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Welcome to the Archives. Here you'll find all of the old articles that have made it onto Free-Genealogy. Search below for census articles, bmd record information, famous people and genealogy and much much more. You've clicked on the March 2006 Archive.

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Genealogy Today: Cyndi's List grows up

One of my favorite places to go on the Internet is Cyndi's List, and Cyndi Howells, the creator and owner of the site, is one of my favorite people.

Ten years ago, on March 4, 1996, Cyndi posted her first personal Web site. It contained her surnames, articles, and several other things that she planned to expand upon. One portion of the site was a list of more than 1,000 links to genealogy Web sites.

As Cyndi says, "I had no idea that I had just created a monster that would take on a life of its own. More...

Life & Home



Consumers turn to their DNA for answers

For years, Art Thomas sifted through the stories and rumors traded among relatives and he wondered: Exactly where did I come from?

Last fall, Thomas, a retired information technology manager in Springfield, Ohio, turned to his body for answers. He scraped a cell sample from inside his cheek, mailed the swab to a test lab and waited for science to supplement his extensive genealogical research.

Thomas' quest to unlock the secrets of his own DNA is far from a solitary one. A small, but fast-growing number of consumers are paying for a proliferation of partly self-administered genetic tests, hoping to determine everything from paternity to their propensity to develop certain diseases to their own ancestry.




Skull find could force re-think of human origins

Archaeologists have unearthed an almost intact hominid skull in Ethiopia that could help to bridge the gap between Homo erectus and modern man.

The cranium belonging to one of man's forefathers is believed to be between 250,000 and 500,000 years old, a time about which little is known because so few fossils have been discovered.

The face and brain case of the fossil are recognisably different from modern humans, but bear unmistakable anatomical evidence that they belong to our distant ancestry, said Sileshi Semaw, director of the Gona Paleoanthropological Research Project in Ethiopia. More...

By Mike Pflanz in Nairobi



It's all relative: One family’s odyssey

An old school assignment leads to long-lost family in the U.S., Israel, South America and Europe

Every so often we need to be reminded that technological advances have made this world a much smaller place, says Marlene Katz Bishow of Rockville, Maryland.

For nearly 50 years, she’s been researching her Deutscher and Katz families from Galicia – then in Austro-Hungary, later Poland, today Ukraine – a passion that began when she traced eye color in her family for a long-ago school assignment. In New York, Marlene’s paternal grandmother Gussie (Golda) Deutscher Katz talked about her parents’ eye color, adding details about her family and childhood in Rozniatow. In 1913, after her father died, she came to America with her mother and five siblings, eventually marrying first cousin Samuel (Shimon) Katz.

Schelly Talalay Dardashti



Finding family: State genealogists gain high-tech tools

Every year, more than 100,000 detectives visit the Library of Michigan seeking solutions to mysteries.

Their work, however, has nothing to do with solving crimes. They are seeking answers to questions about their ancestry.

Genealogy, by some accounts, has become the second most popular hobby in the United States. The Internet has made investigating the past easier than ever.

Lansing State Journal



Skull discovery could fill origins gap

ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) - A hominid skull discovered in Ethiopia could fill the gap in the search for the origins of the human race, a scientist said on Friday.

The cranium, found near the city of Gawis, 500 km (300 miles) southeast of the capital Addis Ababa, is estimated to be 200,000 to 500,000 years old.

The skull appeared "to be intermediate between the earlier Homo erectus and the later Homo sapiens," Sileshi Semaw, an Ethiopian research scientist at the Stone Age Institute at Indiana University, told a news conference in Addis Ababa.

© Reuters 2006



Slate museum quarries families

GRANVILLE, N.Y. — The Slate Valley Museum may soon be reuniting some of the families it honors.

The museum has entered into a partnership with the National Museums Wales that includes a genealogy project that could help descendents of Welsh immigrants to the Slate Belt track down their distant cousins in Wales and vice versa.

"It really has evolved over several years of our working with the Welsh Slate Museum, which is one of the museums in the National Museums Wales," Slate Valley Museum director Mary Lou Willits said last week. "We visited that museum in 2004 when we took our study tour of the slate region of Wales."



Irish census records now online

The Shamrock and the Maple Leaf exhibition coincides with the 160th anniversary of the Great Famine, one of the greatest periods of Irish immigration.
Through a newly-signed partnership between Canada and Ireland, the 1901 and 1911 Irish census records will be digitized to provide information to researchers and genealogists. more...

Victoria News


Finding Clues to Maiden Names in Census Records

While census records will not usually provide you with the maiden name of your female ancestor, they should not be overlooked for the wealth of other information and clues that they provide.  It may be difficult to locate your female ancestor in earlier census records, unless she was divorced or widowed and listed as head of household.  Beginning about the mid-1800s in most countries, the search gets a little easier, as names are usually given for each individual in the household. More...



Face Recognition for Your Family Tree

In an interesting twist on family tree research a new Web site is employing facial-recognition technology to analyze your facial features and match you up with potential relatives. While the most popular feature of the site is the fun "Find the Celebrity in You" tool which matches your facial traits to find the celebrities you most closely resemble, there are a lot of other nice tools for genealogists.

Here's how it works: Head to myheritage.com, an Israeli-based Web site devoted to genealogy research. After a quick sign-up, you upload a picture of yourself or a family member onto the site and select whether you want to only search celebrity photos, or include all uploaded photos (which should hopefully soon include a lot of great heritage photos). After a minute or so of scanning it presents you with photos of one or more people, assigning a percentage to the resemblance. Some people swear the tool is uncanny, but it told me I resemble Rupert Grint (the actor who plays Ron Weasley in the Harry Potter movies), so I don't know :}

About.com, Kimberly Powell



Looking for Hollywood in the family tree

THANKS to an Oscar for best actress, a string of hit films that see her play everything from a dippy bombshell in Legally Blonde to Johnny Cash's brunette wife, in Walk The Line, Reese Witherspoon is now a Hollywood megastar and the highest-earning women in Tinseltown.

She is famed for her strong southern accent and all-American good looks - so it might come as a surprise to many that the 29-year-old star has recently revealed her Scottish roots, talking with pride about her ancestor John Witherspoon, born in 1723, in the East Lothian village of Gifford.




Here's how you can plot your own family tree

One of the deepest human urges is to know where you came from. So, it's no wonder that when Woman's Day asked readers to tell them why they'd like help researching their family history, the magazine received more than 1,000 essays. Among the tips they provided to help make plotting your family tree a cinch: More...

Woman's Day



Growing a family tree

Mar 18, 2006 — Rodger Laughman is, by his own admission, like a kid in a candy store when he's at work. Squinting into the sun and toward the top of 80-foot rock oak trees - better known as chestnut oak - Laughman sizes up what will soon be just another log. A notch in his axe handle, so to speak. Laughman can recall dropping his first tree near Brogue when he was just 8 years old. He estimates he's felled at least 22,000 trees so far. Probably more. And just because he approaching his 61st birthday, he's not slowing down, working at least 40 hours every week. His only stop is for lunch at Spring Grove's Papertown Dairy Bar.

Daily Record/Sunday News



Family trees, twisted roots

LANCASTER -- Darlene Colon haunts cemeteries, digs through documents and quizzes family members.

In unearthing the roots of her family tree, the 52-year-old Lancaster genealogical consultant has left no clue unturned. Over the past two decades, she has discovered relatives who were Civil War soldiers and runaway slaves. One participated in the Christiana Riot of 1851, in which fleeing slaves and farmers defied a slave owner, with bloody consequences.

But as a black woman in search of her past, she encounters some unique roadblocks. More...

By Susan Jurgelski, Lancaster New Era



A climb up Cape's family tree

To look at Diane Gray's book of ancestral records is to see how the Internet has democratized information gathering.

"Some of this stuff I couldn't find again if you paid me," said Gray. "It was just like I find one icon online and I click on it and that leads to another icon and I click on that and before you know it I've got all this stuff about my family." More...



Is Madonna Related To The British Royal Family?

It has been revealed that Queen of pop Madonna is related to the future Queen, Camilla Parker Bowles.

While reconstructing her family tree Madge discovered that she and Prince Charles’ new wife are distant cousins.

Madge has now asked that Bowles join her to meet with genealogist William Addams Reitwiesner to jointly chart their ancestors.

Reitwiesner told the Daily Star: “Camilla and Madonna are both descended from Zacharie Cloutier who lived from 1617 to 1708. More...




Success grows on family tree

NEW YORK — It has been the dream of entrepreneurs throughout the ages: Start a company, build it up and, someday, pass it on to their children, grandchildren, even great-grandchildren. The odds are it won't happen. Many, if not most, family businesses don't survive the passage from one generation to another — personal issues, children who don't want to work in the firm and fights over money are often fatal blows. Yet many businesses do make it into the second and third generations and beyond, often because family members are committed to continuing the legacy of company founders.

By Joyce M. Rosenberg



Meet the ancestors - they're coming online

One of the joys of the internet is that websites are being improved so frequently that step changes can happen almost without users noticing. Nowhere is this more true than in genealogy. Searching for ancestors has been one of the great online sports for ages but the past 12 months has seen a sea change, with researchers given unprecedented access to primary material.

It is little more than a year since only the 1901 census could be accessed online from home. Now all the previous ones can be seen plus most of the information you will need from the registers of births, marriages and deaths - all without leaving your armchair. In the year to April, 2005, 1.7m people were searching their roots online, according to Nielsen/Net Ratings, a 27% increase on the previous year. The momentum has not slowed: a staggering 1.7m surfers visited Ancestry.co.uk in September alone, according to Comscore Europe. More...

Victor Keegan, Thursday March 9, 2006. The Guardian


Cousins seek family links

COUSINS Lynne and Dawn Orme are today hoping that Evening Star readers can help their quest to trace their family tree which may have exotic roots.

The pair from Rednal in Birmingham, want to find out more about their grandmother's side of the family. Her name was Vera Phillis Baker, and she married Frank Leonard Orme. Vera's parents were Charles Philip Baker and Marie Turner, who later became the wife of Percy Wicks and he had children too. Her siblings were Phillip, Raymond, Charlie, Sylvie, Dora, Daphne and Edna. More...




New shelves installed in library's genealogy room

HERKIMER - The staff members at the Basloe Library in Herkimer have fond memories of one of their most loyal and longtime patrons and volunteers, Martin S. Keller, who passed away in May 2004 and has been sorely missed since that time.

Thanks to his generosity, however, the library now has some new shelves for the Irving M. Basloe Room, known to patrons as the local history or genealogy room. The shelves were purchased with a gift from his estate.

Staff member Deb West said Keller would stop by the library every morning, dressed in a suit and bringing the library a copy of The New York Times. West remarked that Keller, who helped the library in a variety of volunteer capacities over the years and is also honored with a shrub and plaque that stand in front of the library, always had a kind word for everyone. She said his memory will live on.



Piazza moved by ancestry

Former Dodgers catcher dons Italian uniform

LAKELAND, Fla. Mike Piazza stood behind home plate, barking commands to a new set of teammates, the enthusiasm in his voice strongly suggesting how much he was enjoying what clearly wasn't just another day of spring training.

"Three, three, three," he demanded, calling for the cutoff man to relay a throw from the outfield to third base. In another drill, "two, two, two" sent the ball to second base and raised Piazza's curiosity.

Turning to a coach, he asked: "What's four?" Piazza repeated the answer "quattro" in a thick Italian accent, then smiled.

By Fred Goodall, Associated Press



Tips on preserving old 'stuff'

COMMERCIAL TWP. -- Almost everyone has "stuff," whether it be family heirlooms or simply items with sentimental value, but sometimes our efforts at preservation only speed an item's destruction. The Bayshore Discovery Program began its series, "Saving Your Stuff,'' on Feb. 28. The goal is to share tips for protecting our valued possessions. The first session focused on preservation of photos, paper, wood furniture and textiles. The next will be on June 27.

Bridgedon News, Jean Jones



Cutting-edge genealogy

In a century-old Templar building in the quaint village of Wilhelma (Bnei Atarot) near Tel Aviv, I discovered the savvy people of MyHeritage.com, who are changing the way we do family history research.

In a few minutes, a powerful genealogy search engine pulls up, from more than 400 databases, more than 13,000 instances of a few variations of my rare name. Other components include an elegant, free, downloadable family tree builder, a family website builder and a just-for-fun facial recognition technology (FRT) game popular on the Internet. No commercial ads, free and user-friendly, the sophisticated package is a one-click linked group of components. More...

Schelly Talalay Dardashti



Family Tree Bears Bad Fruit

The polygamous towns of Hildale and Colorado City have remained small, closed societies for generations. The reasons for this are obvious. The people fear both persecution and prosecution from the larger societies that surround them. However, it is now apparent that the residents of these border towns are paying a price for their insularity.

Because most of the 8,000 residents of these communities trace their lineage back to four founding members, and marriages within these family lines are common, the result has been a limited genetic pool, which as the laws of science decree, will lead to problems.




Build your Family tree

If you are interested in building your family tree, why not enter Ancestry.co.uk's great competition to win a 12 month UK deluxe subscription. More...



Researching Your Family Tree

Looking at family pictures and talking to your relatives about childhood experiences can bring you hours and hours of joy. But, tracing your roots can also be very tiring, daunting task that leaves you at your wit's end.

Experts say the first thing to do is talk to your family adn get as much fo an oral history as possible.


Saint David and Saint David's Day

If you were lucky enough to be in Wales on March the first, you would find the country in a festive mood. Every self-respecting man, woman and child would be celebrating St. David's Day in one way or another. But who was St. David, and why is he so important to the Welsh? And just how is St. David's Day celebrated in Wales today?

Well, Saint David, or Dewi Sant, as he is known in the Welsh language, is the patron saint of Wales. He was a Celtic monk, abbot and bishop, who lived in the sixth century. During his life, he was the archbishop of Wales, and he was one of many early saints who helped to spread Christianity among the pagan Celtic tribes of western Britain.



Surprise, surprise - Cilla's Welsh

SHE'S the Queen of all things scouse. From her oft repeated catchphrase "lorra, lorra laughs" right down to her humble upbringing in a two-up-two-down in one of Liverpool's most deprived areas Cilla Black has always celebrated her origins.

But now it has emerged the presenter and '60s popstar has Welsh roots that go far deeper than those that bind her to the city with which she will always be associated.

Western mail, Darren Devine


A little humour - How times change

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Getting Started

You might think that starting out building your family tree is going to be a daunting task. Well, it doesn't have to be. Below you will find the most common sets of records to help you start or finish your genealogy research and build that family tree. See Getting Started with Genealogy for more information

Census Records

A census is an official enumeration of the population in a particular area. In addition to counting the inhabitants of an area, the census generally collects other vital information, such as names, ages, citizenship status, and ethnic background. Each census can prove to be invaluable in painting a portrait of a family at a particular place and time.

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Birth Marriage & Death records -

Civil vital records—for Births, Marriage and Deaths —mark the milestones of our lives, and are the foundation of family history research. Chronicling the personal moments of our lives through the objective perspective of the public record, vital records can offer details often found through no other genealogical resource. They can be useful in proving or disproving other sources, give you a more complete picture of your ancestor, help you distinguish between two people with the same name, and help you find clues to earlier life events.

With these records, you can gain access to information regarding your ancestor's lives, such as the locations and causes of their deaths, the names of children or parents, their wedding dates and locations, and the many other details that help us record and remember the important moments in the lives of our families.

Search for BMD records here!

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Church -

Church records contain information about baptisms, marriages, burials, and membership. In addition to the name of the person, church records often provide information about family members.

Search Church records here!

Cemetery -

Some of the cemetery records included are tombstone inscriptions, burial permits, and death indexes. These records usually show names, birth and death dates; sometimes, they include information on surviving family members.

England Cemeteries & Tombstones | Wales Cemeteries & Tombstones

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