dakota Plains Auction totaling $8,512, which were acquired during Wild Bill Days at the Old West Firearms and Collectibles auction.

The purchases, which include a McDonald Deadwood saddle bag for $3,100, a Henry Frawley Office docket from 1894 to 1898 for $450, an original 1898 map of Northern Ore District $550 and rare 1877 D.T. reward poster for $3,500 will be paid for from the acquisition line item in the Historic Preservation budget.

Source & Full Story

9 July 2013

Lac-Mégantic Casualties Include Quebec Town’s History

The chair of the board of Lac-Mégantic’s only library was in the final stages of preparing to move the library’s 60,000 books and precious archival documents from the two-floor location downtown to a bigger facility, where the townspeople would have easier access to the documented history of their community.

It was the result of nearly five years of negotiations and countless grant applications. Everything was in place, and Roy was pleased. But then on Saturday, a train carrying crude oil derailed downtown, causing massive explosions that obliterated many buildings, including the library.

Source & Full Story

Hidden Treasures Found In Historical Archives of Lake County, Illinois

Pieces of Lake County’s history in all manner of sizes, shapes and variety occupy Lake County Discovery Museum’s archive space. Thousands of documents and photographs are stored neatly in file cabinets and hundreds of objects are stored by function in carefully controlled storage rooms.

“It’s normal for museums to have only 10 percent of their collection on display at a time,” collections coordinator Diana Dretske said. The majority of the museum’s collection came from donations of all sorts, she said.

Source & Full Story

Are You Related to Courtney Love?

Love was born Courtney Michelle Harrison on July 9, 1964, in San Francisco, California to psychotherapist Linda Carroll and Hank Harrison, publisher and brief manager of the Grateful Dead.

Love's parents divorced in 1969 and her father's custody was withdrawn after her mother alleged that he had fed LSD to Love. Her mother moved the family to Marcola, Oregon, where they lived on a commune.

Courtney Love's Family Tree

8 July 2013

New Ipswich 1700s Barn And Homestead A Site Of History And Family Memories, On The Market For $2.5m

The farmhouse and barn available at 214 Appleton Road are meant for the buyer looking for that perfect fixer-upper project, one that has a healthy dose of character and history thrown in to the mix.

The home has been on the market for the last year under a 12-person trust, all relatives of the family that last lived in the home in 1909. The farmhouse, barn and whopping 383 acres were once used as a blueberry farm and are being sold for $2.5 million.

Source & Full Story

WWII Pilot's Letters Returned To Children After Year-Long Search

The letters of a World War II pilot were returned to the man's children after a year-long nationwide search. Salt Lake City native, Roy Gee, was a fighter pilot during World War II and during his years of service he chronicled his experiences in letters home to his mother.

Gee flew fighter planes in the Pacific before eventually being shot down by enemy guns. He was awarded the Navy Cross and the Navy Marine Corp Medal. Gee died in 2009 at the age of 89. The letters ended up in the West Valley home of a distant relative, Kathleen Duran.

Source & Full Story

Finding of Bodies Upsets Ignacio, Colorado, School Construction

Construction workers in March uncovered four human bodies buried on school grounds in the course of building a new elementary school for the Ignacio School District. Three months later, the district has uncovered 26 bodies around the site.

While authorities initially suspected the bodies were of Spanish origin and buried about 50 to 75 years ago, Jann Smith, La Plata County coroner, said it now appears the cemetery is multi-ethnic and dates to 100 years ago. She said some of the bodies were determined to be Native American.

Source & Full Story

GeneaNet: Download And Print A Very Attractive Ancestry Chart For Free!

On GeneaNet, you can download (in PDF) and print a very attractive ancestry chart for free!

There are 7 themes available and you can change the content: font, date format, on a single page/on multiple pages, etc.

Offer a beautiful ancestry chart to your family and friends!

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5 July 2013

Czechs Discover Passion For Family History, Says Genealogy Researcher Blanka Lednická

Ever since Czech TV began broadcasting its own version of BBC’s show Who Do You Think You Are, many people have developed an interest in finding more about their own history, about who their ancestors were, where lived, and what they did.

In this edition of Panorama, we discuss the boom in genealogy with researcher Blanka Lednická who a few years ago left her IT job and set up her own genealogy business.

Source & Full Story

Rare 3D Camera Found Containing Photos from WWI

While visiting an estate in Ontario's Niagara Falls two years ago, a film enthusiast stumbled upon a rare World War I Richard Verascope stereo camera previously owned by the French Army. Here's what he found inside.

The verascope camera, which was purchased by A Nerd's World's Chris Hughes, was found in pristine condition and included the original leather carrying case and glass slides. The antique had been in the possession of an elderly man who was clearing out his camera collection in preparation for retirement.

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Cherokee Area Archives (Iowa) Update on Digitalization of Newspapers

Over the past several months, the Cherokee Public Library has submitted several articles mentioning the digitalization on its website of all of Cherokee newspapers since 1870.

The Cherokee Area Archives joined the Library in obtaining the initial funding of this service and they hope you will take the time to check it out. If your have interest in your family history or any other events that occurred while you lived or visited Cherokee, you will be amazed at how much was written about you, your family/friends/events.

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4 July 2013

Are You Related to the Signers of the United States Declaration of Independence?

Fifty-six delegates to the Second Continental Congress in Philadelphia signed the United States Declaration of Independence, a statement announcing that the thirteen American colonies then at war with Great Britain were now independent states, and thus no longer a part of the British Empire.

Although the wording of the Declaration was approved by Congress on July 4, the date of its signing has been disputed. Most historians have concluded that it was signed nearly a month after its adoption, on August 2, 1776, and not on July 4 as is commonly believed.

Here are the family trees of some of the signers of the United States Declaration of Independence:

President of Congress: John Hancock (Massachusetts)

Massachusetts: Samuel Adams, John Adams, Robert Treat Paine.

Rhode Island: Stephen Hopkins, William Ellery.

Connecticut: Roger Sherman, Oliver Wolcott.

New Hampshire: William Whipple

New York: William Floyd, Philip Livingston, Lewis Morris.

Pennsylvania: Benjamin Franklin.

Delaware: George Read.

Maryland: William Paca.

Virginia : Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Harrison, Thomas Nelson, Jr..

South Carolina: Edward Rutledge, Arthur Middleton.

3 July 2013

Teacher Wore Same Outfit In Yearbook For 40 Years

A school teacher from Dallas, Texas has answered all these childhood questions. Dale Irby wore the same polyester shirt and vest for his yearbook photo for 40 years.

Irby said what started off as an accident became a running joke that never got old. A sports teacher, Irby usually wore athletic clothes suitable for exercise. He picked the vest and shirt combination in order to look presentable for his first yearbook photo in 1973 and accidentally repeated the outfit the following year.

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Genealogy Software Updates of the Week

Ancestral Quest 14.12 (Full Featured - Windows - Purchase)

• Added a Merge capability for merging records on Family Tree.
• Converted the feature which reads and updates Discussions on FamilySearch to directly work with Family Tree rather than New.FamilySearch.

Arlington National Cemetery Explorer 1.0.4 (Mobile - Freeware)

• Bug Fixes.
• Improved Stability.
• Enhanced iPhone 5 compatibility.
• Improved iPad support.
• Pan/Zoom for POI images.

Discover Your Ancestors 4.9.26 (Mobile - Purchase)

• iPhone 5 optimization.
• Memory fix on larger issue downloads.
• Minor bug fixes and performance improvements.

LiveHistory 1.1 (Mobile - Purchase)

• Forecasting of unknown dates.
• Consistency Guidance.

MacFamilyTree 7.0.3 (Full Featured - Mac - Purchase)

• Importing and exporting GEDCOM files improved.
• Localization improvements.
• Fixed crash when adding notes to events.
• Sorting events by date fixed when viewing places.
• Login issues to FamilySearch fixed.
• Performance enhancements for larger databases.
• Other stability improvements.

MobileFamilyTree 7.0.3 (Mobile - Purchase)

• Importing and exporting GEDCOM files improved.
• Stability improvements, especially when using FamilySearch.
• Errors handling associated persons, like godparents, corrected.
• Localization improvements.

RootsMagic (Full Featured - Windows - Purchase)

• Fixed: A bug which could cause an "Abstract Error" when adding a new person to FamilySearch.

TreeDraw 4.1.1 (Charts and Diagrams - Windows - Shareware)

• Fixed: Italic text elements were wrapping before the last word when they should have been single-line.
• Fixed: Word-wrapped text elements sometimes wrapped differently when in edit mode.
• Fixed: If linked databases are missing these are now reported summarized after an "Update text" operation.

1 July 2013

Vietnam War Veteran Reunited With Long-Lost Arm

A former North-Vietnamese soldier has been reunited with his arm after more than 40 years. Nguyen Quang Hung, a Vietcong soldier during the Vietnam war, had his arm amputated by US army doctor Sam Axelrad in 1966 after his arm caught gangrene.

Dr Axelrad kept the bones of the arm as a reminder of the good deed he had performed by treating an enemy soldier. He began a quest to track down the owner of the arm in 2012, meeting Mr Hung on Monday to return his bones.

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Library and Archives Canada (LAC) Has Released The 1825 Census for Lower Canada

In the first half of the 19th century, a series of census were done in order to determine the distribution of parliamentary representation. The Census for Lower Canada, 1825 marked the first collection of statistics. It took place between June 20 and September 20, 1825.

Enumerators visited 20 census districts, divided into 246 multiple enumeration units known as sub-districts. These units were made up of cities, towns, parishes, villages and townships. The total count of the population of Lower Canada in 1825 was 479,288 individuals.

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Remains of Old Cemetery Found In Prairietown, Illinois

A backhoe operator digging a trench for a new water line accidentally uncovered some gravestones Thursday, leading to the discovery of an historic cemetery adjacent to Renken Road just off Illinois Route 159.

The digging was for the Fosterburg Water District, whose officials called the project engineers, who notified the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency. Dawn E. Cobb, an anthropologist in charge of preserving human skeletal remains, was called to the site to investigate.

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Zeeland Cemetery Plot Purchases Limited After One Family Buys Dozens of Gravesites

After a local family bought 40 plots in Zeeland Cemetery earlier this year, the Zeeland City Council enacted a temporary limit of 10 plots per couple — and city officials need time to plan for the inevitable day when sales must end.

"The cemetery is such a loved area, and we do so many things there," said John Query, chairman of Zeeland's cemetery and parks commission, which recommended the move. "It's the heart and soul of the city."

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Colonial America's Oldest Unsolved Murder

When archaeologists in Virginia uncovered the skeletal remains in 1996 of one of Jamestown's first settlers — a young European male designated as JR102C in the catalog — they said he was the victim in what was perhaps Colonial America's oldest unsolved murder.

Now, 17 years later, the forensic archaeologists at Jamestown may have identified the victim and, therefore, the perpetrator of the crime. Recent evidence, Kelso says, points to a duel in 1624 "where a man named George Harrison took a bullet in the leg and later died from it."

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New Information Message For The Visitors of Your GeneaNet Family Tree

An information message is now being displayed for visitors (non-GeneaNet members) who are visiting your GeneaNet family tree.

The message says that your family tree is hosted for free by, that the visitor may find archival recods and family pictures in your family tree, and invites them to contact and share with you.

The visitor is also invited to sign up for a free GeneaNet account.