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Joe in Australia (7)
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Could someone please translate a marriage record for me from Alsace 1772

I have located on-line a 1772 marriage record from Alsace, France pertaining to my family but can't make much out The image is sharp and clear enough but it looks to be in Latin. I can send a copy. Any help would be appreciated.
posted by mcbeitz on Jul 18, 2014 - 12 answers

Genealogy-specific digitalization services?

How can I help my dad digitize his extensive collection of genealogical documentation? [more inside]
posted by Riki tiki on Jul 15, 2014 - 1 answer

How can I see an original Pennsylvania birth certificate from the 1920s?

My grandfather was born in Pennsylvania to Italian parents during the 1920s in Lackawanna County / Scranton. I was able to obtain a new birth certificate from the PA Dept of Vital Records, but the last name was misspelled. When I called about this, they could only tell me that the mis-spelling "was what it said on the birth certificate". How do I go about seeing the original to get the mistake corrected? [more inside]
posted by NYC-BB on Jun 13, 2014 - 5 answers

What is this (probably) Lithuanian last name supposed to be?

I need help deciphering a last name in a 1914 birth record. It sounds Lithuanian, but I think it is spelled worng, because I can't find anyone else with that name...ever. [more inside]
posted by Biblio on May 12, 2014 - 19 answers

Inconsistent birth dates with my Irish ancestors?

I'm researching my Irish ancestry and am befuddled by inconsistent birth dates. When I compare my ancestors' Irish baptism records (baptisms being close after birth) to their much later American records, the birth dates almost never match up, being sometimes up to six years apart. [more inside]
posted by FelineoidEntity on May 5, 2014 - 12 answers

Kishinev's Country in 1904

When I was young, I was told that my maternal grandparents were from Russia. I had my grandfather's birth certificate translated by a friend, and found that he was born in Kishinev in 1904. Currently Kishinev is in Moldova, but my reading has uncovered a ping pong game of ownership regarding Bessarabia and the surrounding areas during that time frame. Perhaps I'm being dense, but I can't quite make out what country Kishinev was a part of in 1904. Any help would be appreciated.
posted by blurker on Apr 13, 2014 - 6 answers

Please help decipher this handwritten location in Sweden

This snippet is from a petition for naturalization filed in North Dakota (USA) in 1908. It is referring to the birth place of a man born in Sweden in 1874. Anyone with more knowledge of historical Swedish parishes and/or turn-of-the-century handwriting care to help me decipher the first word? [more inside]
posted by muddgirl on Mar 12, 2014 - 9 answers

Researching family UK WWII history

I've been looking into certain aspects of my family history and I'd like to learn more about one particular person, who I'm told left Poland in about 1941, after members of his family were sent to Theresienstadt, and went on to serve in the British army as a cryptographer. [more inside]
posted by Put the kettle on on Mar 1, 2014 - 5 answers

Irish Genealogy Website Question: Help me find a lost baby?

I need help with Irish genealogy websites and where to look. I've joined a couple of sites; the site that looks the most promising is nickel-and-diming me to death just to look at the info that shows up in their searches. Irish records can be spotty, so some of them are totally wrong. So, askMetafilter, where do I go from here without spending another 34 euros to see five records that are probably incorrect anyway? The details (What I know 98% for-sure): [more inside]
posted by Tchad on Jan 27, 2014 - 9 answers

Planning trip to possible ancestral town in SW England, but what to do?

My extremely-uncommon and forever-mispelled last name—Huxham—happens to also be the name of a tiny village right outside of Exeter in SW England. My ancestors left Britain from the port of Plymouth on the other side of Devonshire, so I feel fairly confident this might be where my last name comes from. However, even though I have the means and the desire to visit this hamlet…what do I do there? Just start knocking on doors? Should I contact the parish priest and/or tourism board? [more inside]
posted by huxham on Jan 21, 2014 - 11 answers

How can I create digital choropleth maps of Ireland?

Does anyone know if gis data for irish townlands, parishes, and/or electoral districts is available? If not, would it be possible to draw a vector map and then somehow connect each region on the map to data on a spreadsheet? I can always color the hundreds of little pieces by hand, but I thought I'd check if there was an easier way, maybe in cartodb or processing. Note: I am not a programmer. Thanks! [more inside]
posted by pantufla on Dec 6, 2013 - 7 answers

Genetic DNA test turns up a surprise... what should I do?

I am a male. I am the family historian. In an effort to fine-tune my own research into my maternal grandfather's family (the "Jones"), I have my male first cousin take a Y-DNA test, since he has the "Jones" Y-Chromosome (I have my Dad's Y chromosome). Lo and behold, the test comes back with a perfect match, and a predicted Most Recent Common Ancestor within 3 generations. I have researched back farther than that and I know all of their names. None of the last names match. My occupation doesn't take me anywhere near genetics... but I am assuming that a Y DNA match with a MRCA that close should have the same surname for his male ancestor, correct? Except if there's been adoption or infidelity or rape, correct? I sent the results to my cousin, prior to the lightbulb going off over my head. He knows a lot less about this than I do. He hasn't called me yet, but what if he does? Should I just let sleeping dogs lie? Ugh!
posted by anonymous on Nov 12, 2013 - 24 answers

...and my father's father before him.

How far does genealogy go back in different countries/cultures? [more inside]
posted by Thing on Oct 16, 2013 - 30 answers

How to respond to someone else's quest to find their sperm donor?

Asking for a friend. In a nutshell: My friend has been contacted by at least two different people seeking to identify their biological father, a sperm donor. My friend has enough information to make an educated guess about the identity of the sperm donor. How should he proceed? [more inside]
posted by Orinda on Sep 16, 2013 - 9 answers

Where / How to obtain Italian birth and marriage (Jus Sanguinis)

Trying to obtain Italian citizenship via Jus Sanguinis. Found all relatives born or married in the US and now moving back toward Italy, but running into a wall with Italian records. Does anyone know how to obtain birth and marriage licenses from Italy either online or in person? Family would be from the 1880s-1920s and primarily be from Sicily, Puglia, Calabria, Campania, and possibly Basilicata. Gov't records would obviously be ideal, but Catholic Church records would also be an option. Thank you! [more inside]
posted by NYC-BB on Sep 12, 2013 - 8 answers

What American companies perform mtDNA analysis?

I am looking to buy an analysis of my mtDNA, but my search engine seems to be only giving me foreign companies. (This is why I hate tailored searches because they pigeonhole you.) Can anyone help me?
posted by squirbel on Mar 24, 2013 - 7 answers

Hi, you share a name with my brother and are probably related to us

My brother shares his name with one other person in the world (as far as we can tell from Google anyway). This man is probably related to us. Should we write to him? If so, what should we say? [more inside]
posted by hoyland on Mar 20, 2013 - 30 answers

Advice for making a request of someone you don't personally know?

My father passed away when I was a kid. I want to contact some of his friends to learn more about him, which is awkward enough, but more so when some of his close friends are public figures. Looking for advice on how to go about this. [more inside]
posted by INTPLibrarian on Mar 4, 2013 - 13 answers

How to make an email survey to identify people in a photo?

I have a good scan of the group photo from my grandparents wedding. I know who several of the people are in the photo, and I know that all my grandmother's eight brothers are in the group, but I do not know which brother is which. My Dad has made his best guesses, but he's not sure about many of them. I have recently made contact with several second cousins in the family while doing my genealogical research, so I thought I could get each of them to give me their best guesses in some sort of online survey, and compile the answers to get a sort of family crowd-sourced opinion. But how best to do this? [more inside]
posted by Joh on Feb 3, 2013 - 8 answers

Did this bad New York State apple rot in prison?

How do I get information about a turn-of-the-century criminal? He was my great-grandfather. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Jan 12, 2013 - 6 answers

What's best - Family Tree Maker or Ancestry Quest.

Genealogy Software - can't decide between Family Tree Maker and Ancestry Quest. [more inside]
posted by Kevin S on Dec 2, 2012 - 7 answers

Genealogy question!

Genealogy question! What does the bolded mean in this record of marriage taken from a 1911 genealogy: Margaret Harris, b. Dec. 12, 1810; m. (1st) Abraham Mitchell. (Barrow, Ind.) [more inside]
posted by the young rope-rider on Nov 22, 2012 - 7 answers

Help me build a fun, narrative-rich family tree

ThanksgivingFamilyTimeFilter: Let's talk about family tree-building! I'm looking for genealogy solutions that prioritize narrative as much (if not more) as data. Help me sift through the options? [more inside]
posted by greggish on Nov 22, 2012 - 4 answers

Of Fathers and Sons and DNA

My father's grandfather was adopted with very little paperwork or evidence trail as to his biological origins. Earlier this year, my father's uncle got his DNA tested. Unfortunately, the closest Y-DNA relative we've isolated from the tests is 13 generations back. But, I have a related question: All of the matches, through multiple services (having manually entered the data into other services) have a wide variety of non-repeating last names. Given that Y-DNA matches father-to-son, wouldn't there be at least some names repeating? [more inside]
posted by thanotopsis on Aug 30, 2012 - 25 answers

Can you help me find a copy of this court case?

I found a link to an old court case involving a relative of mine. Google Books won't show me the whole thing - can anyone find it elsewhere or suggest how I can get a copy? I don't have access to legal databases. This is the link, and my relative referred to is Erno Scheiner.
posted by Joe in Australia on Aug 15, 2012 - 11 answers

Can I find details about a manslaughter case from 1942?

Can I and should I request court records from a 1942 manslaughter case in Tucson, AZ? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on May 7, 2012 - 4 answers

Archiving Family Treasures

Archiving Really old photos: Your suggestions on methodology and tools? [more inside]
posted by thanotopsis on May 2, 2012 - 7 answers

Help me make pretty family trees

What program or software was used to make this family tree diagram? [more inside]
posted by Nickel on Apr 12, 2012 - 5 answers

My great aunt was murdered somewhere in the USA around 1970 by her husband. I only know her first name. How do I find out the details?

My great aunt was murdered somewhere in the USA around 1970 by her husband. I only know her first name. How do I find out the details? [more inside]
posted by pandini on Mar 20, 2012 - 28 answers

How complete are DNA tests at determining ethnic / racial background?

How complete are DNA tests at determining ethnic / racial background? [more inside]
posted by mortaddams on Mar 4, 2012 - 10 answers

What is this city name on this headstone?

Please help me read the name of this French city on this headstone! [more inside]
posted by erst on Feb 15, 2012 - 29 answers

Help a librarian with Native American genealogy question!

I'm a reference librarian trying to help a patron find some information. The father of her children claimed to be Native American, but she is no longer in contact with him. She does have his first and last name and social security number, but no other information. She would like to find out whether he was telling the truth and what tribe he was part of, and share that information with her kids. I've told her that her best bet is to check the tribal rolls in the area that he lived, but she hasn't had any luck there. Any other suggestions?
posted by crowyhead on Jan 25, 2012 - 8 answers

Who's yo' daddy, William X. O'Brien?

Does anyone know anything about the Irish trade unionist and politician William X. O'Brien (23 January 1981 - 31 October 1968)? I read that he was born in Clonakilty and, descending from the O'Brien family in that area, I'm curious if he's a relative. I would think it'd be easy to get a little family information on him given his relative prominence, but I haven't turn up much.
posted by Enneking on Jan 21, 2012 - 1 answer

Should I visit a FamilySearch Center for my genealogy research?

Reminded by this question, I want to know if any of my fellow genealogists or history enthusiasts have ever visited their local Mormon FamilySearch Center. [more inside]
posted by That's Numberwang! on Jan 3, 2012 - 14 answers

Flexible, customizable, free, gay-friendly, Windows-compatible genealogy software?

Flexible, customizable, free, gay-friendly, Windows-compatible genealogy software? [more inside]
posted by pracowity on Nov 3, 2011 - 5 answers

Which X Chromosome did I inherit from my mother?

Which X Chromosome did I inherit from my mother? [more inside]
posted by brownrd on Aug 27, 2011 - 12 answers

Can you help me create a family tree?

Genealogy question: I have a lot of information on my (maternal) ancestors going back about 250 years. It's a huge long list of names, dates, places, and relationships, emailed to me years ago by my mother's cousin. The difficulty I'm having is that the information is organized in a linear fashion, and I'd love to see it in a family-tree type of format so I can better understand (visually) how these people are connected to me. I'm looking for software (free if available) that will allow me to plug in names, dates, and relationships, and will display it in a tree format. Can you recommend a website or service that would allow me to do this? [more inside]
posted by JenMarie on Aug 22, 2011 - 12 answers

What is origin of Howard St. in Waltham, Mass. (Part #2)?

What is origin of Howard St. in Waltham, Mass. (Part #2)? [more inside]
posted by joshuamcginnis on Aug 17, 2011 - 4 answers

Can I hire someone to do my genealogy research?

Can I hire someone to do my genealogy research? [more inside]
posted by Nelson on Aug 10, 2011 - 7 answers

Help me snarf image files accessible via a web app

The Mormons have put images of a whole lot of family records online (e.g., here) and people can view and download them for free via a web app. This is super nice of them. But their app is so slow and buggy that doing this page-by-page is driving me crazy. How can I download a whole lot of images at once, or at least automate the process?
posted by Joe in Australia on Aug 10, 2011 - 1 answer

Genealogy websites

I just saw a commercial for ancestry.com that sold me on finding out interesting things about my family that I wouldn't even think to look for or ask about. What are my options in terms of services (are there better genealogy sites than ancestry.com?), and what will this cost me? Have you had a good experience with a genealogy service?
posted by rastapasta on Jun 12, 2011 - 19 answers

Like StoryCorps, but with more beer.

At our upcoming family reunion (the first in a good seven years), my mother wants to run an audio "story booth" where family members can come and tell stories to be preserved for posterity. Can y'all think of any tips -- before, during and after -- to help this run smoothly and get the most interesting stories? [more inside]
posted by Madamina on Jun 3, 2011 - 10 answers

Name that search engine!

Dear HiveMind, please help me think of a name for a new web project I'm building. It's essentially a "genealogy search engine in a box", based on a customized build of Apache Solr. It will allow moderately tech savvy genealogy geeks, whether individual genealogists or small genealogy organizations, an easy way to index and search datasets of names and any related data, with a nice front end UI for doing searches. Notable features include faceted search (by record year, record town(s), record source, etc.), soundalike surname searching, customizable given name synonyms (i.e. searching for "Becky" also finds Rebecca), and pop-up Google Maps linked to record locations. And the entire project will be open source. The project is already about 90% completed, but I need something snappy to call it before I can release it. Ideas welcome!
posted by Asparagirl on May 17, 2011 - 16 answers

Lots of photos of tombstones. I want to crowdsource the transcription. How?

I have lots and lots of photos of tombstones and I want to get the information into a machine-readable format - ideally a spreadsheet. I think I can find volunteers to transcribe them, but I need a way to do it efficiently. Can anyone suggest a way to do this online, perhaps using some sort of blogging or Wiki-like software?
posted by Joe in Australia on May 9, 2011 - 12 answers

Help deciphering some old handwriting?

Deciphering old handwriting...please hope me. [more inside]
posted by cowboy_sally on May 3, 2011 - 13 answers

Do people really trace their family trees back that far?

Do people really trace their family trees back that far? I'm pretty much dead-ended in the 1850s. [more inside]
posted by smackfu on Apr 28, 2011 - 52 answers

Looking for an an English-speaking genealogist in Austria

I need an English-speaking genealogist in Austria with experience searching Austro-Hungarian military records. I haven't had much luck using search engines. Any suggestions?
posted by Joe in Australia on Mar 30, 2011 - 2 answers

I'm sure I have relatives...somewhere.

[biogeography filter] Both of my parents are adopted. How can I find out more about my ethnic heritage? Complicating factors inside. [more inside]
posted by easy, lucky, free on Feb 17, 2011 - 11 answers

Software for local history?

How are people using software and the net to gather and write local history? [more inside]
posted by pracowity on Feb 14, 2011 - 10 answers

German family tree research?

I'm tracking down my grandparents' backgrounds in Germany. Point me in the right direction? [more inside]
posted by cgs on Feb 9, 2011 - 10 answers

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