Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Newspapers Online - New Additions announced this month that they had added the Guardian (UK) to the expansive list of newspapers the website has digitized. The basic subscription includes the papers between 1821 to 1900; while the Publisher Extra adds 1901 to 2003.  The Guardian's sister publication, the Observer is also available. has added thirteen new British papers to its newspaper database, including the Haddingtonshire Courier, Linlithgowshire Gazette, Ross-shire Journal, Rothesay Chronicle, Kinross-shire Advertiser, Peeblesshire Advertiser and the Scottish Referee.

The Library of Congress's Chronicling America database is adding 70,000 new pages from Delaware newspapers printed between 1690 and 1922.

The State Historical Society of Iowa announced they are partnering with a Cedar Rapids firm, Advantage Companies, to preserve more than 12 million pages of newspapers in its collection. The company plans to photograph the pages onto microfilm and then digitally scan the microfilm; making them accessible to the public. There are no current plans to put them online but they are available at the Historical Society's Research Centers in Des Moines and Iowa City.

GRIP Conference Registration Opens Today

Here is another stellar genealogical learning opportunity!  The Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh (GRIP), located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania is offering TWO week-long sessions in Pittsburgh in 2017.  Attendees may choose to attend one week, or the other, or both!  For the list of courses offered visit the conference website.  

Registration opens Noon (Eastern) on Wednesday, February 22, 2017, for courses held June 25-30, 2017.
Noon (Eastern) Wednesday, March 8, 2017, for courses held July 16-21, 2017.

TLC's "Who Do You Think You Are?" Returns March 5

March 5, 2017 will mark the beginning of season nine of The Learning Channel's "Who Do You Think You Are?"  Celebrities include film and TV stars Jessica Biel, Courteney Cox, Jennifer Grey, John Stamos, Liv Tyler, Noah Wyle, Julie Bowen and music icon Smokey Robinson.  The show will are at 9 p.m. CST on TLC.  The show can be viewed after it airs on the TLC website.

IGHR Conference (July 23-27, 2017) Registration Available

Registration for the 2017 Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research (IGHR) to be held on 23-27 July 2017, is now open!  IGHR provides an educational forum for the discovery, critical evaluation, and use of genealogical sources and methodology through a week of intensive study led by nationally prominent genealogical educators. Students choose one course that lasts throughout the week. Topics range from a course for beginners to a variety of courses on specialized topics. 

I attended last year's conference and found it a great way to expand genealogical knowledge and network.  The 2017 event has moved from its home in Birmingham, AL to Athens, GA and promises to be another great genealogical opportunity.  For more information check out the Georgia Genealogical Society website and register here.

Registration for 2017 MoSGA Conference is OPEN!!

We are excited to announce that registration is now open for the 2017 MoSGA Conference to be held on 4-5 August 2017.  The event will be held at the Stoney Creek Conference Center in Columbia, MO.  Our keynote speaker will be Kathleen Brandt of

Kathleen has been featured on television shows including NBC's Who Do You Think You Are? Seasons (2010-2011), PBS's Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates (2012) and she appeared on the History Channel's How the States Got Their Shape (2012). 

Register today!

Tuesday, February 07, 2017

Livestream the Roots Tech Conference that Starts Tomorrow!

The 2017 Roots Tech Conference runs February 8-11 in Salt Lake City,  Utah. If you can't make it in person you can live stream several of the sessions for free. Check it out here.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Researching Ancestors in Other States

Most Missouri Researchers know about our great state resources including Missouri Digital Heritage and those on the University of Missouri Digital Library such as plat books.  But what about when you are searching for relatives in other states?  Do you automatically search for similar resources?  Here are a few sites I have found useful.

A good site for nailing down those state sources is at the Digital State Archives that lists the primary online source for each state.  Happy Hunting!

Creating Context for Your Ancestor's Life: A History of Restaurants

I recently read an article about Italian restaurants in America that detailed a new book by historian Paul Freedman titled, "Ten Restaurants that Changed America."  The book explains the lives of Italian immigrants in New York City and how those new Americans adapted to life in the New World. Italians, according to the author, were much less likely to assimilate into the New York City culinary life.  Rather Italians made the conscious decision to teach their children to cook in the ways of the old country.

There were stark differences, however, mainly relating to the availability and variety of food products such as meat, butter and cheeses.  Many of us cherish our family recipes, but when considering the lives our ancestors led in America, it is worth considering how their eating habits changed and what that meant for families. While food facts may not add leaves to your family tree knowledge of food and the circumstances surrounding it will go a long way in understanding the fabric of the times.

Paul Freedman's book, published in 2016, can be found on Amazon or other book retailers.


Sunday, January 22, 2017

2017 Family Tree University Winter Virtual Conference, March 3-5

Early Bird Registration is open for Family Tree University's 2017 Winter Virtual Conference. By registering soon you can get $40 off the $199 conference cost. It is not clear from the website when early bird pricing will end so check it out.

The conference includes 15 presentations on genealogy issues such as DNA testing, tools and technology, and research and preservation strategies.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Find My Past Offers Free Records Weekend is offering free access to all birth, marriage, census and death records on the site through January 15, 2017.

Sunday, January 08, 2017

Mark Your Calendars!

There are several state and national events on the horizon.  Here are a few to add to your schedule.  Please feel free to submit your event to add to the calendar by emailing

RootsTech is February 8–11, 2017 in Salt Lake City, UT.  Register for the live or web events here.

National Genealogical Society (NGS) 2017 Family History Conference will be held 10-13 May 2017 in Raleigh, NC.  Registration is now open!

NGS 2018 Conference  - Call for Proposals for call for proposals for the 2018 Family History Conference, Paths to Your Past to be held 2-5 May 2018 in Grand Rapids, Michigan.  All proposals must be submitted electronically by 1 April 2017.

Ozarks Genealogical Society is hosting an event called, "Genetic Genealogy: Identifying and Confirming Ancestors with DNA Testing," on 11 March 2017.  Register or get more details here.

Useful Genealogy Advice

There are so many genealogy experts out there dispensing advice it is often hard to keep up.  In the coming months I will highlight a few of the ones I find consistently excellent.  

Amy Johnson Crow, a certified genealogist, has an excellent blog providing advice on many current genealogical issues we all face.  Her recent post "The Truth About Ancestry's Hints," provided useful information about how Ancestry hints should be approached with caution and understanding of the underlying resources. For example, not all databases are included in hints; instead hints tend to come from federal and state records including census, birth, death and marriage.  Additionally,  hints are intended to drive interest and provide possible clues.  Amy reminds her readers that often the hints are not the correct individual.

Amy's recent round-up of her 2016 best blogs reminded me how useful I have found her advice.  I highly recommend reading "Top 10 Genealogy Tips" to discover an excellent resource that is worth your time.  My favorites were "How FindAGrave Could - And Should - Be Made Better" and "5 Things You Can Do in Genealogy When You are Short on Time."

Amy also provides a free program called "31 Days to Better Genealogy" accessible on her website.

Sunday, January 01, 2017

Happy New Year!

I hope everyone had a warm and joyous Christmas with family and friends.  2016 was a bit rough for my family and many friends so we were quite happy to close that chapter and have a chance to begin anew.

When a new year begins we often make resolutions to organize our genealogy, start new projects or finally break down that brick wall.  In the spirit of new beginnings here are a couple of great FREE resources to help you in your quest.

Family History Daily has created a genealogy-specific search engine that looks through free sites. Called doGenealogy, the website offers the ability to search by location, subject or record type.  The project is new so check in regularly for new resources.

The other new resource for organizing your research is to follow the blog Do As I Am Doing, which describes in detail a method for organizing into binders.

Most importantly, mark your calendars for the 2017 MoSGA Annual Conference on Aug 4-5, 2017 in Columbia, MO.  See you there!

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Merry Christmas From MoSGA

Merry Christmas to all MoSGA members and friends!

Silver Dollar City December 2014

Ozark City Park, Christmas 2014

May you have a safe and happy holiday season.

Making the Most of Holiday Gatherings

As families gather to celebrate Christmas we are provided with many opportunities to gather and share stories, pictures and documents of the past.  Here are a few ideas and tools you can use to make the most of the holiday season. 

Flip-Pal mobile scanner is a handy little tool.  The small hand-held scanner has software that allows you to "stitch" together scans, which gives one the option of scanning a large picture or document.  It is very easy to use!  On the website Flip-Pal gives useful advice.  It also has a program called StoryScans with which you can make a video mixing pictures and audio to put the story behind the picture together.

If you are unsure of what to ask your forebears, here is a list of 50 questions to ask your family member to garner the details of their lives.  If 50 seems a bit daunting, Family Tree Magazine has this list of 20 questions.  Lastly, if you are a died in the wool genealogist and your family expects you to interrupt Christmas dinner with questions about relatives past lives, here is a list of 150 questions!