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Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter

Standard Edition

A Weekly Summary of Events and Topics of Interest to Online Genealogists

Vol. 8 No. 48 – December 1, 2003

This newsletter relies solely upon "word of mouse" advertising. If you enjoy reading these articles, please tell others to go to

Some of the articles in this Plus Edition newsletter are restricted to your personal use.

Search previous issues of Standard Edition newsletters at:

Plus Edition subscribers may gain access to a reserved section of the Discussion Board. Details are available at

All opinions expressed in this document are those of Dick Eastman and his alone, unless otherwise attributed. None of his statements are to be interpreted as endorsements by his employer or by advertisers.

Copyright© 2003 by Richard W. Eastman. All rights reserved.


- Authors Wanted
- Bristol and America on CD-ROM
- Pocket Genealogist 2.60
- Genealogy Value Pack for Legacy Users
- (+) The World's Best Web Browser
- (+) My Favorite Backup Program
- Acadian Families to Gather
- The Registers of St. Jean-Baptiste, Annapolis Royal, 1702-1755
- Guidelines for Publishing Web Pages on the Internet
- Copyrights Again
- Old Photos and Notebooks Retrieved from North Carolina Dumpster
- Internet Should Be Last Stop During Genealogy Journey
- Black Roots in Southeastern Connecticut, 1650 - 1900
- Genealogy Online – Seventh Edition
- APG Members Elect New Leaders
- Gun Laws in Plimoth Colony
- Upcoming Events

Items marked with a Plus Sign (+) appear only in the Plus Edition newsletter.

Every time I find an ancestor I need to find two more!

- Authors Wanted

I love writing this newsletter. As many of you know, I have written almost all the articles for nearly eight years, except for the various press releases. The newsletter has been a hobby of mine that started out as a small effort of one or two evenings per week and has grown to consume almost all of my spare time. Now I would like to take the newsletter to the next level. I would like to expand it and to offer more articles written by more genealogy experts.

I am seeking writers who would like to contribute to this newsletter. By adding more articles, along with the views of other genealogists, I believe this electronic newsletter can grow to become the premier publication of genealogy technology and other time-sensitive, genealogy-related topics. If you can write, or if you think you might be able to write, you can become a contributor to this weekly publication.

You do not need to be an experienced writer. I am more interested in your writing or genealogy ability than in your publishing experience. Obviously, writing skills are needed. You also must have an interest in genealogy, an enthusiasm that you wish to share with others. Articles that you write may be about genealogy-related technology, genealogy research, events, book reviews, software reviews, and other topics such as those you’ve seen in this newsletter. Some articles may be about upcoming or recently-held genealogy conferences. And, yes, you can even write about your own or your employer's products and services.

Best of all, I will pay you for writing many of these articles (although not for ones about your own or your employer's products and services). The initial payment schedule is quite modest. While the money you receive won't pay for a luxury vacation in a sun-drenched tropical isle, it will be a few dollars that you didn't have otherwise. In addition, you will be able to increase your reputation as a genealogy writer and have online examples of your work for all to see. If the addition of more articles by more writers results in the growth of this newsletter, you can expect to see a higher schedule of payments in the future.

Your submissions will be edited. I already have a professional editor on staff who often changes what I write. You deserve the same treatment that I receive!

Most paid articles will appear only in the Plus Edition newsletter although there may be occasional exceptions.

If you are interested in becoming a contributor to this newsletter, you can find more information at I look forward to seeing your articles online.

What Do You Think? Comments and discussion are available on this newsletter's Discussion Board at:

[Return to Table of Contents]

- Bristol and America on CD-ROM

S&N Genealogy Supplies is a British firm that has long sold products to those researching ancestry in the United Kingdom. One of their recent releases will appeal to many Americans researching colonial English ancestry along the Atlantic coast of North America as well as in the West Indies.

The "Bristol and America" CD-ROM is an electronic duplication of "Bristol and America - A record of the first settlers in the colonies of North America 1654-1685, including the names with places of origin of more than 10,000 servants to Foreign Plantations who sailed from the Port of Bristol to Virginia, Maryland and also to the West Indies from 1654 to 1685" by R. Sydney Glover. This list was compiled from the records of the Corporation of the City of Bristol, England. The printed book was originally published in London, England, from 1929 to 1931 in three volumes. Now S&N Genealogy Supplies has released the same book on CD-ROM disk. This week I had a chance to use it for some time.

The "Bristol and America" CD-ROM is in Adobe Acrobat format. The popularity of Acrobat means that you probably already have the required software installed on your computer. If not, the Windows version of Acrobat Reader is included on the CD-ROM disk. Macintosh and Linux versions can be downloaded from Adobe's Web site at I tried this CD on both a Windows PC and an iMac, and it worked equally well on both platforms.

The "Bristol and America" CD-ROM contains scanned images of the original book but does not search for words within its pages. Luckily, this book has an excellent every-name index, making it simple to find any person listed, the same as you would use in a paper copy. The electronic version adds a table of contents that is "hot linked": to the various chapters within the book.

The book starts with a preface that gives background information about the archives of the City of Bristol. This is followed by a Historical Introduction, which describes Bristol as the longtime second-busiest port in England, after London. Many thousands of English colonists departed from Bristol to the New World. Quoting from this chapter:

In the course of her thousand years of history Bristol has endured much. Her shipping was pillaged and burnt by Irish sea-rovers and French and Spanish privateers. Her walls were stormed and her peaceful citizens were slain by the Barons and their hirelings. In the war between the King and Parliament, Bristol was besieged and captured in turn by Royalist and Roundhead. More than once the city was destroyed by fire. The Black Death and other plagues swept away her inhabitants. Famine lowered her vitality.

After such a melancholy description, perhaps we all can appreciate why so many people were trying to leave for the New World!

The next chapter is "Bristol and America," giving a great deal of history. That is followed by "The Explorers," describing many of the sea captains who departed Bristol to explore the wilderness across the ocean.

These first few pages serve as introductory materials. The rest of the book contains information about thousands of emigrants. Here is a transcription of one, chosen at random:

Volume 1 1654-63

Page 14 [of the original hand-written records]:

George Edin (of Rouick); destination, Barbadoes. Myles Carrill (of Waterford); destination, Barbadoes. John Bande (of Glocester); destination, Barbadoes. James Davis (of Kingsloe); destination, Virginia. William Davis (of Kingsloe); destination, Virginia. Roger Jones (of Carlion); destination, Virginia. John Ruther (of Cardigan); destination, Barbadoes. Phillip Jones (of Butterwood); destination, Virginia. ffrancis Jones (of Butterwood); destination, Virginia. Latherine Mathew (of Swanzey); destination, Virginia.

You can see that the lists are brief but valuable. They usually give the place of origin in England, information that often is not available on the other side of the Atlantic. It also gives occasional hints when you see side-by-side listings of two individuals of the same surname and same place of origin who are traveling to the same destination.

The original handwritten records were in three volumes. The first two used the format shown above. However, the third volume is quite different. Here is a random transcription of two records from Volume 3:

Date: June 3, 1684
Name: John Thomas
Residence: Llandaff
Ship: Bristol Merchant
Destination: Pennsylvania

Date: June 6, 1684
Name: Thomas Eyre
Residence: East Farendon
Ship: Rainbow
Destination: New England

Note the destinations above: Pennsylvania and New England. While the book's title claims to contain records of those "who sailed from the Port of Bristol to Virginia, Maryland and also to the West Indies," I also found a number of records for destinations of New England or Pennsylvania.

The end-of-book every-name index allows the reader to quickly find records of interest.

I also found that printing of pages was simple and produced better quality results than making photocopies of the original book. The printed pages are an exact image of the original pages from the three 1929 - 1931 volumes.

Many dedicated genealogists will want this "Book on CD." Genealogy libraries may also want to obtain a copy.

The "Bristol and America" CD-ROM sells for £19.95 ($34.35 U.S.) plus shipping. You can safely order it from S&N's secure Web server. Use of a credit card eliminates the problem of converting currency for those outside the U.K.

For more information, or to safely order the "Bristol and America" CD-ROM, go to:

What Do You Think? Comments and discussion are available on this newsletter's Discussion Board at:

[Return to Table of Contents]

- Pocket Genealogist 2.60

If you use a handheld computer that uses a Microsoft operating system, you will be interested in the latest release of a leading genealogy program for those tiny devices. Here is the announcement from Northern Hills Software:

Pocket Genealogist Version 2.60 is now available. There are a lot of new features in this release. This version has changes to the database, so before you install this version, synchronize any data you have on the device and do a GEDCOM export. Databases prior to this release cannot be used after installation. (You can delete the old databases from the program after installation)

New Features:

Updated Features:

Bug Fixes:

Name Alias (AKA) for FTM imports can no longer attach sources.

You can obtain more information about Pocket Genealogist at At the time these words are being written, version 2.60 is available by clicking on " Public Beta & Pre-Releases."

What Do You Think? Comments and discussion are available on this newsletter's Discussion Board at:

[Return to Table of Contents]

- Genealogy Value Pack for Legacy Users

Progeny Software has released an add-on package for Legacy Family Tree. Here is the announcement:

Genealogy Value Pack for Legacy Users Announced!

Wolfville, Nova Scotia, Canada, November 26 ­ Progeny Software has just launched another amazing bundle of popular add-on software, this time for Legacy Family Tree users!

Packaged on just one CD, this Genealogy Value Pack for Legacy Users includes:

"We decided to celebrate both Christmas and Millennia’s launch of Legacy Family Tree version 5 with a special bundle just for Legacy users," explained Bob Thomas, President of Progeny Software. "Charting Companion and Genelines have been very popular charting tools for Legacy users - so as an additional bonus we’ve included our new World Place Advisor for Legacy and a whole collection of online services and software."

Valued at over $85US, this bundle retails for only $29.95US and is available from Progeny Software and Millennia Corporation’s Online Store until December 25th, 2003.

"At only $29.95, this is the perfect stocking stuffer for any Legacy user!" added Thomas.

Legacy Charting Companion is one of a group of Charting Companion products produced by Progeny Software. With over 100,000 copies sold, Charting Companion is a very popular add-on program used to create great looking charts and reports directly from your genealogy file. Legacy Charting Companion is very easy to use ­ simply select a person in your Legacy database, choose a chart type, and presto - the chart is created! There are a wide range of charts and reports available, including the traditional Ancestor, Pedigree and Descendant Charts as well as Hourglass, Fan and Bowtie Charts. The Bowtie Chart is particularly popular since it displays a bowtie with your mother and her ancestors to the right, and your father with his ancestors to the left. Legacy Charting Companion charts may be printed in all shapes and sizes, including huge wall charts, as well as published to PDF so you can share charts with others.

Genelines for Legacy is the most powerful timeline charting software available on the market today. Genelines creates seven eye-catching timeline charts that highlight important events in your family history. These charts include two biographical and five relationship charts, each of which can be customized according to: timeline, historical events, personal or family events, colors and fonts. Genelines for Legacy reads your Legacy file directly - no GEDCOM import required.

Also available in the Genealogy Value Pack for Legacy Users are over 60 historical timelines from Progeny’s TimeLine Exchange. Histories of all 50 US States are included. These files can be downloaded to be used with Genelines - integrate them with your own personal Genelines charts.

Just released for the first time, World Place Advisor for Legacy is the only product available to automatically scan your Legacy file and check your place names from all around the world in a single sweep. More than a spellchecker for place names, World Place Advisor also checks your Legacy file for missing counties, ambiguous and unknown places, wrong jurisdictions and other inaccuracies, all of which can be copied and pasted over to your file. An extensive gazetteer of over 3.3-million place names from around the world is included with World Place Advisor - a very useful tool to find your ancestor’s hometown.

GEDmark is Progeny’s exclusive utility program to ensure the correct author information is accurately recorded when you export a GEDCOM from your Legacy file to share with others. With GEDmark, it doesn’t matter how many times your GEDCOM file is split, imported, exported, or submitted - your source information will always remain attached to each person in your file. And it’s as simple as selecting your GEDCOM, entering the author information, and saving the file. GEDmark does the rest!

The Genealogy Value Pack for Legacy Users also includes online searches and trial subscriptions, including:

Compatible with Legacy versions 3, 4 and 5, this Genealogy Value Pack for Legacy Users is the second bundled product announced by Progeny Software this month. Last week Progeny Software and Global Inc. announced a similar Genealogy Value Pack for Family Tree Maker™ users, available from Global Genealogy until December 12th, 2003.

The Genealogy Value Pack for Legacy Users is available until December 25th, 2003 from Progeny Software at and from Millennia Corporation’s Online Store at

What Do You Think? Comments and discussion are available on this newsletter's Discussion Board at:

[Return to Table of Contents]

- (+) The World's Best Web Browser

The following is a "preview" of a Plus Edition-only article:

We all use Web browsers. Most of us use the free browsers that were included with our computers. By far the most popular Web browser today is Microsoft's Internet Explorer for Windows and for Macintosh. Netscape is also very popular, while the new Safari browser for Macintosh's OS X is gaining in popularity.

Note: I'll ignore Safari for today as it is new. (Safari does have a good reputation.) Besides, Safari is only used by a tiny percentage of the online population. Windows users as well as Macintosh owners who are not yet using OS X cannot obtain Safari.

I will suggest that Internet Explorer and Netscape (and its derivative called Mozilla) are second-rate Web browsers. AOL's Web browser really is a somewhat modified version of Microsoft's Internet Explorer but with a few extra bugs included. I guess that classifies AOL's Web browser as "third rate."

All these browsers are bloated, slow, and bug-ridden. For instance, Microsoft has never been able to figure out how to make cascading style sheets perform properly in any version of Internet Explorer. The program has so many security holes that new security patches are issued almost weekly. Internet Explorer also locks up frequently on all of my computers, and I suspect that other users share this frustrating experience.

As for the other major competitor, Netscape cannot properly display long URLs (web addresses). Netscape insists upon widening the display page to display super-long URLs on one line. Didn't the Netscape engineers ever hear of word-wrapping? Internet Explorer and other Web browsers all word wrap nicely. Why can't Netscape? Netscape is nearly as slow in operation as Internet Explorer.

All of these Web browsers are ruled by on-line advertising gangsters who hijack your browser and display obnoxious pop-up ads at the worst times.

So what is a person to do? Simply shrug one's shoulders and accept these limitations? Not at all. It seems that there is a simple solution. Indeed, one Web browser can properly display cascading style sheets, can word-wrap long URLs, and can operate much, much faster than either Netscape or Internet Explorer. It even blocks most of the loathsome pop-up advertisements. In addition, it includes an e-mail program that will block most spam mail, a feature not offered by Netscape, AOL, or Microsoft. While no piece of software is ever bug-free, this Web browser has a reputation of having far fewer bugs than Internet Explorer, AOL, or Netscape. It is available for Windows, Macintosh, and Linux. In fact, it even has special versions for use on your handheld PDA and even for some cell phones. Best of all, it can be obtained free of charge although a "for pay" version is also available.

Sound too good to be true? Not at all.

The preceding is a "preview" of a Plus Edition-only article. The full article is available only to Plus Edition subscribers. If you subscribe now, you will receive a copy of this article. Click on Plus Edition for more information.

[Return to Table of Contents]

- (+) My Favorite Backup Program

The following is a "preview" of a Plus Edition-only article:

I have written often about the need to make frequent backups. I hear far too many stories about hundreds of hours of work lost when genealogy databases, checking account records, scanned family photographs and other critical computer files become corrupted or deleted. In fact, I had a similar loss last week. One morning I fired up my e-mail program, and it reported that the tens of thousands of messages from the past five years that I have neatly organized and stored in hundred of folders were no longer readable. All the messages had been scrambled by a read error on the hard drive.

The first feeling was a wave of panic. Then I remembered that my system had automatically made a backup copy at 2:00 AM while I was sleeping. I copied the backup copy to the original location and then fired up the e-mail program again. My heart skipped a beat or two while the program was loading but soon resumed its normal rhythm as the program opened all the folders in the normal manner. All my messages were once again readable. The total time lost was about ten minutes.

What will you do if your e-mail program, genealogy program, or word processing program suddenly reports a similar error? Will you be able to recover in ten minutes? Or even in ten days?

The automatic creation of backup copies is ridiculously simple, and yet I am always amazed at how few people take such precautions. This week I thought I would share my favorite Windows backup tool.

The preceding is a "preview" of a Plus Edition-only article. The full article is available only to Plus Edition subscribers. If you subscribe now, you will receive a copy of this article. Click on Plus Edition for more information.


[Return to Table of Contents]

- Acadian Families to Gather

Do you have Acadian (or Cajun) roots, either in Canada or in Louisiana? If so, you may be interested in the upcoming Congrès mondial acadien 2004 to be held July 31 through August 15. This year's event will be held in Nova Scotia. Thousands of attendees are expected. Quoting from the Web site:

This international gathering of Acadians in Nova Scotia in 2004 marks the third celebration of its kind. New Brunswick and Louisiana each hosted a similar event in 1994 and 1999 respectively. These world-class meetings reunited and linked Acadians internationally, regardless of distance, time or present-day location, a feat which will be repeated in 2004.

The Congrès includes many family reunions; many of the events are aimed at the descendants of individual Acadian immigrant families. You can see the lengthy list of the events at Most of these reunions will include extensive genealogies and information about the lives of the immigrants and the first few generations of their descendants. Of course, Acadian food, music, and culture will be everywhere.

Do you even know if your French-speaking ancestors were Acadians? You can find a list of the Acadian family names at

The Congrès mondial acadien 2004 promises to be one of the larges genealogy-related events of the year in North America. You can find more information at:

What Do You Think? Comments and discussion are available on this newsletter's Discussion Board at:

[Return to Table of Contents]

- The Registers of St. Jean-Baptiste, Annapolis Royal, 1702-1755

Speaking of things Acadian, the Nova Scotia Archives and Records Management agency in Halifax has launched a new research tool on its Web site. Available both in English and in French, "An Acadian Parish Remembered" is a fully searchable database built by the agency for family historians. It provides access to the vital records from Nova Scotia's two oldest surviving church registers.

The database contains information from more than 3,500 entries for baptisms, marriages, and burials in the parish of St.-Jean-Baptiste, Annapolis Royal, between 1702 and 1755. The entries provide names of individuals and dates for events, as well as identifying parents and godparents at christenings and witnesses to marriages. Best of all, every one of the 900 pages in the original registers has also been scanned, and the images are included within the database. You can search for an ancestor's name, find it, and then click on a link to view an image of the original record in the priest's handwriting.

Often called Canada's oldest parish, the parish at Annapolis Royal dates back to 1611, when the community was known as Port-Royal. The two Annapolis registers are believed to be the only substantial body of Acadian French records to have survived the 1755 Deportation and remain in Nova Scotia. Both volumes were brought to Halifax after its founding in 1749 and became part of the records of government now maintained at the Nova Scotia Archives. The later register, 1727 to 1755, was presented to the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Halifax in 1855 to commemorate the centenary of the Deportation. The Diocese of Yarmouth, where the volume was subsequently transferred, partnered with the archives earlier this year to bring both registers together for the project. The project was partially funded by Industry Canada through its Community Access Program, and it was endorsed by the Nova Scotia Department of Tourism and Culture as part of its Acadian Celebrations initiative.

I have a lot of Acadian ancestry, so I decided to try the database for myself. As an example of the data available, here is one record that I found:

Register 1 Vol. 26 p.332
Priest: Charlemagne Cuvier
Registration date: 6 April 1723
Event: Marriage
Groom: Louis Thibault
Groom's father: Louis Thibault (deceased)
Groom's mother: Françoise Mauchaire (deceased). The parents were inhabitants of the parish of St. Pierre, la Rochelle
Bride: Jeanne Picotte
Bride's father: Michel Picotte (deceased)
Bride's mother: Isabelle Levron
Witnesses: (none listed on this record but many others do have such listings)

I clicked on the Viewpoint icon below this record, and an image of the original record appeared in the Web browser a few seconds later. I must say that I was unable to read the faded ink on that image, however. I am glad that someone else transcribed the information!

Access to this valuable archive is open to all, free of charge. You can search the database and view the original records at:

My thanks to Pauline Cusson for telling me about this valuable resource.

What Do You Think? Comments and discussion are available on this newsletter's Discussion Board at:

[Return to Table of Contents]

- Guidelines for Publishing Web Pages on the Internet

Now that you have devoted hundreds of hours to researching your family tree, perhaps you want to publish it on the World Wide Web. That will allow distant relatives to see your work and to help them in their genealogy research efforts. Many of today's genealogy programs simplify the task; most will even automatically generate the Web pages for you. Some will look rather professional while others will come up a bit short.

Perhaps you prefer to "roll your own;" that is, create your own Web pages by hand. The result usually is more readable than the automated approach. Whether you automate or create pages manually, you should spend some time first thinking about how to create a nice looking and accurate Web site. You also want to respect copyright laws and the privacy of others. How do you decide what to incorporate? The U.S. National Genealogical Society can help.

In my opinion, "Guidelines For Publishing Web Pages On The Internet Recommended by the National Genealogical Society" should be required reading before creating your first genealogy Web page. It is a short document of less than a page, with one reference to another single-page document about the NGS "Standards for Sharing Information with Others." These two pages pack a lot of advice into a very few lines.

You can find the NGS "Guidelines For Publishing Web Pages On The Internet Recommended by the National Genealogical Society" at: and at

What Do You Think? Comments and discussion are available on this newsletter's Discussion Board at:

[Return to Table of Contents]

- Copyrights Again

Speaking of publishing on the Web, here are a few old wives' tales that I have heard recently:

"I found the information on the Internet, so I have a right to copy it and use it on my own Web site."

"Everything on the Web is free."

"If I attribute where I found it, I can copy it and use it."

"I can use that information as long as I don't charge for it."

"The original records are public domain, so I can legally copy that information from a book, CD-ROM or Web site."

"The information was published by a non-profit organization."

"The information was not labeled as copyright protected, so I can use it."

"You cannot copyright facts, and I am only publishing the facts."

"Well, everybody does it!"

One problem: all of the above reasons are wrong. If you republish information without permission, you may find yourself receiving an unpleasant letter from a law firm.

Under U.S. copyright laws, all content today is copyrighted unless otherwise specified. It makes no difference if the information comes from the New York Times' Web site, from a non-profit society's site, or from cousin Lew's personal Web site: you cannot copy and re-use that information without permission. It also makes absolutely no difference whether you charge money or not. Likewise, attributing the source makes no difference. Publishing someone else's material without permission is illegal.

For further details, you might want to refer to the following:

U.S. Copyright and Genealogy by Mike Goad:

Public Domain Information for Genealogists by Marji Hazen:

Responsible Genealogy: Copyrights, Privileges and Responsibilities by Diana L. Smith:

Mistake or Misdemeanor - Staying Legal with Internet Copyrights by Rhonda R. McClure:

Horror on the Web by Myra Vanderpool Gormley:

Copyrights & Wrongs by Mark Howells:

What Do You Think? Comments and discussion are available on this newsletter's Discussion Board at:

[Return to Table of Contents]

- Old Photos and Notebooks Retrieved from North Carolina Dumpster

Eight-year-old R.J. Bryant of Elizabethtown, North Carolina, was helping his mother take out the trash and load it into a dumpster. In order to make room, he moved an old suitcase in the dumpster. The suitcase broke open and out fell hundreds of old photographs from the late 1800s and early 1900s. "I saw an old suitcase, and Mom said I could move it," he said. "Then I saw the pictures, and I was like, wow, Mom, these are old."

R.J. and his mother, Maria Bryant, then looked around a bit more. They quickly found notebooks filled with neatly written lists of births, deaths, and cemeteries. "I didn't know what to do with this stuff," Bryant said, "but I couldn't just let it go to the dump."

The Bryants gave the photos and records to the Harmony Hall Plantation, a nearby museum. The photos will be preserved at Harmony Hall, either to be claimed by descendants of the people in the photos or displayed at the historic site's visitor's center. The registers will be photographed and made available to the public as well.

The registers are extensive but incomplete. They are possibly a private record of burials and deaths, or a list of dates and remarks from tombstones. Most of the registers are for Cross Creek Cemeteries 1 and 2 in Fayetteville, as well as a burying ground referred to as Cogdell's. Along with people’s names, dates, ages, and sometimes their profession, the recorder of the information included additional information.

If you had ancestors or other relatives in or near Elizabethtown, North Carolina, you will want to read the entire story in the Bladen Journal at The Harmony Hall Plantation can be reached by telephone at 910-866-4844 and on the Web at

What Do You Think? Comments and discussion are available on this newsletter's Discussion Board at:

[Return to Table of Contents]

- Internet Should Be Last Stop During Genealogy Journey

It sometimes seems as if everyone is looking for the "holy grail" of push-button. You know the thought: type your name into Google or some other online site, click on "search," and then a list of all your ancestors appears on the screen. Such capability does not yet exist and probably will not exist for a long time yet.

Sadly, many people think that searching on the Internet is the same thing as doing genealogy research. Not so. Writing in the Lebanon (Pennsylvania) Daily News, James Beidler tells why the Internet should be the last place that you look. Beidler writes:

Despite the Internet, the very first steps in a genealogical search -- or at least one done properly -- have not changed.

"Start with yourself and work backward in time" is the tried-and-true method.

It's not nearly as sexy as typing your surname into the Google Web search engine and letting it spit back information, but it is the way that you can be sure that the information pertains to you.

There is a lot more in the article. It should be required reading for all beginning genealogists. Beidler has excellent genealogy credentials: he is the former executive director of the Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania. You can read his article at:,1413,139~10142~1772443,00.html

What Do You Think? Comments and discussion are available on this newsletter's Discussion Board at:

[Return to Table of Contents]

- Black Roots in Southeastern Connecticut, 1650 - 1900

In 1980 Barbara W. Brown and James M. Rose published one of the landmark Black American books, entitled "Black Roots in Southeastern Connecticut, 1650 – 1900." The authors spent eight years researching almost every record of the 26 counties of southeastern Connecticut. Their sources consisted primarily of U.S. census records from 1790 through 1870 and secondarily on manumission records, deeds, probate records, diaries, church records, and military records.

Brown and Rose were able to uncover an amazing amount of information on Blacks who were living in an area that, on the eve of the Revolutionary War, had one of the largest slave populations in New England. While all of them were freed as slavery became less popular in Connecticut, this large Black population remained in the area and flourished. Today, hundreds of thousands and perhaps even millions of Americans can claim Black ancestry in the area.

The book soon went out of print and has not been available since. The only method of finding this valuable information was to find a library that owned a copy of the 1980 work. Now the New London County Historical Society has republished the book, selecting the Clearfield Company to do the printing. The reprint has just been released, and this week I had a chance to look at a copy.

"Black Roots in Southeastern Connecticut, 1650 – 1900" is not organized in the same manner as most genealogy books. Many of the individuals in this book are not listed with surnames while others did have surnames. The book starts with 456 pages of individuals with surnames, listed in alphabetical order. The next section is 135 pages of individuals without surnames, listed alphabetically by first name. That is followed by the long list of all sources examined.

Finally, there are back-of-book indexes, one for surnames and another for those individuals without surnames. The indexes point to every occurrence of a name within the book. For instance, Ezekial Fox might be listed in the alphabetical section along with all other Foxes, but he is also in the index showing other occurrences of the name on pages where he might be listed as a spouse, a witness to a will, or other records of his name.

Here is the record of Anthony (Tony) Edor, picked at random to show the typical record available in this book:

Anthony (Tony) [Edor] was freed by Daniel Pratt of Colchester in 1781 and served in the 5th Regiment of the Connecticut Line. (Colchester Vital Records, I, 265). He removed to Glastonbury after the war and married (1) Lily Freeman 14 Oct. 1787. (Glastonbury 1st Church). He married (2) Phyllis Anderson in Glastonbury 30 July 1830. He died in Glastonbury 17 Feb. 1831, aged circa 85. Phyllis resided in Glastonbury in August 1853, at which time she was aged 80. (Pension W 7073)

Children of Anthony and Lily (Freeman) Edor:

  1. Eli – born 25 Dec. 1788 (Glastonbury)
  2. Sampson – born 28 Oct. 1791 (Glastonbury)
  3. Samuel – Born 29 Oct. 1797 (Glastonbury)

Eli was working as a farm laborer in Glastonbury as late as July 1825. (John Moseley, Account Book)

Sampson resided in Glastonbury as late as Feb. 1819 (Ibid.)

Samuel Edor, also called Samuel Tony, resided in Glastonbury as late as June 1829. He was working as a farm laborer for John Moseley, 1819-29. (Ibid.)

This is but one record of the tens of thousands in this book. The entire volume is organized in a manner that allows for quick and easy use of its 722 pages. If you have Black ancestry in the area prior to 1900, you need this book! I suspect it will also be added to the shelves of most genealogy libraries.

"Black Roots in Southeastern Connecticut, 1650 – 1900" has a retail price of $34.95. You can order it through most any bookstore if you specify ISBN 0806352132. You can also purchase it online from Genealogical Publishing Company's Web site at The price at that site is only $27.95 plus shipping.

What Do You Think? Comments and discussion are available on this newsletter's Discussion Board at:

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- Genealogy Online – Seventh Edition

Elizabeth Powell Crowe is the author of an excellent book entitled "Genealogy Online." It covers Web sites, mailing lists, search engines, chat rooms, and even electronic genealogy newsletters. As you might expect with her choice of topic, the information changes rapidly. Elizabeth updates her book frequently in order to stay abreast of these changes. Version seven has just been released, and I had a chance to read it this week.

This book is aimed at the beginning genealogist as well as the beginning online user. It starts with an introduction to genealogy: What is it? How do I do it? How do I find information? This introduction also discusses sources and proof, a basic requirement of any genealogy book aimed at newcomers.

Elizabeth Crowe then moves into a discussion of the software, hardware, and services needed to access online sources of information. She discusses Web browsers, Internet service providers, genealogy programs, e-mail, and viruses, and even gives a bit of information on using Web-enabled cell phones. She then goes on to discuss online etiquette, copyrights, privacy, and online scams.

The next section tells how to get started. It includes information about online education courses, search engines, chat rooms, and mailing lists.

The middle part of the book moves into the "meat" of the subject. It covers such topics as the Library of Congress online Web site, online census records, the site run by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and Ellis Island Online, as well as various online library card catalogs. The book then moves on to specific ethnic groups, the U.S. National Genealogical Society Web site, RootsWeb,,, Everton Publishers, and others. It also gives brief information on DNA, online maps, supplies and more.

The book ends with appendixes containing the Standards for Sound Genealogy Research, Standards for Sharing Information with Others, an explanation of GEDCOM, an explanation of the ahnentafel numbering system, and other related topics. Finally, the book has an extensive index.

All in all, this is an excellent introduction to online genealogy. It is aimed at the newcomer although experienced genealogists will probably find a few pointers here as well. It is presented from a U.S. viewpoint; it has only limited information about online resources in other countries. If you are new to the online genealogy world and are researching U.S. ancestry, this is an excellent book for you.

"Genealogy Online" by Elizabeth Powell Crowe is published by Osborne Books, a division of McGraw-Hill. It has a retail price of $24.99 (U.S. funds) but can be purchased at many bookstores for a discount. You can order it if you specify ISBN 0-07-222978-0.

What Do You Think? Comments and discussion are available on this newsletter's Discussion Board at:

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- APG Members Elect New Leaders

The following is an announcement from the Association of Professional Genealogists:

J. Mark Lowe, CG, of Springfield, Tenn., has been elected president of the board of directors of the Association of Professional Genealogists (APG), the world's leading professional organization of family history and related professionals. He will succeed Sherry Irvine, B.A., CGRS, FSA Scot, of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada.

Lowe, a fulltime professional genealogist and lecturer who is currently vice president of APG, said, "APG can continue to make a difference by providing consumers with information regarding ethical professionals, by improving educational opportunities for members, and by expanding the association's efforts in records preservation and access." Lowe is also director of RIGS Alliance workshops in cooperation with the National Archives Regional System.

Irvine, reflecting on APG's change and continuity over her seven years on APG's board and executive committee in the December issue of the APG Quarterly, wrote, "I think it has matured from just another sort of genealogical society into what it really is, an organization for professionals - if you work in this field, you must belong to APG."

APG members also elected three members of the board's executive committee and nine of its 19 regional directors to two-year terms, as well as two members to one-year terms on the nominating committee.

Taking seats on the executive committee on Jan. 1, 2004, will be Vice President Sharon Tate Moody, CGRS, of Smyrna, Ga., presently a regional director; Secretary Beverly Rice, CGRS, of Coos Bay, Ore.; and Treasurer Gary Mokotoff of Bergenfield, N.J., an incumbent.

Directors elected were: Jake Gehring of Woods Cross, Utah, and Joan A. Hunter, M.L.S., CG, of Eugene, Ore., Region 1; Mary Clement Douglass, CGRS, of Salina, Kan. and Nancy Waller Thomas of Columbia, Mo., Region 2; Craig Roberts Scott, M.A., CGRS, of Westminster, Md. and C. Ann Staley, CGRS, of Jacksonville, Fla., Region 3; Elissa Scalise Powell, CGRS, of Wexford, Pa. and Maureen A. Taylor, M.A., of Westwood, Mass., Region 4; and Cornelia Schrader-Muggenthaler of Ostra, Italy, International Region B.

Jana Sloan Broglin of Swanton, Ohio, and Arlene V. Jennings of New York, N.Y., were elected to the nominating committee.

The Association of Professional Genealogists (, established in 1979 and based in Westminster, Colo. near Denver, represents some 1,400 professional genealogists, professional researchers, librarians, writers, editors, instructors, booksellers, publishers and others in all populated continents.

What Do You Think? Comments and discussion are available on this newsletter's Discussion Board at:

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- Gun Laws in Plimoth Colony

Gun laws are nothing new. Even the residents of Plimoth Colony passed laws governing firearms back in the early 1600s. Well, there was one major difference. Any member of the militia who came to church in Plimoth Colony WITHOUT a loaded gun was subject to a 12-pence fine.

What Do You Think? Comments and discussion are available on this newsletter's Discussion Board at:

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- Upcoming Events

The Upcoming Events section of this newsletter is published once per month, usually in the first newsletter of each month. Each event will be listed very briefly: date(s), location and brief details, followed by either an e-mail address or a Web page that you can use to find more information. Since detailed information is available via e-mail or the Web, I will not list the details in this newsletter. If you do contact any of these organizations, please tell them where you heard about the event.

If you would like to see your event listed in future newsletters, send an e-mail to: You must include either a Web page that gives details or an e-mail address for the organization or for someone within the organization who is willing to supply the meeting details upon request. Please limit your listings to events where you expect 100 or more people to attend.

Here are the listings, arranged by date. An asterisk indicates a new listing that has been added since the last time this list was published:

Jan. 22-24, 2004 - St. Louis, MO: NGS GENTECH, a conference for genealogists using technology. This is a major national event. Further information on the conference can be found at:

Jan. 24, 2004 - Largo, FL: The Pinellas Genealogy Society Annual Seminar will feature special speaker John Colletta. Dr. Colletta's topic will be "Passenger Arrival Records, Beginning and Advanced" and "Assembling a Quality Family History".

Jan. 28, 2004 – The Villages, Florida: The Villages Genealogical Society is sponsoring an all-day seminar with Dr. George K. Schweitzer. The three topics covered will be Tracing Ancestors Back Across the Atlantic, Civil War Genealogy, and Finding Your Ancestors’ Parents. For downloadable registration form, check the Web site at:

Feb. 7, 2004 - San Luis Obispo, CA: The San Luis Obispo County Genealogical Society will host its annual seminar. Several speakers will make presentations at this day-long event.

Feb. 28, 2004 - Sarasota, FL: Germanic Genealogy Workshop. The Germanic SIG of the Genealogical Society of Sarasota will present a workshop by Dr. Roger P. Minert, "Advancing Your Germanic Research." Further information on the conference can be found under the Calendar of Events at:

Feb. 28, 2004 - St. Charles, Illinois (New location): The DuPage County (IL) Genealogy Society will host its Twenty-ninth Annual Conference offering a 3-track program with 12 sessions. Patricia Reaves will conduct four sessions. Other speakers include Paul Milner and John Konvalinka. For further information and registration forms, visit

*March 6, 2004 - Charlotte, Florida - GenFair 2004, a genealogical conference for family history buffs, will be sponsored by the Alliance for Genealogical Societies of Southwest Florida. The conference features noted speaker Dr. George K. Schweitzer who will make three genealogical presentations. His topics include: "Civil War Genealogy", "Rivers to Trails to Roads to Canals to Trains" and "Finding Your Ancestor’s Parents". He will also hold an "Open Question and Answer Period". For additional information, contact

*March 9 to 13, 2004- Galesburg, Illinois: Carl Sandburg College is hosting it's 6th annual Genealogy Computing Week. 6 days of hands-on genealogy computing workshops will be held in the college's new state-of-the art instructional computing building. All presentations are made by Michael John Neill, columnist for the Ancestry Daily News and Part I Course Coordinator at the Genealogical Institute of Mid-America. More information on the workshops is available at:

March 13, 2004 - Lake Havasu City, AZ: The Lake Havasu Genealogical Society, Inc., will be holding its 10th Annual Seminar with featured speaker Janna Bennington Larson.

March 20, 2004 – Vancouver, WA: The Clark County Genealogical Society is having Dr John Philip Colletta return for their Spring Seminar. For more information see the society's Web site at

March 28, 2004 – Dublin, Ireland: Nora Keohane Hickey, Sally Warren and Jana Black are organizing a Dublin-based research week beginning March 28th 2004. This is a resumption of research trips organized in mid 1995-1997. Full details are available at:

April 3, 2004 – St. Louis, Missouri: "Tracing ancestors back to Europe" is the theme of the annual St. Louis Genealogical Fair. The day-long program features John Philip Colletta. Ph. D., an expert and entertaining speaker, in four different lectures on how to find your family's European roots. For more information visit the website at

April 22-24, 2004 - Wilmington, OH (between Columbus and Cincinnati): The Ohio Genealogical Society presents its Annual Conference. The Conference will feature Thomas W. Jones and 28 other speakers presenting 58 sessions. The theme of the conference is "Settlers and Builders of Ohio, Discovering Family History Resources and Strategies." Additional details are available from

April 24, 2004 – Santa Rosa, CA: Elizabeth Shown Mills will hold an all-day seminar in Sonoma County, California, sponsored by the Sonoma County Genealogical Society. Details are available at:

*April 24, 2004 - Topeka, Kansas -- The Topeka Genealogical Society hosts its 32nd annual genealogy conference with Lloyd deWitt Bockstruck as featured speaker. For more information see Conference at the TGS website:

May 27-30, 2004 – Toronto, Ontario: The Toronto Branch of the Ontario Genealogical Society will host the Society's annual seminar with a theme of "The 3 R's of Family History: Resources, Research, Results." The seminar will feature different streams of interest: Methodology, Technology, Toronto, Ontario, and Canadian research, and a miscellaneous stream which could include topics related to such things as Society Management, genetics/DNA, and others.

July 11-17, 2004 - Washington, D.C.: The National Institute on Genealogical Research (NIGR) offers on-site and in-depth examination of the common and less-known federal records. This intensive week-long study opportunity is for experienced genealogists and for archivists, historians and librarians interested in using federal records for genealogical research. It is not an introductory course in genealogy. Details may be found at:

October 2, 2004 - Grand Rapids, Michigan: The Western Michigan Genealogical Society (WMGS) is celebrating its 50th anniversary from October 2003 - October 2004. This celebration will culminate in a one-day Conference – "Got Ancestors?!" along with a banquet. Speakers include Dick Eastman, Joan Griffin, and Shirley De Boer. Dick Eastman will also speak at the Saturday evening banquet. Details are available at:

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The PR Budget for this newsletter is $0.00. I rely upon "word of mouse" advertising in which you recommend this newsletter to your friends. This newsletter is a private project of mine, and I have a zero budget for a publicity campaign to get more readers.

In each issue, I try to offer you useful, interesting and sometimes amusing information to help you with your genealogy efforts. Can you take a minute to help me out in return? If you think this newsletter is a worthwhile read, please tell your friends. Better yet, suggest they can read the Standard Edition or subscribe to the Plus Edition at


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COPYRIGHTS and Other Legal Things:

The contents of this newsletter are copyright by Richard W. Eastman with the following exception:

Many of the articles published in these newsletters contain quotes or references from others, especially from other Web sites, software user’s manuals, press releases and other public announcements. Any words in this newsletter attributed to another person or organization remain the copyrighted materials of the original author(s).

This document is provided for informational purposes only. The information contained in this document represents the views of Richard W. Eastman with one exception: words written by other authors and republished herein are the views solely of those authors. All information provided in this document is provided "as is" without warranty of any kind, either express or implied. The reader assumes the entire risk as to the accuracy and the use of this document.

You are hereby granted rights, unless otherwise specified, to re-distribute articles from this newsletter to other parties provided:

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Also, please include the following statement with any articles you re-distribute:

The following article is from Eastman’s Online Genealogy Newsletter and is copyright 2003 by Richard W. Eastman. It is re-published here with the permission of the author. Information about the newsletter is available at

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Be aware that the biggest problem faced when sending e-mail newsletters is spam filters in e-mail servers. Although the problem plagues many, many newsletters and other types of perfectly legitimate email, this newsletter seems to be particularly susceptible. It is quite long, and contains numerous examples of the kinds of things that spam blacklists, in their infinite wisdom, have deemed to be "spam like." Therefore, numerous email servers will delete this newsletter under the assumption that it is spam.

If you all of a sudden stop receiving your copy of the newsletter (and this happens more than you might think), don't just assume I skipped an issue or there's something wrong with the newsletter's distribution. I rarely skip an issue without noting that in advance. If you stop receiving the newsletter, chances are that it's not a problem with your subscription; it's a problem with your mail server or your spam filter. That is the number one cause of newsletter subscription problems.


Dick Eastman is employed by the New England Historic Genealogical Society, serving as Assistant Executive Director for Technology. He is a frequent presenter at major genealogy conferences. He has published articles in Genealogical Computing and Family Chronicle magazines and for a number of Web sites. He was an advisor to PBS' Ancestry series and appeared as a guest in one of the episodes. He is a past Director of GENTECH and of the New England Computer Genealogists. Dick is the author of YOUR ROOTS: Total Genealogy Planning On Your Computer published by Ziff-Davis Press. He can be reached at: Due to the volume of e-mail received, he is unable to answer every e-mail message received.

If you have questions or comments about the article in this newsletter, go to this newsletter's Discussion Board at Post your message there. You will receive then assistance from Dick Eastman or from a number of other people.


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