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13 October 2011, Vol. 14, No. 10
Table of Contents
Using RootsWeb
Genealogy Tip
Connecting
Bottomless Mailbag:
Readers Write In
Advertisements
What's New: Databases, Hosted Sites, and Mailing Lists
Volunteer Opportunities
The Darkroom
You Found It
Subscriptions, Submissions, and Reprints

RootsWeb Resources
RootsWeb Helpdesk
Check here for frequently asked questions about RootsWeb.
RootsWeb Review Archives
Check here for previous editions.
Using RootsWeb
By Joan Young
 
Making Disaster Plans with the Help of RootsWeb
When Hurricane Irene recently came knocking on my door, it was the first time in my lifetime I experienced a direct hit from a hurricane. The East Coast of the United States got a shock when an earthquake unexpectedly jolted us. Fires in Texas and floods in the northeastern states have resulted in home loss and emergency evacuations. Other parts of the world have not been immune to recent natural disasters and destruction either.

These events have forced many of us to give fresh thought to planning ahead in the event we are ever faced with a similar emergency. Insurance or government assistance can help with financial recovery, but no amount of insurance can replace documents or photographs destroyed in a fire or flood.

Family historians have file cabinets crammed with papers, diligently constructed family trees, labeled and catalogued photographs, and more. Now is the time to prepare for the preservation of our valuable research and family treasures. We need to think beyond our computers and even beyond our home and local geographic area. Online storage where we can access our data from any computer and recover it is important to prevent catastrophic loss. RootsWeb provides many resources that have long helped to preserve our data and photographs whether we have thought about it in this regard or not.

  1. WorldConnect trees feature the option for database submitters to download their trees as GEDCOM (GEnealogical Data COMmunication) files. Submit a tree by clicking START HERE on the main WorldConnect page. It is recommended that you do not pre-clean your tree (GEDCOM) before you submit it. Let WorldConnect's filters do the job for you. Once submitted, you can retrieve your complete file at any time including data you submitted that WorldConnect has cleaned from your public tree. Go here to retrieve an existing WorldConnect GEDCOM. Find the tree you wish to retrieve and click on EDIT then select DOWNLOAD GEDCOM.


  2. Consider creating your own Freepages site, or submitting the names in your old family bible as a database. Both are great options for preserving, storing and sharing the data and knowledge you have. If you have lost your site or tree passwords or account information or have forgotten the lists you are subscribed to, look in My Account, or Password Central. Follow the instructions here if your e-mail address has changed.

  3. In addition to sharing scanned documents and photos with other researchers, post them on RootsWeb's message boards. Personally I make a habit of transcribing documents I obtain and posting them on a relevant message board. RootsWeb message boards are not just for queries. Data posts (properly classified as such) are a valuable storage resource. Messages can be searched by classification using advanced search. Examples of data transcriptions I have posted are as follows:

    Will, Deed, Obituary, and Photo (as a file attachment)


  4. Lost obituaries might be found at Obituary Daily Times. You can submit obituaries and/or search the database. Submitting an obituary is one way to be certain you will find it in a future search.

  5. Sharing documents with others can help to ensure that they will be retrievable if the need arises. Scan your documents and send them to your family on a CD, thumb drive or store them online in a shared-access folder. There are numerous online storage options; here are a few companies that provide free storage, SkyDrive, Mozy, and DropBox. Refer to this previous article in the RootsWeb Review to learn more about digitizing your files and sharing them with others to avoid loss.

Sharing and submitting your family history data at RootsWeb ensures that it will be there for you in the future should you be faced with an emergency. It is the family historian's equivalent of stocking up on batteries for your flashlight and radio and making sure you have blankets and a food and water supply on hand.
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Genealogy Tip
By Mary Harrell-Sesniak
"Genealogy is not just a pastime; it's a passion."
 
Blogging Your Genealogy
Family historians have varying habits of how they share genealogy.

Some post trees online, such as at RootsWeb's WorldConnect, others post on message boards or social networking sites, and others simply blog.

A blog, for those who are unfamiliar with the term, is a Web log, generally used to post commentary. A blog post can be short or long. Genealogy bloggers are prone to reporting discoveries, but may also take the opportunity to report on a variety of topics—from family reunions to whatever is on their mind.
Although not specifically for genealogy, one of the more common of the free blog websites is WordPress.com. There is also an extended version for a modest fee.

To start blogging, you'll need to create a blog address, such as one I started called rootswebcolumnist.wordpress.com.

There are a few short questions to enter (name, e-mail, password), and then you activate the account from your e-mail. Once on the site, there is a welcome video, which explains how to use the Dashboard, and then you are ready to blog. Within the dashboard, you can change the appearance of pages, upload a background photo, see comments or statistics regarding visitors, and if you like, edit or delete postings.
 
Some websites provide tools for the writers. WordPress.com provides:
  • Categories and Tags Converter, which allows you to convert an item, such as "genealogy", from a category to a tag, or vice versa.
  • Press This, which clips text, images, or videos from other sites.
  • Webmaster Tools, which shows how search engines view your site.
Before making your decision as to the best blog website, review the Genealogy Blog Finder and the list of "Top 10 Blog Websites to Create Free Blogs".

It's a lot of fun. Whether you are a genealogy webmaster or an individual writer, I hope you'll try it.
 
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Connecting
Connecting Across the Miles
Some years ago when I retired, I decided to start working on the family genealogy. I had two books that were done in the 1960s on my dad's family, and in the 1970s on my mother's side. Both started in Ireland then came to Quebec and Ontario in Canada, and to PA in the 1830s. The books were done by hand and included many family groups, but neither contained any location data. This was frustrating to say the least.

I finally obtained access to my grandmother's family bible which pointed to a specific location in Quebec. This was for the Goggin family. I did some research and found three Goggin families in or near the town of Tingwick, Arthabaska, QC. I wrote snail mail letters to all three. I did not hear from anyone of the three families for many months. Finally I received a letter from a Goggin lady who lived in Connecticut. Her brother in Tingwick had received my letter but could not read it since he was now more French than Irish. He put my letter in a drawer and forgot about it.

Six months or so later, he found the letter and sent it to his sister in Connecticut who was able to read my letter. She then contacted me and sent much information on the Goggin clan going back to Ireland in the 1700s. So patience is a virtue such that waiting sometimes pays off.

Thank you to William Hall (Bill) Grimes
 
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Bottomless Mailbag: Readers Write In
Editor's Note: Thank you to all of our community members who wrote in with tips for how David could break through his concrete wall! It was truly an example of what RootsWeb is all about, "Finding our roots together."
The History of a Name
I liked the story that David Marshall sent in regarding his grandfather changing his name from Reid to Thompson.

A few years ago while putting together my father’s side of the family, I found his mother’s sister married a Samuel Adolph ROHLEN who was born in 1878 in Sweden. After tracking down their family, a daughter told me, before they could leave Sweden he had to change his name from CARLSON to Rohlen. Now why would that be and how many others had to do the same thing—maybe that’s what happened to David’s family??

Thank you to Marilyn Underwood

Busting Through Brick Walls
Hello, I couldn't help but try and offer some advice after reading Mr. Marshall's story. The surname Reid is one of the major septs of the Scottish Clan Donnachaidh, better known as Clan Robertson. He may try and check with the clan genealogists, if he gives them enough of the information he does have, they may be able to connect his William Reid with one who "ran away" or otherwise turned up missing in the same time period. They can be reached at: www.donnachaidh.com.

I think he should also keep in mind that his William may not have run away from home. At that time it was still a custom in both England and Scotland for young boys to be put in workhouses if they were orphaned or the parents were indebted. If he was in a workhouse and ran from there, there would be a record filed with the local law enforcement, possibly even an advert in the papers. It seems from the story that Mr. Marshall knows when William changed his name and enlisted, so it would be safe to speculate that he ran away from whatever he was leaving just prior to that, giving a narrower time frame to search in.

He states that he doesn't think it will have a successful ending, but I'd disagree. It's not going to be easy, but I believe it's very solvable, it's just going to take perseverance and a lot of digging. I would suggest a first stop to be contacting Clan Donnachaidh, as it's very possible they have an answer for him buried somewhere in their extensive archives.

I didn't know how to get hold of Mr. Marshall directly, so I hope you won't mind passing on my suggestions. After over twenty years of doing genealogy—I've hit more walls than I care to count, but with patience, perseverance, and a healthy dose of imagination, I've always managed to get past them. I'd like to see Mr. Marshall do the same: it's always worth it!

Thank you to Robt. Boudreau

Have a story, question, genealogy resource, or tip you'd like to share with RootsWeb Review readers? Send it to Editor-RWR@rootsweb.com.

Editor's note: The opinions expressed herein are those of the authors and are not necessarily those of the editor or of RootsWeb.com.
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What's New: Databases, Hosted Sites, and Mailing Lists
New User-contributed Databases at RootsWeb
MARYLAND, Baltimore County. John Hopkins Hospital School for Nurses
25 records; Paula Lucy Delosh

VIRGINIA, Roanoke County. Amos I Cemetery, Boones Mill, VA
31 records; Kathie Trent Kingery

VIRGINIA, Roanoke County. McGuire Kingery Buckner Cemetery
13 records; Kathie Trent Kingery

ILLINOIS, Marion County. Calvary Cemetery Centralia, IL
1318 records; Bill Culbreth

MINNESOTA, Crow Wing County. Crow Wing County Poultry Show Winners around 1920
47 records; Lori Hardow

MINNESOTA, Waseca County. Spanish American War Veterans from Waseca County, Minnesota
143 records; David Hirscher

VIRGINIA, Prince Edward County County. Gibbs Family Cemetery
6 records; Anne and Frank Crotty

Submit Your Genealogical Data to a RootsWeb Database.

New/Updated Freepages by Individuals
The Civil War Units File (CWUNITS), founded about 20 years ago, lists people who have information on a unit, ship, or group (often rosters, battles, etc.) and are willing to help others research it.

MPD Notices to Licensed Persons—a selection of Habitual Drunkards 1902 to 1912 (including the very first image from 1902).

OUR MATERNAL AND PATERNAL ANCESTORS: 380 YEARS OF HISTORY IN AMERICA. Features three separate family sub-sites as follows: (1) DELLINGER, KNECHT, PFEFFER, SILAR and allied families; (2) BOZARTH, PEIFFER, QUIGLEY, RHUBART and allied families; (3) MORELAND, MCVICKER, PINNELL, SCRUGGS and allied families.

Request a Free Website Account.

New/Updated Websites for Counties, States, and Historical Societies
  • akdar—Alaska Society Daughters of the American Revolution
  • arcem—Arkansas Cemeteries
  • engcwall—Cornwall England
  • hiacdar—Aloha Chapter (Hawaii) DAR
  • hidar—Hawaii State Chapter DAR
  • iacalho2—Calhoun County (IA) AHGP
  • iapocah2—Pocahontas County (Iowa) AHGP
  • ilabydcw—Aunt Becky Young Tent #92 (IL) Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War
  • kscrawhp—Crawford County Kansas History and Heritage Project
  • kslabehp—Labette County Kansas History and Heritage Project
  • kyasjudc—Albert Sidney Johnston Chapter (KY) UDC
  • lalafay2—Lafayette Parish (LA) AHGP
  • mndcw—Michigan Society Daughters of Colonial Wars
  • mnsdiw—Michigan Society Daughters of Indian Wars
  • mojlpudc—John L Patterson, Chapter 2682, (MO) United Daughters of the Confederacy
  • paljpscv—Lt Gen John Pemberton Camp 2060 Sons of Confederate Veterans
  • tnfwcta—Friends of the Washington County, Tennessee Archives
  • tnjohns2—Johnson County (TN) ALHN
  • txjacdar—John Abston Chapter (TX) DAR
  • wilahs—Luck Area (WI) Historical Society
  • wvbacdar—Barboursville Chapter (WV) DAR
Some of these Web pages might not be accessible yet. They are created by volunteers, so if one that interests you isn't up yet, please check again in a few days or next week.

Request a Free Website Account.

Mailing Lists
New Surname Mailing Lists
New Regional Mailing Lists
  • SCOLDCAMDEN— A mailing list for the discussion of genealogical and historical topics regarding the Old Camden District in South Carolina. This district was the parent of Claremont (extinct), Lancaster, Sumter Lee, Fairfield, York, Chester, Kershaw, Clarendon, and Cherokee.
New Ethnic or Special-Interest Mailing Lists
NONE

To find or subscribe to a mailing list, or to search archived posts to more than 30,000 RootsWeb-hosted genealogy mailing lists, go here.

Request a Mailing List.
Volunteer Opportunities
Are you looking for an opportunity to give back to the genealogy community?
Check this section to learn more about some of our hosted projects and other projects you can participate in.

The World Archives Project is helping to keep the world's stories alive. You can too by typing information from historical records into searchable online collections that are available to the public for free. Learn more.

For a complete list of projects to key and search click here.

If you know of genealogically-related volunteer opportunities please email Editor-RWR@rootsweb.com.

The Darkroom
Sometime before 1970 as a Connecticut resident I bought two photos in Brass frames. They are more likely pictures of the same young man. They were purchased in an antique store which ‘by memory' was on the corner of Old River Road and Rt 156 in Niantic, CT. At the time the brass oval frame with its concave glass was its selling point and not the old pictures inside the two frames. A few years later, I moved to Australia where for the most part, I have lived for the last 36 years.

Now after many years of moving for work relocations, the two frames and their pictures have reappeared from my many stored boxes. In the meantime I have begun my own search of both my Irish/Polish heritage and my husband's Australian roots, tracing the family history and trying to unravel the mysteries of our own many unidentified photos. In that time I have thought often about these two photos and the young man in them. I would love to find their rightful ‘genealogical’ families for the cost of shipping the photos to them.

Thank you to Karen

 
Here is a picture of (left to right), my dad Steve Lear and his younger sister Janet Lear, followed by his older brother David Lear. The picture was taken about 1950 in Kokomo, Indiana.

Thank you to Shane

For a chance to see your ancestor's photo in the RootsWeb Review, send it to Editor-RWR@rootsweb.com. Make sure to include your name and a brief description of the photograph.

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You Found It
Do You Think He Got Paid?
While researching the Summers Co., WV birth records, I found one father's occupation listed as "drinking whiskey."

Thank you to Susan Lederer

Say that Name Three Times Fast
Personal cards from a business in 1966 revealed names of John Tinkelpaugh and Pinkle Sturgeon.  We always thought it would be funny for them to get married and her name would be Pinkle Tinkelpaugh.

Thank you to E.S., Colorado
Found a funny name or humorous tidbit in old records, or an amusing entry in census, parish, church, or other records? Send these and other genealogy-related humor/humour items to
Editor-RWR@rootsweb.com.
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Subscriptions, Submissions, and Reprints
Subscriptions
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Submissions
The RootsWeb Review does not publish or answer genealogical queries, and the editor regrets that she is unable to provide any personal research assistance or advice.

RootsWeb Review welcomes short (500 words or less) articles, humor, stories, or letters, and reserves the right to edit all submissions. The announcement of books and products is provided as a community service and is not an endorsement in any way. Pictures for "The Darkroom" should be at least 72 dpi, preferably jpgs.

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  1. the reprint is used for non-commercial, educational purposes; and
  2. the following notice appears at the end of the article: Previously published in RootsWeb Review: 13 October 2011, Vol. 14, No. 10.
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