Episode 94 - Joining the DAR Without A Soldier / Planning Your Research Trip To Italy

podcast episode Jul 06, 2015

Fisher opens the show with David Allen Lambert, Chief Genealogist of NEHGS and American Ancestors.  Fisher talks about how liquor consumption increased during and after the Revolution to absurd amounts in the 1830s.  Exactly how much per person?  Fisher will tell you.  Then David talks about various heritage organizations you may be eligible for because of your ancestor's contributions to the cause of liberty.  There are more than you think!  David also shares another terrific Technical Tip of the Week.
Then, Fisher visits with Sarah Hermans, Regent for Daughters of the American Revolution in Rhinebeck, New York.  Sarah explains how many ways your ancestor can qualify for "patriot" status, aside from carrying a rifle.  Fisher was surprised to learn that one of the ancestors he previous hadn't considered could make his female family members eligible for DAR, and him eligible for SAR.  (His fifth patriot.)  Who have you not considered?
Rhonda McClure, Genealogist for the New England Historic Genealogical Society then reviews her recent research trip to Italy, with great tips and dos and don'ts for your next trip preparation.  What were her biggest mistakes?  Rhonda opens up about that as well!  Her advice can apply to planning for research trips to many countries.
Tom Perry from TMCPlace.com, the Preservation Authority, then answers a listener question about Taiyo Yuden disks and which kind you need... CD, DVD, how many X?  It can get confusing, but Tom is there to make sure you know what you're doing with your next disk purchase.

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

Transcript of Episode 94

Host: Scott Fisher with guest David Allen Lambert

Segment 1 Episode 94

Fisher: Happy 4th of July weekend, Genies! And welcome to another round of Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show. I am Fisher, the Radio Roots Sleuth, on the program where we shake your family tree and watch the nuts fall out. And as always, I’m excited about this week’s show. Our first guest coming up in about ten minutes is Sarah Hermans, who is a leader in the Daughters of the American Revolution in Dutchess County, New York. And getting ready for this visit she sent me some interesting material that might surprise you, as it did me. In essence there are other ways than serving in the army that an ancestor may qualify you for membership in the DAR and SAR. Then, Rhonda McClure from the New England Historic Genealogical Society joins David Allen Lambert and me later in the show, to talk about organizing your overseas family research trip. And you know she’ll have some great tips for us. And speaking of which, let’s bring in our friend David Allen Lambert, Chief Genealogist of the New England Historic Genealogical Society and American Ancestors. Happy 4th, David!

David: Happy 4th to you Fish! How are you?

Fisher: I am excited and ready to spend some time with the kids and eat some really unhealthy food.

David: I think that’s why the fireworks are there, to kind of jumpstart our hearts.

Fisher: Exactly. By the way, this is a really interesting thing I just ran into about the colonial era. This is from Bruce Bustard. He is the curator of the National Archives exhibit on American alcohol consumption.

David: Okay.

Fisher: And he says, that right after the Constitution was ratified, he said, you could see the alcohol consumption starting to go up. He said forty years later drinking hit a peak of 7.1 gallons of pure alcohol per person in 1830, wow!

David: I’m sure that there was reason to celebrate after all the years of the War. I mean from 1775 all the way through to finalizing the start of the federal government. So I’m sure that there were a lot of celebratory toasts if you will.

Fisher: Maybe the case, but to give it a little comparison, in 2013, American’s older than 14, I don’t know where they came up with that number, drank an average of only 2.34 gallons of pure alcohol. So we’ve moderated somewhat since the old days.

David: Well, I know I wasn’t lifting glasses at 14, I can tell you that much! [Laughs]

Fisher: Exactly.

David: Well, you know, interesting because obviously 4th of July, a lot of times we get questions here at NEHGS in Boston, about people serving in the Revolutionary War. But occasionally I get people that come in and say, “My ancestor was a signer of the Declaration of Independence.” Now, does one of your ancestors fall into that category?

Fisher: No. No. I had all privates and patriotic service, that kind of thing.

David: That’s exactly the same as myself. Frederick Wallace Pine published a seven volume set called “Descendents of the Signers of the Declaration of Independence” back in 1997. So if the person comes in, Fisher, and they say, “I have this, now what’s next?” we confirm it. Starting in 1907 there was an organization called, “The Descendents of the Signers of the Declaration of Independence” and it’s applicable to anybody over the age of 21, they even have children members, so the next generation can carry on. So, that’s one level of patriotic hereditary society that one could join. Now, maybe one of your listeners falls into that. But here’s another one, how about if your ancestor followed George Washington, or was an officer in the Continental Army, anything like that in your family tree?

Fisher: Um, my wife has an officer, but not me.

David: Okay.

Fisher: And you have to be direct male line in this, don’t you?

David: Well, that would be the direct male line. There is a ladies auxiliary of it on the Society of Cincinnati is the oldest military hereditary organization started in 1783 by George Washington and officers of the conflict. I’m actually on it to be a life member for New Hampshire through one of my ancestors who was an officer. Now, you can qualify for being a descendent of an original member that joined back then. Or you can be applicable, they had a rule in 1854, a whole bunch of people that never joined could have qualified, you could fall into that. Then there are people who come forward to prove that their ancestor had served three years as an officer in line, and they weren’t drilled out of the service or went A-wall. They can go and follow up and make an application, there’s 14 organizations though.

Fisher: Ha.

David: 13 of them are for the original colonies, you know what the 14th one is?

Fisher: No.

David: France.

Fisher: What?!

David: Yup. France actually designed our... Alfonse who designed for Washington, was one of the people who signed the actual Cincinnati metal, which is the same one they’ve had since 1783, with some minor changes. So yeah because of France’s participation in the Revolution, members and officers of the French forces, and descendents of those, can join.

Fisher: And that’s good.

David: It really is. Now, some people can’t even go to that level. So in 1876 on the centennial of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, an organization called, “The Sons of the Revolution” started up in Massachusetts.

Fisher: Right.

David: Now a lot of people listening will say, “Oh, I’m a member of that.” But they probably are not. They’re probably a member of the organization that started 13 years later, called “The National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution.” That started in 1889, and not to be confused with the ladies who started in 1890 “The National Society of The Daughters of the American Revolution.” And I understand your guest coming up soon will be talking about the DAR and they have a wonderful library in D.C.

Fisher: Yes they do. And a lot of recourses and also some interesting ways to have that person that you descend from qualified, so you can join the organization.

David: Absolutely. It’s a wonderful organization. I research when I go to D.C. I always make a trip over to the DAR library there. They have some great resources there. One of the things that I always like to toss up is of course a technology tip. And this one is kind of great for families, especially with the 4th of July happening. On Facebook you can create for free what I like to call a “Family Homestead.” I’ve created two sets of them, one for my paternal Lambert and Clark family and my maternal, my mother’s mother and father, the Poors and the Leas, and where I can gather all my cousins. On Facebook you quickly find your second and third cousins and your forth cousins five times removed. Let’s put them all under one roof. So create a virtual homestead. You can exchange photos, recipes, even video links and go as far as even having a family reunion. I talked about Periscope, maybe this is where you line up your idea of having a family virtual reunion across the globe.

Fisher: And broadcast it...

David: Exactly.

Fisher: ... with Periscope which is great. And by the way, if you missed this, this was a couple of weeks ago. You can go to our website ExtremeGenes.com and you can find some great links about just what this thing is because you’re going to be hearing a lot about it for a long time to come.

David: Very true. Very true. I think it’s really becoming quite viral. A lot of people are utilizing it. And the only other thing I was going to toss out is if you take a look at the Vita Brevis blog at NEHGS, there was a very interesting piece that got a lot of people talking called, “The Question of Identity.” A lot of people will say what their nationality is or where their origin is. Well, I’m American and Canadian, because I have dual citizenship. But if I go back to my grandparents, I’m American, French, Canadian, and British. However, if I go to my great grandparents the French disappears.

Fisher: [Laughs]

David:  Because my great grandparents were the parents of the French one were from Newfoundland in Nova Scotia and they were not of French descent. So, when someone says what nationality that they are, ask them at what peer? Check out my Vita Brevis on “Question of Identity” and see what you think. So if you want to get the links to Vita Brevis to see other articles that other NEHGS staff has written, go to the Extreme Genes website at ExtremeGenes.com or go to the Twitter page, or my own at @DLGenealogist, or American Ancestors Facebook page, we’ll also have the links. So there’ll be plenty of places to find the links to all the things I’m talking about, all the different societies, so you can clink on them and enjoy the experience online.

Fisher: Boy, it sounds like a lot of great information there. Thanks so much David Allen Lambert! And you’re coming back with us when we get Rhonda on here, just a little bit later on in the show.

David: It will be my pleasure. She’s a wonderful colleague and friend. I’m sure you’ll enjoy hearing from her about her trips across the pond to do ancestral research.

Fisher: All right. And coming up in three minutes, Sarah Hermans from the “Daughters of the American Revolution” joins us to talk about ways, other than military service, that an ancestor can qualify you for membership in the DAR or SAR, when we return on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show.    

Segment 2 Episode 94

Host: Scott Fisher with guest Sarah Hermans

Fisher: You have found us! It is Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show and ExtremeGenes.com. I am Fisher, your Radio Roots Sleuth and it is 4th of July weekend and once again as we’ve done a couple of times in the past, I bring on my friend Sarah Hermans.

Sarah, what is your particular title with the DAR in New York?

Sarah: I am the Regent, which is a fancy word for President, of the Chancellor Livingston Chapter of the DAR in Rhinebeck, New York.

Fisher: Right. And you’ve been doing this for some time and as we’ve been getting ready to talk about this segment, because you really can’t do a 4th of July show and not talk about our patriot ancestors. You sent me a fascinating breakout of a project that you’re all involved in identifying and putting together little biographies on some of the patriots that are buried in a particular cemetery.


Sarah: Yes.

Fisher: And you sent me this list of names and the bios, but also some things that qualify them to be in the DAR. And I’ve been aware of many of them, of course concerning military service, that’s an obvious. But I think a lot of people who were not involved in DAR or SAR, are not aware of patriotic service and what that means.

Sarah: Absolutely, yeah. Military service as you might imagine, you think “private,” that’s pretty basic, but it also goes to like Navy, if there was such a thing believe it or not, privateers even. So you’ve all the fighting men you can imagine. But then you’ve also got Civil Service and Patriotic Service. So those are the other two categories which could be guys who never lifted a finger to a weapon, but to maybe a pen or to donate things. Some of the things that you could qualify for, what we consider to be patriotic service, which is anything that aided the cause of the Americans between Lexington and Concord and the retreat of the British in ‘83. So it goes a little bit pass the actual end of the war. Because we’re still Concord fighting until they actually leave in 1783.

Fisher: Right.

Sarah: So if you were a signer of an Oath of Fidelity or Allegiance or something like that, that said “I support the American cause” and you signed your name in a public forum and it was recorded, the most important part, it was recorded.

Fisher: Right.

Sarah: And has made it down through history and we have a record of that. That would qualify you for what we call “Patriotic Service.” And I’ll list a couple of other things too. If you were a minister and give a patriotic sermon, if you served under Spanish troops which is weird and makes you think how is that patriotic service? But it is. If you gave material aid, if you were a widow and you had money to give, or lead shot, or hay, or lodging, and somebody recorded it down and said “Widow Johnson, thank you very much for putting us up,” signed, Governor Clinton. And pay her some money. If that’s in an old book somewhere, Widow Johnson is a patriot and could be an ancestor in the DAR.

Fisher: Wow! So there’s a long list of things. I remember one of my wife’s down in North Carolina supplied bacon to the troops and that qualified him for patriotic service. And what was the other one you just mentioned, civil service?

Sarah: Civil service, any kind of a state, or provincial, or local official, who was in the American government, as opposed to the Crown government.

Fisher: Right.

Sarah: Even a supervisor of roads, I think that was one of my ancestors, a supervisor of roads, but the Americans were paying him and it was between you know November ‘75 and... I can’t remember the exact dates. I’m a bad DAR [Laughs].

Fisher: [Laughs]

Sarah: We consider ‘75 to ‘83, if you held that position, and again if there’s a record of it, and it was the American government, the American cause, even though you were just a civil servant, you qualified to be an ancestor in the DAR.

Fisher: And that’s really the key to all of this isn’t it? I mean, there are many, many, soldiers and people who fought in the Revolution on behalf of the patriot cause, and records of their service do not exist. I mean a lot of them.

Sarah: Yes, indeed.

Fisher: In fact, I had one who was in the area of upstate New York near where you are, who was obviously involved in the Revolution because he signed what’s called “The Articles of Association” the “Revolutionary Pledge.” But we have no death date on him, we don’t know what happened to him.  I don’t know if he did ever serve, but he was a Justice at the time. And so having just discovered from your list that my guy was a signer of The Articles of Association, I now realize that we would qualify under him for membership in SAR and DAR.

Sarah: Absolutely! The Articles of Association was – I don’t remember if it’s specifically a New York state thing? I think maybe it was.

Fisher: It is. It started in New York City from what I see, right after Lexington and Concord.

Sarah: Yes. And you know, copies of it were sent around and all the local towns would be “Hear ye, hear ye, come out and sign this thing if you agree with us.” And the kicker was if you didn’t agree – and this was very early in the war by the way –

Fisher: Right.

Sarah: ... April ‘75 started and by the summer time it was rolling across what was the state at the time, the colony. So if you were uncertain, you weren’t necessarily a Tory or a bad guy, but if you said “I don’t want to sign that,” they’d put your name on the back and say “People who refused to sign” and they’d write your name on the back.

Fisher: Yes. And there’s a lot of folks on there, including people who were in uniform for the Crown.

Sarah: Yes. And there are people on the back side who said they didn’t want to sign in ‘75, who fought in ‘76 and ‘77 who changed their minds, too. And that brings up an interesting point with DAR considered services. We have something called “The last known act.”  

Fisher: Hmm.

Sarah: Which means, that if you signed The Articles of Association and said “I believe in the American cause” and then in ‘76 you’re fighting for the British, and we have record of that, you’re not a patriot. No matter if you signed that document or not. Because you turned sides and your last known act was fighting for the British.

Fisher: Right. And so the other way would work too, right?

Sarah: Yeah. And I had a perspective member who said “Well, I have a worksheet that my grandmother filled out years and years ago for this one particular guy, let’s call him John Johnson, and I said “Well, John Johnson has a record here that he was in Nova Scotia [Laughs] in ‘79 with blah, blah Rangers for the Crown.

Fisher: So he left as a Loyalist?

Sarah: He left as a Loyalist. He had fought - the funny thing about this guy is that he had fought in like Westchester County, and then just changed his mind and went up and fought for the British. And I’m like “I’m sorry, we’re going to have to find you somebody else.”

Fisher: Yeah, because of the last recorded act, of course. If they didn’t sign The Articles of Association, and then did fight for the cause later, then they’re eligible. That makes sense.

Sarah: Exactly, yeah.

Fisher: Sure.

Sarah: Or the other way around. Like some people get freaked out when they see their ancestor’s name listed on possible Tories on the back side of one of these things. I’m like “It was so early!” If you had any trepidation that you might sign up for the wrong cause and all of a sudden all your land and possessions are gone because you signed up with this ridiculous rebellion that sounds like it’s not going anywhere [Laughs] think about it, it must have been very, very scary at the time to sign on.

Fisher: Yes.

Sarah: But if you look at the lists, the bulk of the lists are all signers and then the back side there usually like a handful of guys that didn’t sign.

Fisher: Where are the originals of these lists?

Sarah: I do not know. I assume it’s in the New York State Archive somewhere.

Fisher: Hmm. So they still exist.

Sarah: Yeah, I think so. I think that what you usually run across is a transcription for sure. And it’s frustrating because sometimes it says “German, name eligible” and I’m like “That must be my guys.” 

Fisher: [Laughs]. Well let me ask you this Sarah, what about other states? They must have had similar things like this that qualify people for membership in SAR and DAR.

Sarah: Oh sure. If you didn’t have a list circulated to sign up that somebody kept and held on to forever and ever. There were other things like oaths of fidelity to the cause. They were in different states. For example, in Boston there were people who were members of the Boston Tea Party and that’s all they did and there may be some record of that in Massachusetts. Anybody who just defended a fort, he didn’t actually fight, but he just stood in front of a fort and did that, that could be in any state or any colony. If you were just a minister and you’ve got your church records that indicate Minister Johnson gave a very patriotic sermon in 1776 and that’s in Connecticut, then he could be a patriot because he gave this really rousing patriotic sermon that roused people to the cause.

Fisher: Wow. It’s just amazing how much there was to it. And when you think about it, I mean this was also part of the growing desire to separate from England. I mean the battle was about independence, it wasn’t about everything else that was to come in the 19th century, but at that point it was just about independence and separation. And you could see the fervor building by the number of people who signed these things, and the few who wouldn’t.

Sarah: Correct. Yeah. People felt like they were just being pushed around by England and once it got started rolling in Massachusetts, it just rolled straight across. It’s just incredible to read the firsthand accounts of people raising militias and going to extreme, especially in the beginning of the War, extreme lengths to take cannons and march to Canada and all these crazy things. It’s amazing they survived. It’s amazing anything happened. It’s amazing we actually won the War [Laughs].

Fisher: It is, isn’t it? I mean you look at Ticonderoga, it’s like “Are you kidding me?” All of it, we capture it, we give it back! [Laughs] It’s like “Really?” And then we haul the cannons back down. I mean through the snow and beat them in Boston. I don’t understand how this could have been done. But it’s great stuff. Thank you so much Sarah, always great to talk to you. There’s so much more we could talk about but we have so many other things to get on to today. Have a great Independence Day and keep up all the good work you’re doing in making sure all these great people are remembered for posterity.

Sarah: Well thanks for having me.

Fisher: And coming up in three minutes, we’re going to be talking to Rhonda McClure, from NEHGS about planning your research trip to Italy, on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show.         

Segment 3 Episode 94

Host: Scott Fisher with guests David Allen Lambert and Rhonda McClure

Fisher: And welcome back to America's Family History Show, Extreme Genes and ExtremeGenes.com. It is Fisher here, your Radio Roots Sleuth with my good friend David Allen Lambert back on, the Chief Genealogist from the New England Historic and Genealogical Society and American Ancestors, and his good friend, genealogist Rhonda McClure. Hi Rhonda, welcome back to the show.

Rhonda: Hi. Thanks for having me back.

Fisher: Now David, she's got a lot of stuff going on there. You actually let her escape and go out and travel to Europe?

David: Well you know, we like to let people on a short leash at NEHGS, so we figured across to Europe we could probably still pull her back. We haven't thought of the Siberia trip yet, but it's probably still on the works.

Fisher: Well, and you know, now that summer is here, there's so many people who are trying to figure out what to do. "How do you plan a trip, a genealogical trip across the pond?" And Rhonda, you recently went to Italy. And how was that experience? Talk about it and give us some ideas of how people can plan for these things.

Rhonda: Well, it was a wonderful experience. I actually spent three and a half weeks over there, traveled all over Italy for a project that we were doing. It was definitely a learning curve in certain areas and especially if people are not familiar with the language, that's going to be their first hurdle.

Fisher: Yeah. You know, I went to Germany many years ago. And somebody told me when I got there not to worry about it, because all the Germans spoke English. But when I got there, none of the Germans spoke English!

Rhonda: It's definitely interesting. Certain areas, larger towns, the cities obviously there's more English spoken. But when I was staying with a particular family over there in Rome, one of the younger kids, twenty one, he commented that only Italians speak Italian, everybody else speaks English. And so, a lot of the younger crowd are obviously learning English as a primary language for them, but the problem is that if you get to some of the smaller communities or go into areas where dialects are spoken, that's where you really can run into some problems.

Fisher: Hmm, not bad. And how did you manage that?

Rhonda: Well actually I had been conversing via email with an Archivio di Stato, which is like a State Archive. And they knew I was coming. But it was in a remote area, it wasn't exactly a thriving metropolis. When I got there, unfortunately their southern dialect was just different enough that we were really struggling. Finally the Archivist looked at me and she asked if I spoke French, which I did, so we conversed the rest of the day in French.

Fisher: [Laughs] I did that kind of thing myself once going over the Alps from France into Italy speaking a second language for everybody involved and we got by barely that way. So it's a good way to go. So tell us about your planning for this and how you set it up and what kind of things that you learned, what kind of mistakes you made, as well?

Rhonda: Well the planning was sort of a little loosey goosey shall we say in that I knew about the first week where I was going to be. I was going to be in Rome for the first week talking to some family members who lived there for this project, but beyond that, it was sort of left up to whom else I was going to be able to get in contact with. So I only had made two hotel reservations, the one in Rome and one in a town called Ceccano which is south of Rome. What I didn't realize was that Ceccano has no taxis.

Fisher: Uh oh!

Rhonda: And so I got off at the train station, I'm looking around and of course I've come with my big luggage, because I'm going to be there for so long. I ended up going across the street to a local bar and asking about a taxi. And the gentleman was very kind, he said, "Nope, one town back." I kind of looked at him like, "Well, now what do I do?" He very quickly found one of his friends who took me to the hotel.

Fisher: Wow!

Rhonda: And as we were winding up this very kind of curvy road and I had no idea if we were really going to the hotel. I was sort of sitting there saying, "Wow! I'm in the car of a total stranger going I don't know where in a foreign country."

Fisher: And can't even speak to him probably.

Rhonda: Well, yeah. To this day, I don't know what I promised this man.

Fisher: [Laughs]

Rhonda: I just know that when I got to the hotel, I played stupid American and dashed in the hotel. [Laughs]

Fisher: Wow! How would you have handled this differently?

Rhonda: Well, from that point forward, I scouted out, because I was traveling by train all over the country. So I made sure that wherever I was, I was either very close to the train station such that I could dump my luggage at the hotel. So my hotels now became close to the train station, rather than maybe close to something I needed.

Fisher: Great tip! Great tip, yes!

Rhonda: And the other thing I think I would do differently when I go back is I would pack much lighter. It was one of those things where I was like, Oh, I don't know if I'll have a chance to do laundry and things, but that meant I had like this really massive suitcase that I was hauling everywhere. And they don't exactly have a whole lot of elevators and escalators to get you from one train track to the other. So I was doing a lot of schlepping up and down.

Fisher: Oh boy! Well that's all great advice and good things to think about. Where did you go and what were some of your experience with the records?

Rhonda: Well, I went to Rome where I spent most of my time talking to family members. And there was also as luck would have it a museum of immigration that had literally just opened like that year at the Vittorio Emanuele II Monument down in the lower part, which was fascinating! And then I went to Ceccano, south of Rome, as my next stop and spent three days in the cemetery there, because they wouldn't let me take pictures on pain of arrest.

Fisher: Really!? You could be arrested taking pictures in a cemetery?

Rhonda: At that particular one, yes, you could. It was posted at the cemetery. So I did a lot of scouring and transcribing, wishing I could take pictures.

Fisher: Do they watch you while you're in there?

Rhonda: You know, I didn't know and I wasn't about to tempt fate, because the time Amanda Knox was, you know, being released, I was very aware of Italian prison life.

Fisher: [Laughs] Yeah, I bet you were!

Rhonda: From there I went to Milan. And that was sort of my personal side trip. I went not for fashion, but for hockey.

Fisher: Oh, you're a hockey nut.

Rhonda: Yeah, nut is probably a little mild.

David: That is definitely putting it mildly.

Fisher: [Laughs]

David: Her knowledge of hockey surpasses most of the knowledge of probably any man sitting in a bar room in Boston.

Fisher: [Laughs]

David: She could probably talk the shop better than probably some of the people in the NHL.

Fisher: That probably makes you very attractive to a lot of men in your area, Rhonda.

Rhonda: I wouldn't know. You know if you can find one, let me know.

Fisher: [Laughs]

Rhonda: [Laughs] So, I spent a couple of days there, literally as I said just to go to a hockey game. Then from there I went over to the Adriatic side of Italy to a town called Ancona. Again, that was my home base, because that was where the train would take me. And then I had to take a smaller train in, I thought to a town called Sassoferrato, changing trains in a town just west of that called Fabriano.

Fisher: Do you do a lot of this on the fly?

Rhonda: I did, yes. I would get to wherever I was going and then I would look in and I would like book my next train and I would book my next hotel. So I had gotten my train tickets for Sassoferrato. I got to Fabriano and was informed that there was a substitution of a bus, which you know I was like, "Okay, I take buses here in Boston. No big deal." And what I discovered was that the lovely coach bus, double of a school bus and that because all the kids know where to get off, the bus driver wasn't announcing the stops.

Fisher: Uh oh!

Rhonda: I ended up at the end of the line. The guy looked at me he was like, "Oh yeah, you were supposed to get off at Sassoferrato." So he put me on another bus. I'm sure there was some discussion of the stupid American again and this bus driver proceeded to flirt with me until he got me back to Sassoferrato.

Fisher: [Laughs]

Rhonda: And there I spent time again in the cemetery. This one I was allowed to take pictures at, so I was very happy about that.

Fisher: So this is not a problem nationwide.

Rhonda: No, no, no, no, no, I think different ones like I said. If I had had extra time in Ceccano, I could have gone to Frosinone and I could have applied for a permit.

Fisher: Oh!

Rhonda: But because my time there was very strict, I felt like it was better to use my time at the cemetery.

Fisher: Well it sounds like it’s good to be aware, though, that each place is different, so that you don't go with an anticipation that you can do something that's going to wind up getting you in a lot of trouble.

Rhonda: Exactly! And the other big thing is, anybody thinking of researching over there, wants to do it, they want to start a dialogue before they ever show up. The Italian way of doing things is very laid back. You know, the first day I got to Campobasso, they were like, “Oh yeah, no, come back tomorrow” kind of approach.

Fisher: Oh boy!

Rhonda: So you want to be prepared for that, but you also want to let them know that you're coming, let them know that you appreciate everything they're doing. You know, start a dialogue, maybe make a donation if you're trying to get into the records of the particular church in an area, which may or may not work. You don't want to just show up on their doorstep.

Fisher: Wow! Well, all great advice. And I wish we could continue this conversation, Rhonda. Thank you so much. We're glad you're home safely. You obviously got the right plane, and that's a much bigger deal than the bus!

Rhonda: It was, yes!

Fisher: [Laughs] She's Rhonda McClure, genealogist at the New England Historic Genealogical Society. Thanks for coming on.

Rhonda: Oh, it's my pleasure.

Fisher: And coming up in three minutes, we're going to talk to Tom Perry from TMCPlace.com about what to do with those boxes of old audio cassettes you have, on Extreme Genes, America's Family History Show.

Segment 4 Episode 94

Host: Scott Fisher with guest Tom Perry

Fisher: It is preservation time at Extreme Genes, America's Family History Show and ExtremeGenes.com. I am Fisher, your Radio Root Sleuth with Tom Perry from TMCPlace.com, we call him the Preservation Authority and for a darn good reason, he just... He knows a lot of stuff. And Tom, good to have you back.

Tom: Good to be here.

Fisher: And we have an email from Hays, Kansas. Sue has emailed that she writes her family's newsletter and distributes to the majority of the clan on CD. She said: "I just listened to an episode where you talked about how quickly CDs go bad. Boy that is so true! This is the 11th year for the letter. I'd like to purchase the Taiyo Yuden disks that you talked about, and provide everyone with a compilation disk this year. When I went out to see about purchasing them there were several choices, and I'm not sure which I need. 8 X, 50X, 52 X, CD, DVD. Help! Thank you. Sue."

Tom: [Laughs] Sorry, Sue. I'm not laughing at you, I'm laughing with you. Taiyo Yuden disks are usually only sold online or at duplicators such as ourselves, because Taiyo Yuden the company doesn't like to sell to mass merchandizes like K-Mart and places like that. Because most places you walk into, they don't know their DVD from their CD from their HDD. You want to make sure you go to an online merchandizer or one of our locations that know has a good reputation, has been around for a while. If they're Amazon or eBay, make sure they have a lot of starts that people are giving them. Good information. When you get the disks, make sure the packaging is shrink wrapped, it's sealed and it is says "Taiyo Yuden" on it. Because unfortunately there are some people out there that try to say that they have Taiyo Yuden disks, and they're really not Taiyo Yuden disks. Now if you see a big JVC logo on it, don't worry. Because JVC Victor, about a year ago did a co-op with Taiyo Yuden and started using their disks in their higher band type stuff that are better quality. And they figured why reinvent the wheel. Taiyo Yuden makes the best. That's what all the professionals want, so let's do a deal with them. So if it says JVC in red letters, it's okay. It's a good Taiyo Yuden disk.

Fisher: Alright. So how do you spell that, so people can search it as they go about this?

Tom: Okay. Taiyo Yuden is two words. “T A I Y O -Y U D E N” So you should just be able to Google it. Or if you go to disk wholesalers, manufacturers, places like that, you should be able to get a good hit on them. Different people sell them at different prices. But one thing you have to be careful of is if it's too good to be true, I guarantee it's too good to be true.

Fisher: Which means it's probably a...?

Tom: Knockoff, or something like that. And the thing is you can't hold it up to the window and say: "Oh, hey, this isn't really a Taiyo Yuden. This is another disk." You won't know that until three months or three years down the road when it doesn't work anymore.

Fisher: Oh boy. Wouldn't that be brutal?

Tom: Oh, it would be awful. It would be awful. Like we just celebrated our 43rd anniversary a couple of weeks ago, and we have been using Taiyo Yuden's for I guess at least 20 years. That's when the disks first started really coming out. And, knock on wood. I have never ever had one Taiyo Yuden disk come back that has stopped working or anything.

Fisher: Do you think that means that they're still good 20 years later?

Tom: Oh, absolutely. You know, we guarantee our disks. We say: "Hey, if anything ever happens with one of the duplicates we've done for you or masters we've done for you, I don't care what the problem is as long as you haven't broken the disk or physically damaged it, bring it in and we will redo it at no charge. Because Taiyo Yuden makes the best disks, that's why we use them so we don't have to keep redoing your job.” And after the break we'll talk about your questions on which disk to buy.

Fisher: Oh boy. And there's so many choices, aren't there?

Tom: Oh, there are. They start out at like 4X, go all the way up to about 60X, DVDs, CDs, BluRay, everything.

Fisher: All right, we'll get into that coming up in three minutes on Extreme Genes, America's Family History Show.

Segment 5 Episode 94

Host: Scott Fisher with guest Tom Perry

Fisher: And we are back, final segment of Extreme Genes, America's Family History Show. It is Fisher here, your Radio Root Sleuth with Tom Perry, the Preservation Authority from TMCPlace.com. Alright, Tom, we're talking about these Taiyo Yuden disks that last years, many times more than most disks do.

Tom: Absolutely.

Fisher: And Sue had sent us this email from Hays, Kansas. She asks about speeds now. 8X, 50X, 52X, CD, DVD, straighten her out and the rest of us with her.

Tom: All right. When disks first came out the first disk that they released was called the 1X. That means it takes the same amount of time to burn as it does to play.

Fisher: Pretty much real time, right?

Tom: Exactly. That's exactly what they were. They were really, really slow machines. Then they came out with 2X which is twice as fast. 4X, four times as fast. All the way up to 60X, is sixty times as fast. Now one thing you want to look at, speed is not always the most important thing. You want to make sure you have the right disks for your machines. Like a lot of the first machines that came out that maybe are 2 or 4 times, don't buy 6 or 8s or 10s and put in them, because you're wasting your money. However, if your machine will actually down burn them as what we call it, you can still play them. So if you have a 2X machine, sometimes you also play 8X disks, but it's only going to record it at a 2 times speed.

Fisher: How do you know what you've got?

Tom: Oh, on your machine? Oh, your machine should say. Like if you have a Mac, you go up to the little Apple and see about this Mac, and they'll tell you what speed your burner is. And a lot of the programs that actually burn disks will go in and read your disk driver and say hey, you know, you can burn at 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, and then you pick which one. Like the DVD burners that we have, they're total state of the art, you know, they'll do the 64X. However, just because they'll do that, we don't do that fast. The slower you burn, the better chance you're going to have of not having any mistakes or anything. So I usually burn only mine at, you know, sometimes 8/10X, it depends what we're doing. Not that it won't do well at a fast speed, because ours have a redundant system in it where it will go and check the disk to make sure there are no errors before it releases it.

Fisher: Wow.

Tom: So it's a really cool system. Sometimes I'll burn them at a slower speed than it's rated for. Like I could have a 64 X disk and maybe only burn it at 32, just because it's a little bit slower. Sometimes when we're working with people that have damaged disks we burn it at 1X. Because then it's a better chance that wherever that hiccup is in the disk that it might be able to compensate, over track it and write it correctly so the disk can be used. We've had people bring in disks that they couldn't play in their machine, but we could play it on our high end machine, and so then if it's not copyrighted, we would make a duplicate for them at 1X speed, so if it's a two hour disk, it's going to take at least two hours to do it, and then another hour to verify that everything is where it is. But if that's the only way you can recover your disk, it's worth the time and the trouble, you want to do that. But some of the really old equipment that's rated at 2X won't be able to even use an 8X disk. We have a gentleman that comes in our store usually once a month and buys 2X disks from us because he has tried 4 and everything else and nothing will burn on his machine, it will reject the disk every time. And they're hard to come by. So if you have a machine like that that's sitting in the garage and you're going to want to use it again, you better make sure you have some old disks because it is hard finding 2s and 4s anymore.

Fisher: Well, it sounds like it's about time for somebody to go out and get a new machine, doesn't it?

Tom: Well, unfortunately some of these real old machines are really, really cool, and they never sold a ton of them and it's all about money in the big world, so they stopped making them. So this is the only machine that he has that's recording, and he doesn't want to reinvent the wheel. They work for him. He understands his machine. He doesn't want to mess around. But sometimes you're going to have to do that. And another thing, if you have duplicators where you have like more than one disk drive, you might have 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6, if one goes out you need to replace them all at the same time, you can't just replace one of them.

Fisher: Oh boy. What a mess.

Tom: Oh, absolutely.

Fisher: Sounds like there's a lot to know with these things, Tom.

Tom: Oh there is. So if you have any questions write to me at [email protected] and we'll get back to you!

Fisher: All right. Thanks for joining us.

Tom: Good to be here again.

Fisher: You know, it never seems like we have enough time. There is so much to cover. Thanks once again to Rhonda McClure and David Allen Lambert from the New England Historic Genealogical Society and to our friend Sarah Hermans from the Daughters of the American Revolution who had some great stuff to tell us about getting your ancestors qualified for DAR membership by means other than military service. Take care. We’ll talk to you again next week. And remember, as far as everyone knows, we're a nice, normal family!

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