Genealogy News Episode 113

Welcome to the Genealogy News from Geneatopia

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

Today is Thursday February 15, 2018 and this is Episode 113.

MyHeritage Lets Everyone Contact DNA Matches

MyHeritage now lets everyone contact their DNA matches. This means you do not need to have a MyHeritage subscription to take a DNA test or upload DNA results from another company and you don’t need a subscription to contact those that you share DNA with.

This has been a frequent request by MyHeritage users. MyHeritage wants more family reunions, more discoveries, and increased collaboration so they are allowing users to contact each other.

Contacting DNA Matches is Now Free

MyHeritage New Feature Ethnicities Around the World

MyHeritage has a new feature called Ethnicities around the world. It’s based on aggregated and anonymous ethnicity from over one million people in the MyHeritage DNA database. You can explore the most common ethnicities in different countries and see the top countries for each ethnicity. For the United States you can view the top ethnicities by state.

The new feature is free for anyone to use. The name of this new feature from the DNA menu is Ethnicities map. The name Ethnicities around the world was too long to fit in the menu.

New Feature: Ethnicities Around the World

23andMe new Global Genetics Project

23andMe has launched a new project called the Global Genetics Project. They want to expand their reference sets to be able to create more study groups for those who are underrepresented in genetic research and they hope to reveal new insights into patterns of human migration and genetic diversity.

The plan is to recruit more the 5,000 people over the next two years to participate in this study. To participate you need to be at least 18 years of age and live in the United States. You also need to have four grandparents who were born in one of several dozen countries across the globe.

The main thrust is to improve insights into ancestry and help 23andMe conduct health-related research within underrepresented populations.

23andMe Launches The Global Genetics Project

Ancestry UK Campaign

Ancestry DNA has a new TV campaign in the UK. The TV ads show that the average British person has 60% DNA from somewhere in Europe.

The ad starts out by saying that Europe has a message for Britain before it leaves the European Union. It then goes to other locations while people are singing Together Forever. It ends with the tagline, “We may be leaving Europe, but Europe will never leave us.”

Ancestry DNA wants to bring people together to celebrate their connections – both cultural and genetic.

Together Forever through our DNA

Fold3 Free Access to Black History Collection

February is Black History month in the United States. During the month of February Fold3 is making its records in the Black History collection free for the month.

Black History Month 2018 – Access Black History Records

New Records at Ancestry

Some notable new collections at Ancestry are

Buckinghamshire, England, Extracted Church of England Parish Records, 1535-1812
Wiltshire, England, Wills and Probate, 1530-1858
Idaho, Old Penitentiary Prison Records, 1882-1961
New Mexico, Census, Military, and Other Records of Mexico, 1821-1846
Births, Marriages, and Deaths for Ostprignitz-Ruppin, Germany
Erfurt, Germany, Deaths, 1874-1935

More new records at FamilySearch

New browsable image collections added include
Maryland, Baltimore, Lock Funeral Home Records, 1936-2007
Russia, Karelia Poll Tax Census (Revision Lists), 1782-1858
United States, Native American, Eastern Cherokee Indian Reservation Rolls, 1848-1970

The following is a new indexed collection
England, Rutland Parish Registers, 1538-1991

Next these collections have indexed records added to an existing collection
Australia Cemetery Inscriptions, 1802-2005
Austria, Vienna, Jewish Registers of Births, Marriages, and Deaths, 1784-1911
Belgium, Namur, Civil Registration, 1800-1912
Brazil, Santa Catarina, Catholic Church Records, 1714-1977
Colombia, Catholic Church Records, 1576-2014
Czech Republic Censuses and Inhabitant Registers, 1800-1990
Denmark, Copenhagen City, Civil Marriages, 1739-1964, Index 1877-1964
Ecuador, Catholic Church Records, 1565-2011
England, Cornwall Parish Registers, 1538-2010
French Polynesia, Civil Registration, 1843-1999
Italy, Reggio Calabria, Civil Registration (State Archive), 1784-1943
Lesotho, Evangelical Church Records, 1874-1983
Luxembourg, Civil Registration, 1796-1941
Panama, Catholic Church Records, 1707-1973
Peru, Amazonas, Civil Registration, 1939-1999
Russia, Samara Church Books, 1779-1923
South Africa, Cape Province, Kimberley, Probate Records of the Supreme Court, 1871-1937
South Africa, Cape Province, Probate Records of the Master of the High Court, 1834-1989
Spain, Province of Barcelona, Municipal Records, 1387-1986
United States Passport Applications, 1795-1925
United States Revolutionary War Rolls, 1775-1783
United States Rosters of Revolutionary War Soldiers and Sailors, 1775-1783
Utah, Birth Certificates, 1903-1914

The next collection has had indexed records and images added to an existing collection
BillionGraves Index
Austria, Vienna Population Cards, 1850-1896
Slovakia Church and Synagogue Books, 1592-1935

These collections have added images to an existing collection
New Jersey State Census, 1915
Sweden, Örebro Church Records, 1613-1918; index 1635-1860

New Historic Records on FamilySearch: Week of February 1, 2018

New Historic Records on FamilySearch: Week of February 12, 2018

FamilySearch Adds Mexican Records

FamilySearch has added 65 million new Mexican records. These are searchable civil registration records for different areas of Mexico.

They have been available for a while on FamilySearch as browsable collections. Now they are indexed and searchable.

These have been available on Ancestry as searchable records since 2015. Since Ancestry had a partnership with FamilySearch to digitize the records, they were able to obtain exclusive access to the indexed collection for a few years. This agreement has now expired and the indexed records can now be made freely available at FamilySearch.

FamilySearch Quietly Starts Releasing Indexed Mexican Civil Registration Collection

Paris Civil Registration Records Available on FamilySearch

Microfilm that was only available at the Paris Archives in France has been digitized by FamilySearch and made available as a browsable collection. These are Paris parish and civil registration.

First you will need to browse the index cards and find the microfilm number for the record you are looking for. Then you can look at the digitized copy of the microfilm.

I’ll have a link in the show notes to a blog post by Anne Morddel of the French Genealogy Blog for detailed instructions about how to access these records.

They’re Up! Paris Bonanza on Family Search!

FamilySearch No Longer Supporting Internet Explorer

Starting on February 1st, FamilySearch will no longer be supporting Internet Explorer. This is the browser that comes with Windows. Microsoft announced back in 2015 that Microsoft Edge will be the browser that will replace Internet Explorer.

What this means is that those using Internet Explorer will begin to have difficulty with the website. FamilySearch will not be updating its website to work with Internet Explorer any more. no longer supported on Internet Explorer

Findmypast Adds Suffrage 100 Web Portal

To mark the 100 years since the first women were given the right to vote, Findmypast has launched the Suffrage 100 web portal. In 1918 the Representation of the People Act allowed women who owned property and female graduates over 30 years of age to vote.

The records for the portal come from The National Archives in the UK. They contain photographs, cabinet papers, lists of prisoners, records of protests and disturbances and an official list of 1,300 women and men who were suspected of being suffragette.

The portal contains:
Events and exhibitions
Suffrage research guide

Findmypast will be adding more content to the portal during the year.

Suffrage 100 Web Portal is free for anyone to search until March 8th, International Women’s Day

Suffragette Ancestors – Genealogy Records

New Records at Findmypast

Findmypast has added parish records for Hertfordshire and Devon. That would be baptisms, marriages and banns, and burials.

From the Durham Diocese they’ve added bishop’s transcripts 1939 – 1919 and calendar of marriage bonds and allegations 1594 – 1815.

They’ve added lots of records for British Armed Forces. There are births and baptisms, banns and marriages, and deaths and burials.

Over 56,000 records have been added to the collection for British India. These new records contain biographical and service data on the families and officers of the East India Company.

Memorial inscriptions have been added for Yorkshire and Northumberland and Durham.

For the United States, they’ve added two browsable collections – Texas, Laredo Arrival Manifests 1903 – 1955 and Idaho, Southeast Counties Obituaries 1864 – 2007.

There is a new collection of Roman Catholic marriages for Monieau, Missouri.

There are 300 records from the Union Provost Marshal that were created during the Civil War in the United States and some records of confederate prisoners of war,

Findmypast continues to add images to PERSI and more newspapers have been added to the British Newspaper collection.

Findmypast Friday January 26th

Findmypast Friday February 2nd

Findmypast Friday February 9th

Reunion Version 12 Release

There is a new version of Reunion that has been released. Reunion is a Macintosh program that is a genealogy database program to keep track of your ancestors. This a major new version with over 80 new features.

Here are the top ten new features:

1. Duplicate checking checks when you add a new person to see if they are already in the file.

2. In the change panel you can easily sort events. Events without dates such as death and burial will always appear at the bottom.

3. There is a new citations list to review and manage citations.

4. Fan charts have been improved. The fan is now more spread out, you can exclude empty cells, and change colors.

5. There are two new kinds of books – a relative book with chapters for each relationship and an hourglass book that begins with a person and then moves in both directions forward and backward in time that represents ancestors and descendants.

6. There are new ways to search for citations and citation details.

7. Color tags can be used to visually see who belongs in what group.

8. Find feature can tell you exactly where matches occur such as the specific field where something is found.

9. The source window shows all elements together. You see the source fields, free-form text, multimedia elements and a preview in one window.

10. Reports that are made for the web use responsive design.

A new copy of Reunion costs $99. If you already have Reunion you can upgrade for $49.95.

Reunion for Macintosh

Double Match Triangulator 2.0

Double Match Triangulator 2.0 has been released. This is a program that helps you analyze your DNA matches. It was developed by Louis Kessler. He won 3rd place in the RootsTech 2017 Innovator Showdown.

The program uses FamilyTreeDNA results that you download in a single Chromosome Browser Results file. It compares matches for triangulation groups to see who could share a common ancestor.

Some of the additions and changes in version 2 include:

• No need to have Excel installed anymore

• You can save results from running the Matching Segment Search at GEDmatch to Double Match Triangulator

• Double Match Triangulator will directly read 23andMe’s Relative Download file and it can directly read GEDmatch data. Previously you had to convert that data into a Family Tree DNA format in order to import it into Double Match Triangulator.

And there were a few more changes. You can read all the details at Louis Kessler’s blog post about version 2. I’ll have a link in the show notes to it.

Double Match Triangulator 2.0

DPLA New Website

The Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) has a new website. They say it is more “user-centered than ever before.” There is more of a focus on tools, resources, and information that matters most to those using the site.

A “Pro Community” will be available soon for members of the DPLA partner network.

The beta site has familiar features as well as new features. One new feature is the ability to browse by topic.

The new website is in beta and you can find it at

Digital Public Library of America releases beta version of ‘all-new’ website

Digital Library of Georgia Adds African American Funeral Programs

The Digital Library of Georgia has added over 10,000 more pages to its memorial funeral program collection. The collection provides a source of genealogical information and local history about the African American community. Each program typically contains a photograph of the deceased, an obituary, a list of surviving relatives, and information about the service.

This new addition doubles the number of programs in the collection. The bulk of the collection was donated to the Augusta-Richmond County Public Library by a genealogist. The funeral programs had been collected for over 30 years.

African American Funeral Programs from the Augusta-Richmond County Public Library System Collection Expanded

Roanoke College History Class Creates Digital Archive about Civil Rights

Last semester a Roanoke College history class created a digital archive about the civil rights era. The archive contains newspaper and other clippings from the Hill Street Baptist Church in Roanoke, Virginia. It documents efforts in Roanoke during the 1950s and 1960s that desegregated lunch counters, movie theaters, and public schools.

The digital archive is available free to the public. There is also a timeline that highlights the major issues experienced by the Black community during that time.

Roanoke College Students Create Digital Archive Documenting the Area’s Civil Rights Era

City University of New York Compiles Slavery Records Index

A New York Slavery Index has been created by the City University of New York’s John Jay College of Criminal Justice. The index includes records, documents, narratives, and the sources that identify enslaved people and their owners. The records date back to the year 1525.

There are 35,000 records in the database and it is available free to the public. You may find birth certificates, advertisements for the capture and return of enslaved New Yorkers, and there is information about some New York senators who owned slaves.

College creates state’s first slavery history database

State Archives of North Carolina Places Secretary of State Wills Online

The State Archives of North Carolina has placed the Secretary of State Wills online. This new collection contains wills from 1633 to 1789. These wills were probated in the province. Most wills after 1760 were kept by the clerk in the county where they were probated but some were not and they are in the new online collection.

The wills are arranged alphabetically by surname and they are searchable by surname.

New Digital Collection: Secretary of State Wills

New Additions to DigitalNC

DigitalNC continues to be very busy adding material from around North Carolina to its site. The latest editions have all been newspapers. Here’s what they’ve added

More issues of the Carteret County News-Times from the 1950s
More issues of The Pilot for the years from 1949 to 1965
More issues of The Franklin Times for the years 1912-1944 and 1963-1972
The weekly newspaper The Transylvania Times for the year 1933
The Smithfield Herald covering January 1917 to April 1918
70 years of The Hilltop, Mars Hill University’s student newspaper for the years 1926 – 1995

11 More Years of the Carteret County News-Times Now Available

70 years of Mars Hill University student newspaper now online

New Issues of the Pilot Now Online

The Transylvania Times Now Online at DigitalNC

Smithfield Herald Now Digitized Online

Franklin Times now covering 1909-1944 and 1963-1972 online

Illinois State University Digitized Its Campus Newspaper The Vidette

Illinois State University has digitized its campus newspaper The Vidette. The first edition is available and seventy-five more volumes up to 1963 are available. Additional volumes will be added.

Currently there are over 2,600 issues available online.

The Vidette Digital Archives at Milner Library now available

Colorado Historic Newspapers Collection Supports Local Communities to Digitize Newspapers

The Colorado Historic Newspapers Collection has a new program to support local communities to digitize newspapers. They plan to award funding for the digitization of newspapers on microfilm or in original format.

The newspapers will be included in the Colorado Historic Newspapers Collection.

Institutions can now apply to receive funding to digitize Colorado newspapers that were published between 1859 and 1922. I’ll have a link in the show notes to where you can apply if you are interested.

Help is Here for Newspaper Digitization!

University of Toronto Launches Discover Archives

The University of Toronto has launched Discover Archives. This is a shared portal for exploring holdings from the University of Toronto and its federated colleges.

There is archival material about the University of Toronto’s history as well as records from private individuals, families, businesses and organizations.

Launch of Discover Archives

City of Victoria Archives’ Online Search

The City of Victoria has launched an online search capability to search more than 10,000 digitized archival photos and records. There are photos from World War I and World War II. Some photos depict everyday life in Victoria and many photos pertaining to the city’s history.

In the future, they plan to add documents such as city reports, maps, plans and news clippings.

Peek into Victoria’s history gets easier with searchable online archive

British Columbia Archives Add More Images From Beautiful BC Magazine

The British Columbia Archives has added almost 5,000 more images to its collection of images from the Beautiful British Columbia magazine slide album. The images were used by the Ministry of Tourism for the magazine between the years 1960 to 1987.

The photographs were taken using color slide film. You can search by keyword or browse the collection alphabetically or by most recent.

Retro tourism photos now available on BC Archives’ website

Criminal Records Added to TheGenealogist

TheGenealogist, a subscription site in the UK, has announced a new collection of criminal records. They are quarterly returns of convicts from The National Archives documents in their Court & Criminal collection. The records cover the years 1824 to 1854.

Over 650,000 criminal records added to TheGenealogist

Database of Everyone Who Traveled on SS Great Britain

There is a new database that contains information about everyone who traveled on the SS Great Britain. This would include crew and passengers.

The database started out as something for researchers so they could learn more about the people who traveled on the ship during the 19th century. But once Arts Council England funding was secured it became a database for everyone to use.

As new information is found, the database will be updated. This can happen if visitors bring in diaries or other artifacts with a connection to the ship.

The SS Great Britain was built in Bristol. It traveled all over the world, making regular journeys to Australia as a passenger liner and to other parts of the globe as a troop ship.


Recreating Ireland’s Public Record Office

A new project plans to digitally recreate the building and contents of the Public Record Office of Ireland. This building was destroyed by an explosion and fire at Dublin’s Four Courts in 1922 during the Irish Civil War.

Many of Ireland’s historical and genealogical records were lost in the fire.

The “Beyond 2022: Ireland’s Virtual Record Treasury” project will see the creation of a virtual reality reconstruction of the Public Record Office. You will be able to walk through the building and explore surviving records and find substitute copies that are located in archives and libraries around the world.

The project is a collaboration with Trinity College Dublin and four archival partners: The National Archives (UK), The National Archives of Ireland (Dublin), The Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (Belfast) and The Irish Manuscripts Commission. The project is funded by the Irish Research Council.

The project is expected to be completed in 2022. It will be made available on June 30, 2022, which is the centenary of the Four Courts fire.

Trinity digitally recreates seven centuries of Irish history lost in 1922 Four Courts fire

Free E-book about Limerick

The Limerick Archives has released a free e-book called City of Churches. There are 57 churches profiled in the book. The book explores the history of each church and talks about the architecture and decorative features of the churches.

Limerick – City of Churches released as a free e-book

Swedish National Archives are Now Free

You may recall from a previous podcast that the Swedish National Archives will no longer be charging a subscription to view their records online. The records started to be free on February 1.

There are court records, criminal records, land registers, fire insurance maps, and lots more.

Millions of archive papers available today

Expansion of Swedish Death Book

Plans are underway to expand the Sweden dödbok. This collection is a digital database containing information about deceased people in Sweden.

The next version, version 7, will be coming out this fall. It will contain the years 1860 – 2017.

Version 8 will go back to the year 1830 and should be available in in 2021.

The federation plans an extended death book

Keynote Speakers at RootsTech

The keynote speakers for RootsTech have already been announced and now we know when each of them will speak. Of course, Steve Rockwood, CEO of FamilySearch International, will be the first keynote speaker on the first day of RootsTech. That will be Wednesday, February 28th.

On Thursday, the keynote speaker will be Brandon Stanton, a world-renowned photographer and storyteller. Then on Friday, the keynote speaker will be Scott Hamilton, a famous figure skater.

The keynote speaker on Saturday will be Henry Louis Gates, Jr. He will share his experiences in documenting genealogical and anthropological finds on film and African-American research.

The final keynote speaker will be Natalia Lafourcade who will also speak on Saturday. She is a singer and songwriter specializing in Latin American pop.

All the keynotes will be live streamed.

In addition to the keynotes and Innovation Showdown, some sessions will be streamed each day. A total of 14 sessions will be streamed live.

If you are not going to RootsTech you can still participate on social media using the hash tag of #NotAtRootsTech. There will be giveaways and prizes on Twitter. Follow @RootsTechConf to find out more.

To enter to win you tweet a photo of you watching the conference online. You could win a RootsTech t-shirt, hat, or other merchandise.

RootsTech 2018 Announces Lineup of Keynote Speakers

#NotAtRootsTech 2018? Here’s How to Participate Virtually

Be sure to check out the calendar at for the webinars coming up. And while you’re there consider making a donation to help defray the costs of the podcast.

The calendar also has all the Google Hangouts that are scheduled, events going on in Second Life, and online events that you pay for.

And that’s it for this episode.

You can send email to

You can find links to things mentioned in this show in the show notes at as well as a transcript. The transcript can also be found in the Geneatopia Flipboard magazine and you can find the recording on YouTube.

This is episode 113.

Thanks for listening.

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