Sunday, October 18, 2009

Best of the Genea-Blogs - October 11-17, 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:

* Blogging Workshop: Easy as 1-2-3 by Kathryn Doyle on the California Genealogical Society and Library Blog. CGS had a blogging workshop last weekend with Thomas MacEntee and Craig Manson leading, and Kathryn has pictures to prove it.

* Video Conferencing & Genealogy Societies by Taneya Koonce on Taneya's Genealogy Blog. Taneya wonders why more societies and speakers aren't using videoconferencing.

* The Bleh Effect by Patti Browning on the Consanguinity blog. Patti coins the term "genea-bleh" as the opposite of "genea-gasm" and provides some examples. I love it! I've always thought in terms of Genea-Arrggghhh or Genea-Awsh!t...

* Professor Gates, Michelle's Great-Great-Great-Granddaddy and Mine by Sally Sheridan on Everybody's Blog Posts on GenealogyWise. Sally discusses the slave-holding issue and links to Henry Louis Gates' post on

* Infants and Mourning Dress by footnoteMaven in The History Hare column of the Online Graveyard Rabbit Journal. fM describes Victorian mourning customs for children with several wonderful pictures.

* The REAL Genealogist by Ruby Coleman on the You Go Genealogy Girls blog. Ruby thinks "real" genealogists are dedicated to doing research and to learning more about the field.

* Look Beyond the Population Schedules and Discover the Agricultural Census by Carolyn Barkley on the Blog. Carolyn reminds us that some really useful records are not online - check this article out!
* Genealogy – Goin’ Green by Thomas MacEntee on the Geneabloggers blog. Thomas has advice for how researchers, societies and vendors can use fewer resources in their genealogy pursuits.

* Growing Up in a Massachusetts Mill Town by Polly Kimmitt on the Pollyblog. Polly weaves the story of her grandmother into the trials and tribulations facing mill workers in 19th-century Massachusetts.

* DNA: Was Columbus Jewish? by Schelly Talalay Dardashti on the Tracing the Tribe: The Jewish Genealogy Blog. Schelly ponders the question, and provides useful information from a newspaper article and a new book about Columbus's writings.

* Reading Women's History: A Family History Project in the High School English Classroom by Denise Levenick in footnoteMaven's Shades of the Departed blog. Denise used her grandmother's pictures and letters to teach high school girls about the past - a beautiful article.

* Managing Your Facebook Experience by Julie Cahill Tarr on the GenBlog blog. Julie offers helpful ideas about your time and activities on Facebook.

* Plagiarism in the Genealogy Community by Gena Philibert Ortega on the Gena's Genealogy blog. Gena has concerns about plagiarism and has wise advice for all writers and presenters.

* Genealogical proof or merely evidence? by James Tanner on the Genealogy's Star blog. This post continues James's series on the elements of the Genealogical Proof Standard from an attorney's view.

* Mingling of Families and Murder by Wendy Littrell on the All My Branches Genealogy blog. Wendy tells the story and then untwists the family members involved in the murder...well done!

* Where were you when the Loma Prieta Quake Struck? by Melody Lasalle on the The Research Journal blog. Melody leads the pack of 1989 earthquake "I was there" genea-bloggers with this first-person story.

* I Survived The Loma Prieta Earthquake by Thomas MacEntee on the Destination: Austin Family blog. A fascinating story by Thomas of being in the earthquake 20 years ago in San Francisco.

* I Too Survived The Loma Prieta Earthquake by footnoteMaven on the footnoteMaven blog. Another first-person story by fM of the 1989 earthquake. This is material for the descendants of course!

* All lined up in the school playground in their Sunday best by Brett Payne on the Photo-Sleuth blog. Brett wondered if the children dressed up for school photos, shows some of his collection and researches some of the photographers. I've been on Uttoxeter Road in Derby myself.

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! I am currently reading posts from over 530 genealogy bloggers using Bloglines, but I still miss quite a few it seems.

Read past Best of the Genea-Blogs posts here.


wendy said...

Randy - thanks for including Mingling of Families and Murder as one of your "Best of" for the week! Thanks so much for thinking so highly of my article!

footnoteMaven said...

Thank you so much for the Maven shout outs.

This list is brilliant. I love our online community. They are so full of it, and I mean that in the nicest way.


Brett Payne said...

Thanks, Randy, for the hat tip to Photo-Sleuth, for which I'm grateful. Always looking for new readers.

I agree, -fM, the feedback and cross-pollination that takes place in this community is part of what keeps us going - certainly it does me.

You've been on Uttoxeter Road Randy? Do you have Derby ancestors? I'm intrigued.

Regards, Brett

James Tanner said...

I cannot imagine having the time to read 530 blogs! But I am really glad some one is doing it.

Family Curator said...

Randy, I look forward to your teaser intros as much as to your "picks" each week. It's great fun to see the variety of genea-blogs that are in action.

Thanks for your kind words about my article at Shades. That was a very special project.


Kathryn Doyle said...

Thanks so much for the mention! We need to get you up here for some SF research and a visit to CGSL.

Schelly Talalay Dardashti said...

Hi, Randy. thanks for the pointer to the first Columbus story. I did one just a bit later that makes even more of a point, according to the same researcher, that he knew Ladino (Columbus: The Ladino Connection), the Jewish language spoken by the pre-1492 Jews of Iberia and post-1492 Sephardic diaspora. Just goes to show that different sources and different interviewers pick up diverse bits of information from the same interview! Reading several sources on the same story is always advised!

Best wishes for your continued great work!


Andy said...

Manasseh and Ephraim were Josephs sons not Benjamine's