Search billions of records on



Computer Users’ Group

September 18, 2013

Many people who have put together a list of items like to consider doing such a list as 101 items and several such lists have appeared lately. Some items may be relevant to what we do so we’ve sorted through some lists to highlight certain items of interest. Each list will have it’s URL presented so you can look through all 101 items to see if there are other items of interest to you. Note that when this handout is posted on the Internet, each list will be only one click away.

101 Genealogy Web Sites. FamilyTree magazine prepared a list of 101 best web site for 2013 and it lists them by category so you can go through the category list to find something that may interest you. Go here:

Sites listed

    Best US Genealogy Websites

    Best Southern US Genealogy Websites

    Best Northern US Genealogy Websites

    Best Midwest US Genealogy Websites

    Best Western US Genealogy Websites

    Best Genealogy Websites for Tracing Immigrants

    Best Big Genealogy Websites

    Best British and Irish Genealogy Websites

    Best Continental European Genealogy Websites

    Best Genealogy News Websites

    Best Online Genealogy Tools and Trees

    Best Genealogy Photo and Mapping Websites

Best US Genealogical Websites has several good free sites. Here are a few.

American Battle Monuments Commisssion lists soldiers buried overseas in 24 cemeteries or listed on a plaque of missing servicemen.

Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System where you can search for both North and South         veterans.

Library of Congress now has 6 million newspaper pages and also has American Memory and Manuscript collections.

Making of America, while way behind Google in the number of volumes, you can search for a name and find what page in what book it appears on. Mostly 1800 US History. See the pastfinders’ discussion on the web page under Articles/Free Books.

Nationwide Gravesite Locator lists all graves of veterans in military cemeteries and private cemeteries where the grave has a government marker.

Regional web sites depend on where you choose to search so look through the ones that pertain to your region.

Best Genealogy Websites for Tracing Immigration

One-Step Web Pages is a site that aggregates most of the other sites listed so one search will seek ancestors in multiple places.

Best Big Genealogy Websites

Just the sites that you’d expect and only FamilySearch and FindaGrave are free. Ancestry is free at the library and some of the others should be tried to see if they have the records you want. Many offer a free trial.

Best Genealogy News Web Sites

Lots of news in all of them. Dick Eastman tells the latest news in Eastman’s Online Newsletter but for some of the further details you have to subscribe to the paid edition.

The Genealogy Guys Podcast can be read by clicking on the link. It has lots of latest news. You can also listen to it.

Best Online Genealogy Tools and Trees

Backupmytree is a free program that allows you to back up your tree in the cloud. If you’ve posted it on the Internet, then you have a backup but this can be an added measure of safety and you can back up files that you haven’t posted.

Evernote is a good way to save notes, clippings and other data to the cloud for access on any device. It’s free and we’ll cover it in more detail nexr month.

Google has many features useful to genealogists. This site lists a few and a search for Google Genealogy will turn up many more ideas.

WeRelate is a Wiki site with more than 2.4 million names. It’s free but you have to register to use it.

WikiTree is similar to WeRelate, is free and you just have to enter who you’re looking for.


101 Most Useful Websites. There are a few very interesting websites and we’ll look at a few. A few that I find useful are listed below by the listed number. All of these are free.

2. Capture web pages/ Saves a web page as an image.

6. Lists many special characters that you can’t find on your keyboard. May not work with all word processors. Click to select and then open the document and press CTRL-V to paste.

10. Office 365 has templates and the latest MS Office programs with many templates based in the cloud. One month for home use is free.

13. Wolframalpha tries to interpret your question to provide an answer on any subject..

20. PDF Escape lets you select a PDF file and edit it using your browser. Very simple and free

34. Online OCR requires you to use Chrome and it allows you to select a PDF file and convert it to MS Office or text format..(Dick Eastman has more details of PDF images vs searchable text but programs are not listed in the free edition but this is a free one.)

36 We transfer will send a file that is too large to send by email. Open it, chose the file and one or more recipients. I used it and it works and it’s free.

101 Great Free Sites and Downloads You’ve Probably Never Heard Of

Click on the alphabetical link to see the programs in alphabetical order; the list starts with the ones that they have chosen as best.

Advanced System Care is a nice free way to clean up your computer and correct problems.

Avast Home Edition is a good free anti-virus program

List-it is a nice way to make and save notes.

Open Office is something I’ve preached about for several years. It’s the free equivalent of Microsoft Office and can read and create MS documents.

James Tanner’s Blog brings up an important issue for genealogists, amateur or professional. How to share data among genealogy programs. The traditional GEDCOM file has severe limitations, especially the way it handles sources. A new version expected from FamilySearch has not materialized. Dear Myrtle offers more on the subject. She is a co-founder on Better GEDCOM. .The main issue here is keeping all of your data intact as you move it from one program to another. As new features are added to programs, we may want to move our files from an older program to a newer one with better features. Extensive editing may be required to do that today with the existing GEDCOM 5. That, however does not mean that GED 5 is useless. I port my FTM files to PAF to use for it’s relationship calculator. It.s still useful for such limited usage and if your genealogy is like so many on Ancestry and other sites that don’t have any sources, then you can use GED 5 with impunity..

Takeover. My computer went through an update of Firefox and Adobe Flash Player. When I tried to use Firefox, I had a yellow rectangle at the top of the screen that popped up with an announcement that my media player needed to be replaced. Also a small image of a man kept popping up telling me I could click there for help.. You can read more about it here and find out how to safely remove it.

Another program that’s useful for problems such as this one is Malwarebytes that you caa get here . It will search out all of the bad files and block any new ones from coming in.

Places. Perhaps we should have covered this before our summer break. Putting together a list of people who may have been at one of the places you plan to visit can be useful in searching for data in the area of your visit. One problem with finding all of the people associated with a given place is that many times the place ame may have been entered differently so that finding one place name may not show all of the people who were associated with it. In FTM 2012, click on Places at the top of the page and then click on Resolve All Place Names. Go down the list of places and if a place name does not match what FTM suggests, change it by clicking on the box in front of the proper name in the list at the right. Repeat this for every site that needs to be corrected. To prevent this in the future, when you enter a Place Name, see what FTM recommends and click on that instead of what you entered. Now when you travel, you’ll know who to look up at places along the way.

FamilySearch PAF Now that PAF is no longer available and supported, those who use it need another option although you can continue to use PAF forever knowing that it will never be improved. FamilySearch offers three alternatives; Ancestral Quest, Legacy Family Tree and Roots Magic. All three are FamilySearch certified to share information on FamilySearch Family Trees. The first 2 have free versions which lack many of the features of the paid versions but they offer you a chance to see if you like the program. Paid versions of both are $29.95 while Roots Magic will cost $19.95. All programs can import PAF data so it‘s easy to switch over.

Printing a Directory Sometimes it can be useful to get a printout of some of your directories {folders) especialy if you are going to be moving files to a new computer. Even if you don’t print any or all of it, having the listing can be udeful in re-organizing and getting rid of junk. My C drive listing would have taken 425 pages to print! There are several ways to accomplish this and we;ll look at a couple.


.Method one: Built onto windows is the following procedure. Click on the folder you want to select it. It should be highlighted. Press the SHIFT key and the Right Mouse Button. In the resulting dialog box, click on Open command window here. The window will open with the folder you want to print listed. Enter the following; Dir>print.txt. Then, open the folder and you’ll find a file called Print.txt. Open that to read or print the contents of the folder. Sub-folders are named but the contents are not listed. When I tried to print out the C: drive I got an Access denied message.

Method two. Go here to download Directorylistprint and unzip the program and run it. It gives the option the include the contents of each sub-folder and you can index the C drive and see everything on your computer in one place.