Notes from the past…

Monday Madness

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Today, my insanity is not associated with a particularly sneaky ancestor. Oh, there are several that are still being difficult, for sure…knock, knock…someone’s at the door…excuse me for a second…well, hello guys!…it’s Dovie’s 5 husbands at my front door!…oops, daydreaming again… :)

No, today I am stressing about (not really stressing, more like intense consideration) 2 things:

  1. The set-up of this blog
  2. Subscription genealogy sites

Sressor #1- I’m still not satisfied with the layout of my genealogy blog. Oh, no! I used that black-listed term, “genealogy blog”! Please forgive me! And please, please, please don’t pay attention to anything you read here or to any photos, documents, newspaper clippings…because they are USELESS TO GENEALOGY RESEARCHERS! But I digress…

I can’t decide how to set up the pages for those afforementioned photos, documents and newspaper clippings. As the blog is now, to actually view, for example, the newspaper clipping about Dovie’s marriage to Ollie Stanley, it takes 3 mouse-clicks and 3 pages, SURNAMES>McBURNETT>Dovie C McBURNETT, to actually be able to view that clipping. Too many clicks! I’m considering leaving all of the images in my Picasa Web Album and just linking to that album. At Picasa, I’ll set up a separate folder for each person. Currently I have 1 album per surname, instead of per person. With my free 1GB storage at Picasa (500 pix max per album), I am allowed 250 albums. That’s more than plenty for now. Eventually I may max out, but that will probably take years. I can upgrade to 1000 albums with 1000 pix per album- 10 GB is $20/year. Very reasonable.

I’m not totally happy with this idea, either. I wish I could set up albums-within-albums, nested albums so that all of the individual McBurnett surnames would be in 1 big McBurnett album. Picaca doesn’t do that, unfortunately. As I read through the Picasa Help pages and user discussions, nested albums is an active topic. Perhaps the Google minds are listening…

Stressor #2- Subscription genealogy sites. I currrently have a 1-month trial to GenealogyBank. In the past, GenealogyBank has been a major, sporatic source of my research findings. I say sporatic because, depending on who I am researching at the moment, GenealogyBank is an all-or-nothing deal. Right now I am studying my McBurnett surname, and I have found a big bunch of newspaper clippings in the Dallas Morning News and Fort Worth Star-Telegram archives. I have been able to knock down a few minor McBurnett brick walls, thanks to GenealogyBank!

The same with my Stanley and Kennedy ancestors in the North Texas area. The Dallas Morning News and Fort Worth Star Telegram archives contain numerous references to these folks.

But only for North Texas ancestors. For surnames in other areas, I have found very little at GenealogyBank. I’m certainly not complaining! I love GenealogyBank! And what I have done in the past is sign up for the 1-month $9.99 trial. That usually gets me all that I can get for that particular surname.  My current 1-month trial will expire on Wednesday. I’m trying to decide whether to upgrade to the 1-year subscription for $69.95, for continuity’s sake. I have probably found almost 100 items total for all my surnames from GenealogyBank, so on a per-item basis, it’s the best deal in town!

I also have annual subscriptions to Footnote. com and Ancestry.com.

Footnote has been a gold mine of Civil War records, much cheaper and quicker than the National Archives for the same documents. I have downloaded Civil War service records for many ancestors, again for $69.95 per year. Also a fantastic deal! That subscription exires next month.

Ancestry I use mostly for the census enumerations. They also have a lot of indexes to other records, which alert me to the existance of particular documents that I’m looking for. Then I can send off for the actual records. Ancestry is more expensive than Footnote and GenealogyBank, but still very useful.

The abilty to access these sites at any time of the day or week is invaluable to me! If I had to wait until I had time to actually make the physical journey to these types of record sites to do my research, I would never get anything done! Maybe when I retire…

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