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February 2006
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April 2006

Unlocking the Vault: Conversion to Digital Records is Progressing

Members may not have to wonder what lies behind the 14-ton vault door at the Church's Granite Mountain Vault Records (GMVR) facility for much longer. In as little as 10 years, much of its genealogical collection may be at their fingertips.

The billions of names preserved on microfilmed records at the vault are being converted to digital images that can eventually be viewed online at and ultimately searched in and linked to an online index. The process of digitizing the microfilm is now faster than ever through a “bleeding edge” technology system called FamilySearch™ Scanning.

Read the complete article here.

How old does Legacy think you are?

Just in case you have forgotten how old you are, and you actually want to be reminded, or if you just want to understand what some of the numbers mean on the Individual's Information screen, read on. . . .

The Individual's Information screen is where you enter the names, dates, places, etc. about an individual. At the far right of the screen, are some numbers. No, they're not just random numbers that Legacy displays.

The number to the right of the birth date and place indicates the years since birth. If the ancestor was born in 1792, then 213 is displayed. He was born 213 years ago.

There may also be numbers corresponding to the Christening, Death, and Burial fields. The number next to the death field displays how old the person was when they died. The number next to the burial field displays how old the person was when they were buried. Hopefully, the death and burial numbers are about the same. :)

If you are looking at your own entry in the Individual's Information screen, and you would rather not be "reminded" of your age, just right-click on the "years since birth" number, and it will disappear.


If you want "to-the-day" numbers of your age, or your ancestor's ages, navigate to the Family View. Then press Control-A on your keyboard (or go to the View menu and select Age). The resulting screen will display the exact ages of the husband and wife's birth, christening, marriage, death, and burial events.

Chronology View

Finally, the Chronology View is probably the easiest place to learn how old you were at any event. In the far left column, it will display the age at any event, including births of children, deaths of parents, and any custom events you may have entered such as graduation, military service, immigration, etc. If you are using the historical timelines (new in Legacy 6), the Chronology View will also display the person's age at the time of the historical event.

Understanding the age can help you catch big mistakes. For example, if, in the Chronology View, the age at first marriage is listed as 69, you might have a couple of problems.

  1. 69 is quite old for an ancestor to be married for the first time. You may be missing a previous marriage.
  2. You may have a typo in the date of the marriage.

Unless you correlated the ages with the ancestor's life events, you may not have picked up on these possibilities.

Free Non-Member Access to the Register Online March 20-22


As a way to introduce potential members to the wealth of information available to members, NEHGS is pleased to offer free access to one of the thousands of databases on, The New England Historical and Genealogical Register. Normally available only to NEHGS members, the Register database will be accessible to all from Monday, March 20 through Wednesday, March 22, 2006.

Published quarterly since 1847, the Register is the flagship journal of American genealogy and the oldest journal in the field. The database includes issues from 1847 to 1994. For more information visit

Non-members will be asked to provide contact information, which will not be shared, but will be used to send information about membership to visitors. Visitors will be taken automatically to the Register database after submitting their information.

PLEASE NOTE: Only the extensive Register database will be open for public use. The remainder of the databases continue to be accessible to members only.

We encourage all NEHGS members to spread the word about this offering, but to avoid disappointment, please make sure to mention that this offer is limited only to the Register. Thanks for your help in letting others know about the wealth of significant information offered by NEHGS.

Non-members can use the Register database for free March 20 to March 22.

British Genealogy Institute announced

The International Society for British Genealogy and Family History (ISBGFH) announces the sixth annual British Institute to be held October 2 - 6, 2006 in Salt Lake City.

The British Institute is a weeklong program combining instruction and practical experience. Each day instructors experienced in British Isles genealogy and research methods conduct classes and seminars in the morning and assist students with their research in the Family History Library in the afternoon. In addition to guidance in the library, each student can take advantage of the opportunity to meet with the course instructor for a one-on-one strategy session.

Accommodations and classrooms for the British Institute are located in the Salt Lake Plaza Hotel; research and most one-on-one sessions take place in the LDS Family History Library. These facilities help make the British Institute an exceptional educational opportunity. The Institute is able to offer everyone expert instruction, small class size, individual attention, and personal research time with assistance. The Institute brings together resources, practical guidance, and the chance to improve skills in a helpful and friendly atmosphere.

Courses offered at this year’s Institute:

Welsh Research
Level: Intermediate
Time Period: 1858 back to early 1600’s
Instructor: Darris Williams
This course is directed at researchers with some exposure to research in Wales or who took the introductory level course in 2005. Students will expand their experience working with fundamental and frequently used records and be introduced to more advanced sources.

Darris Williams: British reference consultant in the Family History Library for thirteen years, currently a reference consultant for World Wide Support in the Family History Department. After completion of a bachelor degree in family and community history at Brigham Young University, he studied at the University of Wales, Aberstwyth in 1996. Darris has lectured at the British Isles Family History Society Conference, UGS Institute, Federation of Genealogical Societies Conference and Federation of Family History Societies Conference. He is a contributor of materials on the Glamorganshire and Carmarthenshire portions of and transcriber of monumental inscriptions for chapels and churches in Wales published by the Glamorgan Family history Society. Darris is only the second person to pass the Wales accreditation test administered by ICAPGen.

British Isles Research: Solving Problems, Creating Strategies
Instructor: Sherry Irvine, MSc, CG, FSA (Scot)
Roadblocks in family history are opportunities to pause, re-examine work, review records and make a new start. Further progress is possible provided another approach is found, one arising from careful analysis. This course is for those with some experience in British Isles research (England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland) wanting advanced guidance in research planning and strategy.

Sherry Irvine: MSc, CG, FSA Scot, lecturer, writer and online teacher specializing in British Isles methods; faculty member IGHR Samford University since 1996, internationally known speaker and a keynote presenter at the Australasian Congresses in Melbourne and Darwin; author of three books including the award-winning Scottish Ancestry: Research Methods for Family Historians; former president Association of
Professional Genealogists and winner of the Graham T. Smallwood Award for services to genealogy; vice-president of ISBGFH.

An online registration form can be obtained at A brochure on the Institute can be requested by writing to:
The British Institute
P.O. Box 35045
Westminster, CO 80035-0459

The International Society for British Genealogy and Family History (ISBGFH) was established in 1979 to educate individuals searching for their British ancestors. ISBGFH is an educational organization and publishes the award winning quarterly journal, British Connections.

GENViewer for Legacy Version Is Versatile and Fast

GENViewer for Legacy is a remarkable add-on program that works directly with Legacy family files or with GEDCOM files created by other genealogy applications. With GENViewer's powerful File Search capabilities, you can simultaneously search multiple files for individuals or find that critical piece of information you need. Gone is the need to examine files one a time.

GENViewer's intuitive, easy-to-use interfaces provide nine different views of your genealogy information: General, Individual, Family, Pedigree, Descendants, List, Highlighted, Islands, and Sources. Most views of your data can be copied to the clipboard with just a click of the mouse. You can then paste the family information right into an e-mail message, word processing document or another application. Reports can also be created in HTML and PDF formats.

GENViewer is an incredible tool for analyzing your family information. Use GENViewer's highlighting tool to make information stand out in each of the views of your data. There are about 100 easy-to-use highlighting options. It's amazing what you can see using this highlighting tool.

You can also use GENViewer's Internet search to find information about your family on the Web. When you find a Web page with information just right click on it and select Print from the popup menu.

GENViewer can create a self-viewing executable from a GEDCOM file that will display your genealogical information when run. This file can be e-mailed as an attachment or placed on a Web site for downloading. Furthermore the special file can be created on a floppy disk and run on any Windows computer. This is a truly unique and efficient way to share your genealogy with people who don't own a genealogy program but who have a computer.

Use GENViewer to quickly examine and clean up all of those GEDCOM files that are cluttering your computer. Its speed and versatility makes it ideal for previewing GEDCOM files before taking the time and effort of importing them into Legacy.

Because GENViewer uses existing Legacy and GEDCOM files, it doesn't create extra files that fill up the hard drive. This is a great space-saving feature. Furthermore, GENViewer is a read-only application: it doesn't change or modify any files so users don't have to worry about changing any information.

Here's what users are saying:

"I downloaded a GEDCOM from I didn't realize how big it was. This GEDCOM had almost 26,000 people in it. When I downloaded GENViewer, this GEDCOM was one of the first things I tried it out on. Here are the results:
    File Size: 18,745,745
    Import Time: 2.240 seconds
    # people: 25,931
    # families: 11,530
    # notes: 390
    # sources: 631.

2.24 seconds is ridiculously fast for this many records!  And with GENViewer, I can see who is in there, how complete the information is, how connected they are and a zillion other things. It makes importing GEDCOMs into my database so much easier. Thanks for a wonderful product."
-- Roger Barnes: GENViewer user

"GENViewer allows you to see a glance exactly what is included in both your own database and in GEDCOMs received from others and to quickly gather lists of your choice of highlighted information from those databases. Its speed and sorting features are unsurpassed. It is an extremely valuable search tool which helps you to better understand and piece together your family tree information. I highly recommend it!" -- Kathi Sittner: Legacy user

GENViewer for Legacy can be used on a free 15-day trial basis, after that you must purchase the program to continue using it. Please go to to download the program.

To order GENViewer for Legacy please visit

"Young Family Historian of 2005" awarded

BYU's Center for Family History and Genealogy presented the 2005 Young Family Historian award to Millennia's Geoff Rasmussen.

George Ryskamp, who presented the award at last week's 2006 Computerized Genealogy Conference, recalled Geoff's enthusiasm in class. "He brought to class copies of a pension file he recently received from the National Archives. In it was a copy of the family's bible which listed three generations of ancestry. Geoff could not stay in his seat he was so excited."

We'd like to congratulate Geoff for this recognition. Since graduating with a degree in Genealogy from BYU in 2002, he has served as director and vice-president of the Utah Genealogical Association, was course director and instructor for the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy, published the East Tennessee Tax Records Index 1778-1850; the Genealogy Daily Calendar; and Plucking, Plotting and Places: a Video Tutorial of AniMap; as well as several Legacy video training CDs.

We're happy to have him as part of our Millennia team.

End of an Era: Taping of Genealogy Presentations at Conferences

The following article is from Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter and is copyright 2006 by Richard W. Eastman. It is re-published here with the permission of the author. Information about the newsletter is available at

One of the time-honored traditions at national genealogical conferences has been the audio tapes of the sessions. Those unable to attend in person often later ordered audio tapes of the presentations. While not as good as attending "in person," the audio tapes added a lot of value to those unable to attend the live events. Sadly, the practice is disappearing. The reason apparently is because of dropping sales of the tapes.

For years, most of the tapes at the U.S. National Genealogical Society (NGS) and Federation of Genealogical Societies' (FGS) conferences have been recorded by Yet a search of the company's web site at shows no genealogy conference tapes recorded after May 22, 2004. The company is not offering audio tapes recorded at more recent genealogy conferences. To my knowledge, no other recording company has stepped up to make the recordings.

The National Genealogical Society has a blog about the upcoming national conference to be held in June in Chicago. At, that blog states:

The National Genealogical Society (NGS) will not be using a taping company to tape sessions at this year's Chicago conference (June 7-10, 2006). As most of you know, they have done this in previous years and the tapes were offered for sale to attendees at the show and also to the public to purchase after the event.

NGS has made this decision due to lack of demand for conference tapes and cost considerations.

It looks like the NGS announcement is a "sign of the times." Apparently, very few future genealogy conferences will be recorded.

Secondary Source defined

Secondary Source, n.

A derivative record created some time after an event, and easily identified by its repeated use of the phrase, "Near as I recall. . ."

This humor is from The Genealogist's Glossary (& Other Essential Nonsense) by Christopher Dunham and is copyright 2005 by Christopher Dunham. It is re-published here with the permission of the author. Information about the book is available at