02 September 2015

NextGen Genealogy Network fosters the next generation’s interest in family history



NextGen – are you?

We first shared with you about NextGen back in 2013 via a guest post, The NextGen Genealogy Network (NGGN) -- Guest Post by Kassie Nelson.

The above article gives you a great overview of NextGen and from the NextGen FAQ page here is a shorter perspective ...

Who founded the NextGen Genealogy Network? NGGN was founded in 2013 following a Twitter conversation between Jen Baldwin, Kassie Nelson, and D. Joshua Taylor, who wanted to create a community for other young genealogists. Additional collaboration from Shannon Combs Bennett, Tara Cajacob, Wendy Callahan, Melanie Frick, Barry Kline, and other volunteers turned this vision into reality.

Putting together a new organization seems like a lot of work. Why bother? As young genealogists ourselves, we know how hard it can be to meet others who share our interests and to find our place within the genealogy community. We want everyone to experience the incredible benefits of enrichment and encouragement that being a part of and contributing to a vibrant and active community can offer.

What exactly is a young genealogist? NGGN builds connections and fosters engagement among young genealogists in their twenties, thirties, and forties. We strive to create a sense of belonging among those who might feel out of place in the genealogy community because of their age, but also realize that youth can't always be attributed to a number. If you are young at heart or simply value the perspective of the next generation of genealogists, we welcome you!

As one would expect, NextGen has footprints on the major tech platforms as well as a blog.

Are you NextGen?  If so, you can join/participate in NextGen and it doesn’t cost you a penny, just your willingness to join a network which ...

... fosters the next generation’s interest in family history. We build connections between all generations, provide resources to promote the next generation’s engagement in the genealogical community, and offer innovative, virtual opportunities for development. Through communication and cooperation, we empower genealogists worldwide.

Not NextGen? You can keep abreast of what is happening via the group’s FB page (it also has a separate closed group FB page), the aforementioned blog, and web site.

Though I may not be NextGen, I still have an interest in anyone interested in family history!  After all, they are the Next Generation when it comes to who will be researching, preserving, and celebrating our shared family history.





Editor’s Note: A post on a related topic, The NextGen of Preservationists ... (2014)



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copyright © National Genealogical Society, 3108 Columbia Pike, Suite 300, Arlington, Virginia 22204-4370. http://www.ngsgenealogy.org.
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01 September 2015

Vertical Files can be a goldmine of information -- Are you taking advantage of them?


Have you checked out the vertical files held in the community where you are doing research?

One of my earliest and best finds were tax lists for Wake County (NC) for 1810 & 1820.  These had been published in publications not readily available and copies were placed in a vertical file in what is now called the Government and Heritage Library (State Library of North Carolina).  These tax lists are important because the census doesn’t survive for this county for those years!  Copies of those copies proudly sit in my library.

This article Six genealogy secrets found in the library's vertical file gives you some insight into what you might find if you haven’t ever looked at vertical files in the course of your research.

And, vertical files aren’t limited to local libraries and archives, university libraries often also have some, such as the University of Michigan and The University of North Carolina Greensboro, as well as historical society libraries like The Filson Historical Society.  These have online indexes so that you can see what material might be available in vertical files.

Can’t get to a local repository to check out its vertical files?  First, check for an online index (as mentioned above) and then you can query about how you might gain access.  Second, a really neat trend over the last few years has been the digitization of vertical files.  Now, due to copyright and privacy issues not everything in a vertical file can be digitized and you still want to check out such efforts.

For example, here are some NC examples of vertical files which have been digitized!  
+ Government and Heritage Library Vertical Files (North Carolina Digital Collections)

Just because vertical files are low tech and often not online, does not mean you shouldn’t consider looking into them.

Every time I start a project on a new family, I check the vertical files at the Government and Heritage Library (yes, in person, even though they are digitized, because I can ) to see if there is a folder for that family.  I have found family association newsletters, copies of family bible pages, family trees, newspaper cuttings, and so much more!

What is your greatest find in a vertical file?




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copyright © National Genealogical Society, 3108 Columbia Pike, Suite 300, Arlington, Virginia 22204-4370. http://www.ngsgenealogy.org.
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NGS does not imply endorsement of any outside advertiser or other vendors appearing in this blog. Any opinions expressed by guest authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the view of NGS.
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Republication of UpFront articles is permitted and encouraged for non-commercial purposes without express permission from NGS. Please drop us a note telling us where and when you are using the article. Express written permission is required if you wish to republish UpFront articles for commercial purposes. You may send a request for express written permission to UpFront@ngsgenealogy.org. All republished articles may not be edited or reworded and must contain the copyright statement found at the bottom of each UpFront article.
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31 August 2015

ProQuest Content Now Discoverable in Google Scholar



We are often greatly challenged to determine where information of interest to us can be found!  Because of this, websites or services that aggregate data from several sources can be quite useful to us.

A new and recent version of this where ProQuest content is available through Google Scholar is now alive.  Back in April, it was announced ProQuest to Open Content Through Google Scholar

Earlier this month, this effort went live, ProQuest Scholarly Content Now Discoverable in Google Scholar.

... The full text of its scholarly content – including journals and working papers – is now indexed in Google Scholar, enabling Google Scholar users to seamlessly discover and access their library’s ProQuest collections. Efficiency and productivity for both ProQuest and Google Scholar users is improved, while libraries benefit from increased usage for their subscribed collections...
 
Do know that in order to access any Proquest Content found in Google Scholar, you still will need to have access, typically via a University Library, to the appropriate ProQuest collection.

Did you make any neat finds?






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copyright © National Genealogical Society, 3108 Columbia Pike, Suite 300, Arlington, Virginia 22204-4370. http://www.ngsgenealogy.org.
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NGS does not imply endorsement of any outside advertiser or other vendors appearing in this blog. Any opinions expressed by guest authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the view of NGS.
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Republication of UpFront articles is permitted and encouraged for non-commercial purposes without express permission from NGS. Please drop us a note telling us where and when you are using the article. Express written permission is required if you wish to republish UpFront articles for commercial purposes. You may send a request for express written permission to UpFront@ngsgenealogy.org. All republished articles may not be edited or reworded and must contain the copyright statement found at the bottom of each UpFront article.
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28 August 2015

New Funding support for Digital Public Library of America facilitates a push to serve all 50 states by 2017!



It’s always nice to read about how Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) keeps growing! Digital Public Library of America makes push to serve all 50 states by 2017 with $3.4 million from the Sloan and Knight foundations.

This is a wonderful resource.  It’s unlikely that you will find your ancestor listed and you will likely gain some historical context for the period of time during which they lived or the community they lived in!

Share your best find from DPLA.





Editor’s Note: More posts about DPLA.





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copyright © National Genealogical Society, 3108 Columbia Pike, Suite 300, Arlington, Virginia 22204-4370. http://www.ngsgenealogy.org.
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NGS does not imply endorsement of any outside advertiser or other vendors appearing in this blog. Any opinions expressed by guest authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the view of NGS.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 
Republication of UpFront articles is permitted and encouraged for non-commercial purposes without express permission from NGS. Please drop us a note telling us where and when you are using the article. Express written permission is required if you wish to republish UpFront articles for commercial purposes. You may send a request for express written permission to UpFront@ngsgenealogy.org. All republished articles may not be edited or reworded and must contain the copyright statement found at the bottom of each UpFront article.
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Suggestions for topics for future UpFront with NGS posts are always welcome. Please send any suggested topics to UpfrontNGS@mosaicrpm.com
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27 August 2015

Not just crowdsourcing -- a Crowdsourcing Game Jam!



Crowdsourcing continues to be a popular way to get lots of work done in a short period of time by involving individuals from around the world to participate.

This time, The British Library is putting a bit of a twist on it by hosting a Crowdsourcing Game Jam, 3rd-11th September.

The British Library has digitised 1,000,000 historical images and made them freely available, but we don't know as much about what's in them as we'd like. Normally this is the size of task we'd turn to crowdsourcing to tackle, but we're looking to have a bit more fun. So we're hosting a Crowdsourcing Game Jam. Can you help us make crowdsourcing information about this collection fun?

An ideal game draws a random image from our 1-million-strong collection and through gameplay the player tells us something about the content of the image. You might choose from our limited set of tags (flora, fauna, mineral, human portrait, landscape, manmade - eg. machine, buildings, ship, abstract, artistic, music, map), or opt to be more creative...

Do read all the details on what must be the objective of your game and the rules by which your submitted game must operate.



Editor’s Note: Related articles on this topic ...




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copyright © National Genealogical Society, 3108 Columbia Pike, Suite 300, Arlington, Virginia 22204-4370. http://www.ngsgenealogy.org.
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NGS does not imply endorsement of any outside advertiser or other vendors appearing in this blog. Any opinions expressed by guest authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the view of NGS.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 
Republication of UpFront articles is permitted and encouraged for non-commercial purposes without express permission from NGS. Please drop us a note telling us where and when you are using the article. Express written permission is required if you wish to republish UpFront articles for commercial purposes. You may send a request for express written permission to UpFront@ngsgenealogy.org. All republished articles may not be edited or reworded and must contain the copyright statement found at the bottom of each UpFront article.
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Suggestions for topics for future UpFront with NGS posts are always welcome. Please send any suggested topics to UpfrontNGS@mosaicrpm.com
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26 August 2015

Historic Landmarks Database



The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) has a neat and free to access database – Historic Landmarks, http://www.asce.org/landmarks/.

As usual, I stumbled across this when I was doing some research, this time on the Great Dismal Swamp (NC/VA area).

My focus at the time was on barriers to travel – a large swamp certainly did and does present a challenge to getting from point A to point B!

The landmarks are all interesting.  Regardless of whether you are researching a particular landmark relevant to your family or locale, each of the included landmarks is unique and is a bit of interesting history!

If you want to learn more about a specific landmark, you can also check out the Civil Engineering Database (CEDB), a free bibliographic database offering over 200,000 records of all publications by American Society of Civil Engineers. It is updated at the end of each month.

If you find a relevant article, it maybe available for purchase and you can definitely check to see if a local library (probably a University/College one) has the publication.







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copyright © National Genealogical Society, 3108 Columbia Pike, Suite 300, Arlington, Virginia 22204-4370. http://www.ngsgenealogy.org.
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NGS does not imply endorsement of any outside advertiser or other vendors appearing in this blog. Any opinions expressed by guest authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the view of NGS.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 
Republication of UpFront articles is permitted and encouraged for non-commercial purposes without express permission from NGS. Please drop us a note telling us where and when you are using the article. Express written permission is required if you wish to republish UpFront articles for commercial purposes. You may send a request for express written permission to UpFront@ngsgenealogy.org. All republished articles may not be edited or reworded and must contain the copyright statement found at the bottom of each UpFront article.
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Think your friends, colleagues, or fellow genealogy researchers would find this blog post interesting? If so, please let them know that anyone can read past UpFront with NGS posts or subscribe!
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Suggestions for topics for future UpFront with NGS posts are always welcome. Please send any suggested topics to UpfrontNGS@mosaicrpm.com
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25 August 2015

How much DNA do you inherit from your grandparents?



This re-post on FB of a Slate post could not have come at a better time! The associated image alone speaks to a main takeaway point from my weekend.

On Saturday while visiting the delightful Augusta Genealogical Society, besides giving three talks on NC research, I gave one talk on the basics of DNA testing for genealogy.

One point I made is that due to the nature of genetics, we don’t get exactly 25% from each grandparent and as you go back in time, you might find that you have large bits of genetic material from one branch of your family tree and practically none from another, regardless of what the basic math suggests on the surface (e.g. 50% from each parent who received 50% from each of their parents, etc)! It is very important to appreciate this when considering autosomal testing.

Well, Which Grandparent Are You Most Related to? pursues this concept in some depth based on extensive personal DNA testing in his own family along with the supporting genetics math about how we disproportionately inherit.  Though I don’t necessarily agree with the author’s intended use of what he is learning as a geneticist, the point that we don’t inherit equally from  grandparents and succeeding generations, is what I want to emphasize.

Related to this, Upfront with NGS recently blogged about In the future ... we might be able to reconstruct what our ancestors looked like! that is based on using DNA data to reconstruct what ancestors may have looked like.  A component of this at the individual level is understanding the correlation of DNA to various features along with the recognition that we did not inherit precise percentages of genetic material from all the ancestors of any one generation in our tree. 

Some of us look like the spitting image of maternal great aunt Lucy while a sibling might look like paternal uncle Alfred.  We know we are siblings and yet genetic inheritance clearly has endowed us with dominant bits from different branches of our family tree.  Something to keep in mind as you do DNA testing, start processing your test results and correlate them with test family members, photos of the deceased and more.







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copyright © National Genealogical Society, 3108 Columbia Pike, Suite 300, Arlington, Virginia 22204-4370. http://www.ngsgenealogy.org.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
NGS does not imply endorsement of any outside advertiser or other vendors appearing in this blog. Any opinions expressed by guest authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the view of NGS.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 
Republication of UpFront articles is permitted and encouraged for non-commercial purposes without express permission from NGS. Please drop us a note telling us where and when you are using the article. Express written permission is required if you wish to republish UpFront articles for commercial purposes. You may send a request for express written permission to UpFront@ngsgenealogy.org. All republished articles may not be edited or reworded and must contain the copyright statement found at the bottom of each UpFront article.
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Think your friends, colleagues, or fellow genealogy researchers would find this blog post interesting? If so, please let them know that anyone can read past UpFront with NGS posts or subscribe!
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Suggestions for topics for future UpFront with NGS posts are always welcome. Please send any suggested topics to UpfrontNGS@mosaicrpm.com
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Unless indicated otherwise or clearly an NGS Public Relations piece, Upfront with NGS posts are written by Diane L Richard, editor, Upfront with NGS.
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