Monthly Archives: December 2010

Which Online Genealogy Software To Use? Dick Eastman Has a Great Response To This Question

Hi Everyone!

I was browsing through some of Dick Eastman’s material at his blog at  One recent post he had caught my eye because it is similar to the questions I may receive here myself as genealogy coordinator for the library.  Dick takes questions from individuals and thought that the question was good and had great applicability among all genealogy researchers.  He decided to publish his response as an open response so everyone could see what his suggestions would be. 

That question has been “What online genealogy software should I use to create my data and make it easy for me to share?”.

Rather than paraphrase what Dick created for a response, I am going to provide a direct link to the entry on his blog that addresses his lengthy and informative response to the questions about what genealogical software should someone use.

You can take a look at what Dick Eastman’s thoughts were about the question and look at the long list of suggestions he had based on how you want to create your data and be able to share the data you have created online.  Dick’s response to the question was broken down into three ways to approach these online resources to place your data:

  • Contribute to someone else’s database
  • Own your own online database
  • A blended approach – you control a database that belongs to someone else

Take a look at Dick Eastman’s great insights into this age-old genealogical question!  You can see Dick’s suggestions at:

Which Online Genealogical Software To Use?

In the day of “cloud computing” we ask ourselves how can we create online databases within which we want to work with others in a collaborative effort in order to add new data over time with new genealogical discoveries.  The day of the “lineage program only on your computer” may have limited time left as the trend seems to be to want to put your data online and work with others to add to it.

Dick really took some time to put together a list of resources that exist for researchers to use.  He noted the “plus” and “minuses” of each resource.

His blog post is definitely worth taking a long look at if you ever wanted to consider moving to the “computing cloud” with your genealogical material.  I did not realize how many resources existed for online lineage databases.

He really provided a very comprehensive list of suggestions for you to consider based on three categories of databases and control that I mentioned early on in this post.

Enjoy his article and I believe you will have a much clearer understanding of what is available in “cloud computing” for you to upload your research.

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

National Genealogical Society 2011 Family History Conference Brochure

Hi Everyone!

The National Genealogical Society has an annual multi-day conference each year.

This year’s program is scheduled for May 11, 2011 through May 14, 2011 in Charleston, South Carolina.  You certainly have plenty of time to peruse the material and make plans to attend this annual major genealogical event.

You can view the full-color 16 page registration brochure at their website by clicking on the following link at:

Also just visit the main NGS website to take a look at much more information and material that they have at the site.  There is much more information about this conference available through their main website.  Browse their site and see what other great resources they may have available online that can help you in your own research efforts.

You can visit their main website at

Attending a national conference such as this is an eye-opening genealogical experience that I would recommend at least once in a lifetime for researchers.  There are literally 180 informative hour-long programs that are scheduled during this program between 8 AM through 4 PM.  There are even  programs going on through the early evening if you can’t get enough information on genealogy from 8 AM until 4 PM!

This brochure is one that in the past I would have made a copy for distribution to our genealogy program  participants.  However, now that I am writing this blog, it is more appropriate to direct you to the National Genealogical Society website directly for you to take a look at their full 16 page color brochure they have put together.

The above link will take you directly to this 16 page incredible brochure.

Even if you do not go to this program or another one down the road, I always recommend that you should take a look at the variety of programs being offered.  You may very well find a program with a great speaker that fits right in with your own research aspirations.  You will then possibly have a contact to make with the speaker to see if they can help answer a question you may have on the genealogical topic of interest.

Also take a look at the long list of world-renowned genealogical speakers that are in the brochure.

These are the best of the best!

Your paths may cross with them through material they may have already published.  Some may even be local to our own area.  Some may very well be speakers we have had at our library offering some great genealogical programs for you to learn from!

Take a look through the brochure to gain a sense of magnitude of what a national genealogical conference looks like.  It is amazing.  These conference are often attended by anywhere from 1,200 to 1,500 fellow researchers.  Vendors are also present selling their wares.

This conference can be nothing short of genealogy nirvana!

Check out the brochure.  Check out the NGS Program.  Try to attend one once in your life.  You won’t be disappointed.

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

DuPage County Genealogical Society Annual Conference to Take Place on Saturday, February 26, 2011

Hi Everyone,

I want to remind everyone of the upcoming Annual Conference that is held by the Du Page County Genealogical Society.  You can visit the main web site of the society to find out more about them and what is available at their site at

Their conference will take place on Saturday, February 26, 2011 at the Hilton Garden Inn in St. Charles, IL from 8 AM until about 4 PM.  At 8 AM, you can register as a walk-in if you have not previously registered, have some morning refreshments that you can buy and take a look at the materials available for purchase from the vendors that are also participating at the conference.  The actual genealogy presentations will start at 8:45 AM.  The last series of genealogical presentations will start at 3 PM.

I have previously mentioned this upcoming annual conference at our own programs and have provided those in attendance with a paper handout of the conference details.

I encourage everyone to visit the Du Page County Genealogical Society Annual Conference Information directly at the following link:

 At their site in the above link you will find out all the details about the upcoming program such as:

  • Information about the Hilton Garden Inn and driving directions to the facility.
  • Registration Fees (Walk-Ins are welcome.  Supplied lunch cannot be guaranteed but there are plenty of places in the local vicinity to have a lunch on your own.)
  • Program Titles, Times, Intended Level of the Program (Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced)and Speakers.
  • Speaker Biographies
  • Vendor Information
  • Other Societies Information
  • Information on Previous Annual Conferences

I am a big proponent for attending these one day, all day local conferences.  You will be exposed to multiple genealogy presentations that you can choose to attend throughout the day.

There are 4 segments of programs that occur.  One is at 8:45 AM, one at 10:30 AM, one at 1:30 PM and one at 3 PM.  Within the 8:45 AM segment and the 10:30 AM segment are 3 unique presentations.  Within the 1:30 PM and the 3:00 PM segments are 4 unique presentations.  You will be attending one of the segments that is of interest to you.  So you will actually be able to hear four unique programs among the 14 that will be offered.

The speakers that will be offering their unique presentations are:

  • Jeffrey Bockman
  • John Phillip Colletta
  • Carol Magnuson
  • Tom Pinnick
  • George K Schweitzer, Ph.D
  • Michelle Bray Wilson

These speakers are some of the best of the best that you can encounter as you expand your genealogical knowledge.

I have previously attended this conference.  It is one of the best conferences that you can attend in the local area.  If you have never attended such an all-inclusive one day conference, then this is the one to experience.  The location is close, the facility is great, the organization is superb, the programs are outstanding, the speakers are top-rated, the vendors have great material and other societies are represented!

You will have a great genealogical learning experience in one day that will expand your genealogical knowledge and assist you further in your own research efforts.

Take a closer look at the Du Page County Genealogical Society Annual Conference Information by clicking on the link I provided above.  All of the information about the conference can be found here.

Our library provides one program per month.  Here is your chance to hear four presentations by top-rated speakers in one day.

I don’t think you will be disappointed.

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

Northwest Suburban Council of Genealogists (NWSCG) Next Program Scheduled for Tuesday Evening, January 18, 2011 At 7:30 PM

Hi Everyone,

I just received a program notice from the Northwest Suburban Council of Genealogists indicating that their next genealogy program is scheduled for Tuesday evening, January 18, 2011 at 7:30 PM.

The speaker for the evening will be R. Aaron Underwood.  The speaker will present a program titled “The GenSmarts Story”.

GenSmarts is an “add-on” software program that works with your traditional lineage software product you may already use.  The product assesses information in your lineage program and intelligently provides an “inventory of records” that you should check into if you have not already done so.

Please take a look at the full PDF announcement of the program by going to:

You will find more details about the program location, the program contents and some information about R. Aaron Underwood, the speaker for the evening.

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

Update on Start Date/Celebrities for “Who Do You Think You Are” NBC TV Genealogy Show

Hi Everyone!

I had a previous post on November 30, 2010 that indicated the popular NBC TV Genealogy show titled “Who Do You Think You Are” was returning to the airwaves.

My previous post had a start date that is no longer accurate based on the current published show schedule.

The show is returning to the airwaves on Friday evening, February 4, 2011 from 7-8 PM Chicago time.  Celebrity guests noted for this upcoming season that will be researching their family history are:

  • Gwyneth Paltrow
  • Tim McGraw
  • Rosie O’Donnell
  • Steve Buscemi
  • Kim Cattrall
  • Lionel Ritchie
  • Vanessa Williams
  • Ashley Judd

Please note that the show will not reappear on January 21, 2011 as my earlier post and earlier program schedule information indicated.  The above February 4, 2011 date is the most accurate date based on the recent publicity release.

You can check out Dick Eastman’s Online Genealogy Newsletter for a December 16, 2010 posting he had on the complete details of this NBC publicity release.  You can visit Dick’s site at

Mark your calendars to view or record this show on this date.  You can always visit the NBC web site and see past episodes of the show.  I would assume the new season’s episodes will also be available from the NBC web site.  You can visit the NBC site for this show at:


Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

Summary of Our Most Recent Genealogy Program That Was Held on December 14, 2010

Hi Everyone!

We had our most recent Genealogy Program at the Schaumburg Township District Library on Tuesday evening, December 14, 2010.  It was one of our quarterly “break out” sessions.  We did not have a speaker for the program.  Instead we had our “break out” work groups giving the opportunity for those interested in various ethnic areas of research to sit with fellow researchers and both learn new things about the topic as well as to share items of interest to help make researching the topic more productive.

We had group tables set for:

  • Irish Researchers
  • German Researchers
  • Polish Researchers
  • Czech Researchers
  • Italian Researchers
  • Scandinavian Researchers
  • British Isles Researchers
  • Colonial American
  • General “Troubleshooting” Group
  • Beginner’s Group

We also had the laptop computer set up and connected to the projector to allow anyone to use during the session.

We had a total of 20 researchers in attendance for the program.  This is small in scope due to the holiday activities occurring in December as well as the cold, wintry weather we had that night.

It did appear that the vast majority of attendees were situated at the Irish and Polish tables as well as at the Beginner’s Table that was being led by myself.  Our German table is normally full but we only one person trying to be at the table this night!!  There were just not enough attendees to fill any other of the ethnic tables for this evening. 

We had 4 new people attend the program.  I asked them to introduce themselves.  Each was given a welcoming package of genealogical material to assist them in their research.

I then reviewed the “handouts” package electronically from what was posted on this blog for this program.  Just look at the right sidebar of this blog for an “archive” of past “Newsletters” and “Handouts”.  I want to use the handouts to keep those in attendance informed of upcoming genealogy programs, news of note in genealogy as well as some summaries of interesting magazine/journal articles that seemed to really hit home with some new research information on a particular genealogical topic.

We had a table full at the Beginner’s table having about 10 people sitting there listening to me give advice and direction on what to focus on and how to progress with research.

I especially want to say a big “thank you” to those that were still there at 9:30 PM and helped rearrange the room back to its original arrangement of the tables and chairs.  I could not do it without your help!!  Thank you, all of you!!

I also want to thank those of you that took many of the newcomers under your wings to help them with individual one on one time while I was busy assisting others.  You are so sharing!  You know who you are!  Thank you so much again for offering such personal assistance.

Based on an observation, I would certainly encourage future participants at these quarterly sessions to consider bringing in a laptop or a notebook to have to use at the table you choose to participate at.  Because of our wonderful Wi-Fi setup, you can easily tap into our Internet setup directly from your laptop or notebook and not have to worry about using our own laptop/projector set up to show someone some piece of information.  It looked like at least one person at each of the major tables had a laptop.  It looked like it worked out quite well.  Please bring your laptop or notebook to these special sessions in the future because it looks like the work at the tables can be even more productive using the laptop or notebook to tap into the Internet via our own Wi Fi setup.

Please remember that we have these special “break out” sessions in the months of March, June, September and December on the 2nd Tuesday evening of the month.

We certainly had a light turnout of very highly motivated researchers who were craving to learn new things and to share the things they knew about with others during this Holiday Month session.  My hats off to all of you for such enthusiasm you brought to the program on this cold, wintry night.

Thank you again to all of you that came out to participate.

We hope to see you again at our upcoming programs.

Keep coming back to this blog to stay in touch with what is going on about our genealogy programs as well as other genealogy programs in our general area.

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

Schaumburg Township District Library Web Address Has Changed

Hi Everyone!

Just to let everyone know that the web address URL of our library has changed as part of a redesign of our website.

Our new library web address is:

Have no fear, if you still use our old web address of you will still be redirected to the new website.

Like with anything new, take a look at the new site and browse around the main page and the various pages you can get to from our links to get the new “lay of the land”.

Everything looks the same for accessing my genealogy blog as well as our genealogical databases.  From the main page of the website just look across the top for a series of “Tabs” that links you to other main sub-sites of our website.  Look for the link that says “Local History and Genealogy”.  Click on that link.  Once there, you will see the familiar icon to get to my blog as well as seeing the familiar list of genealogy focused databases for access.

You can always go directly to my genealogy blog address that was not affected at:

If you want to take a look into the future at the variety of our upcoming  library programs as well as the upcoming specific genealogy programs, just look at the top of the main web page for the list of Tabs to various other sub-sites.  Look for the Tab that says “Events”.  Click on that tab and you will be taken to a page that allows you to select events that are of various types as well as for our branches.  Click on your choice of interest and location among our main library and our branches and you will be taken to a current month calendar that you can browse through.  You can also forward yourself to an upcoming month to see what programs are coming up for that calendar month.  You can even go back in time with the calendar to see what you may have missed!!

Remember, our genealogy programs are always on the 2nd Tuesday evening of each month at 7:30 PM.

Just start reminding yourself that you can now reach us at  The old address of will still redirect you to our website at the new URL address.

You will still find all of our great information about our library at the new address as well as our listing of genealogy research databases that are available.

Give it a try!

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library