Free online versions of my recent Family Tree Magazine articles

In my last post, I mentioned my recent articles I wrote for Family Tree Magazine.  There are now slightly modified free versions of the articles available on their website. The “Moving Targets” article is recast as “How to Use Old Maps to Find Missing Ancestors“, and my case study is found as “How to Use Old Maps & City Directories to Research House History“. I hope you enjoy the articles!

randymajors.org website and I featured in Family Tree Magazine

Many thanks to Family Tree Magazine for featuring me in their May/June 2017 “5 Questions” Q&A column, part of their regular “Genealogy Insider” section.  In other news: Who knew I was an insider? :) It was also great fun co-authoring an article with Sunny Jane Morton in the same issue of the magazine.  Previewed on the cover as “4 Ways to Find Ancestors with Old Maps”, the 8-page feature article beginning on page 48 is called “Moving Targets” and provides genealogy research suggestions for what to do when the ancestor you are researching apparently falls off the map. The article … Read more

AncestorSearch and the Historical Google Maps tools are back in action!

Sorry for the site outage the last 24 hours or so. A blogger.com configuration change triggered it, but all is back in working order now: AncestorSearch using Google Custom Search: searches using the full power of Google, and then filters exceptionally well so you’re more likely to find mentions of ancestors you otherwise might miss buried in thousands of Google search results.  Many people are surprised at what AncestorSearch finds, even for ancestors that they had searched for exhaustively over the years. Historical U.S. County Boundary Maps interactive tool: find the correct U.S. jurisdictions for the place and historical timeframe … Read more

Unexpected Name-Change Brick Wall Busted!

The man who wasn’t  John Charles Brown? Secrecy, Genealogical Research, Hunches, and DNA Testing Lead to Answers For 130 years – from 1880 to 2010 – John Charles Brown’s past was hidden in veils of secrecy.  John’s children and grandchildren didn’t know who his parents or siblings were.  It was the proverbial genealogical brick wall.  Therefore, since this was one of my most difficult family lines I could research, I researched it. JOHN CHARLES BROWN APPARENTLY DIDN’T EXIST BEFORE HIS MARRIAGE For many years, the first confirmed record found of John Charles Brown was of his marriage to Catherine Connors … Read more

Photo Detective write-up on tintype of my 4th Great Grandfather

Back in July of 2009, Maureen Taylor, the Photo Detective, did a write-up on a “photo” I discovered of my 4th Great Grandfather, William Riley Majors.  In the photo with William were his two children from his first marriage: my 3rd Great Grandfather William Andrew “Andy” Majors and his sister Martha Etta Majors. The photo was at the house of a 2nd cousin 2 times removed in Cortez, Colorado, but she had not known who was in the photo until we met in October 2008.  So we both made a fantastic discovery that day! “Electronic files are wonderful for sharing pictures, … Read more