23    Jun 20150 comments

5 mistakes to avoid with event dates: Webinar

We recently hosted a webinar - "5 mistakes to avoid with event dates” - featuring one of our expert genealogist Laurence Harris.

Deciphering dates can be confusing in records, especially with uncommon date formats. Laurence provided tips for interpreting those difficult dates to help uncover more about your family history.

Did you miss it? Don't worry! Click on the video below to watch the full webinar.

Don’t forget to check our other webinars for many more genealogy tips to help make family history research easier.

Have ideas for other webinars? Let us know in the comments below.

18    Jun 20156 comments

Family: Planning a roots trip?

Contributing author Schelly Talalay Dardashti is the US Genealogy Advisor for MyHeritage.com

Are you planning a family roots trip in the future? If so, it's time to make plans.

Whether you stay at home or plan an international trip, the basics are the same: Decide where you are going and what information you would like to find. Contact local historic or genealogical societies in the area for more information, and see below for even more suggestions.

Make a list of your names of interest and the towns your ancestors lived in. Try to group the towns regionally, by a particular geographic area. If this is an ambitious trip, you may want to make several groupings of towns.

A good way to put everything into perspective is to get a big map of the region you are planning to explore. Go to your local office supply store and pick up a few packages of colored transparent removable adhesive dots - they come in all sizes. Using the transparent ones mean you won't cover up important information.

Color-code your map. For example, put a red dot for the town, a blue dot for the cemetery, a yellow dot for archives, courthouses or libraries, and a green dot for possible accommodations. Use other colors for restaurants or other landmarks.

And, if your family is coming with you, mark sites they would like to visit with you or on their own, while you are digging through archives and cemeteries. Pay attention to fun places like water parks, amusement parks, a beach, music festivals or childrens' museums. Remember that cemeteries are not high on other people's must-see lists. Continue reading "Family: Planning a roots trip?" »

10    Jun 20150 comments

Webinar: 5 mistakes to avoid with event dates

Have you come across any obstacles with understanding event dates? Deciphering dates can be confusing in records, especially with uncommon date formats.

Join expert genealogist Laurence Harris for a free webinar on Wednesday, June 17. He'll provide tips for interpreting difficult dates to help uncover more about your family history.

Register for free here: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1831742758010374145

Continue reading "Webinar: 5 mistakes to avoid with event dates" »

7    Jun 20154 comments

Sources: Where did I find that?

Contributing author Schelly Talalay Dardashti is the US Genealogy Advisor for MyHeritage.com

How good is your memory?

Many years ago, when I was very new at the genealogy game, I really believed I could accurately remember where I had discovered every bit of family data. And - for awhile - I actually could do that.

However, as the years went by, the numbers of people in my trees increased - while my brain cells seemed to decrease - it became impossible. Sometimes, I would write the information on a scrap of paper. We all know what happens to a scrap of paper stuck in a bag or pocket.

At one point, I had to stop all new research and backtrack, almost to the beginning of my quest, to fill in all those blanks.

Fortunately, I had even saved some of those scraps of paper on which I had scribbled information while visiting archives and libraries. To preserve them, I had taped them onto regular sheets of white paper. Eventually, I transferred that data to the family tree software I used, but the scraps didn't cover all my research. Continue reading "Sources: Where did I find that?" »

26    May 201514 comments

13 ways to know you’re a genealogist

Whether you are a family historian or just someone interested in learning about their family’s heritage, there are certain things only a genealogist will understand.

You’ve been hit with the genealogy bug if…

  1. When introducing someone you say, “this is my sister’s grandmother’s father’s son.”
  2. You are more interested in what happened in 1815 than in 2015. Continue reading "13 ways to know you’re a genealogist" »
24    May 20155 comments

9 reasons to start your family tree

Debating whether to explore your roots? Trying to persuade a relative or friend to start their family history research?

Here are nine reasons why family history is important to persuade you - or others - to begin learning about your heritage.

1. The Queen? Elvis? Who knows, they may be your distant cousins. You may find you're related to someone famous or be linked to royalty!

2. Leave a legacy for future generations. Do you want to leave something important to your children and grandchildren? Don't leave it to someone else, start preserving family memories and stories for them.

3. Document your life as a piece of living history.

4. Knowledge is power. Learning more about where you came from and your heritage can give you purpose and meaning. Continue reading "9 reasons to start your family tree" »

21    May 20154 comments

A boy called Emma?: Proposed Finnish naming law

Imagine a boy named Emma or a girl named Joshua. Sounds strange? Sounds normal? In Finland, these gender-switching names may become a reality.

The current Finish naming law, dating from 1985, is about to be obsolete. Until now, the law banned giving a female child a male name, and a male child a female name, but a new proposal may change that.

The law, considered controversial by some, would allow parents to give their children names regardless of  the gender  to which they might be associated. However, chosen names may not be offensive, inappropriate or incite harm to children. Continue reading "A boy called Emma?: Proposed Finnish naming law" »

18    May 201545 comments

New Feature: Instant Discovery Tree Cards

Last month, we announced that Instant Discoveries™ are now available to all MyHeritage users, allowing our users to add entire branches to their family tree in just a few clicks. Many of our users have already been enjoying these Discoveries every day, and you can see this in near real-time using our exciting Discovery World Map.

Today we are introducing a useful new feature that lets you see the Discoveries available for you right in your family tree, in their exact context. For example, if a branch connected to your great-grandmother, which includes her father or mother, is missing in your family tree, but found by MyHeritage in another tree, you’ll see a special yellow card above your great-grandmother’s profile labeled “Discovery!”

New Discovery Cards

Hover over the Discovery card to learn more about it: a tooltip will open describing the Discovery and specifying how many missing relatives it can add to your tree and the source of the information.

Hover over Discovery Card to display relatives found

Click on the yellow card to review the Discovery. Discoveries are always based on a match, so you will first be asked to confirm whether you think the match is correct. Continue reading "New Feature: Instant Discovery Tree Cards" »

30    Apr 201517 comments

Names: What’s in the middle?

Middle names. Some people have them; others don’t. The three-name structure we use today (given, middle and last name) began in the Middle Ages when Europeans wanted to give a child a saint’s name and a traditional family name, but middle name use goes back even further.

In ancient Rome, it was an honor given to important people to have multiple names. Later - in the 1700s - aristocrats began to give their children long names to indicate his or her place in society. For example, Prince George Alexander Louis of Cambridge. Continue reading "Names: What’s in the middle?" »

18    Apr 20150 comments

Webinar: Uncover your Scandinavian Roots

We recently hosted a webinar - "Uncover your Scandinavian Roots" - featuring two of MyHeritage's experts: Director of Content Production Mike Mansfield and Senior Program Manager Jason Oler.

Mike and Jason demonstrated how to navigate through the Scandinavian records and provided other research tips to help explore your Scandinavian heritage and family history.

Did you miss it? Don't worry! Click on the video below to watch the full webinar.

Don’t forget to check our other webinars for many more genealogy tips to help make family history research easier.

Have ideas for other webinars? Let us know in the comments below.

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