200 Million PictureLife Images Are Back, Thanks to SmugMug

The following excerpt was posted August 22, 2016 at petapixel.com.


When photo storage site Picturelife shut down, users were left high and dry without a way to access and/or download the images they had stored there. This didn’t sit well with SmugMug, who reached out to Picturelife and, today, is helping reunite those photographers with their lost images.

In all, some 200 million files were lost into the ones and zeroes of Internet history when Picturelife went under—but out of this sad tale came 200 million opportunities for SmugMug to be both altruistic, and maybe snag a customer or two for themselves.

It’s important to note that it will cost you nothing to take advantage of this offer from SmugMug.

Read the full article.

Thanks to ResearchBuzz for the Heads-Up.

Historic Luxembourg Photos

The following excerpt is from the August 1, 2016 edition of the wort.lu website.


While Luxembourg works on its new nation brand, Wort.lu looks back at past branding approaches, in a rare online photo collection.

The 6,500-strong photo archive dating from the 1950s to the ’70s is freely accessible on the website of Luxembourg’s National Archives, where one would normally find administrative manuscripts pertaining to the State.

“The Ministry of Economy contacted 20 to 30 photographers, from professionals to amateurs. They went throughout Luxembourg and photographed everything they saw,” said Philippe Nilles of the national archive office, adding: “It was done clearly to make publicity for Luxembourg.”

The collection is not the largest photo archive in Luxembourg – this can be found at the CNA in Dudelange or the Photothèque de la Ville de Luxembourg.

Read the full article.

Thanks to ResearchBuzz for the heads-up.

Note that Family Roots Publishing just published a guide to research in Luxembourg. Click here to read a blog about it.

London Digital Photo Archive – by Street – is Now Online

The following excerpt is from an article Posted July 27, 2016 at CityLab.com:

A close-up of the London Picture Map, showing the incredible density of entries.
A close-up of the London Picture Map, showing the incredible density of entries.

With over 150,000 pictures now mapped across the city, a new digital photo archive of the city of London is so rich in content it’s almost too much to cope with.

Launched last week, Collage, The London Picture Map allows you to trace London’s visual history street by street. Supported by the City of London Corporation, it’s the result of two full years of digitizing and mapping images from the London Metropolitan Archive and the Guildhall Art Gallery, which together possess the largest collection of London images in the world.

This huge task has now made reimagining old London easier than ever. Simply choose a location across the city and a few clicks will lead you directly to tens of thousands of photos, paintings, drawings and historic posters. It’s the ideal visual counterpart to an ancient city where, even in recently built areas, you can often feel like you’re treading on ghosts. Think of the London Picture Map as a dream chest opening up views to not just what once was, but to what could have been.

Read the full article.

Thanks to ResearchBuzz for the Heads-Up.

Flash Sale – 20% off select Family Tree Books

The following books are all on sale at 20% off, through July 5 or while supplies last.

The Family Tree Polish, Czech And Slovak Genealogy Guide, How to Trace Your Family Tree in Eastern Europe; by Lisa A Alzo

Trace Your German Roots Online, A Complete Guide to German Genealogy Websites; by James M Beidler

Unofficial Guide to Ancestry.com, How to Find Your Family History on the No. 1 Genealogy Website; by Nancy Hendrickson

The Family Tree Historical Maps Book, A State-by-State Atlas of US History, 1790-1900; by Allison Dolan

The Family Tree Historical Maps Book – Europe, A Country-by-Country Atlas of European History, 1700s-1900s; by Allison Dolan

How to Archive Family Photos, A Step-by-Step Guide to Organize and Share Your Photos Digitally; by Denise May Levenick

Unofficial Guide to FamilySearch.org, How to Find Your Family History on the Largest Free Genealogy Website; by Dana Mccullough

The Family Tree Problem Solver: Tried and True Tactics for Tracing Elusive Ancestors; by Marsha Hoffman Rising

The Genealogist’s U.S. History Pocket Reference: Quick Facts and Timelines of American History to Help Understand Your Ancestors; by Nancy Hendrickson

The Family Tree German Genealogy Guide: How to Trace Your Germanic Ancestry in Europe; by James Beidler

Family Tree Pocket Reference, 2nd Edition; by Diane Haddad

From the Family Kitchen, Discover Your Food Heritage and Preserve Favorite Recipes; by Gena Philibert-Ortega

The Family Tree Guidebook to Europe: Your Essential Guide to Trace Your Genealogy in Europe; by Allison Dolan

New Canadian Images Posted at Ancestry. Free Access to 269 M Canadian Records thru July 2


Ancestry is providing free access to all of the site’s 269 million Canadian records – including the two new collections – from June 28 to July 2, 2016. Visit www.ancestry.ca to discover more.

The following news release is from PR Newswire:

New collections contain more than 82,000 images and 668,000 historical records that paint a picture of life in post-Confederation Canada

Historic photo albums and Homestead grant records span period of nearly sixty years, ranging from 1872-1930

Photos include scenes of early Prairie life and images of well-known Canadian landmarks taken more than 100 years ago

Ancestry is offering free access to entire collection of Canadian records from 28th June – 2nd July to celebrate Canada Day weekend

TORONTO, June 28, 2016 /CNW/ – A collection of more than 3,000 historic photographs of Canada, spanning 25 years from post-Confederation to the First World War, have been published online for the first time.

The photographs are part of two new historic Canadian collections made available today on Ancestry, the leader in family history and consumer genomics, to celebrate Canada Day. Canada, Photographic Albums of Settlement, 1892-1917 include thousands of photographs of villages, cities, vistas, landmarks, settlers and aboriginal Canadians from the Prairies to the Maritimes, capturing a glimpse of everyday life for Canadians during the earliest days of statehood.

The Canada, Homestead Grant Registers, 1872-1930 showcase Canada’s growth from small farms to towns and cities and detail demographic and biographic information of some of Canada’s earliest settlers. The collection includes historical records of homesteads in Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta, established under the Dominion Lands Act. Under this Act, Canadians across the Prairies were provided with 160 acres of land to develop and improve upon, for an average fee of only $10.

With a combined 668,000 records and more than 82,000 images, these two collections provide fascinating insight into the true north as it was becoming a nation.

Canada Photographic Albums of Settlement 1892-1817 Collection

Compiled by the Department of the Interior, the Canada Photographic Albums of Settlement collection contains more than 3,300 photos from Library and Archives Canada.

Found in this collection are images illustrating the hard work and labour that went into nation building, from the early stages of railroad construction that connected communities from coast to coast, to photos that bring to life the back-breaking work of the logging process. While the photos capture the gruelling and often dangerous work of cutting and chopping lumber from the treetops, they also show moments of joy, such as the local population dancing on the fresh tree stumps in celebration.

The collection also captures expansive ranches, vintage farming and fishing procedures used in some of the earliest days of Canada and show the establishment of systems that would continue to feed and transport Canadians for generations to come.

Snapshots in Time

Some of Canada’s top landmarks from 100 years ago feature in the photo albums, including:

Niagara Falls – With more than 12 million visitors each year, Niagara Falls is one of Canada’s top destinations for visitors near and far. Surrounded by tourist attractions, the Niagara Falls we know today is in stark contrast to The Falls at the turn of the century. These black and white images show Niagara Falls before the illumination of the Falls began in 1925.

Canadian Rockies – Home to some of the most diverse wildlife and breathtaking views, the Canadian Rockies draw adventure seekers and nature lovers alike. This image shows some of the first Canadians enjoying Jasper National Park around the time the park was established, in 1907. Jasper Park is the largest national park in the Canadian Rockies, with 10,878 square kilometres of mountains.

Government Buildings – Built between 1907 and 1913, the Alberta Legislature Building is the meeting place of the Legislative Assembly and the Executive Council, and due to its Greek, Roman and Egyptian architectural influences, is a beautiful attraction for visitors. This image shows the drastic difference in city development compared to the city of Edmonton today.
Lesley Anderson, family historian and content specialist for Ancestry says: “This incredible collection of photographs is a real treasure trove that gives us insight into the hardships of everyday life and how simply people lived during those first years of our county’s existence. The images capture human experiences against the backdrop of the vast and – what was then – largely unknown landscape of Canada; the place that many of our ancestors called home

“As we approach our 150th anniversary as a country next year, it is wonderful to see how far we have come by comparing what we see in these photographs to the Canada we know today.”

Ancestry is providing free access to all of the site’s 269 million Canadian records – including the two new collections – from June 28 to July 2, 2016. Visit www.ancestry.ca to discover more.

Ancestry.ca was launched in January 2006 and is part of Ancestry, the leader in family history and consumer genomics. Ancestry harnesses the information found in family trees, historical records and DNA to help people gain a new level of understanding about their lives. Ancestry has more than 2.3 million paying subscribers across its core Ancestry websites and 2 million DNA samples in the AncestryDNA database. Since 1996, more than 17 billion records have been added, and users have created more than 80 million family trees on the Ancestry flagship site and its affiliated international websites.

100 Best Photographs Without Photoshop


Warning – this entry has nothing to do with genealogy – but it’s worth reading.

My good friend, Sam Colorassi, sent me a link that really made my day. It’s titled the 100 best photographs without photoshop. It takes a while to scroll through the photos, as you will find yourself stopping and having “ahh” moments. I invite you to check it out. Enjoy!

The National Archives Announces Partnership to Digitize WWII Aerial Photography

The following is from the National Archives Press/Journalists webpage.


November 2, 2015 Washington, DC… The National Archives today announced its partnership with the National Collection of Aerial Photography (NCAP) to digitize historic World War II aerial photography. For the first time, these historically valuable images will be made accessible online to anyone, anywhere.

This partnership marks the first digitization of the National Archives’ aerial film holdings. Under the partnership, NCAP will digitize more than 150,000 canisters of aerial film from the National Archives’ records of the Defense Intelligence Agency. These aerial photographs were taken by the U.S. Navy and Air Force for military reconnaissance and mapping projects.

More than 40,000 canisters of World War II aerial film will be the focus of digitization under the first stage of the five year pilot project. Once digitized, the public will be able to access these materials free of charge from National Archives research facilities nationwide. The National Archives will receive a copy of the digital images and metadata for inclusion in its online catalog.

The National Archives works with partners to digitize and make available National Archives holdings. These digitization partnerships provide increased access to historical government information through the increased availability of information technology products and services. See NARA’s Principles for Partnerships for more information. A list of current partnerships is online.

The National Collection of Aerial Photography (NCAP), based in Edinburgh, United Kingdom, holds one of the largest collections of aerial imagery in the world, estimated at more than 25 million aerial photographs. NCAP collects such records, in both digital and physical formats, to preserve them for generations to come, and to make them widely accessible. NCAP’s online digitized collection, valued by historians and researchers, is also used to help locate unexploded bombs from World War II and to identify contaminated land where development is being planned throughout Europe.

The U.S. National Archives is an independent Federal agency that preserves and shares with the public records that trace the story of our nation, government, and the American people. From the Declaration of Independence to accounts of ordinary Americans, the holdings of the National Archives directly touch the lives of millions of people. The National Archives carries out its mission through a nationwide network of archives, records centers, and Presidential Libraries, and online.

Thanks to ResearchBuzz for the heads-up.

Ellis Island Immigrants – The Photographs

The following teaser in from an excellent article posted October 28, 2015 at the fstoppers.com website.


From 1892 to 1925, Augustus Sherman, the chief registry clerk of Ellis Island, took photographs of immigrants as they arrived in the United States. The photographs are striking for their display of the vast array of cultural backgrounds that passed through on their way to becoming citizens of the U.S. Take a look at some of the history contained in this archive.

Originally published by National Geographic in 1907, this treasure trove eventually passed on to the headquarters of the Immigration Service in Manhattan, before arriving at its current home in the New York Public Library, which graciously made many of the prints available online.

Read the full article and view the photos.

Is This a Genuine Picture of Bob Ford and Jesse James?

The following teaser is from an article posted October 22, 2015 at the CNN website.


CNN – A Houston forensic artist says she’s sure an old tintype owned by a Washington state family is that of Jesse James and his eventual killer, Robert Ford.

“This photo was taken when the two men trusted each other and the younger Robert Ford wanted a picture of himself with the man who had become a legend in his own time,” Lois Gibson said on her Facebook page.

The undated photo shows both men seated on chairs next to each other, with Ford on James’ right.

Read the full article.

Digital Archive of Life at Mount Holyoke College in the Early 20th-Century


Mount Holyoke College, the liberal arts educational institution for women in South Hadley, Massachusetts, has debuted a new online digital archive of about 2,000 rare photographs. The collection documents life at the college from 1899 to 1939. The photographs include pictures of the campus and community and women in a wide variety of academic and extracurricular activities.

The images were taken by Asa Kinney, a professor of botany at the college during the period.

The digital archive may be accessed here.

The above excerpt is from WIA Report. Click here for the full article, and to view a video.

Thanks to ResearchBuzz for the heads-up.

Bluesky Brings Old British Aerial Photos Online

The following press release is from directionsmagazine.com:

View the History of Britain from the Air as Bluesky Brings Old Aerial Photos Online
Thousands of aerial photographs of Britain, dating back more than seventy years, are now available online. Visitors to www.blueskymapshop.com can now search, view and download images from the Old Aerial Photos collection, which includes some of the earliest commercial aerial survey images, military photographs as well as many national archives. Offering a record of most major UK cities and towns, transport and utility infrastructure and commercial property developments, the images are an invaluable resource for anyone with a personal or professional interest in local studies, genealogy, boundary disputes, environmental land use research or town planning.

“Our Mapshop is already established as to the ‘go to’ place for modern aerial photography, with multiple dates of imagery available for the whole of England, Scotland and Wales,” says Rachel Tidmarsh, Managing Director of Bluesky. “The addition of the Old Aerial Photos archive was therefore the next step. Complementing the modern images, as well as the other map layers available, this archive is a really interesting and valuable resource for a range of applications.”

The Old Aerial Photos archive of historic aerial images includes around 100,000 individual images dating back to the 1960s. The newly available images include archives from some of the forerunners of today’s aerial photography industry as well as photographs from the UK military. Visitors to www.blueskymapshop.com can also access archive images from more familiar names such as Infoterra, GeoPerspectives and SCRAN (formerly BLOM).


The online archive can be searched using a postcode, street or city name, or Ordnance Survey grid reference. Once the Old Aerial Photos option has been selected the Bluesky Mapshop viewer window then displays small camera icons for each image available within the search area. Clicking on an icon displays a preview of the aerial image as well as information about the photograph including when it was taken.

By clicking through to the ‘Choose your product’ page, the visitor can get an overview of all products available within the search area before selecting the Old Aerial Photos option. Details of each image, including scale, date and price, are displayed and the visitor can choose different purchase options, such as Standard Scan or Archive Pack, accompanying Letter of Authenticity, Printed Version and Delivery Option.

Contacts: Bluesky, tel +44 (0)1530 518 518, www.blueskymapshop.com, www.bluesky-world.com

Thanks to ResearchBuzz for the heads-up.

New Akron, Ohio Photo Archive – Free For the Public’s Use

The following teaser is from Ohio.com:

An online treasure trove of photographs of Akron is now available — for free use by anyone — thanks to local photographer Shane Wynn and two nonprofits who work to give the city a boost.

Wynn spent more than 40 hours last year taking the shots, capturing more than 1,400 images of the city, including wide-angle photos taken from the tops of parking decks and a ladder.

These are beauty shots, showcasing Akron’s downtown and other parts of the city.

The archive, supported by the Downtown Akron Partnership and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, is open to any organization, business or individual at www.Akronstock.com.

Akron Ohio Northside Lofts -  Click on the Image to see details and browse the Akron Images.
Akron Ohio Northside Lofts – Click on the Image to see details and browse the Akron Images.

Read the full article.

Thanks to Research-Buzz for the Heads-Up.

Savannah, Georgia Digital Images Now Available Online


The Blog of the Digital Library of Georgia has announced that the City of Savannah, Research Library and Municipal Archives, through its online Digital Image Catalog, has made public all kinds of historic Savannah, Georgia digital images. Following is a teaser from an article on the blog:

The City of Savannah, Research Library and Municipal Archives has recently made a new collection available through its online Digital Image Catalog: Public Information Office–Photographs, 1948-2000.

This collection contains digitized photographs, slides, negatives, and manuscript material maintained by the city of Savannah’s Public Information Office, and document city-sponsored services, programs, and significant city events. There are also photographs of politicians and employees of city bureaus.

Images in the collection were used in both internal publications that included reports, newsletters, and identification materials, and promotional materials that advertised city services and programs…

Read the full article.

Search the the City of Savannah Research Library and Municipal Archives site.

Thanks to ResearchBuzz for the heads-up.

100,000 Original Mali Photographs to be Digitized

The following teaser is from an article posted April 21, 2015 at the Michigan State University website.


Hoping to preserve cultural heritage and change Western thought on Africa, a Michigan State University researcher will use a $300,000 National Endowment for the Humanities grant to digitize 100,000 original black-and-white negatives of Mali’s most important photographers, dating from the 1940s.

Candace Keller, assistant professor of African art history and visual culture, is collaborating with MSU’s MATRIX: The Center for Digital Humanities and Social Sciences and the Maison Africaine de la Photographie in Bamako, Mali, to create the Archive of Malian Photography.

Once complete, the publicly accessible, free database will provide valuable documentation of the modernization of Western Africa, featuring family portraits and photos of military activities, diplomatic visits, political events, national monuments, architecture, cultural and religious ceremonies and other aspects of popular culture, she said.

Read the full article.

Digital Imaging Essentials: Techniques & Tips for Genealogists and Family Historians- with FREE PDF- 20% Off

From scanner or camera, digital images, namely photographs, have become a part of everyday life. Even older photographs, on paper or film, are commonly converted to digital format. Documents, letters, notes, books, and just about anything else on paper can be scanned and preserved in digital format. This include vital records. Opinions vary widely on what equipment you need, and what formats to save in, and what software to use, but in the end it comes down to just a little bit of knowledge and some basic skills. Anyone can learn these skills. Years of practice, along with plenty of mistakes, can make an expert out of just about anyone. Geoffrey Rasmussen, from Legacy Family Tree, has experienced his own woes over the years. More importantly, he has learned many useful lessons to successful digital imaging. These lessons are shared in his voice and straightforward way through his book Digital Imaging Essentials: Technique and Tips for Genealogists and Family Historians.

Geoff helps answer age old questions, like which scanner to buy? He reviews the ever nagging questions of picture resolution and file format. He also covers basic skills like importing images from scanner or camera, editing those images, and, of course, organizing, sharing, and backing up. Listing from the back, here is what “You Will Learn:

  • The do-it-right-the-first-time techniques of scanning old documents, and snapping pictures with your digital camera.
  • How to finally get organized so that you can locate any digital image in under a minute.
  • Which file formats and file saving techniques to use to properly preserve your digital images.
  • How to use Adobe’s Photoshop Elements and Google’s Picasa with illustrated, step-by-step instructions and learn about other software choices.
  • How to privately or publicly share your images and videos via printing, emailing, Dropbox, CDs, DVDs, or online via cloud technology.
  • How to access your digital media from any Internet-connected device including your smart phone or tablet.
  • How to develop a backup strategy to protect your collections from digital disaster.”

While Geoff tackles some of the oldest questions in digital imaging, he does so using the latest software and techniques. From hardware to software and from the local hard drive to the Internet, Geoff discusses what is available today. What makes this book so great is the clear and precise way Geoff handles each topic. His opinions are well thought out and come from his vast experience. The step-by-step instructions are easy to follow. This book is truly designed to make learning easy. As Geoff says, “So if you are ready to take your digital pictures to the next level, go ahead, open the book, and have fun!”





Chapter 1: A Digital Image is…

Chapter 2: Before You Digitize

  • What will you do with the digital images?
  • Resolution
  • File Formats

Chapter 3: Scanners, Cameras, Wi-Fi, Mi-Fi, and Eye-Fi

  • Which Scanners?
  • All-in-one
  • Flat-bed
  • Flip-Pal mobile scanner
  • Wand scanners
  • What to look for in a digital camera
  • Resolution
  • Zoom
  • JPG vs TIF
  • Wireless
  • Image Stabilization
  • Tripod vs. a steady hand

Chapter 4: Photo Software

  • Photoshop Elements
  • Picasa
  • Other popular photo software

Chapter 5: How to Import from your Scanner or Camera

  • 4 Steps to digitizing a photograph or document using a Flat-bed scanner
  • Creating a unique file name
  • 3 Steps to digitizing a photograph or document using the Flip-Pal mobile scanner
  • 2 Steps to Transferring a Photograph from your Digital Camera to Your Computer

Chapter 6: Before Editing the Picture

Chapter 7: Auto-Editing Techniques

  • Photoshop Elements techniques
  • Picasa techniques

Chapter 8: Editing: Advanced Tips and Techniques

  • Clone
  • Fixing little scratches and blemishes
  • Replace the background
  • How to “colorize” a black/white photo
  • Stitching
  • How to selectively adjust dark areas of a picture

Chapter 9: Getting Organized

  • My Personal Photographs and Scanned Images
  • My Digital Genealogy Documents
  • Another Golden Rule
  • Photo Organizing Software
  • Keyword tags, and facial recognition
  • Compatibility of tags

Chapter 10: Sharing

  • Printing and mailing
  • Emailing
  • Email feature of your photo editing software
  • You can still send a large attachment
  • How to add a citation to a digital image
  • CDs and DVDs
  • Adobe Premiere Elements
  • The Cloud
  • 4 Steps to Sharing via a the Cloud
  • Picasa Web Albums – anywhere

Chapter 11: Backup Strategies

  • External hard drive or another internal hard drive
  • Cloud services
  • CDs/DVDs
  • Photo Books




All soft-bound copies of Digital Imaging Essentials: Techniques and Tips for Genealogists and Family Historians ordered from Family Roots Publishing currently come with a FREE immediately available download of a full-color pdf version of the book. On Sale for just $15.96 through Monday, April 20, 2015. Reg. price: $19.95

This book is also available in an electronic pdf format ($14.95 with no postage fees).