Saturday, June 21, 2014

Saturday Serendipity (June 21, 2014)

Here are a few recommendations for possible inclusion on your reading list this weekend:  

1.  Two selections from our Legal Genealogist are definitely worthy of a read.  Judy Russell walks us through searching for possible copyright-free images on Google and Bing here.  And then, from last week, there is the short-sighted foolishness of and the 27 comments it engendered in Judy's post, Ancestry responds.  
2.  Have you ever heard of Boston's Saturday Evening Girls? [And NO the term is not yet another euphemism akin to "ladies of the night."]  The sobriquet was adopted by a group of Italian and Jewish immigrant girls in Boston's North End who were initially formed into a reading club in the 1890s. Their story included the founding of a pottery company, a newsletter and more.  Perhaps your family has some connection to this group of enterprising young women.  To learn more, read the piece in The Weekly Genealogist ,Vol. 17, No. 25 Whole 692, from NEHGS.    

3.  If you are reading this, then you are a reader of genealogy-related blogs and you should know about a poll being conducted by NGS's UpFront With NGS blog.   NGS would like to know what type of blog posts you read and that interest you the most.  Read the poll post here and then you can respond by posting a comment there or on Face Book or Google+.

4.  Thank you to Midge Frazel of Granite in My Blood blog for calling to our attention the new web site presenting the Rhode Island cemetery transcription database with resources about locating, photographing and recording gravestones!  As noted here in previous entries, if you have ancestors and relatives from Rhode Island, you should visit Midge's blog and her series on Rhode Island cemeteries.

5.  Here is a wonderfully readable explanation about a "Eureka Moment" experienced by Elizabeth Handler, author of the From Maine to Kentucky blog.  Elizabeth explains what a "non-paternity event" means and how the existence of one was discovered in her tree through the use of a Y-DNA test.  

6.  Genealogy is, of course, the study of one's line of descent through numerous ancestors.  But it is not merely a collection of names and dates placed into a continuous chain of interconnected links. It is about history at its most personal level -- and, as an echo of the title of the popular genealogy show,  Who Do You Think You Are?, it is about the more complete discovery of Who Am I?  With this in mind, I highly recommend a fascinating discovery piece in the NYT on June 10th about a Prince of the Catholic church who (apparently unbeknownst to him) was the grandson of a rabbi.  The story of discovery began with a Mother's Day gift of a subscription to  

7.  Since the highs and lows of seem to be an unintended theme in this week's Saturday Serendipity,  there is another post about the retrenchment taking place at Ancestry.  In addition to the demise of Y-DNA and mtDNA testing through Ancestry, say goodbye (as of September 5, 2014) to services such as MyFamily, My Canvas, Mundia, and  Read about it here.    

8.  And finally, without any comment on the right or the wrong of it -- but with the observation that maybe we should all look at where we now live and where our ancestors lived -- I suggest a quick visit to THIS interactive map of the expansion of the United States of America.     
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Copyright 2014, John D. Tew
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