Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Want to attend a free webinar????

Thomas MacEntee was our speaker last October and he presented this very talk. If you weren't there or would like to hear it again, here is your chance. If this "register now" link does not work from my cut-and-paste, go to www.legacyfamilytree.com and sign up there. You MUST sign up but it is free. Then come the day, about 15 minutes before 11:00, click the link and sit at your computer and enjoy.......and learn.  

Building a Research Toolbox with Thomas MacEntee

Are you overwhelmed with the number of online resources for genealogical research? Are you constantly working with unorganized bookmarks or favorites? Printing out lists of websites you use most? Learn how to build a research toolbox that is organized, easy-to-use, and can be accessed from almost anywhere.

Join webinar host Geoff Rasmussen and speaker Thomas MacEntee (author of Google for Genealogists and Backing Up Your Genealogy Data) for this 90-minute free webinar, Building a Research Toolbox. Participants will learn not only some of the most important online resources for genealogical research, but also how to organize these resources into an easy-to-access and portable virtual toolbox.
The live webinar is scheduled for Wednesday, April 6, 2011, so register today to reserve your virtual seat. Registration is free.

About the presenter
ThomasMacentee-small Thomas MacEntee is a professional genealogist specializing in the use of technology and social media to improve genealogical research and as a means of interacting with others in the family history community. Utilizing over 25 years of experience in the information technology field, Thomas writes and lectures on the many ways in which blogs, Facebook and Twitter can be leveraged to add new dimensions to the genealogy experience. As the creator of GeneaBloggers.com he has organized and engaged a community of over 1,800 bloggers to document their own journeys in the search for ancestors.

Webinar time
The webinar will be live on Wednesday, April 6, 2011 at:
  • 2pm Eastern (U.S.)
  • 1pm Central
  • 12pm Mountain
  • 11am Pacific/Arizona
  • 6pm GMT

Friday, March 25, 2011

Schrag, Washington......... did you know?

If we were asked to identify Schrag, Washington, we would think of it as a rest stop on I-90. But did you know that in 1911 Schrag had a post office and a general store stocked with merchandise for surrounding farms. The Northern Pacific Railroad line built a spur to connect with the huge Schrag grain elevators. The little town finally passed into dust in 1934. But as you zoom through the middle of Washington on I-90 and see the Schrag sign, pause to remember that there once was a town and no doubt a family named Schrag.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Miriam has a birthday party!

Miriam Robbins Midkiff is the 1st VP of EWGS and a hard-working gal, teacher, mother and EWGS member. She richly deserved the surprise 44th birthday party given for her at the Cathay Inn and attended by some of her school co-workers and 15 or so EWGS member-friends. If you see her soon, feel free to give her a Big Birthday hug.......... but don't ask for any cake; we ate most of it and her Matt surely polished it off.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Roots Tech 2012

Relive RootsTech 2011
Popular Conference Makes Select Presentations Available for Free Online
11 March 2011
SALT LAKE CITY—If you missed the popular inaugural RootsTech 2011 conference, you can now at least get a sampling of what all the excitement was about. The wildly popular new technology and family history conference held last month in Salt Lake City, Utah, made its keynote addresses and a few other popular presentations available online today free of charge. The six free presentations can be viewed at RootsTech.org.
“The scope of the RootsTech conference was unique. We wanted to try to fulfill a need to bring technology users (family history buffs and anyone interested in genealogy) and technology creators (developers, programmers, engineers) together in a unique, fun environment to collaborate and move the genealogy industry forward through technology,” said Anne Roach, RootsTech conference chair. And bring them together it did.
The inaugural conference, hosted by FamilySearch, was a runaway success. With over 3,000 in-person attendees and another 4,500 attending remotely over the Internet, it was arguably one of the largest genealogy-related conferences ever held in the country. In-person attendees hailed from 42 states and 15 countries. Some came from as far away as China, New Zealand, Australia, Namibia, and Israel.
Paul Nauta, RootsTech public relations chair, reported that there were over 40 bloggers in attendance. “Between online articles, blog posts, and nonstop tweets, the online community was buzzing 24 hours a day during the conference and for weeks following—and amazingly, articles and tweets are still going strong,” noted Nauta.
The new conference was pulled together quickly by industry standards—in about 6 months. “The fact that we were able to attract as many conference goers as we did in such a short amount of time testifies to the interest there is in technology and family history,” said Roach. “And we’ve put the videos of the keynotes and other presentations online for free to give others a chance to share in the RootsTech experience; to give them a taste of what they can expect for 2012,” added Roach.
A highlight of the conference was the extensive community networking—community zone (exhibit hall), collaboration stations, and unconferencing sessions. These integrated features produced an open conference atmosphere that seemed to be ideal to introduce technology creators to genealogy technology users and to foster discussions, learning, collaboration, and future industry developments.
Unconferencing sessions—impromptu, participant-driven discussion forums that promote brainstorming, the sharing of ideas, and innovation—were totally new to genealogy attendees, but were more familiar to the technologists. Attendees took advantage of unconferencing sessions to discuss user needs with technology developers and to brainstorm new ideas and solutions. “People emerged from these [unconferencing sessions] with eyes sparkling, and I overheard several people describing conversations between developers and genealogists that left both feeling validated and motivated,” said Polly FitzGerald Kimitt, an attendee and author of Pollyblog.
The RootsTech 2012 conference is scheduled for February 2–4 in Salt Lake City, Utah.
In addition to the six video presentations mentioned above, video interviews of other conference speakers and developers can be watched at Genealogy Gems YouTube.

About RootsTech
RootsTech is a new conference designed to bring technologists together with genealogists to learn from each other and find solutions to the challenges faced in family history research today. The conference’s activities and offerings are focused on content that will help genealogists and family historians discover exciting new research tools while enabling technology creators to learn the latest development techniques from industry leaders and pioneers.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

The EWGS Blog is One of Family Tree Magazine's 40 Best Genealogy Blogs for 2011!

Have you heard? Family Tree Magazine has named the EWGS Blog as one of its 40 Best Genealogy Blogs for 2011!
This site is all about community: It shares frequent news and information with a small but involved group based out of Spokane. Find a great page of links for those researching roots in eastern Washington state.

Our blog was listed as one of five in the Local and Regional Research category, along with distinguished blogs such as the Brooklyn Historical Society Blog, the California Genealogical Society and Library Blog (which also won last year), the New York History Blog, and the Sandusky History Blog out of Ohio. Other categories included Everything Blogs, Cemeteries, Technology Blogs, Heritage Groups, Research Advice, New Blogs, and My Family History. Go here to see the complete list and to add the entire 40 to your Google Reader account.

The EWGS Blog is written by a team of bloggers: Charles Hansen, Miriam Robbins Midkiff, and Donna Potter Phillips, each of whom writes at least one other genealogy blog of their own! We encourage you to check out the links and widgets in the sidebars of this blog (if you're viewing this message in a feed reader such as Google Reader, or have subscribed to receive posts in your email, you'll want to go directly to the blog to see these features) and also to visit our website. We'd also like to express our appreciation to the many individuals who nominated and voted for our blog and to the expert panel who made the tough decisions of whittling down the list to just 40 winners!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Spokane Area Legacy Users Group to Meet Wednesday, March 16th

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, March 16th, 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. This meeting is free and open to the public. Regular attendees will take turns in the role of moderator for each meeting.  If you have more questions, please contact Donna Potter Phillips here.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Genealogy Section Downtown SPL

If you do not recognize this place, then may I politely say "shame on you?" This is our wonderful Genealogy Section in the downtown Spokane Public Library. I took this moments before the doors opened and a dozen folks, helpers and seekers, came happily into the area, all intent on learning more about their family's history. Helpers from EWGS are there on Tuesdays; perhaps you should come down for a visit?

Saturday, March 5, 2011

EWGS enjoyed the "Bing thing"

EWGS was well represented at the "Bing thing" today..... the Bing Crosby Family History event at Gonzaga, sponsored by our state library. I estimated that half the group was from EWGS. If you weren't there you missed a fun day.

Howard Crosby, Bing's nephew and former golfing partner, knew his uncle well and shared some great stories about Bing. In his day Bing was a much bigger sensation that Elvis, the Beatles or Michael Jackson ever were. But according to Howard, he was a really great guy.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Wanting to take a good class?

Our very own Miriam Robbins Midkiff is offering 3 terrific classes in April and May:

Military Records -- Tuesday, April 26th, 6:00-9:00pm -- Centerplace, Room 209
Vital & Cemetery Records -- Tuesday, April 31th, 6:00-9:00pm -- Centerplace, Room 209
These two classes are $25 each.

Who Do YOU Think You Are? -- Tuesday, May 3rd through Tuesday, May 24th, 6:00-8:00,
Centerplace, Room 209 -- This class is $49.

Call 279-6030 or click to www.ccs.spokane.edu/ContinuingEd for more information or to register.

Miriam is a knowledgeable and enthusiastic teacher and you will enjoy and learn from any of her classes.