31 December 2019

Thank you — 2019

The end of another trip around the sun is an opportunity to acknowledge those who have been helpful in providing the fodder for the blog.
But first, thank you to all readers. Mostly I don't know who you are, where you are or what especially keeps you coming back. I do know that more than 200 addresses are subscribed. Thank you!
Extra thanks to those who send comments and tips, particularly to BT who contributed most comments this year.

Gifts from MyHeritage include a
throw blanket with the advice
"There is no reason not to follow your dreams."
A special thanks to Findmypast, MyHeritage and Ancestry, companies that provide me free access to facilitate coverage of new resources.
In addition, Ancestry provided prizes for the December draw and hosted breakfast at RootsTech London.
MyHeritage, in the person of Daniel Horowitz, came to Ottawa to give presentations in August — the company gave me a couple of nice gifts during the year. Did you see their year-end wrap-up?
Thanks to FamilySearch for giving me free access to RootsTech London as an Ambassador.
Thanks to the British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa, the Ottawa Branch of the Ontario Genealogical Society, the Historical Society of Ottawa and their volunteers without whom they wouldn't function. Their meetings always provide stimulation.

For a roundup of Canadian genealogy happenings in 2019 see Gail Dever's 2019: A year of Canadian genealogy in review.

British Newspaper Archives additions for December

The British Newspaper Archive now has a total of 35,444,217 pages online (35,052,301 last month). 47 papers (47 last month) had pages added in the past month. There were 21 (10) new titles. Dates ranged from 1842 to 1984.

A year ago there were 29,480,604 pages online, 23,319,767 pages a year earlier and 17,567,270 the year before that.  At the present rate, the 40 million page project target would be reached before the end of the year, likely in October.

The 11 newspapers with more than 10,000 pages added during the month are:

Fishing Gazette1877-1879, 1882-1887, 1899-1900
Heywood Advertiser1855, 1865-1867, 1885, 1894, 1897, 1960-1973
Leven Advertiser & Wemyss Gazette1897-1924, 1928-1939
Mid-Lothian Journal1884-1931
Midlothian Advertiser1906-1949
Rochdale Observer1871-1896, 1898-1899, 1910
Smethwick Telephone1884-1888, 1890-1896, 1898-1909, 1911-1931
Sport (Dublin)1897-1924, 1926-1928, 1930-1931
Stirling Observer1871, 1874-1877, 1879-1892
Truth1904-1905, 1908-1909, 1911-1924
Western Evening Herald1895, 1900-1920, 1922-1924

Yuletide R&R: All time favourite

30 December 2019

The Theses Canada Program: update

There's nothing new to report since my 12 September blog post on this Library and Archives CanadaLAC program. If LAC did restart harvesting theses since suspending it the summer of 2016, as indicated by this notice, it's not evident as no new material has been added. I have requested an update from LAC.

Yuletide R&R Classic

The most popular Yuletide R&R from 2017.

29 December 2019

Yuletide R&R: Classic

This was the most popular Yuletide R&R post for 2018

Sunday Sundries

Miscellaneous items I found of interest during the week.

No Updates
In case you were wondering, Findmypast, Ancestry and FamilySearch had no updates this past week.

Magazine Discount
Moorshead Magazines is offering a Boxing Day special — 40% off subscriptions to Your Genealogy Today, Internet Genealogy & History Magazine.

What does it take to run RootsTech?
A video showing the team members, eight of them, behind RootsTech. That's not counting the hundreds who volunteer during the event. Is that kind of dedicated effort why your society event gets attendance in the hundreds rather than the thousands? Would you want your event to be so large?

Jumping Beans & Throwing Shoes: How Medieval People Looked Ahead to New Year
From History Extra. "One list of predictions from the 15th century, for example, says that if Christmas Day falls on a Tuesday, it will be a rainy winter, a windy spring and a rainy summer – and the sheep will die." I wasn't able to find the source to don't know what that suggests a Wednesday Christmas Day portends.
Another suspicion was that the first 12 days of January foretell the weather for each month of the year.

A historical interactive map of almost every railway or tramway that's ever existed in the UK & Ireland. 

2019 in the UK has been a year of extremes: record-breaking heat and rain

  • Warmest winter day on record: 21.2 °C recorded at Kew Garden on 26 February 
  •  Hottest day on record: 38.7 °C recorded at Cambridge University Botanic Gardens on 25 July 

A Guide to Disagreeing Better
A 38-minute podcast from the BBC.

Best Illusion of the Year

Do you recognize this person? If you think she looks like Helen Brown — she looks a lot better in blue!

28 December 2019

Vernon City Directory Online Update

In a 26 November blog post, I listed the Vernon directories online in the FamilySearch/LAC/OGS digitization project.  The volumes available were "465 — or 515. The first is the number advertized, the second the number actually present."

Checking on Friday I found 519 results listed — the catalogue has caught up with the processing.

Yuletide R&R

27 December 2019

Promethease uploads free through 31 December

A last-minute reminder — if you're interested in DNA and health — the deadline for free uploads of DNA test results to Promethease, now part of the MyHeritage family, is coming up fast.

Promethease is a literature retrieval system that builds a personal DNA report based on connecting a file of DNA genotypes to the scientific findings cited in SNPedia. You can find some samples of reports at https://promethease.com/ where you can also upload your own data.

Yuletide R&R

Compiled from various sources.

A bar was walked into by the passive voice.
C, Eb, and G walk into a bar. The bartender says "Sorry, no minors."
An oxymoron walked into a bar, and the silence was deafening.
Two quotation marks walk into a "bar."
Bartender asks a woman what she wants. “An entendre,” she says. “Make it a double.” So he gives it to her.
A malapropism walks into a bar, looking for all intensive purposes like a wolf in cheap clothing, muttering epitaphs and casting dispersions on his magnificent other, who takes him for granite.
Hyperbole totally rips into this insane bar and absolutely destroys everything.
A question mark walks into a bar?
A rabbi, a priest, and a cliché walk into a bar.
A non sequitur walks into a bar. In a strong wind, even turkeys can fly. Papyrus and Comic Sans walk into a bar. The bartender says, "Get out - we don't serve your type."
A mixed metaphor walks into a bar, seeing the handwriting on the wall but hoping to nip it in the bud.
A comma splice walks into a bar, it has a drink and then leaves.
A Roman walks into a bar and asks for a martinus. "You mean martini?" the bartender asks. The Roman replies "Easy! I'll let you know when I want more."
Two atoms walk into a bar. One says to the other, "I think I've lost an electron!" "Are you sure?" "Yes, I'm positive!"
Three intransitive verbs walk into a bar. They sit. They converse. They depart.
A synonym strolls into a tavern.
A spoonerism walks into a bar and asks where to find a shitted feet.
At the end of the day, a cliché walks into a bar — fresh as a daisy, cute as a button, and sharp as a tack.
A run-on sentence walks into a bar it starts flirting. With a cute little sentence fragment.
A figure of speech literally walks into a bar and ends up getting figuratively hammered.
An allusion walks into a bar, despite the fact that alcohol is its Achilles heel.
The subjunctive would have walked into a bar, had it only known.
A misplaced modifier walks into a bar owned by a man with a glass eye named Ralph.
The past, present, and future walked into a bar. It was tense.
A dyslexic walks into a bra.
A verb walks into a bar, sees a beautiful noun, and suggests they conjugate. The noun declines.
An Oxford comma walks into a bar, where it spends the evening watching the television getting drunk and smoking cigars.
A Higgs boson walks into a Catholic church and the priest says "thank god you made it, we can't have mass without you."
A simile walks into a bar, as parched as a desert.
A gerund and an infinitive walk into a bar, drinking to forget.
An alliteration traipsed into a tavern, where it tangled tempestuously with an insistent, illiterate intern.
A black hole walks into a bar and orders a drink. The bartender asks if he'd like food with that. The black hole says 'No thanks, I'm a light eater'.
A typo wakled into a bar.
Voice recognition walks into a bar. You think he wood of scene it write in front of him.

26 December 2019

News from Deceased Online and TheGenealogist

Boxing day news just in.

Salford records available on Deceased Online

Agecroft Cemetery, originally known as Salford Northern Cemetery has 51,282 records from 1903 to 2003.

Peel Green Cemetery, originally known as Eccles Cemetery has 44,276 records from 1879 to 2010.

Their records comprise digital scans of the original burial and cremation registers, cemetery maps showing the section in which the grave is located, and grave details for each of the graves and their occupants.

TheGenealogist has released colour tithe maps for Cumberland

Subscribers to TheGenealogist’s Diamond membership can now view the latest colour or grayscale maps when using the Tithe & Landowner records.

Colour maps now cover the counties of Warwickshire, Rutland, Huntingdonshire, Buckinghamshire, Middlesex, Northumberland, Surrey, Westmorland, the City, North and East Ridings of Yorkshire along with the newly launched Cumberland.

These highly detailed maps to the apportionment books provide researchers with the details of the plots, their owners and their occupiers at the time that the survey was taken in Victorian times, from large estate owners to occupiers of small plots such as a homestead or a cottage.

Yuletide R&R

24 December 2019

The First Christmas Card

Reproduction of the first Christmas card, designed by John Callcott Horsley, sent to Henry Cole.

via a British Library post.

Yuletide R&R

Very Last Minute Genealogy Gifts

Membership in the British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa, $50, https://bifhsgo.ca/onlineJoin.php

Membership in the Ottawa Branch of the Ontario Genealogical Society, $15 plus required membership in the OGS at $63, total $78, https://ogs.on.ca/shop/bundled-membership/.

Joining either, or both gives discount registration to the respective annual conferences. Registration for the Ottawa Branch OGS Gene-O-Rama (3-4 April 2020) is now available (although the online registration was lacking when I checked) at https://ottawa.ogs.on.ca/geneorama/.

23 December 2019

FreeBMD December update

The FreeBMD Database was updated on Saturday 21 December 2019 to contain 272,823,605 unique records (272,440,112 at previous update.)

Years with major additions, greater than 5,000 records are: for births 1964, 1982, 1984-88; for marriages 1964,1984-87; for deaths 1984-86 and 1988.

Looking back for all 2019, 4,638,202 records were added, or 12,707 per day thanks to FreeBMD volunteers.


Yuletide R&R

Continuing an annual comedy series, mostly videos, for your enjoyment while I spend time on things other than writing blog posts.

Why you may not want to gift a cheese grater — and more!

22 December 2019

Family Tree Live: Program

The impressive program of presentations scheduled for 17th - 18th April 2020 at Alexandra Palace, London is now online.

How many of these names do you recognize:

David Annal, Graham Bandy, Alan Beattie, Amelia Bennett, Peter Calver, Paul Carter,  Else Churchill, Colin Chapman, Peter Christian, Janine Cloud, Jackie Depelle, Gill Draper: Beryl Evans, Karen Evans, Simon Fowler,  Keith Gregson, Deborah Hart-Stock, Daniel Horowitz, Laura House, James Irvine, Debbie Kennett, Diane Lindsay, Les Mitchinson, Claire Moores, Richard Morgan, Robert Parker,  Michelle Patient, Donna Rutherford, David Ryan, Wayne Shepheard, Fergus Smith, Alison Spring, Adrian Stone, Michael Tobias, Ian Waller, Graham Walter, Penny Walters, Simon Wills, Valmay Young & Beverly Hallam.

With 40 speakers in four simultaneous streams, including a dedicated DNA stream, there's bound to be something of interest every time.

Sunday Sundries

Miscellaneous items I found of interest during the week.

Glass slide © Bishopsgate Institute
The Streets Of Old London
From Spitalfields Life, photos from another age — some likely closer to the date you were born than today is to your birth.

The heartbreaking reason the ‘Mind the Gap’ voice is different at Embankment station

London Review of Books
A new website launched on Monday (16 December) with the entire LRB archive of almost 17,500 pieces with its archive freely accessible for a month.

Decade in Review, from c|net
Includes 25 words that describe the decade in tech.

Climate Action Tracker
Canada's actions, like those of the countries of Western Europe, Australia and New Zealand, are judged insufficient by this independent group.

MyHeritage has just published two historical record collections from Germany: the Hesse Birth Index (1874–1911) and Hesse Marriage Index (1849–1931). These collections, totaling 8.5 million historical records, are now indexed and searchable on MyHeritage.

21 December 2019

Findmypast weekly update

Northumberland Baptisms
Over 25,000 new records covering 25 parishes across the county have been added to the collection of Northumberland Baptisms. Both parish registers and bishop’s transcripts are included sourced from the Northumberland Record Office, Durham University Library, the Northumberland & Durham Family History Society and the College of Arms. With these additions, the collection is now from 217 parishes with 708,803 total records

Northumberland Marriages
Over 28,000 new additions from 15 parishes are now available to search. Each transcript includes a combination of the birth years, residences, marriage date fathers’ names and witnesses’ names for both the bride and groom. The total collection is now 146 parishes with 424,265 records.

Northumberland Burials
Over 98,000 new records added from 3 Northumberland parishes; Alnwick, St Michael, Newcastle upon Tyne, Ballast Hills Primitive Methodist, and Thropton, All Saints Roman Catholic. Some records include an image of the original document or include the names of next of kin. The total collection is now 169 parishes with 565,418 records.

Northumberland and Durham Memorial Inscriptions
More than a thousand new inscriptions from 7 burial sites across the county are also available to search. Memorial inscriptions are an excellent resource for family history. They include the full epitaph found on your ancestor’s burial monument and will often reveal important biographical details and the names of additional family members. The total collection is 159 locations with 120,755 records.

Other records include over 4.5 million Texas county tax records from 1846 to 1910, both transcripts and associated image of the original document. Also, 103,488 new newspaper pages digitized and searchable including two titles new to the collection, one each from Scotland and Wales.

Also new this week, a makeover at findmypast.co.uk — not (yet?) at the .com or .com.au sites.

Lump of Coal Award Nominations

Today being the Winter Solstice in the Northern Hemisphere when the day is the shortest and things can look "black as coal", do you know of organizations that deserve a lump of coal in their stocking this Christmas?  Here are my nominations.

1. Library and Archives Canada, failing to respond to an access request for over a year while several times promising a response within a month.

2. Dante Labs, failing to deliver results for a DNA test since May.

3. Statistics Canada, failing to reveal in announcements in The Daily when access is for a fee. In addition, I wonder whether Stats Can ever looks at the advances being made in other countries, such as in this blog post from the UK Office of National Statistics?

4.  Loblaws, increasing the price of their own-brand soft drinks by 25% in December. Nominally the price is $1.49 but typically 2 for $2; now advertising it as a 4 for $5 multi deal.

5. Canada's Anglo-Celtic Connections, inability to proof-read, spell and grammar check.

Your nominations are welcome.

20 December 2019

Irish Lives Remembered: Winter 2019 Issue

There's a new issue of the free Irish Lives Remembered online magazine.

It includes the final installment in a four-part series on illicit whiskey making in Ireland — Money, Mountain Dew, and Murder: Illicit Poitín Distillation in Ireland During the 1920s.


Dame Barbara Windsor’s Irish Ancestry: The Collins Family from Cork City by Fiona Fitzsimons;
The Broderick Surname in Ireland by Paul MacCotter;
Who Needs Genetic Cousins Anyway? by Maurice Gleeson;
Defenders of the Sun: The “Divine Twins” in Ancient Irish Mythology by Eamonn "Ned" Kelly;
"Begad, We Have the Wrong Man Got” by Stephen Peirce;
Excerpt of True to Ireland: Éire’s ‘conscientious objectors’ in New Zealand in World War II (2019, The Cuba Press) by Peter Burke.

Plus regular columns:
Dear Genie (Our Genealogists help you with your research block)
Photodetective (Jayne Shrimpton analyses one of your family photos)
Patrick's Page (Patrick Roycroft deals with a client at the Irish Family History Centre)
FMP Roundup (Niall Cullen lets us know of the new Irish genealogy records that have been added to Findmypast)

Read It Here 

Family Tree Magazine: Christine Jackson article

Somewhat cryptically, Christine Jackson emailed to let me know "You might be interested in the article starting on p 16 of the Jan 2020 issue of the UK Family Tree magazine . . ."

I don't subscribe, and I could find no complete listing of contents online. In a summary of highlights I read "‘You could get back to the 1500s if you knew where to look’! Researcher Christine Jackson has a fascinating case study to help you find out how to trace back to Tudor times!"
Another email exchange with Christine confirmed that the article was on "early unusual sources I used in my Cowley research."

BIFHSGO members will recall Christine's monthly meeting presentations and articles in Anglo-Celtic Roots (ACR). The Cowley Family Saga - Part 3: Back to the Beginning was published in the Fall 2015 issue. The previous parts were in Fall 2014 and 2013. Like all issues of ACR, except the four most recent, thanks to BIFHSGO they're online and free for all to enjoy at https://bifhsgo.ca/clist.php?nm=108/.

CWGC Beechwood Cemetery Burials: Oswald Olsen

Born in Norway on 28 February 1879, Oswald Olsen enlisted for service in the CEF  on 1 March 1916 and was appointed Sergeant. On attestation, he stated he had served for 3 years with the regular Norwegian forces and 4 years with the Governor General's Foot Guards. CEF service was with the 207 Battalion of the Canadian Infantry.
He was discharged as medically unfit owing to a chronically dislocated right shoulder on 31 March 1917. He was accessed to have suffered from tuberculous, the cause of death, for some years.
Death came on 20 December 1919 in the Sanitarium at Kingston. The body was taken to Beechwood Cemetery for burial on 23 December in Section 29, Lot 15.
He had married his wife Anna Peterson in Philadelphia on 4 May 1908.  They had four children — 3 girls and 1 boy.

19 December 2019

RootsTech London Videos

A highlight of my genealogical year was attending RootsTech London in October. Consider reviewing some of the videos of presentations available online for free.

I particularly enjoyed the Thursday Keynote by Dan Snow. Although I've not reviewed all six of the other sessions take your pick from:

Michele Leonard on DNA Is Dynamite - How To Ignite Your Ancestral Research
Gregg Richardson on Discover Your Family at FamilySearch: Photos, Stories and Memories
Maurice Gleeson on A Strategic Approach to Irish Genealogy
Debbie Kennett on Getting started with DNA
Else Churchill on Tracing 20th Century English Ancestors - The Joys and Challenges
Sunny Morton on Comparing the Genealogy Giants: Ancestry, FamilySearch, Findmypast and MyHeritage

LAC Co-Lab update

Here's the monthly update on Co-Lab challenges projects as of 18 December.


George Mully: moments in Indigenous communities (new)

Correspondence regarding First Nations veterans returning after the First World War is 16% complete (5% last month)

Winnipeg General Strike of 1919 is 57% complete (51% last month).

Rosemary Gilliat (Eaton)’s Arctic diary and photographs is 44% complete (42% last month)

Letters from Wilfrid Laurier to Zoé Lafontaine/Laurier is 98% complete (96% last month).


Legendary Train Robber and Prison Escapee Bill Miner is 98% complete

War Diaries of the First World War: 1st Canadian Division is 94% complete.

The Call to Duty: Canada's Nursing Sisters is 86% complete.

Japanese-Canadians: Second World War is 61% complete.

New France and First Nations Relations is 33% complete.


Personal Diary of the Baroness Macdonald - Lady Macdonald (95% last month).


The Spanish Flu Pandemic of 1918–1919.

Correspondence between Sir Robert Borden and Sir Sam Hughes.


One of the indicators for the LAC Three-year plan 2019-2022 is the number of records enhanced by user contributions in the Co-Lab crowdsourcing tool. The indicator is to be released quarterly as is the indicator number of images digitized via DigiLab.

Advance Notice: Kingston District UEL Meeting

On Saturday, January 25, 2020, at 1:00 pm at St. Paul’s Anglican Church Hall, 137 Queen Street, Kingston, James Brownell, President of the Lost Villages Historical Society, will give an “armchair tour” through the Lands of the Lost Villages. There are the six villages and three hamlets that had been settled by United Empire Loyalists after the American Revolution and were swept away for the sake of “progress” and the St. Lawrence Seaway.

Attendees are invited to an optional stew and buns lunch before the meeting, 11:30 for noon seating:  warm fellowship and a way to meet new friends before the meeting — $4.00 donation for those not providing food for the lunch. All welcome.

Thanks to Nancy Cutway for the information.

LAC Scholars Program

The following is the text of a press release from Library and Archives Canada.

The Library and Archives Canada Foundation is thrilled to announce Air Canada as a Founding Partner of the Library and Archives Canada (LAC) Scholars Awards Wednesday, December 18, 2019– Ottawa, Ontario –The Library and Archives Canada (LAC) Foundation, chaired by Jacques J.M. Shore, a partner at Gowling WLG in Ottawa, is thrilled to announce that Air Canada will be the Founding Partner of the recently created LAC Scholars Awards. The LAC Scholars Awards program was created to recognize the outstanding contribution of individuals who have dedicated their lives to the creation and promotion of our country’s literary and historical heritage.

The LAC Foundation was established by a group of passionate individuals to support LAC in making its vast, invaluable and treasured collection more accessible to Canadians from coast to coast to coast, and in sharing it with those around the world wishing to gain a greater appreciation of our country’s heritage. The Foundation will also focus on raising funds to support initiatives and partnerships
to grow and preserve the LAC collection.

"We are happy that Air Canada has come on board as the Founding Partner for the LAC Scholars Awards program which celebrates individuals who are a creative force in our cultural environment and who enhance the visibility and importance of LAC to every Canadian,” says Jacques Shore, chair of the LAC Foundation. “Air Canada is not just a leading light in Canada’s transportation industry – it also lends valuable support to the arts and culture in this country. Both LAC and the Foundation are very fortunate to have them as the founding partner of the LAC Scholars Awards, helping Canadian culture and knowledge reach new heights,” says Librarian and Archivist Leslie Weir of LAC.

“Air Canada is very proud to be a Founding Sponsor of the LAC Scholars Awards that recognizes the outstanding individuals who have contributed so much to Canada’s literary and cultural heritage. This is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the work of Library and Archives Canada, its vast collection, and these individuals who champion Canada’s historical and artistic treasures, and we congratulate the recipients of the inaugural LAC Scholars Awards,” says Ferio Pugliese, Senior Vice President, Air Canada Express and Government Relations at Air Canada. Through its partnership, Air Canada will support the LAC Scholars program and the annual awards ceremony.

The recipients of the first annual LAC Scholars Awards in 2019 were announced last April:

• Marie-Louise Arsenault
• Ronald I. Cohen
• Lawrence Hill
• Frances Itani
• Shelagh Rogers

The 2020 recipients of The LAC Scholars Awards will be announced at an awards ceremony to be held in Ottawa in April 2020.

Hopefully, in 2020 they will provide a balanced recognition to historical as well as to literary heritage.

Ottawa Area Holiday Closures

Library and Archives Canada’s research facilities at 395 Wellington Street will be closed on 25 and 26 December and 1 January.

If you were hoping to take advantage of a quiet period at the City of Ottawa Archives  — sorry. An extended closure is in effect for the Reference Room which will be closed from 21 December 2019 to 1 January 2020. It will reopen with regular hours on 2 January 2020.

The Ottawa Public Library is closed on 25 and 26 December, and 1 January. On 24 and 31 December, all facilities will close at 3 pm.

Further afield, The Archives of Ontario will keep the same schedule as the OPL except closing at 5 pm.

Online things continue. A reminder that FamilySearch continues to host the Ontario 1869-1912 births, 1869-1927 marriages and 1869-1937 deaths from AO, while Ancestry.ca hosts the 1869-1913 births, 1801-1937 marriages and 1869-1947 deaths.

18 December 2019

Family Tree Live

The second Family Tree Live event is happening at Alexandra Palace, London 17th - 18th April 2020. That's a great time for a visit, the week following Easter.

Tickets are now on sale online here where you'll also see a list of organizations exhibiting. According to a note from Karen Clare, Assistant Editor of Family Tree magazine, more are coming and there will be an announcement on speakers and topics coming soon.

WDYTYA Magazine: January 2020

Freshly on PressReader, freely accessible online through many Canadian public libraries, including the OPL, the January issue of Who Do You Think You Are? magazine leads on the front cover with news on 50 websites to watch in 2020.

Also in the issue:

Getting the most from professional researchers,
Scottish Poor Law records, by Chris Paton,
The Victorian roots of vegetarianism,
'Richard III was buried in my ancestor's back garden!',
Best websites for 18th-century research,
How Steve Cogging used genealogy to claim Irish citizenship.

Top Scottish Baby Names for 2019

National Records of Scotland is out with the provisional list of top choices for baby names for 2019 — up until 2 December.

The main points are:

Jack remained the most popular first forename for baby boys, for a twelfth
consecutive year. Oliver and James remained in second and third places,
respectively. Charlie climbed seven places to fourth.

The rest of the boys’ Top Ten were Harris (up three places to fifth), Noah (up three
places to sixth), Lewis (down one place to seventh), Leo (down three places to
eighth), Rory (up one place to ninth) and Alfie (up six places to tenth). Charlie and
Alfie were the only entrants to the boys’ Top Ten; Alexander (down four places to
eleventh) and Logan (down nine places to thirteenth) dropped out of it.

The fastest climbers within the boys’ Top Twenty were Charlie, Alfie and Max (up
six places to twelfth). There were two entrants to the boys’ Top Twenty: Theo (up
eleven places to sixteenth) and Brodie (up seven places to eighteenth).

Olivia was the top girls’ name for the fourth year running. Emily, Isla and Sophie
remained in second, third and fourth places, respectively.

The rest of the girls’ Top Ten were Ella (up one place to fifth), Amelia (down one
place) and Ava (up one place) both joint sixth, Grace (remained eighth), Freya (up
four places to ninth) and Charlotte (up one place to tenth). Freya and Charlotte
were the only entrants to the girls’ Top Ten; Aria (down three places to twelfth) and
Jessica (down three places to thirteenth) dropped out of it.

Freya and Ellie (up seven places to eleventh) were the fastest climbers within the
girls’ Top Twenty. There were two entrants to the girls’ Top Twenty: Rosie (up
seven places to nineteenth) and Millie (up one place to twentieth).

Other big climbers within the 2019 baby name Top Fifty charts included (for boys)
Arthur (up 20 places to 26th) and (for girls) Willow (up 10 places to 24th) and
Daisy (up 11 places to 38th). Particularly fast-rising entrants to the Top Fifties were
(for boys) George (up 13 places to joint 40th), Tommy (up 41 places to 48th) and
Andrew (up 13 places to joint 49th) and (for girls) Gracie (up 22 places to joint
39th), Hallie (up 15 places to 44th) and Ayla (up 19 places to joint 47th).

The births of 23,955 boys and 22,568 girls were registered in the period covered by
these figures. In total, 3,370 different boys’ first forenames and 4,095 different girls’
first forenames were recorded; and 2,138 boys and 2,668 girls were given names
that were unique (within the period, for that sex). The number of different names per
100 babies and the fraction with unique names were well above the levels of 10
and, much more so, 40 years ago. For example, the proportion of boys with unique
first forenames was greater this year (8.9 per cent in the period covered by these
figures) than in the whole of 2009 (6.7 per cent) or 1979 (2.3 per cent).

Jack was the first forename of only 1.8 per cent of the boys, and Olivia was the first
forename of just 1.6 per cent of the girls. Of all the boys’ births that were registered,
38 per cent had a first forename that was in their Top Fifty, and 36 per cent of all
girls had a Top Fifty first forename.

Find the detailed analysis from National Records of Scotland at https://www.nrscotland.gov.uk/files//statistics/babies-names/19/babies-first-names-19-pub.pdf

17 December 2019

Legacy Webinars this week

If you want to watch the free Legacy webinars available this week and be in the draw for freebies given away when streamed live, here are the two available this week.

Tuesday, 17 December 2019, at 8:00pm Eastern
Marriages Here, There, and Nowhere: Finding Gretna Greens and Borders
by J. Mark Lowe

Many couples chose to marry in a location away from their home. Often there were reasons why it was a more convenient location to tie the knot. Sometimes, this decision was based on a romantic location or a place that would allow them to marry quickly without a three-day waiting period. These locations are often referred to as Gretna Green, the historic town in Scotland where thousands of English couples ran because of Scotland’s sympathetic marriage laws. We will consider the reason for a different marriage location, alternate sources to determine the location, and a few of the towns known as "Gretna Greens" in the United States.

J. Mark Lowe, CG, FUGA is a full-time professional genealogist, author, and lecturer. While sharing personal experiences that help beginning and experienced researchers gain new skills and insights for research, he specializes in original records and manuscripts throughout the South. Mark lives in Robertson County, Tennessee that lies in northern Middle Tennessee along the Kentucky border.

Register here.

Wednesday, 18 December 2019, at 2:00pm Eastern
How to trace your UK ancestry
by Kirsty Gray

From the comfort of your home (outside the UK), trying to uncover your roots (whether in England, Ireland, Scotland or Wales) can be an extremely challenging task. However, it is far from impossible with a plethora of information available online from books to databases, transcriptions to images, photographs and other (numerous) online sources. This webinar will provide individual case studies to highlight what is available online and offline, hands-on tips and details of how offline material might be accessed from afar.

Kirsty Gray is a professional genealogist and ‘people finder’ who runs her own research company Family Wise Limited. As a freelance author, she has published articles in family, local and social history magazines and handbooks across the globe. She has been researching the story of her paternal West Country family for many years and, having realised in the late 1990s that her eccentric hobby was called a surname study, co-founded The Surname Society (registering the Sillifant surname) in 2014 to meet the needs of surname studiers in the 21st century. Kirsty published Tracing Your West Country Ancestors in 2013 and is a founder member and was initially Chair (now Secretary) of the Society for One-Place Studies, an international society for family and local historians.

Register here.

As usual, these will be available free on replay for a week after presentation, and indefinitely thereafter to subscribers.

2019 Genealogy Publications at the Ottawa Public Library

In 2019 (so far) 19 publications this year have been added to the Ottawa Public Library genealogy collection. 12 are currently available, 7 have a waiting list. Here they are in order in which they were acquired.

by Cook, Robin
Audiobook CD - 2019
Holds: 16 on 4 copies

Tracing your Irish Family History on the Internet: A Guide for Family Historians
by Paton, Chris
Book - 2019 | Second edition.
Holds: 5 on 4 copies

A Broken Tree: How DNA Exposed A Family's Secrets
by Anderson, Stephen F.
Book - 2019
Holds: 5 on 4 copies

Genealogy Standard
by Board for Certification of Genealogists
Book - 2019 | Second edition.

Downsizing With Family History in Mind
by Lee, Devon Noel
Book - 2019

Posted in the Past: Revealing the True Stories Written on A Postcard
by Baggott, Helen
Book - 2019

Les Filles du Roy: pionnières de la Seigneurie de La Prairie
Book - 2019 | French

Finding your Roots: Season 5
DVD - 2019 | Widescreen version.
Holds: 26 on 3 copies

The Family Tree Guide to DNA Testing and Genetic Genealogy
by Bettinger, Blaine T.
Book - 2019 | Second edition.

Advanced Genetic Genealogy: Techniques and Case Studies
Book - 2019

Inheritance: A Memoir of Genealogy, Paternity, and Love
by Shapiro, Dani
Book - 2019 | First edition.
(copies in various formats (holds), and as Express reads)

Roots Quest: Inside America's Genealogy Boom
by Hogan, Jackie
Book - 2019

Distorted Descent: White Claims to Indigenous Identity
by Leroux, Darryl
Book - 2019
Holds: 22 on 5 copies

Tracing your Irish Ancestors
by Grenham, John
Book - 2019 | Fifth edition.

Tracing your Female Ancestors: A Guide for Family Historians
by Emm, Adèle
Book - 2019

The Family Tree Problem Solver: Tried-and-true Tactics for Tracing Elusive Ancestors
by Rising, Marsha Hoffman
Book - 2019 | 3rd edition, Expanded & updated.

Tracing your Freemason, Friendly Society and Trade Union Ancestors: A Guide for Family Historians
by Weinbren, Daniel
Book - 2019

Tracing your Insolvent Ancestors: A Guide for Family and Local Historians
by Blake, Paul
Book - 2019

Tracing your Ancestors Using DNA: A Guide for Family and Local Historians
by Holton, Graham S. - Editor
Book - 2019
Holds: 0 on 5 copies

Two additional 2019 books are listed as on order.

The Family Tree Scandinavian Genealogy Guide: How to Trace Your Ancestors in Norway, Sweden, and Denmark
by Fryxell, David A.
Holds: 11 on 1 copy

Unofficial Guide to FamilySearch.Org: How to Find Your Family History on the World's Largest Free Genealogy Website
by McCullough, Dana
Holds: 26 on 1 copy

16 December 2019

Free MyHeritageDNA upload ends soon

I missed posting when first announced that you can upload your raw DNA data file to receive free access to all MyHeritageDNA features. It usually costs $39 to get full access. The offer ends on 18 December, but the free access will continue.
I wish I'd remembered this when asked recently about where to upload AncestryDNA results so you can take advantage of a DNA browser that AncestryDNA declines to provide.

Ancestry.ca Draw Winners

The lucky winner of the draw for a one-year Ancestry.ca subscription at Saturday's "Great Moments" BIFHSGO meeting was Ruth Kirk.  Ruth is a long-time society member having served as Director (Communications) in the early 2000s.

In the afternoon, the draw for an AncestryDNA test was at the Ottawa Branch of OGS meeting held at the Ottawa City Archives. The winner, drawn by guest speaker Kyla Ubbink, was the Branch Chair, Doug Gray. Doug has announced he will be stepping down as Chair in June.

Congratulations to the winners, thanks to the folks at BIFHSGO and Ottawa Branch who distributed draw tickets and, of course, thanks to Ancestry.ca for supporting the blog, BIFHSGO and Ottawa Branch of OGS.

15 December 2019

Minister of Canadian Heritage Mandate Letter

While much of the letter sent to Minister Guilbeault is boilerplate — sent to all Ministers, the specifics identified are:

  • Work with all cultural and creative sectors on the successful delivery of initiatives and new funding announced in previous Budgets.
  • Create new regulations for social media platforms, starting with a requirement that all platforms remove illegal content, including hate speech, within 24 hours or face significant penalties. This should include other online harms such as radicalization, incitement to violence, exploitation of children, or creation or distribution of terrorist propaganda.
  • Co-lead work with the Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry to modernize the Broadcasting Act and the Telecommunications Act, examining how best to support Canadian content in English and French and ensure quality affordable internet, mobile and media access. 
  • Work with the Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry to introduce legislation by the end of 2020 that will take appropriate measures to ensure that all content providers, including internet giants, offer meaningful levels of Canadian content in their catalogues, contribute to the creation of Canadian content in both Official Languages, promote this content and make it easily accessible on their platforms. The legislation should also consider additional cultural and linguistic communities.
  • Continue to fully implement the Indigenous Languages Act in order to preserve, promote and revitalize Indigenous languages in Canada, with long-term predictable and sufficient funding to support the implementation of the Act.
  • Co-develop, with Indigenous Peoples, a framework for repatriating Indigenous cultural property and ancestral remains.
  • Provide funding and support for the celebration of the 150th anniversary of the Métis Nation entering Confederation.
  • Strengthen the regional mandate of CBC/Radio-Canada to broadcast more local news and require CBC/Radio-Canada to open up its digital platform.
  • Increase annual funding for Telefilm Canada.
  • Make the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Heritage Centre a national museum.
  • Review our national museums policy to ensure that people can access Canadian history across the country, with better access to digital collections. Introduce the Culture Pass, a $200 credit that every Canadian child will receive when they turn 12 years old to be used to access theatres, museums, galleries, workshops and other cultural venues and local Canadian content.
  • Work with the national museums to increase Canadians’ awareness of climate change.
  • Work with the Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry and the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada to advance Canada’s Digital Charter and enhanced powers for the Privacy Commissioner, in order to establish a new set of online rights, including: data portability; the ability to withdraw, remove and erase basic personal data from a platform; the knowledge of how personal data is being used, including with a national advertising registry and the ability to withdraw consent for the sharing or sale of data; the ability to review and challenge the amount of personal data that a company or government has collected; proactive data security requirements; the ability to be informed when personal data is breached with appropriate compensation; and the ability to be free from online discrimination including bias and harassment.
  • Work with the Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry in reviewing the Copyright Act.
  • Support the Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry to create new regulations for large digital companies to better protect people’s personal data and to encourage greater competition in the digital marketplace. A newly created Data Commissioner will oversee those regulations.
  • Work with the Minister of Foreign Affairs to introduce a new Cultural Diplomacy strategy with at least one international mission each year to promote Canadian culture and creators around the world.
  • Work with the Minister of Environment and Climate Change, who is the Minister responsible for Parks Canada, to provide clearer direction on how national heritage places should be designated and preserved and to introduce new comprehensive heritage legislation on federally owned heritage places.
  • Support local journalism and develop business models that facilitate private giving and philanthropic support for professional journalism and local news.
  • Work with the Minister of Health to implement the pan-Canadian Concussion Strategy and raise awareness for parents, coaches and athletes on concussion treatment.
  • Lead preparations for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games and future international sporting events.
  • Create greater links between our elite athletes and young Canadians to promote health and achievement among youth.
  • Continue to work with partners, including provinces and territories, to foster an environment that is safe, welcoming and inclusive in the sport and cultural industries.
  • Foster a national culture of safe sport, including physical safety, sporting environments free of harassment, promoting diversity and inclusion in sport and research into injury prevention.
  • Develop additional programming to increase Canadians’ participation in sport, with a particular focus on Indigenous Peoples. This should increase awareness of the physical and mental health benefits of participation in sport.
You have to work hard reading between the lines to find anything in which Library and Archives Canada is anything but a supporting player.

The National Institute for Genealogical Studies Blog

Did you know that the National Institute for Genealogical Studies has a blog, and has had since 2013?
Although much is of interest only to Institute students there's content of more general interest too.
Those with Colonial American ancestry should check out recent posts focusing on Mayflower ancestors.
Earlier this year there were articles on men's, women's and military clothing you might find in old photographs.
You can search the blog and subscribe at http://blog.genealogicalstudies.com/

Sunday Sundries

Miscellaneous items I found of interest during the week.

Did you know?
England's shortest county boundary is 20 yards (18 m) between Lincolnshire and Northamptonshire. See www.blanchflower.org/tripoints/quad.html

Birmingham: see how it grows
From a blog created by the staff of The Library of Birmingham, Archives & Collections to explain the workings of their service and their collections.

ThruLines™ Hint
If you're fed up with going to AncestryDNA ThruLines and seeing the same old same old, click on the Filter drop-down. If the number in parenthesis appended to "Ancestors with new DNA matches" is zero you'll know there's nothing new.

He Drowned With His Money Belt On.
On April 26, 1867, which was a Friday, James Smith Bangs and his companion, a man only identified as “Oram,” loaded their canoe to travel the Madawaska River from Bangs’ trading store at Combermere to his home in Arnprior. About 15 miles downstream they came to the rushing spring water at the Snake Rapids, and their canoe upset. 
That's the start of an article by semi-retired Ottawa lawyer Donald Macdougall in the November issue of OGS Families. OGS members can read the rest online.

Who’s killing Canadian non-fiction?
A Globe and Mail opinion piece by Kenneth Whyte.

Good governance is the missing prescription for better digital health care

10 Things Fund Managers Say and What They Actually Mean

CWGC burial at Beechwood Cemetery: Alfred Hardie

Born 17 January 1878 in Islington, London, Alfred Hardie was the eldest son of Thomas and Mary Jane (nee Stammers). In 1881 his father was a solicitor's managing clerk.
He emigrated to Canada on the Dominion in 1899 and married Elizabeth Augusta Heinrich in Lethbridge, Alberta in 1907. They had a daughter Jocelyn Ruby.
He tried to enlist in Canada but was rejected for heart disease. Returning to England he was successful in enlisting with the Canadian Army Pay Corps at Shorncliffe, Kent.
He returned to Canada, became a Freemason but died of "natural causes" on this date a century ago at 97 Metcalfe Street, the Civil Service Club, in Ottawa.
Acting Corporal Hardie is interred in Sec. A. Range 37. Grave 43 at Beechwood Cemetery.

14 December 2019

Call for Conference Presentation Proposals: BIFHSGO

The next annual British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa conference takes place at Ben Franklin Place, Nepean, on 25-27 September 2020. The overall theme is:

Irish Lines and Female Finds: Researching Your Irish and Female Ancestors

There's a call for presentation proposals with a deadline of the end of January.

Did Your Ancestor Have a Tattoo?

This graph, from Google's Ngram English corpus of books, shows that the word tattoo grew in frequency through the Victorian period, and took off in the 1980s.

Even if your ancestor wasn't a convict or a sailor they may have ben tattooed. Today, one in five Britons reportedly have a tattoo.

How tattoos became fashionable in Victorian England is a long(ish) read from The Conversation with data sourced from the Digital Panopticon

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 http://globalgenealogy.com/ 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.

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 ancestry.ca 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 Ancestry.ca 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.

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 alan@familyhistorydownunder.com 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
E: alan@familyhistorydownunder.com
W: www.familyhistorydownunder.com
FHDU Facebook group . . . . . FHDU Facebook event"

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 https://cruwys.blogspot.com/2019/12/gedmatch-has-been-acquired-by-forensic.html 

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.