Bill's Genealogy Blog

Bill Buchanan is a long-time genealogy enthusiast, living at Onoway, Alberta, Canada. This blog will describe my experiences as I research my family history and help others.

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Location: Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada

I am a retired online school teacher. During July 2007 - January 2010, and September 2011 - March 2014, I provided part-time support for https://familysearch.org This is very rewarding. I have helped many with the free Personal Ancestral File 5 (PAF5) software. I continue to help others with the Family Tree and related FamilySearch products.
Since April 2010, I was an assistant director of Edmonton Riverbend Family History Centre. In recent months I was director of this FHC. I have a FHC blog at Bill's Family History Center Blog For information the Latter-day Saints and family history click http://mormon.org/

Friday, July 09, 2010

Get My Ancestors
Two weeks ago I helped a friend with her family history. Her grandmother had given her two book of her own research which she had published, with extensive family group charts, photos, and photocopies of documents. My task was to enter the deceased family members into new FamilySearch. It was a few days of fun as I got to know her family better by data entry, combining records, researching, and finally having the family file cards she wanted printed. In the Family History Center on Wednesday I used the free Get My Ancestors software to download 10 generations of her ancestors and their descendants. She had submitted no genealogy to FamilySearch, and I had input fewer than 100 people. I was amazed that there were almost 18,000 deceased family members downloaded. Good job ohanasoftware.com! (Caveat: It only works if you have access to new.familysearch.org, which is not yet available to the general public.)
Indexing
Wednesday I also updated my Powerpoint presentation on indexing, and I gave the FHC Director a copy last night. She wants to use it to teach a seniors group about indexing. The plan is to use the presentation, followed by having members of the group do the Indexing "Test Drive". The "Test Drive" is really well done.
FindMyPast.co.uk
Last night in the FHC, a patron was seeking for the parents of her ancestor Virtue Hall, born 1843 in Somerset, England. (Apparently her family get a laugh from the fact that she is "seeking virtue".) I was able to help her find Virtue Hall as a young child with siblings and her parents John and Harriott Hall in the 1851 census at findmypast.co.uk. She was delighted!
Promoting Family History in an LDS Ward
The Director and I also met with a group of three people from a new congregation, who wanted to know what they could do to to promote family history. We discussed some ideas, including the Administrative Guide to Family History, and how the FHC can be a useful resource. I also mentioned the success that Parkland Ward is having with the new LDS family history course, and assigning family history consultants to help the class members. Knowledgeable and motivated family history consultants are the key to making things happen on the ward level. At the FHC level, the same is true. With knowledgeable and motivated staff, you are ready to help others to find joy and success in family history!

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