Archive for June, 2008

More than 500,000 Jewish Names From United States, Canada, Germany, and Israel Now Online at WorldVitalRecords.com

Monday, June 30th, 2008

JewishData.com partners with FamilyLink.com, Inc. to bring first complete Jewish genealogy collection online at WorldVitalRecords.com

PROVO, UT, June 30, 2008 — More than 500,000 records from hundreds of Jewish cemeteries across the United States, Canada, Germany, and Israel have been indexed and are now searchable at WorldVitalRecords.com through Jewish Data, a new partner of FamilyLink.com, Inc. The database also includes thousands of Declaration of Intention documents filed by Jewish immigrants as well as rare books, and other records.

“It’s exciting that our records will become more visible to a larger audience. WorldVitalRecords.com has become a very busy and popular website,” said Avraham Laber, President, Jewish Data. “A lot of people wouldn’t dream that it is possible to find our data online. We are happy to partner with WorldVitalRecords.com to provide this service.”

Jewish Data is the world’s largest online database of Jewish cemetery images.

“Our goal is to provide a home for Jewish records in order to help people study Jewish history and genealogy,” Laber said. “Here we have thousands of hours of research already done for people, and it only takes them a few seconds to access the records. If they would search for the same records on their own, it would cost them much more money and time.”

Some of the most popular databases in the Jewish Data collection include: Jewish cemeteries at Cypress Ave., Ridgefield, NY (100,000 images); Washington Cemetery in Brooklyn, NY (52,000 images); Jewish cemeteries in Newark, NJ (23,000 images); Jewish Cemeteries in Montreal, Canada (23,000 images); Jewish cemeteries in Israel (14,000); Jewish cemeteries in Germany, some going back up to 700 years ago (10,000 images).

“Jewish Data represents thousands of unique names gleaned from an eclectic range of sources,” said Yvette Arts, Director, Content Partnerships, FamilyLink.com, Inc.  “Researchers will be pleasantly surprised by the richness of the data as they gather information from this collection to piece together their individual stories.”

Media Contact
Whitney Ransom
Corporate Communications Director
FamilyLink.com, Inc.

http://www.worldvitalrecords.com

whitney@familylink.com

About FamilyLink.com, Inc.

FamilyLink.com, Inc. is a family of services that includes WorldVitalRecords.com, FamilyLink.com, and the We’re Related application on Facebook. The focus of the company is to provide innovative tools to connect families. FamilyLink.com, Inc. has more than 1.9 million unique global visitors each month and 17.5 million impressions per month. Founded in 2006 by Paul Allen and several key members of the original Ancestry.com team, WorldVitalRecords.com provides affordable access to genealogy databases and family history tools. More than 30,000 individuals have subscribed to WorldVitalRecords.com. With more than a billion records and thousands of databases-including birth, death, military, census, and parish records-WorldVitalRecords.com makes it easy to fill in missing information in your family tree. Some of its partners include Everton Publishers, Quintin Publications, Archive CD Books Australia, Gould Genealogy, Immigrant Ships Transcribers Guild, Archive CD Books Canada, The Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation, Inc., SmallTownPapers®, Accessible Archives, Genealogical Publishing Company, Find My Past, Godfrey Memorial Library, Find A Grave, and FamilySearch. Investors include vSpring Capital and several angel investors.

Re-Establishing Family Connections

Friday, June 27th, 2008


By Amanda Forson, FamilyLink.com, Inc.

Sometimes branches of families drift apart, or else do not keep in contact for who-knows-what reason. When there is no particular reason for family members to stay incommunicado, re-connecting is a great way of gaining family history information.

Day One: Determine which family branch(es) you want to get back in contact with, or identify particular ancestors for whom you would like further information.

In my case, there is a rare name in my ancestry that really was changed at Ellis Island. Anyone currently located in the United States with this surname is likely to be related to me. I have never met many members of the different branches of this group, though I have been looking them up as part of my research on my great-grandparent’s siblings.

Day Two:
Open your family history software and figure out who is the most recent connection to the family branch, and/or still alive. A good age range to check would be anyone currently alive between the ages of 25-70.

Day Three: Find out what contact information you can for that person. Email address is the top priority, but address and phone numbers are also good. Look the most likely person up using Google. For any addresses (email or otherwise) found, write them down and get ready to send off a large amount of emails and/or letters.

Day Four:
Continue your search on WorldVitalRecords.com to double check whether or not they show up on the SSDI or any other databases. For any addresses (email or otherwise) found, write them down and get ready to send off a large amount of emails and/or letters.

Day Five:
Write the person you want to re-connect with a short letter asking for more information concerning the ancestor in question, and explain how you are related to that person. This should eliminate the “cold call” feeling when done well. Also be willing to provide information about your side of the living family along with the family history, as appropriate.

Day Six:
Include as SASE, and mail off the completed letter, phone the person in question, or send off the email. If the address is old, one way of checking on it is to write: Do Not Forward: Address correction Requested” on the envelope. This way you will get the letter back with the new address on it.

Day Seven:
Wait for a response. This may take more than fifteen minutes, but there are also other people that need to be researched and more mail to be sent off. Feel free to repeat the process, or to send off more than one letter on day five. Remember to change the section of how the person is related to you to reflect the relationship to each individual, and his or her gender.

Announcing FamilyLink.com’s Newest Web Site: WebTree.com, A New Revolutionary Publishing Site

Thursday, June 26th, 2008

Join WebTree, New Revolutionary Family Tree Publishing Site
Upload Your GEDCOM Today


WebTree.com, a revolutionary family tree building community, is pre-launching, and you are invited to become a member. WebTree.com is looking for early adopters, like you, to share your content on a site that aims to be the largest, community-driven family tree site on the Web. Click here to register and upload your GEDCOM.

Benefits of becoming part of this free community:

* 100% FREE because YOU Own Your Content! WebTree.com is completely FREE. WebTree.com respects the hard work you’ve put into your family history and we’re not about to take that away from you. You can delete your file at any time, no questions asked.

* Beautiful Presentation! WebTree.com has built an unparalleled family tree browsing experience. Your family tree is presented online in the most modern and feature-filled presentation of any family tree site on the Internet. Viewing your family tree on the Web has never looked so good!

* Software-Quality Charts! For the first time, you can build heirloom-quality charts on the Internet, with lots of custom options! After building a chart exactly to your liking, you can export it to a file to be printed or print directly to your printer, in full color. You can be proud of the charts you build without paying for expensive software.

* Share with the World. WebTree.com gives you more options than ever to share your family tree. We’re building the next-generation family tree community that helps your connect with other members in new and interesting ways – all the while, helping you find your ancestors. WebTree.com even enables you to embed your family tree into your own web site (if you have one). Your content will also be searchable at WorldVitalRecords.com. You may help others break down their brick walls with your content.

FamilyLink.com, Inc. Acquires My Family Application on Facebook.com

Thursday, June 26th, 2008

Extends FamilyLink.com lead as top publisher of social networking applications for families


PROVO, UT, June 26, 2008 —
FamilyLink.com, Inc., the company behind We’re Related, the No.1 family application on Facebook, has acquired the popular My Family application, which has more than 1.5 million users across five social networks, including Facebook and MySpace.The My Family app lets social networking users creatively represent their family members and pets on their web pages with cute stick figure icons. More than 8,000 new users per day add the applications. My Family is currently the 26th most popular application on MySpace and it has nearly 8,000 fans on Facebook.

“We believe in social networking as a way to reach families,” said Jason McGowan, director of social networking at FamilyLink.com. “The My Family applications appeal to younger family members, and help us reach a new audience. Acquiring My Family gives us a significant presence on other social networks, such as bebo, myspace.com, hi5, and Friendster and extends our leadership position in family social networking.”

We’re Related allows people to create and share their family tree, connect with members of their living families, and find relatives who are using Facebook. Combined, We’re Related and My Family have more than 5.7 million users and nearly 120,000 daily active users on Facebook. Both applications are especially popular in the United States, Canada, and the UK.

Comments from My Family users show how much they have embraced this application.

My Family application is one of the greatest applications on Facebook,” said Verda Eylül Varan, My Family user on Facebook from Turkey.

“I really like the My Family app. Keep up the good work! I look forward to seeing new ‘people’ on the app,” said Brooke Beaudoin-Boger, My Family user on Facebook from Sault Ste. Marie, MI.

“I REALLY like this application. It can also grow with you as you families grow,” said Andree Rossignol, My Family user on Facebook from Saint John, New Brunswick.

The acquisition of My Family will boost FamilyLink.com, Inc’s potential for increased ad revenue. For more information about advertising or to learn more about the positive impact of this acquisition for FamilyLink.com, Inc., send an email to Jason@FamilyLink.com.

Media Contact
Whitney Ransom
Corporate Communications Director
FamilyLink.com, Inc.
http://www.worldvitalrecords.com
whitney@familylink.com

About FamilyLink.com, Inc.
FamilyLink.com, Inc. is a family of services that includes WorldVitalRecords.com, FamilyLink.com, and the We’re Related application on Facebook. The focus of the company is to provide innovative tools to connect families. FamilyLink.com, Inc. has more than 1.9 million unique global visitors each month and 17.5 million impressions per month. Founded in 2006 by Paul Allen and several key members of the original Ancestry.com team, WorldVitalRecords.com provides affordable access to genealogy databases and family history tools. More than 30,000 individuals have subscribed to WorldVitalRecords.com. With more than a billion records and thousands of databases – including birth, death, military, census, and parish records – WorldVitalRecords.com makes it easy to fill in missing information in your family tree. Some of its partners include Everton Publishers, Quintin Publications, Archive CD Books Australia, Gould Genealogy, Immigrant Ships Transcribers Guild, Archive CD Books Canada, The Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation, Inc., SmallTownPapers®, Accessible Archives, Genealogical Publishing Company, Find My Past, Godfrey Memorial Library, Find A Grave, and FamilySearch. Investors include vSpring Capital and several angel investors.

New South Wales and Norfolk Deaths Australia 1788 -1810 Index

Wednesday, June 25th, 2008

Cathy Dunn, Heritage and History consultant from New South Wales, Australia, compiled the New South Wales and Norfolk Deaths Australia 1788 – 1810 index.

“This database is a great resource for both family historians because of the diverse information that it contains,” said Cathy Dunn. “It is compiled from old family records, and is a consolidated list from references to deaths in primary records. I have included where known, shipping records and other references.”

Included in the database are the location, surname, first name, burial date and notes. Many of the notes contain rich information.

Here’s an excerpt from one of the notes:

“Convict Active 1791. Collins: The death of Mr. George Barrington who, for a long time, was in the situation of chief constable at Parramatta, ought to have been previously adverted to, as his decease took place some time before this period. During his residence in the colony, he had conducted himself with singular propriety of conduct; and, by his industry, had saved some money; but, for a considerable time previous to his death, he was in a state of insanity, and was constantly attended by a trusty person. The general opinion of those around him was, that he brought on this malady, so destructive to the majesty of man, by his serious and sorrowful reflexions on his former career of iniquity. His death, however, was that of a good man, and a sincere Christian. He expressed a very considerable degree of displeasure, when he was in a state of sanity, at his name being affixed to a narrative, which he knew only by report, as being about to be published, and which subsequently did appear, under a deceptious mask. Born as George WALDRON 14 May 1755 at Maynooth Co Kildare Ireland.”

New Genealogical Publishing Company Collection Highlights Revolutionary, Colonial Records

Wednesday, June 25th, 2008

This week’s Major Collection consists of 389 databases from Genealogical Publishing Company. One hundred of the databases were launched on Monday (June 23), and the rest will be launched throughout the week.

There are a variety of types of records in this Major Collection including transcriptions of original records, local histories, and histories of prominent families in certain areas.

Many of the databases that are part of the Major Collection are transcriptions of original records, which all genealogists know can be extremely useful. Some of the titles included in this category are: Federal Land Series, Volumes 1-4; Frederick County, Virginia, Wills and Administrations, 1795-1816; The Pension Roll of 1835, Volumes 1-4; Tennessee Records: Bible Records and Marriage Bonds; Marriage Bonds of Bedford County, Virginia, 1755-1800, Bedford County, Virginia: Index of Wills, 1754-1830; Early Marriages, Wills, and Some Revolutionary War Records: Botetourt County, Virginia; and fifteen volumes from The Barbour Collection of Connecticut Town Vital Records.

Some of the local histories include: Genealogical and Family History of the State of Vermont, Volumes 1-II; A History of Orange County, Virginia; History of Scituate, Massachusetts; History of Patrick and Henry Counties, Virginia.

Local histories often include names of many prominent residents. Even if your ancestors are not mentioned in a volume, the history can still be useful in providing you with details about the history of the place where your ancestor lived.

Among the databases today are also a large number of histories of prominent families in various geographic areas. Unlike family histories, these histories highlight a series of families in a certain area. Usually these histories focus on the earliest settlers of a place or otherwise prominent families in a given location. A few of the titles in this category include: Pioneer Families of Northwestern New Jersey; Families of Ancient Wetherfield, Connecticut; Early Settlers of Alabama; Southside Virginia Families, Volumes 1-2; and Colonial Families of the Southern States of America: A History and Genealogy of Colonial Families Who Settle in the Colonies Prior to the Revolution.

In addition to all these types of records, there are many more. As usual, all U.S. databases in the collection will be free for ten days from the date they were launched. (International databases are not offered for a free trial.)

This past week Barry Chodak, CEO, Genealogical Publishing Company, and Joe Garonzic, Marketing Director, Genealogical Publishing Company came to visit us at FamilyLink.com, Inc in Provo, Utah. While they were here, Joe Garonzic commented on some of the records in their collection, which are now online.

“Free African Americans of North Carolina, Virginia, and South Carolina From the Colonial Period To About 1820 (2 volumes) is the best book ever written on African genealogy because the research is absolutely comprehensive, and based on about 25 years of exact standards of research. It traces forward the genealogy of hundreds of African American families that were free before 1790 and 1810 from these three states and colonies. It is an exquisite piece.”

Free African Americans of North Carolina, Virginia, and South Carolina From the Colonial Period To About 1820, Volume 1 (Free for 7 more days)
Free African Americans of North Carolina, Virginia, and South Carolina From the Colonial Period To About 1820, Volume 2 (Free for 7 more days)

“The Genealogies of Virginia Families from the William and Mary College Quarterly contains all the compiled genealogies ever published in the most prestigious magazine of Virginia genealogy,” Garonzic said. “Read it online at WorldVitalRecords.com, and save hundreds of dollars.”

The Genealogies of Virginia Families from the William and Mary College Quarterly volumes can be accessed below:

Genealogies of Virginia Families from the William and Mary College Quarterly, Volume 1 (Free for 7 more days)
Genealogies of Virginia Families from the William and Mary College Quarterly, Volume 3 (Free for 7 more days)
Genealogies of Virginia Families from the William and Mary College Quarterly, Volume 4 (Free for 7 more days)
Genealogies of Virginia Families from the William and Mary College Quarterly, Volume 5 (Free for 7 more days)

Keeping a Journal

Friday, June 20th, 2008

By Amanda Forson, FamilyLink.com, Inc.

One way to make sure that family history is kept is to start with the present generation. This can be done in a number of different ways, but one of the best is through keeping a journal. This is a great way to capture details of your everyday life for present and future generations.

Day One: Decide to keep a journal and decide on the time when writing fits most easily into your schedule. This may be a once-a-day calendar, like a planner, a once a week summary of weekly events, or other formats.

Day Two: Choose a format–A Journal can be handwritten (long-hand or in shorthand, for those that know shorthand), electronic (commonly known as a blog or web log), or can be based on pictures and mementos (scrapbooking). Before choosing a format, take 15 minutes on each of the next three days to try each style. Once you have decided how you will keep your diary, make sure that the products or materials required are easily accessible.

Day Three: For a handwritten journal, (if it is to survive long after the writer is deceased) choose acid-free paper, or an acid-free blank book, and an archival pen. These are usually available at craft stores near scrapbooking supplies. If the journal is meant for ease of use and at least getting the copy down on paper, then an ordinary spiral-bound notebook and pen should suffice. These types of less permanent journals must be transcribed for preservation.

Day Four: For a blog, all that is needed is a place to keep the log and a computer connection. Most blogs can be accessed readily from any computer for the editor of the blog, though they can be password-protected, enabling the writer to write only for him or herself, and only for the audience invited to read the information. Blogspot.com has easy setup for fresh blogs that also allow for sound and pictures.

Day Five: Scrapbooking is a billion-dollar industry. It will not cost you a billion dollars by any means; going to discount department stores, there are often aisles devoted entirely to the craft. Craft stores tend to carry heavy amounts of supplies, which range from albums, paper, markers, and stickers, to specialty glues, 3-D decorations, and paper punches and scissors designed especially for the art. Entire industries have risen during the past ten years over the supplies involved, including storage of the supplies.

Scrapbooking is also a popular way of recording events and family gatherings, giving the pictures taken at such events context with the additional labeling and thematic displays that are part of the typical scrapbook.

Scrapbooking can also be a fun activity to involve children, and something that many people are doing already. Digital scrapbooking is becoming an increasingly popular art form, and seems to be the way that the general industry is moving. It may be the journal that you are already keeping and never realized it!

Day Six: Recording information in long-hand, electronically, or with attached mementos, helps preserve this information for the next generation to understand who you are and what life was like back in 19XX or 20XX. Keeping one and sharing it allows family members a chance to get to know you, and helps establish patterns and examples for future generations in order to pass down the family heritage and give a sense of place and purpose to everyday living. Take this day to share your new creation with a family member.

Day Seven: Look for more source information on your family for your journal at WorldVitalRecords.com! Write about your search and document your reaction to finding new information.

Sign Up Begins June 20 For Free Introductory GenClass

Wednesday, June 18th, 2008

As announced previously, GenClass.com has partnered with FamilyLink.com, Inc. to provide free courses to WorldVitalRecords.com members. The first session of free courses in May was successful, and all 400 seats were filled within the first five days.

WorldVitalRecords.com members can begin registering on June 20th for August’s free courses providing genealogy basics. To sign up for these courses, click here. (Note: You must first log in to to WorldVitalRecords.com to view this page.)

If the free genealogy classes get filled before you have time to register or if you wish to take a more advanced class, GenClass also provides 23 additional for-fee genealogy courses. These courses are taught by nine professional genealogists, including, Lisa Alzo, Barbara Benge, Schelly Talalay Dardashti, Linda Rakita, Micha Reisel, Cindy Rowzee, Pat Ryan, Sheena Tait, David Webster. Each four-week class includes a detailed course curriculum, online class meetings, and more for the low price of $34.50. Some of the topics include: Adoption Investigation, Canada, Eastern European, English, Family Tree Maker, Great Lakes, Jewish Genealogy, Jump Start Your Genealogy, Lost Friends & Family, Native American, Northeastern US, Scottish, Salt Lake City/FHL, Organizing Your Family History, and Write Your Family History. Visit www.GenClass.com for these paid classes, schedules, instructor info and easy online registration.

“Bravo! What a wonderful opportunity for you to learn from some of the most experienced instructors in the world of genealogy!” (Dear Myrtle, December 4, 2006)

Family Tree Magazine Now Offers Genealogy Podcast

Tuesday, June 17th, 2008

Recently Family Tree Magazine announced the launch of its genealogy podcast. This podcast provides information on genealogy tools and tips. One of the best features about this 30-minute podcast is that it is free. Visit the Family Tree Magazine podcast page at: http://www.familytreemagazine.com/podcast/.

Lisa Louise Cooke–creator of the popular Genealogy Gems podcast will be hosting the online radio show. Lisa will provide more in-depth information on some of the topics covered in Family Tree Magazine. Family Tree Magazine will feature interviews with genealogy experts. Editors at Family Tree Magazine will also discuss Web sites, resources, and records. Plus, editor, Allison Stacy, will provide sneak previews on upcoming issues. Diane Haddad will deliver the latest in genealogy news.

Click here to listen to the first genealogy podcast: Episode 1. This issue contains information about content that will be posted in the July Issue, particularly with state research guides, the WorldCat Web site, the Family Tree Kids! Web site. Plus you will receive hints on connecting with distant cousins from Maureen A. Taylor and strategies on tearing down those brick walls from Sharon DeBartolo.

WorldVitalRecords.com To Host New Online Edition of Everton’s Genealogical Helper

Tuesday, June 17th, 2008

The following announcement is from Genealogy Online, Inc. FamilyLink.com, Inc. will host the new online edition of Everton’s Genealogical Helper online at WorldVitalRecords.com:

LOGAN, Utah, June 12, 2008 –Genealogy Online, Inc., publisher of Everton’s Genealogical Helper, today, announced the publication of the Genealogical Helper in an Online Edition. The Online Edition is an identical copy of the 176-page paper edition – complete with hotlinks to the hundreds of website addresses found therein.

Launch Date – The new Online Edition will launch on July 1 – to coincide with the home delivery and newsstand date of the paper edition of the July-August issue.

Free Access – Subscribers to the traditional Genealogical Helper will have 100% FREE online access to the magazine. See http://www.everton.com for sign-up information. Non-subscribers can purchase the Online Edition for $12 per year.

Net Family History - An important feature of Everton’s Genealogical Helper is the magazine within a magazine entitled Net Family History. New information specific to using the Internet for genealogy is always found in this portion of the bimonthly publication. Extensive website reviews are always located here, as well as articles dealing with Internet-related activities.

Why an online edition? - Every issue of Everton’s Genealogical Helper now contains hundreds of website addresses. The Internet is where some of the most exciting genealogical resource advances are taking place, so it’s required that information about these resources be disseminated to the Helper’s thousands of readers in every issue. Everton’s Genealogical Helper, Online Edition, will allow readers to go from their paper edition to the hotlinked Online Edition and access any of the websites with just a keystroke or two. The Online Edition offers more than just the links found in the magazine – it is the entire magazine itself.

Format & hostingEverton’s Genealogical Helper, Online Edition, will be in pdf format, readable by anyone, with any computer running an Adobe Acrobat Reader (Available at Adobe.com as a FREE download.) The Online Edition will be hosted by FamilyLink.com, Inc. and accessible on WorldVitalRecords.com.