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Genealogy Blog

23 April 2015

Growing Numbers of Turks Discover Armenian Ancestry

In a climate of improved tolerance, growing numbers of people in Turkey are discovering their grandmothers were Armenian, and the revelations are being viewed as an important step.

Hundreds of thousands of Armenians escaped the mass deportations and slaughter of the early 1990's by forced conversion to Islam. Also, some Armenian children were taken in by Turkish families and assimilated.

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22 April 2015

The Story of Hillary Clinton's 'Real' Welsh Great-Grandmother Revealed by History Detective

Megan Smolenyak, a “history detective” made waves this month when she argued that genealogists have “attached” her Welsh grandmother to the wrong parents.

She argues that two girls named Hannah Jones were born in Scranton and people have “latched on to the wrong one” and that “everyone” has “quarter of her family tree wrong”.

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21 April 2015

Ohio Woman Searching for Biological Mother Discovers Co-Worker Is Her Mom

An adopted Ohio woman who was searching for her biological mom was left stunned after learning that the woman she was looking for was actually a co-worker at the same company.

La-Sonya Mitchell-Clark found out her mother's name was Francine Simmons after the state's Department of Health released birth records for those born between Jan. 1964 and Sept. 1996.

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Puerto Rico Rediscovering Its Native Roots, in Schools, Legislature and Census

In Puerto Rico's misty, bamboo-studded mountains, elementary school students are studying a nearly extinct language, beating on drums and growing native crops like cassava and sweet potato as they learn about the indigenous people who lived on the island before Christopher Columbus.

"If you don't know your roots, you don't know yourself," said anthropologist Carlalynne Yarey Melendez, director of the Taino cultural organization that runs the educational program.

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20 April 2015

Armenian Newspaper Holds Century of Memories in Istanbul

It's witnessed the collapse of an empire, the horrendous massacre of its people and the birth of an entirely new state. And it keeps on printing.

The newspaper "Jamanak" ("The Times" in Armenian) is the oldest continuously-running newspaper in Turkey and oldest anywhere in the Armenian language. It published its first issue on October 28, 1908, in the final one-and-a-half decades of the Ottoman Empire when Armenians were still citizens of the empire.

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My, My! Many Britons Ignorant About Battle of Waterloo

As Britain prepares to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo, a survey shows that many Britons know little about the fight and associate the name with an ABBA song or a London railway station.

The National Army Museum survey revealed that more than a quarter of the people surveyed - 28 percent - had no idea who won the battle and 14 percent believed the French were victorious over the British and their Prussian allies. One if five knew absolutely nothing about it.

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Digital Archive Seeks WWI Memorabilia in North Wales

A unique campaign aimed at digitalising photographs, letters and diaries of World War One soldiers is set to visit north Wales for the first time.

Families have been asked to bring the memorabilia to the Never Forget Your Welsh Heroes roadshow on Saturday. Held at the Royal Welch Fusiliers Museum in Caernarfon Castle, the items will be added to a national online archive.

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A Tasmanian Tragedy: Honour Roll of the World War I Casualties

From its small population that had just passed 200,000 for the first time, Tasmania sent more than 15,000 of its men, women and boys to the war.

Hundreds of Tasmanians enlisted elsewhere, expanding that number. Nearly 2900 died as a result of their service.

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Geneanet Weekend 'A Cemetery for Posterity', May 1-3, 2015

On May 1-3, 2015, take pictures of graves in a nearby cemetery.

Cemeteries are one of the most important resources for genealogists, and we must capture headstones before they are lost. That's why Geneanet has launched the project 'A Cemetery for Posterity'.

On May 1-3, 2015, we will need you to picture as many graves as possible worldwide.

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19 April 2015

Ben Affleck Reportedly Asked PBS To Censor His Slave-Owning Ancestor

The PBS series "Finding Your Roots" is all about uncovering the ancestry of the show's celebrity guests. But according to a hacked Sony email, one guest requested to have his family tree censored.

Ben Affleck was featured in a "Finding Your Roots" episode from last October, "Roots of Freedom," which discusses his Freedom Rider mother, a Revolutionary War ancestor and his third great-grandfather. But according to a hacked Sony email posted by WikiLeaks on Thursday, Affleck reportedly asked PBS to edit out information about an ancestor who owned slaves.

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18 April 2015

Are You Related to Conan O'Brien?

O'Brien was born on April 18, 1963, in Brookline, Massachusetts. His father, Thomas Francis O'Brien, is a physician, epidemiologist, and professor of medicine at Harvard.

His mother, Ruth O'Brien (née Reardon), is an attorney and partner at the Boston firm Ropes & Gray. He is the third of six children. O'Brien's family is Irish Catholic; some of his Irish ancestors immigrated before the American Civil War. In a Late Night episode, O'Brien paid a visit to County Kerry, Ireland, where his ancestors originated.

Conan O'Brien's Family Tree

17 April 2015

Gallipoli 2015: Online Sleuthing Helps Solve Mystery of WWI Soldier's Life After the War

A librarian in Brisbane has solved the mystery of what happened to a north Queensland soldier after World War I after his diary was found in an RSL collection.

The diary of Private George Pierce Foot was returned to Townsville this week, after it showed up mysteriously at the Yeronga Dutton Park RSL in Brisbane last year. George was a grazier from Charters Towers, who went to the war in 1915, serving briefly at Gallipoli, where two of his brothers died, before being transported to Egypt.

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WWI Canadian Nurses Honored on Greek Island of Lemnos

These days, it’s easy to forget the role that the northeastern Aegean island of Lemnos played in the First World War. However, with the centenary of the Gallipoli Campaign coming up on April 25, that looks set to change.

Despite the failure of the Gallipoli Campaign, which was launched from the island port of Mudros, Lemnos remained the allied base for the blockade of the Dardanelles during the war.

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Six Unknown British Soldiers Killed During the First Battles of World War One Are Buried in Flanders Field

Six soldiers have finally been put to rest in a cemetery - more than 100 years after they were killed in the first months of World War One.

Little has been discovered about the soldiers, as no relatives have been found, and their graves will be labelled as 'Known Unto God' - a description on headstones of all unknown soldiers, which was chosen by author Rudyard Kipling.

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Hillary Clinton Falsely Says Her Grandmother Was Born in Wales

Hillary Clinton’s British roots tripped her up on the campaign trail on Thursday after she inaccurately claimed that her grandmother was born in Wales.

While many Americans can trace some family history back to the UK, Mrs Clinton does have an unusually direct connection to Britain. Her grandfather Hugh Rodham was born in Northumberland in 1879 and brought to Pennsylvania as a child along with his six brothers and sisters.

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