Here Are A Few of My Favorite Things . . . .
Happy New Year! I've been at this endeavor for about a year now. To celebrate the anniversary, I'd like to share some of the best things I've come across.
At the top of my list is Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter . This is really cool. It's in a blog format chock full o' news, informative articles, and lotsa links! Dick Eastman updates daily. Oh, yes, it comes in a free "standard" edition and a subscription-based "Plus" edition. Get either one or both, but this is a "don't-miss" for any genealogist.
While Eastman's newsletter is No. 1 on my list, "No. 1a" is the Encyclopedia of Genealogy, also created by Dick Eastman. This is a great collaborative online project that already covers many essential topics. Eastman explains that he created the shell of the work, but content is added, created or updated by readers. Now that's the way to network in the digital age! Another "don't-miss."
A new site that came online in 2004 is the World War II Registry of Remembrances, which is associated with the National World War II Memorial which opened last May in Washington, D.C. There are several cool things about the Registry. First, of course, it has an online searchable database. But it includes not just military veterans of the war, but also those who contributed to the effort on the homefront. The Registry allows users to register eligible persons as well. Photos of enrollees are also available online.
Virtual Jamestown is another site I really like. And while we're in that part of the world, check out the Maryland State Archives.
Local government public records sites are indispensable to genealogists. The two best county records sites I found in 2004 were those of Gregg County, Texas, and Jackson County (Kansas City), Missouri.
Everyone knows and loves Google, so this is not so much about the site as how to use it in some interesting ways. For some of the not-too-common surnames I work on, I signed up for free Google Alerts -- daily e-mail updates of news (or other Web content) containing the particular surname. [You take what you get--one of the first Google Alerts I received linked to a news story about a cousin pleading guilty to second-degree murder in a small Southern town]. Google is handy for locating online images relevant to your research, including photos of ancestors and cousins.
Finally, I came across a couple of blogs I like. Janet's Genealogy Blog is nice; a companionable read with great info. A neat, clean design and interesting content distinguishes John Howell's Genealogue.