23 January 2008, Vol. 11, No. 4
Table of Contents
Editorís Desk
Using RootsWeb
Bottomless Mailbag:
Readers Write In
Whatís New: Mailing Lists,
Databases, and Freepages
The Darkroom
You Found It
Subscriptions, Submissions,
Advertising, and Reprints
RootsWeb Resources
RootsWeb Helpdesk
Check here for site maintenance announcements.
RootsWeb Newsroom
Check here for the latest RootsWeb news.
RootsWeb Store
Check here for the latest in genealogy books, software, photos, and more.
RootsWeb Spotlight
Know someone who has gone above and beyond in the service of RootsWeb? Nominate them for recognition on our Volunteer Spotlight page.
RootsWeb Review Archives
Check here for previous editions.
Editor's Desk
A New RootsWeb Review Look, Plus a New Section
I hope you were happily surprised today when you opened your RootsWeb Review. After ten years, it has finally gone the way of HTML. (If your newsletter looks the same, your e-mail provider may not accept HTML and you will continue to receive this newsletter in a text-only format.)

Not only does HTML make the newsletter more attractive--it makes it possible to click to your favorite sections from the table of contents. It also makes it possible to include images.

Because of that, we are introducing a new section to the Review--the Darkroom. The Darkroom is a place to showcase your favorite ancestral photographs. I used one of my own this week; I hope yours will start pouring in soon. Submit them, along with a BRIEF description, to Editor-RWR@rootsweb.com.

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Using RootsWeb
Adding Photos to Your WorldConnect Tree

Want to spice up your WorldConnect tree? How about adding some photographs? Follow these quick steps and you'll soon have your relatives' photos alongside their facts. Caution: A little bit of HTML savvy required.

I added this photo of my grandfather to my WorldConnect tree.

To see the actual page: http://wc.rootsweb.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?op=GET&db=j_lloyd&id=I00001

The key to adding a photograph to your WorldConnect tree is this: place the appropriate HTML image tags in the Note section for an individual in your GEDCOM file before you upload it to WorldConnect. Here are more complete steps to make sure you're successful:

Step One: Enable your WorldConnect tree to accept HTML coding.

1. Go to My Account.
2. Click "Edit" next to the WorldConnect tree you want to add a picture to.
3. Click "Display Options" in the Tree Settings box.
4. Scroll down to the line that reads "Allow HTML in GEDCOM" and select "Yes."

Image of

5. Click Update.

Note: If you haven't created a My Account page yet, you can enable HTML settings through the old User Setup/Edit page on WorldConnect.

User Setup/Edit page on WorldConnect
You must know your tree user code and password to access the tree display options through the old WorldConnect Setup/Edit page.

Step Two: Add appropriate HTML image tags to your GEDCOM.

1. Decide which person you want to attach an image to in your WorldConnect file.
2. Open your family tree making software (e.g., Family Tree Maker, Legacy, PAF, etc.) and locate the individual.
3. Put the appropriate image HTML tag in the Notes section for that individual (the Notes section appears as a field, dialogue box, or separate section depending on your software).

Here is a basic set of HTML tags you could insert in the Notes section. It will create a paragraph break and an image.

<img src="URL where your image is located">

For example, I included the following HTML tags in my GEDCOM:

<img src="http://jlloyd294.googlepages.com/davidirvinglloyd.jpg/davidirvinglloyd-medium;init:.jpg">

Note: To place an image in your WorldConnect file, the image must already be hosted by a file server (i.e., it has to be online somewhere). If you already have an image you want to use on a RootsWeb freepage you can link to the image there. Since I use Gmail and Google provides its users with a free website service, I created a Web page and uploaded numerous family photos to it; then I linked to those images.

Some free Web hosting services where you can post your photographs include Angelfire (part of Lycos), GeoCities (part of Yahoo), and Tripod.com (also a part of Lycos). Or, try a search for "free hosting service" in your Web browser to locate more. One downside of free website hosting services is that they generally place ads on your Web page. Note that you should not use a RootsWeb freepage solely for hosting photographs; pages of this nature will be removed from RootsWeb.

4. Export your new file as a GEDCOM. The tags will be embedded in the file.

Step Three: Replace your existing WorldConnect file with your updated GEDCOM.

1. Go to My Account.
2. Click "Edit" next to the WorldConnect tree you want to update.
3. Click "Replace Tree with New GEDCOM" in the Tree Settings box.
4. Click the Browse button to locate your updated GEDCOM file.
5. Click Upload File.

You will have to wait a few minutes for your new tree to upload before you can view it.

Have you added other HTML tags to your WorldConnect tree? Please write in and let us know how you spruced up your tree.

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For a no-obligation research plan and quotation visit

For help from professional genealogists in England or Scotland visit

Or join us 13-18 April for our TENTH SALT LAKE CITY RESEARCH TRIP--the dream genealogy vacation!

Remembering Past Connections
By Mary Vermiglio

It was interesting to read the "Connecting" piece "Harrison or Hinton?" by Nina Osterlye in last week's RootsWeb Review. Nina once located me through one of my trees on WorldConnect. We share the same fourth great-grandfather through the Branson line.

Last year I mentioned to Nina that I was attending the FGS seminar in Ft. Wayne, Indiana, and she told me her daughter lives there with her family. I met Nina's daughter and family for lunch. What a treat that was.

Nina lives in California, her daughter lives in Indiana, and I live in Florida. It never ceases to amaze me the way RootsWeb helps you to locate relatives all over the world.

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Bottomless Mailbag
Pennsylvania Death Certificates Online
By Dale Berger

The People for Better Pennsylvania Historical Records Access are engaged in a grassroots effort to get older Pennsylvania state death certificates available online. For complete information, including talking points, forms, and sample letters you can send, please visit the following site:


IGP Archives' First Birthday
By Christina Hunt

On 2 February, Ireland Genealogy Projects Archives is celebrating its first birthday. We have also hit our goal of having 1,000 files online in our first year. We are a special project of Ireland Genealogy Projects.

For a number of reasons, researchers have long had a very hard time finding records for their Irish ancestors. Our mission is to provide a place where copyright-free transcriptions can be housed for the benefit of all.

To date we have two Dublin city directories, not available anywhere else online, and transcriptions of two volumes of Encumbered Estate Sale Records for Cork (including tenants' names). We also have a number of old memorials, cemetery listings, and church records, and we are now adding headstone photos and text.

We welcome contributions.


Photo Recognition Software
By John P. Wilz
I have a number of unidentified photos that a distant relative was nice enough to copy from an old album labeled only as "Wilz." I suspect I may have some photos of the same people taken years later. Does anyone know of a photo identification software that would enable me to objectively compare pictures by checking ratios of eye-width and other similar measurements?

Basing a Novel on Genealogical Research
By Katharina Gerlach, author of Ann Angel's Freedom, ISBN 978-1-84753-754-6

When I was at school I hated history. Who was interested in something as boring as dates about dead people? If anybody told me then that I would come to love history and actually write a historical novel I would have laughed. So how did this change?

It all started at university when I made friends with Anke Waldmann. She confronted me with a strange and seemingly boring hobby: genealogy. She had found a box with old documents that her father treasured although he couldn't read them. She started translating the old German handwriting, a difficult and time-consuming task. At the same time I made my first stumbling steps as an aspiring writer. Soon, every other word from Anke was about something new and exciting she had found out in the documents.

One day Anke came home from a family weekend especially excited. An American couple had shown up on her doorstep looking for the home of their ancestor. Imagine their amazement when they found out that the descendants of their ancestor's brother (Anke's great-great-grandfather) were still living there. There had been no contact between the families since 1866 when the heir to the farm had emigrated to the U.S.

When Anke and I visited her relatives in Wisconsin some time later, I finally realized that behind all those facts Anke had fed me was a treasure trove of stories. I half jokingly suggested writing a novel about the emigration, since it was rather unusual for the heir of such a rich farm as the Waldmann's to leave. Together we started to look for his reasons but found them hard to trace.

I felt my fingers itch. I wanted to write. If I couldn't start with the emigration I had to find something just as compelling. Together, Anke and I sorted through the documents. We finally settled on the time when the family bought their freedom from serfdom because it was the best-documented story in the pile. Even minor events (like who had an affair with whom or who owed how much money) were written down in a document about a five-year lawsuit her family was involved in.

I anxiously began my own research into the time period between the first and the second Napoleonic Wars. There were many books on the overall political picture but very little information about everyday life.

Our research took roughly five years--but that was the easy part. When I finally sat down to write the novel, I found that there were many difficulties. I write them now for the interest of others who may be attempting or may eventually attempt to write their own historical novels based on their genealogical research.

One of my problems was that there were too many people involved in the stories. One of the worst tasks was sorting out who wasn't needed for the novel. In one instance I merged two uncles because although both their actions were important, it did not matter which one did what.

I was lucky that the order of events needn't be changed, but there was still the problem of making them exciting. With little more happening than people walking to the court of justice and back, any potential reader would have fallen asleep after a few pages. I had to find the right point-of-view.

I experimented with different people by writing a couple of short stories from different points of view; I even tried an outsider's viewpoint. The person I felt most comfortable with was the middle daughter of the family, Ann Angel, and I ended up writing the whole book from her point of view. Although she was hardly involved in the lawsuit at all, this decision set me free to explore themes like the work of the women at that time, and their differing concepts about family and social obligations of neighbors. It was still more difficult than I had first anticipated because Ann Angel turned out to be utterly uninterested in being the daughter of a free man. It was hard to make her change her mind. I literally needed to kill someone to achieve it. Lucky me: the facts supported this twist in the story!

In retrospect, I can see that it was good that Anke and I worked together. Anke, as a genealogist, is a specialist in research. She happily digs deeper and deeper, creating an ever-increasing mountain of facts. Of course this amount of research gives an authenticity to the novel that not many have. But, had she tried to write the novel by herself, she might have failed because her desire to portray the given time period as correctly as possible by adding fact after fact might have made the resulting novel boring. Also, she might have had a difficult time with characterization. More often than not genealogists know the people that feature in their story. They try to stay as true to the person as possible, losing the freedom to create a fully fleshed fictional character--one that readers can believe in.

Had I written the novel by myself, I would have failed, too. The books would have lacked the accuracy that Anke provided.

If you want to judge this book for yourself, you can download a free sample chapter here: http://www.tapio-de.org/english/angel.html. The full book can be ordered through any major bookshop (such as Amazon.com or BarnesandNoble.com). The e-book is instantly accessible at Holly Lisle's shop (http://www.tapio-de.org/redir.html). Anyone interested in the genealogical data of the Waldmann family (some 20,000 records) should go here: http://www.die-waldmanns.de.

Currently, I am writing the sequel to Ann Angel's Freedom. Of course, I am writing in German, but if Ann Angel's Freedom sells well enough, I will surely translate this novel, too.

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What's New: Mailing Lists, Databases, and Freepages
New User-contributed Databases at RootsWeb
The following databases have come online recently. They are searchable, but not browseable

NEW YORK. Genesee County. Batavia: Daily News Index for 2007. 9,286 records.
Leilani Spring, volunteer for the New York Genesee County Historian.

TENNESSEE. Crockett County. Maury City Cemetery. 263 records. Cristie Sanders. http://userdb.rootsweb.com/cemeteries/

New/Updated Freepages and Homepages by Individuals
To Request a Free Web Account: http://accounts.rootsweb.com/

If you have a new or substantially revised freepage at RootsWeb and would like to see it mentioned here, send the URL, the title, and a BRIEF description, including major surnames, to Editor-RWR@rootsweb.com.

Richard Heaton's Family History Homepage. By Richard Heaton. An addition of about 730 transcripts from English and Irish newspapers, mainly from 1750-1840, and containing more than 100,000 names.

To search the site, please use the FreeFind box at the top of the homepage and press Ctrl + F to find the reference you are looking for on a particular page.


New Mailing Lists




No New Regional Mailing Lists


BAUMAN-DNA -- A mailing list where those who are researching the heritage of their Bowman, Bauman, and Baumann ancestors (as well as those with other name variations) can exchange information.
CREEKINDIAN-DNA -- A mailing list for researchers to learn how DNA tests can help in researching Native Americans. It should also provide connections to people from other tribes.
MS-GEORGE-OBITS -- A mailing list for posting obituaries or death notices for George County, Mississippi.

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The Darkroom

This picture is of my father (right) and his older brother, as toddlers in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Submitted by Jana Lloyd
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You Found It
By Adrian Gray

Last night while looking at the 1881 census I discovered someone living next door to a relation of mine in Chesterfield, Derby, UK, named Stair Walker (he had a son, also named Stair).

Heaven only knows where that came from, if it wasn't transcribed incorrectly.

In the graveyard at Yattendon, Berkshire, UK, I also sighted the grave of the unfortunately named Fanny Rumble.

By Madora

When my children were old enough to handle names and titles, we taught them grandmother and great-grandmother. Then my kids began calling my mother Great- Grandma also (she was great!), and she finally asked, "Why can't they just call me plain Grandma?" So she became "Plain Grandma" and the other one continued to be Great-Grandma.

Now that I am a great-grandma also, I find I automatically say "What?" when one of my little great-grandchildren calls out, "Grandma, where are you?"

By Will Smith

One of my ancestors married a man named Reasonable Darling. He might have been better named as B. Reasonable Darling.

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  2. the following notice appears at the end of the article: Previously published in RootsWeb Review: 23 January 2008, Vol. 11, No. 4
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