Sunday, April 28, 2013

April 2013 Scanfest

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Friday, April 26, 2013

Scanfest is Coming!

I apologize for such a late reminder...

The April 2013 Scanfest will take place here at AnceStories this coming Sunday, April 28th, from 11 AM to 2 PM, Pacific Daylight Time.
What is Scanfest? It's a time when geneabloggers, family historians, and family archivists meet online here at this blog to chat while they scan their precious family document and photos. Why? Because, quite honestly, scanning is time-consuming and boring!

Scanfest is a great time to "meet" other genealogists, ask questions about scanning and preservation, and get the kick in the pants we all need on starting those massive scanning projects that just seem too overwhelming to begin.

To get started, you need to know the basics about scanning:

1. Don't use commercial glass cleaners (i.e. Windex) or paper towels to clean your scanner's glass plate. Use a soft, clean cloth, preferably microfiber. If you must use a liquid, use water sprayed directly onto the cloth  and make sure to let the plate dry thoroughly before placing photos or documents on it.

2. Wear cotton gloves (available at many art and/or photography supply shops) when handling photos and old documents.

3. Don't slide the photos around on the glass plate. Place them exactly where you want them. Photos should NEVER be scanned by a scanner that feeds the document through the machine, but ALWAYS on a flat-bed scanner.

4. Set your scanner to scan at no smaller than 300 dpi (dots per inch). Many experts recommend 600 dpi for photographs.

5. Photographs should ALWAYS be scanned and saved as .tif files. Use "Save As" to reformat the .tif file to a .jpg file for restoration and touchups, emailing, or uploading to an online photo album. ALWAYS retain the original scan as a .tif file.

6. Documents can be scanned as .pdf files or .tif files.

7. When you are done scanning your photos, don't put them back in those nasty "magnetic" photo albums. Place them in archival safe albums or boxes found at websites such as Archival Products or Archival Suppliers. Do NOT store any newsprint (articles, obituaries, etc.) with the photos. The acid from the newspaper will eventually destroy the photograph.

Now about the chatting part of Scanfest:

We will be using Blyve, a live blogging platform that you access right here at AnceStories. On Sunday at 11 AM, PDT, come right here to AnceStories and you'll see the Blyve live blog/forum in the top post. It's not really a "chat room," per se, it's more like a live forum and anyone visiting this site can read and see what is happening in the forum.

You will not need to download any software.

We look forward to having you participate with us!

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Tuesday, April 02, 2013

Clark County (Washington) Genealogical Society's Spring Seminar

I'm excited to announce that once again, the Clark County Genealogical Society has asked me to be their speaker for their Spring Seminar. I'll be speaking on three aspects of social networking--blogging, Facebook, and Pinterest--as well as finding online resources for tracing your Northwest ancestors. This seminar will be held at their facility at 717 Grand Boulevard, Vancouver, Washington from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM. You can pre-register this week at that location; walk-ins are also welcome and the doors will be open at 8:30 AM for registration. Bring your own sack lunch. For more information, see the CCGS's home page here.

You can read my post on last year's seminar here.

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Monday, April 01, 2013

Guest Post: 13 Ways to Tell Your Ancestor Stories

Today I'm honored to have Dr. Bill Smith of the Dr. Bill Tells Ancestor Stories blog share his guest post as part of his Book Blog Tour for the publication of the second edition of his eBook, 13 Ways to Tell Your Ancestor Stories. As part of the book tour, I'm happy to host a book giveaway! To participate, please leave your name and email address in the comments. These will NOT be published on the internet, but will be sent to my email address. If you wish to leave an additional comment regarding the post for publishing without your name and email address, feel free. I will publish those. The giveaway will end at midnight, PDT on Tuesday, April 2nd.

Thank you for the opportunity to share some thoughts about 13 Ways to Tell Your Ancestor Stories, 2nd Edition. My primary interest is encouraging everyone doing family history and genealogy research to share their findings. The workbook shares 13 different ways to tell your stories and provides a worksheet for each of the ways to help you be more effective in your sharing. Blogs, like this, are one of the ways, of course.

But what do I have to tell, you may ask. Let's talk about that briefly. You have two parents and four grandparents, if you are normal. However, who among us is normal? Chances are, your personal situation will have some variances even among these 'six' people - I'll bet there is a story or two there. We each have eight great-grandparents and sixteen great-grandparents. Do you know all of them? You very well may, but I will suggest that most of your family members do not. A story opportunity. Where did they each live? How did each of the couples get together? What did they do? How did they get there? Did they live in the city or on a farm or ranch? How much education did they each receive? Where and how? What religion were they affiliated with - or not? What impact did it have on their lives. How many different occupations were represented in this group? You do have stories to tell!

My wife and I have found two aspects of family history stories where many great stories reside: 1) aunts and uncles, and 2) the women's side of each couple. In years past, children often spent time with aunts and uncles - often on the mother's side of the family. Some were even raised by them. If you don't know a lot about the mother's side, her siblings and their spouses, you are missing many great stories. Has this been your experience, as well? If you are still getting started, don't miss this very special set of folks. It may take a little more digging, but it is always worth the effort.

If you are still reading this, I hope you will use it as inspiration to share your stories. Start small so that you will do it. If you have already started, keep up the good work. If you've been doing it for a long time, thank you very much. Share a story today!  ;-)

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