Category Archives: Genealogy

Where I Am Presenting in 2020

RootsTech 2020

I will be teaching two classes at RootsTech:

  • Discovering Your Family History in Newspapers.com, Thursday 1:30pm
  • Fold3: Understanding Your Ancestor’s Place in Civil War History, Friday 3pm
    • Note: I will be introducing our new Civil War Stories in this course.

Ancestry booth (times MST):

  • Cluster Research: Thursday 2/27 6pm, Friday 2/28, noon
  • Civil War: It’s Personal: Thursday 2/27 4:30pm, Friday 1pm (also on Facebook livestream!)

Family History Institute 2020

Saturday April 4th, Wytheville, Virginia

  • Mapping out Old Mount Airy
  • From Pennsylvania to Southwest Virginia: How and Why Our Ancestors Migrated

Virginia Genealogy Society

Saturday April 18th, Library of Virginia, Richmond, Virginia

Researching Communities: The Key to Unlocking Your Ancestors’ Stories 

California Genealogical Society

Oakland Family History Center on Saturday, May 16

Finding Military Records Using Fold3

American Battlefield Trust Annual Conference

Chantilly, Virginia June 2020More to come on this one!

Slides and Spreadsheets on Cluster, Huddle, Flock at SFBAJGS

I presented to the San Francisco Bay Area Genealogy Society on Sunday, September 15th.

As promised here are My Slides from the Cluster, Huddle, Flock talk 

Here is the assignment for researching around your ancestor in the census: Census Cluster Homework

And the Example Cluster Spreadsheet

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Slides from SoCal 2019

We had a great time at SoCal Jamboree 2019! You can find links to my slides and spreadsheet examples on Slides and Presentations

Fold3 Search: Slides from RootsTech 2019

Download a PDF of my slides from Fold3 talk: PDF of Slides

For those of you who were looking for more information on WWII Veterans records:

Fire and Devastation! Reconstructing World War II Service

and

Ask Ancestry Anne: Why Can’t I Find My World War II Veterans Records?

And to learn more about ordering Union Pension records, you can learn more Civil War Records: Basic Research Sources

Thanks for coming to class!

Cluster, Huddle, Flock: Slides and Spreadsheets from RootsTech 2019

As promised here are My Slides from the Cluster, Huddle, Flock talk today.

Here is the assignment for researching around your ancestor in the census: Census Cluster Homework

And the Example Cluster Spreadsheet

RootsTech 2018: Slides and Thoughts

Funny how things sometimes turn out different than you plan.  Thursday I was supposed to give my Research Guides presentation at RootsTech 2018, but a flu bug decided he had other plans for me. 😦  Fortunately, my Ancestry colleague and friend Juliana Szucs stepped in and saved the day giving the presentation.  You can find the slides at Research Guides: Everything But the People  I am forever grateful to her.

On Friday, I managed to pull it together, and gave my Cluster Research presentation to a full room of enthusiastic conference goers! You can find my slides at Using Cluster Research to Understand Your Ancestors

Thanks to everyone who came to the lectures and many thanks to Juliana for covering for me!

I’ve also updated my Slides and Presentations page.

Note:  These are big PDF files, so give them time to download!

Creating a State Research Guide: The Basics

I’m preparing for my RootsTech talk Research Guides: Researching Everything But People.  If you are at RootsTech, the talk is at 4:30, March 1st in room 250A

I’m going to show you how to gather bits and pieces of information so that you can create a research guide about places that will remind you where to look and hopefully inspire you a bit.

First we will start with the basics and they should be the same for every state, more or less.  You will want to find links or information about:

  • State Archive
  • State Library
  • History for the State
  • State Genealogy Society
  • State Historical Society
  • State GenWeb Page
  • Ancestry Wiki
  • FamilySearch Wiki
  • Cyndi’s List
  • Ancestry Research Guide
  • State Historical Markers

Not every state will have all of these, but most will.

Replace all of these prompts above with the link and then create a blog page, a OneNote or Evernote page or a word document so that you can access it again.  You can check out Virginia  Resources, North Carolina Resources and South Carolina Resources to see what I have done.

Better Than Christmas: Pictures of Ancestors

One of the many great things about writing a blog about your ancestors, is you sometimes find family members who have something to share with you.  And every time it happens, it fills me with delight.  If you’ve been following  me since the beginning you might remember my article about the 8 Payne children who were living without their parents: How Eight Children Ended Up Living Alone In 1930

I wrote that article almost 6 years ago.  And this year, courtesy of a newly found cousin, Robert Payne, I received this:

From left to right, in order of age: Otto, Eva, Daisy, Robert, Thomas, Floyd, Jennie, Jack and Lela.

Sadly, Eva passed away two days ago at the age of 98, the last of this generation.  The expressions on their faces make me smile.  And I’ve never seen a picture of my Grandmother Jennie when she was so young.

And then Robert sent me this picture of James Robert Payne and Georgia Eva Baxter Payne, the parents of the 9 children above.

I’ve never seen any pictures of my great grandparents.  If you belong to the group of us who have very few pictures to pour over and catalog, you know how delightful and meaningful these two pictures are to me.

Some days are better than Christmas. 🙂

 

New Year, New Name, Adjusted Focus

pexels-photo-414916.jpegOver the last year or so, I’ve been changing the way I look at my family history.  If you’ve read Mulling and Pondering My Genealogy Toolkit or maybe Clusters: What Do You Need To Research? you will have an idea of my adjusted focus.

The first cluster our ancestors lived in is always the family tree and we have to start there, but we can’t end there.  Our ancestors have always lived in multiple clusters based on geography, religion, politics and more.

This next year I’m exploring and hopefully creating new tools that will help me and hopefully you gain a better understanding of who our people were.  And just to fit into my new theme, I’ve renamed my blog Cluster Genealogy. You can still  finding with it the Finding Forgotten Stories link. But I’m ready for a change — it’s time to look at our families in a different way.

Happy New Year!