Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Tech Tuesday - Snagit

Blogging theme suggested by Geneabloggers

Today I am reviewing Snagit.
I love this program I learned about it at work and it is one of the tools we use to capture screen shots to make professional looking handouts.  I love it so much I purchased it for my own use at home and started using it to make my quilting handouts.  

You might ask how does this help me do genealogy?  It doesn't but what it does do is take screen shots of documents, pictures, anything that is displayed on your computer screen.  After you have captured the screen shot you can highlight, place squares, stamps or other items.  One of the other features I like is that the screen shot is not distorted and it can be re-sized. 

Let me show you a couple of ways I have used it in conjunctions to doing genealogy.

Sent to Ancestry.com asking them to fix an image
Here is a screen shot I took on Ancestry.com, showing them the wrong image.  The name on the bottom is who I was looking for.  The red boxes where added before I save it as a .jpg file.  You can change the color and thickness of the lines.  I also used this image and another one and to sent it in an email to my cousins and friends asking for their help to report the image problems.  Showing them exactly what they needed to do. 

I have used the screen shots in my blog posts, here, here and here.

I have used it in emails to my cousins asking them for more input.  The below screen shot show some of the stamps in the program, check mark, question mark and word ballons.

Showing some of the tools within Snagit
 My cousin who lives in England and who is a lot of fun sent me these pictures the other day.  The picture came as one .tif file.  She told me the information in an email and I added it to a screen shot of the picture file.  I'll send it back to her to make sure I have it correct. 

More Photos of Chaplin's, Tony's Clan.
 It also allows me to save them labeled in my computer files. 

I am sure you will come up with your own ideas on how to use Snagit while working on your genealogy.   They have a 30 day free trial on their website. 

I'm not affiliated with them, I am just a happy customer.

Happy Researching!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Sorting Saturday - Notes and Handouts

Blogging theme suggested by Geneabloggers

I am reading Unpuzzling your Past by Emily Anne Croom.  I also have her work book, The Unpuzzling Your Past Workbook, Essential Forms and Letters for Genealogist.   While reading these books she suggested in the Workbook to make an Index of workshop notes and handouts.  Now for the seasoned Genealogist that might be an Herculean task but for a new Genealogist it is a big but doable task. 

I have been going to conferences, genealogy meets and workshop for about a year now, so I am starting to collect quiet a few handouts.  I had many of them in a loose leaf binder with no way of finding the notes again until I had looked through all the notes.  Not a very effective use of time.  I want more time for research, studying or quilting.  So I decided to follow the suggestion of Emily Anne Croom.  I could have used her tear out copy of the index from her workbook but I made an excel spreadsheet and I added a third column. 

Index of Handouts and Notes
 The spreadsheet has four pages with the Topics from A -Z divided four ways.  The Lecturer/Author in the middle column.  I added the third column to let me know if it is on paper or on my computer.  Somethings that I received electronically I might print for easy of reading when not at my desk.  Somethings I do not print but still want to be able to find them.

In my bottom desk drawer I used hanging folders, each folder is named with 3 letters of the alphabet.  I had a limited supply of folders in my house that I wanted to use before buying more.  The handout is them placed in the folder and added to the spreadsheet. 

The advantage to using the spreadsheet over the already created form is I can add new notes alphabetically when I receive them instead of just adding them to the bottom of the page. So if I am looking for an article I can look for it on my index then know exactly which folder to find it in.  

Now I guess I will go file a few more handouts.

Happy Researching!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Memories of an Exploding Pressure Cooker

Today I was cooking pinto beans in my pressure cooker and I had a little too much water in it and it started coming out of the vent tube, and I mean a lot of water, enough to pool on the stove.  So off the stove into the sink with cool water.  It's Arizona folks and we do not have cold water coming out of the tap here in the summer. 

Anyway it reminded of a time my Dad was cooking lentil beans in the pressure cooker.  I was in my early teens. The pressure cooker explored and there were lentil beans all over the kitchen, the ceiling, the walls, floor and the stove.  It was a mess.  I wasn't in the kitchen when it happened but the noise made me run to see what had happened.  This was in our Florida home after we had remodeled the kitchen, dinning room and added the Florida room.

My Dad was the real cook in my house.  Mom cooked OK but not as good as my Dad did.  He was also the shift cook at the firehouse.  I can remember him making fruit cake and soaking it in some kind of liquor, wrapping it and putting it in the front coat closet until Christmas when we lived in New York.  I think he stopped making the fruit cake after we moved to Florida because there wasn't any place cool enough to store it.  He made chicken and dumplings and lots of other good dishes.  He cooked all the Holiday meals.  He made the best oil & vinegar salad dressing which I could ever duplicate.  I asked him for the recipe and he laughed, he didn't really measure.  A sign a true cook. 

I couldn't resist telling this story, and using the memory that came to my mind today.   

Saturday, September 4, 2010

My First Obits

Every new Genealogist has a list of time discoveries and on a Wednesday evening in August, I found my first obituaries on my great uncle Herbert.  This is the first one I found in the New York Times.  I noticed the cemetery name and it sounded familiar.  I checked out my grandparents, my grandfather William Chaplin is a brother to Herbert and Bertram.  Both my grandparents are buried in the same cemetery, William and his wife Minnie Elizabeth.   

New York Times 27 Apr 1955

New York Times 28 Apr 1955

Now to find Bertram's Obit or something and to do a cemetery search.  When I shared this with my cousins in England one of them wrote back I'll never think of Canada Dry in the same way. 

Neither will I, maybe I should have one in remembrance of
Great Uncle Herbert.

One small step for me and my ancestors

My Adventures at the Family History Center

I went to the Family History Center today to view a film that was currently in the Mesa Center but had been requested by someone else.  I had looked at the film two weeks ago and hadn't found what I wanted. I had viewed about 450 of the records on that day. The dates weren't in order so I had to view the whole film. 

So today I went back I went to the same machine I had used the last time but I remembered one of the missionaries there told me another machine had better magnification, even though both are marked high magnification.  So I moved to that machine and I could see a lot clearer right off the bat!

So I looked at all the records from 450 to the end 1000.  No Peter Hartmann.  I had an index that told me the record was on this film.  So I had to persist.  Now the interesting thing was and I noticed the same thing the last time I was there viewing this film.  It makes me sick to my stomach.  I tried looking away and then looking back after I cranked.  The head movement made it worse.  I was determined I was going to find the record. 

My nausea was so bad at one point I went to the bathroom and almost throw up.  So back to machine because like I said I was determined.  This time I went back to the 450th record and worked backwards.  Every 20 recorders I would take a break, look away and if needed I got up and walked.  I found my record it was #9.  You got it right at the front of the film and I debated with myself if I should start at the front or where I left off. 

The moral of the story, go to the machine with the good or the right magnification right off the bat.  And if you debate with yourself maybe you should listened to yourself.  Boy do I wish I had, if I had it would have saved me time and a bout of nausea.

Marriage Certificate of Peter & Barbara Hartmann
So since this record caused me so much grieve I am posting it here for your viewing pleasure. 

On small step for me and my ancestors.