Day 8 – GeneaBlogger Games

I am having so much fun with these games! So far today I have not made any progress, but yesterday I moved forward with another task in Category 4: Write! Write! Write!

Using the pre-publish feature in WordPress, I wrote six posts that will be published later this month, and in September.  Five are for my Black Nashville History & Genealogy blog, and one is for my Blount County, Tennessee USGenWeb blog.

In September, my coursework will keep me ultra busy, so I doubt I will have any time at all. I am trying to get myself ahead by preparing post for all my other blogs outside of this one, so that I do not have to worry about them during the month of September.  I am very excited about it, so will continue to push on as the month winds down.

Maybe tomorrow I’ll get to the organize category….

Day 6 – Genea-Blogger Games

Over the past several days, I have been focusing on working the Cite Your Sources category.  I usually have not had issues creating a citation for a source, but, I have had issues in doing them in any kind of standard format.

Towards this task, I have redone or created the following sources

  • 52 citations for people in the 1870 census. You can see my list here. Over the past couple of years, I have been very inconsistent in whether or not I document someone as sourced in a census, even though I do consistently attach the census image to them along with details. The benefit of having it as a source however, is that when I export to Gedcom and do my narrative report in RootsMagic, the sources come out and it is clear that I have located that person in a census record. I have a LOT of future work to do to be more consistent with sourcing this.
  • 9 citations for death certificates – again, I have more than this in my database, but done correctly (see the individuals I have done this for, here), I learned how to do citations for hard copies, and I kind of made up how to do a citation for ones I get from Ancestry databases.  The cool thing about Ancestry is that they provide you information in the right format, so after putting the citation together according to the Cite Your Sources guide, I then appended the database source information from Ancestry. Here is an example of a citation for a death certificate that I’ve gotten from Ancestry — should I be doing something differently?
    • Death Certificate for Georgeanna McNair, 3 May 1934, Certificate #8, Washington County, North Carolina. County Register of Deeds, Plymouth, Washington County, North Carolina. North Carolina Death Certificates, 1909-1975 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2007. Original data: North Carolina State Board of Health, Bureau of Vital Statistics. North Carolina Death Certificates. Microfilm S.123. Rolls 19-242, 280, 313-682, 1040-1297. North Carolina State Archives, Raleigh, North Carolina.

This makes my total count to date of 61, and thus, I have earned my platinum medal!  Whoohoo!

I know this is just a small drop in the bucket, but I am actually very glad to be doing this. Even if I don’t get them all ever done right, from this point forward I can be more consistent, and as I have time, I’ll go back and update others.

Over the next few days I’ll be turning my attention to Category 3: Organize Your Research.

Day 2 – Genea-Blogger Games

At the close of Day 2, I’ve marked off two additional tasks in my list of goals.

Category 4: Write, Write, Write
Task: Participate in a genealogy or family history related blog carnival.
Accomplishment: I contributed a post for the 4th edition of Smile for the Camera.  When I saw that one of the options was to do a scrapbook page, I knew that would be how I would share my favorite photo of myself.  I enjoy digi-scrapping, though I don’t do much of it.

Category 5 : Reach Out & Perform Genealogical Acts of Kindness
Task: Join another genea-blogger’s blog network on Facebook Blog Networks
Accomplishment: I joined more than one, I joined 8 of them (Megan Roots World, Genealogy Reviews Online, Eastman’s, Eastern Washington Genealogical Society, Ancestories, Facebook Bootcamp for Genea-Bloggers, Forensic Genealogy Blog, & Kinnexions) and then started my own! I’ve not really used the Blog Networks application in Facebook, and after this experience, I think I can say that I’m not likely to use it much more. I guess I just don’t find the utility in it beyond just sharing blogs that you read with others on Facebook. I find it rather ineffective for even coming close to being a sufficient feed reader, Google Reader and BlogLines work much better for that. And, I keep track of too many blogs to even try to do a thorough list of favorites in a location outside of my feed reader. But, you don’t know these things unless you experiment right?

Here is the screenshot of my Facebook activity this evening:

Tomorrow, I think I will start looking at the Cite Your Sources category and buckle down and figure out the proper format I should be using.

My Favorite Photograph

The 4th Edition of Smile for the Camera calls for participants to reflect on their favorite photograph.  There are so many pictures in my collection, it’s so hard, but, I can say that this is my favorite picture of me.

I chose to put the picture in a digital scrapbook layout called “Spring Tulips” by Jennie Papai.  My mother took me to take this picture when I was about 9 months old and we were living in New York.  My favorite aspect about the picture is that I am holding my name in block letters.  This may sound vain, but I’ve always had a “thing” about seeing my name in print, about hearing my name being called. I truly love my name, it is unique and I am glad that my mother chose it for me.  Yeah, I had a big head, but I still love me 🙂

This is my first time participating in the Smile for the Camera carnival, and only my second time participating in a carnival at all.  Perhaps after these GeneaBlogger Games, I’ll be more likely to participate! It is interesting to read what everyone contributes.

Day 1 – Genea-Blogger Games

Here at the end of Day 1, I have accomplished two tasks so far. This is actually my Day 1 since I am a late entrant, but since I just did my entry post a few hours ago, I think this is good enough progress.

I have:

  • Re-written what this blog is about and posted it to the blog
  • Commented on a genealogy blog that is new to me.  In order to keep up with what everyone was doing, I added all the Genea-Blogger participants to my Google Reader. In the process of doing so, I found many that were new to me, but I commented on Sheri’s blog, The Educated Genealogist.  Sheri is new to the blogging world, but not new to genealogy.  How does she decide to get started? By creating a blog and in her very first post, declare her intent to participate in the Games.  Talk about jumping in!

To see my progress list, check out my checklist page. I’m off to figure out the next task to do….

UPDATE 8/10/08 11:24pm — I realized that August 9th was the 1st day of competition, thus, I’ve renamed this post from Day 2, to Day 1.

About This Blog

GBG logo For the games, I have re-written my page about this blog.  Originally titled, About Taneya, I decided to rename the page, About this Blog. You can find it at the top of the blog just under the graphic header.  Here is the content from the revised page:

I am a medical librarian by profession and have been interested in my family genealogy since about 1997, but did not begin actively working on it until February 2006.  At that time, I was searching for a way to put the information I did have to date online, found my application of choice, put my family info online, and there was no looking back. I found that my skills as a librarian come heavily into play with the genealogy as both fields encompass a lot of detective work and the analysis and synthesis of information. Sweet!

On this blog, you’ll find that I cover my own family tree, and that of my husband’s. I am interested in capturing as much as I can for our daughter and my stepsons, so my branches go out in many different directions.  I also work on the trees of friends and extended family members, so from time to time, I’ll post about them.

In addition to this blog, I also maintain others:

  • My primary blog – where I post information about our family life, and my cross-stitch when I get to it!
  • African-American Nashville History & Genealogy – I was looking for a way to give back to the genealogy of Nashville and found a niche with this one.
  • Blount County Blog — In October 2007 I volunteered to be the site coordinator for the Blount County, TN usgenweb site. Again, another way for me to give back to Tennessee genealogy. I re-designed the site and started a blog to further engage with those interested in that county.
  • Cross Stitch Magazine Database Blog – my original hobby of choice, cross-stitching, drove me to collect a LOT of magazines. So that I did not have to hunt for designs, I decided to index them. Then, I put the index online. I started this blog to accompany the index and share updates to the database.
  • Roanoke Beacon Blog — information from an old newspaper of Washington County, North Carolina.
  • Kinston Free Press Blog – information from an old newspaper of Lenior County, North Carolina
  • Talladega Daily Home Blog – information from newspaper of Talladega County, Alabama. This one is not going so well as I still don’t have good digital access to the newspaper. No promises on when I’ll pick it back up.
  • Vanderbilt Family Genealogy – because I have this weird obsession with the Vanderbilt family (I do work at Vanderbilt after all!), I decided to study their genealogy and created this blog to share and connect with other Vanderbilt researchers.

Through these blogs, I have made connections with many other researchers with areas of common interests and that has been just as satisfying as what I discover with our own trees.  Please feel free to comment if anything inspires you!

My Entry Post for the 2008 GeneaBlogger Games

I have decided to join the Summer 2008 Genea-Blogger Group Games since they are taking late entrants.  I havebeen a member of Facebook for awhile now and am already a  member of the GeneaBloggers FaceBook group, so that is out of the way.

My Flag

For my flag made at WeAreMulticolored, includes elements of the flags from the US, Germany & Egypt. US because that is where I am from. I chose Germany because my surname, Koonce, is of German origin. Despite the fact that I got it from slave owners, I do still identify strongly with it and embrace it (at times to the chagrin of my husband when I don’t use his surname (lol!).  And, I chose Egypt because we hope to visit there soon; it is within our 5 year plan.

Competition Categories

These are the categories I plan to compete in and my goals:

  • [1] Cite Your Sources – this will be a little tricky, so I hope I can carry this out. I use TNG: The Next Generation of Genealogy Sitebuilding as my primary genealogy software, and sources are created using an online form template.  Up until now, I have been entering source information pretty much haphazardly, so my goal is to learn how to use it correctly, and in such a way that when the information is converted to narrative format, the sources come out according to how they should be.  I have the 1997 version of Evidence Explained, so I’ll use that as a guide, as well as the How to Cite Sources guide by John Wiley.   I am going for PLATINUM.
  • [3] Organize Your Research — As a librarian, I agree that one can always be more organized! So, I take this challenge on to continue the work with my own files.  I may have to see how subject to interpretation Task F is, I have a few questions. But, at minimum, I am going for DIAMOND.
  • [4] Write, Write, Write – I think I can do this one easily enough except for the carnival hosting. I am going for DIAMOND.
  • [5] Reach Out & Perform Genealogy Acts of Kindness — Going for PLATINUM here too.  I do a lot of this anyway, so I look forward to expanding.

Are 4 categories too ambitious? I’ll have to look and see how many people are competing in all 5 categories.  But, I figure this is a chance for me to get a good genealogy push in before September, when I will be starting classes as I go back to school to pursue another Master’s degree, this time in Public Health w/ a focus in Biomedical Informatics (see my main blog for more details on that).

But, to get started, I have added the Games Badge to my sidebar, and I am about to start a new Google Reader label for all the participants, so I can keep up! I also created a special blog page for keeping track all in one place of what I do. I may not get any work accomplished towards the games themselves here at the end of Day 1.

I’m Going to Join the Genea-Blogger Games

Since I’ve been rather busy this past week (as well as in a little pain), I am just now catching up on most of my genealogy blog reading. Last night I was reading about the Genea-Blogger games and thought it would be neat to participate, but I’d missed the deadline. Well, apparently not!

So, I am going to participate. I’m going to be a little late starting as we have plans today, but I will get started this evening. I’m looking forward to participating as I think it will help me with my files. Here’s to the genea-blogger games!  More to come later…

Footnote Findings & Feature Friday

I haven’t been working on my own family genealogy much this past two weeks or so – we’ve been rather busy and I’ve been devoting quite a bit of time to a few other genealogy projects; but, tonight I took a few minutes to play around on Footnote’s website.  I mentioned a couple of posts ago that I have developed some blogging memes – one of them was to take a database a month and search/browse for content relative to my genealogy blogs. I call it “Feature Friday”.

  • Last week, I found something in Footnote for my Kinston Free Press blog of deceased soldiers from Kinston on the Vietnam Memorial
  • Tonight I found a UFO sighting that was reported in Plymouth, NC for my Roanoke Beacon Blog
  • And, I just blogged about a descendant of Cornelius “Commodore” Vanderbilt (namesake of my employing institution) who was approached to go in with a group of people to buy an island in France and make the American dollar the legal tender.

The time that I spend poking around gives me a better sense of the collections – as we know, much information continues to be frequently added.

For my own family tree however, back in May I found my grandmother’s brother listed on a crew list for the USS Neosho.  I already knew he was on this ship and let me tell you, that ship saw some crazy action – I leared a couple of years ago that about 80% of the crew was lost in action around the time of Pearl Harbor.  That is a story for another post – but my spotlight page is here.  I believe I have overcome my “battle with footnote”  🙂

No affiliation with

June’s Database of the Month

In an earlier post, I mentioned that I’d established a blogging schedule for myself in order to help me ensure that each of my blogs received at least a little bit of love throught the month.  I used this schedule all through the month of June and it has worked well for me.  I have not posted *every* time that I intended to, but regularly enough.

On of the topics that I started was “Feature Friday.”  Feature Friday posts examine a chosen database and I look for blog-specific content. In June, I made the following Feature Friday posts for which I searched in GenealogyBank.

What was most cool about doing this however was that Tom Kemp himself emailed me and commented favorably on my posts.  🙂

This was a great exercise for me.  I also wrote a contribution for the newsletter of the Heritage Genealogical Society. I am a new member of HGS and I thought this would be a valuable way to raise awareness of online resources.  The contribution I wrote was for the Genealogy OnLine column and should be out soon.

For the month of July I plan to do the same exercise. The database this time will be Footnote.