Conferencia Iberoamericana de Genealogía

The following press release is provided by the organizers of the Conferencia Iberoamericana de Genealogía:

de la Tierra de los Padres (para los que vienen de España)

de la Tierra de los Padres
(para los que vienen de España)

“Do you have Hispanic ancestry or help others who do?

In just a couple of weeks you will have a unique opportunity to attend the Conferencia Iberoamericana de Genealogía, held September 9-14th at the Brigham Young University Salt Lake Center in downtown Salt Lake City. The theme of the conference is “Familias que cruzaron fronteras,” or “Families Who Crossed Borders.”

The highlight of the conference will be classes given free to the public on Friday, September 13th, and Saturday, September 14th at the Brigham Young University Salt Lake Center located at 345 W. North Temple.

Sonia Meza of Red de Antepasados

Sonia Meza
of Red de Antepasados

The variety of the classes and their instructors is unprecedented within the United States or anywhere in the world [emphasis added]. Presenters are experts in their fields and in their respective countries in genealogy research. Classes of interest include those for the novice beginner, the professional genealogist, and everyone in between. Immigration is a common theme for everyone whose ancestors came to the Americas and this conference will feature experts from around the world who will present classes and papers on this and related subjects. Besides the topic of immigration other class subjects include: research tips and strategies for just about every country and/or region in Latin America, Brazil, and Spain; methodology classes for beginners; ideas on how to involve children in family history; how to make best use of the resources of FamilySearch; and many more. To view the complete schedule we invite you to visit http://reuniongenealogia.blogspot.com/p/clases.html which is one of two websites that have been set up for the conference. Please note that the majority of the classes will be given in Spanish but there will also be a track of classes in Portuguese and a track of classes in English on both Friday and Saturday.

Preceding the conference from September 9th through the 12th will be a four-day gathering of genealogists, archivists, and professionals in the field of Hispanic research. This portion of the conference is the biannual gathering of the Asociación Iberoamericana de Genealogía, and will include presentations of research, guided tours in and around the Salt Lake area as well as in the Provo area, and some meals. This portion of the conference, sponsored by the Center for Family History and Genealogy at Brigham Young University and FamilySearch, includes a fee of $90. To register, we invite you to visit: http://genealogia2013.org/ .

Save the dates on your calendar as this will be an event you won’t want to miss. ¡Le esperamos!”

Can You Chart the Heart? Revisited

I’ve been thinking about this question in relation to the new emphasis in FamilySearch training that says “first the heart, then the chart” in genealogy and family history. It only makes sense. This idea is important to acknowledge by those who have their charts given to them, such as in long-standing New England or LDS families. Others who begin with a question, curiosity, or desire to know the unknown naturally start from the heart because there is no chart :-) The heart provides the motivation for the quest, yet sometimes our hearts are challenged. Rarely do we know this until symptoms manifest.

Equipment to Chart the Heart WPIn 1903, a Dutch physician named Willem Einthoven invented a way to chart the heart. He received the Pulitzer Prize in Medicine for this in 1924. The electrocardiogram (EKG or ECG) identifies abnormalities that provide doctors with information that helps in diagnosis and treatment. The heart exists; the chart assists. The same thing can be true in family history.

Anyone familiar with history knows that challenges within families have existed from the beginning. Without expounding, I have met many individuals over the years who resist family history and genealogy because of sensitive issues surrounding the chart. Family history can be fun if as a community we realize that one size does not fit all. Adoption and other circumstances require our understanding. I remember one student in the second grade who was asked to draw a picture of her family. She drew herself, her mom, her dad, a brother, and three sisters. In reality, her parents were divorced and she was an only child. She drew herself in her best friend’s family. In essence, she charted her heart.

The purpose of this post is NOT to address social or political issues, but to suggest ways that one can engage in and enjoy family history and genealogy by charting the way to turning the heart :-)

  • Start with anyone that you and/or your child would like to know more about :-) Consider a member of your family who has a quality or qualities that you admire. More often than not, they stand on the shoulders of those that came before them. Find out :-) Think about it; Who Do You Think You Are? finds a significant story, otherwise the majority of the audience would just tune out. Learn about your ancestor, write their story and/or a script, make your own episode highlighting a series of interesting life events. Make the ordinary extraordinary!
  • Family Roots Circle Pedigree WPPost a fill-in-the-blank chart in a high traffic area in your home, even on the refrigerator if necessary. Make sure it is laminated and that a vis-á-vis or extra fine Sharpie is readily available to record discoveries. Our chart was in the family room. Recently I decided I would erase all the ancestors and start over, more for fun than verification purposes :-) My daughter’s response was, “Mom, you do have all of this recorded somewhere else, don’t you?” My son came home that day and asked, “What happened to the ancestors!” Believe me, they notice :-) Again, the chart can start with anyone that turns your heart :-)
  • Create a chart to discover common or complementary talents, interests, abilities, and/or occupations. One can chart eye color, hair color, and/or other physical traits. [Don’t you just love military records and passport information that are so descriptive!] The point is for family members to discover patterns and what they have in common with their ancestors.

So, when I consider the titled question, my response is a resounding YES! [And, it can be a fun process.] Just like so much in life, one cannot appreciate what one has not discovered for oneself. It’s the journey, not the destination, that engages the heart and fills out the chart!

[If you have an idea for charting the heart and would like to share, please comment or send me message. At your request, full attribution or anonymity will be included in future posts. If you have your own blog and post a response there, send me the link. I would love to continue the conversation :-)]

Copyright ©2013 Lynn Broderick and the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

The 45th Annual BYU Conference on Family History and Genealogy: An Epilogue

YA Presenters Paul Woodbury and Hannah Allan WPThe work is done, the classes have concluded, and participants have gone forward. The 45th Annual BYU Conference on Family History and Genealogy has become part of history.

One of the benefits of attending a conference is visiting with friends and meeting new people. We learn from one another. We share our knowledge. We share our experience. We share our stories. We associate with those who understand our unique passion. We have many of our questions answered.

At this conference youth were learning and discussing family history. Young adults were attending and presenting. Our ever faithful seniors were presenting and learning as well. As we know, or have come to learn, family history involves the entire family!

How to Involve Youth: A Panel Discussion Left to Right: Matthew Hovorka, Tristan Ostler, Kylee Haunga, Brenden Alton, Mckayla Faddis and Devin Ashby (moderator)

How to Involve Youth: A Panel Discussion
Left to Right: Matthew Hovorka, Tristan Ostler, Kylee Haunga, Brenden Alton, Mckayla Faddis and Devin Ashby (moderator)

On Friday, participants had the opportunity to attend five more presentations throughout the day. There was no keynote address. Classes started at 8:30am and the room scheduled for the Facebook for Family History Consultants presentation was filled to overflowing at least 10 minutes before it started!

Jean Wilcox Hibben gave her presentation about Turning Genealogy into Family History: Creating Stories from Stats. She demonstrated that one does not need to inherit the family scrapbook to turn vital statistics into the stories of our ancestors.

There was at least one birthday among us. As it was said, this was an example of “the power of social media.” (If the person who had the birthday is reading this, I hope it was a happy one! I estimated that you would probably receive about 100+ “friend” requests :-)

The Facebook for Family History Consultants Crowd

The Facebook for
Family History Consultants Crowd

One of the last classes of the day was a Mac Users presentation. There was so much interest that Jimmy Zimmerman, who has been PC free for 5 years, decided to entertain a Mac Genealogy After-Party to answer additional questions and show additional features :-)

For those who may be interested, the conference syllabus is still available for purchase. It contains 586 pages of information suited to the new and seasoned genealogist. The CD syllabus is $15 + $2.50 shipping. The printed syllabus is also available for $30 + $10 shipping. Call 801-422-4853 or visit the conference website for more information.

Robert Dickey demonstrates the equipment used to digitize records. If you are interested in “a mission that fits your lifestyle” call 1-855-346-4774 or visit familysearch.org/mission.

Robert Dickey demonstrates the equipment used to digitize records. If you are interested in “a mission that fits your lifestyle” call 1-855-346-4774 or visit familysearch.org/mission.

I would like to take a moment to thank all who helped organize this conference including Stephen Young, FamilySearch Project Manager; Suzanne Russo Adams, FamilySearch Content Strategy Manager; Margo McKinstry, British Reference Consultant at the Family History Library; George Ryskamp, Professor of History at BYU; John Best, Assistant Program Administrator of BYU’s Department of Conferences and Workshops; and Tessa Lund, event planner in the Department of Conferences and Workshops.

Additionally, I would like to thank the vendors, the support staff of BYU Conferences and Workshops, and all of the presenters and participants. You made it a great conference!

[The Ancestry Insider, Renee Zamora of Renee’s Genealogy Blog, and I served as official bloggers. Be sure to check out their posts covering this conference!]

Copyright ©2013 Lynn Broderick and the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

Calling All Family History Consultants! (At least those who pre-registered :-)

The Final Day of the 45th Annual BYU Conference on Family History and Genealogy

The Ancestry Insider

The Ancestry Insider

The keynote addresses are finished, the vendors are gone, and the Ancestry Insider has said good-bye, this is the final day of the BYU Conference on Family History and Genealogy being held in Provo, Utah.

Initial registration offered Family History Consultants one day of training at no cost. For those who have pre-registered today is the day! Sessions will include training on using Facebook, the role of youth, new resources available, more about the heart then the chart, and concluding the day with a case study. There will be a track for adults discussing youth and genealogy. Research tracks include the U.S., British, English/Welsh, and LDS Ancestral Research. Tracks for computers & technology and ICAPGEN complete the conference program.

Interview with J. Mark Lowe

Interview with J. Mark Lowe

Yesterday J. Mark Lowe exceeded expectations as he addressed a full house at the BYU Conference Center in the opening session. His presentation entitled, “Coffins, Urns & Zip Lock Bags” was not only informative, but fun :-) He had all of us laughing at life and isn’t lives lived and lessons learned what family history’s all about? From sharing stories of growing up as the youngest of five children to nurturing the interest in family history and genealogy with his nephews and others, Mark exemplifies the family historian. It was impressive!

The transcript will be made available soon on the conference website so I won’t elaborate, but he provided a list of “possible objectives” to support and save our cemeteries:

  • Identify historic cemeteries
  • Make “public” aware of cemeteries
  • Research cemetery use & history
  • Preserve and protect cemeteries
  • Promote cemetery preservation through education and special events
  • Broaden support

He posed the question, “What’s in your cemetery kit?” Some of the items he suggested were cornstarch, a paint brush, gloves, an unbreakable mirror, and a camera. He also admonished us to watch out for chiggers :-)

He closed the session by singing “My Grandfather’s Clock” written in 1876 by Henry Clay Work. From one voice to many, this session ended on key. (I must admit, the sing-a-long was a first for me in this setting and I wanted to break out my guitar to play along :-)

I had the opportunity to visit with Mark after the opening session. I asked him how he enjoyed the conference. He shared that he really enjoys being with people that are like-minded in genealogy. I asked him if he had the opportunity to attend other sessions and what he learned. He mentioned that he gained insight when he attended the Huguenot in North America presentation. He also mentioned that it was interesting to hear about the plans and developments that are happening at FamilySearch. When I asked him what he’s been up to recently he mentioned the work of the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS), the War of 1812 Pension Digitization Project, and the recent FGS Webinar he gave on July 18th entitled, “Discovering Local & State Militia Records” which is now available to the public for viewing. After his final presentation here at the conference, Mark was off to catch his plane. He is speaking at the 38th Annual Seminar of the Kentucky Genealogical Society (KGS) on Saturday, August 3rd. It is an all-day event with four lectures given by Mark, including “Coffins, Urns & Zip-lock Bags.” For more information, visit the the KGS website.

Copyright ©2013 Lynn Broderick and the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

The BYU Conference on Family History and Genealogy is Going South

The Third Day of the 45th Annual BYU Conference on Family History and Genealogy

Well, maybe I’m exaggerating just a bit. Actually the South, or really an expert in Southern U.S. Research, has come to us :-)

Today J. Mark Lowe will give the final keynote presentation, “Coffins, Urns & Zip-Lock Bags.” Mark is a professional genealogist, author, and teacher. He is an engaging storyteller that weaves into the minds of his listeners the principles of sound methodology using his experience in conducting Southern research.

Following the opening session, methodology education continues with Jean Wilcox Hibben, Nancy Lauer, Hannah Allan and Stephen Ehat. As part of this track, Mark Lowe’s final presentation at this conference will be at 1:30pm entitled, “Here Comes the Bride, and There She Goes.”

The U.S. Research track continues as well along with the Scottish and German Research tracks. Dutch, Estonian, Russian, and Slovakian Research will also be offered today. More presentations about online research, as well as the first day of classes to assist LDS Family History Consultants with their church responsibilities will also be conducted.

Wednesday’s opening session of the BYU Family History and Genealogy Conference

Wednesday’s opening session of the
BYU Family History and Genealogy Conference

Yesterday Dennis C. Brimhall, managing director of the LDS Family History Department, gave the opening keynote address. His remarks were entitled, “Not Just a Chart, But the Heart.” He mentioned that there are about 70,000 family history consultants world-wide and about 4,700 Family History Centers in 129 countries throughout the world. He shared that there are 2.9 billion names in the FamilySearch database and that 1.7 million names are added daily. Since April over 700,000 photos have been uploaded to the Family Tree system. Presently, there are 237 camera teams digitizing records and it is hoped to raise this number to 500. He estimated that it will take 5-7 years to digitize the Granite Vault.

And then he asked the question, “How well are we doing?” He said that only 25% of members of the LDS Church have registered to use FamilySearch.org and only 8% have logged on in the past 12 months. He said that “we” have been too technology-centric and that a significant number of LDS Church members do not have access to a computer, such as in the Philippians where 1 out of 10 youth have access.

The quandary has been that those who are paying for this system are not using it. He said that Family History Centers have missed the point; they have been places to do research, not places to learn about oneself and that people must start with themselves. He shared a vision of the future Family History Center becoming a Discovery Center that is family friendly. Presently, NEHGS and the British Library, among others, will soon receive this newly-designed center. He also emphasized that the new family history center is in the home.

He shared other statistics, such as 27% of contributors to Family Tree are friends from other faiths. He emphasized that FamilySearch has partnered with major companies serving the genealogical community to increase the number of record sets available to the patrons through avoiding duplication of acquisitions.

He closed by sharing statistics about RootsTech. This year there were 25,644 total attendees, 68% attended by remote access or by live stream. In 2014 RootsTech will be broadcast to 600 locations in 10 different languages with an estimated 120,000 participants.

He said that FamilySearch seeks to champion the things of the heart, as well as the chart. He said that FamilySearch is committed to providing such an experience. He announced that at the end of August a new pamphlet, My Family, will be made available to assist members in beginning their family history.

[The transcripts of the keynote addresses given at the 45th Annual BYU Conference on Family History and Genealogy will be made available on the conference website in the near future.]

Copyright ©2013 Lynn Broderick and the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

Can You Chart the Heart?

The Second Day of the 45th Annual BYU Conference on Family History and Genealogy

Those involved in family history and genealogy are familiar with charts: names, dates, places, and relationships all displayed in an organized fashion. Some have these charts in files, others have published books, and others have charts hanging on the walls of their homes. They provide a sense of knowledge about oneself and those from whom one descends.

Elder Allan F. Packer (Courtesy of BYU Conferences & Workshops Photography)

Elder Allan F. Packer
(Courtesy of BYU Conferences & Workshops Photography)

Yesterday Elder Allan F. Packer extended “an invitation to shape the future” to an overflow crowd at the BYU Conference Center in Provo, Utah. He asked us to get involved, to become “change agents,” in the field of family history and genealogy. He listed fun and fulfillment as the top reasons for the need for change in the number of people involved in this work. Greater unity in [the] family and society, the doctrine [of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints], population growth and record-keeping were other points he mentioned.

And then he suggested “specific things [we] can do.” First on his list was to start with the youth. (This conference hosted about 70 youth yesterday. I had the opportunity to pop-in to their sessions, filled or almost filled, to capacity throughout the day. Will the youth have their very own conference in the near future?)

Paul, Anna, Kate and Rachel

Paul, Anna, Kate and Rachel

He also asked us to “change the sequence of how we introduce people to family history, help them to discover themselves, use stories and pictures, and simplify.” He stated that “family history is more than genealogy.” He encouraged us to “discover the history of the past, create history by living in the present, and shape the history of the future by what we do now.”

During his address Elder Packer reported that the participants of this conference came from 6 countries, 24 states, 89% of the participants were under the age of 60, and 75% of conference participants were female. Of this last point he said that this must change :-)

In the past, transcripts of the keynote addresses were made available on the conference website. I will keep you posted as to their availability this year.

Today Dennis Brimhall will discuss, “Not Just a Chart, But the Heart.” As you know, he is the Managing Director of the LDS Family History Department. After the keynote address there will be 40 classes for participants to choose from divided into 8 tracks. There will be a track for Beginners. Southern U.S. Research and Irish Research will have their own series of classes. Internationally, Canadian, French, Jewish, and Japanese Research will be addressed. Ancestry.com will be presenting a series of classes as well. DNA Research, the FamilySearch Family Tree, and FamilySearch Compatibles round out today’s offerings.

Copyright ©2013 Lynn Broderick and the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

“An Invitation to Shape the Future”

The First Day of the 45th Annual BYU Conference on Family History and Genealogy

Cameron Hodson, Leslie Nielson, Karen Peterson, and Tessa Lund are ready to greet registrants at the BYU Conference on Family History and Genealogy

Cameron Hodson, Leslie Nielson, Karen Peterson, and Tessa Lund are ready to greet registrants at the
BYU Conference on Family History and Genealogy

I was only at the registration desk for a few minutes yesterday to pick up conference materials but in that short amount of time I met individuals from coast to coast. I look forward to meeting many more today as the 45th Annual BYU Conference on Family History and Genealogy begins a week dedicated to increasing knowledge and sharpening skills that will further research endeavors. Over 700 individuals are expected to attend. The opening keynote address will be given by Elder Allan F. Packer* entitled, “An Invitation to Shape the Future.”

Cameron Hodson, Leslie Nielson, Karen Peterson, and Tessa Lund will be ready to greet and assist conference participants. Today marks the first time a Youth track has been offered. From mastering the basics of family history and genetic genealogy to photographing graves to post online, the youth who will attend are sure to find something of interest.

BYUFHGC Hall WPFamilySearch will be on hand to give “a whirlwind tour of FamilySearch resources,” and encourage “effective search strategies and sound research practices” as well as discuss “FamilySearch book scanning.” Other online research presentations will be offered throughout the day including one by Mark Olsen of MyHeritage and another by David Williams of Fold3.

Stephen Ehat will discuss in two separate presentations oral histories and the whys and hows of descendancy research. Nancy Lauer will enlighten us on how to know if we have found the right ancestor. Kory Meyerink will discuss “evaluating evidence and resolving discrepancies.” Jean Wilcox Hibben, who recently served as a lead researcher for the new PBS series Genealogy Roadshow, will present, “Who is That? Why Did Your Ancestors Associate with Apparent Strangers?”

Research in Scandinavia, Italy, and Poland will be addressed today. An introduction to Hispanic research will also be covered. U.S. Research will address an eclectic mix of topics such as the Huguenots, migration, Maryland and probate research.

This is also the day to learn more about Church Records. Although J. Mark Lowe will not be giving the keynote until Thursday morning, those attending this track will have the opportunity to hear his presentations on the “Circuit Riders and the Early Methodist Church” and “Finding Baptist  Ancestors in Southern Manuscripts.” Lisa Arnold will cover “Quaker Records; “ Roger Minert will talk about “German Immigrants in American Protestant Church Records;” and George Ryskamp will discuss “Records of the Seven Sacraments of the Catholic Church.”

BYU Family History Library WPThe BYU Family History Library will be open from 8am to 9pm Tuesday through Thursday and until 6pm on Friday. The library has subscriptions to many noted genealogical websites as well as houses a large collection of microfilm. To check to see if the library has a microfilm of interest, obtain the film number from the FHLC at FamilySearch.org and then check FHL Films and Fiche at BYU to see if the film of interest is here. Scanning, printing and other services are available. For more information about the BYU Family History Library call 801-422-6200.

[*Elder Packer is the Executive Director of the LDS Family History Department and a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. At one point in his life he worked for MyFamily.com. He and his wife are the parents of eight children and twenty-five grandchildren.]

Copyright ©2013 Lynn Broderick and the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

The Single Leaf Interrupts Your Summer…

BYU Conference Center NE WPActually, I hope to enhance your summer as I make this announcement :-)

Unknown to some is a week-long conference held in Provo, Utah, near Sundance resort, you know, Robert Redford’s place. Provo is located about 45 miles south of Salt Lake and if you are interested in genealogy you are probably familiar with that city. Although people come from as far away as Australia, and this year from Africa, to attend this conference, some locals may not even know that this conference has been going on for 44 years!

Therefore, I would like to announce that the 45th Annual BYU Conference on Family History and Genealogy will be held July 30th through August 2nd, 2013 at the BYU Conference Center, 770 East University Parkway, Provo, Utah. There is still time to register if you would like to attend. Remember, sometimes airlines have great last minute deals :-)

Why would you want to interrupt your summer plans?

Unlike genealogical institutes that have you register for one course for the entire week, this conference allows the participant to chose from 160 classes categorized into about two dozen tracks. The syllabus is a treasure trove of additional information, bibliographies, and links to further one’s study of a topic so one can go as deep as necessary or desired.

The opening session for the conference is entitled, “An Invitation to Shape the Future” and will be given by Elder Allan F. Packer, executive director of the Family History Department for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. On Wednesday, Dennis C. Brimhall, President and CEO of FamilySearch International will speak to conference participants about “Not Just a Chart, but the Heart.” This year BYU is pleased to announce that J. Mark Lowe will be teaching a number of classes as well as presenting the keynote on Thursday. Mark is well-known in genealogical circles for his expertise in Southern U.S. Research and his sense of humor. I’m curious to know what he has to say about “Coffins, Urns & Zip-Lock Bags.” Classes are offered from the beginner to advanced levels by some names that you may know and some who are just qualified to share their expertise :-) For a complete schedule of presenters and their topics visit ce.byu.edu.

As we have gone digital, the youth have been a great asset in helping FamilySearch Indexing get record indices online. This year the youth will have their own track on opening day, Tuesday, July 30th. Attendance does not require pre-registration so if you are a youth or know a youth, consider dropping by and staying for the day. It’s free and, with the hot Utah sun, it’s also air conditioned. (Did I mention that the entire facility is fabulous?)

Family Chart Masters and Genealogy Wall Charts are giving away free fan charts to conference participants. You must order them online and they will be available for pick up at the conference. Visit the conference website for more information.

The conference will also have exhibitors present to display their newest products and services. Come check out the newest offerings in the field of genealogy. With the retirement of the free PAF program, Ancestral Quest, Legacy FamilyTree, and RootsMagic will be available to demonstrate their software to help those who may have been reluctant to leave PAF, or those new to genealogy, find a computer database program that suits their preferences. For Mac Users who prefer not to use Fusion, Parallels, or Boot Camp to run the PC programs, there are other options. Ancestry.com will be at the conference. They have programs for PC and Mac. There will be a beginner class on Friday entitled, “Mac Users: Simple Tricks to Save You Time.” Talk to the presenter about program options or contact me. I like Mac :-)

As mentioned above, the Youth track on Tuesday is FREE and does not require pre-registration. Noncredit registration for the four-day event, including a CD syllabus, is $180. Family History Consultants, who may attend their specific track for FREE on Friday, may register for the full conference and receive a $50 discount on general registration. The credit option cost for the conference (2 credits of History 481R – Family History Directed Research and a CD syllabus) is $440. To register, call 1-877-221-6716 or visit familyhistoryconferences.byu.edu.

Men’s and women’s housing, which includes meals each day of the conference, is available on the BYU campus for $155. (That’s four nights lodging and 12 full meals.) Married housing is not available. (See the conference website about hotel accommodations.) Conference participants who are not staying in campus housing may purchase a $32 lunch card that covers lunches at the Morris Center each day of the conference. Lunch includes a choice of two entrees, salad, fruit, desserts, and drinks. It’s all you can eat! For more information about the conference, visit the website or call 801-422-4853.

Copyright ©2013 Lynn Broderick and the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

Blues Skies Cap the End of RootsTech 2013

RootsTech2013-Find My Past 3

Boy Scout Merit Badge WPThe third day of RootsTech 2013 began with snowy roads and about 2000 young people descending on the Salt Palace Convention Center. Upon arriving I met a group of young men that were going to earn their genealogy badge from the Boy Scouts of America, and later found 2000 youth contained in Hall 2 with presentations geared to an introduction to genealogy and family history. Smaller groups toured the facilities with guides. The young people were all smiles as they entered the exhibit hall. Pictures were taken by the RootsTech waterfall. But, as an adult attending the conference, the youth were hardly noticeable. Well-mannered and polite, they blended with genealogists of all ages.

There appeared to be fewer adult attendees this Saturday. The developers were gone. There were only three sessions, and a reduced fourth, offered. The Saturday keynote presentations were sponsored by MyHeritage. The recap is posted at RootsTech.org. David Pogue opened the general session. You don’t want to miss it!

After the opening session, my focus was DNA. The first presentation was a panel from the three leading companies providing DNA testing for genealogy: Family TreeDNA, 23andMe, and Ancestry. Bennett Greenspan, Tim Janzen, MD, and Catherine Ball represented the respective companies. CeCe Moore moderated for the panel. DNA at RootsTech 2013 WPThe attendance in each DNA presentation provided standing room only. Later in the day, a wall was removed to accommodate the crowd. By a raise of hands, the crowd was heavily interested in DNA for genealogy. Most individuals had the results from more than one test from more than one company. The main issue raised during the Q&A was the ability of individuals to compare data with results from all three companies. Bennett Greenspan, with concurrence of the panel, cited business profit as the main reason for the “brick wall.” Many discussed GEDmatch as a possible solution to the problem, but the way in which Ancestry released the raw data to customers is incompatible with the current version of GEDmatch. (Judy Russell, The Legal Genealogist, has written a blog post about Ancestry’s recent move to fulfill the promise to release raw data needed for comparisons that may be of interest to you.)

FamilySearch Indexing expressed gratitude to all of the volunteers who assist them by providing an opportunity for those in attendance to have a picture taken on the mock-up of the Ellis Island immigration dock. The present goal of FamilySearch Indexing is to reach the one billionth record indexed! It is estimated that the goal will be reached in the next few weeks. FS Indexing WPAt the close of RootsTech 2013 the number of records indexed was at 988,216,302 and climbing. If you are a registered indexer with FamilySearch, why not get online and help in this worthy project that benefits everyone in the genealogical community. I personally found a new record subset of interest, US airplane immigration lists from after World War 2 to 1954. These records may be of interest to you as well. If you’ve never indexed before and would like to try it, give it a test run at familysearch.org. A batch of records can be competed in small increments of time and an index is a great tool to genealogists everywhere :-)

Usually, as the conference comes to a close, fatigue sets in as one says good-bye to old friends and new. Blue skies capped a very successful conference. Mike Bronner, Warren Bittner and Nathan Machula FHL March 23, 2013 WPAlthough there were other dinners and parties being held around the venue, I was at the Family History Library. According to Warren Bittner, CG, that is where “real” genealogists go to party :-) Warren was the coordinator of the Advanced German Research Course held this past January for the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy, and at least five of us from that course were in attendance at the library last night, including our own Judy Russell, JD, CG. Although the library has changed its hours to close early on Saturdays, it remained open until 9pm to the delight of all who attended.

Thank you to all who volunteered to make RootsTech 2013 a success!

(By the way, Randy Seaver of Genea-Musings, an offical blogger, has compiled a list of blog posts written during the course of the conference. Thank you, Randy! A list of official bloggers and links to their sites can be found at RootsTech.org.)

Copyright ©2013 Lynn Broderick and the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

It Started with a Snowstorm: RootsTech 2013 on Day 2

Genealogy Workflow Model WPThe weather matched the influx of developers yesterday at RootsTech 2013. Developer Day is a day when, well, RootsTech invites those behind-the-seen individuals to the conference for sessions on development :-) It began with the announcement of the winners of the Developer’s Challenge in the opening session. Tim Sullivan and Jyl Patee provided the keynotes. More to come in my wrap-up, but if you want to see the opening session for yourself, check out the Friday recap at RootsTech.org.

Since the beginning, I’ve always enjoyed Developer Day at RootsTech. Great sessions with great questions and discussions, I’ve never been disappointed in the sessions I’ve attended. This year I went to the Genealogy Workflow Model presented by Joe Martel of FamilySearch. For the user, Google Search…and Beyond drew a large crowd for David Barney in Hall 1, the largest hall at the conference. Unconferencing sessions, presentations not listed in the program but suggested by participants, were going on throughout the day as well.

Maureen Taylor RootsTech 2013 WPMaureen Taylor, The Photo Detective, was there to find clues in pictures past, as well as there being a number of live demos in the exhibit hall.

The evening brought a Late Night at the Library with a pizza dinner provided for those who pre-registered. Story@Home provided an storytelling concert at the Conference Center. No pre-registration was required.RootsTech 2013 WP

And, it was the day the T-shirts went on sale at the registration desk. I tried to tweet about it multiple times yesterday, but the conference sponsored Internet continued to fail me. I was not alone in this challenge. :-( Different than had been revealed to me on Wednesday, these are the T-shirts available for purchase.T shirts RT 2013 WP

In future posts, I will expand on the events of Friday. Time is short as I rush off to the final sessions on Day 3. Today RootsTech is looking forward to almost 2000 young people to descend upon the Salt Palace Convention Center! (Don’t forget to check out the posts of the official bloggers!)

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