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  • The Weekly Genealogist

  • Vol. 11, No. 32
    Whole #439
    August 12, 2009
    Edited by Michael J. Leclerc and Valerie Beaudrault

    Greetings from the New England Historic Genealogical Society! This newsletter has been sent to people who asked to receive it. If you would like to unsubscribe or change your email address, please click on the link at the bottom of the email and follow the instructions provided.

    NEHGS collects, preserves, and interprets materials to document and make accessible the histories of families in America.

    * Coming Soon in the Summer 2009 Issue of New England Ancestors
    * Provides Free Access
    * Research Recommendations: Genealogical Writing: Style Sheets
    * Name Origins
    * New On
    * Spotlight: Canada Genweb Family Bible Transcription Project
    * Stories of Interest
    * Question of the Day
    * Pre-Order New Great Migration Volume
    * Upcoming Education Programs
    * NEHGS Contact Information


    Coming Soon in the Summer 2009 Issue of New England Ancestors

    Retracing a Vermont Family’s Migration to the Holland Purchase, by Julie Foster Van Camp

    The Records of the Holland Land Company in Western New York, by Karen E. Livsey

    Genesee Fever: The Lure of Land on the New York Frontier, by Marian Henry

    Dead or Alive? The Strange Story of David Starrett, by Christopher Benedetto

    Betting on Land in Missouri: A Family Story, by Jim Boulden

    Discovering an Unexpected Past: Thomas Wiswall of Arundel, Maine, by Elizabeth Goddard

    The Virginia Genealogist — Now on, by Eric G. Grundset

    Index to 750,000 Church Records Available at, by Michael J. Leclerc

    ‘An American Experience’: Jacob Isaacks of Newport, Rhode Island (c.1718–1798), by Scott C. Steward

    Also in this issue . . .
    • Computer Genealogist: So Many Opportunities: Genealogy Online Today
    • Genetics & Genealogy: A Hodges DNA Study — Finding a Clue to an English Origin
    • Manuscripts at NEHGS: Manuscript Collection Finding Aids
    • Diaries at NEHGS: From the Diaries of Diadema (Bourn) Swift (1812–1888)
    • Tales from the Courthouse: The Devil and Dr. Reade
    • Focus on New York: No More Heavy Lifting: Classic New York Resources Online

    And, as always, news of NEHGS and the world of genealogy, upcoming NEHGS programs and tours, new publications, notices of family association events, genealogies in progress, and DNA studies in progress.

    Subscription to New England Ancestors is a benefit of NEHGS membership. If you are not a member, you may join online at, or call toll-free 1-888-296-3447, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, Eastern time.

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    ********************************** Provides Free Access, an online family history resource, recently announced the addition of the largest number of records to be released in a single day since the site launched in 2006. To commemorate this milestone, WorldVitalRecords is offering free public access for the first time to its entire online collection of historical and genealogical records. Free access runs from August 11 through August 13, 2009. The public will have unlimited access to more than one billion records in over 11,000 databases from around the world including newspapers, census, birth, marriage, death, immigration and military records; family trees; stories and publications; and yearbooks.

    Visit to try their databases for free.

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    Research Recommendations: Genealogical Writing: Style Sheets
    by Michael J. Leclerc

    When writing extensive articles, books, or other materials, it is helpful to keep a style sheet. Style sheets are lists of words and how they should be abbreviated, capitalized, hyphenated, italicized, spelled, etc. It is critically important that you are consistent in how you apply these throughout your manuscript.

    Once you have finished writing, it is helpful to the editors and proofreaders to know what your decisions were about these issues so they can be aware of them while reviewing the manuscript. For example, they will need to know whether you chose to use Web site, Web Site, or Website, to make sure that you applied the term consistently throughout your work.

    Style sheets are easy to create. Just write your decisions in alphabetical order in a fresh word-processing document. Then provide the Style Sheet to your editors and proofreaders when they are working on your manuscript. If you are working with a publisher, they may provide you with a style sheet for you to follow that reflects their house style. For more information on style sheets, see sections 2 and 3 of The Chicago Manual of Style.

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    Name Origins
    by Julie Helen Otto

    FLAVILLA (f): This name is a feminine diminutive of the Latin family name FLAVIUS.

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    New On

    Massachusetts Vital Records 1911–1915 — Just Added: 1912 Marriages.

    With the 1911–1915 birth index and records completed, we are continuing to release the marriage records of the same period. This week, we are releasing the index and records for 1912 marriages. This consists of 88,823 names. The indexes and records for marriages of 1913–1915 will be released in the future.

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    Spotlight: Canada Genweb Family Bible Transcription Project
    by Valerie Beaudrault

    CanadaGenWeb has begun a Family Bible transcription project, as a way of enabling those who own these valuable resources to share with others the information they contain.

    Click on the Submit Transcription link to view the page with a form and instructions on how to submit a transcription. The only requirement for submitting family record transcriptions is that they include at least one entry from Canada. You can also submit digitized images of the Bible pages.

    Click on the Search Transcriptions list to access the transcriptions via the browse and search page. To view the transcriptions, you can browse through an alphabetical surname list or browse through the collection by Bible. You can also run a keyword search.

    There are currently 38 family Bibles in the collection. Each transcription generally contains the Bible’s history (who owned it and how the submitter came into possession of it); a list of the surnames found in the records; the locales where the births’ marriages and deaths took place; the transcribed records in birth, marriage and death order; the name and contact information for the Bible’s owner; and the date the record was submitted. If there are digitized images of the family record pages, you will find them at the end of the page. Click on the thumbnail to view a full-size image. When you browse through the list alphabetically by surname you will find links to the Family Bible at the end of each record. Click on that link to view the complete family record for that Bible.

    There is also a Family Bible "Swap" page where you can post ads to sell or donate family bibles, in addition to posting ads seeking family Bibles.

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    Stories of Interest

    Author Warns of Pitfalls in Writing Narrative Family History
    [Editor's Note: There was a problem with the link that ran with this story last week, so we repeat it here with the problem resolved]
    Noted genealogist John Colletta recently spoke at the Brigham Young University genealogy conference, telling his audience that "According to the Catholic catechism, you can sin by doing something, and you can sin by neglecting to do something. Well, ladies and gentlemen, I hate to shock you here at Brigham Young University, but I have to tell you, when it comes to writing narrative family history, Catholic doctrine applies."

    Quilts: A Study in Genealogy
    The Packwood House Museum in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, has a number of quilts, including one from the 19th century that contains 312 names of family members.

    Streator Family Digs Deep to Find Roots of Family Tree
    Ken Majernik wanted to properly share his family's history with his grandson. The problem was, he didn't know much of that history himself. It was then that he was bitten by the ancestry bug. Majernik, owner of M&M plumbing & Heating in Streator, traveled to Slovakia with two of his sons in May to find that history.

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    Question of the Day

    Each day (M-F), David Lambert, the NEHGS Online Genealogist, will post an interesting "Question of the Day" on http:/// to share with you. We hope these questions will be valuable and beneficial in your research. Check back daily for new questions and answers or read through our archives. What follows is a question asked this week. You are invited to submit research questions to David Allen Lambert at Please note that he will make every effort to reply to each message, but will respond on a first come, first-served basis. In some cases, he may need to refer individuals to the NEHGS Research Service for more in-depth research services for a fee. You can view more questions of the day at

    Can you explain to me what the comically titled “Court of Errors” was in New York and when it operated? I believe I would like to search these records for some relatives. L.P.

    According to Barbara Jean Evans’ book A to Zax, the Court of Errors was the highest court in New York State. It was in operation between the years 1784 and 1846, when it was finally abolished. The New York State Archives in Albany, New York hold the records for this court. You can reach the Archives at

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    Pre-Order New Great Migration Volume

    The NEHGS Sales department is happy to begin accepting preorders for the next volume of The Great Migration: Immigrants to New England, 1634–1635. This sixth volume in the series covers the letters R and S and is 774 pages long. The regular price of this new volume is $64.95, but you can pre-order the book for $54.95 until October 31, 2009.

    NEHGS is also offering a special price on purchases of all six volumes of this series, covering A through S. Normally priced at $364.70, you can get the entire series for $310.00!

    Individual volumes of the first five books are available as well, at a cost of $59.95 each. NEHGS members will receive their 10% member discount on these earlier volumes. Also available are the following:

    The Great Migration Begins: 1620–1633, 3-volume set, Normally $125.00, Now $99.00
    The Pilgrim Migration: Immigrants to Plymouth Colony, 1620–1633, $29.95 ($26.96 for NEHGS members)
    The Complete Great Migration Newsletter, Volumes 1–15, $24.95 ($22.46 for NEHGS members)
    The Great Migration Newsletter, Volumes 11–15, $11.95 ($10.76 for NEHGS members)

    Please note that the new volume will not be available for shipment until mid-September, 2009. All pre-orders will be held until the books arrive in our warehouse and are available for shipment. If you order all six volumes, we will ship the available volumes now and the new volume when it is available. Please note that prices do not include shipping.

    You can place a pre-order for The Great Migration: Immigrants to New England, 1634–1634, Volume VI: R-S, at

    To place an order for all six available volumes at the discounted price, please visit

    All Great Migration volumes can be found at .


    Did you know that the NEHGS Sales Department offers library-quality copies of over 10,000 rare and out-of-print books? Some titles ordered by recent customers include:

    Descendants of John Stubbs of Cappahosic, Gloucester County, Virginia, 1652 (Item P4-H24879)
    Genealogy of the Swallow Family, 1666-1910 (Item P4-H24987)
    History of Buchanan County, Iowa, 1842-1881 (Item P5-IA0074H)
    Alphabetical Abstract of the Record of Births in the Town of Dedham, Massachusetts, 1844-1890 (Item P27762500)
    A History of Rehoboth, Massachusetts: Its History for 275 Years, 1643-1918 (item P5-MA0260AH)

    You can search the entire Classic Reprints catalog online at If you would like a list of FAQs and search tips for the Classic Reprints catalog, simply send an email with "Classic Reprints" in the subject line to

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    Upcoming Education Programs

    Each year the Society presents a number of dynamic lectures, seminars, and tours for genealogists and the general public. Programs are held at 99 Newbury Street unless otherwise indicated. For more information, please contact Ryan Woods at 617-226-1226 or

    You can view a full listing of upcoming programs:

    Seminars and Tours

    Scottish Family History Research Tour
    Sunday, September 20–Sunday, September 27, 2009
    Discover the origins of your Scottish ancestors with the inaugural NEHGS research tour to Edinburgh. This week-long intensive research program will be based out of Scotland's two premier genealogical repositories, The National Archives of Scotland (NAS) and the General Register Office for Scotland (GROS). Together these neighboring repositories house the major collections of government and vital records for more than 700 years of Scottish history. The main holdings of NAS include records created by the government of Scotland beginning in the twelfth century, including records of the crown and parliament; legal registers; court documents; and records of the Church of Scotland. Vital records, including births, marriages, and deaths from 1855 and parish registers from 1553 to 1854, are maintained by the GROS. Program registration includes lodging at the Sheraton Grand Hotel and opening and closing dinners.

    Salt Lake City Research Tour
    Sunday, October 25–Sunday, November 1, 2009
    Join NEHGS for our thirty-first annual research tour to the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah. Along with more than 70 other participants, you are invited to take part in an intensive week of research where you will be aided by expert staff. Daily programming also includes computer tutorials for accessing the library card catalog, research tips and techniques lectures, personalized consultations and group dinning events.

    For more information about NEHGS programs, visit or email

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    NEHGS Contact Information

    We encourage you to email this newsletter to others who might be interested. To subscribe or view back issues of eNews, please visit

    NEHGS eNews, like all of our programs, is made possible through the generous contributions of our members. For more information about giving to NEHGS visit

    To view the website of the New England Historic Genealogical Society, please visit

    To become a member of the New England Historic Genealogical Society, please visit

    Copyright 2010, New England Historic Genealogical Society
    101 Newbury Street, Boston, MA 02116

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New England Historic Genealogical Society
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Boston, Massachusetts 02116, USA

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