Friday, 13 December 2019

Findmypast adds Scottish, Yorkshire and OGS Records

Scotland, Renfrewshire Death & Burial Index
This index of deaths and burials, covering the years of 1471 to 2017 has 26,009 records. The collection covers Abbey, Cathcart, Erskine, Greenock, Houston & Killellan, Inchinnan, Kilbarchan, Kilmalcolm, Neilston and Renfrew. Some records include occupations, residences and even cause of death.

Scotland, Stirlingshire & Perthshire Burials
Search this index of 82,975 burials for the years 1755 to 2019. It covers Aberfoyle, Balfron, Balquhidder, Bannockburn, Buchanan, Buchlyvie, Callander, Cambusbarron, Doune, Drymen, Dunblane, Fintry, Gargunnock, Gartmore, Killearn, Killin, Kilmadock, Kippen, Lecropt, Logie, Port Of Menteith, St Ninians, Stirling, Strathblane, and Thornhill. From the index, you may learn birth year, death and burial dates, age at death and burial place.

Yorkshire Memorial Inscriptions
Nearly 14,000 new records have been added for churches in Coxwold, Easingwold, Foston, Halifax, Haxby & Wigginton and Holtby as well as King Cross Methodist Cemetery. There are now 151,838 records in this transcript collection.

PERiodical Source Index - Update
The PERiodical Source Index (PERSI) enables you to easily locate key information about people and places. From the FMP announcement, the update includes "Thousands of new images from the Ontario Genealogical Society", but with no further detail.

This week's update to British & Irish Newspapers was 103,570 new pages, six titles — five of which were from Scotland.

OGS Webinars for 2020

Here's the complete list of OGS webinars scheduled for 2020.

2 Jan: Thomas MacEntee - Smarter Search Strategies
5 March: Ute Brandenberg - Hidden Gems in German & Polish Archives
2 April: Blythe Kareen - Tracing Family History Using the Archives of Ontario Collections
7 May: Beverly MacCulloch - Using Ontario's Township Papers
4 June: Jenna Lemay- Researching Indigenous Ancestors in Northern Ontario
2 July: Tim Janzen - Tracing Ancestral Lines in the 1700s using DNA
6 August: Bruce Durie - Using ScotlandsPeople for ALL your Scottish Genealogical Needs
3 September: Lynn Palermo - Get with The Plan: 7 Simple Steps to a Research Strategy
1 October: Serge Paquet - Pre-1869 Birth, Marriage and Death Records
5 November: Michael Strauss - Researching Your Canadian Ancestors in the First World War
3 December: Janice Nickerson - Religious Newspapers: Not just for the Clergy!

The initial webinar presentation is free and open to all, however, registration is limited and attendance is restricted to the first 500 persons signing in to the webinar presentation. Society members may view recordings of webinars after the presentation date by logging into the Society website

Global Genealogy at Saturday's BIFHSGO Meeting

In addition to everything mentioned on the blog yesterday, there's the opportunity for Christmas shopping with Global Genealogy starting at 9 am at Ben Franklin Place.
What do they have? Check them out at and call ahead in case they weren't planning on bringing what you want. I'm sure they'll have AncestryDNA kits at a great price.

Ancestry updates Jersey records

Ancestry's database, Jersey, Church of England Deaths and Burials, 1813-1940 was updated on 9 December to contain 121,178 records. The information is from Jersey Heritage.

Search results are returned with name, age and/or birth year, death date, burial date, and parish. A link to the original record image may provide additional information such as a spouse's name.

26% of the records are for deaths between 1840 and 1860; 16% are from the 20th century.

Ancestry also has Jersey Church of England Records from 1540 – 1915 for baptisms and 1540 – 1940 for marriages. Jersey Heritage has a subscription database with many additional island resources.

Thursday, 12 December 2019

A New Home Children Research database from BIFHSGO

The British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa announces the release of a new Home Children research database containing over 14,000 entries, being the names of children brought to Canada by various agencies from the UK during the years 1869-1892. The database is now available in the Research & Projects section of the BIFHSGO website. It can be found as "RG17 Index" in the *NEW* or Home Children menus.

RG17 (Record Group 17) is a collection of the Canadian Department of Agriculture records. Prior to 1892 (when it was taken over by the Department of the Interior), the Immigration Branch was under the jurisdiction of this department. The General Correspondence Series includes correspondence between the Immigration Branch and various UK sending organizations.

These records have not been microfilmed and are only available at Library and Archives Canada (LAC) in hard copy form. They are stored off-site and are difficult to access so BIFHSGO volunteers extracted all mention of Home Children from within these records.

This transcription work was carried out between 2009 and 2011 by the following volunteers: Jean Eppich, Marlyn Henry, Robert Manchip, Audrey McAllum, Frank McAllum, Marnie McCall, John Mullin, John Sayers (Team Leader), Audrey Stiles, George Swift

725 volumes (physical boxes) covering the years 1869 to 1896 were searched for files. Some years had no files while others had many files. The years with most names mentioned were 1886 to 1891. 14,169 names were extracted, some repeated in several entries. Other than the ships manifests, this set of records provides the most complete set of Home Children names for the period 1869 to 1892.

The transcribed records have been merged into LAC’s Home Children database as part of an agreement forged between LAC and BIFHSGO in 2006. However, BIFHSGO is now offering researchers a targeted view of the RG17 records here on its website. Click on one of the links below to view records in spreadsheet form. They may be searched using the CTRL+f function.

Ottawa Genealogy Double Header on Saturday

Saturday 14 December is another opportunity for a full day of family history in Ottawa. The morning is at Ben Franklin Place 101 Centrepointe Drive, in Nepean; the afternoon at the City Archives building, 100 Tallwood, in Nepean.


In lieu of an educational presentation at 9am "BIFHSGO will host pot luck social, with samples of your best Christmas baking welcome. Tea, Coffee and some baked goods by the Board will be provided. Come early and catch up with fellow members while enjoying some Christmas cheer."

The pace picks up at 10am with Great Moments in Genealogy. The presentations are:

I Was There:  Growing up in Northeast England during the Depression
Wilf Tarbet’s Great Moment is a firsthand account of life in Jarrow, North East England, growing up during the Depression in a town where there was very little work.  He will share details of his grandparents’ appalling living conditions.

New member Wilf Tarbet has researched his family history over the years, and after several years away he has picked it up again.  He hopes his reminiscences will put flesh on the bones of the census data.

Treasures in The Attic
Gil Croome took a family story from his childhood, used the internet to confirm it … and then a came a great moment.

Gil Croome has been interested in genealogy since he wore short pants and asked his Grandfather Croome about where the family came from. His unpaid career of trying to connect all the Croomes has now lasted longer that his paid career with the end being a one name study is not yet in sight. By training a forester but by occupation an editor, tidying up trees has come naturally.

The Sail-Maker's Palm
A tool, owned by a former merchant seaman, started as merely an object of a child’s curiosity, but subsequently connected to a distant ancestor's work, and an understanding of how it was adversely affected by the end of the Napoleonic wars.

Maureen Amey grew up in London, England and immigrated to Canada in 1977. She has been researching and writing about her family history since the 1970s. This year, she rejoined BIFHSGO after being away for a few years.  Maureen is a member of the Writing Group.

Far From Home: Mission Accomplished
Twelve years ago, Diana Beaupre and Adrian Watkinson of Canterbury, England, launched Far From Home, a project to locate, record, research and visit all 3902 gravesites of Canadian Great War casualties who died and are commemorated in Great Britain. The project concluded in September 2019 with one last road trip to visit several gravesites and to place a memorial to all these Canadians in Scotland.
Glenn Wright is past-president of BIFHSGO and author of Canadians at War, 1914-1919: A Research Guide to World War One Service Records. It was a privilege for him to be involved with the Far From Home project over the years, even more so to take part in the final journey, to visit several cemeteries and be present at a very special service of remembrance to honour all those who rest "far from home".

Attendees will be eligible to win a draw prize of an subscription donated by the company. Make sure to collect your draw tickets in the foyer.

Ottawa Branch, OGS

The action moves over to the City Archives at 11:30 am when you are invited to bring a “brown bag” lunch. There will be brief presentations by local genealogy special interest groups: Irish, Scots, the Master Genealogist, DNA and British Colonial. Coffee and tea will be available throughout the session. Kudos to those who bring their own cup or mug. Networking and refreshments continue to 1:30 pm when professional conservator Kyla Ubbink will share practical tips on how to care for your collections.

"Family documents, photographs, artwork, and memorabilia are treasures that not only provide documentary evidence but also tell great stories that we want to preserve and care for. Learn how to apply archival principles of preservation to your home collection and find out about great, new products and innovations in the realm of caring for collections."

Thanks to a donation from there will be a draw for an AncestryDNA test. Make sure you get your tickets.

Following the meeting, at about 3 pm, there will be the final session of the Computer Special Interest Group.

Wednesday, 11 December 2019

MyHeritage LIVE 2020 in Israel

The following is from a blog post by MyHeritage.

MyHeritage LIVE 2020 will take place on October 25–26, 2020 at the Hilton Tel Aviv. Set in landscaped Independence Park, this upscale hotel is a short 8-minute walk from the Mediterranean beachfront and just 5 km from the Tel Aviv-Savidor Center train station.

If you haven’t visited Tel Aviv yet, now is your chance to experience a beautiful, vibrant city that’s known as a “city that never sleeps,” making it a perfect fit for night owl genealogists who toil late into the night to work on their research. Explore the past and experience new cultures in a truly unique country steeped in ancient history. 

In addition to a plenary session from MyHeritage Founder and CEO Gilad Japhet, there will be multiple lectures, panels and workshops covering genealogy and DNA, as well as sessions from local speakers covering Israeli resources and Jewish genealogy.

We’ve lined up an excellent array of international speakers for the event including Roberta Estes, Thomas MacEntee, Dick Eastman, Diahan Southard, and Lisa Louise Cooke. Joining them from Israel will be Garri Regev and Rony Golan along with others to be announced soon. From the MyHeritage team, you will hear from Gilad Japhet, Founder and CEO; Maya Lerner, VP Product; Schelly Talalay Dardashti, U.S. Genealogy Advisor; Michael Mansfield, Director of Content Operations; Daniel Horowitz, Genealogy Expert; and more.

Conference tickets include access to lectures, workshops, coffee breaks, lunches, and the MyHeritage party, all of which you don’t want to miss!MyHeritage LIVE 2020

As I've never been to Israel I'm seriously considering attending.

This announcement was mentioned in Daniel Horowitz's recent free webinar 2019 - A Year in Review: new records and features in MyHeritage

Ancestry adds UK Officer Service Records

From the UK National Archives, record group WO 76, Ancestry's UK, Officer Service Records, 1764-1932 has 129,218 entries.

The following information can be found, where available: Name, Name of relative(s), Relationship to serviceman, Place and date of birth, Place and date of death, Age, Place and date of enlistment, Place and date of discharge, Gender, Marital Status, Regiment and unit, Service rank, Service number, Marriage date.

The bar chart shows the distribution of year (+/- 10) of birth and enlistment. The collection is most likely to be useful for the 19th century. Notice that many more records include enlistment year than birth year.

From the catalogue description for WO 76 "the series includes services of Royal Artillery officers, 1771 to 1870, and one volume of returns made in 1861 by officers of the Indian Army (Artillery)."

Ancestry provides no images but TNA mentions that "records within this series are available to download free of charge as part of the Digital Microfilm project."

Speaking Opportunity Down Under

Do you have what it takes to be a presenter at a major conference — along with Blaine Bettinger, Paul Milner and Judy Russell? Those are the speakers announced so far for Family History Down Under (FHDU), 22-26 March 2021, Sunshine Coast, Queensland.

Did you notice they're all US residents? Maybe there should be some Canadian content too.

Here's information on presenting opportunities.

"All up we will have nearly 100 topics, including talks and workshops. Half of these will be done by the seven headline speakers.

We now invite expressions of interest from others with recognized expertise and experience for the remaining places available on the program.

This is a significant international conference which is already attracting interest and excitement from prospective speakers and attendees from overseas as well as Australia.

If you'd like to be part of this and know more about speaking opportunities, please email for a preliminary registration of interest form and speaker information sheet.

This promises to be a conference experience like no other in the best conference/holiday setting Australia has to offer. If the Sunshine Coast, Australia is on your bucket list of places to visit, there will be no better excuse or opportunity than Family History Down Under.


Alan Phillips (Unlock the Past)
P: (08) 8263 2055 . . . . . international+61 8 8263 2055
FHDU Facebook group . . . . . FHDU Facebook event"

Tuesday, 10 December 2019

GEDmatch acquired

From a press release by Verogen:

"GEDmatch, a pioneer in consumer genealogy, today announced that it has joined with forensic genomics firm Verogen, Inc. in a move that allows the company to ensure ongoing privacy protections and enhance the customer experience for users of its website.

“I am confident that we have found an ideal partner for GEDmatch,” said founder Curtis Rogers. “Verogen understands our philosophy and shares the vision of GEDmatch, which has always been about using science to connect people,” Rogers said. “Verogen is able to support our growth while staying true to our roots.”

GEDmatch allows users to upload genetic profiles created by other genealogy sites in order to expand the search for familial links. GEDmatch’s database currently has more than 1.3 million customer profiles and is gaining as many as 1,000 new users every day."

There's more on what this will mean and the community reaction on Debbie Kennett's blog at 

English and Irish records added to FamilySearch

The following English and Irish records are added to FamilySearch for the week of 9 December 2019. None have digital images associated.

CollectionIndexed RecordsComments
England, Herefordshire Bishop's Transcripts, 1583-1898599Added indexed records to an existing collection
England, Huntingdonshire Parish Registers52,367Added indexed records to an existing collection
England, Oxfordshire Parish Registers 1538-190451,159Added indexed records to an existing collection
England, Yorkshire Marriage Bonds and Allegations, 1613-18872,587Added indexed records to an existing collection
Ireland, James Alexander Henderson, The Belfast and Province of Ulster Directory for 185637,363New indexed records collection
Ireland, Thom's Irish Almanac & Official Directory 1868103,355New indexed records collection
Northern Ireland, Tithe Applotment Books, 1822-1837175,575New indexed records collection

See the complete list here.

MyHeritage adds mystery Canadian Burial Index

On 4 December MyHeritage added this large database.

Canada, Burials, 1800-2019 FREE NEW
2,137,853 records
This collection is an index to burial records from Canada. Records typically list the name of the deceased, death year, birth year and burial place. Burials usually took place with a few days of death.

The search form has space for death place and keyword but they are not functional.

A search returns name, birth year, death year, and burial place.

I found records from all provinces except Newfoundland and Labrador.

There's no information about the source(s).

Monday, 9 December 2019

Poverty and Crime in 1830s Liverpool

Proceedings of the Statistical Society of London, Vol. 2, No. 12 (1837—1838) contains the following items:

A report, drawn up by Mr. Langton, "Upon the Number of inhabited Courts and Cellars, occupied as Dwellings in Liverpool in 1835-6" was then read.
The number of the former was 2,271; of the latter 7,493, which are mostly dark, damp, confined, ill-ventilated, and dirty. Thus, not less than one-seventh of the population of Liverpool dwell in cellars; for, supposing each cellar to contain one family, averaging four persons, there will be about 30,000 persons inhabiting cellars out of a population of 280,000.
These statements, exaggerated as they might appear, were confirmed on the following day by a Liverpool gentleman, who reported that, feeling doubtful of their accuracy, be had procured a similar report from the police, in which the numbers exceeded those stated by Mr. Langton.

Mr. Walmsley, of Liverpool, read a Paper “ On the State of Crime” in that town; which confirmed a previous Report upon the same subject. It was stated that the number of criminals in Liverpool consisted of 4,200 female thieves and prostitutes, and 4,520 males; of the latter 2,270 were professional, and the remainder occasional thieves. The annual amount of their profits and plunder was estimated at £700,000; and Mr. Walmsley, who is the chief of the police at Liverpool, assured the Section that, upon a second examination, the calculation appeared by no means exaggerated.

Genealogists' Magazine: December 2019

Volume 33, Number 4 of the Society of Genealogists quarterly magazine features a long read "Civil Registration and Clergymen on Trial" by Gwyneth Wilkie.  The article documents cases where clergymen failed to report on marriages they conducted and the efforts, including legal, to remedy the situation.
In case this detailed description of transgressions leads to the belief that BMDs are significantly deficient Wilkie quotes from a July 1839 report by the Statistical Society of London.
Important and obvious as are the applications of the registered facts, the measure had to encounter considerable opposition. Its advantages were scarcely perceived at first by the multitude; and some of the clergy of the Established Church thew obstacles in its way, under an erroneous apprehension that the registration of births might interfere with the administration of baptisms. By taking active steps to make known in every way the nature, advantages, and obligations of the Act, and by firm, but conciliatory conduct, the Registrar-General appears to have exceeded beyond the most sanguine expectations, in obtaining, during the first year of its operation, an almost complete register of deaths and marriages. The register of births is less complete; but this is owing to the want of a clause in the Act to render the information on births imperative. 
Shorter items in the issue are:

Further Observations on the Form of the Bride's Signature in Marriage Registers 1754-1837, by John Wintrip
Improving indexes to sources over time, by Barney Tyrwitt-Drake
Leutnant J N Meiser - follow-up, by Karen J Douglas and Dr Colin R Chapman FSG
RootsTech London 2019, by Emmy Jolly and Else Churchill

Sunday, 8 December 2019

The Mystique of Money: Tax Culture and ‘Race’ in Two Centuries”

The Ottawa Historical Association's next presentation of its 2019-20 Speaker Series is at the Ottawa Art Gallery (50 Mackenzie King Bridge) on Tuesday, 10 December:

“The Mystique of Money: Tax Culture and ‘Race’ in Two Centuries”

 A public lecture by Shirley Tillotson

The mystique of money is about its power both to hide and to reveal. Using examples from her recent book, Give and Take: The Citizen-Taxpayer and the Rise of Canadian Democracy (UBC Press, 2017), and from the Dalhousie University inquiry about its connections to race and slavery in the 1810s, Tillotson will explore both sides of the mystique of money and especially its relationship to systems of racial power.

Shirley Tillotson is Professor Emeritus in the Department of History at Dalhousie University.

This presentation is sponsored by the Canadian Historical Association, which named Give and Take as the 2019 Best Scholarly Book in Canadian History. Copies of Give and Take will be available for purchase at the presentation, courtesy of Perfect Books.

The presentation will begin at 7:15 p.m.
Parking is available at the nearby Rideau Centre.

All are welcome!

Sunday Sundries

Miscellaneous items I found of interest during the week.

The Genealogical Society Observer
While researching for an article I was directed to this monthly publication of the Genealogical Society of Utah. Written for employees and volunteers, it contains news about the Society with a leavening of humour. The item below is from volume 5, no. 1 (Jan. 1969).

If you want to know the real purpose of the LDS genealogical endeavours check out the editorial on page 3 of the issue. It's no secret but rarely so plainly stated.

Illustration from "For Surprises, Shake that Family Tree" from the Ottawa Journal, 19 March 1949. The article mentioned a move by the Ontario Historical Society to add a genealogical section to its quarterly publication.

Vernon Ontario Directories
There are now 473 directories advertised as in the collection of Ontario directories, up from 465 when mentioned on the blog on 26 November.

19th-Century London’s Extreme Wealth and Poverty, Mapped
A review of a new edition of the always fascinating Charles Booth’s London Poverty Maps.

Remove car lanes, restrict vehicles and improve transit to reduce traffic congestion
Although promoted as the best option in one of the sources cited the article does not mention congestion pricing. That source is also cautious about enthusiasm for public transit —"there is such an enormous latent demand for road space ... that whenever a driver shifts onto public transportation, another one quickly grabs the open lane.

Why Don’t We Know More About the Subway Cost Disease?
If better research could cut construction costs by 1%, it would be worth spending tens of millions on that research. It might be true for Ontario's rapid transit systems too.

How can we actually create happy societies?
Creating a happy society does not just depend on creating the right conditions. It also depends on creating the right institutions and processes for discovering those conditions.

Saturday, 7 December 2019

LAC Quarterly Progress Report

LAC recently posted 2019-2022 Three-Year Plan Progess Report: Second Quarter 2019-2020

At the half-year mark LAC is on-target to meet or exceed 6 of  8 indicators reported.

I'm impressed that LAC is more than half-way to the annual target of 3,500,000 images digitized from LAC’s collection. It would be interesting to know what record sets are involved and the format of the original.

Co-Lab and DigiLab activities that require input by non-LAC personnel, be they individual volunteers or staff of other organizations using these LAC facilities, are falling short of the target.

OGS Ottawa Branch Golden Anniversary Family History Project

The following is information from OGS Ottawa Branch.

To help celebrate the 50 years of Ottawa Branch, we would like members to donate a copy of their family history to our Branch library. Every family history sent in during 2020 will be noted in the library catalogue as a Golden Anniversary and will be marked on the spine or cover (to make them easier to identify on the shelves) with a small gold coloured symbol.

If you have already donated a family history, consider updating it with any new information. These family histories will join the over 800 family histories now in our library, ensuring that the stories are never lost.

As well, the Branch is indexing all the library’s family histories in TONI, the Ontario Name Index. To speed this task, we would ask you to send us an electronic version of either the whole family history or the index if you have one. These files will be used only to add the names to TONI. Please send the files to with the name of your family history in the subject line.

I wondered what constituted a suitable donation. Here's a reply:

We normally accept only properly formatted genealogical information (paper or electronic format); electronic files must be readable by a web-browser on a Windows machine (e.g., pdf or html). We may accept useful items that can be catalogued and placed on the shelves, even if in a three-ring binder and never published. All materials proposed for donation will be reviewed prior to accepting it since everything must be put through a triage process before it comes into the building. Ideally, family histories should be indexed for easier research access.

Friday, 6 December 2019

Interview with Charlotte Gray

Following the publication of Murdered Midas, I had the good fortune to chat with author Charlotte Gray about the book, her background and writing.

To keep the length to 20 minutes, much too short, I had to leave some segments I enjoyed on the cutting-room floor.
I particularly regret having to cut part of Charlotte's answer to my final question about authors she's enjoyed. The author omitted is Stacy Schiff, and especially her book on Cleopatra — check out YouTube videos where Schiff is interviewed.
After I recorded this TVO aired an interview with Charlotte that focuses almost exclusively on the story told in the book. View it here.

Last minute notice: DNA Workshop

The following is information about a meeting organized by Ottawa Branch, OGS on Saturday, 7 December⋅13:00 – 17:00 at the City of Ottawa Archives, 100 Tallwood Drive (Room 228).

Jason Porteous will again help you to use Genome Mate Pro (GMP). You need not have prior knowledge of the program. Jason will get you through uploading your match info into a database. After that it's fairly easy to learn through playing around with the various tools inside.

Bring your laptop. The GMP database is set up to work from it. Download your match information. This can be done for FTDNA (csv match file on main matches list at bottom, and csv segment list from Chromosome viewer page), for MyHeritage it is a somewhat complicated process that I can cover. For 23andMe it is also complicated but doable using third party site DNAGedcom, and for Ancestry it can't be done directly but is doable indirectly by matching others from Ancestry or any company who have transferred to the third party site GEDmatch . I recommend everyone, regardless where originally testing, transfers to GEDmatch to allow across company comparisons and to generate the largest match list of genetic cousins possible. Please read their terms of service closely. 

We will not be providing refreshments but you are welcome to bring your own coffee/tea and water bottles can be filled at the water stations in the City Archives. We will be upstairs in Room 228.

Jason may also go over the new tools from Borland Genetics which allow you to partially/fully phase your DNA test results (ie. separate your maternal from paternal chromosome to create a "mono" DNA kit that on GEDmatch will only return matches to one parent while also greatly reducing false matches). He's also open to discussing chromosome mapping as well.

Findmypast adds modern UK records

United Kingdom Deaths 2007-2017
Over 2.7 million additions from across England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, and Isle of Man have been added to the collection. These transcripts, provided by Wilmington Millennium, provide the individual’s name, date and location of death.

UK Electoral Registers & Companies House Directors 2002-2019
Over 981,000 new additions are now available to search. This collection enables you to search registers of UK directors whose companies are registered with Companies House along with the UK’s electoral registers beginning from 2002. There are more than 115 million records available.

Cornwall Burials
Over 76,000 additions covering 57 assorted parishes across the county. This collection now has over 280,000 records covering more than two hundred parishes. Each transcript will reveal a combination of birth year, death year, burial date and burial place. Some records may also include relative’s names.

Also added this week, as well as further digitized Scottish newspaper pages, is a browse collection of New York, Marriage Index Cards (Force-Vorce Family) published in partnership with the New York Genealogical & Biographical Society. It's in BETA and undergoing evaluation and testing. The marriage index includes names, event dates and generation numbers.

Saints by Sea

The Saints by Sea website contains first-person accounts of international converts who were among the about 90,000 Latter-day Saint converts arriving in the US from 1840 to1932.

The Saints by Sea website complements the Mormon Pioneer Overland Trail Database, which covers crossing the plains.

Thursday, 5 December 2019

No Sweat Tech: Using YouTube to Learn More about Your Family History

An article from the Saturday Evening Post by the estimable Tara Calishain on using Spotify and YouTube ("an incredible wealth of video that stretches back into the 19th century") to prompt recollections from her grandmother.

Where did they walk? Online Database of British and Irish Hills

Your British and/or Irish ancestors most likely walked, to get to and from school or work (uphill and against the wind both ways), to visit friends and relatives, or for the enjoyment of the countryside.

For the latter check out the Hill Bagging database. It has information on 19,507 British hills and 1,451 for Ireland.

Find out what's available by clicking on Mountain Search from the left-hand menu, scroll in and click "Show all hills within map bounds" from the text beside the map.

Two entries are for hills I climbed to as a teen near the village where my grandmother lived in North Yorkshire, Captain Cook's monument on Easby Moor and Roseberry Topping. This YouTube video makes the point on the opportunity for enjoyment of the countryside for the urban dweller.

Wednesday, 4 December 2019

OGS 2020 Webinars Announced

Although the last OGS webinar of 2019 is not yet presented — Linda Corupe will speak on “Upper Canadian Justice“ on Thursday 5 December at 7pm (register here) — the webinar program for the first half of 2020 is now announced.

2 JanuaryThomas MacEnteeSmarter Search Strategies
6 FebruaryMags GauldenDNA Databases
5 MarchUte BrandenbergHidden Gems in German and Polish Archives
2 AprilBlythe KareenTracing Family History Using the Archives of Ontario
7 MayBeverley MacCullochUsing Ontario's Township Papers
4 JuneJenny LemayResearch Indigenous Ancestors in Northern Ontario

Registration for the 2020 webinars will open shortly.

Lisgar Collegiate Institute Yearbooks

From 1883 to 2006-2007 find yearbooks, Vox Lysei, for Lisgar (Ottawa) Collegiate Institute at

The first few years are handwritten. Printed editions appear to be OCRd and searchable one-by-one.

Find many photos of students and staff, individually or in groups.

The 1919 issue includes the names of former students who died in the Great War including the years they were at the Institute.