Sunday, October 31, 2010

52 Weeks To a Better Genealogy #44 Giving Back

Soon after I stared on my genealogy I also started to help others, I liked indexing, and did a lot of indexes, I worked as a gene helper at the library, I did lookups for people years before the Random Acts of Genealogical Kindness started. In 1998 I got the chance to do lookups for people that sent queries to Eastern Washington Genealogical Society, and a few years later our county auditor contacted EWGS looking for a genealogist to help them with genealogical queries, so for the last 5 or 6 years I answered all genealogical queries that came to the county auditor also. The county auditor had all the Spokane county marriages from #1 back in 1880 to the present, but since the 1970s they have done all those records on computers and those were easily checked by the staff so I never did those lookups, but before then all the records were in huge books in the archives. The auditor also had early birth and death records from 1891 till July of 1907 when the state took over recording those records. The auditors archives also had all the land records for Spokane county. Notice I said "had" and they still have copies of all those records on microfilm, but the actual records have been transferred to the Washington State Archives Eastern Region at Cheney, Washington which also houses the worlds first Digital Archives. Today most of those records are online so I have not done any lookups at the auditors archives in quite a while. Before the digital archives opened, they were interested in indexes from any genealogical society in the state, and I had several old DOS indexes I sent them, and those were part of the first indexes that went live when the Washington State Digital Archives opened. The archives has always encouraged volunteers, many from EWGS have went to Cheney to scan and index records, others like me have been indexing at home, at first they sent us about 10 pages of some records we indexed them and sent them back. (That project is still going on.) A little over a year ago they added a split screen indexing you can do online, on the right is the fields to fill in and on the left is the scan of the actual record. I have been digitizing the 1890 Spokane Polk City Directory, and for a change I have been indexing Pierce County Marriage records. Sam Reed the Washington State Secretary of State is the head of the Washington State Library and also all of the Washington State Archives, and he has always appreciated the volunteers that have helped put so many records online, and has given a volunteer recognition dinner almost every year, they missed this year due to budget cuts. I have 6 or 7 of his volunteer award certificates, thanks Sam. To volunteer to help index Washington State records contact Terri Huntley and she will send you all the information necessary to start. When ever I see her name I think of the old NBC news anchors Huntley and Brinkley, guess that dates me a little.
Since I spend so much time at the library, when an opening for a new member of the library board, I applied, and was one of three nominees sent to the mayor, but did not get appointed. I have another chance for next year as there will be another opening then.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Wordless Wednesday Scene at Grand Coulee Dam

Another picture from my great aunt Latisha Vanderpool's photo album.

Scene at Grand Coulee Dam September 1941

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Saturday Night Fun Common Birthday

Hey there, Genealogy Jedis - it's Saturday Night - time for more Genealogy Fun!

Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to:

1) Is there a person in your genealogy database that has the same birth date that you do? If so, tell us about him or her - what do you know, and how is s/he related to you?

2) For bonus points, how did you determine this? What feature or process did you use in your software to work this problem out? I think the Calendar feature probably does it, but perhaps you have a trick to make this work outside of the calendar function.

Well I used the calendar feature of Ancestor Quest and found four others that have the same birthday as me June 14 (Flag Day).
Brandon Donald Gay a second cousin twice removed
Pamela Link a second cousin once removed
Kathy Olson a second cousin once removed
Fred Stanfield a husband of my first cousin once removed and not related to me at all.
I have met Kathy and Pamela at one or more of our Hansen reunions, but don't think I have met Brandon or Fred.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Wordless Wednesday Grand Coulee Dam

Another picture from my great aunt Latisha Vanderpool's photo album.

Me, Cleo and Van at Grand Coulee Dam Sept. 1941

Me is Latisha, Cleo is my grandmother Cleo (Travis) Kelly, and Van is Charles Vanderpool, Cleo's uncle and Latisha's husband.

Tombstone Tuesday Roy William Travis

Roy William Travis 1923-1975

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Saturday Night Fun Who Do You Blame?

Hey geneaphiles - it's Saturday Night, time for more Genealogy Fun for all Genea-Musing readers.

Your mission, should you decide to accept it (and we need more of you to do this, otherwise it may end...), is to:

1) Read Brenda Joyce Jerome's post Who or What Do You Blame? on the Western Kentucky Genealogy blog. She asks these questions:

* Can you identify person or event that started you on this search for family information?

* Did you pick up researching where a relative had left off?

* Did your interest stem from your child's school project on genealogy?

* If you have been researching many years, it may be hard to pinpoint one reason for this journey.

Well it is pretty easy, my sister Jacque decided we needed to have a Hansen family reunion and asked all our cousins to send us addresses of any Hansen relatives they knew. We sent out a letter asking if any on this group would be interested in a reunion? Almost everyone said yes, and one lady Lorraine Erickson (a Family History Center volunteer) sent us some group sheets on our family and some blank ones to put in the next mailing, so we did and set a date. We got back 350 filled in group sheets, which I still have, but like all novice genealogists I did not label who sent which group sheet, so I have little or no sources for the first 500+ names in my genealogy database. So in 1990 we had the first of several Hansen reunions. Great fun, and after it was over we wanted to learn more on our family so Jacque & I took a beginning genealogy class at our community college evening class and so I was able to extend the research Lorraine Erickson had done back 4 or 5 more generations and we also found 5 more brothers and sisters for the five Hansen's that came from Denmark to Austin, Minnesota in the 1880s and 1890s.

Never had any genealogy classes or assignments in school.

Friday, October 15, 2010

52 Weeks to Better Genealogy Rootsweb Message Boards

I have not done a lot of these posts, due to being rather busy for some of them, but this one is one I know a lot about. In the mid 1990s I found the mail lists at RootsWeb and soon after the message boards. I became a mail list owner and my first list was for people on Prodigy that was closing to have a mail list for the genealogists to get together on. Soon after that I got my first county mail list, Whitman County Washington, and I still administer that list today. I also have 6 other mail lists today and several are gatewayed to the corresponding message board. Gatewaying means that posts on the message boards are copied by RootsWeb to the mail list so more people get to read the message board post and hopefully they will find someone to respond. Message boards today also have the ability for you to attach a file, so you can attach an obit, or a picture. Note the attached file will not get sent to the mail list, but you get a note that it is there and can click on the link to see it.
Are there good posts? Are there bad posts? Sure, just be sure to let people know the specifics, and if possible a clue as to when you are looking for the information. Did they get married in 1890 or 1990?, a lot of searching could be eliminated with a simple clue.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Wordless Wednesday Passenger Boat Grand Coulee Dam

Another picture from my great aunt Latisha Vanderpool's photo album.

Passenger Boat Grand Coulee Dam September 1941

Tombstone Tuesday Martha Lucille Travis

Martha Lucille Travis 1923-1989

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Saturday Night Fun I Like It

Hey genea-philes, it's Saturday Night - time for more Genealogy Fun!!!

Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to:

1) A Facebook meme for women went viral this week - the "I Like It" meme which garnered responses like "I Like It ... On the Couch" or "I Like it ... on the Table." The subject was "purse" - where to put their purse. The mind boggled for awhile with some of the responses from supposedly proper genealogy ladies.

2) Please write an "I Like To Do It" post where "It" = "genealogy research" someplace and why.

I used to like researching in the auditors archives in the Spokane Courthouse, it was so quiet and peaceful, but they needed more room for courtrooms, so they have moved those records to the Washington State Digital archives and most of them are online today. So now my favorite place is the Genealogy Section of the Spokane Public Library. It always amazes me what you can find on people that lived in Spokane at one time.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Wordless Wednesday Yellowstone Elk

Another picture from my great Aunt Latisha Vanderpool's photo album. This is the last one from Yellowstone Park.

Elk Yellowstone Park 1941

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Saturday, October 2, 2010

EWGS October 2010 Workshop Day 2

Day two started out early and I was really looking forward to Thomas MacEntees first and last sessions today. The first session was Facebook for Genealogists, and Thomas went over Setting up a Facebook account, a Facebook profile, inviting friends and accepting friends, configuring Facebook account settings, and Facebook Privacy settings, and finally Facebook Best practices.

The second session was on Becoming a Genealogy Blog user, what is a blog, how can it help my genealogical research, will it help my writing and finding out about new developments in the genealogical world. Since I already have a blog and read close to 170 blogs on Google reader daily this session was really a review for me.

Lunch was next and a good box lunch was ordered and delivered on time and we had an hour to eat and network before the afternoon session started.

The session after lunch was Build a Genealogy Blog, and that was a review for me also, but Thomas did a good job explaining how to start your own blog on Blogger and how to set it up the way you want it to look. The syllabus on this section is massive, so setting up your own blog step by step is shown for Blogger and WordPress.

The Last session was on Google Docs for Beginners. What is Google Docs, Google Docs vs Microsoft Office, setting up a Google Docs Account. This was the second session I was really looking forward to seeing. Thomas went through explaining the document types, how to create a document, how to upload a document to Google docs, how to use folders and how to share documents and Google docs settings. This is the cloud computing we have all been hearing about.

Saturday Night Fun Best Genealogy Advice I Ever Got

Calling all Genea-Musings readers - it's Saturday Night, time for more Genealogy Fun!!

Are you ready? Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to:

1) Leah over at The Internet Genealogist blog, wrote The Best Genealogy Advice I Ever Got Was earlier this week. I thought that it would be a good challenge for SNGF.

2) Tell us what genealogy advice you received that helped you improve your understanding, knowledge and skills in genealogy research.

Well I can think of two people that gave me some very good genealogical advice. I think the first was to join the genealogical bulletin board on Prodigy. Now I know few people even remember the Prodigy bulletin boards, but they were an exciting place for a very newby genealogist to learn about researching my ancestors, and I read and read all the posts that interested me, and later on became a mem rep (member representative) and hosted chats every other Tuesday on general computer and Danish research. I also did some easy lookups for people on Prodigy in the local newspapers, and that led to me doing lookups for EWGS.
The second best advice was a list of speakers to listen to at my first National Genealogical conference. A friend gave me that list as I headed off for my first national genealogical conference. I can not remember if it was NGS or FGS, but I had picked out about 6 classes I wanted to go to, but was undecided on the rest so my friends list was much appreciated. She said even if it was not in my line or even close do not miss these speakers. The only one I can remember now is Elizabeth S. Mills and she was correct you do not want to miss Elizabeth if you go to a conference and she is one of the speakers.

Friday, October 1, 2010

EWGS October 2010 Workshop Day 1

Friday night I stopped by the library to look up an obit, and then when I was done I headed down stairs for the Special Workshop for EWGS Members which was to start at 7:00 p.m. This first picture is Thomas MacEntee the speaker and his subject was Building a Research Toolbox.

He showed several examples of his research toolbox, and they are even available on his blog for others to copy. I guess I have been using the the bookmarks of Firefox to do my research toolbox. I also am not as organized as he is, and he did emphasize you need to organize your toolbox. My dad was an auto mechanic and had all his tools organized in his toolbox so he could find them fast when he needed a tool.

This last picture is Thomas MacEntee and Miriam Midkiff the EWGS first Vice President and program chairman.

Funeral Card Friday Ava Madren

Ava's funeral was September 25, 2010, and while not a real shock, she has been pretty weak for about a year. Ava was not related to our family, but was very close to our family. Ava was my mom's Maid of Honor at my parents wedding, and her husband Gerald Madren (he died in 1972) was my dad's best man. When they got married both my parents worked at Madren Brothers Studebaker dealership and so we have been close every since then. Ava was the last person alive from my parents wedding.


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