Sunday, December 26, 2010

2010 Discoveries

     2010 has not been an easy year for my family. I have made 5 trips to NY due to health problems with my mother and aunt. Mom is in a nursing home, has great care and is failing fast with Alzheimer's. Aunt Clara died September 3rd.  The last trip in November was to be with Mom for her 92nd birthday.
     For many years, my mother and aunt never really shared any information with us about our Bjerknes & Horgen  families. Between trips, I lived on Ancestry and with the help of Gerd, I now have information for the Bjerknes family going back to 1475. Caroline, a distant Bjerknes cousin in Australia, had a copy of the Bjerknes book, printed in 1953. Caroline copied the pages for my line and mailed the pages to me. Of course, it is in Norwegian! I then  made 3 copies to mail one copy to Gerd and take one to Aunt Clara. Clara was delighted to see her copy. Gerd translated to English the information for me and I now have created a mini book, with pictures and the history for the family members and plan to add information for the generations the generations I can write about!
     Clara finally decided I was to be the family historian in May. So, when returning home after the visits with Clara, I had a large box to bring home with a lot of wonderful Bjerknes & Horgen information. I had no idea she had so many pictures, family documents and letters written in 1910! How I wish she had shared with us! I have scanned many pictures, letters and documents to share with my brothers and to merge in to FTM.
     2011...there is still a lot to scan. Then I have to decide how to organize all of the family history and where to store of it.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Family Connections Continued

   Spring is here in Venice, Forida and the new leaves on our oak trees are so beautiful and green. I am using Family Tree Maker (FTM) and those green leaves are also beautiful as they have helped me gain new information for my Norwegian families: Bjerknes and Horgen.
   While I am not a shy person, taking a step to contact a stranger is not easy for me. However, once I do take the step, I look forward to getting a response and hope some of my questions are answered. I was so excited when Gerd Rabben responded very quickly in February!
   Since Gerd's responce to me, she has found many records and sent them to me for both Bjerknes and Horgen families. I also sent Bjerknes information to Gerd that she was missing. As a result of our collaboration, Gerd discovered that we have a common ancestor making us distant cousins: 10th cousins, 2 times removed. I now have a lot of new information to add in to my tree.
  I am very thankful the Digital Archives records have so much great information. I am able to access the Archives in English and the webpage translates to English. I wish I could read Norwegian.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Scandinavian SIG meeting

About Scandinavian Special Interest Group (SIG) of Englewood Genealogy Society  of FL (EGSF)

   The EGSF Scandinavian SIG is unique as many are seasonal Florida residents, November - April. When they leave FL, the majority go to the midwest.
   We met again last Wednesday with Laila and will meet again April 12th. We are meeting at Elsie Quirk Library (EQL). 
   When we started to meet in January, I was under the impression the majority were researching Norwegian ancestors. However, quite a few are also researching Swedish roots and one researching Danish roots.We also discovered many of us are researching Chicago, IL ancestors!
   EQL is wireless and connecting to the internet is slow. The library has the library edition to Ancestry, but access is on their computers. Fortunately, almost all in the SIG have an Ancestry subscription. All but one had a wireless laptop when we met. We researched using the Digital Archives, Ancestry  and working individually or in small groups. Laila assisted members with reseach and answered questions. Immigration and  passenger lists/ship manifests were also researched.
   It was a great meeting and we are looking for our next meeting.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Connections through

Last spring, I decided a realistic goal for my geanealogy reseach would be to collaborate with others as much as possible. Getting organized has not been a good goal! I began with an Ancestry webinar on collaboration, bought Drew Smith's book, Social Networking for Genealogists, and attended several seminars at the Florida State Genealogical Conference.  
   When my Ancestry account needed to be renewed, I decided to upgrade to Ancestry World. My main purpose was to find some answers to my paternal immigrant Harris family arriving in the USA before 1850 from Prussia/Poland/Germany. I have yet to find out how they got to America.
   This week, while on Family Tree Maker (FTM) 2010, was the discovery of new green leaves that I had not seen before on my HORGEN family. There were 2 public profiles to look at and both had information that identical with my information. I send a message to both and have received a response from one. We have been sharing infornmation and as a result, we have some common ancestors!

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Links for Norwegian & Swedish Research

Laila Christiansen has provided the EGSF Scandinavian SIG many wonderful links for researching ancestors in Norway and Sweden, avvailable in pfd format or as a Word doc. The group will be SUPER busy till we meet again.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Scandinavian genealogy ...

This is exciting, Sue invited me to write on her blog. This is Social Networking for you!!

After meeting with the Scandinavian SIG (see my blogpost for pictures ) I am working on a document with lots of links to sites we talked about. I suggest the Norwegian Olsens play around here: Digitalarkivet - and the Swedish Swensons start here: Swedish Roots .

As mentioned, most of the scanned churchrecords for Sweden are only for Subscribers, but in Norway they are free. (well...the norwegian taxpayers don't really know where they money goes...) Remember though that Familysearch has a lot of resources, (secondary sources at best). They are now in the midst of putting out a lot of new resources and sources, also scanned documents. These resources are available at their pilotsite

Ha det bra! Hej då! 

Social Networking for Genealogists:Drew Smith at EGSF

Drew Smith presented a very informative program about social networking. He wrote a book on this topic and his knowledge on the subject is great. His handout had many websites.
A year ago, I decided to use collaboration as my main focus for researching. I bought the book last summer and decided to be "serious" about creating a blog for research. I also took collaboration webinar on Ancestry.
I first met Drew at the FL State Genealogical Conference and heard a shorter presentation on the subject. As soon I got home, I worked on getting this blog up and running.