Posts Categorized: Uncategorized

The Lebanon Valley Genealogical Society will meet at 1:30 p.m. Sunday (25 June) in a new place. “We will be meeting at the Lebanon Council of the Arts on the corner of 770 Cumberland St. and Eighth Street (the former bank),” according to Denise Hoffman, society president.  “There are two entrances, but I will only …

Another load of genealogical laundry

Published June 23, 2017

Once again, I continue the tradition of using a phrase of a onetime colleague of mine, Birmingham Post-Herald Sports Editor Bill Lumpkin, when I have a bunch ideas each worthy of a few paragraphs but not of a column. So, as I do a couple times a year in “Roots & Branches,” it’s a day …

When it comes to popular music, I don’t think there’s anyone who can get an “earworm” faster than me. And that’s probably the whole secret behind the whole success of pop – the way it sticks with you, even when maybe you’d rather it not. But one of the things I treasure about my girlfriend …

Conferences lead to friendships

Published June 3, 2017

A couple of weeks ago I made note of the good synergy that often happens at genealogical conferences. One of the best of those types of things happened more than a decade ago when I met Stephen C. “Steve” Young at a Federation of Genealogical Societies conference (As is obligatory in anything mentioning Steve: No, …

Small world when it comes to Staudts

Published May 30, 2017

There are a lot of “small world” moments in genealogy and the 38th annual Lancaster Family History Conference offered one of those moments. Among the sessions I was involved with at the conference was German cursive script workshop, one of the participants in which was Pernell Staudt, whose surname immediately had my attention. That’s because …

Give me a choice between text and a live phone call, I’ll text you every time since a text you can just send – whereas a call can often lead to “phone tag,” If you give me a choice between text and e-mail, I’ll e-mail because I learned the “home keys” many years ago and …

There’s been no more faithful reader of “Roots & Branches” than Eric “Rick” Bender, now of New Mexico but with long Pennsylvania roots. And now he’s turned to DNA to try and disentangle – and maybe even extend – those roots. Bender had tested with Family Tree DNA some years ago (in what must seem …

Occasionally when people find out that I’m a hard-core genealogist, they ask something along the lines of “So what’s more fun about it – the finding? or the searching?” (Well, at least this used to be a very popular question – now the response I get is often an observation about them having taken a …

“Distance programming,” usually called webinars in the genealogy world, has been a real growth in genealogy education during the last decade or so. For many local, regional and state genealogical societies, they have been a way to cut the costs of genealogical programming (since they don’t have to fly in, feed and lodge the webinar …

Wonderful day in Madison WI!

Published April 22, 2017

The Wisconsin Historical Society hosted me for a full-day conference on German genealogy on Saturday, 22 April 2017 in a packed room at the Memorial Library in Madison. I covered everything from the two great waves of German immigration … to history and case studies of German microstates … to online resources for tracking down …