Monday, 30 June 2014

Pre-WW2 RAF records at findmypast

From the collection held at The National Archives now available exclusively online at findmypast are Royal Air Force service records including the predecessor Royal Flying Corps and Royal Naval Air Service.

British Royal Air Force, Airmen's Service Records 1912-1939, 342,818 records.

This includes 342 with birthplace Canada, 29 British Columbia, 1 Alberta, 52 Manitoba, 219 Ontario, 37 Quebec, 15 New Brunswick, 43 Nova Scotia, 2 Price Edward Island, 10 Newfoundland.

British Royal Air Force, Officers' Service Records 1912-1920, around 101,000 records.

Four pages of original record for a Canadian flying ace show his birth date as 08 Feb 1894, in May 1915 he was declared unfit for general service, by the end of the war he had a stellar record.

William Avery Bishop

UK academic research of genealogical interest

The UK Arts and Humanities Research Council funds some projects of interest to genealogists and family historians. Here are a few that may be of interest to you:

The London and Middlesex Hearth Tax: an analysis of the status and wealth of neighbourhoods and households on the eve of the Great Fire
http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk/project/27AC4E52-CD0D-420B-AB61-75FEEC134D8C

Sussex Church Monuments c. 1530 -1830
http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk/project/6FAB4D84-3CB5-4838-A10B-B685B0BDD212

Family Names of the United Kingdom
http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk/project/04EB9698-C3F4-4C1A-8BB1-6598FE22DB69

The Singing Landscape Project
http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk/project/6194D4B3-BAA9-4010-A2B3-96BCE8C5969B

The AHRC are also highlighting projects relating to the First World War. See the news item at http://www.ahrc.ac.uk/News-and-Events/News/Pages/Leeds-stories-of-the-Great-War.aspx

TNA podcast: Inconvenient people and how to find them: Tales from the Victorian lunacy panics

This presentation from May 29 at TNA by Sarah Wise is based on her recent book which tells the stories of the horrors of the Victorian medical system and lunacy. Often as not lunacy was used as an excuse to sideline those whose eccentricity, and often control over resources, were inconvenient to the family.

Check it out at http://media.nationalarchives.gov.uk/index.php/inconvenient-people/

Sunday, 29 June 2014

Guide to Norfolk Ancestors

FamilySearch have produced a detailed guide to Norfolk parish resources. Read about it at https://familysearch.org/blog/en/free-guide-norfolk-england-ancestors/.

 

Thanks to Gail Dever at Genealogy à la carte for the tip.

Canadian civil service lists

Fully-searchable Civil Service lists from Canada's Department of Public Printing and Stationary, for 1922, 1924 - 1932, 1935 - 1940 are now available at Early Canadiana Online, specifically  http://eco.canadiana.ca/view/oocihm.8_03500

In the few samples I was able to view the information given was name, position, department, home address.

Earlier years, which often had more detailed information, may be found by searching Civil Service List of Canada at the Internet Archive (texts).

For more general information check the LAC information at http://goo.gl/cK4HDh.

Saturday, 28 June 2014

Ireland Dog Licence Registers

Findmypast previously included dog licence applications in their Petty Court collection noted on the blog previously. Now they are separating out into a collection with over 2.4 million records. "The Irish Dog Licences contain not only the name, breed, colour and sex of your ancestor’s four legged friend, but also the owner’s address and the date the licence was issued."

Maybe this should have been saved for the dog-days of summer.

FreeBMD June update - NOT

I've been wondering about the delay in updating the FreeBMD site. All is revealed with this announcement:

You might have noticed that there has been a delay with the most recent update to the FreeBMD database. We are currently planning on moving the site to new servers and we will update the database when that move is completed. We apologise for any inconvenience this might cause but hope that the move to new servers will help us to provide a better service in long run. We anticipate that the move will happen over the next couple of weeks and during that time there might be short periods where the site is unavailable, or certain facilities are unavailable, but we are working to try and keep disruption to a minimum. Thank you, in advance, for your patience whilst we complete this.

Friday, 27 June 2014

BBC TV WDYTYA next series

Featured celebrities on the next British series of WDYDYA have been announced: Mary Berry, Brian Blessed, Billy Connolly, Brendan O'Carroll, Tamzin Outhwaite, Martin Shaw, Sheridan Smith, Twiggy, Julie Walters, Reggie Yates. More information at  http://goo.gl/OwdvL7

Annual Toronto History Lecture

Historian, author, York University professor and member of the former Library and Archives Canada Services Advisory Board, Craig Heron, will be delivering the 2014 Lecture, on the topic of The Workers’ City: Lives of Toronto’s Working People.
Generations of working people literally built the city and created the goods and services to sustain a large metropolitan population. Yet their stories are seldom told. Historian Craig Heron will explore the opportunities and challenges that members of the city’s working class have faced over the past 150 years, and will share his insights into major changes and common themes during that period, through the lives of eight different Toronto workers.
Further information and free pre-registration (required) at
http://torontofamilyhistory.org/learn/toronto-history-lecture/
According to the weekly newsletter from the Toronto FHC the event is already over half full.
The 2014 lecture is dedicated to the memory of J. Brian Gilchrist (1956-2014)

New and updated British and Canadian WW1 records on Ancestry

The following are new on Ancestry:

Canada, Ledgers of CEF Officers Transferring to Royal Flying Corps, 1915-1919, 1,210 records
This relatively small database is from the records of the Department of National Defence, RG 24. Library and Archives Canada. The records, typically two pages, include name, address, date of birth, next of kin, the officer’s movements from unit to unit, appointments and promotions, decorations and honours, medical information, and civilian employment.

England, The National Roll of the Great War, 1914-1918, 97,712 records
Substantially incomplete and compiled by subscription from family sources.

UK, De Ruvigny's Roll of Honour, 1914-1919, 26,928 records
Biographies of over 26,000 casualties of the Great War, both officers and ranks, from British Force;. 7,000 include photographs. The emphasis is on the early years of the war.

The following databases are updated:
British Army WWI Pension Records 1914-1920, 2,139,613 records
British Army WWI Service Records, 1914-1920, 3,653,052 records
British Army WWI Medal Rolls Index Cards, 1914-1920, 5,280,584 records
UK, Soldiers Died in the Great War, 1914-1919, 703,810 records
Ireland, Casualties of World War I, 1914-1922, 49,647 records
UK, Citations of the Distinguished Conduct Medal, 1914-1920, 24,928 records
UK, Silver War Badge Records, 1914-1920, 882,674 records
UK, Commonwealth War Graves, 1914-1921 and 1939-1947, 560,902 records

Thursday, 26 June 2014

Ancestry.ca celebrates Canada

Ancestry.ca is offering free access, with registration, to all 235 million Canadian records until July 1 at 11:59 p.m. It's not clear if this is available just within Canada or more broadly.

The census enumerators challenge

Here is testimony of Mr. Charles James White who had acted as an enumerator for the 1881 census for an area of Mile End Old Town including Ernest Street, Ely Terrace, part of Duckett Street. He testified on 10 March 1890 before the UK Treasury committee on the census; here is an extract from his testimony found on page 81 and 82 of the report. Starting at paragraph 1850.

Q. Did you have any difficulty in distributing the papers?
A. No, because I had special advantages. I had been five years poor law officer, and under the school board for several years. I know nearly every family in the district. I could go and knock at the door, and knowing I treated them properly, they would do as much for me, and perhaps a little more, than they would for a stranger. Of course there would have been very greater difficulties for an inexperienced person.

If you will permit me, I will give you an instance or two. In Ely Terrace I delivered two schedules; on the day in question, when I went for them, the landlady gave me hers. I was satisfied with hers, as I know all the children, know her husband, what he was, and know the wife. I said, "Where is the schedule for the family upstairs?" She replied, "I do not know." I said, "Is he at home?" She said, "Yes." I said "You go on, and I will manage my business," because you see a lodger does not like a landlord to interfere – – sometimes, you know – or a landlady either. I knocked at the door. Down came a man, partially paralyzed from the waist. He said, "What do you want?" I said, "I want your schedule. Do you know that in accordance with law you are bound to fill up of this paper?" "What is it for" he said. "What is it for" said I. "Why; the government require it to know something about the statistics of the country." And he said, "Well, I do not want to bother with it." Now I said, "You did not treat me so glibly when you used to come over to the house when you were poor, look, and you may remember." Then he softened down. "Now let me proceed to business," said I. I know his name, really. I then said, "Your name is so-and-so; then the wife." There were no children. I put that down. "Now," said I, "What are you?" "A cooper," he said. "Well," I said, "are you? How long have you been a cooper?" So he said, "Why, I am a cooper." I said, "I do not think so. Do you remember when you came into the board of guardians one day and said if they gave you tools you would get work? They gave you tools, and you came back and next board day and said you could not get work. Of course we know perfectly well you could not do the work. You only labor about it in a cooper shop. Now, what are you really? You know perfectly well you could not make a tub; you could not work at it." He said "I am a laborer." "What sort of a one?" I asked. "Cannot you qualify it?" What about the shoeblack box?" "Well," he said, "I am a shoe black." You could see him a few minutes ago at the Burdett Road at work. Poor fellow, he could not work; but he might've told me the truth.

Unless you know something of those people, the census, although it may appear very accurate, it is not likely to be so. There was a brothel in the next street. The woman who kept it was convicted a little while ago as a procuress. I said when I called there, "I have instructions to have the names of everyone in the house." "The girls and all?" she said. "The girls and all," I said. When I collected the schedule it contained, as far as I can remember, her name and the names of two little boys who were in a home in Deptford. I said "You have not put down the girls in this said house. Are not the boys in the home at Deptford? I must strike those out." She took the pen and struck those out. She did it herself. I was not at liberty to do it. "Where are the girls?" I asked. "They are in bed" she said. "Well," I said, "I am going up the street, and I will call as I come back." It is a long street with about 1000 people in it. There are 500 schoolchildren that is what I know. When I came back I said: "Now, where are they?" So she called them down and we marshalled them along the passage and I cannot remember whether they put their names down or whether I did, but instead of having these girls down as servants or needlewoman, they were simply unfortunates.

Q. Had you many cases like that you had to manage in this way?
A. I believe there were several brothels in the street. I did them all about the same and there were persons who had been locked up for assaults, and some questionable characters.

The (British) Army Children Archive

The Army Children Archive (TACA) was established to collect, record, preserve and also raise awareness of the unique aspects of growing up as the child of a serving soldier in the British Army.

Check out two Flickr albums of the First World War era:

The Army Children of the First World War: Faces and Families’ consists of a set of photographic portraits of army children and their families photographed between 1914 and 1918. Ten images have initially been posted, after which further images will be added weekly. Any known information about the faces and families pictured, or any clues offered by the photographs themselves, accompany the images. Viewers are invited to fill any information gaps and, if possible, to identify these forgotten faces.
The Army Children of the First World War: a Sentimental View’ displays a selection of First World War-era sentimental postcards and ephemera featuring army children, and children generally. Many of these images were intended to tug at the heartstrings; others, to arouse patriotic feelings; another category reflects, through the prism of childhood, national preoccupations during the Great War. The initial ten images will similarly be augmented weekly.

via tweet from Family Tree Magazine.

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Toronto Star gives TPL over 1,000,000 photographs

News from the Torontoist blog of a major donation. Great to see the Star making the donation. Great to see the Toronto Public Library ready and willing to accept it.
Can't help but reflect that when the Ottawa Journal went out of business the photos were junked, and uncertain that the Ottawa Public Library would be ready to accept such a donation.

Back another generation, at last

Feeling in despair of ever moving your family history further back? Janet Few, who will be giving a remote presentation at the BIFHSGO conference in September, has an inspiring story about a breakthrough along her paternal line. It's one where she's been blocked since 1977.

Janet is cautious. She writes "I just can’t bring myself to ‘ink them in’. I am not sure what I am waiting for in terms of additional proof but I seem to feel I need something more. Is it just that I cannot believe that I have made progress on this line after so long?"

This looks like a case where a probability approach would help.

Irish genealogy: accentuate the negative

John Grenham's latest Irish Roots column reminds that absence of evidence is not evidence of absence, but it’s not much good as evidence of presence either. Nowhere is that more true that in Irish genealogy.

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Anglican Diocese of Ottawa Archives closed

This message is posted on the door of the Anglican Diocese of Ottawa Archives which I tried to visit on Monday following research at Library and Archives Canada.
It's always a good practice to call before making a visit. Information on the closure is also on the Archives answering system at 613-232-7124 Ext 234.
One can't complain about lack of notice. The most recent Friends newsletter and the website mention that there are regular scheduled closures each year - the last week of the months of May, June, September and December.
With the exception of those closures, and other unforseen circumstances, the Archives is open to the public on Monday and Tuesday from 9 am to noon and 1 pm to 4 pm, that's well over 500 hours a year.

Sir John Coape Sherbrooke collection

"On Thursday, June 26th at 4:30 PM at the LAC (just before the annual Friends of Library and Archives Canada AGM at 5 PM); there will be a presentation on the "Sir John Coape Sherbrooke" collection. This major acquisition in 2013 was made possible through a partnership between LAC, the Canadian Museum of History and financial support from the FLAC."
Thanks to Bob Lamoureux for the tip.

Monday, 23 June 2014

Findmypast buys Mocavo

Dick Eastman reports that Mocavo, second tier genealogy search site, has been acquired by findmypast, the second acquisition by the company this month. See http://blog.eogn.com/2014/06/23/findmypast-buys-mocavo/

First Day on the Job for Dr. Guy Berthiaume

Welcome to Dr. Guy Berthiaume as he takes over as Librarian and Archivist of Canada.

With a solid record of leadership in Quebec as both an administrator and academic even before he assumes the role today an improvement in morale has been evident among LAC staff.
He can be sure he has the goodwill of LAC's user community, who hope to be consulted on new directions being taken over the coming months, as he assumes leadership.

We should also express appreciation to Dr Hervé Déry who has served for more than a year as Acting Librarian and Archivist of Canada and managed to calm the turbulent waters left by his predecessor.

On Friday an announcement of changes to the senior ranks of the Public Service sees Patrick Borbey, currently President of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency, becoming Associate Deputy Minister of Canadian Heritage, effective July 2, 2014.

Sunday, 22 June 2014

Ottawa Branch OGS AGM

Saturday 21 June 2014 saw an elite group of Ottawa Branch members assembled for the Branch Annual General Meeting.
Branch Chair Norah Larocque-Cousins opened the meeting.

Kyla Ubbink, Treasurer, reported that 2013 saw a small surplus at the end of the year, a little under $400. Membership, publication sales and interest earnings remained steady, and the Ottawa Genealogy 2013 event saw a profit. The cost of producing and distributing the Branch news decreased slightly, mainly due to more members choosing to receive the publication electronically. She encouraged additional members to do so as it saved a considerable amount in printing and postage.  Meeting expenses have decreased dramatically thanks to the City of Ottawa Archives providing free access to their facility for meetings. The library offset many expenses by selling duplicate books and donated books that had no relation to the library's content. This allowed the purchase of much-needed archival supplies and books that enrich the collection.
Recognition in the form of 30 year membership certificates went to four members, Dolly Allen was there to receive her's in person. Ontario volunteer awards to six members were announced.
Heather Oakley, who was one of the Ontario volunteer award recipients, reported on her work for the OGS awards committee. She mentioned that The Dr. Don Brearley Branch Newsletter Award had been won by The Ottawa Genealogist. A new award for the best branch website was won by Kingston Branch with an honourable mention to Quinte Branch.
Many of the Branch board members will continue in their roles. Doug Gray takes on the role of Chair from Norah Larocque-Cousins. The program will be handled by a committee including Heather Oakley, Richard McGregor, Mike More and Rachel Muston.
Doug Gray mentioned a tentative date for the next Gene-O-Rama is 27-28 March 1915.
Following the AGM members heard from OGS Past President Shirley Sturdevant about developments which have resulted in a change in the composition of the Board of Directors, and from President Alan Campbell involving a heavier reliance on technology.

WW1 and Schools

Jeremy Paxman article on the role of British schools in WW1.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/history/world-war-one/10916542/First-World-War-Centenary-The-path-that-led-from-the-playing-fields-to-Flanders-Fields.html

Ottawa Branch OGS AGM

Saturday 21 June 2014 saw an elite group of Ottawa Branch members assembled for the branch Annual General Meeting.
Branch Chair Norah Larocque-Cousins opened the meeting.
Kyla Ubbink, Treasurer, reported that 2013 saw a small surplus at the end of the year, a little under $400. Membership, publication sales and interest earnings remained steady, and the Ottawa Genealogy 2013 event saw a profit. The cost of producing and distributing the branch news decreased slightly, mainly due to more members choosing to receive the publication electronically. She encouraged additional members to do so as it saved a considerable amount in printing and postage. Meeting expenses have decreased dramatically thanks to the City of Ottawa Archives providing free access to their facility for meetings. The library offset many expenses by selling duplicate books and donated books that had no relation to the library's content. This allowed the purchase of much-needed archival supplies and books that enrich the collection.
Recognition in the form of 30 year membership certificates went to four members, Dolly Allen was there to receive her's in person. Ontario volunteer awards to six members were announced.
Heather Oakley, who was one of the Ontario volunteer award recipients, reported on her work for the OGS awards committee. She mentioned that The Dr. Don Brearley Branch Newsletter Award had been won by The Ottawa Genealogist. A new award for the best branch website was won by Kingston Branch with an honourable mention to Quinte Branch.
Many of the branch board members will continue in their roles. Doug Gray takes on the role of Chair from Norah Larocque-Cousins. The program will be handled by co-Directors Heather Oakley, Richard McGregor and Mike More.
Doug Gray mentioned a tentative date for the next Gene-O-Rama, 27-28 March 2015.
Following the AGM members heard from OGS Past President Shirley Sturdevant about developments which have resulted in a change in the composition of the Board of Directors, and on future directions from President Alan Campbell involving a heavier reliance on technology.
 

Ontario Community Newspaper Portal Survey

Do you use the Ontario Community Newspaper Portal at Our Ontario? It offers access to more than 200 years of Ontario newspaper issues, articles, genealogical resources, and clippings. The organization is looking for advice on the best ways to present and share the content.

If you have experience with the Ontario Community Newspaper Portal and newspaper content displays please take approximately 10 minutes to complete the survey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/OntarioNewsPortal. Along the way you'll see examples of how other newspaper sites tackle presentation.

Saturday, 21 June 2014

Peter Carruthers: Ottawa WW1 Beechwood burial

Bombardier Peter McRae Carruthers, the fourth WW1 soldier to be buried at Beechwood Cemetery, died a century ago on April 8, 1915. A native of Ottawa born on 13 September 1881 to John and Margaret Carruthers, he died suddenly of heart failure at Lethbridge, Alberta, while in charge of the Guard at the 20th Battery, Canadian Field Artillery. According to an article in the 9 April 1915 Ottawa Citizen he had been scheduled to go to Europe with the second Canadian contingent.
 

WW1 burials at Beechwood Cemetery

Lieutenant Fergus Nathan Black is the third soldier of the CEF to be buried at Beechwood Cemetery. According to his CWGC file he died on February 7, 1915, age 35 and was the son of the John and Mary Dougal Black, of Barrie, Ont.; husband of Margaret Isabelle Black, of 17, Webber St., Riverside, California, U.S.A.
The Beechwood burial register lists his birthplace as Barrie, Ontario and burial as 10 February.
The civil death registration shows he had suffered from myocarditis for 5 months.
He had returned from Liverpool to Halifax, NS, on the Grampian the previous month accompanied by his wife and two children.
He had been a soldier, resident of Ottawa, prior to the war.
 
The gravemarker in section 17, plot 21, reads
"In loving memory of Lieut Fergus N Black Canadian Ordinance Corps attached to 9th Batt Can Exp Force died on active service Feb 7, 1915 Aged 35 years."
 

Developments at PRONI

If you have Northern Ireland genealogical interest don't miss the news in Chris Paton's British GENES blog post PRONI user forum meeting - latest developments.

Findmypast adds Registers of Non-conformist Births, Marriages and Deaths

The latest addition to findmypast is two million non-conformist (includes Catholic) register entries from the TNA collection RG4,  General Register Office: Registers of Births, Marriages and Deaths surrendered to the Non-parochial Registers Commissions of 1837 and 1857.

In lieu of FMP's description loof for more information at: see http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/SearchUI/details/redirect/?CATID=12173&CATLN=3

In this instance FMP is playing catch-up with Ancestry where these records, and also those of RG5 and RG8, are already included.

If FMP or Ancestry is looking for another non-conformist source why not look to the Wesleyan Methodist Historic Roll described at http://goo.gl/Lxqcib as "a unique set of 50 large leather bound volumes which are located at Westminster Methodist Central Hall in London. The volumes contain the names of over one million people who donated a guinea [£1/1/- or £1.05] to the Wesleyan Methodist Twentieth Century Fund [or The Million Guinea Fund] between January 1st 1899 and September 1909 when the fund was finally closed."

OGS Toronto Branch June Meeting

OGS Toronto Monthly Meeting – Monday, June 23rd at 7:30pm in the evening at the Burgundy Room, North York Memorial Hall, 5110 Yonge Street in Toronto (convenient access from the North York subway station).

Our featured speaker, Coral Grant, will take us on a journey of discovery back in time, beginning in Toronto’s garment district of the early 1930s and ending in 19th century Eastern Europe. The title of Coral’s talk is: “How Uncovering my Grandmother’s Deepest Secret Revealed a Rich Jewish Ancestry“.
Sherilyn Bell will present a mini-presentation - Visualizing Genetic Genealogy Results – A 23andMe/Cytoscape Mashup.

Friday, 20 June 2014

Wellcome and The Wipers Times

One of the digitized publication now available online thanks to the Wellcome Library is the Wipers Times, the satirical WW1 newspaper published for the 12th Battalion Sherwood Foresters (Nottingham & Derbyshire Regiment), 24th Division. It's the 1918 compilation edition.
Welcome has just made much of their more recent digitized material freely available online, detailed in this blog post. you only need to click that you agree to the terms and conditions, no registration.

Thursday, 19 June 2014

Annual Accrual of Nova Scotia Historical Vital Statistics released

The following is a 19 June notice from Nova Scotia Historical Vital Statistics

An additional 25,589 historical vital statistics are waiting for you on www.novascotiagenealogy.com! These records were released on 31 December 2013 and since then have been digitized, fully indexed and checked for quality control. This year's accruals include 14,974 births (1913), 4,233 marriages (1938) and 6,382 deaths (1963). As usual, the birth records include some 'delayed' entries for individuals born in 1913 (or earlier) but not registered until a later date. Happy searching!

Ottawa Branch OGS AGM

The final meeting of the season takes place on Saturday, 21 June, 13:00 – 15:00 at the City of Ottawa Archives, Room 115.
Following the business of the Ottawa Branch Annual General Meeting, outgoing OGS President (Shirley Sturdevant) and incoming President (Alan Campbell) will provide an update on the Ontario Genealogical Society including: governance and structure, OGS Board and Provincial Office activities and plans for 2014.

Phillimore Atlas and Index of Parish Registers on Ancestry

Phillimore has been an essential reference for the British genealogist for years. You want to know when the surviving parish records start - go to Phillimore. Want to know which are the adjacent parishes - go to Phillimore. Want to know what's in the IGI - go to Phillimore.
The 1995 edition which cost £50 is kept handy at my desk.
Now Ancestry has made a version available as part of a subscription. You get the ability to search by country (England, Scotland or Wales), county, registration district and parish. The example is for Evenley, Northants and shows a map reference. Unfortunately the grids on the sides of the maps are missing. All maps have a grid range from A1 to M10, with the letters falling along the longest side.
For England and Wales I now tend to turn to FamilySearch England Jurisdiction 1851 which has more comprehensive information -- and will likely be available when Ancestry is not!

Quinte OGS Branch June meeting

The topic for the Saturday, 21 June meeting is "Making the Most of the Canadian Census". It will be given as a digital Presentation by Kathryn Lake Hogan

"Learn strategies and techniques on how to get the most out of the Canadian census records in order to gain a better understanding of your ancestors. This webinar will put those techniques into practice by following three different families (Canadian, French-Canadian & African Canadian) through the census records.

Kathryn Lake Hogan is a professional genealogist, author and educator as well as the driving force behind LOOKING4ANCESTORS. Specializing in Canadian and English research, Kathryn has earned the Professional Learning Certificate in Genealogical Studies (PLCGS) with the National Institute of Genealogical Studies. She enjoys lecturing on a variety of family history topics at genealogy and historical society meetings, workshops, regional conferences and webinars.

Starting with her own family history research over 10 years ago, Kathryn has not only made genealogy her passion, she has also dedicated herself to helping others discover the joys of family history and how to locate their own ancestors."

The meeting starts at 1pm at Quinte West City Hall Library, 7 Creswell Drive, Trenton, Ontario

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

More Welsh Newspapers

100,000 pages have been added to Welsh Newspapers Online for a total of 725,000 pages. Additions this update are:

Barry Herald 1896-1910
Brecon County Times 1866-1869
Cambrian Daily Leader 1913, 1919
Cheshire Observer 1901-1908
Chester Courant 1897-1908
County Echo [Pembrokeshire] 1893-1896; 1901-1910
Glamorgan Free Press 1897-1899
Glamorgan, Monmouth and Brecon Gazette 1832-1843
Gwyliedydd Newydd 1910
Herald Cymraeg 1901-1910
Herald of Wales and Monmouthshire Recorder   1897
Llan 1881-1910
Llanelly Mercury 1897; 1909-1910
Llanelly Star 1910
Llangollen Advertiser   1909-1910
North Wales Gazette 1808-1816; 1823-1825
Pembroke County Guardian 1898-1910
Pontypool Free Press 1859-1869; 1872-1893
Rhedegydd 1878-1879; 1886; 1889; 1893-1910
Rhos Herald 1909-1910
Seren Gomer 1814-1815
Tyst a'r Dydd 1871-1891
Tyst Cymreig 1867-1870
Tyst 1892-1910
Welsh Gazette 1899-1910
Wythnos a'r Eryr 1899-1903; 1909-1910

Findmypast acquires Origins

The findmypast blog announces that pioneer online genealogy company origins.net has been acquired by the company.

The addition of Origins "unusual and often hard to find British and Irish records, it's many early records including rare marriage indexes, apprentices and poor law records and their National Wills Index" will add major value to a subscription as they are integrated into findmypast.

Hint: Check Hometown Newspapers

Don`t overlook hometown newspapers, becoming more accessible as they are digitized, for family history colour.
During my recent trip to England I visited my old home town library searching archived newspapers on microfilm from the start of WW1. I didn't find what I sought but fell victim to the common malady of newspaper researchers, getting sidetracked by other items in the paper. Reproduced is a letter from a former resident who had emigrated to Winnipeg and was writing home to tell of his experienced in his first days in the CEF.
In common with many of the early CEF recruits Alfred Thomas Woolston was English. Born in Great Ormsby, Norfolk in 1884 he arrived in Canada in 1905, made one return visit, survived the war and returned to live in Winnipeg. He died on 4 December 1953 on holiday in Daytona Beach and is buried at Winnipeg's Brookside Cemetery.

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Dublin electoral lists

John Grenham's Irish Roots column for June 16 highlights Dublin City Library and Archives electoral lists. 1908, 1909 and 1910 are currently available free at http://www.dublinheritage.ie/burgesses; 1911, 1912 and 1915 are coming.

Monday, 16 June 2014

Claire Santry: must follow for Irish genealogy news

Claire Santry tweeted out:
MAJOR IRISH GENEALOGY NEWS: Valuation Office to digitise Griffith's Valuation Cancelled Books: http://irish-genealogy-news.blogspot.com/2014/06/valuation-office-to-digitise.html
Instead of writing a post on this forthcoming resource, and don't get too excited, it will take some years for it to be available, I recommend those with Irish interest who want to keep up with the very latest follow Claire. She tweets (@Irish_Genealogy) or bookmark the blog's home page, and check in regularly to keep up to date with all that's happening in the world of Irish genealogy.
 

British Military Nurses

A nice find by Gail Dever is this site of interest to anyone with a British military nurse in the family tree, from before WW1 thru WW2. You might want to start with the page on researching a nurse or hospital.

Sunday, 15 June 2014

BIFHSGO Service Completed

Glenn Wright became Past President following Saturday's BIFHSGO meeting. At the meeting he expressed appreciation to Mary Ann Sharpe who leaves the Board having served two years as President and four as Past President.

BIFHSGO AGM and Board

Saturday 14 June 2014 saw a large group of members, well above the 25 needed for a quorum, attend the British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa Annual General Meeting.
President Glenn Wright summarised the annual reports. which are available on the society website. He noted there was an average attendance of about 180 at monthly meetings. Membership had declined slightly, from 628 in 2011 to 625 in 2012 and 623 in 2013.
The financial statement showed a surplus of $15,737 for 2013, up from 4,309 the previous year thanks in large part to a particularly successful conference.
It was announced that owing to a large increase in costs for renting the auditorium at 395 Wellington monthly meetings will be moving to the former Nepean Council Chambers at Centrepointe in January, a move which appeared to be greeted with membership approval when the magnitude of the rent increase at 395 was explained by Treasurer Marnie McCall.
After considerable debate it was decided to retain the services of an accredited auditor for 2014.
President Glenn Wright presented two certificates in recognition of excellence for presentation and writing, the subject of another blog post.

All directors whose terms were ending, Marnie McCall, Susan Davis, Kathy Wallace and Mary-Lou Simac, offered to stand again and were acclaimed. Ken McKinlay was acclaimed a director at large.
Barbara Tose was acclaimed as the new society President. Shown in the photo (l-r) are Anne Sterling, Mary-Lou Simac, Susan Davis, Marnie McCall, Glenn Wright, Jane Down, Barbara Tose and Ken McKinlay. Directors not present were Dave Cross and Mary Donnelly.

BIFHSGO Winners

At Saturday's BIFHSGO meeting two members were recognised for excellence.
On the left Barbara Tose was recognised as having made the best presentation by a member during the year as voted by the membership. Her presentation was Travels With My Aunt: Adventures in Europe 1914.
On the right Christine Jackson received a certificate for the best article published in Anglo-Celtic Roots. The Cowley Family Saga appeared in the Fall 2013 issue. Christine, who last month received an award from the Sussex Family History Group in a writing competition, is now working on a second Cowley article taking the family history back to England.

Saturday, 14 June 2014

Lincolnshire Poor Law Removals 1665-1865

findmypast are now more than two-thirds through their 100 records sets in 100 days initiative. The latest is Lincolnshire Poor Law Removals 1665-1865,  4,909 records with details of individuals removed from the county of Lincolnshire under the 1662 Poor Law Relief Act between 1665 and 1865. The level of detail varies, but the records can include information such as name, parish, age, name of spouse, names of children, where removed to and from, plus occasional details about their circumstances.

Other recent additions are:
Epsom College England Deaths 1899-1945 consists of 650 records containing the details of former pupils who were killed while serving in the military between 1899 and 1945.
Bromsgrove School Deaths 1899-1945 with 195 records containing the details of former pupils who were killed during military service between 1899 and 1945.
Wyggeston Grammar School England Deaths 1939-1945, 136 records with details of former pupils who were killed in the Second World War.

Find the complete list at http://100in100.findmypast.com/

Survey of London: Battersea

A video on the BBC online magazine celebrates Battersea: the site of the world's most famous power station. That follows the two most recent publications in the Survey of London series, which has published at least one volume each decade for over a century, quite a record.
According to the Bartlett School of Architecture, the new home of the Survey, the two volumes are fully illustrated books, with around two hundred new drawings, a similar number of new photographs, and altogether more than 900 illustrations.

Volume 49, which contains a general historical introduction to Battersea, is arranged thematically to cover all building types (except housing), including public buildings, hospitals, churches, schools, buildings for entertainment, shopping, railways and industry - with a whole chapter on the power station - parks and open spaces, New Covent Garden Market, the heliport as well as a chapter on the current large-scale regeneration of Nine Elms.

Volume 50 follows more traditional Survey lines and is divided topographically into nineteen chapters, with a general introduction to housing history in Battersea.

Digitized versions of previous Survey of London publications are at http://www.british-history.ac.uk/place.aspx?gid=74&region=1

Friday, 13 June 2014

British Red Cross Register of Overseas Volunteers 1914-1918

February saw the reprint of an interesting not so little book, 464 pages, British Red Cross Register of Overseas Volunteers 1914-1918: Including - Voluntary Aid Detachments, Order of St John, First Aid Nursing Yeomanry, ... Hospitals, Covering All Theaters of War.

Described as a reprint of the final, and largest, British Red Cross list giving information of over 18,000 women and men who undertook more routine jobs - cooks, laundry maids, wardmaids, dispensers, drivers etc. It provides individual detail (name, rank, unit, destination).

The new reprint sells for £43.18, and I didn't find any copies of previous printings in libraries outside the UK.

findmypast comes to the rescue with a similarly titled database, not cited but likely an earlier edition with over 17,000 entries. It provides Name, Title, Rank, Certificate number, Department, Destination - where stationed overseas, Passport Number; not much to go on unless the name is fairly distinct.

Thursday, 12 June 2014

Household Cavalry Service Records

With a history that can be traced back to 1660 the Household Cavalry is the most senior component of the British Army. The National Archives has now made service records, from 1799 to 1920, for over 12,000 servicemen from the Household Cavalry available online to view and download.
According to TNA information the records are from series WO 400 and include those serving during the Battle of Waterloo, the Boer War and the First World War.
Information is from the original handwritten enrolment forms, conduct, casualty, medical and pension documents.
19 men by name Reid, five with first name John, include those serving with the Royal Horse Guards and the First and Second Life Guards. Search from the form at http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/records/household-cavalry-soldiers.htm. The cost to view images of the original is £3.30.

Lives of the First World War

For me the Beechwood cemetery walking tour last Sunday revealed the lives of the great and the good but overlooked the ordinary soldier. I'm slowly exploring the lives of the 98 WW1 soldiers in the Commonwealth War Graves Commission database buried at Beechwood Cemetery. Some will be posted here on their anniversary of death.

Gail Dever on her Genealogy à la carte blog mentioned the IWM Lives of the First World War website which would be a good place to archive and consolidate such stories.

What about other cemeteries? Will any person or organization take on that task for those with no descendants or close relatives? How many of the 277 WW1 CWGC burials at Montreal's Mount Royal Cemetery, the 248 at Notre Dame des Neiges, the 62 at Kingston's Cataraqui Cemetery, the 12 at Belleville Cemetery, the 126 at Toronto's Mount Pleasant, and many others. There are 2,844 cemeteries with WW1 and WW2 CWGC burials in Canada, many with a single burial like the Czar Cemetery in Provost, Alberta, which holds the remains of Canada's first WW1 fatality.

Compiling these stories is a fitting tribute and also a great way to sharpen your research skills.

I'm reminded that the Perth (Ontario) Royal Canadian Legion, 26 Beckwith Street E., has a Hall of Remembrance,which commemorates the stories of area residents in the world wars. For information about visiting the museum, phone the Legion’s office at 613-267-4400, or the lounge at 613-267-1148.


BIFHSGO June meeting and AGM

In lieu of the regular "before BIFHSGO" presentation next Saturday the society will hold it's annual general meeting starting at 9am. That's followed at 10am by a

Great Moments in Genealogy session where you can learn how four members made a great discovery.

Grandma Ruth’s New Fur Jacket
By Susan Davis
In her 1956 diary, Ruth Robinson records the fact that she received her lovely fur jacket October 31st. In a later entry, she records feeling somewhat uncomfortable wearing it to the church for the first time. Today, the mink jacket lives on in the form of two furry teddy bears and Ruth’s life lives on in the words she wrote in her diaries from 1944 to 1964. After receiving three of her diaries in 2012, Susan happily became the caretaker of the collection in 2013.

About the Speaker
As an adolescent, Susan Davis volunteered at her local library. When returning books to their shelves, her two favourite sections were biographies and mysteries. Family history research provides her with lots of life stories to read and puzzles to solve. As the daughter of an army cook, Susan grew up loving her parents’ Eastern Townships of Quebec roots. She and her mother spend many happy hours discussing these family stories.

A Tale of Illegitimacy, Music, Mistresses and the Windham-Guises
By Gillian Leitch
In search for her Cutler ancestors, Gillian Leitch stumbled upon a fascinating group of people.  The deeper she dug into the family tree, the more interesting they became. Gillian found clerics, musicians and mistresses, all leading to the amazing story of Elizabeth Windham Guise. This has definitely been one of the great moments in her genealogical research. This is an update on Gillian’s article in the fall 2013 issue of Anglo-Celtic Roots.

About the Speaker
Gillian Leitch is a professional historian who works at CDCI Research in Ottawa. Besides her keen interest in genealogy, she is a specialist in nineteenth century Canadian history, and recently edited a book on Doctor Who.

John Armstrong Fielder – Is This All There Is to Him?
By Judy Thamas
This WOW moment is a result of following inspiration after Judy thought that she had gathered all the facts that she could from public sources. The inspiration was that she should Google her grandfather’s brother’s name. A website that she had not particularly noted came up with a piece of unexpected information. This lead to a letter to Who Do You Think You Are? magazine, and back to the website to correspond with the webmasters until contact was made with the person who posted the information and a surprising result.

About the Speaker
Judy Thamas grew up in southern Ontario and has spent a good majority of her adult life either as a wife of a member of the Canadian Forces or as a reservist in the Primary Reserve or a combination of both. Thanks to the military, she has lived on both coasts of Canada, in Ottawa, and in Germany. She has worked for the private sector as a bookkeeper, factory worker, and in administration.  Judy retired from the Reserves in September of 2010 after 24 years as a musician, a cook and a clerk. She first started working on her family history in 1976.  Since her retirement, she fills her days with family history.

Finding My Great Great Grandmother in London, England
By Brian Chamberlain
Brian will speak on his great-great-grandmother, Maria Matilda Snooks. The talk will look at research done to find her here in Canada and where she came from in England, using various techniques, sources and Ancestry.com.

About the Speaker
Brian Chamberlain was born into a military family in Barrie, Ontario. In 1967, he moved to Ottawa in 1967 and has lived here ever since. He graduated from Algonquin College twice, first in Business and later in Records Management. His genealogy research began when he inherited a family genealogy for the McKenzie family. Brian is now working on writing his family history.

The location is Library and Archives Canada, 395 Wellington Street, Ottawa, Ontario. Visitors are welcome. Free admission.

Wednesday, 11 June 2014

FamilySearch adds Ontario Births, 1869-1912

Transcriptions of records of civil registration of Ontario births are now available free at FamilySearch.org. The collection runs to 1912, Ancestry.ca has an extra year and also links to images of the original. FamilySearch makes no reference to Ancestry so this appears to be an independent transcription. If you couldn't find an expected registration on Ancestry check this version as maybe there was an indexing error.

Tuesday, 10 June 2014

The Future of the Canadian Archival Community

A report: Vision 2017: The Future of the Canadian Archival Community: The Canadian Archives Summit: Conclusions, Observations and Possible Next Steps (pdf) authored by Sean Berrigan, Marianne McLean and Jan Michaels, dated May 2014 has now been issued by the organizers of last January's Summit.
The report is part of an ongoing process; it contains the notice that it includes "recommendations and opinions that have been provided by the authors. The report is not approved by the Summit Organizers and should not be treated as such. It is meant to stimulate and encourage ongoing discussions."
This reflects the finding that: There was general consensus that while there is a need for a new vision and blueprint, there was not a clear understanding of what was needed, what its shape or composition should be and how to get there.
Clearly more work is needed, reflected in the presence of 64 question marks in the document compared to 122 sentence ending periods!

Victoria Census of 1891

The June issue of the Canadiana Bulletin mentions that images of the municipal 1891 census of Victoria (reel H-1401) are now online at  http://heritage.canadiana.ca/view/oocihm.lac_mikan_104263  "Individuals are listed alphabetically, with notation of street address and occupation as well as the number of persons in the household. Names are given only for the heads of households. Ethnic origin is indicated only for those who were Chinese and Aboriginal. The crews of ships in harbour, and residents of the local orphanage and Indian Reserve are listed separately at the end of the volume."

Monday, 9 June 2014

FTDNA Father's Day Sale

Family Tree DNA are offering the Family Finder test for $79 (regular $99) until June 17th. Also for those flush with cash and a deep interest, the Big Y SNP test is $595 (regular $695).

Belling the cat in genealogy

You likely remember the fable about the mouse that suggested tying a bell around the cat's neck so that when it was on the prowl they would be warned. The only problem was finding a volunteer to tie the bell -- a good idea in theory, troublesome in practise.
That came to mind on Friday when I was listening to Blaine Bettinger's streamed presentation from the Southern California Genealogical Society Jamboree "DNA and the Genealogical Proof Standard." Blaine posed the question of how much by way of resources, financial and time, were implied by the GPS requirement to conduct a reasonably exhaustive search. In the case of DNA where a client may be looking for an answer in a couple of months, but it's impractical to complete a DNA test in that time, what do you tell a client? Given that the average non-paternity rate is maybe 1 or 2 percent per generation, and maybe you're looking back 5 generations, is the 5 to 10 percent possibility of non-paternity which could be detected by DNA tests enough to preclude you claiming your research meets the GPS?

Sunday, 8 June 2014

The future of genetic genealogy

It may not be available for very long so for those interested I recommend priorizing a visit to http://new.livestream.com/wab/scgs-embed and Bennett Greenspan's Southern California Genealogical Society Jamboree presentation The Future of Genetic Genealogy.

Researching your Irish ancestry online

I'd not intended listening to Maurice Gleeson's talk streamed from the Southern California Genealogical Society Jamboree Researching your Irish ancestry online & at minimal cost but found myself doing so as he's entertaining as well as knowledgeable. With over 100 slides for the 60 minute presentation he wasn't able to do justice to them all. There was material new to me. Slides for that and his other presentations are at http://dnaandfamilytreeresearch.blogspot.ca/p/presentations-downloads.html

Advance notice: One World-One Family family history conference

If your summer plans include being in the Toronto area consider attending the 5th annual One World-One Family family history conference to be held on Sat. Aug. 23, 2014 from 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. at 10062 Bramalea Rd. The program includes:

Accessing and Preserving Family Heirloomsby Archives Ontario
Discovering Your Ancestors in the Great Warsby Shirley-Ann Pyefinch
Finding Your Ancestors from the Philippinesby Jette Soutar
French Canadian Researchby To Be Determined .
Getting Started in Jamaican Genealogical Researchby Dorothy Kew
Great Non-Genealogy Sites for British Isles Researchby James F. S. Thomson
Hunting and Fishing: Different Approaches to Genetic Genealogyby Linda Reid
Indexing - A Way to Help Others Build Their Family Treeby Rick Dunstall
Irish Resources Available on LDS Websitesby Shirley-Ann Pyefinch
Missing in Action: Solving a Six Decade-Old Mystery with DNAby Elizabeth A. R. Kaegi and James F. S. Thomson
Recent Developments in British Isles Researchby James F. S. Thomson
Researching Ukrainian Family Historyby Natalie Lisowiec
RootsTech Workshop – 5 Essential Resources for Hispanic Genealogy (in Spanish)by Sonia Meza
RootsTech Workshop - Five Ways to Do Family History in Your Sleepby Deborah Gamble
RootsTech Workshop - Ten Things I Learned about my Family on my Couchby Tammy Hepps
RootsTech Workshop: Basic Online Resources For the Beginning Genealogistby Lisa Alzo
Starting From Scratch: How to Begin Family History Researchby Claire Nabrotzky
Tantalizing treasures in the Peel Archive’s Wm. Perkins Bull collectionby Kyle Neill
Using FamilySearch to Solve Genealogical Problemsby James Ison
Using Local Sources for Scottish Genealogy Researchby Christine Woodcock
Using Social Media for Genealogy Researchby Christine Woodcock
Why Mormons Build Templesby Pres. Richard Norton
尋根 - 中國家譜研討會 Finding Chinese Ancestorsby Grace Chan

Visit www.oneworldonefamily-theevent.com/ for more information.

Saturday, 7 June 2014

QFHS Event: Wills, wills and more wills

The Quebec Family History Society is offering a brand new seminar taking a thematic approach to explore how to find wills in Quebec, Ontario and other parts of Canada. It will also discuss probate records in England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales as well as Australia and New Zealand.
"If there's a Will there's a way to discover a lot more detailed information about your ancestors family history."
Lecturer:          Gary Schroder
Date:                 Saturday, June 14th, 2014
Time:                10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Location:          The Quebec Family History Society Library and Heritage Centre
                          173 Cartier Avenue, Pointe-Claire, Quebec
Telephone:       514-695-1502
$30 for members, $40 non-members

LAC WW2 war dead service files augmented

LAC now has an expanded version of the service files of the Second World War – War Dead, 1939-1947 Database. It now has more than 1000 complete digitized service files; that's still not quite 2% of files for Canadian servicemen and servicewomen killed in action in WW2.

http://goo.gl/Ad0VsF

Friday, 6 June 2014

Annual Beechwood cemetery walking tour

Marking the anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War the annual Beechwood tour this Sunday includes five stops at the grave-sites of men and women who fought in the trenches in Europe, cared for the injured or guided the country through the difficult war years. The tour will include war-time Prime Minister Sir Robert Borden, nurse Minnie Gallagher and Lt Alexis Helmer, whose death inspired John McCrae’s famous poem, ‘In Flanders Fields.’ Costumed actors will bring these historical figures to life.

It's quite a way from the Borden grave site to section 29 of the cemetery where many of the 98 WW1 era soldiers buried at Beechwood are found. There's a military area on the northwest part of section 29, and some other graves scattered in that section including that of the first Ottawa WW1 fatality, Thomas W Hardingham, who died in September 1914 in a machine gun accident at the Rockcliffe range. It has two memorials.

The event starts at 2pm. Refreshments will be served after the tour. Enter by Beechwood Avenue entrance. Tour and parking are free. Wear good walking shoes.

D-Day 70th Anniversary: James Doohan (1920-2005)

"I'm given' her all she's got, Captain!" were not the words spoken by Lieutenant James Doohan who had a command in 'D' company of the Winnipeg Rifles on storming Juno Beach. The company moved off the beach quickly and cleared a path through the minefield at La Vallette. Then they headed for Graye-sur-Mer and cleared the town of the Germans. They advanced further making good progress.

Doohan was shot in the hand and chest, a silver cigarette case stopped the bullet to the chest, and lost a finger on his right hand.

Those words, or similar, had to wait until after when Doohan, as the actor who played Chief Engineer Montgomery “Scotty” Scott of Star Trek, was called upon to pull the the USS Enterprise out of yet another tight situation. After D-Day Doohan was evacuated to hospital in Basingstoke, as if "beamed up" from further fighting during Operation Overlord.

Read more in James Doohan's 1996 autobiography Beam Me Up, Scotty.

Thursday, 5 June 2014

Ancestry exits some services

Ancestry.com has announced it is discontinuing MyFamily, MyCanvas, Genealogy.com, Mundia, services along with Y-DNA and mtDNA tests effective 5 September 2014.
While Genealogy.com will remain as a read only archived facility the other sites will disappear. Current clients need to take action to preserve information they may have at these sites. 



Pharos Teaching and Tutoring forthcoming courses

Pharos Teaching and Tutoring is out with the list of course offerings for the three months starting in July.

July
So You Think You Know Family Search - A Guided Tour (#206)
The Poor, The Parish and the Workhouse - Records in in the 18th and 19th Centuries (#203)
One-Place Studies - Research from a New Perspective (#317)

August
Old Handwriting for Family Historians (#417)
Ireland - A Practical Approach to Family History (#103)

September
Scottish Research Online (#102)
Your Military Ancestors (#224)
Organizing Your Genealogy (#202)
Victorian Crime and Punishment- Courts, police and prisons (#308)
Researching Your Welsh Ancestors (#119)
Fixed in Time and Place - Using Directors & Gazetteers (#311)
Professional Genealogist - Become one, become a better one (#941)
The National Archives Website and Catalogue - Finding People (#207)
Introduction to One-Name Studies (#901)

There's more information on these, and for periods beyond, at http://www.pharostutors.com/coursesmainsd.php

Wednesday, 4 June 2014

New season US WDYTYA? announced

Who Do You Think You Are?returns for its second season on TLC and its fifth season overall on Wednesday, July 23 at 9/8c. The second season of TLC's genealogy docu-series "Who Do You Think You Are?" will feature six new journeys with Valerie Bertinelli, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Lauren Graham, Kelsey Grammer, Cynthia Nixon, Rachel McAdams and her sister, Kayleen McAdams.

Also, TLC has acquired 10 episodes from the show's previous seasons on NBC. The episodes feature Matthew Broderick, Lisa Kudrow, Rob Lowe, Reba McEntire, Tim McGraw, Gwyneth Paltrow, Sarah Jessica Parker, Brooke Shields, Vanessa Williams and Rita Wilson.

Read the announcement at http://www.thewrap.com/tlc-who-do-you-think-you-are-season-5-lineup-preview-premiere-date/

London Life in Sound

The London Sound Survey, a growing collection of Creative Commons-licensed sound recordings of places, events and wildlife in the capital. Historical references too are gathered to find out how London's sounds have changed.
Go to www.soundsurvey.org.uk/ but make sure you set aside time to explore, it can draw you in. There's historical content, like comments of people watching the Battle of Britain, pub sing-alongs. ambient recordings of streets, the underground and at the British Library.
The blog has an item on the Cities and Memory project "mapping the real and imagined sounds of the world."

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Faces reconstructed from DNA data

A video on the BBC website http://m.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-27668747 is accompanied by the text "Today we can all look online to find out who our ancestors were, and soon geneticists hope that DNA can show us their faces as well."

The reality is in an article published in PLOS Genetics, http://journals.plos.org/plosgenetics/article?id=10.1371/journal.pgen.1004224 "Modeling 3D Facial Shape from DNA". It concludes in part "... much more work is needed before we can know how many genes will be required to estimate the shape of a face in some useful way and many more populations need to be studied before we can know how generalizable the results are ..."

I'd like to see a comparison between a face and the corresponding reconstruction, then a side by side reconstruction of a face, with corresponding photographs from same sex siblings, to see just how much discrimination is possible.
In the meantime it's a nice "gee whiz" media item.

SCGS Jamboree Free online sessions

The Southern California Genealogical Society Jamboree is offering fourteen free streamed sessions this year --  sessions over the three days.

To register for a session, go to http://www.scgsgenealogy.com/Jamboree/2014/LiveStream.html and click on the link for the desired session(s) and follow the directions. You will receive an emailed confirmation. The same link provides information on five pay per view DNA sessions on Thursday.

Friday, June 6

FR009 - Friday 1:00PM (4PM EDT) - Judy G. Russell JD, CG, CGL - "Dowered or Bound Out: Records of Widows and Orphans"

FR018 - Friday 2:30PM (5:30PM EDT) - Blaine Bettinger PhD, JD - "DNA and the Genealogical Proof Standard"

FR027 - Friday 4:00PM (7PM EDT) - Paula Stuart-Warren, CG, FUGA - "Manuscript Finding Aids: Locating Migrating Family Records"

FR034 - Friday 5:30PM (8:30PM EDT) - F. Warren Bittner, CG - "Proof Arguments: How and Why"

Saturday, June 7

SA003 - Saturday 8:30AM  (11:30AM EDT) - F. Warren Bittner, CG - "Elusive Immigrant!"

SA019 - Saturday 10:00AM (1PM EDT) - Judy G. Russell, JD, CG, CGL - "Staying out of Trouble: The Rights and Responsibilities of Today's Genealogist"

SA027 - Saturday 11:30AM (2:30PM EDT)- Michael Leclerc - "Researching Your New England Ancestors"

SA037 - Saturday 2:00PM (5PM EDT) - Bennett Greenspan - "The Future of Genetic Genealogy"

SA039 - Saturday 3:30PM (6:30PM EDT) - Dr. Maurice Gleeson - "Researching Your Irish Ancestry"

SA053 - Saturday 4:00PM (7PM EDT) - Cyndi Ingle - "The Internet: A Genealogist's Printing Press"

Sunday, June 8

SU009 - Sunday 8:30AM (11:30 AM EDT) - D. Joshua Taylor - "Resources of the DAR: Beyond Revolutionary War Soldiers"

SU012 - Sunday 10:00AM (1PM EDT) - Dawn Thurston - "How to Write a Personal History that Captures your Interesting Life"

SU020 - Sunday 1:00PM (4PM EDT) - Dr. Maurice Gleeson - "Ireland and the Slave Trade"

SU036 - Sunday 2:30PM  (5:30PM EDT) - Denise Levenick - "Dirty Pictures: Save Your Family Photos from Ruin"

Monday, 2 June 2014

British WW1 stories

Find out about the impact of the Great War on Britain from a local perspective from the BBC website at http://www.bbc.co.uk/ww1/ww1-at-home/find-locations/. Enter a community name or postal code and find stories for it and neighbouring communities. Did you know that pubs in Carlisle were nationalized? I couldn't get some of the A/V material to play but the text is interesting.

Monthly backup nag

When I returned from my English vacation my main laptop wouldn`t boot. Subsequent investigation found the motherboard was fried. Fortunately I had backups of the material on the hard drive.

As it turned out BIFHSGO colleague Doug Hoddinott was able to retrieve the laptop`s hard drive and install it in an external case so I have access to the files, but not the programs. You may not be so fortunate. It's not too late; complete your monthly backup today.

The Stage Archive

The June issue of the UK's Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine includes a Best Websites article on Theatre. It recommends six websites for researching theatrical ancestors, the top pick of which is archive.thestage.co.uk

A free search by name found my grandfather, a London-based pianist and orchestra leader, at the Walthamstow Palace and Hippo, Dover, in 1937.

Sunday, 1 June 2014

WW1 Limerick diaspora

An interactive map showing where each of the Limerick natives in the WW1 Commonwealth War Graves Commission database are commemorated across the world is the topic of an article Remembering the 1,000 Limerick soldiers who died during World War I.

One of them died in Canada. He is recorded as Private John Martin O'Donoghue of the 14th B. Canadian Infantry (Central Ontario Regiment), buried in Montreal`s Notre Dame Neiges Cemetery.
His military records show he attested in August 1916 under the surname O`Donohue, occupation steamship officer, and that he died on 9 October 1918 of broncho-pneumonia following influenza.

Thanks to Gail Dever of Genealogy à la carte for the tip.

Benchmarks update for May

Another month come and gone; May did so very quickly for me. Here`s how major genealogical sites did during the month.

Familysearch.org has added or updated record collections for a total of 1,776 (1,762). Census & lists account for 153 (156); birth, marriage, & death 1,044 (1,037); probate & court 178 (173); military 124 (123); migration & naturalization 121 (118); and with a change in categories, other 147 (149); miscellaneous 9 (6). Familysearch.org has Alexa rank 4,413 (4,451).

Ancestry slipped in rank on the .com site 729 (710); the .co.uk continuing to advance 8,036 (8,485) while .ca advanced to rank 26,201 (27,485). The number of datasets in the collection grew to 32,258 (31,775) thanks to collections added from familysearch; including 1,980 (1,979) for Canada, 1,802 (1,781) for the UK, 138 (136) for Australia and, 25,649 (25,237) for the USA.

MyHeritage.com's Alexa rank declined to 7,104 (6,893)

Findmypast had another good month with .co.uk leaping in Alexa rank to 17,734 (21,453), while .com edged further ahead to 84,262 (84,684).

Family Tree DNA returned to it`s rank two months ago 27,671 (29,227). 23andMe ranks 13,838 (12,777) continuing the decline with the FDA halt to its personal genetics health business.

GenealogyinTime.com at 31,596 (32,960) continue a drift up the rankings; Mocavo.com retreated to rank 38,566 (28,751), while eogn.com slipped further to rank 26,928 (23,384).

Britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk contains 8,093,304 (7,894,131) digitized pages, an average addition of 6,424 (7,436) pages per day; Alexa rank 139,165 (127,378). A full list of recent additions is at http://goo.gl/88JleK

Newspapers.com contains 3.106 (3,061) newspapers including 668.905 (668,385) pages for England and 1,584,686 (1,523,074) pages for Canada with substantial additions for the Vancouver Daily World (1888 - 1924) in May. The Alexa rank bounced back to 23,580 (24,228).

Cyndislist.com claims 331,374 (331,043) total links in 205 (205) categories, with 990 (1,285) uncategorized; Alexa rank continued to advance to 38,412 (46,142).

FreeBMD.org.uk has  238,293,287 (237,672,737) distinct records, the Alexa rank jumped to 54,787 (63,126).

Deceasedonline.com continued to gain in rank, 595,341.
CanadianHeadstones.com has 864,000 (830,000 at the end of March) gravestone photo records from across Canada. Alexa rank is rapidly improving 420,710 (407,816 at the end of March).The Canadian Gravemarker Gallery (gravemarkers.ca), has over 843,743 (820,000 at end of March) photographs from across Canada took a big Alexa hit to rank 12,588,695.

Bifhsgo.ca declined to rank 1,826,487 (1,508,466), qfhs.ca edged up to rank 3,730,389 (3,794,396), and ogs.on.ca advanced to rank 392,622 (396,009). In the UK sog.org.uk returned to it`s rank two months ago 626,637 (541,620).

And in case you're curious, Canada's Anglo-Celtic Connections has 5.648 (5,584) posts; on Alexa the .ca site advanced to rank 407,703 (478,971).

Did I miss something significant? If so please post a comment with statistics if applicable.