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February 28, 2021

Calling all DAMEN Descendants!

Are you a DAMEN descendant? I have good news if you have Jan Cornelise Damen and his wife Sophia (Fytie) Martens in your family tree.

My latest book in my New Netherland Settlers Series is available on and

New Netherland Settlers: The Damen Family: Ancestors and Descendants of Jan Cornelise Damen & Sophia Martens 

Jan Cornelise Damen was born circa 1636 in Bunnik, Utrecht Netherland. He emigrated from Bunnik, Netherlands circa 1650 and later married Sophia (aka Fytie) Martense. To date no record of him as a passenger on a ship has been found. However an Amsterdam Netherlands notarial document in 1651 has been found where a Jan Cornelisz. van Vechten signed on to come to the New World in the employ of Jacob Stoffels. My research takes the Damen ancestry back four more generations in Holland. This book provides all ancestral details, and follows Jan and Sophia's family down two more generations.

Available on and

February 24, 2021

Check Out My Author Page Showcasing my Books, Podcasts, Interviews, Articles and More


I'm excited to announce my new author site. It took me a long time to complete but I'm liking it. 

Take a peek if you have a minute.

This is where you will find all my published books,  list of articles, as well as my interviews, podcasts, and TV appearances. 

I hope you find it interesting. And of course, should the mood strike, you can easily purchase one of my books.  They love living on genealogists' bookshelves! 

And I appreciate a review on Amazon if you do purchase one of my books. I read all my reviews as I  find they encourage me to keep writing. And I like knowing what my readers liked or didn't like, about a book.



February 22, 2021

Excited to be a Guest on Mildly Eccentric and Imminently Wise Podcast


And now for something completely different! 

My niece April Ann McGinnis has started a new Podcast series called "Mildly Eccentric and Imminently Wise"

April explains the purpose of her new series

"Living a badass life at any age got me thinking.What does it take? I believe you have to think creatively and allow yourself to NOT conform! I also believe that we never know everything we want to know, or even think we know! So imminently wise seemed appropriate since we have been around a few years, or decades, and have learned a lot but we are still on a journey towards knowledge and wisdom."

I was honoured to be April's first guest on this series. Part 1 of my episode is called Internet Pioneer Lorine McGinnis Schulze is In the House!

Part 2 of my story is also online.

This is going to be a fascinating series designed to empower women and I'm looking forward to listening to other stories.

February 15, 2021

Winner of Free 1 Year Access to Ancestry!


Congratulations to Penny Allen of UK to Canada Genealogy for winning a free 1 year All Access subscription to Ancestry! 

A random name generator was used to find the winner from all entries.

Thanks goes to for their kind donation of this gift  in honour of the 25th Birthday of my Olive Tree Genealogy website

I hope you find more ancestors with this free subscription, Penny! 

February 11, 2021

Olive Tree Genealogy Free GiveAway Ancestry Subsciption

 Olive Tree Genealogy is thrilled to announce that thanks to's generousity, I am able to give a free 1 year All Access subscription in honour of the 25th Birthday of my website

Yes, I've been online with my website for 25 years - a milestone! I started with one ships' list in the days of only 1 or 2 genealogy websites online. The internet was a barren genealogy landscape back then! You can read more about my site's beginnings at About

Entry Requirements: For a chance to win you must do two things:

1. Share this blog post on a social media site such as Twitter, Facebook or Instagram You may provide a link to this blog post on your own blog as an alternate method of sharing the news. 

2. a) Send an email to 

    b) Tell me where you shared the news of Olive Tree Genealogy Giveaway. 
    c) Be sure to put ANCESTRY.COM GIVEAWAY as the subject of your email

Contest Rules:
1. No purchase necessary.
2. Winner will be chosen at random from entries received. See details above for entry requirements
3. One winner will be chosen to receive the giveaway.
4. Giveaway starts Feb. 11, 2021 at midnight EDT and ends at midnight EDT Feb. 14, 2021
5. You are responsible for anything in regards to the legality of entering a contest in the area in which you live.
6. The winner will be notified via your provided contact information and the winner's name will be posted on Olive Tree Genealogy blog.

Please note that only entries received at can be accepted. 



February 6, 2021

Happy 25th Birthday to!


Olive Tree Genealogy is 25 years old this month!  It was one of the 1st in 1996 to bring genealogy to the Internet with ships passenger lists. It has grown over the last 25 years into a huge site full of free content for genealogists and historians. 

After my husband died, and I was injured at school, and had not worked for a year (due to injuries), one of my good friends encouraged me to start a website on that new-fangled thing called "the internet". I had no idea how to do that, but he just kept telling me "You're smart, you'll figure it out!" Well I'm not sure how smart I am, but I'm stubborn. 🙂 Back in those days there were no editors, so I had to learn through trial and error, how to code a website using html. 

I started small on a lovely battle-ship grey background (anyone else remember those days when all sites were battle-ship grey with no bells or whistles?) One ship's passenger list from the early 1600s that I found with my ancestor Cornelis Van Slyke's name on the manifest - and it got such a response from folks online that I put up another. And another. And another. And that is how it all began 🙂 Thank you to everyone for your support and encouragement, for visiting over the years, for offering ideas -- I appreciate all of you.

Hoping I will still be around for a few more decades at least


February 1, 2021

Looking for your McGinnis ancestors? Don't miss the new book The McGinnis Family in North America

Great news! The first volume of my planned series on the McGinnis family of North America is now available for purchase. 

The McGinnis Family in N. America: V. 1 John McGinnis & Mary Moore Ireland to Canada ca 1831 is available on and

John McGinnis and Mary Moore and their 9 sons and daughters left Ireland for Upper Canada circa 1831 and settled in Puslinch Township, Wellington County Ontario. 

Twenty years later seven of their nine children left for America - settling in Michigan, Ohio, Iowa, California, N. Dakota, Tennessee, Kentucky, Wisconsin & Colorado. This series follows each son and daughter and descendants to 1920

See the basic outline of the McGinnis family at McGinnis Family of Puslinch Twp and Guelph, Wellington County, Ontario