The Online Genealogist

John Brugliera

Archive for the tag “FREE”

Just in case you have a few billion dollars kickin’ around

Big news of the day is that Ancestry.com is pondering a sale of their website.

Two people talk at the Ancestry.com booth at the Rootstech Conference sponsored by Family Search in Salt Lake City, Utah February 7, 2014 REUTERS/George Frey

Two people talk at the Ancestry.com booth at the Rootstech Conference sponsored by Family Search in Salt Lake City, Utah February 7, 2014 REUTERS/George Frey

Hell, if I had the money, I’d put in a bid!  Better yet – why don’t subscribers pool their funds to buy it?  Owner benefits would include a free lifetime World Explorer Plus membership!

Going in another direction, what if the LDS folks snatched it up?  Combining Ancestry.com with FamilySearch.org would be HUGE.  Sure, there’s much overlap; but each offer their own great collections of exclusive information.  And both have already been partnering with other major genealogical websites!

I would have NO problem with paying for a subscription to AncestryFamilySearch.com.  That “extra” money would go towards the acceleration of LDS’s digitizing microfilm for online databases; a massive undertaking.  How incredible would THAT be??

Yes, many would yell “Monopoly!”, but don’t these two websites, the TOP TWO of 2015 (and located less than an hour’s drive of each other!), combine to be a sort of monopoly anyway?  And what would be wrong with that??

aFS

Logo courtesy of Ancestry.com and FamilySearch.org and Photoshop and John B.

Finding the majority of your sources on AFS.com would surely make online research just that much easier.

Yes, it’s always nice to imagine the possibilities.

 

 

JohnBrugliera@theonlinegenealogist.com

TOG WEB

 

 

Who Do You Think You Are? Inside scoop!!!

BoDonaldson

Wasn’t that Bo Donaldson & the Heywoods’ second-highest-charting single, which reached #15 on Billboard Magazine’s US Top Pop 100 chart in the summer of 1974?  It was a follow-up to their #1 Billy Don’t Be A Hero that spring.  THAT Who Do You Think You Are??

Then that’s it.  That’s all I know about it.

Anyway, there’s supposed to be this show on television – the name of which escapes me now – that’s a cross between Roots and Antiques Roadshow with a heavy dose of The Amazing Race.  But subscribing to basic cable, I don’t get the “special channel” it’s on.  (Didn’t it used to be on NBC??)

But I see on their website, which shall remain nameless, the first three full episodes of the season.  So I watched.  All three.  Not at once.  Consecutively.

WDYTHY

[Meanwhile, after viewing 135 minutes of the afore-non-mentioned show…]

Wow.  Unfortunately, the “easily hopping from one set of original records to the next” isn’t a reality for most of us.  Yeah, we HOPE to get there “one day”, but by the time we’ve climbed up several generations, that’s dozens of locations spanning either the country, or most likely, the globe.

Anyway, that’s what struck me the most after watching the shows.  And that some genealogy newbie will assume it’s “that simple” and quickly done, when it usually isn’t.  Which, to me, is the best part of genealogy!

The hunt and subsequent challenge of piecing together pieces and parts of a particular person.  Giving them a biography that they would’ve never had otherwise, as most were certainly not famous or extraordinary. “Jus’ normal folk like you and me!”

I always wonder if they’re “somewhere” cheering us on, like they “know” we’re researching them.  I’ve had some INEXPLICABLE genealogical finds over the years, where I’m left thinking “Getting a little help, perhaps?”  Hmmmmm…  (Whole other blog post…)

And now you’re left going “What the %@!!# is he talkin‘ about?”, as I seemed to have gotten off track there somewhat.  Though, I’m sure you’ve all had at least one of those moments.

…Oh yeah, opinion of the shows – which I fully refuse to promote for free!!…

Eh, they were OK.

 

And if you think genealogy is also OK, but you can’t fly around the world to research, like on that SHOW there; hire ME!!  I’ll do the virtual flying around for you!!  (And yes, despite the naysayers, it can be done.)

TOG WEB

johnbrugliera@theonlinegenealogist.com

 

The Online Genealogist’s Mixed Bag

BBW

This makes too much sense.  Even in my area cemeteries, there’s always someone walking, jogging, biking through.  But way too small to be charging admission!

I can see the slogans now… “It’s a gentle, peaceful walk”… “Celebrate life amongst the dead”… “This ain’t your mother’s Scooby-Doo graveyard!”…  OK, so they need some work.

Going from buried people to buried records.  Staying in New York City, but visiting Massachusetts.

NYT

It’s amazing what is still collecting dust in church attics and rectory cellars.  And how many churches can YOU think of that have gone up in flames over the years?  More fingers than I got!  Churches and fire are kind of like trailer parks and tornadoes.

And, yes – a courthouse made of bricks CAN burn.  So sad.

Telegraph 01 Telegraph 02

And just after you’ve gotten used to FamilySearch‘s indexing program during their recent key-athon; they’re going to “improve” it and gives us “more features”.

fsb

Bring on the next key-athon, I say!!

 

Until later…

 

TOG WEB

johnbrugliera@theonlinegenealogist.com

 

 

Genealogy research without these will leave you LOST

 

 

GenInTime

In reviewing GenealogyInTime‘s Top 100 Websites for 2014, one of MY most-used sites for research wasn’t on here – Old Maps Online.

OMO

Old Maps Online is more of a collection of historical map collections; I’m talking AMAZING collections, most notably Cartography Associates’ David Rumsey Map Collection and Boston Public Library’s Norman B. Leventhal Map Center.

If you don’t use maps in your research, why the heck not?  Historical maps often provide excellent clues when tracking your ancestors; especially if they remained in one place for an extended period of time.

Streets, rivers and hills; roads, streams and mountains; any of them could be named after your ancestor.  Williams Drive, Pierson Hill, Carson’s Crossing, Skinner River.  All named for somebody.  Or a family of somebodies if several generations lived in an area.

You could also check out some of those very detailed county atlases from the late 1800s and find exactly where your ancestor lived.  I love aimlessly browsing through these.

David Rumsey

Given the time that these county atlases were published, many can be used as an 1890 Federal Census replacement of sorts.

Maps should be one of your FIRST stops in a research project.  Whether you know the area or not.

I’ve discovered SO MUCH by utilizing geographical genealogy!

 

And if you’re having trouble finding your way in ANY aspect of your genealogical research, I can help to point you in the right direction!

TOG WEB

johnbrugliera@theonlinegenealogist.com

 

“It jumped up to 60% of genealogy records online overnight!” and other comical items

hahaha

Yes, it’s time for more geneologyuks!

I came across some entries within the 1890 Boston city directory that gave me a chuckle.

Isaac was the only one that did NOT get a name-appropriate job…

Boston Directory 1890 1158a Sellar

“Henry A. Sellar, clerk”…we all nod in agreement.

I can understand the laborer, but are you sure you want an inexperienced carpenter or boilermaker??

Boston Directory 1890 966a Newby

Are they referring to the cans or the company itself??

Boston Directory 1890 678a Intelligent

For DUMB-ASS tin cans, you’ll need to look elsewhere.

Do you think Joseph’s surname caused confusion for some?

Boston Directory 1890 976a Nope

“Could you tell me your last name?”  “Nope!”  “Why not?!?”

And only we baby-boomers will get this one…

Boston Directory 1890 983a Oates

Shouldn’t he be “Holland Oates, musician”??

Let’s go back 10 years to 1880 for more fun marriage notices from The Sun (New York City).

If only these names were switched…

NY Sun 18800118 05a

This could be the beginning of a sonnet…

NY Sun 18800123 03a

And who said “Three’s a crowd”??

NY Sun 18800126 03a

Yes, that one looks quite odd; until you actually read it.  Ahhhhhhhhhhhhh!

Sometimes I can go for several newspaper issues without finding some good combos and names, but I hit the jackpot here on Jan. 31, 1880!

NY Sun 18800131 03a

Are we sensing a THEME here?  (Be even funnier if the first two couples were switched – heh.)  And we also get a bonus combo with some Hudson River wordplay!

I’ll leave you with this divorce notice; no explanation required – ha!

NY Sun 18800130 03a

In a JAM??  We all nod in agreement.

And if you’re having trouble finding those 65% of genealogy records online, I can help!

TOG WEB

johnbrugliera@theonlinegenealogist.com

The Online Genealogist is tired of hearing “Only 10% of the genealogy records can be researched online”

CGS_Iceberg                 Many thanks to CGS!

Nearly any time a “traditional” genealogist bashes the majority of research being done online, this is often used to back up their argument.  “Yeah!  Just a TIP of the ICEBERG!!”

Where are the citations to back up this wonderful graphic?  How is the tip size being calculated?  Where is the research and study data?  I’ve heard no crunching numbers.  And who keeps passing this along as fact?

First off, the 10% figure is nowhere to be found in this blog post.  Must be one of those extras added as the tale traveled.  Looks to be less than that on the iceberg itself, but as I won’t be breaking out my compass and protractor; 10% will work.

And I believe we’re strictly talking about United States records here?  The worldwide figure for records online is probably a tiny .0010% number.

With that, how accurate do I believe the iceberg portrayal to be?  Oh, about 10%.

First off, did you notice the date of that blog post?  Being into genealogy, of course you did!

27 Mar 2009

This was created over five years ago.  As a poster.  Which is still being sold online.

Genealogy records are being digitized as I type.  (And surely much much faster.)  Can you count how many have been added over the last 5 years?

No, I didn’t think so.  Neither can I, but I’d bet the big bucks that massive mystery number will at least double going into the next 5 years!

So, what percentage would I give the iceberg tip now?25Seriously!

But wait – it’s going to grow even more!…

There should be adjusted percentage points when the USEFULNESS of each record set is taken into account.  Which records will be most beneficial for the largest number of researchers?

Many of the biggies are online now.  Most US censuses, a nice variety of vital records, lots of city directories, a huge selection of newspapers and hundreds of wonderful historic maps are easily accessible via the internet for the viewing!

Q:  Which would be more likely to help us in our research, the 1880 Federal Census for Chicago -or- Member Directory of the Greene Street Philatelist Club of Beaufort, South Carolina, Autumn, 1727?

A:  Duh!

Q:  Shouldn’t census records alone make that iceberg tip even larger?

A:  Why, yes.  Yes, they should.

With the Usefulness Factor included, how large should the iceberg tip be NOW?

50Really!

Not much of an iceberg tip now, is it?

There’s more information online than you think.  WAY more.  I know this because I keep finding more things online!

How many have gone to ancestry.com, typed in a name, got only a couple of search results and then cried “Online genealogy researching SUCKS!”.  Or they do a quickie Google search, not realizing how much of the internet Google can actually get at?  Isn’t it something like…10%?

No big secret to online family history research.  You have to know where to look.  And be able to get there quickly.  Oh yeah, and know genealogy.

OK, so maybe that 50% is slightly high, but regardless – that iceberg tip is no longer a valid analogy for online genealogy research material availability.  (You knew I had to be going somewhere with this fuzzy math.)

In any case, the above outdated and misleading poster needs to be TOSSED!!!!!

Or modified, at the very least…

Genealogy Research 2014with apologies to Elizabeth Gorrell

Others say it’s only 5%…*sigh*

 

If you don’t believe this, put me to the test.  I’m always up for a challenge!

 TOG WEB

johnbrugliera@theonlinegenealogist.com

The Online Genealogist goes offline for an MGC seminar

 

MGC

Yes, The Online Genealogist attended his first-ever genealogy seminar over the weekend…offline.

Sure, I’ve been to several webinars electronically, but nothing ever live and in person.

I actually had a wonderful time!  Going in, I had NO idea of what to expect, so it was interesting to see how one of these all-day events was held.  The seminar flowed most excellently; I got the chance to meet several fellow genealogists and listen to some very knowledgeable and engaging speakers.  (Hi, Mary!!)

IMG_4654

At the luncheon, MGC did a bit of a “Who Do You Think You Are?” segment with one of the attendees, who was curious to know if she was related to Daniel Boone and Abraham Lincoln.

Even though inconclusive, it was surely looking favorable and further research would be required to confirm (or deny) her connection to Dan and Abe.  And it did make for an intriguing presentation!

The ONLY complaint I had was there were too many great topics and speakers to choose from!  With the four lecture periods, I had to decide which of three to attend for each.

For example, from 10:30 to 11:30, the offerings were Genealogy Research Online *ahem*, Adventures in Italian Genealogy and Scrivener for Genealogists.  I wasn’t quite ready for Scrivener, so I went with Italy.  As I probably could’ve hosted the online session myself, I opted for some possible new tips and tricks regarding my personal Brugliera Italian research.  And the remaining three time period topics were even MORE difficult to choose from!

But I will say the MGC did a spectacular job and it was most definitely worth the trip; I am SO glad I went!!!

 

And if you’d like to benefit from all that new knowledge, hire ME – The Online Genealogist!!!

TOG WEB

johnbrugliera@theonlinegenealogist.com

Congratulations, FamilySearch.org!!!!

FS

On Monday, July 21, Familysearch.org held their Worldwide Indexing Event.   The goal was to get 50,000 batches keyed; at least one batch per contributor.  By the end of the 24 hours, they had over 66,000 batches submitted, 16,000 over their goal – NICE!!!!!!!

Of course, being The Online Genealogist, I contributed a few batches and subsequently part of that total.  So, yes…

IMH

Or, if I knew Italian…

IMH2

Congrats to FamilySearch and to all who contributed!!!!

Your reward (besides one of these badges)?…

A genealogy-related funny that I came across the other day!

bg140722

Yuk, yuk, yuk!!

And if your family tree has MORE than one branch, you’ll need some help…from ME!!!!

TOG WEB

johnbrugliera@theonlinegenealogist.com

Join The Worldwide Indexing Event Tonight Into Tomorrow!!!

Capture

Just helping to get the word out on FamilySearch.org‘s Worldwide Indexing Event.

The LDS’ goal is to get participants to transcribe ONE BATCH for indexing.  Of course, you can do as many as you like, but they figure if EVERYONE that’s into genealogy does that one batch, it will help IMMENSELY with their ongoing effort to have indexes available for many of their wonderful FamilySearch collections.

And you KNOW The Online Genealogist will be there!  As I’m not huge on data entry, I’ve requested to be an arbitrator.  A tie-breaker, if you will.  As I can actually read many of these records (though not ALL are handwritten), I find it more to my liking and skill level.

Also, if you’d like to get all social at any time during those 24 hours, you can join DearMyrtle’s GeneaSleepOver!

DearMyrtle

There, you can drop in and say hi (via headset and video or on the sidelines with typed-in comments) to many others who will be joining this ambitious undertaking!

If you use FamilySearch.org at all (their website is FREE; no yearly subscription!), then it is your OBLIGATION to key in that one batch.  As that is ALL they are asking.

And most importantly – have some FUN while you’re doing so!!

 

But if you have NO interest at all in doing anything genealogy-related online, then I’m your man!!!

TOG WEB

johnbrugliera@theonlinegenealogist.com

 

 

 

Family History Humor, featuring Jean E. Allogee

 

 

Hiney

While researching, I frequently come across records that give me a chuckle; mostly bad name puns and the like.

Or those that are comical all in themselves.  Such as the above 1850 Federal Census extract for Rome, PA.

Yes, Henry Hiney, his wife Sally Ann Hiney and their presumed five children.  George Hiney at the bottom (sorry) could be a younger brother of Henry Hiney.

But the kid’s names are even better… Zepheminah Hiney! C.C. Hiney!!

City directories are a GOLDMINE for such silliness.  Or if not, I just add my own.

Like Jesus Christ is NOT in Buffalo!

No Jesus Christ

He should be between Jacob the carpenter and the John on Clinton Street.

But then I thought, Well, DUH!  Of course Jesus would be UNLISTED!!

And what’s a directory without a few good name and occupation combos?  This from the 1911 Boston Directory.

George Speede Boston 1911

Now, what ELSE would George L. Speed be doing for work??

And a 1932 Columbia, NH entry.

Columbia Directory 1932

E.E. Cass: “You wanna work on my farm and your name is Guy LeGro??  You’re HIRED!!

You know, that’s how many surnames came to be in the first place.

“I am a blacksmith and will forth hence be known as Mr. Smith!”

“Yes, and I own a mill.  Instead of ‘Very Friendly Mill Man’,  I hereby change my name to Bud Miller!!”

“Oh, but I am a DOG CATCHER!  Forthwith and beyond -”

Wait, that doesn’t work out; damn!  Eh, you get my gist.

And maybe we could have farmer Guy above “translate” this ad page from the 1915 Lebanon Directory.

Leb 1915

“Yeah, I need my horse renovated…”

“We’re Rogers & Hubbard!  Your one-stop shop for bone-based fertilizer!”

Cow invigorator??  I don’t even wanna know what that’s supposed to do!  Boviagra?

And don’t forget “Books free. Good books too.”  Ha!

I saw this in unsold ad space in a 1928 Lancaster, NH directory.

LOOK

A raise of hands…

How many of you have come across typographical errors in city directories?

Yep, everyone but that one dude in the back there.  “Yo!  Henry Hiney!!  Research much??”

So, how many people have THEY offended over the years in hundreds of localities across the country?  They should be apologizing here instead of looking for ad dollars!  OK, rant over.

From the Federal Naturalization Index…

Superfine

Lewis Superfine from Russia!  Wonder what his Russian name really was.

And I’ll leave you with this almost-triple-play…

Russell

Yes, it’s Russel Russ, of Russell, NY!

 

Thank you ancestry.com and familysearch.org for most of the above images!

Besides being screen captures, these items have not been altered in ANY WAY.  “If you don’t believe me, you can look it up yourself!” (King of California, 2007)  That’s why I always include WHERE they’re extracted FROM.

 

Because that’s just what The Online Genealogist does.

And don’t forget my Free Quickie Online Ancestor Search!!!  Details upper right.

I would love to research for you!

 

TOG WEB

johnbrugliera@theonlinegenealogist.com

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