Saturday, February 10, 2007

Worldconnect update expect outages

RootsWeb Message Boards > Topics > RootsWeb > WorldConnect Suggestions > New WorldConnect Server
9 Feb 2007
Randy Winch wrote:-
"Over the next few days, we will be moving WorldConnect to a new server.
Users may experience slow performance or outages.
Updates will be disabled until after the move.
We appreciate your patience while this improvement is made."

see links in the side bar to my own trees for examples

best usenet service for genealogists

News.Individual.NET » Welcome to News.Individual.NET:
"For an annual fee of only 10 EUR we offer

* worldwide, provider-independent access
* more than 25,000 newsgroups from over 220 hierarchies (no binaries)
* spam filtering
* privacy through crypted posting host header
* highly redundant feeds
* reliable server operation (part of university's computer center)
* qualified support
* longtime experience and expertise in Usenet"

Explore the possibilities from genealogy - Google Groups
but then use nntp to read and reply

News.Individual.NET » Program Configuration: "To access their news server, you need to configure the program that you use to read and post news articles appropriately. They have put together the necessary information for some of the most common products:"

in other languges too
genealogi - Google Groups
genealogia - Google Groups

Friday, February 09, 2007

Russ Worthington

Users of Family Tree Maker look towards Russ with stars in their eyes like a small child meeting Santa Claus.

Russ is a volunteeer who has helped solve so many problems that he is one of my personal heroes of the internet.

He started his "collecting of ancestors" in 1996) when his youngest daughter gave him Family Tree Maker (version 3.4) as a gift to give him something to do.

Little did he know where this would lead him and the people he would meet.

"Russ Worthington" - Google Search

see his knowledge and kindness on - Message Boards

Family Tree Maker's Genealogy Site: Troubleshooting -- FTM for Windows: What is TeamFTW?:

"TeamFTW is a dedicated group of Family Tree Maker customers who volunteer to share their time and knowledge with other Family Tree Maker customers. The names of TeamFTW members may already be familiar to you as the generous help they offer is nothing new. We felt that we should recognize the contributions that they make to the Family Tree Maker community.

Just like they do now, TeamFTW members will help answer your technical questions and offer their advice on using Family Tree Maker. Keep in mind that because they are not employees, they can't help with issues of shipping or returns. Those types of non-technical questions are best addressed to our customer service department which can be reached at 800-548-1806. The customer service and sales departments are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Here are the members of TeamFTW.
Click their name for short biography.

Orvis Kline Kim Lake Wayne McElreavy
Nick Spalding Oren Wood H.R. (Russ) Worthington

National Archives of Ireland

National Archives have updated their web pages

Thursday, February 08, 2007 - Message Boards fiasco continues on Rootsweb dot com

The Generations Network - Press Releases

The Generations Network - Press Releases: "For more than 9 million people who said their 'I do's' and 'I don'ts' in Nevada between 1956 and 2005 -- the cat's out of the bag., the world's largest online family history resource, today announced it is unleashing a unique collection of Nevada's infamous marriage and divorce records.

Just in time for Valentine's Day, the collection provides an inside look into this iconic location for marriages and divorces in the United States -- from high profile hook-ups and break-ups to nuptials of the common folk. A cross-section of the collection reveals some fascinating and fun facts on getting together, splitting up and everything in between -- celebrity sightings, most popular days of the week to get married, percent of marriages that take place in Nevada vs. nationwide, how many marriages take place per minute, number of divorces per capita, shortest marriages of Nevada history, repeat offenders and more.

'Only in Nevada could you find a collection that's as enlightening as it is light-hearted, amusing and, at times, even absurd,' said Megan Smolenyak, Chief Family Historian at 'Whether you're interested in celebrity gossip, statistics on marriage, picking a date for a Vegas wedding, this collection has something for everyone whether you're researching your family history or simply being nosy.'

Crunching the data from the collection, is launching, an online marriage-predicting site, which, based on your first name, will give you the first names of the people you're most likely to marry in Nevada. At you will be given the Nevada odds that you will, in fact, someday wed that special someone in your life. Visit to get a glimpse of your odds in Vegas.

As icing on the wedding cake, and the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority are partnering to bring the site to life in Las Vegas for Valentine's Day -- the most popular day of the year to tie the knot. Couples waiting in the extra long lines at the Clark County Marriage Bureau for their marriage license can bet on love at a special kiosk to see what's in the cards before joining the ranks of this collection's infamous newlyweds. In fabulous Las Vegas-style, couples will be joined by Las Vegas showgirls and Vegas wedding icons as they roll the dice before they walk down the aisle.

Trends, Highlights and History from the Wedding Capital of America on

High-Profile Hook-Ups:

- Elizabeth Taylor (as Elizabeth Taylor Todd) married husband No. 4 out
of 8, Eddie Fisher, on May 12, 1959, in Las Vegas
- Mickey Rooney: Traditional rumors hold that Mickey married 7 of his 8
wives in Las Vegas; however can confirm only two
- Elvis Presley & Priscilla (1967)
- Angelina Jolie (as Angelina Jolie Voight) & Billy Bob Thornton (2000)
- Bruce Willis (as Walter Bruce Willis) & Demi Moore (1987)
- Dennis Rodman & Carmen Electra (as Tara Patrick) (1998)
- Richard Gere & Cindy Crawford (as Cynthia Ann Crawford) (1991)
- Frank Sinatra (Francis Sinatra) & Mia Farrow (1966)
- Glynn "Scotty" Wolfe tied the knot with just one of his 29 brides in

Big-Time Break-Ups:

- Britney Spears & Jason Alexander, January 2004 in Las Vegas --
annulled 55 hours later: One of the shortest marriages in Nevada
- Nicky Hilton (as Nicholai Olivia Hilton) & Todd Meister, August 2004
in Las Vegas, annulled November 2004

"I Do" Rates:

- A couple gets married every three minutes in Nevada
- Nevada has the highest marriage rate per capita of any state in the
United States -- 62 marriages per 1,000 people (Hawaii comes in 2nd
place with only 22 marriages per 1,000)
- Odds of someone being married in Nevada rather than somewhere else in
the United States are 1 in 17 -- in 2004, approximately 7 percent of
all U.S. marriages took place in Nevada
- Between 1970 and 2004, more than 4 million marriages took place in
Nevada, the majority in Clark County, home of Las Vegas

The Nevada Wedding Planner's Guide: Who, When, Where

- More than 3.5 million California residents have crossed the border to
marry in Nevada
- Eight of the top 10 states of residence for brides and grooms
marrying in Nevada are western U.S. states
- Most popular wedding days in Nevada, in ranked order, include:
Valentine's Day (4.5 times higher than an average day), Saturday
before Labor Day, New Years Eve, Fourth of July and New Years Day
- More than 3,000 weddings took place in Nevada on Valentine's Day 2004
(that's more than 2 marriages per minute; almost 131 marriage per
- Saturday is the most popular Nevada wedding day with an average of
900 marriages taking place every Saturday -- 39 percent of weekly
Nevada marriages take place on Saturday
- August is the most popular month for Nevada marriages with an average
of 16,000 couples tying the knot in August each year
- January is the least popular month for marriages

Digging up the Dirt:

- Search, by name, marriage records of more than 9 million people
married in Nevada between 1956 and 2005
- Each record includes full names of both the bride and groom and
marriage date and place; in addition, many also include state of
residence for the bride and groom
- Check the collection to see if that steamy office romance turned into
wedding vows during a quick weekend trip to Las Vegas -- really, it's
- Search the records to see if your sister was telling the truth that
"nothing happened" between her and the guy she met that one weekend
in Vegas last summer

History of Nevada Marriages & Divorces:

- Nevada's reputation as a "marriage Mecca" dates back to Prohibition
days, when California's three-day waiting period on marriage licenses
pushed impulsive couples over the Nevada border -- where marriage
licenses could be obtained immediately
- Immediate access to marriage licenses is available today in many
states, but Nevada remains the nation's wedding capital; Not only is
there something sentimental about getting hitched in Vegas, but
there's 24/7 access to wedding chapels statewide
- Nevada is also the U.S. divorce capital -- In 1931, feeling the
economic stress of the Great Depression, Nevada changed its divorce
residency requirement to only six weeks; During the Depression, Reno
earned the nickname "the divorce capital of the world"
- The six-week residency requirement is still in effect today -- the
lowest requirement in the nation -- helping to keep divorce rate in
Nevada higher than the national average; Not surprisingly, Clark
County grants some 62 percent of Nevada divorces

To celebrate Valentine's Day, is offering free access to the Nevada Marriage & Divorce Records Collection for the month of February.

Note: The Nevada marriage and divorce data comes from publicly available records from various Nevada county and State archives.

Web site:

Web site:


RootsWeb Newsroom Blog style

Photos on Public Profiles

my comment which "is awaiting moderation. "

yes you seem to be playing catch up with the bells and whistles seen elsewhere
but not attending to fundemental errors of the site’s update like the browsing is not improved yet

and like
false error messages

raised today in Genbrit list and I see on

“Post new reply to General
An error occurred while sending your message.”

first time due to a time out

second time on

after the post appeared anyway

about my profile

it still fails to save the fusion of all my older subscriptions and alerts

To add photo an URL would be good enough as an alternative to an upload


I am getting some contact equiries from other researchers using the new system so it is doing some good as you guys wished :-)

but not as many as from genesreunited :-(

from RootsWeb Newsroom

important census tools and databases

One-Step Webpages by Stephen P. Morse

Ellis Island - FREE Port of New York Passenger Records Search

JewishGen Databases

JOS, JewishGen's calculator, contains several different functions:

  • Soundex: calculates Daitch-Mokotoff (D-M) and National Archives soundex codes.

  • Calendar Conversion: calculates dates to/from Gregorian and Jewish calendars.

  • Jewish Calendar: displays all Jewish holidays for any Gregorian or Jewish year.

  • Distance / Direction: calculates distance and direction between towns (kilometers and miles).

Hollerith 1890 Census Tabulator

Hollerith 1890 Census Tabulator: "Herman Hollerith's 1890 tabulating machine is shown on the webpage and from IBM a color photo.
hollerith census - Google Search

The results of a tabulation are displayed on the clock-like dials. A sorter is on the right. On the tabletop below the dials are a Pantographic card punch (explained below) on left and the card reading station ('press') on the right, in which metal pins pass through the holes, making contact with little wells of mercury, completing an electrical circuit (according to Austrian [44], when workers wanted some time off, they would suck the mercury out of the wells with medicine droppers and squirt it into the spitoon).

All of these devices are fed manually, one card at a time, but the tabulator and sorter are electrically coupled."

hollerith census - Google Image Search

used in UK from 1911 until the coming of computers
which is why there ae no enumerators books for the 1911 census

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

new mailing lists - Genealogy mailing lists

No new surname mailing lists.


AUS-QLD-BUNDABERG -- For anyone with genealogical or family history
interest in the Bundaberg area of Queensland.
AUS-QLD-TEXAS -- This list is for anyone with a genealogical interest
in the town of Texas, in Queensland, Australia, and the surrounding
AUS-VIC-PIONEERS -- This list is for people searching for
information about pioneers in Victoria, Australia, from 1835-2000.
Of particular interest are details regarding their immigration,
descendants, and burials in Victorian cemeteries.

CAN-SK-BATTLEFORD -- A mailing list for anyone with a genealogical
interest in the Battleford Region of Saskatchewan, Canada. Topics
include general genealogical queries, heritage, history, culture,
genealogy of particular ethnic groups, etc.
CAN-SK-MOOSE-JAW -- A mailing list for anyone with a genealogical
interest in the Moose Jaw Region of Saskatchewan, Canada. Topics
include general genealogical queries, heritage, history, culture,
genealogy of particular ethnic groups, etc.
CAN-SK-ST-JOSEPHS -- This list is for the discussion and sharing of
genealogical information for the St. Joseph's region of
Saskatchewan, Canada. Topics include general genealogical queries,
heritage, history, culture, genealogy of particular ethnic groups,
CAN-SK-SWIFT-CURRENT -- This list is for the discussion and sharing
of genealogical information for the Swift Current region of
Saskatchewan, Canada. Topics include general genealogical queries,
heritage, history, culture, genealogy of particular ethnic groups,
CAN-SK-WEYBURN -- This list is for the discussion and
sharing of genealogical information for Weyburn region of
Saskatchewan, Canada. Topics include general genealogical queries,
heritage, history, culture, genealogy of particular ethnic groups,

ENG-LAN-BLACKBURN -- This is a mailing list for anyone with a
genealogical interest in the borough of Blackburn with Darwen,
Lancashire, England, including the towns of Blackburn, Darwen, and
the surrounding countryside.
ENG-LAN-ROSSENDALE -- This is a mailing list for anyone with a
genealogical interest in the borough of Rossendale, Lancashire,
England, including the towns of Rawtenstall, Haslingden, and Bacup;
and the smaller towns of Whitworth, Waterfoot, Helmshore,
Crawshawbooth and Edenfield.
ENG-NTH-PETERBOROUGH -- This list is for the discussion of family
history topics regarding those living in the Soke of Peterborough,
extending to Wittering Heath between Stanford and Wandsford to the
west of Northamptonshire, Market Deeping and Crowland in
Lincolnshire, Thorney and Whittlesey in Cambridgeshire, and to
Chesterton and Yaxley in Huntingdonshire.

ITA-ABRUZZO-CHIETI -- For the discussion of genealogy, research, and
history of the Chieti Province, Abruzzo, Italy (Provincia di

NEW-ENGLAND-I -- A list covering history, culture,
and genealogy of the Irish who settled and/or lived in the New
England states of Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island,
Vermont, and New Hampshire.

SCT-HEBRIDES -- This list is for anyone interested in researching
their family history on the islands of the Hebrides off the west
coast of Scotland.

VA-FREDCO-WINCHESTER -- The focus of this list will be on all aspects
of history concerning the Independent City of Winchester, Frederick
County, Virginia.


AZ-NAGS -- This list is for the Northern Arizona Genealogical
Society. It is to be used to update members of upcoming meetings
and special notices.
BCATP-CAN -- This list is for the discussion of topics related to the
British Commonwealth Air Training Plan (BCATP) in Canada.
BLAKELY-DNA -- This list is for the discussion and sharing of
information regarding DNA testing and DNA projects for the surname
Blakely and its variants worldwide.

CAN-USA-MIGRATION -- This list is for the discussion of ancestors
who moved from Canada to the USA, or from the USA to Canada. This
includes all provinces of Canada and all states in the USA.

CARRICO-DNA -- This list is for the discussion and sharing of
information regarding DNA testing and DNA projects for the surname
Carrico and its variants worldwide.
DC-KENSINGTONFHC-NEWS -- For the distribution of the monthly
newsletter to patrons and interested persons on genealogy
information and monthly training events and upcoming seminars.
FERRILL-DNA -- This list is for the discussion and sharing of
information regarding DNA testing and DNA projects for the surname
Ferrill and its variants worldwide.

GEN-WEB-SITES -- A list on which subscribers can discuss the merits
(or otherwise) of any and all genealogical websites.

HM_CUSTOMS-EXCISE -- A list for all those interested in, who were
employed in or who have ancestors who were employed in the service
of HM Customs & Excise (UK).

MA-BOSTON-SAR -- This list is for the sending and receiving of
information of interest to the members of the Boston Chapter,
Massachusetts Society of the Sons of the American Revolution.
MACMILLAN -- This list is for the discussion and sharing of
information regarding DNA testing and DNA projects for Clan
MacMillan and its variants.
MARKHAM-DNA -- This list is for the discussion and sharing of
information regarding DNA testing and DNA projects for the surname
Markham and its variants (e.g., Marcum) worldwide.
MASON-DNA -- This list is for the discussion and sharing of
information regarding DNA testing and DNA projects for the surname
Mason and its variants (including, Meason, Marer (German), Maesen,
et al.) worldwide.
MCKEON-DNA -- This list is for the discussion and sharing of
information regarding DNA testing and DNA projects for the surname
McKeon and its variants worldwide.
RECORD-KEEPING-METHODOLOGY -- To assist researchers with storing,
filing, archiving and recording genealogical data collected by
both physical and electronic means.

SUVCW -- This list is for the discussion on and about the Sons of
Union Veterans of the Civil War including events, networking in the
SUVCW, history of the GAR, SUVCW, Union Army, and events of the
period 1860-1861.

TX-HARRIS-FTC -- The Greater Harris County Family Tree Club is a new
genealogy club that was created as a nonprofit organization
effective December 20, 2006 and located at 8039 FM 1960 Road East,
Atascocita, Texas 77346.
TX-UDC -- This list is for discussion of topics of interest to the
Texas Division United Daughters of the Confederacy.

QUAKER-BRITISH-ISLES -- Quaker ancestors and family history in the
United Kingdom and Ireland.

my thanks to the RootsWeb review Newsletter and just click here to visit the Center to subscribe or search the archive

Digitize Thousands of Brittle Books

Grant to Help Digitize Thousands of Books - The Library Today (Library of Congress):

"$2 Million Sloan Foundation Grant To Help Digitize Thousands of Books

Librarian of Congress James H. Billington today announced that the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation has awarded the Library of Congress a $2 million grant for a program to digitize thousands of public-domain works, with a major focus on at-risk 'brittle books' and U.S. history volumes.

The project, 'Digitizing American Imprints at the Library of Congress,' will include not only the scanning of volumes, but also the development of suitable page-turner display technology, capability to scan and display foldouts, and a pilot program to capture high-level metadata, such as table of contents, chapters/sections and index. Past digitization projects have shied away from brittle books because of the condition of the materials, but 'Digitizing American Imprints' intends to serve as a demonstration project of best practices for the handling and scanning of such vulnerable works.

'‘Digitizing American Imprints’ will make a major contribution to the collective body of knowledge that is accessible worldwide, further democratizing the information that is a key to functional societies and economies,' Dr. Billington said.

The Library of Congress’ proposal includes digitization of works in the following categories:

  • "Brittle books" from across the Library’s General Collection.
  • American history.
  • U.S. genealogy and regimental histories. The former includes many useful county, state and regional histories, while the latter includes histories, memoirs, diaries and other collections from the Civil War period.
  • Six collections of Rare Books including the Benjamin Franklin Collection, selections from the Katherine Golden Bitting and the Elizabeth Robins Pennell Collections of Gastronomy, a selection of first editions from the Library’s Rare Book and Special Collections Division, selections from the Confederate States of America Collection, the Henry Harrisse Collection of Columbiana, and selections from the Jean Hersholt Collection of Hans Christian Andersen.
  • Works of photography focusing on the technical aspects of photography and the artistic publications and biographies of photographers.

Digitizing American Imprints will utilize the "Scribe" scanning technology of the Open Content Alliance. Scanning is expected to begin within a few months after an initial startup period to establish logistics, staffing and resources."

Founded in 1800, the Library of Congress is the nation’s oldest federal cultural institution and the largest library in the world, with more than 134 million items in various languages, disciplines and formats. As the world’s largest repository of knowledge and creativity, the Library is a symbol of democracy and the principles on which America was founded. The Library serves the U.S. Congress and the nation, both on-site in its 21 reading rooms on Capitol Hill and through its award-winning Web site at

Use Rootsweb not Ancestry!

* There are 8,194,784 entries in the Ancestry database (3,812,744 females and 4,382,040 males) , and 9,366,786 in the Rootsweb database (4,235,715 females, 5,130,939 males, 132 others). That is a ratio of 0.875 of Ancestry to Rootsweb entries, or 1 in 8 entries that are on Rootsweb and not on Ancestry. Fascinating. Troubling.

* For San Diego County**, there are 561,375 on Ancestry and 629,816 on Rootsweb (0.891 ratio)"

read the whole blog
Genea-Musings: California Death Index - Use Rootsweb not Ancestry!: "

and Rootsweb is gratis too

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

wait for windows vista sp1

Please wait at least one year before updating any system which works well

from my email today:-

Hi Hugh,

I notice you comment about Microsoft Vista on you blog!

I "upgraded" last week and its been nothing but problems since >:o .

Microsoft suggest making a complete backup of your system before starting the upgrade. However, they should have added "but do not do this using Norton Save & Restore because this is not compatible with Windows Vista and you will not be able to access the backups!!!!".

Another Symantec product, Norton Partition Magic, is also incompatible. The Symantec site suggests that when Vista version are produced they will not be free but charged at full price!

If you intended to use your computer to send faxes then you need to purchase one of the Office versions of Vista as the Home versions do not allow faxing!

In addition to this Vista is still very buggy!!! And I'm still waiting for several hardware drivers to be released.

So your caution is probably a wise decision.

I bought a MacBook pro and installed WinXP SP2 on a virtual machine which is mostly Vista Compatable but I will stay with what I have now is a quiet blog because my new machine just keeps on trucking

Census question in Westminster

Census: 5 Feb 2007: Written answers ( "Mike Hancock (Portsmouth South, Liberal Democrat) | Hansard source

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs what assessment she has made of the completeness of archived census records.

Photo of Vera Baird Vera Baird (Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Department for Constitutional Affairs) | Hansard source

Until recently, no empirical research had been carried out to establish the precise extent of any missing sections from census records held at The National Archives.

A project is currently under way to analyse the 1861 census returns in detail and to establish the exact percentage of the returns that are missing."

Atlantic Graveyard ghosts on Rootsweb

Atlantic Graveyard January 26, 1938:
"Grisly secrets popped out of the craterlike bowls; ships' timbers; old shoes with bones of human toes rattling inside!"

WorldCat updated

WorldCat [OCLC] the Web site and search box that offers public access to the catalogs of libraries worldwide, has added new features and functionality that enhance the discovery experience and make it possible to customize the downloadable search box, search and find materials in Chinese, and link to libraries nearby via IP address location.

New features and functionality on the site will be added continuously as the service continues to progress. allows Web users to search the catalogs of more than 10,000 libraries worldwide. The site offers a downloadable search box to allow access to the world’s largest resource for discovery of materials held in libraries.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

DNA Research Questions?

soc.genealogy.methods | Google Groups

"I'm looking into doing a DNA Test (probably Y-DNA) for genealogical
purposes. I see from reading Family Tree Magazine that there are a
number of organizations who can provide the Y-DNA tests. Have
anyone out there use this test and would like to share your thought
on value of resulting information?"

I joined in this discussion 11 months ago and had an enquiry in my mail box about it just now.

Google Groups found about 2,330 hits from Mar 3, 2006 to Feb 4, 2007 for author:Hugh author:Watkins

together with the lists and private emails at about 10 a day . . . .I have no idea what the context of my remarks was.

author:Hugh author:Watkins - Google Groups search - Results 1 - 100 of about 2,760 from Mar 3, 2006 to Feb 4, 2007 for author:Hugh author:Watkins

My position is very simple, DNA research is only useful if backed by solid and complete traditional research.

You must very carefully define the question to be asked first and you may not get any useful answer.

So many of the studies look like wildy optimistic money spinners for the owners of the laboratories.

The Melungeon Mystery Solved: A Scientific Researcher's View - DNA - Why it won't work - By James S. Elder:
" My first concern was that the study be done properly. That meant testing only individuals who were universally accepted as having Melungeon heritage. If you throw non-Melungeon genes into the pool, you get non-Melungeon returns from gene testing. I began to hear reports almost immediately about individuals who I certainly question as having real Melungeon roots being sampled. Researchers and computer junkies have a term for this - GIGO - Garbage In, Garbage Out.

The more I thought about these tests, the more I realized that DNA alone can not prove Melungeon ancestry, regardless of how carefully the tested individuals are selected. There is an inherent and fatal flaw in any such test using mitochondrial or Y-chromosome DNA to trace a 'race' to another ethnic group. Additional problems face the researcher attempting to use human leukocyte antigen region (HLA) chromosome 6 testing. These are currently the three techniques used for attempting to determine ethnicity using DNA.

Studies of the HLA region have been done primarily for medical reasons. Scientific consensus is that any conclusions about race derived from such studies are difficult to assess and the resulting conclusions are highly questionable. Quite properly, none of the current or proposed Melungeon DNA tests of which I am aware use HLA test"


Fact & Fiction