Friday, April 17, 2015

DNA Results: Ethnicity Estimate (Me)

I finally jumped into the DNA testing pool.  Ancestry had a great sale at the beginning of March and I bought a test for myself and for my husband.  My results arrived Wednesday and I have been playing around on the site trying to build my tree and my husband's as my results came in much faster than I had anticipated.

The first thing I looked at was my ethnicity estimate.  Unsurprisingly, my ethnicity is "very white."  33% Europe East would be Germany, France, Belgium, and Luxembourg.  18% Great Britain is mainly England, 17% Italy/Greece is just Italy for me. The 15% Scandinavia surprised me until I read that people with German ancestors can show up as Scandinavian ancestry in this test.  11% Europe East is Poland and the trace regions are 3% Ireland and 2% Iberian Peninsula.  The less than 1% West Asia is in the Middle East and I'm guessing has to do with my Italian ancestors going further back.

The ethnicity estimate is what I expected and most of it can be figured out easily from the research I've done.  This is still a really cool map to have and I'm glad Ancestry gives out this information.

In my next post, I'll begin to discuss my matches in Ancestry and what I plan to do with the data next.  Once my husband's results come in, I'll post those as well.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Webinar: Ten Genealogical Lessons I Learned the Hard Way

Family Tree Webinars 

Warren Bittner is among the best, if not the best, genealogical speaker I've ever heard.  I was very excited to see that he was giving a webinar entitled "Ten Genealogical Lessons I Learned the Hard Way" through Legacy Family Tree Webinars today.

This was a fantastic webinar and one that I highly recommend people check out.  A lot of these are things you hear when you learn how to do genealogical research and know you should do, but that you don't always do. 

My favorites are to build the citation up front, read Genealogy Standards: Fiftieth Anniversary Edition quarterly, summarize and plan on the go, and write proof summaries.    Because I didn't do that with my research years ago, I have been going through all of my research over the past couple years and making sure it is cited properly and the conclusions I reached made sense.  In the future I will be doing this as I go along.

I also really liked his discussion on credentials.  At GRIP last summer, I mentioned that I still didn't feel ready to take one of Tom Jones' course, and, after I answered a couple questions, was told I was definitely ready for it (not taking it this year, but that's only because of the New York state course offered).  The point being, don't wait until you're perfect, become a better genealogist and a better researcher now.

These webinars are available free online for a week, so check it out soon!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Tombstone Tuesday: Ted Acquard

Photo of my grandfather Theodore Acquard's grave with flowers from my Uncle Brian's funeral.  St. John's Roman Catholic Church, Alden, NY.  Photo courtesy of my Aunt Barb.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Thirfty Thursday: RootsMOOC

What is more thrifty than free?  Canvas Network is currently hosting RootsMOOC: Intro to Genealogy and Family History Research, a free massive open, online course for beginning genealogists.  I'm a big fan of refresher courses, so I signed up. It is being taught by librarians at the State Library of North Carolina.

It is currently in the introduction week, but there is already a great surname list and a lot of discussion.  Hope to see you there!

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Sunday's Obituary: Brian Acquard

ACQUARD - Brian M. Of Alden, NY, March 4, 2015, beloved father of Scott (Laura), Brianne and Brian Acquard; dear stepfather of Jennifer (Robert) Mitscher, Amanda and Brittany Jutze; step-grandfather of Zachary and Abigail; son of Agnes (Nuwer) and the late Theodore Acquard; brother of Mark (Kim) Acquard, Barbara (Dan) Kay, Laura (Frank) Orlowski and Lisa (Brian) Anger. No prior visitation. A Memorial Service will be held at the First Baptist Church of Attica, 3 Prospect St., Attica, NY, Wednesday at 11 AM. Flowers gratefully declined. Arrangements by the CHARLES MEYER FUNERAL HOME.

RIP Uncle Brian
9 Feb 1965 - 4 Mar 2015

Published in the Buffalo News on Mar. 8, 2015

SNGF: The Date Your Grandmother Was Born

For this week's mission (should you decide to accept it), I challenge you to:

  1. What day of the week was your Grandmother born (either one)? Tell us how you found out.
  2. What event was a headline in the newspapers on that date?  Tell us how you found out.
  3. What has happened in recorded history on your Grandmother's birth date? Tell us how you found out, and list five events. 
  4. What famous people have been born on your Grandmother's birth date? Tell us how you found out, and list five of them. 
  5. Put your responses in your own blog post, in a comment on this blog post, or in a status or comment on Facebook.
1. I'm going to skip back a generation, to one of my great-grandmothers, Lillian Eichhorn, who was born 22 December 1908 in Buffalo, Erie, New York, to William Eichhorn and Augusta Tross.  According to the calendar in Legacy Family Tree, was a Tuesday.

2. "Reforms in the Navy Begun" from The Sun (New York City).  I couldn't find an online scan from a paper for Buffalo for this day.

3. Historical events on 22 December:
  • 1807 - The U.S. Congress passed the Embargo Act, designed to force peace between Britain and France by cutting off all trade with Europe
  • 1895 - German physicist Wilhelm Röntgen made the first X-ray, of his wife's hand. 
  • 1910 - U.S. Postal savings stamps were issued for the first time. They were discontinued in 1914. 
  • 1943 - Sporting goods manufacturers received permission to use synthetic rubber for the core of baseballs. 
  • 2001 - Thirty Afghans, including two women, were sworn in as part of the new interim government in Afghanistan. Hamid Karzai was the head of the post-Taliban government.
All found at

4. Famous people born on 22 December:
  • Giacomo Puccini 1858 
  • Lady Bird Johnson 1912
  • Diane Sawyer 1945 
  • Ralph Fiennes 1962 
  • Meghan Trainor 1993 - Singer 
All found at

Saturday, February 28, 2015

SNGF: How Did You Meet Your Significant Other?

This week's Saturday Night Genealogy Fun: It's story time - tell us how you met your spouse or significant other.  If you don't have one, tell us about your parents met each other.

Summer 2008: Thousand Islands, NY
In 2007 I moved to Syracuse to take a job with Starbucks.  A week or so after I started I had a sit-down with the district manager to discuss how my training was going and after we spoke he turned to some guy sitting behind him who was drinking an espresso and reading the newspaper and asked how he thought I was doing.  Luckily for me, he thought I was doing well.  I thought this was the oddest thing, but learned later that the guy sitting in the corner was a regular and had been at my DM's former store as well.

Over the next few months, the guy drinking espresso and reading the newspaper and I became friends.  Eventually Aaron and I were hanging out all the time.  And about a year after we first met, with the help of our friend Shannon, we started dating and have been together ever since.  Our first date was dinner at the Sherwood Inn on 7 May 2008 and we got engaged there on 8 May 2009.  We still go back every May.