Monthly Archives: July 2013

“Who Do You Think You Are?” Most Recent Episode Starring Kelly Clarkson Is Available For Viewing Online At The Learning Channel (TLC)

Hi Everyone!

Who Do You Think You Are?In case you missed the recent episode of the newly restored genealogy TV program “Who Do You Think You Are?” featuring singer Kelly Clarkson, you can view it online at The Learning Channel Website (TLC) as I suspected you would be able.

I did take a quick look at the full-length show.  Everything appears similar when it originally appeared on NBC as to access the full show after it was aired.  The show still maintains the embedded “commercials” that you will not be able to fast-forward through or doing anything at all with them until the show resumes after they have completed.

It does appear the show is available online approximately 1 day after the original airing.

Here is the link to view the show directly that aired on The Learning Channel (TLC) on Tuesday evening, July 23, 2013″

“Who Do You Think You Are?” Kelly Clarkson Episode From July 23, 2013 on The Learning Channel (TLC)

Here is a link to the main TLC website associated with the show “Who Do You Think You Are?” where you will be able to find out so much more about the show and the episodes overall:

“Who Do You Think You Are?” Genealogy TV At The Learning Channel (TLC)

It feels so good to see the show on air again.  The style of the show does not appear to have changed from the shows that were originally shown on NBC.  Perhaps as it gets rolling, we will see changes since it is on a new network that may have their own ideas for changes in style.  If you saw it originally on NBC, it looks and sounds just like we were used to seeing.

Welcome back “Who Do You Think You Are?”!!

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District LIbrary


We Have Switched Our October 8, 2013 And November 12, 2013 Library Genealogy Programs; Jeff Bockman Will Speak In October Not November; Marsha Peterson-Maass Will Speak In November Not In October

Hi Everyone!

Oops! Road SignDue to a conflict with one of our speakers, I have switched our library’s genealogy programs for October and November 2013.  I have updated the “2013 Programs” page of this blog to reflect those two programs.  I have also updated the “Events” link of our library website to reflect the switch if you visit that part of our website for planning purposes for our genealogy programs as well as for all of our other programs.

On Tuesday evening, October 8, 2013, at 7:30 PM, Jeffrey Bockman will make a presentation titled “Using Maps in Your Genealogy Research”.

On Tuesday evening, November 12, 2013, at 7:30 PM,  Marsha Peterson-Maass will make a presentation titled “Compiling Your Medical Family Tree”.

Originally, Jeff was to do his presentation on November 12, 2013 and Marsha was to do her presentation on October 8, 2013.

We just did a direct switch between the months.

For those of you that may have used my entire year schedule of our programs that appeared on this blog for planning purposes months ago, please make note of the change, especially if you were interested in attending either program for the month it was originally scheduled.

It is not a dramatic change that delays either program for any amount of significant time.  I am so glad it worked out that we were able to make the switch between the speakers.

You will also see me publish notices of upcoming genealogy programs at our library via this blog as the program approaches its actual date at which time I will re-state what the programs will be for October 2013 and November 2013.

Update your calendar to note the switch.

We will see you on the right date for the right program in October 2013 and November 2013!

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

Civil War Widows’ Pension Digitization Project At The National Archives; YouTube Embedded 5 Minute Video On How The Project Is Done; Very Touching Footage

Hi Everyone!

National Archives LogoIn my various readings I happened to come across that there is a YouTube video from the National Archives that gives some insight into how the National Archives is going about digitizing the Civil War Widows’ Pension documents they have in their possession with the help of many volunteers.

Here is the embedded video that is worth looking at.  I think you will like it and be touched by what is going on with this project.  It is nice the National Archives made this so we can become aware of their activities.  Please read my comments that follow the embedded video:

For many of us, we have volunteered to digitize genealogical materials.  If done through FamilySearch we digitize and index documents that are in fact already in digitized form.  We receive a file that contains images.  We fill in the blanks on what we read from the image into an Excel Template form and we send the material back when we have completed that particular file.

The YouTube video from the National Archives about the Civil War Widows’ Digitization Project gives us an entirely different view of how a digitization project appears when you are actually working with the original paper documents.

You will hear from the volunteers as well as the coordinator of the project from the National Archives.   You will hear about the papers that are found in the paper envelopes.  Some are paper-clipped together requiring special processes to un-clip without damaging the paper.  Some of the paper pieces had been glued together requiring assistance of the National Archives Conservator to separate without damaging the paper.  Some of the pages are in pieces also requiring the Conservator to re-assemble without further damaging in preparation for digitization.

There are 1.28 million case files.  Volunteers are completing about 30,000 case files per year.  The volunteers are logging in a total of about 700 hours per month.   If you do the math, it will take these volunteers and many more generations to come about 42 years to complete the digitization process for all of these case files!

The National Archives coordinator noted facing such a daunting task that “You have to start somewhere!”

It is a very touching 5 minute video that is well put together.  The files represent the real lives of real people and the suffering and the deaths that are described in materials the volunteers read through.  You can really tell that the volunteers really love what they are doing.

For many of us we have advanced our own research by accessing online, indexed material.  That material often got there through the hard work of volunteers transcribing and digitizing.  One particular volunteer in the video expressed her need to contribute her time and energy as a measure of “giving back” because so much of her genealogical online success was due to volunteers digitizing genealogical materials.

I hope you enjoyed the video!

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

New Poll On Right Sidebar Of The Blog; Simple Question Being Posed; “Have You Ever Watched The American Genealogy TV Program “Who Do You Think You Are?”?; “Yes” Or “No”?

Hi Everyone!

Well, here goes another Poll that is now on the right sidebar of the blog right at the top of the blog homepage.

I am just asking for a simple response to a very basic question.

“Have You Ever Watched The American Genealogy TV Program “Who Do You Think You Are?”?  Yes or No

Simple, direct and to the point.

This popular TV program is making a brand new appearance on a different network since it has been off the air on NBC since May 2012.  So why not ask the question whether you have watched the show at any time?  Gee, maybe if you did not watch it in the past on NBC, that would explain why it got cancelled!  I am not putting a guilt trip on you!

Well you now have another chance to take a look at what has been a very popular show on TV.  It was surprising that NBC cancelled the show after 3 seasons on air in May 2012.  The ratings and popularity of the show seemed good.  The show is now coming back to TV with 8 new episodes starting Tuesday evening, July 23, 2013, at 8 PM Central Time on The Learning Channel (TLC) on Cable TV.

I believe the fact that it is coming back does in fact does speak to the popularity of the show and how well received and viewed it was by so many family historians.  It just needed a new home on a new network, new day of the week and new time for viewing.

You get to see popular stars, get a sense of the emotion of family history, see a little bit of the process of research and also get to often travel around the world with the stars as they make their discoveries all within 1 hour of viewing time!  Ah, the miracle of TV and  how things get so nicely wrapped up in such a short time!

Give me an idea as to whether you have ever watched the show previously when it had its run on NBC.  I would like to gauge from family historians whether you actually took the time to see one of the shows when it was on NBC.

“Yes” or “No”?

If “Yes”, you now get your program back on the air with new episodes for you to see.

If “No”, you now have a chance to start viewing the show that so many of us have become “hooked” on.  You will now  be both entertained and informed with the world of genealogy and popular stars!

Take a look at the new Poll.  Consider providing a reply.

Let’s see how active this poll can be.

The more the merrier!

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

Poll On The Right Sidebar Has Been Closed For “Have You Actively Collaborated Your Research With A Fellow Researcher On Some Common Family History Research?”; Results Indicated

Hi Everyone!

It is amazing that almost 2 1/2 months has passed on the life of the poll I had on the right sidebar of the blog since April 30, 2013.  It is time to move on!  I think a new poll question is in order!

The poll had asked the question “Have You Actively Collaborated Your Research With A Fellow Researcher On Some Common Family History Research?”

The results of the poll showed the following from the 41 total respondents that took the brief time to provide their “Yes” or “No” response to the question.  The numbers show that 27 responses noted they had collaborated their Family History research (65.85%) with other researchers while 14 responses indicated they have not collaborated their Family History research (34.15%) with other researchers.

Collaborative research is a growing aspect of genealogy with all of the social media outlets that exist to facilitate such interaction.  The above poll results show a good majority that responded to the poll have in fact collaborated with other researchers.  Going it alone does not appear to be the way for researching family history.  Plus, you probably get to interact now with newly discovered cousins that share your same liking for family history.  The more the merrier!  Working with others simply puts numbers on your side to allow for the potential of more discoveries or the resolution of problems you have not been able to solve.

I am always looking for a larger response than even that which I just saw!  So come on down ——  affix your opinion as a “Yes” or “No” when so asked to the varied polls on different topics in the world of genealogy and family history research.  Your answers count.

I plan on putting up a new poll rapidly.  Come back for that one to see the new question being asked.

A big thank you to all of those that took the time to respond to this just recently closed poll.  Take a look at the results of that poll to satisfy your own curiosity.

Don’t forget to visit my Poll Archives as part of this blog.  Look for the link at the top of the homepage of the blog where it simply says “Poll Archives”.  In here you will find the statistical results of the 10 previously active polls in addition to the poll that is generally “active”.  If you were not aware of this Archive, you may want to visit to see what all the previous polls were about.

Here is a direct link to the Poll Archives at my blog:

Poll Archives At Tony’s Genealogy Blog At The Schaumburg Township District Library (STDL)

Get ready for another poll ……………………..SOON!

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

Re-Post Reminder: New Season Of “Who Do You Think You Are?” Starts On Tuesday Evening, July 23, 2013, At 8 PM Central Time On The Learning Channel (TLC); Check TLC Website For Show Information

Hi Everyone!

Who Do You Think You Are?I just want to remind all of you that the new season for “Who Do You Think You Are?” will be starting on the cable channel The Learning Channel (TLC) on Tuesday evening, July 23, 2013, at 8 PM Central time.

Previously, when the show was on NBC, they dedicated a portion of their website to the show so that you could always get updates on the show and view online videos of the shows that had been broadcast.  TLC appears to be doing the same for this show as it unfolds during this season.  You can find the information for the show on TLC at:

“Who Do You Think You Are?” Website At The Learning Channel (TLC)

You will find some “teaser” videos on some of the upcoming “stars” that will appear on the show this season, as well as some “biographical” information on two of the upcoming stars to make an appearance on the show, Kelly Clarkson and Christina Applegate.

There will only be 8 episodes of the show for this new season on TLC.  NBC for a season previously had about 12 episodes.  Maybe the lesser amount of shows for this season is because of the transition to the new cable channel as they get their feet planted firmly in the ground for this show!  I hope if all goes well this season that there will be another season and that season will hopefully be “fuller”
with more episodes.

Only time and viewership ratings will tell for what happens next year!

Here are the “stars” that will appear on the show during the 8 episode run for the season on TLC.  The order is alphabetical and does not represent the order of the shows as they appear to the best of my knowledge:

  • Christina Applegate
  • Kelly Clarkson
  • Cindy Crawford
  • Zooey Deschanel
  • Chelsea Handler
  • Chris O’Donnell
  • JIm Parsons
  • Trisha Yearwood

It has been over 1 year since we saw the “last” episode of this wonderful genealogy show in May 2012.  That seems like an eternity ago.

It has now been “raised from the dead” and given new life on this cable channel.

Make sure you mark down the date and time and plan to DVR it.  If you miss that, it looks like the website for the show will allow you to revisit it and view it online.  It appears you will also be able to see each episode on the website after it views initially on TLC.

Now is the time to reconnect with some TV help and entertainment to motivate you in your own genealogical research efforts.

Mark your calendar for Tuesday evening, July 23, 2013 at 8 PM central time on the The Learning Channel (TLC) on cable.

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

Family Tree DNA Has A Big Sale On Family Finder Testing Product; $99 Instead Of $199; Sale Ends July 26, 2013

Hi Everyone!

Family Tree DNABarb P. a participant at our monthly genealogy programs, has made me aware of a “gigantic” sale taking place at Family Tree DNA.

Their best know genealogically oriented DNA testing product is known as “Family Finder”.  Normally, this product has been advertised at a $199 cost.  Right now, through July 26, 2013, the test is being offered at a remarkable price of only $99.  That is a 50% discount!  But you have to act now as the sale is only in place until the noted July 26, 2013 date.

Barb P. has been an active participant with Family Tree DNA.  She has previously purchased and participated in the “Family Finder” product offered by Family Tree DNA.  She has been very happy with what the test offers and has made some fascinating discoveries with the results she has been given.  Your results provide you with contact information on anyone in the database that has also taken the test with Family Tree DNA and is indicated as having genealogical DNA connections with you.

She knows what she speaks of about the fantastic sale that is currently taking place on the “Family Finder” product especially when she previously paid the much higher price herself.  So she knows a great sale when she sees one and wants to be sure that you are aware of this sale.

If you have been on the “fence” waiting to take a DNA test for genealogical purposes, then the time may be now to jump in with both feet at a 50% savings!

But the sale is only on until July 26, 2013!

Here is the web site for Family Tree DNA so you get an overall view of the company and the products they offer for DNA testing:

Family Tree DNA

Here is a link to information about the specific product called “Family Finder” they offered that focuses on genealogical information:

Family Tree DNA/Family Finder

Here is the text description of the “Family Finder” product from the Family Tree DNA site:


Family Finder

NEW! Discover close relatives and your ethnic percentages with Family Finder!

Family Finder uses autosomal DNA (inherited from both the mother and father, four grandparents, eight great-grandparents, etc.) to provide you a breakdown of your ethnic percentages and connect you with relatives descended from any of your ancestral lines within approximately the last 5 generations.

Results Include:

genetic matches with relationship ranges, visual tools to show matching DNA, and ethnic percentages. Family Tree DNA does not charge a subscription fee. We will continue to update you about new matches and other information regarding your results.* [Read More].

Should I Take Family Finder?

If you are interested in using DNA for close genealogy relationships (within the past 5 generations) that cross gender lines or if you are curious about your ethnic percentages, Family Finder is the right choice!**

** Due to the nature of autosomal DNA, the test does not specify from which branch of your family tree your matches or the percentages of your geographic heritage derive.


You can obtain the test for the $99 sale price by simply following the “Purchase A Test” link from the “Family Finder” product description website link above.

Discover your connections to anyone else that may have submitted their DNA with Family Tree DNA and has a match with you.  Even if you initially do not see matched results you will now know that as more and more genealogists submit their DNA sample that at some point in the future you may discover the magic match to another fellow researcher, with both of you sharing that common connection.

Time is now running out until the end of the sale on July 26, 2013.

Maybe now is the right time for you to get your DNA tested while you can save 50% compared to the normal cost.

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

Using Google Powerfully For Your Genealogy Research (Part 2); Devin Ashby Video On Using Google Alerts And Google Books

Hi Everyone!

Google LogoGoogle is one of the most powerful tools that exists for genealogists and their research.  We feel great when we do some simple searches and get some great results.  But we may be leaving so much more on the table and settling for basics!

I recently made a post noting that there is a wonderful series of YouTube videos put together by Devin Ashby on using Google to get the most out of that search resource when doing your genealogy research.

I want to continue highlighting those videos put together by Devin Ashby.

Here is Part 2 of the five-part series put together by Devin Ashby.  This one runs about 9 minutes.

The developer focuses on using Google Alerts and Google Books in this video.  You can use Google Alerts without having a Google Account because you submit your e-mail address to them when you establish the alert of interest to you.  If you have a Google Account, you receive Alert information within your account.

Google Books is a great source of genealogical information because historical books containing genealogical information might often be outside of the scope of copyright protection, thus making them candidates for digitization within Google Books.

You do not need a Google Account to access and use Google Books.

Take a look and listen to what Devin Ashby says about Google Alerts and Google Books.

Here is the embedded video from YouTube, Part 2 of  Devin Ashby’s series on getting the most out of Google in your genealogical research:

Take a look at it and see what you think.

Enjoy the above video.  I hope to be making future posts about these great videos to help you in your research efforts.

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

Polish Genealogical Society Of America (PGSA) Will Have Their Next Meeting/Program On Sunday, August 11, 2013, At 2 PM In Chicago; Program Title Is “Swab Your Cheek: How To Make The Most Of DNA Kinship Results” Presented By Marsha Peterson-Maass

Hi Everyone!

PGSA Logo Clip ArtI received word from the Polish Genealogical Society of America (PGSA) that they will be having their next meeting on Sunday, August 11, 2013, at 2 PM in Chicago at the Social Hall of the Polish Museum of America located at 984 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Chicago, IL.

Marsha Peterson-Maass will present a program titled “Swab Your Cheek: How to Make the Most of DNA Kinship Results”.

Take a look at the following link that provides you with the program notice information that I received from PGSA.

August 11, 2013 Polish Genealogical Society of America Meeting/Program

Please mark your calendar for this upcoming meeting.  Doing Polish research?  Here is your chance to connect to the PGSA in Chicago and all of the rich historical items that exist within the Polish Museum of America.  More importantly, think of connecting with like-minded Polish researchers as you yourself may be.

Check out this wonderful organization and all that it has to help you in your own Polish research.

Visit the PGSA website to find out all about them and the wonderful resources they have to facilitate your Polish genealogical research.  You can find them at:

Polish Genealogical Society of America (PGSA)

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

July 2013 Schaumburg Township District Library Genealogy Program Handouts Uploaded As A PDF for July 9, 2013 Genealogy Program

Hi Everyone!

I have added the July 2013 Schaumburg Township District Library Genealogy Program Handouts as a PDF file into the PROGRAM HANDOUTS Category on the right sidebar of the blog.

Here is a direct link to the July 2013 Handouts for your convenience:

July 2013 Schaumburg Township District Library Genealogy Program Handouts

Take a look at it if you choose to browse through it in advance of our Genealogy Program that will take place on Tuesday evening, July 9, 2013 at 7:30 PM at our main library location at 130 S. Roselle Road in Schaumburg, IL.

You can read the handouts online or you can save them as a PDF file to your own computer for reading offline and more detailed searching through all of the contents.

You will also note that I  “highlight” in this uploaded PDF key points within the handout  by using  the “yellow highlighting” function within Microsoft Word.  This will allow your eyes to visually see key points within the handouts that I want to emphasize.  I hope you will enjoy being able to more easily see these key points within the set of handouts through this highlighting technique.  I plan on highlighting within the Handout file on a going forward basis.

Please note that the Handouts PDF file has embedded Bookmarks to allow you to move to the handouts of interest to you quickly without having to scroll through the entire document.  Just open the Bookmark window in the PDF file and select the handout of interest for quick access.

You can also get to the handouts of interest to you quickly via the Table of Contents at the beginning of the document.  You will find hyperlinks that will get you directly to the handout of interest to you from the Table of Contents.

Please note that you can access directly any and all URL Links that you find within the Handouts PDF.  You can get directly to the website being mentioned from within the handout being mentioned.

Enjoy the handouts.

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library