Dick Eastman Reminds Us: Back Up Your Genealogy.

Considering how easy it is too lose your data, we all need to heed this advice.

From “Eastman’s Online Genealogy Newsletter” for November 01, 2013

It is the first day of the month. It’s time to back up your genealogy files. Then test your backups!

Actually, you can make backups at any time. However, it is easier and safer if you have a specific schedule. The first day of the month is easy to remember, so I would suggest you back up your genealogy files at least on the first of every month, if not more often.

Read the full article.

FamilySearch Adds 8.5 Million Records From Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Italy, Netherlands, and the United States

The following news release is from FamilySearch:

FamilySearch added 8.5 million new, free indexed records and images this week to its collection. Included are 2,897,940 additional index records and images for the new New York State Census of 1855 collection, the 1,070,807 index records and images from the Texas Birth Certificates collection from 1903-1935, and the 554,541 images from the Italy, Catania, Diocesi di Caltagirone, Catholic Church Records collection from 1502-1942.See the table below for the full list of updates. Search these diverse collections and more than 3.5 billion other records for free at FamilySearch.org.

Searchable historic records are made available on FamilySearch.org through the help of thousands of volunteers from around the world. These volunteers transcribe (index) information from digital copies of handwritten records to make them easily searchable online. More volunteers are needed (particularly those who can read foreign languages) to keep pace with the large number of digital images being published online at FamilySearch.org. Learn more about volunteering to help provide free access to the world’s historic genealogical records online at FamilySearch.org.

FamilySearch is the largest genealogy organization in the world. FamilySearch is a nonprofit, volunteer-driven organization sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Millions of people use FamilySearch records, resources, and services to learn more about their family history. To help in this great pursuit, FamilySearch and its predecessors have been actively gathering, preserving, and sharing genealogical records worldwide for over 100 years. Patrons may access FamilySearch services and resources for free at FamilySearch.org or through more than 4,600 family history centers in 132 countries, including the main Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Collection – Indexed Records – Digital Images – Comments

Argentina, Santa Fe, Catholic Church Records, 1634-1975 – 124,303 – 0 – Added index records to an existing collection.
Australia, Tasmania, Miscellaneous Records, 1829-1961 – 0 – 11,466 – Added images to an existing collection.
BillionGraves Index – 179,075 – 179,075 – Added index records and images to an existing collection.
Brazil, Mato Grosso, Civil Registration, 1889-2012 – 0 – 120,720 – Added images to an existing collection.
Canada, Manitoba, Census Records, 1831-1870 – 0 – 30,729 – Added images to an existing collection.
Canada, Quebec Notarial Records, 1800-1900 – 0 – 520 – Added images to an existing collection.
Czech Republic, Land Records, 1450-1889 – 0 – 56,150 – Added images to an existing collection.
Dominican Republic, Civil Registration, 1801-2010 – 0 – 140,707 – Added images to an existing collection.
Hungary, Civil Registration, 1895-1980 – 0 – 16,259 – Added images to an existing collection.
Italy, Benevento, Benevento, Civil Registration (Comune), 1861-1929 – 0 – 31,541 – Added images to an existing collection.
Italy, Catania, Diocesi di Caltagirone, Catholic Church Records, 1502-1942 – 0 – 554,541 – Added images to an existing collection.
Italy, Napoli, Barano d’Ischia, Parocchia de San Sebastiano Martire, Catholic Church Records, 1671-1929 – 0 – 3,182 – Added images to an existing collection.
Italy, Napoli, Panza, Parocchia di San Leonardo Abate, Catholic Church Records, 1670-1929 – 0 – 2,127 – Added images to an existing collection.
Netherlands, Drenthe Province, Church Records, 1580-1911– 0 – 21,918 – Added images to an existing collection.
Netherlands, Zuid-Holland Province, Church Records, 1367-1911 – 0 – 724,788 – Added images to an existing collection.
Korea, Collection of Genealogies, 1500-2009 – 0 – 392 – Added images to an existing collection.
U.S., California, San Mateo County Records, 1855-1991 – 0 – 50,823 – Added images to an existing collection.
U.S., Idaho, Butte County Records, 1882-1970 – 0 – 23,226 – Added images to an existing collection.
U.S., Idaho, Twin Falls County Records, 1906-1988 – 0 – 89,528 – Added images to an existing collection.
U.S., Illinois, Probate Records, 1819-1970 – 0 – 78,573 – Added images to an existing collection.
U.S., Louisiana, Orleans Parish Will Books, 1805-1920 – 0 – 5,485 – Added images to an existing collection.
U.S., Maine, County Probate Records, 1760-1979 – 0 – 1,073 – Added images to an existing collection.
U.S., Minnesota, Itasca County Land Records, 1872-1930 – 0 – 7,328 – Added images to an existing collection.
U.S., Montana, Sanders County Records, 1866-2010 – 0 – 55,148 – Added images to an existing collection.
U.S., Montana, Sweet Grass County Records, 1885-2011 – 0 – 28,481 – Added images to an existing collection.
U.S., New York, Queens County Probate Records, 1899-1924 – 0 – 496,052 – Added images to an existing collection.
U.S., New York, State Census, 1855 – 2,818,214 – 49,726 – New indexed records and images collection.
U.S., North Carolina, Estate Files, 1663-1979 – 15,959 – 371,253 – Added index records and images to an existing collection.
U.S., Oregon, Douglas County Records, 1852-1952 – 0 – 15,698 – Added images to an existing collection.
U.S., Tennessee, Putnam County Records, 1867-1955 – 0 – 22,826 – Added images to an existing collection.
U.S., Texas, Birth Certificates, 1903-1935 – 527,134 – 543,673 – Added index records and images to an existing collection.
U.S., Texas, County Marriage Records, 1837-1977 – 187,126 – 73,546 – New indexed records and images collection.
U.S., Texas, Eastland County Records, 1868-1949 -0 – 10,629 – Added images to an existing collection.

What Historical Treasures Are We Missing?

I recently read an article in the Tooele Transcript-Bulletin about an historic home located near the Great Salt Lake in Tooele County, Utah. The home was built in the 1850s predominately out of stone and mortar with 18 inch thick walls. The article outlines the historic nature of the home along with some of its locally-known previous owners. This historic home is privately owned and not open to the public. However, the near-by Benson Grist Mill, featuring identical construction and likely built in conjunction with the home, is a Nationally Registered Historic Site.

This article reminded me of an experience I had with my family about eight years ago. In looking for an activity the family could do together that wouldn’t cost much and could be both fun and educational, I came across a listing for an historical home not too far from where were living at the time. The Workman and Temple Family Homestead Museum is a California Historical Landmark.

Our visit to the home and museum gave the entire family a wonderful insight to life in Southern California as lived between the 1840s and 1930s. We were even surprised to learn that the grounds hosted one of the oldest private cemeteries in the Greater Los Angeles region, and is the burial spot of Pío Pico, the last governor of Mexican California.

Over the years, my family has continued to enjoy historical sites and museums, learning not only our local and national history, but also about the way our ancestors lived. I have grown to feel closer to my ancestors and more appreciative of the hardships they faced which have contributed to the life I live today. I believe my children also have a better understanding and appreciation for their predecessors.

Another thought struct me as I reminisced over our trip to the Workman home. I grew up not far from this historic landmark; yet, I had not heard of it until a few days before our visit. Perhaps the sheer volume of landmarks and activities in California make it difficult for any one site to stand out. After all, even the famous California Missions, one of which is only a few miles from the Homestead Museum, have a tough time competing with local beaches, famous entertainment centers, and the “Happiest Place on Earth.” But, then again, perhaps there are more sites of historic interest all around us then we realize. These sites may just waiting for us to find them. The education we could gain, and perhaps share with our children or grandchildren, would be highly rewarding.

The Homestead Museum describes the value of visiting their site in the following way:

“Cracking open a textbook and reading about major political, economic, and societal changes is one way to learn about history, but having the opportunity to see how real people navigated these changes puts a personal twist on the subject matter—and makes it more intriguing.”

So, I wonder, what are we missing that may be all around us. What historical treasure is waiting for you in your own backyard? What day trip can you take to help strengthen your connection with the past? One great thing about the Internet is your are just one Google search away from answering these questions.

Books Discounted Daily at Family Roots Publishing

UPDATE: The Featured Item on sale at Family Roots Publishing Thursday., March 19, 2009 is: Greenwood’s The Researcher’s Guide to American Genealogy. selling today for only Normally $29.95 – selling today for on $19.77.

UPDATE: The Featured Item on sale at Family Roots Publishing Wed., March 18, 2009 is Kip Sperry’s “Early American Handwriting. Normally $29.95 – selling today for on $19.77.

The economy is lousy… Sales seem to be down everywhere… A friend of mine, prominent in the publishing industry, made the comment a few days ago that “books just aren’t selling.” Well – I don’t see it as that bad; but yes, sales of genealogy books are down.

Every item sold at the Family Roots Publishing website is now discounted. Some more, some less. However, to keep traffic to the site up, and to keep the cash flow working, we’re now heavily discounting one title per day – every day. Check for the Discounted Item of the Day by checking for the title, discount, and price under the Family Roots Publishing logo in the right-hand column of GenealogyBlog (currently the third major graphic down – under the Salt Lake Plaza Hotel photo and link).

Clicking on the FRPC logo will take you directly to the FRPC home page, where you will find the Featured Item of the day. Click on it and get the details about that item.

Since it’s St. Patrick’s Day, we’re featuring Brian Mitchell’s A New Genealogical Atlas of Ireland, 2nd Edition. It’s 35% off, and priced at just $13 – for the next 24 hours or so. I’ll change the special each day, but I’m not tying myself to an exact time… Life’s too messy to try to be too exact about these things.

frpc home page

Please note that I normally won’t blog about what’s on special from day to day. However, I will list that info under the FRPC logo in the right hand column. Of course, the Special of the Day will always be featured on the home page of the Family Roots Publishing website also.

GenealogyBlog Upgrades & Maintenance in Process

You might see all kinds of errors and such for the next few hours – maybe even days. I’m currently making all kinds of changes in the Blog – in its look, feel, content and utility.

Password requests that were taking place earlier were remedied, and shouldn’t happen again. I found that I was linking too deep on the server, causing the issue.

I Get That Mormon Paper – The Deseret News

I’m a reader – and that’s the way I like to get my news, whether its in the form of a newspaper, magazine, or just words on deseretnewsthe computer screen, I get a lot more out of the written word than from radio, television, YouTube, or podcasts. A big part of that is because I’m very deaf – and I only get a small percentage of what’s being said on any audio device. And I can honestly say that I like the in-depth coverage that I can get from the written word.

We get two newspapers at our house. The Davis County Clipper (twice a week), and the daily Deseret News. We’ve also gotten the Salt Lake Tribune off and on over the years. There’s a big difference in the two Salt Lake City daily papers – and it’s a lot more than just that one comes in an orange plastic wrapper, while the other is yellow (If you drive the city streets in the early morning, you can instantly tell what paper each household reads!) The Deseret News has a decidedly conservative slant, and includes news of special interest to their Mormon readership (including the Mormon Times). It’s also where I find the most local genealogy-related news.

The Tribune takes a much more liberal slant on nearly everything. It’s the opposition newspaper, always has been, and always will be. It has some very good reporting, but nowhere near as much genealogy-related stuff. So – although we aren’t Mormon – we get the Deseret News.

The Mormon Times includes some very interesting articles – ones I find interesting, even though I have no church affiliation at all. On March 12, Russell Bangerter wrote a good blog titled, “What Motivates Us to Seek Our Ancestors?” The blog has a very Mormon viewpoint. However, the viewpoint is also one that I think most genealogists relate with personally. You might want to take a moment and check it out.

Got a bug…

Update (Friday March 13): I’m feeling much better – and back at work. Many thanks to those of you who have been sending me encouragement, both online and off. Now Patty’s come down with this thing. She had a temperature of 104 last night. Not good…

Goodness, I’m so sick I can hardly set here and write this, but I thought I should let my readers know that I’m not slacking and I’m not ignoring them. While in San Diego last weekend, I caught a bug of some kind and since then I’ve been dealing with a fever, constant headaches, body aches, and a head that’s thinks it’s Niagara. So – this short missive is just to let you know that I’m sure that “this too shall pass,” and I’ll be back to blogging again shortly.

Fooling Around with WordPress Themes

Update: Okay – I’ve settled on the current theme for now. It’s called Vistalicious. I find it quite reader-friendly and I haven’t run onto any critical browser issues thus far. I’ve still got much to do, but the site is coming along well.

You may note that GenealogyBlog is taking on a lot of different looks today. That’s because there are currently about 540 different themes available that WordPress users can fool around with. Themes make up the background, fonts, and general layout of the blog. Before I settle on one, I need make sure that it’s something that both my readers and I can live with. I’ve found some themes work  in Internet Explorer, but not Safari – and so forth. Other than obvious bugs, and Web browser deficiencies, my major complaint so for has been the default type size for the body copy within many of these themes. I’m sure that most of these things are made by young people with young eyes. Us old folks need larger type.

This theme testing may take a few days. I’ll let you know when I’ve decided on a theme I think we can all live with.

GenealogyBlog is back

Well… I’m back. This blog is about as ugly as you can get, but I’m sure that can be taken care of, given time and work on my part. This one’s all mine. There’s no administrator this time around. 

As for the GenealogyBlog archives that I spent five years building… Honestly, I have no idea what happened to any of it. My former website administrator, Joe Edmon, doesn’t seem to want to tell me what happened. He doesn’t accept my phone calls or emails. So I’m starting over, with some fresh ideas and lots of enthusiasm for the new year. As time permits, I do plan to rebuild the archives. However, I don’t see that as a priority.

I’ve been predicting great things for genealogy in 2009 – and I’m more enthusiastic about the coming year than ever before. And as my good friend, Tom Kemp would say, “Onward.”