Monday, May 31, 2010

Summer of Genealogy Wishes - Genealogy Societies: The Transition Balance Beam by Thomas MacEntee

Welcome to the first week of the Summer of Genealogy Wishes! To kick off the summer I am happy to present a wonderful guest post by Thomas MacEntee. If you would like to be a part of this series, just send me an email to genwishlist@gmail.com with your wishes for the genealogy community.


Without further ado, I present:

Genealogy Societies: The Transition Balance Beam by Thomas MacEntee

Anyone who sits on the board of a genealogy society these days knows what it is like to walk a balance beam: trying to attract new members and expand services by utilizing new technologies while at the same time keeping your long-time members who are rooted in tradition happy. It is not an easy task and no matter what action is taken, it seems as if some current members will up and leave and some potential members just won’t join.

But is there a way to walk that balance beam and handle the transition from costly and outdated practices to more efficient and updated ones while at the same time minimizing the number of unhappy members, both new and old?

Having worked with various genealogy societies as well as sitting on the governing board of a state genealogy society, here is a five step plan that can get your board members walking that balance beam without falling off.

Step One: Perform a Needs Assessment

The society needs to do a serious “self-check” and determine the following:

  • What works and what doesn’t?
  • What are the most expensive components of membership?
  • Do the society goals include expanding membership? Adding new services?

But this isn’t limited to services - for each of these items under consideration, the society must estimate how changes will impact current and potential new members.

  • If the newsletter is no longer printed but only available online, will we lose members?
  • If we don’t allow folks to sign-up and pay for membership online, will potential members not join?

Step Two: Think Multiple Converging Balance Beams

Many societies that undertake a plan to transition to less expensive and more efficient services, often fail because of the “all or nothing” approach. They eliminate instead of transitioning and offering dual tracks. Envision a balance beam that splits into two, then converges back to one beam.

An example: offer a lower-rate “e-membership” that allows people to join and purchase a membership online and receive all society communication via email. This does not mean raising the current price point for a traditional membership, but it gives the society a chance to see how attractive this alternative membership format is to potential members. After six months to a year, the society can then decide to switch or not switch depending upon the results.

Step Three: Communicate, Communicate, Communicate

Change is never easy. Most of us know this from trying to make changes in our own personal lives. Habits are hard to break and many of us don’t like stepping out of our comfort zone. And if we do need to make changes, we like to do them on our own. We don’t like to be told what we’ll have to change and when!

Communication - frequent and clear - is the key to keeping as many parties involved as possible during any transition.

  • Don’t just state the change being made; be clear as to why, the impact on the society as well as on its members.
  • Realize that no matter how many times you mention a pending change, someone will act as if this is the first time they’ve heard of it and how the society will be much worse off for the change.
  • Send out surveys to your current membership putting forth different scenarios (e-newsletter only, e-newsletter for free with printed newsletter for a small fee, etc.) and get opinions.
  • Be clear that changes are being considered not merely to “keep up with the times” but to ensure the future of the society.

Step Four: Commit to an Action Plan

A society needs to stick to its guns when putting changes into effect:

  • Don’t let emotional reactions of long-time members or the influence of a large financial contributor derail your plan.
  • You still need to listen to the concerns of the membership and just don’t do so as a means of “going through the motions.”
  • Write down the issues raised. You will need to include them later when you track the results of the changes. The results will either support the concerns raised by the membership or will bear out and be supportive of the changes made.

Step Five: Track the Results

After three months, go back and survey your long-time members and get their thoughts on the changes. Continue to do so every three months or as major changes are made. Publish the results on your blog or website and in your newsletter.

Very often when results are seen in writing, especially when they support the decision to institute changes, the vocal opponents suddenly get laryngitis.

Conclusion

While the genealogy and family history fields continue to expand thanks to recent media exposure via Faces of America, The Generations Project and Who Do You Think You Are?, genealogy societies must walk a balance beam in order to meet the needs of their members both current and future.

On one side of the beam are the loyal and supportive long-time members with valuable experience in the field yet lacking in an understanding of current technologies such as social media. On the other side are new members at ease with social media and technology who want to learn as much as possible about genealogy yet are frustrated at what they see as outdated and inefficient practices.

The walk down that beam should not be predicated on keeping as many people as possible happy. The walk should be one which advances the mission of the society and embraces new technologies while still respecting tradition and helping members make the transition. Such a walk is possible with careful planning, committed execution, and thoughtful listening.

© 2010, copyright Thomas MacEntee

* * *

Thomas MacEntee is a genealogist specializing in the use of technology and social media to improve genealogical research and as a means of interacting with others in the family history community. Utilizing over 25 years of experience in the information technology field, through his business High-Definition Genealogy, Thomas writes and lectures on the many ways in which blogs, Facebook and Twitter can be leveraged to add new dimensions to the genealogy experience. As the creator of GeneaBloggers.com he has organized and engaged a community of over 1,000 bloggers to document their own journeys in the search for ancestors.

May Genealogy Goals Reviewed

I gave myself a light set of genealogy goals this month to give myself a little break before I gear up for a summer filled with genealogy. Let's see how I did:

For May I wanted to:
  • Write an ancestor profile on Willard Theodore BASCOM. (Part of 6 profiles for the year goal.) - I wrote a 3 part series on Willard aka "Dora's" life. Check out His Childhood, His Marriage and Children and His Final Years.
  • Label 10 digital photos a day as part of Brooke's challenge at Know Your Story.net. Need to label those WWII photos from my grandfather so that I can find them easier. I like Brooke's challenge because I think I can manage 10 images a day instead of just saying that I need work on this. - I didn't label 10 images a day, but most days I labeled well over 10. I was able to label all of my grandfather's WWII photos, finally add my wedding photos to my hard drive and label those and label most of the other photos that were floating around my computer. Thanks to Brooke for finally getting me to do this task.
  • Order FHL films for Ohio county, Indiana wills. (This summer is Indiana probate records summer!) - I didn't do this. But that's okay because it will still be Indiana Probate summer for me and I start ordering the films this week.
This month I also decided to launch a blog series called "Summer of Genealogy Wishes." Hopefully you will see many posts by guest bloggers detailing their wishes for the genealogy community. The first post will be coming later this morning, so don't miss it!

Tomorrow I will post my summer goals.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Follow Friday - Clue Wagon

This week for Follow Friday I take you to Kerry Scott's blog Clue Wagon. Kerry's blog includes lots of thought provoking posts.

Check out Kerry's posts about social networking and genealogy:
What's The Deal With Not Following Back on Twitter? - I'm one of those people who don't think you have to follow everyone back, but she does make a great case about giving people a chance that I may start to incorporate into my Twitter life.
Can Facebook Be A Research Tool?

Read about Kerry's discovery and research into an unclaimed person in her family tree in her posts Here's One Place You Don't Want To Find Your Family and About That Guy In The Morgue.

Some of her other posts to take a look at are:
What Was The Census-Taker Thinking? Now We Know.
Bringing Them Into The Light
Organizing Your Family Photos - Part One, Part Two, Part 3

I hope you will take the time to read through some of Kerry's blog postings and add it to your lists of genealogy blogs to read.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

52 Weeks to Better Genealogy - Week 21 - State Archives

Challenge 21 of 52 Weeks to Better Genealogy brought to by Amy Coffin is:

Examine the website of your state or provincial archives. Take some time to push all the buttons and click all the links. What did you find? Bloggers can write about the site’s high points and share the information with their readers.

I examined the Indiana State Archives. I really wish that they had a blog to keep up on their news and digitization progress. But I did find that you can sign up to receive an email when they have news. At least I can stay updated in some way without having to check back all the time. I learned that they will be adding Hoosier civil war records (so maybe I can find more about Robert Bruce Bascom since NARA lost his pension file).

I have never been to the Indiana State Archives (even though I should take a trip to Indianapolis at some point) and was happy to read about some of their collections. They have a genealogy page, but it's nothing special. If you only looked at the genealogy page, you would miss lots of good stuff at the archives.

Indiana is currently working on digitizing some records and putting them online in their digital archives. There is not very much in the digital archive. I only found indexes and not online images in my searches. But there were places where you would be able to click on an image or order it online (but I never saw it working). There is definite potential here, but nothing for my own research yet. I'll look forward to updates to the site.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The Life of Willard Theodore Bascom - The Final Years

After looking at the childhood and marriage of Willard Theodore Bascom, we close with the final years of his life.

During the 1920s, Willard, Susan and the families of their sons moved to Butler county, Ohio. It was there that Susan died on 16 Jan 1927. Susan's apron caught on fire while cooking and she died from the shock from the burns.
Ohio, Death certificates, file no. 408, Susie Bascom, 16 January 1927; digital images, Family Search, FamilySearch (http://pilot.familysearch.org : accessed 2 February 2010); citing Ohio Department of Health records.

In 1930, Willard lived with his son George's family in St. Clair, Butler county, Ohio. Willard's occupation is listed as laborer - odd jobs.
1930 U.S. census, Butler county, Ohio, Population schedule, St. Clair township, enumeration district 9-51, sheet 17B, dwelling 396, family 396, Household of George Bascom; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com: accessed 2 Feb 2010), citing National Archives microfilm publication T626.

By 1933, Willard and one or both of his sons owned a grocery business.
"Cash and Carry," Hamilton (Ohio) Daily News, 27 Oct 1933, Willard T Bascom and Son advertisement; online images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 2 February 2010), Hamilton Daily News (Hamilton, Ohio).

Willard died in Hamilton, Butler county, Ohio on 30 Mar 1934 from meningitis and albuminuria.
Ohio, Death certificates, file no. 14110, Willard T Bascom, 30 March 1934; digital images, Family Search, FamilySearch (http://pilot.familysearch.org : accessed 2 February 2010); citing Ohio Department of Health records.

"Willard Bascom Taken By Death," Hamilton (Ohio) Daily News, 30 March 1934, death of Willard T Bascom on 30 Mar 1934; online images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 2 February 2010), Hamilton Daily News (Hamilton, Ohio).

Both Willard were buried in Bovard Cemetery in Cotton township, Switzerland county, Indiana. After Willard's death, his sons would continue in the grocery business moving to Florida and then settling in Cincinnati.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday: Ida S ECK


Immaculate Conception Cemetery
Bastress, Lycoming county, Pennsylvania

Ida S. ECK
1889-1949

The Life of Willard Theodore Bascom - His Marriage and Children

Yesterday we looked at the childhood of Willard Theodore Bascom. Now we continue the looking at his life after his marriage.

In May 1891, Willard (aka Dora) married Susan Sanders in May of 1891 in Switzerland county, Indiana.
"Aaron," community news, The Vevay (Indiana) Reveille, 18 June 1891, marriage of Dora Bascom and Sanders; digital images, Vevay Newspapers (http://www.switzerland.k12.in.us/hs_vevaynewspapers.php : accessed 25 March 2010), Vevay Newspapers.

In March of 1895, Willard's hands were burned while trying to save his father's store.
"Aaron," community news, The Vevay (Indiana) Reveille, 14 Mar 1895, Dora Bascom accident; digital images, Vevay Newspapers (http://www.switzerland.k12.in.us/hs_vevaynewspapers.php : accessed 25 March 2010), Vevay Newspapers.

Susan and Willard's son, Dewey Francis BASCOM was born on 6 May 1898 in Dillsboro, Dearborn county, Indiana, according to his SS-5.

In 1900, Willard and Susan lived in Cass township, Ohio county, Indiana. Willard was a farm laborer. Susan states that she had two children and one is still living. The other child is unknown.
1900 U.S. census, Ohio county, Indiana, Population, Cass township, enumeration district 112, sheet 2A, dwelling 35, family 35, Household of Willard Bascom; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com: accessed 1 Feb 2010), citing National Archives microfilm publication T623.

Willard and Susan had another son, George Robert Bascom, on 14 Jun 1902 in Aberdeen, Ohio county, Indiana.

In 1910, the family lived in Center township, Dearborn county, Indiana. Willard worked as a gardener.
1910 U.S. census, Dearborn county, Indiana, Population, Center township, enumeration district 38, sheet 12A, dwelling 246, family 252, Household of Willard T Bascom; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com: accessed 1 Feb 2010), citing National Archives microfilm publication T624.

In 1920, the family lived in Aurora, Dearborn county, Indiana. Willard was listed as a laborer.
1920 U.S. census, Dearborn county, Indiana, Population schedule, Aurora, ward 2, enumeration district 35, sheet 2B, dwelling 41, family 51, Household of W T Bascom; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com: accessed 2 Feb 2010), citing National Archives microfilm publication T625.

Next we look at Willard's final years.

Monday, May 24, 2010

The Life of Willard Theodore Bascom - His Childhood


Willard Theodore Bascom was born 4 January 1868 in Rising Sun, Ohio county, Indiana. He was the oldest child and only son of Robert Bruce Bascom and Olive Bovard.

Willard's father, Robert Bruce Bascom, had first married Margaret Littlefield on 1 March 1863 in Switzerland county, Indiana. To them was born one son, Edward Harry Bascom on 6 March 1864. Margaret died on 15 Mar 1866. On 4 November 1866, Robert Bruce married Olive Bovard. Robert Bruce and Olive had 8 more children after Willard, all daughters. They were Alice Luella, Catherine, Jessie Florence, Josephine, Grace Gertrude, Charlotte, and twins Martha and Mary.

Willard was found in his parents' household in the 1870 census in Cass township, Ohio county, Indiana.
1870 U.S. census, Ohio county, Indiana, Population, Cass township, enumeration district , page 3, dwelling 25, family 25, Household of Robert Bascom; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com: accessed 10 Feb 2010), citing National Archives microfilm publication M593.

In 1880, the family remained in Cass township but had grown much larger.
1880 U.S. census, Ohio county, Indiana, Population, Cass township, enumeration district 146, 3, dwelling 53, family 56, Household of R B Bascom; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com: accessed 20 Aug 2009), citing National Archives microfilm publication T9.

Next we look at Willard's marriage and children.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Follow Friday - Free Genealogy Resources Blog

This week's Follow Friday recommendations is a "new to me this week" blog. Dee left a comment on my blog this week and when I clicked on her Blogger profile, I found her blog and its wonderful resources. It is called Free Genealogy Resources and each post contains a great free tool for helping you find your ancestors.

Here is just a sampling of the free sites she has written about:
Arizona Resource - for Arizona death certificates
Irish Resource
Another Massachusetts Resource
Resource of Slavery in Virginia

Dee has also started a series on social networking and genealogy. Her first post covers Facebook and I look forward to more in the future.

Check out her blog, save some money, and find new research avenues!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

52 Weeks to Better Genealogy - Week 20 - Land Records

Challenge 20 of 52 Weeks to Better Genealogy written by Amy Coffin is:

Play with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Government Land Office (GLO) Federal Land Records web page. This is a great resource. Your task this week is to explore the land patents and land surveys sections. Input some search terms and see what pops up. Don’t be afraid to click links and see what happens. You’ll be surprised by what you find. Genealogy blog authors can share what they find from this site on their blogs.

My ancestors barely made it to Indiana. They were so close to the Ohio border that their land records are listed in Ohio. This is a good reminder to read the FAQs when using a new database. The FAQ page for the BLM states that part of southeast Indiana is listed in the Ohio records. Why they can't list it as Indiana when the patents state that the land was in Indiana is beyond me.

One of the things that I need to do with these land patents is put my ancestors' properties on a map. I guess one of these days I will get around to that.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Why My Husband's Genealogy Is So Unfair!

Recently, I started working on my husband's family tree. And it is soooo not fair! His genealogy is so much easier than mine.

His family lived in Toledo, Ohio for many generations. Before moving to the city, most of them lived somewhere else in Ohio. I have been amazed by how many details about his family I have found through the Ohio death certificates on FamilySearch Record Search. I'm from Ohio too, but my family was barely ever in Ohio and when they were they would move counties each generation. Adding obituaries from the Toledo Blade on Google's News Archive and I have even more to help me find his ancestors. Add to this the fact that I have barely touched the Toledo city directories available on Footnote and his genealogy has come together easily.

It's not like my genealogy where most of the places where my ancestors lived have little to no online records. It's not like my family tree where I have way too many secondary sources. I have to work to get to the good stuff in my family's history. It's just not fair.

Even when his family immigrates, I have had luck. One of his lines came from Sussex, England and I easily found their passenger list and census records in England. I can barely find passenger lists for my family when someone else tells me the name of the ship they used to travel across the ocean!

Plus his family has jobs! One of the reasons that Valentine BLITZ is my favorite ancestor in my own family tree is that he was a stone mason, not a farmer like everyone else. My husband's family lived in the city and had all sorts of interesting careers (interesting = not farmer).

Even when I get stuck on one of his lines I can figure out a way to get unstuck. This week I was missing one set of great great grandparents from his tree. It bothered me because by adding their information I would "finish" his family tree (well actually just the view in Roots Magic starting with him would be filled). I go on FamilySearch Record Search to their Ohio marriage collection and find the marriage of his great grandparents that give me the parents' names that I was missing. I would like to add that not one of MY ancestors marriages are in this database. And even though it is just a transcription of the record, it tells me exactly where to go to find it in the FHL microfilm.

And the thing that irks me the most about his tree is that it is so well sourced. Even though I learned fast doing my own genealogy, I didn't learn fast enough to get all my sources just right. And his research is all organized from the start because I found a system that worked for me (after 6 months of fixing my old system).

Maybe it's all that I have learned or where his ancestors lived or something else. But I still think it's unfair!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday: Henry and Mary ECK

Immaculate Conception Cemetery
Bastress, Lycoming county, Pennsylvania

Henry W ECK
1859-1923
Mary M. His Wife
1866-1941

Monday, May 17, 2010

Summer of Genealogy Wishes - Coming in Two Weeks

Last week I announced one of my plans for the blog this summer. The Summer of Genealogy Wishes will be a series of posts by guest bloggers and me discussing some of the wishes that we have for the genealogy community.

The series will run on Mondays from Memorial Day until (hopefully) Labor Day. As of right now, the series will be every other week. I'd love to do it weekly, but we will have to see how well it is received. I am still looking for guest bloggers and will continue to seek new posts throughout the summer.

I am excited about the wonderful bloggers who have already committed to writing a guest post (and some have already sent theirs to me!) I can't wait to share their ideas about genealogy societies, education, photography and more.

If you would like to write a guest post for the "Summer of Genealogy Wishes", please send your wish to genwishlist@gmail.com. (I would be happy to write a guest post in return for anyone willing to participate in my series. Just let me know.)

Don't miss the first guest post on May 31st!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Follow Friday - FGS Conference News Blog

This week for Follow Friday I recommend you check out the FGS Conference News Blog.

I am happy to say that I will be attending the FGS 2010 conference in Knoxville, Tennessee in August. I am really excited to be going to my first national conference!

Many other societies are using blogs to get out the message about their conferences and I would love to see even more of these. Usually the blogs just make me jealous that I can't attend, but finally I will get to participate in many of the interesting events at the FGS conference.

The conference blog is a great way to stay on top of what will be happening at the conference. It reminds you about deadlines for registration, special events at the conference, different lecture tracks, accommodations, other places to visit, and more

Don't forget that the deadline for early bird registration is June 1st. Don't miss out on the $50 savings if you are planning to attend!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

52 Weeks to Better Genealogy - Week 19 - Military Records

Challenge 19 of 52 Weeks to Better Genealogy by Amy Coffin is:

Examine the “Genealogy and Military Records” page on the National Archives page. (Non-U.S. folks: examine the military records information from your country’s national archives.) Click the links and read everything you can. If you’ve ordered a military file before, read this page again and refresh you memory so you can help others. Authors of genealogy blogs can write about records they’ve received, comment on the National Archives page, or ask questions of their readers via their blog.


The National Archives page about military records is excellent and I recommend that everyone take a look at it if you have any military ancestors in your family tree.

I have used the online ordering available at the bottom of this page to order 2 civil war pension files for my ancestors. One, for Robert Bruce BASCOM, is missing. Somehow NARA has misplaced it. Apparently they left a note in the right place that they should let me know if they ever find it. Yippee! The other file I ordered was for Francis Marion WASHBURN. That one I received as a PDF on a CD. I chose the PDF option because I didn't want to have to scan the entire file when someone else would do it for me.

While we are on the topic of military records from NARA, Michael John Neill wrote a blog post recently about the civil war pension payment cards. The Allen County Public Library had their microfilms of this record set scanned and they are available at Internet Archive. Michael's post explains how to get to find your ancestors in these records.

I was able to find the payment cards for Robert Bruce BASCOM's widow, Olive BOVARD. So at least I have something about his pension now.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday: Harry J ECK

Immaculate Conception Cemetery
Bastress, Lycoming county, Pennsylvania

Harry J. ECK
1899-1972

Monday, May 10, 2010

Summer of Genealogy Wishes - Guest Bloggers Wanted

This summer I plan on doing a blog post each week that features one thing the genealogy community wants and needs in order to do better research. I'm calling it The Summer of Genealogy Wishes. But I am going to need your help.

When I started this blog, I intended to use it as a place to voice what I wanted for my own genealogy. Some months I have a lot to say and others not so much. What I would like to do this summer is get back to discussing what our genealogy wishes are.

Here's where I need your assistance. I would like to have one guest blogger a week discuss their own genealogy wishes. I'd love to see topics on education, societies, technology, social networking, lecture ideas and techniques, databases, web sites, and anything else you can desire for the genealogy world. Although we all have a genealogy wish list of bricks walls we want broken and burned records we want restored, that is not what I am looking for in this series. (Maybe we will do that series next!) I'd like to focus this series on things that we want to help us do better research.

If you would like to volunteer to write a guest post on your genealogy wishes, please send me an email to genwishlist@gmail.com. Let me know what topic or topics you would be interested in discussing. I would like to see a wide variety of topics (I know we all don't want to read the same things over and over again.) I'll let you know when I would like to publish your piece and which of your topics I would like you to use.

I encourage everyone to consider writing a guest post. The success of this series will depend on all of you. Depending on how many people are willing to write a piece the series may be once a month this summer or every week to the end of the year. I hope to give everyone a chance to voice their genealogy desires.

This summer I hope we can express our genealogy wishes and find ways to make them a reality!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

SNGF - Matrilineal Line

This week's Saturday Night Genealogy Fun created by Randy Seaver is:

1) List your matrilineal line - your mother, her mother, etc. back to the first identifiable mother. Note: this line is how your mitochondrial DNA was passed to you!

2) Tell us if you have had your mitochondrial DNA tested, and if so, which Haplogroup you are in.

3) Post your responses on your own blog post, in Comments to this blog post, or in a Note or status line on Facebook.

Here is my maternal line:

1 - Me
2 - My Mom
3 - My Grandma
4. Alice Susan HILLIS (1 Apr 1896 - 31 Jul 1979). Married Dewey Francis BASCOM.
5. Mary Susan WASHBURN (28 Sep 1866 - 19 Apr 1919). Married George E HILLIS.
6. Lovina MATTHEWS (14 Mar 1840 - 19 Dec 1883). Married Francis Marion WASHBURN.
7. Susan ROATH (23 Jun 1818 - 23 Jun 1874). Married Thomas Russell MATTHEWS.

I don't know anything about Susan's parents, so my line stops there.

I have not done a DNA test to find my mitochondrial haplogroup. (But I do have a DNA test sitting on my kitchen counter waiting to be used!)

Thanks Randy for another great SNFG!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Follow Friday - Know Your Story.Net

This week's Follow Friday Recommendation is for Brooke's blog Know Your Story.Net. Her blog description says it all:

A blog mostly about preservation of one's past, present and future through photos...but I'm a mom of two, so there may be some rambling as well :)

Brooke is finally make me label my digital photos that I have put on my monthly to do lists and just never felt like doing. She gave herself a simple challenge that I am happy to also be sharing with her. Her challenge is to organize 10 photos every day for the month of May. You can read about her progress on her blog each day and see what photos she found in the bottom of her photo bin.

Check out some of her other recent posts:
The effects WDYTYA has had on me
How do you share your photos and videos with family and friends?
I had a photo scare today
Dying to know what this old home's story is!

Check out Brooke's blog and think about taking up her photo organization challenge.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

52 Weeks to Better Genealogy - Week 18 - Social Networking

I can't believe we are on Week 18 of Amy Coffin's wonderfully written 52 Weeks to Better Genealogy series. This week's challenge is:

Dip your toe in the social networking pool. Genealogists are some of the friendliest people on the block. Networking with them by using “social” web sites will help your research and provide you with new friends. If you’ve never used social networking tools, this Social Networking in Plain English video by Common Craft is a good place to start. Picture the ways you can use social networking to meet and collaborate with other genealogists. Some of the more popular social networking sites are Facebook, Twitter and even Linked-In (though this site is more business-like in its purpose). You do not have to join these sites if you do not feel comfortable doing so, but you should at least know they exist and that they can benefit genealogy research. Those that are well-versed in social networking can refer others to the video. Bloggers are encouraged to discuss how they use various social networking sites in their own research.

After 3 weeks of Amy giving me tasks that I had put off, we finally come to an easy week. I love social networking with genealogists. I love not doing my research in a hole. I love instantly sharing with other what I have been researching and when I am doing a genealogy happy dance.

Facebook allows me to share my blog with all of my friends (not just my genealogy buddies). It surprises me when someone at work mentions that they read it. Hopefully I can get more people interested in their own genealogy.

I use Twitter primarily for genealogy. I link to my newest blog posts and tell everyone what I am working on that day. I love the conversation that is always taking place between genealogists there. It also allows me to find new genealogy blogs to read.

I signed up for Linked In when I renamed this blog. But I really haven't used it. I'm sure that it will come in handy someday.

Please feel free to join me on these social networking sites. Below are links to all my pages. Hope to see you there!
Facebook - Tina Eiswerth Lyons
Twitter - @genwishlist
LinkedIn - Tina Lyons

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday: Francis and Joseph ECK

Immaculate Conception Cemetery
Bastress, Lycoming county, Pennsylvania

ECK
Francis-Joseph
1920
Children of H.A. & M.B. ECK

Saturday, May 1, 2010

May Shout Outs

I'd like to thank everyone who commented on my blog in April. It's nice to know that you are all out there and you add so much to this blog.

This list is inspired by Apple from Apple's Tree who started doing shout outs in February. In order to be included on this list, you must have a genealogy blog and it must be linked to your comment.

Brenda from Journey to the Past
Granny Pam from Granny's Genealogy
Wendy from New England Genealogy
Tracy from The Pieces of My Past
Amy from We Tree
Thomas from Geneabloggers
Betty from Betty's Boneyard Genealogy Blog
Barbara from Life From The Roots
Lori from Genealogy and Me
Terri from Southwest Arkie
Jo from A Rootdigger
Jo from Those Who Went Before
Michelle from The Turning of Generations
Sarah from Geneapprentice
Kathleen from a3Genealogy
Sheri from The Educated Genealogist
Margie from The Bent Branches of My Family Tree
Joanne from Keeper of the Records
Olive's Granddaughter from Grandma's Stitches
Lisa from The Faces of My Family
Greta from Greta's Genealogy Bog
Deci from Wild Rhododendrons - A Family History
Linda from Flipside
Mary from me and my ancestors
Kim from Ancestors of Mine from Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky & Beyond
Sharon from Kindred Footprints
Kerry from Clue Wagon
Linda from Documenting the Details
TennLady from Gene Notes
Jama from Saturday's Child

Thanks again everyone!

May Genealogy Goals

I am so ready for summer. But first I have to get through May. May is usually a busy work month for me, so I am going to make just a few genealogy goals this month.

For May I want to:
  • Write an ancestor profile on Willard Theodore BASCOM. (Part of 6 profiles for the year goal.)
  • Label 10 digital photos a day as part of Brooke's challenge at Know Your Story.net. Need to label those WWII photos from my grandfather so that I can find them easier. I like Brooke's challenge because I think I can manage 10 images a day instead of just saying that I need work on this.
  • Order FHL films for Ohio county, Indiana wills. (This summer is Indiana probate records summer!)
What are your goals for the month? Good luck!