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September 21, 2018

DNA Match Labeling Available for Chrome

Blaine Bettinger has done it again! He's developed a DNA Match Labeling  program for Ancestry.com DNA using your Chrome browser.

What it Does:

DNA Match Labeling adds colored dot labeling to AncestryDNA matches. 

There are 8 colors (red, blue, green, yellow, pink. orange, gray, and black) at the top of each page when you are on Ancestry.com. The user can enter text defining the color as he/she wishes.
 

How it works:

1. Open Chrome and go to the Chrome web store

2. Download the free extension DNA Match Labeling

3. Once it has attached itself to your browser, you'll see the icon in the upper right corner

4. Go to Ancestry to your DNA matches.

5. As soon as I log into my son's account I see the following followed by a list of matches:


Next I chose the labels Maternal (red) and Paternal (blue) and hit the UPDATE button. I'm keeping it very general for now. You might prefer to put in surnames for the colors and keep track of new matches that way.

I also labelled the first few people showing as a match to my son with the blue dot as I know they connect through my father's side.


Give it a try, you might find it makes your DNA life easier. If you don't have your Ancestry DNA kit yet, go here to purchase one.



September 20, 2018

Reacting to a Copyright Violation of Your Content or Photos

Heads up to the genealogy community - here's what to do if you are a victim of a copyright violation of your photos or articles.

1. Contact Site Owners

If there is no contact information on the site check their WhoIs information. There is an article outlining how to write such an initial take-down letter at Lorelle

In the one and only email I send to a person who uses my content without my permission, I give 24 hours as the timeline in which such articles must be removed or a fee for the use of the article/photo must be paid to me. 

I make it clear to the webmaster that if one of these actions is not take when the 24 hour deadline rolls around, I will file a DMCA notice with his webhost, any ad services he uses such as Google AdSense and feed services if they are used. And I do it. I don't hesitate, I don't give second chances, I file the DMCA notice. I then copy the webmaster on my filing of the notice.  




2. Contact the Host of the Site

Here is an example email to send:

To whom it may concern
You are the hosting company for [name of site] 
[name of site] is using my copyrighted material (writing and images) without my permission. My work is at [name of your own site]
Kindly see that [name of site] remove *all* my blog posts, images, and     articles from their site or shut them down completely.  

3. File a Policy Violation Complaint with Google

File a Policy Violation complaint with Google if the site has Google ads. Google will pull their ads if a site violates their rules so at least you can hit the offenders in the pocketbook with your complaint.

4. File a DMCA Complaint

You can also file a DMCA Complaint  The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) is a United States copyright law that helps stop copyright infringement on the Internet. There is a DMCA generator you can use if you are not sure how to do this.



If you want to learn more about copyright in the USA and Canada, see US Copyright Office and Canada Intellectual Property Office 

September 19, 2018

Happy Ending for Rescued Dog Tag Case!

I received this email earlier this month about a very happy ending for the search for family of James J. Bell and of Idaho, and his rescued dog tag.

Dear Lorine,
Thank you so much for helping me connect with Mick, the gentleman who found my father's dog tag. He sent the tag, along with a compass, wings and maps of the Seething Airfield to me in care of my son who resides in Manchester, England. 

As it turned out, my daughter and I were planning a visit to my son this July, so we were all able to open Mick's package together.

I don’t know who was the most excited to see what Mick had sent me, my children or grandchildren. My 10-year old granddaughter Mariam had studied WWII quite extensively at her school and acted in a play about the Blitz. When she was studying, she had taken a copy picture of my father and his crew to show her classmates. My grandson, Adam was full of questions that you can imagine any 9-year old boy would want to know.

Everyone wanted to hold the dog tag. How amazing to be touching something that my father wore during those dangerous missions. It is hard to believe that out of all the dog tags that must be lost out there Mick would find my dad's.
Along with the dog tag, Mick sent a compass he found at the airfield and a set of pilot wings. When we examined the compass, my granddaughter exclaimed, “It’s stuck. That must be the direction it was pointing when it was lost.” When the children realized that it was lost almost 75 years ago, they were blown away. It is impossible to know who lost the compass and the wings. We can only hope that they survived the war and went on to happy lives. All the items will be kept together and passed on to my son and grandchildren.

My son and I spent quite a long time going over the maps. They must have been top secret when they were created in 1944. It is incredible to think that they were done with such precision in the time before computers. Drawing maps by hand is probably becoming a lost art.

I’ll be visiting my brother soon and will be surprising him with what Mick found. I’m going to start by having him read the post on Olive Tree.

I’m hoping that sometime in the future my husband and I along with all the family can meet Mick and go with him to the Seething field. We all want to see where he found the dog tag and get a feel for the place that was such a significant part of my father’s life.

Please thank everyone involved in this search. My father and I were very close. There are some people we lose in life that we wish we could have even five minutes more with. He is one of those people for me. Finding the dog tag was almost like getting those five minutes back.
All the best,
Catherine (Kit) Bell


P.S. This is a photo of my father that was taken when he completed his flight training. He gave it to his sister Betty.

September 17, 2018

Don't Overlook Upper Canada Sundries

C-6866 image 878
The Upper Canada Sundries hold an incredible treasure trove of early Ontario genealogy information but are often overlooked by genealogy researchers.

The Sundries date from 1766-1841. This series is part of the Civil Secretary's Correspondence for Upper Canada and Canada West. It consists of letters, petitions, reports, returns and schedules, certificates, accounts, warrants, legal opinions, instructions and regulations, proclamations and other documents received by the Civil Secretary of Upper Canada, 1791-1841, together with copies of some documents of 1766-1809, made for reference purposes. (From Heritage Canada website) 

The Sundries are not indexed but they have been digitized and put online on Heritage Canada on 94 reels of microfilm. Here is an example of what you might find if you take the time to look.

Film C-6866 has the following signatures to a petition dated 1828. If you see your ancestor in the list you can find the image and see how he signed his name.

Just go to Film C-6866, and choose image 878 from the dropdown menu.

Signatures to a petition dated Hamilton, 22nd November 1828. Signatures: James Cope, Barnabus Howard, Andrew Kichen Jr., James Kirkpatrick, John Daly, John K. Cooks, James Blaikie, Joseph A. Crooken, Jacob Cummins, David Cummins, Daniel Cummins, John Cummins, James Park, Samson Howell, Jas. Deary, Joseph Chatterson, Francis McElroy, Phillip Miller, Robert H. Edgar, John Hill, Bernard McKernan, John Adams, William Petrie, Jeramiah S. Hunt, Samuel Cornell, Samuel Betrener, George Hanes, Andrew Vanevery Sr. Peter Vanevery, Andrew Vanevery Jr., Peter VanEvery Jr., Alexander Hanes, Christian Christner, John Muirhead, John J. Cope, Jesse Millard, Moses D. Hunt, Wm. Keane, Benony Cornell, Andrew Whitesel, John D. Cornell, Jacob Cornell, William Cornell, John Ramsay, Seth Knowles, John Deary, James Cope, Barnabas Howard, Andrew Kitchen Jr., James Kirkpatrick, John Dayly, John K. Crooken, James Blaikie, Wm. B. Sheldon, Henry VanWagner, Julius Morgan, W. Turner, Asa Mann, Robert Hilday, Robert L. Hughson, Abram Garvey, Wm. Crownover, John Depue, James Oliver, Michael M. Mills, Samuel Mills, John Saw, Stephen Randal, John Aikman, Joshua Applegarth, Jno Wright, B. Mulhollan, Abraham R. Smith, Shermon Wright, Wm. Sterling, Bucklin Alderman, Samuel J. Riddle, Charles Terry, Hannah E. Hallock, Philip Firth, John Terry, Isaac Stephenson, Peter Jones, Michael Aikman, T.C. Pomroy, Daniel McCollom, George Ransier, Wm, A. Atkin, H. Smith, George Cary, James G. Strobridge, Isaac Horning Sr., David Laing, Joseph Kirkendall, D.L. Dennis, A. Newcomb, Samuel Potts, Richard Hobbs, Amos McVaigh, John Smith, Thomas Hilday, F. Marund, William Wallace, John Watson, Kennet McKensy, Charles McCarty, Sullevan Birtram, Jacob Spaun, John Oleg, George R. Cooper, David Stewart, John Davis, Abraham Sabar, Michael Horner, Joseph Barry, Philip Jones, Samuel Sutton, Peter R. Ludlow, Aaron Glover, George Fonger, Hugh Johnson, Lewis R. Crawford, James Pettit, Peter Glover, John Pettit, Angus McAfee, James Stewart, William Huball, Owen Robert, Philip Magee, Normant Lamont, Thomas Stewart, W. King, James D. Stephens, Wm. Blain, Joseph H. King, W.A. Stephens, Simon Lyons, John McIntire, Clement Lucas, Jacob, Young, Thomas Lucas, Pierre LeClaire, William Lucas, John Snoob, Ephraim Hopkins, N.E. Manwaring, Isaac Smith, James Mills, John Madson, George Lanley, A. Bates, Andrew Gags, John Fonger, Robert Bates, Niel Taylor, John Livingston, William Smith, George Chisholm, James King, John Colquhaun, John Bachelder, David Farly, Thomas Choate, Peter McFee, Era Chisholm, William Kerr, Wm. Case, Peter Hess Sr., Andrew Bradt, Henry Fonger, Adam Crips, Andrew Weage, John Weage, Andrew Flock, John Crips, Christopher Kirk, Isaac Blain, Wm. Terryberry, Jacob Terryberry, Aulno Gorlyck, John Grooms, Leviness Vandusen, Elain Stimson, Thomas Grooms, James Johnson, David Terryberry, Benj. Sharp, Helmus Fredenburgh, Caleb Cook, Harlinde Orton, Samuel Moore, John C. Magiverin, Charles Kirk, Thos, Milnie, Hinry Smith, Be. Magiverin, James Magiverin, Absalom Jones, William Jones, Freeman Dunham, James Taylor, John McColl, Jacob Gorman, Thomas Brooks, Jacob B. Rosenberger, James B. Sterrett, Wm. Parker, Ira Holden, Holmes Vanhowten, Thomas Thornton, John Buckman, Reuben Babcock, James Babcock, Jos. Babcock, Wilder Babcock, Elisha Babcock, John Servos, Cornelius Barley, Henry Scofirt, John Huston, Samuel Burley, Isaac F. Tillotson, Vincent Southand, Mul. Hurd, Nathaniel Hoghson Jr., Stau. H. Holden, D. Sharp, J. Bowen, Jacob Longaine, Lawrence O. Lane, Michael O. Lane, Phillip Bleam, Robert Gillespie, John Bleam, Geor, Gehazel, John Kaye, William Mcauley, Henry Johnson, William Bliss, Samuel Conger, John Freman, Russell Green, Joseph Raboun, Joseph Brayen, William Fry, Henry Lomli, John Dunning, Michael Hess, Egbert E. Mansfield, James Depew, G. Link, Thos. Butlor, William Thomas, Daniel Crosthwaite, Thos. O. Scott, David Hern Jr., John Snider, Henry Snider, Charles Duffy, K. Williams, Abel Worth, John Flanagan, Thomas Bonnett, Richard Springer Jr., John Klasgye, Jacob Middeaugh, Abel Land, Robert Land, George O. Secord, Henry L. Smith, Jonas Bloom, Daniel McKenny, John Henry, Samuel Andress, Isaac Grant, Andrew Hammon, John Freeman, James Rose, Hugh Morrison Sr., Abraham Horning, Abraham Bartholomew, Josiah Bennett, Ira Holton, Abraham Smith, J. Turner, Samuel Potts, Wm. Crownover, H.N. Case, James Strachan, Samuel W.C. Smith, Robert Lackie, Robert Muller, Thomas Reynolds, M.M. Mills, J.W. Cameron, James Sproule, Alexander Forbes, Charles Cooley, T. McBrian, Bart, Glass, J.B. Brown, Jacob Sett, Stephen Blackstone, Joseph Prostan, Alex. McCann, John Worthington, Benjamin Tyde, Andrew McIlroy, Isaac Walton, Andrew Miller, Frederick Ashbaugh, A. Ryckman, Edward Clement, Peter Hess, Nathan Bostwick, William English, Caleb Forsyth, Elijah Forsyth, John Binkley, Samuel Hagle, David Henry, William Binkley, Samuel Binkley, Andrew Kennedy, John Kinbyell, Peter Smock, James Durand, Hugh McMahon, Henry Durand, Christopher Burns, John Leslie, Joseph Magee, Daniel Campbell, John Miller, Elias Mayer, Thomas Miller, Charles Phillips, John Boney, Wm. F. Cox, Thos. Fores, James Chambers, David Oliphant, Salmon Smith, William Clements, Abner Cassiday, John Smoke, James Hammill, Abraham Ryckman, John Rolph, George Frelick, Manuel Overfield, Edward Foran, Samuel Hare, Christopher Case, Richard Hatt, W. Johnson, Mathew Bayley, Thomas Elliott, Robert McCoullough, George F. Rew, James H. Price, John Bastedo, Henry McDonell, George Durand, William Crawford, William Smith, Benjamin Spencer, William McFadden, Alexander Oliphant, Hugh Chambers, Wm. Robinson, James Thorpe, William Hare, William Rymal, J.H. Burkholder, David Burkholder, Jacob Kern, Andrew Flod, Henry Vamers, David R. Springer, Peter Horning, Thomas Taylor, John Davis, John C. Depew, William A. Davis, Aaron Corould, Jacob Thorpe, Joseph Burroughs, John Ryan, Robert Land, Lewis Thanney, William Gage, Jacob Rymal, John Flook, Peter Lampman, Joshua Steves, Caleb Steves, James Johnston, David Kendall, Jacob Ness, William Lottridge, Perius H. Curtis, Robert Lottridge, Jeremiah Shute, John Fox, Eli. Secord, Peter Hogeboom, George Hogeboom, Edward Ward, Samuel Tisdale, Job. Loder, Henry Beasley, James Biggar, Robert Massman, Thos. R. Tisdale, Edward Hakley, David Marr, John McMichael, Adam Marr, Thomas Williams, George Burn, P.L. Hogeboom, Thomas Baker, James Newton, James Humphrey, Richard Cockrell, John Wright, Peter Lamain, James B. Clark, John J. Ryckman, Joseph Carpenter, William Quay, John M. Secord, Samuel R, Merwin, Eli. Eichito, Matthias Crysler, E. Whitteman, Edward Jackson, Hiram Pipen, H.G. Barlow, Nathaniel Lees, Jacob Ten Eyik, Hiram Adair, John Londsy, Samuel Thomas, Edward Zealand, James Garnett, Thomas C. Ward, Benj. Hazelton, John C. Ludlow, Mic. McChurkey, John Hulchinson, Joseph Biluck, Mathias Vannater, John Andeson, Otis Ingalls Jr. George Depew, Thomas Lettridge, Hen, Lekey, Samuel Croudle, Robert Clements, James Gage, Philip Buck, John Bonds, Leander Hooper, W. Sears, William King, W. Turner, Thomas Ashley, Jeremiah Sud, Wm. Turner, Thos. Archer, John Peer, David Farrier, William Carrigue, J. Fisher, Robert Best, W. Cox, Henry F. Magee, John Magee, Aaron Leake, Thomas Bennet, Michael Farrel, Frederick Loun, Horace Sharpe, Jacob Smith, Stephen Jones, Peter Bloom, James Crawford, Robert Black, Joseph Goodale, Green, Oliver Butts Sr., Thos. Corner, Dayton Reeves, Joseph Merrell, Job Massacre, Charles Harris, John Davis, Oliver Butts Sr., David Agnew, John Noles, Wm. Noles, Sam. Lyon, Joseph Harris, Andrew White, Robert Robinson, W.J.S. Bennet, John Cleaver, Peter Bradt,  

Below are the signatures of my Vollick relatives. It was disappointing, but interesting to see that Peter, Isaac and Cornelius could not write their own names, but Matthias could. Peter and Isaac were my 3rd great grandfather's brothers, and I suspect Cornelius was as well, although their father's name was Cornelius and it is possible this is him.


Image 893 - my Vollick family signatures
Peter VOLLICK, Isaac VOLLICK, Cornelius VOLLICK, W. Harris, John Hempstreet, Sanuel Dean, James Dean, John Carpenter, James Hunter, Jacob Hampstreet, Abraham Neff, A.A.W. Jackson, Peter Spaun, An. G. Hoogeman, George Redengbur, David Springsted, Peter D. Springsted, John Lee Spaun, Jacob Springsted, Edward Mann, Joseph Jones, John Biggar, Augustus Jones, W.K. Jones, John McKerr, James Duff, sper H.B. TenEyck, Peter McKirby, John Kenney, Caleb Hopkins, Linsford Mosey, George Hobson, Matthias Vollick, George Glover, Robert Jones, Charles Howard, Wm. Walker, Wm. Livingston, Stephen Sweet, Drake Lewis, Plumer Burley, W. Butts, Bryan Condon, Wm. Parker, Adolphus Flanner, Daniel Stouffer, John Hewit, Samuel Sleighter, John Bricker Jr., Samuel Gaheen, John Wismer, Jacob Wismer, Jacob Shantz, Joseph Martin, Isaac Shantz, Jacob Bleam, Jacob Rosenberger, David Shantz, Peter Beek, G.W. Gusker, Andrew Sears, Abram Beam Sr., Michael Bowen, Jacob Hackerton, Gouvriel Rundrot, J. Keep, Samuel Snyder, Peter Case Jr., Ross Tims, Joseph Kitchen, John Griffeth, Samuel Wood, Norman Ingels, Robert Keefer, Daniel Everitt, Thomas Patten, Wm. Munn, Andrew Armstrong, James Murphy, John Warden, A. Carp, John Kirk, Benjamin Shantz, Martin Ely, William A. Moyers, L. McIntosh, Phinehae Marnam, Peter Erl, George Croft, William Hunsparger, Michael Turner, Christian Bleam, Gideon Southworth, Columbis Gildea, Jacob Bean, David Shantz Jr., John W. Detwiler, William Cub, John Weay, Wm. Springsfield, John Millar, Frederick Millar, Levi Moore, Samuel Moore, Joseph Barber, Abner Roseburgh, Enos Griffeth, Samuel Ranswear, John Gage, Peter Rykert, S. Washburn, Thomas English, William Mitchel, Isaac Griffeth, Alex. Kemp, Peter Carp, Kinear Vansickel, Joseph H. Crooks, Benony Vansickel, Jarvies Evans, Robert Rosebrugh, John Sleeth, Joseph Cornell, Elias W. Forsyth, Jacob Cummins, David Cummins, John Syer, Daniel Cummins, James Parks, William Smith, Lazarus Grifth, Conrad House, Richard Hull, David Rymal, Eli Sly, Abraham Van Norman, Thos. Rich, Thos. G. Chapman, William Finlay, John Howell, John Cummins, Sanson Howell Jr., E. Griffith, John Van Every, William Miller, Calvin Moore, Adam Corner, Ephraim Cummins, Joseph M. Van Norman, David A. Lawrence, Martin Regan, Garnett McHoll, D. Ryan, Pat. Regan, Andrew McVenn, Thomas Johnston, Cornelius Sheehan, John O'Lynch, John Stewart, David Hay, John Brown, Alex. Ross, Alexander McDonnell, David Briles, John Reed, John Smith, Andrew Colburne, Wm. Johnson, Alex. Burt, John McNutty, Thos. Leavy, Charles Armstrong, James Keogh, John Armstrong, John McDonald, Alex. McGregor, Robert Levison, Donald Gilles, Alexander McRea, Hugh McGill, John McGill, Wm. McGill, James McQuillan, Andrew Blacke, James Blacke, John Robson, James Wood, Andrew Morrean, James Tomson, Thomas Brown, Isaac Lennox, John Foster, Chr. Keagh, Edw. Carroll, David Fielding, James Gibson, Patrick Keon, Charles McLeague, John McLeague, Bernard McLeague, James Rogers, Mathew Sweetman, Austin Sweetman, J. Mandafield, Edward Gilmore, Michael Lannon, Mich. Mullen, Joseph Molloy, John Carr, Wm. Thompson, Miles Livingstone, John Weldon, Jas. Thompson, Robt. Morgan, Jos. Morgan, Patrick Caraher, James Walsh, John Sanders, David Gibbs, Thos. Gibbs, Charles Kitchen, James W. Griffeth, Henry Monro, Allan Nixon, John Westwood, Levi Peck, William Mulholland, Rob. Murray, Lawrence Schumerhorn, James VanNatten, William Barber, John Brown, Jemah Banham, Gabriel Hopkins, Adam Almas, Joseph Brown, James W. Noble, Jonathan Stanton, James Barber, Jacob Cope, James Perrine, John Bray, Benjamin Tayler, Ritchard Kitchen, Isaac Willet, Anthony Bunley, George R. Burley, W.O. Burley, David Culp, Edward Evans, James Bigelow, O.W. Everett, John Keagey Sr., Adolphus French, James Gitty, Richard Ayer, Daniel Dotton, Benjamin G. Buker, John Mannen, David Mannen, Elam Bonham, Daniel Snyder, James Given, Abram Gingrich, John Balantine, William Koplin, Geo. Bush, Hugh Brown, Thomas Bourk, Jeremiah Wait, John Davis, Henry Gilmon, William Green, Robert Troop, James Ker, Isaiah K. Millard, Alexander Markle, John Ryckman, Peter Misner, Henry Bloom, Jonas Smith, Benjamin Sneyden, William Green, Peter A. VanEvery, William McCormick, James Hamilton, Duncan McKenzie, David Hill, Smith Connors, Stephen Pembleton, Daniel Anderson, John Wallace, William Misner, Isaac Blosdale, Ephriam Munron, John Owens, Mark T. Brooker, Richard Decker, Edward Carroll, David Aldridge, John Kievell, Hiram Hawkins, William Hickey, George Chambers, William Robbs, David Chambers, Philip Olwell, J. Ginlaw, Jacob Hagey, Jacob Zigter, Henry Oberholtzer, Benj. VanEavery, William Sleith, John Gatins, Sylvester Campbell, Freema Dunham, Rogert Ferrier, Pierre Bliss, Daniel Howell, James B. Morden, Artemus Commins, John Skinner, Geo. Calvert, Samuel Rosebrook, Michael Lancaster, John Mowat, Innes Ker Jr., Jeduthan Bird, Aaron Cornell, James Miller, Edward McQuillen, Jacob Bickart, Barn. Canes, Frances Cochenor, John McMun, David Decken, Alex. McInless, Barnabas O'Neal, George Blurd, Robert McLaghlier, Henry Speara, George N. Horton, Jonah Howell, James Kitchen, John K. Cornwell, James Fonger, Hugh Keachie, Andrew Mc Andrew Flatt, David Abel, John Cope Jr., Daniel Burkholder, Stephen Nisbet, Phillip Cline, Clarkson Freeman, Andrew Banghart, Richard Ayer, Seba Kinniard, P. Elliot, Moses H. Howell, James D. Hare, Michael O. Loan, George Glen, Henry Anderson, Michael Banghart, William Williams, Nicholes Jones, Wm. Burnham, Thos. Hitton, Emey Bedford, Lewis Graham, James Fellenden, William Hamilton, Henry Hannon Jr., John Smith, J. Hathaway, Eli Everitt, William J. Wilson, Charles McCrea, Andrew McCrea, Patrick Coleman, Richard Coleman Jr., George Goodhue, James Waugh, Horace H. Hills, Ralph Morden, Robert Miller, Robert Clements, Henry Cope, Benjamin Burner, Abraham Baker, John S. Green, Edward Thomas, Charles Burnahon, James Banghart, Robert King, Alex. Burner, Thomas Armstrong, Wm. Knowles, William Fonger, John Young, Philip Beemer, Isaac Dewitt, John Dewitt, William Nevills, Rita Hains, David Maul, John T. Cains, Ephraim Vanormin, John Telfer, Samuel Hannon, C. Sullivan, Timothy OKeeffe, William Miller, Richard Coleman, John Coleman, Barzilla Boal, Joseph VanWalkerby, Hugh B. Lee, John Markle, James Blain, Joseph N. Keefer, John Robertson, Thorns Espy, Abner Cheeseman, Mich. O'Neil, George Kintzet, John Hughson Jr., Sebastian Bogel, Adam Thompson, Isaac Smith, Michael Cane, Robert Jameson, Joseph Beemer, William Van Alton, Lent Munson, Thomas Pope, James Fremer, Jacob Fonger, Preserved Cosby, John Cornell, James Hains, John Hains Jr.

September 14, 2018

Think Outside the Box When Searching for Ancestors

I've been looking for my husband's great-grandfather Archie DeMeuleaneare in the 1921 Ontario census. As you can imagine, his surname DeMeuleaneare can has been spelled a dizzying variety of ways in records. I've found him as DeMeulenaire, DeMulenare, and yes, even De Millionaire.

To make searching even more challenging, Archie was born in Belgium as Achilles (pronounced AW-she, hence the Anglicization to Archie). So I have to go slowly and methodically, and search with all possible variations of both names. That is where wildcards come in. Wildcards are your friend. I'd be lost without them.

So in searching on Ancestry.com for Archie and his family in 1921 I was feeling pretty confident. I know the "tricks", I use wildcards, I start with a specific search (first name, surname, date of birth +/- 2 years, location of birth, residence). If that doesn't pan out I start eliminating fields. But the standard techniques were not working. I was getting no hits or thousands!

I decided to try searching for his wife. No dice. Okay I thought, I'll try searching for one of his children. Again I came up empty.

This is where genealogists need to think outside the box. Now is the time to try searching on just a first name and location - nothing else. Or a child's first name. Or a spouse. You may have to scroll through a few hundred results but that often does lead to success.

Jumping ahead, I'll share with you that I did eventually find Archie and his family - mistranscribed and indexed under the surname "Tekealeneau"

1921 Census Waterloo Township, Ontario
It is easy to see how the transcriber would have trouble with the surname! And that is why genealogists need to think outside the box when searching for an ancestor. Don't assume the indexing is correct. Don't assume the transcriber understood what they saw on the document.

Be persistent, be methodical, and be creative. You can't go wrong if you follow those three rules. 


September 12, 2018

Learn How to Spot a Bot, Sockpuppet or Troll

In this day and age of the popularity and influence of Social Media, we all need to be cautious. We need learn how to spot disinformation, lies, and automatic bot tweets and comments. If we don't understand how to recognize bots, sockpuppets, and trolls, we may be guilty of sharing the lies and disinformation that these bots spread.
 
Bots

There are good bots, and bad bots. It is the bad bots we need to be aware of, recognize them, and avoid or ignore them. A bot performs an automated task without involving a human. Bad bots exist only to deceive. They exist to disrupt, to cause chaos and confusion in the population. They spread disinformation and sometimes malware as they attempt to trick readers into clicking on malicious links.

Retweet Bots are dangerous as they exist to take disinformation and normalize it. On Twitter they retweet false stories (we've all seen them!) and immerse social media users in the lie until it is believed, or at least widely shared and sent into mainstream media.

Sockpuppets

What is a sockpuppet? A sockpuppet is an online identity used for purposes of deception. The term originally referred to a false identity assumed by a member of an Internet community who spoke to, or about, themselves while pretending to be another person.  Sockpuppets use a phony name or identity to argue and bully while hiding and pretending to be someone else.

Trolls

What are trolls? A troll doesn't hide behind a phony identity, usually they post under their own name. They post inflammatory and offensive comments meant to entice others into responding. They exist to disrupt and create an angry hostile environment.

Why should we care about learning to recognize these malicious bots and trolls? Because they help gaslight the population. They share lies and misinformation so often that the general population starts to believe lies are truth, reality is false, and that we cannot and should not believe our own eyes and ears.

Fact-Checking

Sharing stories or articles without fact-checking is one of the worst things we can do. As genealogists we should be fact-checking every "fact" or document or story we encounter. There are sites online that will help with that task - we can consult FactCheck.org , Snopes, or PolitiFact for example.

The bottom line is that we need to not only protect ourselves from bots, we need to protect others. So please, my fellow genealogists, do your fact-checking before you share or before you respond to online trolling.

The following is the best and most comprehensive article I have read on this new, and dangerous, phenomenon.

Spot a Bot: Identifying Automation and Disinformation on Social Media

September 10, 2018

Finding Genealogy Books on Amazon

Did you know it is easy to find genealogy books on Amazon? Decide what subtopic you want - do you want a Genealogy Guide? How about a Genealogy Guide specific to Ontario Canada? A Family History? For a family history you need to search using the surname of interest. For example maybe you want a book on the Van Slyke family. A Genealogy Mystery?

You can also choose to see the top 100 genealogy books on Amazon. This of course changes over time, but right now, two of my published books are in the top 100. That's super cool but I could use some help to get them higher in the rankings, or to get some of my other books into the top 100.

Try it. You might just find the genealogy gem you've been looking for.