1    Sep 2014260 comments

Labor Day: 10 jobs that are obsolete

Did your great-grandfather cut ice for a living? Perhaps your grandmother was a switchboard operator and connected calls from house to house?

There are so many professions that our ancestors once followed that are now extinct today.

Here are 10 examples of professions that no longer exist:

1) A scissors-grinder was a street merchant that sharpened the blades of knives and scissors. He would call out in the streets or knock at the doors to try and get business. He worked the stone grinding wheel with his foot using a treadle.

A scissors-grinder in 1909. Credit: Maryland Historical Society Library.

Continue reading "Labor Day: 10 jobs that are obsolete" »

28    Aug 20141 comment

WWI: Unknown animal heroes

When we speak of war heroes, we generally refer to the brave men and women who fought and died for their country. Yet, many animals were on the frontlines with the soldiers. These heroic animals transported equipment, sent secret notes and informed of enemy movements.

Horses carrying ammunition at the Battle of Vimy Ridge

Horses:
Horses were used for transporting food, artillery, equipment and to carry wounded soldiers. Eight million horses from all sides of the war died during WWI. Continue reading "WWI: Unknown animal heroes" »

23    Aug 20141 comment

WWI Heroes: British women of the war

While many men went out to fight, it’s important to also remember the little known heroes who fought for their countries during the war.

Many brave women - doctors, nurses and soldiers - served on the battlefront, risking their lives to save others.

In honor of the WWI centenary, we highlight just a few of those heroic women: Continue reading "WWI Heroes: British women of the war" »

10    Jul 201428 comments

Search WWI military records for free!

2014 marks a century since the outbreak of World War I. On July 28 1914, the Austro-Hungarian Empire invaded Serbia, beginning a world war that would last four years and result in millions of casualties.

Were your ancestors among the brave men who fought? How did they serve their country? Learn more about them by searching hundreds of thousands of WWI military records.

Enjoy FREE access to the following record collections from now through the end of July: Continue reading "Search WWI military records for free!" »

29    Jun 20142 comments

Fathers: More quality time

Spending time with family is vital for maintaining a happy family with strong relationships. The more time you spend together, the better chance you have of bonding over quality experiences.

Today’s fathers are spending more time with their children than ever, and are becoming more and more involved in family childcare.

Continue reading "Fathers: More quality time" »

20    Jun 20143 comments

Nostalgia: Sounds of technologies from the past

We recently wrote about smells that evoke nostalgic memories. Many claim that smell is the most powerful sense, as it brings up memories from the past. Sound is also powerful in that it helps us remember our childhood, and times gone by.

According to a recent article, Ryan Dube explains that for generations of early technology users, sounds of technologies from an earlier time can evoke powerful memories of childhood games, long nights of online chats, and new email messages.

Dube lists five top sounds from a time when technology was simpler and these sounds along with the technology that they accompanied was just being introduced into our daily lives.

1) The whir of the floppy drive:

Do you remember waiting as our computers tried hard to read data from floppy disks?  We would wait patiently as the floppy driver whirred away and we hoped that our disks were not too damaged to be read. Continue reading "Nostalgia: Sounds of technologies from the past" »

5    Jun 20142 comments

We Are Family: Sibling bands

Today we spotlight some families that got along well with each other, and also shared the same musical talents and worked together on a daily basis. These family bands toured and performed together over the years.

Here are some of our favorite sibling bands:

Jackson 5
The Jackson siblings are possibly the best-known sibling act in history. Founded in 1964, the five brothers  -Jackie, Tito, Jermaine, Marlon and Michael - began singing in talent shows before they entered the professional scene. The Jackson 5 showcased the then tiny Michael Jackson's talents as a solo artist. Continue reading "We Are Family: Sibling bands" »

23    May 20141 comment

Memorial Day: Search Military Records for Free

On Memorial Day we remember the brave men and women who fought and died while serving in the US military.

On this Memorial Day, learn more about your ancestors who served their country by searching millions of military records. MyHeritage is offering free access to millions of military records all weekend, through May 26.

Search now

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20    May 20140 comments

Levis: From a quick fix to the world’s best-selling jeans

Levi's jeans are well known throughout the world for their quality and durablility, but do you know the history of how the jeans were were originally created by Levi Strauss for gold miners in the 1800s' California Gold Rush?

In 1853, Levi Strauss, a German Jewish immigrant, moved to San Francisco to open a branch of his brother's wholesale dry goods store. He began selling clothing, blankets, fabrics and other items to small stores throughout the region.

One of his customers, Jacob Davis, was a Latvian Jewish immigrant, in Reno, Nevada. As a tailor, Jacob frequently purchased bolts of denim cloth from Levi Strauss & Co.'s wholesale house. Davis found himself repeatedly reinfocing torn pants, and had an idea to to use copper rivets to reinforce the pants at stress points. He added rivets to the button fly and pocket corners.

Davis knew that the idea would take off, but he didn't have the money required to obtain a patent, so he wrote to Strauss suggesting that they go into business together.
Continue reading "Levis: From a quick fix to the world’s best-selling jeans" »

13    May 20147 comments

Photography: Styles and fashion of times gone by

When thinking about old times, we remember past decades by the styles and the fashion trends that were prevalent.

Image credit: Annalisa Hartlaub

I remember frizzy hair and jean jackets in the 80s, and the slicked-back hair of the 90s. But what if I had been around in the Roaring 20s? What would I have looked like in a flapper dress with a feather in my hair?

Have you ever wondered what you would have looked like in a different decade? Continue reading "Photography: Styles and fashion of times gone by" »

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