Ancestry Library Edition: available at home for many until the end of May!

Normally, the Library Edition of Ancestry is available only when you are at a subscribing library. Due to the current Covid-19 that has shut down our libraries, Ancestry and ProQuest have made it available in our homes through cooperating libraries. What a generous thing they have done for family historians. Today they announced it will be available this way through May!! It’s always been a good thing to have a library card that allows us to borrow books and movies and access some subscription databases. That card has even more value thanks to Ancestry, ProQuest, and many libraries.

Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh (GRIP) to be held virtually in summer 2020!

It’s been a few weeks of planning, meetings, reworking of some sessions, and now it can be announced that GRIP is going virtual in 2020. To keep students, instructors, coordinators and the directors, Debbie and Elissa safe, we are going to teach and attend online. More info will be forthcoming. For the time being, check here for details.

The course I coordinate, Digging Deeper: Records, Tools, and Skills will still be offered but online. Join us July 19-24 for this experience. We will still have hands-on work, discussions, much learning and some laughs, too. We all need those. The extensive syllabus will still be available in advance of the course.

Get ready to join us from the comfort of your recliner, kitchen table, den, office, or even your bed. But, be sure to get dressed as we will have time to see each other and get to know each other better during the week.

Register soon so that you are able to receive some special instructions from me that will provide the opportunity for you to share one of your research problems for group discussion and suggestions. That info will go out soon in an email.

MyHeritage has a yearbook collection that is FREE, through May 23, 2020

MyHeritage has a yearbook collection that is FREE, through May 23, 2020!

From Daniel Horowitz at MyHeritage: “Our yearbook collection consists of 290 million names in 36 million pages, from yearbooks across the U.S. from 1890 until 1979. Take this opportunity to reminisce about your own high school years or search for your loved ones in the collection. 

In addition, following the successful release of MyHeritage In Color™ (10 million photos were colorized in the first 3 months), one of the ideas raised by our team was to apply this technology also to records, in cases where black and white photos are abundant and colors could enhance the records. We focused our attention on the huge U.S. Yearbook collection on MyHeritage, and I’m happy to announce that you can now view our entire collection of U.S. yearbooks in color!

Search MyHeritage U.S. Yearbooks for Free Now

Ordinarily, accessing the yearbook records on MyHeritage requires a Data or Complete subscription. Now, through this wonderful freebie, anyone can access the yearbooks for free, without even having to sign up, through May 23, 2020. And the yearbooks are now colorized!”

We’re doing this because we want to help our community in these challenging times and give people a fun activity to do when they are isolated at home that is genealogical, enjoyable, and free.

We’ve made it easy to share the yearbook pages on social media. Anyone who shares a yearbook page on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram with the hashtags #LookingGood and #FreeYearbooks and tags @MyHeritage will enter a draw. Each week we’ll select one lucky winner who will receive a free MyHeritage Complete subscription! 

My experience in Native American genealogical and historical research

A couple weeks ago, Cyndi Ingle asked me to do an educational guest post on The Genealogy Squad (TGS) Cyndi is one of the administrators of TGS and also is the Cyndi of We talked about several ideas and this morning 15 April) I posted my tips on Native American research. Now I have been privately asked by a reader for information on my qualifications regarding Native American research. I though I should share that info directly on my blog.

I have been involved in Native American research, consulting, enrollment issues, lecturing, and court testimony since about 1990. I also have several trusted subcontractors who assist in segments of this work. The following is a brief overview of my experience.

1989-present: Full-time genealogical & historical researcher, consultant, writer, and lecturer related to a wide variety of topics, clients, families, and localities across the U.S.

1990-present: Specialist in Native American research and analysis for individuals, families, law firms, and Tribes in several states.

1993-2015: Contract genealogist and consultant for a Minnesota-based Tribe.

1995-present: Extended research time at various National Archives facilities in BIA related records for several Tribes. Other research sites included county courthouses, state archives, and state historical societies in several states.

2016-2018: Served as the Enrollment Committee for a Tribe, assisted the Tribe in the reopening of the enrollment process, in establishing a new enrollment ordinance, determining the Enrollment Application process, development of an Enrollment Application Form and associated reference materials, and established the DNA testing process. Then analyzed, verified, and evaluated 450+ enrollment applications and suggested approval of 302 new members. 

Legacy Family Tree Webinars special offer for genealogists and historians

During April 2020 you can view a free webinar each day from Legacy Family Tree Webinars. It’s a webinar chosen by Legacy and it is available beginning at midnight Eastern Time Zone.

Their blog has the list of what is being offered each day. Be sure to download the handout for each webinar.

If you need more webinars to view each day, it’s time for a membership. Click here to take advantage of the $49.95 annual membership. This is my affiliate link and I appreciate your use of this.

Genealogy Guys Learn has updates and an April sale!

The Genealogy Guys just released the video file, “Using Stereographs and Vintage Postcards” at Genealogy Guys Learn. They also have a new written course, “Dowager Law: A Case Study”. The Genealogy Guys Learn subscription is on sale for $79 (reg. $99 per year.) You’ll find details, instructions, and the Coupon Code in The Genealogy Guys Blog at…/genealogy-guys-learn-on-sal….

Need some U. S. genealogy assistance?

Staying at home to be safe is not a problem with the consultations I do with clients and prospective clients. I have done them by Zoom, Google Hangout, and by phone over the last few weeks. I do have openings on my calendar starting next week for more. I can assist you with using any of the methods for a consultation. Clients send me documents as email attachments, by Google Docs, or place them in Dropbox. I review the material, make notes on questions and suggestions, and then we “talk” about their U.S. and Canadian research. It may be some of those missing ancestors, finding a place of birth, material that doesn’t quite make sense, or simply needing a research plan based on what you send to me. Some that I consult with are beginners at family history research and it’s like a private lesson on what to do.

A consultation is a minimum of 2 hours. The fee is $100 total payable via Paypal or check. Those 2 hours can be split up if you wish. If you want to continue after that, more hours can be added then or even a month or two later when more questions arise.

History and genealogy books, periodicals, and more from home

This is not a list of all the websites that offer digitized books and periodicals for us, but is a list that will get you started from the comfort of your own home. This list of free websites is abstracted from my oft-requested presentation Your Anytime Library: Success in the Virtual Stacks. We can do a lot of U.S. historical and genealogical research from our home.

Do some searching by various terms: surname, city, county, state, occupation, laws, vital records, bibles, and other keyword terminology. I will add another post soon about some websites that lead you to both free and fee-based websites.

Subscription based genealogy databases have some free material as do many genealogical societies. Many public, college, and university libraries and special collection departments have digitized books. County and state historical societies often have digital collections. is what I call a library catalog of library catalogs and it’s easy to set a parameter to search for books and other items that are available online.

There’s no reason to be bored with all the research that we can do right now from our homes as we wait for our libraries, historical societies, and archives to reopen.

MyHeritage opens colorization tool for FREE with no limit

MyHeritage sent this today: “we’re giving everyone FREE and unlimited access to MyHeritage In Color™ from March 23 to April 23, so that people everywhere can join in the fun of colorizing their black and white photos. Ordinarily only 10 photos can be colorized by users who do not have a Complete plan, but now, you can colorize as many photos as you’d like for free. “

Daniel Horowitz also said: “Colorizing photos is the perfect activity for anyone who is isolated at home. We invite everyone to pull out their family photo albums, colorize their photos, and start reminiscing. Over the coming month, anyone who shares their colorized photos on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram with the hashtag #ColorBeatsCoronavirusBlues and tags @MyHeritage will enter a weekly draw. Each week we’ll select one lucky winner who will receive a free MyHeritage Complete subscription!

Please share the news on your social channels and with your audience so they can make the most of this opportunity and colorize their photos.

I also invite you to join me this Tuesday March 24 at 1:00 pm EST for a 30-minute session on how to work with this incredible feature. Feel free to register here and prepare your questions in advance.”