My Experience with DNA for Genealogy

At the July 2015 Daytime meeting Walter Wood spoke on DNA for Genealogy. He covered the three main DNA tests and the three companies providing DNA testing for genealogists. He also spoke on his own experiences with DNA testing and how it helped advance one of the lines he was working on. Additionally, two YouTube videos on DNA from Lisa Louise Cooke's Genealogy Gems show were shown. After the presentation there was a discussion on DNA testing.

Walter's presentation can be found at It includes links to the Genealogy Gems videos along with links to items he discussed in his presentation.

Microsoft Office Lens for iPhone and Android

Office Lens was launched on Windows Phone over a year ago and is now available as an app for Apple and Android devices. Office Lens is a handy capture app that turns your smartphone into a pocket scanner. It works with OneNote and OneDrive so you'll never lose a scan. You can use it to take pictures of legal documents, pages from books, receipts, business cards, whiteboards or sticky notes—then let Office Lens crop, enhance and save to OneDrive in the format(s) you choose. Just like that—all the scanned images you capture from Office Lens are accessible on all your devices. (I assume Office Lens is similar to Evernote's Scanner app only supported on Apple devices although it appears to do much more than Scanner)

Office Lens should be a great tool for anyone's genealogy toolbox, especially when you are at a location where a copy machine is not available, you are not allowed to copy documents, can't get a document to lay flat, or have to photograph it from an angle. Where Office Lens cannot recognize an area in a document as text, it will save that area in place as an image so the document is preserved in its original layout.

Below are some of the features Office Lens supports:

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Free State Research Guides from

Learning about the history and what resources are available for the places your ancestor lived can give your research a solid boost. The State Research Guide series includes historical background, a chronology, helpful information on census and vital record availability, highlighted collection for that place on, and links to important resources beyond By clicking on a state you can view and/or download the guide for that state.

View List of States

Ancestry Launches Largest Online Collection of Wills and Probate Records in United States

From Dick Eastmans's Onlie Genealogy Newsletter 2 Sept, 2015

The following announcement was written by the folks at Please note that the new collection will be available FREE of charge for the next few days:

More than 170 million documents from 1668-2005 now available exclusively on Ancestry;
New collection provides a wealth of deeper stories about ancestors’ lives

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15 Ways to Find Ancestors Death Information

The Ancestor Hunt website has provided a handy way to locate your ancestor's death information. The list apparently started with 14 items (see the URL) but it now contains 15.In addition to the 15, I urge you to alse read the excellent comments at the end of the article.

When researching our ancestors, one of the most important events is obviously their death. Determining dates and location of death is important as we document the major events in their lives. Most folks limit their search to the obvious repositories, whether online or not. That would include online or offline death indexes (such as the SSDI and State Death Indexes), death certificates, obituaries, and burial/cemetery records.

Finish Article on The Ancestor Hunt

Explore Your Family Tree with Family Tree Analyzer

How many of you have done a through audit of the data in our family tree software? I know I have not. To specify what I am talking about, have you checked to see if your database has children that were born after their parents died or couples that were married at a very young age? A few months ago an article in Dick Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter spoke of auditing our databases with the routines built into our programs. This is great, but most of us have never used them.

A few weeks later Dick Eastman wrote another article about this. He described a program that will not only help with the above issues of bad dates etc. but also provide us with clues for locating information we either had not thought about or never got around to looking for. Dick's article, Explore Your Family Tree with Family Tree Analyzer 5, brought to my attention a program that will not only perform an audit on your database (in the form of a GEDCOM file) but will also help you find missing records.

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Chronicling America Newspaper Collection at Library of Congress

Dick Eastman mentioned this in an article in his newsletter recently. This is a Library of Congress site that digitizes newspapers and make them available. Using this website you can search America's historic newspaper pages from 1836-1922 or use the U.S. Newspaper Directory to find information about American newspapers published between 1690-present.


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