Sunday, March 15, 2009

Best of the Genea-Blogs - March 8-14, 2009

Several hundred 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 the genealogy carnivals, or other 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:

* WeRelate - Getting Started and WeRelate: An Introduction to Page Editing by Denise Olson on the Family Matters blog. Denise is my favorite Genealogy 2.0 guru and she provides two wonderful tutorials on I think it's great when somebody else writes blog posts so I don't have to, and does it better than I would!

* Hairstyles! by Maureen Taylor on the Photo Detective with Maureen A. Taylor blog. Watch this slide show compiled by Maureen - fascinating, isn't it?

* First, you have to get a milch cow; then . . . by Terry Thornton on the Hill Country of Monroe County, Mississippi blog. Terry writes about so many things that are, um, different for this San Diego city boy. I never realized that milch cows had, well - read the post.

* Conceptual Overview of Genealogical Research by Dan Lawyer on the Taking Genealogy to the Common Person blog. Check out Dan's video and his flow chart of how genealogy research works. This chart may become as famous as Mark Tucker's GPS chart!

* Pop-Top Genealogy by Dick Eastman on Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter blog. Dick is concerned that some researchers are only using online sources and expect the Internet to have everything they need. Read the comments too. Enlightening.

* Manchester Maxwell - From the Civil War in Tennessee to Sheep Ranching in Flagstaff, Arizona by Cheryle Hoover Davis on The Graveyard Rabbit of Northern Arizona blog. Cheryle's story of being a real Graveyard Rabbit to help someone who ran across her blog is wonderful. Read Teresa's comment too!

* Capturing the Past by Professor Dru Pair on the Find Your Folks blog. This post has a five video series of how to prepare and conduct an oral history interview. Dru has posted several other videos on this subject this past week.

* Using PERSI by Gena Ortega on the Gena's Genealogy blog. Gena clues us in on how to find and use the PERiodical Source Index - compiled by the Allen County (IN) Public Library, a wonderful resource. You can order the articles too - Gena tells us how.

* The Rest of Paul Harvey’s Story–Part 1 and The Rest of Paul Harvey’s Story–Conclusion by Craig Manson on the Geneablogie blog. Craig tells the background story about Paul Harvey's life that we didn't get on the radio - and for good reason. Fascinating.

* Continuing Education for Genealogists by Carolyn L. Barkley on the blog. This article details the formal continuing education opportunities, including institutes, academic degree programs and home study courses.

* Princess for a Day by Apple on the Apple's Tree blog. Apple has known a family secret for awhile, and asked her mother for more details. She did some research and, well - go read about what she found. Hope springs eternal in the genealogists heart!

* Digital Revolution in Genealogy -- 5 important developments by James Tanner on the Genealogy's Star blog. This is James's first in a series of post about the subject. It's a review of the past and the start of discussing the effect of the digital revolution on genealogy. I look forward to the rest of the series.

* At a Loss... by Cindy on the Everything's Relative - Researching Your Family History blog. Cindy tries to sort out all of her research problems by writing about them. Great idea, and she provided me with a research nugget about Maryland deeds in the process (but no link!).

* Murder in Salem - Susannah Martin Hung as a Witch by Lee R. Drew on the FamHist blog. Lee's 9th great-grandmother was Susannah Martin, and he provides the documents and transcripts from her trial in Salem in 1692. Turns out that Lee and I are cousins - one of my 9th great-grandmothers is Rebecca Towne Nurse, also hung in Salem in 1692.

* Dwight Minns Ware of Springfield & Boston, Massachusetts by Brett Payne on the Photo-Sleuth blog. Brett analyzes an orphan photograph, and finds some family history for the persons in the photograph. Now he's looking for a descendant to give the photograph to. Excellent work!

* A Mini-Bloggers' Summit at CGS by Kathryn Doyle on the California Genealogical Society and Library blog. Four lovely and fun genea-bloggers met at the CGS Library on Saturday, chatted a bit (probably forever), and had a picture taken. And solved a mystery (at least for me!).

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 - all bloggers appreciate feedback on what they write.

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

Read past Best of the Genea-Blogs posts here.


Cindy said...

Randy - thanks for including me in your list this week! I've put another post on my blog with the Maryland link - it's a wonderful thing to actually be able to look at the deeds on line. I hope you also find something. I don't know if I mentioned that mine were in PG county also and some just below in Charles County - I think one piece of property was actually in PG at one point and then when new county lines were drawn it ended up being in Charles - makes for interesting times finding the records!

Have a good one and thanks for your note - glad to know that I'm not losing it!

Charley "Apple" Grabowski said...

Thanks for including me Randy!

Now how did I miss Lee's post - another geneablogger cousin!

Terry Thornton said...

Thanks, Randy, for including Hill Country in your roundup. I had a lot of fun writing about how to milk a cow --- well, I got sidetracked and never told how, did I? I'm saving that for another post. LOL!
Thanks again,
Terry Thornton

The Photo Detective said...

Hi Randy,
Thank you for including my slide show in your list of the best of the week. I had so much fun putting that together! I'd love to meet you too!


Cheryle Hoover Davis said...

Thank you, Randy, for including me in your list here! Teresa and I worked together to find and photograph the gravesite of her ancestor, Manchester Maxwell, who had disappeared after the Civil War...and we found him in Flagstaff, AZ. Teresa's comment is, indeed, wonderful, isn't it?

Geolover said...

Randy, you asked Cindy for the link to MD land records. It is:

and not only 'land records,' but deeds from all of the counties. With "issues".

When you get to the site you must register (no charge at this time); in a couple of days staff will send you a password.

Some issues: the indexes are variable in quality and readability.

To see the Washington County deeds you must click on the "Microfilm" link, not the regular scans link.

Some pages are missing all over the place. Some I notified them of around a year ago are still missing.

Here is a really surprising thing in the MD State Archives site: a single page listing all of the on-line sources!

--but I just tried it and got a computer error page. Hope it will be back.

Using MD land records beginning with the surveys and grants (which are not recorded in the deeds) is a pretty steep learning curve. One recent post describing how to find the actual survey documents is here:

Good hunting to all,

Brett Payne said...

I don't know why I missed this at the time but I did. Thanks very much for the mention Randy - much appreciated. Regards, Brett