Monday, March 31, 2008

FREE ACCESS TO PAY GENIE WEBSITES's list of free genealogy record websites (or places where pay sites can be accessed for free):



The University of Illinois has been quietly digitizing some of the numerous items in its vast collections:

“The UIUC Library and its departmental libraries conduct a broad range of digital projects, including the digitization of library collections and archives, research in information retrieval technologies for digital collections, and digital library research projects. They also develop instructional resources and facilitating tools for digitization projects, and experiment with the application of digital content in teaching and learning.”

Several of these projects seem of possible special interest to genealogists:

ALA Archives Digital Collections
Includes photographs of past ALA conferences and images of library buildings around the country.

Early 19th Century Russian Readership & Culture
Consists of texts drawn from fiction, journals, memoirs & travel accounts, and supplementary materials on early 19th-century Russian readership, culture & the press.

From Alchemy to Chemistry: Five Hundred Years of Rare and Interesting Books
Contains selected pages of thirty-six books, dating from 1500 to 1964 and showing some of the major shifts in the study of chemistry.

German Emblem Books
A collection of German emblem books, containing ca. 1,000 emblems.

Global Cultural Memory Project
Integrates materials from collaborating institutions, focusing on the past fifty years of cultural history in Champaign County, Illinois.

Historical Maps Online
Includes maps charting the last 400 years of historical development in Illinois and the Northwest Territory and topographic maps of Illinois.

Illinois Air Photo Imagebase
Aerial photographs of Illinois counties dating back to the 1930's, currently including Champaign, Cook, Fulton, Mason, Peoria, and Will.

Illinois Fire Service Institute Digital Archives
Selected archives of the Illinois Fire Service Institute, including photos of the firefighter training programs and facilities.

UIUC Digital Gateway to Cultural Heritage Resources
Contains approximately 538,485 metadata records from 32 collections of images, text, sheet music, websites, museums and archives.


Saturday, March 29, 2008


The recent flurry of interest in the Vietnam Memorial reminded me of this list-serve post I wrote in 2003 about sacred spaces (places created to help us remember deceased loved ones or deceased historic figures):

Re: Sacred Spaces-- I find the subject of sacred spaces to be fascinating. I view sacred spaces as doors between the worlds: the world of the living (the present) and the world of the dead (the past). A previous list respondent quoted Santayana on religion as "another world to live in," a quote I really like, although I think for most people, sacred spaces are "another world to visit," not live in.

There appear to be two main kinds of sacred spaces: the religious sacred space, and the secular sacred space (I will confine my comments to secular sacred spaces). Each of these types of sacred space can be divided into two sub-groups: the symbolic sacred space, and the geographic sacred space. A symbolic sacred space is one not built on the site where an important event happened. It has conferred significance only initially, simply because its builders have declared that it has some connection to an important individual or event. It continues to be noted as a sacred space only if many persons visiting the site come to believe it to be one. A geographic sacred space, by contrast, has inherent significance because an important historical event occurred on that spot.

A few examples may help illustrate what I mean:

1. Vietnam Memorial: A secular sacred space (sub-group symbolic).
2. Ford's Theatre: A secular sacred space (sub-group geographic).
3. The Lincoln Memorial: A secular sacred space (sub-group symbolic).
4. Gettysburg National Battlefield Park: A secular sacred space (sub-group geographic).

In order to be considered a "true" secular sacred space, a site appears to need to be the scene of one or more tragic, unnatural deaths (or must commemorate such deaths). The act of dying before one's time seems to "open a door" between the world of the living and the world of the dead. This act of dying appears to "hallow" the ground, in a way that no other human action apparently can. One need only think about the "spontaneous shrines" that spring up at sites of tragedies to realize that this is true-- people will erect their own shrines on such sites if the government doesn't beat them to the punch!

It appears to me to generally hold true that an unnatural death that occurs in connection with a "lost cause," or "light that failed," or even for little discernible reason, infers a greater degree of "sacredness" to a space than does the sacrifice of lives in a cause that succeeds. I think that is a big part of the reason why Southern Civil War memorials are such magnets for domestic and foreign visitors-- I think the South in its entirety is viewed by many persons (in most cases unconsciously) as a secular sacred space. There are some notable seeming exceptions to this observation, such as the Vietnam Memorial, which I think is inarguably a secular sacred space in spite of the fact that no one died an unnatural death on the site (although the site is of course a memorial for thousands of Americans who did die unnatural deaths in what many view as a "lost cause"). I hope these comments help someone organize his or her thoughts. They've certainly helped me organize mine. I do apologize for not "keeping it short."

Tom Pearson


I posted recently about’s Vietnam Memorial Exhibit. Well, folks are taking a look… in droves! So many, in fact, that is having a real time of it keeping up with demand.

BTW, there’s a great video on YouTube about making fullest use of’s Vietnam Memorial Exhibit. If you’ve got the bandwidth to handle video, check it out:



Recently received by MoSGA:

Dear Missouri State Genealogical Association,

I am writing to let you know about a wonderful thing that my wife has done, for which I would like to nominate her for an award.

While doing research for a Perry County Poor Farm project, Jennifer Ruth Baker found that some of the residents from that institution had been transferred to the State Mental Hospital #1 in Fulton, MO. As she learned more about the hospital, she discovered that a cemetery was located on the grounds.

Jennifer then found out that an estimated 800 people are buried there, but State Hospital officials only know a few names from head stones because a fire in 1956 destroyed their cemetery list and plot map.

Jennifer was given permission by the hospital to try and reconstruct a cemetery list. She primarily used the Missouri State Archive’s Death Records database to do this project.

After 400 hours of reading death certificates, she compiled a list of 553 people who had been buried in this cemetery. On March 19, 2008, she turned over her research and findings to State Hospital #1 in Fulton Mo.

Jennifer because of her hard work and dedication has restored a part of history that had been lost for 52 years due to a terrible fire. Please consider her for an award because she has done such a wonderful job on this very interesting and worthwhile project.

Thank you for your time,


David Baker
Perryville, Missouri

NOTE: We had to inform Mr. Baker that MoSGA is not conducting a formal awards program this year because we are not holding an Annual Conference. Instead, we are encouraging our members to attend the National Genealogical Society's Conference in Kansas City May 14-17, 2008.

In place of an annual conference, MoSGA is holding a one day free workshop in Columbia, MO on Saturday, 23 August 2008. During the workshop, we are presenting three awards that, due to a mix-up, were not presented at our 2007 Annual Conference.

Mr. Baker’s note has been forwarded to our Awards Committee, however, and everyone on the MoSGA Board of Directors wishes to extend to Mrs. Baker our thanks for her selflessness and dedication. Bravo!


New at MIT Opencourseware:

"Course Description:

This course (21H.914) explores how our views of Jewish history have been formed and how this history can explain the survival of the Jews as an ethnic/religious group into the present day. Special attention is given to the partial and fragmentary nature of our information about the past, and the difficulties inherent in decoding statements about the past that were written with a religious agenda in mind. It also considers complex events in Jewish history -- from early history as portrayed in the Bible to recent history, including the Holocaust."

Courses at MIT Opencourseware can be taken for free at your own pace (non-credit).



ProGenealogists has created some German street guides for those of you researching kinfolk from the Fatherland:

"Street Guides are important resources for identifying which church or civil records to search in a large city. Street guides have been created for the following cities (guides for Berlin & Breslau also will be included here but are not quite ready yet):"

Berlin Civil Registration
Berlin Evangelical Parishes



If you've got access to, and need German city directories, here's an easy way to generate a list of what's available:

Go to the's "Search" page:

In the right-hand navigation bar, click "Card Catalog."

Under "Keywords", type in "German directories" without the quotation marks.

Click "Search."

Voila! There's your list!

BTW, if you don't have a subscription to, ask your local library if they provide access to or for their patrons. You may also want to ask them if they've got a subscription to and if not, why not?

Friday, March 28, 2008


These War of 1812 websites may be of interest to those of you with soldier or sailor ancestors who participated in that war:

Alabama Department of Archives and History- Military Records.

Canadian Military Heritage Project.

Cyndi's List- United States- Military Resource Sites.

"Genealogical Fallout From the War of 181: Seamen's Protection Certificates." Prologue 24:1 (Spring 1992).

"Genealogical Records of the War of 1812." Prologue 23:4 (Winter 1991).

Illinois War of 1812 Veterans Database.

Indiana University Library- War of 1812 Collection.

Library of Virginia- 1812 Pay & Muster Rolls Database.

Library of Virginia- Soldiers of the War of 1812.

Maine State Archives- Military Records and Related Sources.

Massachusetts Archives- Researching Your Family's History.

Naval Historical Center- Officers of the War of 1812.

New York State Archives- War Service Records & Searches.

Newberry Library- War of 1812 Genealogy Resources.

North Carolina Archives- Information by Mail.

Ohio Historical Society- Roster of War of 1812 Ohio Soldiers.

Records About Impressed Seamen- 1783-1814.

South Carolina Archives and History Center- Genealogy Resources.

Tennessee State Library and Archives- Military Records on Microfilm.

U.S. Army Center for Military History- War of 1812.

The War of 1812 in the Illinois Territory- Regiments & Muster Rolls.

The War of 1812: Key Events and Causes.

The War of 1812: British Regiments in the War of 1812.

The War of 1812: a Chronology.



HISTORY TV Listings []
Programming Schedule


Please Note: All air times are Eastern and subject to change. Check your local listings for broadcast dates and times, and be aware that History Channel airs many programs twice per day.

Browse their complete schedule here.


Saturday, March 29, 2008

7-8pm -- Modern Marvels - Baseball Parks
Step up to the plate and play ball as we take you on a tour of those
amazing edifices of the national pastime--baseball stadiums! From the
sandlots and wooden ballparks of the 1800 and 1900s to the monolithic
multipurpose stadiums of today, baseball parks have grown into
technological wonders that pull in and cost millions.

8-9pm -- Save Our History - Written in Bone
Explore the fascinating investigative work of Dr. Doug Owsley, one of
the world's top forensic anthropologists. Dr. Owsley has examined more
than 10,000 skeletons, including those of Jamestown colonists, and has
assisted the FBI and other law enforcement agencies in solving
numerous criminal cases. Watch as Dr. Owsley and his team from the
Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History use digital 3D imaging,
scanning electron microscopy, and virtual facial reconstruction, to
analyze 400 year-old skeletons as they search for a cold case homicide
victim, and investigate the identity of a 19th century teenage boy
whose remains were recently discovered at a Washington, DC
construction site.

9-11pm -- Lost Book of Nostradamus -
In 1994, Italian journalist Enza Massa was at the Italian National
Library in Rome when she stumbled upon an unusual find. It was a
manuscript dating to 1629, titled: Nostradamus Vatinicia Code. Michel
de Notredame, the author's name, was on the inside in indelible ink.
The book contains cryptic and bizarre images along with over eighty
watercolor paintings by the master visionary himself. Follow the
investigative trail of how the manuscript was found in the archives
and exactly how it got there. New insight is given into the life of
Nostradamus and his relationship with Pope Urban VIII, who knew about
this manuscript and in whose possession it was for many years.


Monday, March 31, 2008

8-9pm -- Modern Marvels - World's Strongest.
Strength...A powerful word, but what does it mean? How is it measured?
Why are some things simply stronger than others. How strong is a rope,
a tractor, a diamond, a tugboat or even plastic. From Spectra fibre to
Lexan learn where, how and why strength matters to us every day.

9-10pm -- Cities of the Underworld - New York: Secret Societies
Today, New York is the biggest city in the country... but it's got
some dark secrets in its past. It was founded by covert groups,
overrun with gangs and mob bosses, and ruled by secret societies.
This is the true foundation of the city that never sleeps, and host
Don Wildman is headed deep beneath the skyscrapers, taxicabs and
street vendors into a New York that few have ever seen before. From a
hidden Freemason tunnel and secret world of the Sandhogs, to mobster
hideaways and gang escape routes, we're uncovering the secret
societies that built New York--from the underground up.

10-11pm -- Ancient Discoveries - 09 - Mega Machines
In 2004 the American School of Classical Studies in Greece made a
surprising discovery of two limestone coffins which dated back 3000
years. Archaeologist Guy Sanders was not only surprised by the quality
of the sarcophagi but shocked by their size and weight. The coffins
weighed 3 tons, and he concluded that the people of the Geometric
Period must have used massive machines to move them. From the Pharos
of Alexandria to the Parthenon on the Acropolis we will delve into the
world of the ancient heavy engineers, and discover how their machines
were used to build and transport some of the most amazing structures
in Antiquity.


E-mail Marketing | A&E Television Networks |
250 Harbor Drive | Stamford, CT | 06902



…But only if you donated a sample of your DNA to the Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation prior to December 31, 2007. If you did so, however, you can order a basic mtDNA profile for only $19.50. Details here:


LOWCOUNTRY AFRICANA SITE GOES LIVE… of March 29, 2008, so persons with ancestors from that region of the American South will want to check out this free website’s database of primary historical documents, research library, and the members’ area where registered users can keep a research journal and bookmark links of interest:


Thursday, March 27, 2008


If your ancestral home lies somewhat further south, here are links to all things genealogical for old London town:



Have you ever visited the ancestral home in Edinburgh, Glasgow, or Aberdeen, or thought about making a visit? is ready to lend a hand:



An announcement from

"Footnote and the National Archives held a press conference this morning (3-26-08) in Washington, D.C. to unveil a new interactive online Vietnam War Memorial. This Footnote project features the largest photo of The Wall on the Internet (at full size, the photo on Footnote is about 460 feet wide). The project has been several months in the making and provides an interactive experience for finding names on The Wall as well as service record and casualty report information for each soldier listed. Viewers may also upload photos and create tributes connected to any name on The Wall.

Please take a moment to view a short video about how one veteran found a fallen friend on The Wall and add your own tribute today. The video is on YouTube at:

or on the Footnote site at:

Questions can be sent to us via the website."


Folk Arts Festival
May 31, 2008
Memorial Park, Jefferson City, Missouri
Saturday 9:30 am-3:30 pm
Craft Vendor Information

The Friends of the Missouri State Archives and the Missouri State Archives, a division of the Secretary of State's Office, invites you to participate in a Folk Arts Festival on Saturday May 31st at Memorial Park in Jefferson City, Missouri.

Description: Come celebrate Missouri's folk art tradition in music, storytelling, and decorative arts. See Missouri heritage come to life at this outdoor festival highlighting the styles and techniques of a growing number of folk artists who keep our rich and diverse tradition alive. Good food, a variety of craft vendors, and a beautiful park setting will make the festival fun for the entire family. The event is free to the public, and is sponsored by the Missouri State Archives and the Friends of the Missouri State Archives.

Information: Areas are designated for craft vendors, traditional artisans/tradesmen (demonstrating their craft/trade), and concession.

Non-demonstrating craft vendors will be charged $20.00 per 12'x12' space. The festival is held outdoors and vendors will be provided space on grass. Space in the pavilion is on a first-come, first-served basis. Vendors supply own canopy, tables, chairs, etc.

Jefferson City requires that each vendor have either a regular business license or a temporary Jefferson City business license. A one-day temporary business license may be obtained by submitting a $5.00 check made payable to the Friends of the Missouri State Archives. The fee will be included in the group Trade/Craft Show License Permit and will provide the vendor with a one-day City license.

Electric availability is limited for craft vendors.

Anyone selling ANY food item must contact the Jefferson City Environmental Health Division at (573) 634-6410 for information on obtaining a temporary food service permit. The license needs to be obtained 2 weeks ahead.

If you would like to participate in the 2008 Folk Arts Festival, you will need to fill out an application/agreement along with a check (if selling items) made out to Friends of the Missouri State Archives that should be mailed to:

Emily Luker
Missouri State Archives
600 W. Main Street
Jefferson City, Missouri 65101

Please carefully read the rules and regulations. Thank you for your interest. If you have any further questions, or need an application/agreement, please send me an e-mail at or call (573)-526-5296. We hope to see you at the Festival!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008


If your ancestors hail from the Emerald Isle, you may want to visit's guide to Tracing Your Irish Roots:



The Kansas City area is full of wonderful repositories and research facilities. If you should find yourself in this area, you may want to check out the following:

Mid-Continent Public Library

In nearby Independence, Missouri. The Mid-Continent Public Library is recognized as one of the country's major repositories. Their holdings include census records, family histories, city directories, and state and county records. The collection also includes the Draper Manuscripts, St Louis fur trade records, Canadian, Southern Plantation and Native American records.

National Archives Central Plains Regional Archives

The National Archives Central Plains Region holds the retired records of federal agencies in Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, and South Dakota. Their 46,000 cubic feet of records range in date from the 1820s to the 1990s. They hold records of many agencies, including United States District Courts, the National Parks Service, the Bureau of Indian Affairs, and the Bureau of Prisons, to name but a few. In addition to making original textual and audiovisual records available for research, they are a center for genealogical research with a vast microfilm collection. NARA works to preserve and make available the historical documents created by federal agencies. Visit them online at:

Kansas City Public Library
Central Library, 14 W. 10th Steet, Kansas City, Missouri 64105.

The Central Library is located in downtown Kansas City and offers free high-speed WiFi computer access. Across the street is a parking garage with the facade of giant book bindings. On the fifth floor is the Missouri Valley Special Collections, which houses Local and Regional Histories and Genealogy. To access their website, go to and click on "Local History", or go directly to . The site contains The Local History Index, a searchable index for magazines, newspapers, portions of books, photographs and arcival collections. The site also includes images of photographs, postcards, maps and advertising cards. The images on the website are a low resolution, but a high-resolution image can be ordered online through the "Order" link. The core genealogy collection of the library came from a local lumber magnate and genealogist, John Barber White, who donated his collection to the library. It contains many New England and Midwest genealogies. Another collector of Midwestern history donated city, county and state histories from Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska and Iowa.

Visit these repositories and more during the NGS Conference in the States and Family History Fair in Kansas City, 14-17 May 2008.

The Mid-Continent Public Library will be open before, during and after the NGS Conference for research. Shuttle buses will be available free of charge on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from the Hyatt Regency Crown Center (main conference hotel) over to the Library. There will also be a reception at the Library on Wednesday 14 May in the evening.

In conjunction with the NGS Conference, Tuesday May 13th will be Research Day at the National Archives. At this time transportation is not provided. The archives is located approximately 20 minutes from the Hyatt Regency Crown Center, research hours are 8:00am-4:30pm.

Additionally the National Archives will sponsor a reception on Thursday May 15, 5:00 -7:00pm at the National World War I Museum-- located just two blocks from the Hyatt Regency Crown Center. You must register for this event.

EARLY BIRD DEADLINE coming up for the NGS Conference!

Register by 31 March 2008 for the early bird lower registration fees. Go to: for full information on the conference and to register online.


Join us for the following free talk (pre-registration is not required):


Tom Pearson, Reference Librarian at St. Louis Public Library, will describe for us book, periodical, manuscript, and Internet sources of information about World War I. He will also provide tips for doing better, more thorough searches for photographs and online books about the Great War.

Date: 3 April 2008. Time: 7:30 p.m. Location: St. Luke Parish Hall, 301 North Church Street (North Church and East "C" Sts.), Belleville, Illinois, 62220 (need not be a society member-- guests are always welcome).

Inclement weather and lecture information: Nancy Pannier, 1st Vice-President & Program Chair, St. Clair County (IL) Genealogical Society, (618) 235-7417.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008


click! photography changes everything
click! invites experts from a spectrum of professional worlds-innovators, image makers, writers, and public figures-to survey the ways photography has influenced the history, progress, and practice of each of their fields of interest [Smithsonian Photography Initiative].

Enter the Frame
Browse thousands of Smithsonian images, "tag" them, create slideshows,and make your own associations as you view photographs from the Smithsonian's nineteen museums, nine research centers, and the National Zoo [Smithsonian Photography Initiative].

Visitor Photo Documentation of the 2007 Smithsonian Folklife Festival
View slideshows of images submitted by Festival visitors and Smithsonian staff, interns, and volunteers during the 2007 Smithsonian Folklife Festival [Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage and the Smithsonian Photography Initiative].

A Different Light
An exhibition of Amy R. Boles photographs documenting the Renovation of the Old Patent Office Building, home of the National Portrait Gallery and Smithsonian American Art Museum [Smithsonian Institution Architectural History and Historic Preservation].

America By Air
This online exhibit offers the ability to search or browse images from the America By Air exhibition [National Air and Space Museum].

American Photographs: The First Century
American Photographs offers a wide-ranging selection of photographs from The Charles Isaacs Collection of American Photography [Smithsonian American Art Museum].

Between Home and Heaven: Contemporary American Landscape Photography
From stunning panoramas and majestic bridges to nuclear waste dumpsites, this online exhibition captures the compelling complexity of contemporary landscape photography [Smithsonian American Art Museum].

Freeze Frame: Eadweard Muybridge's Photography of Motion
Freeze Frame explores the famous photographs of animal and human locomotion taken by photographer Eadweard Muybridge [National Museum of American History].

Photographing History: Fred J. Maroon and the Nixon Years, 1970-1974
These images of President Richard Nixon's years in office offer a powerful record of an unsettling time in American history [National Museum of American History].

Red Cloud's Manikin and His Uncle's Shirt: Historical Representation in the Museum as Seen Through Photo Analysis
This online exhibit examines photographs of early manikins representing Plains Indians in the Smithsonian during the 1870s [National Museum of Natural History].

Secrets of the Dark Chamber: The Art of the American Daguerreotype
Learn about the history of the daguerreotype and view daguerreotype landscapes, portraits, and occupationals [Smithsonian American Art Museum].

The Washington Salon and Art Photographic Exhibition of 1896 and the Beginning of a National Collection
View a collection of images from three prestigious Washington, D.C. organizations that played a major role in the establishment and acceptance of art photography in America [National Museum of American History].



Did you know that you can still get free Internet access from your home? Well, you can! Of course, you may have to put up with limited access, miniscule bandwidths, annoying pop-ups, and frequent disconnects, but you get what you pay for, after all...



Nice list of photo sharing, photo editing, and image gallery websites (and read the comments for further helpful tips):



This just received from our MoSGA webmaster:

“I've just received an email from IX Webhosting. They are moving their headquarters from Kentucky to Ohio this weekend. Starting midnight, Friday, March 28, all their websites, including, may be down for up to 48 hours. Just wanted to let Board members know in case you get inquiries from concerned MoSGA members.”

Carolyn Branch, MoSGA Webmaster

BTW, I maintain an 89th Illinois Infantry Regiment website and a Sons of Union Veterans camp website with IX Webhosting, and I suggested IX Webhosting to Carolyn. I am very happy with their prices and customer service, and think Carolyn would agree with me. They're currently running a great special promotion that may interest any of you who are in the process of picking a new web host.

Monday, March 24, 2008


I've noted before in this blog that we're quickly losing our living links to many of the twentieth century's most momentous events:

The last of France's 8.5 million World War I vets, a 110 year-old gentleman, has died:



The Shropshire Family History Society maintains a database of over 14,000 Shropshire Strays (people born in Shropshire who turn up in genealogical event records in other UK counties).



Thousands were captured by the Japanese during World War II, and many lived to tell about their often horrific experiences:



The MoSGA Spring 2008 Newsletter is now available on the MoSGA website. Just click "Newsletter" in the left-hand navigation column. Print copies will be arriving sometime during the next 30 days (depending on where you live). By the way, we're curious as to how you prefer to receive your newsletter. Do you prefer:

1. to receive a print copy;
2. to read it as a PDF file on the MoSGA website;
3. to read MoSGA news items as they become available
on MoSGA's blog, MoSGA Messenger.

Let your voice be heard here: your opinion matters to us!


Registration has begun for MoSGA's 2008 Annual Workshop. This free workshop will be held in Columbia, Missouri at the Boone County Electric Cooperative on 23 August 2008. The workshop includes talks on getting started in genie research, land records, and Missouri Civil War soldier research by Janice Schultz, Dr. Bill Eddleman, and Tom Pearson. We're also having a genealogy book sale and our annual meeting and awards ceremony (lunch on your own at one of many fine nearby restaurants).

The workshop is free, but seating is limited, so we advise you to register ASAP if interested. You can now register online at the MoSGA website: just click "2008 Workshop" in the left-hand navigation column. We hope to see you there!


Randy Seaver has written in to let us know about the blog of the Chula Vista (CA) Genealogical Society:

The Chula Vista (CA) Genealogical Society blog is at and has been active for a year now.

We post society calendars, meeting summaries, research tips, a monthly genealogy news, recap, and more.

Congrats on a great blog - lots of content and useful tips.


Note: Randy also runs the Genea-Musings blog at

Sunday, March 23, 2008


Two-volume book history of these 19th century naval warships available full-text online:



The South Carolina Department of Archives and History is working hard to digitize materials in its collection. These items are currently available:

• Confederate Pension Applications, 1919-1938

• Insurance file photographs of public schools, 1935-1952

• Grand Jury Presentments to the General Assembly, 1783-1877

• National Register of Historic Places files

• Collection Curiosities



Is John McCain a descendant of Robert the Bruce? His book publisher says yes, and he said so in his 1999 autobiography, but Scottish historians and genealogists are not so sure:


Dr. Bruce Durie of the University of Strathclyde calls the McCain claim "a load of baloney," and asks why anyone would want to claim descent from Robert the Bruce, as the man was "an absolute scoundrel."


George also reminds us (in a post for the 24/7 Family History Circle) that:

"In 1850, 1860, and 1870, the Social Statistics schedule was used to obtain detailed information about social conditions in a county or area. I spent part of last Saturday morning examining microfilm of the 1860 Social Statistics schedules for Virginia."

Categories covered include:

• Real Estate Value

• Seasons & Crops

• Annual Taxes

• Colleges, Academies, and Schools

• Libraries

• Newspapers and Periodical

• Religion

• Pauperism

• Crime

• Wages

Read the entire post here.


George G. Morgan (in a post for the 24/7 Family History Circle) reminds us that most Windows-based software has a "Find" function:


Saturday, March 22, 2008


Why, all these groups are:


A Golden State blog for you to enjoy:



Yup-- these folks from the Sunshine State are taking time out from all that fun and sun to blog, too:



Yes-- a blog for all Hoosiers, wherever life has led them:



Buckeyes blog, too:


Missouri’s own Ozarks Genealogical Society also has a Blog:


NOTE: All blogs listed showed very recent posts (sometime in last 7 days), and so appear to be alive and kicking...


If you need to buy an American flag, you’ll want to check out this website. Prices seem quite reasonable, and it doesn’t matter whether you need a 13-star flag, a 50-star flag, or any combination in between-- they’ve got them all. The site also provides a nice history of the evolution of our flag, which may come in handy for your children / grandchildren still in school, or for your club or society:



If you've got the money and the time, here's a real opportunity for research and relaxation:

Good Afternoon,

Fly Away Travel is now taking reservations for the 2008 Genealogy Seminar at Sea, October 25 to November 1st. The seminar at sea will be hosted on board Royal Caribbean's brand new, unparalleled, Liberty of the Seas, which will be sailing to the warm Eastern caribbean islands of Puerto Rico, St Maarten & Royal Caribbean's private paradise of Labadee.

This Seminar at Sea stands to be the best of the best in terms of its stunning array of some of the most sought after speakers in the Genealogy coummunity today:

~ John Phillip Colletta
~ Stephen J Danko
~ Paul Milner
~ George G Morgan
~ Donna M Moughty
~ Laura G Prescott
~ Paula Stuart-Warren

Passengers will have the opportunity to learn the latest and greatest techniques in areas such as: methodology, writing & publishing, internet research, problem solving and geographic areas around the world. Guest's will have the opportunity to choose up to 15 lectures that will take place in Liberty of the Seas' four state of the art conference centers over a period of three days during the seven day cruise. The authored speakers will be featured for book sales and autographs during a special group activity.

Check out our exciting all-star line-up of topics for this event at:

The cost of experiencing this week long seminar/vacation begins at just $864 per person, including all port taxes and seminar fees. Traveling companions not attending the lectures qualify for a rate reduction, as well as the 3rd & 4th passengers sharing one cabin. (Ask for details)

Contact Cindy Lorenz at Fly Away Travel 800-837-0295 or by
e-mail: for additional information.

Fly Away Travel
2829 Whipple Ave NW
Canton OH 44708

Friday, March 21, 2008


Footnote in the Library

by Charlie Bell

In an effort to provide their patrons with full access to Footnote content, a number of public, academic, historical, and genealogical libraries around the United States have signed agreements to become Institutional Accounts. We offer a free trial period to any interested library so if you are associated with or would like to see Footnote at an institution near you, please let us know! Send an email to with Institutional Accounts in the subject line. Thanks!


Newest, Most Popular, and Coming Soon

Pearl Harbor Muster Rolls
The Chicago Tribune 1870-1877
Bayland Orphan Home, Board of Trustees Records, 1867-1948
70 new titles from SmallTownPapers

Most Popular:

Civil War Pensions Index
Revolutionary War Pension Files
Pennsylvania Archives
FBI Case Files
Naturalizations - PA Western
Revolutionary War Rolls
Missing Air Crew Reports, WWII

Coming Soon:

Vietnam Photos
Boston, MA - City Directories
Chicago, IL - City Directories
New York, NY - City Directories
Philadelphia, PA - City Directories
Washington, DC - City Directories
Broken Bow, Nebraska, Homestead Final Certificates (1890-1908)
Harris County Tax Records

Please visit our Original Documents page for a complete list of titles available on Footnote.

Remember, we offer a Footnote All-Access Trial!

Recent Upgrades to Footnote

Last week the Footnote Team launched upgrades to the site including:

"Search enhancements: Search by date range. Remove highlights for stop words (and, the, etc.) and highlight phrases in search results. These upgrades are found in the New Search area."

"Film Strip: We have updated the filmstrip in the viewer so when you reach the end of an image set you are viewing, you can easily get to the next set of images."

"Member Discoveries Page: Summary of what people are doing on Footnote."

"You might also like...: Footnote suggests related images."


You can now share your Ancestry Press projects online in digital format with relatives / friends / potential buyers. They can examine your project online and decide whether they’d like to purchase a printed copy or not. Read the entire post on the Blog:



So go ahead and ask them…

It just might be well worth contacting the State Historical Society in states of interest, or the historical societies in counties of interest. Why? Because some of them will photograph items of interest, like family Bibles, place the photos on their website, and return the Bible or other family record to the family:

“I had previously thought that they only posted family record information from Bibles that were part of their collection. It turns out that they can photograph your Bible for the records and return it to the family.”

Check the original post on the Family History Circle blog:


The same blog post relates the extremely positive experience one woman had as the result of her correspondence with an historical society!


Did you have relatives in Britain in 1909, particularly relatives 70 years old or older? If so, this post on the Family History Circle blog will definitely be of interest:

“The year was 1909 and in the UK, the Old-Age Pension Act of 1908 began paying claimants. There were 837,831 people who filed claims in the first three months of the program, which offered public support to those over seventy years old who met specific qualifications.”



But it might not be the thing ye were seeking…

The Canadian Press is reporting that the Government of Australia has found the wreck of the WWII German warship DKM Kormoran. Great news, certainly, but Australia wasn’t looking for the Kormoran, exactly-- it was actually looking for the HMAS Sydney, which was sunk by the Kormoran before the Kormoran had to be scuttled by its crew during a naval battle off the coast of western Australia in November 1941:


PS- Seek and ye shall find…

The Australian Press is now reporting that the HMAS Sydney has also been found:



Thursday, March 20, 2008


Thanks to you, we've now passed the 5,000 visitors mark! Our visitor counter is in the left-hand navigation column on this blog. We hope you're enjoying MoSGA Messenger, and that you'll stay with us as we approach 10,000 visitors, and 25,000 visitors, etc., etc.

BTW, we welcome your stories about trips to genie libraries and archives, your tips on great genie sites, and your recommendations about great new genie books or magazines to keep an eye out for. We also welcome news about genie and historical society events and publications (especially societies based in Missouri and neighboring states).


Having trouble with a surname? There are probably names that are even more difficult to research...

In the 12 March 2008 issue of the RootsWeb Review, Audrey Burba told about her problem doing family research because her mother's maiden name was Driver. I just want Audrey to know she is not alone. I am trying to find out where my great-great-grandfather's middle name Washman came from. Try putting that into a search engine. I am learning a lot about washing, and not much about families with the surname Washman.

Sandy Williams

Previously published in RootsWeb Review: 19 March 2008, Vol. 11, No. 12


Microsoft Word. Many people have a love/hate relationship with it. It’s fairly easy to use, very versatile, and works with many other Microsoft products. It’s also expensive, and the Microsoft people are (somewhat understandably) paranoid about piracy. And-- what do you do if you want to use it on your home computer and your laptop, or if you want to collaborate on a project with somebody who doesn’t have Word?

Zoho Writer might be the answer you didn’t know you were looking for. It’s a free Web-based word-processing program. It can work with Word and OpenOffice documents, and you can store projects on the Web and work collaboratively on projects with other people.

From their website:

Access from anywhere.
Access, edit, share documents from anywhere.
Create and edit documents your way.
Create, edit and re-format documents using our WYSIWYG editor.
Collaborative editing of documents.
Allow multiple users to work on a document simultaneously.
Load your existing documents.
Import Microsoft Word (DOC), OpenOffice text (ODT & SXW), HTML,
RTF, JPG, GIF PNG files.
Share, don't attach.
Share documents with your friends or publish them for public view.

Zoho Writer is fairly versatile, although probably not as versatile as Word. But it just may have all the features you actually need and use, and at a price that anybody can afford!



Those of you interested in will want to take a look at their blog:


Wednesday, March 19, 2008


Rootsweb Review has announced a frequency of publication change:

"The past year has seen a number of changes to the RootsWeb Review. First, long-time editor Myra Gormley retired. Then, after ten years as a text publication, the Review was changed to an HTML format. One more major change is in the works.

As of April 2008, the RootsWeb Review will become a monthly publication: you will receive your copy on the second Wednesday of every month.

Although the frequency will change, you will still get the same great Review you're accustomed to. Jana Lloyd, Mary Harrell-Sesniak, and Joan Young will continue to contribute articles to the Review, and we will continue to keep you up-to-date with the latest and greatest at RootsWeb. And of course we still want to hear your experiences with family history: your stories, tips, photographs, and the fun and interesting things you come across in your research. In addition, we will also be adding a short, new section with genealogy how-to tips.

If you're anything like us, you receive tons of e-mail everyday, and it is sometimes overwhelming to sort through it all, let alone read it. We hope that by changing the Review to a once-a-month publication we will reduce some of that e-mail overload while still keeping you as up-to-date as ever with what is happening on RootsWeb.

Look for one more weekly issue on 26 March and for the first monthly issue of the Review on 9 April.

Previously published in RootsWeb Review: 19 March 2008, Vol. 11, No. 12


I don't know how many of you use Facebook, but the plug-in is a very helpful (and free!) application:

A free WorldCat application for the Facebook social networking Web site is now available. The application lets Web users search the collections of WorldCat libraries and monitor favorite WorldCat lists, their own lists, or those created by other users right from personalized Facebook pages. Search results are returned from

Once installed, WorldCat library searching is easily accessed from the list of applications beneath the Facebook search box.

The application includes a Home screen with WorldCat search box, as well as quick links to WorldCat searches based on personal interests a user has input in his or her Facebook profile. The application also includes tabbed access to:

* a built-in advanced WorldCat search
* a "Something to Read" panel that displays books recently added to other users' WorldCat lists
* a panel where the user can invite other Facebook friends to install the WorldCat application

On a user's Facebook profile page, the application adds a custom Facebook "box" with basic WorldCat search. The profile's owner can expand or collapse the box's visibility, and reposition it to a preferred location by dragging its title bar.

The Facebook application represents another way OCLC uses the platform to strategically integrate information about its member libraries' collections and services within the wider Web experience. participating libraries can encourage their patrons to install the Facebook application using either of these options:

* Follow the link from the WorldCat plug-ins page at
* Log into a Facebook account and install the application directly from

Users can also search Facebook with the term "WorldCat" to reach the application home page.


The FlickR Commons is a group of Library of Congress photos for which no copyright restrictions are known (several hundred color photos taken during the period 1939-1944). That’s right, boys and girls- no copyright restrictions! So if you’re writing (or have previously written) a family history or other genealogical tome, and could use some interesting, no-cost photos, this may be your lucky day! Go here for details, and to browse photos:


BTW, they want you to add your comments to photos you view, as part of an experiment in social tagging (folksonomy). Comments I examined were the usual feast or famine mixture of very insightful / wise guy type remarks.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008


The Library of Congress (LOC) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) have been involved in a project to digitize early 20th century American newspapers: Here's what they have to say:

From the LOC website:

More than 79,000 newly digitized newspaper pages, along with several new site features, have recently been added to the Chronicling America Web site. With this update, the site now provides access to more than 500,000 digitized newspaper pages, dating primarily from 1900 to 1910, and representing 61 newspapers from California, the District of Columbia, Florida, Kentucky, New York, Utah and Virginia. Chronicling America is a project of the National Digital Newspaper Program (NDNP), which is a partnership between the LOC and the NEH.

New features in Chronicling America include:

+ “See All Available Newspapers” page - A list of all newspapers with pages available on the site.

+ RSS feed and E-mail Update service - Users can subscribe to Real Simple Syndication (RSS) updates or e-mail delivery at (see list under Topics/Newspapers and Journalism). Updates will include notices of added content and other points of interest.

Make sure to see the news release with links to a few highlights from the database.
Source: LOC


12 April 2008--Using

Held at St. Charles Community College, St. Peters, MO.

Co-sponsored by the St. Charles County Genealogical Society and St. Charles Community College.

Presenter: Michael John Neill, columnist for Michael has led research trips to Ft. Wayne and Salt Lake City and lectures nationally on a wide variety of genealogy topics.

During the workshop, you will discover original records on FOOTNOTE.COM and how to access, interact, and use them.

Each person will have a computer and free access to during the workshop.

There will be time for practice and experimentation with the site. Registration is limited. Lunch is on your own.

Registration Fees:
SCCGS Member, SCC students, faculty, staff: $30.
General Public: $40.

For more information:

Questions? Email Michael John Neill at
or Jo Schnare

Thanks! We'd love to have you join us.

Michael John Neill

Monday, March 17, 2008


A commentor has written in to ask why I am "wasting space" on History Channel TV listings. My answer, simply, is this: as you learn more about history, you both become a better genealogical researcher and make the stories of your own ancestors come alive. A mere recitation of dates and places is just marks on paper-- a family history with great historical background info is more like a novel, but with real people-- your people!

So, are the History Channel TV listings I post helpful, or just a waste of space? Let me know what you think!

BTW, I've received no comments on the recent Jules Verne ebooks posting-- even though I noted specifically that I could see no genealogical relevance in Verne's books!


Looking for kin from Lincolnshire? Never fear, there's also a links page just for you:



If you're tracing kin who hail from Lancashire back in Old Blighty, you'll want to check out this website:


Not familiar with the "Old Blighty" reference? Go here:



U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has some interesting statistics on living arrangements, income and poverty, and health and chronic health problems:



Well, the Isle of Wight Records Office has created a very nice website, anyway:



If you're researching Irish kin, you should know about the Council of Irish Genealogical Organizations (CIGO). Checking their site periodically is a good way to keep abreast of developments in Irish genealogical research, like the announcement under "News":

"Dublin's Glasnevin Cemetery, opened in 1832, is about to go on-line. It will be the first of the city's cemeteries to place its older registers on the Net. The Irish capital is served by two main cemeteries, Glasnevin & Mount Jerome (latter opened in 1836). Until recent times, the capital's Catholics generally used Glasnevin while the Protestants tended to favour Mount Jerome."



The LDS folks are convinced: Everything is digital (or will be, anyway, if they have any say in the matter):


Sunday, March 16, 2008


Detective work by a genealogist at last brings well-deserved honors to a Scotsman, Robert Kilgour, who was shot dead during the Battle of Passchendaele in July 1917:


BTW, KIAs at the Battle of Passchendaele (also known as the Battle of Third Ypres) were nearly unbelievable- 448,000 UK soldiers and 260,000 Germans (708,000 total):



"As you know, The Generations Network has hosted and funded the RootsWeb online community since June 2000, thereby maintaining RootsWeb as the world's oldest and largest free genealogy website. TGN remains committed to this mission and believes that RootsWeb is an absolutely invaluable and complementary resource to, our flagship commercial family history site. We believe in both services and want to see both communities prosper and grow.

As part of this goal, we have decided to "transplant" RootsWeb onto the domain beginning next week. This move will not change the RootsWeb experience or alter the ease of navigation to or within RootsWeb. RootsWeb will remain a free online experience. What will be different is that the Web address for all RootsWeb pages will change from to Again, the RootsWeb experience is not changing.

The decision to host RootsWeb on is being made for one primary reason: we believe that the users of each of our two main websites can be better served if they have access to the best services available on both. Simply stated, we want to introduce more users to RootsWeb and vice versa.

Today, despite the fact that and are the two most frequently visited family history sites on the Web, only 25 percent of visitors to visited RootsWeb in January 2008, while only 20 percent of visitors to RootsWeb visited (according to Comscore Media Metrix). We think we will serve our users best by doing a better job of letting them know what is available on both and RootsWeb. Hosting RootsWeb on is the first step towards making this happen, but we will absolutely look for more and better ways down the road to advance this goal.

Hosting RootsWeb on will also make it easier for us to make changes and improvements to the RootsWeb experience in the future.

All old RootsWeb URLs will continue to work, whether they are bookmarks or favorites, links to or from a hosted page or URLs manually typed in your Internet browser. We will have a redirect in place so that all old URLs will automatically end up on the appropriate new RootsWeb URL. You will never need to update your old favorites or links unless you want to. We have worked to make the transition as seamless as possible for our users, and this change should have a minimal impact on your experience with the site.

RootsWeb will remain a free online experience dedicated to providing you with a place where our community can find their roots together. If you have questions regarding this change please email them to"


Tim Sullivan
The Generations Network, Inc.


MAAP (Mapping the African-American Past) is an online exhibit about the historical odyssey of black Americans in New York City sponsored by Columbia University Teachers' College. Includes maps, a photo gallery, and lesson plans:



Then you'll flip over's latest announcement:

"Ancestry has posted posted five hundred German city directories containing an estimated 27 million names for those with a membership to or a World Deluxe membership. Most are from the late 1800s and early to mid-1900s."


Saturday, March 15, 2008



Programming Schedule


Please Note: All air times are Eastern and subject to change. Check your local listings for broadcast dates and times,and be aware that History Channel airs many programs twice per day.

Browse our complete schedule here.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

7-8pm -- Modern Marvels - The Colosseum --
Nothing symbolizes the Roman Empire at its height or Rome in magnificent ruins more than the Colosseum. Built in 70 AD, it seated 80,000 people, boasted a retractable roof, underground staging devices, marble seating, and lavish decorations. It still serves as the prototype for the modern stadium. The complexity of its construction, the beauty of its architecture, and the functionality of its design made it the perfect place for massive crowds to congregate for the bloody spectacles it contained.

8-10pm -- Journey to 10,000 BC --
Discover the thrilling real story of life on earth in prehistoric times. Viewers will go back in time to when early humans are just starting to inhabit North America and huge climate fluctuations cause a mini-Ice Age. The saber tooth cat, the giant ground sloth and the woolly mammoth are suddenly becoming extinct. How does man survive? Travel to early archaeological sites in North America and watch as scientists uncover fossilized bones, ancient homes and weapons of stone. State-of-the-art green-screen computer animation re-creates the great mammoth hunts of the time.


Sunday, March 16, 2008

7-8pm -- Mega Disasters - Earthquake in the Heartland --
Could a killer earthquake strike America's heartland? If history proves true, the answer is yes. The 1811-1812 New Madrid Earthquakes (centered in southeast Missouri) rank as some of North America's most catastrophic natural disasters. Stretching more than 160 miles, a system of earthquake faults lurks beneath the Mississippi River basin, loaded and ready to erupt. And it's happened before. Pioneer residents of New Madrid, Missouri were thrown from their beds in the early hours of December 16, 1811 when an estimated 8-point earthquake hit. But it wasn't just one event. Multiple shocks were experienced over the next three months--the largest caused the Mississippi to flow backwards. No earthquake sequence has lasted so long, produced so many shocks, nor created such astonishing phenomena on land and water. The New Madrid Fault remains a seismically active area and experts expect a repeat. The only question is when...

8-9pm -- Modern Marvels - Alaskan Fishing --
The Alaska Ocean is the largest factory-fishing boat in the US fleet. The crew's mission: hunt down, catch and process 300 tons of Alaskan Pollock each day on the unforgiving waters of the Bering Sea. We travel with them on the last voyage of a long and grueling season. The crew reveals the inner workings of one of the most sophisticated and complex vessels afloat. It is half fishing boat, half floating factory, processing and flash freezing Alaskan Pollock as fast as its crew can catch it. To meet their seasonal quota of Pollock, the crew must overcome obstacles of weather, mechanical dangers aboard the sea-tossed ship and the wiliness of the fish themselves. Captain Scott Symonds takes us inside the amazing ultra-modern world of high stakes commercial fishing where a wrong decision on his part can cost not just the season's catch, but also the lives of his crew.

9-10pm -- Ax Men - 01 - Man vs. Mountain --
Deep in the woods of the Pacific Northwest, rugged men make their living doing one of the deadliest jobs in the world... logging. Their mission is to retrieve timber perched on mountain sides too steep to access with machines, but it's no easy task. Plagued by mechanical failures, relentless weather, and unpredictable terrain, these brave men risk their lives retrieving the timber with which we built our country. Meet four companies trying to survive each day. Pihl Logging--a rag-tag group of loggers based in Vernonia, Oregon. Gustafson Logging--a close-knit crew working one of the most dangerous jobs in the region. J.M. Browning--the best of the best. Stump Branch Logging--the young guns with a lot to prove. These are the Ax Men.

10-11pm -- Ax Men - 02 - Risk and Reward --
Just days into the fall logging season, the Ax Men are already being put to the test. J.M. Browning races to meet a big deadline. Stump Branch Logging tempts fate by jury-rigging their old equipment. The Gustafson Company races Mother Nature as they attempt to build a road to access their logging site. Father teaches son the lessons of logging as the men of the Pihl Company haul in the forest's cash crop.

Monday, March 17, 2008

7-8pm -- Modern Marvels - Brewing --
It's one of the world's oldest and most beloved beverages--revered by Pharaohs and brewed by America's Founding Fathers. Today, brewing the bitter elixir is a multi-billion-dollar global industry. Join us for an invigorating look at brewing's history from prehistoric times to today's cutting-edge craft breweries, focusing on its gradually evolving technologies and breakthroughs. We'll find the earliest known traces of brewing, which sprang up independently in such far-flung places as ancient Sumeria, China, and Finland; examine the surprising importance that beer held in the daily and ceremonial life of ancient Egypt; and at Delaware's Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, an adventurous anthropologist and a cutting-edge brewer show us the beer they've concocted based on 2,700-year-old DNA found in drinking vessels from
the funerary of the legendary King Midas.

8-9pm -- Modern Marvels - Whiskey --
Known to Irish monks as "water of life", visit some of the world's finest distilleries to see how each country brews this thousand-year old spirit. Jack Daniels tells the secret of charcoal filtering, Jim Beam shows its premium bourbons and the art of blending is revealed at Canadian Club Whiskey. Cross the Atlantic to get the real deal at Jameson's Distillery in Midleton, Ireland and in Scotland discover why smouldering peat gives Glenlivet its character. Meet some of the people who are lucky enough to sample whiskey for a living. Cheers!

9-10pm -- Cities of the Underworld - Mob Underground --
Chicago was once a playground for mobsters and corrupt politicians. It wouldn't be the third largest city in the U.S. today if it weren't for the shady dealings that went on just beneath its streets. From vice dens and top-secret railroad lines to sunken shipwrecks and the spark that created the A-Bomb, host Don Wildman unearths the true history of the Windy City.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

8-9pm -- Modern Marvels - Candy --
It pulls, stretches, bubbles, hardens, crunches, and melts! We eat about 7-billion tons of it yearly. We're talking about Candy--loved by kids and savored by adults. Candy-making evolved from a handmade operation to high-tech mass production. Nowhere is that more apparent than at Hershey's. On a tour of their newest production facility, we learn how they process the cocoa bean. At See's Candy, we see how they make their famous boxed chocolates--on a slightly smaller scale than Hershey's. We get a sweet history lesson at Schimpff's Confectionery, where they still use small kettles, natural flavors, and hand-operated equipment. Then, we visit Jelly Belly, purveyors of the original gourmet jellybean. Saltwater-taffy pullers hypnotize us on our sweet-tooth tour; we gaze at extruders making miles of licorice rope; and watch as nostalgia candy bars Abba-Zaba and Big Hunk get packaged. And in this sugary hour, we digest the latest sensations--gourmet chocolates and scorpion on a stick!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

7-8pm -- Modern Marvels - Copper --
It transports electricity, water, and heat. Our bodies can't survive without it, yet it can kill microbes in minutes. It brings music to our ears and beauty to our eyes. We'll delve into all of copper's impressive traits, history, and how it's mined. This versatile red metal's most famous attribute is its ability to conduct electricity--copper wires connect and energize the world. And it's revolutionizing the electronics industry by enabling ever-shrinking computer chips. It's also formed into plumbing pipes to convey water and is the metal of choice for beautiful roofs and sculptures. It doesn't only look good--it sounds great too. A visit to a bell foundry reveals why bronze, a copper alloy, has been used to make music for hundreds of years. In myriad shapes and for innumerable uses, copper figures prominently in our world.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

7-8pm -- Modern Marvels - The Autobahn --
Imagine a superhighway designed for speed...thousands of miles of roadway unhindered by limits of any kind. Buckle up for safety as we take you for the ride of your life when we explore the fascinating history and current reality of the world's fastest freeway. The number-one works project of the Third Reich, the Autobahn was known as Adolf Hitler's Road until Germany's defeat in WWII. Reconstructed and extended to more than four times its original size, it became a symbol of the New Germany.

10-11pm -- Cities of the Underworld - Viking Underground --
Dublin, Ireland is much more than a city full of pubs and pints. Pagan burial tombs, subterranean defense tunnels, and mysterious burial crypts line the underground below the rolling hills. Even an underground river runs through the heart of the city where you'd least expect to find it.

Friday, March 21, 2008

7-8pm -- Modern Marvels - B-2 Bomber --
In any battle, the key to victory is the ability to strike the enemy without them knowing what hit them. Within the US arsenal one such weapon can go into harm's way, deliver 40,000 pounds of either conventional or nuclear bombs, and slip away unobserved--the B-2 Stealth Bomber. With its origins in single-wing experimentation in Germany in the 1930s, the B-2 was developed under a cloak of secrecy. But when that cloak was lifted, the world was awed by what stood before them. Able to fly over 6,000 miles without refueling, it can reach whatever target the US military wants to attack and deliver its awesome array of laser-guided weapons with pinpoint accuracy. Using state-of-the-art technology, including over 130 onboard computers, and shrouded by a mantle of stealth, it's undetectable by any radar.

8-9pm -- Sinking a Destroyer --
In this one hour special, Air and Naval forces team up to test weapons with a live fire attack on a modern day destroyer.

10-11pm -- Battle 360 - Bloody Santa Cruz --
Part two of the deadly saga of the Solomons plays out at the Santa Cruz Islands. In one terrible day of vicious combat, Enterprise loses her sister ship USS Hornet and suffers dozens of casualties as bombs nail her flight deck. When the smoke clears, Enterprise is the only American carrier left in the Pacific. For the U.S. Navy at Santa Cruz, survival becomes the ultimate battle.


E-mail Marketing | A&E Television Networks |
250 Harbor Drive | Stamford, CT | 06902



Well, the friendly folks at Mashable say you can, anyway…

Mashable has posted a list of 13 online applications you can use to create PowerPoint-like presentations:


NOTE: I like PowerPoint, and use it a lot at work, but I'm always willing to take a look at free alternatives...


True-- Jules Verne didn’t write a thing that I can pretend is remotely genealogy-related, but he did write some stirring, sometimes prescient novels that have aged quite well, thank you very much. Many of his books are available as free ebooks and audio books at Project Gutenberg. A list of all things Verne is here:


Hint: just discovering Le Grande Jules? Try Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, Five Weeks In a Balloon, or Journey to the Center of the Earth. My local library had a big Verne collection in wonderful old hardbound volumes, and one summer I read nearly everything Verne that they had. Le Grande Jules knew how to pull out all the stops when the story required it-- it’s why people still read his books, and why they’re still making movies from those books…


You may think that deleting a file on your computer makes it go away forever, but it just ain't so, my friend. It's still in there somewhere, waiting to be returned from the dead by someone with the right software and know-how. One or more deleted files could come back some day to haunt you (personal or confidential information, financial or business information, revealing photos, etc.), unless you use a (free) hard drive scrubber like Eraser to overwrite your deleted files…

From the publisher’s website:

“Eraser is an advanced security tool for Windows that allows you to completely remove sensitive data from your hard drive by overwriting it several times with carefully selected patterns. The patterns used for overwriting are based on Peter Gutmann's paper Secure Deletion of Data from Magnetic and Solid-State Memory and are selected to effectively remove magnetic remnants from the hard drive. Other methods include the one defined in the National Industrial Security Program Operating Manual of the U.S. Department of Defence, and overwriting with pseudorandom data. You can also define your own overwriting methods. Version 5.86 includes unspecified updates.”



If you’re a person who loves to talk (or have relatives / friends who do), it may be time to review your cellular phone contract, now that many plans are offering unlimited talk for a set fee. You may need to change services, or you may be able to renegotiate your existing service contract. Here’s how:



The St. Louis Genealogical Society is delighted to announce that Ye Olde Genealogie Shoppe will have a huge booth at our annual Family History Conference on April 12, 2008 in Maryland Heights, Missouri. This Indianapolis store is one of the few remaining "brick and mortar" book dealers left in the U.S. Publishers of more than 500 titles in the field of genealogical research, they also carry forms, charts and maps. Owner Pat Gooldy is making one of her rare trips since the death of her husband.

Please see the STLGS website for more information on signing up for the Family History Conference.

Friday, March 14, 2008


Online finding guide to the impressive manuscripts collection of this distinguished institution:

“This database contains a guide to the archive and manuscript collections held in the University of Southampton Library. It aims to provide a summary description of all these holdings and it is based on the published, printed guides, C.M.Woolgar and K.Robson A GUIDE TO THE ARCHIVE AND MANUSCRIPT COLLECTIONS OF THE HARTLEY LIBRARY (University of Southampton Library, occasional paper, 11; Southampton 1992), and C.M.Woolgar and K.Robson A GUIDE TO THE ARCHIVE AND MANUSCRIPT COLLECTIONS OF THE HARTLEY LIBRARY, UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHAMPTON MSS 201-300 (University of Southampton Library Archive Lists, Catalogues and Guides Series, 7; Southampton 2000), with substantial additions to provide fuller coverage of collections than was possible in print, which will in general include much of the summary listings of collections. There are separate databases containing detailed descriptions of the Wellington papers (MS 61), and the Palmerston Papers and the papers of Earl Mountbatten of Burma (both in MS 62) which are not duplicated in this guide database. For arrangements to access these databases and the databases containing the guide to the Jewish archives in the UK and Eire and the papers of senior UK defence personnel, 1793-1970, please contact

The archives are made available for research, Monday-Friday 0900-1230 and 1330-1700 hours, by prior appointment. Readers are asked to bring evidence of identity with them on their first visit to the manuscripts section. The inclusion of items in this guide does not imply that they are available for study. For further details, please contact:”

The Archivist
Hartley Library
University of Southampton
Southampton SO17 1BJ
United Kingdom

Tel: (+44) 023 8059 2721
Fax: (+44) 023 8059 3007




Need a guide to UK military medals? THE EXPERT on the subject has written a book that should answer ALL your questions:

“The authoritative guide by The National Archives' renowned medal expert and best-selling author, covering military and civil awards, orders, decorations and medals – from 1793 to 1990.

This unique approach to researching medals focuses upon tracing individuals and actions through the medal roll. Ranging from Java to New Orleans, Copenhagen to Egypt, it explores both campaign and commemorative medals to show how the awards system helps research into an ancestor, regiment, medal or campaign.

Structured geographically for ease of use, the guide draws together information from the National Archives and the India Office, as well as associated records at the British Library. It advises on the best online access and places to visit, as well as strategies for extending research into sources such as the census and the War Diaries. Combining detailed descriptions – far fuller than those in online catalogues – with an insider’s knowledge on imminent record releases, this is the perfect, time-saving tool for family historians, military enthusiasts and collectors alike.

• Introduction
• Campaign medals
• Awards for gallantry and meritorious service
• The London Gazette
• Awards for long service
• Coronation and Jubilee medals
• Commemorative and Miscellaneous medals
• Research techniques
• Online information
• Published sources
• Where to see medals
• Societies
• Further reading”



Show-Me Genealogy: Tips for Researching Your Family
Missouri State Genealogical Association

Date: 23 August 2008
Place: Boone County Electric Cooperative
1413 Rangeline Street
Columbia, Missouri 65205

Workshop is free, but seating is limited, so pre-registration is essential to guarantee a seat! Watch for more info and pre-registration details on this blog and on the MoSGA web site!

9:00-9:30 Registration
Check out the bargains available at our Used Book Sale going on today!

9:30 -10:30 Show-Me How to Get Started
This course will prepare the participant to begin a genealogical project. Topics will include finding records and keeping everything in order. Janice Schultz is the Branch Librarian at the new Mid-Continent Public Library Midwest Genealogy Center. She has been working in the genealogy field through the library system, starting as a page in the newly formed Genealogy Department at Mid-Continent North Independence Branch. She has served o the MoSGA Board for a number of years, in several positions and is a frequent lecturer in the state of Missouri and elsewhere.

10:30-11:00 Break
Check out the Used Book Sale.

11:00-12:00 Show-Me Land Records
No other genealogical record source includes more people than land records. Missouri is usually listed as a public land state in genealogical reference books, but the story is actually more complex than that. Learn about French and Spanish Land grants, the ins and outs of the land confirmation process and how to find your ancestor in these records--as well as the U. S. Public Land system and how to research public land records. Dr. Bill Eddleman is Professor and Chair of Biology at Southeast Missouri State University, and is an ornithologist by profession. He is President of the Cape Girardeau County Genealogical Society, Chairman of the Cape Girardeau Historic Preservation Commission, and is a former MoSGA Board member.

12:00-1:30 Lunch
Enjoy one of our local restaurants.

1:30-2:30 MoSGA Membership Meeting and Awards Ceremony

2:30-3:30 Show-Me Missouri Civil War Soldiers
Join us as Tom Pearson demonstrates how to thoroughly research Missouri Civil War ancestors (Union and Confederate) using government records, reference books, regimental and county histories, newspapers, and websites. Tom is Special Collections Librarian at St. Louis Public Library, and edits Gateway Family Historian for the Library. He is MoSGA Newsletter Editor and Blogmaster, Secretary and Webmaster for Colonel Hecker Camp #443 Sons of Union Veterans, and is a frequent lecturer on genealogy and military history topics in the St. Louis metro area.

Thursday, March 13, 2008


Following is a list of newspapers published in St. Louis during the Civil War years (1861-1865) that are in the collection of St. Louis Public Library. The listing provides the name of the newspaper (several of which are German-language newspapers) and the range of years of that paper owned by St. Louis Public Library. It should be noted that our newspaper microfilm in some cases has gaps where one or more issues of the newspaper in question was not filmed, so it should not be assumed that we will have every issue of a newspaper for the range of years indicated. Please check with our Microfilm Department to be sure we own the dates needed for a particular newspaper (314-539-0368 or if you are planning a visit to our library to use the newspaper microfilm.

Anzeiger des Westen (newspaper, 1839-1898)
Daily Missouri Democrat (newspaper, 1853-1868)
Deutsche Blatter (newspaper, 1863-1870)
Missouri Democrat (newspaper, 1843-1872)
Missouri State Journal (newspaper, 1861)
Missouri Republican (newspaper, 1822-1888)
St. Louis Daily Evening News (newspaper, 1861-1865)
St. Louis Daily Press (newspaper, 1864-1866)
St. Louis Daily Union (newspaper, 1862-1863)
St. Louis Dispatch (newspaper, 1865-1866)

The major papers in this list are the Anzeiger des Westen, the Missouri Democrat, the Missouri Republican, and the Daily Missouri Democrat, although any newspaper is major if it's got the story you need. As we do not have indexing for these papers, we cannot perform searches for you unless you can provide either the specific date an event occurred (month, day, year), or the specific date (month, day, year) the story appeared in a particular newspaper. You can ask us to perform a search here:

Newspapers in the collection of St. Louis Public Library list for the most part items about St. Louis area persons and events. For newspaper coverage of persons from and events which took place in other Missouri counties, contact the State Historical Society in Columbia, which has the largest collection of Missouri newspapers in the world, and indexing for some time periods for some of those newspapers.

State Historical Society of Missouri
1020 Lowry Street
Columbia, MO 65201-7298
Phone: 573-882-7083
Fax: 573-884-4950

Good luck!


More information about Civil War forts in Missouri and in other states and territories may be found in Encyclopedia of Historic Forts by Robert B. Roberts (Macmillan, 1988).

This list includes original name of fort; whether constructed/first occupied by U. S. Army or Confederate States of America forces; town and/or county where fort was located; and either date of construction (month and year if known; year otherwise) or years in existence; and notes, if any.

Alexander Barracks- USA- city of St. Louis- 1863- renamed Schofield Barracks in June 1865
Beaver Station Fort (see Fort Lawrence)
Benton Barracks- USA- city of St. Louis (Fairgrounds Park)- September 1861
Bird's Point Fort- USA- Mississippi County- 1862
Camp Cavender- USA- St. Louis County- 1861
Camp Fremont- USA- Cape Girardeau, MO (Cape Girardeau County)- 1861
Camp Gratz- USA- Rolla, MO (Phelps County)- June 1861
Camp Hunt- USA- February 1862
Camp Jackson- CSA- city of St. Louis- May 6, 1861-captured May 10, 1861 by Union troops commanded by General Nathaniel Lyon
Camp Jennison- USA- Kansas City, MO (Jackson County)- 1861
Camp Lyon- USA- Benton County- late 1861 or early 1862
Camp McCullough- CSA- Greene County- 1862
Camp Ozark- USA- Christian County- 1863
Camp Sand Springs- USA- Webster County- August 1862- burned by Confederate troops in 1863
Camp Totten- USA- Howard County- 1861
Camp Union- USA- Kansas City, MO (Jackson County)- Spring 1861
Camp Vest- CSA- Howard County- 1861
Fort A (see Fort Girardeau)
Fort B (see Fort Girardeau)
Fort Bankhead - CSA- near New Madrid, MO (New Madrid County)- March 1862
Fort Benton- USA- Patterson, MO (Wayne County)- March 1861
Fort Davidson- USA- near Ironton, MO (Iron County)- 1863
Fort Dette- USA- Rolla, MO (Phelps County)- August 1865
Fort Girardeau- USA- Cape Girardeau, MO (Cape Girardeau County)- September 1861
Fort Jefferson- USA- Cole County- 1861
Fort Lawrence- USA- Taney County- destroyed January 1863 by Confederate troops
Fort Mulligan- USA- Lafayette County- September 1861
Fort Perrique- USA- St. Charles County- 1861
Fort Thompson- CSA- New Madrid, MO (New Madrid County)- 1861
Fort Wyman- USA- Rolla, MO (Phelps County) - 1862
Hartsville Fort- USA- Hartsville, MO (Wright County)- burned by Confederate troops in 1863
Jefferson Barracks- USA- St. Louis County- 1826-1946
Lawrenceville Mill Fort (see Fort Lawrence)
Schofield Barracks (see Alexander Barracks)
St. Joseph Post- USA- Buchanan County- August 1863
St. Louis Arsenal- USA- city of St. Louis- 1827-1904
Waynesville Post- USA- Pulaski County- June 1862


The National Archives is seeking comment on a proposed joint digitization project with The Generations Network (parent company of

Comments must be received by April 9, 2008.


Wednesday, March 12, 2008


Then the Immigrant Ships Transcribers Guild (ISTG) may have an online ship list that lists your immigrant (they've made more than 8,000 passenger manifests available)! If you're ready to take a look, their website is here:



Find out about these important records in an article in the Learning Center (need not be a subscriber to read Learning Center articles):


Also, wants you to be on the lookout for these soon-to-be-added items:

Coming soon: Tennessee State Marriages, 1780-2001
In 1815, a state law required the registration of marriages in Tennessee. Find marriage licenses, applications, bonds, and certificates for counties throughout the state-some recorded before it was mandatory.

Coming soon: U.S. Naturalization Records, 1795-1972
This collection contains images of original naturalization records from Alaska, Arizona, Delaware, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington, and West Virginia. Years vary by state.

Coming soon: Ireland, An Index to Griffith's Valuation, 1848-1864
One of the greatest Irish genealogical resources, Griffith's Valuation was a survey conducted between 1848 and 1864 to determine the amount of tax each person should pay to support the poor.

Coming soon: Ireland, Tithe Applotment Books, 1823-1838
These books list tithe payers to the Established Protestant Church of Ireland (both members and non-members were taxed) between 1823 and 1838. Approximately 40 percent of Ireland's heads of households are included.

Coming Soon: New Search Enhancements
We'll soon be introducing several new features to improve the Ancestry search process and make it easier to find exactly what you are looking for.


When Moses climbed up Mount Sinai and received the 10 Commandments from God, was he high on some kind of ancient Hebrew whacky tobaccy?

Benny Shanon, a professor of cognitive psychology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, thinks that he was, since mind-altering drugs were an integral part of religious rites of the Israeli people during biblical times, reports Agence France Presse.

"As far as Moses on Mount Sinai is concerned, it was either a supernatural cosmic event, which I don't believe, or a legend, which I don't believe either, or finally, and this is very probable, an event that joined Moses and the people of Israel under the effect of narcotics," Shanon told Israeli public radio.

Shanon further believes that Moses was likely on drugs when he saw the "burning bush."

Professor Shanon visited the Amazon forest in 1991 and, during a religious ceremony, used ayahuasca, a powerful psychotropic plant. "I experienced visions that had spiritual-religious connotations," Shanon recalled, noting that the psychedelic effects of ayahuasca are similar to those produced by potions made from the bark of the acacia tree, which is frequently mentioned in the Bible. Critics have noted that Shanon at one point professed to be an atheist, but his experiences in the Amazon with ritual drug use have convinced him that there is in fact something more to human existence than what normally meets the eye.


Tuesday, March 11, 2008


We are fast losing our living links to world history. Stevie Fullerton, the last Scotsman to fight with the International Brigades during the Spanish Civil War, has died at age 88. He went to Spain when just 18 years, after seeing a photo of women and children fleeing Franco's forces, and fought with distinction until being shot in the stomach and invalided out of the war. He recovered fully, and served with the RAF during WWII. Full story here:



The wreck of the HMS Hunter, a Royal Navy destroyer, has been found under 1,000 feet of water in a Norwegian fjord. It was lost (with all 110 hands) during the Battle of Narvik in April 1940-- two Allied and four German vessels sank during the struggle: