Sunday, December 5, 2010

Helpful Computer Programs

Have you ever thought that you would like to download what is on New Family Search to compare it with what you have in your records more easily.  That is possible using Get My Ancestors made by Ohana Software.  It is free and allows you to download your information into a PAF file.  You can find it at  It is very simple to use.  Ohana Software also has several other pieces of useful software but we will save that for another time.

It is very helpful to have your own genealogy program to track both living and deceased relatives.  New Family Search is only for deceased ancestors/relatives.  In having your own program, it will allow you to track items you are researching and are not yet ready to put on NFS.  There are several programs available and which you choose will depend on what your needs and finances allow. A comparison of several programs can be found at Some of the most popular programs include:

  1. RootsMagic -  They have a free essentials program and the full program is $29.95.  It will also sync with NFS, allowing you to compare your information, make changes in NFS, and download information from NFS into your program one person at a time.
  2. Personal Ancestral File -  This program is free and is available for download at the Family Search website in the bottom right corner.  This is a great program for the beginner or an individual that just wants a basic program.  It cannot sync with NFS without an add-on program, Family Insight, developed by Ohana Software. Note:  This program will not be updated and does not have as many feature as most of the commercial programs.
  3. Legacy -  They have a free standard program and the full program is $29.95 or $39.95 depending on the method of delivery.  Can also sync with NFS.
  4. Ancestral Quest 12 - This program is $29.95 and can also sync with NFS
  5. Family Tree Maker 2010 -  Made by and can sync with a family tree created on Ancestry.  It cannot currently sync with NFS without an add-on program, Family Insight, developed by Ohana Software.
These programs are all for Windows based computers.  Family Tree Maker 12 has just been released for the Mac.  The main other program available for the Mac is Reunion which is available at and sells for $99.

These programs can help to make your Family History work easier and will certainly allow you to document more completely.  They also allow you to track information on your living relatives.  Find a programs that works for you. 

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

A Celebration of Family History

A Celebration of Family History, the program was presented at the National Genealogical Society meeting last April in SLC will be broadcast on BYU TV the following dates in November. Note all times are Pacific times.

Tuesday Nov 2 at 7pm
Sat. Nov 6 at 8pm
Tuesday Nov 9 at 11am; 5pm
Sunday Nov 28 at 4pm

This is a program you and your family should watch

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Milwaukie Stake Family History Fair

"Weaving Family Threads"

The Milwaukie Stake Family History Fair "Weaving Family Threads" will be held Saturday, November 20th, 2010 at the Milwaukie Stake Center, 8331 Cason Road, Gladstone, OR.

The public is invited to spend the day gaining research skills in your quest to learn about your ancestors and the lives they led.

An array of classes will cater to the 'beginner', 'intermediate' or 'advanced' researcher. The event is free including a delicious lunch.

Early registration is encouraged but same day registration will also be accepted. Early registration forms will be available here soon so keep checking back.

The day of the fair will begin with check in/registration at 8am.

9:00 am Opening Session
9:40 - 10:45 Class session I
10:55 - 12 noon Class session II
12 noon Free Lunch
12:45 - 1:50 Class session III
2:00 - 3:05 Class session IV

The full roster of classes and presenters will soon be posted.

We hope you will clear your calendar and plan on spending the day w

Monday, May 3, 2010

Family History Conferences in Salt Lake City

I spent this past week in Salt Lake City attending two genealogical conferences.  They were both awesome and I learned so much.  I will try to share some of the things in the next few weeks. 

One conference was the Conference on Computerized Family History & Genealogy put on by BYU.  It's emphasis was on using technology to assist in this work.  FamilySearch announced the release of a large number of records that have recently been indexed. They talked about the importance of indexing and the new wiki.  This is much like wikipedia but has information about searching for your family.  They also have forums for people to post questions and discussion issues.  Both can be useful for everyone from beginners to the experienced.

The second conference was the National Genealogical Society (NGS).  It consisted of members and nonmembers from the nation and some from other nations.  FamilySearch was a major sponsor along with  I was able to take a tour of Ancestry and was impressed with their operations there.  A professional scanner scanned both sides of a yearbook page faster than a copier can scan one side of a page.  It was remarkable. The Family History Library was open until 11 each night and I was able to find some valuable information on my family.  I learned much about how the library operates and how more information is being made available every day online.  Mormon Times has several articles about the conference.

The highlight of the trip was "A Celebration of Family History" held in the Conference Center.  President Henry B. Eyring spoke and the Tabernacle Choir sang some beautiful songs and hymns.  Author David McCullough spoke.  He has written a book on John Adams among others and has won a Pulitzer Prize.  He spoke about teaching our children about our family history and history in general. Another point he made is that only through our journals can our descendants understand this time and how life was not. He made an interesting point when he said that a person who is not forgotten is not gone. Some beautiful videos were shown. You can view them at this link.

This was an awesome experience that I was privileged to have.  I hope that you will all take the time to think about how important your family history is.  It is what makes you who you are.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

How do I Start?

I hear this question from a lot of people.  Many tell me that their family is complicated so it can't possibly be done.  Though it may be hard to believe almost everyone has something complicated about their family history.  Some more than others.  You just need to begin.

Start with yourself.  You know when you were born and where.  Next you go to your parents.  Do you have brothers and sisters?  What do you know about them?  Put the information on your immediate family on a family group sheet. (see pages for an example).  Then create a family group sheet for each of your parents families showing your parents as children and your grandparents as the parents.  Create a pedigree chart showing yourself as number one, your father as number two and your mother as number three and so on. You will most likely find information missing.  Now is the time to talk to your family members and try to gather information from them.  Then you begin to search other sources.  That is when the short list of websites comes in handy to help you begin to do research.

If you need help contact the family history consultants or visit the family history center.

Remember this is important work.  

Wednesday, April 7, 2010


Dear Brothers and Sisters:
I hope many of you heard the talk given by Elder Russell M Nelson in the Sunday afternoon session of General Conference.  I felt he made clear the importance of Family History and Temple work.

This is an exciting time.  More and more resources are being made available to us through the internet.  Those who are doing indexing are to be complemented.  Thanks and congratulations to Cailynn Brinkerhoff who had already indexed 1,000 names this year.  The stake has set a goal of indexing 600,000 names this year.  We could use as much help as we can get.  Just go to and register.  You log on using your LDS logon.  This is the logon you use to access the ward website.  It will now be the single logon for all LDS websites including

If you are looking for some enjoyable family TV programs, there are currently 3 available which cover Family History research.  These are as follows:
  • "Who Do You Think You Are?" on NBC, channel 8 on Comcast, or you can watch it on or
  • "The Generations Project"  on BYUTV - Shown on Monday evening at 7 pm
  • "Faces of America" on OPB.  I have watched it at  I am not sure what time it is on our OPB station
I have posted a page with several websites which will allow you to research your family.   If you have any questions or want any help, contact me at  I am also at the Church on most Tuesday evenings from 7 pm to 9 pm.

Please help to move the Lord's work ahead.

Ann Shettles