It’s A New Day For RootsTech!

RootsTech now begins on Wednesday! As the conference evolves, RootsTech continues to expand its offerings to the #NotAtRootsTech audience, including 5 live-streamed sessions today (up from 3 sessions last year) and an opportunity to participate via Twitter with the hashtag #NotAtRootsTech with a chance to win #RootsTech prizes! After looking over the sessions to be live-streamed, it was so tempting to stay home rather than make the trip to Salt Lake City … lol :-) Here’s Wednesday’s live-streaming schedule found at RootsTech.org:Is anyone with me on staying home this year? It looks like a great lineup!

Okay, Okay, I have no excuse for *not* being there. Besides the plethora of sessions offered, the Expo Hall has expanded and the highlight of any conference is seeing old friends and meeting new ones! This year is especially fun as I connect with the Twitter crowd. If you haven’t joined us for #genchat, #genchatDNA or #AncestryHour check out these hashtags on Twitter and join the fun!

The Media Banquet was held last night and Jen Allen shared some statistics about this year’s conference:

  • all 50 of the United States will be represented
  • 42 countries will be represented
  • as of Tuesday, 14, 200 passes have been sold
  • 197 exhibitors will be on display in the Expo Hall with 60 new companies & 65 companies that have exhibited at RootsTech four or more years

Even if you have been to RootsTech before, there is plenty new to see! Those at the banquet got a sneak peak of the conference theme, “Connect.Belong.” Dan J. Debenham shared a preview of Relative Race. As I mentioned in my last post, “I know of no better team to connect with or belong to on television than Relative Race!” Nevertheless, the best part of the evening was seeing old friends, connecting with social media friends, and meeting new people destined to become friends. Relationships are what family history and genealogy are all about!

As far as those who will be at #RootsTech, one session that I’d like to point out is a 3-hour session titled, Access & Preservation (RT7953). It will be held in Ballroom I of the Salt Palace Convention Center beginning at 9:30 a.m. Who will be speaking?

Welcome & Introduction—David Rencher, CGO, Family Search International

Keynote—Brewster Kahle, Internet Archives

Digital Preservation Presenters—

Laura Stone, Arizona State Library

Ken Williams, Utah State Archives

Wendy Hanamura, Internet Archives

Internet Archives Record Access Presenters—

Hollis Gentry, Smithsonian

Curt Witcher, Allen County Public Library

Stephen Valentine, FamilySearch International

It’s a mini-conference within the conference! Also, there is no accompanying handout for this session so if you are onsite it will be worth your attendance.

Not quite interested in access and preservation at this time? Do you have other genealogy goals? There are many other sessions from which to choose so download the app via the App Store or Google Play Store and take a look. If you are #NotAtRootsTech you still have the handouts available for many sessions that can provide an overview and allow you to glean some new information that will benefit your family history pursuits. Don’t forget to provide feedback for any session you attend onsite or virtually. This information is important to the RootsTech team in planning next year’s conference!

For those at RootsTech, the Expo Hall will be open from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Interested in DNA testing? I learned this evening that 23and Me is offering their ancestry service for $69 and their ancestry + health test for $99 for conference participants. AncestryDNA is offering their autosomal test for $59. I have not received word yet from the other 3 DNA companies. I just thought I’d let you know if you have decided to use one or more of these services.

Near Salt Lake City and would like to join us? RootsTech passes are still available. Check them out! There is an Expo Hall only pass for $10 at the registration desk after the keynote concludes.

Once again I invited you to follow me on Twitter @thesingleleaf. You may also follow me on Instagram @thesingleleaf.

Have a wonderful day!

About RootsTech
RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I am designated as an official ambassador to the RootsTech Conference and, as such, I am provided complimentary admission and other services to accomplish my duties. Nevertheless, I have been with RootsTech since its inception and with its predecessor for many years as a paid participant. As always, my coverage and opinions are my own and are not affected by my current status. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Copyright © 2018. Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

The Relative Race Continues … On BYUtv

Have you heard? Relative Race continues on BYUtv one week from tonight, March 4th at 7 p.m. MST, with a 90-minute premiere and our family could not be more excited!

What is Relative Race?
Once compared to the award-winning television show Amazing Race, Relative Race has become popular in its own right. The show uses DNA to identify and connect each team to a trail of 10 of their living relatives discovered through this process. Each new relative has something to share as the teams race to a final destination for the $50,000 prize. Of course, each team wins by gaining the knowledge and relationships of these new found or confirmed relationships.

Relative Race previewed their show at RootsTech 2016. I had the opportunity at that time to sit down with the Relative Race team and discuss the premise of the show. As Dan J. Debenham outlined the specifics, I was surprised to learn that each couple would stay the night at the home of the new found relative. What Dan did not reveal was that one couple in particular would have a difficult time having Season 1’s Team Red stay the night. When that particular episode debuted, viewers were left asking, what? As an audience we had the opportunity to get to know Team Red through a number of episodes. Our omniscient view left us wondering why. Since I don’t want to spoil it if you haven’t seen Relative Race Season 1, I’ll refrain from expounding. Relative Race is a great show to binge-watch!

On February 8, 2017, Relative Race won the award for Best New Reality Show at the National Cynopsis TV Awards. As Lenzworks, the video company that produces the show, explains on their website, “The Cynopsis Awards is a national competition and is judged by industry professionals including programming executives and media developers.”

By the time Relative Race received this award, Season 2 was set to debut and Relative Race returned to RootsTech to preview the show and meet two of the teams. One of those teams was Team Blue, the couple who had difficulty having their Team Red Season 1 cousins stay in their home. I had the opportunity to talk with Team Blue about that defining moment of Season 1. I met their adorable children. I completely understood why they would prefer to not have strangers stay in their home, but I asked the brazen question—Would Season 2 “redeem” this husband and father?

Relative Race Season 2 also introduced us to Joe of Team Black. His story is compelling and demonstrates the power of DNA to answer questions about family and bring situations to resolution.

Relative Race Season 3 continues the race.  This time Joe from Season 2 was one of the photographers who accompanied a team on their personal journey. This season the teams will begin in Washington D.C. and introduces a new dynamic—different combinations of family members! In the past the teams have always been married couples but this type of race can accommodate other family situations. Seeing such potential, I even tweeted a request during Season 1 to include such family dynamics as parent-child. My request has been granted! Although Season 3 consists two married couples, it also hosts two sisters representing Team Green and a father and son representing Team Blue.

Additionally there have been changes in the direction of the race. Season 1 led teams through 10 stops from San Francisco to New York. Season 2 led teams from Miami to Boston. No one but Relative Race  knows where Season 3 will lead! Nevertheless, here are the teams and their assigned colors:

Team Red—Troy & Nicole Hitt, a married couple from Humble, Texas
Team Green—Jaime Grace Harper & Morgan Harper Nichols, sisters from Los Angles, California
Team Blue—Michael & Dylan Anderson, a father and son team from Concord, North Carolina
Team Black—Rebecca & Johnathon Hoyt, a married couple from McAllen, Texas

One week from tonight Season 3 will debut on BYUtv, but if you want a sneak peek, come to RootsTech on Friday, March 2nd at the Salt Palace Convention Center. Dan J. Debenham will keynote along with 1984 Olympic champion, Scott Hamilton. Later on Friday, at 1:30 p.m., Relative Race will highlight Season 3 in Room 254A with a panel consisting of Dan J. Debenham and Teams Red and Green.

Have a conflict in your schedule? Relative Race will be at booth 734 in the Expo Hall each day and display an interactive Relative Race screen that will be located in the North Foyer from Thursday, March 1st through Saturday, March 3rd.

Whether you find yourself at RootsTech or Not-At-RootsTech, join in watching Season 3 of Relative Race beginning March 4, 2018 at 7 p.m. MST! There are multiple ways to access the show, including the BYUtv app. When you download the app, you’ll always have an episode at your fingertips. You may also “like” Relative Race on Facebook, follow Relative Race on Instagram, and/or follow @RelativeRace on Twitter and when you tweet use the hashtag #RelativeRace. During the Sunday night broadcast of each episode there are a number of us on Twitter. I invite you to follow us, join the conversation, and have some fun! This year’s RootsTech theme is “Connect. Belong.” and I know of no better team to connect with or belong to on television than Relative Race!

About RootsTech

RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I am designated as an official ambassador to the RootsTech Conference and, as such, I am provided complimentary admission and other services to accomplish my duties. Nevertheless, I have been with RootsTech since its inception and with its predecessor for many years as a paid participant. As always, my coverage and opinions are my own and are not affected by my current status. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Copyright © 2018. Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

 

Have You Heard About “Relatives At RootsTech”?

FamilySearch announced a new venture for this year’s annual RootsTech conference—Relatives at RootsTech. For your information, here is the full announcement:

Thousands of people gather from countries around the world to attend RootsTech, the world’s largest genealogy conference. With so many family history enthusiasts under the same roof, it’s only a matter of time before someone looks around and wonders, “Is anyone here related to me?”

Now they—and you—can find out who’s related by using your phones and the FamilySearch Family Tree mobile app.

Simply open the Family Tree app on your phone, and at the top of the screen, tap the Find Relatives at RootsTech banner. To allow the app to show how you’re related to other conference attendees, tap Yes, Opt In.

Once the app has finished searching, you’ll see a list of RootsTech attendees who are related to you, with their name, photo, and relationship to you. Tap on any person from the list to see more details about how you’re related. You’ll be able to see people on your list right away, but note that it may take up to 20 minutes for you to appear on the lists of other conference attendees.

If you want to send a message, go to the top right corner of the screen, and click the Message button. Then you’ll be able to write a subject line and message to get in touch with your relatives. You can chat about your common ancestors, arrange a time to meet up between classes, or just say hi. It’s up to you!

And as an extra bonus, FamilySearch has a special gift for every RootsTech attendee who meets a distant relative using the app, takes a photo together, and adds it to the wall of the FamilySearch booth in the Expo Hall.

RootsTech is all about making connections with family, and this is a great way to do that. You might have more in common with the person next to you than just your class schedule. Download the Family Tree app now, and find out!

In order to participate, you must register for a free FamilySearch account and uploaded your GEDCOM if you do not have a pedigree on FamilySearch Family Tree. These preparatory steps are best accomplished before you arrive at RootsTech but can be completed onsite. Any questions? Let’s Talk. If not, I look forward to seeing you at RootsTech!

Not at RootsTech? The live-stream schedule has been announced and you can follow the hashtags, #RootsTech and #NotAtRootsTech, on Twitter to enter to win great prizes!

About RootsTech
RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I am designated as an official ambassador to the RootsTech Conference and, as such, I am provided complimentary admission and other services to accomplish my duties. Nevertheless, I have been with RootsTech since its inception and with its predecessor for many years as a paid participant. As always, my coverage and opinions are my own and are not affected by my current status. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Copyright © 2018. Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

Connect. Belong. Play. RootsTech :-)

In preparation for RootsTech, the largest genealogy conference in the world, I just have to tell you about a couple of family history games that you’ll want to check out as you stroll the Expo Hall. This year’s RootsTech theme is “Connect. Belong.” and these items are sure to carry this theme back into your home to the enjoyment of your family!

The first game is geared towards young adults as a “getting to know you” game titled, “Did You Know …” Just imagine saying that title with a Minnesota accent! It’s in our family’s DNA. :-) This game comes as a pack of cards with questions covering five different categories: Bon-Appétit, Dating, Nice 2 Know, Adventure, and Pop Culture. The one question that stays with me is, Which do you prefer—Star Wars or Harry Potter?, and in our family we discovered a defector among us … lol :-)

The second game is titled, “Roots & Branches,” formerly called “Your Family Tree—The Game.” It’s a cute tree with roots and branches exposed revealing the path from start to finish. A player rolls the dice and moves the determined spaces. If time is an issue, you can speed up the game by using more dice. There are gophers and squirrels involved in this game, which I love, and here’s why:

When a player lands on a gopher, that player says something about everyone else playing the game. When a player lands on a squirrel, every player says something nice about you!

The game is over after each person crosses the finish point, but the first one to cross receives a larger portion of the family dessert. The game came with a small packet of M&M’s that never made it to the first time we played in our family. [I just don’t know what happened.]

The card categories are: About You, Our Family, Our Ancestors, Nice to Know. I highly recommend that you sort through the cards for those applicable to your family members’ ages and your family situation.

Sample questions from each category include:

About You:

“What sport would you like to eliminate from the world and why? [Definitely not football … lol :-)]

Our Family:

“If your siblings reminded you of animals, which animals would they be and why?” [You can only imagine the responses!]

Our Ancestors:

“What is a story of an ancestor which has strengthened your faith in God?” [Although questions in this category cover many topics, the question I just shared reminded me of a story President Russell M. Nelson told at RootsTech 2017. The story can be found beginning at 15:50.]

Nice to Know:

“What are some good family rules for using the internet?” [Other questions involve safety, preparedness, favorites, traditions, etc.]

Roots & Branches is a board game targeted for ages 4-Adult and can be played with 2-6 Players. My children described the game as a family history “Chutes and Ladders” or “Candy Land.” This game has the potential to become a game board classic!

Here’s just one other idea to use from time to time. The game board can be mounted to a vertical magnetic surface, such as the front of a refrigerator, and played with magnet dots purchased from your local office supply store. Families tend to congregate in the kitchen and these questions can be great for conversation before, during, or after dinner. It doesn’t need to be played all in one sitting. At the end of the week, the family members that complete the path can receive a special treat.

If you have young children, if you like playing games, if you want to pique your family’s interest in their history, these games are for you!

Stop by The Connections Games booth (1647 & 1746 noted on the above map) in the RootsTech Expo Hall February 28 – March 3 during regular hours. Not at RootsTech this year? You can order online at The Connections Games, LLC.

About RootsTech
RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.
Disclosure of Material Connection: Doug & Carol Ladle gave me a complimentary copy of each of these games, but the review is written just because family history is my game and I like to play. I also like these games so I recommend them for your consideration. As always, my coverage and opinions are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Copyright © 2018. Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

Heirloom Show & Tell At RootsTech 2018

Heirloom Show and Tell was a new experience offered for the first time at RootsTech last year. I remember walking by and seeing vintage toys and other objects displayed. With all there was to see and do at the conference, I never returned to have an item of interest examined.

This year I have a friend who received a set of nesting dolls as a gift featuring some of the Presidents of the United States of America. We’ve done a little research but we still would like to know more. We hope to find our answers at this year’s conference.

Heirloom Show and Tell will be held in the Expo Hall beginning March 1st through March 3rd. According to the RootsTech website, an attendee may bring an antique, heirloom, or photo that they would like an expert to evaluate. The promotion says, “Bring in any small item, or a photo, or a large item you’ve been wondering about, and we’ll tell you about it.” I’m looking forward to hearing what the experts have to say.

How about you? What item will you be packing along to RootsTech this year?

HAPPY PRESIDENTS’ DAY!

P.S. For those unable to attend the entire conference, two new passes will be available in the coming days: 1) a pass to attend the keynote sessions plus the expo hall each day ($29) and 2) an expo hall only pass ($10). The keynote plus expo hall pass will be available beginning this Wednesday. The expo hall only pass will be sold onsite each day at the registration desk after the keynote has concluded. Follow me on Twitter @thesingleleaf to get the latest updates.

About RootsTech
RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I am designated as an official ambassador to the RootsTech Conference and, as such, I am provided complimentary admission and other services to accomplish my duties. Nevertheless, I have been with RootsTech since its inception and with its predecessor for many years as a paid participant. As always, my coverage and opinions are my own and are not affected by my current status. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Copyright © 2018. Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

How To Preserve A Husband*

Be careful in your selection. Do not choose when too young. When once selected give entire thought to preparation for domestic use. Some insist on keeping a husband in a pickle, others are constantly getting one in hot water. This makes him sour, hard and sometimes bitter. Even a poor variety may be made sweet, tender and good by garnishing him with patience, well sweetened with love and seasoned with kisses. Wrap one in a mantle of charity and keep warm with a steady fire of domestic devotion and serve with peaches and cream. Thus prepared, one will keep for years.

* This recipe was found handwritten among an ancestor’s papers. Further investigation revealed that it was commonly printed in regional cookbooks. The earliest reference I found was published in 1907.

Copyright ©2018 Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

Ready-for-RootsTech Guide to DNA 2.0

Preparation is a key to success. When it comes to RootsTech, the largest genealogy conference in the world, it can make all the difference, especially if you’ve set specific goals you want to achieve at the conference. If one of your goals is to learn more about DNA testing and genetic genealogy, this guide is for you.

Why DNA?

There are three reasons individuals test their DNA for genetic genealogy: 1) to learn ethnicity estimates, 2) to connect with genetic cousins for reunions or for information about their common heritage paper trail, and 3) to discover personal health information. There will be opportunities at this year’s RootsTech conference to learn all you need to make informed decisions for each of these scenarios.

RootsTech will offer over 40 sessions covering genetic genealogy ranging from beginning to advanced, some of which are pre-registration lab classes, to inform and educate participants on this timely topic. The Expo Hall will host five genetic genealogy companies who will have representatives available to answer your questions: 23andMe, AncestryDNA, Family Tree DNA, LivingDNA, and MyHeritage DNA. 23andMe is sponsoring the Demo Theater this year and will host a special presentation, “DNA User Experience Stories” with Angie Bush and Diane Southard on Thursday, March 1, 2018 at noon. Something new this year is the GeneRosity Registry, which is part of Intermountain Healthcare and a major sponsor this year. They seek to accelerate “genetic discoveries for future medical breakthroughs.” If you have already taken a direct-to-consumer DNA test and you are interested in advancing medical science, stop by Booth 2247 in the Expo Hall.

To maximize time at RootsTech, PREPARE NOW!

1. Create a list of your questions. First, write down any DNA questions you have at this point. When you have finished reading this post and its associated links, review your questions to see if you have discovered your answers. If not, organize them and bring them to RootsTech. You will then be prepared to ask these questions in any session where the presenter offers a question-and-answer period, or you can bring your questions to the Expo Hall to have your questions answered by representatives of the different DNA companies. Clear, concise, and thoughtful questions are always easier for the experts to answer.

2. Define your goals. For example, if you purchased a Getting Started pass, there are only 2 sessions that you may attend: “DNA User Experience Stories,” held Thursday at noon in the 23andMe Demo Theater and “Before You Test: DNA Basics You Need To Know” that also will be held on Thursday at 4:30 p.m. in 155B. If you consider yourself technologically advanced, “Update to Third Party Autosomal DNA Analysis Tools” will be offered at 11 a.m. on Thursday. For the beginner and intermediate family historians, there are many sessions spread throughout the 4-day conference. (See the charts, one for each day, listing the DNA sessions at the end of this post.) Pre-registration for DNA lab sessions and sponsored lunches is required. There are still a few spots left in various sessions.

3. Become familiar with the 5 DNA companies represented in the Expo Hall. If you are planning to test your DNA as a result of what you learn at this conference, become familiar with the 5 DNA companies and what DNA tests are offered by each. Also learn about the legal notices for each company, such as their terms of service and privacy policies. Each company’s legal notices are different. Presenters have their own vested interests as employees, affiliates, and business owners and may only cover a portion of relevant material in any given session. Time is limited. Not all companies may be represented in each session you attend. Understanding the legal notices before coming to RootsTech frees you to make informed decisions at the conference. Most, if not all, companies will offer special pricing on their kits at the conference. Many individuals test with more than one company.

A Note About DNA Test Terms and Conditions

As individuals learn more about genetic genealogy, questions arise. Some of them are legal and are best answered by an attorney without a vested interest in the business of genetic genealogy or even within the genealogy community. Opinions vary throughout the genealogy community and beyond. Each company has its own terms of service and opportunities to opt in or opt out of research studies and to allow degrees for sharing your genetic information. One common question is, Who obtains the rights to my genetic information? It is a good question to ask each company you consider testing with because you must be comfortable with their answer.

For example, one company states,

“We do not claim any ownership rights in the DNA samples, the DNA Results and/or the genetic information in the DNA Reports. Any genetic information derived from the DNA samples, the DNA Results and/or appears in the DNA Reports continues to belong to the person from whom the DNA was collected, subject only to the rights granted to MyHeritage in this Agreement. In addition, you understand that by providing DNA samples and/or DNA Results to us, you acquire no rights in any research or commercial products that may be developed by us that may relate to your DNA.

We will, if requested by you, destroy the DNA sample provided by you. To request destruction of your DNA sample, please contact us using the contact details indicated in the “Contact Us” Section below. In addition, you can, at any time, delete your DNA Results and DNA Reports from the Website by using the delete function from the “Manage DNA kits” page on the Website, or request MyHeritage Customer Support to do this for you.

By submitting DNA samples to us and/or DNA Results to the Website, you grant us a royalty-free, world-wide license to use your DNA samples, the DNA Results and the resulting DNA Reports, and any DNA samples and/or DNA Results you submit for any person from whom you obtained legal authorization as described in this Section and the resulting DNA Reports, and to use, host, sublicense and distribute the resulting analysis, to the extent and in the form or context we deem appropriate on or through any media or medium and with any technology or devices now known or hereafter developed or discovered. You hereby release us from any and all claims, liens, demands, actions or suits in connection with the DNA testing, DNA samples, DNA Results and/or DNA Reports, including, without limitation, errors, omissions, claims for defamation, invasion of privacy, right of publicity, emotional distress or economic loss. This section continues even if you stop using the Website or the DNA Services.” (“Terms and Conditions,” myheritage.com, emphasis added).[1]

4. Create a DNA testing plan. Creating a DNA testing plan will provide focus, save you money, and give you the best chance of answering your research questions. Be familiar with each of the three DNA tests used for genealogical purposes, and be confident that the kit you order will answer the family history question you want answered. There are 3 tests offered for genealogical purposes:

Autosomal DNA, atDNA, is the collaborative DNA from all of your ancestors, male and female, that recombined to define you. It is the DNA from which your ethnic origin estimates are derived as far as scientists and others in related fields can currently determine. These estimates are subject to modification as the reference panels on which the results are based are modified. All 5 companies offer this test. Some companies identify matches to the X chromosome. One good question to ask each company is, How many SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms) are tested by your company? [2] The more SNPs, the more comprehensive the results. This is the DNA test that assists you in finding living cousin matches with others who have tested.

 Y-DNA is the DNA that defines paternal lineage and is inherited only by males; it is passed down from father to son. It provides positive identification of the biological paternal family and outlines the migration pattern of direct paternal ancestors (from son to father, etc.) as far as science can currently identify. It is defined on the top line of your traditional pedigree chart. It is a male-only test, so females must find a brother, father, brother of their father, or son of a brother to test for this information. Family Tree DNA is the only major company to offer this as an independent test for genealogical purposes. There are also many surname projects administered through Family Tree DNA.

Mitochondrial DNA, mtDNA, is the DNA inherited by all of a mother’s children, but passed on only to the next generation by females. It identifies the maternal migration pattern (from son or daughter to mother, etc.) as far as science can currently identify. It is defined on the bottom line of your traditional pedigree chart. Family Tree DNA is the only major company to offer full sequencing of the mitochondrial genome for genealogical purposes.

DNA results are just another source, like vital records, censuses, probate or land records. They can assist in extracting one’s biological heritage. It is important to note that a DNA test may or may not provide the answer to your question, or it may provide an answer that leaves you or others in your family uncomfortable. Expectations of extending your lineage must be managed. Not all individuals who take a DNA test find generations of ancestors. Many online trees contain misinformation, and DNA testing is not a short cut to obtain a verified pedigree. In addition, an individual must be prepared to accept that an identified living cousin through DNA may not want to have contact or establish a relationship with the one tested.

Not all individuals need DNA testing to answer their family history questions. But, DNA testing offers those who have unanswered questions, such as adoptees, amazing results in extending their biological pedigree. It is a source that relies on the permission of family members to obtain. All people who test must agree to the legal notices, such as terms of service and privacy policy, of the company they select for testing. These policies are different for each company and are best read in an environment conducive to understanding the terms.

Genetic genealogy is an exciting and developing field. It can provide answers to family mysteries. It has brought joy to many and sorrow to a few. It is a topic worth learning about so you can make an educated decision about how DNA testing can potentially help you strengthen your family relationships among the living and add to your family tree.

Not registered for RootsTech? There’s still time. Check out the website.

Appendix:

Disclaimer: The purpose of this article is for information only. The final decision to act upon this information is your own and you take sole responsibility for all outcomes.

[1] MyHeritage. “Terms and Conditions”. (https://www.myheritage.com/FP/Company/popup-terms-conditions.php: accessed February 12, 2018)
[2]“A single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP, pronounced snip) is a DNA sequence variation occurring when a single nucleotide adenine (A), thymine (T), cytosine (C), or guanine (G]) in the genome (or other shared sequence) differs between members of a species or paired chromosomes in an individual.” International Society of Genetic Genealogy. “Single-nucleotide polymorphism”. (http://isogg.org/wiki/Single-nucleotide_polymorphism: accessed February 12, 2018).

About RootsTech

RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I am designated as an official ambassador to the RootsTech Conference and, as such, I am provided complimentary admission and other services to accomplish my duties. Nevertheless, I have been with RootsTech since its inception and with its predecessor for many years as a paid participant. As always, my coverage and opinions are my own and are not affected by my current status. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Copyright © 2018. Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

It’s Groundhog Day … It’s Groundhog Day … It’s Groundhog Day!

A few years back I had the opportunity to visit Punxsutawny, Pennsylvania, but I never saw a living groundhog. The home of Punxsutawny Phil, the town does not resemble the town depicted in the iconic film by the same name. I was disappointed. Nevertheless the town square displays a number of caricaturistic statues around its borders.

According to a signpost by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, it was “as early as 1886 [that] German immigrants here observed Groundhog Day … According to folklore, if the hibernating groundhog—known as Punxsutawny Phil—leaves its burrow on February 2 and sees its shadow, there will be six more weeks of winter. The legend is based on a European custom predicting the length of winter by weather conditions on Candlemas, an ancient Christian festival.” In the old country, the tradition was based on a hedgehog that would either see its shadow or not. When the Germans settled in Pennsylvania, they continued this tradition of weather prediction by substituting the groundhog. The first official Groundhog Day was celebrated at Gobbler’s Knob on February 2, 1887.

This year while in Virginia I finally enjoyed my first groundhog sighting—in a parking lot! Too fast to snap a photograph, I only have the memory. I don’t know why these critters are so endearing but they are.

Genealogists & family historians are a lot like groundhogs—they come out from the libraries and archives long enough to assess if they’ll enjoy six more weeks of relatively uninterrupted winter research.

If not, it’s time to visit the cemeteries. :-)

HAPPY GROUNDHOG DAY!

[Groundhog Day Explained was created by C.G.P. Grey. Check out his website @ http://www.CGPGrey.com.]

Copyright ©2018 Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

It’s Time for the NFL Super Bowl! Now What About Your Family History Bowl?

Warning: Participating in family history and genealogy while watching the NFL Super Bowl with your significant other may cause side effects including distraction, interference with relational bonding, and failure to fully enjoy chips, salsa, and guacamole. Research responsibly.

It’s time for the NFL Super Bowl! The winner of the Lombardi trophy will soon be determined on the field. The New England Patriots secured the AFC Championship and the Philadelphia Eagles beat the Minnesota Vikings to win the NFC Championship. Sunday will be the final game of the year—Super Bowl LII!

As the big game approaches, I think of another “big game,” RootsTech, to be held at the Salt Palace Convention Center this month, beginning Wednesday, February 28 through Saturday, March 3, 2018. This year’s headliners includes Brandon StantonScott Hamilton, Henry Louis Gates, Jr., and Natalia Lafourcade. Although their keynotes may inspire and motivate us to pursue our heritage, the actual routes we run for our genealogy touchdowns will be as individual as the ancestors we pursue.

To assist us, RootsTech offers approximately 300 sessions from which to choose to customize a plan of attack to avoid fumbles and interceptions when pursuing our family history goals. Whether you attend the conference onsite or virtually you can download the RootsTech app either from the App Store or Google Play. Once you have downloaded the app you will have access to information about each session and any of the accompanying handouts to enhance your training.

So how can RootsTech assist you? How can you make the most of your time at the conference and in Salt Lake City? Here are a couple of suggestions:

Know why you are attending. This may seem like a strange recommendation but it will make all of the difference because everything you do will center on the why. RootsTech is an amazing conference, but it is impossible to see, hear, and do everything. Knowing your why will help you manage the all the possibilities.

Make SMART—Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound— family history and genealogy goals for RootsTech. The more specific you are, the greater the opportunity to achieve your goals during the conference. These goals determine which sessions to choose or if it would be best to skip a session and head to the Expo Hall or Family History Library. The assistance available at RootsTech and the neighboring Family History Library can easily move you closer to a genealogical touchdown, to winning your game, and ultimately to achieving the [insert your ancestral surname here] trophy of your Family History and Genealogy Bowl.

To the players and coaches of the Philadelphia Eagles and the New England Patriots who play this year’s Super Bowl, the genealogists and family historians who struggle to find time to play the game (i.e., research), to our ancestors whose lives were rarely blessed more than ours, I close with a quote that I first posted for Super Bowl XLVIII and is known as The Man in the Arena[1]:

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

Cheering you on in your game to win your Family History and Genealogy Bowl!

1.Roosevelt, Theodore. “Citizenship In A Republic.” Delivered at the Sorbonne, in Paris, France on April 23, 1910. Accessed January 4, 2014. http://www.theodore-roosevelt.com/trsorbonnespeech.html. [For a copy of the complete speech in PDF format click here.]

About RootsTech
RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I am designated as an official ambassador to the RootsTech Conference and, as such, I am provided complimentary admission and other services, opportunities, and meals to accomplish my duties. Nevertheless, I have been with RootsTech since its inception and with its predecessor for many years as a paid participant. As always, my coverage and opinions are my own and are not affected by my current status. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Copyright ©2018 Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

One More RootsTech 2018 4-Day Pass Giveaway Begins Now!

It’s autumn. It’s football. It’s a time when the RootsTech team begins to unveil their plans for this amazing one-of-a-kind conference! I spoke with Jen Allen, the “quarterback” of the RootsTech team, last February as the 2017 conference was underway. She was already planning for 2018! Something old, something new … Oh, wait, … but this still applies to RootsTech 2018. :-)

As I’ve said before, there are 3 reasons I enjoy RootsTech:

  1. Keynote addresses from individuals whose life experiences and successes are varied. RootsTech has brought in speakers from the tech industry, the science community, the writer’s circle, the political realm, the entertainment industry, the sports arena, the bloggers’ sphere and of course, the field of family history and genealogy. I have never been disappointed. In 2018, RootsTech is looking forward to hearing once again from Steve RockwoodBrandon Stanton, and Scott Hamilton will keynote Thursday and Friday opening sessions, respectively. The Saturday keynote has yet to be announced but Dallin H. and Kristen M. Oaks will be the keynote speakers for Family Discovery Day. Replacing the Innovator Summit this year is the Innovation Showcase that will highlight the best technology to assist you in achieving your family history goals.
  2. RootsTech offers a customized learning opportunity with over 300 sessions from which choose. I’ve heard in the past individuals lamenting because there were too many choices and the participants were placed with the difficult task of choosing one favored session over another. The good news is that if a session fills quickly, there is always another quality session to attend.
  3. The Expo Hall provides the greatest gathering of organizations, societies, and vendors to explore the latest in the field of family history and genealogy. There’s the 23&Me Demo Theater with presentations about some of the products on the floor and the Discovery Zone where interactive displays provide opportunities to come to know your heritage in fun and unique ways. Innovation Alley was introduced 2 years ago, highlighting new tech tools and products. The Heirloom Show and Tell is back, where you can bring a small item or a photo of a larger item and have an expert tell you more about its historical significance. In addition, there will be a Coaches’ Corner to provide one-on-one mentoring to help you overcome your brick walls.

In addition to my initial 3 reasons, one cannot forget that the RootsTech venue, the Salt Palace Convention Center, is within walking distance of the Family History Library. Prepare now to access some of the greatest collections on earth that will help you find your ancestors!

This 4-day pass allows entrance to the daily keynote addresses, your choice of over 300 RootsTech sessions, entry into the Expo Hall, and all of the evening events. It does not include sponsored lunches, computer labs, transportation to or from the conference, lodging accommodations, meals, or any other expenses that you may incur. If you’d like to register for Family Discovery Day, it is free, but you must register separately.

Now, how do you enter this giveaway? It’s simple.

This year the RootsTech theme is “Connect. Belong.” and there is no better way to connect with others about family history than to share a brief replay of a genealogy touchdown—that glorious moment when research came together, you entered your genealogy end zone, and you felt like spiking the ball in celebration (a.k.a., doing the genealogy happy dance as it has been described for generations). Although this contest is open to all interested in family history and genealogy, including those who do not like football, it is void where prohibited. Football terminology is not required and entries may be of any length. Submit entries via my Let’s Talk Family History page or share on Twitter by tagging me @thesingleleaf. Each entry is one chance to win. Participants may submit more than one entry if the entries are submitted separately.

I ask your permission to include quotes from your entry in future posts. If your submission is used, proper attribution will be given. If you’d rather not be quoted in a future post or you would rather remain anonymous, please indicate this with your submission. The more you enter, the greater your chances to win!

So, why wait? Send me a message via my Let’s Talk Family History page. Fill out your name, email, and in the comment section describe one of your genealogy touchdowns, a.k.a., genealogy happy dance moments, OR describe your challenging brick wall, OR provide a statement about what you hope to learn at RootsTech.

As mentioned, this contest is void where prohibited. Please remember that I will not use your email for any purpose other than entering you into this contest and to notify you if you are the winner. The winning prize is non-transferable so only enter if you plan to attend. The contest runs from November 27, 2017 from 8 p.m. ET/6 p.m. MT to November 30, 2017 at 7:30 p.m. ET/5:30 p.m. MT. The winner will be notified that night by email.

Don’t delay your registration, though; it’s Cyber-Monday and this Pass is currently discounted at $169, a savings of over $100. Use the code CYBER18. Other registration packages are available. If you are the winner of this contest, RootsTech will reimbursed you for the full amount that you prepaid.

Enter today! Good Luck! Hope to see you at RootsTech’18!

About RootsTech

RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I am designated as an official ambassador to the RootsTech Conference and, as such, I am provided complimentary admission and other services to accomplish my duties. Nevertheless, I have been with RootsTech since its inception and with its predecessor for many years as a paid participant. As always, my coverage and opinions are my own and are not affected by my current status. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

© 2017 Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.