Saturday, May 31, 2008

Wheel of Genealogy Fortune - Post 2

You all know how to play Wheel of Fortune - I've given you R S T L N and E just like in the Final Round!

Take a stab at this quote:

_ E N E _ L _ _ Y ... _ S ... N _ T ... _ _ S T ... _ ... _ _ S T _ _ E,

_T'S ... _ ... _ _ S S _ _ N. -- _ _ R _ ... _ _ R R E L L - S E S N _ _ _.

[Note: If you can see the "..." they are spacers between words. Blogger doesn't do double spaces well. I whited them out on the blog web page.]

Extra credit if you can find the quote on a web page.

It shouldn't take too long! Put your answer in Comments.


The Elusive Russell Smith - Post 7

I wrote a series of six posts back in January and February documenting my search for information about Russell Smith, the probable father of my third-great-grandfather, Ranslow Smith. Post 6 of the series is here, and has links to the earlier posts.

In post 6, I listed the Oneida County NY deeds that I wanted to review from the Grantor and Grantee indexes. I have methodically ordered, received and reviewed the microfilms of the deeds from the Family History Library at the San Diego Family History Center. I captured digital images of all of them also, and have spent this morning extracting information from those for Russell Smith.

My extraction from the first deed involving Russell Smith is below:

On 1 March 1806, John Lansing Junior, and Cornelia his wife, of Albany in Albany County, New York, and Abraham Lansing of Albany, sold land to Russel Smith of Western town in Oneida County, New York, for $256 of money of the USA in hand. The land was "...all that certain parcel of land situate lying and being in the town of Western in the county of Oneida being part of a certain lot of land distinguished in the division of Fonda's Patent as lot number eighteen and which parcel of land is in a survey made by Benjamin Wright. bounded easterly by the east boundary line of the said lot number eighteen southerly by the northern bank of the Mohawk River westerly and northerly by a line drawn from a point seven chains & fifty links from the north east corner of the said lot number eighteen in the eastern boundary line of the same south forty three degrees forty minutes west twenty five chains and eighty eight links to the northeast corner of a square of four acres granted to Prosper Rudd then along the east line of the said four acres south six chains and thirty three links thence west three chains and twelve links and thence south two degrees twenty five minutes west fifteen chains and fourteen links to the Mohawk river containing fifty eight acres and an half together with all and singular the hereditaments and appurtenances thereunto belonging or in any wise appertaining and the reversion and reversions remainder and remainders rents issues and proffits thereof and all the estate right title interest use trust property claims and demand whatsoever of the said parties of the first part either in law or equity of in and to the above bargained ..." John Lansing, and Cornelia his wife, and Abraham Lansing and Susannah his wife, acknowledged that this indenture was executed before Sebastian Visscure, Master in chy, and it was recorded on 23 May 1807 by Francis A. Bloodgood. (Deeds, 1791-1901, Oneida County, New York, Volume 12, Page 607, accessed on FHL Microfilm 0,364,861).

Four subsequent deeds sell off bits of this land parcel to Henry Smith (a sibling or cousin or uncle?), Charles Leffingwell, Nehemiah Muscott and Benjamin Rudd. Russell Smith's last deed is in 1817, and sells all 58 and a half acres to Benjamin Rudd.

I still have several deeds to review - so far I haven't been able to connect Russell Smith with a specific David Smith, much to my dismay.

Several of the deeds mention neighbors and list witnesses, so those names have gone on my list of "associates" of Russell Smith. One of them may be related to Esther (--?--) Smith, Russell's wife.

I have had some experience with the metes and bounds type of land definition in New England, but I wanted to learn more about it. I cracked open E. Wade Hone's book Land & Property Research for the first time - it has been sitting proudly in my bookcase for several years. I especially wanted to refresh my memory about the measurements, such as:

* Chain = 100 links; 4 rods, poles or perches, 66 feet, 1/80th of a mile.
* Link = 7.92 inches
* Rod = 0.25 chains, 16.5 feet, 1/320 of a mile
* Acre = 160 rods square, 10 square chains, 43,560 square feet, 1/640th of a square mile.

I looked for a map of Fonda's Patent in Oneida County, and found several on the Oneida County NY USGenWeb site The 1829 map shows Fonda's Patent. The 1822 map shows the early towns, including Western and Lee just up the Mohawk River from the town of Rome.

If Russell Smith sold all of his land in Western in 1817, I wonder where he went from there? There are several Russell Smith's in the 1820 New York census, but none are in this area. Perhaps he and/or his wife went up to Jefferson County NY, where his son David settled around 1800, and where his sons George, Lyman and Ranslow Smith owned land in the 1830's.

Don't you just love the language in the older deeds? They don't use any punctuation other than a random period, it seems.

Book Report: "Death on the Family Tree"

I like murder mysteries, and when the book "Death on the Family Tree" by Patricia Sprinkle fell off the paperback book shelf at the library and I picked it up, I was hooked.

The cover says "These family ties don't bind ... they kill!"

The back cover says "If you dig around the roots of your family tree, you might find a few bodies."

The book summary (from the back cover) reads:

"With grown-up kids and a husband always on the road, Katharine Murray's nest would be empty if it weren't for her Aunt Lucy -- until the elderly woman dies. Now Katharine's saddled with her Aunt's worldly belongings - mostly knickknacks destined for the dumpster. But there's a priceless Celtic necklace among the dross - and a diary written in German, neither of which Katharine's ever seen before.

"Determined to find out where these objects came from, Katharine unwittingly discovers a branch of her family tree she never knew existed - namely Aunt Lucy's brother Carter, murdered more than fifty years ago after a mysterious trip to Austria. And when Lucy's artifacts are stolen, and the main suspect turns up dead, Katharine realizes she must solve a burglary and two unsolved homicides separated by a half-century ... before more than her family secrets end up dead and buried."

I really enjoyed this book because of the genealogy angle and the twists and turns of the murder stories. The setting is in Atlanta. One of the characters, Uncle Dutch, has done genealogy research and knows the family secrets but doesn't give them up. Katharine gets help at a "history center" and checks the 1930 census (using Soundex and microfilm) and later uses on her uncle's computer to find the same record. The family relationships are believable and familiar - how many of us don't know about the personal life of our mother's sister's husband's brother?

I read these types of books while watching the Padres games during the endless baseball season, so I'm always on the lookout for works like this. Does anyone else have a recommendation for family tree or genealogy mystery novels?

Friday, May 30, 2008

The LearnWebSkills Family History Tutorial

I posted over a year ago about the use of the web site to provide tutorial instruction in genealogy research to individuals working alone or to a group. The web site includes:

This site has an online genealogy tutorial that is excellent for both beginner and veteran Internet researchers. The tutorial is in six modules:

I- Getting Started (Home Sources, Charts, Recording Information, Citing Resources)

II - Using Online Resources (Online Databases, Search Engines, Directories)

III - Gathering Key Records (Vital Records, Federal Census Records)

IV - Exploring Further (Probate Records, Church Records, Military Records, Newspapers)

V - Sharing Information (Discussion Lists, Message Boards, Software Programs)

VI - Quiz

Module II, provides tutorials for:

1) Social Security Death Index
2) Rootsweb WorldConnect Project Database
3) LDS FamilySearch Databases
4) Ellis Island Database
5) Castle Garden Database
6) (only the 1880 Census)
7) Google Search Engine
8) Cyndi's List
9) USGenWeb Project

In each tutorial, there is a summary of the database or web site, and links for Demonstration or Practice.

If you click on Demonstration, you will get step-by-step directions in the left-hand frame for how to use the database of web site with examples shown in the right-hand frame.

If you click on Practice, then the step-by-step directions appear in the left-hand frame, the actual web site input boxes and results are in the right hand frame, and you can input your own ancestors into the databases.

This web site has just provided a new tutorial for Researching Your Patriot Ancestor. This tutorial series has four modules:

* Getting Started (includes Home Sources, Social Security Death Index, and Chart basics)

* Finding a Revolutionary War Patriot (includes the Rootsweb WorldConnect database, census records, FamilySearch, Google, and DAR/SAR Patriot lookups)

* Documenting the Lineage (includes the SSDI,,, Family History Library Catalog, and

It all works beautifully. And it is free! The tutorial is fairly simple to use and accesses only freely available online databases. However, a similar tutorial that utilizes commercial web sites such as Ancestry, WorldVitalRecords, Footnote, GenealogyBank, NewEnglandAncestors and others might be useful to those who have access to these sites (for instance, at home, at a library, at the LDS Family History Library, and selected LDS Family History Centers).

The whole tutorial can be used to provide a fairly complete course on how to effectively pursue genealogy research on the Internet. IMHO, it is much better than any static lecture course because the student can see a demonstration and then practice using the databases with the step-by-step directions on the screen.

If your local society is struggling to provide online genealogy research instruction to your members, this is by far the best online hands-on at-your-own-pace tutorial I have found.

NEHG Register Table of Contents - April 2008 issue

The Table of Contents for The New England Historical and Genealogical Register (Volume 162, Number 2, Whole Number 646), April 2008, includes:

* Editorial - page 83

* Peter Hackley of New London, Connecticut, and His Two Wives, Elizabeth (Waterhouse) Baker and Elizabeth (Marshall) Darrow, by Patricia St. Clair Ostwodl - page 85

* William Reynolds of Plymouth Colony and Cape Porpoise, Maine, by Martin E. Hollick - page 91

* The Identity of Phillipa, Second Wife of Nicholas West of Drayton, Somerset, and Grandmother of Joan (West) White of Lancaster, Massachusetts, by Patricia A. Metsch - page 93

* English Origins of Lawrence Leach of Salem, Massachusetts, by Robert F. Henderson and James R. Henderson - page 98.

* Identifying Mercy, Wife of Thomas Hinckley of Harwich, Massachusetts, As Mercy (Bangs) (Hinckley) Cole, by Glade Ian Nelson - page 101

* Various Wills Relating to New England Colonists: Gillett, Swaine, Cheney, and Tutty-Knight-Whitman, by Leslie Mahler - page 113

* Dorcas (____) Lippitt of Providence, Rhode Island, and Her Descendants, by Cherry Fletcher Bamberg (concluded from 162:36) - page 118

* Ancestry of Bennet Eliot of Nazeing, Essex, Father of Seven Great Migration Immigrants to Massachusetts, by William Wyman Fiske (concluded from 162:72) - page 128

* Wolston Brockway of Lyme, Connecticut, with Further Analysis of His Associations, by Gale Ion Harris (concluded from 162:46) - page 140

* Joseph and Phoebe (Millington) Rounds of Clarendon and Monkton, Vermont, by John Bradley Arthaud and Marcia (Yannizze) Melnyk (concluded from 162:64) - page 149

* Reviews of Books and CD-ROMs - page 154

The books reviewed include:

* The Descendants of Henry Sewall (1756-1656) [an error? probably 1576-1656] of Manchester and Coventry, England, and Newbury and Rowley, Massachusetts: The Family in England and the First Six Generations in North America, by Eben W. Graves (Boston, Newbury Street Press, 2007).

* The Pierponts of Roxbury, Massachusetts, by Helen Schatvet Ullmann, CG, FASG, (Boston, Newbury Street Press, 2007).

* The Descendants of John Grumman(t) of Cranfield, Bedfordshire, and Fairfield, Connecticut, and His Wife Sarah Try, by Martin Grumman Phillips (Boston, Newbury Street Press, 2007).

* Royal Families: Americans of royal and Noble Ancestry: Volume Three, Samuel Appleton and His wife Judith Everard and Five Generations of Their Descendants, by Marston Watson (Baltimore, Genealogical Publishing Company, 2007).

* The Ancestors of Alila May Miller (1881-1960) of Miller Place, Long Island, New York, by Willis H. White (Herndon, Va., the author, 2007).

* Caudebec in France and England: The Origin of Jacques Caudebec, 1664 - abt. 1764-1766, of Bolbec, France, and Deerpark, New York, Ancestor of the Cuddeback Family in America, by Elwyn L. Simons (Boston, Newbury Street Press, 2005).

* Thomas Fairchild, Puritan Merchant & Magistrate. The Life and Times of an American Colonizer & Patriarch (c. 1610-1670), by W. Bruce Fairchild (New York, iUniverse, Inc., 2006).

* 15 Generations of Whipples: Descendants of Matthew Whipple of Ipswich, Massachusetts, Abt. 1590-1647: An American Story, by Blaine Whipple, 4 vols. (Baltimore, Gateway Press, 2007).

* Hubbell by Choice: The Ancestry of Some Early Connecticut Women, by Mary Ann Walker Hubbell and Marjorie F. Hubbell Gibson, with Carol Hubbell Boggs, Bertie Herman, and Barbara Kruse (n.p., Hubbell Family Historical Society, 2008).

This issue has several interesting and useful articles for those researchers with the specific subject families. The Mercy (Bangs) (Hinckley) Cole brushes close to my Cape Cod Bangs and Cole families - she's not mine, but she's the wife of a sibling of one of my Cole ancestors, and a distant cousin due to her newly found Bangs family birth.

I value these issues because they demonstrate research techniques and results in finding colonial New England records and records in England prior to colonization. In many cases, they are inspirational to me - "look what they found, I wonder if I could try that for ..."

I also value the list of books reviewed, because Carlsbad Library in northern San Diego County often purchases new family surname books. In my own ancestry, I have the Whipple family from these works reviewed. The descendant books are also useful because they may cover collateral Seaver families in more detail than I have from my own research.

I checked the web site to see if the table of contents for this issue can be downloaded - the last issue they have on the site is January 2008, not the current April, 2008 issue. They show only the four 2007 issues available currently in PDF format. I really don't understand why organizations like NEHGS don't keep their web site up-to-date with the latest information.

Why doesn't NEHGS post the Table of Contents for the whole run of the publication online? It's only text, which doesn't have much bandwidth. That only makes sense to me. A researcher might Google a name and find that an article in NEHGR has been published. They may buy the specific issue, or even subscribe to the Society in order to gain access to the entire publication run.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Records from Central and South America on Ancestry

Gary Gibb posted "Why Such Little Interest in Central and South American Records?" on the blog on 23 May. Please read all of his post, and the comments too. In his post, Gary asked:

"Is it that we have had so few records from Central and South America that people that come from those places do not visit Ancestry?

"Is it that they just have lower interest in Genealogy?"

I saw the post on the first day, and recognized the importance of it to researchers with Latin American heritage. My local society in Southern California has noticed an increased interest in Central (including Mexico) and South American family history and genealogy, and we have found very few resources to help researchers with their research - mainly the Church records on microfilm at the LDS Family History Library and in their IGI and Vital Records databases.

My comments to Gary's post included:

"An interesting question, but I can think of several responses.

"1) How many databases do you have for Central and South America?

"2) It’s a pretty big place - with a total population exceeding North America. Only Belize and Guyana speak English as a first language, right? Brazil speaks Portuguese, Surinam [speaks] Dutch, and the rest speak Spanish. Does Ancestry have a Spanish or Portuguese language capability?

"3) The population of much of Latin America is poor, and does not have universal Internet access. If poor, buying basic necessities would trump paying for an Ancestry subscription - but a subscription to what?

"4) If you offer services in their language that meet their needs, they will come. The horse has to come before the cart."

There are now many more comments to Gary's post, which is good because only through feedback can determine the importance of records to researchers. The commenters make good points.

Why did Gary write the post in the first place? Was it a post to determine if there was any interest at all? Or to determine what specific interest that there might be?

Is there an opportunity here for to expand into church records that the Catholic Church now won't allow the LDS FHL to digitize or index? Is there an opportunity to digitize government records that may be available in many Central and South American countries - like census, vital, land, probate, military, immigration, etc. if they exist.

What do you think about this issue? Those with Latin American heritage are a significant percentage of the USA population. It must be remembered that it includes some of the Caribbean countries (e.g., Cuba, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, etc.). How can they be better served with genealogy databases and web sites?

I urge my readers with an interest in Central and South American genealogy research to respond to Gary's post with specific recommendations for databases and an expression of interest in having Ancestry expand to a Spain/Latin America specialty web site and subscription.

CVGS "Scottish Research" Program by Jackie Webster

The Chula Vista Genealogical Society program meeting speaker on Wednesday, 28 May, was Jackie Webster, who spoke on "Scottish Research." Jackie's CV and talk summary was posted here.

Jackie focused on the research that can be performed either using online resources or the LDS resources available at the San Diego Family History Center. She explained where records were located at the FHC, especially the Research Guides, the microfilms, the CDROMs, the computers, and the British Isles (BIGRA) collection. Jackie described the major books found at the reference desk, the general book shelves and the British Isles (BIGRA) shelves.

She summarized the availability of the Civil Registration of births, marriages and deaths (after 1855) and the Old Parochial Registers (OPR) of Scotland for the Church of Scotland (Presbyterian), which has baptisms, marriages and burials before 1855. Scotland has 33 counties and over 900 parishes. All of these records can be found on microfilms, and many are held permanently at the San Diego FHC. She also mentioned non-conformist church records.

Jackie covered the census records, which are available for 1841 to 1891 at present. They are all available on microfilm, and several are in online databases. The FHC has all of the 1861 and 1871 census microfilms, and a microfiche series with the transcribed 1881 census.

The BIGRA shelves at the FHC have many genealogy gems, including Family History society newsletters for many counties, books for monumental inscriptions, occupations and trades, gazetteers, clans and tartans, and surnames.

Jackie showed examples of many records for her ancestors, and described the processes used to find them. She particularly mentioned the army, medical, ministry and biographical records connected with the Honorable East India Company (HEIC) for military persons (many from Scotland) who served in India during the 19th century.

This presentation was full of interesting and useful information, especially for those with Scottish ancestry. In response to a question, Jackie explained that Scotland was initially settled by people from Ireland in the medieval time, then some Scots migrated to northern Ireland in the early 1700's, and many emigrated to Canada (especially Nova Scotia) and the USA in the mid to late 1700's.

Jackie ran out of time to cover the Internet resources in detail. Her handout listed the following web sites:


* -- IGI, Ancestral File and Pedigree Resource File have many Scottish families.
* -- a commercial site with Civil Registration BMD from 1855, Old Parish Records to 1854, the 1841 to 1901 census, and wills and testaments to 1901 (free). You can subscribe for a set number of credits (30 for 6 pounds).
* -- free site for historical records and documents.


* -- National Archives of Scotland official web site
* -- digital archive for the Scottish Archive Network which has digitized all testaments from 1500 to 1901.
* -- National Library of Scotland catalog


* -- Statistical Accounts of Scotland - sources for Scottish life in the 18th and 19th century.


* -- GENUKI is a "virtual reference library" of genealogical information that is of particular relevance to the UK & Ireland. It is a noncommercial service, provided by an ever-growing group of volunteers in cooperation with the Federation of Family History Societies and a number of its member societies.

We had a reporter and a photographer from the San Diego Union-Tribune present at the meeting. The reporter interviewed several members after the meeting, and the photographer took shots of the Board members, the speaker, and the attendees. We hope to see an article in the newspaper next week.

At the Beach!

I searched my family photographs for beach pictures for this Carnival of Genealogy post, but I found only one that I've scanned. I'm sure that there are more in my family photo albums, but they are not scanned yet.

The one I found is from 1958, and it certainly fills the bill about bathing beauties.

This photo was taken by my father at Mission Bay in San Diego, and shows my mother (the bathing beauty) wading with my brother Scott while I and brother Stan play in the water and the sand.

My parents didn't take us to the beach very often - it was usually not a holiday and rarely more often than once a year. We almost always went to the bay (no waves) rather than the ocean (with waves) - this was probably a safety issue with them! As boys, we loved the beach! Water, sand, sand crabs, seaweed, kelp, fish, shells - what a beautiful playground. We could run and jump and make a big mess ... and take it home too. I remember being buried in the sand with only my head above the ground - a feeling of total helplessness.

When I was a teenager, we would hitchhike from the top of Texas Street to the beach - there were usually three or four of us, and invariably we ended up at Mission Beach, which had not only the ocean with nice bodysurfing waves but also Belmont Park, an amusement park with the Big Dipper roller coaster, and a salt-water indoor pool. Bodysurfing is exhilarating - the wave actually catches you and sometimes throws you down on the sand in front of the wave. There is a science to it. You spend hours bobbing in the ocean waiting for the right wave in the right place. It's difficult without swim fins. As a teenager, the beach was a great place to watch teen girls (and other females) in bathing suits - and learn about some of the finer points of the opposite sex.

I never learned how to surf on a board. The surf boom started while I was in high school and I didn't fit in with that crowd, so I never learned how. I was always envious of the guys who did. And I loved the surf music - the Beach Boys, Jan and Dean, Dick Dale and the Deltones, the Ventures, etc.

When we married and had children, going to the beach became a regular event for the Easter, Fourth of July, Labor Day and Christmas holidays. When the girls were small, we usually went to the Silver Strand State Beach because they had a snack bar and restrooms. In later years, we went to Imperial Beach (we have a friend that lives right on the beach) or the Coronado Beach by the Hotel del Coronado (the girls youth group often went here). There are other great beaches - notably Ocean Beach, Pacific Beach, Windansea Beach in La Jolla, La Jolla Shores, the clothing optional Black's Beach below UCSD, the glider port and the Torrey Pines Golf Course (I've never been there!), and more further up the coast. There are fishing piers extending out into the ocean at Imperial Beach, Ocean Beach, Pacific Beach and Oceanside. On a holiday weekend, its not unusual to have more than half a million people at the San Diego beaches. Imperial Beach also has a great sand castle contest every year.

My daughters learned to swim early, and it was great fun to watch them scamper from the waves when they were young. When they were older, we all went into the ocean and bodysurfed and boogie-boarded. The real highlight for me was the creativity involved in building sand castles. We always took buckets and diggers, and created intricate English-style castles with moats and tunnels. Then we dripped sand from our fingers to make them look really old. If the surf didn't take the castle down before we left, the girls would body-bomb them - run and jump on them. Then they'd have to wash the sand off of them in the surf again.

The weather in San Diego is usually cool during May and June, with the sun rarely peaking through the clouds (we have May gray and June gloom) and beach air and water temperatures in the mid-60's. By July, the clouds disappear and it's sunny nearly every day into October, with beach temperatures in the mid-70's and water temperatures around 70 F. In September and October, the Santa Ana winds sometimes create hot days (over 100 F) and people flock to the beaches. In the late fall, winter and spring, the water is usually below 60 F but there are often warm and clear days for walking on the beach and enjoying the scenery. We often have beautiful crystal-clear and warm days at Christmas time and Easter time.

When out-of-town visitors are here, we usually visit Coronado Beach, the tidepools at the end of Point Loma, the wave-carved beach at La Jolla, the Children's Pool at La Jolla Cove, and we drive along the Sunset Cliffs on Point Loma.

In our retirement years, Linda and I occasionally go to Imperial Beach or Coronado Beach and walk along the beach for exercise and the atmosphere. We occasionally have a weekend vacation to Del Mar, Encinitas, Carlsbad, Laguna Beach, Huntington Beach and other Southern California towns - we stay in a motel, shop in the stores, and walk on the beach watching families with children having fun, and remembering the good old days.

See here for information, pictures and videos of all of the San Diego County beaches. There are some beautiful pictures of San Diego scenery - including beaches - here, here and here. I hope you don't mind that I sort of turned this into a travelogue show! I'm proud of my home town!

Actually, I did find another beach picture in my photo collection (not my mother, wife or any other relative) which I posted here.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Where do visitors go on

The web information company,, provides some indication of the subdomains used by visitors to a web site.

For instance, for, Alexa provides the following percentages for these sub-domains:

* - 41% (this is the subdomain when you click on a match in a database)

* - 28% (this is the subdomain when you click on your own, or someone else's, family tree)

* - 15% (this is the main domain where you start a search)

* - 9% (this is the subdomain when you click on a specific database from a menu to get a list of matches)

* - 3% (this is the message board subdomain - you get to it from the main ancestry page by clicking on the Community tab)

* - 1% (this the personal account page - you can get to it from the My Account link)

* - 1% (this is one of the Ancestry World Tree pages - you can get to it only by clicking on a match in Ancestry World Tree)

* - 1% (this is also one of the Ancestry World Tree pages - you can get to it only by clicking on a match in Ancestry World Tree)

* - 1% (this is the main Rootsweb page - I don't think you can get to it from the main Ancestry page).

Those total up to 100% - they're probably rounded off a bit. It's interesting that the subdomains,,, and don't register on the list.

What can we figure out from the statistics? If we assume that these are page views, then:

* 28% are associated with family trees submitted to One World Tree, Personal Member Trees and Public Member Trees. Only 2% are associated with Ancestry World Tree for some reason (I think that AWT is much easier to navigate and use than the others, and contains much of the same information as the others). I'm surprised that this number is so high. It may be inflated because you have to click many times to find useful information on a family line in OWT and PMT.

* 41% are associated with actual searches in databases - results from a search request and the search results, including the database images. I'm surprised that this number is this low.

* 9% (Content) is associated with finding a specific database - but you have to do it from specific web pages, like the What's New list, the Card Catalog and the New Database list. I'm surprised that this number is as high as it is.

* Only 3% are for the Message Boards and only 1% for the Rootsweb main page and subpages. My opinion was that these percentages would be higher once Rootsweb came into the Ancestry domain. I usually use the WorldConnect database through Rootsweb (the subdomain would be and not through Ancestry Trees. Since it's free, I thought that this would have much more traffic than the Ancestry World Tree (also free) subdomains on Ancestry.

It's not clear what the time frame is for these statistics. If it's the last three months or more, they may be skewed by the use of the Rootsweb domain before April.

What are you surprised by in this list? How do you analyze this?

What about unclaimed ancestors?

Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak has an intriguing blog post titled "Coroners and Genealogists Join Forces in New Show to Tackle Quiet Epidemic of Unclaimed Persons" on her RootsTelevision blog. Of course, there is a video also about this story - watch it here.

My semi-twisted mind wondered about the millions of unclaimed ancestors lying in graves around the world - marked or unmarked.

I wondered how many of them have never been put into a family tree by a descendant or genealogy researcher. There are over 500 million entries in the Rootsweb WorldConnect family tree database (the same as in Ancestry's World Tree), and hundreds of millions more in other family tree databases, but many of them are duplicates.

My SWAG (super wild-a$$ guess) is that only about 10% of people in the 1900 US census are in online family trees. The percentage is probably a bit higher for people in the 1850 census. What about the 1790 census -- higher or lower than 10%?

How can we figure this out? I'm going to try by looking at about five random pages from each census and see if the families are in the WorldConnect databases. I'll report back later on this.

Many of the unclaimed persons that Megan wrote and videoed about have children, siblings, nieces, nephews, and cousins still living. The living relatives obviously don't know about the situation of their unclaimed family member or they don't care enough to find out about them. Both are sad situations to be in.

How would you like to be an abandoned or unclaimed ancestor? You could be moldering away in your grave worrying that nobody really cared enough to find you in a census or even write a memory story about you. Not mine - I'm trying to find out everything I can about them in order to honor their lives and their contribution to my genetic makeup so that my progeny, siblings and cousins can understand better their roots.

Don't let it happen to you - document your genealogy and family history and make sure that it is distributed to your family members. Make photo albums (with labels), family history books, collections of family papers, genealogy databases, family newsletters, blog posts, etc.

Family Photographs - Post 7: Three Generations

I'm posting old family photographs from my collection on Wednesdays, but they won't be wordless posts like others do - I simply cannot have a wordless post.

Here is one of the most precious (to me) images from my Carringer/Auble family collection:

This photograph was taken in September 1920, probably by my grandfather, Lyle Carringer. The three females in this picture are (left to right):

* Georgia (Kemp) Auble (1868-1952) - mother of Emily and grandmother of Betty.

* Betty Virginia Carringer (1919-2002) - daughter of Emily, and my mother!

* Emily Kemp (Auble) Carringer (1899-1977) - daughter of Georgia and mother of Betty.

Georgia's husband, Charles Auble, died of a fall in the house in 1916, and widow Georgia resided with Lyle and Emily (Auble) Carringer for the rest of her life.

This photograph is in the family photograph collection handed down from my mother to me after 1988.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Dear Genea-Man: Am I descended from John Tyler?

I received this query as a comment from Heather on my post "John Tyler's Grandson is still alive!" I have no other way to reach Heather, so I'm posting my response here in the form of a Dear Genea-Man question.

Q: I am looking for my heritage of the Tyler family. My grandmother was born Ruth Tyler in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania, October 6, 1898. Died early 1980's. Resident of New York since early 1930's. I located her name listed on the 1930 census. Married to Ralph Titus. My mother was Edith Titus and My great aunt was Elizabeth (Agnus) Tyler. I was told we are descendants of President John Tyler. Any information is very helpful. Thank you.

A. You provided several important clues to help determine an answer to your question. I looked for your Ralph and Ruth (Tyler) Titus family, and the Sydney and Elizabeth (--?--) Tyler family in the following resources:

* Family trees posted on,, and

* LDS databases at

* Census, vital records, immigration, stories and newspaper databases at

The only records I found that directly relate to the two subject families are in the Census records on Working backwards, here is what I found:

1) 1930 US Census for Manhattan, New York County, NY (NARA T626, Roll 1577, ED 1028, sheet 8B), residing at 510 West 147th Street, Renting for $64 per month:

* Ralph Titus - head, male, white, age 32, married, at age 21, born PA, parents born PA/PA, a sprayer of automobiles.
* Ruth Titus - wife, female, white, age 32, married, at age 21, born PA, parents born PA/PA
* Ruth Jr. Titus - daughter, female, white, age 10, single, born PA, parents born PA/PA
* Betty Titus - daughter, female, white, age 8, single, born PA, parents born PA/PA
* June Titus - daughter, female, white, age 3, single, born PA, parents born PA/PA
* Sherley Titus - daughter, female, white, age 1-6/12, single, born PA, parents born PA/PA
* Sidney W. Tyler - father-in-law, male, white, age 65, widowed, married at age 25, born PA, parents born PA/PA, a chef in a restaurant.

2) 1920 US Census for Wilkes-Barre Ward 10, Luzerne County, PA (NARA T625, Roll 1597, ED 240, Sheet 8A), residing at 85 N. Ross Street, Renting home:

* Elizabeth Tyler - head, female, white, age 47, married, born NY, parents born Canada/MD, no occupation.
* Ruth Tyler - daughter, female, white, age 20, single, born PA, parents born MD/NY, a clerk, works in retail store.
* Agnes Tyler - daughter, female, white, age 18, single, born PA, parents born MD/NY, a stenographer, works for attorney.
* Edward J. Tyler - son, male, white, age 12, single, born PA, parents born MD/NY

I could not find Sydney Tyler in Luzerne County PA in the 1920 census. I wonder where he is?

3) 1910 US Census for Wilkes Barre Ward 13, Luzerne County, PA (NARA T624, Roll 1371, ED 153, Sheet 16B), residing at 137 Prospect Street:

* Sidney W. Taylor - head, male, white, age 39, first marriage, for 14 years, born MD, parents born MD/MD, a chef, works at French house
* Elizabeth Taylor - wife, female, white, age 36, first marriage, for 14 years, 3 children born, 3 living, born NY, parents born NY/NY
* Ruth Taylor - daughter, female, white, age 11, single, born PA, parents born MD/NY
* Agnes Taylor - daughter, female, white, age 8, single, born PA, parents born MD/NY
* Edward Taylor - son, male, white, age 2, single, born PA, parents born MD/NY

4) 1900 US Census for Wilkes Barre Ward 13, Luzerne County, PA (NARA T623, Roll 1436, ED 177, Sheet 8B):

* Sydney Tyler - head, white, male, born Mar 1871, age 29, married, for 2 years, born MD, parents born MD/MD, a day laborer.
* Elizabeth Tyler - wife, white, female, born Oct 1872, age 28, married, for 2 years, 1 child born, 1 living, born PA, parents born Germany/Germany
* Ruth M. Tyler - daughter, white, female, born Oct 1898, age 1, single, born PA, parents born MD/PA.

5) 1890 US Census - not available - destroyed in fire in 1921.

6) 1880 US Census - I searched for a Sidney, Sydney or S. Tyler in PA, MD and VA, but found only one (see below). There were no Tyler's in Luzerne County PA born in MD or VA. There were 97 Tyler males born between 1869 and 1873 in MD, none of them with Sidney/Sydney as a given name. There were 54 Sid* and 21 Syd* born in MD between 1869 and 1873, none of them with Tyler (or anything close) as a surname.

The only Sydney Tyler found was in Richmond, Henrico County, VA (NARA T9, Roll 1371, ED 79, Page 21A):

* Jno Lyle - white, male, age 59, married, a watchman, born VA, parents born VA/VA
* Francis M. Lyle - white, female, age 56, wife, married, keeping house, born VA, parents born VA/VA
* Jno. L. Lyle - white, male, age 20, son, single, a blacksmith, born VA, parents born VA/VA
* Mary E. Lyle - white, female, age 12, daughter, single, born VA, parents born VA/VA
* Sydney W. Tyler - white, male, age 8, boarder, single, born VA, parents born VA/VA

I don't know if this Sydney W. Tyler is the one who lived in Wilkes-Barre in 1900 to 1920, married Elizabeth and had a daughter Ruth. Sydney W. Tyler said he was born in MD in every record found for him, and his parents also. This one in the 1880 census is in Virginia.

For informational purposes, there were 1,354 persons with surname Tyler in Virginia in the 1870 census, including 56 in Henrico County. Certainly some, but probably not all, are descendants of President John Tyler. I can't determine if the Sydney W. Tyler in the 1880 census is a descendant of President John Tyler. A review of the family trees at reveals several trees that list at least two generations of descendants of President John Tyler, but there is no Sydney or Sidney listed. One of the most complete is here. That doesn't mean that he isn't a descendant or a relative, there is just not enough information.

What should you do now? I recommend that you:

* It is possible that Sydney W. Tyler married Elizabeth --?-- in Luzerne County PA in 1897 or 1898. You could try to obtain a marriage certificate from Luzerne County PA for them. It would probably name their parents, their birth dates and birthplaces, and provide Elizabeth's maiden name. The PA vital records don't start until 1906, however. You can check for more information - it looks like there might be records in the Register of Wills in the Orphan Courts for each County.

* While your grandmother Ruth (Tyler) Titus was born before 1906, her brother Edward was born in about 1908, probably in Wilkes-Barre. You can probably obtain a birth certificate for him at the PA Vital Records site. That would give you Elizabeth's maiden name and birthplace, and Sydney's birth place also.

* Try to determine when and where Sydney W. Tyler died. Are there family papers, a Bible, an obituary, etc. that provide a death date and location?

* If there are no family papers available, the City Directories may help define a year range when Sydney or Elizabeth died. There may be a probate record for them if they owned property - you can find these records at the County Courthouse.

* If you can find a death date and place, then you could request a death certificate for Sydney W. Tyler. This will probably provide his birth date, birth place, and parent's names. If he died in PA, then you should be able to obtain a death certificate from the State of Pennsylvania - see

* If you can determine his parents names, then you could do further research in the location(s) where his family lived and come up with a birth record for Sydney and possible siblings, and a marriage record for his parents.

Research like this often takes a long time. Finding the census records is fairly easy, now that they are online. Finding a death date, obtaining birth, marriage and death records usually requires writing letters to repositories, visiting them in person, or hiring someone in the locality to do it for you.

Do any of my readers have suggestions for Heather to help her out? Please comment on this post if you do - and I'll update this post.

Traffic data for Ancestry domains

Avid genealogy blog- and news-hounds will recall that Ancestry decided to incorporate all Rootsweb pages into the domain in mid-March, two months ago.

After that, I posted several articles about Traffic statistics for Ancestry and Rootsweb - on 1 April and again on 17 April. By then, all of the Rootsweb pages that I checked from the main Rootsweb page are now within the domain.

Here are the traffic statistics for the last six months for,, and - in Reach (unique visitors per million Internet users):

The traffic for the four sites has been fairly stable over the last month. One thing that confuses me is that the total traffic Reach for Ancestry plus Rootsweb was about 0.07 at the end of February, but is now only 0.055 (approximately) in May. That's about a 20% drop in Reach over three months.

Here's the Page Views (per million Internet users) for the same sites:

I was curious about the different Ancestry franchises, so I looked at traffic for the Canada, UK, German, French and Italian domains. The Reach (unique visitors per million Internet users) and Page Views (per million Internet users) for these five domains are below:

Totalling the Reach for these five domains, I estimate a Reach of about 0.005 at the beginning of May, or about 10% of the domain. The UK Reach and Page Views have decreased markedly since April - I wonder why? Is it competition from the other UK database providers?
These traffic statistics are all from There is more information about the Alexa traffic rankings at

RootsWeb Review newsletter now monthly

I really miss my weekly email passing on the RootsWeb Review newsletter. It is now a monthly newsletter. It is always full of research tips, contributed stories, and a bit of humor. Now I can't even get the monthly newsletter to come via email for some reason. So I have to go visit it online to get my "fix."

The May 14 issue has a nice collection of articles, including:

* Researching at the U.S. National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) by Mary Harrell-Sesniak.

* Finding Your SMITHs (and Other Ancestors with Common Surnames) by Joan Young

* Don't Give Up Hope by David T. Johnston

* Three Sisters Reunited by Karen Gilbert

* Using a Divining Rod to Locate Unmarked Graves by Henry C. Wiggin

In the humor section, there are these entries:

* "While reading a local obituary, I noticed the gentleman who died was a driving instructor. His name was Rex A. Lott." - thanks to Joy; Oregon

* "I found this interesting name in a census record years ago: Lovely Hooker." - thanks to Nancy

* "While looking for an entry in our phonebook years ago, I stumbled upon the name "Gloomy Jones." My mother-in-law was in a nursing home here for several years and Gloomy was also a resident there, so I got to meet him. He died several years ago.

"When I showed a coworker Gloomy's name in the phonebook, he turned to the entry for an unusual name he had seen on a mailbox: Turley Curd. The name is no longer in our phonebook and we could not find it in a search of white pages nationwide, so I assume that he is also deceased." -- thanks to Bill

[The above was previously published in RootsWeb Review: 14 May 2008, Vol. 11, No. 15.]

Have you been reading RootsWeb Review regularly? If not, check it out!

Monday, May 26, 2008

US Military Records at eBook

The Ancestry Store is offering a FREE eBook titled "Military Records at" by Esther Yu Sumner, published in 2007 by The Generations Network.

You can download the eBook in PDF format from here. The file is large - 16.9 mb, so you will need a cable or DSL connection or better.

The eBook has a description of each American War or Conflict from Jamestown and New England in the 1600's through the Vietnam conflict. Each section summarizes the war, the military records available from the war, and the resources available at

This eBook is well worth the time to download it and read it. The background information on each war or conflict provides an excellent summary that refreshed my distant memories from American History classes!

Thanks to Juliana Smith's 24/7 Family History Circle blog post here.

Wheel of Genealogy Fortune - Post 1

My local society had a fun time last summer playing the Wheel of Genealogy Fortune. I could have sold the role of Vanna White for many dollars, I think.

You all know how to play Wheel of Fortune - I've given you R S T L N and E just like in Final Jeopardy:

Take a stab at this tag line:

_’_ ... N _ T ... S T _ _ _ -

_’_ ... _ N _ E S T R _ L L _ ... _ _ _ L L E N _ E _

It shouldn't take too long! Put your answer in Comments.


"Scottish Research" at CVGS on Wednesday, May 28

The next program meeting of the Chula Vista Genealogical Society will be Wednesday, May 28, at 12 noon at the Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street) auditorium.

After a brief business meeting, Jackie Webster will present "Scottish Research."

Jackie's talk description and curriculum vitae are:

"Jackie Webster's interest in genealogy expanded after she retired in 1990 and joined local organizations - BIGRA, GRA, & SDGS - and took genealogy classes. Trips to the FHC in Salt Lake City extended her information. She also joined other organizations relevant to her area of interest - Pennsylvania, Palatines, Nottingham, Glasgow and Scotland FHS, and they provided much more information about her family history. She currently volunteers one day a week at the SD FHC and one day a month at the SDGS in El Cajon. She is the Scottish Interest Group chair for BIGRA, and purchases publications, film and fiche on Scotland for the SD FHC. She holds periodic meetings there on specific topics of interest; the next meeting is July 10th on Scottish Land and Property Records.

Jackie will show us what records to research and where to find them specifically at the FHC. She will show us how to use the Scottish Research Outline and why we also need to use the English Research Outline. She will show us how Scottish history effects our research and where to find census & church records, maps, & locality registers. She will show us how to use the catalogues and where to find gems not listed in the catalogues! Finally, she will show us how to use the internet for Scottish research."

Please join us for this interesting presentation. When you come into the library, please enter through the Conference Room door to register, pick up the handouts, buy an opportunity drawing ticket, and have a snack.

My ancestors who served

On Memorial Day, we honor those who have served our country and have given their lives so that we can remain free.

My known ancestors who have served in the military since the Revolutionary War include:

1. World War II

* Frederick W. Seaver (1911-1983, my father) served in the United States Navy aboard the USS Halford. The picture is from 1944.

2. World War I

* Lyle L. Carringer (1891-1976, my grandfather) served in the United States Marines in San Diego. The picture is from 1917.

3. Civil War

* Isaac Seaver (1823-1901, my great-great-grandfather) of Leominster MA, a blacksmith, served in the Union Army (Civil War Pension File). The picture is from the collection of my aunt Geraldine (Seaver) Remley, and depicts Isaac and Lucretia (Smith) Seaver, probably in about 1863.

4. War of 1812

* James Bell (1777-1836) of Albany NY and later Henderson NY, served in the NY Militia.

* Amos Underhill (1772-1865) of Aurora NY served in the NY Militia.

5. Revolutionary War

* Martin Carringer (1758-1835) of Mercer County PA (RevWaw Pension file)

* Philip Row (1752-1817) of Hunterdon County NJ (RevWar Pension File)

* Peter Putman (1760-1835) of NJ and Yates County NY (RevWar Pension file)

* Stephen Feather (17??-1804) of NJ and Westmoreland County PA

* Rudolf Spengler (1738-1811) of York County PA

* Philip Jacob King (1738-1792) of York County PA

* Burgess Metcalf (1741-1816) of Piermont NH

* Isaac Buck (1757-1846) of Sterling MA (RevWar Pension File)

* Thomas Dill (1755-1830) of Eastham MA (RevWar Pension File)

* Joseph Champlin (1758-1850) of S. Kingston RI (RevWar Pension File)

* Norman Seaver (1734-1787) of Westminster MA

* Benjamin Seaver (1757-1816) of Westminster MA

* Zachariah Hildreth (1728-1784) of Westford MA

* Zachariah Hildreth (1754-1828) of Townsend MA

* Amos Plimpton (1735-1808) of Medfield MA

* David Kirby (1740-1832) of Westport MA

* Joseph Oatley (1756-1815) of S. Kingston RI.

Amazingly, each of them survived their wartime experiences.

I thank God for these men, the families that nurtured them, the wives that supported them, and the children who learned from them the importance of service to their country.

I also thank God for the safe return of my son-in-law, Michael, to his family and home in late April after his year of active duty in the United States Marine corps serving in Ramadi in Iraq.

\I continue to pray for the health and safety of all of our armed forces personnel, for the wisdom and perseverance of our leaders, and for the patience and understanding of our citizens as we continue the battle to keep America safe and free.

May God continue to bless the United States of America.

Memorial Day - Honoring our Heroes

1. My country,' tis of thee,
sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing;
land where my fathers died,
land of the pilgrims' pride,
from every mountainside let freedom ring!
2. My native country, thee,
land of the noble free, thy name I love;
I love thy rocks and rills,
thy woods and templed hills;
my heart with rapture thrills, like that above
3. Let music swell the breeze,
and ring from all the trees sweet freedom's song;
let mortal tongues awake;
let all that breathe partake;
let rocks their silence break, the sound prolong
4. Our fathers' God, to thee,
author of liberty, to thee we sing;
long may our land be bright
with freedom's holy light;
protect us by thy might, great God, our King.

America the Beautiful

1. O beautiful for spacious skies,
for amber waves of grain;
for purple mountain majesties
above the fruited plain!
America! America!
God shed his grace on thee,
and crown thy good with brotherhood
from sea to shining sea.
2. O beautiful for heroes proved
in liberating strife,
who more than self their country loved,
and mercy more than life!
America! America!
May God thy gold refine,
till all success be nobleness,
and every gain divine
3. O beautiful for patriot dream
that sees beyond the years
thine alabaster cities gleam,
undimmed by human tears!
America! America!
God mend thine every flaw,
confirm thy soul in self-control,
thy liberty in law.

Click the links to see the lyrics and hear the songs.

Say a prayer, shed a tear, and be very grateful to those who have served our country with honor and sacrifice.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Best of the Genea-Blogs - May 18-24, 2008

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

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

* "Medieval England Soldier Database" by Tim Agazio on the Genealogy Reviews Online blog. On a scale of 1 to 10 for "esoteric," I thought this post was a 10 when I read the first paragraph. Then I read some of the links and I understand what Tim meant... this is a post to a wonderful web site with English history all over it. There were even two "Lancelot" persons, but not in King Arthur's Court!

* "What Does Memorial Day Mean?" by Ruth Stephens on the Bluebonnet Country Genealogy blog. What a poignant and eloquent letter, straight from the heart, embodying all of the hopes and fears of every soldier that ever went into battle.

* "Are Incomplete Databases Ancestry's Policy?" by the whoever writes The Ancestry Insider blog. The AI responds to a reader's question about this subject, which reveals quite a bit about Ancestry practices and policies.

* "Elizabeth T. Henderson, 1918-2008" by Harold Henderson on the Midwestern Microhistory: A Genealogy Blog. Harold wrote a beautiful tribute to his late mother - full of all those details that only a child would know about his parent.

* "What If Genealogy Had a TED Conference?" by Mark Tucker on the ThinkGenealogy blog. What is TED, you ask? Why - it's Technology, Entertainment and Design. Mark is involved professionally with these concepts and wants to apply them to genealogy software too. Great ideas!

* "I Have a Complaint Concerning Many Genealogists" by Dick Eastman on the Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter blog. Dick complains about genealogists who complain about the cost of commercial services. I pretty much agree with his points. Read his view, and the comments also.

* "May 23 - Friday From the Collectors -- Documenting Today for Tomorrow's History" by Nikki-Ann on footnoteMaven's Shades of the Departed blog. Nikki-Ann describes how she documents her life story as it happens - fascinating. Nikki-Ann's own blog is Notes of Life.

* "Some Good Healthful Exercise: Brooklyn, 1897" by Laura Crawley on The Virtual Dime Museum blog. Laura's piece about Mac Levy is priceless, and in Laura's inimitable style, she finds out more about her subject and the times he lived in.

* "A Civil War Soldier: Pvt. Joseph Uzza Benson ROBBINS, 1847-1931" by Miriam Midkiff on the Ancestories: The Stories of My Ancestors blog. Miriam has been posting several mini-biographies of Civil War soldiers on her blog for weeks now - each one is a gem waiting to be found by a descendant. She has 33 done already!

* "NGS Conference Report Pt. 1" "Pt. 2" and "Pt. 3" by the unknown blogger on the MoSGA Messenger blog. These three interesting posts describe this blogger's experiences at the NGS Conference in Kansas City last week. I haven't seen any other blog posts describing experiences at the NGS conference. I wonder why?

I encourage you to go to the blogs listed above and read their articles, and add their blog to your Favorites, Bloglines, reader, feed or email if you like what you read. Please make a comment to them also - we all appreciate feedback on what we write.

Did I miss a great genealogy blog post? Tell me!

Another Genea-cyberquote

John D. Reid on the Anglo-Celtic Connections blog has posted another Genea-cyberquote here.

Spend some time and try to figure it out. It's really good advice for all of us!

SCGS Jamboree 2008 News Update

We're five weeks from the Southern California Genealogical Society Jamboree 2008 in Burbank, and Paula Hinkel has sent out the latest information:


Deadline Alert

Southern California Genealogical Society Jamboree 2008
June 27, 28, 29 at the Burbank Airport Marriott

There's still time to join us for Jamboree! Don't miss the largest genealogy conference on the West Coast. Advance registration closes June 15. Of course you'll be able to register at the door, but why not register in advance?

** The registration process will be a breeze. You won't have to wait in line to have your registration processed.

** You get to wear an official printed name tag.

** You can purchase tickets for the special events. These will not be available after June 15.

Seats are still available for all of the special events, including the

** Friday night banquet with Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak;

** Saturday Effective Society Management breakfast and panel discussion;

** Saturday evening's dinner with Dick Eastman;

** Sunday morning Presidential Genealogy with Chris Child and Gary Boyd Roberts of NEHGS.

Reservations for the meals will close on June 15.

Don't forget to register for the newly added events:

** Hollywood Forever Cemetery, bus transportation and guided tour by the cemetery historian Karie Bible. 8:30am-12 noon on Friday, June 27. Cost $30.

** FREE Introduction to Genealogy taught by Beverly Truesdale 9:00 am-12 noon Friday, June 27.

** FREE Kids Genealogy Camp taught by Starr Campbell, Hailey J. Campbell and Michael Melendez from 9:00am-12 noon Friday, June 27.

In addition, we have arranged with Lockett Tours for a "Slice of the City" tourist bus trip on Thursday afternoon, June 26. The tour is $30.

Find all the details at

This year, the program will include speakers and lectures of particular interest to those researching German, Eastern European, and Jewish roots. These include

** John T. Humphrey on German records,

** Peter Lande on "Holocaust Records as a Source for All Genealogists," which includes how to obtain records from Bad Arolsen;

** Steve Morse on "One-Step Webpages"

** and several others.

Many well-known professional genealogists, among them Dick Eastman, Tom Underhill, Arlene Eakle, and Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak, will speak about online and traditional resources, tech applications for genealogy, including several DNA talks, German ancestry, genealogy applications for today, such as family health histories, dealing with family secrets and black sheep, finding living relatives, and more.

A featured session will be the first-ever Blogger Summit, which will feature seven of the leading genealogy bloggers: Dick Eastman of Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter; Steve Danko of Steve's Genealogy Blog; George G.Morgan, Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak of Megan's Roots World andRootsTelevision, Schelly Talalay Dardashti of Tracing the Tribe, and Randy Seaver of Genea-Musings. Moderating the panel discussion will be Leland Meitzler of

Why not take the train to Jamboree and avoid $4 per gallon gas, traffic and parking? The San Diego Genealogical Society has organized a group trip on the Pacific Surfliner. Contact Phyllis Quarg [ ] for information on their group tour. The Burbank Airport Train Station is directly across the street from the Marriott, and the shuttle will pick you up at no charge. Check out your transportation alternatives!

You can find full descriptions of speakers, lectures, evening events, and you can pre-register at this website: and the Jamboree blog at