Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Spokane Area Legacy Users Group to Meet Wednesday, October 20th

If you are a Legacy Family Tree genealogy software user, or are simply curious about this genealogy software program, you may be interested in the Legacy Users Group (LUG), which will meet next Wednesday, October 20th, from 1:30 to 3:30 PM in the meeting room of the Shadle Park Branch of the Spokane Public Library at 2111 W. Wellesley. Regular attendees will take turns in the role of moderator for each meeting. If you have more questions, please contact Donna Potter Phillips here.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Findmypast Publishes Devon Parish Records Online

Press release from

Devon parish records go online

.       857, 603 Devon parish records are available online, making it easier to find Devon ancestors
.       The famous dog breeder John Russell, the Jack Russell's namesake, can be found in the records

Today leading UK family history website launches the Devon parish records in association with Devon Family History Society.  Significantly, these new online records pre-date civil birth, marriage and death records and census records, enabling family history enthusiasts to delve even further back into their Devonian ancestors' pasts from the convenience of their own home.

The Devon parish records include 363,015 baptism records for 1813-1839; 271,193 marriage records for 1754-1837 and 223,395 burial records for 1813-1837.  The transcripts of these records are available to search at from today as part of what is already one of the largest online parish record collections for England & Wales, currently comprising over 26 million baptism, marriage and burial records dating as far back as the reign of Henry VIII.

The search facility at makes it possible to look up ancestors across all the parish records on the site just by entering a surname.  Previously, to search the offline records it was necessary to know where in the country your ancestors came from and then contact the relevant record office or family history society for that area, so this development will make it far easier for people to research their family history.

The decline of agriculture at the end of the nineteenth century caused many people to migrate to cities as well as overseas in search of work. Therefore many people now living across the UK or in other corners of the globe may find ancestors listed within the newly available Devon Parish Records that they never knew they had.

The county of Devon has produced many famous faces over the years that can be found in the Devon Parish records. These include Charles Babbage, the inventor of the first ever computer, Charles Kingsley the author of 'The Water Babies' and John 'Jack' Russell, who owned the foundation bitch of a line of fox hunting terriers that would eventually come to be known as the Jack Russell.

Debra Chatfield, Marketing Manager at, says: "As a descendant of generations of Devonshire blacksmiths, I am particularly excited that the Devon Family History Society is working with to put Devon parish records on our website and make them available to all. Like me, many people who have never lived in Devon themselves may discover that they have ancestors who were baptised, married and/or buried in Devon, and this is a great way to find out about them."

Maureen Selley, Chairman of Devon Family History Society commented: "This is a unique and very special resource that has been created over many years by members of Devon Family History Society.  By working with to put these records online, we are enabling a wider international audience to become aware of these terrific records, allowing millions more people worldwide to discover their Devon ancestors."

Findmypast's Parish Record Collection brings together in one place the disparate records from local parishes, which have been collated by local family history societies since 1911, coordinated by the Federation of Family History Societies*. Since 2007 has been working exclusively with the Federation to publish these records online, with many more records due to be added to the website over the coming months. will also be working with FamilySearch to digitise the record collection of Plymouth & West Devon Record Office, with a view to matching their images of the parish records to the transcripts from Devon Family History Society that are now live on the site.

FamilyRoots Seminar in Calgary on October 16

Alberta Family Histories Society
FamilyRoots Seminar
"New Horizons in Genealogy"

Featuring three of North America's leading genealogists
  • Dick Eastman - The Organized Genealogist & Conservation: Keeping UP with Technology
  • Lyn Meehan - Records Interrogation 101 - Squeezing Records Until They Talk
  • Thomas MacEntree - Social Networking for Genealogists & Become a Genealogy Blogger
Saturday, October 16, 2010
8:30 AM - 4:00 PM
(Doors open @ 8:00 AM)
Deerfoot Inn Hotel
11500 - 35 St. SE, Calgary, AB, Canada
Dinner (Optional)
Big Rock Grill
5555 - 76 Ave. SE, 6:00 PM
Speaker: Dick Eastman
Topic: "Putting the Genes in Genealogy"

For more information, logon to FamilyRoots

Sunday, October 3, 2010

What You Missed: The October 2010 Workshop with Thomas MacEntee

Hopefully you didn't miss the October 2010 Workshop at the Spokane Public Library with Thomas MacEntee this weekend! If so, you missed an informative, educational, and entertainment time. Thomas gave five presentations, one of which was brand new: Building a Research Toolbox, Facebook for Genealogists, Become a Genealogy Blog User, Building a Genealogy Blog, and Google Docs for Beginners. Here is what some attendees said about the workshop:
Wonderful, informative and cost effective event today.
This was the best workshop I've been to in a long time.
Thank you for one of the best workshops that I have attended in several years. Thomas was a great speaker, entertainer, and educator and probably produced one of the most informative syllabus in as many years.
Thomas MacEntee was interesting, entertaining, and very very good at explaining these Internet "mysteries" like Facebook and blogging to us.

We also had a terrific box lunch catered by Apple Spice Junction.

If you would like to get a glimpse of some of the great things Thomas shared with EWGS, check out his free cheat sheets:
You can also view his slideshow, A Genealogy Blog Primer (or Everything You Wanted to Know About Genealogy Blogs But Were Afraid to Ask!).

For more on this weekend, check out Miriam Robbins Midkiff's A Visit with Thomas MacEntee on her AnceStories blog, and Charles Hanson's EWGS October 2010 Workshop Day 1 and EWGS October 2010 Workshop Day 2 on his blog, Mikkel's Hus. Thomas also wrote about the workshop on his Destination: Austin Family blog at Next Stop: EWGS in Spokane and Video - Resource Toolbox Workshop at EWGS.

Speaking of blogs, several attendees have expressed an interest in starting one. Terrence Day started Day's Days and already has nine followers!

If you are interested in more information about starting a blog, don't miss a free webinar on Wednesday, October 20th at 5:00 PM, P.D.T. presented by Pat Richley (a.k.a. DearMYRTLE). This webinar is presented by Legacy Family Tree. More details available here.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

WSGS Volunteer Awards John Ellingson

This is a picture of Donna Phillips EWGS President awarding John Ellingson the WSGS Volunteer award for 2010. Each member society of WSGS was supposed to nominate 2 people for the annual WSGS Volunteer award and John Ellingson was one of the two nominated by EWGS for that award for 2010, John did not go to the WSGS Conference in Chehalis this year so Donna brought the award home to give to John.
Congratulations John.

Lemon Fudge

I was asked by several people today to post the recipe for the lemon fudge I brought today. The actual recipe was actually called Black Cherry Swirl Fudge, and I changed two items from the original recipe:

2 1/2 cups sugar
2/3 cup evaporated milk (small can)
1/2 cup butter or margarine (1 cube)
1 package (10 or 12 oz) white or vanilla baking chips
1 jar (7 ounces) marshmallow creme
2 envelopes unsweetened black cherry Kool Aid (I used lemon Kool aid instead)

Line a 13x9x2 inch pan with foil and grease the foil with butter, (I used pam instead), set aside. In a heavy sauce pan combine the sugar, evaporated milk and butter. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Cook and stir for 4 minutes.
Remove from heat; stir in vanilla chips and marshmallow cream. The vanilla chips did not melt very well every time I used them so I stirred in the vanilla chips while still on the heat and when melted I turned off stove and stirred in the marshmallow creme. Next they want you to put a cup aside and then stir in the Kool Aid to the remaining fudge and then swirl the two together so you have ribbons of white and color. I just stirred the Kool Aid into all fudge and the poured it into the pan to cool. I first made this last Christmas and it was very lemony, and while I like lemony most people said it was too much lemon, so this batch only had 1 package lemon Kool Aid, and that is still very good. What other Kool Aid flavors would make good fudge?