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Job Opening for a Customer Service Representative at Family Tree DNA

The following job opening was received from APG:

Customer Service Representative, Family Tree DNA

Work in the exciting and dynamic field of genetic genealogy! Family Tree DNA provides people with innovative ways to discover their past through genetic testing. Family Tree DNA was the first to offer genetic testing for genealogy and has been at the forefront of this field for over 11 years.

Qualifications: Several years of customer service experience required. Experience with genealogy is a plus! Applicants should be computer savvy, detail-oriented, and organized. Applicants should also have strong communication skills, an interest in learning new things, and the capacity for multitasking and problem-solving in a fast-paced environment. We will provide on-the-job training.

Primary duties will include: answering phone calls and e-mails, explaining DNA tests for genealogy and ancestry, interpreting test results.

Benefits include: health insurance, dental insurance, paid vacation.

Pay: Starting at $28,000/yr
Job Function: Communication
Employer: Family Tree DNA
Requisition #: IS04/11
Position Title: Customer Service Representative
Number of Openings: 1
Salary Range: Starting at $28,000 per year
Work Type: Full Time, 8am-5pm M-F
Duration: Permanent Position
Approximate Hours Per Week: 40
Desired Start Date: Immediate
Travel Percentage: No Travel
Job Location(s): Houston, Texas United States
Resume Receipt: Email resume and cover letter to

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Full-time Job Opening for a Genealogist in the NSDAR Registrar’s Office

The following announcement was received from APG:

The National Society Daughters of the American Revolution has an immediate full-time opening for a Genealogist in the Registrar’s Office. Primary responsibilities focus on examining and evaluating lineage-based information provided on DAR membership applications or supplemental applications, and corresponding with prospective members or Chapter Registrar if further documentation is needed.

Previous experience in conducting genealogical research is required. The successful candidate must be able to analyze and evaluate lineage information, be detail oriented and resolve issues from conflicting data, and be able to write clear and concise letters explaining difficult research problems, including providing suggestions to the applicant for further research. Proficiency in Microsoft Word, including the ability to adapt quickly to proprietary databases, is essential.

Limited overtime hours possible during board weeks, (April, June, October and December) however, must be available to work overtime hours during one week of annual meeting.

Please send a cover letter and resume including a writing sample and a sample or portfolio of genealogy/family research performed, to:

Attn: Human Resources
1776 D. St., NW
Washington D.C., 20006-5303
Fax: (202) 737-5702

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Family History and Those Missing in Action

The Bowerman family of Ohio will represent the families of 18,096 MIA Americans lost in the Pacific during WWII on this week’s Dan Rather Reports. Dan Rather Remembers: Pearl Harbor will air this Tuesday, December 6, 2011 at 8PM ET on HDNet. Read about the Bowerman family in the article below from the ReviewTimes in Fostoria , OH.

Area family airs their history



For one area man, being featured on celebrity journalist Dan Rather’s nighttime news show this week is exciting, but he’s not letting it go to his head.

“It isn’t about me, it’s about the story,” said Ron Bowerman, a physics teacher at St. Wendelin Catholic School, who will be featured on a 90-minute special Dan Rather Reports show Tuesday at 8 p.m.

The Bowerman family was chosen to represent those with missing-in-action family members on Tuesday night’s show, commemorating the 70th anniversary of Pearl Harbor.

But how the show’s producers came to contact Bowerman at his Van Buren home is much more than a story of coincidence.

Bowerman remembers the story untold dating back to his childhood. His uncles, Bill and Sam Bowerman, were both declared MIA in the Pacific Ocean during World War II. Bill, a sergeant in the U.S. Army, was declared missing during a battle, and later returned home. His brother Sam was lost at sea — he never made it back home.

Sam was a Navy Seal during WWII and served as a coxswain aboard the USS Mullany, also known to some as “the ship that wouldn’t die,” Bowerman said. Sam’s duties included steering the ship and supervising the crew members.

He went overboard after an explosion during a battle on Dec. 6, 1945. The then-23-year-old, plus eight other crewmen, were lost at sea.

The incident took its toll on their mother, Ron Bowerman’s grandmother, who refused to accept that Sam was dead.

Click here to read the full article

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Immigration Research at a Glance

Adding to the growing collection of Genealogy At-A-Glance guides is Immigration Research by Sharon DeBartolo Carmack.

In just four laminated pages, Carmack shares a wealth of knowledge for researching you immigrant ancestors. In her own words, “unless you have 100 percent American Indian ancestry, you have immigrant ancestors in your family tree. Our origins are from other places, with some ancestors arriving during the Colonial Period and others arriving only a few decades ago.”  With key information, listed sources, additional references and great tips, this quicksheet is useful to every research not already and expert in immigration. And, even the experts can benefit from a quicksheet which is easy to carry anywhere.

Immigrations Research is broken into sections (listed below under ‘Contents’). For each, Carmack shares her expertise and advice for finding records. Be sure to read the tips, as well, they offer insight that often forgotten or overlooks. Take this example tip:

“Keep in mind that some arriving vessels might have docked at more than one port, stopping first in Boston, for example, and then making a final stop in New York, so check passenger list indexes for all ports if you are having trouble finding your ancestors.”



Quick Facts & Important Dates
Immigration History Background

  • Migration Factors
  • Immigration by Time Period
  • Chain Migration

Ports of Arrival

What You Need to Know to Begin Determining Your Ancestor’s Time of Arrival

  • Federal Census Records

Passenger Arrival Lists

  • Pre–1820
  • 1820–ca. 1891
  • ca. 1891–1950s

Passenger Arrival Lists Online

Microfilmed Indexes & Lists

Naturalization Records

Find the help you need, and carry it with you, with your own copu of Genealogy At-a-Glance: Immigration Research at Family Roots Publishing; Item #:GPC884.

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The Big Wind in Bountiful, Utah

UPDATE: Bountiful Power set a new pole back behind the houses on our corner, and we had electricity again about 5 pm on Sunday evening. We were without power for 86 or 87 hours, with nothing worse happening than a rather odd smell in the refrigerator.

I’ve been out of touch of since Wednesday, as Davis County, Utah got hit with hurricane force winds late Wednesday night. One hundred mile per hour winds were forecasted, but I didn’t believe it. Well, I should have paid attention. Not that it would have done a lot of good. The area in which we live and work has a lot of trees. It now has a lot less. Trees are down everywhere, including our yard. We had one that came down over our power line to the house. Luckily it didn’t break the line, or tear the mast from the house. However, it split the power pole on which the line hung. So – we’re know in our third night without power, phone or Internet at the house, and at FRPC. I checked into the Plaza hotel, and we are now shipping product from our hotel room. I now have Internet access again…

The 27th annual Salt Lake Christmas Tour starts on Sunday, so it’s going to be a wild and crazy week…

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The Making of Germany, Maps and History

Few countries have as confusing a past as Germany. Over the centuries literally hundreds of small kingdoms and territories existed, swelling and falling through war and domination. Beginning as early as 843, larger territories were broken up into hundreds of small lands. The people of these various lands spoke a similar language and shared many of the same customs; yet, no leader could bring them under the control of a single king or government. The squabbling and constant border changes lasted until 1871, when the German Empire was established.

The Lands of the German Empire and Before examines the history and maps of the ever changing lands which comprise, for the most part, today’s Germany. Author Wendy K. Uncapher has take the map of the German Empire and broken it down by individual states. She then examines each state in detail, providing maps and key historical facts for each. Uncapher also takes a detailed look at Prussia, describing exactly what and where it was in its own chapter. Chapter 3 of the books takes a quick look at the overall map of the German area through major historical periods, broken down as follows:

  • Holy Roman Empire
  • Confederation of the Rhine
  • German Confederation
  • North German Confederation
  • German Empire
  • Weimar Republic
  • Third Reich
  • Allied Occupation
  • Federal Republic of Germany and German Democratic Republic
  • Federal Republic of Germany

To genealogists researching their Germany heritage, especially prior to 1919, The Lands of the German Empire and Before is an indispensable tools for finding place names for cities and lands which have come and gone, or may exist today under a different name. With historic timelines, points of interest, and alternate names, this book is not lacking in interest or useful information. See all this book as to offer in the table of contents, listed below.


Table of Contents


Turning Points for the German Empire

Chapter 1: States of the German Empire

Chapter 2: Prussia

Chapter 3: Eras of German Political History

Lands of the Holy Roman Empire

Rivers and Ports

Rulers of Major German States and Dynasty Families


Internet Sources for Town Lists




Following is a List of Maps provided in the book (note: the individual states are grouped together as Kreise Maps covering pages 9–70):

  • Allied Occupation
  • Berg, Mark, Kleve, Julich
  • Bishopric and Archbishopric Territories
  • Black Forest
  • Confederation of the Rhine 1806–1814
  • Europe in 1871
  • Federal Republic of German Democratic Republic 1949–1990
  • Federal Republic of Germany (Deutschland) 1990–present
  • German Confederation 18115–1866
  • German Empire 1871–1918
  • Grand Duchy of Berg
  • Grand Duchy of Frankfurt
  • Grand Duchy of Warsaw 1807–1815
  • Grenzmark Posen-Westpreussen 1918–1938
  • Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation 800–1806
  • Kingdom of Westphalia
  • Kreise Maps (individual states)
  • Luxemburg
  • North German Confederation 1867–1870
  • Partitions of Poland 1772, 1793, 1795
  • Polish Corridor
  • Prussia, Growth of
  • Rivers and Ports
  • Saarland
  • Schaumburg
  • Stem Duchies 843
  • Sudentenland
  • Swedish Land in Germany
  • Teutonic Knight’s Land
  • Third Reich 1933–1945
  • Weimar Republic 1919–1933


Get a copy of The Lands of the German Empire and Before for your own or a society library; available at Family Roots Publishing; Item #:Ogerman.

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Freedom of the City of London Records Posted at

The following excerpt is from an article published in the November 29, 2011 edition of the BBC News. Over 240,000 records are included in the collection. I did search on the surname of Canfield and got two hits. The illustration below is for John Canfield.

Records of people across the UK who had the “freedom” to trade in the City of London after 1681 have been published online for the first time.

Author Rudyard Kipling and former prime ministers Benjamin Disraeli and Robert Peel are among the names listed.

The records from 1681 to 1925 were published by family history website

Names and details of privileges enjoyed by more than half a million people feature on the website.

It details how some awarded the Freedom of the City of London were able to drive sheep over London Bridge, be drunk and disorderly without fear of arrest, or, if sentenced to death, be hanged with a silken rope.

Read the full article.

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Canada Won the War of 1812?

The following exceprt is from an interesting article posted in the November 29, 2011 edition of the Montreal Gazette.

In a relatively rare admission for an American scholar, a leading U.S. historian who authored a provocative new tome about North American military conflicts states bluntly that Canada won the War of 1812.

Johns Hopkins University professor Eliot Cohen, a senior adviser to former U.S. secretary of state Condoleezza Rice, writes in his just-published book, Conquered Into Liberty, that, “ultimately, Canada and Canadians won the War of 1812.”

And Cohen acknowledges that, “Americans at the time, and, by and large, since, did not see matters that way.”

The book also echoes a key message trumpeted by the federal Conservative government in recent weeks as it unveiled ambitious plans to commemorate the bicentennial of the War of 1812 over the next three years: that the successful fight by British, English- and French-Canadian and First Nations allies to resist would-be American conquerors — at battles such as Queenston Heights in Upper Canada and Chateauguay in Lower Canada — set the stage for the creation of a unified and independent Canada a half-century later.

“If the conquest of (Canada) had not been an American objective when the war began, it surely had become such shortly after it
opened,” Cohen argues in the book. “Not only did the colony remain intact: It had acquired heroes, British and French, and a narrative of plucky defense against foreign invasion, that helped carry it to nationhood.”

Read the full article.

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Early Oswegatchie Iroquois Records to be Placed in the Owen D. Young and Ogdensburg Public libraries

CANTON [New York]— Melissane Schrems, St. Lawrence University assistant professor of history, has arranged to bring a copy of the records of Fort de la Présentation, a mission founded at the confluence of the Oswegatchie and St. Lawrence rivers in 1749, to the Owen D. Young [St. Lawrence University] and Ogdensburg Public libraries.

The records are in French and provide a rare research source for Native American history as well as the history of the Oswegatchie Iroquois, early Ogdensburg and the French and Indian War. The documents include baptismal and marriage records of Iroquois living in the vicinity of the fort who were members of the Mission at Fort de La Présentation and the names and ages of members of the Iroquois community.

From the November 28, 2011 edition of the Watertown Daily News.

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A Successful Adoption Search for a Brother

The following excerpt is from the November 23, 2011 edition of the Sonoma News. It’s one of those happy-ending stories, well worth the read.

Sonoma City Manager Linda Kelly knows how to roll with the punches.

She’s dealt with budget deficits, unfair state mandates and issues that sometimes pull her in several different directions at the same time.

But last year, when her two sisters died in a span of 11 months, her coping skills were almost overwhelmed. With both parents deceased, she was the last of her generation.

And then a miracle occurred. Her brother-in-law told her a family secret. She had another sibling, a full brother, given up for adoption in 1960.

“This news was such an unexpected gift,” said Kelly. “I decided I had to find him.”

She began by putting together the information she had.

“It was much easier than I thought it would be,” she said. “My brother-in-law told me the year of his birth, and I knew my parents were living in San Bernardino County at the time because my older sister had grown up there. I went online and found birth records. There was a website that listed babies born in a particular year with the parents’ last names.”

In addition to knowing the county of birth, the search required knowing the mother’s maiden name. Kelly’s mother’s maiden name was uncommon and so was her father’s last name. There had been only one baby boy born to a woman with that name in 1960 in San Bernardino County, and that gave her the correct month and date of birth.

“I hired a private search service after that, which was marginally helpful,” she said. “But my best find was a website called G’s Adoption Registry.”

Read the full article.

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Access to Information Found on Social Security Applications (the SS-5) is Limited

The following is old news to genealogists who follow the news. However, when all this was taking place, I was busy with other things and didn’t get the opportunity to blog about it. Naturally, I disagree with the ruling. It just makes it more difficult for genealogists. The following excerpt was written from a Canadian’s point of view, but I’m guessing that many of us in the USA have the some opinion. (written by Dian Lynn Tibert for

Genealogists searching for ancestors or extended family in the United States have access to Social Security Death Index (SSDI). It is one of the largest databases containing genealogical information in that country, and it used to be easy to obtain full records. However, full access to this databank and Social Security Number records has changed.

Limits were first placed on the information a few years ago. At that time, requests for persons born after 1940 had the names of their parents blocked. This was done to protect the parents in case they were still alive. Still, if death of the parents could be proven, then their names were released.

Recently, this limitation was extended for individuals who were born up to one hundred years ago. The same policy for proving the parents’ are deceased applies.

Obviously, there are flaws in this new ruling. Who would expect the parents of someone born 99 years ago to be alive? Still, death must be proven to access the full record.

The only reason many researchers request a copy of the original SSN card is to learn the name of an individual’s parents. This new rule makes accessing these records essentially useless. As one comment on a website noted, where is a person to find an official death record for parents killed during the holocaust? For that matter, how can one request death records from another country if that country is unknown?

Read the full article.

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Amendments Would Defeat Pennsylvania Open Records Bill’s Purpose

Pennsylvania Genealogists – take note… My friend, Jim Beidler, wrote the following information about the potential watering down of the open records legislation now underway in Pennsylania. The following is just an excerpt of his article in the November 27, 2011 edition of the Lebanon Daily News.

Just when advocates for the reform of vital records laws in Pennsylvania think it’s safe to think that the long-sought-after changes are a done deal, another bump in the road.

Less than two weeks ago, the Health Committee of the House of Representatives, which is chaired by Rep. Matthew Baker of Tioga County, approved Senate Bill 361 by a vote of 24-0. That came on the heels of a unanimous state Senate vote a couple of months ago.

Then Rep. Ronald G. Waters of Philadelphia, the only member of the Health Committee who missed that meeting, filed several amendments to the bill that will need to be voted upon on the House floor.

To recap, Senate Bill 361 makes open records of Pennsylvania death certificates more than 50 years old and birth certificates more than 105 years old. It also transfers the certificates once they become open records to the Pennsylvania State Archives.

The most substantial of Waters’ amendments would say that the birth and death records are “open for public inspection” rather than becoming “public records.” Another of his amendments redundantly reasserts the state Department of Health’s power to charge fees for certified copies of the certificates.

Read the full article.

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A Tombstone Goes Home to Nebraska

The following teaser is from a heartwarming article posted in the November 27, 2011 edition of the Billings Gazette. This is a great read. Please let this teaser lead you to the full article.

STROMSBURG, Neb. — Alexandra Grant traveled halfway cross the country with a special passenger riding along in her Prius.

The 37-year-old artist from Los Angeles brought a tombstone with her. Along all the stops she made on the way from California to Nebraska, Grant took special care of the ivory-colored marker, carefully carrying it into hotels she stayed at, ignoring the odd looks she got when curious people ask what she is carrying in the wooden box.

She has been what she calls “the caretaker” for the tombstone belonging to Lena E. Davis, a baby who died July 19, 1880, in Polk County.

Eleven years ago, Grant was on a road trip passing through Buffalo, Wyo., when she stopped at a consignment store called The Rendezvous. It was there she spotted the tombstone. History behind the marker was shady at best. From what Grant was told, it was from a ranch in eastern Wyoming, and the cemetery it came from didn’t exist any longer.

She said it looked forlorn and out of place at the store. As an artist who incorporates the written word into her pieces, Grant was drawn to the beauty of the tombstone. So, three days after she first came across it, Grant decided to buy it for $150.

Read the full article.

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Petition Making the Rounds to Remove Social Security Numbers of Deceased Folks From Genealogy Websites

And now we have another assault on the limited access genealogists have to anything Social Security… Thus far, not exactly a bi-partisan effort, but just wait…

Where do these senators think those records with dead folk’s social security numbers in them came from? Hmmm… It seems the Federal government sold them to those websites, and have been for how many years? In my personal opinion, this is nothing but throwing the baby out with the bath water… But, as I said, that’s just my opinion.

The following is from the November 29, 2011 edition of

Columbus Ohio: An effort to stop web sites from giving out Social Security numbers of those who have died made progress this week.

NBC4 first reported on the Thomas family in May 2011. Samantha Thomas was an infant when she died from sudden infant death syndrome in 2010. While her parents were still mourning her death, they found out that someone had used her SSN on their taxes.

NBC4 stepped in, confirming that a branch of popular web site was listing the full Social Security numbers of those who have passed on. It’s a way for criminals to get information fast.

Sen. Sherrod Brown [D] started a congressional investigation into genealogy web sites after the story was aired.

Brown started a petition to have the web sites remove the sensitive information and NBC4 has learned that Sen. Dick Durbin [D], Sen. Bill Nelson [D], and Sen. Richard Blumenthal [D] have signed on in support of the petition.

Read the full article and the news that led up to this move.

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Alaska State Museum in Juneau May Close During Construction

The following excerpt is from the November 28, 2011 edition of the Alaska Journal of Commerce:

JUNEAU — The Alaska State Museum has been an institution in Juneau for decades, but it’s one that the city and its hundreds of thousands of visitors may have to learn to live without for up to two years.

The new state Library, Archives and Museum project now underway will be built on the Willoughby Avenue site of the current museum building.

That means if project advocates, including history buffs around the state and members of the Juneau legislative delegation, are successful in getting approval of remaining funding from the Parnell administration and the Alaska Legislature, the museum could “go dark” for up to a couple of years, said Linda Thibodeau, director of the Division of Libraries, Archives and Museums.

The construction plans are still being drafted and a timeline has yet to be finalized, but a closure time of about 20 months is expected. However, when that 20 month period would start is not clear.

Among the questions yet to be answered is “how many tourist seasons we want to miss,” said Bob Banghart, museum curator.

The museum staff wants to minimize impact to the public, but also has to ensure the builder is able to complete the building as efficiently as possible.

Two other functions that will eventually find a new home in the new building won’t be affected by the construction. The state Library and the State Archives are both located elsewhere, and their operations won’t have to change due to the construction, Banghart said.

In fact, much of what the museum does is done elsewhere, including traveling exhibits, and most Alaskans outside Juneau won’t even notice the construction issues, Banghart said.

In Juneau, the closure of the museum isn’t scheduled to begin for 14 months after full construction starts.

Read the full article.

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