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Ancestry Hints

Monday Genea-Pourri – Week Ending 10 November 2019

Here are the highlights of my family history and genealogy related activities over the past week:

1)  Attended the Chula Vista Genealogical Society board meeting on Wednesday, and reported on the Newsletter, Research Group, and DNA Interest Group.  Wrote, edited and published via email the CVGS Newsletter for November 2019.  I will print and mail the postal copies on Tuesday. 
2)  Participated in Mondays With Myrt today.  The panel discussed Remembrance Day, Veterans Day, 1940s occupation of Norway, Pat’s map issue, Dave’s computer problems, backup and cloud storage, photos of ancestors who served, and the Sayre talk on Soldiers homes.  I contributed only to the photos with my post Veterans Day 2017 – Honoring My Heroes.


4)  Wrote and posted a biographical sketch of 7th great-grandfather #514 Samuel Rayment (1679-1724) for my 52 Ancestors biographical sketch on Friday.  


6) There were several sessions working in the RootsMagic software program to match with and update FamilySearch Family Tree profiles for Seaver families and my ancestral families, with occasional additions to the RootsMagic profiles. I have matched 33,469 of my RootsMagic persons with FSFT.

7)  Used Web Hints and Record Matches from Ancestry, MyHeritage, Findmypast and FamilySearch to add content and sources to my RootsMagic profiles.  I now have 55,335 persons in my RootsMagic file, and 111,669 source citations.   I TreeShared once this week updating 155 profiles, and I resolved 241 Ancestry Hints.  I’ve fallen behind on the Ancestry Record Hints with 121,955 to be resolved, but I work on them weekly.  

8)  Added the ThruLines for three AncestryDNA matches with “Common Ancestors.”  Researched the ancestry of one of the Brigham cousins to see if there were any common ancestors other than the Brighams.  There weren’t, but some lines are not complete.

9) Wrote 20 Genea-Musings blog posts last week, of which two were press releases.  The most popular post last week was Don Created a Wonderful Genealogy Website on TNG  with over 317 views.


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Copyright (c) 2019, Randall J. Seaver

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Monday Genea-Pourri – Week Ending 20 October 2019

Here are the highlights of my family history and genealogy related activities over the past week:

1)  Moderated the Chula Vista Genealogical Society (CVGS) DNA Interest Group Meeting  on Wednesday with 12 attendees.  I reported on the Ancestry Health announcement, the FamilyTreeDNA health announcement, the 23andMe updated ethnicity and family tree, the MyHeritagwe Live 2019 DNA videos, the RootsTech London livestreams and handouts, and my Newton/Brigham DNA matches.  The attendees reported on the status of their DNA test results and analyses.  

2)  Participated in Mondays With Myrt today.  The panel discussed the Zoom webinar and meetings features, RootsTech London, the Society of Genealogists, the Irish Genealogy site with free BMD records, removal of FamilySearch records, and the Newspapers.com obituary hints.  

3)  Finished up my new presentation on “Researching in Historical Newspapers” which I will give at the 30 October CVGS general meeting.  I still need to do the syllabus.

3)  Watched one MyHeritage Live 2019 video –  The Worldwide DNA Web by Alon Diament Carmel. 

4)  Wrote and posted a biographical sketch of 6th great-grandmother #511 Sarah (Campbell) Rolfe (1746-1838) for my 52 Ancestors biographical sketch on Friday.  This completes my known 6th great-grandparents and closer ancestors.


6)  Ancestry added about 4,000 record hints for the Newspapers.com Obituary Index and I started resolving them, adding content and sources to my RootsMagic tree.  I used the mining tool for a specific Ancestry record collection.
7) There were several sessions working in the RootsMagic software program to match with and update FamilySearch Family Tree profiles for Seaver families and my ancestral families, with occasional additions to the RootsMagic profiles. I have matched 33,163 of my RootsMagic persons with FSFT.

8)  Used Web Hints and Record Matches from Ancestry, MyHeritage, Findmypast and FamilySearch to add content and sources to my RootsMagic profiles.  I now have 55,167 persons in my RootsMagic file, and 111,073 source citations.   I TreeShared thrice this week updating 276 profiles, and I resolved 1105 Ancestry Hints.  I’ve fallen behind on the Ancestry Record Hints with 120,220 to be resolved, but I work on them weekly.

9)  Added several more ThruLines to DNA matches to my RootsMagic file.  Added Notes to about 5 AncestryDNA matches.   Downloaded  new MyHeritageDNA shared cM match list and got it into a spreadsheet, hoping to find common ancestors for my matches.  Tried to obtain the Auto cluster analysis but it failed for some reason.


10) Wrote 17 Genea-Musings blog posts last week, of which two were a press release.  The most popular post last week was 
New Collection on Ancestry.com – Newspapers.com Obituary Index, 1800s to Current  
with over 472 views.

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The URL for this post is: 


Copyright (c) 2019, Randall J. Seaver

Please comment on this post on the website by clicking the URL above and then the “Comments” link at the bottom of each post.  Share it on Twitter, Facebook, or Pinterest using the icons below.  Or contact me by email at randy.seaver@gmail.com.


Dear Randy: Do You Ignore Ancestry Hints?

Sherry asked a question in email recently concerning Ancestry Hints:

Do you use the ignore button to get rid of a hint once you have recorded your information or do you leave it there are try to remember where you were on the list of hints?”

Here is my response:

I do IGNORE every Record Hint that I look at for my Ancestry Member Tree, perhaps with a few exceptions.  That way, I know that I’ve at least looked at it, and often include the record information in my RootsMagic tree, add a source citation, perhaps a Note.  If it’s a useful record for one of my ancestors, I will save the record image to my computer files and add the Media item to the person profile in my RootsMagic tree. 

On Ancestry, even the IGNOREd hints are saved on the Hints page, so I can go look at them if I choose to.  I like that capability, because occasionally I find that I need to look at them again.  

The RootsMagic WebHints feature shows all of the Ancestry WebHints found for a person, and the list includes New, Ignored, and Accepted Hints.  I can accept or reject them from RootsMagic also.

I would never remember where I was on the list of Record Hints!  I have over 115,000 Record Hints now.  Sometimes it is days later when I come back to the Hint list, and Ancestry has added dozens or hundreds more hints.  I usually start with the latest first, and try to work through 200 or so in one sitting.  I try to do this 3-4 times a week.  I never seem to catch up!  I do what I can, but am resigned that I will never be “finished.”

Note that I don’t add information to my RootsMagic tree for every Hint – I already have events and source citations for many of them, and don’t add information for other trees, for duplicate entries (some state vital records are in multiple collections), or for general collections (e.g., Millennium File, AGBI, etc.).  I seem to add information for one in every 10 to 20 Record hints (I haven’t collected statistics on this).  On the other hand, I look at the “Suggested Records” for a person in a record to determine if there are other records of use to me.

I have found that if I TreeShare every other night I can limit the number of new Record Hints and am able to work through some of the older Hints.  

I look at the Photo and Story Hints occasionally so as not to miss something for one of my ancestors.  

Some readers may wonder “don’t you help Ancestry by telling them why you accepted or rejected a Hint?”  

This task is a bit time intensive for me, so I don’t do that – I just Ignore them.  

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Disclosure:  I have had a fully paid Ancestry.com subscription since 2000.  Ancestry.com has provided material considerations for travel expenses to meetings, and has hosted events and meals that I have attended in Salt Lake City, in past years.


Copyright (c) 2019, Randall J. Seaver

Please comment on this post on the website by clicking the URL above and then the “Comments” link at the bottom of each post.  Share it on Twitter, Facebook, or Pinterest using the icons below.  Or contact me by email at randy.seaver@gmail.com.

Monday Genea-Pourri – 13 May 2019

Here are the highlights of my family history and genealogy related activities over the past week:

1)  Moderated the Chula Vista Genealogical Society Research Group on Wednesday with 12 in attendance.  Discussed my Forever experience, including my YouTube movies, the “Who Do You Think You Are?” show to be on NBC this year (when?), Finnish and Danish records on MyHeritage, and the SDGS meeting.  In the second hour, the attendees discussed their research challenges and successes.

2)  Attended the San Diego Genealogical Society meeting on Saturday.  In the first session, Anne Turhollow presented “Putting Flesh on the Bones: Newspaper Research.”  In the second second, I moderated one of the 13 Group discussion tables; mine was on “Colonial New England.”  There were four others in the group.  I provided an updated 4 page handout for reference purposes.  After the session, I talked for 15 minutes with Jenny Lynn, my Forever ambassador, who encouraged me to sign up for a Storage plan on Forever.

3)  I signed up for a Free 2 gb Storage plan on Forever on Saturday afternoon.  My movies were there, and I made several albums for my photographs, and I added photos to the Charles Auble Family album, and captioned them.  I may sign up later for the 10 gB plan so that future digitized movies and many more family photos can be added to my Forever account.

4)  I signed up for the 100 gB Google Drive plan because I was maxed out on the Free Google Drive plan.  On Saturday night, I added 30 gB of my Genealogy files to Google Drive.  


6)  Wrote and posted a biography of 6th great-grandfather #454 Johann Leonhard Nachbar (1698-1766) of Germany and New Jersey for my 52 Ancestors post on Friday.  


7)  Watched one DNA Central Webinar – “So You Wanna Be a Search Angel” by McKell KeeneyExcellent webinar (behind paywall), with description of tools to solve adoption and other thorny problems, and a cast study. 

8)  Participated in today’s Mondays With Myrt on Zoom (which will go on YouTube later).  Today’s webinar discussed Pat Kuhn’s granddaughter’s wedding, Hilary’s nephew’s wedding in England, an article about genealogy blogs in an English magazine, use of social media vs. blogs, and why fewer people are blogging; use of YouTube; the 150th anniversary of the “golden spike” on transcontinental railroad in Utah; Liv highlighted the Oslo 1798 interactive video; use of Flickr to store photos; I showed my 2014 Flickr album of Myrt’s RootsTech after-party.

9) There were several sessions working in the RootsMagic software program to update FamilySearch Family Tree profiles for Seaver families and other ancestral families, with occasional additions to the RootsMagic profiles. I have matched 30,855 of my RootsMagic persons with FSFT.

10)  I continue to use Web Hints and Record Matches from Ancestry, MyHeritage, Findmypast and FamilySearch to add content and sources to my RootsMagic profiles.  I now have 53,610 persons in my RootsMagic file, and 104,627 source citations.   I TreeShared once this week updating 111 profiles, and I resolved about 763 Ancestry Hints.  I’ve fallen behind on the Ancestry Record Hints with 109,839 to be resolved, but I work on them weekly.

11) Wrote 18 Genea-Musings blog posts last week, of which one was a press release.  The most popular post last week was 
Where Are the Morris County, New Jersey Probate Records in the Family History Library Catalog – UPDATED with over 505 views.

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The URL for this post is:  


Copyright (c) 2019, Randall J. Seaver

Please comment on this post on the website by clicking the URL above and then the “Comments” link at the bottom of each post.  Share it on Twitter, Facebook, or Pinterest using the icons below.  Or contact me by email at randy.seaver@gmail.com.