Sharing some bits and pieces brought home from RootsTech 2015 last week:
Going to be in Indiana this summer? The Indiana Historical Society is holding their annual Midwestern Roots conference on 1-2 August in Indianapolis. Advance notice: the dates will be 15-16 July in 2016, also in Indianapolis. Google it to learn the details.
FamilySearch Apps.... did you realize you can have a whole family of genealogy apps on your phone from FamilySearch? And of course they're free. FamilySearch has partnered with many companies to offer to you their services. Companies like Ancestry, Billion Graves, FamilyTree DNA, Find A Grave, Find My Past, Fold 3, Kinpoint, Genealogy Bank, My Heritage, NEHGS, RootsMagic and Legacy and several more. Such a nice deal. Stay tuned to www.familysearch.org/partneraccess. (If only I had a smart phone..... I'm in the dwindling army of those with dumb phones.)
The U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services has a genealogy program. Who would have thought? If you are seeking records between 1906 and 1951, you might want to click to www.uscis.gov/genealogy.
The BYU Family History Library (http://sites.lib/byu.edu/familyhistory) offers you direct links to research sources. For instance, under Digital Archives, there are links to all fifty U.S. state archives. Another link is for Libraries & Historical Societies and there is one for Periodicals & Newspapers. How will you know that there is nothing there for you unless you go looking??
Here's a fun one: Text in a Bottle (www.TextinaBottle.com). Set up a free account on this website and you can send very special messages to friends and family. I say "special" for the message pops from a bottle and unrolls for the recipient to read. And you can post-date these messages to come tomorrow, next month or long into the future. Great to go through your birthday calendar and have birthday messages all done and ready to be sent!!
Anybody but me ever do a book using Ancestry's MyCanvas? And remember how bummed we were to hear that Ancestry was discontinuing this service? Well, as you might have guessed would happen did happen. Now it's MyCanvas by Alexander's and is still reachable from a link at Ancestry or directly at www.mycanvas.com. Sigh. All is not lost.
Ancestor Cloud (www.ancestorcloud.com) is another new opportunity I learned about at RootsTech 2015. Their blurb reads: "AncestorCloud is a global marketplace of passionate researchers that work together to solve their research problems. Whether you're stuck and need a records lookup, local photograph, translation, research help, or anything else, AncestorCloud is the online community for you." Here's how it works. Click to the website and create a profile. Then type into the box what you are wanting and how much you're willing to pay for the help. When somebody responds, offering to help you, that amount is deposited in their online-money account built into the website and then they can use it to "buy" help they need. Pretty cool idea, really.
Whenever I'm in Salt Lake City, I try to attend the "Music & The Spoken Word," the live half hour broadcast on Temple Square. Before RootsTech, I was lucky! Lloyd D. Newell always gives an inspirational and non-denominational message and this time his message centered around Broadway musical star Idina Menzel. She realized that in her performances on stage that she might not hit every note correctly every single time. But that's life and that's okay. Lloyd Newell ended his remarks that Sunday with this: "We are all far more than the notes we hit....or fail to hit. Perhaps we should define ourselves not by what we are today but by what we can be, by what we aspire to be. Wherever those aspirations are leading us, let us accept that success can happen over time, little by little. With this perspective, our mistakes and shortcomings can teach us instead of condemn us. In reality, this is what it means to do our best."