Tuesday’s Tip

29 Mar 2016

Free Family History Books Online – Tuesday’s Tip

Today’s post is short and sweet and
about free family history books online.
Family History Books (books.familysearch.org) contains more than 200,000 digitized genealogy, family history, and local history publications available from around the world. “The collection includes family histories, county and local histories, genealogy magazines and how-to books, gazetteers, and medieval histories and pedigrees.” The titles included in the Family History Books collection come from the following partner institutions:

Allen County Public Library
Brigham Young University Harold B. Lee Library
Brigham Young University Idaho David O. McKay Library
Brigham Young University Hawaii Joseph F. Smith Library
Church History Library
Family History Library
Houston Public Library – Clayton Library Center for Genealogical Research
Mid-Continent Public Library – Midwest Genealogy Center
Historical Society of Pennsylvania
Onondaga County Public Library
University of Florida, George A. Smathers Libraries
Arizona State Library, Archives and Public Records

You can access Family History Books from FamilySearch.org as follows:
1. Through the Books Tab

A. Go to https://familysearch.org/. Click on the Books tab as shown at the top […]

8 Mar 2016

Women Lost U.S. Citizenship When Marrying

At certain times in the early 20th century,
women lost U.S. citizenship when marrying foreign-born men.
The U.S. Expatriation Act of 1907 mandated that all women acquired their husband’s nationality upon marriage. As a result, American women who married foreign-born men in the United States between 1907 and 1922 lost their U.S. citizenship.

Before 1907, women who married foreign-born men and continued to live in the United States remained American citizens. After March 2, 1907, provisions of the Expatriation Act changed all this. Congress mandated that “any American woman who marries a foreigner shall take the nationality of her husband.” Therefore, after 1907, regardless of where the couple resided, the woman’s citizenship was determined solely by her husband’s.

I had heard of this anomaly when I researched naturalization records for my e-book, Discovering Immigrant Ancestors. But I only realized recently that my great-aunt, Louise Marie Hann, found herself exactly in this situation when she married Swedish-born Ernest Anderson in […]

29 Apr 2014

Preservation Week 2014 Textiles

Preservation Week 2014 Textiles is today’s post. This year Preservation Week is from April 27-May 3. A joint effort by the archives, library, and museum professions, Preservation Week is designed to share professional expertise on preservation of historical materials with individuals and organizations.

As part of this celebration, this retired archivist and Sassy Jane are featuring five posts this week on preserving your family history papers, photographs, data. and textiles.
Genealogists are family historians and sometimes they’re museum curators too. If you need to preserve family textiles – Grandma’s quilt, Mom’s wedding dress, Great-great-grandma’s needlework sampler – then here are six quick tips for you.

Preservation Week 2014 Textiles
1. Textiles like the same environment you do. No basements, no attics, no garages, no place where the temperature and humidity cycle up and down constantly.
2. Gravity is not your friend. Store textiles horizontally and roll rather than fold. If you do have examples hanging vertically, take a tip from museums and let them “rest” horizontally […]

25 Mar 2014

Translating Meyers Konversationslexikon – Tuesday’s Tip

Have you used Meyers Konversationslexikon?

Meyers Orts- und Verkehrs-Lexikon des Deutschen Reichs (English title: Meyers Commercial Gazetteer of the German Empire) is an essential resource for German genealogy researchers. Meyers Orts is available in print at libraries and at Ancestry and FamilySearch.

But for English-speaking researchers, Meyers Orts can be tricky to use. This historical reference work is, of course, published in German and in Fraktur typeface. An additional complication for monolingual English-speaking researchers (like me) is the frequent use of abbreviations. When you don’t speak German, it’s hard to know what word is being abbreviated. And the type can be very small for aging eyes to see.

While there is no substitute for the seminal Meyers Orts gazetteer, another Meyers publication may also help. Meyers also published the Meyers Konversationslexikon. Full title: Großes Konversationslexikon: Ein Nachschlagewerk des allgemeinen Wissens. Sechste, gänzlich neubearbeitete und vermehrte Auflage. Leipzig und Wien 1905-1909. (English title: Meyers Large Encyclopedia. A reference book of general knowledge. Sixth, completely revised and enlarged edition. Leipzig and Vienna from 1905 to 1909).

Some of the same information found in Meyers Orts is also in Meyers Konversationslexikon. This “Large Encyclopedia,” includes concise information on a city, town, or village. Included is geographic location, population, province, civil registry offices, churches and synagogues, all valuable information when searching for ancestors. Also included in each entry is information on civic organizations, institutions, schools, agriculture, factories, businesses, governmental organizations and hierarchy, transportation, and more.

Using Meyers Konversationslexikon is relatively easy thanks to the digital version at Wörterbuchnetz, from the Trier Center for Digital Humanities at the University of Trier. Their digital edition of Meyers Konversationslexikon uses the Roman alphabet, has adjustable type size, an excellent search interface, and best of all, when you turn on the translating function of your browser, the gist of each entry is easily readable in English.