Saturday, April 26, 2008

Conference Time is HERE!

I just love this time of year! Not only are the flowers blooming, but genealogical conferences are too!

Last weekend was the Ohio Genealogical Society's annual conference. Over 600 attendees and vendors made for a great 3-day event in the Cincinnati area. Conference Chair, Kenny Burck, did an outstanding job as ever. A big thanks to him and his crew for a job well done.

Now it's off to Kansas City for the National Genealogical Society's conference May 14-17. See details at </">>. Four days of conference for this one. Not only are there fantastic speakers, but the range of items in the vendor hall is overwhelming. As a few examples, WillowBend Books, Maia's Books, the Ohio Genealogical Society, Dick Eastman, RootsMagic, plus many, many others. The vendor hall is open to the public, so stop by and see what's available in genealogical programs and books.

If you have never been to a conference, it would be one of the best learning experiences for you. Topics vary from beginners to the advanced and all areas in between.

So get the comfy shoes and "get out there!"

-- Aunt Merle

Thursday, April 10, 2008

A New Scam in Town

Suzanne Russo Adams from has posted this notice on the Association of Professional Genealogists website. There are always those who try to cash in upon a name -- using one that sounds similar to a reputable site, as this posting shows.

-- Aunt Merle

From Suzanne: "We have recently become aware of three websites purporting to allow
family history research:,
and The sites claim to have "the largest online
genealogical search tool" and promote themselves as the foremost
resources for genealogy, but from what we can tell, these sites are
nothing more than a series of web pages with links to other services.
These sites, in our opinion, are clearly fraudulent.

On each site, potential customers are lured to purchase under what we
feel to be false, misleading and deceitful promotional material, and get
little or no value out of money spent at the websites. Blog and message
board posts from the community confirm this opinion.

The people/companies behind the websites are buying very high level paid
search results on Google and other sites. In addition, they are using
trademarks of well-known websites, including and, to get higher-than-normal natural search results. It
appears the site colors, fonts, and pictures on at least one site are
designed to mislead people in to believing the site is related to

As the leading online family history company, The Generations Network,
Inc. and its website properties including and its global
network of Ancestry sites,, and Rootsweb, we want to
encourage consumers to validate and verify the legitimacy of a website
before providing credit card information or paying for services. TGN
will take appropriate administrative and legal action to do its part to
protect the community from these sites.

Suzanne Russo Adams, AG(r)

Monday, April 7, 2008

Two new books on the market

There are two new books available regarding the "seedier" side of life. This information was found on today's posting of Dick Eastman's column. This free newsletter can be viewed at (Eastman's Online Genealogy News) The full URL for this article is:

It sounds like two fun books!
Aunt Merle

April 06, 2008

Hookers, Crooks, and Kooks - the Books

Jana Sloan Broglin is a Certified Genealogist with an interesting way of looking at history. One of her specialties is focusing on those "other people" in the family tree. You know the ones: those who were not fine, upstanding pillars of the community. We all have such people in our family trees although perhaps our older relatives didn't mention them when we were growing up. Jana suggests that these scoundrels also deserve to be remembered, and I think she is right.

Jana has now published two books, entitled "Hookers, Crooks, and Kooks," Parts 1 and 2. These are the first two of what is promised to be a series of books. Here are the announcements of these new books:

Hookers, Crooks, and Kooks
Part 1: Hookers
By Jana Sloan Broglin, CG

What had been a story passed down about the author’s great-great aunt, Gertrude Mearl Cabisher Eagle Boring, being a “madame” of a brothel, piqued her interest in finding prostitutes, madams, ladies of the evening, soiled doves, etc. Would they appear in the census? The answer was a resounding, “YES!”

Research using the online entries for the 1880 United States Federal Census at led to the amazing fact that 4,723 individuals were listed. When other words (maybe they could be called “sin-onyms”) were also checked such as “whore,” “sporting woman,” “concubine,” and others, an amazing total of 6,210 were listed with this occupation. At first, the number seemed high, but there may be many hundreds, possibly thousands of women not listed as a prostitute in the census as the occupation may be identified as “boarder” or “seamstress” within a household. Many of these women truly were boarding at a home while others plied the prostitution trade.

The first in a series of books regarding Hookers, Crooks, and Kooks, tackles the listings of prostitutes in the 1880 United States Federal Census. The second volume will cover some of the crooks and kooks found, while the third volume will be a listing of those persons involved in jails and prisons, including the sheriffs, marshals, deputies, and employees, as well as the prisoners themselves.

[Cost $22.00 plus $5.00 shipping and handling]

Hookers Crooks, and Kooks
Part 2: Crooks and Kooks
By Jana Sloan Broglin, CG

In this volume of Hookers, Crooks, and Kooks, occupations from the old Cher song, “Gypsies, Tramps, and Thieves” were located in the 1880 United States Federal Census, along with quack doctors, phrenologists, chicken thieves, circus performers, ballet dancers (as well as the more notorious “Hurdy Dancers”), clairvoyants, bummers, and drunks. Baseball players are also included, although they don’t really fit the criteria of a crook or kook, but as the sport was so new, these occupations were rarities. People who had died by the census date may also be listed in the census with “dead” as the occupation. Research using the online entries for the 1880 United States Federal Census at led to the amazing fact that gambling was the most prominent occupation with 1,313 men and women listed

[Cost $21.00 plus $5.00 shipping and handling]

Save $5.00 shipping and handling by buying both books in one order!
Order from Jana Sloan Broglin, CG, 2780 County Road E, Swanton, OH 43558. Checks or money orders – no credit cards.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Attending local genealogical societies

How many times is it thought a local genealogical society can't help with research in another area? Or not having any ancestors in the county where you live?

It doesn't make any difference. Local societies have an abundance of items to offer: the main being meetings on methodology. Those meetings help the beginner or even more experienced researcher, look at a new way of interpreting data.

Some sessions may be on different offices in the courthouse: Probate, Clerk of Courts/Common Pleas, Recorder of Deeds/Recorder's Office and Department of Veterans Affairs. Other meetings may focus on newspaper research, blogs, (Yes, blogs!), Podcasts, and library holdings. Field trips offered by the local society can include cemeteries, major libraries, such as Allen County Public in Ft. Wayne, Indiana.

Check to see if a local society in your area will help in YOUR research. For society listings, check the Federation of Genealogical Societies at