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New FamilySearch Database Collections Update as of March 28, 2016

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Explore the new record collections for Denmark Deeds and Mortgages 1572-1928, Czech Republic School Registers 1799-1953, United States War of 1812 Index to Service Records 1812-1815, and more than 7 million additions to the Find A Grave Index. Search these and more by following the links below.

COLLECTION – INDEXED RECORDS – DIGITAL RECORDS – COMMENTS

Belgium Antwerp Civil Registration 1588-1913 – 5,142 – 0 – Added indexed records to an existing collection
Belgium Brabant Civil Registration 1582-1914 – 28,028 – 2,055 – Added indexed records and images to an existing collection
Belgium East Flanders Civil Registration 1541-1914 – 41,927 – 0 – Added indexed records to an existing collection
Belgium Hainaut Civil Registration 1600-1913 – 4,729 – 0 – Added indexed records to an existing collection
Belgium Liège Civil Registration 1621-1914 – 5,655 – 0 – Added indexed records to an existing collection
Belgium West Flanders Civil Registration 1582-1910 – 43,815 – 0 – Added indexed records to an existing collection
Czech Republic School Registers 1799-1953 – 0 – 1,158,164 – Added images to an existing collection
Denmark Deeds and Mortgages 1572-1928 – 0 – 2,993,164 – Added images to an existing collection
Find A Grave Index – 7,586,038 – 0 – Added indexed records to an existing collection
Japan Genealogies 850-2012 – 0 – 59,303 – Added images to an existing collection
Japan Village Records 709-1982 – 0 – 223,187 – Added images to an existing collection

United States Databases

South Carolina Georgetown Passenger Lists 1904-1942 – 1,302 – 0 – Added indexed records to an existing collection
Texas and Arizona Arrivals 1903-1910 – 59,299 – 0 – Added indexed records to an existing collection
United States Passport Applications 1795-1925 -38,025 – 0 – Added indexed records to an existing collection
United States War of 1812 Index to Service Records 1812-1815 – 1,130,851 – 0 – Added indexed records to an existing collection

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The Canadian National Digital Heritage Index (CNDHI) is Now Live

The following teaser is from an article posted on CRKN.ca
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CRKN is pleased to announce that CNDHI (affectionately pronounced “candy”) is now live at http://cndhi-ipnpc.ca. CNDHI is funded in part by Library and Archives Canada as part of the Documentary Heritage Community Program.

Libraries, archives and other memory institutions across Canada take the preservation of our national digital heritage very seriously with the goal of preserving both hard-copy and digital materials for present and future generations. CNDHI complements these activities by providing a single point of reference for every digitized collection in Canada that includes relevant metadata and information needed to access the various collections, all with the goal of increasing awareness of and access to these collections.

Read the full article.
Thanks to ResearchBuzz for the heads-up.

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American Ancestors by NEHGS Announces an Unprecedented, Historic Event for Genealogists: A BILLION Records FREE!

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AmericanAncestors.org/Free-Billion

April 6, 2016—Boston, Massachusetts— America’s oldest and largest genealogical society announces a historic event for family historians around the world. From April 6 to April 13, American Ancestors by New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS) is offering FREE access to all of its online records on AmericanAncestors.org. More than one billion records covering 18 countries— including the most important family history research materials for early America created by the experts and scholars at NEHGS—and all are open to anyone who registers for a free account. Start searching now at AmericanAncestors.org/Free-Billion.

To assist family historians of all levels in locating more pieces of the family tree puzzle, NEHGS is granting this unprecedented free access to its entire collection of genealogical databases from Wednesday, April 6, 2016, at 12:00 a.m. (EDT) through Wednesday, April 13, 2016, at 11:59 p.m. (EDT). Free accounts on AmericanAncestors.org ordinarily allow visitors only a sample of the vast offerings that NEHGS provides family historians of all levels. This unprecedented free access promotion by NEHGS from April 6 through April 13 offers the Society’s entire collection of online content for eight full days to anyone who registers for a free account.

About American Ancestors and NEHGS

Holding the largest collection of original family history materials in the country, the New England Historic Genealogical Society, founded in 1845, is the nation’s oldest and largest genealogical society. Our website, AmericanAncestors.org, offers access to more than 1 billion searchable records and leading scholarly resources to help you advance your family history research. Our expert staff helps researchers of all levels explore their past and their families’ unique place in history. Located in Boston, our research center houses millions of manuscripts, books, and original items to preserve the stories of families in America and beyond.

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MyHeritage Releases Exclusive Book Matching Technology for Family History

This is it, folks! This announcement is the one I’ve been waiting for! I’ve been writing that some new technology was coming from MyHeritage for the last two weeks – and it’s arrived. Pretty amazing stuff!

To find your ancestors in the books, go to the MyHeritage website. Bs sure and have a family tree posted at the site. Then:

1. Click on the Discoveries Tab on the top of the Home page.

2. Click on Record Matches

3. Click on Compilation of Published Sources.

Enjoy!

TEL AVIV, Israel & LEHI, Utah, April 7, 2016 — MyHeritage, the fastest-growing destination for discovering, preserving and sharing family history, has launched today a revolutionary addition to its suite of technologies: Book Matching. This innovation automatically researches users’ family trees in historical books with high precision.

In April 2012 MyHeritage launched SuperSearch™, a search engine for historical records, which has since then grown to include 6.6 billion historical records, including birth, marriage, death and census records. By implementing its vision of enhancing genealogy with technology, MyHeritage then developed a line of unique and sophisticated technologies that automatically match the records from the search engine to the 32 million family trees uploaded by its users.

In December 2015, MyHeritage expanded its data collections to include digitized historical books, with an initial corpus of 150,000 books of high genealogical value. This collection was tripled last week to 450,000 books with 91 million pages. With a team of more than 50 dedicated curators, MyHeritage aims to add hundreds of millions of pages of digitized books to the collection each year.

As of today, MyHeritage users will receive matches between profiles in their family trees and the books from this collection. The Book Matching technology analyzes the book texts semantically, understanding complex narrative that describes people, and matches it to the 2 billion individuals in MyHeritage family trees with extremely high accuracy. This breakthrough technology is the first of its kind, and is exclusive to MyHeritage.

Book Matching has produced more than 80 million matches, and this number will continue to grow as the collection grows and as the family trees on MyHeritage continue to expand. Book Matching is currently available for English books, and the technology is being enhanced to cover additional languages. In addition, de-duplication technology is being added in the next few weeks to remove duplicate books that have been scanned and OCRed more than once by different sources.

“No one has ever done this before,” said MyHeritage Chief Technology Officer, Sagi Bashari. “Our Book Matching technology reads hundreds of thousands of books for you, every hour, comparing them to your family tree and pointing you to relevant excerpts about your ancestors with almost no false positives. MyHeritage is the first to offer full semantic text analysis in this way, and the genealogical breakthroughs speak for themselves. You will be amazed at the value of books for your research.”

“I’ve personally seen what this new technology can do, using my own family tree,” said blogger and lifelong genealogist Leland Meitzler. “It found well over 500 books with information on my family, most of which I’d never seen before. All kinds of ancestors and relatives can now be added to my tree! To say that this new search technology changes everything would be an overstatement, but not by much.”

Genealogist James Tanner said: “This advanced technology from MyHeritage opens up a whole new world of research possibilities that were almost completely unavailable in the past. I have always valued the content of the older genealogy books because the people who wrote them were contemporaries with my ancestors. Being able to search these books on a large scale will change the way most of us have been doing genealogy and our attitude towards the books that have been there all along but were not searchable.”

Dick Eastman, of Eastman’s Online Genealogy Newsletter, summed up MyHeritage’s latest innovation: “MyHeritage Book Matching is like having a huge library at your fingertips, with a twist; there is a magical librarian who tells you exactly which books have information about your ancestors.”

Book Matches are available at www.myheritage.com and are generated automatically for any family tree built on the website or imported into it. A Data subscription is required to view Book Matches.

About MyHeritage
MyHeritage is the world’s fastest-growing destination for discovering, preserving and sharing family history. As technology thought leaders, MyHeritage is transforming family history into an activity that’s accessible and instantly rewarding. Its global user community enjoys access to a massive library of historical records, the most internationally diverse collection of family trees and ground­breaking search and matching technologies. Trusted by millions of families, MyHeritage provides an easy way to share family stories, past and present, and treasure them for generations to come. MyHeritage is available in 42 languages. www.myheritage.com

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View From Space Hints at a New Viking Site in North America

The following teaser is from an article posted on nytimes.com

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A thousand years after the Vikings braved the icy seas from Greenland to the New World in search of timber and plunder, satellite technology has found intriguing evidence of a long-elusive prize in archaeology — a second Norse settlement in North America, further south than ever known.

The new Canadian site, with telltale signs of iron-working, was discovered last summer after infrared images from 400 miles in space showed possible man-made shapes under discolored vegetation. The site is on the southwest coast of Newfoundland, about 300 miles south of L’Anse aux Meadows, the first and so far only confirmed Viking settlement in North America, discovered in 1960.

Since then, archaeologists, following up clues in the histories known as the sagas, have been hunting for the holy grail of other Viking, or Norse, landmarks in the Americas that would have existed 500 years before Columbus.

Read the full article.

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Silver Lake to invest in Ancestry.com

The following teaser is from an article posted on reuters.com

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Private equity firm Silver Lake Partners has agreed to acquire a minority stake in Ancestry.com in a deal that values the privately held genealogy website at $2.6 billion, including debt, people familiar with the matter said on Friday.

The investment represents a bet that Ancestry’s fast-growing DNA business will continue to expand. Ancestry sold 1 million genomics kits last year, a 93 percent increase from the prior year, as people keen to discover their roots sent in saliva samples.

Read the full article.

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Teens tipped over headstones at 175-year-old Michigan cemetery

The following teaser is from an article posted on clickondetroit.com

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Teens tipped over headstones at 175-year-old Michigan cemetery ‘because they were bored’

GENEVA TOWNSHIP, Mich. – Authorities say three teenagers have confessed to tipping over and damaging more than 30 headstones at a cemetery in southwestern Michigan.

The Van Buren County sheriff’s department says in a statement that two 15-year-old boys and a 13-year-old girl told deputies they tipped headstones at Lacota Cemetery in Geneva Township on March 19 “for fun and because they were bored.”

Read the full article.

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Scottish Jews Finally Get Their Own Tartan

The following teaser is from an article posted on uk.news.yahoo.com
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Scottish Jews Finally Get Their Own Tartan – After 300 Years

Scotland’s Jewish community finally has its own tartan – a 100% kosher design approved by the Scottish Tartans Authority.

The design was approved by Rabbi Mendel Jacobs, the only Scottish born Rabbi living in Scotland.

Read the full article.

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Crash Course in Family History, Fifth Edition – on Sale for 25% Off Thru April 5

One of my favorite genealogy guides is Paul Larson’s Crash Course in Family History. The book is now in its fifth edition, and is a great guide for the beginner to the advanced genealogist. If you’re looking for a fresh prospective in how to go about your research, I recommend you take advantage of the following offer.

Purchase Crash Course for 25% off – anytime between now and midnight, Tuesday, April 5, 2016. Regularly $39.95, this 344 page hardbound guide is only $29.96 through the sale period. Following is a description of the book.

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HOW TO DISCOVER YOUR FAMILY TREE AND STORIES

Step-by-Step Illustrated Guidebook and Comprehensive Resource Directory

  • Features 3-Easy-Steps…
    • to trace your family roots and stories. Walks you through the fascinating family history journey hand-in-hand! It couldn’t be easier!
  • Updated and Expanded
    • The new epic Fifth Edition has been updated and expanded with 100 more pages of the best essential resources totaling 344 pages of family history help.
  • Easier and Faster
    • Discovering your family roots and story can be a life-changing experience. Learning about your ancestors, and how they met life’s challenges, can bring new perspective and understanding to your own life. Now its easier and faster with this epic new step-by-step guide from Paul Larsen.
  • Today’s Technology
    • This dynamic new fifth edition – available in both hardcover and e-book – is an illustrated guidebook and comprehensive resource directory to help you discover your family tree and story better than ever before using today’s technology.
  • Latest and Best Resources
    • Paul Larsen has done the legwork for you. He has scoured the Web and consumer reports to bring you the latest and best resources. This widely-acclaimed, best-selling guidebook has been updated and greatly expanded, and is the essential and perfect guide to discover your family roots and stories. It enables easier and faster ways of searching and organizing your family tree, collaborating with others, and connecting to your ancestors.
  • Discover Missing Information
    • It will help you discover missing information on your family tree, and add richness to your family story. And perhaps change your life!

LEARN ABOUT THE FEATURES AND BENEFITS OF HUNDREDS OF NEW WEBSITES AND RESOURCES

  • 10 Essential Websites to Search
  • 10 Things You Can Do to Get Started
  • 7 Steps to Find Your Ancestral Village
  • FREE Genealogy Records to Make Your Research Easier and Faster
  • FREE Genealogy Charts and Forms
  • FREE Genealogy Websites
  • How to Find Lost Living Relatives
  • How to Use Google Earth to Find Your Ancestral Home
  • How to Discover Your Family Stories
  • How to Find Your Ancestors in the Military
  • How to Find Your Birth Parents
  • How to Network with Others

Crash Course in Family History, FIFTH EDITION; by Paul Larsen; Published: 2014; Hard Bound; viii+343 pp; 8.5×11; ISBN: 9781937900052; Item # PL13

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9 Historic Cannons at Fort William Henry in NY are From a Sunken British Warship

The following teaser is from an article posted in the Arts section of Yahoo.com.

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Research has determined nine historic cannons displayed for the past 60 years at a recreated French and Indian War fort in upstate New York were originally aboard a British warship that sank in the Florida Keys in the 18th century, according to an underwater archaeologist who led the project. Joseph Zarzynski, of Wilton, New York, said a study of all 68 cannons at Fort William Henry found that some if not all of the nine iron cannons likely came from HMS Looe, a British warship that sank after hitting a reef in 1744.

Read the full article.

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Bundle of Two Nebraska Genealogy Research Guides – 25% Off

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We’ve put together a bundle of two popular Nebraska research guides, discounted the bundle by 25% and charged for p&h as if it were only one title – another $2.50 savings. This sale runs through March 31, 2016. The bundle is made up of the following books:

Genealogical Research in Nebraska, by Ruby Coleman – also discounted 25% if purchased individually.

and

NGS Research in the States: Nebraska – Second Edition, by Roberta King – also discounted 10% if purchased individually.

Click on the links to view full descriptions on each individual title. Return to this page to order as a bundle.

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Please Give to the Hudson Gunn Cancer Fund at GoFundMe

For those of my readers who may not know, Hudson Gunn is the founder of Billion Graves. This site is of tremendous value to genealogists. His wife, Vanessa, is now in a battle for her life. My friend, Mark Olsen, set up a GoFundMe account for the Gunns. Following is the message that Mark posted at the GoFundMe site. Please give if you can. Every dollar will help.

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A few months ago, our friends Hudson and Vanessa Gunn happily welcomed a new baby boy, Jackson, into their family. Unfortunately, as a complication of the pregnancy, Vanessa developed a rare form of fast-growing cancer called Choriocarcinoma, starting as a tumor in the uterus. It would have likely been caught sooner, however, doctors failed to catch it in it’s earlier stages.

When they found the tumor it was baseball sized. By the time it was removed the next day, it had grown to the size of a softball. Because it is such a fast growing and moving cancer it is categorized as stage four and has already spread from the uterus to the lungs and lymph nodes. Vanessa’s heart and respiration have also been affected. Chemotherapy was started immediately after the tumor was removed and will hopefully stop further growth.

Despite the reality of a fast spreading cancer and the scope of what this now means for the family, this cancer is beatable and Vanessa is a fighter. Your many prayers and service are helping and much appreciated as Hudson and Vanessa figure out how take care of the baby and work to fight off this cancer.

The financial costs are helped through insurance but the Gunns will be faced with payment of twenty percent of the total bill after the insurance pays out its maximum benefit, which they are already close to hitting. Hudson continues working many hours while also taking care of Vanessa and the baby. Family and friends are helping to take care of Jackson.

This wonderful little family is going through so much and we would like to help lighten the financial burdens they now have and will continue to face, due to hospitalization as well as six months or more of chemo treatments. Any kind of financial support is welcome and appreciated greatly.

Update From Hudson: We just got word that Vanessa will be released from the hospital today under the care of home health nurses. Finally after 10 days she’ll be able to see Jackson! She is responding well to the chemo. It’s great that she is able to come home but know that there is still a long battle ahead of her with continued chemo with the 48 hour hospital stays each week. She is in good spirits and we are all so excited to have her be able to come home!

Click here to go the the GoFundMe site, and help this family out.

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Serendipity Day

I just discovered a brand new (to me anyway) most interesting website:  www.curiositystream.com.  The home page for this site boasts:  “Watch 1000+ nonfiction programs to grow curious minds. There are Trending programs, Science programs, Technology programs, Human Spirit programs, and Civilization programs. Some programs are only a few minutes long, others nearly an hour. Some are offered in several episodes. I just watched Scribes of Ancient Egypt (55 minutes long) and it was great.  If you are among those with curious minds who want to know more, perhaps CuriosityStream would be a website that tweaks your beak. The only downer is that it does cost $2.99 per month……… for unlimited watching. Good deal if you ask me.

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Here is another recommended new-to-me-too website. If you use it, would you please provide some feedback to me??

Hi everyone:      I didn’t know who to send this to, but I’ve just discovered a site that is new to me, and had a tremendous response.  So I sent it to a few of you, and maybe you can pass it along to more.  Free, no sign up required.

  It is http://www.wikitree.com/g2g .  Very cool!  In just 20 minutes I have had more response to my genealogy query on this site, than I’ve had on the Rootsweb/Ancestry family message boards, ever.

  I’m excited! Happy ancestor hunting! Jo

[Read the rest of this entry…]

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Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England & the Female Index – on sale for 20% Off thru March 28

This weekend Family Roots Publishing is offering one of the greatest works ever published on New England genealogy, along with a female index, which make the 4-volume set all that much more valuable.

CLICK ON THIS LINK TO PURCHASE THE BUNDLE

They are:

Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England; in four volumes; by James Savage

and

Female Index to Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England by James Savage; Patty Barthell Myers, compiler

We negotiated a reduced price with the publisher, and are able to offer the 4-volume Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England and the Female Index for 20% Off, making the bundle of 5 books only $190.32 (Reg. $237.90). This is a large set of books, so the postage comes to $15.50. Allow about three days for them to be shipped, and anywhere from 3 to 10 days for their arrival in the USA. The sale runs through Monday, March 28, 2016. Click on this link to purchase – or if you need only one or the other, click on the links to the individual books, and get them at 10% off during the sale.

Following are detailed descriptions of each one:

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Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England; by James Savage; Published: 1860-1862; Reprinted: 2008; Paper; Four Volumes; 2,541 pp total; ISBN: 9780806307596; Item #: GPC5170D.

This four-volume set is the basic genealogical dictionary of early New England settlers, giving the name of every settler who arrived in New England before 1692 regardless of their station, rank, or fortune. Alphabetically arranged for each it gives the dates of his marriage and death, dates of birth, marriage and death of his children, and birthdates and names of the grandchildren. According to the author, “nineteen twentieths of the people of these New England colonies in 1775 were descendants of those found here in 1692, and probably seven-eighths of them were offspring of the settlers before 1642.”

Owners of this series will also want to purchase the Female Index to “Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England,” which indexes all the females scattered throughout Savage’s four volumes by both maiden and married names.

“Probably the greatest work on genealogy ever compiled for the New England area.”–P.W. Filby, American & British Genealogy & Heraldry

EDITORIAL REVIEWS

“There is little doubt that this is probably the greatest work on genealogy ever compiled for the New England area…Essential for those with genealogy and history collections.”–AMERICAN REFERENCE BOOKS ANNUAL (1982).

“We welcome the reprint of this old friend…Comment as to the usefulness of Savage’s work is unnecessary. It is a classic.”–NATIONAL GENEALOGICAL SOCIETY QUARTERLY, Vol. 65, No. 4.

“In the field of genealogical research certain standard reference works have come to be regarded as foundation blocks. James Savages’s monumental four-volume Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England, for example,…is a work which must be literally at the elbow of every student of genealogy.”–OLD-TIME NEW ENGLAND, Vol. LVII, No. 3.

“…it is one of the best reference works on genealogy, particularly for those tracing New England ancestry. It is also useful for historians and biographers, and should therefore be in most reference collections.”–LIBRARY JOURNAL.

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Female Index to Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England by James Savage; by Patty Barthell Myers; paper; 2008; 350 pp; ISBN: 9780806317854; Item #: GPC3986D.

It is generally agreed that James Savage’s Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England is one of the greatest works ever published on New England genealogy. The first edition came out in 1860, and as the four volumes were published in alphabetical sequence by family name, the males were usually found by checking their surname. The females were scattered throughout the four volumes. Some were listed under their fathers’ names, some were listed under their husbands’ names, and many women had three or more spouses. All were difficult to find, and if the husbands’ names were unknown, these ladies could not be found.

In 1884 O.P. Dexter prepared a “Genealogical Cross Index” which appeared in all reprints. However, it is a surname index only and has all the deficiencies of such an index, and it does not make the job of searching for women any easier. This new Female Index, however, published almost 150 years after Savage’s Dictionary first came out, lists all the females alphabetically by maiden name and married names (over 50,000 names altogether), and now they are as easy to locate as the males.

Every researcher of New England genealogy who owns the four-volume Dictionary by Savage, every genealogical society library that has Savage, and every public library that has Savage will want this index.

About the Author
Patty Barthell Myers has been involved in genealogy since the mid-1960s. She is the author of Joseph Barthel and his wife Christina Lutz (1991), Ancestors and Descendants of Lewis Ross Freeman with related families (1995), Cargill/Cargile/Cargal of the South and Southwest (1997), The Hughes Family from Virginia to Oregon (1999), and Ancestors and Descendants of Thomas Rice Lyon and his wife Harriet Wade Rice (2003). She has found over three hundred American immigrants in her family tree and descends from five Mayflower passengers and twenty-two Revolutionary War soldiers and patriots.

Again, we negotiated a reduced price with the publisher, and are only able to offer the 4-volume Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England and the Female Index for 20% Off, making the bundle of 5 books only $190.32 (Reg. $142.74) for a few days. The sale runs through Monday, March 28, 2016. Click on this link to purchase – or if you need only one or the other, click on the links to the individual books, and get them at 10% off during the sale.

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Supreme Court Nominee Merrick Garland’s Jewish Ancestry

The following teaser is from an interesting article by David Margolick about Merrick Garland’s Jewish ancestry. Please check out the full article at tabletmag.com.

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Within minutes of President Obama’s nomination of Judge Merrick Garland’s to the Supreme Court, the Jewish guessing game started.

Was Garland Jewish? Was a fourth Jewish justice about to join the High Court? (In Louis Brandeis’s day, even a single Jew on the Supreme Court was, for some, one too many.) And, mostly, how could there be a Jew named Merrick Garland?

For me, though, Garland’s religious background wasn’t a question. Forty years ago, my law school classmate Alvin Katz (Garland’s best friend in third grade, Katz insists) had touted the guy to me, and I’ve been following him ever since. I’d seen that long before his name perennially appeared with every Supreme Court vacancy, Garland had vindicated Alvin’s praise and predictions of success. I thought I knew a certain amount about him, and always assumed, with the usual ethnic pride, that he was Jewish…

Read the full article.

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