Tuesday, August 31, 2010


MyHeritage.com and JewishGen.org are now working together to invigorate the Family Tree of the Jewish People (FTJP) project.

Under this collaboration, family trees built with a special version of MyHeritage.com available at http://www.myheritage.com/jewishgen, with the consent of the tree creators, will be transferred periodically to the FTJP for digital safekeeping. Privacy controls, using the MyHeritage.com tools, can be set according to the wishes of the tree creator. Data of existing MyHeritage.com users will not be transferred.

JewishGen is a non-profit organization created to help researchers interested in Jewish genealogy around the world connect to each other, research their families and ancestral geographic locations, participate in research projects and store Jewish family trees safely. The mission of JewishGen is to obtain records and information that will be valuable to those with Jewish ancestry and place them on the JewishGen website, at no cost, in an easy to understand and searchable format.

The Family Tree of the Jewish People is a project of JewishGen to bring together family historians around the world who research Jewish family branches.The project offers a central resource for Jewish family trees and helps re-connect Jewish families.

MyHeritage.com is a genealogical social networking site with more than 50 million members and 590 million profiles worldwide. It currently holds some 15 million family trees. It operates in 36 languages including English and Hebrew, making it ideal for Jewish families around the world to connect, as it offers easy and fun tools to enable sharing of information, photos, documents and videos among far-flung relatives, with complete and secure privacy controls that can be set by tree creators.

JewishGen is committed to ensuring Jewish continuity for present generations and generations yet to come, says JewishGen managing director Warren Blatt.Our free, easy-to-use website features thousands of databases, research tools and other resources to help those with Jewish ancestry research and find family members. The vision of JewishGen is to connect Jews throughout the world with their relatives and provide them with the ability to learn about their family history and heritage.

MyHeritage.com a site used all over the world and by all religions is among the most popular genealogy websites in the Jewish world, making it a natural partner for JewishGen, said Blatt. The benefit of this partnership is to offer the free website tools from MyHeritage.com to create and research family trees, with the option to share those trees with the thousands of JewishGen users via the FTJP. Under the new partnership, the FTJP will be invigorated and constantly updated, resulting in an accurate, up-to-date and constantly growing Jewish family tree database for JewishGen.

We are excited to join forces with JewishGen, said Gilad Japhet, founder and CEO of MyHeritage.com, himself an avid genealogist and a member of JewishGen since August 2000. We see it as a privilege to cooperate with JewishGen and help it preserve family trees of people who wish to discover, and be discovered by, fellow researchers and relatives," Japhet added. "Our Smart Matching technology will provide genealogists the added benefit of discovering additional relatives through the large databases on MyHeritage.com. This will fulfill the mutual objective of MyHeritage.com and JewishGen to reunite families whose ties have been lost through time and fate."

About MyHeritage.com:

MyHeritage.com was founded by a team of people who combine their passion for family history with the development of innovative technology. Since launching in November 2005 MyHeritage.com has become the worlds leading international online network for families and the second largest family history website. For more information, visit http://www.myheritage.com/jewishgen

About JewishGen:

JewishGen, a non-profit organization affiliated with the Museum of Jewish Heritage A Living Memorial to the Holocaust, was founded in 1987 as a bulletin board with only 150 users who were interested in Jewish genealogy. Primarily driven by volunteers, there are over 700 active volunteers throughout the world who actively contribute to its ever-growing collection of databases, resources and search tools. Currently, JewishGen hosts more than 14 million records, and provides a myriad of resources and search tools designed to assist those researching their Jewish ancestry. JewishGen provides its resources online as a public service.

For more information please contact:

Daniel Horowitz
Genealogy and Translation Manager
Email: Daniel@MyHeritage.com


The 1890 census was mostly destroyed by a 1921 fire at the Census Bureau (and by the damage done by attempts to contain the fire). Here’s the complete story of that fire and its aftermath:


NOTE: The article notes that records of 6,120 households from a number of different states did survive the burning of the census, and are indexed


Some Civil War soldiers who received the Medal of Honor got their awards thirty years after the war ended- and some of them really didn’t deserve the honor:



That ancestor whose passenger record you can't find (1895-1954 period) may not have landed at a U.S. port- maybe she of she landed in Canada, and crossed into the U.S. via land border points of entry:



Nice annotated bibliography for those researching St. Louis history put together by Mercantile Library staff:


Monday, August 30, 2010


Updated version of this huge searchable guide to their collections:



If you’ve got one of more interesting stories about your tour in Vietnam (or know someone who does), you can post it here:



The Missouri History Museum has a very nice genealogy links page:



From: Arenson, Adam
Subject: Possible Book Discussions/Signings

My book, The Great Heart of the Republic: St. Louis and the Cultural Civil War, is in production, with copies available on November 29, and an official publication date of January 3, 2011.

I am working with Harvard University Press on publicity, but I do plan to come to St. Louis, through central Missouri, and other places in an near Missouri where there is interest, in order to talk about the research, do book signings, answer questions, and discuss the work with undergraduates, graduate students, library and museum patrons, teachers, and whoever else is interested.

If you know of an interested audience, do let me know. Let me know when and what might be best, and I can work to coordinate it.

I hope the summer is ending well, and the school year's rush is not too painful--


Adam Arenson
Assistant Professor of History, The U of Texas-El Paso
(915) 747-6277

The Great Heart of the Republic: St. Louis and the Cultural Civil War -- available November 29th, or for pre-order now:


Friday, August 27, 2010


St. Clair County Genealogical Society
PO Box 431
Belleville, Illinois 62222-0431


Please join us on Thursday, September 2, 2010 when Dr. Tom Meuser will share aspects of interviewing elderly members of the community and/or family on topics such as history, sociology and family interactions. The types of questions asked of Life Review participants, the prep-sheet they receive ahead of time and techniques used to guide the interviewer or keep the participant on track.

Dr. Meuser is Director of the Gerontology Graduate Program and Coordinator of the University of Missouri, St. Louis Life Review Project. For more information, please visit the following web site:


On Thursday, October 7, 2010, author A J Brower will discuss "How I Turned Genealogy into Murder". Ms Brower became addicted to genealogy at the age of 19. She has written articles that have been published in the now defunct Heritage Quest and the NGS newsmagazine, among other local society newsletters. She has also produced her own family newsletter and turned one line of the family into a self-published, fiction novel, "A Family To Die For".

The story involves two teachers, one of whom also has her own historical research business. The plot is tied into an identity theft in WWI and the murders in the family over the last 75 years. Ms Brower is currently working on her third book.

Ms Brower majored in journalism and has a master's degree in internationall relations and education. She is a licensed high school history and journalism teacher. She is also an active Reservist with 25 years in the United States Air Force.

Thursday, November 4, "Thirteen Dollars a Month: Recruiting, Enlistment, Conscription and Desertion in the American Civil War." Tom Pearson discusses how they joined the army during the Civil War; what they got paid for doing so and how some of them took the money and ran.

Thursday, December 2, is our Annual Christmas Party with show and tell.

Our monthly meetings begin at 7:30 pm at the St. Luke's Parish Hall, 226 N. Church St. in Belleville, Illinois.

We are always looking for good speakers on genealogical topics. Let us know if you can recommend any speaker(s) from the St. Louis Metro Area, or if you can speak on a topic of interest to our Society.

For more information, program suggestions or inclement weather, please contact Karen LaCroix, Program Chairperson by e-mail or you may call (618) 286-4392.

Visitors and Guests are Always Welcome!

Diane Auth
Membership Chairperson
St Clair County Genealogical Society


PROVO, UTAH - August 27, 2010 - Ancestry.com today launched millions of records that now make up the largest searchable collection of yearbooks available online. Along with Ancestry.com's existing collections, there are now more than 60 million yearbook records available in the site's U.S. School Yearbook collection, which also includes class and candid photos of famous celebrities.

The 10,000 yearbooks included in the new U.S. School Yearbook collection feature yearbooks from high schools, junior highs, academies, colleges, and universities-military, public, parochial, and private-from almost every state in the United States spanning 1875-1988.

"The new U.S. School Yearbook collection just made starting your family history even easier by adding an entirely new dimension to your research," said Christopher Tracy, Senior Vice President of Global Content at Ancestry.com. "Yearbooks contain graduation and candid photos, which add insight into an ancestor's extracurricular activities in school. Along with our ever-expanding database of billions of other historical records, the U.S. School Yearbook collection will help people discover the deeper details about their ancestors that they would not have otherwise been able to find."

What can be found in an old yearbook? Perhaps you will find a photo of your great grandfather or even a famous classmate. Like Ancestry.com that discovered the Academy Award-winner, Sandra Bullock, at her high school homecoming dance was already fighting off men - or in this case a young man - trying to steal a kiss on the dance floor, or a teenage Will Smith tackling science class before he ventured off to be the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.

Below are more details on the new celebrity photos found in the U.S. School Yearbook collection. In addition to their official yearbook photos, many of today's biggest stars were captured in their school activities exhibiting the dynamism that later brought them to fame and fortune.

Sandra Bullock - "To be a varsity cheerleader, the girls had to sacrifice a lot of time, money and energy," appeared in the 1982 Washington-Lee High School yearbook story on the Arlington, Virginia Varsity Cheerleaders, which included Academy Award-winner Sandra Bullock. Bullock had no shortage of energy since Ancestry.com also discovered her high school photos from the Thespian Honor Society and the German Honor Society. Of course she still had time to attend the Homecoming Dance where her dancing partner was captured trying to steal a kiss.

Betty White - The Emmy Award-winning actress is experiencing a career comeback after a Facebook campaign landed her a gig as the most popular guest host on this past season of "Saturday Night Live". Along with her newly discovered popularity, White's fans can now share her newly discovered high school photo from Beverly Hills High School in 1936.

Will Smith - The Overbrook High School yearbook photo of top international box-office star and Academy Award nominee, Will Smith, shows he was once a high school student perplexed by science, in 1986 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, before he was a 'man in black.'

Alec Baldwin - Alexander Baldwin was no high school activity slouch at Alfred G. Berner High School in Massapequa, New York. In 1976, he served as Class President, and was a member of the youth council, drama club, the student activities council, the lacrosse and football teams.

Brad Pitt - Academy Award-nominee and Angelina Jolie's significant other exercised his creativity in high school as a member of the 1981-82 Kickapoo High School Student Council in Springfield, Missouri. This newly discovered photo finds Pitt creating the decorations for the school's "Chief Ceremonial."

Nicolas Cage - A very young Nicolas Coppola is pictured in his Beverly Hills High School 1979 yearbook official picture looking quite serious hiding any glimpse to the versatile star's great sense of humor.

Jay Leno - The "Tonight Show" host was recognized early on by his classmates who named him the "funniest" in this candid photo of Leno in his Loyola Academy (Andover, Massachusetts) 1966 yearbook. Also noted next to his class yearbook photo, Leno listed his possible future career as "retired millionaire."

Matt Lauer - The popular "Today" show anchor revealed his secret to success as a broadcast journalist, who often has to ask tough questions, in the quote he selected by English writer William Hazlitt that ran under his official 1975 Greenwich High School (Connecticut) yearbook photo, "He will never make true friends who is afraid of making enemies."

The entire yearbook collection will be available on Ancestry.com to existing members or through a 14-day free trial for new members.

For anyone interested in discovering their ancestors in the yearbook collection, visit www.ancestry.com/yearbook to search the full collection of 60 million records.

About Ancestry.com

Ancestry.com Inc. (Nasdaq: ACOM) is the world's largest online family history resource, with more than one million paying subscribers. More than 5 billion records have been added to the site in the past 13 years. Ancestry users have created more than 18 million family trees containing over 1.8 billion profiles. Ancestry.com has local Web sites directed at nine countries, including its flagship Web site at www.ancestry.com.

Sr. PR Manager
Address 360 W 4800 N Provo, UT 84604



(Nominated by Darrell Jackson, President, and presented to David by Darrell at the MoSGA Annual Conference, 13 August 2010.)

The President’s Award for 2010 is given to David Sapp. David has ably served MoSGA as an officer for the past 13 years. He was:

1. Second Vice President 1998 to 2002;
2. On Nominating Committee 2002 to 2003;
3. First Vice President 2003 to 2004;
4. President 2004 to 2006;
5. Publications Director 2006 to 2008; and
6. Treasurer 2008 to 2010.

He volunteered to take on the major job of chairing the Host Committee for the National Genealogical Society Family History Conference held in Kansas City in 2008.

David is active in his local society, the Genealogical Society of Central Missouri, where he has held offices and written publications, including a transcription of the 1821 tax list for Boone County and a history of Wilton in Boone County.

He is also active in other organizations that share interests with the genealogical community. He has led the efforts to place and preserve historic buildings on the grounds of the Boone County Historical Society’s museum. He is member of the board of directors of the Friends of the Missouri State Archives.

In all his service to MoSGA David Sapp has not just served but has served with high distinction, working hard, expending great effort to do things correctly, and holding all around him to high standards in carrying out MoSGA’s mission to promote genealogy, educate genealogists, and foster statewide communication among genealogists and genealogical organizations. He has truly been a mainstay of our association. It is a pleasure to present this award to David Sapp.

Congratulations to David on receiving this well-deserved award!


Explore photos, letters, and various other documents from the vast collections of the National Archives (US):



Have some sort of financial calculation you need to make? Doesn’t matter what sort of calculation it is- they’ve got a free calculator you can use to solve that problem:


Thursday, August 26, 2010


An illustrated blog post about this museum and archives:



Annual list compiled by Family Tree Magazine:



Need to learn more about a genealogical topic? You may find the answers here:



From their website:

Civil War Washington examines the U.S. national capital from multiple perspectives as a case study of social, political, cultural and medical/scientific transitions provoked or accelerated by the Civil War. The project draws on the methods of many fields—literary studies, history, geography, computer-aided mapping—to create a digital resource that chronicles the war's impact on the city. Troops, fugitive slaves, bureaucrats, prostitutes, actors, authors, doctors, and laborers were among those drawn to the capital by a sense of duty, desperation, or adventure. Drawing on material ranging from census records to literary texts and from forgotten individuals to the famous (such as Abraham Lincoln and Walt Whitman) we examine how Washington changed from a sleepy Southern town to the symbolic center of the Union and nation.


Wednesday, August 25, 2010


Full-text of this account of the battalion’s involvement in the Spanish Civil War, written by battalion members:



Full-text of this memoir by Spanish Civil War survivor Albert Prago, a member of the Abraham Lincoln Battalion:



You can access full-text versions of both The Source and The Red Book on the Ancestry.com wiki:



Archaeologists are currently excavating the site of this Civil War prison for captured Union soldiers, and are discovering dozens of fascinating artifacts:



If there’s an astronomy nut in the family, or if you just need some great free wallpaper, check out this site- there are sure to be images that will entrance you:


Tuesday, August 24, 2010


On Saturday, August 28, at 3:00 p.m. the National Archives will host historian and lecturer Dr. Bryan Le Beau for a program coinciding with the opening of two exhibitions celebrating the life of Abraham Lincoln, Abraham Lincoln: Self-Made in America and Lincoln Lives On. Le Beau will provide an introduction to the exhibits by exploring the theme of the first exhibit, Abraham Lincoln: Self -Made in America. He will speak on the origins of the myth of the self-made man in America and how and why Lincoln came to be associated with that myth.

Abraham Lincoln: Self-Made in America is a traveling exhibit featuring reproduction artifacts from the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield, Illinois. Lincoln Lives On is an exhibit created by the National Archives at Kansas City featuring original materials from the local community.

Created to commemorate the 200th anniversary and birth of one of America’s best presidents Abraham Lincoln: Self-Made in America is a learning station exhibition and covers Lincoln’s childhood, self-education, careers as a surveyor and lawyer, family life, political career, election to the Presidency, and his assassination. The reproduction artifacts on display, all modeled from originals in the Presidential Library and Museum, include: Lincoln’s favorite books; his son Tad’s toy cannon; the nameplate from his Springfield home; his stovepipe hat, which he used like a briefcase to hold important papers; a Presidential campaign banner; an axe that Lincoln used to chop wood; the bloody gloves found in Lincoln’s pocket the night of his assassination; and many other unique and interesting items.

Lincoln Lives On explores how Abraham Lincoln’s persona has been built up to create a larger than life figure over the past 145 years, and examines the man behind the myth. Telling Lincoln’s story from a local perspective, the exhibit features original letters, signed documents, photographs, campaign buttons, and more from the holdings of the National Archives at Kansas City, Harry S. Truman Presidential Library and Museum, University of Saint Mary, and private collections.

Bryan Le Beau is Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the College at the University of Saint Mary. He holds a Ph.D. from New York University and has been a professor of American history since 1982. He has held an endowed faculty chair at Creighton University, as well as various administrative positions, and he has authored seven books and dozens of articles on various topics in American history.

For more information or to make a reservation for this free event call 816-268-8010 or register by emailing: kansascity.educate@nara.gov.

Additional Information

Abraham Lincoln: Self-Made in America and Lincoln Lives On are free exhibitions. Abraham Lincoln: Self-Made in America will be on display through September 24, 2010, and Lincoln Lives On will run through October 30, 2010. Abraham Lincoln: Self-Made in America was created to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the birth of one of America’s best presidents by the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum. The We, the People program of the National Endowment for the Humanities, a federal agency, provided major financial support for the exhibition and accompanying programs. The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation and the History Channel provided additional financial and in-kind support. For additional information call 816-268-8000 or visit: www.archives.gov/central-plains/kansas-city

The National Archives at Kansas City is one of 13 facilities nationwide where the public has access to Federal archival records. It is home to more than 50,000 cubic feet of historical records dating from the 1820s to the 1990s created or received by nearly 100 Federal agencies. Serving the Central Plains Region, the archives holds records from the states of Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, and South Dakota. The facility is located at 400 West Pershing Road, Kansas City, MO 64108. It is open to the public Tuesday - Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. for research, with the exhibits open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, call 816-268-8000 or visit: www.archives.gov/central-plains.


A review of this recently published guidebook to Civil War in Missouri. The book divides the state into five driving tours, and is illustrated with photos, illustrations, and maps:



Family Tree Magazine offers access to free genealogy forms on its website:



From their website:
The Michigan War Studies Review (reference abbreviation MWSR) publishes book reviews, literature surveys, original essays, commentary, and other material in the field of military studies, with a purview extending from antiquity to the present. Subscription is gratis. Publishers desiring to have books reviewed in MWSR should contact the editor:



Full-text booklet on the men, horses, dogs, and boats that patrolled our nation’s beaches during WWII, on the lookout for U-boats and enemy saboteurs:


Sunday, August 15, 2010



I have just received emails from our vice president (program chairman) advising that the research trip to the Missouri State Archives that was scheduled for Tuesday, Aug 17, has been canceled due to the extreme heat and lack of interest at this time. The organized carpools from Nevada and El Dorado Springs, MO are canceled.

Please contact Neoma Foreman or Dorothy Foster if you have questions. (If you need their emails, please let me know.)

Nancy Thompson
Tri-County Genealogical Society
218 W. Walnut St., Nevada, MO 64772
web: www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~motcogs/
email: tricountygenealogy@centuryte l.net

Thursday, August 12, 2010


If you don’t need a “media center,” and just want a freeware program that you can use to easily create playlists or just play music, then Quuxplayer is the Windows music manager you need:



This version of the Firefox browser (Secure Browser) lets you do your web browsing from within the comfort and safety of an “electronic sandbox.” Any malware that tries to penetrate your system is trapped within this “computer within your computer.” After surfing, you just check to see if Secure Browser has detected any attempted intrusions-- if so, simply reset Secure Browser to its original parameters and any pesky malware goes bye-bye:


NOTE: You can also set up lists of specific safe and blocked sites if you wish.


Ready to buy an e-book reader, but aren’t sure which one is right for you? These tips should help you decide:



Ready to upgrade from DVD to Blu-Ray, but don’t want to shell out a fortune for Blu-Ray discs? Trade in 25 DVDs for 25 Blu-Rays of the same titles (Warner Brothers titles). There’s a $5 charge per disc, but that’s a much better deal than paying full price for 25 Blu-Ray discs:



PROVO, UTAH (August 6, 2010) – Ancestry.com Inc. (Nasdaq:ACOM) announced today that it has acquired leading professional genealogy research firm, ProGenealogists, Inc.

Based in Salt Lake City, Utah, ProGenealogists specializes in genealogical, forensic and family history research. During its 10-year history, the firm has become a trusted name in professional genealogy, finding great success with client research and expanding both its domestic and international capabilities. As a part of Ancestry.com, ProGenealogists will continue to provide premier family history research to its existing clients while extending the Ancestry.com reach across the genealogy value chain.

“We are delighted to welcome ProGenealogists into the Ancestry.com network,” said David Rinn, senior vice president of strategy and corporate development for Ancestry.com. “With this acquisition Ancestry.com can better serve subscribers who are seeking dedicated, personal support in their family history research. As a natural service extension for Ancestry.com, we expect the addition of ProGenealogists will also enhance and expand the professional research offerings currently available through Ancestry.com Expert Connect.”

“Ancestry.com is definitely in a class by itself in the genealogy industry,” said Natalie Cottrill, CEO of ProGenealogists, Inc. “We are excited to become part of the Ancestry.com family and look forward to finding new ways to help more people interested in learning about their roots.”

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Ancestry.com does not expect the acquisition to have a material impact on its financial guidance as issued in connection with its second quarter earnings release on July 29, 2010.

ProGenealogists and Ancestry.com have worked together on several initiatives over the past few years including driving the research for the NBC television program, “Who Do You Think You Are?” which traced the family histories of celebrities including Sarah Jessica Parker, Lisa Kudrow, Brooke Shields, Susan Sarandon, Emmitt Smith, Matthew Broderick and Spike Lee. Ancestry.com will continue leveraging the expertise at ProGenealogists for similar initiatives in the future.

About Ancestry.com

Ancestry.com Inc. (Nasdaq:ACOM) is the world's largest online family history resource, with more than one million paying subscribers. More than 5 billion records have been added to the site in the past 13 years. Ancestry users have created more than 18 million family trees containing over 1.8 billion profiles. Ancestry.com has local Web sites directed at nine countries, including its flagship Web site at www.ancestry.com.

About ProGenealogists, Inc.

ProGenealogists, Inc. is a consortium of professional genealogists who specialize in genealogical, forensic, and family history research. The firm services thousands of professional, government, media, and individual clients worldwide. In addition, the firm has published numerous articles and research tools on their award winning website, www.progenealogists.com.


This Trails to the Past website provides links to numerous Missouri Civil War-related websites:



If you use the Firefox web browser, you’ll enjoy browsing through these 5,000+ potential add-ons to your browser:


NOTE: If you’re a veteran Firefox user, you know how simple it is to integrate add-ons into your browser!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010


Follow the news in your local area (you can choose one of several large cities from your home state to use as your “news base”):



The National Archives at Kansas City, in partnership with the Jackson County Historical Society, will host David W. Jackson on Thursday, August 12, at 6:30 p.m. for a discussion on his new book Kansas City Chronicles: An Up-To-Date History. Jackson will be available to sign copies of his book after the discussion. A 6:00 p.m. reception will precede the event.

From guerrilla warfare and martial law to the elegant dresses of the Harzfeld’s Parisian Cloak Company, discover how everything became up-to-date in Kansas City (including the phrase “up-to-date,” itself, which predates the song in Oklahoma!). Learn how the Jackson County Poor Farm became the state-of-the-art Truman Medical Center and why Old Westport is the real McCoy. Meet the resident mouse of the Laugh-O-Gram studio on Thirteenth and Forest, who took food from Walt Disney’s hand as Mortimer before taking shape on his drawing board as Mickey. In this collection of his best historical columns, Jackson delivers a vivid portrait of the people who left their mark on this fascinating town.

David W. Jackson received a BS magna cum laude in historic preservation, archives studies from Southeast Missouri State University. He is the founder of the Orderly Pack Rat, a historical research and consulting service. Since 2000, Jackson, as director of Archives and Education for the Jackson County (Missouri) Historical Society, has served as editor of the nonprofit organization’s scholarly JOURNAL; administers its archives operations; services patron requests through its research library; manages its bookshop; updates its website; coordinates a volunteer program; presents on behalf of its Speakers’ Bureau; contributes regular, local history-related articles to area newspapers; and has written and directed the publishing of several products through the society’s imprint. The Orderly Pack Rat (http://www.orderlypackrat.com) published Jackson’s first book, Direct Your Letters to San Jose: The California Gold Rush Letters of James and David Lee Campbell, 1849–1852 (2000), and, subsequent Recipes of the Our Past: Morsels from Our Grandmothers’ Recipe Boxes (2005).

Copies of Kansas City Chronicles will be available for purchase at The Kansas City Store at the National Archives. Following the program Jackson will be available to sign copies of his books. For more information or to make a reservation for this free event call 816-268-8010 or register by emailing: kansascity.educate@nara.gov.

The Jackson County (Mo.) Historical Society, a not-for-profit organization located on the historic courthouse square in Independence, Missouri, celebrated its 50th Golden Anniversary in 2008. Although the Society has roots dating back to 1909, formally organized in 1940 and officially incorporation in 1958. Jackson County has a unique, rich history and JCHS is dedicated to the preservation and understanding of our heritage and to promoting the study, appreciation, and interpretation of local and regional history. Membership dues, gifts, donations, and grants primarily accomplish our operation. For more information visit: www.jchs.org

The National Archives at Kansas City is one of 13 facilities nationwide where the public has access to Federal archival records. It is home to more than 50,000 cubic feet of historical records dating from the 1820s to the 1990s created or received by nearly 100 Federal agencies. Serving the Central Plains Region, the archives holds records from the states of Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, and South Dakota. The facility is located at 400 West Pershing Road, Kansas City, MO 64108. It is open to the public Tuesday - Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. for research, with the exhibits open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, call 816-268-8000 or visit: www.archives.gov/central-plains.


Miss any episodes? It's back:

If you missed any Who Do You Think You Are? episodes featuring Lisa Kudrow, Sarah Jessica Parker, Emmitt Smith, or Brooke Shields, you’ll get a chance to watch them on NBC, Fridays at 8/7c, starting August 13.

Friday, August 06, 2010


If you’ve got some useful items you don’t need anymore, but hate to toss in the trash, list them on Freenapkin. One catch- they have to be free to anybody who will come and pick them up. You can also look on the site to see if somebody in your area is giving away something you need:



Full-text of this how-to guide to tracing British ancestors:



Planning to buy a laptop during this tax-free weekend in Missouri and Illinois? Then you’ll want to read Kim Komando’s tips for choosing one that fits your needs:



Intrigued by the possibilities of social networking, but don’t want your info and photos available to anybody who happens upon your site? Then try Chattertree- it’s password protected, so only people you invite can visit the site you create (no programming knowledge necessary), and it’s free:



What is your society or library doing for this year’s Family History Month? Here’s what they’re doing at Allen County Public Library (IN):

Coming Soon: Family History Month 2010

A great month of events is in the works for your genealogical pleasure. This year, each week will highlight a specific aspect of research, with General Week, October 1st through 9th; Preservation Week October 10th through 16th; Technology Week, October 17th through 23rd; and Dead Week, October 24th through 31st. Other highlights include One-on-One Consultations every Tuesday and the annual Military
Symposium on October 8th & 9th, as well as the Cemetery Seekers’ "Start Sharing the News" dinner at the Baker Street Station on October 29th, presentations on October 30th, and Lindenwood Cemetery Tour on Halloween. Add to all that the traditional Midnight Madness Extended Research Hours on Friday, October 29th. We anticipate an exciting month, and hope you'll join us!

More info: www.acpl.lib.in.us/genealogy/programs.html

Thursday, August 05, 2010


AZZ Cardfile is a free Windows program (works with Windows 95 through Windows 7) that helps manage any personal information like addresses, phone numbers, references, notes, recipes.

It can serve as personal organizer, contact manager, address book, rolodex, personal information manager (PIM) or small database software. Replaces Microsoft Cardfile.

Modern customizable user interface, ease of use and extensive features makes this information management software equally suitable for business office or home use.



Statistics on federal and state units involved in the conflict:



Have a question about laws (past and present) in England, Wales, Scotland, or Northern Ireland? Then your first stop on the digital highway should be legislation.gov.uk:



Did you know that you can search the National Archives (UK) Reference Catalogue while sitting at home in your jammies and fuzzy slippers?


Wednesday, August 04, 2010


Army Lawyer (May 2010) includes a two-page (pp. 3-4) article on the execution of a WWII Army deserter:



Kansas City, (MO)… The National Archives at Kansas City will host Kenneth LaMaster on Thursday, August 5, at 6:30 p.m. for a discussion on his book US Penitentiary Leavenworth. LaMaster will be available to sign copies of his book after the discussion. A 6:00 p.m. reception will precede the event. In addition, attendees are encouraged to view the exhibition Mugged!: Facing Life at Leavenworth prior to the discussion.

Located twenty-five miles north of Kansas City, Kansas, the United States Penitentiary in Leavenworth, Kansas, opened its doors in 1895 as the nation’s first Federal Penitentiary. That year, a St. Louis architect William Eames of Eames and Young Architects began working on the plans for the prison. This prison would become notorious for hosting famous offenders from across the country and would become known as Leavenworth Penitentiary. In his book, LaMaster takes readers on a behind-the-scenes journey through the halls of the United States Penitentiary at Leavenworth, Kansas. Included are photographs of the men who served time at the prison from the 1890s - 1990s, along with documentation on how the prison was constructed and what day-to-day life was like for many of the inmates.

Since 1979 Ken LaMaster has worked in all three of Leavenworth's famous prisons. His career began as a Correctional Specialist at the United States Disciplinary Barracks at Fort Leavenworth. In May of 1982 Ken went to work at the then Kansas State Penitentiary in Lansing as a Correctional Officer and in July of 1983 he began his career as a Correctional Officer for the Federal Bureau of Prisons at the United States Penitentiary Leavenworth. LaMaster credits his love of history to his father Kenneth Sr., a World War II veteran that often spoke of his experiences during the war and his days with the 2nd Armored Division, U.S. Army. In 2002, LaMaster became the official institution historian and has researched every aspect of the prisons history up to present day.

Copies of U.S. Penitentiary Leavenworth will be available for purchase at The Kansas City Store at the National Archives. This event is free and open to the public. For more information or to make a reservation call 816-268-8010 or register by e-mailing: kansascity.educate@nara.gov.

Mugged!: Facing Life at Leavenworth is organized by the National Archives at Kansas City.

Admission, hours, and additional information

Mugged!: Facing Life at Leavenworth is a free exhibition and will be open through August 7, 2010. The National Archives at Kansas City is open Tuesday-Saturday 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. for exhibits viewing and Tuesday-Saturday from 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. for research. Free parking is available for National Archives visitors, with additional free parking available in the Union Station Parking Garage on the west side of Union Station.

The National Archives at Kansas City is one of 13 facilities nationwide where the public has access to Federal archival records. It is home to more than 50,000 cubic feet of historical records dating from the 1820s to the 1990s created or received by nearly 100 Federal agencies. Serving the Central Plains Region, the archives holds records from the states of Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, and South Dakota. The facility is located at 400 West Pershing Road, Kansas City, MO 64108. It is open to the public Tuesday - Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. for research, with the exhibits open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, call 816-268-8000 or visit: www.archives.gov/central-plains.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010


My brother, William James Pearson, now rests in this beautiful national cemetery in North Carolina:


NOTE: Bill was a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy- his son, Andy, is currently serving on a submarine, the U.S.S. Louisiana. My father, my daughter, and my Uncle Bob were also in the Navy- how's that for a tradition of service to our country?

What about me? No, not Navy- Air Force!


They’re building a full-sized medieval castle in Lead Hill, Arkansas:


NOTE: Extensive photo gallery!


Review of a thought-provoking new book:



Does your state offer any tax holidays? Missouri has one this weekend (August 6-8):



The name of this free app is possibly ill-chosen, but never mind- it’s a Firefox add-on that allows you to quickly access the amazing number of Google services available: