Episode 23 Transcript

Welcome to the Genealogy News from Geneatopia

I’m Patty Roy, also known as Dinah Larkham in Second Life

Today is Monday, February 3, 2014 and this is Episode 23
RootsTech 2014 is almost here.

The Innovator Summit will be on Wednesday, February 5th and the conference is Thursday, February 6, thru Saturday, February 8th.

If you’re not going in person, there are plenty of ways to find out what’s happening at the conference. During the three-day conference, sessions will be streamed live and you can watch them for free at RootsTech.org. The past few years the sessions were recorded and you could watch them later. No word this year about viewing the recordings.

There’s a Flipboard magazine created by Lisa Louise Cooke called RootsTech 2014 that she plans to update it during the conference will blog posts and articles found on the web about the conference.

Caroline Pointer has created a RebelMouse page for the Rootstech conference
https://www.rebelmouse.com/RootsTech/. RebelMouse lets you create a page of your online presence to display what is being posted to Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr, and Instagram.

You can also follow on Twitter and Instagram with the hash tag RootsTech. And follow on facebook at facebook.com/RootsTech.

And then there will be an after party with DearMyrtle. That will be a Google Hangout with lots of bloggers and they will discuss the conference. That will be on Saturday, February 8th, at 8:30pm eastern.

The St. Louis Dispatch last week had an article in that paper about two student employees who misfiled and trashed 1800 veterans’ records in 2011 and 2012 at the National Records Center in St. Louis. This is same organization that lost many military records during a fire in 1973.

The records involved were individual documents, not entire personnel files. Documents were thrown away at the center, at the student’s home, and some dumped in the woods. Still some were misfiled.

Both employees have pleaded guilty to a federal misdemeanor charge. One was sentenced last week to two years of probation and 40 hours of community service. The other will be sentenced on February 7th.

A couple of weeks ago a federal appeals court in Washington struck down the Federal Communications Commission’s rules for Net neutrality.

Net neutrality is to ensure that broadband providers don’t block competing traffic on their network. An example would be, you use Netflix and stream movies from your Internet connection from Comcast. Comcast cannot slow down your streaming video because Netflix is in competition with Comcast. Well, now they can.

Last week Michel Leclerc wrote a blog post about Net neutrality on the Mocavo blog. He said in the past the Internet has been equal access for all. Anyone with a web presence was treated equally. Now he’s concerned about our ability to access genealogy sites. It’s possible that Internet service providers can slow access to sites making them impossible to use.

He also mentions the possibility of paying for Internet access the way we pay for cable TV. We pay extra to access more channels and we may have to pay extra to access more web sites.

The December issue of the National Genealogical Society Quarterly in the Editor’s Corner section, Melinde Lutz Byrne and Thomas Jones talk about DNA standards. They talk about how genealogists have no voice in the ethical uses of DNA test results and with no established standards, how do editors decide to publish articles that might affect relatives of the person who had their DNA tested and is mentioned in the article.

Blaine Bettinger, the author of the blog The Genetic Genealogist has responded to this article. He would like to form a group to establish Standards for DNA Ancestry Testing and for certifying individuals as a Certified Genetic Genealogists.

If you would like to participate in the group you can contact Blaine. I’ll have a link in the show notes to his blogpost which includes ways to contact him.

More new records at FamilySearch

New browsable image collections added include

Indonesia, Jawa Tengah, Pati, Naturalization Records, 1960–2013

U.S., Iowa, Non-Population Census Schedules, 1850–1880

U.S., New York, Bronx Probate Estate Files, 1914–1931

U.S., Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Seamen’s Proofs of Citizenship, 1791–1861

U.S., Vermont, St. Albans Canadian Border Crossings, 1895–1924

Collections with new images added include

Belgium, Brabant, Civil Registration, 1582–1912

England, Dorset, Parish Registers, 1538–1936

Italy, Cuneo, Alba, Civil Registration (Tribunale), 1866–1941

United States, Passport Applications, 1795–1925

The following have new indexed records and images

Germany, Hesse, Stadtkreis Darmstadt, Darmstadt District, Civil Registration, 1876–1925

Peru, Arequipa, Civil Registration, 1860–1976

Next these collections have indexed records added to an existing collection

Mexico, Chihuahua, Civil Registration, 1861–1997

Mexico, Coahuila, Civil Registration, 1861–1998

Mexico, Guerrero, Civil Registration, 1833–1996

Peru, Lima, Civil Registration, 1874–1996

And one more category, the next collection has had indexed records and images added to an existing collection

Peru, Junín, Civil Registration, 1890–2005

And there’s a podcast episode about FamilySearch from the UK National Archives. The title is “News from FamilySearch” with Sharon Hintze. She is the Director of the London Family History Center. It was recorded on January 27, 2014.

In that broadcast she mentioned that only 93% of the records are online. And they are continuing to film records. They can’t keep up with digitizing so next year only 94% of the records will be online. You may want to order microfilm at you local Family History Center to view records that interest you.

FamilySearch is asking for help with the FamilySearch Wiki. The wiki is a place where you can find information about topics in genealogy. FamilySearch prepares and uploads basic information and volunteers contribute the rest. They’re asking for help to fill out and expand the articles in the wiki. You can find articles that need help when you see an Incomplete Section template in the article. You can also find those types of articles on the page for Projects Needing Content and select a continent to find articles needing additional help.

You can always edit any article you find with additional information. The wiki is meant to be a resource to all and everyone is encouraged to add their expertise in any area they find needs more information.


Ancestry has created another research guide, this one is for Kansas. The research guide gives a little history about the state, important dates for Kansas, where to get vital records, and links to lots of resources for Kansas.

They’ve recently announced research guides for some other states – Alaska, California, Georgia, Indiana, New Mexico, New York, Texas, and Virginia

All the research guides are free.


If you are a paying subscriber to Ancestry and you have your tree at Ancestry, you’re eligible to participate in a feedback session. Ancestry wants to talk to you in person or online about some new concepts for Ancestry.com. They are looking for input about existing and new experiences on the website and mobile.

The session should last about an hour and they are offering incentives to choose from, such as the latest version of Family Tree Maker.


Ancestry and Fold3 are partnering with Journey Through Hallowed Ground to create a living tribute to all those who sacrificed their life during the Civil War. A tree will be planted for each individual who died during the war.

Trees will be planted in the 180-mile corridor running from Gettysburg to Monticello. The trees will be geo-tagged so anyone with a mobile device can find out about the solider the tree represents.

Anyone can contribute $100 to dedicate a tree for one of the fallen.


Jet Magazine is having a giveaway for Ancestry.com one-year World Explorer Plus membership and AncestryDNA test. There will be 5 winners that will receive a membership and a DNA test.

All you have to do to enter is submit your name, address, email, and phone number. When you enter you consent to the following:

Subject to applicable law, winners irrevocably grant the Sweepstakes Entities and each of their sponsors, licensees, and its and their successors, assigns and sub-licensees the right and permission to use their name, voice, likeness and/or biographical material for advertising, promotional and/or publicity purposes in connection with the Sweepstakes, in all forms of media and by all manners (now and hereafter known), and on and in connection with related products, services, advertising and promotional materials (now known or hereafter developed), worldwide, in perpetuity, without any obligation, notice or consideration except for the awarding of the prizes to the winners. Entrants agree not to issue any publicity concerning the Sweepstakes Entities.
The contest ends 12:00PM CT on Sunday, February 16, 2014. The winners will be selected in a random drawing on February 17th.


Ancestry is continuing its Branch Out contest, this will be third time. There will be a total of six Branch Out contests. You can enter to win time with a professional genealogist, an AncestryDNA test, a one-year subscription to Ancestry.com, and a photo book from MyCanvas.

To enter you fill out a form with your name and address and a brief story about your family history that is not more than 500 words. The story must be theme-related.

You have until end at 11:59:59 p.m. PT on February 28, 2014. The winner will be selected in a random drawing on March 3, 2014.


MyHeritage, a subscription-based site, has added over 160 million US and UK records. These records include births, baptisms, marriages and deaths, military records, censuses, and more.

They’re having a webinar about the new records on Wednesday, February 12th at 3pm eastern called How to find ancestors in US and UK records. It’s presented by different people, one will show how to search US records, one will show how to search UK records and then another person will talk about MyHeritage matching technology.


MyHeritage users now can search profiles on Geni. MyHeritage bought Geni in November 2012 and they set it up so Geni users could obtains search results form MyHeritage Record Matches and Smart Matches.

When MyHeritage users search with SuperSearch, they will now see matches with Geni trees.

Geni trees are part of the World Family Tree where anyone can edit the tree. This results in lots of collaboration and very little duplication. MyHeritage trees can only be edited by the owner and others the owner allows to edit the tree.

User at either site can benefit from the work done by genealogists at the other site.


GRAMPS is a free genealogy program that runs on Windows, Mac, and Linux. It’s a program to keep track of your ancestors, similar to RootsMagic or Family Tree Maker. A new version has been released, and that would be version 4.0.3. This is a minor release and it mostly fixes small bugs and some updated translations for other languages.

A new version of Evidentia has been released, this would be version 2. Evidentia is a program to help you resolve conflicting resources and analyze information you’ve collected about an ancestor.

There are lots of new changes, some users have requested. Now you can attach source documents, use dropbox, spellcheck, and many more enhancements.

There was a Google Hangout about the new version of Evidentia and you can view it at Ed Thompson’s YouTube page. Ed is the developer of Evidentia.

If you have version 1 of Evidentia you can upgrade for $15.99. For new users the price is $24.99, $5 off the regular price of $29.99.

If you purchased Evidentia version 1 after November 28, 2013, the upgrade is free.

There is also a CD-ROM version that costs slightly more.

HistoryGeo.com has announced new maps, tools, and ways to learn. They’ve added new content and new map-viewing tools. The site is a paid site where you can find out where your ancestors lived and who their neighbors were.

The have two mapping tools: the First Landowners Project has nearly 8 million original landowners with more to come. And the Antique Maps Project has more than 4,000 maps from around the United States that contain landowners from different periods.

The site has been re-engineered to use the most modern technologies so it operates in many different web browsers and devices. No longer will you need to install plugins to use the site.

They’ve started a blog that will be explaining the site and they’ve created online training videos.

You can search for free so you can see what the site has to offer.


The Family History Writing Challenge has announced the lists of experts that will be involved this year.

The writing challenge is during the month of February. You will be writing about your family history. It’s to get you to start or maybe finish a family story that your family will want to read.

You commit to write every day during the challenge. It’s meant to get you into a daily writing habit that hopefully you will continue after the challenge is over.

The experts are Jean-Francois de Buren, Sharon DeBartolo Carmack, Julie Cahill Tarr, Lisa Alzo, Biff Barnes, and Linda Gartz

You can find out more about these folks at the Armchair Genealogist web site.


The Library of Congress has add hundreds of thousands of newspaper pages to their Chronicling America web site. For the first time there are newspapers rom Maryland and North Carolina. More newspapers were added to the following states – Arizona, Louisiana, Montana, New Mexico, Ohio, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, and West Virginia.


The Dutch site WhoWasWho is now available in English. Previously it was only available in Dutch.

The site contains a large number of records from Dutch archive organizations. You’ll find civil registration records, church registers, population censuses and more. On the site there are trees submitted by users and biographies written by users.

Right now you can sign up for a free trail. Eventually you will be able to pay for a subscription.


The Library and Archives Canada plans to digitize 640,000 World War I service files. This in part of the commemoration of the centennial of the First World War.

The service files are the First World War’s Canadian Expeditionary Force members. These men and women were soldiers, nurses, and chaplains serving their country between 1914 and 1918.

The digitization of these files will ensure they last, many of the paper files are starting to deteriorate. The original documents will be kept in boxes designed for long-term storage and they will be kept in the Library and Archives Canada’s state-of-the-art preservation facilities.

They will start digitizing the service files beginning with the letter A through D. Beginning in March of 2014 you will no longer be able to view these files while they are being digitized. It’s planned to have them available online in the Summer of 2014.

The project should be completed some time in 2015.


The partnership between Library and Archives Canada and Canadiana.org over the next ten years involves the digitization and indexing of millions of records. It will triple the digital content at Library and Archives Canada web site.

Content will be added regularly to the Héritage web site found at heritage.canadiana.ca

So far 2.1 million images have been added since June 2013 when the microfilms were starting to be digitized.

As the collections are digitized, they will appear on the site.


The European 1914 – 1918 website has been relaunched. This site brings together resources from three European projects with different types of First World War material. At the site you’ll find collections from libraries, personal stories, and film archives.

Libraries from eight countries are sharing their collections at the site.

The site is still collecting letters, photographs, and keepsakes from the war that can be placed on the site. Currently there are over 90,000 items and more than 7,000 stories from a dozen countries.

The film archives include newsreels, documentaries, fiction films, propaganda and anti-war films.


FindMyPast has partnered with the British Library to release over 2.5 million record about the lives of the British in India from 1698 to 1947.

The British in India collection includes:
British India Office birth and baptism records 1698-1947
British India Office deaths and burials 1749-1947
Indian Office wills and probate records 1749-1957
India Office East India Company and Civil Service pensions 1749-1947
East India Company cadet papers
Applications for the civil service

You can search the records for free and then pay a fee to access the scans of the original documents.

Things Coming Up

Heather Rojo has a list of events around New England for February and beyond at her blog Nutfield Genealogy. You’ll find meetings for genealogy clubs, genealogy society meetings, study groups. library activities, and historical society events.

Not much going on this week except for RootsTech. Other things going on this week are

Friday, February 7, 8pm eastern
Twitter #IDGChat – Guest Chat with Cindy Freed on Civil War Research

Friday, February 7th, 10pm eastern
#genchat – RootsTech 2014! What new tech have you discovered because of genealogy?

Saturday, February 8, 8:30pm eastern
RootsTech After Party with DearMyrtle and Heather Rojo hosting with other bloggers on the panel

Then next week, there’s lots of things scheduled.

As always, every Monday at noon is the Google Hangout, Mondays with Myrt.

Tuesday, February 11, noon eastern
Heritage Collector Storybook Users Group Webinar
Creating a Family Storybook Part 1
During this class you will learn how to document precious family memories and turn them into beautiful one page histories with sound and video clips
presented by Kathleen Bitter

Tuesday, February 11, 2pm eastern
Friends of the National Archives – Southeast Region
Have You Really Done the Census? A close look at the population schedules
presented by Linda Woodward Geiger

Illinois State Genealogical Society Webinar
Tuesday, February 11, 9pm eastern
Printed Legends and Missing Footnotes: Dissecting 19th and 20th Century Compiled Genealogies
Presenter: Joshua Taylor

Wednesday, February 12 2014, 2pm eastern
Legacy Webinar – Family Stories: Using Newspapers to Reconnect with the Stories of Your Family’s Past
presented by presented by Tom Kemp

Wednesday, February 12, 3pm eastern
MyHeritage Webinar
How to find ancestors in US and UK records
presenters will be Mike Mansfield, Director of Content Production, he will review US records; Laurence Harris, MyHeritage’s Head of Genealogy UK will present the new UK records, and MyHeritage’s Chief Genealogist Daniel Horowitz will provide an overview of the matching technologies to advance your family history research.

Wednesday, February 12, 9pm eastern
Heritage Collector Webinar – Understanding and Using the GPS Module
Learn how to automatically create GPS maps with tags / pointers. Acquire GPS coordinates via smart phone, or car navigator
Acquire GPS coordinates via smart phone, or car navigator
Manually find coordinates anywhere in the world using HC’s ‘Get GPS’ option.
Create and print GPS map.
Print or share via PDF and more.
presented by Marlo E. Schuldt

Thursday, February 13, 10 am eastern
The National Archives UK Webinar – Army muster lists
Learn how the army accounted for the money it spent and what you can discover in these records.
presented by William Spencer

Thursday, February 13, 9pm eastern
Second Life APG Chapter meeting
speaker will be Drew Smith

Saturday, February 15, 3pm eastern
NEHGS Webinar Find Your 17th-Century New England Ancestors with NEHGS
presented by David Dearborn

And that’s it for this episode

If you use Flipboard on your phone or tablet, be sure to check out the Geneatopia magazine by searching for genealogy or Geneatopia in Flipboard.

You can send email to geneatopia@gmail.com

You can find links to things mentioned in this show in the show notes at Geneatopia.com. This is episode 23.
Thanks for listening.


Listen to the episode.


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