Category Archives: How To

Genealogy Puzzles (?)

Through the years, I’ve learned a lot about the right way to do genealogy at the blog Genealogy’s Star by James Tanner.  I follow him using Feedly.  Today he had a post about errors he has found in data in the FamilySearch family tree.  He presents them in a puzzle fashion and I found myself getting a kick out of trying to find the error.  Perhaps you will find this particular post fun and informative too. 

https://genealogysstar.blogspot.com/2022/06/lets-just-think-about-what-we-are-doing.html


Ancestry DNA Ethnicity Estimate has a Sideview

If you have tested your DNA at Ancestry . com, you need to check in with the recently added “Sideview” display that breaks your ethnicity estimates down by your parents, without testing your parents! It is really intriguing and potentially useful for improving the accuracy of your own paper research. I for one didn’t know my maternal side had Welch DNA floating around. I knew about the Irish. When you realize that Wales is only about an hour boat ride from Ireland, you begin to realize that some wily sailor could have joined my ancestors a few generations ago! To see your Sideview, follow these steps.

Go to DNA in the menu bar and select DNA Story

In the Ethnicity Estimate section, select See What’s New

Select View Breakdown

Notice that the two sides are labeled Parent 1 and Parent 2. They can’t tell which half of your genome is which, but maybe you can. Play with the ethnicity sections at the bottom and se if you can decide which side is Mom and which is Pop.

If you can determine “Sides”, like my Maternal has the Irish genes, then select Edit Parents below.

You pick for the Left side. You can always change this later, or even clear and start over.

Once you have chosen sides, you get a nice breakdown like this. Looked at like this, you can see there are subtle differences in my background.

I just wish I knew where that Aegean Islander snuck in from!

Ethnicity Estimates often change, but when they do it is because they are becoming more accurate. I like this new breakdown. When I share this type of data with my family, they seem understand it better than just seeing what my Personal breakdown was. This is meaningful to siblings, cousins, aunts and uncles.


Upload a new tree into MyHeritage

MyHeritage User Guide

Tree Replacement after DNA connected to Tree

  1. Download GEDCOM from Ancestry
    1. Rename it _2 or _3 etc
  2. Upload into MyHeritage, making sure name is different
    1. Wait until email is received saying processing is complete
  3. Picture handling
    1. Download pictures from 1st tree (under Family Tree, My Photos)
      1. You should actually have all photos for genealogy sites in one folder somewhere so you don’t have to download them again. This step refers to pictures copied from within MyHeritage and never downloaded before. Big chore maybe.
  4. Click somewhere making new tree the default (under Family Tree, Manage trees, Actions)
  5. Connect DNA to new Tree (see below)
  6. Delete 1st tree
  7. Upload pictures into 2nd tree (under Family Tree, My family tree, pick new tree)

CONNECT ME TO MY TREE

  1. Move your mouse over the ‘Home’ tab and click on ‘Site Members’.
  2. Select the name in the tree
    1. NOTE: If you have already been associated with another tree, and you would like to correct the association to a different tree, click on the ‘More’ link on the right side and select ‘Fix relationship’.  Then you will see the empty field next to your name.
    1. Next to your name you will see the empty field where you should enter a name to find the corresponding person in the tree.
    1. Start typing the name in the same way it shows in the tree, in the empty field.
    1. Select the correct variant from the pop-up that appears.
    1. Click ‘Apply’

Assigning DNA to another person in the tree

https://www.myheritage.com/help-center/en/article/how-do-i-assign-a-dna-kit-to-someone-else


My master tree is not in MyHeritage, but I do use and like MyHeritage. So, once in a while, I cut a gedcom from elsewhere and upload it to Myheritage, and eventually delete my previous tree. Since I have DNA and pictures in MH, there are a few steps required. I wrote the above for myself and another user requested a copy so I have posted it here. The steps have worked for me a few times, but “let the buyer beware’!

Find Genealogy Meetings Near our Central California Coast

GSSCC => Genealogical Society of Santa Cruz County

https://scgensoc.org/ and https://scgensoc.org/event-calendar/

MoCoGenSo => Monterey County Genealogical Society

https://mocogenso.org/

Monterey Public Library

https://monterey.org/services/library/events/index.php

Salinas Public Library

https://salinaspubliclibrary.org/calendar

SVCGG => Silicon Valley Computer Genealogy Group

https://www.svcgg.org/ and https://www.svcgg.org/meetings.html

1950 Census and AI

I am amazed — the Artificial Intelligence extraction of names from the 1950 census is really working!!! Already !!! Go to the National Archives at https://1950census.archives.gov/ and get into the 1950 census search page at https://1950census.archives.gov/search/?page=1&state=IA and put in your state, county, AND try a name search. It is working already for most!!

One hint, I wasted an hour trying to find the correct pages for my home town. I followed instructions and put in State and the County. It just would NOT find my address. Finally, I put in City first, and then it came up correctly!! Someone made a typo for my city, it is Waterloo, Black Hawk instead of Black Hawk, Waterloo.

The National Archives is open, working, and FREE !!


BTW, if you want to correct some of the data, select the “Help Us Transcribe Names” tab above the image and then check your SPAM folder if the security code does not quickly appear.

Membership Renewal Time is Here!!

Spring has come and it is time to remind everyone that MoCoGenSo memberships will expire soon, and it is time to renew. The dues will remain the same at $20.00 for individuals and $25.00 for families (add $7.50 for paper copy).

An important way to learn more about your ancestors and their lives is to join a genealogy society that focuses on the area in which your ancestors lived. Genealogy societies conduct research and preserve information about a specific area, and most publish some sort of newsletter, journal, or other periodical. The articles offer insight into the area and the people, and can provide help in conducting your research in an area. There are genealogy societies at the national, state, county, parish, province, and other levels. Annual membership fees are reasonable and the benefits are considerable.

The Monterey County Genealogy Society is one of these organizations right here in your own back yard. It serves its members in many ways. The board of directors is made up of members just like you.

Remember our society is only as strong as our membership, and those who get involved.

OUR MEMBERSHIP YEAR RUNS FROM APRIL 1 TO MARCH 31 OF THE FOLLOWING YEAR. For renewing members, you can renew using the membership form in your recently received newsletter. New or renewing members can download and print a copy of the Membership Application by CLICKING HERE. There will always be copies of this form at our monthly meetings.

Join me by staying with MoCoGenSo and getting the E-Newsletter.

Thank you for being a supporter!

Rootstech 2022 and the DNA Discussions Group

Rootstech 2022 is happening now.  There are many excellent presentations happening every day covering almost every possible topic relating to genealogy.  The recorded presentations, called Sessions, will be viewable throughout the year. 

The good news is that many of the Sessions from 2021 are still available, the new ones in 2022 are being added to the list!  So you can see last years and this years.

Rootstech has a “Playlist” which are Sessions you have tagged for yourself to watch later.  All you need to do is build the Playlist, and then view them at your leisure.  You still need to sign in to Rootstech to see your Playlist.  Some of the Sessions are in Youtube, you can build a list for yourself to watch later outside of Rootstech, if you wish.

The following description is oriented towards DNA but applies to ANY topic in Rootstech.  

Step 1 – Sign in to Rootstech and Click on Sessions.

Step 2 – Select your topic and select your year. DNA is one of the topics. There are 169 DNA Sessions from 2022, 88 left from 2021, 257 in total.

Step 3 – The list of presentations will be populated on the right. Go through the list and Click on the PLUS sign for those you want added to your Playlist. The Plus sign changes to an X. If you change your mind or after you have watched it, click the X.   This process can take a while! 

Step 4 – Watch the presentations.  Come back whenever, sign in to Rootstech, and Click on the Menu in the top right, then Click on My Playlist at the bottom and “watch on” ! 

I use a laptop with headphones so I can multitask in front of the T-V.  One could use a tablet to watch the videos while using your laptop to follow along in FTDNA or MyHeritage or whatever.

The DNA Discussion group could just watch these all year!  🙂

Membership Renewal Time is Here!

Spring has come and it is time to remind everyone that MoCoGenSo memberships will expire soon, and it is time to renew. The dues will remain the same at $20.00 for individuals and $25.00 for families (add $7.50 for paper copy).

An important way to learn more about your ancestors and their lives is to join a genealogy society that focuses on the area in which your ancestors lived. Genealogy societies conduct research and preserve information about a specific area, and most publish some sort of newsletter, journal, or other periodical. The articles offer insight into the area and the people, and can provide help in conducting your research in an area. There are genealogy societies at the national, state, county, parish, province, and other levels. Annual membership fees are reasonable and the benefits are considerable.

The Monterey County Genealogy Society is one of these organizations right here in your own back yard. It serves its members in many ways. The board of directors is made up of members just like you.

Remember our society is only as strong as our membership, and those who get involved.

OUR MEMBERSHIP YEAR RUNS FROM APRIL 1 TO MARCH 31 OF THE FOLLOWING YEAR. For renewing members, you can renew using the membership form in your recently received newsletter. New or renewing members can download and print a copy of the Membership Application by CLICKING HERE. There will always be copies of this form at our monthly meetings.

Join me by staying with MoCoGenSo and getting the E-Newsletter.

Thank you for being a supporter!

Download DNA Matches from Ancestry . com

Jim Bartlett is a genetic genealogist who loves to work with spreadsheets. I too like spreadsheets, but he is way beyond me. I follow his blog and always wonder if I should try my hand at building the “master sheet”!

Meanwhile, “clustering” is all the rage now. There are automated methods to build clusters and kindship charts for FTDNA, MyHeritage, 23andMe and Gedmatch. But Ancestry.com has decided to not provide a cluster option and as even blocked others from doing so.

The other day, Jim Bartlett posted a method to manually create a clustering spreadsheet for Ancestry! Manually!? I read the post and decided he was a bit crazy. It would take forever to type all those DNA matches I have in Ancestry! Then I remembered that he has a “master sheet” somewhere, and it is probably easy for him to add the cluster-logic.

You can read his article here. This is a must read if you plan to try this. You don’t have to read all of it.

https://segmentology.org/2022/02/26/manual-clustering-to-find-ancestors/

So, I consulted Google and went searching for a method to download all my DNA matches from Ancestry. Google didn’t fail me, I found a spreadsheet that you can copy screens of matches into. It is a special spreadsheet that is loaded with code to scrape data from the DNA match list screens that only works in the Google Docs arena. It helps to have prepared your Ancestry matches ahead of time. It still requires a few hours of work to identify clusters. But it works! I now have 179 matches split into 10 different clusters. Each match has hot links into Ancestry to review trees and add notes.

Using this special spreadsheet is a bit complicated and I am not going to even try to tell you how. The following links do a good job explaining it, good enough for me to make it work. The YouTube is a real how-to video.

I read this but did not use the links here.

https://www.familyhistoryfanatics.com/download-ancestrydna-matches-hack

This is the YouTube with the instructions that I used. The link to download the spreadsheet can be found in the comment section after the video, click “show more” to see it. But do watch the video first. Click Watch on YouTube below.

Hint: download the sheet, but don’t open it. Just upload it to your Google Docs area and use it there.

Place of birth vs. Ethnicity

One of the reasons people take a DNA test is to figure out their ethnicity. That is fine, I have no problem with that. In fact, I have tested my DNA at 6-7 different places! But did you know that FamilySearch.org has a tree display option that will show you the country of birth of your direct ancestors? Yes, country of birth really is not ethnicity at all (or is it), but the price is right, and some of my grandkids think it is a great show-n-tell chart! All you need is to have built out your ancestral tree at FamilySearch to where you connect to the already-existing folks in the “one world tree”. Here is how:

Sign into FamilySearch and then open your tree. The default display mode is Landscape as shown in the upper left corner of your tree screen. Presumably you will be the focus of your tree. You can change the focus to someone else, if you wish.

Then, first click where the word Landscape originally showed and select Fan Chart. Then a drop down will appear and select Birthplace. Bingo — a colorized fan will display with a color code table signifying the Country where the ancestors were born. You can select how many generations to show.

Oh ya, you need to have filled in the Country of Birth for the ancestors that you add to the tree! That is where the genealogy research come in. I don’t have a good display for that!

Try it, you just might like it. While you are there, try the other fan chart options.