Friday, July 9, 2010

Follow Friday: Personal Past Meditations – A Genealogical Blog

One of the posts I’d like to feature this week happens to have appeared on the blog that I am featuring this week, Personal Past Meditations – a Genealogical Blog, by Daniel Hubbard, so I’ll start with that post: “Independence Data.” (Many of the post titles on Hubbard’s blog involve some sort of play on, or slight distortion of a familiar term or phrase, and this one is no exception.) This is a subject that we genealogists – who in an ideal world make supporting evidence a major focus of our research – should pay very close attention to. I know that I have made the mistake/oversight addressed here, and I imagine quite a few others have as well. While I try not to steal too much of other bloggers’ thunder by quoting too much from their posts, I’ll have to say that there is a lot of quotable material here. However, let me provide just two key statements: “As soon as one bit of information is derived from another they are not independent” and “Mistakes often gain the power to convince by being repeated.” Hubbard uses the 1900 census to illustrate his point.

Much of what genealogists and family historians seek in their research is context and perspective, and this is precisely what is explored in depth at Personal Past Meditations. Moreover, the “perspective” Hubbard provides is often slightly skewed, compelling us to take a fresh look at what we are doing. It is both easy and difficult to name favorite posts – just take any at random, but then too many good ones are left out; however, a couple of recent “super-favorites” are “A Genealogist in Mathmagic Land” (Part 1 and Part 2) and “A Brief History of Oops.”

If you are serious about genealogy, Personal Past Meditations is a must-read.

This Week

Excellent advice from Ruby Coleman on attending genealogy conferences at the You Go Genealogy Girls in “The Conference Experience.”

You Go Genealogy Girl #2, Cheri Hopkins, muses about sparking an interest in genealogy among family members in “Involving Family” at The You Go Genealogy Girls. Sounds like she’s having some success!

In “Madness Monday: ADDing Roots,” Nolichucky Roots describes tracing signs of ADD in relatives through report cards. I have heard of using genealogy to trace inherited diseases, but this is an interesting new twist!

James Tanner аt Genealogy’s Star gives us “A Tour of the FamilySearch Beta.” I really need this – have been chasing the databases from site to site and not sure exactly how things are divided up… (And Randy Seaver brings up another source of confusion - "Is the IGI on the FamilySearch Beta Site?" at Genea-Musings.)

Read the scoop about turning pro in Sheri Fenley’s post, “Perhaps I Can Join the Circus In My Next Life,” at The Educated Genealogist.

Ian Hadden at Ian Hadden’s Family History goes into the specifics of “2011 Census of Canada Gone Wrong.”

At GeneaBloggers, Thomas MacEntee has introduced the “What I Do” meme (what technology we use for our profession and/or hobbies and how we use it) with a genealogy twist and it is making the rounds. (Too embarrassing for this blogger to show how “un-with-it” she is. But I’m working on it – I’m taking notes from other bloggers’ posts, especially those who use Macs.)

Really disturbing news and efforts that are being made to save the situation are detailed in "Cutbacks at the Dallas Public Library" at Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter.

Happy 2nd Blogoversary to Amy Coffin at We Tree!

Happy third Blogoversary to Denise Levenick at The Family Curator!

This week I started following these blogs:

Discovering Family Roots

Genealogy Leftovers

Mary Ann’s Menagerie

Spirits of the Old

Turn the Hearts

Who Am I …

Will’s Genealogy Blog


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. Greta,
    Thanks for this Follow Friday. I have been out of touch for the last couple of months, so this was a great way to get back into the swing of things.

  3. Greta Dahling!

    I finally made your list! You have made my day, thank you!

  4. Ha - gotcha there, Sheri! You have been featured in Follow Friday before, so there!

  5. Greta,
    Thanks for the wonderful review! And not just all the positive things- when I read "slightly skewed, compelling us to take a fresh look at what we are doing," it gave me a wonderful "Yes, that's it!" feeling. -Dan

  6. Joan - Glad to be of help. I get so much enjoyment and educational value out of reading genealogy blogs, I just love to share it!

  7. Dan - So happy to write this review. Your blog has made me take a fresh and different look at my own research a number of times and I never take some of the unusual information or coincidences for granted again. Thanks for consistently providing such fascinating reading!

  8. Delighted to see that 'Genealogy Leftovers' is of interest! Judy.