26 July 2007

Genealogy Chat & Forums, Part II Scan Fest

Not only does this go with my series on Genealogy Chat rooms, but this also ties in with my series on getting organized. Through my genealogy research and blogging about it I have actually had the wonderful privilege of meeting a great lady, Miriam who blogs AnceStories: The Stories of My Ancestors. She started up a great idea with a chat room. I have joined them on a few occasions, but lately my time has been spread thin, but I'll try my best to join them again this Sunday, July 29 at 11AM-2PM Pacific Time. Although no promise that you will see me here. My hubby may actually be home this weekend after being on the road for three weeks!

Scan Fest is a great way to chat with other fellow genealogist, family historians, or just the average mom looking to get her photos and documents organized. At the same time they encourage you to scan your photos and documents into your computer. I highly recommend that you do this. You should always have a back up scanned copy of all your documents and photos. There is nothing like the original, but if God forbid something happened to your originals in a disaster at least you would still have a back up. Not only that but you can then organize your photos and documents with the appropriate ancestor in your genealogy software. It makes life so much easier when your information, documents and photos are all in one place. Then again I'm a computer nut, can you tell.

Go here for detail on how to join Scan Fest.

25 July 2007

George Scott, Oops!

Well I do this from time to time. All researchers have those "oops I missed it" moments! I was sharing my research with a cousin last night. Well this morning she wrote back to let me know that George Scott was infact on the 1885 Nebraska State Census. He was on the previous page, but since I couldn't see the document and was relying on an index, I had no way of seeing that. She knew from her grandfather that Aner died before George did.

While I have more information today on George and Aner than I did a week ago, I'm still no closer to finding his date or place of death. So it's back to work.

George Scott, Almost Found

It was one in the morning again before I got to bed last night. I had the time last night to get online with one of my favorite genealogy chat rooms, Genealogy.com/chat. Usually I'm in there asking for suggestions and help. But last night I think they were my good luck charm.

It was about 11:00PM when I came across the first record. Now remember a couple nights ago I did find Aner SCOTT in the Nebraska State census in 1885, but George wasn't with them. So last night I found them in 1880! George was still alive in 1880! They were living in Plum Creek, Pawnee, Nebraska. That brings me closer to pin pointing a place of death for George, since that is my current goal. So today I will look in Pawnee Co., Nebraska for his grave. When I found the 1885 Nebraska Census I did look in Gage county where Aner was and didn't find anything. So now I have a new place to look.

I also found two other censuses last night of them. One was 1850. They were living in Center, Marion Co., IN. This was the first record that I have seen with my gggg grandmother in it. She was indeed their oldest and is two at this point. I now also have a middle initial of "M" for George. And there is a Nancy Sackett living with them. Now I don't believe the was Aner's mother. I believe Aner's mother was Isabel, unless my Sackett research is wrong. So she may be an aunt. She was 62.

Then I found the family in the 1856 Iowa Census. This time it is George, Aner, Emily and two more children, A.F.(Alexanders) and M.E. (Mary). Now if I could just find the family in the 1860 and 1870 censuses I'll have a complete trail. But so far no luck.

So I'm back at it again today. I'll eventually get up and go sweep, mop and do some laundry, but for the most part I'm lost in the past in my office looking for my ancestors. I'm sure I will find more on them today.

20 July 2007

George Scott husband of Aner Scakett Scott

I was planning on expanding on my post from yesterday about Genealogy Forums and Chat rooms. But I've changed my mind for today. I have an ancestor who has been calling my name for weeks you might say. I've have been working feverishly for the last weeks to finish up this genealogy report on the QUINN/SCHWIMMER/SPEISMAN family for their reunion. Well as of yesterday afternoon I am done!

While I was spending on this time on someone else research I had numerous occasions where the name SCOTT and even George SCOTT would pop up while I was researching this other family. I've also recently gotten an email from a distant cousin I haven't talked to in over a year about specifically George SCOTT. So I think it's time I look into him further. None of us have ever been able to move on the SCOTT line. We do know that he married Aner SACKETT and we have all the research on her line (thank goodness she was a part of the SACKETT's used as inspiration in the Louis L'Amour novels).

This morning I got started looking at a forum I was going to write about today, when once again, you guessed it, I see someone requesting information on a Mary SCOTT. I've looked further. I don't believe she is the Mary SCOTT, daughter of George and Aner, but it just got me looking at him again. So I'm setting aside that blog post for today to work on George Scott.

I did find something interesting though. I've known through bits and pieces that the family was in IN, MO, OH and KS. But now apparently in 1885 they may have also been in Island Grove Precinct, Gage, Nebraska. It appear that George may have already been dead by this point as he was not listed with Aner and her two sons Alexander and John. I'll keep digging and see what else I find under the rocks I turn over.

19 July 2007

Genealogy Chats & Forums, Part 1

I am going to start a series of posts discussing genealogy chat rooms and forums. Today I will list a few that I know about, but if any of you know about any I'm missing please let me know so I can add them to the list.

It's always helpful to have a place to go and bounce ideas off of other people. It's amazing at the little suggestions people have given me when I'm stumped that have opened the flood gates once again on a family with so much more to find.

A Genealogy Experience
"It's not just genealogy its an Experience!"

Boy isn't that true. I think many of us started doing genealogy for a reason. Maybe it was for medical history, to find adopted parents, curiosity, because it was your duty, and so many more reason. But in the end I think we keep doing it because of the experience. It's a one of a kind experience. It's addicting. Once you find one piece of the puzzle you can't stop looking for more pieces. It's like a computer game that you just can't quit playing until you've beat it.

This group helps make that experience great. In the evening the room actually gets quite full with lots of people looking for information, but even more willing to help you find it and share information with you. I was in there one night when two gals discovered they were cousins. It's a great feeling.

This group also has scheduled chats based on geographical location or topic. Just check out their calendar and write it on yours. Then come join the chat.

You will need a passport account to get it, but if you don't have one the site will walk you through it to get signed up.

Come join. This is a great group of fellow researchers.

Genealogy.com Chat

This is another big group. Again it gets busiest in the evening, but you might also find some of us on during the day. Pretty much a great group just like the group above. They are always willing to help each other out.

One night I was on there really late. I think it was about midnight for me. Since my hubby drives truck for a living that isn't unusual. I had been researching a part of a friends family in the south. I don't remember the state now. I had no luck finding anything more. So the group started asking me what I had search, websites and records. They knew that I was a stay at home mom and just unable to travel. So after we talked for a while they started throwing websites my way that I could search for more records. Low and behold if I didn't find more records on the family in land records.

You will need to create an account at Genealogy.com, but you don't need to purchase a subscription. If you have trouble with getting in the room there is a drop down box to choose your preferred chat client. It has a default, but sometimes may not be right for your computer. I always have to set mine to JavaLite.


This one is often empty in the main room through the middle of the day. But what I really like about this room is their different rooms of chat topics. You can join rooms that are based on Irish, Canadian, Main, General Genealogy and so much more. If you have another topic to add, I'm sure you can contact them and schedule another time for your subject.


This one is rather new and a bit slow for the moment, but maybe we can get them up and going. Again if you have family you want to chat with on all your research to compare your notes. Drag them all here. Chat live about your family.

Or maybe you are a part of a genealogy society and all of you want is a way to chat and discuss genealogy online. Come here. Others will start to join and before you know it we'll have a full room!

I'm sure there are many other chat rooms and live forums out there that I don't know about. So please post them here so I can add them to the list and even check them out myself.

17 July 2007

The Research is more FUN!

I have just spent the last four days compiling a genealogy report. I've been doing research for a frind of mine since October 2006. I just talked to her the other day to find out that she is heading off to a family reunion next week. So I set myself a deadline of July 20th to get a genealogy report finished for her to take and show the family.

I did give myself plenty of time, but I must say it was a larger task than I expected. If it hadn't been for my Family Tree Maker software I would have pulled out all my hair. Pulling My Hair Out

With Family Tree Maker I was able to design a book of all the information and differnet charts and reports I wanted in it. Though the first task was to make sure I had all my notes entered and that everything was correct.

I quickly discovered the the information I had recently entered was not on this computer. I had entered it in my laptop which was with my husband (a truck driver). Since there is no telling when he will be home, I knew I couldn't wait around and throw it all together when he got home from that file. All I can say is it sure does pay to keep written and printed notes of your genealogy research.

So I set out to get the first task accomplished. Adding all my notes, finding the source records, attaching them to the appropriate family member, and double checking all of it. Then I was ready to build the book. It was actually very easy to use their program to add the charts and reports to the book. I created a different chapter for each line of the family (since it's not to large yet).

It's all done. All the records are correct, the latest research is added, everything organized and proff read. As I'm scrolling through making sure everything looks correct I come to the last page. Page number 200 Wow! Oh my I can hear my printer screaming at me now "you want me to print WHAT!" Well after running out of ink, half way through, and reprinting that section their family BOOK is done! Now I've just got to three whole punch it and put it in the binder. Not a big deal right? Wrong! My three hole punch decides now would be a good time to fall apart, half way through a book. Just great! Now I've got to get my hands on another one so I can get all of this in a binger.

In the next couple of day I just need to do one small little report of the kinds of information they can gather at the reunion and the places they can go to find information that might aid our search further. But that won't leave my printer screaming at me. Boy am I glad the book is done.

Here is a great idea for other family historians. At the next family reunion. Ask every family member to bring a few photos with them of ancestors (leave originals at home, make copies), especially those that have a great story with them. Then have each person share the photos and the stories with the group. Make sure to record this on video. Make copies of the video for each member. Also have one person in charge of running down and making copies of fronts and backs of all photos (WalMart is great, one CD is $3, or do it from a family members home near by) Make copies of the CD for everyone. This not only shares the stories and photos with the family, but it's also another way to insure their continued existance. If the originals are ever lost, there will be at least one family member with a copy ready to give it back to you.

So in the middle of all this I've learned something new about genealogy. I LIKE THE RESEARCH MUCH BETTER! But unfortunately like everything else, with the fun comes the work. Genealogy reports are a must. If they are not created the lineage of the family is lost on the reader.

14 July 2007

A New Toy!

Here I go again. It's almost midnight and with hubby on the road I don't feel like sleeping much. I've been working on a closely approaching deadline for a family that will be leaving for a family reunion and wants to take a report of all my research of their family with them. Well I've got most of it pulled together on all the family lines going backwards and forward, maps, charts, timeline, outlines, registry reports, the works. It is currently at 200 pages, which is no surprise. I've been working on this family for nine months. Now after days of unplugging the phone (except cell phone used to talk to truck driving hubby lol), putting away messages on all my IM programs and retreating to the basement for most of the day (that is when I'm not doing laundry, meals, kids, floors which never stay clean since it's summer and again the kids, and all the other motherly chores) I finally needed a break.

So the 200 page report has been set aside. Setting on my desk was my Family Tree Magazine that I had been dying to read since the mail came today. As always I find something just wonderful in there, if not many things.

Well tonight I found a new way to watch TV my way. Since my husband has been on the road driving truck I rarely watch TV these days, unless I know a good old western is on. I'm just not a coach potato. I have to be doing something, even if I'm only stimulating my brain and not my muscles. I no longer get the history chancel because when I started cutting costs the cable TV bill went first, lol hubby wasn't happy. If you are like me and not a big TV person, but love to hear, read, and watch anything related to history then you'll love this, Roots Television

Roots Television is better than regular TV. It's a subject that I truly enjoy, history and genealogy. The best part, you can watch it on your own schedule! You can choose from a huge list of topics. Programs include, lectures, storytellers', recollections, tips from leading researchers, how to footage, and get this even some genealogy humor.

So there is my new late night entertainment. That and the genealogy forums out there where I can chat with other researchers. Well I'll save that for another post.

12 July 2007

One of My Secret Weapons - RAOGK

Now of course I do use a lot of Ancestry.com for my research. But there is also another place I have discovered that has helped me to get copies of things I would never find online.

Here is my delima. I'm doing research not only for my family, but for friends as well. I am a stay at home mom of three children, with a limited income. This makes it impossible for me to travel to other parts of the country to do research in the courthouses, till now.

You can't rely on internet research alone to find all the documents you need to properly research your family. Sending off for certificates can be costly, but sometimes necessary. But through the generous volunteers of Random Acts of Genealogical Kindess you may find someone in the county you are researching that can find you a wealth of information. The cost is minimal. They only charge you their cost for copies and documents and in some cases when they travel a long distance for what you need they charge for mileage which is only fair.

A few month ago I used them for the first time. I had been researching a German family from PA. I just seemed to run into so many road blocks and couldn't break through them with what was available online. So I looked up researchers in Crawford County, PA. I was lucky to find one really wonderful lady who was able to find a will for the wife, and a naturalization records for the husband. Both records shed new light on some discrepancies I had noticed in the current research as well as included other family member's names.

The most revealing was Margarett's will, where she listed her cousin John Haghen as the executor of her will. This tied in with the woman living with them in 1880, listed as Elizabeth Haughen the mother-in-law to Charles. After some research I realized that I had never found any more of the family because I was looking for Haughen not Haghen. So I began looking for Margarett's family to find many Uncles, cousins, Aunts, and of course knew who her mother was. Though I have yet to discover who her father was. My feeling is that he died in the old country and then the family moved to PA.

You can see what a few added documents to your arsenal can do to add a whole new line to the family. If you are unable to travel to the courthouse then RAOGK is a great way to get your hands on other documents that are not online and therefor not available to you any other way. They also do things like grave site photos and other types of look ups.

The downfall is that not every county has a volunteer. But it's worth looking into.

On the flip side. If you enjoy Genealogy research and you have the time and ability to travel to courthouses, library, funeral homes, churches, graveyards, and other places that documents can be found in your area, please volunteer. Like I said there are some counties that don't have a single volunteer. They can always use more.

03 July 2007

Just an Update.

So much has and is happening in my life right now. My husband is now on the road as a long haul truck driver. I will admit it isn't easy being a mother of three children, but the task seems that much harder when you don't have your hubby coming home and giving you a break and some support with the kids every night. However, one way or another I will survive that.

First off my class at North Idaho College went very well. I got the chance to meet a bunch of great ladies who share the same passion for preserving their family history as I do. Speaking of such I think it's time I set down and email them like I promised to do.

I also intent to further hold classes her in my home in the future for those that would like to learn digital scrapbooking and even some basics in genealogy. It's either that or I will conduct them online, or maybe both. Who know. First though I've got to find a way to pay for some software, my Ancestry (which expires next month) and another computer. So that may be a ways down the road, but it is a plan.

I'm hoping to get back to posting more often again now that life is getting back to normal and I even have more time on my hands in the evening since hubby isn't here to occupy my time. So now I need to spend some time figuring out what next to post.