Tuesday, August 8, 2006

New Everton's Genie Helper issue

The first issue of the Everton's Genealogical Helper magazine with Leland Meitzler as Managing Editor has hit the library shelves, so I went browsing through it.

The feature articles are by Richard Hooverson ("Musings and Glranings from the World of History and Genealogy"), George G. Morgan ("Cracking the Cousin Code"), Aaron L. Day ("DNA to Africa"), Loni Gardner ("The Magic of Mindmapping"), and Bill Dollarhide ("State Censuses and Substitutes: A Selected List for all 50 States"). The Dollarhide article is excellent - a keeper for serious researchers. The other articles were mildly interesting, but not real helpful to me

The regular features are still there through the editing change - with at least one major exception (detailed below). The "Bureau of Missing Ancestors" has queries from readers, while the calendar of upcoming events, the CDROM and book reviews are all useful. The Computer Helper section had two articles - one by Leland about "Your Fake Genealogy" - huh? The other by a Ph.D about using automatic word-linkage techniques to find elusive ancestors in the census records. The results of the technique are explained, but I couldn't figure out if he was using an available program (and if so, where to obtain it) or if this was a super-secret tool that only Ph.D.s can effectively have and use. Even Google turns up zero hits for the term.

The major disappointment for me in the editorship change is the loss of the column that listed the brickwall problems of readers along with answers by professional researchers suggesting avenues for further research. I found that feature very informative and useful, and was my major reason to read the magazine.

It's probably too late now to join one of the genealogy cruises advertised in the magazine - there is one from BC to Alaska, two to the Mexican Riviera, and one to the Eastern Caribbean. They are all in October or November and our calendar is already full this year. They sound like fun - I wonder if my wife would enjoy one of these?

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