Genealogy Roundup, April 8

‘Gertie’s Babies,’ Sold at Birth, Use DNA to Unlock Secret Past

11 Little-Known Words for Specific Family Members – Some great words here - let's start using them!

The Gift of #ThrowbackThursday – "As a genealogist, I'm so focused on the dearly departed that I often neglect the living, but I recently got a serious reminder that those of us above ground matter, too."

10 Things You Didn't Know About Jon Hamm's Roots – Since Mad Men is starting its final half-season this Sunday, this seems a good time to share this.

1,000 Irish died with American army in WWI – This took A LOT of analysis and number-crunching. Will be of interest to those with Irish roots and/or into military history.

Hillary Clinton Family Tree a Wake-Up Call for Genealogy – "Are the names adorning your family tree really your ancestors or just crowd-sourced fiction?" BTW, for those curious about the Hillary Clinton research behind my think-before-you-merge-online-trees warning, you'll find it on pages 50-52 of Irish America Magazine. Can't recommend this magazine highly enough, especially for those of Irish heritage!

Army corporal, captured in Korean War, to be buried in hometown – RIP, CPL Higgins. One of my Korean War soldiers will be buried this weekend.

Illinois Ancestors: Genealogist offers grants for worthy projects – Article by Joan Griffis about my grants program and a recent interview re: genealogy I did with National Geographic.

Genealogy Roundup, April 1

War Numbers: Counting the Irish-Born Dead in WWI – I did some number-crunching on the Irish-born soldiers from America who died in WWI. Companion article profiles individuals soldiers who served from NJ.

Genealogy was on Hot In Cleveland last week! If you'd like to find out more about Betty White's real Greek-Danish-Canadian-Welsh-English roots, have a look here.

EXCLUSIVE VIDEO: Sean Hayes Discovers Family's Criminal Past

Lou Szucs: Genealogical Hero

Genealogy Roundup, March 25

Boy finds 45-year-old love letter in bottle addressed to his grandpa – Serendipity trikes again!

EXCLUSIVE VIDEO: Angie Harmon Understands the Power of Walking in Your Ancestors Footsteps – Check out my "Genealogy on TV" Pinterest board if you'd like to see more photos of Angie Harmon on this week's episode of "Who Do You Think You Are?"

Bruce Springsteen accepts Ellis Island award with his mother & aunts – My video of Bruce Springsteen at Ellis Island with his mother and aunts just crossed 10,000 views! Thanks, y'all! If you haven't watched it, you might want to because it's charming. Sweet family.

Naturalization ceremony for my sister Stacy (left with my mom) and me (right with my dad):

Genealogy Roundup, March 11

Genealogy to premiere ‘Don't Deny’ on March 12 on Armenia’s public TV and on – "Generations are shifting with time but the genealogy remains. . . "

Keep Calm and Apply for a Genealogy Grant – May 2015 will be the 15th anniversary of my genealogy grants program. Initially called Honoring Our Ancestors, I did just that when I renamed it after my mother - Seton Shields - several years ago. To apply for a Seton Shields grant, fill out and submit the form here. You can see examples of past grant awards here. And you might also enjoy the peek behind the scenes that I share here.

15 Years of Genealogy Grants

May 2015 will be the 15th anniversary of my genealogy grants program. Initially called Honoring Our Ancestors, I did just that when I renamed it after my mother - Seton Shields - several years ago.

So 182 grants later, I was debating what to do to mark this milestone, and finally decided to give a peek behind the scenes by sharing some of the thank you notes I've received over the years. This will help give a sense of the variety of both recipients and objectives.

I'm not going in any sort of logical order. Instead, I've just opted to post a random thank you note whenever the mood strikes, and will continue to do so at least until the May 2015 grant.

First up is Yamhill County Genealogical Society from Oregon. Way back in May 2005 on the 5th anniversary, I gave five grants to mark that milestone, and YCGS was one of them!

Genealogy Roundup, March 4

Irish family from Galway the longest living group of siblings in the world – 5 over 100 and one more almost there . . .

Who Do You Think You Are? Returns with 8 New Celebrity Family Tree Searches on TLC – Not long now . . .‪ ‬ If you want to start getting warmed up for the first episode on March 8th, why not spending a couple of minutes poking around my Celebrity Roots board on Pinterest?

10 Things You Didn't Know About Jon Hamm's Roots

Genealogy 101: Discover Your Roots – Did not know this was out there until someone emailed me about it!

Chromosome pillows playfully represent "his and hers" DNA with pink felt applique for the XX chromosome and blue for the XY chromosome – For all my genetic genealogy peeps, you know you need this!

Family Photos From Ukraine — 'My Sisters' – Can really relate to this since I have roots just north of L'viv. Her family was much better off than mine, but I love that she's part Rusyn!

Genealogy Roundup, February 25

Building a Face, and a Case, on DNA – Those of us who have been involved in genetic genealogy will probably experience a touch of deja vu with this, but I'm sure this will provoke a lot of strong reactions.

Kindred Voices: Listening for Our Ancestors by Geoff Rasmussen – Got to read an advance copy and strongly recommend this book. You know you want to hear some tales of genealogical serendipity!

Melvina's Descendants, Michelle Obama's Cousins

February 2015 Seton Shields Genealogy Grant

Caleb Pomeroy will be taking some time to visit his ancestral home in Devon to interview locals, visit archives, and possibly pursue DNA testing. His goal is to contribute to the creation of a comprehensive family tree, by tracing lineage after the sale of the Berry Pomeroy Castle to the Seymour family in 1549, including tracking travels of the family from England to the New World. He'd also like to substantiate more of the castle's history, such as claims that it was one of the last constructed in the old feudal style, as well as to learn more about how the sale of the castle to the Seymour family was conducted. The grant will help to pay for fees associated with this trip.

To apply for a Seton Shields grant, fill out and submit the form here. You can see examples of past grant awards here.

Genealogy Roundup, February 18

Happy 113th birthday to the longest living person in Ireland's history – An interesting woman I researched last year just had another birthday!

Armenia to be represented by Genealogy – Genealogy meets music for Armenia in Eurovision Song Contest! Cool way to reunite the diaspora.

Everything you ever wanted to know about Stephen Colbert’s 94% Irish roots

Adopted woman discovers her grandfather was Nat King Cole – Well, this granddaughter got a better surprise when looking into her roots than the one I shared last week.

So Kim & Kanye thought they were being original when they named their daughter North? So very 1886. In fact, there are 208 people in the SSDI of this name and the vast majority were born in the 1800s and early 1900s.