Sunday, August 22, 2010


FamilySearch is constantly adding searchable records.

I tested their records for Cook County, Illinois. I note you cannot right click and save a section but if you have Windows 7 you can use the snipping tool. If you hover over a name you get more information, perhaps spouse, parents and/or children. And if it is a vital record you can order a copy from the Cook County Clerk.

It produced assorted birth, death and immigration records for the surname. I note they have not done a bang up job with the ethnic names or the foreign birthplaces so you need to be flexible. Needless to say, the document may not have spelled things correctly to begin with.

I then tried their Wisconsin records. Hovering produces information which can be copied.

I could not find a Civil War pension index card for my 2g grandfather - there is a widow's pension application and a dependent pension record. It's a work in progress and perhaps they haven't gotten to them.

You need to check back periodically to see if they have added a database you can use. You can also volunteer to help with the transcribing.

Thursday, August 05, 2010


Back on February 1, 2010, I said GEDViewer, a genealogy program for the iPod Touch, iPhone and iPad, looked promising but couldn't handle a large database. The programmer David Knight sent me an email saying yes it could, that the limit is based on your device memory. For my 3G iPod Touch 12 generations is probably the max. [GEDviewer is not to be confused with Genviewer, a useful product by Mudcreek Software.]

I loaded the program on my iPod Touch. It imported my 10,000+ name database efficiently. I was surprised at the speed. More, I was surprised that it didn't eat all my iPod memory. In fact I hardly noticed. [How do they do that?]

I find GEDViewer to be better than FamViewer not to mention quite a bit cheaper. It is faster. When I open FamViewer it wants to import my gedcom which takes awhile. When I open GEDViewer it opens to my data.

When I had a question Knight responded promptly, not with a canned response but an actual answer.

Totally aside, FamViewer comes with a Kennedy family database. GEDViewer comes with a British royals database. I'm a Ricardian so I was delighted to have the British royals database.