Friday, September 19, 2014

Gather Your Fondest Grandma Stories

The following is from FamilySearch.

Campaign Aims to Gather Your Fondest Grandma Stories

SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH—If you could share ONE story about your grandma, what would it be? That’s the question nonprofit FamilySearch International ( is nudging people worldwide to respond to as part of its worldwide #meetmygrandma social media campaign, September 20-30. FamilySearch announced the campaign today, seeking 10,000 stories in 10 days to kick off the global initiative where descendants are invited to share and preserve online or through a mobile app the fond memories or stories about their grandmothers’ charms or idiosyncrasies. Find out more at

“Heart-warming experiences with a beloved grandmother are at the heart of many fond memories from our formative years, or even adulthood,” said Brad Lowder, International Marketing Director for #MeetMyGrandma campaign. “All you have to do is ask a person to share a special memory about their grandmother, and they immediately wax sentimental as they recount a heartfelt story or wise saying they cherish from a grandmother. We want to encourage people to capture for future generations those stories that make their grandmothers so special.” offers a free international service for families to share their family histories, memories, photos, and historic documents online and preserve them for future generations. If you are fortunate to have a grandma still living, the free FamilySearch Memories mobile app (IOS only for now) allows individuals to audio record their grandmother and save those recordings online. And there are 20 fun questions to ask your grandma to help write and preserve her personal history in her own words online.

“The #meetmygrandma campaign encourages families to have fun as each member of the family shares their personal perspectives of what makes their grandmothers so special to them,” added Lowder. Their stories, and those contributed by other family members and relatives, are saved to a dynamic online profile dedicated specifically to their grandma, along with any photos and digital artifacts submitted.

One youth contributor wrote, “Grandma Ella likes to Fly. Age 80 isn’t too old to fly. She discovered she loves jumping out of airplanes. Now I know where I get my adventurous personality.” He included a picture of her skydiving with her coach. Another woman tells how her grandmother suffered for 20 long painful years from cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, and other illnesses, but still managed to run a successful business from her bed.

The launch of the initiative runs from September 20–30, but the campaign will run indefinitely. Go to for more information.

Upcoming ISGS Webinars

The following is from the Illinois State Genealogical Society.

Upcoming ISGS Webinars

Join us on Tuesday, September 23, at 8:00 PM Central, where Luana Darby, MLIS will present Treasures and Hidden Secrets of the Illinois Regional Archives (IRAD).  To attend this webinar, register at

Upcoming Webinars

September 23 – Treasures and Hidden Secrets of the Illinois Regional Archives (IRAD)
Presenter:  Luana Darby, MLIS

October 14 – Hunting for Henry: A Case Study Using Collaterals 
Presenter:  Teresa Steinkamp McMillin, CG

November 11 – Evaluating What You Have Found: The Third Stage of Research
Presenter:  Barbara Renick

For the complete list of upcoming webinars, visit

Support the ISGS Webinar program by making a financial contribution, which will help ISGS expand its educational offerings in a virtual manner.  To learn why we need your help, or to make a contribution, please visit

Please direct any questions to the ISGS Education Committee at

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

September Consultant Webinar! Member Triage: Adapting to Individual Needs

The following is from FamilySearch.

Family trees come in many shapes and sizes. Some members may have several generations of ancestors on their family tree. Some may have only a few. Some may have only themselves. In the next consultant webinar, Member Triage: Adapting to Individual Needs, you can learn how to:
  • Identify the most common tree situations.
  • Customize the help that you provide to each person.
  • Help members in a variety of circumstances bring their ancestors to the temple.
To register, click on the time below that best works for you:
The number of participants is limited.
After you register, an email will be sent to you explaining how to find and attend the webinar.

Our presenter will be Beth Taylor, CGSM. Beth is a two time family history consultant, a credentialed genealogist, and holds a bachelor’s degree in history. She has been working for FamilySearch since 2005 and loves learning and teaching about how new websites and technology can help you find and share your family stories.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Worldwide Indexing Event Follow-up

The following is from FamilySearch.

You Helped Make History!

Thank you for participating in the recent Worldwide Indexing Event. The response from our valued volunteers like you was incredible! We hope your experience was a good one. 
Now what?
  1. Elder Neil L. Andersen has challenged the youth of the Church to take their own family names to the temple this year. We want to extend that challenge to all indexers, both youth and adults. Will you find the name of an ancestor that you can submit to the temple this year?
  2. While you’re at it, invite your family members to join you—in both indexing and submitting at least one family name for temple work—so all can enjoy these blessings. Remember, every batch you index can help someone else find his or her missing ancestor, so please continue.
Thank you again for all you are doing to help hasten the work of salvation through family history!

The FamilySearch Indexing Team

Elements of Genealogical Analysis by Robert Charles Anderson

The following is from the New England Historic Genealogical Society.

The Bookstore at NEHGS is happy to announce the release of Elements of Genealogical Analysis, the latest book by renowned author Robert Charles Anderson. 
Analyze records and make sound genealogical conclusions using the same method applied by Robert Charles Anderson for the Great Migration Study Project!

This handbook presents a step-by-step process for solving genealogical problems--a methodology thirty years in the making. Developed by Anderson and perfected through his work on the Great Migration Study Project, this systematic approach considers each source, each record, and each possible linkage before making a genealogical conclusion. Clearly defined tools, checklists, and logically ordered steps throughout the book help make this method both accessible and effective.

To get your 20% off, enter the coupon code RCA14 into the coupon field in our online store or mention it when calling in an order at 1-888-296-3447. Prices are good through 9/24/14, while supplies last. Discount cannot be combined with other discounts, including the NEHGS member discount. Prices do not include shipping. 

About the Author
Robert Charles Anderson is the director of the Great Migration Study Project.He was educated as a biochemist and served in the United States Army in electronics intelligence. In 1972 he discovered his early New England ancestry and there­after devoted his time and energies to genealogical research. In 1983 he received a master's degree in colonial American history from UMass Amherst and was elected a Fellow of the American Society of Genealogists in 1978He became a Contributing Edi­tor of The American Genealogist in 1979, Associate Editor in 1985, and Coeditor in 1993.He has been an editorial consultant to the Register since 1989.

Reminder: Y-DNA and mtDNA are being retired on September 30

The following is from
Reminder: Your Y-DNA and mtDNA results will no longer be available as ofSeptember 30, 2014
A few months ago, we sent a notification that we are retiring the Y-DNA and mtDNA tests and that your results will no longer be available online. The original deadline of September 5 has been extended to September 30 in order to give you extra time to access your results. After September 30, 2014, you will no longer be able to view Y-DNA and mtDNA results on website.

Important: This does not affect the AncestryDNA autosomal DNA test. We continue to offer the AncestryDNA service and are fully committed to supporting and expanding its’ capabilities. AncestryDNA has a vibrant and growing user community, now over ½ million strong, and a team of 11 Ph.D. scientists dedicated to providing new breakthroughs with DNA for family history.

Preserving your Y-DNA and mtDNA results
To save the results of Y-DNA and mtDNA tests, there are two popular options.

Download your raw DNA data. For instructions on downloading your raw data, please read this guide to downloading your Y-DNA or mtDNA data.

Print your results. For instructions on printing your results, please read this guide to printing your Y-DNA or mtDNA results.

For more information about retiring the Y-DNA and mtDNA testing, please read this article, which includes additional details.

Have questions? Check out answers to these Frequently Asked Questions.

If you haven’t already, we encourage you to check out AncestryDNA. Here are some of the things we’ve heard from Y-DNA and mtDNA customers comparing AncestryDNA to Y-DNA and mtDNA tests.

Easier to understand Instead of getting a haplogroup result, like “E1b1b”, the AncestryDNA test provides an easy to read, detailed percentage mix of where your ancestors came from, such as Ireland, Great Britain, Native America, etc…

Better DNA matching With a rapidly growing database of over ½ million people and the use of more of your DNA, over 700,000 DNA markers, you can make more and closer family connections across your entire family tree with the autosomal AncestryDNA test.

Less limitations Both men and women can take the AncestryDNA test and get the same powerful results. Similarly, because autosomal DNA is inherited from both of your parents, the AncestryDNA test gives you results that include ancestors from both paternal and maternal lines of your family and everywhere in between.

ISGS Webinar Rescheduled

The following is from the Illinois State Genealogical Society.

Join us on September 23, for Treasures and Hidden Secrets of the Illinois Regional Archives (IRAD) with Luana Darby, where you will learn about the Illinois State Archives regional depositories and how you can gain access to a variety of common and unique records.
Date: Tuesday, September 23, 2014, 8:00 p.m. Central
Description: If you research in Illinois, you don’t want to miss the resources held in the seven regional archive repositories of IRAD. From vital records to city directories, probate to local histories, each site has its own unique set of records. Learn tips and tricks for getting the most out of your visit, whether long-distance or on site. Come see some of the gems already gleaned from the vast resources of this amazing Illinois asset.
Presenter: Luana Darby, MLIS

Luana Darby, MLIS, is a Salt Lake City based genealogist who specializes in the U.S. Midwest, Palatine German, and American patriot research. Her love for genealogy came from listening to stories at her grandmother's knee while a young girl. She has been working with clients for over 20 years and is a frequent speaker at conferences, workshops, and institutes. She is past president of the Utah Genealogical Association.

Recording and Handout Available to ISGS Members:  For ISGS members who cannot attend the live webinar, a recording of the webinar, along with the handout, will be made available in the Members Section of the ISGS website at  If you're not already a member of ISGS, visit Join ISGS! at for more information.

Make a Contribution:  Support the ISGS Webinar program by making a financial contribution, which will help ISGS expand its educational offerings in a virtual manner.  To learn why we need your help, or to make a contribution, please visit
Please direct any questions to the ISGS Education Committee at

Virtual Institute of Genealogical Research

The following is from the Virtual Institute of Genealogical Research.

Virtual Institute of Genealogical Research to Offer Unique Opportunities in Genealogical Education

RALEIGH, North Carolina, 9 September 2014. Professional genealogists Catherine W. Desmarais, CG, Michael Hait, CG, and Melanie D. Holtz, CG, are pleased to announce the formation of the Virtual Institute of Genealogical Research (VIGR). VIGR is a unique educational opportunity for genealogists of all skill levels.

The Institute will offer courses on a wide variety of genealogical subjects, providing “Vigorous” year-round education for the genealogical community using a virtual platform. Each course will consist of a total of four 90-minute lectures, two each presented on consecutive Saturdays, extensive syllabus material, and practical exercises. Limited class sizes of only one hundred registrants per course allows for a higher level of class participation and instructor feedback than typically offered by genealogy webinars.

Courses are currently planned around the topics of genealogical writing, advanced methodology, DNA testing and analysis, and cultural, regional, or record-based research strategies.

Many of these subject matters—as well as the depth of instruction—have never before been offered in a virtual format and are ideal for genealogists around the world. “VIGR will allow genealogists who work a full-time job or have limited travel budgets to more easily advance their genealogical skills,” Institute co-administrator Melanie D. Holtz stated.

Registration for each course will cost $69.99 and includes digital video recordings of all four lectures, available within two weeks of the close of each course.

For more information on the Institute and to register for upcoming courses, visit and subscribe to the mailing list for updates on future courses.


Michael Hait, CG, “Writing Logical Proof Arguments,” 1 November–8 November 2014
J. Mark Lowe, CG, FUGA, “Preparing the Field: Understanding the Agricultural Records of our Ancestors,” 24 January–31 January 2015
Maureen Taylor, “Family Photographs: Identifying, Preserving, and Sharing Your Visual Heritage,” 21 February–28 February 2015
Donna Moughty, “Strategies for Finding Your Irish Ancestors,” 7 March–14 March 2015
Blaine Bettinger, “(Finally!) Understanding Autosomal DNA,” 21 March–28 March 2015
Billie Stone Fogarty and Rick Fogarty, “Verifying the Family Legend of Native American Ancestry,” 18 April–25 April 2015
Melanie D. Holtz, CG, and Melissa Johnson, “Genealogical Applications of Dual Citizenship by Descent,” 2 May-9 May 2015
Paul Milner, “An In-Depth Look at the 'Big Four' Records of English Research,” 30 May -- 6 June 2015
Angela McGhie, “Digging in Federal Land Records,” 19 September-26 September 2015

UGA/IGS Combined Fall Conference

The following is from the Utah Genealogical Association.
We have for the first time joined with the Idaho Genealogical Society in co-sponsoring a fall conference and invite all who are interested. The cost is $25 and membership is not required. We hope you will come if possible and help spread the word!
Do you want to know how to interest your kids in your family tree? Would you like to know more about the “jail bird” in your family or how your grandpa came to own the family farm? Does learning about DNA, exploring railroad records, plumbing the depths of the special collections in various repositories and probing into your Native American roots get you excited? Are you interested in learning how to preserve old photos or interview and film living relatives? You can choose from all these subjects and many more at the first annual Idaho Genealogical Society Family History conference, “Idaho and Utah, Family Ties Crossing Borders” on Saturday, October 11, 2014 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in Pocatello, co-sponsored by the Utah Genealogical Association.
The keynote speaker is Susan B. Hawkes who will speak on “What the 42nd Parallel Meant to the Settlers of Utah and Idaho in 1863.” Susan was born and raised in northern Utah. She is the Site Coordinator for the Idaho State Historical Society at the Franklin Historical Site, which was the first Idaho Mormon settlement. She is the co-author of several historical fiction novels as well as other historical publications, and also conducts classes in family history. Susan serves as a member of the Idaho Pioneer Association and works with the Utah/Idaho Pioneer Byway Committee, Bear Heritage Area, Idaho Heritage trust, Daughters of the Utah Pioneers, and Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, to promote the historical value of northern Utah and Southern Idaho. Susan has been able to collect over 250 histories on the settlers of southeastern Idaho and northern Utah. 
The conference offers 16 classes taught by well qualified instructors such as Steve Barrett from the Idaho State Archives, Juvanne Martin, president of the Idaho Genealogical Society, Laurie Francis, special collections librarian at BYUI, and Robert Mallory, former ABC news anchor and producer. A lunchtime panel on special collections throughout Idaho and Utah relating to the early families of this area is staffed by specialists in repositories such as Boise State, BYUI, Utah State and Idaho State. A workshop for Family History consultants and up to date technology classes are also available.

An exciting and marvelous service will be offered at the conference, the FamilySearch Book Project. This is what FamilySearch does at Rootstech where people can bring their personal family histories and after signing a copyright release, we will scan the book, give them a copy and then place it on the FamilySearch Book site. If you miss the conference, the Pocatello FamilySearch Library is the scanning location for Idaho.
A syllabus will be offered both in printed form and electronically. Boxed lunches can be ordered at the time of registration. More conference information and online registration can be found at 
For questions or offline registration please call (801) 259-4172.

The annual Idaho Genealogical Society meeting will be held immediately after the conference in the Idaho State University Student Union Building. Society business will be discussed and voted upon.

MyHeritage on prime time news show

The following is from MyHeritage.

I'm delighted to share a TV segment which appeared this weekend on an Israeli prime time news show, watched by over 25% of Israel's population. It featured an interview with MyHeritage Founder and CEO, Gilad Japhet, and showcased MyHeritage as a company that not only does well as a business, but also does good in the world. 

The segment highlights some of MyHeritage's pro bono work, including helping to discover heirs for unclaimed assets confiscated during WWII, returning looted art to its rightful owners and our global crowdsourcing project to digitally preserve the world's cemeteries with BillionGraves.

Our technologies have helped millions of families around the world make new discoveries, and we're delighted to have helped in these projects as well. 

Please see the video with English subtitles here:

RootsTech 2015 Registration Now Open

The following is from RootsTech.

Join us at RootsTech!
Family Discovery Day
RootsTech registration is now open!
RootsTech registration is now open!
Registration is now open for RootsTech 2015 taking place February 12-14, 2015 at the Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City, Utah.
This annual conference, hosted by FamilySearch, is now the largest family history conference in the world offering more than 200 classes, hundreds of exhibitors, special guest speakers and performers, and more!
Whether you're new to your family history calling and need to learn the basics or you're more advanced and want to enhance your research skills, RootsTech has something for you!

Get a RootsTech 3-day pass at a special discount!
As someone with a family history related calling, you can attend the full RootsTech 2015 conference at a special discounted price! Get a RootsTech 3-day access pass for $99 when you use the promotional code CALLING99. That’s a savings of $150 over a full price pass. Register now and save.
See the RootsTech Schedule

Check out the RootsTech Expo Hall

Studio C
Your three-day RootsTech pass includes:

Over 200 classes for all experience levels with topics ranging from the latest in DNA research to learning storytelling techniques. Click here to view RootsTech 2015 schedule.

Access to the huge expo hall with hundreds of family history and technology exhibitors available to help you with such things as scanning photos, recording stories, building a family tree, and more.

General sessions with inspirational and nationally recognized keynote speakers and evening events, including the RootsTech closing social with the cast ofStudio C from BYUtv and other popular entertainers to be announced.

Family Discovery Day for LDS members and families
Family Discovery Day
Families and members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are also invited to attend Family Discovery Day at RootsTech on Saturday, February 14, 2015. This free one-day event is a day of devotionals, classes, interactive activities, and entertainment to help members discover and connect with their families across generations and provide them with the blessings of the temple.

Since last years’ event filled up quickly, please help spread the word by inviting your ward members and families to sign-up for this one-day event that promises to inspire.

Click here to register.

RootsTech offers classes just for beginners!
Beginner Classes at RootsTech
Just starting your family tree? At RootsTech, the Getting Started pass offers 30+ classes to help beginners discover different ways of using everyday tools to connect families across generations. Classes include how to use social media as a family history resource, develop storytelling techniques for personal and family stories, and discovering who you are and where you’re from through DNA.
Click here to see the Getting Started class schedule.

Add more to your RootsTech experience!
RootsTech Labs
Reserve your seat!
Enhance your RootsTech experience by purchasing a reserved seat for activities, such as sponsored lunches orhands-on computer labs. These add-on activities are immensely popular with attendees and tend to fill up prior to the event. Don’t miss out! Select these items during the registration process.
Two great conferences, one venue.
This year, RootsTech is teaming up with the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS)to offer two great conferences in one venue. The two conferences will have combined on-site experiences, like keynotes, evening events, and the expo hall. Classes will be separate for each conference. If you purchase a RootsTech Three-Day Pass, you can add access to FGS classes for just $39.

For more information and pass registration for the RootsTech 2015 conference is available at