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Burke’s Peerage to Include Illegitimate Children

July 2nd, 2009

Burke’s Peerage and Gentry is finally succumbing to the demands of the 21st century.

The guide, which lists the genealogy of every royal and aristocratic family in the Europe and the U.S., is to include illegitimate children for the first time.

As part of a major shake-up, the book will also list offspring in order of when they are born, rather than males first, which has been tradition.

Over the next few months the records of one million upper class families will be carefully updated to bring them in line with the modern format.

You can read more in the Daily Mail Online at

FamViewer Version 2.0, Genealogy Software for iPhone and iPod Touch

July 2nd, 2009

The following announcement was written by Aster Software:

Aster Software Releases FamViewer Version 2.0, Genealogy Software for iPhone and iPod Touch

LEXINGTON, KY, June 29, 2009 — Aster Software has announced the release of version 2.0 of its genealogy application, FamViewer. FamViewer allows genealogists to carry their genealogy databases with them on their iPhone and iPod Touch.

FamViewer imports standard GEDCOM files and displays them on the iPhone. GEDCOM files can be uploaded to FamViewer with a web browser on a desktop computer or downloaded to FamViewer from any web site or web server via WiFi. FamViewer will import the GEDCOM file and display its contents. Once a GEDCOM file is downloaded and imported you can view individuals, families, notes and sources. Navigate the family tree with a touch. You can carry your genealogy database with you wherever you bring your iPhone or iPod Touch.

New in version 2.0 is an ancestry chart that displays up to eight generations for anyone in the database. Tap on the name of anyone displayed in the chart and go to their family page.

An index by surname allows the user to find anyone in the database. A family view, resembling a family group sheet, displays three generations of a family: parents, children, and grandparents. Touch the parent’s names to view the details of their life events and personal attributes. Each event and attribute can have sources and notes, which are visible in another view.

All the FamViewer views work in portrait or landscape orientation so long names, places, dates or other data can be easily viewed.

FamViewer isn’t tied to any desktop genealogy software. Active genealogy researchers already own genealogy software that they run on their desktop, or laptop, computers. All modern genealogy software can export their genealogy databases in GEDCOM format. FamViewer will import GEDCOM files exported by today’s popular genealogy applications.

User comments about FamViewer from online reviews:

“A perfect solution. This genealogy app is exactly what I’ve been waiting for.”

“Great App!”

“Great iPhone App. This is a great portable application that I have long awaited for my iPhone. I use Family Tree Maker and have successfully imported 80,000+ names. The customer support and responsiveness is awesome!”

“Love it, and with the latest update, you can see the actual pedigree chart, it’s great.”

“Outstanding software. Outstanding value. It was great having my entire TMG database (all 2700 people and nearly 2000 sources) with me on the last two business trips to Washington DC (the Archives and the DAR Library) and all on the iphone.”

Version 2.0 improvements:

  • Added family tree view that allows viewing eight generations of a family tree.
  • Added support to display long notes.
  • Added ability to connect to FamViewer using Bonjour.
  • Improvements to the networking code should provide better reliability on certain networks.
  • Implement choosing the home family.
  • Added progress bar that shows progress of importing a GEDCOM file.
  • Plays a sound when the GEDCOM import is complete.
  • Changed placeholder text on the family page view from ‘Grandfather’/’Grandmother’ to ‘None’ due to user feedback.

FamViewer can be purchased at the Apple appstore and is priced at US$14.99. To find out more about FamViewer visit the appstore with iTunes. FamViewer is listed under Productivity Applications and Genealogy. More information is also available at View an overview movie showing FamViewer’s main features at

About Aster Software.

Aster Software is a small company specializing in products for iPhone, iPod Touch, and Macintosh. The company website is

The 1911 census is now complete

June 23rd, 2009

The final batch of records has now been added to the 1911 census, and includes the Channel Islands of Alderney, Guernsey, Jersey and Sark, and the Isle of Man.

They’ve also added records for around 135,000 soldiers based at 288 military establishments overseas, and around 36,000 naval personnel on 147 Royal Navy Ships overseas.

In 1911 the British Empire was nearing its peak and you can find soldiers and sailors located across the globe at remote outposts of the empire, as well as in other countries, such as Egypt, where Britain had a political and military presence but which were never formally part of the empire.

You will be able to search for army personnel who were stationed overseas, plus family members who went with them, as well as soldiers who were absent on the night of the census, and navy personnel who were onboard ship.

One million new Poor Law records

June 23rd, 2009

More than a million additional records covering the period from 1834-1940 have now been added to the Ancestry UK.  These records were created by the boards of guardians responsible for the care of the poor in their respective Poor Law Unions.

The poorest in society had recourse to some form of relief since Elizabethan times by virtue of the Poor Law. Poor law relief generally applied to the poorest and most vulnerable individuals such as the elderly, orphaned, unemployed, or the sick and afflicted. These individuals were eligible to receive help such as monetary relief and other daily necessities like food, clothing, and work – usually administered via the dreaded workhouses. Children could be appointed to apprenticeships or placed in schools and other institutions. The records also include registers of creed, school, apprentices, servants, children, and inmates among others.

BBC1 asks again Who Do You Think You Are?

June 19th, 2009

Sex and the City star Kim Cattrall, Big Brother presenter Davina McCall and Radio 1 DJ Chris Moyles are to all feature in the new run of BBC1’s genealogy series Who Do You Think You Are?

The show, produced by Wall to Wall, will return in the summer for another 6 x 60-minute run which will also see Peep Show comedian David Mitchell, wildlife presenter Kate Humble and The Office star Martin Freeman all research their ancestry.

Read more here

19th century British Library Newspapers Online

June 18th, 2009

The following announcement was written by the British Library:

June 17, 2009 — Available for the first time at, The British Library, in partnership with JISC (Joint Information Systems Committee) and Gale, part of Cengage Learning, has today launched the public version of its 19th century British Library Newspaper website.

Bathing machines, children as young as nine smoking and drinking, Vesta Tilley – London’s very own Pop Idol, the banking collapse of 1878 and zero percent income tax are just a few of the fascinating items researchers can now look at online.

For the first time ever, users regardless of their location will be able to explore over two million pages of newspaper from 49 national and regional UK titles at the click of a button. With enhanced search capabilities and new imaging techniques, serious and amateur researchers now have access to vivid newspaper reports previously only available via hard copy in Reading Rooms.

Chosen by leading experts and academics to present a cross section of 19th century society, the website offers its users highly illustrated materials on topics as diverse as business and sport, politics and entertainment. The collection focuses on national newspapers such as the Daily News, English regional papers, for example the Manchester Times, home country newspapers from Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales, weekly titles such as Penny Illustrated Paper and Graphic and specialist titles such that covered Victorian radicalism and Chartism such as Charter.

Users are now able to read first-hand factual reporting of the Battle of Trafalgar in the Examiner and the gory details of the Whitechapel murders in the melodramatic Illustrated Police News. Alternatively, researchers can access reports directly at their desktops on the first FA Cup final between Wanderers and Royal Engineers at the Kenington Oval in 1872 or the first England-Australia Test match in 1877. Some of the most famous authors of the 19th century are also represented, including Dickens and Thackeray.

Searches of the site are free and downloads of full-text articles are available by purchasing either a 24-hour or seven-day pass. Users can buy a 24-hour pass (up to 100 downloads) for £6.99 or a seven-day pass (up to 200 downloads) for £9.99. Access to The Graphic and The Penny Illustrated Paper is free.

Simon Bell, the British Library’s Head of Product Development, said: “There’s a huge appetite for wider online access to this kind of resource, which is already well-used by Readers at the British Library and by people in Higher and Further Education. The new pay-as-you-go service will enable users across the UK who don’t wish to travel to our Reading Rooms in London or Yorkshire to delve into this unrivalled online resource.”

Simon Fowler, Editor, Ancestors Magazine, said: “This new service really does open up a major new resource for family historians. Realistically for the first time it is possible to use newspapers to complement other records to build up a rounder portrait of our ancestors, with information that would not be possible to obtain elsewhere.”

Alastair Dunning, Digitisation Programme Manager at JISC added: “This is one of many JISC-funded projects which will open up valuable slices of history to new audiences using online channels. The British Library site means genealogists, academics and the public alike now have easy access to a realm of fascinating information – which is core to our ethos of backing innovative uses of technology.”

Jim Draper, Vice President and Publisher at Gale said, “This service fulfills a vision of making these fascinating historical records available to the widest possible audience. Now researchers the world over – historians, genealogists, and the merely curious – can discover the nineteenth century in exciting new ways.”

You can also watch a video about the new service at

Irish Family History Research

June 17th, 2009

With hundreds of rare and, in most cases, exclusive searchable databases, as well as other essential Irish genealogy resources covering every Irish county, this site is one of the most useful websites for Irish Family History Research.

All Irish genealogical materials available on this site are extremely rare and are exclusive to Irish Family – some are free, others require a registration fee. The availability of the exclusive Memorials of the Dead database has proved a tremendous success apparently.

In the last five years, many thousands of people have visited this site to successfully locate information about their Irish Ancestors, so if you have hit a brick wall in your Irish family research, you might find their support team helpful as they offer free advice to members.


June 15th, 2009

GEDitCOM II is a new genealogy application for MacOS X that sets the standard for Macintosh ease-of-use editing of genealogy files, for customization of the user experience, and for power features allowing the greatest access to your genealogical data. GEDitCOM II is a complete rewrite of the former GEDitCOM application.

GEDitCOM II is a rewritten version of GEDitCOM using Apple’s Cocoa environment. It will greatly exceed user-interface features of GEDitCOM. It will retain the philosophy of GEDitCOM to be a customizable genealogy application for editing and viewing GEDCOM genealogy files. Users of GEDitCOM, should find GEDitCOM II easy to use.

For a full list of features and to download a trial version, visit

All Welsh counties now available in 1911 census

June 12th, 2009

All 13 Welsh counties are now available on

  • Anglesey
  • Brecknockshire
  • Carnarvonshire
  • Cardiganshire
  • Carmarthenshire
  • Denbighshire
  • Flintshire
  • Glamorgan
  • Merionethshire
  • Montgomeryshire
  • Monmouthshire
  • Pembrokeshire
  • Radnorshire

These records contain a total of over 2.4 million individuals, and over a million households.

Search for your Welsh ancestors on the 1911 census now

Two languages

As the 1911 census is the first where household schedules were preserved, you will find that some of the census returns are printed and completed entirely in Welsh, while some are written in a mixture of Welsh and English. To help those who are not native Welsh speakers, there is a site section of useful tips, and translation tables to help you translate the most common Welsh census terms into English.

Common surnames and occupations

The tips will also help you narrow down your search results if you happen to have an ancestor with one of the most frequently occuring names, such as Jones or Evans, or one who worked in one of the dominant industries such as farming or coal mining.

Good luck with your Welsh research.

Kith and Kin Pro 3

May 18th, 2009

SpanSoft are delighted to announce the release of “Kith and Kin Pro 3”, the original Windows genealogy software.

We have improved the program’s unique best-selling user interface as well as adding a host of new features.

Kith and Kin Pro 3 is a genealogy software package for storing, querying and documenting family trees. It features an easy to use graphical interface and powerful data management tools which makes it ideal for large or small trees.

The Kith and Kin series is the original Windows genealogy software, started in 1993 under Windows 3.1, and now used by thousands of users in over 50 countries worldwide.

These are just some of the new features:

  • Adobe PDF file export for all reports.- Soundex and Metaphone searches. This allows the user to search for similar sounding surnames.- Soundex and Metaphone code calculator.
  • Families can be arranged into selectable “Layers”. This allows the user to “grey out” all families except the ones he wants to work on.
  • Simplified Search Window. As well as powerful SQL queries, users will be able to carry out much simpler searches.
  • Several different picture records can be linked to the same image file.
  • Pictures can be arranged into an order defined by the user.
  • Pictures can be added to source references and source documents.
  • Drag and drop pictures from Windows Explorer.
  • Web page export uses a CSS stylesheet. This makes the Web pages much easier to customise.- Supplied with several pre-defined stylesheets.

Full details are on the new Kith and Kin Pro 3 Website

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