Find My Ancestor Blog

Mobile Monday – New and Updated Apps

New Jamboree iPhone App

A couple days ago I received an email from the Southern California Genealogical Society announcing their new Jamboree iPhone App. This app is pretty impressive. It features just about everything you need to know for this years Jamboree held in Burbank California. Some of the features of this app include:
  • List of speakers and corresponding classes
  • Exhibitors
  • All the events of the conference
  • Blog posts
  • Twitter posts
  • Maps
  • "My Schedule" - This is where you can plan which classes you are going to attend so you can have everything all lined up even before the conference.
I think this is a great app to help me learn more about he Southern California Genealogical Society Jamboree. I am hoping to see more apps like this popping up for various genealogy societies. Below are some screenshots of the new app.

Genealogy Gems Podcast Now on iPad

Last August I wrote about the Genealogy Gems Podcast App for the iPhone, and the other day when I went into the App Store on my iPad I noticed that the Genealogy Gems Podcast App is now available for download on the iPad! It has all the same great features the iPhone app has, but now those of you who have iPads can enjoy the podcast without downloading them onto your device! Below are some screenshots for the new app


A Busy Week in Genealogy

This has been a very busy week and it seems like I have missed quite a few things going on in the genealogy community! As I have been going through my Google Reader reviewing all the things that have been happening I figured I am probably not the only one who has been running from place to place and is now just catching up on all blogs, press releases and numerous other things. Here are a few things I have found going on this week that I found interesting!
Federation of Genealogical Societies Radio Debut - My Society
April 20, 2011 – Austin, TX. The Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS) announces the debut of My Society, the first Internet radio show dedicated solely to genealogy societies. Broadcast weekly each Saturday at 1:00 pm Central, My Society will host discussions of genealogy society topics with a variety of guests including well-known genealogists and genealogy community leaders. This unique media outlet can be accessed at To read the full article, visit
Making Money in Genealogy?
There has been quite the talk lately in the genealogy community about making money doing genealogy. Whether you are a blogger, speaker or researcher this article by DearMYRTLE is a great one to check out. She also gives links to other blogger's posts about the topic.
FamilySearch is Adding Source Capabilities
On Saturday I attended the monthly Riverton Family History Seminar. I attended a great keynote presentation by Tim Cross of FamilySearch talking about of the new features that are coming to FamilySearch. One of the features that particularly stuck out to me was the ability to add sources to the FamilySearch Tree. When Tim mentioned this my first thought was "about time". FamilySearch has done such a great job incorporating Web 2.0 and other great features to their website in the last few years. The Ancestry Insider describes a little bit more about Tim's presentation and when we can [hopefully] expect to see these new features. Hopefully this weekend I will have more time to read more genealogy blogs, write a few more posts and get some personal genealogy time in there as well.


2011 Regional Archive Workshop

The following is a press release from RIGS Alliance (Regional In-depth Genealogical Studies Alliance). This press release and many other can also be found at

Jasper, Georgia (9 March 2011)—The Regional In-depth Genealogical Studies Alliance (RIGS Alliance) will present a week-long workshop at the National Archives at Fort Worth, Texas (26-30 September 2011).

RIGS Alliance workshops are designed for genealogists, historians, and librarians with a general genealogical or historical grounding who want to learn skills and techniques for researching original records at national and regional archives. To ensure a quality experience, enrollment is limited. Although the workshops focus on records within the region, many of the record types are available at other NARA regional facilities.

Activities are based on an integrated curriculum with an emphasis on methodology and problem-solving skills. Attendees work in teams to complete assigned projects and to build confidence in research proficiency. All workshops provide an opportunity for on-site research.

Workshop staff includes J. Mark Lowe, CG, FUGA; and Linda Woodward Geiger, CG, CGL, co-directors of RIGS Alliance, with assistance of the expert staff members at the National Archives at Fort Worth.

For details about the RIGS Alliance workshops, visit the web site at; e-mail; or write to RIGS Alliance Workshop, P.O. Box 1273, Jasper, GA 30143.



Skeletons in Your Genealogical Closet – M. Bridget Cook

As mentioned in my earlier post about the St. George Family History Expo, which can be found here St. George FHExpo 2011 - Day 1 I mentioned briefly about the Friday evening event with author and speaker M. Bridget Cook. In this post I would like to go in a little further about this amazing night and some of the things Bridget talked about.

Handling and Healing the Skeletons in Your Genealogical Closet

During Bridget's speech she talked about her recent book she co-authored, Shattered Silence, the Untold Story of a Serial Killer’s Daughter as well as her other co-authored book, Skinhead Confessions: From Hate to Hope. Each of these books talk about real-life individuals that have had life changing effects because of the power of forgiveness, love and hope.

One of the main points from Bridget's speech is the point that we all have skeletons in our genealogical closet. We all have at least one ancestor that when we are researching we find a document or find an event that made our ancestor a criminal, infamous or something else that our first instincts wants to hide. She explains how these ancestors and the events in their lives are important for us to learn and are chances for growth and learning. As we learn and grow, hopefully our descendants will learn and grow too.

Do you keep a journal? Are you honest when writing in your journal? Do you only write about the good days you have and the fun events in your life? Bridget emphasized the importance of writing about all aspects of your life. The ups and downs make your life interesting. If you were to read a journal of an ancestor and all it contained were their accomplishments, good days and happy times, it might seem like they were "perfect" or it might seem to you like you could never "live the life they did".

By including the trials and heartache in your own history, along with how you were able to overcome them will give hope to your descendants. Maybe one of your descendants will suffer from the same physical, mental or emotional challenges you have to overcome everyday. Your words and testimony can be a great benefit for thousands of people. Write what you know, what you don't know, how you feel, your accomplishments, your shortfalls and everything in between.

Friday night was such an amazing experience to be able to hear from Bridget and how she herself has overcome challenges and trials in her life. She gave much hope and encouragement for us to do the same. I highly recommend reading more about Bridget and her books. The stories told in these books are very motivating and personal. You can learn more about Bridget by visiting her website

M. Bridget Cook is an author, speaker, and life coach who has been writing stories of transformation since she was young. Always curious and awed by the extremes of human behavior, she co-authored Shattered Silence, the Untold Story of a Serial Killer’s Daughter(Sweetwater Books, Cedar Fort 2009) with Melissa G. Moore, daughter of the infamous Happy Face serial murderer. She also co-authored Skinhead Confessions: From Hate to Hope(Sweetwater Books, Cedar Fort 2009) with former high-ranking white power leader TJ Leyden. In her writing, Bridget loves to inspire and be inspired by people from all walks of life.