Tips & Opinions

Technology Advantages

Technology can and should be an crucial adjunct to your genealogical efforts.  As a matter of fact, I contend that no effort is complete, nor can your genealogy efforts be fully effective, without effective technological support.  The support can be as simple as using a word processor or as complex as writing large databases to […]

Geneabloggers & ManyRoads

ManyRoads is pleased to announce that we have been published on Geneabloggers. It is our hope to have generalized thoughts & opinions available for publication on that great site on a monthly basis (or thereabouts!). Like most things, our publication schedule will ‘most likely’ be semi-irregular.  Kind of like me, semi-irregular. We encourage you to […]

Outside the box

Genealogy is where you find it. Most often those looking for their relatives follow the tried and true paths of searching the Internet as well as searching the ‘traditional’ genealogy venues such as town halls, LDS Family History Centers, etc. Many people even go so far as to restrict their searches to the Internet only, […]

The best non-genealogy genealogy places #3

I debated whether or not this was the correct title for my posting but settled on it anyway! I really do not have a long list of items to present here, but rather a very small listing with only two, wonderful, non-genealogy genealogy places; they are: Flea markets Antique shows Yesterday, my wife, mother-in-law and […]

Tools for date calculations

Date calculations are quite useful and necessary in doing genealogy work. If you are like me, I constantly need to count backwards and forward from one event to another: death to birth, birth to marriage, etc. I find this type of calculation is more necessary when there is a paucity of information and documentation available […]

Changes on ManyRoads

The changes are a-coming! Some of the changes to the site are fairly significant others tiny.  However, although I have tested them all, I would greatly appreciate hearing from our readers if they are either helpful or problematic.  Please use our contact page or the comments on this page to let me know what you […]

Genealogy within context

Learning about your past, the past, any past requires an open mind and open eyes. An attention to detail, circumstances, and motivation are crucial. Preconceived notions, biases and wishes need to be set aside so that a clear and open mind is available to absorb the scenery. As an Frank Zappa once said: A mind […]

Winnie the Pooh on Genealogy #2

As I have mentioned before, it never ceases to surprise me how much Winnie the Pooh knows about life, genealogy included. I searched and found the following quotes and they just seemed to be very insightful. I hope you find them so as well. “Here is Edward Bear, coming downstairs now, bump, bump, bump, on […]

Here today…gone tomorrow

Grab the data while you can.  I guess that is what every online genealogist needs to have as their motto these days. Today I uploaded a very useful (helpful) WordPress plugin called: Broken Link Checker- It checks your blog for broken links and missing images and notifies you on the dashboard if any are found. […]

Hundreds of Free Genealogy Courses

Major revision Date(s): 20 October 2013 For those wishing to learn ‘more’ on how to conduct Genealogical research, acquaint themselves with the basics, or just see ‘how things are done'; there are numerous sources of on-line training. Hopefully you will find these Free courses to be of value as you develop your skills, knowledge, and […]

Find your friends

Find your friends.  If you run a family history/ genealogy website, building associations and affiliations can be a useful and valuable adjunct to your genealogical efforts. Some of the most interesting and potentially useful affiliations (links) are with are sites and organizations belonging to other family members or family associations.  These family members/ associations need […]

Winnie the Pooh on Genealogy #1

It surprises me how much Winnie the Pooh knows about genealogy. I came across the following quotes and they just seemed to be very insightful. I hope you find them so as well. Before beginning a Hunt, it is wise to ask someone what you are looking for before you begin looking for it. Winnie […]

20-20 Hindsight

Ah, the advantages of hindsight.  Looking back in time and regretting the decisions that were made, the options that were chosen, and the events that occurred is very easy trap to fall in.  Fruitless, but easy.  In fact, spending a lot of time trying to rewrite the past, excuse events or bemoaning their occurrence is, […]

Civility and history

Unfortunately when people are expelled from areas, civility is not always, or perhaps even generally, the rule. Such was the case in Poland.  The Polish Communist government was eager to lay claim to its newly obtained German lands and expel all Germans not simply from the lands but also from memory and history. Over time […]

It is not a contest

It seems many people believe that genealogy, or family history, is some sort of competition or contest. Their ancestors were better, were more important, traveled further, worked harder, suffered more, were more regal… Genealogy and family history is conceptually straightforward, it simply involves accurately identifying our ancestors, family and history. Every family has had its […]

Genetic Genealogy

All of us have DNA. Even if we do not know the names of our ancestors, we have DNA. Our family has decided to gather and analyze its DNA materials (matrilineal and patrilineal lines) and see what these DNA lines have to say. We have elected to do this through the genographic project, a partnership […]

Zotero and genealogy

Do you use Zotero in doing your genealogy research work? This is a question I have toyed around with for quite a while now.  I don’t have a good answer for myself although the toolset seems well suited to gathering web-based information, collating, and processing it.  It is also tightly coupled with the browser I […]


Acknowledge your sources! Today I received a note from a very important genealogy friend. She asked me if I hadn’t perhaps confused two family members who had similar names thereby giving erroneous credit to the ‘wrong’ person rather than the ‘right’ one. A very important question. It is absolutely essential to provide good and clear […]

No name, no date… #2

What do you do when there are no names or dates to work with? Well quite simply, there has to be something or else you are in deep trouble!  Having said that there are many times when the names are and dates are unclear, indefinite or conflicting. I have found a few options that work […]

Publish your information

Publishing genealogy information seems important to me.  I suppose that ought to be obvious enough just by the size of ManyRoads. But why go to the trouble?  What is the value? I can only answer those questions from my perspective.  Perhaps some of our readers might be willing to chime in via comments on this […]

No name, no date… #1

Ever have a person without a clear name or birth/ death dates? I seem to regularly encounter family members for whom the names have become vague and the dates muddled. Because this situation is fairly common, there need to be simple methods for getting around these situations. I have found the following approaches to be […]

What Genealogy Tool is best?

Many search but few find… I think that old quote pretty much sums up what happens when searching for the right genealogical toolset. Too often, people believe that their hardware or operating platform defines their selection choices.  In truth, it rarely does.  Almost any tool can be run on any platform.  Certainly a bit of […]

We are… inter-related!

Never one to leave well enough alone, here are a few additional excerpts of concepts and data I came across while thinking about our collective Royalty or inter-relatedness.  Rather than attempting to re-write these ideas into my own words, I have included excerpts of the original posts with links to the entire reading(s). Enjoy! Conservatively […]

We are all royal!

Over the past few days my email has been clogged with questions about whether or not anyone- everyone was related to royalty.   Well being the geek that I am, I decided to a quick bit of research and here’s what I found out  (these are excerpted for the articles noted at the end of this […]

Finding “lost” family

Finding a lost family connection can be daunting, exhilarating and exasperating.  The human need for connection to family and community is strong.  And, the desire to find lost family members can become nearly all consuming. In order to succeed in this search, here are 5 pointers might be helpful (especially if you are new to […]

Further WordPress – GRAMPS Integration

With the latest release of GRAMPS (version 3.2.2) I have been able to more tightly integrate the WebSite output of GRAMPS with the ManyRoads site.  With this most recent release I have the flexibility of generating html pages- YAY!  I am now able to provide the following functions quite easily: I can add an image […]

Another Genealogy Adventure…. part 2

To fix the problems, Craig and I devised a fairly simple plan. Craig sent me the genealogical documents he had in his possession. He agreed to travel to Plattsburgh, New York in search of additional source evidence. I agreed to re-read (this time more carefully) all the documentation I had in my possession; this evidence […]

Another Genealogy Adventure…. part 1

As I have written numerous times before the Deyo portion of my family is a bit of a challenge. Well recently, my analysis and documentation of the Joseph Dion line was once again brought into question (by my new friend Craig LaPine!). On Saturday the 24th of April, I received the following email note from […]

Merging Genealogy “Branches”

Merging branches (also known as cutting and pruning) is something you will most certainly need to do; unless you never make mistakes!  I just encountered a situation like that with my Deyo Branch (I seem to enjoy making mistakes in this line…). By way of providing background, a newly discovered relative was kind enough to […]

15 Excellent & FREE Genealogy Sites

Numerous excellent FREE genealogy sites are available- probably too many to mention. Beyond the sites listed below from LovetoKnow, I suggest the following exceptional sites (obviously these relate heavily to my areas of research): Norwegian National Archives GenWIKI (German) Genealogy of Canada National Archives of Quebec (French) Progenealogists (Page of Links) sourced from LovetoKnow Roots […]

Share with Gendex

Share your information! It’s a really good idea. Almost certainly someone out there is looking for a family member or two of yours. The corollary is: you know how hard it has been for you to find reliable information, why not make it easier for everyone by generously making your work shareable. Of course, you […]

GRAMPS – WordPress Integration

Integrating GRAMPS and WordPress is a very straightforward activity. Not a lot of special skills or tools are required in order to make this integration work smoothly. I have to say it is one of the things I like best about GRAMPS. A couple of points worth remembering (knowing?) first: Don’t expect to update your […]

Look in a mirror…

People fear the past… they fear their history.  I have had countless conversations with family genealogists who have problems bringing unwanted, or bad news to their families. The bad news is ‘how you say???’ — rarely well received. Bad news is a term I use loosely.  More precisely I am referring to the news that […]

GRAMPS review and decision #3

Today we have published three (3) branches of our genealogy; two (2) are available for public access. Senger Branch (Public) Deyo Branch (Public) I have customized the output of GRAMPS standard web generation tools (NAVWEB) to create a look & feel that is consistent with the ManyRoads website. Please be aware that there remain bugs […]

GRAMPS review and decision #2

Based upon my decision to use GRAMPS as our primary genealogical database management environment, I have begun the transfer of family branches (both public and private) into our new format. If you look closely, you should notice the appearance of new page links from our various menus… As I undertake this transition, I will be […]

GRAMPS review and decision #1

Using GRAMPS as a primary management, storage and presentation tool for our genealogical data came about slowly. As many of you may recall, I tried and still use numerous family databases such as TNG, RootsMagic etc.  However, moving genealogical data back and forth across three or four tools before placing it in a single secure […]

A Great Find…

One of the great joys of doing genealogy work is that every once in a while, you make a great find.  A find that brings on a feeling of joy, wonder, and belonging.  Yesterday was one of those days for me. I know I have been offering a lot of insights into issues associated with […]

Data Cleanup Tip #1

One quick trick I discovered for repairing problem Genealogy data involves using an editor -I like geany and gedit… probably because I run on Linux. But truth be known, any editor with a global find & replace function should do just fine! Here’s the typical scenario.  You have a data corruption problem that occurs throughout […]

Cleanup from #2

Ancestry files require a lot of clean-up before they are really useful or accurate.  As I noted earlier, the files themselves need to be scrubbed of duplicates, overlapping records and more. In order to accomplish these repairs, I use numerous tools to address the requisite tasks including: GRAMPS (a Linux Genealogical Toolset)- I like this […]

Cleanup from #1

I don’t know how many of you, like me, use as their data collection and ‘easy analysis’ site.  I suspect quite a few. As you may be aware I have been pouring through a significant section of my father’s family- the Deyos.  This research effort has generated a set of over 500 people.  Also […]

Norwegian Research

Norway offers exceptional internet research facilities for genealogy. Although we have not been working in the Sivertsen family line very long we have uncovered some very helpful web-tools. Thus far we have unearthed several excellent, dare I say indispensable,  tools: Norwegian Historical Data Centre (a wonderful repository) – The Norwegian Historical Data Centre (NHDC) is […]

Genealogy of Canada

Genealogy of Canada is a great site for researching French Canadian ancestry.  I discovered the site two days ago when I was stumped trying to locate some relatives. The site is developed primarily for native French Canadian language speakers and offered in translated English.  I have had no major problems with the English variant; it […]

Ancestry Downloads

Ancestry download issues?? Like the rest of you, I need to download my Ancestry work files.  Also like many of you, maybe all of you, I encounter problems. Here’s how things don’t work for me. To perform a download of a gedcom file is not difficult, although the function is pretty well hidden. To access […]

Pick wisely

As you work on your genealogy be sure to work on branches and items in logical groups.  Do not scatter your efforts too much or you risk becoming confused, muddled and inaccurate. I find that my best and most productive work comes when I work in a single or focused area of my family either […]

The best non-genealogy genealogy places #1

Some of the most useful genealogy sites and locations, often are not genealogical in nature, include the following: Internet Archive.  This site is associated with the wayback machine, for those who remember that. The site provides access to a wealth of source documents, histories, etc.  All the documents provided are free of copyright encumbrances, which […]

Be honest

Honesty is one of the most important dimensions of good genealogy and family history.  We all have backgrounds that we would like to say were ours. However, sometimes we have to settle for the fact that we are who we are. If you truly want to provide and accurate family history and genealogy, you need […]

No historical records?

Yesterday while working on my genealogy, I accidently got carried away.  Hard to believe but true.  Here is what I found myself doing, then questioning and finally fixing. I was conducting initial research on Ancestry, seeking the basics about who was born of whom and where.  As is typically the case, I was using the […]

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