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4 Steps to Begin WWI Research For A Country (Liberia)

Posted by on Oct 21, 2017 in Genealogy Education, Military research, Useful Tips, WWI | 0 comments

This post will cover the four initial steps to research the participation of a country (non-U.S.) in WWI. At a recent talk about ancestors in the U.S. military, a very enthusiastic genealogist asked me a question: how could he research his Liberian WWI ancestor? Questions like this make me think, and make me want to learn more. These first steps help you get oriented by learning more about the topic.   1. Google Start with Google. Search for terms that combine your country name with “WWI” or “World War One”. You...

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NaNoWriMo: A Great Time to Write

Posted by on Oct 17, 2017 in Genealogy Education, Useful Tips | 0 comments

Have you been thinking about writing your life story? There is a painless way to get underway and make serious headway on your project. Every November, writers from all over participate in National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), and set a goal to write 50,000 words in a month, which is the length of a novel. Many write non-fiction, but it is not against the rules to write about yourself! It is free to participate, and it is optional to sign up for an account. The website has some interesting tools, and can help you chart your progress as you...

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Researching Maryland WWII Ancestors

Posted by on Oct 6, 2017 in Genealogy Education, Military research, WWII | 0 comments

Perhaps you have seen the War Memorial in Baltimore. Did you know that the War Memorial in Baltimore serves as a repository for approximately 70,000 discharge papers of the Maryland veterans who served during World War II. Discharge papers are a great starting place for researching your WWII ancestors. These papers give the dates and branch of ancestors’ service, as well as where they fought, and the medals they earned. Veterans and their families can order the discharge papers. Check out the page with War Memorial Miscellaneous...

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Researching Maryland WWI Ancestors

Posted by on Oct 5, 2017 in Genealogy Education, Military research, WWI | 0 comments

In this blog, our books and talks, you may have seen the New York Service Abstracts of WWI Military Service in my examples. Have you looked for what your state has to offer? As I come across more of these resources, I plan to post information about them in this blog. This post describes a useful starting place for those who are researching Maryland WWI service members. To locate an abstract of your Maryland WWI ancestor, consult the two-volume book set, Maryland in the World War, 1917-1919; Military and Naval Service Records. Vol. I-II....

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5 Things Learned from an NPRC Archivist

Posted by on Oct 5, 2017 in Military research, NARA, WWI | 0 comments

If an archivist ever has time to chat, take advantage of it! They know so much that any information will either enhance what you know or inform you of something you did not know. No matter what you have read about destroyed records, always ask an archivist. Some records were able to be restored. Navy and Marine Corps files from WWI and WWII should be undamaged. Even if you are the next-of-kin, once a military file moves into archival status (discharge date of 1954 or prior), there is a fee to obtain it. You can always view the file in person...

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Two Days at the NPRC

Posted by on Sep 21, 2017 in Military research, NARA, Useful Tips, WWI, WWII | 0 comments

The National Personnel Records Center (NPRC) is an imposing facility located in St. Louis, MO.  This summer I spent two days researching the 51st Pioneer Infantry at the NPRC. This post describes the planning and visit to the facility; a subsequent post will discuss the specific records I researched during my visit. The NPRC the central repository of personnel-related records for both the military and civil services of the U.S. Government. Always remember that their priority is to serve current veterans. Everyone you meet at the facility and...

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Family History Outing: The National World War I Museum and Memorial (Part II)

Posted by on Sep 9, 2017 in Genealogy Education, Get Children Involved, Military research, WWI | 0 comments

When you walk into the Museum, you cross over a glass floor to enter the exhibits. Below your feet is a field of poppies; above you the tower through the glass ceiling. You then walk through the chronologically arranged galleries, experiencing trenches and a bomb crater. The artifacts include weapons, vehicles, flags, personal effects and uniforms. The walls are filled with data that helps put the conflict in perspective. There are activities for families, including a family visitor guide and interactive activities like creating your own...

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Family History Outing: The National World War I Museum and Memorial (Part I)

Posted by on Sep 4, 2017 in Genealogy Education, Get Children Involved, Military research, WWI | 0 comments

Dedicated in 1921 with five WWI leaders present, the Liberty Memorial Tower, Assyrian Sphinxes, Exhibit and Memorial Halls were completed in 1926. The newer part of the Museum sits below, and was completed in 2006. Read the Visitor Guide for the details of the Interior and Exterior. Symbolism is embedded in the architecture of the Museum. The Liberty Memory tower is 217 feet tall. Courage, Honor, Patriotism, and Sacrifice are the 40-foot Guardian Spirits on the Memorial. Ride the small elevator, and take a few steps for a 360-degree view of...

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“The Summer of 1918 (in 2017)”

Posted by on Aug 30, 2017 in Genealogy Education, Military research, NARA, WWI | 0 comments

This summer I spent a lot of time in 1918. It was a time when our nation had entered a war of global conflict, an ocean away. It was a time when U.S. men began being drafted into military service, training and traveling. It was when men from the U.S. took up arms in defense of civilization. The United States had a small army and had to ramp up quickly to gather the needed troops. Private organizations became part of the war effort. People on the home front geared up to support the war by buying war bonds, wrapping bandages and conserving food....

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5 Things to Tell New Genealogists

Posted by on Aug 12, 2017 in Genealogy Education, Useful Tips | 0 comments

Have you ever helped a friend start a family tree? Starting out with a blank tree, and beginning to fill it, is always a joy. I have done this a few times and have come up with some hints to tell people who are completely new to all of it.     1) Start with yourself and work backwards. When you work backward, you are sure to construct a solid trail to a family that you can be sure is yours.   2) No, really, start with yourself. Collect and scan all the documents that prove you and your relationships. Think about what you would...

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