Thursday, March 19, 2020

Documenting History

How would you like to read your grandparents' thoughts while they went through the 1918 Spanish flu epidemic or your parents during World War II or anyone during the Civil War? Wouldn't that be amazing? I'm not aware of anything my ancestors wrote down during these times. Most people think their thoughts are not important enough to write down and that their lives were mundane and boring. I know my mother said that, despite being a teenager during World War II. These events were big parts of history. The current COVID-19/Coronavirus/SARS-CoV2 pandemic is history in the making. You are living through a major event in history. Document it!

Sunday, March 8, 2020

Life Aboard the Skagit

My father served in the Navy during the Korean War. Much of his time was spent on board the attack cargo ship, the USS Skagit (AKA 105). The Skagit was originally built for World War II, then mothballed. Once the Korean conflict started, the ship was pulled out of retirement, brought to San Diego for training, then sailed to Pusan, Korea, also traveling to Yokosuka and Inchon. This mission was the one my father was on. He served as the ship's Yeoman Third Class.

Friday, February 14, 2020

Automatic Colorization of Old Photos

MyHeritage has made a free photo colorization tool available. It can be found at https://www.myheritage.com/incolor. Once you are logged in using either a paid subscription or a free account, you just select a photo to upload and around 10-15 seconds later, it has been colorized for free. It will have have the MyHeritage logo added to the lower right-hand corner. You then have the option to share it via social media, copy a link to the colorized photo or download it. The tool allows you to add color to an unlimited number of photos if you are a MyHeritage subscriber. If you only have a free membership, you are limited to 10 photos. If you have a large number of photos to colorize, it could make sense to subscribe.

Saturday, February 1, 2020

Comparing DNA Pile-Up Matches to Other Matches

I've been trying to make sense of the pile-up regions and matches in my Family Tree DNA test results. I'm not making any progress in figuring out how I'm related to any of them so I thought I'd try to illustrate the problem in the hopes of getting ideas from readers and to be able to work with or ignore them in the most efficient way. Listed below are my top twenty-two DNA matches on Family Tree DNA, along with the total number of matches I have in common with them and the number of matches that are calculated as 5th cousins and closer. I've highlighted the matches I'm now labeling "pile-up matches".

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

A Look Back at 2019 and a Look Ahead to 2020

2020 is well underway. I hope you and I have a great year with lots of walls tumbling down. With the new year, it's always good to look back at the previous year and remember things we discovered, things we learned and things we can improve on.

In 2019, my biggest genealogical achievement was the discovery of the marriage record of the parents of my great-grandmother, Elizabeth Dunzinger. I already knew her father's name and his marriage record gave me her mother's name, along with her mother's parents' names, which were a complete mystery to me. This discovery gave me my great-great-grandmother, Anna Ziegelmueller and her parents Paul Ziegelmueller and Victoria Seefried.

Saturday, January 4, 2020

What is Passed on Through DNA?

I'd appreciate your input. Do I resemble my great-grandfather? My wife and I just had professional portraits taken. Most of my life, I've always figured I resembled my father's side of the family more than my mother's side. My dad's First Communion picture was always hanging on our wall at home and just about everyone thought it was me. I know that with my hair, body structure, facial expressions and other items, I look quite a bit like my dad.