30    Apr 20125 comments

Webinar: Find your relatives in the 1940 US Census

1940 Census on MyHeritageHaving trouble finding people in the 1940 US census? Need some practical tips to make the most of available information?

Join MyHeritage's experts on Thursday, May 3, 2012 at 2pm EDT* for a free, live webinar: How to find your relatives in the 1940 US Census - (register for the webinar).

Laurence Harris

Laurence Harris

Laurence Harris and Mark Olsen will take you step-by-step through researching the census. They’ll demonstrate how to find the people you’re looking for and how to understand the records you find.

We’ll also look at other methods to help reveal records such as using city directories or converting previous census EDs, how to decipher the information and follow clues for further research.

A question-and-answer session with our expert panel - also including Daniel Horowitz and Schelly Talalay Dardashti -  will follow.

Mark Olsen

Mark Olsen

MyHeritage was the first commercial entity to have all the census images online. Search the entire census.

We’ve also updated our MyHeritage Mobile App so you can search the census on-the-go.

Register for the webinar.

* Time Zones:
London, UK 7pm
New York, 2pm
Chicago, 1pm
Salt Lake City, 12 noon
Los Angeles, 11am

Do you have any questions you'd like answered? Put them in the comments below, and we'll address them during the webinar.

Feel free to "like" this post. Share it with your friends so they can also join in - the webinar is open to everyone.

We look forward to seeing you online.

27    Apr 20122 comments

Family History: Involve your children!

Do you wish that your children or grandchildren were more interested in their family history?

Most children have little interest when they're young. While growing up, children are often surrounded by family and exposed to information about their relatives. As they get older, they begin to think  about those relationships. Over time, they begin to develop a natural curiosity as to who they are and where they come from.

But how can we speed up the process?

Children and Family History

Here are five creative tips on how to help the younger generations develop an interest in their family history: Continue reading "Family History: Involve your children!" »

26    Apr 20120 comments

Heritage: This is Preservation Week!

Preservation Week is celebrated in the US during the week of April 22-28.

Although it was created in 2010 to raise awareness of some 630 million items in institutions which require immediate care, it also focuses on protecting personal and family history collections.

Some 80% of institutions have no paid staff to care for collections; and 22% have no staff at all (paid or not) for that purpose. An estimated 2.6 billion items are not covered by an emergency plan, and are in danger from disasters.

Events and programs over the week bring attention to the fact that personal items, family history and community collections are also at risk.

Check out the event’s Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/preservationweek, and follow their tweets at #preswk.

During Preservation Week, libraries all over the US offer events, activities and resources that help us  preserve personal and shared collections. Continue reading "Heritage: This is Preservation Week!" »

25    Apr 20122 comments

Luck: Is your family lucky?

The story of a Virginia resident's incredible luck has been plastered all over the news today. Virginia Fike won the lottery - not once, but twice! She bought two tickets - each gave her about $1 million.

Another lucky lottery story, from 2011, focused on the McCauley family. Kimberly was delighted when she won $100,000 in North Carolina in a new scratcher game. She’d never imagined winning anything, although her mother Amy had won two huge prizes - $15.5 million in a the New York State Lottery (1991) and $161,172 in the North Carolina Education Lottery (2007). We might assume that "lightning" doesn't strike twice in the same family, but this family did it three times.

Our question now is of luck in families. Do you believe in inherited luck? Do you have stories of luck running in your family? We’d love to hear them, lottery or otherwise. Share them in the comments section.

While you’re thinking about it, take a look at this video, which features the luckiest people in the world. Are you related to any of them?

24    Apr 20122 comments

Names: Choosing one for your child

Recently we posted about interesting birth stories. As a follow-up, we've been thinking about our children's names and how we choose them.

There are several reasons why parents select a particular name for a child. Some choose to name after a deceased relative, or to honor a living person. Some simply like a certain name or its meaning.

Other factors are important when selecting a name. What will the child's initials spell? Would a name result in an embarrassing nickname?

Some countries prohibit using certain names and won't allow the registration of such names. Parents may want to avoid names that might get them in trouble with the law!

Many families use recurring names in each generation, as they name children after those in the previous one. This is very helpful in tracing some families, as an unusual given name can provide clues if the surname is common. Of course, in some families, it can offer another challenge as some given names are used so commonly that researchers may have trouble separating each generation from another.

How did your parents select your first name? Who were you named after? Do you have a story about your name? Share your story in the comments below.

23    Apr 20124 comments

Finding Family: MyHeritage and divine intervention

John Landry, 1949

Searching for family involves using every tool available. Sometimes, there’s also a bit of divine intervention.

In Texas, Christy Landry and her family were going through a difficult period in March. Her husband, John, went to church and asked for a prayer for his family. The pastor told him that God would heal their family. They didn’t know how soon!

Christy shared their family story with MyHeritage.

She’ll never forget Monday, March 19. She was at the computer beginning the long process of doing their family tree (again), this time on MyHeritage.com.

I was going to redo the entire thing - this time with resources, evidence, and total assurance that I had it right. I began, like anyone else, by adding my name first, then my husband’s, our son and my husband’s father. I was about to add my parents when I saw the first SmartMatch. ’What’s this?’ I thought, as I clicked on it.

John (she calls him JJ) and Christy married in 2011 after being together for eight years. Born in Texas, she was raised near her entire extended family. A very tight-knit family, her parents’ home was the center for holidays and often some 30-60 people gathered there.

Continue reading "Finding Family: MyHeritage and divine intervention" »

19    Apr 20122 comments

Dick Clark: An American icon passes

Dick Clark 1961

Dick Clark in 1961 (Source: Wikipedia)

Dick (Richard Wagstaff) Clark, American radio and television personality died yesterday.

Born November 30, 1929, in Bronxville, New York, he died of a massive heart attack in Santa Monica, California, on April 18, 2012.

Best known as the host of the long-running teen music show - American Bandstand - watched religiously every afternoon by millions of US teens when they came home from school. The show is credited by many as the forerunner of reality TV shows like "American Idol." Later, he also created "Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve" and even a game show - "Pyramid."

The release of the 1940 US Census (available on MyHeritage) earlier this month provides an inside view into the lives of those who lived at the time. Clark was 10 years old when the enumerator came to call.

Continue reading "Dick Clark: An American icon passes" »

18    Apr 20123 comments

Books: Essential genealogy resources

There are many good genealogy books. Some are basic beginner guides, while others are specific to a certain ethnicity or geographic location. Some authors detail an exciting and emotional personal journey.

Determining the usefulness of each resource is personal for each researcher and depends on each unique research project.

Note that some books are classics and - although published a decade or more ago – are still relevant. To find the books suggested below, do an Internet search for the title. New books are published frequently, so keep searching! This suggestion list contains is far from complete. Many genealogy sites offer lists of good books as well.

Some basic books for beginners: How to Do Everything With Your Genealogy, Unpuzzling Your Past - The Best-Selling Basic Guide to Genealogy, The Genealogy Sourcebook, The Complete Idiot's Guide to Genealogy and The Everything Online Genealogy Book.

Continue reading "Books: Essential genealogy resources" »

17    Apr 20126 comments

Family: Welcoming the newest member!

My wife and I welcomed a beautiful baby boy yesterday. What a special moment for our family – to witness such a miracle.

We’ve heard many special, moving, incredible and sometimes funny birth stories from relatives and other women in the hospital. I’m now wondering how common it is to have an unusual delivery story.

There are somewhat common cases, such as giving birth in the car – not quite making it to the hospital – or in a bathroom, and there are those more unique cases as welcoming the newest member of the family on a plane or in a department store.

Those last two examples come with their own urban legends. Rumor has it that if you give birth on a plane, you receive free flights for life, and if you give birth in a department store, it provides many gifts for baby and mother.

Our delivery in a hospital seems rather mundane in comparison!

What unusual birth stories do you have in your family? Were any of your relatives born in unusual circumstances? Did you give birth on a plane and get free flights?

We’d love to hear about your experiences. Share them in the comments below.

16    Apr 20120 comments

The Big Question: Marriage in your family

There are many ways to "pop the question."

How Silas Popped the Question - Card game - 1915

This article lists a number of famous marriage proposals. It includes that of King Edward VIII, who abdicated the British throne to marry American divorcee Wallis Simpson, and performer Seal, who proposed to supermodel Heidi Klum in a custom-built igloo on top of a glacier!

Speaking of celebrity proposals, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie recently announced their engagement and are planning to wed in September. Watch this space for a Brangelina special!

Continue reading "The Big Question: Marriage in your family" »

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