Showing posts from November, 2019

Why I Use FamilySearch Family Tree and You Should Too

There is some scorn directed at FamilySearch Family Tree because it is full of errors and some profiles have no sources, which makes it unreliable. The criticism is fair. I've found errors and unsourced profiles there. I've probably added some back when when I first began.

However I find that using FamilySearch Family Tree is critical to my research, and think that I can and should make it better. I hope I can convince you to help. I still have plenty to do, as my fan chart shows:

Has it been years since you used FamilySearch? Please try it again soon.

These days, there are record hints, improved record search, and millions more indexed records available. Merging duplicate profiles can still be tedious and yet it is worth your time. Duplicates weaken the tree, so clean and improve it, at least in your direct lines. Correctly list family members, relationships, and their presence in various records; you'll thank yourself later.

It's important to learn how Source Linker…

Buying and Activating DNA Test Kits for Relatives

Black Friday is coming soon, and one item many genealogy researchers will be looking for is DNA test kits to give as gifts for relatives. A common question is should I activate the kit before giving or sending it to my relative?
The answer depends on:
Which testing company?Will you be in charge of the kit, or your relative?The BasicsLet's start with the basics. 
Have you tested yourself? If so, choosing the same company for both of you will simplify matters.
If not, test yourself too. Test results get their meaning from comparison with matches. If you are purchasing from FamilyTreeDNA, MyHeritage or LivingDNA, you can upload your results to those companies, and my advice is that everyone should do so whether or not you are buying kits for relatives. This is known as "fishing in all the ponds." I would add uploading to Gedmatch to the list above.
Have you asked your relative if they want to test? Have you explained to them in as much detail as they want, what the risks and rew…

Not All Black and White: Puritan Clothing

Puritan ClothingCurrier and Ives; Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division

We are approaching a monumental 400th anniversary: the landing of the Mayflower Pilgrims in November, 1620.  They were followed by the Puritan settlements beginning in 1621 and through the Great Migration years, all nearing the 400 year anniversary.
Maybe it is due to our childhood education that the month of November brings up visions of the first Thanksgiving.The Mayflower Pilgrims are some of the most iconic figures in American history. One glimpse of their black clothes and buckled hats and you automatically know who they are.

But those images are not completely accurate.  The Pilgrims and Puritans are often represented as wearing black or grey clothing but in reality they seldom wore black, preferring to wear what they called “sadd” colors.  These included green, rust, orange, purple, brown and other colors.  In the 17th century black was the color of formal garments and not considered appropriate…
“Batty Brock and the Research Plan:  The Search for the Marriage Record for Charles Beverly Brock Raymond and Marie Marguerite Richards”
as inspired by Thomas W. Jones, PhD, CGL, FASG, FUGA, FNGS

     My fifth cousin, Carol, is in the process of identifying all the descendants of her ancestors, Azariah Perkins and his wife, Elizabeth Moss, of New Brunswick, Canada, of which she and I are two. She inherited the project from her mother.In the midst of her research, she saw my query asking about another descendant, my great-grandfather William Samuel Winslow Raymond, also of New Brunswick.Her question, “How are you related to William?He never married and had no children” and my answer, “He did marry in Boston in 1902 and had seven children and I’m the granddaughter of the eldest!” sent us on a merry chase, which included much sharing of information, photos and more research.I’m happy to say that it also led to a wonderful friendship.
     During this process, Carol asked the question, “Did …