27 April 2012

Did You Know?

It must have been quite hard, being a lawyer in the Middle Ages in England. Originally, all your law books would have been in Latin. Then, in the 13th century, they start being written in French. Then along comes English. Lawyers had a problem. Should they they describe the issue using an English word or opt for the equivalent word in French or Latin? And would the words be equivalent anyway?... The lawyers thought up an ingenious solution. They would use both.
-- From "The Story of English in 100 Words" by David Crystal

Legal pairs include will and testament, good and chattels, null and void, aided and abetted, and the triplet: give, devise, and bequeath.  Can you think of others?

26 April 2012

Miracles, Mysteries and Mayhem

Miracles, Mysteries and Mayhem: Online Family Trees 
by Jeanne Larzalere Bloom
Learn effective techniques to determine if branches on a tree are diseased or if they are healthy.

Presented by the Chicago Genealogical Society
June 2, 2012, 1:30 PM CT
Newberry Library, 60 W. Walton, Chicago
More info at http://www.chicagogenealogy.org/

Speed Dating for Genealogists

Speed Dating for Genealogists
Bring your “brick wall” research questions and you will have an opportunity to ask an expert.

Presented by the Chicago Genealogical Society
May 5, 2012, 1:30 PM CT
Newberry Library, 60 W. Walton, Chicago
More info at http://www.chicagogenealogy.org/

25 April 2012

Ancestry.com Inc. to Acquire Archives.com

"Simple and Affordable" Fast-Growing Start-up Adds Complementary Offering to Ancestry.com

PROVO, Utah, April 25, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Ancestry.com Inc. (Nasdaq:ACOM) announced today it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Archives.com, a family history website, for approximately $100 million in cash and assumed liabilities.

This transaction will enable Ancestry.com to add a differentiated service targeted to a complementary segment of the growing family history category. In addition, Ancestry.com will welcome a team of talented engineers, digital marketers, and family history innovators into the Ancestry.com fold and also gain access to a proprietary technology platform that has supported Archives.com's rapid growth.

Archives.com is owned and operated by Inflection LLC, a Silicon Valley-based technology company. Since Archives.com's launch in January 2010, the site has rapidly grown to more than 380,000 paying subscribers who pay approximately $39.95 a year. Archives.com offers access to over 2.1 billion historical records, including birth records, obituaries, immigration and passenger lists, historical newspapers, and U.S. and U.K. Censuses.

"Archives.com has built a fantastic and fast-growing business that we think is highly complementary to Ancestry.com's online family history offering," said Tim Sullivan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Ancestry.com. "We love their focus on making family history simple and affordable, and we are excited to help the talented Archives.com team continue to grow alongside Ancestry.com, Fold3.com, and Family Tree Maker."

"Family history remains a dynamic and growing online category," added Sullivan. "Archives.com's focus is consistent with our mission to help everyone discover, preserve and share their family history, which will help continue our efforts in delivering amazing discoveries to an even broader audience."

Over the past two years, Archives.com has partnered with multiple well-known family history organizations that have helped build out Archives.com robust collection of family history records. Most recently, Archives.com partnered with the U.S. National Archives to provide free digital access to the recently released 1940 U.S. Federal Census.

"We are proud of the experience we've built with Archives.com and believe strongly in its future potential," said Matthew Monahan, CEO and Co-Founder of Inflection. "Combining with Ancestry.com positions Archives.com to best capitalize on that potential, pairing complementary visions of the marketplace and the opportunity. We've long admired Ancestry.com's content and technology and the innovations that the Ancestry.com team continues to bring to market. We're excited to see how this transaction expands the reach of family history to an even larger audience."

Upon completion of the transaction, which is subject to customary closing conditions, including expiration of the HSR waiting period, Ancestry.com will continue to operate Archives.com separately retaining its brand and website. Multiple Inflection employees, including key product and engineering executives are expected to join the Ancestry.com team.

About Ancestry.com

Ancestry.com Inc. (Nasdaq:ACOM) is the world's largest online family history resource, with more than 1.8 million paying subscribers. More than 9 billion records have been added to the site in the past 15 years. Ancestry users have created more than 34 million family trees containing approximately 4 billion profiles. In addition to its flagship site, Ancestry.com offers several localized Web sites designed to empower people to discover, preserve and share their family history.

About Archives.com

Archives.com is a leading family history website that makes discovering family history simple and affordable. The company has assembled more than 2.1 billion historical records all in a single location. Archives also partners with other leading family history websites to provide a comprehensive resource for researching your family history. Archives.com is free to try for seven days, allowing anyone to explore the benefits of membership without risk or obligation. For more information and to start discovering your family history, please visit http://www.archives.com/.

About Inflection

Inflection is a Big Data and e-commerce startup headquartered in the heart of Silicon Valley. Leveraging its proprietary technology platform, the company has built innovative data services like Archives.com, PeopleSmart.com, and Identity.com. Inflection was founded in 2006 and is backed by tier-one venture capitalists Matrix Partners and Sutter Hill Ventures.

ISGS Fall Conference

IL State Genealogy Society’s Fall Conference scheduled for Oct. 19, 20 in Rockford

Everyone from novice genealogists to hobbyists to people interested in becoming professional researchers will find something of value at the Illinois State Genealogical Society’s (ISGS) 2012 Fall Conference scheduled for Oct. 19 and 20 at the Best Western Clock Tower Resort & Conference Center in Rockford.

“There’s something for everyone,” says Stephanie Carbonetti, ISGS Fall Conference Co-Chair. “We want to provide a conference for all levels of interest, whether it’s someone who hasn’t started researching their ancestors yet and doesn’t know where to begin, to people just wanting to hone up on their research skills. There’s so much to choose from!”

This year’s conference, entitled “Family History in Profile,” is being co-hosted by the Winnebago & Boone Counties Genealogical Society and will feature nine nationally and regionally known genealogy research experts who will lead more than 15 workshops on such topics as “Breaking Through Brick Walls,” “Facebook for Genealogists,” “Our National Archives,” and “Discovering the Real Story of Your Immigrant Ancestors.”

Carbonetti says this year’s conference also will include a day-long workshop on Friday for young people interested in genealogy. First through fourth-graders will meet from 9:30 to 11 a.m. and fifth through twelfth-graders from 1 to 4 p.m.

“If we can spark an interest in a young person, then they will carry it all through their life,” she adds. “When young people do family research, they have the benefit of being able to talk with older members of their family who are still alive and who can provide them with valuable information.”

Scheduled presenters include John Philip Colletta, PhD, a Washington, D.C.-based genealogy lecturer who has worked at the Library of Congress, taught workshops at the National Archives, and is a faculty member of the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research at Samford University; Thomas MacEntee, Chicago, organizer of the 2,000+ member GeneaBloggers, lecturer and teacher of online webinars; Dr. Daniel Hubbard, a former particle physicist who owns Personal Past, which focuses on American, Canadian and Swedish records; Jeanne Larzalere Bloom, trustee and treasurer of the Board for Certification of Genealogists, and a full-time professional researcher specializing in Chicago and Cook County records.

Other presenters are Dr. Gary K. Hargis, past president of the ISGS, president of the Fox Valley Genealogical Society in Naperville, and director of the Genealogical Institute of Mid-America; Oriene Springstroh, founder and first president of the Fox Valley Genealogical Society, and past editor of the ISGS “Quarterly” magazine; Larry Pepper, owner of PepperPhotograph.com and an expert on restoration of old photos; Dave McDonald, director of the National Genealogical Society and president of the Board for Certification of Genealogists whose research focuses on the Midwest and Plains states, New England, the UK and Germanic Europe; and Kathy Carey, a district director and past Illinois state registrar and organizing secretary for the Daughters of the American Revolution, and a volunteer genealogist.

Carbonetti says the ISGS holds these conferences annually at different locations around the state in part to provide information and generate an interest in the people who helped establish and develop Illinois, and to encourage people to seek, preserve and make Illinois family history data available.

Enrollment for the Youth Workshops is limited. Special early registration pricing for the conference is available. To register for the conference or the Youth Workshops, to download registration forms, or to get more information, visit the ISGS website at www.ilgensoc.org

04 April 2012

Newspaper Research in the Midwest by Debbie Mieszala
Presented by the Zion Genealogical Society
April 16, 2012, 7:00 PM CT
Beach Park Village Hall, 11270 Wadsworth Rd - Lower Level, Beach Park, IL 60099
More info at http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~ilzgs/