17    May 20110 comments

Gen conferences: Information for all

Three genealogy conferences in two countries were on my schedule over the past 10 days.

Each conference provided food for thought, learning opportunities and practical information. Additionally, each event offered networking opportunities, and chances to meet others with the same interests.

On May 7, the Society of Genealogists (London, UK) held their Centenary Conference, a major event for this group founded in 1911. The world of family history and how we research hadn't changed much over the decades until rather recently.

Continue reading "Gen conferences: Information for all" »

26    Feb 20111 comment

London: Who Do You Think You Are LIVE 2011

Who Do You Think You Are Live will welcome some 20,000 visitors over this three-day event.

Our MyHeritage team has been busy! The first day of the family history fair was Friday, and we were very busy from the minute the show opened. Today (Saturday) will be even more crowded.

Here's famous genealogy blogger Dick Eastman with MyHeritage's chief genealogist Daniel Horowitz as Daniel demonstrates some of our new features.

Blogger and podcaster Lisa Louise Cooke dropped by yesterday to record short segments with Daniel and myself.

Today is expected to be even more crowded than yesterday and many people are dropping by to learn about the software, family sites, memory card game and other features such as SmartSearch, SmartMatch and more.

I'm preparing for my talk this afternoon on creating online sites for ancestral communities.

On Thursday evening, Daniel and I spoke in a double session for the Jewish Genealogical Society of Great Britain. He spoke on SmartSearch, while my talk focused on genetic genealogy and DNA.

The MyHeritage team is very busy and includes Mario, Daniel, Robert, Laurence and mysef.

These conferences and fairs are always exciting, as we get to meet so many people. Many come up to us and announce that they are happy MyHeritage users. Others may have a small problem with a feature and Daniel is able to assist them, so they are also happy.

It's even more fun explaining about what we do to newcomers.

2    Feb 20118 comments

Family History: Learn from experts

2011 provides a great opportunity for family history enthusiasts and genealogists to learn from experts who might be visiting their communities.

MyHeritage's own Daniel Horowitz has a daunting tour schedule in the coming months, and I will also be speaking in numerous venues. We will both be speaking at the major genealogy events as well as staffing the company's booth.

We invite MyHeritage.com users to stop by and say hello at the conferences or to attend the other programs at the conferences.

We are especially looking forward to greeting our UK users at the upcoming Who Do You Think You Are? Live family history fair in London.

Here's Daniel's upcoming tour. His topics cover information-packed talks covering a broad range of topics - from MyHeritage features, technology, genealogy school projects, resources and more.

Continue reading "Family History: Learn from experts" »

2    Nov 20100 comments

Tracking the troops: GI Jane, GI Joe

Do you have ancestors or relatives who served in the military?     

As we peer into our past, we often find family members who served on land or sea in many countries and in many capacities. Some were on-the-ground forces, while others filled support roles such as tailors, doctors, nurses, cooks or musicians.   

London's Imperial War Museum has organized a Family History Day on Saturday, November 6, sponsored by MyHeritage.com. The event will assist participants - from beginners to experienced family historians - to learn how the Blitz affected families, the roles relatives played to help win the war, the aftermath of this history in today's families, and what records are accessible for more information. 

The Imperial War Museum is the museum of everyone’s story: the history of modern conflict told through the stories of those who were there. It is an educational and historical institution responsible for archives, collections and sites of outstanding national importance. You can view the Museum’s main website here.    

Dr. Mary Edwards Walker

 Women as well as men have served in diverse capacities in all US military branches - Army, Air Force, Navy, Marines and the Coast Guard. For information on women veterans from Colonial to contemporary times, view stories here (scroll down to see other relevant pages on that site), and a time line here. For a collection of photos and artifacts documenting women's service, click here.    

One Civil War surgeon - Dr Mary Edwards Walker (photo left) - was the first woman to receive the Medal of Honor.     

Accessible records include regiment lists, files for widows' pensions, death and burial records, medals, hospital lists for the wounded, transport lists and many other records, each supplying another piece of the family history puzzle.     

Where can you find more information on those who served?

Continue reading "Tracking the troops: GI Jane, GI Joe" »

26    Aug 20100 comments

Wedding bells: Picture that!

Weddings are important events in family history as each brings together individuals from two families to create another.

Photos of bride and groom are among the most cherished in families. Copies are sent far and wide, to relatives in other countries. When researchers begin to expand their family histories they often find the same photographs in the hands of branches in several countries or different cities.

It's another way of confirming the relationship between two groups of people. The sender of the photo may have inscribed it to the person who received it and indicated that the receiver was an aunt, uncle, cousin or sibling of the person who sent it. They may also have included the date and place of the wedding and the full names of bride and groom.

Here are more tips when working with wedding photos:

Continue reading "Wedding bells: Picture that!" »

20    May 20100 comments

Success: The London Connection

Traveling to other countries provides an opportunity to reconnect with family.

In February, that's exactly what our genealogy and translation manager Daniel Horowitz experienced. He had traveled to London to represent MyHeritage at the Who Do You Think You Are? LIVE family history fair.

His visit enabled several SINGER branches to meet once again. The family has its roots in Czernovits, which was in Austro-Hungary and is today in Ukraine.

The SINGER Family (c1930)

Daniel, born and raised in Caracas, Venezuela, knew there were branches in London but didn't know much about them, except that they didn't talk to each other! Continue reading "Success: The London Connection" »

29    Dec 20094 comments

UK: New database for family surnames

Who says there's no money for genealogical research projects?

University of the West of England (UWE) researchers have received 800,000 British pounds to ask "what's in a name?" They plan to include the meanings and origins of some 150,000 UK surnames using resources dating to the 11th century.

In addition to UK and other "native" origin names, other names will be Norman French, Gaelic, Welsh and Cornish, as well as Huguenot, Jewish and later immigrant names. Information for each name will include where and when the names were recorded and spelled.

Professor Richard Coates of the UWE's Bristol Centre for Linguistics will carry out the research with visiting professor Dr. Patrick Hanks. They hope it will be a good resource for those researching their family history. For those who love maps, here's one of the town of Bristol in 1874.

Bristol 1874

The project will begin in April 2010, and a permanent publicly accessible database will be available by 2014. It is being billed as the "The largest ever database of the UK's family surnames," according to a UK site.
Continue reading "UK: New database for family surnames" »

3    Apr 20083 comments

Searching for your UK roots?

If you are searching for family with links to the UK, here's a mega site that covers literally everything related to genealogical resources in the geographical area.

It is sponsored by Price and Associates, who are experts in English family history and genealogy research.

Among the many links, you'll find some sites in color and this indicates fees are required.

Put tooltip here

The main categories are Genuki, Burial Indexes, Occupations, Civil Registration (BMD), Census and Census Substitutes, Baptisms, Marriage Indexes, Education & Announcements, Historic Newspapers, DNA, Probate Records, Emigration Records, Migration, Maps and Gazetteers, Monumental Inscriptions, Military Records, Archive Catalogs, Networking with Others, Genealogy Humour, Surname Studies, Surname Distribution Maps, Old Handwriting Aids, Religion, Local Histories, Land and Court Records, Heraldry and Nobility, Records of the Poor, One-Place Studies, and Finding Living People.

As just one example, under Civil Registration (birth, marriage, death certificates), find links to major websites, as well as such lists as death duty (1795-1903), births/marriages/deaths at sea, birth/marriage/death indexes, geographical indexes and more.

Census & Census Substitutes lists both major sites and some esoteric links:

Hemp and Flax Grower’s Index (Dorset, Somerset, Devon 1783-1791)
Hearth Tax 1660s-1670s (Various Places)
Lay Subsidies for London (1292, 1319, 1332, 1541, 1582)
London inhabitants within the walls (1695)

UK and Ireland Records similarly offers records for many geographical areas.

Education and Announcements provides many links for resources (centers, magazines, guides, history, encyclopedias, blogs/newsletters, institutes/societies and more.

There are also Lots of Links to even more links, such as Cyndi's List, Genealogy Links, Looking 4 Kin, 101 Best Web Sites, etc.

Emigration Records provides passenger and immigrant lists, port records, lists of emigrants from and to specific locations, births at sea, Brits in South America, Canadian immigration index, New South Wales (Australia) convict arrivals and registers, and a host of other fascinating links). I barely had time to scratch the surface in my perusal of this list.

In addition, find Networking links, Jewish links, Occupations, Surname Distribution Maps, Handwriting and Language links, Religion links, records for the poor and literally hundreds of other links which lead to additional resources.

Enjoy your exploration of this site!

I look forward to reading the comments and questions of readers who take the time to look at the UK resources site.

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