There are many resources available on almost any family history topic. If you are frustrated at not being able to find what you want, or need help understanding what you have found, that may be a signal to join your local genealogical society.
Newcomers are welcome at all societies, where experts are interested in helping you. Remember that all of us were newcomers at some point regardless of our current skill level. We have all been in the same place as you, and we were assisted by experts who answered those "silly questions" we were hesitant to ask.
This week's edition focuses on new records at FamilySearch.org, a California conference deadline, the National Black Genealogy Summit, Who Do You Think You Are? new US season lineup, Canadian news and more.
Let us know which resources you like, which you have used, your experiences. We value your opinions and comments.
FamilySearch.org sends out a weekly update of new records added to its database. This week's collection includes an addition of seven million record images, covering Austria (1537-1888), Belgium (1795-1920), Canada (1800-1900), Czech Republic (land records, 1450-1850), Spain (1241-1950), various US states, as well as five million for the Philippines (1945-1980).
Southern California Genealogical Society Jamboree Deadline
If you would like to speak at one of the best regional genealogy conferences in the US, the deadline for proposals is fast approaching - October 13.
This week we report on why people want to gather more information via digital preservation, a hidden cemetery in Indiana, a photo collection of a Japanese-American internment camp in Wyoming, and a slew of events and classes in Minnesota, Kentucky, Ohio and Canada.
We offered two views of digital preservation in last week’s North American News edition.
As promised, writer Mike Ashenfelder of the Library of Congress’ preservation blog - Signal - has provided Part 2 of his first post..
In Part 1, he wrote that“relational databases are the engines that drive digital genealogy. Databases make it possible to quickly search through enormous quantities of records, find the person you’re looking for and discover related people and events. And when institutions collaborate and share databases, statistical information becomes enriched.”
In Part 2, he addresses why modern genealogists want to gather this information.
“Brian Lambkin, director of the Centre for Migration Studies, said that adding multimedia, geospatial data and more, enriches the biographical information about a person. “Potentially there’s a biography to be written about every single individual,” said Lambkin.”
This is what researchers call “adding flesh to the bones.” Family history research is much more than merely a dry list of names and dates. We want to know more about our ancestors and this includes all aspects of their lives. Ashenfelder’s post provides numerous examples of projects and sites that try to do just that.
In late August, our community once again begins to buzz with activity as people return to their daily lives. The program year begins in September for many genealogy societies.
This week has produced event announcements ranging from society meetings, anniversary programs, the start of classes, new tools and databases and more.
Read on for some of the announcements - we couldn't fit everything into this column!
How you can learn more:
-- Google for genealogy and family history events in your own town or city.
-- Join your local family history society.
-- Sign up for a family history class.
Recent announcements include online Canadian records, a free mobile app for the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS), as well as interesting family history-related stories covering an inspiring search, family reunions and memoir-writing.
Canadian records online
Looking for a quick way to search Canadian genealogy records?
FamilySearch.org has added nearly 8,000 Quebec notarial record images (1800-1860) to its Canadian records. Click here for more information.
- Try Genealogy in Time’s free genealogy search engine. Some included websites: Automated Genealogy, Alberta Family History Society, Alberta Genealogical Society, Ontario Genealogical Society, Canada Genweb websites, federal and provincial archives, Canadian obituary websites, as well as French, Acadian, Loyalist, Mennonite and other sites. Fifty additional online sites with Canadian ancestral records have been added. The site claims some 10 million new records have been added.
- For more lists of Canadian-specific sites and records, click http://www.genealogylinks.net/canada/ or http://www.cyndislist.com/canada
This week, we have humor and history, a Canadian genealogy survey (but open to all) and a new UK family history show which will bring together Brits and Anglo-Indian relatives.
Humor and history
For a light-hearted look at history as it may have been written, check out this new, slightly irreverant genealogy blog - Today in Heritage History.
The NFB has a website where many videos and documentaries - from decades ago up to today - are free to view. You can access it here and view videos at your leisure.