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  1. The Inside Story: What Determines the Pace of an Indexing Project?

    from the December 2015 issue

    In a previous article we discussed the steps a project goes through before it can be worked on by volunteers in FamilySearch indexing Now let s examine the path of a project as it begins to be indexed On any given day there are as many as different indexing projects to choose from everything from vital records to scanned church books naturalization records newspaper obituaries probate records census records and many more Some of these projects are easy and well-suited to the beginning indexer others are more challenging Because these projects vary so widely in size complexity and their appeal...

  2. The Key to Finding My Italian Family

    from the April 2015 issue

    In family history research something very small can be the key to solving a mystery It may be a clipping tucked in an old wallet a faded document or a photograph Take another look in your family archives You never know where it will lead you In I wrote in these pages about the Italian document found among my father s papers that led me to my grandfather Antonio Ferrari s birthplace in Prella province of Parma and a meeting with my father s year old first cousin That first meeting led to many more visits and close ties to...

  3. The King's Cook

    from the February 2013 issue

    Gail and I met when she invited me to her library on Staten Island for a genealogy presentation as part of her an October program for Italian Heritage month The library director for Staten Island choose her library for this inaugural program She Googled for an Italian genealogist and came up with me but she had rather personal reasons for the choice She wanted help with her own genealogy research Gail comes from a rather tightly knit family who lived together over Mama s grocery story in Brooklyn They say it takes a village to raise a child She and...

  4. The Mail Order Bride and Willie & Minnie

    from the October 2004 issue

    These stories were told to me by one of my cousins who was able to visit with the mail-order bride She spoke to Carolina back in when she was years old She eventua lly lived to reach years old In my genealogical research I was able to obtain the death certificates of the principals involved from the state of California which established the primary facts I was able to ascertain the family relationship from a professional researcher Professor Luigi Maiocchi of Villa Guardia Province of Como Italy Rinaldo Gioacchino Arighi was born on September in Luisago Province of Como Italy...

  5. The Medical History Aspects of Genealogy

    from the May 2013 issue

    I have been a member of the IGG for about fifteen years now I have learned much and have had very good advice from various members but for some reason the medical aspect of genealogy is rarely mentioned We are all made from both of the people who preceded us our parents and those who preceded them etc and their medical history does have something to do with who we are and our own medical history and personalities As I researched my family families and found myself going in many directions I can remember my great-grand parents on my father's...

  6. The Mystery of the Grave

    from the December 2007 issue

    On that Day the Dead Will Reveal their Secrets I had never been to the grave of my father s parents Salvatore and Josephine DiBartolo until four years ago When I started my genealogical search I decided that it was time to make that visit Since my mother and father were estranged we weren t invited to attend their funerals I knew that my grandparents were buried in Calvary Cemetery and that the funeral services took place in St Leo Church in Corona NY I also knew that the wake was probably held at Cappolato Funeral Home directly across the...

  7. The Myth of Ellis Island

    from the June 2011 issue

    I was involved with a series of e-mail exchanges recently with a reader of this newsletter He claimed that his ancestor had her name changed at Ellis Island I pointed out that such a change was unlikely despite all the claims we hear of such name changes The ensuing e-mail exchange got me thinking that perhaps others have the same misconceptions that the family name was changed at Ellis Island I decided to amplify a bit on the subject in this newsletter Immigrants surnames were changed thousands of times but professional researchers have found that name changes were rare at...

  8. The Names of the Dead

    from the March 2010 issue

    Dusty registers with a whiff of mold Sit abandoned on sturdy metal shelves In disarray they stand they lean they crowd In tall precarious piles buried secrets Discolored by the touch of time Sifting the pages for ancestors long Forgotten my eyes scan unfamiliar Scripts round flourishes a river of words That flows densely on the page I become Witness as scenes unfold under my gaze The clerk dips pen to ink grates the black nib Into the rough texture of his paper He writes the names of the dead of newborns Of burials of matrimonial vows I see generations...

  9. The Names of the Dead - Avella, Italy

    from the February 2014 issue

    Dusty registers with a whiff of mold Sit abandoned on sturdy metal shelves In disarray they stand they lean they crowd In tall precarious piles buried secrets Discolored by the touch of time Sifting the pages for ancestors long Forgotten my eyes scan unfamiliar Scripts round flourishes a river of words That flows densely on the page I become Witness as scenes unfold under my gaze The clerk dips pen to ink grates the black nib Into the rough texture of his paper He writes the names of the dead of newborns Of burials of matrimonial vows I see generations...

  10. The New York City Cemetery Project

    from the January 2014 issue

    The New York City Cemetery Project documents the history of the city s graveyards Hundreds of cemeteries including small family burial grounds and churchyards as well as larger cemeteries containing hundreds thousands even millions of bodies have existed throughout the five boroughs since the th century Study of these cemeteries whether they have been lost in time or are still in existence provides much regarding the history of this ever-evolving city and its people and offers some intriguing answers to the question What does the city do with its dead This project and this site is the work of Mary...

  11. The New York Public Library

    from the June 2007 issue

    Ruth Carr is the chief of both the Irma and Paul Milstein Division and the General Research Division of the New York Public Library The library is located at Fifth Avenue and nd Street New York NY - - and it maintains one of the largest free collections of genealogical tools Using the laptop computer a video projector and her own Power Point presentation Ms Carr gave us a very informative lecture on the many genealogical holdings of the NY Public Library Listed below are the holdings described by Ms Carr The Milstein Division Room collects materials documenting American history...

  12. The Night Before Christmas

    from the December 2013 issue

    Twas the night before Christmas and all through the town many were still missing My dad Anthony Simone grew up in Bethpage Back then it was still called Central Park After brief stints with BH aircraft Severski and Brewster he went to work for Republic Aviation He graduated from Farmingdale High School in It was the depression so no chance of going to college Central Park schools only went up to eighth grade back then which is why he attended Farmindale HS Dad and Mom got married in She was Ethel Auer descended from several old Hicksville families Dad was...

  13. The Old Switcheroo Search

    from the February 2005 issue

    There are days when I'm researching my ancestors in indexes that I'd like to just to go berserk You know the feeling I'm sure You've tracked down evidence that has conclusively pointed to an event occurring in a particular place Yet when you start searching through the index there's either no information or when you finally find it you discover that it is not entered as you expected it to be I have learned over the years to maintain my composure more or less and to change my search strategy Instead of doing what we might consider a traditional search...

  14. The Origins of Italian Surnames

    from the January 2005 issue

    In general European surnames last names began during the th Century In Italy this method of identification only goes back about five or six hundred years to a time when it became fashio nable The th to the th Century was the time span when the practice slowly began but last names were not legally required until much later Following the Dark Ages when Feudalism began to collapse merchant classes began to rise As the Re naissance established a foothold the nobility were no longer the only people interested in keeping track of heredity The history of these periods of...

  15. The Orphan Train Kids

    from the December 2012 issue

    In the mid s there was a problem that was getting continually worse in the large cities such as New York and Chicago among others Many children were living on the streets some of them just young kids with nowhere to live sleep or eat These kids eventually became known as Orphan Train Kids They were not necessarily orphans some of them had parent s Most of these children were from immigrants who came to American with their parents with a dream of a better life Life for these immigrants was very hard a parent may have died on the...

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