Sunday, November 28, 2010

November 2010 Scanfest

Friday, November 26, 2010

Holiday Weekend Genealogy Deals

Several genealogy companies and individuals are offering holiday deals this weekend:

One Year of Casefile Clues for $14 - Last Day Offered
"In honor of Michael's 7 newly discovered Mayflower ancestors, we're offering Casefile Clues Thursday and Friday for $14 for a year of 52 issues. Here's a little about Casefile Clues and here's a little more."

More info, including how to get sample copies, here.

New England Historic Genealogical Society - The Bookstore at NEHGS is here to help with your holiday gift giving for the genealogist in your life - even if that's YOU! We've bundled some of our most popular titles and slashed the prices just in time for the holiday season. Find the perfect stocking stuffer with our list of gift ideas for under $15.

Order online, through the mail or over the phone. Supplies are limited, so start shopping today!

Click on the link below to start saving!

Offer ends December 31, 2010 (brought to you by FamilyTreeMagazine) - Skip the Lines-Shop Online! Save 20% on your order!
Enter offer code SFT133 when you check out before November 29.

Be Sure to check out our Holiday Gift Section While You Shop!

* Offer code SFT133 expires November 29, 2010 at 11:59 pm EST. Offer not valid on VIP program enrollment or renewal, subscriptions, or products that ship directly from the manufacturer.

Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy Black Friday Deal - The Utah Genealogical Association would like to offer a Black Friday/Cyber Monday deal!! Beginning today, Friday, November 26th, through Tuesday, November 30th:

Registrants for the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy will also receive free UGA membership ($35 value) and the UGA member discount ($40 discount) for a total value of $75/off the current price!! Classes are filling fast and will fill even faster with this deal. Register at

Remember, the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy will be January 10-14, 2011 at the Salt Lake Radisson. Instructors are the best in the nation and cover topics from advanced methodology to writing a family narrative, to technology. We are also offering location-specific courses in French and Irish research this year. Don't wait, we're not sure when they will be offered again.

Questions? Contact Christy Fillerup at

Coupon code for this deal: SLIG2011

$100 Off a Y-DNA Kit from Genetreee - We're going all out this year for our Holiday Special!
Y-46 tests for only $79.95! (That's a savings of $100.) A DNA test kit makes an extraordinary gift that won't be forgotten! Valid now through the Monday after Thanksgiving (Nov 18-29, 2010). Order at

WorldVitalRecords/Historic Map Works Black Friday Sleep-In Special

Get a World Collection Subscription to PLUS 10% off any order at Historic Map Works for only $59.95. Save up to $50!

For more info, click here.

Scanfest is Coming!

The November 2010 Scanfest will take place here at AnceStories next Sunday, November 28th, from 11 AM to 2 PM, Pacific Standard Time.

What is Scanfest? It's a time when geneabloggers, family historians, and family archivists meet online here at this blog to chat while they scan their precious family document and photos. Why? Because, quite honestly, scanning is time-consuming and boring!

Scanfest is a great time to "meet" other genealogists, ask questions about scanning and preservation, and get the kick in the pants we all need on starting those massive scanning projects that just seem too overwhelming to begin.

To get started, you need to know the basics about scanning:

1. Don't use commercial glass cleaners (i.e. Windex) or paper towels to clean your scanner's glass plate. Use a soft, clean cloth, preferably microfiber. If you must use a liquid, use water sprayed directly onto the cloth  and make sure to let the plate dry thoroughly before placing photos or documents on it.

2. Wear cotton gloves (available at many art and/or photography supply shops) when handling photos and old documents.

3. Don't slide the photos around on the glass plate. Place them exactly where you want them. Photos should NEVER be scanned by a scanner that feeds the document through the machine, but ALWAYS on a flat-bed scanner.

4. Set your scanner to scan at no smaller than 300 dpi (dots per inch). Many experts recommend 600 dpi for photographs.

5. Photographs should ALWAYS be scanned and saved as .tif files. Use "Save As" to reformat the .tif file to a .jpg file for restoration and touchups, emailing, or uploading to an online photo album. ALWAYS retain the original scan as a .tif file.

6. Documents can be scanned as .pdf files or .tif files.

7. When you are done scanning your photos, don't put them back in those nasty "magnetic" photo albums. Place them in archival safe albums or boxes found at websites such as Archival Products or Archival Suppliers. Do NOT store any newsprint (articles, obituaries, etc.) with the photos. The acid from the newspaper will eventually destroy the photograph.

Now about the chatting part of Scanfest:

We will be using Cover It Live, a live blogging format that you access right here at AnceStories.

On Sunday at 11 AM, PST, come right here to AnceStories and you'll see the CoverItLive live blog/forum in the top post. It's not really a "chat room," per se, it's more like a live forum and anyone visiting this site can read and see what is happening in the forum.

You will not need to download any software.

Up to 25 individuals can be invited to be Producers. Producers are participants who have the extra capability of sharing photos, links, and other media within the forum (great for sharing the photos you're scanning!). You must have Internet Explorer 6.0+ or Firefox 2.0+ to be a Producer.

We can also have up to 25 other Participants who can comment freely in our conversation, but will not be able to share media. You can have any kind of browser to be a Participant.

In addition, any other readers of this blog can drop on by and view/read what is happening at Scanfest. If the 25 Participant spaces are full, those readers will not be able to comment, unless someone else drops out.

Confused? Have questions? Go to CoverItLive and check out 6. Try It Now to see live blogs in action or 7. Demos to see videos demonstrating how to use CIT (especially the ones titled "How do my readers watch my Live Blog?" and "Adding Panelists and Producers").

If you would like to be a Producer, please e-mail me no later than Saturday, November 27th at 4 PM, PST and I'll send you an invitation. Preference will given to previous Scanfesters. You must set up an account (free!) ahead of time to be a Producer. This account will be good for all future Scanfests. You can do some practices ahead of time by going to My Account and clicking on the link under Practice your live blogging. Again, you must have IE 6.0+ or Firefox 2.0+ to be a Panelist.

As a Producer, Participant or simply a reader, if you would like an e-mail reminder for Scanfest, fill out the form below and choose the time frame for which you would like to be reminded (if you're reading this through Google Reader, Bloglines, or some other RSS feed reader, you will need to go to my blog and view this post there to see and utilize the form).

It really is easier than it sounds, and I'm looking forward to seeing you all there and getting some scanning done!

Thursday, November 25, 2010 Creates Strategic Alliance with National Geographic Digital Media


New Features Bring Further Discovery of Family History Online

PROVO, Utah, November 16, 2010 – is pleased to announce it has created a strategic alliance with National Geographic Digital Media to help individuals make new discoveries in their family history. As part of the relationship, will host a family history experience online, developed by, which enables visitors to learn more about researching their genealogy and provides specific tools for them to search their ancestral roots located on the Genographic Project website.

“We are always looking for unique ways to connect with people interested in their family history and have forged a great alliance with,” said John Pereira, Vice President of Business Development, at “With our development of this new experience on the Genographic Project website, we believe we can help individuals understand how exciting family history can be as they find further success in discovering their own family history.”

The new feature is an add-on to National Geographic’s existing Genographic Project Web portal that helps chart the migration history of the human species using DNA analysis. This additional online experience offers the ability to start an online family tree, tips on how to get started with researching family history and links to important historical record collections that are searchable on

For anyone interested in learning more about their ancestors, or to experience the family history tools offered by and National Geographic, visit

About Inc. (Nasdaq: ACOM) is the world's largest online family history resource, with more than one million paying subscribers. More than 6 billion records have been added to the site in the past 14 years. Ancestry users have created more than 20 million family trees containing over 2 billion profiles. has local websites directed at nine countries that help people discover, preserve and share their family history, including its flagship Web site at

About National Geographic Digital Media
National Geographic Digital Media (NGDM) is the multimedia division of National Geographic Ventures, the wholly owned, taxable subsidiary of the National Geographic Society, one of the world’s largest education and scientific nonprofit organizations that works to inspire people to care about the planet. Holding many top industry awards, NGDM publishes; produces short-form video for broadcast markets; manages marketing and content partnerships across broadband, mobile, gaming and other consumer digital platforms; and provides video and film footage to commercial, theatrical, educational and other digital footage markets.

Plymouth and West Devon Family History Records Set to Go Online

November 24, 2010


  • awarded contract by Plymouth and West Devon Record Office to publish its record collection
  • 343,257  images of records containing details of 3.5 million individuals will be published online for the first time

Leading family history website has been awarded the contract by the Plymouth and West Devon Record Office to digitise and publish online its family history records for the very first time, in an exclusive partnership. will work with FamilySearch International, the world's largest repository of genealogical records, to make the collection fully searchable online, making it easier than ever before to trace Devonshire ancestors.

Over 1500 volumes of records covering an area that includes historic Plymouth, the Dartmoor expanses of Lydford, and the Royal Navy dockyard at Devonport, will be digitised over the coming year. Details of the lives of over 3.5 million Devonians can be found within the 343,257 images. Among the records being published online are:

  • Baptisms, marriages and burials dating as far back as 1538
  • Monumental inscriptions
  • Records of funerals
  • Churchyard plans
  • Churchwardens' accounts
  • Electoral rolls
  • Bastardy bonds
  • Settlement orders
  • Rate books
  • Apprenticeship indentures

These records will be joining what is already one of the largest online collections of over 26 million parish records dating back 650 years at

Today's announcement follows on just a few weeks after published online over 223,000 transcripts of parish baptisms, marriages and burials from Devon Family History Society. Those transcripts will soon be matched up with the images of the original parish registers, to be supplied by the Plymouth and West Devon Record Office, enabling family and local historians to view facsimiles of the original historic documents online for the first time.

FamilySearch will scan original images of the registers for to then transcribe and make available and fully searchable online at with an index search on

Nicola Moyle, City Curator of Plymouth and West Devon Record Office commented: "We are committed to making our archives much more accessible and easy to use. We're really excited to be working with and FamilySearch to digitise these records so that they will be easily available to everyone at the simple click of a button."

Debra Chatfield, Marketing Manager at said: "We are extremely excited that the Plymouth and West Devon Record Office has chosen to make its family history collection available through Once these records are online, it will be possible for anyone to find out if they had Devon ancestors just by entering a surname in a search engine. They will then be able to see an image of the original parish register, which in some cases could be up to 650 years old."

The online records will be free to access at the Plymouth and West Devon Record Office but will be chargeable if viewed from home or elsewhere, either by buying PayAsYouGo credits or included within a subscription to

Leading UK family history website (formerly was the first company to make the complete birth, marriage and death indexes for England & Wales available online in April 2003.

Following the transcription, scanning and indexing of over two million images, the company launched the first website to allow the public easy and fast access to the complete indexes, which until then had only been available on microfiche film in specialist archives and libraries. The launch was instrumental in creating the widespread and growing interest in genealogy seen in the UK today. has subsequently digitised many more family history records and now offers access to over 750 million records dating as far back as 1538. This allows family historians and novice genealogists to search for their ancestors among comprehensive collections of military records, census, migration, occupation directories, and current electoral roll data, as well as the original comprehensive birth, marriage and death records.

In November 2006 launched the microsite in association with The National Archives to publish outbound passenger lists for long-distance voyages departing all British ports between 1890 and 1960.

In April 2007,'s then parent company Title Research Group received the prestigious Queen's Award for Enterprise: Innovation 2007 in recognition of their achievement. was acquired in December 2007 by brightsolid, the company who were awarded The National Archives' contract to publish online the 1911 census, which it launched in January 2009.

About Plymouth and West Devon Record Office
The Plymouth and West Devon Record Office is the principal archive repository within Plymouth and the West Devon area. It exists to collect and preserve the historical records of the area and to promote and encourage their use by all who want to study them.

The Record Office holds records of the old borough and modern city of Plymouth, as well as the West Devon area. From 1 April 1998, it has been run as an independent archive service by Plymouth City Council and forms one of the services provided by the Community Services Department.

The Record Office holds original records (archives) of many organisations and individuals. Dating from circa 1190, they include deeds, charters, minute books, letters, registers, manorial documents, reports, diaries, financial records, maps, plans, photographs, card indexes, microfilms and microfiche.
The office is open Tuesday to Friday to view records and staff are happy to answer queries by telephone and email.

About FamilySearch
FamilySearch is the largest genealogy organisation in the world. Millions of people use FamilySearch records, resources, and services to learn more about their family history. For over 100 years, FamilySearch has been actively gathering, preserving, and sharing genealogical records worldwide and operates over 4,500 family history centres in 70 countries, including the renowned Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah.

MyHeritage.Com Unveils Stunning Online Family Tree Charts


Launches world’s largest online source for creating, printing and sharing family tree charts

London, England & Tel Aviv, Israel - November 18, 2010 -, the largest and fastest growing family network on the web, unveiled today a host of new online family tree chart designs and features. As the leading online source for family tree charts, with over 7,000 of them created every day by its users, has now completely revamped its offering to enable free customization, printing and sharing of beautiful family tree charts. Going one step further in enabling users to showcase their family history, launched today a professional poster printing service for any chart produced on the website, and added a new department specializing in the production of custom-tailored handmade family tree charts.

More than 16 million families have created a site on; a private place for exploring family history, finding long-lost relatives and keeping in touch. Innovative tools, such as Smart Matching™ and photo sharing with facial recognition technology, provide a friendly and secure setting where millions of users have planted their family tree online.

Users can now create a family tree chart from their family site in a few clicks, by choosing from numerous different chart types (click here to view), including the newly introduced Bowtie and Hourglass formats. The Hourglass chart shows the ancestors and descendants of a selected individual, in as many generations as desired. has further innovated on this format: its Hourglass charts can optionally include the ancestors of any spouse as well. The new Bowtie format showcases an immediate family with the ancestors of the two partners on either side.

With a choice of 18 different predefined chart styles (click here to view), plus a wide variety of border designs, frames, background images, decorations, colors and fonts, users enjoy thousands of combinations for personalizing their family tree charts. Users can further customize their chart by choosing which information they wish to include in their family chart - from names, birthdates or wedding anniversaries - through personal photos and personal notes - to entire biographical data on family members. offers high resolution export of charts completely free of charge, to enable sharing with other family members and friends. Users can generate all charts in PDF format, which is compatible with every home printer and enables easy sharing as an email attachment.

As of today, adds a professional poster printing service for any chart produced on the website, starting as low as $20 per poster. With worldwide shipping, any user can now order a high quality printout of their chart packaged in a protective tube, either directly to their home or shipped as a gift to any other address. The print can be ordered on a variety of paper types (including standard paper, matt photo, glossy photo, vinyl and canvas), in almost any size and with optional lamination. For special occasions like family reunions, posters can be as large as an entire wall.

In addition to the automatically generated charts and posters, is launching today exclusive handmade charts (click here to view). These special charts, each a unique creation, make an ideal present for a family reunion, anniversary or other special occasion, and are also an heirloom for future generations. A dedicated team at has been set up to prepare these impressive custom-made family tree charts in direct consultation with the customer, to ensure they are tailored according to the individual’s needs and taste. 

“Our beautiful family tree charts are a great reward for families who have spent many hours researching their roots”, said Founder and CEO, Gilad Japhet. “Family history is much more fun when you can share what you’ve discovered with others, and family tree charts are perfect for that. We’re proud to raise the bar and provide the widest choice of customizable family tree charts on the web - that can easily be shared with others for free. Our attractive new family tree posters will be a source of pride in every home and are perfect as a gift for the upcoming holidays”.

Existing users of can create their own family tree charts by simply clicking on the 'family tree' tab on their family site and choosing 'charts and books'. People who have already built a family tree elsewhere can easily import their family tree onto and take advantage of the beautiful chart options, by signing up for free on and uploading a GEDCOM file.

About is the most popular family network on the web. Millions of families around the world enjoy having a private place for their families to keep in touch.’s Smart-Matching technology empowers users with an exciting and innovative way to find relatives and explore their family history. With all family information stored in a secure site, is the ideal place to share family photos, and celebrate and preserve special family moments. Offering 36 languages, 650 million profiles and 16 million family trees, is nurturing family relationships and uniting families worldwide. For more information please visit

NGS Video Productions Presents: LauraDeGrazia, CG

For your Thanksgiving viewing NGS is pleased to send you two new segments from the NGS Online Video Series. Laura DeGrazia, former president of the Board for Certification of Genealogists, tells the story of how she became a genealogist and shares tales of her family and ancestors.

Also showing for our members:
  • Leslie Anderson, msls
  • Elizabeth Shown Mills, cg, cgl, fasg, fngs, fuga
  • David E Rencher, ag, cg, figrs, fuga
  • Willis H. White, cg

Log in at, click on the Members Only tab, and then click on NGS Videos in the sidebar menu.

Now showing for everyone:
  • Thomas Adams, 2009 Rubincam Youth Award Winner
  • Helen F. M. Leary, cg (emeritus), fasg, fngs
  • Paths to Your Past
  • Home Study Course
  • NGS Conferences
  • Finding Your Family at the National Archives
  • NGS & NARA

All of us at NGS wish you and your family a blessed holiday.

A Lot to Be Thankful For: 15 Million New Indexed Genealogical Records

18 November 2010

A Lot to Be Thankful For: 15 Million New Indexed Genealogical Records
Digital images and indexes include 34 collections from 13 countries
The collection of indexes and images available on FamilySearch’s beta website continues to grow by leaps and bounds, with the addition of 34 collections of genealogical records. These records include 15 million indexed records and 2.5 million images. The bounty of information covers 13 different countries around the world: Mexico, Chile, Colombia, Honduras, Guatemala, Brazil, France, Spain, Germany, Belgium, Jamaica, Canada, and the United States. Search these records now at

See the chart below for the complete list of newly added or updated collections.

Digital Images
Indexed Records
Belgium Marriages, 1563-1890
Index only.
Belgium, Antwerp Police Immigration Index, 1840-1930
New records and images. This is an index of immigration dossiers compiled by the Antwerp police force between 1840 and 1930. Presently, the immigration dossiers are only available on microfilm, so this publication allows us to reference these dossiers.
Brazil, Church Records, 1814-1930
New images for Ribeirao Preto, Bauru, Rio Preto, Santo Andre, Novo Hamburgo, Passo Fundo
Canada, Ontario Births, 1869-1912
New images and records
Chile, Concepcion, Civil Registration, 1885-1903
New images and records
Colombia, Diocese of Cúcuta Parish Registers,
New images added to existing collection
France Births and Baptisms, 1546-1896
Index only
Germany, Bremen Passenger Departure Lists, 1904-1914
New images and records
Guatemala, Guatemala City, Sagrario Parish Baptisms, 1898-1920
New images added to existing collection
Honduras, Tegucigalpa – Baptisms, 1895-1931
New images and records
Jamaica, Church of England Parish Register Transcripts, 1664-1880
New images added to existing collection
Jamaica, Civil Births 1878-1899
New images and records
Mexico Census, 1930
New images and records added to existing collection (Michoacan, Nuevo Leon, Zacatecas)
Spain, Avila–Catholic Church Records, 1500-1930
New images added to existing collection
Spain, Catastro de Ensenada, 1749-1756
New images added to existing collection
U.S., Arizona, Service Records of Confederate Soldiers of the Civil War, 1861-1863
Index only. Data courtesy of
U.S., Arkansas County Marriages, 1837-1957
New records added to existing collection
U.S., Georgia –Death Records, 1928-1930
New images added to existing collection
U.S., Index to Naturalizations of World War I Soldiers, 1918
Index only. Data courtesy of
U.S., Louisiana, Eastern District Naturalization Petitions, 1838-1861
Index only. Data courtesy of
U.S., Maryland, Naturalization Indexes, 1797-1951
Index only. Data courtesy of
U.S., Maryland, Naturalization Petitions, 1906-1931
Index only. Data courtesy of
U.S., Massachusetts Naturalization Index, 1906-1966
Index only. Data courtesy of
U.S., Minnesota, State Census, 1865
New images and records
U.S., Mormon Battalion Pension Applications, 1846-1923
Index only. Data courtesy of
U.S., New York State Census, 1905
New records for the following counties:  Albany, Bronx, Broome, Columbia, Essex, Franklin, Greene, Hamilton, Herkimer, Jefferson, Lewis, Madison, New York, Onondaga, Oswego, Seneca, Warren and Yates. This release completes this collection.
U.S., New York, Eastern District Naturalization Petitions, 1865-1957
Index only. Data courtesy of
U.S., New York, Western District, Naturalization Index, 1907-1966
Index only. Data courtesy of
U.S., Oklahoma, Applications for Enrollment of the Commission to the Five Civilized Tribes, 1898-1914
Index only. Data courtesy of
U.S., Rhode Island, State Census, 1885
New images and records
U.S., Rhode Island, State Census, 1905
New images and records. This census was taken on a two-sided form where only one person appears on each form.
U.S., South Dakota State Census, 1945
New records added to existing collection
U.S., Tennessee County Marriages, 1790-1950
New records added to existing collection
U.S., Utah, Territorial Case Files of the U.S., District Courts, 1870-1896
Data courtesy of
FamilySearch International is the largest genealogy organization in the world. Millions of people use FamilySearch records, resources, and services to learn more about their family history. To help in this great pursuit, FamilySearch has been actively gathering, preserving, and sharing genealogical records worldwide for over 100 years. FamilySearch is a nonprofit organization sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Patrons may access FamilySearch services and resources free online at or through over 4,600 family history centers in 132 countries, including the main Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah.