Sunday, July 30, 2006

Week of July 23 - 29, 2006

Saturday, July 29
Diana Wilkes, a Find A Grave photo volunteer, blessed the socks off of me by not only taking many photos of my Robbins ancestors' graves at Hesperia West Cemetery in Hesperia, Michigan, but also submmitting a cemetery map with all the Robbins' graves marked! In addition, she will be mailing me a CD with all the photos. The photos she submitted to Find A Grave were for Joseph Josiah Robbins, Marinda (Robbins) Robbins, Charles H. Robbins, and Viola Gertrude (Peck) Robbins.

Sent a link to my Robbins Family Page to the McKean County, Pennsylvania GenWeb site.

Found info online about the Wyckoff House Museum, which my ancestor, Pieter Claessen Wyckoff, built c. 1652 on Long Island. It is the one of the oldest standing wooden homes in North America, and New York City's first Landmark.

Friday, July 28
Andrew Whitlock, a Find A Grave submitter, e-mailed to say he had updated my Civil War ancestor Benjamin Henry Kimball's information, which I had sent him a few weeks ago.

Thursday, July 27
Requested photos of my Higby ancestors graves in Old Westfield Cemetery in Middleton, Connecticit from Norma Unger.

Matt and I went to Holy Cross Cemetery and took photos of the graves of George Ogden and Dessie Lola (McCready) Purviance for a requestor. It was my first time there, and I found it to be a beautiful, well-laid-out cemetery with easy-to-find graves. It is a newer cemetery (built 1931).

Wednesday, July 26
Added details to a memorial page on Find A Grave, which I created for my grandaunt, Mary Louise (Hoekstra) Glashower.

Heard back from Judy Zenge, a Find A Grave photo volunteer who is looking into taking a photo of the grave of my infant brother, Aaron James Robbins. She talked to an individual in Metlakatla, Alaska who said his parents are buried right next to Aaron, and he and other Metlakatla citizens continue to tend the grave out of loving respect and memory of all my parents did as Salvation Army officers to that village over 30 years ago. He also stated that the cross Dad made for Aaron's grave was still intact. Judy is hoping to get over to Metlakatla on Annette Island from Ketchikan soon, to take a photo. This news was very touching to me.

Tuesday, July 25
As pre-arranged, I received a telephone call from Laurie Perkins, Education Historian at the Michigan Historical Museum in Lansing. She is in charge of developing and overseeing the Future Historians program for 9 - 15 year olds at the Museum. She told me about the program and answered my many questions. She also gave me contact information for the person in charge of the Genealogy Sprouts Day Camp program through the Library of Michigan. I am hoping that my local genealogical society can develop (a) similar program(s) in the Spokane area, with the help of the Spokane Public Library and/or the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture.

Monday, July 24
My son, Matt, and I went to Greenwood Memorial Terrace to take a photo of the grave of Allene Eugenia (Castlio) Castlio for someone who requested it through Find A Grave. We stopped first at the cemetery office, and were informed that Allene was not buried there; she was buried at Fairmount Memorial Park. Greenwood and Fairmount are both owned by the Fairmount Memorial Association, which also owns Riverside Memorial Park, Spokane Memorial Gardens, and Woodlawn Cemetery, so they have all the records at the central office at Greenwood. I was given the locations of some more Castlio burials; two at Greenwood (Edwin Sparks and Dora A. Castlio) and two at Spokane Memorial Gardens (Raymond W. and Alma L. Castlio). Since I was already at Greenwood, I went and took the photos; then I went to Fairmount and, after a little help from the office there, found Allene's burial place (her grave is unmarked, except for a curbstone family marker off to the side). After adding Allene's photos to her memorial page at Find A Grave, I created pages for the other Castlio individuals at that site. I used information from the Washington State Death Index at Ancestry to fill in some unknown information.

Sunday, July 23
I worked on my friend Bev's family tree website, and I now have three pages up. Once I get it complete, I'll put a link here for my readers, so that they, too, can read it. Bev is a great writer; a professional journalist who writes for many genealogy magazines, and her family stories on her new website will warm your heart and make you feel like you've known these people all your lives!

One of the ladies from the Eastern Washington Genealogical Society contacted me; she recently ordered a copy of the GenSmarts software by phone. She talked to Aaron Underwood, the owner of the program, and suggested that he donate a copy as a door prize for our October workshop. He agreed, and I think that this will make a wonderful addition to a great program (Michael John Neill will be our guest lecturer)!

I've agreed to be the coordinator for the EWGS' educational program for 2007. We offer free computer classes for members each month with a different topic. So far, we covered Using the Boolean Search Method, Using, Placing Queries for (and Finding) Surnames Online, Using, How to Fix Broken Links (see my blog entry of July 16th), Patriotic and Lineage Societies Online, and Using GenSmarts Software. My job will entail signing up people for the classes (there's a limit of 15, due to the amount of computer stations in the computer lab), of which we hold three each program day.

I also started adding a lot of cemetery information from various sources to the Goodrich Cemetery (Atlas Township, Genesee County, Michigan) listing at Find A Grave...kind of an outgrowth to my work on The Atlas Project.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Broken Links and Other Tips and Tricks - Free Syllabus

A couple of months ago, I taught a computer class offered exclusively for members of the Eastern Washington Genealogical Society. This class was titled "Broken Links and Other Tips and Tricks." Have you ever heard of a great genealogy website from a friend, or seen a link to a great new database in an e-mail or on a website...but when you've gone to the site (either by entering the URL yourself or clicking on a link) you get the dreaded 404 Page ("this page not found")? There are tips and tricks you can use to find the site you need. I wrote this presentation from things I learned from experience, plus from other tips I've found along the way over the years. For those who could not attend (and for all of you reading this blog), I am offering the syllabus for that class. It is a step-by-step procedure on how to find those sites when the links are broken. This syllabus is offered for free, no-strings-attached (I won't send you spam or put you on a mailing list). Just e-mail me (find my address in My Profile - see right-hand menu) and ask for the Broken Links syllabus.

P.S. This syllabus isn't just for genealogy will work for ANY kind of site you are looking for online.