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Genealogy Blog

23 April 2014

This is How the Vatican Will Digitize Millions of its Documents

Digitizing the Vatican's 40 million pages of library archives will take 50 experts, five scanners and many, many years before the process comes to a close.

The Vatican Library was founded in 1451 and has around 82,000 manuscripts, some of which date back about 1,800 years. It will work in tandem with NTT Data, a Japanese IT firm, to convert the first batch of 3,000 manuscripts. It is expected to take four years to digitize the initial round, though some of those documents will be online toward the end of 2014.

Source & Full Story

22 April 2014

Inside The Mundaneum

On the night of June 1, 1934, a Belgian information scientist named Paul Otlet sat in silent, peaceful protest outside the locked doors of a government building in Brussels from which he had just been evicted.

Inside was his life’s work: a vast archive of more than twelve million bibliographic three-by-five-inch index cards, which attempted to catalog and cross-reference the relationships among all the world’s published information.

Source & Full Story

Amelia Earhart Wreckage: Real or Not?

Underwater video shot four years ago in a remote South Pacific island doesn’t show the wreckage of the airplane flown by Amelia Earhart on her fateful round-the-world flight of 1937, say experts retained by an aircraft preservation group.

Stating that the video does not provide evidence for an aircraft debris field, the reports were filed in court this week by expert witnesses for The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR), which has long been investigating Earhart's fate.

Source & Full Story

Houghton Library: New Digitization January-March 2014

Here are the complete works and collections the Houghton Library have digitized in the last three months.

Highlights include one of their most spectacular medieval manuscripts, the Emerson-White Hours, a 17th century manuscript on magic tricks, a sonata by Handel, and a 19th century book of paper dolls.

Source & Full Story

College Student Fought Dutch Bureaucrats To Obtain Justice for Amsterdam Holocaust Survivors

Charlotte van den Berg was a 20-year-old college student working part-time in Amsterdam's city archives when she and other interns came across a shocking find: letters from Jewish Holocaust survivors complaining that the city was forcing them to pay back taxes and late payment fines on property seized after they were deported to Nazi death camps.

Following her discovery four years ago, Van den Berg waged a lonely fight against Amsterdam's modern bureaucracy to have the travesty publicly recognized. Now, largely due to her efforts,

Source & Full Story

Michigan Moves Digital Archive Records to Cloud

The Archives of Michigan is using a state-of-the-art and inexpensive option — the Internet — to store and preserve a growing collection of digital records that includes everything from 40 years' worth of election results to an index of thousands of proposed designs for the state's quarter released 10 years ago.

The move to the cloud is expected to bolster a plan to help the public easily access some historical records without having to trek to the Archives' facility in Lansing.

Source & Full Story

World War II Dog Tags Found in Saipan May Solve 70-Year-Old Mystery

Old and battered dog tags found in a cave in the South Pacific may crack a 70-year-old mystery. The dog tags are those of a 31-year-old Army infantryman from New York named Bernard Gavrin.

He was reported missing in action during the battle of Saipan in World War II and never found. His 81-year-old nephew David Rogers, of West Delray, Fla., said the family never knew what happened.

Source & Full Story

National Archives of Australia Battle To Preserve Nation's 'Birth Certificates'

Australians have the chance for a relatively rare glimpse of some of the most important documents in the country's history, with the nation's "birth certificates" on show at the National Archives.

Three of the seven precious documents that changed Australia's relationship with Britain are so fragile that their dark covers are taken off only for occasional viewing by the public, including the Easter and Anzac Day long weekends.

Source & Full Story

21 April 2014

The Geneanet Ancestry Book

GeneaNet offers a very attractive Ancestry Book.

This Ancestry Book is available for every GeneaNet member and it can show up to 10 generations.

Every GeneaNet member can also export the Ancestry Book in PDF file format.

Continue reading...

19 April 2014

Are You Related to Ashley Judd?

Ashley was born as Ashley Tyler Ciminella on April 19, 1968, in Granada Hills, California. She is the daughter of Naomi Judd, a country music singer and motivational speaker, and Michael Charles Ciminella, a marketing analyst for the horseracing industry.

Ashley's elder half-sister, Wynonna, is also a country music singer. Her paternal grandfather was of Irish descent, and her paternal grandmother was a descendant of Mayflower pilgrim William Brewster.

Ashley Judd's Family Tree

18 April 2014

The Uplifting Story Behind a Blunt Obituary

Stig Kernell had specific and strong wishes for his own obituary notice. He told his local undertaker in Tranås, southern Sweden that he wanted the notice simply to state his name and the words "I Am Dead", along with the place and date of his death.

"He was a special man with a very particular sense of humour and a twinkle in his eye," Kernell's son, Lars-Åke, told tabloid Expressen. He added: "He was crass, too, and that has helped us deal with our loss, since he did not fear death in the least."

Source & Full Story

17 April 2014

Genealogy Software Updates of the Week

Branches for iPad 1.2 (Mobile - Purchase)

• Expanded help instructions.

Genealone 1.1.2 (Web Publishing - Windows, Mac, Linux - Purchase)

• Several bugs fixed.
• Several design improvements.
• Added German translation.
• New: New color scheme.
• New: New Timeline option.

My Family Tree 3.0.15.0 (Full Featured - Windows - Freeware)

• Added Danish translation.
• Added option to specify the birth order of siblings.

The Family Tree of Family for Android 1.9.1 (Mobile - Purchase)

• Added ability to select more than one parent.
• Added same-sex marriages.

Transcript 2.4.1 build 100 beta (Transcriptions & Indexes - Windows - Freeware)

• Fix: Needed to check for GlobalSettings being initialized at startup or might get a crash in certain rare cases.
• Fix: Words consisting only of accented characters are handled wrong by the standard Windows RichEdit control.
• Fix: Highlighter zoom and brightness were reset after moving to another image.
• Fix: Silence a few warnings in the code.

WWI Soldier's Love Letters Found Hidden Behind Attic Wall

A bit of history and romance has been found during a home renovation in Indiana -- love letters sent to a woman from a soldier during World War I were found behind a wall.

The letters were discovered after the homeowners hired a contractor to redo their bathroom. The contractor found letter after letter hidden in the attic wall. They dated back to July 1918 from a man named Clement to his love, named Mary.

Source & Full Story

16 April 2014

Severe Scurvy Struck Christopher Columbus's Crew

Severe scurvy struck Columbus's crew during his second voyage and after its end, forensic archaeologists suggest, likely leading to the collapse of the first European town established in the New World.

In 1492, Christopher Columbus crossed the Atlantic, beginning Europe's discovery of the New World. Two years later on his second voyage, he and 1,500 colonists founded La Isabela, located in the modern-day Dominican Republic.

Source & Full Story

Scotland Gets Ready To Celebrate Battle of Bannockburn's 700th Anniversary

Music, culture, ancestry, food, drink and fight re-enacting will make the 700th anniversary of the Battle of Bannockburn a memorable one.

Bannockburn Live on June 28-29 will see hundreds of artists and clan members unite for a festival at the Stirling battlefield where Robert the Bruce’s army annihilated the English, led by Edward II, and paved the way for Scottish independence.

Source & Full Story

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