PC World Reviews Family Tree Builder

PC World Magazine posted an online review of Family Tree Builder, by MyHeritage. Here is an excerpt:

Editorial Review of Family Tree Builder

Genealogy software Family Tree Builder is a helpful research tool for people who find it a daunting task to figure out the best way to link together all the information they collect about relatives through letters, old documents or photographs.

Family Tree Builder

Family Tree Builder has a userfriendly, intuitive UI, and makes it very easy to add unlimited images, documents, and notes: although you have a limit of 250 MB of uploadable data before you need to switch to a paid version.Like most family tree software, Family Tree Builder can import GEDCOM files with no problems, and it also offers to import Family Tree Legends, Family Tree Maker, Personal Ancestry File (PAF), and Legacy Family Tree files. I was unable, however, to import Family Tree Maker files (version 2012 failed; older versions only imported a partial database), so I would recommend sticking with GEDCOM.

You also may use Family Tree Builder to start from scratch, which the smooth, well thought-out UI makes easy and intuitive. Either way, growing a family tree with Family Tree Builder is very similar to that of Family Tree Maker 2012 ($40). Family Tree Builder’s process makes sense: You start anywhere on your tree and add parents or children as you go. There are a few features in Family Tree Builder I prefer over Family Tree Maker: You can include both maiden names and married names in Family Tree Builder, which eliminates the confusion when researching your extended family; there’s also a deceased checkbox.

Much like Legacy Family Tree (free), you can easily add images, documents, and video/audio to your Family Tree Builder database. In addition, you can associate photos to multiple people, allowing you to upload a group image only once and include it in multiple database entries.

Family Tree Builder also allows you to add religious names, nicknames, former names, and aliases, plus name citations and notes very simply. At the click of an icon, you can add a virtual cemetery for deceased relatives that can include images, documents, and notes. There are no genogram icons: if you are more interested in genograms, try GenoPro ($50, with 14 day free trial), a family tree creation tool with great genogram capabilities.

Click here to read the full review.


Makers of MacFamilyTree offer 50% off all Products for a Limited Time

Here is an excerpt from their press release:

Synium Software launches 50% Summer Sale Discount

July 27, 2012

[prMac.com] Mainz, Germany – Starting today, Synium Software has cut all prices for Mac and iOS software in half. The Synium Summer Promotion is running until August 5th 2012, discounts are available for the Mac App Store as well as the Synium Software Store. These are our exciting offers:

* MacFamilyTree 6 – $59.99 -> $27.99
Easily enter and then visualize your family history. Be it creating reports, diagrams or browsing your data – MacFamilyTree offers a solution for every task.

Click here to read the full release on prMac.

Reunion 10 Now Available

Leister Productions has released Reunion 10, the latest version of their family history database software for Apple’s Macintoch platform; plus buddy apps for the iPhone/iPod Touch and iPad. This release is considered a major upgrade over version 9, adding to and improving on the older version.

Reunion’s List of Top New Features:

  1. Pictures Everywhere — anywhere the user has saved a picture for a person, that picture will show up next to their name. In the tree view, reports, etc.
  2. Tree View — the main view for the family is larger and more flexible than ever before
  3. New Window — the window has been broken into three main areas; the navigation bar on the left, the tree view or main view window, and the side bar The side bar can show many different views and lists like places and people.
  4. Side Bar — the side bar can show many different views and lists like places and people
  5. Places — a new and improved placed database has been added, offering new features including geo tagging
  6. Web Searches — intelligent web searchers from intelligent menus; for example, right click a person’s name and select web search. The user can search a variety of websites for the selected person
  7. Customized Family View — the user can choose more options than before in customizing the family view
  8. Chart a Relationship — with a few key strokes, a person can quickly chart the relationship between any two individuals in the database
  9. New Reports — more features and options have been added to the reporting tools


There are dozens of new features listed on the company’s website: click here to read about these enhancements.

The cost is $99 for a new install, or $49.95 for an upgrade from older versions. If you purchased Reunion 9 after January 15, 2012 then you may qualify for a free upgrade — click here for details.

The Official Unofficial Guide to Using Legacy Family Tree

Legacy Family Tree users will likely be interested in The Official Unofficial Guide to Using Legacy Family Tree: Plus Research Advice, News, Views and Technology Tips by Geoffrey D. Rasmussen. This guide was built from the knowledge, the tips, and even the tricks developed and shared over the years, much in the Legacy News blog.

This guide goes beyond being a simple how-to software manual. Incorporated into program walk through are real-life examples, which helps the reader not just learn the software but to understand how it can be best used to keep one’s family history records, notes, and media files. Inspirational stories will help keep the reader on track and “help lead you to one Genealogy Happy Dance after another.”

In these pages, researches will learn to use Legacy Family Tree. In addition, they can learn great tips and tricks for getting more from their computer and other technologies. For example, one tip covers using Windows 7 taskbar shortcuts. Another covers accessing your computer from anywhere. There are similar tips on organization and research. Putting together and organizing years of advice into one book make this guide more enjoyable to read than the average software manual. For those using Legacy Family Tree, this is one book to consider reading. Even users of other software may gain and insight or two from these pages.




Legacy Tips

  • Data Entry 101, 102 , and 103
  • Your Legacy Toolbox
  • Understanding Importing and Exporting
  • Where in the World? Locations and Mapping
  • Picture Perfect
  • 9th cousins, 4 times removed – huh?
  • Reporting and Charting
  • Sharing Your Legacy
  • It’s Got To Be Around Here Somewhere: Searching
  • No Truth Without Proof
  • Legacy Tips from the Experts

News and Views


Technology Tips

Tips from the Experts



Get your copy of The Official Unofficial Guide to Using Legacy Family Tree: Plus Research Advice, News, Views and Technology Tips from Family Roots Publishing; Item #:LEGB01, Price: $19.60.

A Primer for the Master Genealogist

A Primer for the Master Genealogist was updated this past year in support of The Master Genealogist (TMG) version 8. If you are looking for a guide to using TMG then consider yourself lucky. This book is one of the best written software guides I have ever come across. The writing is concise and well organized. The language is not overly technical; rather, the book was well written for the target audience, the average user. Visual examples are plentiful. Most visuals are labeled to match key bullet points in the text. Each chapter builds on the previous chapter, moving from basic concepts to more advanced features, developing a clear path to a successful user experience.

The introduction outlines the topics found in the various chapters, along with a list of conventions used in the text to help the reader quickly identify key points. For example, bold-italics identify key terms of specific importance in the program. Bold words represent buttons or menu commands. Menus commands are written to show each level or choice under the top menu, for example: Report >List of…>People. Reviewing these conventions before jumping into the main text will help the reader better understand the content.

The book itself begins by covering basic concepts like name and event tags, importing data or starting a new project, navigating the key sections of the software, and entering personal data. From there, chapters progress into entering and editing data, citing sources, creating and generating reports. With the basics covered, the reader can progress into more advanced subjects, like customizing the workspace; working with “sentences” to create narrative reports, or book ready content; adding “witnesses” and “roles”; using custom tags or fields, and more.

TMG users speak highly of the book. Here are some of their comments:

“This is a great introduction for new users! Terry explains complicated topics in terms a beginner can understand, and he explains the concepts as well as the specific steps to make fast, effective use of TMG. Even experienced users will learn from this book, particularly in the chapters about more advanced topics. Terry’s TMG Tips website is a great resource for TMG users, and now Terry has expanded that with A Primer for The Master Genealogist.” – John Cardinal, author of Second Site, TMG Utility, and other companion programs for TMG

“A Primer for The Master Genealogist is a ‘must have’ for the new user. With its easy to read format and multiple illustrations even those seemingly complex features and tasks are easy to understand. I wish I’d had a copy of this book when I first started using The Master Genealogist.” – Mark A. Cunningham, TMG user for two months

“Thanks for your book. Even though I am a long time user of TMG, I am still learning some things from it and understanding some other things better. I will shortly be buying another copy for a friend of mine who is newer to TMG.” – Holly Timm, TMG user since version 3

TMG users would be hard pressed to find a better written guide to using the software than A Primer for the Master Genealogist.


Table of Contents



  • Conventions Used in This Guide

The Parts of TMG’s Standard Screen

Chapter 1 – Basic Concepts

  • Everyone is a Number
  • All Data is Entered in Tags
  • Names are Tags
  • Events are Tags
  • Relationships are Tags
  • Tag Type and Tag Type Groups
  • Multiple Tags of Same Type Are Allowed
  • Primary and Non-Primary Tags
  • Flags
  • Sources and Citations
  • Recording Sources
  • Citing Sources

Chapter 2 – Getting Started

  • Starting Fresh
  • Importing from Another Program
  • The Important Wizard
  • Cleanup After Import – Places
  • Reviewing Sources or People Next
  • Splitting Large Notes
  • Keeping Track of Who’s Been Reviewed
  • A Cleanup Checklist for Each Person
  • Use John Cardinal’s TMG Utility

Chapter 3 – Navigating from Person to Person

  • Double-Clicking a Name
  • Last Viewed Person Button
  • Go To Button
  • View Menu
  • The Picklist
  • Project Explorer
  • Focus Group
  • Bookmarks

Chapter 4 – Personal Data Entry Standards

  • You Objectives are Key
  • Name Conventions
  • Place Conventions
  • Abbreviations
  • Conflicting Data
  • Multiple Persons in an Event
  • Is GEDCOM Export Required?
  • Source Conventions
  • Create a Test Project

Chapter 5 – Entering and Editing Data

  • Name Tags
  • Parent/Child Relationship Tags
  • Event Tags Reminder Screens
  • Editing Existing Data
  • Adding New Tags to an Existing Person
  • Adding New People
  • Duplicate Person Warning
  • Entering Repeated Place or Other Data
  • Consider switching to Advanced Data Entry Mode

Chapter 6 – Working with Sources

  • Understanding the Terms
  • Source types
  • Defining a Source
  • Testing Our Work
  • Citing a Source
  • Repositories

Chapter 7 – Setting Up Reports

  • The Report Definition Screen
  • Specifying the Subject Elements of the Report
  • Output to Screen Printer, or File
  • Using Filters
  • Query by Example Filters
  • Creating a Filter Line-by-Line
  • Adding Spouses Ancestors, and Descendants

Chapter 8 – Reports for Research and Analysis

  • The List of People Report
  • The List of Events Report
  • The List of Citations Report
  • Specifying the Output
  • Secondary Output
  • Other Analysis Reports

Chapter 9 – Genealogy Reports

  • Selecting the Subjects of the Report
  • Controlling Who is Included
  • Sources, Endnotes, and Bibliographies
  • controlling Formatting
  • Specifying Report Content
  • Narrative Reports
  • Forms and Charts
  • Box Charts
  • Websites

Chapter 10 – Customizing Your Workspace

  • Customizing Your Layout
  • Saving a Layout
  • Customizing the Toolbars
  • Setting Fonts, Colors, Sorting, and More
  • Accents
  • Creating a New Accent Definition
  • My Accent System – An Example
  • Customizing the Picklist
  • Customizing the Add Person Screen

Chapter 11 – Working with Sentences

  • Local vs. Global Modifications
  • Deciding to Use Local or Global Sentences, Roles, or New Tag Types
  • Where to Modify Sentence Structures
  • Writing Sentence Structures
  • Testing Your Work
  • Some General Considerations

Chapter 12 – Witnesses

  • Why Add Witnesses?
  • Basic Functions of Witnesses
  • Adding Household Members to the Narratives of Principals
  • Witnesses with Different Parts in the Event
  • Entering Witnesses
  • Witness Memos

Chapter 13 – Roles

  • TMG’s Standard Roles
  • What Can Roles Do?
  • Overview
  • Using Roles – An Example
  • Creating Custom Roles
  • Defining Role Sentences
  • Using Role Names to Refer to Participants by Role
  • Applying the Roles
  • Some Thoughts on Design of Roles
  • The Confusing Term “Witness”
  • More About Using Roles

Chapter 14 – Adding Custom Tag Types

  • Why Create a Custom Tag Type?
  • Creating a Custom Tag Type
  • Adding Roles and Sentences
  • Add a Reminder

Chapter 15 – Customizing Sources

  • Local vs. Global Source Templates
  • Deciding to Modify Templates Locally or Globally
  • Where to Modify Source Templates
  • Editing the Templates
  • Locations of Elements
  • Source Elements Are in Groups
  • Groups Designed for Names
  • Testing Your Work
  • Advanced Topics

Chapter 16 – Projects and Data Sets

  • What is a Data Set?
  • So then What is a Project?
  • Maybe an Analogy Would Help
  • Why Use More than One Data Set or Project?
  • Data Sets and ID Numbers
  • “Switching” Data Sets
  • About Merging Projects and Data Sets
  • Merging Projects
  • Merging Data Sets
  • Using Copy Persons Rather than Merging Data Sets

Appendix A – Other Resources

Appendix B – Shortcut Keys



Get A Primer for the Master Genealogist from Family Roots Publishing; Item #: RR01, Price: $24.45.

Family Roots Publishing also carries these guides to other popular genealogy software packages:

RootsMagic Webinars On CD, Volume 1

RootsMagic Webinars On CD, Volume 2

Legacy 7 Deluxe (with User’s Guide And CD)

Legacy Training Video CDS – Volume 1

Legacy Training Video CDS – Volume 2

Family Tree Maker for Mac 2

Back in early December, Ancestry.com released a new version of its popular genealogy software—Family Tree Maker 2012. About a week later, the company released an upgrade for its Mac version of the same software. Family Tree Maker for Mac 2 offers a number of new features.

One big change was the inclusion of TreeSync, a popular Family Tree Maker utility that lets you update and synchronize your family tree in multiple locations, including on Ancestry.com’s iPad and iPod apps and on your Ancestry.com account. Other key enhancements were noted in an Ancestry.com Blog, as follows:

  • New Mac-only features. Now you can capture photos using your iSight or built-in camera and import it directly into Family Tree Maker. And if you’re using OS X Lion, you can take advantage of the new full-screen capability—with one click fill your entire desktop with the Family Tree Maker workspace.
  • Easy-to-understand combined family view. The family group view has a new “blended families” option that lets you display all of a couple’s children in one location, including stepchildren and adoptees. An icon next to a child’s name lets you see at a glance whether he or she is the child of the father, the mother, or both parents.
  • More Ancestry integration. Find other Ancestry members who are searching for your ancestors by viewing Member Connect activity in the expanded Web Dashboard. You’ll also see links to message boards and notification of your new Ancestry messages.
  • Enhanced performance. Now you can choose the type of Internet connection you’re using, which allows Family Tree Maker to tailor how it downloads information from the Web. Uploading and downloading speeds have been improved, and there is an increased ability to upload large files to Ancestry.com.
  • New image collection. Create beautiful family trees and reports with a variety of new backgrounds and images.

You can order Family Tree Maker 2012 or Family Tree Maker for Mac 2 directly from Ancestry.com’s online store.

All 75 Forms Designed by William Dollarhide

We have discussed before the popularity of William Dollarhide’s books. Bill has decades of experience in research. His ideas have helped countless genealogist discover their ancestor in all types of records. Over the years, Dollarhide has learned the value of note taking and keeping activity logs while researching. In fact, he has created dozens of forms to help keep accurate records and document research finding. His forms are no secret he has hidden up for his use only. All his expertly designed forms are available to anyone.

Dollarhide Genealogy Forms Complete Package is a bundle of 75 forms designed by Bill. Each form in the packet is printed on white cardstock and three-hole punched. Never write on the originals, keep them clean and safe in a binder. Use the originals to make scans or prints. Use the copies you make for your research. You will always have the original on hand to make more copies.

The forms are grouped into five main categories, with the complete contents listed below.


Census Forms

  • AF0101 – 1790 Federal Census
  • AF0102 – 1800 Federal Census
  • AF0103 – 1810 Federal Census
  • AF0104 – 1820 Federal Census
  • AF0105 – 1830 Federal Census
  • AF0106 – 1840 Federal Census
  • AF0107 – 1850 Federal Census
  • AF0108 – 1860 Federal Census
  • AF0109 – 1870 Federal Census
  • AF0110 – 1880 Federal Census
  • AF0111 – 1900 Federal Census
  • AF0112 – 1910 Federal Census
  • AF0113 – 1920 Federal Census
  • AF0181 – 1930 Federal Census
  • AF0114 – 1890 Veteran’s Schedule
  • AF0115 – 1790-1840 Census Worksheet
  • AF0116 – Census Comparison Sheet
  • AF0117 – 1880 Soundex
  • AF0118 – 1900 Soundex
  • AF0119 – 1910 Soundex/Miracode
  • AF0120 – 1920 Soundex
  • AF0182 – 1930 Soundex
  • AF0121 – 1850 Slave Schedule
  • AF0122 – 1860 Slave Schedule
  • AF0123 – 1850 Mortality Schedule
  • AF0124 – 1860 Mortality Schedule
  • AF0125 – 1870 Mortality Schedule
  • AF0126 – 1880 Mortality Schedule
  • AF0127 – 1790 U.S. Map
  • AF0128 – 1800 U.S. Map
  • AF0129 – 1810 U.S. Map
  • AF0130 – 1820 U.S. Map
  • AF0131 – 1830 U.S. Map
  • AF0132 – 1840 U.S. Map
  • AF0133 – 1850 U.S. Map
  • AF0134 – 1860 U.S. Map
  • AF0135 – 1870-1880 U.S. Map
  • AF0136 – 1890-1920 U.S. Map

Family Group Sheets

  • AF0137 – Family Group Sheet, 12 Children
  • AF0138 – Family Group Sheet, 1st 8 Children
  • AF0139 – Photo Family Group Sheet, 1st 8 Children
  • AF0140 – Family Group Sheet, 9th-12th Child & References
  • AF0141 – Family Group Sheet, 9th-15th Child & References
  • AF0142 – Family Group Sheet, 9th-18th Child & References
  • AF0143 – Family Group Sheet, References

Pedigree Charts

  • AF0144 – Pedigree Chart, 4 Generation, no IDs
  • AF0145 – Pedigree Chart, ID #1-15
  • AF0146 – Pedigree Chart, ID #8-71
  • AF0147 – Pedigree Chart, ID #9-79
  • AF0148 – Pedigree Chart, ID #10-87
  • AF0149 – Pedigree Chart, ID #11-97
  • AF0150 – Pedigree Chart, ID #12-103
  • AF0151 – Pedigree Chart, ID #13-111
  • AF0152 – Pedigree Chart, ID #14-119
  • AF0153 – Pedigree Chart, ID #15-127
  • AF0154 – Photo Pedigree Chart
  • AF0155 – 5-Generation Ahnentafel chart, German style, ID #1-31
  • AF0156 – 5-Generation Ahnentafel chart, German style, no ID #s

Forms from Dollarhide’s Book: Managing A Genealogical Project

  • AF0157 – Reference Family Data Sheet
  • AF0158 – Master Data Sheet
  • AF0159 – Research Log
  • AF0160 – Combined Family Data Sheet, Front
  • AF0161 – Combined Family Data Sheet, Back
  • AF0162 – Correspondence Log
  • AF0163 – Research Journal
  • AF0164 – Ancestor Table
  • AF0165 – Relationship Chart


  • AF0166 – Ancestor Table (new)
  • AF0167 – Surname Index, Alpha (new)
  • AF0168 – Surname Index, Numeric (new)
  • AF0169 – Correspondence Log (new)
  • AF0170 – Research Journal (new)
  • AF0171 – Family Data Sheet (new)
  • AF0172 – Genealogy Source Checklist, Page 1
  • AF0173 – Genealogy Source Checklist, Page 2


Dollarhide Genealogy Forms Complete Package is available from Family Roots Publishing; Item #:AF0174.

Gift Ideas for Your Favorite Genealogist

So, just what does one buy for their favorite genealogist? I have collected a list of top choice, in all price ranges, based on various articles I had read this season, plus a few of my own ideas.

Every list had its own ranking but, I have decided to list these items in no particular order. Simply, these are things every genealogist would love to have.


Flip-Pal Scanner a mobile scanner with great features for scanning photographs to pages from a book. “Stiching” software compensates for the small scan area when dealing with full pages in a book.

Netbook or Laptop – who wouldn’t benefit from a small, portable computer with a full keyboard for keeping up with family or taking notes while on a family history vacation or weekend trips to the library.

Evidence Explained: Citing History Sources from Artifacts to Cyberspace 2nd Edition this idea came from one of the articles listed below, but makes sense. This is by far the most popular title on citation.

Family Tree Maker, Roots Magic, Legacy, etc. – top selling genealogy software. Recommend buying a copy for a budding genealogist in the family, then give them a GEDCOM with all the information you have already collected.

Portable Scanner – the Flip-Pal is probably top choice here; however, there are pen scanners, light-weight (if bulky) full-bed scanners, and other portable to semi-portable options.

Digital Voice Recorder – how easily we forget something when its not written down. A voice recorder lets you quickly record notes, meetings, classes, etc. without the noise and bulk of a traditional tape recorder.

Google Your Family Tree – Unlock The Hidden Power Of Google (see special offer from Family Roots Publishing, includes free upgrade to 2nd edition) Google is the Internet’s most popular search tool and this guide will help genealogist make the most of it.

Digital Camera – everyone historian needs a camera, whether capturing current events, gravestones, pages in a book, old photographs, or anything else that comes along, the camera is a vital part of the research toolkit.

Flip UltraHD Video Camera – a small portable video camera is a nice addition. I recommend getting a standard digital camera first, but if your budget allows, a pocket/purse-size video camera can be very useful. You could also go straight for a standard video camera, if the extra bulk is not an issue for you.

Ancestry.com subscription the gift of research is always welcomed

Any Genealogy How-To Book – visit Family Roots Publishing and browse through hundreds of genealogy specific titles. Find books for virtually every subject area on which a genealogist may focus.

Kindle Fire – a portable e-book reader is both popular and functional.

Amazon.com Kindle Gift Card – once someone has an e-book reader, they will need some e-books to go with it.

Journal – give a loved one the tool necessary to capture their stories while they are here with us.

Membership to local Genealogical Society – active genealogist will appreciate the help and social interaction they will get from a society membership.

Genealogy T-Shirts – just for fun. Shirts with catchy phrases or declarations of genealogical joy.

Genealogy Buttons – also, just for fun.

Genealogy Bags – for fun and function. Everyone needs a bag to haul all their research materials and gear around in.

Paid Attendance to a Genealogy Conference or Expo – give someone a day, weekend, or week at a conference where they can learn and meet with others to improve their research skills and sometimes find answers to pesky stumbling blocks.



5 Gifts Genealogists Will Love from Squidoo

Christmas Shopping: 12 Must-Have Genealogy Toys from The Armchair Genealogists

Holiday gift ideas for your favorite genealogist from nj.com

Generation Maps Becomes Family ChartMasters

I just heard from Janet Hovorka that Generation Maps has changed their name to Family ChartMasters. Following is their news release.

Easy to use genealogy chart printing service becomes even more accessible

Cedar Hills, Utah. — June 1st, 2011 — Generation Maps, the leading genealogy chart printing service, announces today that it is changing its name to Family ChartMasters.

“We’ve decided to rename in order to simplify and focus our message on exactly what we do the best, “ said Kim Hovorka, CEO, Family ChartMasters. “We’re proud of the excellent customer service we provide and the way we can customize any family’s information to any design a genealogist is looking for. Future users will be able to easily find us now, and future generations will benefit from the family history we are able to display for your family.”

The name Family ChartMasters also comes with a new concentrated tagline, Share•Honor•Inspire, expressing how a genealogist can use a genealogy chart to further their research. Users are encouraged to Share their research, Honor their ancestors, and Inspire their family members with their family’s heritage. Family ChartMasters continues to be an inexpensive, beautiful way to make your genealogy chart ideas a reality.

About Family ChartMasters
Family ChartMasters was established in 2004 to help families express their heritage in a beautiful and attractive way. Family ChartMasters charts provide a visual reminder of your family’s history and help establish feelings of love and confidence that come from knowing who you are and that you are part of a family. Family ChartMasters charts can awaken individual potential embedded in one’s inherited traits and nurture emotional healing through understanding a family’s history.

Family ChartMasters is the premier printing service for any kind of genealogy chart imaginable. In addition to the design-it-yourself online Family ChArtist program, Family ChartMasters continues to offer a multitude of custom chart printing services, including both decorative and working genealogy charts. Custom decorative designs come with an online preview system that gives you personalized attention and feedback until the chart is exactly the way you envision it. Working charts are oversized, inexpensive, family reunion-type charts that display your entire file in one place to write on and add more information. Family ChartMasters has printed working charts up to 800 feet long with information for over 30,000 people. Free consultations are always available at http://www.familychartmasters.com/consult.

These Gloves Aren’t for Gardening…

Cotton gloves for handling documents Are you looking for a special genealogy gift for a friend, family member or Birth chartfor yourself? www.FunStuffForGenealogists.com has some great things for you! Just added and in hot demand are Cotton Gloves for handling those precious artifacts and photos. Also added are birth charts for a boy, girl or a lovely generic tree chart. See Fun Stuff for Genealogists for lots of scrapbooking items as well as jewelry, pedigree charts, archival preservation materials and lots more!

Entrepreneur Bill Burch Introduces ArchivaLife – to Document Your Life Story

During the class periods, exhibit halls at conferences can be pretty quiet – if not dead. That’s when the exhibitors themselves get to visit. This was the case at the California Family History Expo a couple weeks ago. One of the booths near my Family Roots Publishing booth was the ArchivaLife exhibit, manned by Bill Burch himself. He’s the man behind the idea of the ArchivaLife product, and a very interesting guy. A while back he came up with this idea which allows users to record events on a timeline – and then write about the events in as much detail as they like. This record is then combined with photographs, and documents and stored in a beautiful leather case – for generations to come.

I would bet that anyone who purchases Bill’s system, and records their memories, as well as pictures and such had better be very specific when they make out their will as to who may be chosen to receive the Archivalife. Otherwise there’s sure to be a big family fight.

I ran across the following news release at PRNewswire last night, and am including it in this blog, along with a photo I took at the Family History Expo of Bill in his booth.

ArchivaLife's Bill Burch in his booth at the 2009 California Family History Expo. SAN DIEGO, Oct. 28 /PRNewswire/ – Everyone has an interesting life story. But not everyone has the ability to write a memoir. That’s where ArchivaLife comes in. ArchivaLife(TM) (www.ArchivaLife.com), the creation of San Diego entrepreneur, Bill Burch, provides a way for genealogists, memoir writers, scrapbook enthusiasts, seniors, parents and grandparents – anyone who wants to capture personal or family history for future generations – to record a life story.

ArchivaLife is unlike other products because of its unique, patent-pending timeline, and memory prompts which guide people to easily record their lives decade-by-decade – details often missed with scrapbooking, simple memory books, genealogy charts or photo albums alone. ArchivaLife’s high-quality, attractive, leather textured keepsake books make perfect gifts.

Two editions are available online at www.ArchivaLife.com. The ArchivaLife(TM) Classic Edition includes a scrapbook and archival case, and retails for $125. ArchivaLife(TM) LifeLines Edition is lighter weight and retails for $49.95.

“I wish I had ArchivaLife before my mom passed away suddenly. I hear stories from my dad, but some of her life memories are lost. I would have loved to have helped her record her life experiences and share them with my children. So my dad and I are going to work on an ArchivaLife for him,” says Raj Lahoti, Chief Guru at Online Guru Inc. “I work on the Internet all day, so I appreciate that ArchivaLife provides a hardcopy format and creates a process to write memories. There is something about the act of writing that evokes memories.”

Bill Burch, the creator and CEO of ArchivaLife, was inspired to develop the product when attempting to recall a memory. While trying to remember this long-since forgotten fact, he thought he might recapture it by recalling a few related pieces of information from the same time. He jotted down details he knew, such as where he lived and worked, and what car he drove at the time, in order to build a context from that era. He found his notes began to take on a timeline format. Not only did he remember the forgotten fact, he created an organized synopsis of his life.

Burch was then encouraged to sit down with his mother and create her “lifelines” as well. “Completing this was some of the most cherished time we’ve spent together, laughing and talking about things we had never discussed before,” says Burch. “It was then I realized the value of ArchivaLife for family projects and bonding. It’s a great way to share memories and makes a lovely timepiece to display in any home.”

About ArchivaLife
ArchivaLife(TM) is a privately held San Diego-based manufacturer and Internet retailer of archival-quality memory keepers. ArchivaLife’s high-quality, durable, leather textured keepsake books enable users to document their lives using ArchivaLife’s patent-pending, decade-by-decade timeline. ArchivaLife can be used for a meaningful family project or to create a treasured legacy for future generations. ArchivaLife is perfect for memoir writers, amateur genealogists, and scrap bookers, as well as extended family members, parents, and grandparents. Two editions are available – ArchivaLife(TM) Classic Edition and ArchivaLife(TM) LifeLines Edition. For more information visit www.ArchivaLife.com or call (877) 982-7244.

The Family History Store Opens in Potlatch, Idaho

fhs-outsideThe Family History Store now has a brick and mortar location in Potlatch, Idaho. It has 3,000 square feet of items of interest to family historians and is located in the Potlatch Mall, a strip mall on the corner of 6th Street (Main Street) and Pine – next door to the U.S. Post Office.

The Family History Store currently carries all the items they sell on their website. Karen Calisterio tells me that they are moving to add as many new relevant products as they can without going out on a limb too much, given the economy. They are supplementing their product line with anything heirloom or family related. The Family History Store includes a framing department where they offer hand-finished heirloom quality frames with the convex glass. fhs-floorspaceThey offer all kinds of needlecraft supplies, scrapbooking, photo restoration and a custom imprinting section where they imprint images onto just about anything. Karen tells me that so far the community response has been great.

fhs-shelvingThey also have a small area of the store where they hold classes and are now offering free ‘Intro to Genealogy’ classes twice a week. Thus far, they are pulling in 2-6 students per class. As the weather continues to improve, those numbers will surely go up. They’re also working at adding a computer research center where they will have four computer workstations that customers can use to research online. Classes in scrapbooking, needlecrafts, digital imaging and photo restoration are also offered.

The Calisterios recently secured the lease on an additional 4,000 square foot space in the same strip mall where they will soon open The Family History Storefhs-forms Activity Center – coming in April of 2009. In this location they will be offering their regular classes and also holding seminars in genealogy, scrapbooking and other related interests. In the upcoming months they will be issuing a call for papers from presenters and lecturers interested in presenting there. Watch for an announcement on this blog.

Check out the Frames, Matboard & Convex Glass sold at The Family History Store.

Their address is: Kindred Trails, Inc, The Family History Store, 575 Pine Street, PO Box 625, Potlatch, ID 83855.

Printable Family Tree Templates

The following news release was written by Savetz Publishing staff:


Seven new family trees and ancestor charts have been added to the Web site FamilyTreeTemplates.net, which offers family tree templates and blank genealogy charts perfect for researchers, young students or anyone interested in tracing their family roots.

The site now offers more than 25 family tree templates that can be instantly downloaded and printed for free in PDF format. Or, site users may opt for a premium, $4 .DOC version that can be edited in Microsoft Word. The .DOC version can be easily customized by keyboarding in family members’ names into the pre-formatted templates.

FamilyTreeTemplates.net was originally launched in September 2008. “I’m really pleased with the response the site has received,” said Kevin Savetz, the site’s creator. “Everyone from classroom teachers to genealogy buffs are finding it fun and easy to instantly download and print these family trees and ancestor charts.”

Savetz said the new additions come directly as a result of site user feedback and requests. “I’ve added more trees for non-traditional families, such as stepfamilies and adoptive families,” he explained. “There’s also a new family tree with room for aunts, uncles and cousins, as well as a tree with room for lots of siblings.”

A family group sheet, commonly used by people researching the branches on their family tree, has been added as well.

Other family tree templates and ancestor charts are available in a variety of full-color, decorative designs as well as simpler black-and-white designs with room to record as many as seven generations.

“There are some cute charts for schoolchildren, as well as more sophisticated charts that are suitable for framing,” Savetz added.

The new family trees join categories such as multi-generation family trees, family trees with graphics, family trees for kids, family trees with room for photos and more.

FamilyTreeTemplates.net was created by Savetz Publishing, Inc. It is among the nearly 40 sites in the FreePrintable.net family of free printables sites created by Savetz Publishing, Inc., a company devoted to creating useful and informative web sites of interest to consumers and small businesses.

From the March 6, 2009 edition of NewsReleasWire.com.