Saturday, August 29, 2020

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Your "Other" Hobbies or Pastimes

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) What hobbies or pastimes other than "genealogy" do you have now, or had in the past as an adult?

4) Write about it in a blog post on your own blog, in a Facebook post, or as a comment on this blog post.

Here's mine:

I turned off my first adult hobby to start pursuing genealogy in 1988.  I have been full-time genealogy and family history since then when I have had free time to pursue it.  

Before genealogy, my hobby was radio station DXing (Distance Listening), and studying radio wave propagation.  
From age 20 to 45, I listened for distant U.S. and foreign radio stations on the AM band (540 to 1600 khz), kept a reception log, made tape recordings, and learned about radio wave propagation.  This was usually an evening (7 to 11 p.m.) and early morning (like 1 a.m. to 4 a.m.) activity.  I used a reel-to-reel tape recorder in the early days, and then a cassette recorder, to tape my DX as "proof" of a reception.  I also wrote to the radio stations I heard and received QSL cards (confirmations) and verification letters from the stations in the mail.  

From San Diego, I routinely heard Japan, Russia, China, Korea, Hawaii, Pacific Islands, Australia, New Zealand, Central America, Caribbean, and South America radio stations during a calendar year.  Occasionally, I would hear stations in western Europe, Thailand, western Africa, south Asia, and other distant countries.  This hobby was essentially trying to hear distant stations in between the local stations on the standard AM dial.  

For these receptions, I used a communications receiver, mainly a Hammarlund HQ-160 early on and an HQ-180 later.  These radios had selectivity and sensitivity to separate stations from stations on local or semi-local frequencies.  I started in the 1960s with long wire antennae strung up and onto the roof of the 30th street house.  By 1970, I was using a large loop antenna (3 feet by 3 feet) with a tuner that provided significant directionality so I could null a semi-local station (say in Los Angeles or San Francisco) on a specific frequency and hear something to the east or west on the same frequency.  Local stations were nearly impossible to null because they were ground wave.  Living in the city, I could not install really long (more than 100 feet) wire antennae.

The propagation of radio signals at these medium-wave frequencies (540 khz to 1600 khz, approximately 555 to 160 meters) at night is mainly via skywave refraction from the E-layer of the ionosphere about 90 to 120 km  above the earth.  During daylight, the sun's rays activate the D-layer (from 60 to 90 km) which causes skywaves to be totally absorbed.  So it is a nighttime hobby.  At sunset in the west, DXers can hear signals from distant station to the east already in darkness, and at sunrise in the west, DXers can hear signals from distant stations to the west from Asia and Oceania still in darkness.  

I was an editor of the DX Worldwide column for the International Radio Club of America (IRCA) newsletter, called DX Monitor, in the mid-1960s.  I wrote propagation articles for the newsletter during the 1970s and 1980s.  IRCA, and the other BCB radio club, the National Radio Club, held annual conventions all over the country, with speakers and radio station tours.  I hosted the 1965 IRCA convention in San Diego at the El Cortez Hotel, and attended others in Milwaukee, Denver, Boston, Montreal, Chicago, Vancouver, Seattle, Portland, Sacramento, and several other places.

Before I was married, I was a member of the El Rancho Bar Association (ERBA) based in Sacramento composed of DXers who liked  to drink and tell tall stories.  We had meetings all over the state over several years.  They drummed me out when I got married in 1970.  I still hear from DXers from this period of my life in email and on Facebook.  Several of my best DX friends have died.

Several years ago, I found that IRCA had a DX message board so I subscribed to it, and read the messages every day via email.  The technology has really improved now - many DXers can set up a receiver, an antenna and a digital recorder overnight and digitally save signals on specific frequencies or even on all frequencies over a time span.  Then they listen to them during the day to try to identify distant radio stations through station identifications, often at the top or bottom of the hour.  Some of them go on multi-day expeditions to a remote area near the ocean (salt water paths really enhance signals!) - like Hawaii, Tahiti, Newfoundland, Bermuda, etc. -  to hear more exotic DX at sunset, nighttime and sunrise.  


Copyright (c) 2020, Randall J. Seaver

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Added and Updated Record Collections - Week of 22 to 28 August 2020

The following record collections were listed on the Recently Added and Updated List on during the period from 22 to 28 August 2020: 

The ADDED and Updated record collections are:

Thuringia, Germany, Lutheran Baptisms, Marriages and Burials, 1557-1940; indexed records without record images, Updated 8/27/2020

U.S., Interviews with Former Slaves, 1936-1938; indexed records with record images, ADDED 5/1/2020

Pennsylvania, U.S., Births, 1852-1854; indexed records with record images, Updated 8/26/2020

Pennsylvania, U.S., Deaths, 1852-1854; indexed records without record images, Updated 8/26/2020

New York State, U.S., Death Index, 1957-1969; indexed records without record images, Updated 8/24/2020

Stanislav, Ukraine (Poland), List of Residents by Street, 1939-1945 (USHMM); indexed records without record images, Updated 8/28/2020

*  1860 U.S. Federal Census - Slave Schedules; indexed records with record images, Updated 8/24/2020


The complete Card Catalog is at  

By my count, there were 1 NEW collections ADDED this past week, per the list above.  There are now 32,816 collections available as of 28 August, an increase of  1 from last week. 


Disclosure:  I have a complimentary all-access subscription from, for which I am thankful. has provided material considerations for travel expenses to meetings, and has hosted events and meals that I have attended in Salt Lake City, in past years.

Copyright (c) 2020, Randall J. Seaver

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Added and Updated Record Collections at - Week of 22 to 28 August 2020

I am trying to keep up with the new and updated record collections at FamilySearch   ( every week.

As of 28 August 2020, there are 2,859 historical record collections on FamilySearch (an increase of 5 from last week):

New and updated collections this week are (as Marshall provided them):

--- Collections Added ---

*  Oregon, Lincoln County Voter Registration Index Cards, 1913-1942 (; 23,193 indexed records with 23,193 record images, ADDED 25-Aug-2020
*  Oklahoma, Noble County, Parker Funeral Home, Funeral Records, 1908-1982 (; 21 indexed records with 21 record images, ADDED 26-Aug-2020
*  Italy, Latina, Civil Registration (State Archive), 1867-1946 (; Index only, no images, ADDED 25-Aug-2020
*  California, San Francisco Chinese passenger lists, 1882-1947 (; 62,291 indexed records with 62,291 record images, ADDED 21-Aug-2020
*  Italy, Catania, Civil Registration (State Archive), 1820-1900 (; Index only, no images, ADDED 25-Aug-2020

--- Collections Updated ---

Australia, South Australia, Will and Probate Records (; 48,404 indexed records with 47,189 record images (was 48,290 records with 47,080 images), UPDATED 24-Aug-2020
Brazil, Bahia, Civil Registration, 1877-1976 (; 101,539 indexed records with 93,360 record images (was 101,055 records with 93,021 images), UPDATED 26-Aug-2020
Mississippi, County Marriages, 1858-1979 (; 1,065,595 indexed records with 348,030 record images (was 1,016,617 records with 331,079 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
Luxembourg, Civil Registration, 1796-1941 (; 253,703 indexed records with 767,518 record images (was 244,885 records with 767,518 images), UPDATED 26-Aug-2020
Iowa, Dallas County, Violet Hill Cemetery, Lot Records, 1846-1988 (; 6,557 indexed records with 3,083 record images (was 6,529 records with 3,069 images), UPDATED 21-Aug-2020

Wisconsin, County Naturalization Records, 1807-1992 (; 659,147 indexed records with 1,135,393 record images (was 451,914 records with 1,135,393 images), UPDATED 25-Aug-2020
Brazil, Minas Gerais, Civil Registration, 1879-1949 (; 128,097 indexed records with 54,736 record images (was 122,020 records with 52,020 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
United States, New York Land Records, 1630-1975 (; 22,393,539 indexed records with 8,129,310 record images (was 22,393,539 records with 8,129,310 images), UPDATED 26-Aug-2020
Virginia, Bureau of Vital Statistics, County Marriage Registers, 1853-1935 (; 209,955 indexed records with 6,866 record images (was 196,798 records with 6,441 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
North Carolina, Center for Health Statistics, Vital Records Unit, County Birth Records, 1913-1922 (; 804,575 indexed records with 802,530 record images (was 759,381 records with 757,376 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
United States, Iowa Naturalization Records, 1859-1990 (; 55,256 indexed records with 52,524 record images (was 55,114 records with 52,499 images), UPDATED 25-Aug-2020
South Africa, Civil Marriage Records, 1840-1973 (; 715,440 indexed records with 637,586 record images (was 701,795 records with 623,941 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
New Hampshire, County Naturalization Records, 1771-2001 (; 171,517 indexed records with 173,600 record images (was 168,529 records with 173,600 images), UPDATED 26-Aug-2020
England, Middlesex Parish Registers, 1539-1988 (; 948,984 indexed records with 67,220 record images (was 870,066 records with 59,236 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
Pennsylvania Delayed Birth Records, 1941-1976 (; 174,258 indexed records with 132,746 record images (was 172,630 records with 132,697 images), UPDATED 26-Aug-2020

United States, Compiled Military Service Records Of Volunteer Union Soldiers Who Served With The U.S. Colored Troops, 1861-1866 (; 931,845 indexed records with 759,589 record images (was 850,715 records with 695,278 images), UPDATED 25-Aug-2020
Kansas, Lawrence City Cemetery Records, 1850-1988 (; 29,848 indexed records with 1,875 record images (was 28,333 records with 1,789 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
Spain, Province of La Coruña, Municipal Records, 1648-1941 (; 696,983 indexed records with 258,646 record images (was 682,718 records with 258,646 images), UPDATED 25-Aug-2020
South Africa, Natal Province, Civil Deaths, 1863-1955 (; 324,370 indexed records with 285,308 record images (was 306,673 records with 267,613 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
United States, GenealogyBank Obituaries, 1980-2014 (; 30,047,342 indexed records with 46,885,453 record images (was 30,047,342 records with 46,885,453 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020

Arizona, Birth Certificates and Indexes, 1855-1930 (; 305,694 indexed records with 305,209 record images (was 278,954 records with 278,512 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
Canada, New Brunswick, County Register of Births, 1801-1920 (; 190,556 indexed records with 8,150 record images (was 176,696 records with 7,714 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
South Africa, Church of the Province of South Africa, Parish Registers, 1801-2004 (; 532,564 indexed records with 355,318 record images (was 514,051 records with 355,318 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
United States, GenealogyBank Historical Newspaper Obituaries, 1815-2011 (; 35,411,516 indexed records with 4,830,472 record images (was 35,411,516 records with 4,830,472 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
South Africa, Civil Death Registration, 1955-1966 (; 190,431 indexed records with 190,170 record images (was 178,633 records with 178,377 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020

Puerto Rico, Naturalization Records, 1897-1985 (; 91,228 indexed records with 67,290 record images (was 91,075 records with 67,175 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
Nova Scotia Delayed Births, 1837-1904 (; 117,010 indexed records with 70,782 record images (was 116,891 records with 70,782 images), UPDATED 26-Aug-2020
Peru, Diocese of Huacho, Catholic Church Records, 1560-1952 (; 1,075,315 indexed records with 159,173 record images (was 1,026,312 records with 159,173 images), UPDATED 26-Aug-2020
Texas, Hardin County Clerk, Death Records, 1908-1948 (; 2,067 indexed records with 1,126 record images (was 1,214 records with 772 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
Virginia, Bureau of Vital Statistics, Death Records, 1853-1912 (; 11,311 indexed records with 2,614 record images (was 1,736 records with 1,700 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020

Washington, County Birth Registers, 1873-1965 (; 75,046 indexed records with 1,395 record images (was 67,650 records with 1,271 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
Russia, Lutheran Church Book Duplicates, 1833-1885 (; 266,681 indexed records with 128,317 record images (was 266,610 records with 128,317 images), UPDATED 26-Aug-2020
New Jersey, County Naturalization Records, 1749-1986 (; 227,705 indexed records with 791,233 record images (was 138,512 records with 791,233 images), UPDATED 26-Aug-2020
Texas, Hardin County, Marriage Records, 1837-2009 (; 56,679 indexed records with 44,088 record images (was 56,667 records with 44,082 images), UPDATED 21-Aug-2020
Texas, Confederate Army and Commanding Officer Card Index, ca.1861-ca.1865 (; 82,890 indexed records with 81,797 record images (was 80,070 records with 79,948 images), UPDATED 22-Aug-2020

Hawaii, Collector of Customs, Ships' Passenger Manifests, 1843-1900 (; 394,533 indexed records with 189,025 record images (was 371,398 records with 171,385 images), UPDATED 26-Aug-2020
South Africa, KwaZulu Natal, Vital Records, 1868-1976 (; 134,006 indexed records with 131,450 record images (was 131,250 records with 128,711 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
Venezuela, Catholic Church Records, 1577-1995 (; 1,221,135 indexed records with 1,899,876 record images (was 1,220,292 records with 1,899,876 images), UPDATED 25-Aug-2020
North Dakota Manifests of Immigrant Arrivals, 1910-1952 (; 19,294 indexed records with 11,627 record images (was 5,688 records with 11,627 images), UPDATED 26-Aug-2020
California, County Birth and Death Records, 1800-1994 (; 6,247,772 indexed records with 2,841,076 record images (was 6,247,176 records with 2,841,076 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020

England, Warwickshire, Parish Registers, 1535-1963 (; 2,900,867 indexed records with 134,087 record images (was 2,900,841 records with 134,087 images), UPDATED 25-Aug-2020
Mexico, Morelos, Catholic Church Records, 1598-1994 (; 446,210 indexed records with 531,787 record images (was 74,374 records with 531,787 images), UPDATED 26-Aug-2020
North Carolina, Department of Archives and History, Index to Vital Records, 1800-2000 (; 7,926,454 indexed records with 96,473 record images (was 7,926,454 records with 96,291 images), UPDATED 21-Aug-2020
Texas, Washington County, Birth Records, 1903-1991 (; 17,795 indexed records with 2,728 record images (was 17,768 records with 2,727 images), UPDATED 21-Aug-2020
Pennsylvania Cemetery Records, ca. 1700-ca. 1950 (; 713,605 indexed records with 102,272 record images (was 648,754 records with 94,630 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020

Puerto Rico, Civil Registration, 1805-2001 (; 5,028,552 indexed records with 4,581,756 record images (was 5,013,375 records with 4,581,756 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
Brazil, Civil Registration, 1860-2006 (; 31,334 indexed records with 13,603 record images (was 26,099 records with 11,999 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
Peru, Prelature of Yauyos-Cañete-Huarochirí, Catholic Church Records, 1665-2018 (; 124,786 indexed records with 57,277 record images (was 113,191 records with 52,756 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
Papua New Guinea, Birth Records, 1888-2004 (; 1,237 indexed records with 1,156 record images (was 497 records with 386 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
California, Los Angeles, Angelus-Rosedale Cemetery/Crematory Records, 1884-2002 (; 61,582 indexed records with 10,740 record images (was 60,340 records with 9,537 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020

Micronesia, Civil Registration, 1883-1983 (; 17,556 indexed records with 17,529 record images (was 14,539 records with 14,517 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
Peru, Piura, Civil Registration, 1874-1996 (; 387,150 indexed records with 383,542 record images (was 324,432 records with 321,923 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
England, Herefordshire Bishop's Transcripts, 1583-1898 (; 1,094,875 indexed records with 89,020 record images (was 1,089,798 records with 88,904 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
Norway, Oslo, Census, 1832-1954 (; 91,579 indexed records with 3,505 record images (was 57,025 records with 2,608 images), UPDATED 21-Aug-2020
Brazil, Santa Catarina, Civil Registration, 1850-1999 (; 244,311 indexed records with 1,038,133 record images (was 235,103 records with 1,038,133 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020

United States, Obituaries, American Historical Society of Germans from Russia, 1899-2012 (; 6,595,649 indexed records with 539,878 record images (was 6,595,649 records with 539,878 images), UPDATED 26-Aug-2020
Wales, Marriage Bonds, 1650-1900 (; Index only (191,299 records), no images (was 158,196 records with 0 images), UPDATED 24-Aug-2020
Missouri, County Marriage, Naturalization, and Court Records, 1800-1991 (; 3,030,789 indexed records with 2,513,517 record images (was 3,028,517 records with 2,513,517 images), UPDATED 21-Aug-2020
Hawaii, Hawaiian Islands Newspaper Obituaries, 1900-ca.2010 (; 218,750 indexed records with 19,429 record images (was 195,519 records with 17,504 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
Germany Births and Baptisms, 1558-1898 (; 15,059,394 indexed records with 29,147,064 record images (was 15,059,394 records with 29,147,064 images), UPDATED 26-Aug-2020

England, Essex Non-Conformist Church Records, 1613-1971 (; 42,448 indexed records with 5,034 record images (was 39,315 records with 4,813 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
Utah, County Birth and Death Records,1892-1951 (; 30,990 indexed records with 1,143 record images (was 30,717 records with 1,137 images), UPDATED 21-Aug-2020
Zambia, Archdiocese of Lusaka, Church Records, 1950-2015 (; 49,738 indexed records with 4,034 record images (was 43,246 records with 3,579 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
United States, Missouri, Recruitment Lists of Volunteers for the United States Colored Troops, 1863-1865 (; 17,932 indexed records with 307 record images (was 17,881 records with 5,483 images), UPDATED 24-Aug-2020
South Africa, Cape Province, Civil Deaths, 1895-1972 (; 3,062,881 indexed records with 2,216,270 record images (was 3,062,826 records with 2,216,270 images), UPDATED 24-Aug-2020

Louisiana, New Orleans Index to Passenger Lists, 1853-1952 (; 439,472 indexed records with 435,372 record images (was 439,348 records with 435,255 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
South Africa, Orange Free State, Civil Death Registration, 1902-1954 (; 24,546 indexed records with 24,538 record images (was 19,699 records with 19,696 images), UPDATED 27-Aug-2020
Niue, Vital Records, 1818-1994 (; 40,806 indexed records with 30,608 record images (was 40,782 records with 30,584 images), UPDATED 26-Aug-2020

--- Collections with new images ---

Iowa, Records of Persons Subject to Military Duty, 1862-1910 (; 5,075,771 indexed records with 107,838 record images (was 5,075,771 records with 107,833 images), last updated 03-Aug-2019
Uruguay, Passenger Lists, 1888-1980 (; 3,319,694 indexed records with 144,490 record images (was 3,319,694 records with 130,327 images), last updated 08-Jul-2020
United States, Native American, Census Rolls, 1885-1940 (; 6,031,182 indexed records with 306,452 record images (was 6,031,182 records with 288,054 images), last updated 20-Feb-2020
Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Greenmount Cemetery Records, 1880-1966 (; 73,648 indexed records with 3,019 record images (was 73,648 records with 3,015 images), last updated 02-Apr-2020
Australia, Victoria, Inward Passenger Lists, 1839-1923 (; 883,350 indexed records with 5,555 record images (was 883,350 records with 5,554 images), last updated 30-Jul-2019

Colombia, Bogotá, Burial Permits, 1960-1991 (; 178,686 indexed records with 212,744 record images (was 178,686 records with 212,540 images), last updated 29-May-2020
Kentucky Death Records, 1911-1965 (; 1,681,910 indexed records with 1,676,662 record images (was 1,681,910 records with 1,675,645 images), last updated 16-Jan-2020
Maryland, Baltimore Passenger Lists Index, 1897-1952 (; 653,829 indexed records with 652,803 record images (was 653,829 records with 652,586 images), last updated 15-Apr-2020
South Africa, Transvaal, Civil Marriages, 1870-1930 (; 253,685 indexed records with 253,519 record images (was 253,685 records with 253,446 images), last updated 10-Apr-2019
Iowa, Birth Records, 1921-1942 (; 743,126 indexed records with 741,019 record images (was 743,126 records with 740,963 images), last updated 21-May-2019

--- Collections with images removed ---

Nebraska, Naturalization Records, 1855-1989 (; 144,058 indexed records with 140,356 record images (was 144,058 records with 140,784 images), last updated 13-May-2020
Connecticut, passenger and crew lists, 1804-1959 (; 98,790 indexed records with 6,951 record images (was 98,790 records with 6,972 images), last updated 17-Jul-2020
Sweden, Stockholm City Archives, Index to Church Records, 1546-1927 (; 1,067,735 indexed records with 67,960 record images (was 1,067,735 records with 69,267 images), last updated 02-Jul-2020
Oregon, Multnomah County, Voting Registration Records, 1908-1958 (; 988,587 indexed records with 980,715 record images (was 988,587 records with 982,224 images), last updated 15-Jul-2020
Arizona, Nogales, Index and Manifests of Alien Arrivals, 1905-1952 (; 502,795 indexed records with 495,412 record images (was 502,795 records with 496,137 images), last updated 21-Apr-2020

South Africa, Orange Free State, Probate Records from the Master of the Supreme Court, 1832-1989 (; 638,400 indexed records with 64,230 record images (was 638,400 records with 82,254 images), last updated 23-Dec-2019
Kansas State Census, 1905 (; 1,545,509 indexed records with 50,860 record images (was 1,545,509 records with 50,873 images), last updated 10-Oct-2019
Australia, South Australia, School Admission Registers, 1873-1985 (; 191,136 indexed records with 4,660 record images (was 191,136 records with 5,040 images), last updated 08-May-2019
Ohio, Athens County, Deceased Veteran Grave Registration Card File Index, 1819-1936 (; 5,553 indexed records with 5,223 record images (was 5,553 records with 5,546 images), last updated 21-Apr-2020
France, Dordogne, Church and Civil Registration, 1540-1896 (; 7,882,907 indexed records with 3,098,316 record images (was 7,882,907 records with 3,099,653 images), last updated 28-Mar-2018

--- Collections with new records ---

Iowa, Black Hawk County, Waterloo, World War I Pledge Cards, 1917-1918 (; 44,100 indexed records with 43,974 record images (was 39,462 records with 43,974 images), last updated 05-Aug-2020

--- Collections with records removed ---

California, County Marriages, 1850-1952 (; 1,941,772 indexed records with 2,480,495 record images (was 1,945,269 records with 2,480,495 images), last updated 14-Nov-2019
United States Public Records, 1970-2009 (; Index only (875,610,567 records), no images (was 875,610,569 records with 0 images), last updated 19-Aug-2020
California County Naturalizations, 1831-1985 (; 505,381 indexed records with 99,436 record images (was 505,480 records with 99,436 images), last updated 12-Jun-2020
California Deaths and Burials, 1776-2000 (; 585,564 indexed records with 60,094 record images (was 594,153 records with 60,094 images), last updated 03-Feb-2020
California Births and Christenings, 1812-1988 (; Index only (195,362 records), no images (was 201,028 records with 0 images), last updated 18-Mar-2020

California Marriages, 1850-1945 (; Index only (537,465 records), no images (was 540,743 records with 0 images), last updated 01-Feb-2020
Georgia, County Delayed Birth and Death Records, 1870-1960 (; 101,855 indexed records with 3,120 record images (was 101,857 records with 3,120 images), last updated 12-Nov-2019


My friend, Marshall, has come up with a program to determine which collections are ADDED, DELETED or UPDATED.  Thanks to Marshall for helping us out here!

In order to select a specific record collection on FamilySearch, go to and use the "Filter by collection name" feature in the upper left-hand corner and use keywords (e.g. "church england") to find collections with those keywords.

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.

Copyright (c) 2020, 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.  Share it on Twitter, Faceboo
k, or Pinterest using the icons below.  Or contact me by email at

Friday, August 28, 2020

Genealogy News Bytes -- Friday, 28 August 2020

Welcome to Genealogy News Bytes, posted on Tuesday afternoon and Friday afternoon, where we try to highlight the most important genealogy and family history news and education items that came across our desktop over the past three days.

1)  News Articles:

2)  New or Updated Record Collections:

3)  Genealogy Education -- Conferences and Institutes

*  Back to Our Past [Ireland] Virtual Conference (18-20 September 2020)

4)  Genealogy Education - Webinars and Online Classes (times are US Pacific):

 GeneaWebinars Calendar

*  Upcoming Family Tree Webinar - Tuesday, 1 September, 7 p.m.:  Willkommen in Australien! Researching German-Australian families, by Benjamin Hollister

*  Upcoming Family Tree Webinar - Wednesday, 2 September, 11 a.m.:  Using Chromosome Browsers, Segment Data and Triangulation, by Michelle Leonard

*  Archived Family Tree Webinar:  Slack for Genealogy Projects, by Thomas MacEntee

*  Archived Family Tree Webinar:   TechZone - Creating a Web Page with Adobe Spark, by Cheri Hudson Passey

5)  Genealogy Education - Podcasts:

*  Fisher's Top Tips:  #201r - Genealogy Luck

6)  Genealogy Videos (YouTube):

*  BYU Family History Library:  2020 Update: Basics of Findmypast - James Tanner

*  Family History Ron:  Q&A With Family History Ron

7)  Did you miss the last Genealogy News Bytes - 25 August 2020 ?


Copyright (c) 2020, 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.  Share it on Twitter, Facebook, or Pinterest using the icons below.  Or contact me by email at

New Records Available To Search This Findmypast Friday, 28 August 2020

I received this information from Findmypast today:


Findmypast Friday: Welsh wonders await in over 900,000 new additions

Delve deeper into your Welsh heritage this weekend with a host of brand new records, along with major enhancements to existing collections.

Wales Probate Records 1544-1858

Findmypast has transformed this important collection to make it fully searchable for the first time. Until today, these Welsh probate records were only available to browse. Researchers can now search more than 300 years of will abstracts, inventories and other probate records by name, year, location and role as well as the names of other family members. Containing over 700,000 records, this resource really is a must-search for anyone with Welsh roots.

Probate is the legal right to deal with a deceased person’s estates; such as property, money and possessions. The index will explain what type of record is available. You will find ‘will’ if the individual created a will with his or her wishes for the estate. If a will was not created, you will find ‘administration’. A probate record was not created for every person who died, those with smaller estates often didn’t make one – the property was often divided up by agreement of the family. Married women were unable to retain ownership and control their property until 1882. They could only create a will with their husband’s permission.

Caernarvonshire Parish Registers

Do you have family from North Wales? Thousands of new baptisms, marriages and burials from Llanbeblig parish have been added to this collection. You can now explore each record set separately to uncover the details behind the most important moments in your ancestors’ lives. This includes;

Findmypast is the only site where you can explore original parish records covering every county in Wales.

Denbighshire Burials

Over 37,000 additional records from Wrexham Cemetery have been added to the collection.

As well as transcripts capturing the most important details, many of the records feature digitised copies of the original burial registers. Always check the original record where available as it often contains additional information that is not included in the transcript.

Montgomeryshire Monumental Inscriptions

Discover what was inscribed on your ancestor’s memorial with over 17,000 new entries. Each record includes an image of the monumental inscription and a transcript recording the crucial details. Some even include detailed local histories and Welsh language translations.

Monumental inscriptions can reveal surprising amounts of detail relating to your ancestor’s life, family and death such as the names of their spouse, parents or children, their occupation and even details of their death.


This week’s releases include what could be Wales' oldest paper, dating back to 1810. Brand new to the site include:

  • Star of Gwent from 1853-1866 and 1901-1903
  • Waterford News Letter from 1838-1848 and 1870-1878
  • Pontypridd Observer from 1897-1950
  • Carmarthen Journal from 1821-1822, 1832, 1835, 1842-1843, 1846, 1852-1853, 1856-1858, 1860-1868, 1871, 1876, 1879-1880, 1889, 1892-1893, 1895-1896, 1906 and 1911
  • Manchester Daily Examiner & Times from 1856-1857, 1875-1877, 1889 and 1894
  • Port Talbot Guardian from 1927-1937
  • Radnor Express from 1898-1910
  • Strabane Weekly News from 1912
  • Manchester Guardian from 1821-1828
  • Gloucester Mercury from 1871, 1873 and 1881-1884
Plus, we've added additional pages to these newspapers:
  • Sporting Chronicle from 1876-1877, 1879-1880 and 1888
  • Glamorgan Gazette from 1894, 1912, 1914, 1916, 1919, 1925-1926, 1928-1929 and 1931-1950
  • Caernarvon & Denbigh Herald from 1878-1884, 1886-1889 and 1913-1920
  • Dundee Courier from 1994

Disclosure: I have a complimentary subscription to Findmypast, and have accepted meals and services from Findmypast, as a Findmypast Ambassador. This has not affected my objectivity relative to Findmypast and its products.

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Copyright (c) 2020, Randall J. Seaver

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52 Ancestors - Week 345: #555 Abigail (Smith) Fisher (1686-1725) of Medfield, Massachusetts

Abigail Smith (1686-1725)  is number 555 on my Ahnentafel List, my 7th great-grandmother, who married #554 John Fisher (1677-1727)  in 1705 in Medfield, now Norfolk County, Massachusetts.

I am descended through:

*  their daughter #277 Abigail Fisher (1711-1785) who married #276 John Plimpton (1708-1756)  in 1731.
*  their son #138 Amos Plimpton (1735-1808) who married #139 Mary Guild (1735-1800) in 1756.
*  their daughter #69 Mercy Plimpton (1772-1850) who married #68  Aaron Smith (1765-1841) in 1795.
*  their son #34 Alpheus Smith (1802-1840)   who married  #35 Elizabeth Horton Dill (1791-1869) in 1826.
*  their daughter, #17 Lucretia Townsend Smith (1828-1884) who married #16 Isaac Seaver (1823-1901) in 1851.
*  their son #8 Frank Walton Seaver (1852-1922) who married #9 Hattie Louisa Hildreth (1857-1920) in 1874.
*  their son #4 Frederick Walton Seaver (1876-1942) who married #5 Alma Bessie Richmond (1882-1962) in 1900.
*  their son #2 Frederick Walton Seaver (1911-1983) who married #3 Betty Virginia Carringer (1919-2002)  in 1942.
*  their son #1 Randall Jeffrey Seaver (1943-living)


1)  PERSON (with source citations as indicated in brackets):

*   Name:                        Abigail Smith[1–2]    
*  Alternate Name:         Abigail Fisher[3]

*  Sex:                            Female    

*  Father:                        Samuel Smith (1641-1691)    
*  Mother:                      Sarah Clarke (1650-1704)  

2)  INDIVIDUAL EVENTS (with source citations as indicated in brackets):
*   Birth:                        18 December 1686, Medfield, Norfolk, Massachusetts, United States[1]    

*  Death:                        23 February 1724/5 (age 38), Medfield, Norfolk, Massachusetts, United States[3]  

3)  SHARED EVENTS (with source citations as indicated in brackets):

*  Spouse 1:                  John Fisher (1677-1727)    
*  Marriage 1:               23 April 1705 (age 18), Medfield, Norfolk, Massachusetts, United States[2]    

*  Child 1:                    Solomon Fisher (1706-1706)    
*  Child 2:                    Abigail Fisher (1707-1711)    
*  Child 3:                    Sarah Fisher (1709-1711)    
*  Child 4:                    Abigail Fisher (1711-1785)    
*  Child 5:                    John Fisher (1714-1777)    
*  Child 6:                    Sarah Fisher (1719-1756)    
*  Child 7:                    Joshua Fisher (1724-    )  

4)  NOTES (with source citations as indicated in brackets):  

Abigail Smith was born 18 December 1686 in Medfield, Massachusetts, the daughter of Samuel Smith and Sarah Clarke[1].

Abigail Smith married John Fisher on 23 April 1705 in Medfield[2].  He was born 22 December 1677 in Medifield, the son of John Fisher and Hannah Adams.  John and Abigail (Smith) Fisher had seven children, all born in Medfield and recorded in the town record book:

*  Solomon Fisher (1706-1706).
*  Abigail Fisher (1707-1711).
*  Sarah Fisher (1709-1785).
*  Abigail Fisher (1711-1785), married 1731 John Plimpton (1708-1756).
*  John Fisher (1714-1777), married 1736 Dorcas Adams (1717-1807).
*  Sarah Fisher (1719-1756).
*  Joshua Fisher (1725-????), married 1752 Silence Adams (1724-????).

Abigail (Smith) Fisher died 23 February 1724/5 at age 38[2], just days after the birth of her youngest son Joshua Fisher, leaving four children aged 0 to 13 without their mother.  

There is no burial record available for Abigail (Smith) Fisher, but she may have been buried in Vine Lake Cemetery in Medfield.


1. Vital Records of Medfield, Massachusetts to the Year 1850 (Boston, Mass. :  New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1903), Births, page 90, Abigail Smith entry, 18 December 1686.

2. Vital Records of Medfield, Massachusetts to the Year 1850, Marriages, page 171, John Fisher and Abigail Smith entry, 23 April 1705.

3. Vital Records of Medfield, Massachusetts to the Year 1850, Deaths, page 211, Abigail Fisher, wife of John Fisher, entry, 23 February 1724/5.


NOTE:  In 2014, Amy Johnson Crow suggested a weekly blog theme of "52 Ancestors" in her blog post  52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks on the No Story Too Small blog.  I have extended this theme in 2020 for a seventh year to 364 Ancestors in 364 Weeks.  The list of 52 Ancestors biographies from my great-grandparents to the 7th great-grandparents (in work) is in

Copyright (c) 2020, Randall J. Seaver

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