Thursday, January 19, 2017

Gather, Find, Prove

First Day of Class “Family History on the Internet”: Discussions for Friday 

1. Handouts: I will e-mail you copies of any handouts that I make up. I will also post it on my website. If you don't have a printer and still want a paper copy of something, I suggest you put the document on a flash drive and take it to Office Depot or Kinko's; you can even send them the docs via the Internet and then go pick them up.

2. Jon Shepherd will be helping me this session with the class. I've asked him to share his experiences with you as an user, his insights on, and more. I will be focusing on, strategies of researching on the Internet, and sharing some insight into learning the skills of research. Or not! You are the stars of this search and where you need help and ideas, we will strive to address some of those concerns. We sure can't do everything in 8 weeks, but maybe we can hit some of the things that will help you with finding your family either on the Internet or we can use the Internet to tell us where to look.

Some of the elements of researching that we will discuss in class will have to do not only with gathering the information about your family, but also analyzing the evidence and evaluating the various documents or other types of proof.

Here is a document.  Tell me what you learn from this "clue":  

 Is it just as important for you to cite your internet sources as it is a source a book?  What is the best way to do that?  How can you keep up with all the records you find when you are using the Internet as a tool.  First, gather these finds.  Put them in a notekeeper like Evernote, OneNote, etc.  You can also use Pinterest to save images!  Make a family group on Facebook and share your finds with your relatives.  

After the finding- gathering phase, you will want to compare the information in the document with what you already know about your relative.  Don't immediately assume that a similarity in name or place makes it your guy.  We will go into more detail later on, but building a profile for your ancestor is rarely a one step process.

Various links on the Internet will help with obtaining the proper tools for your search.  Order a "Quick Sheet" for citing sources from's Database and Images.  Create a research log and always capture the sources, one a time...before you go on to the next "find".  

  • specializes in making such tools available.  Key Person in "Evidence" is Elizabeth Shown Mills.  Google her name and see what I mean.
  • Building a Solid Case for your research on a someone's profile calls for a Genealogical Proof Standard.  The author is Christine Rose for one such book. 
  • My goal as a teacher this session is to help you see more clearly that which you are detecting.  You may have to utilize a magnifying glass both literally and figuratively to see everything a piece of evidence has to "say".  Shining a bright light on a dark closet will make those corners yield up their secrets.  What detective rules will you follow?
  • Records
  • FamilySearch Tree- Plant your tree one person at a time.
  • FamilySearch Wiki- Knowledge Base (Kind of like wikipedia, but for genealogy)
  • FamilySearch Apps- Have a little fun.
  • FamilySearch Memories- Stories, photos, documents (Share)
 Please get a FamilySearch Account today.


Sunday, January 15, 2017

Introduction The Genealogy Do Over

Give this a try or at least hear him out!  I've been mulling over starting this program for several months and now, I'm finally going to start putting it into some serious planning stuff.  Thomas makes it easy:  You can pick and choose the parts of the program that you feel like you need OR will benefit guess is that I may take that tack, but end up going back to the first and doing it over with even more gusto!

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

What is Your Vision for Family History on the Internet?

 Merry Christmas, Folks! 
I am looking forward to the new Center for Lifelong Learning Session in January.

My vision and goals for the new class (Center for Lifelong Learning), or rather the new session beginning in January 2017, is touched upon in this recent exercise I set out.  

Access it and tell me what you need from the Class experience.

Tuesday, November 08, 2016

Genealogy's Star: Jumpstart Your Family History in Ten Steps: Step Two -- Learn about your family

Genealogy's Star: Jumpstart Your Family History in Ten Steps: Step Two -- Learn about your family

Is this little fellow climbing his family tree? 
Everywhere I turn these days are articles about family stories and learning more about our families, not just in terms of facts, dates, etc., but also in terms of narrative lingo.  Is this writer's composition along those lines or is it closer to "Back to Basics"?  Read and let me know what you think!

Of course, this link takes you to "Step Two"'ll have to do some backtracking to get "Step One", as well as watch for future "steps" to get the full flavor of his article. 

University of Florida's George Smather's Library is Repository for Newspapers

Not sure if this is true of other states and other universities, but the University of Florida (Go Gators!) is the official repository for old newspapers in the State of Florida and I would assume that they have a digitization program since I was able to find this as a source through the Florida Archives Site.

Certainly, that doesn't mean you won't find copies of the Walton Breeze or other newspapers in other repositories; it has been my experience that old newspapers are found in various places.  

Sunday, November 06, 2016

Margaret and Her Children 2011 (December)

"Digging for lost ancestors is far more than simply collecting the names of your ascendants...You don't dig merely to accumulate a lot of dry bones, as it were; or to change the metaphor, you simply cannot back-trail your progenitors without becoming interested in the times in which they lived and in the various phases of their lives and activities."  (Searching for Your Ancestors, Gilbert H. Doane & James B. Bell.)

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

It's Still October...Let's Go to the Fair!

National Archives Virtual Genealogy Fair 2016   
On October 26 & 27, 2016 (Wednesday & Thursday), the National Archives is hosting a two-day, virtual Genealogy Fair via webcast. Viewers have the opportunity to participate with the presenters and other family historians during the live event on YouTube. All of the session videos and handouts will be available from this web page free of charge. You can watch the sessions and download the materials at your convenience. The videos and materials will remain available after the event. Registration is not required.