Notes from the past…


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#31WBGB: Participate in an Online Genealogy Group

31 Weeks ButtonIt is already Week 9 of Tonia’s 31 Weeks to a Better Genealogy Blog challenge. This summer has gone by in a hurry!

This week’s task is to join and participate in an online genealogy group. This can be forums, mailing lists, message boards, facebook groups, whatever.

At first thought, I didn’t quite know how to respond to this assignment. In my experience, online genealogy groups are “hit-and-miss”. Those that I have belonged to, such as RootsWeb surname or location mailing lists, serve a purpose, but more in a passive fashion. I subscribe to several and get daily updates, but most do not concern my particular ancestors. These are more for monitoring, not participation. I also belong to several Facebook groups, but again, mostly just for monitoring.

An active online group, that “meets” routinely, with specific programs for each meeting, interaction, all that stuff?

Where, oh, where…?

Wait a minute…I remember DearMYRTLE talking about something…what was it…?

Second Life! A virtual world created to be just about anything, but in this case, a virtual genealogy society:

“The Second Life Chapter of the Association of Professional Genealogists meets monthly in Second Life and there are 3-4 other genealogy chats each week…”

Sounds like just what I’m looking for! So I went to Second Life, signed up, created an avatar and unique name (my online self!), and started wandering about this new world!

The late monthly online magazine Digital Genealogist created a nifty primer on Second Life.

So this week, I did little more than join and explore. Check back with Ruth’s Genealogy in the very near future for an update on My So-Called Second Life!

 


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#31WBGB: Interlink Your Old Blog Posts

31 Weeks ButtonIt’s Week 8 of Tonia’s 31 Weeks to a Better Genealogy Blog challenge! This week’s assignment is to begin to interlink some of my old blog posts.

There are 3 reasons for interlinking: help the reader find relevent posts, help the search engines find posts and to increase page views. That is the ultimate task, to get more people to visit a blog!

While I frequently link to other websites and blogs as appropriate, I don’t refer back to my own past posts very often. No more!

In review, we are eight weeks into the 31 Weeks to a Better Genealogy Blog challenge:

  1. Write an Elevator Pitch for Your Blog
  2. Make List Posts Work for Your Genealogy Blog
  3. Promote a Blog Post
  4. Analyze a Top Genealogy Blog
  5. Contact a Reader
  6. 27 Must-Read Tips for Genealogy Bloggers
  7. Write a Link Post
  8. Interlink Your Old Blog Posts

If you haven’t joined in the fun, it’s not too late! 31 Weeks to a Better Genealogy Blog is an exciting and most useful blogging primer!


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#31WBGB: Write a Link Post

31 Weeks ButtonIt is already Week 7 of Tonia’s 31 Weeks to a Better Genealogy Blog challenge. Time does fly!

This week’s assignment is to write a post linking to other blogs or websites. Types of link posts include those that build upon the points of others, suggest further reading, and build a resource on a topic.

I think I’ll take this great opportunity to highlight a few of my favorite online Texas genealogy resources:

The Portal to Texas History- “The Portal is a gateway to Texas history materials. You may discover anything from an ancestor’s picture to a rare historical map. From prehistory to the present day, you can explore unique collections from Texas libraries, museums, archives, historical societies, genealogical societies, and private family collections.”

The Handbook of Texas Online- “The New Handbook of Texas is a multidisciplinary encyclopedia of Texas history, geography, and culture. It comprises more than 25,000 articles on people, places, events, historical themes, institutions, and a host of other topic categories.”

Texas Adjutant General Service Records 1836-1935- “The Service Records series combines both official service record files from the Adjutant General’s Office and alphabetical files created by other agencies that contain records related to an individual’s service in a military unit” (Confederate States Army (CSA) records for Texas units).

Texas Physicians Historical Biographical Database- “The Texas Physicians Database consists of citations to biographical information related to early Texas physicians from the Texas State Journal of Medicine for 1905-1966. Most of these are one-line death notices, rather than extensive obituaries, and so they were not indexed in standard sources such as Index Medicus. Additional citations from other sources range in date from the 1870′s to 1966, and include early Texas medical journals such as the Texas Courier-Record of Medicine, Polk’s Directories, Texas newspapers and assorted histories of Texas.”

Tarrant County Marriage Index- Records dating as far back as 1950, many with images of the actual marriage documents.

Austin Genealogical Society Online Records- “Advancing genealogy through wide-ranging research and education, and supporting the preservation of the heritage of Austin, Travis County and Texas.”

John P. McGovern Historical Collections and Research Center- “In the Houston Academy of Medicine – Texas Medical Center (HAM-TMC) Library, has notable historical collections on the foundations of the medical specialties, Texas medicine, rheumatology, and North American public health.”