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Friday, October 1, 2021

I need your help

For those of you who do not know I am one year into a six-year doctoral degree in History and Genealogical Studies. My research involves multiple aspects of lineage organizations.

Examples of lineage/heritage organizations are:
  • Sons / Daughters of the American Revolution
  • Colonial Dames of America
  • General Society of Mayflower Descendents
  • and etc (there are nearly 500 organizations in the US!)
If you navigate to my page titled Ph.D. Research Questionaire you can read more about the project and find the link to the online survey.

I believe that perspectives from a wide audience would add important context and information to our study and would be a valuable resource for the present research and for any future researchers seeking to study the influence and historical significance of heritage organizations and lineage societies within the United States.

Participants must be over the age of 18 and are assigned a number by the survey program. They will be referred to by that number in the research. At the end of the survey participants will have the opportunity to give contact information if they would like to participate in the interview section of the study. This is optional, and not required to complete the survey.

For analysis purposes, the survey is broken into several sections. Everyone will take the sections covering general demographics, education, involvement in genealogy, impressions of applications for these organizations, uses of DNA with genealogy, and discrimination. After these sections, the participant will select from a group of descriptions that they feel best describes them.

These groups are:
  • Historian, archivist, librarian, professional genealogist, or employed with a company that does genealogical work and interacts frequently with persons who perform genealogical research
  • Member of a lineage or heritage organization
  • Not a member of a lineage or heritage organization
  • A paid staff member or volunteer for a heritage organization or lineage society who approves applications for membership or assists prospective members with their applications
  • A genealogist/family history researcher (but not a professional) who researches for themselves, family, friends, or others for free

Each of the groups will have a set of questions pertaining to them to gather information on their impressions of heritage organizations and lineage societies. Participants can choose as many groups as possible that describe them.

Thank you for reading this far! I hope you will consider taking part and letting me know your thoughts on this type of research and these organizations.

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Yes, I am still alive and here are the updates

 You know, I should stop making promises that I cannot keep. I have been writing, but it is for school and not here. Sigh, I really do miss you all and I have so many ideas that I would love to blog more about. Finding the time seems to be the real problem. Especially when I do have any downtime (per se) I want to relax like the snowman in this picture. Hot chocolate (with a kick), take me away!

So let me do a few updates.

Many of you know that my father lives with me. Officially, I am his primary care-giver. Family always comes first in my life, and he has had some health struggles over the past year. This cuts into a lot of my free time (I have kids at home too) for fun things like blogging. If you have ever been in this situation you know what I mean. But, we take it one day at a time and I do the best I can.

I am back in school. Working on my Ph.D. while in a pandemic has a few interesting problems. First, everything must be researched online. Thankfully archives and libraries are very understanding. More than one has sent me the material digitally I needed seeing I cannot get into repositories right now. I am also supposed to travel to Strathclyde every so often, but when the country will not let anyone fly in that is not going to happen. 

The worst part of 2020 was so many of my in-person lectures canceling. Understandable, but I wished many of them would have moved to virtual learning quicker. However, once again the pandemic has forced groups and people into technology that they were dragging their heels on. Nothing like money to make you move faster! Thankfully 2021 is picking up so I will "see" you all online more.

In case you did not know, this week is RootsTech Connect virtual conference. I am presenting five lectures, and there are hundreds of videos to choose from. Registration for the event gives you access to all of the videos for one year!! 

Oh, and an apology. It seems I am a dunce and had over 500 comments that were un-checked in my blogger account. While 80% were spam, there were some comments in there dating back 3 years! I have started to reply to them. However, if you all need me in a timely manner please feel free to email me through the website. 

Alright, updates are done. Off to get some work done!

Monday, November 16, 2020

RootsTech Connect 2021 Announces First of Keynote Speakers


RootsTech Connect 2021 Keynotes

RootsTech Connect 2021—the world’s largest family celebration event—announced its first wave of keynote speakers hailing from Australia, Italy, Mexico, and the United States. Speakers include New York Times bestselling author and international motivational speaker, Nick Vujicic; Lorena Ochoa of Mexico, a retired top female world golfer; Francesco Lotoro of Italy, musician, composer and collector of music composed in captivity during the Holocaust; and Sharon Leslie Morgan, author and genealogist dedicated to promoting healing by providing resources for African American genealogical research.

RootsTech Connect, February 25–27, 2021, is a free online conference to discover, share, and celebrate family and heritage connections.


Nick Vujicic was born in Melbourne, Australia. With no medical explanation or warning, Nick came into the world with neither arms nor legs. He has overcome his disabilities and has achieved remarkable goals despite them. By age 19 he started fulfilling his dream of encouraging others through their personal challenges. He has spoken live to 6.5 million people live in more than 65 countries, met with 21 presidents, and addressed 9 governments. His New York Times best seller, Unstoppable, is now published in more than 30 languages. Vujicic now lives in California with his wife and 4 children. (Read more about Nick Vujicic).

Lorena Ochoa is best known as the top-ranked female golfer in the world for 157 consecutive weeks in the LPGA. As the first Mexican golfer of either gender with such a ranking, she is considered the best Mexican golfer and Best Latin American female golfer of all time."Knowing your past is very important to understand who you are," said Ochoa. "The work that FamilySearch and RootsTech Connect does is incredible. I know more about my story than I would have ever imagined."

Ochoa has received numerous prestigious awards. She now hosts her own tournament bringing the professional elite to golf in Mexico. Among many altruistic pursuits, she has started a foundation focused on educating low-income children. In November 2012, she published her book, Dream Big, sharing the goals from her childhood that set her on that course. Lorena is the mother of 3 young children, and lives with her husband, Andres Conesa, in Mexico City. (Read more about Lorena Ochoa).

Francesco Lotoro is an Italian pianist, composer, conductor, and professor at the Umberto Giordano Music Conservatory in Foggia, Italy. For the past 30 years, he has worked tirelessly to recover, study, archive, execute, record, and promote tens of thousands of remarkable musical scores composed by prisoners in concentration camps. He is currently working on a multi-volume encyclopedia dedicated to music written in concentration camps and to the related composers with the goal for it to “become a historic, artistic, cultural and spiritual treasure for all.” For his efforts, Lotoro has received widespread interest and recognition throughout Europe and North America. (Read more about Francesco Lotoro).

Sharon Leslie Morgan has devoted her career to support African American genealogical research. She founded Our Black Ancestry (OBA), an online community to provide resources for African American genealogical research, preserve historical materials and properties, and promote healing of wounds that are a legacy of slavery. OBA is a partner with FamilySearch on the ROAR (Reclaiming Our African Roots) Project.

A staunch advocate of racial justice, Morgan has co-authored several books including Gather at the Table: The Healing Journey of a Daughter of Slavery and a Son of the Slave Trade, and she works with organizations that promote this work. She has received prestigious awards for her efforts to help others with this research and make connections to provide healing.

“I believe genealogy is a tool for healing from America's egregious past and a shining light on a pathway toward a society that embraces equality and justice for all,” said Morgan. “RootsTech Connect 2021 is an unparalleled opportunity to celebrate humanity in all of its colors, cultures, and creeds."  (Read more about Sharon Leslie Morgan).

Register for RootsTech Connect 2021 for free at


In-depth with RootsTech 2021 Keynote Speakers

About RootsTech

RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide. RootsTech Connect 2021 is free and will be entirely online.

Thursday, October 1, 2020

NGS - FGS Merger Party

 For Release: 30 September 2020

NGS and FGS Invite Genealogists & Family Historians to its Virtual Merger Celebration Party 1 October 2020


FALLS CHURCH, va, 30 SEPTEMBER 2020—The National Genealogical Society (NGS) and the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS) announced their merger will be finalized tomorrow on 1 October 2020. We invite family historians and genealogists to join us as we celebrate “the new NGS” on 1 October at 8:00 p.m. (EDT) at a virtual merger event, featuring host Judy G. Russell, JD, CG, CGL. Additional guests include members of the NGS and FGS boards, AAHGS president Gene Stephenson, BCG president LaBrenda Garrett-Nelson, Lou Szucs, Curt Witcher, and more. The merger agreement will be signed as part of this event.


Grab some snacks, put on your party hat, get your noisemaker ready, and join us for an exciting evening of fun! Share the experience by posting a photo of yourself on social media using #NewNGS. 

To attend, check your email (or ask a friend) for the link and password!


Help us commemorate FGS and salute the new NGS by creating a digital card with Vivid-Pix. Submit by 5 October to see your card live on the NGS website!


Founded in 1903, the National Genealogical Society is dedicated to genealogical education, exemplary standards of research, and the preservation of genealogical records. The Falls Church, Virginia, based nonprofit is the premier national society for everyone, from the beginner to the most advanced family historian, seeking excellence in publications, educational offerings, and guidance in research. It also offers many opportunities to interact with other genealogists.

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

FamilySearch Announces RootsTech Connect 2021: A Free Global Virtual Event


For Immediate Release
31 August 2020

FamilySearch Announces RootsTech Connect 2021: A Free Global Virtual Event

FamilySearch is thrilled to announce that the RootsTech 2021conference previously planned for February 3–6, 2021, in Salt Lake City, Utah, will now be held on February 25–27, 2021, as a free, virtual event online. RootsTech Connect 2021 will enable attendees to participate from around the world and will feature inspiring keynote speakers, dozens of classes in multiple languages, and a virtual marketplace. Reserve your place today for free at

“The pandemic is giving us the opportunity to bring RootsTech to a broader audience worldwide,” said Steve Rockwood, FamilySearch International CEO. “A virtual event also allows us to expand our planning to truly make this a global celebration of family and connection.” 

RootsTech Connect 2021 will be global in scope while offering many experiences that attendees have come to know and love from RootsTech events—including inspirational keynote speakers, dozens of classes to choose from, and an expo hall.  

<Watch RootsTech Connect 2021 Promotional Video

Throughout the three-day online event, attendees will have the ability to interact with presenters, exhibitors, and other attendees through live chat and question and answer sessions. 

“Classes will be taught in many languages, and presenters will teach from a number of international locations,” said Rockwood. “We will celebrate cultures and traditions from around the world, with activities that the audience can participate in from home—such as homeland cooking demonstrations, storytelling, and music performances. This is one virtual event you won’t want to miss.” 

RootsTech Connect 2021 will offer a combination of both livestream and on-demand content to accommodate differences in time zone for participants. In addition, sessions will be available to view on-demand after the event concludes. 

Rockwood says that FamilySearch is looking forward to the opportunity to deliver the signature RootsTech experience and helping tens of thousands of participants worldwide to discover, gather, and connect their family story.  

RootsTech hopes to gather in-person again in the future but anticipates the RootsTech Connect virtual opportunity will become a regular addition to the event. 

Register for free at

Find and share this announcement from the FamilySearch Newsroom

About RootsTech

RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

I am still here, Life during a pandemic

When we entered quarantine at the beginning of March I was like "Woohoo! So much time for writing!" Well, that obviously did not happen. Just look at how many posts there are here.

I got sick, my husband got sick, my kids got sick, and my dad got sick. While we do not know if we had Covid-19 (there were not enough tests at that time and we did not meet the criteria to be tested) it's been several months of being cared for and caring for others in my home. Exhaustion is the worse part. You just do not want to do anything.

To top it off, my husband and I have relapsed several times with whatever this is. On the 15th I was given a Covid-19 test which came back negative. However, as my doctor told me yesterday, that doesn't mean you didn't have it, you simply do not have it now. Yup, my husband and I are still sick with some sort of chest crud and are under treatment, again.

After 12 weeks at home (one of us leaves the house as needed for groceries, medicines, or to a doctor appointment) I need to set a routine and stick to it. No matter what. Having everyone here though has set my mind into a loop. When your kids are home, doing school work, it sometimes is hard to get into a work rhythm. I have not begun any large projects because once I get on a roll, then get sidetracked with helping someone, I often cannot maintain my momentum.  The train of thought has derailed and the crane to right it gets bigger each time.

Although, I finished two crocheted afghan projects that have languished in a basket and made a new granny square blanket from scratch using odd and end yarn I have stashed around the house. So yay for making things!

Plus, we started a garden for the first time in 16 years. Yes, 16 years. My husband still has tilling
trauma from the last time I tried to do a garden. One of my boys wanted to try, and having a willing victim, er participant, makes things happen around here. We started seedlings in the house, built a raised garden bed (4'x4'), and have planted the first seedlings in it. There are three types of tomatoes, dwarf sunflowers, bib lettuce, and heirloom marigolds. The marigolds are from seeds I saved three years ago from a summer camp project for child number two. He attended camp at Mount Vernon, home of George Washinton, and they planted marigolds from the plantation to bring home. Those two heirloom flowers gave me several dozen seeds.

We have also planned an herb garden to go around the seating area in the back yard. The plants are ready to go, I am just waiting for the supplies from the building supply store to be delivered. We will have oregano, thyme, mint, lemon balm, sage, basil, and chamomile. Fingers crossed it all gets done this week. My seedlings want out of the house!

But it has not all been sitting around and playing with yarn and soil. I have made some progress on some paid, volunteer, and personal research. Limited of course because I only have the internet and my personal library. However, some of my librarian and archive friends are still at work. Guess what, they re bored too. I lucked out that some research I needed was done by these wonderful people over the last couple of months. So, reach out and see if the repository you need information from is taking online requests or phone requests. While it will not be free, you may get extra care and information since they have not as many customers to help.

I hope you all are doing well. Stay safe, take care, and do some genealogy today!

Monday, March 2, 2020

RootsTech London 2020

During Steve Rockwood’s keynote address, he and Jen Allen announced the opening of RootsTech London! Mark your calendars for November 5 – 7 at the ExCeL. Take advantage of the early-bird pricing and secure your seat now. Full passes are £79 and day passes for £39.   

Start planning by checking out my previous London RootsTech 2019 Posts here