30 August 2016

Did you know you have a "digital estate" and why genealogists care

I was caught by the title of today's post on Upfront with NGS. It's "Digital Estate Planning Laws -- Relevant to Preserving "Your" Digital Genealogy Assets!" The post is pretty brief and includes some links you may want to check-out.
I wanted to stress the aspects of my digital genealogy records I'm concerned about. Each of us has different concerns but you might think, "I don't really care what happens to my..." Facebook account or Ancestry.com account. What's important to realize is it might not go away (I'm a little freaked out every time Facebook recommends I share something with someone that has been dead for years) BUT no one may be able to access it. The post calls this a "legal limbo" and that is probably the biggest issue most genealogists want to avoid.
22 August 2016

11 Hints for Using DAR Records in Genealogy

Did you like Saturday's post (eight tips for using the DAR GRS for genealogy--straight from my, now retired, lecture "The DAR Library for All: Near or Far, Member or Not")? If you liked that, I've got a bonus for you today!

These are the hints I've always included in the lecture handout about using DAR Records for Genealogy. 


These hints went with Tip #8, Use Common Sense but give you a bit more specific information if you are using DAR applications/supplementals. If you haven't already, check out Saturday's post to get geared up to use DAR sources for your genealogy.

Here are my eleven tips for using DAR records in genealogy.
20 August 2016

The DAR Library for All: Near or Far, Member or Not

Today I am giving one of my lectures for the last time. I am retiring "The DAR Library for All."
Lucky you! That means I'm putting my top tips here. No need to wait to hear the lecture anymore. The GRS is a great free website (with some of the information being finding-aids for records you will need to pay to get, free finding-aids are much better than no finding-aids or subscription finding-aids so don't complain!) I'm going ahead and posting this on TheOccasionalGenealogist.com because it's a great resource to go through in smaller amounts of time. It's relevant for any genealogist, occasional or frequent, though.

Because the research sections of the DAR website (the tabs making up the "GRS," the Genealogical Research System) change and are updated. I'm not including some of the information that was originally the core of this lecture. It started out as "The DAR GRS" when I lived outside Washington, D.C. My audiences had easy access to the DAR Library but when the GRS was first made public, it was NOT that easy to use. I had already been using it for over two years as a staff genealogist at the DAR so I could "translate" all the DAR-isms and explain some of the, uh, less than obvious navigation.

One of the reasons this lecture is being retired, I'm just not as fundamental in the user-website relationship, anymore. That's great news for you, the average user. I've been replaced with "information" icons. Which leads me to my number one tip...

19 August 2016

Sight My What?

"Cite Your Sources" (that's the answer to "Sight my what?") 

This post is a companion to the first suggestion in "Three Genealogy Shortcuts That Aren't Cheats." That particular post has become very popular (compared to my others) on Pinterest. I know why---it's a totally pin-able title. But as the number of views shot up and I reread the post, I started to worry the first suggestion was a shocker to much of my audience. I conceived of the shortcuts for the type of genealogist I used to get in my "Occasional Genealogist" class. Those were very avid hobbyists, not beginners, not casual "searchers". I'm not sure who's coming from Pinterest. So if you read the first "shortcut" (start your citations before you start to research) and thought, "sight my what?," this post is for you.