Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Many Features Added to the New Ancestry.com Site

Ancestry.com announced their "new" Ancestry.com website back on 1 June 2015 - see Announcing the New Ancestry Website.  Some of the planned features had not been incorporated into the "new" website at the time.  Since then, the Ancestry Blog has announced additional features recently added, including (with my comments in brackets):

1)  The New Ancestry: July 15th Feature Update

*  View and add notes – Notes are now available as a slide-out on the right side of the screen, so you can quickly review and add notes. It is turned on in the tools menu on the top right.  [yes, I like it]

*  View and add comments – Comments are now available as a slide-out on the right side of the screen, so you can quickly review and add comments. It is turned on in the tools menu on the top right. [yes, I like it]

*  Media Gallery / Viewer – We have added a number of features to the new Media Gallery/viewer:

** Save photos to your family trees from the new media viewer
**  Edit the description and details on a photo or story
**  Create and upload a new story in the media Gallery
** View and listen to audio and video files

*  Story formatting in the Gallery – We have fixed the layout and formatting to make it more readable.

*  Web links – We have implemented web link functionality on the new Ancestry site. Web links are found on the Facts View at the bottom of the Sources column.

*  Age on Facts View events – The age at a specific event has been available on the LifeStory page in the new Ancestry. We have now also added it to the Facts View to make it easier to review facts.  [yes, I like it]

*  Adjusted profile page photo to better fit – Some pictures were not fit correctly. This has been adjusted to show the whole picture on the profile page.

*  Quick edit – The quick edit option is now available on the person card in the tree viewer under the Tools menu. It is also available under the Edit menu in the person profile.

*  Guidance on LifeStory and Facts view – We have added some in-line help screens that appear when you first come to either page.

*  Source and media counts on Facts view – Sources and media associated with events on the Facts view are now represented with a number count in addition to the fact/source link lines. Counts are also links and will direct to the appropriate section in the edit modal when clicked.  [yes, I like it]

*  Media Comments – Comments from the classic site will be available in the media viewer with the ability to also comment on them in the new Ancestry site. [yes, I like it]

2)  The New Ancestry:  July 22nd Feature Update

*  Person Media Gallery – Show & Sort. SHOW allows you to show only the media types you want to see – Photos, Stories, etc. SORT allows you to view the data in the order you choose – New to Old, Alphabetical, etc.  [yes, I like it]

*  Family Card in Hints – Allows you to see the family of the person you are evaluating Ancestry Hints for – this mirrors the Family Card in the Facts View. [yes, I like it]

*  Research tools – A shortcut that provides you nifty tools such as View in tree, View Notes, View Comments, and Merge with Duplicate. You can access these tools with just one click from the Tools button. 

3)  The New Ancestry: July 31st Feature Update

None listed as new.

4)  The latter article identifies features that they are working on:

*  We are investing a lot of resources updating our backend infrastructure so the new Ancestry will work much better than the old site.

*  Printing in Facts View –We have had a busy week bringing Print feature to the new Ancestry. You will notice that the coming soon print image is formatted to fit the page while still reflecting the layout and benefits of the Facts View as well as removing the dark backgrounds to reduce unnecessary use of ink for printing. We are also working on printing for LifeStory and MyCanvas publishing options.  [good, I'm looking forward to this]

*  FamilySearch integration – LDS Account holders will be able to share information between their Ancestry tree on the new Ancestry site and their Family Tree on FamilySearch.  [doesn't affect me.  Why aren't I, as a non-LDS member, able to do this?  It's a universal FamilySearch Family Tree]

*  Profile picture cropping – Edit/crop a profile photo to fit in the circular photo space

5)  The top reported issues from customer feedback include:

*  Relationship Calculator – We have addressed the a number of the reported issues, this should be available now on the Person Page. [Note that the sentence doesn't make sense.  I can't find it on the Person page] [looking forward to seeing this]

*  Inaccurate narrations in LifeStory and Facts view – We are looking at the language in the narrations and how to better generate narratives.

*  Photos added to events to appear as thumbnails in Facts view – Thank you for your feedback on this. We are evaluating whether to include this functionality in the new Ancestry site. [great idea!]

*  LifeStory map pins appearing in wrong locations – This has been an issue due to how the locations are evaluated. We implemented a fix last week that will prevent mapping pins for any location that doesn’t have a standardized place. We are also looking at improving the standardized place engine to ensure correct pin placement. [looks pretty good to me]

Ancestry says:

We appreciate your feedback and encourage you to keep submitting it. What do you love about the new website? Did you find a bug? Something doesn’t quite work like you think it should? Please submit it via this form.


6)  I complained in What Facts Show Up in an Ancestry.com LifeStory? (2 July 2015) that some of my Facts and media did not appear in a LifeStory.  

a)  I found these Facts in profiles of several of my ancestors that did not show up in the LifeStory:

*  Census Fact
*  Occupation Fact
*  Education Fact
*  Military Service Fact
*  Baptism or Christening Fact
*  Land Deed Fact
*  Cause of Death
*  Burial Fact
*  Obituary Fact
*  Probate Fact
*  I'm sure there are many more!

For me, I would like to have these other Facts, with the accompanying uploaded media item, included in the LifeStory.  How is the LifeStory complete without the events that are included in the Facts list?
b)  While the Residence Fact is included in the LifeStory, the attached or uploaded images for these Facts are not included.  I think they should be.

The URL for this post is:  

Copyright (c) 2015, Randall J. Seaver

Please comment on this post on the website by clicking the URL above and then the "Comments" link at the bottom of each post.  Or contact me by email at randy.seaver@gmail.com.


Tuesday's Tip: Use the Family History Guide to Learn Family History Techniques

This week's Tuesday's Tip is:  Use the Family History Guide (http://www.thefhguide.com/) to learn more about doing genealogy and family history.  This is oriented toward beginning family historians.

The Family History Guide (http://www.thefhguide.com/) was announced several weeks ago.  The home page looks like this:

There are two links on the Home Page - one for "Get Started" and one for "Projects."

1)  The "Get Started" page provides information about the Family History Guide:


It says:

"Welcome to The Family History Guide™- your family history learning and resource site. The Projects, Goals, and Choices on this site help you find your ancestors and bring their stories to life, one step at a time. Enjoy your family history journey! "

On the menu bar, and on the right-hand side of the page, are links to:

*  About the Family History Guide
*  FAQs
*  Computer Basics
*  Family History Basics
*  About the Projects
*  Project Resources
*  Project 1

On the left-hand side of the screen above arel inks to:

*  The Family History Guide Quick Tour (a video)
*  Classes and Training
*  Upcoming Events
*  About Us

2)  The "Computer Basics" page provides lessons on using your computer:


The "Computer Skills" videos are for:

*  Getting to Know Your Computer
*  Learn Computer Basics, Part 1
*  Basic Computer Skills
*  Mouse Skills
*  Glossary of Computer Terms

3)  The "Family History Basics" page provides information about Family History terms and concepts, FamilySearch, and FamilySearch partners (Ancestry, Findmypast, MyHeritage and American Ancestors): 


For each of the partners, there are articles about "Learn more..." and "Getting started on..."

4)  The "Projects" link on the home page, or the "About the Projects" link on the menu bar, provides information about the 7 Projects:


The 7 Projects in the Family History Guide are:

*  Family Tree
*  Memories
*  Descendancy / Ordinances
*  Discover
*  Indexing
*  Help
*  Technology

Each project has Goals, Choices, Instructions, and Resources.

5)  Here is the screen for Project 4: Discover:


The Goals are listed, and there are links to a page for each goal.  If you run your mouse over the "4. Discover" in the menu bar, you can select a specific region (United States, Canada, etc.):


The United States page looks like this (two screens):


The right-hand side of the page lists goals for different record types.  The left-hand side of the page lists each state (link to FamilySearch), with links to A (Ancestry), P (Findmypast), H (MyHeritage) resources.

6)  There is a lot to review on this website - I've only scratched the surface here.  While it is oriented toward an LDS member just starting their family history journey, it is useful for non-LDS members - just ignore the LDS specific information.

If it interests you, please take the time to read the pages, watch the linked videos, try to work through a project or two.

Note that the Guide uses four subscription websites - Ancestry, Findmypast, MyHeritage and AmericanAncestors.  LDS members have free access to these sites.  A non-LDS member would have to subscribe to them in order to use them.  They could use FamilySearch resources, which are free.

For an experienced researcher, the "Discover" projects may be very helpful to expand their research skills and knowledge.

I think that this site is an excellent learning tool for a beginning family historian.  The flow of the Projects is interesting - it starts with adding family information to the FamilySearch Family Tree, then Memories (photos, stories, videos, etc.), then adding Descendants, and only then getting into Discovering more information.  I can visualize a genealogical society Beginner's course using this as curriculum, but it does require a computer and enough computer skills to succeed online.

The URL for this post is:  http://www.geneamusings.com/2015/08/tuesdays-tip-use-family-history-guide.html

Copyright (c) 2015, Randall J. Seaver


Please comment on this post on the website by clicking the URL above and then the "Comments" link at the bottom of each post.  Or contact me by email at randy.seaver@gmail.com.



Monday, August 3, 2015

What Ancestry Hints Do I Get For Susanna Page (1614-1691) on an Ancestry Member Tree?

I wrote Lesson Learned Again: Don't Trust Online Family Trees last week, and have received several helpful and interesting comments.  

Russ Worthington suggested something in a comment and I tried it today.  He said:

"I'd like to do an experiment on this topic, or you can. See what happens, if you post a small GEDCOM on an Ancestry Member Tree and, withOUT searching, what are the Online Tree Shaky Leaf Hints provide you.

"I find that relying on Shaky Leaf hints, in many cases, return a better result list then if I manually enter a search as you did. I know that the Record Hints are very good, not perfect, but very good (on my main tree between 90 and 95%) good results.

"Not questioning your results at all. I totally get that, which is why I don't spend a lot of time on online trees.

"W[ish] we had a way to search on a specific USER's online tree, or have the ability to compare trees like we to with Ancestry DNA." 


I didn't add a small GEDCOM.  I went into one of my Ancestry Member Trees, and added Susanna Page (1614-1691) and her husband Thomas Gleason (1609-1686), plus her parents, Thomas and Susanna Page.  Here is the tree with these four persons:



Soon after adding these four persons, the green leafs appeared.  Susanna Page has 12 Ancestry Hints (three screens):


I'm going to try to judge these 12 Ancestry Hints as to accuracy based on what I know about Susanna's life, on a Bad, Fair, Good, Very Good, Excellent scale.

1)  Ancestry Member Trees -- it gave me 10 AMTs to compare to, and 7 of them had Thomas as a father, but only 2 had Susanna as a mother.  There were no other parents named.  GOOD.

2)  Family Data Collection - Births -- it gave me a birth in Susannah Page in 1622 in Lavenham, daughter of John Page and Phoebe Payne.  BAD (wrong parents, wrong birth year, wrong birth place).

3)  U.S. Canada Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, 1500s-1900s -- lists Thomas Gleason only, not Susanna.  BAD (doesn't match search term)

4)  Family Data Collection - Individual Records -- Identifies her parents as Robert Page and Lucy Ward.  BAD (wrong parents)

5)  American Genealogical Biographical Index -- Identifies Susanna Page birth date as 1610 in Massachusetts.  BAD

6)  Family Data Collection - Deaths -- Provides correct death date and place for Susanna Page.  EXCELLENT

7)  England, Select Births and Christenings, 1538-1975 -- Provides father's name (Thomas Page), baptism date (4 Dec 1614) and place (Ingham, Suffolk, England) for Susanna Page.  EXCELLENT

8)  London, England, Baptisms, Marriages and Burials, 1538-1812 -- Provides father's name (Thomas Page),. baptism date (19 Nov 1626) and baptism place (St. Bride's, Fleet Street, London).  BAD.

9)  Global, Find A Grave Index for Burials at Sea and Other Select Burial Locations, 1300s-Current -- Provides birth date (`1622, Lavenham, Suffolk), death date (24 Jan 1681), death place (Boston, Mass.), Spouse (Thomas Gleason III), Father's name (John Page), mother's name (Phoebe Page), Child (Susanna).  BAD (only item accurate is spouse's name!).

10)  Millennium File -- Lists spouse (Thomas Gleason), birth date (1628), and death date/place (24 Jan 1691, Boston, Mass.).  GOOD (3 out of 4)

11)  U.S., New England Marriages Prior to 1700 --  lists spouse (Thomas Gleason), death date (1691) and marriage date (1631).  FAIR (got spouse and death year).

12)  U.S. and International Marriage Records, 1560-1900 -- Lists spouse (Thomas Gleason) and Marriage (of MA).  FAIR (it the spouse's name right).

There are no Original records on this list of 12 Ancestry Hints.  The one record that is totally correct is a Derivative Source based on a transcription of the Ingham parish registers, which would be an Original source.

I don't accept Hints #1 to #6, or #10 to #12 in my Ancestry Member Trees.  They are mainly indexes and lists from other derivative records.  Because I cannot easily access the original parish records on microfilm, I do accept the parish register transcriptions if the entry is in the IGI extracted records.  I do use Find A Grave, but only for the burial record.  Those are my choices.

The total for the answer to Russ's suggestion - one of the 12 Hints for Susanna Page was Excellent.  Several others had parts correct or were limited in information.

The URL for this post is:  http://www.geneamusings.com/2015/08/what-ancestry-hints-do-i-get-for.html

Copyright (c) 2015, Randall J. Seaver


Please comment on this post on the website by clicking the URL above and then the "Comments" link at the bottom of each post.  Or contact me by email at randy.seaver@gmail.com.




New or Updated Record Collections at FamilySearch.org - July 26 to August 2, 2015

I'm trying to keep up with the new and updated record collections at FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/search/collection/list).  

As of 2 August 2015, there were 2,020 record collections on FamilySearch (an increase of 1 from last week):



The new or updated collections are:


*  Wisconsin, Marriages, 1836-1930; 734,522 indexed records, without images, added or updated 31 Jul 2015

*  United States Census, 1810; 827,547 indexed records, with images, added or updated 30 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Hidalgo, Catholic Church Records, 1546-1971; 3,250,977 indexed records, with images, added or updated 29 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Distrito Federal, Catholic Church Records, 1514-1970; 2,372,479 indexed records, with images, added or updated 29 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Durango, Catholic Church Records, 1604-1985; 130,218 indexed records, with images, added or updated 29 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Guanajuato, Catholic Church Records, 1519-1984; 1,488,203 indexed records, with images, added or updated 29 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Sonora, Catholic Church Records, 1657-1994; 176,257 indexed records, with images, added or updated 29 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Zacatecas, Catholic Church Records, 1605-1980; 85,499 indexed records, with images, added or updated 29 Jul 2015

*  Philippines, Civil Registration (National), 1945-1984; Browse Images only, no index, added or updated 28 Jul 2015

*  United States, Index to Alien Case Files, 1940-2003; 456,334 indexed records, with images, added or updated 28 Jul 2015

*  Italy, Bari, Civil Registration (State Archive), 1809-1908; 604,492 indexed records, with images, added or updated 28 Jul 2015

*  Italy, Caltanissetta, Civil Registration (State Archive), 1820-1935; 291,719 indexed records, with images, added or updated 28 Jul 2015

*  Italy, Genova, Civil Registration (State Archive), 1796-1812, 1838-1859, 1866-1899; 153,718 indexed records, with images, added or updated 28 Jul 2015

*  Italy, Mantova, Civil Registration (State Archive), 1496-1906; 170,486 indexed records, with images, added or updated 28 Jul 2015

*  Italy, Pescara, Civil Registration (State Archive), 1865-1929; 179,661 indexed records, with images, added or updated 28 Jul 2015

*  Italy, Pesaro e Urbino, Urbino, Civil Registration (State Archive), 1866-1942; 113,558 indexed records, with images, added or updated 28 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Oaxaca, Catholic Church Records, 1559-1988; 1,279,525 indexed records, with images, added or updated 28 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, México, Catholic Church Records, 1567-1970; 1,032,545 indexed records, with images, added or updated 28 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Jalisco, Catholic Church Records, 1590-1979; 1,239,961 indexed records, with images, added or updated 28 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Michoacán, Catholic Church Records, 1555-1996; 345,068 indexed records, with images, added or updated 28 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Puebla, Catholic Church Records, 1545-1977; 1,884,313 indexed records, with images, added or updated 28 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Chihuahua, Catholic Church Records, 1632-1958; 27,361 indexed records, with images, added or updated 28 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Sinaloa, Catholic Church Records, 1671-1968; 50,792 indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, San Luis Potosí, Catholic Church Records, 1586-1977; 396,924 indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Tamaulipas, Catholic Church Records, 1703-1964; 109,933 indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Colima, Catholic Church Records, 1707-1969; 61,464 indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Nayarit, Catholic Church Records, 1596-1967; 9,863  indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Coahuila, Catholic Church Records, 1627-1978; 317,740 indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Guerrero, Catholic Church Records, 1576-1979; 16,290 indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Tlaxcala, Catholic Church Records, 1576-1994; 63,259 indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Aguascalientes, Catholic Church Records, 1620-1962; 135,095 indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Tabasco, Catholic Church Records, 1803-1970; 32,572 indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Baja California and Baja California Sur, Catholic Church Records, 1750-1984; 43,067 indexed records, with images, added or updated 7 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Veracruz, Catholic Church Records, 1590-1978; 44,289 indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Yucatán, Catholic Church Records, 1543-1977; 13,476 indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Morelos, Catholic Church Records, 1598-1994; 75,920 indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Querétaro, Catholic Church Records, 1590-1970; 93,907 indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Nuevo León, Catholic Church Records, 1667-1981; 33,747 indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

*  Mexico, Campeche, Catholic Church Records, 1638-1944; 19,651 indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

*  Massachusetts Marriages, 1841-1915; 1,538,139 indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

*  Peru, La Libertad, Civil Registration, 1903-1998; 342,315 indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

*  England and Wales Census, 1871; 25,330,945 indexed records, with images, added or updated 27 Jul 2015

Unfortunately, it is difficult to tell which collections are brand new and which ones are updated.  The asterisk they use is for "Recently added or updated."  I am particularly interested in new collections, for the obvious reasons.

In order to select a specific collection, go to 
https://familysearch.org/search/collection/list and use the "Filter by collection name" feature in the upper left-hand corner.

Each one of the collections listed above has a Research Wiki page (use the "Learn more" link).  It would be very useful if the Wiki page for each collection listed the dates for when the collection was added as a new collection and the dates for major updates also.

The URL for this post is:  
http://www.geneamusings.com/2015/08/new-or-updated-record-collections-at.html

Copyright (c) 2015, Randall J. Seaver


Please comment on this post on the website by clicking the URL above and then the "Comments" link at the bottom of each post.  Or contact me by email at randy.seaver@gmail.com.



Amanuensis Monday - Week 279: 1809 Will of Mercy (Foster) (Russell) Sever (1737-1810) of Kingston, Mass.

Genea-blogger John Newmark (who writes the excellent  TransylvanianDutch blog) started a Monday blog theme years ago called "Amanuensis Monday."  John offers this definition for "amanuensis:" 

"A person employed to write what another dictates or to copy what has been written by another."

The subject today is the 1809 will of Mercy (Foster) (Russell) Sever (1737-1810) of Kingston, Plymouth County, Massachusetts:


The transcription of the will and Judge's order is:

 [page 192, left-hand page of image, near the bottom]

In the name of God amen. I Mercy Sever of Kingston in the County of
Plymouth & Commonwealth of Massachusetts being visited with bodily Infirmity
and apprehending myself drawing to the close of life & being desirous to set my

[page 193]

house in order, do proceed to make this my last will and Testament.

In the first place: I commend my Soul to the Mercy of God through a Redeemer
for Pardon & eternal Salvation, and my Remains to decent Interment.

In the second place: it is my Will, after the discharge of debts & funeral charges that
all the property of which I shall die seized, be disposed of in the following Manner, viz.
To be placed in the hands of my beloved Son George Russell, he becoming obligated to pay
annually the lawful Interest of the whole Sum to my beloved Daughter Nancy
Sever during her Widowhood; and after her Marriage or Decease the said property to
pass, one half of it to Cap^n James Sever, and the other half to the Children of
John Seaver deceased in equal Shares.

The Reasons which have influenced me to this manner of disposing of my
property, to the Exclusion of my beloved Sons Nathaniel & George Russell and my
Grand Children Thomas, James, Charles & Mary Children of my beloved Son John Russell
deceased, & Lucia James & William, Children of my beloved Son James Russell deceased,
are, that said Property was derived to me, from my Honoured & beloved Husband
William Sever Esq^r deceased, and therefore may with propriety eventually revert
into the Line of his Family.

In the last place, I do hereby appoint my Son Nathaniel Russell Executor
to this my last will and Testament. In witness whereof I have hereunto set
my hand & seal this 26th day of December Anno Domini one thousand eight hundred
and nine.

Signed & sealed in presence of (the Insertion of
the word Widowhood & the Interlineation of the
word Marriage being made before the Signature)          Mercy Seaver {seal}

Zephaniah Willis
Mary Barnes
Polly Torrance

To all People to whom these presents shall come Joshua Thomas Esquire
{seal} Judge of the Probate of Wills &c in the County of Plymouth within the
Commonwealth of Massachusetts sendeth greeting.

Know ye that on the second day of May Anno Domini 1810 the Instrument
hereunto annexed (purporting the last Will & Testament of Mercy Sever late of
Kingston in said County Widow deceased) was presented for probate by Nathaniel
Russell the Executor therein named then present Rev^d Zephaniah Willis & on
the fourth day of the same May, Mary Barnes two of the Witnesses thereto
subscribed, who made oath that they saw the said Testatrix sign seal & heard her
declare the said Instrument to be her last will and Testament & that they with Polly
Torrance subscribed their Names together as witnesses to the Execution thereof in the said
Testatrix presence, and that she was then (to the best of their Judgment of sound
& disposing Mind; Wherefore I do prove approve & allow of the said Instrument as the
last will and Testament of the before named deceased, & do commit the Administration thereof
in all Matters, the same concerning & of her Estate whereof she died seized & possessed in said County
unto Nathaniel Russell the before named Executor well & faithfully to execute the said Will &
to administer the Estate of the said Deceased according thereto, who accepted of his said Trust & gave
bond with sureties to return an Inventory of said Deceased's Estate & according to the Directions of
the Law, & he shall render an account ^upon oath^ of his proceedings when thereunto lawfully required & Testimony
whereof. I have hereunto set my hand & Seal of Office, the fourth day of May & year above written.
                                                                         Joshua Thomas

The source citation for this record is (using the "Digital Archives" source template in RootsMagic 7):

"Massachusetts, Plymouth County, Probate Records, 1633-1967," Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org : accessed 23 July 2015), court clerk transcription, Probate records, 1806-1811 Vol 42-43 > Volume 43, Pages 192-193 (image 423 of 612), will of Mercy Sever of Kingston, written 1809, proved 1811 (from FHL microfilm US/CAN 0,550,902); citing original Plymouth County Probate Court volumes at State Archives, Boston, Mass.

Mercy Foster (1737-1810) was the daughter of Nathaniel and Mercy (Thatcher) Foster of Plymouth.  She married (1) John Russell (1732-1776) in 1757.  Her living Russell children in 1809 were Nancy (Russell) Sever, Nathaniel Russell (who she named executor) and George Russell, and her deceased children with issue were John Russell and James Russell, naming their living children.

Mercy (Foster) Russell married William Sever (1729-1809) on 19 June 1798 in Plymouth, Massachusetts.  He died in 1809 in Kingston, Massachusetts.  

William Sever, in his 1802 will probated in 1809, left his real estate to his two living sons, James Sever and John Sever (see Amanuensis Monday - Post 277: 1802 Will of William Sever (1729-1809) of Kingston, Mass.).  The son John Sever (1766-1803) was the husband of Nancy (Russell) Sever, the daughter of Mercy (Foster) (Russell) Sever.  When William Sever's real estate was divided (see Amanuensis Monday - Post 278: 1811 Division of Lands of William Sever (1729-1809) of Kingston, Mass.), son John's estate was given one half of the real estate, including lots adjacent to William Sever's Mansion house.

In her will, Mercy (Foster) Russell) Sever left her entire estate to Captain James Sever (1761-1845) and the children of John Sever deceased (1766-1803), the husband of her daughter Nancy (Russell) Sever (1767-1848), in order to keep it in the Sever line.  Nancy (Russell) Sever outlived James Sever, and she also has an estate in the Plymouth County probate records.  It consisted of personal estate, not real estate, and was split between the heirs of James Sever and John Sever.

The URL for this post is:   http://www.geneamusings.com/2015/08/amanuensis-monday-week-279-1809-will-of.html

Copyright (c) 2015, Randall J. Seaver


Please comment on this post on the website by clicking the URL above and then the "Comments" link at the bottom of each post.  Or contact me by email at randy.seaver@gmail.com.



Sunday, August 2, 2015

Added or Updated Databases at Ancestry.com - Week of July 26 to August 1, 2015

The following databases were added or updated on Ancestry.com during the period from 26 July to 1 August 2015:



The databases added or updated include


*  London, England, Electoral Registers, 1832-1965; indexed database with record images, UPDATED 7/30/2015


*  Gloucestershire, England, Baptisms, Marriages and Burials, 1538-1813; indexed database with record images, UPDATED 7/29/2015


*  Gloucestershire, England, Baptisms, 1813-1913; indexed database with record images, UPDATED 7/29/2015


*  Gloucestershire, England, Confirmations, 1834-1913; indexed database with record images, UPDATED 7/29/2015


*  Gloucestershire, England, Marriages and Banns, 1754-1938; indexed database with record images, UPDATED 7/29/2015


*  Gloucestershire, England, Burials, 1813-1988; indexed database with record images, UPDATED 7/29/2015


*  1880 United States Federal Census; indexed database with record images, UPDATED 7/28/2015


The recently added and updated page on Ancestry.com is at http://www.ancestry.com/cs/recent-collections.


The complete Ancestry.com Card Catalog is at  http://search.ancestry.com/search/CardCatalog.aspx. 
 

There were 0 NEW databases ADDED this past week. There are now 32,701 databases available as of 1 August, up 0 from last week. 


The URL for this post is:  
http://www.geneamusings.com/2015/08/added-or-updated-databases-at.html

Copyright (c) 2015, Randall J. Seaver


Please comment on this post on the website by clicking the URL above and then the "Comments" link at the bottom of each post.  Or contact me by email at randy.seaver@gmail.com.


Best of the Genea-Blogs - 26 July to 1 August 2015

Hundreds of genealogy and family history bloggers write thousands of posts every week about their research, their families, and their interests. I appreciate each one of them and their efforts.


My criteria for "Best of ..." are pretty simple - I pick posts that advance knowledge about genealogy and family history, address current genealogy issues, provide personal family history, are funny or are poignant. I don't list posts destined for daily blog prompts or meme submissions (but I do include summaries of them), or my own posts.

Here are my picks for great reads from the genealogy blogs for this past week:


*  Unlock the Past Baltic Genealogy Cruise -- Days 1 to 3; Days 4 to 6;  Days 7-8: Russia; Days 9-11: Helsinki and Stockholm; Days 12-14: Copenhagen and Homeward Bound by Chris Paton on The British GENES Blog (GEnealogy News & EventS) blog.  Chris shares his cruise experiences.

*  Lost Genealogy: Don't Be a Victim of the Digital Dark Ages by Thomas MacEntee on the Geneabloggers blog.  Thomas describes his backup system, plus a mea culpa.

*  Claiming the Scandal, Finding the Line by Dave McDonald on the Thinking Genealogically blog.  Dave describes how a memory and the IGI helped him solve a research problem in the 1980s.

*  8 Quick Genealogy Website Search Strategies by Diane Haddad on the Genealogy Insider blog. Diane describes tips from the WDYTYA professional genealogists.

*  What's in a Name? by Linda Stufflebean on the Empty Branches on the Family Tree blog.  Linda's database has some interesting names.

*  Incremental Improvement of the New Ancestry.com Website by the writer of The Ancestry Insider blog.  Mr. Insider relates the recent incremental development history of the Ancestry website.

*  Tuesday Genealogy Travels by Mary Mettler on the California Genealogical Society & Library blog.  Mary is on a research trip in England and shares her experiences.

*  Guest Interview with Michael D. Lacopo: Author, Lecturer, and "Hoosier Daddy" Blogger by Dana Leeds on The Enthusiastic Genealogist blog.  Dana  asks about the GRIP course Michael taught, and about the blog.  Great interview!

*  The Value of Old vs. New Genealogy or Myth vs. Fact by James Tanner on the Genealogy's Star blog.  James highlights the availability of digitized books online.

*  Book Shelf:  Plat Book of San Diego County, California by Christine Manczuk on the Ancestry Island blog.  Christine found this gem in the Library of Congress digitized book collection.  Does the LOC have something similar for your ancestor's home town?

*  Getting That SSN and  More SSI Info by Judy G. Russell on The Legal Genealogist blog.  Judy highlights Social Security numbers and practices and readers comments.

*  Kehrer Talks FamilySearch Transformations - #BYUFHGC by the writer of The Ancestry Insider blog.  Here are talk summaries from the BYU Family History and Genealogy Conference.

*  They Took My Johann and Didn't Ask by Michael John Neill on the RootDig.com blog.  Michael's ancestor's information doesn't belong to just him...I agree.  Good work, good attitude.

*  Creating Eternal Families: BYU Conference on Family History & Genealogy, Recap of Day 1 and On to Day 2;  Making Difficult Research Easy and Accurate at the BYU Conference on Family History and Genealogy  by Lynn Broderick on The Single Leaf blog.

*  Genealogy Opportunities: How Do You Make Money in Genealogy? by Thomas MacEntee on the GenBiz Solutions blog.  Thomas details his 2015 income and expenses to date.  Impressive, and transparent.

*  Koonce & Koonce Expedition, Part 2 by Taneya Koonce on Taneya's Genealogy Blog.  Taneya was persistent, and had some luck finding a family cemetery.

*  6 Steps to Choreograph Your Research Across the Internet by Karen Hanna on the FamilySearch Blog.  Karen provides highlights from Janet Hovorka's talk at the BYU Conference.

*  A First-Hand Look at Little Becky and Dennis, Age 2 by Becky Jamison on the Grace and Glory blog.  What priceless memories Becky found in her father's papers.

Here are pick posts by other geneabloggers this week:

*  Friday Finds July 25th - 31st by Nichelle Barra on the Copper Leaf Genealogy blog.

*  Recommended Reads by Linda Stufflebean on the Empty Branches on the Family Tree blog.

*  Friday Finds - 07/31/15 by Julie Cahill Tarr on Julie's Genealogy & History Hub blog.

*  This Week's Creme de la Creme -- August 1, 2015 by Gail Dever on the Genealogy a la Carte blog.

Readers are encouraged to go to the blogs listed above and read their articles, and add their blogs to your Favorites, Feedly, another RSS feed, or email if you like what you read. Please make a comment to them also - all bloggers appreciate feedback on what they write.

Did I miss a great genealogy blog post? Tell me! I am currently reading posts from over 1590 genealogy bloggers using Feedly, but I still miss quite a few it seems.


Read past Best of the Genea-Blogs posts here.


The URL for this post is:  
http://www.geneamusings.com/2015/08/best-of-genea-blogs-26-july-to-1-august.html

Copyright (c) 2015, Randall J. Seaver

Please comment on this post on the website by clicking the URL above and then the "Comments" link at the bottom of each post.  Or contact me by email at randy.seaver@gmail.com.



Saturday, August 1, 2015

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun -- Survey of Genealogy Activities

Calling all Genea-Musings Fans: 

 It's Saturday Night again - 
time for some more Genealogy Fun!!



Here is your assignment if you choose to play along (cue the Mission Impossible music, please!): 


1)  
Answer these questions in my survey about your genealogy resources and usage:

a)  Which genealogy software programs for your computer do you use (e.g., Family Tree Maker, Reunion, GRAMPS, etc.)?

b)  Which online family trees have information submitted by you - in either a separate online tree (e.g., Ancestry Member Tree) or a universal (collaborative) online tree (e.g., WikiTree)?

c)  For which subscription genealogy record providers (e.g., Ancestry) do you have a subscription?

d)  Which FREE genealogy record providers (e.g., FamilySearch) do you use regularly?

e)  How much time do you spend each week doing actual genealogy research online?  [Note:  not reading, or social networking, but actual searching in a record provider].  Estimate an average number of hours per week.

f)  How much time do you spend each week doing actual genealogy research in a repository (e.g., library, archive, courthouse, etc.)?  Estimate an average number of hours per month over, say, a one year period.

g)  How much time do you spend each week adding information to your genealogy software program (either on your computer or online)?  Estimate an average number of hours per week over, say, a one month period.

h)  How much time do you spend each month at a genealogical society meeting, program or event (not a seminar or conference)?  Estimate an average number of hours per month over, say, a one year period.

i)  How much time do you spend each month on genealogy education (e.g., reading books and periodicals, attending seminars, conferences, workshops, webinars, etc.)?   Estimate an average number of hours per month over, say, a one year period.

j)  How much time do you spend each week reading, writing and commenting on genealogy blogs, websites, and social media?   Estimate an average number of hours per week over, say, a one month period.

2)    Answer the questions in a blog post of your own (and please drop a link as a comment in this post), in a comment to this post, or in a Google+ or Facebook post.

Here's mine:

a)  I use RootsMagic 7 to enter all ancestral information into a database.  I also use Family Tree Maker 2014 and Legacy Family Tree 8 occasionally to take advantage of their features.

b)  I have my family tree information in these online tree systems:

i)  Separate tree:

*  Ancestry Member Tree (several, replaced very 1-2 years), use Hints 
*  MyHeritage (rarely updated), use Record Matches
*  GeneaNet (never updated)
*  FindMy Past (never updated), use Record Matches
*  Mocavo (never updated)

ii)  Collaborative tree:

*  FamilySearch Family Tree (updated frequently), use Record Hints
*  WikiTree (updated occasionally)
*  Geni.com (updated occasionally)
*  WeRelate (updated rarely)

c)  My subscription genealogy record collection websites:

*  Ancestry.com
*  MyHeritage (tree and data)
*  FindMyPast
*  Mocavo
*  GenealogyBank
*  American Ancestors

d)  My most-used FREE genealogy record providers:

*  FamilySearch
*  Find a Grave
*  Google
*  USGenWeb
*  Rootsweb

e)  Doing online genealogy research each week:  Average per week = 8 hours

f)  Doing repository research each month:  Average per month = 2 hours

g)  Adding information to family tree database each week:  Average per week = 12 hours

h)  Genealogy society events and meetings:  Average per month = 16 hours

i)  Genealogy education:  Average per month = 16 hours

j)  Reading genealogy websites or contributing to social media:  Average per week = 32 hours

Adding all of that up totals about 60 hours per week.  Which is about right, I think!

Since I do a lot of genealogy blogging, I spend at least half of my time every day on social media.  I try to streamline my time reading by using my iPhone for email and blogs, and try to limit my time on Facebook to 30 minutes a day or less.  I really should get out more to the local repositories.  I do spend at least one day each year at the Family History Library and an hour or two at the local libraries each month.  My genealogy education this past year was limited to society events, webinars, RootsTech and Jamboree.  The last three years, we went on a genealogy cruise.


The URL for this post is:  http://www.geneamusings.com/2015/08/saturday-night-genealogy-fun-survey-of.html

Copyright (c) 2015, Randall J. Seaver


Please comment on this post on the website by clicking the URL above and then the "Comments" link at the bottom of each post.  Or contact me by email at randy.seaver@gmail.com.