Episode 257 - Getting “Sideways” With Your Family- In A Good Way! / Collecting Stories On Ancestral Ocean Crossings

podcast episode Oct 28, 2018

Host Scott Fisher opens the show with David Allen Lambert, Chief Genealogist of the New England Historic Genealogical Society and AmericanAncestors.org.  The guys start off with a great find for the family of Muhammad Ali. Through DNA, a third cousin learned that “The Champ” was a 3rd great grandson of a freed slave whose likeness was used for a very special statue. Find out what it is. Then, a different kind of DNA story. This is the kind where a woman learns she has a half-sister… and that they were born five months apart! Catch some more of the details. Then, is it really true? Archaeologists have discovered what is believed to be a 3,500 year old prosthesis! Who was using it and why? David has some insight. Another early find goes back 1,500 years where a child was apparently buried in a vampire ritual to prevent him from coming back to life. There’s lots to catch in Family Histoire News this week.  David’s Blogger Spotlight shines on a woman named Marlee who hosts Loganalogy.com. In a recent post, Marlee shares her insight on using Facebook to grow your family history.

Next, well known genealogist, Amy Johnson Crow, visits with Fisher. Recognizing that many beginning genealogists focus mainly on their direct ancestors, she recommends “getting sideways” with your family. Hear what she means by that and why it’s so important.

David Allen Lambert then returns to talk about collecting stories of your ancestors’ ocean crossings. From the Mayflower to Ellis Island, there are ways to find out what happened as your people came to “the Promised Land.”

Then, it’s Tom Perry from TMCPlace.com, the Preservation Authority. Tom notes that many people are starting to get back to the idea of “physical” or “analogue” gifts. Those can include physical calendars with family images and QR codes linked to special sites. And think of what you could do with recipe books?! Tom shares his ideas.

That’s all this week on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show!

Transcript of Episode 257

Host: Scott Fisher with guest David Allen Lambert

Segment 1 Episode 257

Fisher: And welcome to America’s Family History Show Extreme Genes and ExtremeGenes.com. It is Fisher here your Radio Roots Sleuth on the program where we shake your family tree and watch the nuts fall out. And today’s show is brought to you by BYUtv’s Relative Race. Now it’s Season 4, and boy they’re doing some great stuff right now. Hey genies, nice to have you along. And if you’re new to the show, this is the program where we talk about some of the stories people find, how they found them and we’ll give you a little instruction on how to break open your family tree, and find the same types of material. And coming up a little later on we’ve got a great guest, well known in the genealogy field. She is Amy Johnson Crow, a professional researcher and we’re going to be talking about “getting sideways” with your family. Now, that doesn’t mean the same thing that it does in the rest of the world in the genealogy world. That’s a good thing and we’ll explain why and what it means and why and how you should do it. We’ll explain that coming up in about ten minutes or so.

Then later in the show this guy from Boston, very grizzled, he’s going to be in the studio talking about crossing the pond, finding stories from your ancestors, how they came across the pond, what the experience was of crossing the ocean and how you can find and develop some of that material. It’s a lot of fun. David Allen Lambert will be here. In fact, he’s going to be here even sooner. Hey, just a reminder, if you haven’t done it yet, sign up for our “Weekly Genie Newsletter.” It is absolutely free. You could do it through ExtremeGenes.com or on our Facebook page. And of course we’ll never spam you, just give you all kinds of great information, links to past episodes and current stories. You’re going to love it. But right now let us…oh, he’s right here. It’s David Allen Lambert in the studio with us today. [Laughs]

David: Hey! [Laughs]

Fisher: Nice to see you bud.

David: It’s nice to actually see you in front of me.

Fisher: Yes, it doesn’t happen that often which is why we’re going to do a bonus segment here a little bit later on with you.

David: Hey, I’m glad I walked in.

Fisher: Pick that brain of yours.

David: [Laughs]

Fisher: But right now let’s get on with our Family Histoire News. We’ve got a lot of good stories today to share relating to family history, starting with the “greatest of all times” Muhammed Ali. 

David: This is going to knock you out I’ll tell you. The genealogical world has just learned that the great Muhammed Ali is actually the third great grandson of Archer Alexander, who was one of these people from history you probably wouldn’t know about, but he is actually the model for the emancipation statue in Washington D.C.

Fisher: Yeah, with Lincoln on that, yes.

David: Hmm.

Fisher: It’s somewhat controversial because it shows Lincoln towering over this slave being, you know, lifted to freedom, but nonetheless, he was the guy. And that’s the third great grandfather of Muhammed Ali. And it was discovered because one of Ali’s third cousins did DNA and did the work and figured it all out. What a great story.

David: It’s unbelievable the history that we find when we don’t even think we’re going to come across it. And of course you know, I just hope that none of my third cousins find out any interesting stuff that I don’t discover.

Fisher: Right. [Laughs]

David: [Laughs] Hey, by the way, didn’t you meet Muhammed Ali a couple of times?

Fisher: Actually four times I got to meet him.

David: Wow!

Fisher: And every single time just a delight with anybody he met. He loved kids. He was pleasant. He was fun. He enjoyed himself. And it didn’t matter how much people were pressing on him, or demanding whatever it was. He was just one of the nicest people I’ve ever met, and I’ve met a lot of celebrities. 

David: And your kids met him too. I remember seeing your video that you put out there at the time when they met him.

Fisher: Yeah, they actually entertained him and he gave them a hug and a kiss. Can you believe that?

David: Wow!

Fisher: Crazy stuff.

David: Pretty amazing. Well, the next discovery is kind of little close to home. A young lady from Kingston, Ontario, Kim McFarland did a DNA kit like most of us have with Ancestry and she got a match, a half-sister match who’s only five months difference in age to her.

Fisher: Oh boy.

David: Yeah.

Fisher: And Dad’s still living too.

David: Ah yeah, that’s what we see.

Fisher: Um hmm. Dad’s got some ‘splaining to do!

David: He does. He does, but it’s proven that this is not so rare. This is actually one of the things that the girls were concerned about that maybe Ancestry should give a warning. Well, they actually have that option.

Fisher: Right.

David: You can opt out of having make your results public.

Fisher: I think the biggest problem with the warnings is nobody really believes they’re going to be the one to get that strange match.

David: Um hmm.

Fisher: And so when they do it is just such a shock. And we certainly experienced that personally watching other people. And you’ve even had a surprise finding your family though not through DNA.

David: Correct, yes. I’m delighted that I have a half-sister Donna who was put up for adoption that we never knew. And she’s a welcome part of my family, and a shout out to Donna. I know you’re listening.

Fisher: [Laughs]

David: Okay. So my next story is a little older. It’s 3,500 years old and it goes out to Switzerland. And this is in regards to a bronze decorated hand that was found. It’s not just a piece of a statue. It’s probably the first known prosthesis.

Fisher: A prosthesis hand?

David: Um hmm. Yeah it looks like this person would have lost their hand maybe in battle or something, but yeah we tracked the little fingers and the whole nine yards. It looks like something that’s from C-3PO.

Fisher: Wow!

David: Yeah, it’s quite amazing. So that is now being looked into. Who knows, there may even be more such discoveries in this area.

Fisher: Yes and then kind of in keeping with this ancient find, there was another one of a child in a burial situation way back from like 1,500 years ago. This is amazing.

David: Yeah this is out in a Roman villa. This is a 10-year old child. They’re not sure of the sex. He was found with a limestone rock about the size of a bird egg shoved into his mouth and what they’re pretty sure was he was suffering from malaria. So part of it was to keep away the evil spirits and the dead from rising, and also potentially to keep the illness at bay.

Fisher: So they’re thinking it’s kind of like a Dracula burial.

David: Right.

Fisher: Incredible.

David: Just in time for Halloween. [Laughs]

Fisher: Yeah, right. [Laughs]

David: My blogger spotlight shines all the way from Boston out here in the studio to Loganalogy.com where Marlee has a great little blog about her family with some of her Scottish research that she’s done, but she touches base on that most recently using Facebook groups for genealogy. And I’ve done that myself. I’ve talked about using a homestead if you’re will to kind of gathering all your cousins, second cousins, third cousins. You know, they may find there’s a statue of your ancestor that might be out there. You just never know. And of course, as always, if you’re not a member of AmericanAncestors, you can join and use the coupon code. You know what it is Fish.

Fisher: Yes, It’s “Extreme.”

David: That’s it. Always has been.

Fisher: Which is what it always has been. You get 20 bucks off, right?

David: Oh my goodness, you’ve heard this before!

Fisher: I knew it! I’m all over it! I’m well over it.

David: I’m going to stick around because after Amy we’re going to talk about getting over here across the pond.

Fisher: Alright, coming up in just a little bit. Thanks David. It’s great to have you in the studio. It’s been a long time. All right, coming up next as David mentioned, we’re going to talk to Amy Johnson Crow. She’s a professional genealogist from Ohio, and she’s going to talk about getting “sideways” with your family in a good way when we talk about genealogy. That’s coming up in three minutes on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show.

Segment 2 Episode 257

Host: Scott Fisher with guest Amy Johnson Crow

Fisher: Hey we’re back! It is America’s Family History Show Extreme Genes and ExtremeGenes.com. Fisher here, your Radio Roots Sleuth and this segment is brought to you by FamilySearch.org. And it was my recent pleasure to meet for the first after having heard about her for many years, the famous Amy Johnson Crow at the Federation of Genealogical Societies conference in Indiana back in August. And she has agreed to come back on the show. Hi Amy, good to talk to you again!

Amy: Hey! It’s good to talk with you. Thanks for having me back on the show.

Fisher: You know, there’s so many things that you write about that I really enjoy on your blogs. We had a conversation the other day about this idea of getting “sideways” with your family. Now, most people realize that that term tends to mean that you are getting on their bad side for one reason or another.

Amy: Yeah.

Fisher: But in the genealogical sense we’re talking a whole different way of looking at it.

Amy: Yeah. It’s definitely not getting on their bad. It’s actually just a different way of looking at it. It’s kind of a broader perspective than just looking at that one person in the family that you descend from. You know, I’m really into Civil War research. I just absolutely love that time period. And when I discovered that my great, great grandfather had served for the Union out of the state of Ohio, I did a little bit more digging and found that both of his brothers had also served. So, being the Civil War nerd that I am, I sent away for all three pension files.

Fisher: Nice.

Amy: Yeah because that’s just what you do. You know?

Fisher: Right.

Amy: Right.

Fisher: And this is what we mean by “getting sideways.” You’re not just dealing with the individual you’re also looking at the siblings.

Amy: Exactly! So, when I got all three pension files I was fascinated to see what was included and what wasn’t included in all three of the files. Because here we have brothers out of the same family, and they’re serving not in the same unit but they are all serving from the same county. So, backtracking just a little bit, my third great grandparents came from Scotland and settled in Washington County, Ohio where they had 11 children.

Fisher: Wow.

Amy: Yeah. Nice big family. Well, they had 11 children from what I could tell from census records and from the will of my third great grandfather. Well, I start going through these pension files and I discover that one of them, one out of the three had abstracted the family Bible, that family record of the family Bible where it’s listing all of the births and whatnot.

Fisher: Well, and in that era there were very few local areas that recorded births and deaths the way people did in their own family Bible. That’s where it was kept.

Amy: Yeah exactly. And he was born in Ohio but in a time period before Ohio was keeping civil birth records. He needed to prove how old he was to get an increase in his pension. So what does he do? He takes the family Bible to the local pension office, the pension officer makes this beautiful transcript of the family record, and they have a nice notary signature on it. It’s all nice and official. But in that pension file it mentions a twelfth child.

Fisher: Ha!

Amy: And this child, a little boy named William, only lived a few days but he was born and he died between censuses and before Ohio was keeping civil birth and death records.

Fisher: So now you’ve hopefully completed the family.

Amy: Yeah. It is complete as far as that family Bible appears to be, and from what other records I have found, but I just thought it was fascinating that out of the three brothers and their very robust Civil War pension files, only one of them had this family Bible and it was only in that family Bible that listed that other brother of theirs who sadly died in infancy.

Fisher: Boy and this is why it’s so important to look at those siblings. I had a similar thing. Back in 1968 my mother approached my dad’s aunt, she was I guess my great aunt, and she provided all kinds of little family history notes from her memory that proved over the decades to be very useful. And she sent them just a few months before she died. And it mentioned in there the married name of a sister of my great, great grandmother who had been a brick wall for decades. When I started to work on this side of it, I figured boy, if I could find out about this sister. In fact, I stumbled upon a record that mentioned the name Faloon in a record that also contained my great, great grandmother. I’m going, wait a minute that was the name in Aunt Mamie’s notes! So I started tracking this woman and then found the sister. And from a result of that, she lived longer than my great, great grandmother to a point where the death certificate started carrying the names of the parents in New York City. So, when my great, great grandmother had died in Brooklyn in 1879 there was no such place for the names of the parents. But by 1900 there were. And so, it gave the name of the sister’s parents, which of course were the parents of my second great grandmother. And when I found the christening of the sister, I got the maiden name of the mother and then was able to find all the children that were christened including my second great grandmother. So that took me back not only that generation, but also one more generation to the parents of my great, great grandmother’s mother. So it was really useful to find the sister and not just work on the direct line.

Amy: Yeah exactly. Because each child in the family has the potential of creating records that are going to give us the answers that we’re looking. Like you said, that one sibling who lasted long enough to live into an era where they had really good death records that gave you that clue that you needed to move back another generation. But if you had focused solely on your direct ancestor, you might still be beating your head against that brick wall.

Fisher: [Laughs] I think you’re right. Because it went back over to London and then it was very difficult. It’s always harder to cross the pond I think.

Amy: Yeah. And when you do have a situation where you’re wanting to cross the pond, you need to do as much research as you can on this side.

Fisher: Yep.

Amy: And that includes researching that extended family. Because you’re going to need all of the clues that you can to make sure that you’re researching the right person over in the other country and not just someone with the same name.

Fisher: Boy, I think you hit it right on the head. And you know Amy one of the other sides of researching the siblings is the fact that siblings’ stories often have to do with your direct ancestor. So if you found some distant cousins that might have some oral history or some stories in their lines, you could discover some stories in there concerning your people directly which I think would be really important.

Amy: Oh definitely. And I think sometimes when we’re thinking about doing an oral history or just talking to someone in the family, you know we hear the advice so often and it is good advice to approach the people in the oldest generation.

Fisher: Yep.

Amy: If you’re fortunate enough to still have somebody in a generation further back than you are. But sometimes I think we get so focused on generations… being that direct ancestor. Like well, my grandmother isn’t still living so I can’t interview her, but could I interview her sister who is still living?

Fisher: Sure.

Amy: Could I interview her brother? And I think we also need to expand it a little bit, like you said, thinking about those cousins. I’m actually the youngest of twelve grandchildren. And my older cousins have completely different memories of our grandparents than what I have.

Fisher: Sure.

Amy: Grandpa died when I had just turned six. So I have just a precious few memories of him. But in talking to my cousins, you know I hear the story about how every year he dressed up as Santa Claus, and hear the stories of what he would do around the house, and just how jovial he was. It kind of makes me a little sad that I didn’t get to know him better. But I think we need to pull out some of those stories from people even within our own generation but who have a different perspective on things that we haven’t and things we’ve experienced because no two people are going to see the event exactly the same way.

Fisher: Right, and especially generational, right? I mean, a child looks at an adult in a completely different way than say a sibling or a peer or a friend because they experience them as adults obviously and have that adult like relationship. And people are different around children and it’s fun to hear how they were in their different roles within life.

Amy: Right. And I think it’s so neat if you can find someone who knew your ancestors younger than you remember them.

Fisher: Yeah.

Amy: You know, I look at pictures of my dad and it’s like “Wow, Dad!”

Fisher: “You were young once!”

Amy: Yeah. “You were young once and you had hair!”

Fisher: [Laughs]

Amy: And talking to people who knew him when he was in high school or when he was just starting his business, it’s something that obviously I would never be able to experience first-hand. And sometimes you know, even though I can still ask Dad different things, sometimes it’s interesting to get someone else’s perspective on it.

Fisher: Well no kidding. And the other side of this is that Dad doesn’t necessarily remember all these other things. You know how it goes. Everybody has little collective piece of memory somewhere. But you know really what we’re getting down to here, is that no person is an island and they have experiences essentially in relating or having experiences with other people. And when you can find those people who can share those memories, you can get some golden stories. And it’s really fun also when they disagree. [Laughs]

Amy: Oh yeah totally. And you get me together with my two sisters and we start talking, it’s like, “Well, here’s what happened. No, this is how it really happened.”

Fisher: Right?

Amy: Yeah. And trying to figure out okay, which one of these really is correct? And usually it’s a little bit out of each one because as you said, we all have a different perspective on things and we all have different memories how we remember things. What was important to us at the time can also affect how we remember it.

Fisher: And you never know what you’re going to come up with when you start getting sideways with your family and work on those sibling lines and find their stories, and also find their records. Great stuff Amy. Thanks so much.

Amy: Thank you.

Fisher: She’s Amy Johnson Crow you can follow her at AmyJohnsonCrow.com lots to think about there. And coming up next, if you ever wondered how your ancestors did coming across the ocean, what were the stories they experienced, what ship were they on, what happened during that journey, well, David Allen Lambert the Chief Genealogist of the New England Historic and Genealogical Society and AmericanAncestors.org is going to talk about that with us coming up next on Extreme Genes.   

Segment 3 Episode 257

Host: Scott Fisher with guest David Allen Lambert

Fisher: Welcome back to Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show and ExtremeGenes.com. Fisher here your Radio Roots Sleuth with my good friend David Allen Lambert. He is the Chief Genealogist of the New England Historic Genealogical Society and AmericanAncestors.org. David, we’ve been talking about this concept of researching and maybe collecting stories about your immigrant ancestors as they crossed the pond and there’s so much to find relating to this. I’d never really thought about this until you brought it up.

David: Well, I think we all start with our genealogy with stories and I think sometimes we get the stories before we have the research.

Fisher: Right. [Laughs]

David: So, we hear the story about somebody getting seasick which is what I heard. My grandfather and his younger sister came over in 1911 from England on the Empress of Britain, water was going over the top of the boat, it was heavy seas and they got sick. So, a little nausea goes a long way because that’s a story that stuck out from my childhood and I thought they came over when my grandfather was eight years old. They came over when my grandfather was nearly ten years old.

Fisher: A little different there.

David: I was looking for the wrong date. So, sometimes you have these stories that add color, as disgusting as it might seem to think about seasickness is the only snippet of your family’s adventure to come across to the new world. But think about it, if we had these stories for the Mayflower passengers. I think I know somebody who had somebody who came over nearly 400 years ago.

Fisher: Yeah. [Laughs] It’s funny you say that because I think my Mayflower ancestor had the best story about crossing the ocean and that was because he fell overboard!

David: Yes.

Fisher: We’re talking about John Howland and I know many of our listeners also descend from him. He has I think the second greatest number of descendants out there but coming across the ocean there was a big storm and the ship was being tossed to and fro and there was a break in the middle of it, and everybody was down below. You can imagine how it smelled down there, all these people.

David: Ugh.

Fisher: And this would have been in 1620. And John sensing the break decides, “Hey, I’m going to go back up on deck,” and he does. And this monster wave comes and jerks the ship sideways and he’s thrown into the drink and the next thing he knows, he’s ten feet under water and he’s just flailing around down there and he feels the rope from a halyard mast hanging in the water. He grabs it, pulls himself back to the surface and using a boat hook the crew of the Mayflower pulled him back on the ship, no doubt with great scorn.

David: Oh, I’m sure.

Fisher: [Laughs] And he went back down (below deck) and went on to marry and have ten children and 88 grandchildren by the time he and his wife died.

David: And this is why they put pools on cruise ships!

Fisher: Yes! [Laughs]

David: So, people would not decide to jump overboard and go for a swim.

Fisher: Exactly. Well, the stories that come are just amazing. I had another great, great who came across in 1882 and in the journal on the ship it talked about how someone had died and they buried them at sea and I’m sure he had to witness that. You know, you don’t think about these things. You just think “Well, he got on the boat here and he got off the boat here.” But what happened in between?

David: Well, you know it’s funny, during World War I a lot of the passenger ships like the White Star Line Olympic which was the sister ship to the Titanic. That transported my great grandfather and his units across from Toronto, Canada all the way to England. It was decorated with camouflage but I would just know the name of the ship. But no, there are war diaries so they talk about the longitude and latitude, where they are and if they spotted any U-boats the whole nine yards. It’s really detailed.  So, you can occasionally find diaries people have written down, or better yet postcards they sent. My friend who was on the Titanic Melvina Dean who was the youngest passenger, when she came out to Boston one time she showed me a postcard her mother mailed from Cherbourg, France when they had picked up the last group of passengers before they were going Transatlantic and it was post marked, the RMS Titanic.

Fisher: Wow!

David: Yeah, so I mean, we don’t even think about trips now. You get in a plane or a train, or we just drive but think of the anxiety our ancestors must have had leaving all that family behind and how are they detailing this. I mean, I almost feel jealous when there are people that have family that have came over in the past 100 years because they have stories. Majority of mine came over in the 1600s or the 1700s I don’t have any stories like that.

Fisher: Right. No, because the records aren’t usually that strong. Now, the Mayflower is kind of an exception to that because there was a great documentation of the entire experience for the Pilgrims and the Strangers, and all those who were with them. I think a lot of people who say, “Wow, I can’t go back that far because I have a lot of recent ancestry and it’s tough to get things (say) from Eastern Europe,” but what a history you could put together if you just collected the stories of the trips across the ocean and made a little collection of that.

David: Right. And not everybody came into the Port of New York. I mean they think of Ellis Island. I mean, before Ellis Island as you know, Castle Garden.

Fisher: Castle Garden, yeah.

David: But through other ports Boston, Philadelphia, Portland, Maine.

Fisher: New Orleans.

David: Right. I mean, how about the person who was tracing their research and thought their ancestor was going to come into New York, and it was New Orleans.

Fisher: New Orleans. And to me that is a mindblower. I mean, it’s rare but it does happen.

David: He got on the wrong boat. [Laughs]

Fisher: Yeah. [Laughs] “I thought you said New York!” It was New Orleans!

David: He had the ticket folded and didn’t see the other side. [Laughs]

Fisher: Right. [Laughs]

David: And there was the language barrier occasionally too.

Fisher: Yeah, maybe that was the case but nonetheless they had to find their way north pretty quickly.

David: So, I guess our listeners, if you have stories about your family coming over and it’s not obviously written in the passenger list, it’s not written in the naturalization record, have you written it down? If not, why not? It’s so important.

Fisher: Right.

David: Share it with your kids. I mean, if you’re an immigrant yourself and you’re listening, how did you get here? Sure you may have come on a plane, maybe you did come on a boat, write it down. First hand recollections of yourself or your parents, or your grandparents, that’s a golden treasure of genealogy.

Fisher: You know, we were talking to Amy Johnson Crow a little bit earlier about “getting sideways” with your family, interviewing siblings and aunts and uncles, not your directs themselves, maybe they’re gone but a lot of those stories will live with those people.

David: True and you have to preserve this. We have such great technology now.

Fisher: Well, in the records of the ships and the military ships there are photographs too. I know Ancestry has a lot of the photographs of the ships that brought our ancestors across.

David: There is. There’s a great book called “Ships of our Ancestors” but you can use something as simple as Wikipedia.

Fisher: Yes.

David: Just put in the name of the vessel. I mean, you may find that there are more than one vessel over the years with the same name as your ship. I mean how many Mayflowers have there been.

Fisher: Right.

David: So, that’s the type of thing you can find an image of it, if you have an elderly relative and you know they’re the one that came over even as a child, get the story and pass it on. It’s something that’s so important. Once these stories are lost, they’re lost forever.

Fisher: That’s it. You know, I think a lot of people it’s amazing to me because I’ve always embraced these stories. It’s amazing to me how many of these stories are lost. The thing I often hear from people when I talk to them is, “Oh, I wish I had asked her that question. Oh I wish I had known at that time. You know how much I would miss this.” But you grow into it.

David: Right. Even as a child when I interviewed my grandmother who was alive until I was eleven. I mean, I asked her the birth, marriage and death questions what filled into a chart. I heard other stories like the one about our Dad being on a whaling ship so that’s kind of a vessel story in its own right but I don’t have of the specifics. But you don’t know what her parents did or did not tell her.

Fisher: Sure.

David: So, sometimes it’s lost a generation before the one that you’re interviewing.

Fisher: Yeah. There are so many. What other sources are there David, to find out about ships of the ancestors?

David: Well, obviously if your ancestor applies for citizenship you get the date of arrival and generally the port and then all you have to do is look at the manifest. I mean, so many of these are online now.

Fisher: Sure.

David: Between Ancestry and what FamilySearch has put online for free you can get into so many of them. The Ellis Island website, Castle Garden, you can go on and search for people.

Fisher: That’s kind of combined really, isn’t it? It should be.

David: It is. And like I say, just knowing the difference between the two… when you go out to get your boat across to Ellis Island, remember where you’re getting your ferry from is where they were before Ellis Island… Castle Garden.

Fisher: That’s right. At the very south end of Manhattan Island and that’s the battery.

David: Um hmm. The other thing you can use is newspapers. If you know that somebody came down on say a boat from Canada, some of my family did. Look at the local paper and see the arrivals. I mean you’ll see the boats arriving or maybe better yet find an ad for your ancestor’s ship, or buy something on eBay like a menu that came from the ship.

Fisher: Yeah.

David: You can get that stuff, or a postcard.

Fisher: It’s out there. It’s great stuff. Great conversation, thank you so much David!

David: My pleasure.

Fisher: Good to see you. Tom Perry is next talking preservation on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show.

Segment 4 Episode 257

Host: Scott Fisher with guest Tom Perry

Fisher: It is time to talk preservation on Extreme Genes, America's Family History Show and ExtremeGenes.com. Fisher here your Radio Roots Sleuth. I've got Tom Perry with me on the line from TMCPlace.com, he's our Preservation Authority. How're you doing, Tommy?

Tom: I'm super duper, thanks.

Fisher: You know, it’s really interesting, you and I were talking a little off the air about this, we've heard so much about millennials and not wanting things, and yet, we're finding out that the physical and analogue and all these old timey things are coming back into the realm. And that certainly has something to do with family history and preservation, does it not?

Tom: Oh absolutely. In fact, like we were talking off air, you know, our mad scientist, Marlo from Heritage Collector, his software now, he went and did some surveys with all of his people to find out what direction they wanted him to go the most and what they were the most interested in. And analogue calendars were number one by a big, over 70% of the people wanted analogue calendars.

Fisher: Meaning physical, right? I mean like something they could actually hold, maybe somebody could unwrap it Christmas time. But of course there's also a digital component to that, because you've got QR codes on there too, right?

Tom: Exactly. It’s the best of both worlds. And like you say, people want to feel something nowadays. They want to actually touch something that they can actually see. And they don't have the old photo albums, so this is a great way to bring all of your different pictures together by making a calendar. And it’s not just like 12 pictures, you can have multiple pictures, you mentioned the QR codes. So for instance, on Christmas, if, you know, grandma and grandpa are in Dothan, Alabama and you're in Phoenix, Arizona, you can have a little QR code and let the kids use your Smartphone and click on the QR code and it will be grandma and grandpa singing, you know, Merry Christmas or Happy Birthday or anniversary or whatever you want, which is just so crazy!

Fisher: Yeah, it really is, because it connects right to a website that provides the videos that you do ahead of time. That's 21st century calendars and the best of both worlds. But audio is also moving in that direction as well. You know, we often talk about interviewing ancestors, older relatives and getting their stories, but there are a lot of people who like to sing or perform music.

Tom: Oh absolutely.

Fisher: And a lot of folks are now going to the analogue side of things. In fact, I had a buddy of mine who had a very popular band back in the late 1960s, and he decided to get the boys back together. And they went and recorded in a studio in Los Angeles with 1960s era equipment. Tubes! And 1960s era microphones, and the sound is remarkable. And there's something I think with a richer quality to that old analogue feel.

Tom: Oh it is. In fact, that's the exact reason that analogue vinyl records have come back so much. They have a certain feel or flavor to them that you can't get no matter how well you master a CD, no matter how well you do all your transfers. You know, it’s still a digital medium. When you have those analogue microphones, which are the old tube microphones, you record everything onto an analogue tape, you take that and edit it with the old way that we did with the scissor and such.

Fisher: Oh boy!

Tom: And you can go and make things that just have such a neat feel and flavor to them to give it the old vinyl thing. You know, I have a friend I was just talking to on Facebook that was just doing a new arrangement, and his newest synthesizer he was using was 15 years old, and the oldest was 31 years old!

Fisher: [Laughs]

Tom: All this old analogue stuff, even in synthesizers that are digital, in the old days, they still had that analogue quality to them, because they weren't like overly digitized. And the sound is just so wonderful. And like tube microphones, not only were they really, really expensive, there are some of the bigger companies that are actually remaking tube microphones now, because the studios want them. They're very expensive to make and very expensive to purchase, but they just have this rich sound that if you want that, that's the only way you can go.

Fisher: You know, it’s interesting, because there's a company in California right now that all they do is produce vinyl records. Yeah, vinyl!

Tom: Wow!

Fisher: And they have a $10 million valuation on this company and they're very small and very new, but it just makes you wonder, what's the ceiling? And is this really a niche? But we do know one thing, it’s an option now. All right, Tom, we're going to take a break, and when we return in three minutes, what do you want to talk about?

Tom: Okay, after the break, let's talk about these really cool gifts that we can give to people as Christmas gifts that are all based on analogue.

Fisher: All right, coming up next on Extreme Genes, America's Family History Show.

Segment 5 Episode 257

Host: Scott Fisher with guest Tom Perry

Fisher: Hey, we're back at it for our final segment of Extreme Genes, America's Family History Show and ExtremeGenes.com. This segment is brought to you by Legacy Tree Genealogists, LegacyTree.com. Tom Perry's here from TMCPlace.com. We're talking preservation, but of course, and this strange renewal of physical things, of analogue things. And we're talking about Christmas gifts what you might anticipate. Tom, you mentioned calendars a while ago, and that's really kind of fun and intriguing when you think about it. A physical calendar maybe hanging in the kitchen and then you can actually scan a QR code and get a video from your grandparents or an aunt or your kids or whatever it might be. I mean, that's an amazing mix of the old and new. But we're not limited to just calendars.

Tom: In fact, one of my favorite things to do is, recipe books, because mom had recipes, grandma had recipes, great grandma had recipes. In fact, sometimes they're handed down through even more generations. And this is cool, because you can do it either analogue like we talked about or you can do it digital. So you want to get these and make PDFs of them. And you always want to get the card or whatever it’s written on and make a copy of that, even if it’s in grandma's handwriting that you can't read. But then always you want to put it down where you can read it. So you've got this really cool picture of this handwritten index card and then underneath exactly what it is and maybe the story behind it, like why did she say to do this, why did grandma use this. When grandma said a pinch, what did she really mean?

Fisher: [Laughs]

Tom: And you put really cool things on it. If you're creating a PDF, you can print it out, so you still have something physical. And I've even seen people do CDs and put all these on a data disk. But then they wrap the CD in photos that they've made of the old recipe books or you can go and get a binder and put these in the sleeves on the front and the back of the binder and then put things inside as well and then get a sleeve that holds the disk. Then the people that want to do digital, they've got it. The one that wants to do analogue, they've got it. And this is a priceless gift to give for Christmas and the different holidays that are coming up.

Fisher: Wouldn't that be fun to do a QR code actually showing grandma or mom actually putting this recipe together? You flash the QR code and it takes you right to the website with that video if you're lucky enough to have them around still to show you exactly how it was done.

Tom: Oh, that's absolutely wonderful. In fact, taking another step, you can actually if grandma's gone kind of dress up in oldie clothes and shoot it!

Fisher: [Laughs]

Tom: And then when you go into Photoshop or you’re editing, you know, make it grayscale or turn it into sepia tones and put the little scratches in it and change the speed so it looks funky. And do little things like this on a QR code and it will just be so much fun, it will be hilarious and everybody will have a good time. And nobody's going to give them a better gift than that.

Fisher: Let's see now, we've got calendars, we've got recipe books, what else is in your little book of tricks here, Tom, for the holidays?

Tom: One of my favorite ones to do also in story books, because you can take recipes and put it in them, you can take pages out of certain people's journals, like if Dad kept a real good journal, take out the pages where he was talking about, you know, brother Mickey and make a book for them of all of his journals when he was talking about Mickey. Make one for sister Sharon. And with the new technology, when you put it into like Word or something, you can do searches and find the words and say, "Okay, for Jimmy's, I need page 48, 62, 81, 104.” And it’s real easy to get those and put them in PDFs if they want it digital or actually print it out for them. So you have this really cool story book that has all these journal entries, have the recipes in them, have special photos. And you can tie all these things together and just make a gift that is just priceless. And you can go to a local copy center and make it into a hardbound book if you want to or go digital or do both!

Fisher: Wow, you're making my head explode again! You do this all the time on a regular basis.

Tom: Oh absolutely. I love it! [Laughs]

Fisher: [Laughs] All right, Tom, great suggestions, great ideas. The old is coming back to merge with the new for a whole unique kind of gift experience for these holidays. Talk to you again soon, Tom. Thanks so much.

Tom: You bet. My pleasure!

Fisher: Hey, if you missed any of today's show, make sure you catch the podcast. You can find it on iTunes, iHeart Radio, Stitcher, ExtremeGenes.com, it’s everywhere! And of course you can download the free Extreme Genes app as well. Don't forget also if you'd like to support the show, signup for our Patron's Club, go to Patreon.com/ExtremeGenes. Hey, we'll talk to you again next week with some more great guests. Thanks for joining us. And remember, as far as everyone knows, we're a nice, normal family!

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