The following are a few recommendations for inclusion on your reading list this weekend.1. A nearly century old mystery surrounding our 29th President, Warren G. Harding, has apparently been solved via DNA analysis with AncestryDNA, a division of Ancestry.com. Was the otherwise childless Harding indeed the father of a daughter born out of wedlock to the much maligned Nan Britton? Does Harding have any living descendants? To read about the answer to these questions and the solving of the Harding mystery go here.
2. History, the parent of genealogy, is often very useful to telling a family history. It provides context via relation to big events and occasionally can even involve ancestors or relatives in events previously unknown to the genealogist. It is for this reason that I have yet to meet a genealogist (professional or amateur) who is not also an avid history buff. With this connection in mind, I want to recommend the history podcast known as "The Memory Palace." The creator of The Memory Palace is Nate DiMeo, a native of Providence, RI now living in LA. He is a public radio veteran who contributed to All Things Considered, Morning Edition, and Marketplace . . . so he might sound familiar to many of you. Find out more about The Memory Palace at http://thememorypalace.us. I also encourage you to sample one of Nate's podcasts by going here and clicking on Episode 49 (Dreamland) -- especially do so if you have ancestors who lived in and around Coney Island, Brooklyn, New York in the period of 1904 - 1911. Enjoy . . . but be forewarned, you could get hooked listening to the podcasts and find an hour has easily slipped by as you listen to one episode after another!
3. NEHGS and The Weekly Genealogist had a few interesting items this week (Vol. 18, No. 32, Whole #752, August 12, 2015) including links to pieces about the Hatfield and McCoy descendants working together at a dig on one of the feud sites and the news about a major finding in the Roakoke Island "Lost Colony" story. Two items are of special interest. First is the discovery by contractors in Oklahoma City of untouched chalkboards from 1917 beneath a set of chalkboards being removed for updating with whiteboards. If you had ancestors who attended Emerson High School in Oklahoma City in or around 1917, you will find this piece and the photographs of special interest. Second is a piece about two sets of identical twins in Colombia who, as the result of a hospital error, were split and then raised as two pairs of fraternal twins. Read here about the twins and how they found one another.
4. The 70th anniversary of the use of the atomic bomb on the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki was this past week and The Vault, provides some really haunting panoramic views of the destruction of Hiroshima. See the photographs here.
5. There are two items of interest from NGS on its UpFront With NGS blog. If you have ancestors and relatives in Maine, you should be aware that vital records from 1892 to the present are no longer available at the Maine State Archives. Read more about this development here.
6. The second NGS item of interest is really fascinating. What would you think of the ability to produce a picture of what your long deceased ancestor looked like even if he or she never had a photograph taken? Read here about two links to articles on how DNA might be used to reconstruct how individuals looked.
7. Do you find it difficult to set aside enough research time to advance the development of your family history? Maybe you should try the 30 x 30 method described here by Janine Adams of Organize Your Family History blog.
8. Diane Boumenot of One Rhode Island Family blog had a very useful post a few weeks ago about how to organize your genealogy journal collection. Check out Diane's step-by-step instructions and photographic illustrations here.
9. And finally there is the post at New England Folklore blog by Peter Muise titled, "Is The Scarlet Letter A True Story?" Read the post here . . . and be sure to read the first comment from blogger Heather Rojo and then the comment further down from Karen K.
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Copyright 2015, John D. Tew
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