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Genealogy books, family histories, and more useful books online, digitized

When I was working on a cousin’s colonial ancestry, googling an ancestor’s name* would often find a book digitized and online at google, for example, a local history of Stamford, CT. Recently I saw a post about the genealogically related books digitized by familysearch which said “There are many thousands of historical and genealogical books available to read online. They are indexed so I was able to find old towns where ancestors lived, genealogies of families …”

In short order I found a book at familysearch.org about Norwegians in Brooklyn that listed my granddad and both sets of my great grandparents who lived there. The details of that are posted here on my family history site.

MunsonInstituteAfter I excitedly announced this on one of my favorite mailing lists, others chimed in with more online book resources. So with permission, I am including June Byrne’s list of these and tips on using them.

*n.b. when googling a name, put it in quotes to get an exact match, e.g. “Lawrence J. Munson”

The rest of this post is adapted from a write-up by June C. Byrne.

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Finally a good basic book on genetic genealogy

There is finally a really well-done book on understanding and using autosomal DNA testing, so of course I have been wanting to review it. At last on the plane to Rootstech 2014 I had the time to read it:  Genetic Genealogy: The Basics and Beyond by Emily Aulicino. I thought that I would know most of what was in there but was pleasantly surprised by a number of helpful insights.

I will reread chapter 6, “Convincing a Person to Test” several more times. I have found that the DNA match ups of my 2nd cousins who have tested are extremely useful for figuring out which line a new relative is related on. Thus I need advice on how to get few more of them to test!

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My contest for a free pass to RootsTech 2014

One lucky reader will get a free pass to Rootstech 2014 this coming February (an educational event for the howtos of using technology in family history research), since I will be an official rootstech blogger. So my idea was to award it to whomever comes up with the best question for me to ask Spencer Wells at the conference. I am expecting to have a private interview with him, video recorded and posted here. So send me your questions via my contact page by January 30th.

It was Well’s book, Deep Ancestry: Inside The Genographic Project, that sparked my interest in population genetics and genetic genealogy. After I read it, I did the original NatGEO DNA test. Then I transferred the results to FamilyTreeDNA.com but my mitrochondrial DNA was too deep in the past to satisfy my genealogy cravings. Soon thereafter I heard about 23andme and tested there. Twisted the arms of many family members and relatives to get tested, including my father, whom I had tested by both of those sites. In the process I read lots of books and blogs. The marriage of genes and genealogy known as genetic genealogy had me firmly hooked.

Read on for more about all the things I have enjoyed reading to expand my understanding, n.b. favorite blogs are in the column on the right towards the bottom. Continue reading