Saturday, January 28, 2012

Rock Star Genealogist Results

John D. Reid has posted Rock Star Genealogists Results on his Anglo-Celtic Connections blog tonight.  There were 676 voters for this selection.

John names the three leading vote-getters, with their pictures and summary of their genealogy achievements.  Please go read the post for the winners.

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Your Maternal Grandfather's Paternal Line

It's Saturday Night, so it's time for some Genealogy Fun. 

Many of us have traced our patrilineal line and had a Y-DNA test done for the line.  I thought that some of you might be interested in tracing another Y-DNA line - that of your maternal grandfather. 

The challenge is this:

Find a living male person in your database from your maternal grandfather's patrilineal line who could take a Y-DNA test. Answer these questions:

1) What was your mother's father's name?

2) What is your mother's father's patrilineal line? That is, his father's father's father's ... back to the most distant male ancestor in that line?

3) Can you identify male sibling(s) of your mother's father, and any living male descendants from those male sibling(s)? If so, you have a candidate to do a Y-DNA test on that patrilineal line. If not, you may have to find male siblings, and their descendants, of the next generation back, or even further.

4)  Tell us about it in your own blog post, or in a comment on this post, or in a Facebook or Google Plus post.

Here is mine (as an example):

1)  My mother's father was Lyle Lawrence Carringer (1891-1976), born in San Diego CA.  He was the only child that lived to adulthood.

2)  Lyle's father was Henry Austin Carringer (1853-1946), born in Mercer County, Pennsylvania.  He had one brother, Harvey Edgar (1852-1946) who did not marry and had no children.

3)  Henry's father was David Jackson Carringer (1828-1902), born in Mercer County, Pennsylvania.  He had four brothers:

**  George Carringer (1832-1880),  who had one son, Wilbert H. Carringer (1863-1924) who had one daughter.
**  Cornelius A. Carringer (1834-1916), who had three daughters, but no sons.
**  Henry Carringer (1839-1864), not married.
**  Harvey Carringer (1848-1870), not married.

4)  David Jackson's father was Henry Carringer (1800-1881), born in Mercer County, Pennsylvania.   He had  four brothers:

**  Jacob Carringer (1785-1865), who had three sons with children, but none of the male lines extend past 1942.
**  George Carringer (1795-1870), who had five sons, and I can find several males born in the early 20th century, but don't have death dates for them, and don't know if they had sons..
**  Solomon Carringer (1802-???), no further record.
**  Joseph Carringer (1805-1869), who had five sons; several had male line descendants who were born in the 1920s and 1930s, and are potential Y-DNA candidates, along with any sons they might have had.

I thought that I was going to get shut out here!  The last one I checked has the best chance!  Now the challenge is to find the children of these male Carringer's born in the 1910 to 1940 time period

I'm thinking that the 1940 U.S. Census may be my best bet to find names, dates, places and children when it comes out!!!

Did you identify a living male descendant of your mother's father in your database who might be a Y-DNA candidate for your mother's maiden name?

The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) Randall J. Seaver, 2012.

Is the new brightsolid USA Venture?

The Scottish company brightsolid  has said that there would be a major announcement about a new USA venture at RootsTech 2012.

Who will be the Product Manager for this venture?  I think that it will be D. Joshua Taylor, formerly at the New England Historic Genealogical Society.  He is listed with a brightsolid email address on his syllabus articles for RootsTech 2012, and as a Business Development Manager in the FGS Conference brochure.

What is the new product for the U.S. market?

Tamura Jones broke the news about the brightsolid website on his Modern Software Experience blog yesterday in  Read Tamura's post for details.

The Genealogy In Time magazine dated January 2012 apparently picked up on Tamura's post, and wrote:

"US – A major new genealogy website has just quietly and unofficially been launched. It is from the Scottish genealogy company brightsolid. It clearly shows the company has moved into the US genealogy market in a big way. The company has yet to make an official announcement, but the website is called As the name implies, this website is all about US census records."

The new brightsolid website is

The site says:

"Find your ancestors using the U.S. census:

"A historical record of the entire U.S. population, the census is the nation’s largest record set for family history and genealogy. Taken every ten years, from 1790 to the present day, each entry provides a unique snapshot of the lives of your ancestors.

" brings this vast resource to you online, allowing you to quickly to discover your family history."

The site offers either a pay-per-view option or a subscription option, similar to other brightsolid commercial genealogy websites (like  

The pay-per-view cost is $7.95 for 1,000 credits (payable by credit or debit card) usable for 60 days.  This option is explained at  Basically, to view a census record will cost you 40 cents for each view (20 views for $7.95).

The subscription costs are:

*  A 12-month subscription is $34.95
*  A 6-month subscription is $24.95
*  A 1-month subscription is $12.95

At present, the site has these census records available:

*  1790 to 1840:  transcriptions available (for free), images "coming soon"
*  1850, 1880, 1900 transcriptions available (for 50 credits), images "coming soon"
*  1860, 1870, 1920 transcriptions (for 50 credits) "coming soon," images "coming soon"

Search features are described on this page:

It appears that there is a Soundex-like search for a surname in the "Variants" section.  The asterisk (* for zero to any number of letters) ) and question-mark (? for one letter) wild cards are available.  There is an Advanced Search feature, and a "faceted search" feature useful to narrow your search.

Stay tuned!!  RootsTech 2012 is going to be very interesting, I think!

Hat tip to Tamura Jones for the website, to  GenealogyInTime magazine for the news item, and to Chris Paton for catching it on his British GENES blog.

The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) Randall J. Seaver, 2012.

Updated 9:30 a.m. to credit Tamura Jones with original find.

Surname Saturday - WAITE (England to Rhode Island)

It's Surname Saturday, and I'm "counting down" my Ancestral Name List each week.  I am now up to number 359, who is Meribah WAITE (1720-1803), one of my 6th-great-grandparents. [Note: The 6th great-grandfathers have been covered in earlier posts] 

My ancestral line back through four generations of WAITE ancestors is:

1. Randall J. Seaver

2. Frederick Walton Seaver (1911-1983)
3. Betty Virginia Carringer (1919-2002)

4. Frederick Walton Seaver (1876-1942)
5. Alma Bessie Richmond (1882-1962)

10. Thomas Richmond (1848-1917)
11. Julia White (1848-1913)

22. Henry Arnold White ((1824-1885)
23. Amy Frances Oatley (1826-before 1870)

44. Jonathan White (1806-1850)
45. Miranda Wade (1806-1850)

88. Humphrey White (1758-1814)
89. Sybil Kirby (1764-1848)

178.  David Kirby (1740-1832)
179. Martha Soule (1743-1828)

358.  Benjamin Soule, born 18 November 1719 in Dartmouth, Bristol, Massachusetts, United States; died 31 January 1803 in Westport, Bristol, Massachusetts, United States.  He was the son of 716. Jacob Soule and 717. Rebecca Gifford.  He married about 1742 in probably Dartmouth, Bristol, Massachusetts, United States.

359.  Meribah Waite, born 20 July 1720 in Dartmouth, Bristol, Massachusetts, United States; died 03 February 1803 in Westport, Bristol, Massachusetts, United States.  

Children of Benjamin Soule and Meribah Waite are:  Martha Soule (1743-1828); Patience Soule (1745-1780).

718. Thomas Waite, born 22 April 1683 in Dartmouth, Bristol, Massachusetts, United States; died after 1743 in probably Dartmouth, Bristol, Massachusetts, United States.  He married  25 January 1711 in Dartmouth, Bristol, Massachusetts, United States.
719.  Mary Tripp, born 22 August 1689 in Dartmouth, Bristol, Massachusetts, United States; died after 1754 in probably Dartmouth, Bristol, Massachusetts, United States.  She was the daughter of 1438. Joseph Tripp and 1439. Mehitable Fish.

Children of Thomas Waite and Mary Tripp are:  John Waite (1711-1770); Reuben Waite (1713-????); Thomas Waite (1716-1790); Mary Waite (1718-????); Meribah Waite (1720-1803); Mehitable Waite (1722-????); Martha Waite (1725-????); Alice Waite (1729-????).

1436.  Reuben Waite, born about 1656 in Portsmouth, Newport, Rhode Island, United States; died 07 October 1707 in Dartmouth, Bristol, Massachusetts, United States.  He married  about 1681 in Probably Sandwich, Barnstable, Massachusetts, United States.
1437.  Tabitha Launders, born about 1662 in Sandwich, Barnstable, Massachusetts, United States; died after 1707 in probably Dartmouth, Bristol, Massachusetts, United States.  She was the daughter of 2874. Thomas Launders and 2875. Jane Kirby.

Children of Reuben Waite and Tabitha Launders are:  Thomas Waite (1683-1743); Eleanor Waite (1689-????); Benjamin Waite (1690-1772); Joseph Waite (1693-1774); Abigail Waite (1693-????); Reuben Waite (1695-????); Tabitha Waite (1695-????); Jeremiah Waite (1698-1754).

2872.  Thomas Wait, born before 13 June 1612 in Rigsby-wi-Ailby, Lincolnshire, England; died before 13 September 1665 in Portsmouth, Newport, Rhode Island, United States.  He was the son of 5744. Richard Wait and 5745. Margaret Carter.  He married before 1640.
2873.  Eleanor, born about 1618 in England; died before 13 June 1671 in Portsmouth, Newport, Rhode Island, United States.

Children of Thomas Wait and Eleanor are:  Samuel Waite (1640-1694); Joseph Waite (1643-1665); Benjamin Waite (1645-1704) Jeremiah Waite (1646-1675); Thomas Waite (1638-1733); Mary Waite (1650-1713); Reuben Waite (1656-1707).

Two articles are available for this Waite family:

1)  The English ancestry of this Waite family was discussed in the article:

Edwin G. Sanford, "'Judith at the Island,' Judith (Smith) Fisher, the Wait Family of Massachusetts and Rhode Island, and Their English Origins." The American Genealogist, Volume 67, Number 4 (October 1992), pages 193-200.

2)  The biography and family data for several generations of the descendants of Thomas Waite of Portsmouth RI was discussed in the article:

G. Andrews Moriarty, "Thomas Waite of Portsmouth, R.I. and Some of his Descendants," New England Historical and Genealogical Record, Volume 73, Number 4, October 1919, pages 291ff.  

Friday, January 27, 2012

Questions for at RootsTech 2012 - Updated

I am compiling questions that I want to ask of the developers whom I hope to meet at the RootsTech 2012 conference. 

Here's my list so far for developers (for, Rootsweb,, Fold3, Family Tree Maker.  I will probably update it before and during the conference as I think of more questions.  I will try to post a summary of the answers, probably after the conference):

*  When will you drop the Old Search capability in

*  What happened to the Article Archive on the Learning Center?  Will it disappear?  

*  Why doesn't the Search field on the Learning Center work better?

*  Will the source citations created by attaching an historical record to a Member Tree ever comply with Chicago Manual Of Style or Evidence Explained style standards?

*  Which states will be indexed first in the 1940 U.S. Census?

*  Why don't you include matches in search results?  And vice versa?  Especially the FREE collections.

*  Have you considered a "package deal" for an subscription and a Fold3 subscription?

*  Why do you charge customers every year for a Family Tree Maker upgrade which has marginal changes from the previous version?  

*  Are you working with the BetterGEDCOM group or the GEDCOM X group on GEDCOM-like standards?

*  Are there any historical record collections on that are not on

*  Is still a beta website under development?  What are the plans for Mundia?

*  Alice asked in Comments:  Can you add a "private" or "public" options on media for private tree owners? Some people don't mind sharing media but don't want the whole world looking at your tree! 

*  Shirley asked in Comments:  Why is Ancestry pushing those things [Family Data Collections Series, U.S. and International Marriage Series, Millenium File, One World Tree] to beginners as "RECORDS"? They have all kinds of nonsense like some passengers on the Mayflower were born in Plymouth in 1580, the usual children born before their parents, etc. Beginners are not being taught to click on and read censuses. They're being taught to copy from others. What about starting your beginners off on basics instead of directing them to trees that are often wrong?

*  letzelfarm asked in Comments:  Does Ancestry plan to allow its members to merge separate trees that are posted?

*  Leaves of Heritage Genealogy noted in comments:  What I want to see on Ancestry is better tools. I want to be able to make a note when I save something to my shoebox so that I can remember why I saved it in the first place. Also, I would like better search options and results. I would like to be able to search all but X, Y, or Z, etc. 

Lastly, I wish they had a check mark box or some other way of marking a record that I've already reviewed. You know, maybe offer a red X for those that are not what you're looking for (negative searches), or a green for positive searches. Then when they continue to show up in my future searches, I won't waste my time revisiting the same darn records over and over!

What other questions should be asked of the website developers?  Please add them to comments to this post, or on Facebook or on Google Plus so that every reader can see them.  I will add them to the list above as they come in.

If personnel wish to answer the questions, I hope that they will comment also, and I will highlight their responses.

I hope to do this type of Question post for several other developers of genealogy databases, software and services.  If readers have suggestions for other websites, please forward them to me as comments on this blog, or on Facebook or Google Plus.  I will give credit to those who provide questions.

The URL for this post is:

copyright (c) Randall J. Seaver, 2012.

Updated: 30 January, 9 a.m.

Follow-Up Friday - a Potpourri of Comments that need reading

For Follow-Up Friday, I want to highlight some comments that were made on my blog posts over the last two weeks.  I thought these were valuable to have posted so that search engines can find them:

1)  On my post Do you have Loyalist Ancestors? Check out the UELAC Site, there were two comments:

*  Geolover wrote:

"For those who find extremely difficult to navigate, some background on the Loyalist claims process and some transcripts of the claims documents are available to read on the fabulous USGenWeb site for Herkimer Co., NY (so many thanks due Martha S. McGill and many volunteers):"

*  Brenda Dougall Merriman commented:

Randy, nice to see some promotion of the UELAC website and newsletter, thanks. I have an intermittent series of Loyalist posts on my blog, They are geared more to a newbie than my book on Upper Canada's (Ontario) Loyalists.

2)  On my post Follow-Up Friday - in which I Confess to Using Derivative Sources, David Newton commented that:

"Something that is even sillier about the situation in England and Wales about the access to registers is the situation with marriage registers. 

"What I said about the registers themselves not being open to public inspection is perfectly true about birth, death, civil partnership and adoption registers. The stillbirth registers are even more tightly controlled and there is not even an index published for them. However it is not true for certain copies if some marriage indexes.

"If a marriage takes place in a civil venue such as a register office or a hotel registered to perform marriages then the registers are not available for public inspection. If a marriage takes place in an ecclesiastical venue then very often the copy of the registers in the venue is available for public inspection. Furthermore for these sort of venues said registers are also often eventually deposited in local record offices. However the copies of the same registers sent to the local registrar and by them onto the GRO are not open for public inspection because according to the GRO it is "illegal". To see how many marriage registers are actually available for public inspection consider the recent collections of parish registers and non-conformist registers made available by Ancestry for the London area and for the counties of Dorset, Warwickshire (less Birmingham), West Yorkshire and the Liverpool area and then extrapolate that situation to the whole of England and Wales.

"Even if the register has not been deposited at the local record office and is still at the church in question, if that church is Anglican it can be inspected upon payment of a fee as determined by the General Synod in statute.

"It is a ludicrous situation to have all birth and death registers and a significant proportion of marriage registers locked away from public view with information in them only obtainable upon payment of a fee for a certificate. Very rarely is it necessary for genealogists to have certificates for their work, with the most common reason being work with things like tracking down relatives for probate cases or intestate estates. The Scottish situation is much preferable in this case where certificates can be obtained in much the same way as in England and Wales, but where images of the registers themselves are available after statutory periods there for privacy have expired. In the case of Scotland it is 100 years for births, 75 years for marriages and 50 years for deaths. The only problem with Scotland is that the index itself is not available for free and is instead locked behind a paywall at the Scotlandspeople website.

"The situation in certain US states is even more ludicrous with showboating legislators locking things away for spurious "privacy" reasons."

3)  On my post What is this Feature Called? And more questions..., there were several useful comments:

*  John noted:

"Ancestry's reliance on the Soundex Code to produce possible matches produces some weird results.  In your results, instead of Carringer you get photographs of Crankshaw, Cuerings, and Carmichael.  When I searched for one of my Cruvant ancestors, I got several photographs of Carpenters.

"I wonder if Ancestry and other sites should consider utilizing some of the newer variations on Soundex."

*  GeneGinny observed:

" What's particularly interesting is that you don't have to sign in to Ancestry to access this information. Very strange! "

*  Andy noted:

"The following thread will explain what you are seeing.

*  Geolover commented:

"...what you were doing searches from is a years-old test that was not rolled out for public use, and does not search current databases. It should have been removed."

*  JG in MD commented:

"I just found my dad's picture in his 1923 MIT yearbook on that page. It's not all bad."

*  My comment:  This is the remnant of Ancestry Labs' PersonView effort.  I'm glad that JG got some redeeming value from it!  

"Every week you have another will from a 17th century ancestor. I have a slew of such ancestors myself, not many of whom left wills. You realize that having that many ancestors with full wills is the exception and not the rule, don't you?"

My comment:  Yes, I know, and appreciate my landed ancestors very much!  With over 50% of my ancestry, and maybe 75% of my known 10th generation ancestry, being rooted in colonial New England, my probate cups runneth over.  Hopefully, posting them will help other researchers solve some of their research challenges .

Thank you all for your comments.

Questions for FamilySearch at RootsTech - Updated!

I've been compiling questions that I want to ask of the developers whom I hope to meet at the RootsTech 2012 conference.

Here's my list so far for FamilySearch developers (I will probably update it before and during the conference as I think of more questions.  I will try to post a summary of the answers, probably after the conference):

*  When will the FamilySearch Family Tree be completely open to the public?

*  When will the FamilySearch Family Tree be a conclusion based tree?

*  Will you permit GEDCOM uploads to the FamilySearch Family Tree?

*  Will there be a FamilySearch Family Tree access application for smart phones and tablets?

*  At the rate that you are adding Historical Collections, how long will it take to complete the available 
microform collection?

*  Would you please indicate which collections are Newly Added on the Historical Collections list?

*  Would you please indicate the completion percentage of each Historical Collection on the list?

*  Will there be a new Historical Collections page with easier navigation to continents, countries and states?

*  Which states will be indexed first in the 1940 U.S. census?

*  What are you doing to create an improved GEDCOM-like standard?  

*  If you are creating an improved GEDCOM-like standard, when will it be available?  

*  Are you working with software developers (e.g., RootsMagic, Family Tree Maker, Reunion, etc.) and/or online family tree providers (e.g., Ancestry, MyHertiage, Geni, WikiTree, etc.) to implement a new GEDCOM-like standard?

*  Brooke Schrier Ganz asked in Comments:  Will the FamilySearch catalog ever have an open API so that third party websites may query it for a list of record collections available for specified towns?

*  Justin York added in Comments:  I would add to Brooke's comment to include an API for searching the indexed records too.

*  Carol asked in Comments:  When are they going to fix the search so you don't have to keep clicking and pointing, and pointing and clicking. I used to be able to search (and find!) a lot of helpful I get tired trying to whittle results down to a manageable number. I just don't use the site much anymore.

*  Geolover asked in Comments:  Have mistakes in the Family History Library Catalog listings on ever been fixed, and to whom should mistakes be addressed?

*  David Newton asked in Comments:  When are they going to start providing more information about whose fault it is that access to images of the digitised microfilm and microfiche of many of their collections is restricted?  That way genealogists can contact those organisations and lobby them to stop being so restrictive.

*  David also asked: When are they going to acknowledge that a great deal of the "genealogy" undertaken by members of the LDS church is complete garbage and consequently tighten up the standards of documentary proof required before information appears in the Familysearch tree?

What other questions should be asked of the FamilySearch website developers?  Please add them to comments to this post, or on Facebook or on Google Plus so that every reader can see them.  I will add them to the list above as they come in.

If FamilySearch personnel wish to answer the questions, I hope that they will comment also, and I will highlight their responses.

I hope to do this type of Question post for several other developers of genealogy databases, software and services.  If readers have suggestions for other websites, please forward them to me as comments on this blog, or on Facebook or Google Plus.  I will give credit to those who provide questions.

The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) Randall J. Seaver, 2012

Updated: 30 January, 9 a.m.

RootsTech 2012 - Livestreaming Schedule

RootsTech has announced the live-streaming schedule for this year's conference. I watched many of the live streaming events last year and it helped overcome the disappointment I had over not attending the conference.   

The live-streaming will cover all lectures taking place in Room 155 of the Salt Palace Convention Center. The times listed for the presentations are Mountain Standard Time, so be sure to convert to your timezone (in the USA, add two hours for Eastern time, add one hour for Central time, subtract one hour for Pacific time.  GMT is 7 hours ahead of Mountain time).

The lectures to be live-streamed are:

Thursday February 2 

8:30 a.m.- 10 a.m.
Inventing the Future, as a Community (Keynote) by Jay Verkler

11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Do I Trust the Cloud? by D. Joshua Taylor
Description: With iCloud, Dropbox, and other cloud computing services taking center stage in data storage, genealogists are asking, “Do I trust the cloud?” Discover the basics concepts of cloud computing and how they relate to storing your genealogical data. In addition, relevant case studies will provide you with the resources needed to make a decision on whether or not cloud storage is for you.

1:45 p.m. - 2:45 p.m. 
Effective Database Search Tactics by Kory Meyerink
Description: Online genealogy research requires effective searching of databases. With billions of names in thousands of databases, it’s easy to get lost. This dual focus presentation helps researchers search more effectively while also encouraging developers to incorporate more advanced search techniques, such as truncation, keyword, fielded data, proximity, phrase, and wild word searching.

3:00 p.m.- 4:00 p.m. 
Twitter – It’s Not Just “What I Had For Breakfast” Anymore  by Thomas MacEntee
Description: Twitter. You’ve heard about it on the news and read about it in magazines and newspapers. You’ve seen televisions shows display their “tweets” especially for celebrities like Oprah and others. You wonder what all the fuss is about, why so many people are talking about it, and if you really should be interested in what someone else is doing. And more importantly, you wonder if you are missing out on something which could be useful as a genealogy research tool. Social media applications such as Twitter allow you to build a group of subscribers or “followers” who can follow your conversations or broadcasts of information and respond automatically or pass the information along to their own followers. Sort of like the child’s game of Operator – but one that actually works!

Friday February 3

8:30 a.m. - 9:30 a.m. 
Exabyte Social Clouds and other Monstrosities (Keynote) by Josh Coates
Description: Josh presents and discusses the origins, implications and possible eventualities of key technologies that are shaping our technological infrastructure.

9:45 a.m.- 10:45 a.m. 
Publish Your Genealogy Online by Laura Prescott
Description: This lecture will discuss the fundamentals of publishing family data to a website, whether it is done through a big-name genealogy site, or by using genealogy software and a personal domain. We will explore options for appearance, access, costs, and privacy issues. Even without a computer-based genealogy program, there are some reasonable alternatives for placing a genealogy online. Whether you use a PC or a Mac, or even a public computer at your local library, you have choices for software, online access, and the final presentation. We’ll also review additional important considerations like degree of interaction, multimedia, and sources. Although the process may seem intimidating, after we work through each of the steps and explore the various options, the adventure into publishing an online genealogy will enter the realm of possibilities.

11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. 
Optimizing Your Site for Search Engines  by Robert Gardner
Description: With the explosion of genealogical information available on the World Wide Web, it is becoming more and more important to make that information available and prominent on Internet search engines, such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo. This session is targeted at site owners and software engineers. It will discuss standards and techniques for making the information on your site easy for search engines to crawl, index, and rank. Topics will include optimal page layout, sitemaps, and a proposal for a new genealogy-specific microdata standard that will allow search engines and other internet tools to make the most of your genealogy content.

1:45 p.m.- 2:45 p.m. 
Genealogists “Go Mobile” by Sandra Crowley
Description: Instead of a backpack that contains a laptop, camera, portable scanner, flash drives with our files, and maybe even printed copies of our research, we now have SmartPhones, electronic tablets and other devices. The world of genealogy and technology is rapidly changing, and we want to know how to use the future to find our past. Our family tree is truly in our pocket – in a form that we can access, update, print and share. This session will take a look at the latest trends in hardware, software and cloud storage and examine what the future might look like.

3:00 p.m.- 4:00 p.m. 
Google's Toolbar and Genealogy by David Barney
Description: The web is a vast resource for finding genealogical data, but the problem has always been filtering through all the irrelevant content to find just what you are looking for. Google’s mission is to make the world information (and that includes genealogical data) universally accessible and useful. Learn about Google’s recent efforts to organize genealogical data and make it easier to find the specific information you are looking for.

Saturday February 4

8:30 a.m.- 9:30 a.m. 
Making the most of technology to further the family history industry (Keynote)  by Tim Sullivan
Get the inside details of the technology behind from some of their top technology leaders in this don’t-want-to-miss panel discussion, moderated by Tim Sullivan, President and CEO of

9:45 a.m.- 10:45 a.m. 
Genealogy Podcasts and Blogs 101 by Lisa Louise Cooke
Description: Genealogy podcasts and blogs are the perfect way to pursue your family history no matter where you are. They are packed full of genealogy news, tips, entertainment and interviews with the experts. In this session Lisa Louise Cooke, host of the Genealogy Gems Podcast and author of the Genealogy Gems News Blog, will teach you how to locate them, subscribe to them for free, and the variety of listening methods. You will be up and running in one session!

11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. 
Future of FamilySearch Family Tree by Ron Tanner
Description: Discuss how FamilySearch has changed recently and the new features that are being planned for including new concepts to allow people to change data.

1:45 p.m.- 2:45 p.m. 
Privacy in a Collaborative Environment by Noah Tutak
Description: When we work together on genealogy, we’re no longer are constrained to “My tree” or “Your tree." Suddenly, we’re all working on “Our tree.” In this presentation, Noah Tutak, CEO of, will explain how to properly handle private and public data in a collaborative genealogical environment.

Interested readers can see all of the conference sessions at and can read and/or download the syllabus articles for almost every session.

Disclosure:  I am an Official Blogger for RootsTech 2012, and have had my registration fee paid for by the organization.  I look forward to attending this conference! 

The URL for this post is: 

Copyright (c) Randall J. Seaver, 2012

Follow Friday - This Weekend's Genealogy Radio Shows

There are two genealogy-related radio shows on Blog Talk Radio ( this weekend.  They are:

1)  GeneaBloggers Radio Episode 52 -- 
Angela Walton-Raji of the African Roots Podcast hosts the show titled Walking Together on the Same Path: Slave and Slave Holder Descendants Collaborating.
  This show is on:

Friday, January 27, 2012
9pm-10:30pm Eastern US
8-9:30pm Central US
7-8:30pm Mountain US
6-7:30pm Pacific US
*  2am London UK

*  1pm Saturday Sydney AUS  

The show guests are:

*  Bernice Bennett, South Carolina researcher and host of the “Research at the National Archives & Beyond” radio show here on Blog Talk Radio. Bernice will speak about finding and meeting a descendant of her ancestor’s slave holder;

*  Betty McDade, genealogist and researcher of Edgefield, South Carolina who is a descendant of slave holders and works diligently to document the history of slaves held by her ancestors and throughout the community;
*  Toni Carrier, host of the Lowcountry Africana website, who works to document descendants of slaves in the Low Country, and has worked with both slave holder descendants and slave descendants in Hilton Head, South Carolina. 
You can read more information about the guests at GENEABLOGGERS RADIO – SHOW NOTES FOR FRIDAY, JANUARY 27, 2012

Don’t forget that there is a chat room where all the “cool kids” hang out on Friday night! Sign in to BlogTalkRadio with your Facebook account or set up a free BlogTalkRadio account to join in the fun.

2)  FGS Radio - My Society, an Internet radio show on Blog Talk Radio presented by the Federation of Genealogical Societies.  This week's show is 
 Email Marketing Solutions for Your Genealogy Organization.  It will be hosted by Thomas MacEntee.  The show airs at:

Saturday, January 28, 2012
2-3pm Eastern US
1-2pm Central US
12-1pm Mountain US
11am-12pm Pacific US 

The special guests and features include:

. Our guest will be Kathryn M. Doyle, of the FGS-member society California Genealogical Society and Library in Oakland, California. Kathryn will discuss the many ways in which her society has effectively used email marketing to not only communicate with members but to reach the larger genealogy and family history community. 

*  We’ll be featuring FGS member society, California African American Genealogical Society, in our weekly Society Spotlight feature. 

You can read more information about the guests at 
Email Marketing Solutions for Your Genealogy Organization. 

You can also listen to the archived shows on Blog Talk Radio by going to the two show sites:

*  Geneabloggers Radio:

*  FGS Radio - MySociety:   


Thursday, January 26, 2012 Revamps Their Learning Center

I love the Learning Center, and often refer beginning genealogists to the site, which is free. recently changed the format of the Learning Center - but the old links to it still work as of today (

Let's take a look at the new Learning Center.  On the Home, Family  Trees, Search, Collaborate or Learning Center tabs, clicking on the Learning Center tab leads to this screen:

There are four main sections to this Learning Center (with the light green background in the screen above), and we'll look at each of them in succession:

1)  The What's New page:

The "What's New page has five main links:

*  New Content - links to selected new historical record collections
*  New Features - links to selected features for using the site
*  Our Social Network - join the online community and learn about education opportunities
*  Ask Ancestry Anne - Anne Mitchell writes on the Sticky Notes blog, and answers submitted questions
*  Livestream Videos - watch Desktop Education videos prepared by family historians

2)  The First Steps page:

This page has four sections:

*  Getting Started - links to selected articles about starting your research
*  Learn More - links to selected articles about using to grow your family tree
*  Links to a video on Why Start a Family Tree?;  a pedigree chart at Start with Paper and Pencil?; and the app at No Matter where you go, your tree can grow.
*  Links to videos two First Steps webinars.

3)  The Next Steps page:

This page has three sections:

*  Census Records - links to three articles about census records
*  Immigration Records - links to three articles about immigration records.
*  Links to a webinar on Finding the U.S. Military Heroes in Your Family, an article on Vital Records on,  and a link to a page for Free Research Guides.  There are 12 links to illustrated articles for specific research areas (e.g., Irish, UK, Sweden, Germany, Canada, Immigrants, Passenger Lists, Census, American Revolution, Civil War, World War II, and black Sheep).

4)  The Family History 101 page:

There are three major parts to this page:

*  How-To Articles - links to seven selected articles on different topics
*  Beyond Family Trees - links to four selected articles about family history topics
*  Links to pages about joining the Facebook page, the Livestream Videos, the Sticky Notes blog, the YouTube Channel,  the Twitter feed, and the Blog.  

There is also a link to sign up for the free monthly newsletters by email.

5)  There are links to all of the Webinars, to the Help - FAQ area, and Family History Wiki  in the Learning Center button on the top menu dropdown list, but those links are not on the Learning Center pages.

6)  A user can search for articles by topic in the search field at the top of each Learning Center page.  Searching for "census records" comes up with 289 matches; for "immigration records" comes up with 261 matches; for "military records" brings up 258 matches.  However, not every article that comes up with these searches seems relevant.  The first ten matches for "military records" do not mention military records in the titles.  Most of the articles do not have publication dates.  I tried searching for authors like Michael John Neill and George G. Morgan, and got a lot of matches.  Again, none of the first ten articles mentioned them.

All in all, it's a pretty decent makeover.  I am concerned that the search doesn't return relevant matches, and that there are no apparent links to the Ancestry Article Archive that I value.

The URL for this post is:

copyright (c), Randall J. Seaver, 2012.

RootsTech 2012 Presentations - 1:45 p.m., Saturday, 4 February

I'm going to list all of the presentations at RootsTech 2012 session by session in a series of posts.  You can see the full schedule of all sessions at

Here is the schedule for Friday, 3 February at 3:00 p.m. until 4:00 p.m.  The links provide information on the presentation and the speaker:  

1:45 - 2:45 pm, Room 355D
Presentation for Beginner Developers

1:45 - 2:45 pm, Room 255F
Presentation for Intermediate Users

1:45 - 2:45 pm, Room 155
Presentation for Beginner Users

1:45 - 2:45 pm, Room 255C
Presentation for Intermediate Users
1:45 - 2:45 pm, Room 259
Presentation for All Developers

1:45 - 2:45 pm, Room 355A
Presentation for Intermediate Users

1:45 - 2:45 pm, Room 255E
Presentation for Beginner Users

1:45 - 2:45 pm, Room 255D
Presentation for Beginner Developers

1:45 - 2:45 pm, Room 255B
Presentation for Advanced Users

1:45 - 2:45 pm, Room 255A
Presentation for Beginner Developers

1:45 - 2:45 pm, Room 258
Hands-on Workshop for Intermediate Users
Self Publish Your MS Word Book Like a Pro by Nancy Barnes and Biff Barnes

1:45 - 2:45 pm, Room 257
Presentation for Intermediate Developers

The sessions that I might attend include:

*  D. Joshua Taylor's talk
*  Lisa Louise Cooke's talk
*  Noah Tutak's talk

Which session would you like to attend?

Disclosure:  I am an Official Blogger for RootsTech 2012, and have had my registration fee paid for by the organization.  I look forward to attending this conference! 

The URL for this post is: 

Copyright (c) Randall J. Seaver, 2012