October 19, 2014

Genealogy Gems Premium Podcast Episode 115 Features 10 Cool Things You Can Do With Evernote

Genealogy Gems Premium Membership and PodcastIf you’re a Premium member on our site, you can now access Genealogy Gems Premium Podcast Episode 115, “Newspapers, Evernote, DNA and a Heartwarming Story.”

This episode is PACKED with news and ideas YOU can use to move your family research forward now. Here are some highlights:

  • 10 Cool Things You Can Do With Evernote when you’re traveling (you have to hear these ideas–they’ll save you a lot of fuss on the road)!
  • Great advice on what to keep on your hard drive v. what to keep on Evernote;
  • A conversation with a listener who reunited lost heirlooms with the right family–the advice I gave her and how it went;
  • An interview with Genealogy Gems’ resident DNA expert Diahan Southard on a recent news story and its impact on genetic genealogy;
  • A recent news story about Canadian birth brothers who were reunited–but are still looking for their sister;
  • Updates on two great online tools, PERSI on FindMyPast sites and the FamilySearch Standard Location Finder; and
  • an update on content at the British Newspaper Archive and some great U.S. newspaper history trivia.

Not a Premium member yet? You’re missing out on the “plus” content in Genealogy Gems Premium Podcast episodes! Click here for more on becoming a member. Our low annual membership rate is, we think, the best value in genealogy education out there. You don’t just get access to these meaty podcasts: you get unlimited access to Lisa’s online video classes for an entire year. Check it out!

NEW How-to Help – Use Evernote for Genealogy

Evernote for genealogyI’ve got not one but TWO new resources to help you use Evernote for genealogy. Evernote is a FREE note-taking service keeps all your digitized and online research discoveries at your fingertips. It is easy to learn, sync across all your devices, and did I mention it’s FREE?

I’m so excited about Evernote’s ability to organize my family history that I’ve published two new resources to help Genealogy Gems Premium members get the most out of it:

Genealogy Gems Premium Podcast Episode 114, just published this week, reviews what’s new in Evernote. Learn how to move items into Evernote from your mobile device. Get some great tips on optimizing photos for Evernote’s OCR capability (yes, that means you can keyword-search your PHOTOS!). Then we’ll tackle the eternal question: “How do I organize my genealogical paper?” Listeners have been asking for the secrets of my system, and all will be revealed in this episode including downloadable templates.

Using Evernote to Create a Research Plan is a new Premium video class. The key to a successful family history research plan is having a set process for gathering and analyzing data. With its ability to organize, sync and save information, Evernote is ideally suited to assist you in this endeavor. Premium members can watch this 30-minute class anytime: just sign in to the Genealogy Gems website and then click the link above.

If you’re not quite ready for this more advanced topic, try my other Premium videos on using Evernote: How the Genealogist Can Remember Everything with Evernote (for beginners) and How to Organize Your Research with Evernote (intermediate level).

Genealogy Gems Premium MembershipThese resources are FREE for Genealogy Gems Premium members. Not a Premium member yet? As you can see, you’re missing out! Click here to learn about becoming one.

Special FREE Genealogy Gems Premium Episode Featuring Dan Bucatinsky of WDYTYA?

Dan BucatinskyWho Do You Think You Are? has become a worldwide television phenomenon, starting in the UK and making its way around the world, telling the stories of well-known celebrities in search of their family history.

July 23, 2014 marks the debut of season 5 of the series here in the U.S. and the show’s Executive Producer Dan Bucatinsky (image left) joins me on the podcast to talk about the series.

This episode was just too much fun not to share with everyone. So we will unlocked  this Genealogy Gems Premium episode for all to hear on July 23, 2014 in celebration of the start of the new WDYTYA? season. Premium episode #113 will be available on our website, as well as through the Genealogy Gems Podcast App! Get the app here.

We hope you enjoy the free access to this Genealogy Gems Premium Podcast episode! Genealogy Gems Premium Membership and Podcast

Not a member yet? There are over 100 episodes just like this one available exclusively to Premium Members for one low price of $29.95 for an entire year. You’ll also get my most popular genealogy classes on video, and new audio and video content added every month. Become a Member Today

10 Ways to Add Volume to Your Family History with Video

Genealogy Gems VideoDid you know that in 2013 57% of all Internet traffic was video (according to a Cisco report), and over 100 hours of video get uploaded to YouTube every minute?  That’s a lot of activity, and plenty of it is family history related! But where do you start? No one could ever watch it all, or would ever want to for that matter! And yet there are some incredible treasures buried in them thar video players!

In the brand new Genealogy Gems Premium Episode #111 I will sift through all that noise to bring you 10 simple and highly effective ways to add real quality ‘volume’ to genealogy with video. Premium Members have exclusive access to the audio of this one hour webinar presentation I recently gave at a large silicon valley corporation.

While the video version of this presentation is also coming to the membership area soon, this hour is really packed with usable ideas, and I want you to be able to take your daily walk and still listen in.

Genealogy Video

You don’t have to be techie to take advantage of what online video can do for your genealogical research and story telling efforts. And there are endless benefits well beyond producing a 10 minute YouTube video. I’ll tell you how in Genealogy Gems Premium Podcast Episode #111. Sign in to your membership and click on Premium Videos Episodes in the menu to get started.

Genealogy Gems Premium Podcast Episode 110: New FREE Apps and More

Genealogy Gems Premium MembershipLisa found a few minutes before heading out to play “mother of the bride” to publish Genealogy Gems Premium podcast episode 110

There’s lots of fun stuff on there for you lucky Premium members, like:

  • Lisa talks about great FREE new apps she loves, including Magnifying Glass with Light, which we posted here about;
  • Advice to a listener on finding a home for some orphaned family memorabilia in the Mailbox section of the show notes;
  • An inspiring family history use for Twitter.

Haven’t become a Premium member yet? Did you know you’re missing out on not just podcast episodes like this one (and 109 archived episodes) but a growing online collection of Lisa’s video classes on her most popular topics. She adds a new video class every month! Check out the benefits of Premium membership here.

Premium Episode 98 – Interview with Eileen O’Duill

Published May 28, 2013
Lisa Louise Cooke

Download the show notes

In this episode we’ll discuss the 3 reasons you need the new version of Google Earth, a tech tool for discovering what your speech reveals about your heritage, a free Mac tool that will help you take control of iTunes, the new FamilySearch Map App, how to research the college students in your family tree, along with an interview with Irish Genealogist Eileen O’Duill.

What I saw on my vacation in Dallas, Texas:




3 Reasons You Need the New Version of Google Earth Just Released
Google celebrated Earth Day by releasing Google Earth 7.1 and announcing some great new content! And there are three reasons you will want to make the upgrade:

1. New Hands-Free Navigation Technology
The big news with version 7.1 is Leap Motion support, a touch-free 3d technology that lets you “navigate Google earth with simple hand gestures.” The Leap Motion Controller ($79.99) https://www.leapmotion.com/product will start shipping mid-July, so you’ve got some time to get to know Google Earth a little better before you start flying around in it like this:

2. More 3D City Views
There’s also exciting new 3D data in Google Earth, most notably for New York City. But there’s also more imagery for other cities around the world: Innsbruck, Austria; Dijon, France; Cagliari, Italy and the Spanish cities of San Sebastian, Santander, Pamplona, Manresa and Burgos. Other U.S. cities with 3D coverage include Miami, FL; Houston, TX; Orlando, FL; Encinitas, CA and Spokane, WA.

3. The Addition of the 50th Country to Google Maps’ popular Street View Feature
You can now view 50 countries with Google Maps’ popular Street View feature. The newest nations to be added are Hungary and Lesotho (a tiny country within South Africa), and there’s new or updated coverage for Poland, Romania, France, Italy, Russia, Singapore, Thailand and other locations worldwide. Google calls this “the largest single update of Street View imagery we’ve ever pushed, including new and updated imagery for nearly 350,000 miles of roads across 14 countries.”

Help for Using Google Earth for Genealogy
Google Earth for Genealogy BundleUpload the latest version of Google Earth for free (for PC, Mac or Linux). Then check out my Google Earth for Genealogy 2-CD Bundle. There’s a reason is this one of my best-selling presentations: Google Earth is one of the best genealogy research tools around! In these CD presentations, I show you how to locate and map ancestral homesteads; use historical map overlays; identify where old photos were taken; create 3D models of ancestral locations; create custom family history tours and much more.

Discover What Your Speech Reveals About Your Heritage
If you’ve ever lived in or visited the U.S. or Canada, you already know we don’t all speak English the same way. But did you know that we actually speak eight different major dialects in North America?

The website North American English Dialects has put those dialects on the map. In fact, it even traces their origins and spread: 2 dialects from the west and 6 from the east, reflecting the way the English language originally spread across the continent.

It’s fun to look at this map and think about how our American or Canadian ancestors may have pronounced things differently than we do (or the same, depending on how far we’ve wandered). If your families have migrated within the past 50 to 100 years, click on some of the sound samples from your old stomping grounds and see if you catch some familiar cadences or phrases.

Learn more about how our speech reveals our heritage and family history by listening to my interview with Dr. Robert Leonard Ph.D., Forensic Linguist in Genealogy Gems Podcast Episode 89. Dr. Leonard has been featured on the TV series Forensic Files and has a fascinating personal history as well.


GEM: Stop iTunes Automatically
The iTunesTimer dashboard widget

If you are a Mac user and listen in iTunes, it will keep playing your podcasts and mp3s until you turn it off. It is a Mac desktop app for you that lets you set a countdown timer that will automatically pause iTunes at the end of the countdown.

The iTunesTimer dashboard widget will not only pause iTunes when the timer goes off, but it can even restart iTunes when you tell it to. And that means you can not only drift off to sleep listening to Genealogy Gems but you can also have it wake you up in the morning! The widget has additional options to for controlling QuickTime, DVD Player and putting your machine into sleep mode. Use the slider bar to select the time duration and click the green button to start the countdown.

The iTunes Timer requires the OS X operating system, version 10.4 or later


How to Make a Daguerreotype
We live in the era of digital photography–far from the time of the daguerreotype. But that didn’t stop Seattle-based photographer Dan Carrillo from falling in love with daguerreotypes and bringing this art form back to life. Today he creates photographs he calls “shiny little jewels” using the same laborious process and dangerous chemicals as early photographers.

Read more about it here

Google Patents: More than 480 daguerreotype-related patents at Google Patents


Look Who Will be on TLC’s Who Do You Think You Are?
It has recently been announced that the love interest in the hit movie “Elf” and current star of the popular TV series “New Girl” (think “That Girl” 21st century style), Zooey Deschanel will appear in the next season of TLC’s reality television show Who Do You Think You Are.

According to Zooey Dechanel Online “The season premiere is set for July 23rd, though not sure when Zooey’s episode will air yet.” Zooey joins the growing list of celebrities signed up to star including Christina Applegate, Cindy Crawford, and Chris O’Donnell.

Zooey’s latest album: Volume 3 – She & Him.

If you grew up in the 50′s and 60′s you’ll likely enjoy her warm nostalgic vocals that feature a nod to icons like Loretta Lynn and Patsy Cline, enveloped in a subtle “Spector Wall of Sound” feel. Take a listen for yourself :


Your Chance to Enter Family History Writing Contest
Here it is! The International Society of Family History Writers and Editors (ISFHWE) sponsors an annual writing contest for those who write genealogy for blogs, journals, magazines, newspapers, websites and even for editors of family history newsletters.

Entries are due by June 15, 2013
Entry Form

FamilySearch App Maps Ancestors Birthplace
A new app for FamilySearch.org users lets you map your ancestors’ birthplaces. It retrieves information about your ancestors from your data at FamilySearch.org. The app is FamilyMap and is available in iTunes for $1.99.



Using College Records

I suggest starting with 3 sources:

  • Yearbooks
  • University archives material
  • Student files

(I’m going to talk about researching U.S. colleges, but some of the same ideas will apply to researching students outside the U.S.)

Yearbooks are probably the easiest place to start your search. College yearbooks date back to the 1880s in the States; most schools had them by the early 1900s. A lot of old yearbooks have been archived online. Some schools have digitized their own. For example, Virginia Tech first published a yearbook in 1895; they’ve posted theirs on their website, digitized by decade.

Look for these on school websites in the university archive or digital archive section. You can also find a ton of yearbooks from all kinds of schools at Classmates.com (where registration is free), E-Yearbook.com and Old-Yearbooks.com. Ancestry.com even has a sizeable U.S. School Yearbooks collection, though many of these are for high schools, not colleges.

If your relative attended school just before yearbooks appeared, look for group photos. You might find these in published histories or originals in university and community archives.

Create a search for the yearbook you seek, and then save it as a Saved Search to continue searching for you. Listen to Episode 140
Also, hear more about yearbooks on Premium episode 26


After you’ve checked yearbooks, turn to other historical sources about the school. Check the university archives webpage for digital collections (including photos) and descriptions of non-digitized materials. (Original manuscripts might be difficult to find in an online card cataloge.) Then contact a university archivist and ask what materials are available to help you learn more about a student who attended during the years in question. Ask about student newspapers and other campus publications. If you think your relative participated in intramural or competitive athletics, performing arts or other activities, ask about memorabilia for those activities.

Finally, it’s worth asking about individual student files, too: transcripts, applications and other materials kept on file like news clippings. Some schools haven’t kept individual files on students from long ago. You may also run into privacy restrictions. Federal law protects university records for living students (the law is called FERPA, or the Family Education and Privacy Act of 1974). But schools can set their own rules regarding disclosure of records for deceased students. Politely ask the University Archivist or someone in the Alumni Office what records exist and their policy for sharing. You may need to prove the student is deceased. Alumni files kept after the student’s graduation (about a career or their ongoing relationship with the school) may be less restricted.


GEM: Eileen O’Duill
Earlier this year while I was at Who Do You Think You Are? Live in London, I got a chance to sit down and chat with certified genealogist Eileen O’Duill.

Lisa with Eileen Oduill

She is a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists in Ireland, international trustee of APG (U.S.) 1995-2000, 2007-2008 first CGRS (1995) in Ireland. Her specialization is Irish research and searches for next-of-kin, and she has been admitted as an expert witness in the Surrogate Courts of New York. Co-author of Irish Civil Registration – Where Do I Start available at her website www.heirsireland.com. Lecturer on Irish genealogy topics ranging from beginners to specialist subjects.

What DNA Can Tell You About Your Family History, and What it Can’t

Lisa and TuriHad King Richard III been discovered 50 years from now, chances are DNA testing would not have been possible – at least not without exhuming a body or two. In Genealogy Gems Premium Podcast episode 97 Dr. Turi King, the geneticist who positively identified the 500 year old remains found under a parking lot in Leicester, England, explains how a few decades could have made all the difference.

You heard from Dr. King briefly in Genealogy Gems Podcast Episode 152, but in this brand new Premium episode you will hear the entire 25 minute interview. Dr. King brings clarity to the murkiness of using DNA for genealogy.

(Image right: Turi and I at Who Do You Think You Are? Live in London earlier this year)

In Premium episode 97 we’ll also discuss one of my favorite free apps that can create a gorgeous customized genealogy digital magazine of sorts, and of course the latest genealogy news.Premium_Logo_lined

Not a Premium Member? Why not join us?  Learn more about how to become a Genealogy Gems Member.

Premium Episode 97 – Full Interview with Dr. Turi King on Using DNA for Genealogy

Date published: April 3, 2013

Download the Show Notes

In the last regular Genealogy Gems episode which was #153, you heard a portion of my interview with Dr. Turi King, the geneticist who confirmed the identity of the found remains of King Richard III in England. Well, as promised, in this Premium episode you will hear my interview with her in its entirety. Dr. King is a renowned expert in using DNA in genealogy and she brings a lot of clarity to that subject in this interview.


Where You Should Sit at a Genealogy Conference

Google Earth Updates: More Cities for Your Family History Research

Chinese Heritage

National Archives and Digital Public Library of America



Premium Member George wrote in to share a solution he came upon recently. He writes: “I was listening to your latest Premium Member podcast and the issue of Podcast Apps for your Premium service came up again. I tried several different podcast programs after Apple split the Podcasts out from the main program on the iPhone. I finally settled on iCatcher. It seems to work flawlessly with the Premium Podcast and has lots of features. You can search from the program and subscribe directly so it is easy to set up.”

Premium Member Steven also had something to say about apps. He writes: “I was thrilled to hear you mention FlipBoard on a recent podcast. I was turned onto Flipboard back in 2011 and can’t imagine anyone having a tablet or smartphone without it. It is my favorite app.

I was wondering do you have a list of RSS feeds specifically for genealogy that you could share with your listeners. I use Google Reader to connect to Flipboard and once again until you mentioned it I never even considered using Flipboard for my research.”


Steven is referring to the Flipboard app that I recommend in my book called Turn Your iPad into a Genealogy Powerhouse, and in the Premium Video called Genealogy on the Go with the iPad.

Flipboard is free and turns your favorite RSS feeds into a gorgeous customized digital magazine. And again, an RSS fee is just the address to a blog or podcast, anything that you can subscribe to for free online.

So Steven has been following his favorite genealogy blogs on Google Reader and using Flipboard for other types of online content. And it’s easy to overlook genealogy in Flipboard because the app doesn’t list genealogy, family history, or any topic like that as a suggested category. But that doesn’t have to stop you from creating a wonderful genealogy digital magazine of your favorite blogs, and podcasts and even YouTube channels.

As you may have heard recently Google Reader is about to bite the dust. Yep, Google is closing the doors on Google Reader.  And I don’t think it’s an issue of it not being used or being popular. I think they are trying to roll it all into Google+ as sort of your one-stop shopping online place for content. Which is interesting, because I just don’t get the impression that Google+ is really all that popular compared to Facebook.  Either way, you can copy and paste your existing RSS feeds from Google Reader into Flipboard, and have a really nice way to view everything.

Steve asked about the RSS feeds that I follow personally. The genealogy-related RSS feeds I have added to my Flipboard are an eclectic mix of the blogs, podcasts and YouTube channels that relate to my specific research. So what I recommend is turning to Google first to find the content that meets your needs. Do a search on genealogy blog and perhaps a surname, or a location, or a particular archive or library. The best genealogy blogs, podcasts and video channels are really the ones that meet your specific needs, and that’s a bit different for everyone. Then once you’ve settled on them, add their RSS feeds to Flipboard.

But as for me, I like to search for content that is specific to the type of genealogy I do: Irish, certain counties around the U.S., the county of Kent in England…you get the idea.  Here are just a few I follow in no particular order:

  • The Genealogy Insider Blog
  • Desperately Seeking Surnames blog
  • Philibertfamily.blogspot.com
  • The State of Search
  • Google Official Blog
  • Google Earth Blog
  • kitchen-retro.com
  • Ancestry YouTube Channel
  • US National Archives YouTube Channel
  • Depression Cooking YouTube Channel
  • Familysearch YouTube channel…

But to be honest, I tend to use Flipboard for much more – I subscribe to content on Public Speaking (I give a LOT of presentations!), technology, Inspiration, News, Entrepreneurship, Thought Leaders, Video and Audio production, etc…


While you can search for content in the Flipboard app, I like to do most of my searching on Google first to really zero in on great content, and the last step is adding the feed to Flipboard.

I hope that helps.
Happy Flipping!


Lisa and Turi


GEM: Full Interview with Dr. Turi King at Who Do You Think You Are? Live in London

About Dr. Turi King, University of Leicester

Read more about the identification of Richard III at the Genealogy Gems Blog



Caring About Who You Talk ToYou know she was so sweet to take the time out of a very hectic schedule at Who Do You Think You Are? Live And all of the excitement around the identification of King Richard III, and while we chatted, two things were really clear to me. She’s really bright, AND she really cares about what she is doing. You know there are lots of folks out there who are really smart, but it’s a chore to listen to them if they speak only from the head and not from the heart. Author John C. Maxwell summed it up this way: “People don’t care what you know until they know that you care”

And that’s something we can all strive for. And it’s not really so much that you care about you’re your topic, but that you care about the person you are speaking to and what it means for them.

“People don’t care what you know until they know that you care”

As genealogists we love to talk about our latest discoveries and the family tree, but if we really want folks to listen, we remember to focus on caring about them and what we are telling them might mean for them.

Just a little something to think about until we meet here again.

I care about you, so thanks for listening friend!





Premium Episode 96 – Historic Maps, and Evernote, and Free Translation

Date Published: February 27, 2013

Click here to download the Show Notes pdf


Historic Newspapers

Imagine the thrill of pulling up a page on from an old newspaper on your computer screen and seeing your ancestor’s name in print. It’s an event any genealogist would enjoy (and the reason I wrote the book How to Find Your Family History in Newspapers.)

Findmypast.com just made the possibility of that happening a little more likely by adding more than 6 million pages from British newspapers to its subscription website. Read more about it here:

Finding Your Family History in Newspapers Just Got a Little More Likely


Record Your Stories and Help the American Widow Project

An estimated 3200 military wives have lost their husbands in Afghanistan and Iraq. Though nothing can ever truly make up for their loss, a nonprofit organization called the American Widow Project (AWP) offers them support as they rebuild their lives. Now the website Saving Memories Forever,is contributing to the cause.


The AWP and Saving Memories Forever share a common interest: keeping alive the memories and stories of American soldiers, husbands and oftentimes fathers. The AWP hosts a hotline, puts out a monthly newsletter and holds events where widows can come together to enjoy life and heal by sharing stories, tears and laughter. Saving Memories Forever helps people audio-record, save and share their memories in a secure online archive.

Saving Memories Forever has donated 20 premium subscriptions to the AWP. In addition, from now through the end of March, the AWP will receive 40% of the profits from new subscribers who use the special promo code AWP213. If you’re interested in capturing, preserving and sharing oral histories, take a look at Saving Memories Forever.  Read more about it here..


Evernote 5 for Mac is Here

Find out what’s new here…


New Keyboard shortcuts:

CMD-J: Jump to a notebook from anywhere in the application

CMD-Shift-A: Jump to All Notes

CMD-Option-(1-5): Switch to main sidebar sections (Notes, Notebooks, etc)

CMD-(1-9): Jump to Shortcuts

CMD-L: Edit current note title

CMD-’: Edit current note tags

CMD-]: Indent text


Place Cards
Atlas is a brand new way to visually explore your notes in Evernote. Evernote helps you remember where you were when you took notes to help you have richer, more vibrant memories. Evernote Atlas reads the location where your notes were created and intelligently presents them to you on Place Cards based upon their proximity to each other.

Map view
Click on any card to see flags with numbers representing all the notes in that location. Pan and zoom to see more or fewer notes then click on a flag to see the associated notes. To see notes created near your current location, click the compass icon.

TypeAhead search suggestions
With TypeAhead suggestions, Evernote’s Search is more powerful than ever. It completes your thoughts based on the words and phrases you personally use frequently in Evernote.

Search Joined Notebooks
Search results now show notes both from all personal as well as Joined Notebooks at the same time.

Saved Searches can be Shortcuts
You can drag Saved Searches from the search menu into your Shortcuts for easier access

More search options
Click into the Search field for a variety of search options. You can search all your notes or click the Notebook capsule to search just those in the Notebook you were last viewing. If a notebook or tag matches your search, selecting a match adds search tokens that you can click on and modify later if desired. Below those, your five most recent searches are stored and shown in a selectable list.

New Evernote for Mac guide
The new product guide highlights the core features of Evernote and walks you through details of how to use them.


GEM: No More Whining About Brick Walls – King Richard III Remains Found

Just when we throw up our hands in frustration and declare that we will never find a particular ancestor, someone comes along and proves it possible.

Reuters is reporting that England’s King Richard III has been found after 500 years. “A skeleton with a cleaved skull and a curved spine entombed under a car park is that of Richard III…”

“The DNA remains points to these being the remains of Richard III,” University of Leicester genetics expert Turi King said during a press briefing.

The lesson is not that we as genealogists need to start digging up parking lots, but rather “never give up, never surrender.” And where there is evidence, seek indisputable proof.

To learn more about the role that DNA played in this amazing discovery watch the videos at the Genealogy Gems Blog

Stay tuned for my interview with Dr. Turi King in an upcoming episode!


From Clytee:
“My maiden name surname – “Kleager”.  After 30 years of trying to figure out where my immigrant ancestor came to Franklin County, Missouri from , I have finally broken through the brick wall. Once I got there, it is a beautiful view – I am discovering all kinds of wonderful information and stories on the other side and the information is coming fast.  I have now tentatively linked to a 13 times great grandfather!…

…I just keep hunting on-line, and I have made a contact with a man who has a museum (or maybe local history society of some sort, I can’t exactly tell) in Kaltbrunn, and he sent me as a Christmas present (how nice was that?) a recently published local history of Kaltbrunn.  It’s a beautiful book, and I was so touched he did that. Problem is, of course, it’s in German and I want to read the whole thing cover to cover.

Do you have any other ideas about how I could put scanned images of the book into Google translate, or another way to get my computer to translate it?

From your encouragement, I started a blog a couple of years ago (Kleager-Klaeger-Kleger.blogspot.com) that has been very helpful in finding relatives.  I am also trying to share my information as I’m finding it and it has been well received.”

Lisa’s Answer:
Regarding translating the German pages, I think I may have a solution for you. What you need is a program that can apply OCR technology to your scanned document, and then translate German (rather than English which most programs do.)

Try Free Online OCR at http://www.free-ocr.com/

Free-OCR.com is a free online OCR (Optical Character Recognition) tool. You can use this service to extract text from any image you supply. This service is free, no registration necessary.

Just upload your image files. Free-OCR takes either a JPG, GIF, TIFF BMP or PDF (only first page).

The only restriction is that the images must not be larger than 2MB, no wider or higher than 5000 pixels and there is a limit of 10 image uploads per hour.

The beauty is that it can handle German!  Once you get a German text, you should be able to run that text through Google Translate.  German to English.

Congratulations on the blog and the success it has brought you in making such wonderful connections!

From Aileen:
“I cannot seem to figure out how to gain access to premium podcast through iTunes and or through an iPhone app. I listen to regular podcast on podcast app. I tried following instructions in show notes for Mac users but said invalid address. Also tried the link to download app to get on mobile device (the one from another listener) but that was only for android. Do you have any other suggestions?”

Lisa’s Answer:
On the iPhone or iPad try this method:

  1. Download the RSSRadio App (free iPhone app in iTunes – will work on iPad as well)
  2. Select Add a Podcast
  3. Select “More”
  4. Select “Enter the URL Manually”
  5. Enter this URL:  http://www.lisalouisecooke.com/Premium_Feed/feed.xml (this is case sensitive, and be sure not to get http:// in there twice)
  6. Enter or “Go” on the keyboard
  7. Enter Premium Membership username  and password (again this is case sensitive, so be careful, particularly if the first letter of your username is lower case because your device will try to capitalize it. Just press the shift key before you start typing so you get a lower case letter)

The iTunes feed works, but again everything is case sensitive. I’m guessing that might be the problem.


GEM: Blending Evernote with your Genealogy Database

Sue wrote:
“What is your process for moving these images, screenshots, etc. to your genealogy family history files on your computer? I’m not a super tech, and I’m at a loss as to how I would go about that. Thanks for all your great information; I’ve been a listener since the beginning.”

Lisa’s Answer:
For now, the easiest way to add them is to use the “Share” feature and copy and paste the unique Evernote URL address for the note into your database. That way it takes up very little space, but the information is just one click away.  The idea here is that Evernote is a linked “holding tank” of tons of great back up info for your database, without having to load everything into your database. This is particularly useful, because it means you always are accessing the most current version of the note. If you save it to your database (as described below), now you have two versions – one in Evernote and one in your database, and they will not synchronize.

You can also right click on images saved in Evernote and save them to your computer, so that you can then add the picture itself to your database.


GEM: Online Historic Maps

American Memory Map Collections at the Library of Congress

British Library

Hargrett Rare Book & Manuscript Library

National Library of Australia

Perry-Castaneda Library Map Collection

Visual Collections (including the David Rumsey Collection)

David Rumsey’s site 

Download the complete Online Historic Maps PDF cheat sheet

Premium Episode 94 – Immigration Records and Ancestral Travels

Date Published: December 18, 2012

Click here to download the Show Notes pdf

Family History Art

In Genealogy Gems Podcast episode # 146, I talked with you a little bit about our family history lifestyle, which to me is the ways that we show our value for family history in our day to day lives.

In the YouTube video called Family History Art, student film maker Jayne Reynolds  captures the story of how her fiancé Chase Jones created a work of art that demonstrates the gift of family history he feels he has received from his Grandfather who he lovingly refers to as PaPaw.

It’s clear that Chase’s PaPaw has imparted countless gems of wisdom and love to his grandson, and their bond is lovely to watch. I was so entranced by this lovely brief film, I wanted to learn more. By clicking on Jayne Reynolds name as the YouTube channel owner I was able to browse her other videos. This is something that you can do any time you find a video that you really like on YouTube. Right under the video will be the name of the creator  which is linked to their channel. By clicking the name you will be taken to the creator’s YouTube channel, click Browse Videos and you can explore their other videos which is a great way to find additional content that covers topics that interest you, such as family history. In this case, I discovered another video that Jayne had posted called Thoughts at PaPaws.


Read the Incredible story of a woman in 1843 who visualized computing at the Official Google blog


From Dot: “Just a quick message to say a BIG GIGANTIC thank you for Podcast number 146 and the Premium Video on the Ipad. I have listened and watch both of them today and I feel as full with knowledge as you feel full with food after a Christmas Dinner!”

iPad Tips from Tina
“I have also read you iPad book (ebook download) and there is one thing I that I give you heartfelt thanks for – the swipe up of the comma to get an apostrophe!  Fantastic!

Here’s a little gem for you: You know how so many websites require your email address to log in?  This can get very tedious on an iPad.  So – how about a keyboard shortcut?  Go to Settings->General->Keyboard and create as many as you like.”

Sherry is a New Genealogy Blogger
I finally got my blog up and running last week, and am finding it an amazing process. Thank you so much for the blogging instructions on the “Family History: Genealogy Made Easy” podcasts. They were very easy to follow, and I would recommend them to anyone considering starting a blog.

My blog, “My Descent into Descent”,http://mydescentintodescent.blogspot.ca, showcases stories from my family tree, and my experiences as a new family historian. Right now, I am in the midst of telling the stories of my ancestors who came to Canada, including my great grandfather who was a British Home Child, and was in the Royal North West Mounted Police.

Writing these stories is helping me to share my family history with family members, to discover more in the data I already have, and to lead me to new resources. It seems to be a good discipline to write a narrative about an ancestor after you have gathered enough information. It helps you to know what you have, question it, and to realize what you don’t have and could perhaps obtain.”

The iPad, Photos, and Interviews
“I’d like is a way to take notes that get tied to the photos, or even possibly record the voices of my relatives talking about the pictures.  The trick is, I want the notes or audio to be clearly connected to the picture.  I don’t want to get home and not be able to remember which picture they were referring to.  If an app doesn’t already exist, it might be an idea for someone to create.  Meanwhile, I thought you might have a work-around or a work-flow idea to make this task easier.”

Lisa’s Answer: There are a couple of apps (or combination of apps) out there that might be able to do the trick, however, I’m not a fan of having a thousand different apps cluttering up my iPad, so I like to look to what I already have first.  And I had to look no further than the free Evernote app. I think it’s the perfect solution for what you want to do: include and take photos, make written notes, record audio notes, and synchronize all your information across all of your computing devices.

Evernote is easy to use and there is great tutorial info on the website. Sign up for a free account on your computer, and then download the free app on your iPad. www.Evernote.com

One note about recording comments. I see the microphone option on new notes in the Evernote app, but not on existing notes (which might include your photo.) To connect them quickly consider a naming convention that you can easily remember and use. Type the name or code on the note containing the photo, and then include it at the beginning of your audio note.


GEM: Immigration Research and Ancestral Travels with author Lisa Alzo

Here are some free gems to take advantage of on the web:

Research trip packing list

Back to the Homeland – Five tips to ensure a smooth journey
by Lisa Alzo

The Geared-up Genealogist
by Diane Haddad


Katharine emailed me this quote from Bill Bryson, author of a Short History of Nearly Everything.
“Not one of your pertinent ancestors was squashed, devoured, drowned, starved, stranded, stuck fast, untimely wounded, or otherwise deflected from its life’s quest of delivering a tiny charge of genetic material to the right partner at the right moment in order to perpetuate the only possible sequence of hereditary combinations that could result — eventually, astoundingly, and all too briefly — in you.”