Thursday, July 06, 2017

Announcing: DearMYRTLE's new blog "Myrt's Musings"



DearREADERS,

Yup! I've taken the plunge and designed a new blog called Myrt's Musings. It will include all the news, hangouts announcements and opinionated moderating my DearREADERS have come to expect.

So head on over to


Frankly, I've had a ball experimenting with Wordpress. After consulting with 3 experts, we realize its impossible to import my old DearMYRTLE's Genealogy Blog posts over without a ton of broken links. It had something to do with a custom domain redirect. Yikes!


Yes, I love Blogger, but I'm loving Wordpress, too. 

That sounds like a line from a country western song.


P.S. Genea-friend and fellow GeneaBloggerTRIBE member Randy Seaver of Genea-Musings said it's ok if Ol' Myrt here uses the word "musings." I'm guessing he doesn't have a copyright on the use of that word.

P. P. S. - I've got a whole new color scheme. Wonder if that means I'll need to make a new quilt backdrop for our upcoming hangouts? Hmmmm.

Happy family tree climbing!

Hangouts: Pay what you want. So it's simple. If you value the work Ol' Myrt, +Cousin Russ and our beloved panelists do week in and week out on your behalf, please:






Check the DearMYRTLE Hangouts Calendar for upcoming study groups and hangouts. There you'll find links to the GeneaConference (in-person) and the GeneaWebinars Calendar with over over 200 hours of online genealogy classes, webinars, live streams and
tweetchats from other hosts and presenters over the next 12 months.

Monday, July 03, 2017

Don't Panic! Review The Written Conclusion Study Group instead



DearREADERS,

While it's true there are no DearMYRTLE hangouts this month, don't panic. Ol' Myrt here has a suggestion for you. What can you possibly do in place of Mondays with Myrt in July 2017? Spend the time reviewing The Written Conclusion Study Group (four 90-minute sessions) and reading Chapter 7 from Thomas W. Jones' Mastering Genealogical Proof  (Arlington, Virginia: National Genealogical Society, 2013). [Book available from the publisher here and in Kindle format, described here.]

What IS a "written conclusion" and why should family historians care?

A written conclusion isn't something typical fill-in-the-blank genealogy software prompts us to compose, yet it is mission critical if we aim to climb the right family tree.

One writes a conclusion about any sort of genealogical breakthrough as it is quite simply a summary of why one believes an ancestral "fact" to be true.


The word "fact" is in quote marks, because as Elizabeth Shown Mills writes "Facts always have other facts lurking in their shadows." Source: It's a Fact. No Discussion Needed. Or Is It?  (www.EvidenceExplained: viewed 15 June 2017.)


You'll find the The Written Conclusion Study Group sessions on DearMYRTLE's YouTube Channel, embedded here:


Extra Credit


Aside from learning it's all about explaining your thought process in narrative format, participants may compose written conclusions based on each session's topic.

  1. Follow along with the four weekly hangout sessions.
  2. Incorporate the principles Dr. Jones presents in Chapter 7 as mentioned above.
  3. Compose a written conclusion based on your own research. 
  4. Make sure to include your name on the top of the page.
  5. Include reference material as follows:

    Reference Material
    Jones, Thomas W., "The Written Conclusion" 
    Mastering Genealogical Proof,  (Arlington, Virginia: National Genealogical Society, 2013). 
    Richley-Erickson, Pat. Mastering Genealogical Proof Study Group, DearMYRTLE's YouTube Channel (http://ow.ly/dmhX30dhvOS : viewed July 2017).

  6. Publish your conclusion in blog or public Google Doc format.
  7. Submit only 1 conclusion per week as follows:
    Week 1: Proof Statement
    Week 2: Proof Summary
    Week 3: Proof Proof Argument
    Week 4: Clear Writing (take one of your previous proofs and rewrite following Dr. Jones' advice.) 
  8. Register each week's write-up here: https://goo.gl/forms/lLalKcuAzQpHTuYJ3 


Each entry makes the participant eligible to win a $100 Amazon Gift Card to be awarded during our next Mondays with Myrt #genealogy hangout, 7 August 2017. WOW! 

Hangouts: Pay what you want. So it's simple. If you value the work Ol' Myrt, +Cousin Russ and our beloved panelists do week in and week out on your behalf, please:






Check the DearMYRTLE Hangouts Calendar for upcoming study groups and hangouts. There you'll find links to the GeneaConference (in-person) and the GeneaWebinars Calendar with over over 200 hours of online genealogy classes, webinars, live streams and
tweetchats from other hosts and presenters over the next 12 months.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

National Archives (US) Hosts Free “Write” Stuff Festival for Kids July 7-8, 2017

NOTE From DearMYRTLE: The following was received from our friends at the National Archives (US). 4th-6th graders may participate online or in person.



Literacy, Writing and Research Festival Celebrates Summer Vacation!

Washington, DC —  The National Archives welcomes the start of summer break with its first-ever, two-day “Write” Stuff Festival showcasing how research impacts writing and storytelling July 7-8. Writers young and old, accomplished and novice, are invited to the National Archives to meet and learn from favorite authors and illustrators. Young writers (4th-6th grade) can participate in special “story development” workshops in person or online. Additional Festival highlights include book signings, discussions, hands-on activities, and more! Full schedule online.

The“Write” Stuff Festival is free and open to the public, but online registration is required for Friday’s “kids only” afternoon workshops, which are limited to 4th-6th graders. All events will be held in the William G. McGowan Theater and Boeing Learning Center. Attendees should use the Special Events entrance on Constitution Avenue at 7th Street, NW.  The building is Metro accessible on the Yellow and Green lines, Archives/Navy Memorial/Penn Quarter station.

Festival events for Friday, July 7 - “Be a Writer Day”
The morning starts with a panel discussion in the William G. McGowan Theater.  Authors and illustrators John Hendrix, Syl Sobel, Susan Campbell Bartoletti, Jacqueline Jules and Tonya Bolden will share their inspirations, research and writing processes and challenges with you. Kitty Felde, host of the Book Club for Kids podcast, will moderate the discussion, offer tips and take questions.

Following a book signing in the Theater lobby, authors will lead five “kids only” (4th-6th graders who have pre-registered online) breakout story development workshops (see workshop descriptions online) for young writers in 4th-6th grades. The day concludes with a closing session (parents can join their young writers) for a wrap up and“lessons learned” during the breakout workshops.

Not in DC?  Participate online!  
Playwright, author, and Book Club for Kids podcast host Kitty Felde joins National Archives Education Specialist Katie Munn for a Making Fiction from Facts webinar to address these questions and more:  
– How to find inspirational material
– How to access online resources from the National Archives
– What are the rules for using facts in your fiction?
– When is it time to stop researching and start writing/painting/singing?
Registration required; participants will receive a link to join the webinar via email the week of the program.

Festival events for Saturday, July 8 - Family Research & Literacy Day
On Saturday, Family Research & Literacy Day, budding writers and their families will have the opportunity to:
– Participate in “hands on” activities led by featured authors and illustrators Marty Rhodes Figley, Syl Sobel, Janet Macreery, Diane Kidd and Margaret A. Weitekamp, John Hendrix, Tim Grove, Tonya Bolden, and Kitty Felde;
– Watch a live recording of the “Book Club for Kids” podcast with host Kitty Felde;
– Meet featured authors and illustrators and get books signed;
– View DC National History Day project finalists;
– Enjoy story times with special celebrity guest readers; and,
– Learn about literacy and research organizations

About the Boeing Learning Center
The Boeing Learning Center offers in-depth education programs for middle and high school students as well as workshops geared to the needs of parents and teachers. Programs and resources include a Learning Lab, Resource Room, Digital Classroom, and Primarily Teaching, a national professional development program for teachers. Boeing Learning Center staff train educators in the effective use of primary sources in the classroom with facsimile documents, instructional videos, sample lesson plans, and other tools. The staff engages walk-in visitors, of all ages, with hands-on activities to enhance civic literacy and promote an understanding of the American stories found in the records of the Federal government. Learn more about the Boeing Learning Center online.

Related online links

RootsMagic 7.5 now integrates with Ancestry

NOTE from DearMYRTLE: The following was just received from our friends at RootsMagic. 

Ancestry-RootsMagic-Header-2017-03
Last year, we announced we were working with Ancestry® to integrate Ancestry Hints® and Ancestry’s records and online trees with our software. After months of development and the feedback of thousands of testers, we’re pleased to announce the release of RootsMagic 7.5, a free update to RootsMagic 7 that adds two amazing new features: TreeShare™ for Ancestry and the addition of Ancestry Hints to RootsMagic’s WebHints™ feature.

TreeShare for Ancestry

ANC-TreeShare-256
RootsMagic’s TreeShare for Ancestry will let you move data between your RootsMagic files on your computers and your personal Ancestry online trees. You can transfer people, events, notes, source citations, and even pictures between the two systems.
RootsMagic users also gain the ability to easily share and collaborate with others by giving family members access to their Ancestry online tree. Using the new TreeShare feature, family members can then synchronize the latest changes and additions to both the online tree and their desktop computers.

Ancestry Hints Integration

Works-With-Ancestry
RootsMagic leverages the Ancestry Hints capability, and as possible matches are found, users may conveniently review them from within the software. RootsMagic then lets you add new information and media from matching records into your file.

Free RootsMagic Essentials Software

For those that are just starting their journey into the world of genealogy, RootsMagic offers “RootsMagic Essentials”- a free version of their software with a limited set of features tailored towards beginners.
If you have an account with Ancestry, RootsMagic Essentials includes the ability to upload your file to Ancestry or download your existing online trees from Ancestry.  If you are a subscriber to Ancestry, RootsMagic Essentials also allows you to search and view all of the content in your subscription.  Those wishing to compare and transfer individual records between RootsMagic and Ancestry will want to use the full-featured RootsMagic software.

Celebrate with a Giveaway

To celebrate this monumental release, we’re holding a special giveaway. We’re giving away a 1-Year Ancestry World Explorer Membership as well as 3 Ancestry DNA Testing Kits. To enter, use this entry form:

Available Now

The update is free for users of RootsMagic 7 and RootsMagic Essentials 7 and is available via direct download or through the “Check for Updates” feature within RootsMagic. To learn more about these features or to take advantage of a special offer for Ancestry users, please go to http://www.rootsmagic.com/ancestry.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Follow-up: Valerie's Listing of EE Tabs



DearREADERS,
WACKY Wednesday attendees were excited to learn from Valerie Eichler Lair of ValsRoots.com as she demonstrated how inserting tabs facilitates quicker access to the 900-page EE. This is the link to Valerie's EE Tabs List from her copy of Elizabeth Shown Mills Evidence Explained: Citing History Sources from Artifacts to Cyberspace Third Edition. (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 2015.)

In my case, I decided to look through the book page by page, then place a tab on those citation samples and discussions that give me the most difficulties. These may or may not be the same as those Valerie chose to spotlight in her listing.
Sure you can watch the YouTube video of the event but why not view it at
http://hangouts.dearmyrtle.com/ww_eetabs.html
where all the comments and links we mention are found in the unified chat?




Hangouts: Pay what you want. So it's simple. If you value the work Ol' Myrt, +Cousin Russ and our beloved panelists do week in and week out on your behalf, please:

Check the DearMYRTLE Hangouts Calendar for upcoming study groups and hangouts. There you'll find links to the GeneaConference (in-person) and the GeneaWebinars Calendar with over over 200 hours of online genealogy classes, webinars, live streams and tweetchats from other hosts and presenters over the next 12 months.


No more FHL microfilm? Myrt's take


DearREADERS,
The LDS Church and subsequently FamilySearch sent out notices regarding the digitization efforts at FamilySearch and the decision to cease distribution of microfilm effective 1 September 2017. Naturally, this is a topic ripe for discussion during today's Mondays with Myrt genealogy hangout beginning at 28 minutes 6 seconds into the broadcast embedded below.




LINKS WE MENTION
OL' MYRT'S TAKE
I'm thankful the folks at FamilySearch.org are being fiscally responsible with the funds I donate as a member of the LDS Church. Reproducing microfilm on blank stock costing $85 a pop, isn't a viable business model to then rent the microfilm to local Family History Centers for a mere $7.50 including postage both ways.

I believe the decision to wait before discontinuing microfilm distribution was a financial sacrifice on the part of FamilySearch. The effort was made to insure the majority of the records folks normally order on microfilm were made available in digital format before ceasing the 80 year old microfilm lending program. What remains to be digitized are those obscure microfilm rarely ordered.

It will take only three years to digitize the balance of the microfilm collection.

I understand it is the contract negotiations that takes the real time before the remaining microfilm can be digitized. Some have thought money is needed to digitize, but it isn't about money. It's about creating the contracts to permit digitization of the microfilm. The original document collections are housed in distant government or church archives. Each archive must be contacted to develop a new contract.

Each of those government or church archives administrators must meet with their governing boards to determine *if* the records should be digitized. During the hangout, Valerie Lisk writes of her research experience "Mississippi will not allow their films to be digitized."


*Whether* the digital images should reside at FamilySearch.org or on the archive's website is another concern. If the archives decides to host the images, contracts must be let out to order servers, hire an IT person, and develop an interface. Decisions must be made about indexing. Each archive must decide if images can be viewed from any computer with internet access or if they are to be restricted to viewing only in Salt Lake City at the Family History Library, or possibly expanded to include viewing at the 4,000+ Family History Centers throughout the world.


Oh, those contract to-do lists go on and on. 


Old contracts didn't cover digitization. In fact, most microfilming contracts were created before we had the internet and before digitization was invented. I have it on good authority that to this day, those new digitization contracts are unique, with myriad choices facing each distant archive.


We can trust FamilySearch to keep digital images in the most up-to-date format, so newer machines can read the files. "Microfilm deteriorates but digital images do not." says John Laws, our man 'not in Edinburgh, Scotland.' 

This final thought comes from Bill West who writes "I suspect some people were upset when people switched from clay tablets to papyrus rolls."


Hangouts: Pay what you want. So it's simple. If you value the work Ol' Myrt, +Cousin Russ and our beloved panelists do week in and week out on your behalf, please:

Check the DearMYRTLE Hangouts Calendar for upcoming study groups and hangouts. There you'll find links to the GeneaConference (in-person) and the GeneaWebinars Calendar with over over 200 hours of online genealogy classes, webinars, live streams and tweetchats from other hosts and presenters over the next 12 months.


Saturday, June 03, 2017

Register Now: DearMYRTLE Hangouts June 2017


DearREADERS,
Next month Mr. Myrt and I will be traveling, so let's hangout this month for some mighty special events. How about a two-part  家族 Japanese Family History Research presented by English speaking Japanese genealogy research specialists Valerie Brown Elkins and Linda Okazaki? Konichiwa.

You won't want to miss
Adding Tabs to Evidence Explained with Valerie Eichler Lair Wednesday, 14 June 2017 We've looked forward to this hangout for a good two months. Valerie recommends the 2" lined Post-It Tabs by 3M. Better stock up before that hangout, so you can follow along during the broadcast.

Powerful #genealogy breakthroughs happen during our video hangouts. Come on over:
http://hangouts.DearMYRTLE.com
FEE
This DearMYRTLE Hangout is presented at no cost. If you find the information useful, consider the Pay What You Want business model Ol' Myrt employs:
http://blog.dearmyrtle.com/2015/03/hangouts-pay-what-you-want.html

HOW
Now everyone can log in to VIEW and COMMENT on DearMYRTLE Hangouts. YUP! Log in with your Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, email or G+ account. You'll only need a G+ if you wish to JOIN the panel as an "official" participant.

VIEW and post COMMENTS before and during each hangout. The comments are right there with the video now that we're hosting them at:
http://hangouts.DearMYRTLE.com

AFTER the hangout, comments continue at http://bit.ly/DearMYRTLEonGoogle

VIDEO PANEL PARTICIPANTS
We open the "green room" 15 minutes early if you'd like to test out your microphone and webcam. Consider JOINing the panel as an official "participant".  We may even "scramble" to mix up the conversation a bit with new panelists.

ARCHIVED VERSION
If you miss the live events, catch the archived version at your convenience. It's usually available within the hour after the *live* recording has concluded. http://hangouts.DearMYRTLE.com

FAMILY HISTORY CONSULTANTS - Session 1 
Sunday, 4 June 2017
9pm Eastern US (New York), 8pm Central US (Chicago)

7pm Mountain US (Denver, Salt Lake City), 6pm Pacific US (Los Angeles), UTC-7 hours

 








MONDAYS WITH MYRT (90 minutes)
Noon Eastern US (New York), 11am Central US (Chicago)
10am Mountain US (Denver, Salt Lake City), 9am Pacific US (Los Angeles), UTC-7 hours

FAMILY HISTORY CONSULTANTS - Session 2 
Sunday, 11 June 2017
9pm Eastern US (New York), 8pm Central US (Chicago)
7pm Mountain US (Denver, Salt Lake City), 6pm Pacific US (Los Angeles), UTC-7 hours


M
ONDAYS WITH MYRT (90 minutes)
Noon Eastern US (New York), 11am Central US (Chicago)
10am Mountain US (Denver, Salt Lake City), 9am Pacific US (Los Angeles), UTC-7 hours












WACKY WEDNESDAY (60 minutes)
Adding Tabs to Evidence Explained with Valerie Eichler Lair
Wednesday, 14 June 2017
We've looked forward to this hangout for a good two months. Valerie recommends the 2" lined Post-It Tabs by 3M. We begin the live broadcast at 9pm Eastern US (New York), 8pm Central US (Chicago), 7pm Mountain US (Denver, Salt Lake City), 6pm Pacific US (Los Angeles), UTC-7 hours.










GENEALOGY GAME NIGHT(60 minutes)
A chance to practice using your headset mic and web cam. 
9pm Eastern US (New York), 8pm Central US (Chicago)
7pm Mountain US (Denver, Salt Lake City), 6pm Pacific US (Los Angeles), UTC-7 hours

 
FAMILY HISTORY CONSULTANTS - Session 3 
Sunday, 18 June 2017
9pm Eastern US (New York), 8pm Central US (Chicago)
7pm Mountain US (Denver, Salt Lake City), 6pm Pacific US (Los Angeles), UTC-7 hours

 









MONDAYS WITH MYRT (90 minutes)
Noon Eastern US (New York), 11am Central US (Chicago)
10am Mountain US (Denver, Salt Lake City), 9am Pacific US (Los Angeles), UTC-7 hours











家族 JAPANESE FAMILY HISTORY RESEARCH
(90 minutes) Wednesday, 21 June 2017
Presented by English speaking Japanese genealogy research specialists Valerie Brown Elkins and Linda Okazaki.
Noon Eastern US (New York), 11am Central US (Chicago)
10am Mountain US (Denver, Salt Lake City), 9am Pacific US (Los Angeles), UTC-7 hours












DNAGen STUDY GROUP (60 minutes)
Read in advance and complete the homework at the end of Chapter 6 "Genealogical Applications for X-DNA" in Genetic Genealogy in Practice by Blaine T. Bettinger and Debbie Parker Wayne. Now also available in Kindle format. 9pm Eastern US (New York), 8pm Central US (Chicago), 7pm Mountain US (Denver, Salt Lake City), 6pm Pacific US (Los Angeles), UTC-7 hours
You must attend this hangout live as it will not be available for access later, due to copyright restrictions.


MONDAYS WITH MYRT (90 minutes)
Noon Eastern US (New York), 11am Central US (Chicago)
10am Mountain US (Denver, Salt Lake City), 9am Pacific US (Los Angeles), UTC-7 hours











家族 JAPANESE FAMILY HISTORY RESEARCH
 (90 minutes) Wednesday, 28 June 2017
Presented by English speaking Japanese genealogy research specialists Valerie Brown Elkins and Linda Okazaki. Noon Eastern US (New York), 11am Central US (Chicago), 10am Mountain US (Denver, Salt Lake City), 9am Pacific US (Los Angeles), UTC-7 hours












THE ARCHIVE LADY (60 minutes)
Wednesday, 28 June 2017
9pm Eastern US (New York), 8pm Central US (Chicago)
7pm Mountain US (Denver, Salt Lake City), 6pm Pacific US (Los Angeles), UTC-7 hours


Happy family tree climbing!
Hangouts: Pay what you want. So it's simple. If you value the work Ol' Myrt, +Cousin Russ and our beloved panelists do week in and week out on your behalf, please:

Check the DearMYRTLE Hangouts Calendar for upcoming study groups and hangouts. There you'll find links to the GeneaConference (in-person) and the GeneaWebinars Calendar with over over 200 hours of online genealogy classes, webinars, live streams and tweetchats from other hosts and presenters over the next 12 months.