Saturday, December 21, 2013

Saturday Serendipity (December 21, 2013)

Saturdays often allow a more leisurely approach to life than work days. I can more easily post links to some blog posts or other materials I have discovered during the week, or even to those discovered during a Saturday morning coffee and extended surfing of the blogosphere/internet.

Here are a few recommendations for inclusion on your reading list.

1.  Could you use a few images from the 17th, 18th and 19th century -- say about 1 million of them -- to illustrate your blog or other writings? The Weekly Genealogist by NEHGS points us to a story with links to over 1 million images taken from books of the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries.  All the images are on Flickr Commons and have been released into the public domain by the British Library.  Read all about why the images are being released and the feedback the Library would welcome by going here. As a teaser, here is a seasonal image from "The Coming of Father Christmas" (1874) by Eliza F. Manning.

2.  "A Note from the Editor: Holiday Newsletters Revisited" by Lynn Betlock in The Weekly Genealogist this week (Vol. 16 No. 51 Whole #666) was the inspiration for a post here on The Prism this past Thursday.  It is well past time to collect, copy, share and preserve all those newsletters you have!      

3.  Since all things old are eventually new again, you might be well advised to check out a pamphlet from New York City's Special Fraud Squad in the 1980s informing tourists about the cons games and frauds haunting the streets of The Big Apple.  This is brought to us by Rebecca Onion here at The Vault.

4.   While you are visiting The Vault, you should also take a side trip to learn about the "open air school" trend in the early part of the 20th century. There are some chilling photos in the piece that you can use to convince your kids that returning to school after their winter holiday break could be a whole lot worse!      

5.  For those of us who have never been to Salt Lake City at Christmas time and therefore have never seen seasonal lighting displays on Temple Square, here is Part 2 of Jana Last's beautiful photo tour for all of us to enjoy!

6.  We can all use a stark reminder from time to time about the importance of taking steps to protect and preserve our precious family photo history.  Heather Wilkinson Rojo had a post yesterday at Nutfield Genealogy that illustrates in text and photos why this needs to be done and reminds us what a task it can become (and the losses that can result) if not done in a timely manner!

7.  Keeping up the theme of protecting genealogical materials leads to the burning question, "Should we glove or not glove when handling archival material?"  The new opinion might surprise you a bit. See the post and related links here on the UpFront with NGS blog edited by Diane L. Richard.  

8.  Harold Henderson at Midwestern Microhistory calls to our attention the newly revised and updated Genealogical Standards published by the Board for the Certification of Genealogists. The editor of the revision and update is Thomas W. Jones, author of the recently published and much praised Mastering Genealogical Proof.  

9. If you have not heard, our so-called "do nothing Congress" has actually done something in the
last days of 2013. We who are interested in genealogy certainly will not like it, but it is done. Judy Russell at The Legal Genealogist explains that one of the items that lurks in the depths of the budget package passed this week is a provision that cuts off access to the Social Security Death Master File
(the SSDI or Social Security Death Index) until three years after the death of an individual. The law also removes the ability to access the data under a Freedom of Information Act request. Read the
details so clearly explained by Judy here -- and weep.

10. And finally, for those who appreciate and love the at of quilting (and make no mistake, it is an
art as well as a skill), do check out the heirloom quilt Laura Mattingly shares with us at
The Old Trunk in the Attic blog. It is a wonderfully colorful quilt made for Laura by her Grandma.
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Copyright 2013, John D. Tew
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  1. Thanks for mentioning my blog post about our photo rescue mission in Puerto Rico. I'm sure that you know what we'll be doing over the Christmas vacation... scanning, scanning, scanning!

  2. Thank you for the mention John! Merry Christmas to you & yours!!