Find My Ancestor Blog

“The Google Genealogist” – UGA Virtual Chapter Meeting

This Virtual Chapter Meeting is available for free to everyone, not just members of UGA. For more information about the Utah Genealogical Association, visit their website:
Devin Ashby presents "The Google Genealogist"
April's Virtual Chapter Meeting!!
Date: April 21.7:00pm MDT (Your time zone) Address to access the chapter meeting:
Title of Presentation: The Google Genealogist
Synopsis: What are the latest tools from Google and how can I use them in my research? Come learn about products like Picasa, Alerts, Sites, Books, Video, Maps and much more that can help you save time and money as you utilize the internet to help you get the job done.
Bio: Devin Ashby is a Project Coordinator for FamilySearch, the largest genealogical organization in the world. Devin has been involved in family history for years. In 2004 he received Bachelor degrees in History and Spanish, and the following year earned a Masters Degree in Educational Leadership from Northern Arizona University.


Weekly Genealogy Wallpaper – 4/4/2011

Here is your Weekly Genealogy Wallpaper! I am going to start including some more information along with these wallpapers from time to time. Whenever I create a historical wallpaper or a location based wallpaper I will include other blogs, websites, histories and other information. Also, many of you will notice the sizes of wallpaper has changed. After a couple months of making these wallpapers and monitoring the stats of the visitors of this blog and website I have decided to modify the wallpaper sizes to better fit your computer monitor. The new sizes are close if not exact sizes of the most common monitor resolutions of the visitors. I hope these sizes will work better for your computers. Please let me know if you have any questions or comments. Civil War Wallpaper  


The Civil War

Civil War Blogs

Civil War Records

Civil War Education

Civil War Photos


Mobile Monday – White Pages Mobile

Disclaimer: The following reviews may have personal opinions in them. At the bottom of each review there is a link to purchase and download the app reviewed. By clicking on the links below you are helping support this free blog and Find My Ancestor. Thank You!

The following post continues the Mobile Monday Series reviewing various apps for mobile devices that help doing genealogy while you are on the go. If you haven't been following this series be sure to check previous posts:

While doing your genealogy research you tend to come across distant cousins you never knew you had - especially if you are out there looking for them on Ancestry Member Trees, message boards, Facebook, Twitter, Genealogy Wise, and many other websites online.

It was not too long ago that if you wanted to find a distant cousin living in a different city or state you would have to get ahold of a telephone book from that area and then you would have to go through it only to find that there are no people by that surname you are looking for. It was very time consuming to try and find people in the telephone book just a few years ago.

Since then the internet has come along making it so we can search online for people who live all around the world in just a matter of seconds. Today we have mobile phones that will connect to the internet and you can download apps that will help you in pretty much what ever you are wanting to do. Now, we are no longer limited to the need of being at a computer in order to use the internet.

With White Pages Mobile you can search for anyone in any state (as long as they are listed in the phonebook). 
The layout of this app is very simple and basic - no getting lost in here! As you can see from the screenshot above you can search for people, businesses, do a reverse phone look-up, and view your recent results you have searched for.

In the People Search screen simply fill in the fields (Last name is required). You can either search by city, town, or state. If you are using the iPhone you can also have automatically search around where you are. By clicking the little dark circle next to the city/state it will locate where you are and automatically enter in the location of where you want to search for. This of course will only be useful if you are wanting to search around you. For other cities and states you will have to enter that in manually. As you are entering them in manually it will also show on the botton of the screen suggested places as you are typing. This is very useful if you are typing a long city or state and instead of typing the whole thing in you can select it from the suggested list.

Many times while doing a Person Search it will also include in the results where they work if their employer has them in part of the directory used by White Pages. You can preview the results to see if they are who you are looking for. The preview will give the person's name, address, the person's age range, and who else in the household.

If you determine someone on the results screen is who you are looking for, simply click on that result and a screen with more options will pop-up. This screen will again give the person's name, address, age range, and others in the household. This screen will give the telephone number as well as a few other cool features.

On this screen it will show a little preview of a map where the address stated above it. You can click on the Map/Directions button to the left of the map preview and it will open the map full screen for more detail. From there you can also say for it to give you directions to this address. If you click on this it will then open the map in the Maps App that comes default on you iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad. Just like any other directions search you do in the Maps App it will give you turn-by-turn instructions.

You can also add this contact information into your address book by either clicking on Create New Contact of Add to Existing Contact. And lastly you can Send/Share Listing. You can either email or text message the contact info. 

Doing a Business Search is just like doing a Person Search. You just simply type in the business name or even a category such as Department Stores. In the search results it will show you all the businesses that apply to that category.

Doing a Reverse Lookup can be very handy at times! You may not find this feature very handy in your genealogy research, but I can't tell you how many times lately I have gotten phone calls from random people or telemarketers that never leave a message or their name. Using this revers lookup is great to help you determine who it was that just called.

I really find White Pages Mobile very helpful. There have been quite a few times where I have been working on my seemingly endless project I started almost two years ago updating a family directory my grandpa started back in the early 1980's. I have used this app to find new addresses and phone numbers of distant cousins and I have even found a few new names and contact info of family I never knew I had. And the best part about this app, its FREE!



"Who Do You Think You Are" Review

Recently I finished the book "Who Do You Think You Are" by Megan Smolenyak. 

At first, many people thought the book was just a text version of the TV show that was on NBC this past spring, but in fact, it is a beginners guide to genealogy.

Even though the book is only about 200 pages, I was very surprised at the amount of detail that was included. Writing a "how to" book on genealogy can be very difficult because there are SO many things that can be covered making the book into a number of volumes. But like I said, I was very happy to see the topics that were covered and the amount of detail that she covered. Of course, if you are wanting to go more in depth on the topics she covers, there are a lot of books, websites, blogs, and other resources.

The book includes chapters on preparing for you research, online research, and the importance of passing on and sharing what you find with others. She describes some of the most used and popular records such as birth, marriage, death, census, military, and immigration/emigration. 

One of my favorite things about the book is that Megan included a lot of websites, both free and paid, to find the records she was describing. I am always excited to find new websites I can search for records or information about a particular topic.

As I was reading the book I kept telling my parents what a great book it is for someone who is just getting started in genealogy. As soon as I finished it my mother started reading it so maybe me talking about it sparked a little interest in her!

Click here to learn more about Who Do You Think You Are. If you are interested in learning more about Megan Smolenyak, visit her website Honoring Our Ancestors website.