Saturday, July 14, 2012

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Your Own Newspaper Article

Hey genea-philes, it's SATURDAY NIGHT, and time for lots more GENEALOGY FUN!!!



This week, your mission, should you decide to accept it (you'd better, i'm taking names!), is to:

1)  Go to the The Newspaper Clipping Generator (http://www.fodey.com/generators/newspaper/snippet.asp) and create one or more articles using this tool.

2)  You could generate articles that didn't appear in the newspaper, or articles you wish had appeared in the newspaper, or even your own obituary (in the future).

3)  Share your newspaper clippings with us as an image or a screen capture on your own blog, or a comment to this blog post, on a Facebook Status post, or a Google+ Stream post.  

4)  Please give me a link to your clipping as a comment to this post.

Here's mine:


And one I did several years ago:


The URL for this post is:http://www.geneamusings.com/2012/07/saturday-night-genealogy-fun-your-own.html

Copyright (c) 2012, Randall J. Seaver

Surname Saturday - LA TOURETTE (France > New York)

It's Surname Saturday, and I'm "counting down" my Ancestral Name List each week. I am skipping #501 (since I don't have a name for William Hutchison's (ca 1745-1826) mother) so I am up  to number 503: Marie LaTourette  (1734-1786). [Note: The 6th great-grandfathers have been covered in earlier posts] 

My ancestral line back to Marie LaTourette and several more generations is:

1. Randall J. Seaver

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


6.  Lyle Lawrence Carringer (1891-1976)
7.  Emily Kemp Auble (1899-1977)


14.  Charles Auble (1849-1916)
15.  Georgianna Kemp (1868-1952) 


30.  James Abram Kemp (1831-1902)
31.  Mary Jane Sovereen (1840-1874) 


62.  Alexander Sovereign (1814-1907)
63.  Eliza Putman (1820-1895)

124.  Frederick Sovereign (1786-1875)
125.  Mary Jane Hutchison (1792-1868)


250.  William Hutchison (1745-1826)
251.  Catherine Lewis (1759-1845)


502.  Jonathan Lewis, born about 1715 in probably Southold, Suffolk, New Yok, United States; died 1785 in Richmond, New York, United States.  He was the son of 1004. Jonathan Lewis and 1005. Abigail.  He married before 1756 in Richmond, New York, United States.
503.  Marie La Tourette, born before 01 September 1734 in Staten Island, Richmond, New York, United States; died 05 January 1786.  

Children of Jonathan Lewis and Marie La Tourette are:  David Lewis (1757-????); Catherine Lewis (1759-1845); James Lewis (1761-1845); Mary Lewis (1763-????); Francis Lewis (1765-????); Elizabeth Lewis (1767-????); Israel Lewis (1769-????); Phoebe Lewis (1772-????); Joseph Lewis (1775-????)

1006.  David La Tourette, born 28 December 1699 in Fresh Kills, Richmond County, New York, United States; died 20 March 1764 in Staten Island, Richmond, New York, United States.  He married before 1730 in New York, United States.
1007.  Catherine Poillon, born 14 July 1712 in Staten Island, Richmond, New York, United States; She was the daughter of 2014. Jacques Poillon and 2015. Francoise Billiou.

Children of David La Tourette and Catherine Poillon are:  Jacques LaTourette (1732-1785); Marie La Tourette (1734-1786); Catherine La Tourette (1737-1808); David La Tourette (1738-1808).

2012.  Jean La Tourette, born 1651 in Osse, Basse Pyrenees Province, France; died July 1725 in Fresh Kills, Richmond County, New York, United States.  He was the son of 4024. Henri La Tourette.  He married 16 July 1693 in New York, New York, New York, United States.
2013.  Marie Mercereau, born 06 November 1670 in Mo√ęze, Charente-Maritime, Poitou-Charentes, France; died about 1733 in Fresh Kills, Richmond County, New York, United States.  She was the daughter of 2026. Jean Mercereau and 2027. Elizabeth Dubois.

Children of Jean La Tourette and Marie Mercereau are:  Marie LaTourette (1693-1772); Jean La Tourette (1695-1794); Esther La Tourette (1696-1781); Pierre La Tourette (1697-1754); David La Tourette (1699-1764); Susanna La Tourette (1704-1811); Jacques La Tourette (1706-1738); Henry La Tourette (1708-1794).

Vital records and biographical information for these La Tourette families was obtained from a WorldConnect database at http://wc.rootsweb.com submitted by Brent (email rOOtsdigr@yahoo.com) on 7 April 2007 titled "Brent's Family Tree."   Brent has done an excellent job of collecting and presenting La Tourette family information.

I have done no original research on this family.  It is the link to the small portion of my ancestry that is of French descent, for which I am thankful.

The URL for this post is:  http://www.geneamusings.com/2012/07/surname-saturday-la-tourette-france-new.html

Copyright (c) 2012, Randall J. Seaver

Friday, July 13, 2012

1940 Census for California Infographic

Archives.com has created a 1940 U.S. Census for California infographic for our viewing pleasure - and they offer it to us to post:

Archives.com and other community project partners recently announced the release of the California 1940 census index. We wanted to showcase California in 1940, and demonstrate all of the interesting facts that can be found, by putting together this neat infographic.

We thought you and your readers would enjoy this, so we wanted to share with you!


1940 census archives.com
The Ancestry.com Blog announced Ancestry.com Adds 1940 Census Indexes for 15 States today, bringing the total on Ancestry.com up to 25).  Their blog post also provides links to see the 1940 census entry for many famous people - young and old at the time.

The URL For this post is:  http://www.geneamusings.com/2012/07/1940-census-for-california-infographic.html


How Do I Make Money in Genealogy?

Yesterday's topic in Thomas MacEntee's series on money in genealogy is How Do You Make Money in Genealogy? describes his income producing activities, his administrative and overhead activities, and his volunteer work.  I really appreciate and admire Thomas' work ethic, accomplishments and willingness to share this information with the genealogy world.  It is enlightening and instructive.

What about Randy?  Unlike Thomas, I do not support myself to any great extent with my genealogy work.  I am retired from aerospace engineering, have a pension, Social Security and a 401K, and we live comfortably with no mortgage, and with no significant health problems (knock on wood!).  We can afford occasional vacations, genealogy conferences, visits to the grandchildren and research trips.

My income producing activities fall into three categories:

1)  Speaking on genealogy topics to genealogical societies, historical societies, service groups, heritage groups, library groups, family reunions and social groups.

I have presented this year to date:

*  5 January 2012:  Linares Chapter of Daughters of the American Revolution on "Genealogy - Be An Ancestor Detective!"
*  25 January 2012:  Chula Vista Genealogical Society  on "Genealogy is Fun, Seriously!"
*  18 February 2012:  South Orange County California Genealogical Society on "Searching Ancestry.com Effectively"
*  3 March 2012:  Escondido Family History Fair on "Wikis for Genealogy"
*  3 March 2012:  Escondido Family History Fair on "Genealogy Blogging"
*  7  April 2012:  Orange County California Genealogical Society on  "The Genealogical Proof Standard and Doing a Reasonably Exhaustive Search"
*  25 April 2012:  San Diego PEO Chapter on "Genealogy - Be An Ancestor Detective" (short)
*  20 May 2012:  Legacy Family Tree Cruise on "The Genealogical Proof Standard and Doing a Reasonably Exhaustive Search"
*  20 May 2012:  Legacy Family Tree Cruise:  "Searching Ancestry.com Effectively"
*  12 June 2012:  North San Diego County Genealogical Society on "Exploring FamilySearch: The Very Best Free Genealogy Website"
*  30 June 2012:  Chula Vista Genealogical Society on "Genealogy in the Cloud"

The presentations booked for the rest of 2012 are:

*  14 July 2012:  San Diego Genealogical Society on "Discovering Jane's Roots in California, Australia and England"
*  14 July 2012:  San Diego Genealogical Society on "Genealogy and Cloud Computing"
*  21 July 2012:  Genealogical Society of North Orange County California on "Discovering Jane's Roots in California, Australia and England"
*  4 August 2012:  Chula Vista Genealogical Society on "A RootsMagic Workshop"
*  18 August 2012:  Computer Genealogical Society of San Diego on "Genealogical Proof Standard and doing a Reasonably Exhaustive Search"
*  31 October 2012:  Chula Vista Genealogical Society on "Discovering Jane's Roots in California, Australia and England"
*  8 November 2012:  Sweetwater Women's Club on "Genealogy - Be An Ancestor Detective" (short)
*  12 November 2012:  Temecula Valley Genealogical Society on "Searching Ancestry.com Effectively"

In general, I usually receive $50 to $100 for each hour-long presentation (the Family History Fair was free, some CVGS talks are free), plus mileage expenses (from some of the non-San Diego societies).  I appreciate the honorariums paid, and the expenses paid, by the organizations.

2)  Teaching and being a Genealogy Evangelist:

I have presented this year to date: 

*  16 February 2012:  OASIS sponsored talk at University City Library on "Genealogy - Be An Ancestor Detective"
*  March:  OASIS Adult Education Class (4 sessions, 8 hours) on "Beginning Computer Genealogy"
*  20 June 2012:  OASIS sponsored talk at Benjamin Library on "Genealogy - Be An Ancestor Detective"
*  July:  OASIS Adult Education Class (4 sessions, 8 hours) on "Beginning Computer Genealogy"

Teaching and Evangelism talks booked for the rest of 2012:

*  24 July 2012:  OASIS sponsored talk at Mission Valley Library on "Genealogy - Be An Ancestor Detective"
*  November:  OASIS Adult Education Class (4 sessions, 8 hours) on "Beginning Computer Genealogy"

In general, I receive $100 for each OASIS Class (for all four sessions) and for each sponsored talk.

3)  I do receive some gratuities from conferences for registration, food, and blogger gifts, and I receive some books from publishers for writing a review.

To sum up, I will give about 34 presentations during 2012, and will receive perhaps $1,800 for the effort.  

So there you have my money earning activities.  I don't take research clients (except for pro bono selected people), I don't speak at Conferences (yet), or have advertising or affiliate links on my blogs.  It's pretty much a labor of love...and I'm enjoying all of it.  

Of course, there are expenses involved in creating and improving or editing the presentations and the handouts.  For a new presentation, it usually takes me 20 to 30 hours to create an 80 to 120 slide Powerpoint presentation (which are usually graphics heavy rather than text heavy) and the handout.  Revising a presentation to update it usually takes 3 to 5 hours, unless it needs heavy revision due to new material.  

So this year, I have, or will, create three new presentations, and have or will revise 14 others.  I'm not making much money on doing presentations, am I?  But then creating presentations are not taking away from other money making opportunities, since I don't have any except cashing my retirement checks.

In conclusion, I use the income to fund my genealogy society memberships, my historical record collection subscriptions, buying genealogy books, going on research trips and vacations (including conference travel registration, hotel and other expenses).  Except for the travel and hotel expenses, I essentially break even every year!  Or at least that's what I tell my wife.

The URL for this post is:  http://www.geneamusings.com/2012/07/how-do-i-make-money-in-genealogy.html

Copyright (c) 2012, Randall J. Seaver

Follow-Up Friday - Helpful and Interesting Comments on My Posts

For Follow-Up Friday, I'm featuring helpful and interesting comments to my blog posts from the past week or two.  Here is this week's "crop" for my readers' enlightenment:

1)  On Citing an Unsuccessful Search, Mills commented:  "Randy, if we make a practice of preparing a research report whenever we do a block of research, then that research report will itemize everything that yielded positive or negative results, identify exactly what and who we sought in each of those sources, and discuss any/all other factors that may have influenced our results. Then in our databases, whenever we need to reference that "unsuccessful search," we can simply cite that research report, where all the details are provided."

My response:  Ah, simplicity, thy name is Mills!  But, but, but ... I have thousands of ancestors for whom I have not performed this essential task. True confession:  The "thrill of the hunt" for new information overcomes the "drudgery of reconstructing research reports" for many of us, including moi.

2)  On Benchmark Numbers for July 2012, Geolover noted:  "Those were strange numbers for fold3.com - a precipitous decline in databases but increases in images?"

My response:  I think that the Small Town Newspapers collection was removed from Fold3 when Ancestry took them over.  That might explain the anomaly you noted.

3)  On Surname Saturday - LNU (Germany > New Jersey), GeneGinny said:  "Have you looked at "Early Germans of New Jersey" by Chambers? It's available on archive.org. I also found info on the Baltus Pickle family in the Genealogical Magazine of New Jersey, Vol. 46."

My response:  I have seen and used that resource, but did not have it in my Google Library.  I do now!  Ginny also sent me images of the GMNJ article via email.  Thank you, Ginny!  

4)  On Amanuensis Monday - the Will of Alvina Seaver (1848-1923), Robyn asked:  "Wow! That was alot of money in 1923, I started to do the math, but it [seems] to be too much. Was Isaac a businessowner, or some other occupation which left him with such a sizeable estate?"

My response:  Excellent question, Robyn.  Isaac left about $1500 to her in 1901, and she owned a house also at that time.  Alvina received a monthly Civil War pension ($12/month) as a result of Isaac's service.  I think that Alvina was very prudent and conservative, and likely made some wise investments.  She may have inherited assets from her parents, also.  She lived the last year or so of her life in a "rest home" setting, and probably sold any property before she died.

5)  On Surname Saturday - BLOETGOET/BLOODGOOD (Holland > New York > New Jersey), Yvette Hoitink made two comments:

"I'm pretty familiar with Dutch sources and thought I'd see if I can find anything that might interest you. I've found a mention of a Jan Bloedgoed in Gouda in 1393. A rent from his house in mentioned in the records of the burghers of Gouda. Given the rarity of the name, this suggests the family may originally be from Gouda rather than Amsterdam. That fits with John Blythe Dobson's doubts about the Amsterdam connection."

"The Gouda archives website has more Bloetgoet information, including more baptisms of children of Thomas Jans Bloetgoet (click the 'meer resultaten' links for more results). Thomas apparently moved to Nieuwkoop, a town a couple of miles north of Gouda. I live in that area myself. Feel free to ask me if you want to know more."

My response:  Thank you so much, Yvette, for the information and the links to the Gouda information.  I checked the data out (using the helpful Google Chrome translator) and have added some of it to my database.  I love my readers!!!

6)  On What to make of this telephone call..., I had many comments with great insight and advice, including:

*  Laura Marshallsay:  "My husband is a fraud investigator for a major bank. Do not attempt to do anything or verify anything yourself. Using someone else's SSN is call Ghosting and is a federal offense. This is something you need to report to the authorities. Contact the OFiice of the Inspector General for the Social Security Administration. They take this stuff very seriously. Their website (with hotline number) is http://oig.ssa.gov/report-fraud-waste-or-abuse."

*  Geolover:  "There are two essences to the call. One is an accusation, for which you have no evidence, concerning an unknown person's intention to act illegally. Since a question about SSDI does not imply such an intention, you would have no ground for reporting anything to any officialdom.  If your caller is concerned, he can attend a public meeting and do his own reporting if he wishes. It is possible that the caller's actual intention was to target an individual for harassment.

"As recent Congressional discussions and actions have indicated, there is a fringe element that wishes to suppress public access to information about Social Security numbers. Despite the fact that removal of public indexes would make it harder for prospective employers to do a quick check on the SSDI.  Some of this fringe element may be trying not to remove the indexes but to make it harder to find out how to consult them. This is the same theory as "if I don't tell my daughter about sex she won't engage in it." In this vein, the aim of the caller may have been to deter your showing how to use SSDI. Since information on how to use SSDI and where to find databases is extremely easy to find, it would make no sense for you to be ill at ease in sharing information."


My response:  I did call the number I received during off-hours, and it was for the fraud investigator for the local Social Security office in San Diego, so that appears to be a "good" number.  The person of interest did not come to the CVGS Research Group meeting, so the issue is moot at this point.  


*  David Newton commented:  "They've also still not allowed for having one source for large datasets and multiple citations. For example each person in a census would have their own "source" with the system they are using. Until they properly separate out the citation from the source this system will be comparatively useless."

*  Alan Mann noted:  "You can add any source you want. When you are on the "View Person" screen and scroll down to Sources, there are two links - "create a source" and "my source box". Simply click on create a source and a blank template comes up. You can enter any source any way you want within the fields provided."

*  Alan Mann responded to David's comment:  "There is a temporary work-around for the problem you describe. You let FamilySearch create the source for you "My Source Box", then you open "My Source Box" and it will be shown there. Click on that source, and you are not allowed to edit it, but one of the options will be "Copy". Copy the source, and you can edit the copy to make it the way you want it--in most cases moving the personal details out of the source title box down to citation or notes box."

Alan provided a description and examples of this process, and noted:  "This method is a bit cumbersome, but it is a whole lot easier than creating it from scratch, and really only take me a minute or two."

My response:  I should have noted the "Create a Source" on the Person page - I knew about it, and have tried it, but forgot to mention it in my long post.  

David's comment goes to an issue we've discussed in earlier posts;  A source can be used for many Events with only the citation changed to reflect the Event.  The way FSFT does it now, it's not a "big deal" if people attach the FamilySearch collection source, but they are imperfect as previously discussed.  However, it is a "big deal" if I have to enter the source information into fixed fields for every source I want to add.  For example, I have over 200 citations for the 1900 U.S. Census source in my database.  

I have resisted doing what Alan suggests - adding source information by typing into fields, or by copying and pasting from my RootsMagic source citations - because I'm hoping (praying?) that the source citations I have in RootsMagic can be added to FamilySearch Family Tree in the future by clicking a check box within RootsMagic (like I do for Events) rather than by copy/pasting them or typing them in.  I have over 28,000 citations now. 

One more thought:  Source citations in FamilySearch Family Tree are attached to the Person and not to the Event or Fact. If the "Source attached to a Person" persists, then comments for the source citations in FSFT will be essential in order to assess which Event is being cited.

Thank you to all of my commenters - I appreciate your help, suggestions and opinions.  


Copyright (c) 2012, Randall J. Seaver

Thursday, July 12, 2012

TANSTAAFL - 2012 Update

In Thomas MacEntee's Genea-Opportunities series this week on Geneabloggers, he posted Genealogy - Whjat Do You Mean It isn't Free? A 2012 Update.  I'm providing my own comments a day after...

I wrote something on this topic back in 2007 - see TANSTAAFL.  Here is my update of that post:

There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch (TANSTAAFL). We've all heard that throughout our lives - as children, as students, as adults, as workers, as players, as genealogists. It takes money for the world to go around. If you're getting something for free, then someone else is paying for it.

DearMYRTLE and Jasia posted back in 2007 about the "hidden" costs of all of the free genealogy data we have available to us - the web sites, genealogy societies, databases, search engines etc. Someone pays - the web site owner, the advertisers, or you and me. I want to address the "you and me" part of it.

Every so often, someone posts a rant on one of my mailing lists decrying the cost of joining a genealogy society, the cost of an Ancestry (or other commercial site) subscription, or the use of user-contributed databases by a commercial web site. Once in awhile, a person in my genealogy society meetings goes off on the subscription genealogy websites, especially Ancestry.com.  I understand that many people are on limited incomes, and have to make priorities in their spending - genealogy may not be a necessary cost when a person is financially squeezed. But sometimes the rant is based on the notion that "someone wants to rip me off," or "they only want to make a big profit."

To my mind, a commercial genealogy company like Ancestry.com (which has Rootsweb, Ancestry, MyFamily, Genealogy.com, FamilyTreeMaker, Fold3, Archibes.com and other sites under its umbrella) is in a competitive business of providing information to customers (you and me). They offer an annual US Deluxe subscription (all of the US-based collections) for $155.40 a year, and an annual World Deluxe subscription for $299.40 (all collections). When you consider this on a daily basis, it is $0.43 a day for the US and $0.82 for the World. That is a pretty good deal IF you will use it on a regular basis.

Consider also that access to many of Ancestry's databases is available at libraries in the US in the form of Ancestry Library Edition. And that they provide access to Rootsweb (databases, mailing lists, message boards, freepages, society web pages, etc) for free. 

I don't know about you, but my Ancestry subscription is probably the wisest and smartest genealogy investment I've made in the last ten years. I use it almost every day. I can use it any time of day, at home on my desktop, at others homes or on vacation on my laptop or another computer, or on my smart phone and tablet device.

The biggest value, though, is the time (and money) it saves me - I can search databases and documents that I would otherwise have to travel a distance to find (incurring transportation and lodging costs), or find and copy at a local repository (copy costs, film rentals), or hire a professional genealogist to find (lookups or copies from a distant repository). I can download images from it and save them digitally - I don't have to abstract or transcribe it by hand to obtain a copy.

Some people have bemoaned the fact that there are so many commercial genealogy web sites now available and that they cost money. The fact is that these web sites (I'm thinking MyHeritage/WorldVitalRecords, GenealogyBank, AmericanAncestors, and FindMyPast here) are providing access to unique documents and databases that are not available at the Ancestry or LDS web sites - they are providing a service to their subscribers.

My view is that competition is GREAT for genealogy - when there are several content providers, they will fight for customers and continue to increase their product and their holdings. The worst thing that would happen to genealogy would be if one commercial company swallowed all of the others.

I, as a subscriber, have to make the choice whether to subscribe or not, based on the database offerings and my perceived need for them. Even so, the costs are not exorbitant to my way of thinking when considered as a daily or weekly cost. I could subscribe to all of those databases mentioned above for about $1.50 per day. I imagine that I spend $1.50 a day on things I "want" but don't "need." Heck, my cable modem connection costs me about $1.50 a day, and I use it for about 6 to 8 hours daily - I definitely "need" it!.  My smart phone is $2 a day for phone, message and web access.

I am especially grateful for the work done by the LDS church in providing - totally free - a large research library in Salt Lake City, 4,500 Family History Centers all over the world, access to millions of data microforms, and the https://www.familysearch.org/ web site with over 1,200 historical record collections (and more on the way), the research wiki, the research courses, and much more.  This organization will continue to add new databases and documents over the next many years, and is collaborating with several of the subscription sites to make their databases available at LDS facilities - for free.

What makes the most sense to me is for each researcher to evaluate their available income for genealogy-related activities, and budget accordingly. If you are not going to use a genealogy subscription service more often than once a month, it makes no sense to subscribe - you can go to a library or an FHC and find almost every thing that is available. If you are doing research every day, a personal subscription makes a lot of sense.

TANSTAAFL is a true statement - but in my humble opinion, genealogy resources on the Internet are almost FREE, and I am happy and grateful that commercial genealogy companies exist to provide data and information to their customers. I hope that they keep up the good work - and the competition - because all genealogists and family historians will benefit.

Note: I am not a member of the LDS church, or an employee or affiliate of any of the web sites mentioned. I do have a US Ancestry subscription that I pay for. I'm just a genealogy guy who is having a lot of fun searching for my own ancestors and helping other people in their searches.

The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) 2012, Randall J. Seaver

Attaching Sources to Persons in FamilySearch Family Tree

James Tanner revealed today that anybody can now access, add to and edit the FamilySearch Family Tree (formerly New.FamilySearch.org) in his Genealogy's Star blog post, FamilySearch Family Tree is open to everyone.  This is, I think, good news, and it seems like it's "ahead of schedule" - I think FamilySearch said it would happen "sometime in 2012."

I have written about my recent experiences in FamilySearch Family Tree, in these posts:

*  Checking Out "My Source Box" on FamilySearch.org (29 May 2012)

*  Using RootsMagic 5 to Add to the FamilySearch Family Tree (27 April 2012)

*  My First Look at FamilySearch Family Tree - Post 2: Source Citations (27 March 2012)

*  My First Look at FamilySearch Family Tree - Post 1 (22 March 2012)

In the first listed post above, I added some FamilySearch documents to the "My Source Box" feature, created a "Folder" for Isaac Seaver in "My Source Box" and added some of the captured sources to Isaac Seaver's Folder.  I did not "Attach" those source items to Isaac Seaver, however, leaving that for another time.

The time has come.  I've searched for FamilySearch records for several of my ancestors, and have practiced adding the source records to "My Source Box," creating more folders for those ancestors, adding the source records to those folders, and now attaching the source records to the correct person.

There are some steps in this process that HAVE TO BE followed, and I'll try to highlight them in this post.

I'm going to use my grandmother, Alma Bessie (Richmond) Seaver (1882-1962), for this exercise.  For males, the searcher needs to do only one search because their surname doesn't change.  For females, the searcher needs to search in FamilySearch records for all of the female's last names used in their lifetime, since FamilySearch's record search engine does not "know" what names a female might have used.  I used "Alma Bessie Richmond" and got one source record (1900 Census) and "Alma Bessie Seaver" and for one source record (1930 Census), and clicked on the "My Source Box" link and "Add to My Source Box" on the Record Search results.  So those two records should be in "My Source Box" when I go to it in the FamilySearch Family Tree.

1)  On the FamilySearch Family Tree pedigree chart, I highlighted Alma Bessie Richmond:


2)  I clicked on the "View Person" link for Alma Bessie Richmond and saw her information, previously added by me using RootsMagic 5 (two screens - the second one is the bottom of the page):



3)  Near the bottom of the page, there is a link for "Go to My Source Box" so I clicked on it.  My Source Box opened, and I added a Folder for "Alma Bessie Richmond (1882-1962)."  Before I added anything to this folder, it is empty:


4)  Here is "My Source Box" at the present time in my account.  "My Source Box" lists ALL sources that have been captured from FamilySearch source records, and wants you to put them in Folders.  There are two sources that are not in a Folder (the ones I just captured for Alma Bessie Richmond Seaver):


5)  In order to add a Source record in "My Source Box" to a Folder in "My Source Box," the researcher drags the specific Source to the Folder and drops it there (in Windows, left-mouse click held down to drag and released to drop it).  In the screen below, I have dragged and dropped the first source record but not the second:


6)  After dragging and dropping the second source record to Alma Bessie Richmond's Folder, I clicked on the Folder to see if they are there:


 7)  They are there!  Now I want to Attach each record in the Folder to the Person.  I clicked the "Attach" link on the screen above and the "Attach Source to Alma Bessie Richmond" window opened.  I typed in a reason for attaching this record:


8)  I did the same process for the second source record, and the Folder for Alma Bessie Richmond shows that both are attached (they show a paper-clip icon):


9)  The researcher can click on one or all of the sources in the Folder and see more information about them:


That is a fairly cumbersome process.  I wonder if the genealogy software will make this easier for source citations in the database and the images attached to the Fact and/or source citation.  I hope so!

The major warning I have is this:  The user must start the Source record Attach process from the Person's Page - in my example above, from Alma Bessie Richmond's page.  The name of the Person shows up when you click on the "Attach" link - if it is not the right person, the user has to go to the Person, click on the "My Source Box" link, open the Folder for the Person, and then Attach the Source to the correct Person.  I found no way around this!

Note also that the "My Source Box" seems to be ONLY for FamilySearch Historical Records - what about records from another Source?  And images from other sources?  I'll be looking into this in future posts.

I need to check out if I can do a "Disconnect Person from Parents" function yet.  The FamilySearch Family Tree has Isaac Seaver attached to two sets of parents (one of them is correct) and I want to disconnect him from the wrong set of parents.  Even though I have written up a Discussion for this, no one has discussed it with me).

A caveat:  I think that I'm doing this Source record to My source box to Folder to Attach to Person process correctly.  If not, I hope that someone from FamilySearch will correct me on it!

The URL for this post is:  http://www.geneamusings.com/2012/07/attaching-sources-to-persons-in.html

Copyright (c) 2012, Randall J. Seaver

Treasure Chest Thursday - 1910 U.S. Census Record for Fred W. Seaver Family

It's Treasure Chest Thursday - time to look in my digital image files to see what treasures I can find for my family history and genealogy musings.


The treasure today is the 1910 United States Census record for my grandparents and their family in Fitchburg, Massachusetts: 



A closeup of the Seaver family entry:




The extracted information for the family, residing at 116 Lawrence Street in Fitchburg, taken on 19 April 1910, is:

*  Fred W. Seaver -- head, male, white, age 33, first marriage, married for 10 years, born Massachusetts, father and mother born Massachusetts, can speak English, superintendent in a comb shop, an employee, worked on 15 April 1910, not out of work in 1909, able to read and write, owns home with a mortgage
*  Bessie A. Seaver -- wife, female, white, age 28, first marriage, married for 10 years, four children born, four living, born Connecticut, father born England, mother born Connecticut, can speak English, no occupation, able to read and write
*  Marion F. Seaver -- daughter, female, white, age 8, single,born Massachusetts, father born Massachusetts, mother born Connecticut, attended school since Sept 1909

*  Evelyn Seaver -- daughter, female, white, age 7, single, born Massachusetts, father born Massachusetts, mother born Connecticut, 
attended school since Sept. 1909 
*  Stanley R. Seaver -- son, male, white, age 4, single, born Massachusetts, father born Massachusetts, mother born Connecticut
*  Ruth W. Seaver -- daughter, female, white, age 2, single, born Massachusetts, father born Massachusetts, mother born Connecticut
*  Marion E. Coleman - servant, female, white, age 18, single, born Massachusetts, father born Massachusetts, mother born Massachusetts, can speak English, a servant, works for private family, an employee, not out of work on 15 April 1910, no weeks out of work in 1909, able to read and write English, did not attend school since Sept 1909.
*  James H. Richmond - brother-in-law, male, white, age 23, single, born Connecticut, father born English, mother born Connecticut, speaks English, a comb-maker, works in a comb shop, an employee, not out of work on 15 April 1910, out of work 24 weeks in 1909, able to read and write.


The source citation for the census image is:

1910 United States Federal Census, Worcester County, Massachusetts, population schedule, Fitchburg; Enumeration District 1745, Sheet No. 6B, dwelling #82, family #125, Fred W. Seaver household; online image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com); citing National Archives Microfilm Publication T624, Roll 608.

I consider the 1910 U.S. Census records to be an "Original Source" (because this "family snapshot" in April 1910 is in its first written form); as "Secondary Information" (since we don't know who provided the information - although it was probably Bessie Seaver), and as "Indirect Evidence" for most of the information (the exception being the home address, the names of the children, the birthplaces, and Fred's occupation which were certainly known by the informant).  

I see no obvious errors in this census record (based on what I know about these persons from other records, including birth and marriage records).

The surprise for me is the presence of a servant, Marion Coleman, age 18.  When this enumeration was made on 19 April 1910, Stanley R. Seaver had scarlet fever, and died five days later on 24 April 1910.  Did Marion start working just before the enumeration, or was she a long-term employee?  I don't know.  I wonder if Marion was a family friend or a neighbor, or a young lady out on her own.

If I did not know that Bessie Seaver was a Richmond, there is an obvious clue to her maiden name here because Fred's brother-in-law, James H. Richmond, is residing with them.  He is probably working for Fred in the same comb shop.  


Copyright (c) 2012, Randall J. Seaver

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

SDGS Meeting on Saturday, 14 July Features ... Randy Seaver!!

The Saturday, 14 July meeting of the San Diego Genealogical Society (SDGS) starts at 10 a.m. at St. Andrew's Lutheran Church (8350 Lake Murray Blvd. in San Diego).  The program speaker will be Randy Seaver for both sessions.

In between the sessions, the annual Ice Cream Social ($3 for two scoops, and a topping of your choice) will make it difficult for attendees to stay awake for the second session!




The two sessions will cover:


1) “Discovering Jane's Roots in California, Australia and England.”  – Randy Seaver

In this presentation, Randy will explore the research journey to find the ancestors of his wife's great-grandmother, Jane (Whittle) McKnew (1847-1921).  She married in Gold Country, had a family of 11 children, survived the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, and died in San Francisco.  Jane was born in Australia to parents who were born and married in England.  Most of the research was done with online resources and in a collaborative environment.  Come watch Randy unveil a fascinating family history worthy of a “Who Do You Think You Are?” television episode.

2) “ Genealogy and Cloud Computing” – Randy Seaver

Can we do all of our genealogy research, data organization, analysis, collaboration, and writing online – in the “cloud” on remote servers and computers rather than on our desktop or laptop computers?  What about using smart phones and tablets for genealogy?  This talk will discuss the elements of cloud computing, including mobile devices, and their application to genealogy tasks, along with an evaluation  of the benefits and drawbacks for these exciting technologies.

Randy's genea-biography is:

Randy Seaver is a native San Diegan.  His ancestry is mainly colonial New England and Upper Atlantic, with some colonial German, French and Dutch forebears, and several 19th-century English immigrants.  He has been pursuing his elusive ancestors since 1988, and has been online since 1992.

Randy is a former President of the Chula Vista Genealogical Society, and is currently the Newsletter Editor and Research Chair.  He speaks to Southern California societies, libraries and groups, teaches "Beginning Computer Genealogy" adult classes at OASIS, and writes the Genealogy 2.0 column for the FGS FORUM magazine.  He is a member of NGS, NEHGS, SCGS, SDGS, CGSSD and CVGS.  Randy blogs daily about genealogy subjects at Genea-Musings (www.geneamusings.com) and the Chula Vista Genealogy Cafe (http://cvgencafe.blogspot.com/). 

I hope to see many of my Genea-Musings readers there!  Two presentations and a bowl of  ice cream - what's not to like?  Come and enjoy a genealogy day!

The URL for this post is:  http://www.geneamusings.com/2012/07/sdgs-meeting-on-saturday-14-july.html

Copyright (c) 2012, Randall J. Seaver

My So-Called "Career" in Genealogy - Genealogy Evangelist

Thomas MacEntee wrote Careers in Genealogy - a 2012 Update yesterday on the Geneabloggers blog, including a description of several "types" of genealogy "careers."  I thought that I would add my own career summary for my readers.

My genealogy career started back in 1988 after I read Roots by Alex Haley (I know, I was 12 years late!) and asked my mother if we had any family material?  Of course we did - boxes of it covering four generations of her ancestry, and quite a few pictures and papers from my father's Massachusetts family.  Before long, I was going down to the Family History Center every Saturday adding persons to my pedigree chart, copying published material, reading census and other microfilms, and eventually obtaining land and probate records on microfilm.  Before long, we took trips to Massachusetts to meet the cousins, aunts and uncles, and I encouraged them to provide information about the family.  This resulted in the yearly "Seaver-Richmond Family Journal" that I write to share family history with the extended family, and still send to the family at Christmas time.

At the time, I was employed as a technical manager in an aerospace company, had a wife and two teenage daughters, and I needed a "research outlet" for my down time, and genealogy seemed to fit the bill very well.

Then came the Prodigy.net service, and I found a collaborating community of like-minded enthusiasts who really helped me.  I started using Personal Ancestral File software, and eventually "graduated" to Family Tree Maker 8 in 1998.  Prodigy went down, and several other boards popped up and I was on the About: Genealogy and Delphi boards for awhile.  And along came the Internet and everything changed!

I started speaking about my research experiences in 1993 at the Chula Vista Genealogical Society and have continued with the society to the present day.  I have branched out to speaking to other Southern California societies over the years, and at service groups and public library venues.

I retired from my "real" job in 2002, and was able to expand my genealogy efforts to essentially full time - speaking more often to local societies, joining the CVGS Board, and doing much more research online and at the FHC.  I added a teaching element in 2009 with the "Beginning Computer Genealogy" class at OASIS and CVGS Genealogy 101 classes.  We took more vacation trips with family history content, and then started going to conferences.

Genea-Musings was started in April 2006, and has snowballed from 30 minutes a day to 2 to 3 hours a day to keep up with the genealogy world.  I seem to spend 8 to 12 hours a day doing something with genealogy - writing, presenting, teaching, society work, conferences, and researching.

So which of Thomas MacEntee's "genealogy career" categories do I fit into?

1)  Researcher.  But only for myself and selected friends that ask me for help.  I considered doing research for clients, but figured that I might get really bored doing research on families that I do not care about.  I am not certified or accredited, and determined that I didn't want to spend the time and effort to become certified or accredited.  I did determine to act professionally in my genealogy activities.  I do try to do some research (either online or at a repository) for 10 to 20 hours a week on my own family history.

2)  Author.  Well, maybe.  I do have the Genealogy 2.0 column in the quarterly FGS FORUM magazine, and edit the CVGS Newsletter, and write articles for SDGS, but I haven't published any articles in genealogy magazines.  Then there's blogging, so maybe I can be considered an author.

3)  Educator.  Well, maybe.  The OASIS class is three times a year (4 sessions for each class) and I get paid for it (a bit).  Genealogy 101 at CVGS (freely offered) too.  But not full-time.  I guess Genea-Musings is at least educational in part.

4)  Curator.  Well, maybe.  I guess the "Best of the Genea-Blogs" is curation, as are my research and software compendiums on Genea-Musings.

5)  Librarian.  Not really...

6)  Analyst.  I do try to analyze websites, software and industry trends on occasion on Genea-Musings.

7)  Marketer.  Not really.  Some book reviews, some website and software reviews, but not really.

8)  Retailer.  Nope.

In summary - I'm really just a genealogy semi-professional who loves doing what he does, has the time and interest to do it, and enjoy everything I do and all of the people I converse and commune with while doing it.

In essence, I'm a genealogy evangelist - one who loudly, consistently and passionately proclaims that Genealogy IS fun...at least for me!

The URL for this post is:  http://www.geneamusings.com/2012/07/my-so-called-career-in-genealogy.html

Copyright (c) 2012, Randall J. Seaver

(Not So) Wordless Wednesday - Post 213: Young Girl Geraldine Seaver

 I am posting photographs from my family collections for (Not So) Wordless Wednesday (you know me, I can't go wordless!).    

Here is a photograph from the Geraldine Seaver Remley family collection handed down from my aunt in 2007
 after her passing.




This is a picture of Geraldine Seaver (1917-2007) as a young girl, taken in about 1923, so she is about age 6 in this photograph.  Gerry is still sporting the bow in her hair (see last week's picture)!  She is wearing some sort of smock, and holding a picture book.

The URL for this post is:  http://www.geneamusings.com/2012/07/not-so-worldess-wednesday-post-213.html

Copyright (c) 2012, Randall J. Seaver

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

What to make of this telephone call...

I answered the phone yesterday  at home, and a male person said "Are you the Randy Seaver who is with the Chula Vista Genealogical Society?"  Of course, I admitted to that...  I asked for his name, and he gave me a name, and implied that he worked for a non-government organization that tries to combat identity theft, but would not tell me the name of the organization or his phone number..

Then he said:  "I have been told that a certain person of interest will be attending one of your society meetings in the near future and will inquire how to find dates of birth and Social Security Numbers for a person in order to steal their identity."

This puzzled me, because the places that I know of with Social Security Numbers are indexes of already dead people.  I mean, that's why the Social Security Death Index exists, right?  So that banks, credit card companies and other agencies can determine if the SSN is for a deceased person, and therefore the person presenting it is trying to steal a person's identity.  Then I recalled the income tax form scam recently discussed in Congress, where the SSNs of children were used to claim them as dependents on an income tax form, and it works because the IRS does not cross-check the SSDI with the claimed dependent SSNs.

The fellow gave me the phone number of a Social Security inspector who works on identity theft issues, and asked me to call that person when we are contacted by the person of interest, subject of the call.

He also gave me two names of our society members that had been contacted by the person of interest and may have been asked to help the person of interest.  I emailed my two colleagues, and they say that they have had no contact of this nature.

So now I'm wondering what to make of this phone call.  Is it:

1)  Real - and a person of interest will show up at one of our meetings and ask their question.

2)  Fake - someone is trying to pull my chain and see how much information I will volunteer.

Our next CVGS meeting is the Research Group on Wednesday, 11 July, where we typically answer questions and try to solve research problems for the attendees, whether they are members or not.

If the person of interest does show up and ask for help, I wonder what we should do?  Should we demonstrate how to use the SSDI?  Which version should we use - the free one on FamilySearch.org, or the subscription one on Ancestry?  Should we note the names that the person of interest asked about, and then call the number I was given?

UPDATE 11 July, 3 p.m.:  I called the number given and it was the local Social Security fraud prevention person - right name at the extension.  We had our Research Group today and the "person of interest" did not show up, so we won't do anything about this until the POI shows up.  From what I perceive, the call was a warning and a request to help prevent fraud rather than a scam.

The URL for this post is:  http://www.geneamusings.com/2012/07/what-to-make-of-this-telephone-call.html

Copyright (c) 2012, Randall J. Seaver.

Geneablogging for Fun, Research Success, and more

Thomas MacEntee is running a series on the Geneabloggers blog titled Genea-Opportunities.
 His first post in the series is  Genealogy Blogging – For Fun or Profit?


Here are my thoughts on this topic:


*  I started this blog in order to share my knowledge and experiences in genealogy research, software and education with no thought of making any money from the effort.  I had no clue that it would last more than six years (and is still going strong).


*  I don't have advertising or affiliate agreements on my blog.  I didn't want the hassle (I know, it's easy...), and when I started the blog, the first question I was asked was "Do you have ads on your site?" as if that was a black mark against any blog or site.  I don't think it is, but I still don't do it.  There are now legal issues concerning blog ads and I'm glad that I have avoided that.

*  As my blog traffic has increased over the years (currently about 3,000 readers each day, considering website visits, RSS readers and email messages), I have accepted "perks" from many genealogy businesses, including trips to Salt Lake City, free meals and briefings, free conference registration, free database subscriptions, free software, free books, etc.  I try to disclose these when they occur or when I use the product, but try very hard to be objective when I evaluate products, databases and services.  These "perks" did not come easy - the key to having a relatively large readership is to post quality content (what people need to know) on a regular basis (posts several times a day).  

*  By far, the biggest benefit of genealogy blogging for me has been the Research Help that I have received from my readers.  One prime example is The Whittle Research Compendium from late 2010.  Several readers helped me find online resources, suggested offline resources, and provided research ideas and encouragement.  I often get reader suggestions for further research  on my Surname Saturday posts, and identify distant cousins also.  Genealogy blog readers are fantastic, and I know that they know more about genealogy research in many areas than I do.  Blogging about my genealogy research and my ancestral families is just one aspect of dangling "Cousin Bait" for the "genea-fishers for information" using Google or other search engines.  

*  Another benefit of geneablogging is being part of the blogging community - there are over 2,000 genealogy blogs out there, and many of the writers attend seminars and conferences.  We have had over 70 geneabloggers at some conferences, and the camaraderie is fantastic.  I totally enjoy sharing time, learning, food, drink, laughs and hugs with geneabloggers - all of whom, without exception, are interesting and funny people passionate about genealogy.  

In conclusion, I don't make any advertising money from genealogy blogging by choice, and I don't have a genealogy client business, but I receive immeasurable benefits from genealogy blogging.  Genealogy, and blogging, is FUN!!!

The URL for this post is:  http://www.geneamusings.com/2012/07/geneablogging-for-fun-research-success.html

Copyright (c) 2012, Randall J. Seaver

Tuesday's Tip - Lisa Louise Cooke's Genealogy Gems Website

This week's Tuesday's Tip is:  Visit Lisa Louise Cooke's new website - www.GenealogyGems.com - to watch genealogy video and hear genealogy podcasts.

Lisa has a new website design:


The site has vibrant colors, and easy navigation.  You can watch an introductory video on the home page.  Lisa has a free email newsletter, and when you sign up you receive a free Google Research e-book.

Lisa has a free podcast page - a podcast is like a radio show, but you can listen any time you want.  The Podcast page is http://lisalouisecooke.com/podcasts-2/:


The list of podcasts that you can listen to is http://lisalouisecooke.com/podcasts/:


Each podcast is about one hour long and deals with an area of genealogy research.  Do you want to know more about podcasts and how they work?  Read Lisa's Frequently Asked Questions.

The five most recent podcasts available are:

*  Episode 132 -- Bonnets and Hats with Maureen Taylor, and the Genealogy Widower


*  Episode 133 -- Lisa interviews Henry Louis Gates about his TV series Finding Your Roots.
*  Episode 134 -- A Blast from the Past! This episode includes Episodes 1 and 2!
*  Episode 135 -- Interview with Linda Chavez of Finding Your Roots
*  Episode 136 -- Life After iGoogle!  And the brand new Lisa Louise Cooke’s Genealogy Gems website has launched!
There are also show notes for each episode.
Lisa has a Premium Membership for $29.95 per year, which includes premium podcasts, premium videos and video recordings of some of Lisa's most popular classes.
Lisa speaks at genealogy programs, seminars and conferences.  Her subjects are listed on her Book Lisa page.
Lisa's Genealogy Gems blog is http://lisalouisecooke.com/blog/.  Put it in your RSS reader so that you don't miss out on any of Lisa's posts.
Explore Lisa's website, listen to her podcasts, and consider becoming a Premium Member.
Copyright (c) 2012, Randall J. Seaver