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  • The Weekly Genealogist

  • Vol. 11, No. 37
    Whole #444
    September 16, 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.

    * SwedGen 2009 Tour
    * Irish Census Release Illustrates Greater Interest in Genealogy
    * Research Recommendations: Genealogical Education
    * Name Origins
    * New On
    * Spotlight: Kentuckiana Digital Library, Kentucky
    * Stories of Interest
    * New Books from the NEHGS Sales Department
    * Upcoming Education Programs
    * NEHGS Contact Information


    SwedGen 2009 Tour

    Genline is working with groups around the country to promote research on Swedish roots. They are promoting the SwedGen 2009 tour, which is appearing in Worcester, Mass.; Berlin, Conn.; Cambridge, Minn.; and South St. Paul, Minn. The Research Day will include presentations and demonstrations on how to use the various resources for Swedish genealogical and historical research. There will be presentations on Swedish genealogical online resources, Swedish genealogical CDs, and Swedish emigration, plus opportunities for individual research assistance. The events are free, but registration is required for both the events and individual consultations.

    Saturday, October 3, 2009 (10 AM–4:30 PM) The Worcester Public Library and The Swedish Ancestry Research Association will host the SwedGen 2009 Research Day at the library. Please check for complete details and registration information.

    Wednesday, October 7, 2009 (9 AM–4:30 PM) The SwedGen 2009 group will host a Research Day at the Bethany Covenant Church, 785 Mill St., Berlin. To register send an email to, or call (800) 975-5493 and ask for Kathy Meade.

    Thursday, October 15, 2009 (1 PM–5 PM, 6 PM–10 PM) The Isanti County Historical Society (ICHS) will host the SwedGen Research Day at the ICHS Heritage Center located in the northwest corner of the Isanti County Fairgrounds in Cambridge, Minn. For information contact Kathy McCully at 763-689-4229. For complete details and registration information, visit

    Friday and Saturday, October 16-17th, 2009 (October 16, 1 PM–4 PM, and October 17, 9 AM–4 PM) The Swedish Genealogical Society of Minnesota will be holding a “SGSM Fall Research Conference” where they will host the representatives of SwedGen Tour200, Genline Sweden/Genline North Americ, and the Swedish American Genealogist (SAG) at the Minnesota Genealogical Society building, 1185 Concord Street North, South St. Paul, Minn. Pre-registration will be required. Please check our SGSM homepage at for details and your registration form.

    For additional information about the SwedGen Tour, go to

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    Irish Census Release Illustrates Greater Interest in Genealogy

    The Irish Times recently ran a wonderful piece on the increasing interest in family history in the Emerald Isle. The recent release of the 1911 census there prompted four and a half million hits in the first 48 hours:

    "Tracing your family tree, like decent coffee and big cars, used to be something reserved for Americans. However, it seems that over the last few decades, people in Ireland have been digging up their roots and when the entire 1911 census became available online a few weeks ago, it received 4.5 million hits in the first 48 hours. Millions more have visited it since."

    You can read the entire story at

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    Research Recommendations: Genealogical Education
    by Michael J. Leclerc

    As I write this I have just returned from the Federation of Genealogical Societies annual conference in Little Rock, Arkansas. Hundreds of people were present in the exhibit hall and classroom sessions, looking at the latest books, products, and services available to genealogists. They also experienced presentations from some of the leading talent in the field.

    As I was departing, I thought back on the previous week, and realized that this was real genealogy. Those who work only on the internet will never find all of the correct information on their family, because, as true genealogists know, only a small tip of the iceberg of available materials is available online. Even worse is that many of these folks working only online will never realize this fact. Sparkly marketing and claims of “one-stop shopping” leave them in a place where they think that all information on their family can be found after a few simple keystrokes.

    If you wish to truly find your family, far more work is necessary. And sitting at home in isolation working on a computer will never allow you find the necessary tools. Even though more and more is available online, and much research can be done more efficiently with online resources, nothing can replace the in-person learning experience. This is where you learn about the records not available online, or even on microfilm, and how to access them without flying back and forth across the country either.

    Genealogical societies, historical societies, libraries, and archives around the country offer many educational experiences for genealogists. These programs range from free one-hour lectures to week-long programs that can cost several hundred dollars. Local speakers can bring in knowledge of their hands-on work in materials that only a person who lives in the area can convey. National speakers have vast knowledge and skills to assist in specific methodology as well as research.

    But the best reason for attending such educational programs is the interaction with other attendees. You may find other people researching the same lines as you, distant cousins who have access to information you may not yet have found. A casual conversation during a break or over lunch might lead to new resources you did not know existed. At the very least there is the ability to commiserate with someone else over those brick wall ancestors.

    Though I have been conducting genealogical research for more than two decades, I never fail to learn something new at any educational program I attend. From the speakers to the attendees, be it a gathering of 15 people or 1,500, the personal interaction is something that cannot be replicated online. And as anyone who has been researching for more than a short time can tell you, it is these personal interactions that lead to the best learning, and the greatest breakthroughs.

    You can find information on genealogical societies, libraries, archives, and other repositories, around the country from the Federation of Genealogical Societies. Their Society Hall ( provides information on all of their member organizations.

    A list of upcoming educational events from NEHGS can be found at the bottom of this newsletter. A complete listing can also be found at The Society also maintains a National Calendar of events at

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    Name Origins
    by Julie Helen Otto

    ATHILDRED (f): a form of the Anglo-Saxon royal name ÆLFTHRYTH, which, via the somewhat Latinized ÆTHELREDA, later evolved into AUDREY. St. ETHELREDA [ÆTHELREDA] was said to have died of a tumor of the throat, a demise she felt to be just retribution for the splendid necklaces and other finery she had worn in her youth.

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    New On

    Massachusetts Vital Records 1911–1915 — Just Added: 1913 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 marriages in 1913. This consists of 88,820 names. The indexes and records for marriages of 1914–1915 will be released in the future.

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    Spotlight: Kentuckiana Digital Library, Kentucky
    by Valerie Beaudrault

    The Kentuckiana Digital Library is a collection of digital resources, sponsored by the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education, the Institute of Museum and Library Services, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. The Library’s mission is “to enhance scholarship, research and lifelong learning through the establishment of access to shared digital archival collections in the state of Kentucky. It also provides guidance and instruction for Kentucky libraries, archives, historical societies and museums on applying appropriate technologies used in the production of digital library resources.”

    There are a number of different collections in the library, accessible from icons on the homepage. Following are several examples of the variety of databases available from the website.

    Historic Kentucky Newspapers
    This collection contains more than 17,500 issues from 36 newspapers. The number of issues per title varies from a single issue to more than 3,000. You can search the collection or browse through it by title and county. You can also choose which newspapers to search. The search results are returned in two different formats. There is a summary listing of the results returned ‘by collection’ and a list by individual issue. Click on the links to view search results. If you click on the “Detailed Results” link you will see a transcription of the text containing your keyword. Once on that page you can click on the page number to view the digitized image on the newspaper page on which the text can be found. In addition to printing out pages you can download the full newspaper in Adobe PDF format.

    Printed Books
    This collection contains 1,104 digitized texts related to Kentucky history. You can search the collection or browse through it by title and author. When browsing the collection, click on the title link and then on the page link to view the digitized page images. In addition to printing out individual pages you can download the files in Adobe PDF format. Full bibliographic information is provided.

    There are more than 80,000 digital images from more than 100 different collections in the Kentuckiana Digital Library. You can search the entire collection or browse through it by collection, Kentucky county and/or subject.

    There are two map collections among the resources. Of most interest is the Kentucky Sanborn Maps collection. There are more than 4,500 sheets from more than 100 cities and towns in the state. Sanborn fire insurance maps “show property lines, buildings with construction and insurance characteristics and addresses.”

    There are twenty-three items authored by six individuals in the manuscript collection. They include diaries, letters and a scrapbook. You can search the collection or browse through it by title and author. When browsing the collection click on the title link and then on the page link to view the digitized page images. There is also a search box on each page. Pages can be printed.

    There are two journals in the collection. They are Kentucky Negro Education Association Journal (1916–1952) and Mountain Life & Work (1925–1958). You can search the collection or browse through it by title. Click on the title link to access the list available volumes. Click on the desired volume link to access the page image links. There is also a search box on each page. Pages can be printed.

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    Stories of Interest

    Malaysian Woman, 107, Fears Hubby No. 22 Will Leave Her
    Afraid that her husband will leave her for a younger woman, a 107-year-old Malaysian woman is looking to marry again – for the 23rd time. Her marriages have lasted, on average, for 4 years each.

    Paying Tribute to a Masonic Icon
    Prince Hall, who arrived from Africa in the mid-eighteenth century at the age of 12, was “the first civil rights organizer in America.” He established African Lodge 1 in 1776, the first Masonic lodge for blacks in America.

    Volunteers Uncover Graves
    The Vine Lake Preservation Trust has been sponsoring beautification projects to preserve, enhance, interpret, and celebrate the historic Vine Lake Cemetery in Medfield, Massachusetts. As a result, many gravestones have come to light that were previously hidden by overgrowth and neglect.

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    New Books from the NEHGS Sales Department

    The NEHGS Sales Department is happy to offer the following titles for sale. Simply click on the link (or cut and paste into your browser) to order or find out more information.

    The Great Migration: Immigrants to New England, 1634-1635, Volume VI, R-S by Robert Charles Anderson

    Minutes of the Connecticut Court of Assistants, 1669–1711, by Helen Schatvet Ullmann

    Opening the Ozarks: First Families in Southwest Missouri, 1835–1839, by Marsha Hoffman Rising

    An American Family, 1575–1945: A History of the United States of America Viewed Through the Eyes of One Family, by James Edmond Carbine & Marianne Lemly Carbine

    A Rabble in Arms Massachusetts Towns and Militiamen During King Philip's War, by Kyle F. Zelner

    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:

    History of Malden, Massachusetts, 1633-1785 (Item P27820000)
    Warwick, Massachusetts: A Biography of a Town, 1763-1963 (Item P5-MA0488H)
    Williamstown, Massachusetts: The First Two Hundred Years, 1753-1953 (Item P5-MA0343H)
    Chronicles of New Brunswick, New Jersey, 1667-1931 (Item P5-NJ0125H)
    History of Penacook, New Hampshire, from its First Settlement in 1734 Up to 1900 (Item P5-NH0188H)

    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

    Getting Started in Genealogy –Greenwich, Conn.
    Saturday, October 3, 2009 10 AM to 2 PM
    Learn strategies for using libraries, repositories and genealogical websites to locate vital record information, census records, immigration documents and more. Learn how to organize a pedigree chart and document your discoveries for future generations. This lecture/lunch program is in conjunction with the Historical Society of the Town of Greenwich. The program includes tours of the National Historic Landmark Bush-Holley House
    To register, please email or call 617-226-1226.

    The Gods of Copley Square: Dawn of the Modern American Experience
    Wednesdays, October 7–October 28, 2009, 6–7:30 PM
    Back Bay Historical/The Global Boston Perspective has asked the New England Historic Genealogical Society to partner with it in presenting a series of historical lectures by Douglass Shand-Tucci in which Victorian Copley Square will be detailed for the first time through the exploding worlds of art and science, religion and architecture, medicine and psychology.
    Visit for more information.

    NEHGS Weekend Seminar—Oakland, Calif.
    Friday, October 23—Saturday, October 24, 2009
    Join NEHGS President and CEO D. Brenton Simons and California Genealogical Society President Jane Lindsey along with other NEHGS staff on Friday, October 23 for a seminar and dinner program in Oakland, California, devoted to helping you find your New England Ancestors. Michael J. Leclerc and Christopher Child, NEHGS genealogists will present talks on Researching Your New England Ancestors online; Western Massachusetts Families in 1790; and more. Capping off the day will be a dinner and presentation "The Lighter Side of Genealogy." On Saturday, October 24, NEHGS genealogists will hold research consultations for New England genealogy at the California Genealogical Society library.

    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

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    101 Newbury Street, Boston, MA 02116

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Boston, Massachusetts 02116, USA

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